Archive for May, 2014

Disjunctive Sequel.

May 10, 2014

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“Shariah” Most repulsed and reprehensible word on the minds of people.

It is the synthesis of the binary source of injunctions (Book/Scrip and Prophetic practices and instructions) and presents a package of Devine Injunctions as an eclectic, epochal Posse Comitatus to the people.

Shariah – Corpus Juris–of more than thousand Messengers, from Moses to Mohammad, including those of the Abrahamic lineage; having huge followings in our times (Peace be upon them all), is the topic of this discourse. Given the overwhelmingly rampant disenchantment from religions, across the board; stemmed mainly from thematically incongruous sermons of religious leaders. It is one of the reasons for this befuddlement. A canonical religious medium due to sacrilegiously odious but cogent discourses by the ingenious leaders has become an anathema for votaries and non-votaries alike. The skepticism about religious dogmas has also been ossified due to the inadvertent attitudes of people on the one hand and commoditization of the religions by the religious patriarchy on the other. The outcome is that this world, which was already a place for testing and training, has become even more inimical. This Intellectual dogmatism, a gift from our most learned and revered religious leaders, has pushed this sacred sequel-ad Infinitum into disrepute and rejection. This disturbing scenario impelled me to dwell on this arduous but quintessential subject. Though, it would be naïve to expect a revolutionary change in the understanding of people by this one piece. It may, however, be hoped that it would, at least, presents an opportunity to think about and rediscover this sacred sequel which does not belong to Muslims exclusively.

A brief history/background, appealing to the contumacy and intellectual dogmatism stemming from human disposition and cognitive sense perception, would be expounded upon. There would neither be a deliberate effectuation of the point of view of one religion over the other nor an effort, even feeblest one, to present any judgment as to who is right who is wrong. The Human mind is evidently yet evolving to accommodate the comprehension of the sublime merits of synchronicity; to obviate the sequential differences which are causing havoc.  Another reason why a Judgment would be refrained from is, owing to the subliminal, thought that a complete harmonization in this matter may not even be the goal of the Creator; for the implementation of His travailing scheme of retribution.

Every Messenger is given specific injunctions to put into practice as a sample for his disciples to follow. That is Sharia–defined as:-  “Path to be followed” or in literal sense “The way to a watering place.” It is the Creator who, with His absolute sovereignty, knowledge, and wisdom, may assign the most proper way to be followed. Since it deals with the right or wrong way to the Creator, It is beyond human capacities to undertake such a mammoth task.

It should be borne in mind that Sharia despite being an Arabic word is not Muslim exclusivity. It refers to all those messengers who were given the message to be delivered. Every one of them had his own sharia and was to be followed by the community/nation of that prophet/messenger.

It is also worth noticing that the message of all the prophets/ messengers, from Adam to Mohammad (peace be upon them) had remained the same whereas the Sharia have been subjected to change; according to the necessities of the time, locale and the psychological reflexes of the people. A renowned exegetist  Abdullah Bin Abbas has proved this from Holy Quran’s surah Al Imran (3:7) which says that all religious systems have been in agreement and none of these was abrogated.  It has, however, been the practice that with the descent of a new prophet/messenger sharia of the new Prophet/messenger took over with the required changes.  Several examples from the history of Judaism and Islam are a manifest affirmation of this process; where certain things which were forbidden under Judaic law are allowed under Islamic Sharia. The core message, however, remained the same and is immutable.

 Adherents of Judaism rejected Jesus-Christ and his Sharia, so did the Christians those of Mohammad. Then both joined hands and became the sailors of the same boat, rejecting Mohammad and his Sharia. This is at the very root of the disjunctive sequel.

The system of Sharia directly addresses the very nature on which man has been created. It affords a package, which is explained by juxtaposing the merits and demerits of traversing the right path or straggling. It, on the one hand, lures those of the good nature towards good deeds and obedience and warns those of the other traits of the punishment.

