Friday, January 15, 2010

Signs of Fragmentation and Cracks

Almost 97% of the population in Pakistan follows the religion of Islam and has been doing so peacefully since creation of Pakistan. Despite there being two major sects, and many derivatives thereof, there have been an aura of fraternity, love, unity and brotherhood that had existed since my childhood. No sect or its faction ever displayed publicly which sect or faction they belonged to. Everyone was dressed alike and despite differences, which even exist in Christianity and other religions, everyone minded his own business. That’s how we lived for many decades since our independence.

And everyday, we also became more intelligent (or so I thought), more read, literate and aware of our surroundings. But this added learning instead of uniting us more tightly, has done something the other way. It has developed fragments, cracks, doubts and if not hate, distance from others. We are more intolerant today than we never were before. Now the intolerance is visible “VISIBLY” in the form of various dresses and headgears we don. Now one can find turbans, caps and headgears of different colours all over, straightaway indicating which sect or the faction the person belongs to. Walk into a mosque of a particular coloured-headgear, to offer prayers, and you would instantly feel isolated for being “different.”

This is fragmentation of a religion that propagates fraternity and brotherhood. Have we been derailed somewhere in between? Have our scholars and Ulema failed to see this and haven’t done anything to curb the tendency? Or have we become so rigid in our own way that we do not want to follow the other visibly or publicly?

I think times like this demand a very rationale thinking on the part of our scholars and religious men to “defragment” the fragmented lot. We need to display unity and religious fraternity not by mouth but also the way we look. Let the colours of our headgears be the same so as not to show difference of opinion which are hardly of any consequence. Interpretations could be different but not in a manner that show dissent. Victor Hugo once said, "Toleration is the best religion" - and how so wisely said.

I am not religious but follow the basics which are good enough to follow a middle path without causing any harm or injury to a person of another sect or faction. Which is required for inter-factional harmony and bondage. We need to understand the basic tenants of the religion and should not cause harm to it by bolster on those things that are petty and do not count much. No??


Asghar Javed said...

Let us try to defregment.

Jalal HB said...

I have by writing this blog - let us go on hands in glove..