Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Political: Sword can only spread fear, not faith

the rhetoric that Islam was spread by sword always intrigued me. can a faith be really spread by sword? if humans have no capacity to rebel at a moment of the sword or later, perhaps then it can be spread by the sword. even if a human succumb to fear at that instance, subsequently over time be it days or months or years or decades later, the human or his offsprings will indeed rebel. humans are one species that you can never hold them down forever against their will.

it is interesting to read the wills that two of the greatest sultans and conquerors in Islamic history had written for their successor sons. both these two sultans founded two of the longest lasting dynasties and empires. in their wills you find advice that they give to their successors being basically of justice, good governance, ethics, piety, development and human rights. indeed sword can only spread fear not faith and humans may succumb to fear temporally but never forever.

(Sultan Osman Ghazi, founder of the Ottoman Empire, addressing his sonand successor Sultan Orhan Ghazi in his last will:)

Son! Be careful about the religious issues before all other duties.The religious precepts build a strong State. Do not give the religiousduties to careless, faithless and sinful men or to dissipated,indifferent or inexperienced people. And also do not leave the stateadministrations to such people because the one without fear of Allahthe Creator is in fear of the created. The one committing a great sinand continuing to sin can not be loyal. A person would be loyal if hefits to the Prophet's (sws) true traditions and does not go out fromSheriat.

Avoid cruelty and superstition. Remove the persons whoencourage cruelty and superstition from your State. The underlyingreason for it is that such persons make you decline. Always widen theState by jihad. Because if the campaign is not held for a long time adeficiency and clumsiness appear on the braveness of the soldiers andon the knowledge, information and measure of the commanders. Personswho know better about campaigns die and inexperienced persons come intheir place. So many mistakes emerge and the State is damaged muchfrom this.

Save the Beytul Mal (treasury). Try to make much the State stock.Within the borders of Sheriat be contented with what you have. Do notdestroy in an unuseful manner but fulfill your needs and necessitiesand do not squander. Do not be proud with your soldiers and goods.Because they are the intermediaries in the way of Allah for carryingthe public services as a whole and for widening justice and virtue inthe world. Protect the statesmen working for Allah's sake. After theirdeath care about their families and answer their needs.

Do not seizepublic goods by violence. Give your kind hand to the deserved peopleand save such persons' relations from troubles. Protect capablemilitary officials. Scholars, virtuous men, artists and literary menare the power of the State structure. Treat with kindness and showhonor to these men. Make close relationship when you hear about avirtuous man and give wealth and grant to him. Thus, in your State thenumber of learned men, virtuous men and knowledgeable men becomeshigh.

Put in order the political and religious duties.Take lesson from me. I came to these places as a weak leader and thehelp of Allah reached me, although I did not deserve it. Follow my wayand protect Din-i Muhammad (the religion of Muhammad sws) and thebelievers and your followers. Respect the rights of Allah and Hisservants. Do not hesitate to advise your successors in this way.Depend on Allah's help regarding justice and fairness and attempt toremove cruelty in every duty. Protect your public from the enemy'sinvasion and from their cruelty. Do not behave with any person in anunsuitable manner or with unfairness. Gratify the public and save allof their affairs.
[Source: ttp://]

(According to the document available in the State Library of Bhopal,India, Babur Shah left the following will to his son Humayun Shah:)"My son, take note of the following: Do not harbor religious prejudicein your heart. You should dispense justice while taking note of thepeople's religious sensitivities, and rites. Avoid slaughtering cowsopenly in order that you could gain a place in the heart of thenatives. This will take you nearer to the people.Do not demolish or damage places of worship of any faith and dispensefull justice to all to ensure peace in the country. Islam can betterbe preached by love and affection, rather than tyranny andpersecution. Avoid the differences between the shias and sunnis. Lookat the various characteristics of your people just as thecharacteristics of various seasons."



At 8:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Salaam, brother!

Very interesting! Thanks for sharing the links. I do enjoy reading such information.


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