There are five established sources of Sharia.

Primary Source; -Shariah originates from the direct commandments of the Creator with the right to man to interpret and explain these commandments by means of analogical deductions and through other processes.The first source had always been the Book or the Scrip of the Creator given to the prophet /messenger.

 

The Second source– Sunnah– is the practices/traditions adopted and instructions given by the prophet/ messengers. (It includes what is said, done and approved by the prophet/messenger).

The Third source is Ijma–the Consensus of the opinion of scholars/learned people of the religion, developed within the parameter set in the Book/Scrip and the practices of the prophet/messenger. This source plays an important role in the development of the law thereby providing a broad vehicle for progress and reconstruction. It provides detailed understanding derived from the book and practices of the prophet/messenger, covering the myriads of problems that arise in the course of man’s life. In fact, the ideal code of conduct or a pure way of life which is the Shariah has much wider scope and purpose than an ordinary legal system in the western sense of the term. The Shariah through this process aims at regulating the relationship of man with the Creator and man with man.

The Fourth source– Qiyas—is the analogical deductions by the learned men of the religion within the parameters of the given book/script and the practices adopted by the prophet/messenger of the time. It could precisely be defined in the theological parlance as an analogy or analogical deduction, providing an instrument to cope with the growing needs and requirements of society, which ought to be agreed upon by the religious scholars termed as Ijma. In other words, it is a legal process introduced in order to arrive at a logical conclusion of a certain law on a certain issue that has to do with the welfare of the people.

It was introduced by a prominent Muslim scholar from Iraq-Abu Hanifa.

The Fifth sourceIstihsan–is Juristic-preference or equity of jurist. It affords elasticity and adaptability to the religious legal system. This particular source deals with the matters which are, though not specifically related to Sharia but are of public interest at large. Developed by a prominent Muslim scholar,  Imam Malik.

Ijtihad — is yet another concept which means an effort or an exercise to arrive at one’s own judgment.

In the wider, sense it means the use of human reason in the elaboration and explanation of the Sharia law.

It covers a variety of mental processes, ranging from interpretation of the text of the book/script and the assessment of the authenticity of the practices /instructions of the prophet/messenger. Qiyas or analogical reasoning, then, is a particular form of Ijtihad, the method by which the principles established by the book/script, practices of the prophet and the consensus are to be extended and applied to the solution of new problems not expressly regulated before. Ijtihad, therefore is an exercise of one’s reasoning to arrive at a logical conclusion on a legal issue done by the jurists to deduce a conclusion as to the effectiveness of a legal precept in the religion.

A recent development is the induction of “syncretism “ in Sharia broadening its horizon even more.

(Syncretism represents the reconciliation of science, philosophy, religion, reason and prophecy though within the constraints of Qiyas).

For the understanding of the readers five major crimes and their punishments which fall under the purview of Islamic Sharia, widely considered to be grotesque and cruel, would be briefly expounded upon. Attention however, need be paid to the most stringent system employed in production of, flawless and an absolutely sound, proof of the crime committed, before awarding the commensurate punishment. The crux of these punishments is instilling the awe in the minds of the criminals to keep the society from chaos and anarchy. On the other hand the stringency of the conditions in production of the proof makes the dispensation of these punishments a rarity. There is a very subtle difference in the man-made law and the Divine Law. Man made law always seeks out the proof to punish whereas Divine law always seeks out the doubt to forgo and forgive the prescribed punishment. It is the most beautiful twofold expression of the Divine mercy. On the one hand it absolves the accused and on the other the societal milieu is shielded of the scars. It would now be left to the readers to decide in favor or against these punishments and for the hue and cry thus generated.

 

Although the system of Sharia encompasses the whole life cycle the discussion however, be restricted to the core Issues of the crimes and punishments handled under Sharia. Though most crimes committed result in intermingling of the violations of the rights of the Creator and the created, but in some cases the predominance belongs to the rights of the Creator and in others to those of the created. The categorization is thus determined by the predominance of the rights of either. In the former case it is classed as Hud, whereas in the later as Qisas. The significance and implications of these are discussed in the proceeding paragraphs.

