Sunday, May 18, 2014
Sunni’s don’t read books!
A few months ago I met an old friend from my University days. He began to tell me about his woes and his life. Though we were not complaining he told me about the Islamic shop that he had opened. He talked about the stock he had got damaged and so on. Then he said something shockingly straight to the core of the matter of our communities in the west. "Sunnis don’t read!"
His shop was open for a matter of months before it was closed. Why because his books did not sell! This might seem trivial to many of you but this is of upmost importance to Islam. Without learning and teaching any religious tradition dies out. It’s that simple! If there is no knowledge; there is no religion. Full stop.
Another equally sad story was that another book shop was set to close because of many factors and guess what he said to me? Sunni’s don’t read! This was one of the causes of the decline of his business.
It’s very sad to say many scholars do not emphasis learning to any of their students. Even if they do then they only emphasise their own teachers and ignore those more qualified. This is just like nepotism.
The amount of effort it takes to get a book out is considerable. It can take years and in that time someone can come along and beat you to the punch by releasing their version!
The main support of Wahabism and other groups are the scholars who say do not learn or study. To be honest I do not consider anyone who belittles knowledge as a scholar. All he is a story teller so he should be ignored and his opinion should be flushed away into the sewer!
Many a time born Muslims come across those who enter Islam and find them more knowledgeable. This is shocking for many who experience it. But what else are you going to expect? Just because you are born Muslim does not give you all the knowledge of Islam. And by the same token neither does being someone who has studied a few years give you superiority. After many years of study I sometimes find that others know things I do not.
So how do we get out of this mess? Simple get learning! Find someone in your area who is teaching Fiqh and Aquida. Then look for a spiritual master to work on your nafs. Fiqh/law study either the Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi schools as the Hanbali’s have all but died out. Aquida/Islamic belief the teacher needs to be Ashari or Maturdi to be sure. If there are other than this then be careful and refrain from studying with them. Your spiritual master needs to have an authorisation from his teachers and he should name them as should the teachers of the first two sciences should.
Remove the state of ignorance and work hard to propel yourself out of this mire. Tajweed, marriage, buying and selling are also other fields that you need some knowledge of. So you have your work cut for you. The names of the scholars on this blog will give you an indication of who to study with.
There is a pleasure in learning that you will not find elsewhere. So go ahead and experience it. Use this blog as much as you can. Search the labels and benefit from the greatest religion that is full of beauty that most of us were unaware of until we looked...
Oh yeah and start reading books! Yes you Sunni get reading! And read this!