Newsletter (1st Mar’14 – 31st Mar’14)


(1st March '14 - 31st March`14)

Compiled by: Azeem Ayub



In the Name of Allah,
the Most Gracious,
the Ever Merciful



Downfall of the Muslims


Muslims remained a great power in this world for almost a thousand years. No nation was able to compete with them with regard to knowledge and wisdom, political acumen and affluence. They reigned over the whole world during this period. This kingdom was given to them by God and it was God who has taken it away from them. The law of God regarding the rise and fall of nations is that for rise He selects whichever nation He wants to according to His law of trial; however, once He selects a nation to elevate it, He only changes this state of that nation when that nation itself falls in decadence with regard to scientific knowledge and morality.


Muslims are also faced with another scenario. By origin, most of them have been Arabs. Arabs are mostly the Ishmaelites and about the Ishmaelites it is known that they are the progeny of Abraham (sws). Hence they face the established practice of the Almighty that is mentioned by the Qur’ān for the progeny of Abraham (sws). As per this established practice, if they adhere to the truth they will lead all nations of the world and if they deviate from the truth they will be deposed from this position and will have to face the punishment of humiliation and subjugation.


Hence if Muslims are afflicted with this punishment, then this is not a haphazard happening nor is it the result of some conspiracy hatched by others, as is generally alleged by our religious and political leaders. Behind this punishment are specific reasons. The divine law of rise and fall of nations is the cause of this punishment. If this punishment and humiliation is understood in the light of this divine law, three causes for the downfall of the Muslims can be pin-pointed:


Firstly, Muslims were entrusted with the Book of God. It is not merely a book. It is the yardstick of God revealed to decide truth and falsehood. Muslims should present all their religious differences before it and whatever verdict it gives, they should accept it without any hesitation. It should be the basis of their beliefs and deeds. It should be the source of all matters relating to faith and sharī‘ah. Every research, every opinion and every viewpoint must be kept subservient to it; so much so, even the words of the prophets of God should not be considered authority over it; on the contrary, it should be regarded as having authority over everything. Unfortunately, since the past many centuries Muslims have not been able to confer this status on the Qur’ān in their beliefs and deeds. Hence, as pointed out by Allāmah Iqbal:


خوار از مہجوریِ قرآں شدی


(You are in a state of humiliation because of leaving aside the Qur’ān.)



Author: Javed Ahmad Ghamidi (Tr by Dr Shehzad Saleem)


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In this Issue

* Downfall of the

Read & Reflect
* Insurance


 Debate & Discuss
Discussion Forum:
    The Religion of


 return to the top ^

Express & Explain
* General Discussion
    Forum:  Are Taliban
    Justified in Taking
     Human Life?

 return to the top ^ 

Pause & Ponder
*  The Correct
     Version of Islam



*  Successful








  Read and Reflect




Javed Ahmad Ghamidi
(Tr. by Shehzad Saleem)


Insurance is a sort of contract for mutual help in which people pay a fixed amount in installments. The purpose is that if any of them is inflicted with losses relating to their persons or their wealth they are compensated from this pooled money in a prescribed manner. The money given is never returned and all the people or institutes which provide this service are granted this right by people who enter into this contract of mutual help with them that in return for this service they can spend the accumulated money in whatever way they want.


This is an extraordinary scheme which has been chalked out to compensate losses and to help people in difficult circumstances. Its benefits are now acknowledged everywhere. After the termination of the institutions of tribes, fraternities and ‘āqilah, this is the best substitute for them which contemporary economic systems have provided to this world. There seem to be no objection against it; however, Islamic scholars generally regard it to be prohibited. Following are the objections they have raised against Insurance:


1. The amounts which Insurance Companies pay to their clients are generally more than the installments their clients have paid them; this is interest and interest is forbidden in Islam. Moreover, Insurance Companies further invest this money in interest-based schemes. Some part of the interest earned by them is also used in paying off their clients who had bought their insurance policies.


2. Insurance Policy holders repeatedly receive large sums of money against death, accidents or losses. This is gambling which is prohibited in the Islamic sharī‘ah.


3. The entity for which an Insurance Policy is bought does not typically exist; the locus of the contract is also not ascertained and the Policy holders do not even know the number of installments and the time till which they will have to pay them. In the terminology of the jurists these are called gharar (deception), jahālah (ignorance) and ghaban (embezzlement) respectively in the presence of which no contract is allowable. The Prophet (sws) has forbidden such deals.


A little deliberation will show that all these three objections are baseless.


The first of these is not tenable because the installments paid by an Insurance Policy holder are not loans. They are given by him for the help and support of others on the condition that he too could be the recipient. Thus they are never returned. If Insurance institutions invest them in interest-bearing transactions, it is because they have been given the right by the policy holders to use them. No responsibility of the nature of this use rests on the Policy holders. If a person is to receive Insurance money for the purpose he had bought an Insurance Policy, then as per the contract, he receives it from the accumulated amount. This is the real nature of Insurance, and it must be viewed on its basis.


