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Posts tagged with: Islam

Prophets, protests and holocaust

Anyone who’s been on Youtube or Facebook or Blogs in general knows that no intelligent conversation can take place between two Internet-commenters. It’s like the paralympics being hosted on the Interwebs. Even if you win, you’re still retarded. During the last fortnight, ever since this unfortunate drawing contest issue caught fire.

I’ve been reading countless accounts of Pakistani Internet users in a variety of rhetoric styles which all sum up to this one thing: ‘they’ are out to get ‘us’ and they have COOKIES! Ok, I’m just joking about the cookies but I can practically hear Mr. Zaid Hamid saying in the most Dumbledore-esque voice: ‘I will only truly have left the Pakistani minds when none here are loyal to me’. Most of the Pakistanis today are channeling the same spirit which can only be likened to a mental patient caught between acute psychosis, paranoia and schizophrenia. The bottomline is, had we paid any attention to the course ‘Introduction to Logic-374’ in college, we would perhaps be aware of how absurd all our comments and arguments are. I will try to counter some in this post:

1. Blasphemy is a BIG deal:
Yes it is a big deal but so is tolerance. You are claiming to be the followers of a Prophet who preached that conquering wrath and anger is perhaps the bravest thing a man could do. I’m not a religious scholar but I’m quite sure that the Prophet who himself went to visit an old woman who used to throw garbage at him, the Prophet who only had well wishes for a city which reduced him to blood and tears when Angel Gabrielle stood at his command to just say the word and Taif would be history -that Prophet would not condone such inflammatory reactions in his name.
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Lahore High Court orders Facebook blocked till the 31st of May

Following hot in the footsteps of the controversial Draw Mohammed Day, Lahore High Court has issued orders to the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority to block facebook up till the 31st of May on an petition lodged by Islamic Lawyers Movement on Tuesday

Daily Times: Justice Ijaz Ahmad Chaudhry of the Lahore High Court on Tuesday issued notice to the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority secretary to reply until Wednesday (today), on a petition seeking a ban on Facebook, which is holding a competition of caricatures of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Islamic Lawyers Movement filed the petition through Chaudhry Zulfiqar advocate, who stated that a competition was announced on Facebook on April 20 which would continue until May 20, asking all the members of the website to create their caricatures to participate in the competition

Tribune reports that PTA urged the court to only ban those particular pages showing the offensive drawings. It is said PTA still awaits the orders when they will be handed down from the Ministry of IT, after which a nationwide ban will go into effect on facebook.com
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Draw Muhammad Day – The Muslim Response

I fully support the suggestion of this response to the Draw Muhammed Facebook page controversy, makes a compelling argument to strive for peace and tolerance. This issue was previously discussed previously on this blog

Join the Facebook Group page to Honour the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) and also the Fan Page here, not in reaction, but more as a proactive step trying to show the world religious tolerance and the the fact that how Islam preaches peace, tolerance and respect


Understanding Terrorism

image by ~trump on DeviantArt

I was deeply troubled by the recent suicide bombings of the innocents in the Kohat refugee camps. I was not surprised by the reaction of the Pakistan military and continuous shelling in response. I know I was not alone in this. The entire nation felt the pain of these refugees who were the victims of an extremist mindset. How cruel does one have to be to attack some people who are already homeless and helpless? Does one really have a second thought before killing himself and many others? These are some questions that occupy my mind before. Where are these terrorist organizations taking this war to? They have introduced an indiscriminate nature of attacks in the country. We all saw how two suicide bombers dressed in burqas struck a crowd of displaced people collecting aid handouts, killing at least 41 people. What bothers me more is where does one get all this courage from? Did these terrorist not see the faces of the people collecting aid? What in the world makes these men choose this path and why do they Pakistan so much?

The country is doing all it takes to put a stop to these terrorist activities. Along with the high intensity of military action, many think tanks have once again begun to explore whether a retort utilizing the tools of dialogue and negotiation might produce a better outcome. The prolonged war on terrorism keeps giving continuous hits to the financial standing of the country. Every morning I wake up and realize that the situation seems to keep getting worse. Terrorism must be stopped with whatever tool it takes before it is too late and the economy of the country cripples.

However, my perspective is poles apart from the others. My deep thoughts about terrorism stem from long inquiry into what creates conflict and violence between the Pakistanis. More importantly what keeps the terrorist going? What fuels the courage to the terrorist for going into mosques and shattering into pieces of flesh?
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To Shave or Not to Shave, that is the Question

An event was to be held on the 30th of March 2010 at Hall 6 of Expo Center Karachi, to break India’s world record of most people shaving at the same time. The event was being sponsored by Gillette, a reputed shaving company, the event was advertised well & over 2000 people showed up at the venue on their own free will, voluntarily, to be part of the smooth shavng spree.

