Islam is Not Religion


by Nasiruddin Ghani

Islam is not religion. Religion is belief system. Religion constists of creed, rituals and priesthood. Religion is all about salvation in the life hereafter. Islam is not belief system. Islam regulates all aspects of personal and social life. Islam is the social system of Allah (Quran 3:19 & 85, 5:3) which leads to love, righteousness, social justice, unity of mankind, equality in this world; and success and Paradise in the life Hereafter.

Peace is absence of injustice, inequality and disorder. Peace is attained through self-surrender to the “will/plan/law of Allah”, that is the Quran, which is a guide to good living for entire mankind (2:185). The Quran upholds the ideal of service to all mankind. In Islam service to mankind is service to Allah.

The key to peace is: gaining knowledge for the benefit of mankind, righteous life of moderation, and doing of good to others. If no social justice and peace, no Islam.

The social system of Islam includes quranic political system, quranic economic system and quranic cultural values. Caliphate is the political ideal of the Quran (24:55).

There is no priesthood in Islam. There is no division of priesthood and laymen in Islam. Islam is not theocracy dominated by priest. Islam is the Quran-way and not the so-called Ulama-way. If you follow the Quran in letter and spirit, you are a Muslim.

 

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Quranists Take on 2014 !!!


Salaamun Alaikum Folks! Peace Be Upon You!

Welcome to the new year’s edition of our newsletter. Already this year the Conservative Traditionalists have restarted their campaign to dogmatise Islam. We are now seeing issues such as the issue of the use of the word ‘Allah’ by non-Muslims in Malaysia. In Saudi Arabia, the religious police seem to be going after women on swings, adding it to the haram list! How can we help this situation?

Firstly, lets continue to engage with our Traditionalist brothers and sisters and show them that the Quran simply does not contain any of these things. The Quran uses the word ‘Allah’ to convey the concept of one true God. If we do not allow people of other faiths to use the word, how can we talk about the same thing? Indeed, the Quran itself mentions those who believe God has taken a son in 5/72. In this verse, those people use the word ‘Allah’. They say ‘inna Allah huwa al-masih ibn maryam’ (verily Allah is the masih son of maryam). Therefore Allah himself acknowledges the rights of non-Muslims to use his ‘name’. Why do we then prevent others from doing so?

Secondly, lets try to spread the message of Quranist Islam as much as we can. Remember that the message of Quranist Islam is NOT ‘lets reject hadith’. Rather, its message is this – THINK for yourself. Don’t let anyone (even fellow quranists) from letting you determine what is best for you. Of course we find hadiths deeply problematic but if a hadith allowed me to interpret the Quran in a better way to yield deeper knowledge, why would I accept it? It hasn’t happened yet but I’m always open to it.

Thirdly, lets together remove the diseases of Quranist Fundamentalism (QF). The QF mentality is one held by people who fail to realise that the Quran does not have exclusive mouthpieces. There are people who say ‘this is the Quranic viewpoint’ but what they really mean is, ‘this is my viewpoint based on my understanding of the Quran’. Such dishonesty leads to arrogance and vilification of others. Lets weed out the QFs as much as we can.

Fourthly, lets celebrate the diversity of thinking within the Quranist space. We have over TWENTY different approaches to the Quran. We obviously don’t agree with many or even most of them but celebrate that individuals are actually engaging with the Quran and trying to mend their lives. That is the main thing and we will be judged for our deeds, not for the depth or correctness of interpretation.

Lets make 2014 our year for growth, folks. Lets set some targets for Quranist Islam and carry the message of the Quran as best we can to the world….peace be upon you!

Birt saw it coming


I found an interesting article written by Yahya Birt, where he speaks about how the Internet has changed the way Muslims access information and what he sees as the future for Islamic material online:

A study by Nature magazine surveyed forty two corresponding articles in both and found 162 factual errors in Wikipedia and 123 in Britannica, so the difference is less than we might think. Yet Wikipedia, with greater resources of peer review, has been shown to correct itself more quickly. And it is – unlike Britannica – making the inheritance of human learning available to the world for free.

So rather than Sheikh Google, Wiki-Islam provides a better possible future for Islam online, amenable to its unchurched nature. Creative collaboration between scholars, experts, intellectuals and Muslim publics would allow for the social and intellectual process of ijma and ijtihad to become dynamic, relevant and infinitely refinable. The internet is no panacea: real-world conditions of authoritarianism in the Muslim world, the war on terror and intellectual conservatism may stymie unlocking the true potential of Wiki-Islam. But a crucial first step nonetheless to unlocking that potential is to recognize the collaborative creativity the digital age offers to the Muslim.

Our very own Quranist Matrix is an attempt at doing exactly what Yahya Birt envisaged back in 2008 🙂

God Alone, Quran Alone or Quranist?


What’s the difference between the three terms? For Sunnis, they’d readily say ‘they all don’t follow hadith! which isn’t wrong but is an oversimplification. This question popped up in Free-Minds (the granddaddy of quranist forums).  For me, here are problems with the first two terms.

1. God Alone – sure we all WANT to be God alone but are we really? The only mentioned in the Quran to be of deeni khalis (pure monotheism) is ibrahim and he was imam of mankind (2/125). Are we leaders of mankind? FAR from it! Rather, God alone is our ASPIRATION. It is also the aspiration of Traditionalist Muslims and so lets not insinuate that they are polytheists (as some quranists call them).

2. Quran Alone – another big delusion. If you didn’t know Arabic, try opening a Quran. All you’ll see are scratchings on a page. If you DO know Arabic, try asking yourself, were you BORN knowing Arabic? Of course not, you were taught it by those who raised you. These very same people imparted the meanings of words as THEY understood it. It’s not necessarily the Quran speaking but maybe Arabs speaking for the Quran. So in reality, no one is Quran ALONE. We are pushing TOWARDS Quran Alone.

And that’s why I’m a Quranist. A Quranist recognises his limitation and his process. He is constantly walking towards the goal and does not consider himself to have attained the goal simply by dropping hadith.

“Quranist” not a replacement for “Muslim”


A popular criticism of the Quranist term in The Quranists Space

Question: “First of all I don’t understand why you guys named the group as Quranist. Allah never approved a Muslim by any other name other than as Muslim. Please explain?”

Answer (by Farouk A. Peru): ‘quranism’ denotes our method, our way of understanding HOW to be muslim. It is not a REPLACEMENT for the term ‘muslim’. A ‘muslim’ is an agent of wholeness and soundness. How do people do it? Many ways. Sunni Muslims follow Quran and Sunnah, Shia Muslims follow Quran and Ahl Al-Bayt and Quranist Muslims follow the Quran and try to interpret it in the best way possible. Hope that helps, sir 🙂

Please add your comments!

http://www.facebook.com/groups/quranistsspace/permalink/328841447206848/

Quranists Network Salat Discussion


The Quranists Network Salat Discussion took place on Saturday 4th Feb, and it was a pleasure to have the participants come together and share their study notes and views. I personally found it very beneficial, lively and encouraging, and I enjoyed the relaxed and welcoming environment, Alhamdulillah! A big thank you to all who attended and contributed, and also to the Muslim Institute for their hospitality. The playlist for the videos from the Salat Discussion are to be found here on Quranists Network TV Channel: Please watch, subscribe and share! http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL9CBF73F09D04B0F1&feature=plcp

QRAC survey


QRAC survey