Critique of Islamic Studies in Pakistani Madrassas

This is extracted from Pukhtoon Khan's "Religious Exploitation of Afghans and World Peace".
The religious curriculum taught in Pakistan is the major reason for the backwardness of the Pakistani society [and all other societies in general].
Whatever I know about the very philosophy of religion or Islam is that after all the zeal, fervor and enthusiasm the new converts or the "born again" Muslims turn out to be no different than those who glorify Arab culture, language and civilisation instead of having a serious, sincere and intellectually honest approach to find out the reality , if any, in religion and how it can help solve the problems faced by humanity.

The curriculum taught in Pakistani institutions [called Madrassas, which I sometimes refer to as mad-rassas] is out of date and irrelevant to our contemporary problems and their solutions. The syllabus taught there was proposed hundreds of years ago by Nizam.

In the west, due to the dominance of Arab faculty or Arab investment, what they teach to the common Muslims is more of what is called "organized religion" in the academia which is aimed at the "glorification of the Arab culture" instead of a serious inquiry into the truth and reality of religion as a metaphysical discipline.

Just for reference, here is a glimpse of "Dars Nizami" syllabus taught in Pakistan. One can see how far they get from reality after studying for so many years. No wonder after getting "graduated" from Dars Nizami , they start considering the masses around them as some lunatic aliens who need to be shown the right path.

1st year
nahv meer
ahkam us salat
insha ul arabia
tariqatul jadeda
ilm ut tajweed
sarf nihai
asas ul arabi
2nd year
tasheel un nahav
tasheel us sarf
noor ul ezah
tasheel ul mantiq & taleem ul mantiq
mutalitul arabia
hidayat un nahav
3rd year
osool e shashi
sabaa mualliqat
duroos ul balaghat
al itqan
ilm ulum quran
4th Year
sharah mulla jami
noor ul anwar
sharah tahzeeb
talkhees ul miftah
musnad imam e azam
risyaz ul salihen
5th Year
jalalain ukhra
mukhtasar ul muaini
mishkat shareef
6th Year
tuzeeh wa talweeh
tafseer ul bedawi
zubdatul fikr
sharah aqauid
final Year
sahih bukhari
sahih muslim
jami tirmizi
sharah muaini ul asar
sunan nisai
sunan abu dawood
asar e sunan
sunan ibne maja

The Islamic studies taught in universities are a perfect way to indoctrinate students' minds with the Arab culture. I condemn this approach. It is a cheating which the presenters and the propagators of the Islamic studies do. The serious students of Islamic studies should raise a voice against it. How is it a cheating? Here is the answer.

In 99.99% of cases Islam is projected as the way of life, the salvation for humanity, the only true philosophy of life, the perfect system of life, correct code of life, the universal teachings of the prophets etc etc.

All these definitions if analysed logically are purely academic ones. If you say that it is an explanation of life and existence, you need to refute the contemporary and/ or ancient ideas about life and existence. It encompasses the theory of origin of universe, the nature of life, the composition and nature of human beings, all these are the topics of physics, biology and philosophy.

If you assert the existence of God and consider it a source for all Islamic teachings you need to discuss the scholarly arguments for the existence of God or the refutation of non existence of God. This includes among other things the basic conceptions about logic, ontology and physics. You cannot neglect creationist vs evolutionary approaches, the scholastic interpretations of, for example, Shah Waliullah , Jamaluddin Afghani, Syed Qutub, Mohmmad Qutub, Iqbal, Harun Yahya etc from the modern age and Ibne Rushd, AlGhazali, Almawardi, Ibne Arabi etc from the medieval age and a lot more.

Similarly you need to question the modern sociological theories and concepts about society, its growth, institutions, civil rights etc in case of social and family related injunctions of the Quran etc.You need to be aware of the the role of various revolutions and their contribution to the makeup of various definitions related to family, social group,community,soceity etc.

The same is true about a lot of other aspects of life which need to be considered. Without these considerations, as I claimed earlier, defining Islam, is just an effort to arabise people in the name of Islam. Asking them to learn the science of religion [Islam] while practically teaching them just about the language, culture and history of the nation who claimed to offer a solution to the problems of humanity and not critically evaluating the solution itself.

This is same as asking people to learn science and technology and practically teaching them about British, European and American cultures instead of teaching them about Pure and Applied Sciences like Physics, Maths, Biology, Chemistry, Engineering, etc.

NWFP officially renamed as Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa

NWFP officially renamed as Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa

The 15th April 2010 marks the historic day when the 18th amendment was passed and hence first step was taken towards the recognistion of Pashtuns as the second major nation [ethnic group] living in Pakistan.

The renaming of NWFP will have positive effects on Pashtun nation.If more provinces are made as result of Hazara's objection to renaming the province then Pakhtuns and othr nationalities in Pakistan will see two positive steps in the future:

1) The creation of another division in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province carved out of present Hazara division due to the concensus of the MP's from Battagram,Shangla and Kohistan Distt of Hazara division as these distt are predominantly Pakhtun.

2) Punjab will be divided into three provinces Potohar,Seraikistan and Punjab which will help break the monopoly and hegemony of Punjab over the resources of other provinces by reducing its votes in the National Assembly of Pakistan.

The Pakhtuns of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will now own the province and the land as they had never accepted the existence of Pakistan consciously due to the flawed referendum after the creation of Pakistan in which they were just asked to become either a part of India or Pakistan ,not giving them the third option to become a part of their historic motherland Afghanistan.

The renaming will hopefully lead to the renaming of the Pashtun Belt of Balochistan as Bolan or South Pakhtunkhwa,in addition to the merger of Attock and Mianwali into the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province in the future.

