By Syed Shameel Sani
The world appeared to have totally changed after the 9/11 attacks on the US. The muslims can easily be termed as prime victims of the entire episode. While the rest of the world community suddenly finds a tongue to express their anguish for the muslim world, few of us actually know how a muslim feels. Well, I managed to get hold of one, and following is the way the poor man explains himself.
“I, happen to be a muslim by birth. Should this be termed as the soul mistake which I was forced to commit by virtue of my fate ?, or should I be penalized for not converting from the religion of my forefathers ?, I have no comments to offer. My nation has been kept suppressed by the so called generous powers of the world. My ill fated brothers and sisters belong to each and every corner of the world. May it be Bosnia, Palestine, Kashmir, Chechnia or the burning towns of Gujarat, a muslim appears to be the soul enemy of entire non muslim community. Is it really so? I recall the teachings of my religion which regards peace as its highest priority in a society. I recall the saying of my prophet which meant that the one who kills a human being, actually kills the whole mankind.
I look at my people, striving to earn a livelihood. Trying hard, that their children do not die of hunger. My youth grows with no ambition, except to find ways and means to feed their families. Their thoughts and feelings are bounded by their compulsions. Their minds restricted to think in one direction only. Unable to improvise they are forced to follow the traditional paths of survival.
My past, was glorious. My religion, Islam, enlightened the world form the era darkness to the social divine that formed the very basis of today’s civilized society. It converted the evil rituals of the most dejected culture of that time into the custodians of the unmatched social values.
My ancestors, were the best known professionals of their times. They enlightened the dark world in every field one can imagine. They introduced the importance of education. They established the value of research in science as well as arts. They excelled in sociology, they progressed in astrology, they discovered new horizons in every aspect related to human life. My forefathers were known to be the best military commanders this world has ever seen. May it be the battle of Yarmuk, the assault on Gibralter, or the invasion of the subcontinent, the muslim tactician stands out for his prowess in mastering the skills of sword and stallion. They ruled the largest part of the world for centuries. I belong to them, yet for me to be proud of, is only my past, regrettably I don’t have any pride in my present. Similarly, I don’t see anything in my future to be proud of, I am bound to cherish my past only.
While the evils of my society continue to prevail, I don’t enjoy any freedom to raise my voice. All that I managed to yell was subdued in the hue and cry of the so called developed nations. The nations, whom my ancestors taught the A, B, C of today’s success. They being powerful economically, take it as their right to decide the fate of poor nations like me. If they don’t allow, I cant fight my social evils, I cant practice my religion, I cant eat, I cant sleep, I cant even breath. And yet they dub me as a terrorist. Even then, they are surprised that why my people hate them, for they owe the right to be loved by all, despite whatever they might do to harm them, innocent aren’t they?
The rules are not the same for all. They shoot my people in the head if the poor chaps throw stones at them. If my people ask for freedom, what they get in reply is massacre, bloodshed, scorched houses and raped women. If they ask for justice, the reply is again a barbaric act of state sponsored terrorism and extremism. Yet the world regards these nations as democratic, secular, and even victims of terrorism, how can they be wrong? they are always right, they cant be wrong, because they themselves judge who is right and who is wrong. And if one of my helpless youth picks up arms as a last resort to stop his wife, mother, sisters or daughters being raped in front of his eyes, he becomes a terrorist for the civilized world.
Today, my brothers and sisters in every corner of the world are forced to blow up their bodies just to make the world realize that they prefer death over the miserable life which they are forced to lead by the so called masters of the world, and yet they are termed as terrorists. I can feel the pain they suffer. I can realize their emotions when they decide to sacrifice their lives for their just cause. I can feel the misery from which one of my sisters must have suffered at the hands of hindu extremists at Godhra Railway Station before some of her loyal brothers set the train ablaze, yes, I can feel the heat that burnt her to death. I can sense the terror which thousands of my sisters in Kashmir would have suffered from while they were being maltreated, brutalize, abused, raped and finally killed. Their pain, when portions of their bodies are shredded away. The distress of their real brothers and fathers, in front of whom their beloved sisters and daughters were being slaughtered. I can sense it all. I can see it all. I can hear it all. I can feel it all. Yet I am unable to do anything.
I feel sorry Fida, (synonymous to her name, my Palestinian sister who blew herself up a couple of months ago in Israel dictating the the norms of bravery to cowards of modern world), I am sorry. For I feel the sting of death you suffered when you accomplished your task. I feel the impact of the shockwaves that ripped your body apart. I feel your emotions when you pressed the button which dispatched a number of Israelis to hell. What I cant experience is the joy and ecstasy which you are in now. While you enjoy the propinquity of the Prophet in the heavens above, please pray for me. Pray, that the dormant and inert period through which I am now is over before long. Pray, that I get the muscle to thwart those because of whom you were forced to leave the world this way. Pray, that I get the wisdom that allows me to keep only the will of the Almighty as my prime mover. Pray, that I enjoy the might of a united muslim world where each brother shares the sorrows and grieves of the other. Pray, that I don’t turn my eyes away from a diabolic act committed against any of my sisters on this planet. Pray, that I become able to dictate my terms to the tyrants of so called civilized world. Pray for my success, as you are at a place from where, requests are not turned down.
But I still feel ashamed, as after going through all this debate I would still turn on my television and tune into an Indian channel to get my nerves relaxed. I feel ashamed, but there is nothing I can do. This, is not a bad thing in my society. My people are so accustomed to this practice that they don’t realize it to be something bad. My youth continues to be spoiled by this social menace to an extent that now they don’t even feel like taking revenge of the savagery their fellow muslims have suffered at the hands of their enemy. They don’t know what is wrong and what is right. The very sense of discrimination has been stolen from them. And they fall asleep. My muscles, are lulled asleep. My arms remain dormant. My mind is latent. When shall I see it awake? When will my arms be able to break the shackles of mental slavery? When shall I be able to think? My questions remain unanswered…..”
I listened to the man spellbound, I never thought him to be so sensitive. Now that I was able to convey the real curse of muslims living all over the world, might you suggest some way to get them out of the darned whirlpool of miseries. As I find myself completely helpless in a situation like this. When one feels bad about something, and he wanting to fight it out, but constrained by the unknown factors, what will he do? Whom will he turn to ask for the solution? But we don’t realize, the solution is there. The solution was given to us fourteen hundred years ago but we failed to understand that. The solution is, a total adherence to the teachings of Islam, the prophet and the Quran. But we forgot that. Would a reality such as one quoted above can open our eyes or do we need some more humiliation to wake up from the horrible dormancy.
To tell you the truth, the muslim, presented above, I found him, in myself. Till the time I relearn to practice the teachings of Allah, I will continue to face the brunt. Till the time I don’t learn to trust in Allah only, I will continue to be maltreated. I will continue to face defeat. Till such time its not me, it’s, The Defeated Me….
By Brother Syed Shameel Sani