The second of these objections is not tenable because gambling is a game and a matter of purely chancing one’s luck. People who buy Insurance Policies do so to become part of a system which caters for helping one another in case of losses. The nature of the two is entirely different, and the basis of religious directives is not marginal similarity between two things; it is and should be based on the actual nature of the two.


The third of these objections is not tenable because the directives of the Prophet (sws) related to gharar (deception), jahālah (ignorance) and ghaban (embezzlement) are not of the nature of an absolute prohibition: they are meant to resolve disputes and to close the door to ways which may result in these evils in cases of financial transactions. Insurance, however, is not a financial transaction. It is a scheme which relates to mutual help. It is executed and managed by individuals and institutions who are given the right to use the accumulated money in return for the service they provide. It is not appropriate at all to judge it by ignoring the nature of this scheme.


(Translated from Maqāmāt by Shehzad Saleem)


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  Debate and Discuss


Discussion Forum: The Religion of Islam

Faith and Ethics of Islam



I just studied the course 'Religion of Islam'. I have a question.


In the course material/ text it's stated that al-Hikmah are the ethics of a religions (if I understand it correctly). And furthermore that all the ethics are the same of religions.


But I question if this is so. Are the ethics of Islam the same as Christianity or Buddism?


I really would like to know more about it.



This is my personal view of ethics, ethics in relation to Islam, whether philosophical or theological grew out of early discussions of the question of predetermination. (qadar) and obligation (taklif) and the perceived injustices of temporal rulers, particularly the caliphs.


So I think that ethical thought has quite a lot to do with the cultural framework of different societies and how religion is perceived in those societies.



What is stressed in the course material is that in general moral values are the same in all religions. No one one would contest for instance that justice (which is a moral value) is not approved by all religions. It is precisely because of this universality that they are called universal moral values.


Further more:



Express and Explain:


General Discussion Forum:
Are Taliban Justified in Taking Human Life?




The Qur'an claims there is no contradictions in its text. What it says in one part of the book must agree with the other part. If that is not the case, it cannot be claimed that the book is authored by God. Humans have contradictions because, unless they are stubborn, they learn, unlearn, and relearn all the time. God is perfect; there is no learning curve in His case. The Qur'an challenges the reader to reflect upon its verses carefully and see the evidence of this reality. "Do they not ponder over the Qur'an? Had it been from anyone other than God, they would have found in it a lot of discrepancy." (4:82)


The Qur'an categorically states that taking life of one human is as big a crime as killing the entire humanity. "The one who kills a soul -- not as a punishment for murder nor for mischief on earth -- it is as if he has killed the entire humankind." (5:33) War is a game of killing. People enter a battlefield to kill others. Soldiers don't participate in battles to just shave off the mustaches of their enemies.


How can the facts mentioned in the first two paragraphs be reconciled? How can the sanctity of life and legitimacy of war be simultaneously acceptable to Islam? The answer can be inferred from the exception stated in the Qur'anic verse (5:33) quoted above: A state can engage in a war to kill those who are guilty of killing or to crush mischief on earth. And if the Qur'an allows war for a reason other than killing or mischief on earth, it would contradict itself, which the book of God would never do. War can be undertaken only for these two reasons and for no other purpose. If it is undertaken for a purpose other than these two, it would tantamount to killing the entire humanity each time a human is killed. This conclusion brings us to the important question: What is mischief on earth?


Mischief of on earth is a crime caused by criminal activities of those individuals or groups of them who do not commit crimes at their ordinary level. They commit them in a way that their criminal inclination becomes a threat to the life, wealth, and honour of the ordinary citizens. When murder takes the form of serial killing, depriving of their wealth rises from the level of theft to that of robbery, and extra-marital sex reaches the extent of raping, what is happening is no ordinary crime: It is mischief on earth which is a constant threat to all members of the society. In Pakistan, indeed it is Taliban are the most obvious example of a group that is involved in the crime of creating mischief on earth.


Taliban, however, believe that refusing to establish God's law (the Shari'ah) in Pakistan is mischief on earth which justifies their policy of killing people. Quite aside from the question whether this argument is justifiable or not, how could killing of innocent people who have nothing to do with the question of implementing the Shari'ah be justified by Taliban even by their own logic? Even though the ordinary Pakistanis in the streets have no say in deciding the question of implementing the Shari'ah, Taliban keep killing them with impunity. Going by a clear verdict of the Qur'an, Taliban are guilty of believing in one part of the book (implementing the Shari'ah) but rejecting another part of it (ensuring sanctity of human life). The verdict of the Qur'an for practicing such double-standards is that people who indulge in it deserve "... insult in the worldly life and on the day of judgment they shall be assigned to an even more grievous penalty. And God is not unaware of what you do?" (Qur'an; 2:85) Is failing to implement God's religion in the society by Muslim rulers mischief on earth? There could be several possible scenarios, only one of which can be claimed to come close to a case of creating mischief on earth: The Muslim rulers know clearly what God's law is but they are stubbornly resisting the possibility of implementing it because of their vested interests despite being presented with a clear understanding of it. In that case indeed they can be described of being guilty of preventing God's verdict to get implemented.