FATA will also be considered to be an option for becoming a province ,though the Durand line issue still exists between Afghanistan and Pakistan.The names to be considered for FATA are Central Pakhtunkhwa from the Pakhtun Nationalists while Qabailistan from the Pakistani establishment.I think Qabaili Pakhtunkhwa will be a good compromise and an acceptible name too for FATA.

News Excerpt from Pakistani Newspaper: [DAWN NEWS:Thursday, 15 Apr, 2010 ]

"Pakistan Senate approves 18th Amendment bill Senate approves 18th Amendment bill ISLAMABAD: Pakistan's North West Frontier Province was officially renamed as Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa on Thursday".

Discrimination in Pakistani Cricket

Discrimination in Pakistani Cricket

Pakistani cricket potfolio was under the direct control of Musharraf during his regime.This shows how Cricket has been used to artificially fabricate the feelings of patriotism and specially against India.

Pakistan wants an enemy in the form of India even in games to keep the nations living in Pakistan glued in an artificial bond of patritotism so they keep hating the largest democracy in the world and keep cherishing the injustices committed by the military owned state.For example Younas Khan won the Twenty20 cup for Pakistan but is facing a trial becuase he is a Pashtun while the playboy Shoaib Malik became the hero in the Pakistani media just for marrying a tennis player after ruining the lives of many muslim girls.The reason is obvious.He is Punjabi and hence the toy of Punjabi elite whose flirteous act is turning into an event of glory.

Shahid Afridi will be "Boom Boom Afridi" till he serves the purpose of the ruling militarty Junta which wants to use cricket as an igniting force of hatred against India ,once that is over ,a humiliating fate will await him because ,afterall, he is a Pashtun despite being awarded the player of the decade by ESPN just recently.

Justification of the name - Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

Justification of the name - Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

NWFP has been renamed Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.In my opinion ,the new name Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is fine. The reasons are;

1) Pakhtunkhwa just for North Pakhtunkhwa [NWFP] would have been unjustified.Pakhtunkhwa has much larger geographical jurisdiction than what is it perceived to be by common people.

2) The name Khyber Pakhtunkhwa paves the way for renaming the Pakhtun belt of Balochistan as well as FATA. I think If we call the South Pakhtunkhwa as Bolan Pakhtunkhwa and FATA as Qabaili Pakhtunkhwa,it will be justified. They have a meaning now being parts of Pakistan and even in future even if the Pakhtunkhwa becomes a separate state, these names will make sense.

3) However it is debatable whether FATA [Central Pakhtunkhwa] should be merged with Pakistan or not. In my opinion if it is merged it will give Pakhtuns more strength to get their freedom in the future. Also it will no more be a proxy land of Islamabad to be used against Afghanistan. Atleast if it is under a Pakhtun CM ,it will not be used as efficiently against Afghanistan as it is being used now.

4) I think the next demand should be to have a separate province for South Pakhtunkhwa - the Pashtun belt of Balochistan.

5) ANP should also support Seraikis for a separate province with the condition that they do not claim Attock and Mianwali as part of it.

6) If FATA Pakhtuns agree then we can demand a separate province [preferable] or merger [less likely] for Qabaili Pakhtunkhwa.

7) The final equation for Pakhtunkhwa becomes:
Pakhtunkhwa = Khyber Pakhtunkhwa+ Bolan Pakhtunkhwa+ Qabaili Pakhtunkhwa

8) One of the arguments against change of names could be calling it North, South, Central Pakhtunkhwa.But I think historic names have more relevance and are more appealing to people then geographical directions. At the end of the day all these names [Khyber,Bolan,Qabaili] are used by Pakhtuns [or atleast proper nouns specific to Pakhtun land] and hence better than geographical directions.

Clergy - A Hurdle in the growth of Pashtun society

Clergy - A Hurdle in the growth of Pashtun society

Pakhtuns are traditionally the followers of the Arabian cultural ideology called Islam by the Arabs and have been the victims of intellectualisation by the clergy. The result is that instead of nurturing a culture of intellectualism their society has been suffering from intellectual stagnation.

In Pashtun society everything is defined by the mullah-presented-religion, whose latest version was developed by Abdul Wahab Najadi and later on promoted by Al Saood so we should not expect any creativity, criticism and intellectualism from Pakhtuns.

Pakhtuns have been used as guinea pigs for the survival of Pakistan and a military version of religion has been taught to them by the military junta and its agencies for their ulterior motives, how can you expect them to have liberal , secular version which can encompass and encapsulate the discoveries and the techno creative cultural values of science and technology?

Pakhtuns are a nation which has been fighting against the hegemonial and imperialist designs of the invaders and intruders all their life, would find it an exercise in futility to engage in discussion and debate which is either against their religion with which they have been hypnotised for more than a thousand years or a waste of time for their survival which has always been on stake due to their geo strategic location.

Intellectualisation is what has been taught to Pakhtuns by the mullah instead of Intellectualism. We need to liberate Pakhtuns from the false Bedouin myths, Indic philosophising mindset as well as the cultist Punjabi version of religion. The same race has otherwise given birth to those who pioneered and excelled in so many walks of life. In very recent history Pakhtuns have experienced those times when the whole world including the Arab projected sacred land was under the clutches of slavery or invasion except Afghanistan, whose inhabitants did not bow their heads to any invader or imperialist.

It is a good omen that the new generation of educated Pakhtuns after witnessing the devastations of traditional clergy , are embracing Pakhtuns nationalism by choice and conscously. However Nationalism does not just imply being part of a political party, revering the words and persona of the leaders and intellectualising their words without using one's own energies to understand the helm of affairs. It also implies helping the nation to move forward and get at par with other developed nations of the world by learning science and technology.

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