The Backwardness of Muslims and the Reasons Behind it

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Quite a number of times I’ve pondered upon the backwardness of Muslims and the reasons behind it. There are many – lack of education, the hold of tradition, medievalist obscurantism, sectarianism, etc. But most importantly, it is the lack of ideological leadership. It isn’t that there is a complete absence of leaders among Muslims. There are leaders, but what they lack is the strong ideological footing and a moral conviction. In absence of these two, the leaders among the Muslims are either debauch, selling themselves for few pennies, or at the best sectarian leaders who have a sway only among their sect/caste. 

By Anuradha Sengupta via Flickr

The question that arises is – how are leaders created?

The role of ideology is very important in the creation of leaders and a strong organization. You cannot have a robust and functional organization without strong ideological footing. 

Just look at the RSS.

They have a strong organization, And a cadre of committed and spirited volunteers, who have been working for years. The position they occupy today is not a result of 2-3 years. They’ve worked tirelessly towards the fulfilment of their organizational goal. What energises them? It is the ideology.

I’ve questioned their ideology, but not their spirit.
I believe in the latter, but have the distrust with the former.
My differences with RSS are over their ideology.
Coz it is that ideology which energizes the volunteers.
Had their ideologies been functional for the society
तो देश की सूरत कुछ और होती 

Coming back to the question of backwardness of Muslims, there are two lapses on the ideological fronts:

(a) A lack of strong ideological footing, and 
(b) Conflicting ideological leanings of various sects owing to different interpretations of the Quran and Hadees

In fact, both are inter-related. The conflicting ideological leanings of various sects have been an impediment to the emergence of an organization backed up by strong ideological footing. 

Unless the Muslims don’t come at a common platform, sidelining their MINOR ideological differences based on differential interpretation of the scriptures, and stress more upon the values of Islam than the rituals (since the difference between the various sects is more about rituals than values), a strong movement for emancipation of the Muslims from the clutches of medievalist obscurantism is not possible. 

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When this internal ideological conflict is resolved, a strong leadership would automatically emerge.

This post by Farhan Rahman was first published on his Facebook Timeline

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About Farhan Rahman 25 Articles
MA (Sociology), Farhan Rahman has an interesting perspective on everything in general.