Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Animal rights & Muslim wrongs

I really need to reread Talbeesul Iblees (Satan's Deception) by Ibnul Jawzi. In fact, all Muslims need to. I do not know which deception was most prevalent in Baghdad in those days, but these days Satan seems to have perfected the art of turning worship into sin, whilst the worshipper still deludes himself into thinking that he will be rewarded. A relevant issue is Udhiyyah (sacrifice of 10 Zul Hijjah).

The South African SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) has graphic footage of Muslims completely ignoring the noble teachings of their religion and acting most viciously during Udhiyyah. Our usual knee-jerk reaction can be, "That is just more Islamophobia. They hate us. It's a Jewish conspiracy!" or we can be mature, admit there is a problem and rectify ourselves.

We are the followers of that Nabi sallallahu alayhi wa sallam who showed us how to be human. Never mind abandonment of finer teachings of not letting one animal see another being slaughtered, footage shows Muslim breaking the tails of beasts as they force them to face Qiblah; beating them with metal pipes and even inserting sticks into the anus to make them move; and other horrors.

These poor souls not only give Satan a share in their "worship," but disgrace Islam in front of the Kuffar. Let us remind ourselves who it was that taught the world to be kind to animals. What an utter disgrace that they should teach us what is in our Hadith.

"Verily Allāh Most Honourable and Majestic has written kindness for everything. So when you kill, kill in a kind way. When you slaughter, slaughter in a kind way. You should sharpen your knife and put the slaughter-animal at ease." [Ibn Mājah] Thus spoke Rasūlullāh sallallahu alayhi wa sallam and thus is the way of the Muslim - kindness to all of creation including animals. Let alone being rewarded for fulfilling the rights of Allāh and humans, a Muslim is rewarded for showing kindness to "every living animal". [al-Bukahri, Muslim]

 Allāh does not overlook any good deed, however insignificant the deed or the recipient. Whilst the dog is unclean, Rasūlullāh sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said, “A dog was circling a well. It was close to death due to thirst. A prostitute from the Children of Israel saw it and removed her leather sock to give it water. Because of that, she was forgiven.” [al-Bukhari]

Conversely Rasūlullāh sallallahu alayhi wa sallam showed great concern over abusing the weak and defenceless, be they orphans, women, slaves or animals. He forbade hunting [including fishing] for mere entertainment, “If someone kills a sparrow for sport, the sparrow will cry out on the Day of Judgment, “O Rabb!  That person killed me in vain!  He did not kill me for any useful purpose.” [an-Nasaai]

Rasūlullāh sallallahu alayhi wa sallam was greatly distressed to see an undernourished camel. He exclaimed, “Fear Allāh in regards to these beasts which cannot speak [for themselves]. Ride them kindly, eat them kindly.” [Abū Dāwūd]

Even slight misuse is not allowed. Rasūlullāh sallallahu alayhi wa sallam passed by people sitting on their mounts, not riding. He said, “Ride them healthily and leave them healthily. Do not make them into seats for your chatter in the roads and markets. Some mounts are better than their riders. They remember Allāh Most Blessed and High more than the rider.” [Aḥmad]

Let alone physical mistreatment, Rasūlullāh sallallahu alayhi wa sallam was even distressed at emotional trauma of animals. Once some men removed two chicks from a nest. The mother circled them, beating her wings in grief. Upon determining what happened, Rasūlullāh sallallahu alayhi wa sallam ordered them to return the chicks to their mother.” [Muslim]

May the day come when once again we are emulators of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam and examples unto the rest of the world instead of embarrassments. 

سليمان الكندي

Monday, 10 October 2011

Evolution & the 10 year old

Its's quite daunting teaching Islam to a 10 year old who has not had the benefit of a formal Islamic education system and in addition to the challenges of just living in the west, learns in a school not very conducive to inculcating the Islamic spirit. Oh for the days when al-Imaam Maalik rahimahullah could snub the Abbasid Emperor's request that he leave al-Madinah and teach his children in Baghdad. The Imaam was adamant that one goes to seek knowledge, it does not run after you. Today we have to maintain the Dien as we can, or am I a contributor to lowering the value of knowledge? But I digress...

On Thursday my rather bright student asked, "You say that Allah created Adam, but science says that we are evolved from apes." Before getting to the summary of my reply, note the following indications of how the poor boy has already been affected:
  1. "You say..." - as if this is my own queer view, not absolute fact.
  2. "Adam"  not "Aadam عليه السلام"

Me: Science does not say that. Some people say that, but its not science. I just saw a documentary a few weeks back about how scientists who do not believe in evolution lose their jobs, get fired and are oppressed because they do not believe in evolution, or even just because they want to discuss the possibility that evolution is not true. They are not even allowed to bring their evidence. There are many scientists in the world who are not Muslim, but they do not believe in evolution. As scientists they believe that there is a Creator. Now tell me, what does the word "theory" mean?

Student: Something which might be?

Me: Exactly! It's not an absolute fact. You will say, "My theory is.... I theorise..." In other words, "I think so." Its not something that is definitely proven. Even those who believe in it will call it the "theory of evolution."Evolutionists have never given any absolute evidence for any stage of evolution. Whereas the opposite is true.  Evolution can be disproved at any stage. They claim that at every stage the animal changes to something better. They say from a single celled animal fish came which became amphibians which started walking because they wanted to come onto the land. They became apes and then humans.

Student: Isn't it that there are bush babies somewhere in there?

Me: Maybe, whatever that is. Let's just look at the fish story. You go a lot to Durban isn't it?

Student: Yes.

Me: Does your daddy fish?

Student: No.

Me: Okay, ask him to take you fishing. Now if you take a fish and throw it on the beach, have you ever see it grow legs because it needs to walk on land?

Student (laughing): No.

Me: Okay. Shame. Let's give the evolutionists another chance. What will happen if you take 20 fish and throw them on the beach?

Student: You'll have 20 dead fish.

Me: Let's be patient with the evolutionists. Take a thousand fish.

Student: A thousand dead fish.

Me: A million?

Student: The sea will be empty. 

Me: Yes, a million dead fish without legs..... Now even the evolutionists must admit that there is an Allah who designs everything. They will say "nature saw a need", "nature made a change". Who or what is nature to have its own mind and  decide these things? Let's start at the the single cell when there were no creatures who could see. Now how does the first creature decide, you know what, seeing will be a great idea. Let me me grow a pair of eyes! Let's say you were born blind. Can I explain the difference to you between blue and red? 

Student: No.

At that moment his cousin walked into the room wearing a T-shirt with a print of cars of various colours. 

Me: How does that creature decide it needs to see the difference between the red car and the green car on Riyaad's T-shirt? Who can have made sight, the first eye, besides Allah?

Having already gone 4 minutes over schedule I had to cut short and dismiss him, but what was clear that my 10 year old student could grasp facts which academics will not. Another day, another battle...this one won. 

سليمان الكندي