The other possibilities could be wherein the Muslim rulers are either not fully aware of or are not convinced that what is being presented to them is in reality God's law. There could also be a possibility that the rulers are aware of what the Shari'ah law is but they have put in place a system which will enable the law to get gradually implemented exactly in accordance with what they think is God's requirement of doing it by mutual consultation.


The truth is that no human can conclude that the rulers of his time are stubbornly rejecting the possibility of implementing God's law despite knowing it to be from Him. Only God can tell if a certain ruler is arrogantly rejecting His law and therefore He deserves to be killed for creating mischief on earth. And God has chosen to make such disclosures only when He sends His messengers; and He has decided to not send them anymore.


Even in case if some people are convinced that their rulers are hypocritically blocking the process of implementing the Shari'ah law, they have no right to fight against the rulers, because that would tantamount to resorting to one form of mischief on earth to remove another form of it. In no case Islamic law allows individuals or non-state agents to resort to arms for getting their demands implemented because in doing so they will resort to killing humans which individuals cannot be allowed to do under any pretext.


If the rulers are not fully aware of what the Shari'ah law is or are not convinced that what is being presented to them is God's law, those who are interested in getting the Shari'ah implemented in Pakistan should use their pens and tongues and not bullets and guns to help the rulers and masses know the truth. As followers of the last messenger of God (pbuh) they should consider themselves in the Makkan period when the prophet (pbuh) preached and invited people to understand and accept God's message. Despite being God's messenger, he did not resort to Jihad for getting God's will implemented.


And if the rulers have already taken the path of introducing the Shari'ah law gradually through mutual consultation, allowing debate and getting implemented what is agreed upon by the majority, as indeed is the case in Pakistan, then it is an excellent opportunity for Taliban to grab with both hands and convince the majority that their understanding of what constitutes God's law is the right one. And if they would not avail this opportunity and kill innocent people instead, they will not only be guilty of killing the entire humanity but also of killing the only available opportunity of implementing the true Islamic Shari'ah. Who then should be considered a more deserving candidate for being described as perpetrator of mischief on earth: Pakistani rulers or Taliban?


To conclude, the Qur'an is categorical in its condemnation of the crime of killing. The book presents only two acceptable justifications for taking a human life. Both make it allowable only for rulers to kill after proper measures are adopted to ensure that the extreme decision is correct. An ordinary citizen is not allowed to take human life under any pretext. If he kills, it is as if he has killed the entire mankind. And that is the volume of sin Taliban are accumulating for themselves. It is they who are the biggest criminals in the eyes of the Islamic law. They are very likely to face its consequences on the judgment day.



My question is that does Islam allow us to have political negotiations with Talibaan? Is the government of Pakistan correct religiously speaking in undertaking negotiations with Talaibaan?

saba2 (Moderator)

Governments don't negotiate with terrorists. They have to establish the Ritt of the government in every corner of the State. It is only politics on the government's part and lack of education in religious matters from the masses that negotiation is even considered.



  Pause and Ponder

The Correct Version of Islam


How can I be certain that I am following the right version of Islam. There are so many sects and diverse views that one tends to get confused and afraid also. The reason is that one might end up with the wrong version of Islam. What should one do then?



In my humble opinion, one basic thing needs to be understood: Human intellect, you would agree, has its own limitations. It can falter and err and of course be different in different scholars. Hence the different interpretations of certain directives of Islam are but a natural outcome of this premise. In this regard, the real thing is the arguments which are presented in support of a viewpoint. A person is required to weigh these arguments in the scales of sense and reason and decide which one appeals to his intellect the most. He should adopt that particular viewpoint, since he would be held accountable according to his own understanding of religion.


Furthermore, no one is guided by divine revelation after the termination of the institution of Prophethood with the departure of Muhammad (sws) and it is his or her judgement which must be exercised. Therefore, no one can be certain whether he has attained the absolute truth or not. He must keep his eyes and ears open to criticism and cling to whatever he thinks to be the truth till he has reason to abandon it and accept a new premise as truth. Moreover, in adopting or forming an opinion in religious matters, the real thing is sincerity of judgement. As long as a person is sincere in exercising his judgement, it does not matter what conclusion is reached. As the Prophet of Allah has put it: a person who strives to form an opinion can reach the right conclusion and he can also reach the wrong one; if he reaches the right conclusion he will be rewarded twice in magnitude and if he is lead to the wrong conclusion he shall still be rewarded though of single magnitude. This shows that the real thing in this regard is the sincerity of effort put in.




Dr Shehzad Saleem






Successful Participants


15896 Arrangement of the Qur'an Pakistan B+
9762 History of the Qur'an Pakistan D+
15966 Surah 'Asr UK A+
15966 Surah Nasr UK A+
15966 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim UK A+
15939 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim Pakistan B+
15908 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim Pakistan D+
15977 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim Pakistan E+
15964 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim Pakistan B+
15962 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim Pakistan E+
15888 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim Pakistan C+
15918 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim Pakistan C+
15914 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim Pakistan D+
15874 Ten Qualities of a Good Muslim Pakistan C+
15966 The Religion of Islam UK A+
15966 Theme of the Qur'an UK A


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