Before embarking on the explanation of these concepts it is imperative to understand few significant terminologies used by Islamic Sharia, for the conceptual clarity and understanding of the practical implications.

1)      The rights of the Creator. The crimes determined as the violations of the rights of the Creator are awarded pre-fixed punishments without any recourse, mitigation or intercession by any human being, regardless of his/her status. (That’s why it is called Hud—limit. Plural Hudud).

In the Hud category no one has the right to reduce, increase or abolish the punishment meted out by The Creator, even the hearing or recommendation of any kind is impermissible. Should the holder of the right elects to forgive the offence, it would not be forgiven, and the Hud would still apply.

2)      The rights of the fellow human beings. The crimes committed against fellow human being. Such as fraudulent acquisition of the property or killing, is dealt with by Qisas. (Even retaliation).

In the category of Qisas (Even retaliation i.e life for life, wound for wound) the aggrieved party or its legal heirs/guardians may forgive the culprit, after taking Qisas. The Hud punishment would still apply.

3)      Tazirat:- (Penal-Law) The crimes which are not categorized under the above two classes are dealt with in accordance with the penal code of the land or the discretion of the judge as the attending circumstances of the land may demand. Should the aggrieved party or the holders of the rights decide to forgo and forgive the criminal, the penal law of the land or the discretion of the judge; in the general interest of the public and society at large, would still be applied as deemed necessary.

The essence is that the act of forgiveness on the part of the holder of the rights, though benevolent, should not be misused/misconstrued and let the criminal go unscathed since the state still has the, across the board, responsibility of the other residents of the land. This is a modus operandi of universal character in all situations. The punishments in such circumstances are usually physical and lesson oriented—such as lashes.

There is yet another concept of immense significance– Muharbah—derived from the word WAR–           (synonymous with terrorism-a currently popularized term), used in the context of Hud punishment. The crimes of this category are cause of disturbance of public peace, and spreading disorder in the land. They are considered to be waging of a war against the Creator, His messenger and the State. This term is applied to the group or individual who use force of arms to commit crime. (Such as Highway robbery or Sea Piracy etc) This distinction is meant to distinguish between those who indulge in common crimes such as pick pocketing or thievery etc from those described above and are liable for the Hud punishment.

Islamic Sharia has declared only five crimes subject to the Law of Hud. These are:-

1)  Robbery.   2) Theft   3) Adultery.   4) False accusation of adultery.   5) Drinking of wine.

Let us see how the punishments are determined in these crimes.

When it comes to establishing the crime committed and the proof thereof, most stringent conditions are employed. Should even a single condition, out of those prescribed, be found missing, the Hud punishment would stand dropped. In fact even a shred of doubt found in the proof will be enough to cause the Hud to be dropped. For example in the case of adultery there is a requirement of 4 eye witnesses. These witnesses, in the first instance have to be of impeccable integrity and practicing adherents of the religion who can be vouched for by other residents of the neighborhood. If all the conditions are not satisfied in the production of proof or there are less than four such witnesses, the Hud punishment would stand dropped. Similarly in the case of theft or robbery if there is any shortfall or doubt in the proof of crime the Hud punishment of cutting the hand and foot would stand dropped. Provision of suitable conditions for procurement of sustenance is one of the conditions on the part of the Government, in absence whereof the Hud punishment would not take effect.

There is a lucid display of practicality of this system in Saudi Arabia, where level of crimes is emblematically low. Shops are not locked or shuttered down during the customary timings of prayers and nothing gets stolen or goes missing. It is, as claimed, the awe of the punishment in temporal world, instilled fear of the Creator and the consciousness of the damnation in the hereafter; which is the catalyst for this remarkable system of sharia.