The Organizing committee started receiving threats a couple of days leading to the event by Maulana Fazl ur Rehman & his cronies who called upon them to shutdown or face the consequences. The Maulana is said to have threatened to send a truck load of Madaressah boys to take care of the world record attempt. The organizers contacted Rangers for security and support who declined to help because they could only be deployed at the request of governmental approval, in turn the organizers resorted to coordinating their security cordon with the local police station who promised support


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Let History be our Mentor

Does Adolf Hitler ring a bell? Historian and analysts attribute his rise and fame to the geopolitical situation facing Germany. Hitler found Germany in a social and political mess, infighting for power and control of parliament was the only goal of each faction, with the military holding the system together. The economy was in shambles and people found it extremely difficult to make their ends meet, life was very harsh for them. On the global front communism was gaining currency and posed a severe threat to the German elite, the rich exorbitant and industrialists. Hitler exploited these long term factors through propaganda, the terror of his storm-troopers, and the brilliance of his speeches.

Invoking a sense of nationalism, providing economical solutions and offering a common enemy and scapegoat for the situation (Jews) Hitler instantly found mass appeal for his fascist agenda. The vicious little man with a program of hatred became an overnight hero. His rhetoric transformed Germany from a failed state to a super power but for what? The country went to war killed in millions and eventually was shared as a trophy by the allied armies. The visionary of great Germany ended up enslaving and separating its people, as the country was divided into East and West Germany. Adolf Hitler wrote the worst chapter of human history.
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Blind Faith or Emotional Pull?

Recent debates, especially on facebook, regarding Zaid Hamid and his relations with a convicted blasphemer who died in jail almost a decade ago have certainly caught the Pakistani youth by surprise. They find themselves locked in an argument which is taking a heavy toll on their intellect and energies. On one side there are people who look upto traditional religious scholars with a good number of years and experience in the matters of religion while the other segment is quite wary of these sources and choose to follow their “Sir” Zaid Hamid.

A closer look into the matter reveals that our youth can easily be generalized as passionate, emotional, irrational, impulsive, aggressive, vulnerable, know-it-all, mind guarded and above all frustrated. The description is equally valid for all the participants irrespective of their point of view. Ironic it may be both the parties well and truly are the future of Pakistan. These youngsters are enrolled in medical, engineering and management universities.
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Pervaiz Hoodbhoy against Burqas in Universities?

In a seminar on the “Education System in Pakistan: Lessons Learned and the Ways Forward” at the Islamic University in Islamabad Dr. Pervaiz Hoodbhoy made a very shocking and controversial statement to state that

The News: “The culture of effective communication was diminishing in universities as the number of female students hiding their faces with Burqa (veil) were rapidly increasing compared to the trends that prevailed during the decade of 60s and 70s”

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Intolerance in The Name of Religion

After Lahore blast, people will give you different reasons for the blasts; they will say that it is Pakistan and America’s fault; America and Pakistan trained these people earlier to fight against Soviets, and now they have turned against both; they will say these people have nothing to do with Islam, and Islam is a peaceful religion; they will say these people do not represent Islam. May be it is true. But somehow, somewhere religion is involved, and one can not deny that–hence, these savage killers believe that they are just about to meet 71 virgins after committing mass murder. They are doing all this in the name of God, the most compassionate, the most merciful; whether with his approval or without.

It is not just one particular religion, most religious people, whether belonging to Christianity, Hinduism, Judaism or Islam, are different from people, who let’s say have very casual attitude towards religion or do not believe in God at all. Here in USA, I have personally experienced, the more religious a person is, it is more likely that person would hate certain “others”. In the case of Christian religious fanatics in USA, they have long list of people whom they hate, but these days mainly Muslims.
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Aman Ki Asha – An Indo Pak Peace Project ?

India is preparing for a possible “two-front war” with China and Pakistan, Geo News quoted an Indian newspaper as saying on Wednesday, The News reported … something not new, Indian Establishment has been directly or indirectly showing hostility against Pakistan since Mumbai incident and yet we have this ‘Aman ki Asha’ thing going on, communicating (read conditioning) the already dazzled Pakistani masses to have a very friendly perception of their neighbors, whose involvement in the Karachi Ashura incident and Bolton Market Tragedy cannot also be ruled out, let alone in the Indian’s Involvement in Waziristan, frequent cross of fire at boarders etc  … and amidst of all this we have this Aman Ki Asha campaign only adding to the list of questions one might have against the intentions of our capricious (not quite though) neighbor …

I haven’t seen all the ads of this strange campaign, but this one is telling …


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MA Jinnah Road Bomb Blast of 28th Dec – Video of the devastation Next Day

A Bomb Blast ripped through MA Jinnah Road on 28th December 2009 – this video of the kilometer long stretch of road shows that the mobsters ransacked a large section of the street leaving a hundreds of shopkeepers devastated and a loss of millions of rupees.

