Following the concepts such as “The End of History” and the “Clash of Civilizations” that started to be popular from the 90’s onwards, one fact looms in these harshest days of the 21st Century; these concepts have no validity whatsoever and they fail to deliver any solutions. Thus there is an urgent need for constructing a brand new civilization. People have become increasingly isolated and distant from love; social corruption, moral degeneration, economic crisis, poverty, terror, anarchy, violent clashes are no longer confined to any one particular region of the world. What humanity experiences today reveal that things have to change all over the world.
We are in the age of communication; this is a world where everyone becomes aware of other’s pain and is influenced by it. Experience have taught us that we can not build bliss upon the misery of others. This being the case, we need to find the way of binding up these wounds and “recovering” as soon as possible.
The Islamic world, which was the epicenter of so much misery in the last century can be the vanguard of recovery in this century. Many people who are unacquainted with Islam may have difficulty in understanding this at first sight; nonetheless this is fairly easy. It is possible to remove all the chains that those who do not know love have burdened on Muslims for 1,400 years by abiding by the affectionate sprit of the Qur'an and building the civilization that we have missed.
Examples like the brutal massacre of students a few weeks ago in Nigeria by Boko Haram, an organization whose name means “Education is Unlawful”, the Afghani girls who were subjected to torture only because they wanted to have access to educational opportunities are significant in the sense that they show where to start: Education. The only way to remove the impact of those extremists who seek to ban science, technology and the arts to Muslims and condemn them to oppression is through education.
However there is a vital issue here. Modern western education is definitely obligatory; however, the number of Muslims educated in the West but then going to the East and Africa to participate in acts of terror is not insignificant. This point deserves special thought. It is self-evident that it is far easier to direct ignorant people: However how is it possible to convince those who are well acquainted with science, philosophy, the arts, technology, etc. to become involved in terrorism? When observed carefully, we understand that crux of the problem is those teachings which legitimize violence in both West and the Islamic world.
We are aware of these negative elements of the Western education. Meanwhile, praises to violence that exist in some Shia and Sunni references are mostly ignored. Regrettably, during their primary Islamic education, many young people are first taught about these sources. A generation totally unaware of the content and context of the Qur'an and whose minds are molded by radical views are readily directed to violence.
While Islam is a religion of love, the existence of some references that order the killing of those who do not fulfill their prayers, or those who do not fast or even trim their beards is both a serious contradiction and a grave danger.
Those who make lengthy speeches about the importance Islam attaches to women constitute an important problem when they do not admit to the invalidity of some so-called hadiths suggesting, “Women are imperfect”, “Do the opposite of whatever a woman does” or “A great part of hell is full of women.”
Surely, according to the Qur'an, Muslims are supposed to be loving, compassionate and friendly, and they have absolutely no right to impose anything on other people; however the problem is most Muslims today follow not the Qur'an, but their tribal, local or regional traditions and superstitions. Therefore, unless all those superstitions we mentioned are completely eliminated, unless Muslims completely turn to the Qur’an, it is simply not possible to prevent those violent people that act in the name of Islam or to stop Islamophobia.
It is impossible not to see what kind of a disease the radicalism has now turned into, after taking science, art, technology and sophistication from Muslims for the past 150 years. Some Westerners think that in order to get rid of this problem they need to be against Islam; this is a mistake assumption that will only worsen the situation, and accomplish nothing but increase radicalism and violence even further. The cure to radicalism and violence is in the Qur’an.
The morality of the Qur’an encourages science and research, praises art and beauty, encourages wider roles for women in administration, leads the way to free thinking, frees people from the pressure they are suffering from, state – quite clearly - that everyone is entitled to a great life regardless of their thoughts or beliefs, and fosters happiness, liveliness, productivity and creativity. Therefore it is the only way out for Muslims.
When Muslims follow this path, they will not only be saving the Islamic world, but also building a whole new civilization that will help all mankind. They will become beacons of light guiding people across the world.