 

 

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https://shakir2.wordpress.com/
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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:Shakirmwp/sandbox (Islam’s liberalization)
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https://shakir2.wordpress.com/2014/…/10/disjunctive-sequel-2 (Sharia)

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Psychoanalytical essay with therapeutic antidotes.

May 10, 2014

              (updated version. 05/10/2014)Image

Life, from anecdotal evidence and empirical point of view, is mainly shaped by three kinds of factors, experiences, observations and genetic/ innate traits. Which may be further explicated as follows.  Sensory experience is immediate and all encompassing. Thought process operates selectively or even seemingly arbitrarily. Experience through mental (imaginative) visualization is narrower but more focused. Emotions are instantaneous. Mood lasts longer. Traits are longer lasting still.

 

Before we get consumed into the detailed discussion of the subject we must understand two basic misconceptions and the distorted framework within which we operate.

1-    The dependence on fellow human beings.  Human beings, as a first-hand experience, have been habituated dealing with the fellow human beings extensively. Therefore, everything is expected of one and other rather than any other entity. Although we know that the ultimate Provider is the Creator, yet expect each other to come to help. The simple reason is that this is the only experience we have.

We, therefore, need a fundamental paradigmatic change. In our perceptual cognition we have to perpetuate the ultimate provider as the primary provider. We ought to understand, that the other human beings, are the means and not the source. This conceptual change will save us from numerous disappointments and sour relationships.

2-    We expect immediate results.  We are enmeshed in fast paced life with quick outcomes therefore, any delay is certain to gives rise to doubts and suspicions. Sustained effort is the human obligation whereas results are His domain and will. If the results are delayed let Nature take its course. Patience is a virtue. Time is not only the healer but solution to many problems as well.

 

These processes, which influence our lives so immensely, may be either cognitive or emotional.  These may be either first person perspectives or the third person perspectives.   These may be either objective experiences or subjective experiences.  (Technical and linguistic jargons, as far as possible, would be avoided to keep this essay lucid, restricting it to empirical observations and possible remedies).

 

 

Negative aspects such as fears, failures or unsuccessful endeavors are major entropic elements in personality formation. There is always a fear of failure which often displays vividly in dreams and is broadly manifested throughout our lives. We are a construct of our own brain and, through our body language and behavior, are walking manifestation of it. Someone or something is always there that is frightful and chasing.  In most cases it is the haunting sense of guilty conscience. This guilt may be factual or made to believe so.

 

 

Intrinsic-attractiveness(attachment) & Intrinsic-Unattractiveness(Aversion).

Our obvious belief in intrinsic existence of things ushers our deluded attachment to them. It is our self perpetuating dysfunction while dealing with the realities of the world.By according intrinsic properties of attractiveness we react to some objects and events or people with deluded attachment. On the other   hand we accord intrinsic properties of unattractiveness resulting in deluded aversion. Intrinsic properties could only be attached to a thing having disconnected and independent existence.  God only, as for as the cause of His being is concerned, fits the definition. He is uncaused. On the other hand He is the cause of everything. Therefore, created things cannot be intrinsic by design.

 

Love                     (Psycho-sophically speaking)

It is twitching of the brain, impulsive vibrations translating into emotive feelings yearning for the satisfaction of lust or instinct. It has beginning and end, it is ephemeral. It may, however, be fractional constituent of the true whole, which we were inculcated with before being descended into temporality.  Buried in sub-conscious, it is clamoring to reach its Zenith in perpetuity. True love with fellow human beings is improbable, but an instinctual bonding; which cannot be classed as love. Love could only exist between God and (Creation) human. This love, if true, would require human to lose his “self” or else it would simply be reverence. Temporally speaking, it is delusional attachment entailing unwholesomeness—self centeredness.

