Ibrahimi Qurani: Two Major Problems with Quranists


I think two major problems that the Quranist community has are Occidentalism and extreme anti-traditionalism (best seen as a form of anti-establishmentarianism) I would define Occidentalism as extreme love, bias and favoring of Western society, trends, cultures and scholarship. I find that many Quranists really want to be more Western and stay Muslim than anything else. Unfortunately, some of this Western style liberalism also involves an acceptance of moral decay as long as it is done in a civilized way, and this is clearly against the Quran. Occidentalism also includes favoring western style scholarship (which is often fraudulent in my opinion) concerning the Arabic language, Islamic history (orientalist tendencies that often seems to disparage Islam) and the need to look to Western Civilization, and not within Islam and/or logic to solve some of the problems in the Muslim community.

Part of this modern style of Occidentalism also involves thinking that homosexuality and feminism are okay, as well as a complete rejection of traditional (and sometimes very textually based) religious based gender ideals and lifestyles. Western style Athiesm and anti-religious thought (anti-establishmentarianism and anti-organized religion) also seem to be, ironically, quite alive in the Quranist community.

This leads to the second problem I see which is extreme anti-traditionalism. This has led to some Quranists thinking that Islam needs to be entirely reworked in a way that creates a “modern” religion for a “modern” people. Some of this is born out of hate from the rejection felt by us questioners when we question our many established Islamic sects. I myself have felt strong rejection from many established sects as a Quranist and just as a sincere questioner. But each sect has to be judged according to its tenets and the reactions of its people. Traditionally Islam is full of many sects and some have not made it to the present day. To reject all traditional Islamic scholarship on issues in the Quran is extreme and wrong. Just like rejecting and disdaining clothing and other traditions within Islam that may not be exactly Quranic but aren’t unquranic and have a positive intent behind them is also extreme and wrong. Part of this modern Occidentalism also includes claims that Salaat is not physical prayer, the abstractification of our religion in general, and thinking that rituals are worthless and the only things worthwhile in any religion are physical actions that positively affect other physical people (this is a form of Western philanthropist materialism).

Western society has been anti-Islamic since 800 AD when the Moors first moved into Europe. And although sometimes misguided we will mostly find that Islamic traditions are more in spirit with the Quran than Western traditions, not counting the more extreme tendencies as we can find these tendencies in Islamic and Western societies. Also this extreme anti-traditonalism has led some Quranists to reject the traditional scholarship on even the Arabic language, thinking that through self-serving Western methodologies they can discover the ‘true’ meanings intentionally shrouded by some evil traditionalists of the past who hijacked the religion of the Quran and even hijacked the Arabic language. The racist things that have been said about the Persians and even Arabs in an effort to broad-brush all Muslims of the past in an evil light is unjust and an atrocity, to tell the truth.

Is a Persian Muslim scholar automatically an agent of previous anti-islamic Persian empires, because he is Persian? Are all Arab Muslim scholars agents of Jahiliyyah motives passed on to them by their fathers and mothers who hated the last prophet (saas)? To think so is nonsense. So whereas I don’t agree with every Muslim tradition and I don’t believe that hadeeth have any religious authority, I know better than to try to claim that the entire Classical Arabic language has been corrupted or to reject all traditional Islamic traditions just because many of our Muslim brothers and sisters may be misguided in their mentality and idea of our deen. The linguistic issue has proved to be more complex and difficult for many Muslims (and even Arabs) to understand. And to be honest if you don’t have a grip on language you don’t have a grip on anything. I have seen much fabrication as a cover for ignorance from Quranists and this is the last thing that I expected from Quranists. But the anti-traditionalism has blocked many Quranist minds from being able to open up the dusty books in traditional Muslims’ closets and bring the hard knowledge to them, correcting their misconceptions and abuses.

You may not have to cover your head or wear a Kufi, but isn’t modesty, and being identified as a follower of the Quran a good thing? Would you rather associate yourselves with atheists and clear idolators? Because as misguided as most Muslims may be about the deen of the Quran, if anything they are not clear idolators or atheists. When we boil our idols down to fear, fear of the group, love of the group, greed, lust, hate, love, money, pride or personality worship we all have issues with that. But Quranists are starting to make the West and Western Civilization their idols despite the Quran just as traditional Muslims have made their traditions and civilizations their idols despite the Quran.

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About Farouk A. Peru
I am a human being in the world, blogging my existence. My thought systems may be found in my website: www.farouk.name

3 Responses to Ibrahimi Qurani: Two Major Problems with Quranists

  1. Rai Mahmood Akhtar says:

    Thanks

  2. Confused Muslim says:

    Now I am confused Farouk, I have been following what you have written and admired it a lot then by reading this article I feel like you have changed your mind like 180 degrees. Didn’t you say that God has not prohibited homosexuality and that Lut’s story is about oppression and rape! also didn’t you preach that being a good person and following the ethics of Quran makes you automatically a muslim even if you are not a part of the organised religion.

    • Apologies for the confusion but this is not my view. I posted an article by Ibrahim Qurani. My view has not changed 🙂

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