A group of concerned citizens sympathized with many shopkeepers, trying to share in their grief but there were simply one too many. The kilometer stretch of road was in flames. Targeted attacks on particular markets was noted, indicating that it was not a random affair. The witnesses all say that the rioting starts almost immediately after the bomb blast that one has to wonder if there was a definite plan to cause serious harm. While walking the enter business district one noted that the fire continues to burn in a few of the buildings still 16-20 hours later, indicting that some chemical was used to ignite these shops. A short compilation of the videos and pictures that we took on our visit today can be seen here

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Charter for Compassion | Karachi Nov 15th – Atrium Mall

In February 2008, Karen Armstrong won the TED Prize and called for the creation of a Charter for Compassion to bring together people of different religions and moral codes in a powerful common cause.

The Charter will proclaim a principle embraced by every faith, and by every moral code. It is often referred to as The Golden Rule.

Date: Sunday, November 15, 2009
Time: 12:05pm – 3:15pm
Location: Atrium Mall -Near Avari Towers, Zaibunissa Street, Karachi. Pakistan
Facebook EVENT RSVP: Charter for Compassion & You


Living with the Infidels

Is a new five-part series of short online video clips of five muslims managing a Bradford [UK] based terror cell. Initially set on a path to martyrdom, these jihadi warriors discover that the West isn’t as bad as it seems. Tempted by the likes of Manchester United, Cable TV and even hot looking girl upstairs, they debate the awaited Paradise in the arms of seventy-two virgins or is Shangri-La more closer to home.

As up until now three videos have been released [2-parts] and they are hilarious, do watch these clips but at the same time I’d like to voice a word of caution to any fundos who might take these jokes a tad-bit too seriously, if you are offended by such poking fun, please don’t burn down the Union Jack just yet, instead it’d serve humanity better if you would kindly stay off the Internet
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Interview with Leader of Khatm-e-Nabuwwat Maulana Saeed Jalapuri about Gojra Killings

khatm-e-nubuwwatWe condemn the Gojra killings; Maulana Saeed Ahmed Jalapuri, Ameer Almi Majlis-e-Tahfuz Khatam-e-Nabuat, Karachi

“A very unpleasant incident of Muslim Christian’s riots took place in Gojra, a place near Faisalabad, on Friday, 31st July 2009. Seven people were killed and several injured while 40 houses were set ablaze. Indeed maximum condemnation of this incident becomes insufficient as it was the duty of Islamic state [of Pakistan] to protect the lives and properties of Non-Muslim citizen of the state.” This is the intro of article by Maulana Saeed Ahmed Jalapuri, Ameer Almi Majlis-e-Tahfuz-e- Khatam-e-Nabuat Karachi which he gave me for reading before the interview. Both the English and Urdu version of article “Saniha-e-Gojra, Pase Parda Muharekat” will be published on my blog soon inshaAllah.

After reading the intro of article, I cut short the list of my questions and asked who has committed this heinous crime? Is there any hand of Khatam-e-Nabuat in this incident?

Maulana Saeed smiled despite my blunt questions and replied: “Islam doesn’t allow any individual or group to take law in his hand. We can’t tolerate that our worker would take law in his hand. Khatam-e-Nabuat doesn’t believe in fanaticism. We have a long list of martyrs but you can’t name a single killer in our ranks. We haven’t killed a single Qadiani even, leave alone the Christians. We are struggling in the frame work of the state Law and will keep our struggle continued peaceful. We have neither taken law in our hand nor will we do in future.”
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Gojra Update: by Bishop Ijaz Inayat of Karachi

Bishop Ijaz Inayat from the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Karachi shares an email with the latest update on the tragic incident which left 9 people dead in Gojra, this is more as a follow up to his earlier report that we published on 2nd of August

According to latest news five terrorist considered to be member of the core group which conspired the burning of Christians and their house in Gojra and Korian have been arrested.

These arrests were done from Sindh and Frontier provinces. In this barbaric incident over forty houses were burnt to ashes and over hundred and twenty looted, killing nine including women and children burnt alive.

The persons arrested stayed for fifteen days in the house of a local Muslim Imam (Clergy of a Mosque) named Mohammad Yaseen and had fled immediately after the incident of Gojra.
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