 

 

  1. (Psycho-sophically speaking)

Same emotive feelings (derivative-affliction) transform into superfluous ego which resort to retribution or aggression due to indelible scars on the mind. Negative memories stoke sense of deprivation or competitive disadvantage. When a spate of hatred is experienced; while enduring, viewing, facing some event or scene, is the reflection of this phenomenon. Lack of confidence which (is derivative of ignorance) also works as a catalyst. Certain Faces, events, or words; associated with negative memories may stem afflictive mental process thereby becoming catalyst for feelings of hate. At times it may just be the disadvantaged position, against which extreme disgust is exhibited. At other, it may be the satisfaction of spuriously inflated ego through display of the expression that I am better suited for the position or situation in which the other person is. It is jealousy factor which usually stems from inferiority complex. It might have been infused by the situational disadvantage which is being played out. When one is caught up in distorted mind-set, loses self control and renders his perspective narrower; this situation is displayed.

 

The influences of the formative period are very crucial. Archetypes, Heroes and villains are of huge relevance. Human traits are overwhelmingly shaped around these characters. Sense of liking and disliking may similarly be shaped around peers, parents, cultures. It may even be genetic; often confused with innate traits. These influences become the determinant of the trajectory of lives and hallmarks of personalities. This behavior, just because of some chance semblance, plays out even against those whom one has never met. To remedy one must delve into the past; which most probably would be the moot point for such a behavior. Correct identification and then acknowledgement of the causes is the key to remedy.

 

Anxiety, Sudden Burst, Spate of Anger, Snapping.

All these behavioral expressions are product of afflictive mental process or derivatives thereof called-derivative afflictions. The reasons for these situations are not different from those mentioned above. However, some of these conditions are more intense and could be harmful; in terms of health, self infliction or the violence meted out to others. Snapping and sudden bursts reflect the tipping point in one’s state of mind. The cause of this behavioral pattern may be certain words, expression of dominance, threat, insult, humiliation, Helplessness, fear of loss of face or integrity. It has become norm; given the present socio-economic conditions and the prevalence of self righteousness, that people lose equanimity and become ensnarled in rash behavior. Sometimes it is termed as -”Anxiety attack”. If this behavior is not checked properly and timely, it could entail wide ranging complications.  

 

Negativity, Bitterness.

It stems from the deprivation, non achievement which may be due to lack of the opportunities which keep one deprived of possible achievement or excellence. These may be destined due to surrounding milieu or forced upon by others. It pervades in class bifurcated societies where the inculcated hatred against the better off provides a feeding ground. When someone better-off or seemingly so is seen in an uneven environ, the reaction of worse-off shows up in change of countenance, negative/abusive comments or manhandling etc. Remedy! Once the reason is understood and acknowledged, it becomes easy to deflect the spate of rage. Identification and Acknowledgement are a panacea.

 

Fear of Poverty, Deprivation.

Past experience of deprivation or poverty leaves indelible scars on human mind. It is immensely detrimental and forces one, according to axiom, to even forsake his core belief. It has exoteric and esoteric dimensions. It is a duel between firm belief and logical (at times even illogical) reasoning. The conclusion depends on one’s conviction and level-headedness. Here, I may take the liberty to lean towards esoteric side and would like to postulate that we human do not have much of latitude (free Will) therefore rightfully succumb to destiny. I would therefore, unflinchingly, affirm my belief in destiny. It preempts all apprehensions of poverty and deprivation. Peace and tranquility lies in frictionless smooth sailing. Go with the flow, do what He makes us do. One would become fearlessly brave. Bitterness is often the result of sustained struggle to get out of the vicious life circle; it leaves a person perpetually prone to fear and bitterness at the muddled event horizon of life. Acceptance of predestination perhaps is the best remedy. Otherwise proper professional treatment would be best suggestion.

 

Panicking when faced with unexpected situation.

At times, it happens that one becomes agitated, defensive, apologetic or even aggressive, when faced with an unexpected situation. The reason often is unpreparedness which results in any of the situations described. Unpreparedness entails wide range of causes; it may be that one is not having an appropriate answer to the question raised. One may not be having the knowledge of the topic raised or one may not be in a position to answer or explain in the existing situation. The worst could be the fear of losing one’s face and integrity.

