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In the Name of God بسم الله

Interesting Q&a

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  • Veteran Member

  Question

Is it reasonable to believe that Islam can manage the affairs of humankind and accommodate its needs despite the staggering improvements and advancements of the modern age? Shouldn’t the modern human being, who anticipates traveling to the depths of the universe and conquering other galaxies by means of science, dispose of such antiquated religious beliefs in favor of a new way of life more befitting his achievements—a way of life that would enable him to concentrate the power of his mind and will more fully on adding to his praiseworthy achievements?

Answer

Before engaging in the answer to the above question, it should be noted that although we by nature cherish newness and prefer what is new over what is old, there are exceptions to this inclination. It cannot, for instance, be claimed that since “2 + 2 = 4” has been cited by people for thousands of years it is now outdated and must be dispensed with. Or, it would be absurd to contend that the social structure of human life, which has to date preserved the human species, is now too old and that from now on humans must live individually.

Obedience to civil law, which curtails individual freedoms to a great extent, cannot be abolished with the excuse that it is old and annoying. It would be unacceptable if someone claimed that since in the modern age the human being has embarked on conquering the universe by sailing out to new galaxies in spaceships, a new route must be pursued in human life that would free the individual from the burden of law, legislation, and governments.

The hollowness and absurdity of such assumptions are clear enough. The question of new and old is meaningful where there is room for evolution, where the object at issue allows of evolution and change—one day fresh and new but in time and after encountering the vicissitudes of life turning to frailty and decline. Thus, in discussions conducted for the purpose of shedding light on the truth (as opposed to vain polemics)—when debating natural phenomena, questions relating to the world of creation, and the laws of nature—such as the discussion at hand, poetic utterances of the fable of the new and the old have no place: “Every word behooves a certain place, every point a certain location.”1

Let us now turn to our question: can Islam manage human society, considering the circumstances of the modern age? Of course, this question would seem superfluous once the reality of Islam and the message of the Qur’an are understood.

For, Islam denotes the path to which human nature and cosmic order point. Islam conforms to the nature of the human being. As such, it provides for and satisfies the true human needs, not the illusory desires or what one’s sentiments dictate. Obviously, so long as the human being is what he is, his nature will remain the same. Regardless of the passing of time, the difference in habitat, and the varying circumstances, human beings share the same nature. This nature calls for a specific way of life, whether human beings be willing to pursue it or not.

In this light, the above question can thus be rephrased: would one attain to happiness and satisfy one’s natural wishes, should he follow the path that human nature points to? This is similar to asking: would a tree reach its natural destination, should it grow in its natural manner with its needs provided for through its inherent natural structure? The answer to such a question is obvious.

Islam is the path of the primordial human nature. As such, it is always the correct path for the human being; it remains unchanged in the face of varying circumstances; it is the solution to our genuine needs. It is the natural and inherent needs—not the sentimental wishes and delusional desires—that are one’s true needs. It is the fulfillment of these inherent needs that begets felicity and happiness. In His Book, God says:

فَأَقِمْ وَجْهَكَ لِلدِّينِ حَنِيفًا فِطْرَتَ اللَّهِ الَّتِي فَطَرَ النَّاسَ عَلَيْهَا لَا تَبْدِيلَ لِخَلْقِ اللَّهِ ذَٰلِكَ الدِّينُ الْقَيِّمُ وَلَٰكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ

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  • Advanced Member

I would say a new interpretation of religion must take action, however one do not new to change the religion. There are many myths and legends in Islamic dogma, such as the popular albeit scientific contradicting belief that there once existed giants, and such myths and legends must perish and the religion should become more Gnostic and compatible to science, in spite many Muslims doesn't want to admit this, if one is a rational human being and not follower of a dogmatic blind faith, he must base the Quran on science and not science based on the Quran.

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