The best remedy is that before embarking on any encounter one should make oneself ready for such a possibility with a suitable response. This process of forethought would muster confidence to face the situation and certainly provide a strong base to preempt if one needed to. This tactic may be tremendously beneficial   in boosting one’s confidence while saving face and integrity. A deep breath and a momentary thoughtful pause would also be helpful in recollecting oneself before offering an appropriate response. Honest solution nevertheless would be to thrash out the weaknesses and make them up. Always be well prepared.

 

Timidity or Pretentious behavior.

It happens that at the sight or presence of someone, a normal behavior is suddenly transformed into that of someone subdued, victimized, sick and suffering. A weaker posture is put-on to gain the attention or sympathy of the person who is targeted; apparently unconsciously but in fact as per well conceived and meditated plan. This plan is lurking somewhere in the back of one’s mind and is directing the formulated behavior. It is an endeavor to provide support to the weaknesses, fears,   apprehensions or vicissitudes one is harboring. It may also be to elicit the recognition of the created state of affairs or of the one actually faced which is not being sufficiently acknowledged.

The analysis of this kind of behavior would reveal that it emanates from lack of self respect and self confidence. This lacking compels the actor to seek out a suitable pivot to latch-onto. It is extremely despicable especially where one professes Taqwa (fear of the Creator) and Tawakkul (the dependence on the Creator). This lacking may be the result of over protected-childhood or the failures of succeeding life.  It is sheer lack of faith in the Creator and His providence. A strong sense of Self respect and self confidence would emerge once the belief in the Creator and its created destiny is ingrained. One can never get what is not intended for him and one can never miss what is meant for him. The boundaries of Destiny are un-traversable.

 

 

Always keep the window of better option open.

Regardless of what is being felt or thought; based on past experience, hunch or conviction, should not be conceived in absolute terms. The attitudes towards our conceived conclusions are so deterministic as if they are revelations from God. It recently transpired, to me personally, that despite strong feelings of an obvious negative outcome if way is given to better option, with sincerity and trust in God, it would turn out positive. It is the repudiation of my long habituated course of thought process. I am sure that opening of this new dimension is the bestowal of His mercy. It convinced me that there is always a possibility of a better outcome. One has to yearn for it. The initial faulty outcome may possibly be result of a glitch in thought process which stands rectified while transitioning to second thought or after thought. The fact remains! Give it a second thought, Keep the better option—always—open.

 Judgmental errancy.

Often than not, the initial judgment is normally faulty. The reason for that, most probably, is that it is formulated with mental impairment; caused due to the fog of instant reaction or spur of the moment. Therefore, it would always be prudent to revisit and recalibrate the initial judgment. One might be shockingly surprised to see how wrong the first impression (i.e. formulated judgment) was. One should always be generous and gracious towards the nominal aberrations of the subject while formulating a judgment. This is the trait of the men of God and has panoply of merits.

 

 

Mendacity (Oldest & Mother of all moral turpitudes)

This tendency was the very first step towards human indignation when Prophet Adam was lied to about the forbidden fruit. It unceasingly coagulates innumerable vices. Tendency to lie is a derivative of fear or greed. When a situation needs to be avoided or availed, while hiding the truth, use of an unwarranted lie comes handy. We have become complacently habituated for its huge efficacy. It is used extensively and fearlessly; without even a thought of any repercussion. This is temporary refuge in exchange for a huge penalty of sinking into the quagmire of lies. Old saying goes without saying that Honesty is the best policy.

 

 

Disclaimer: No responsibility is assumed as this essay does not offer any professional advice or treatment. Empirical observations if used would be at one’s own risk and responsibility.            Comments, critique, Questions could be directed at ruqaya@bellsouth.net


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