Muslims need to avoid extremism to get a moderate middle path leading to justice

Most of the Muslims generally need to practice moderation according to the following Quranic verses –i.e. verse 143 of the second chapter – al-Baqarah. Lord Buddha had also taught his followers to take a middle path, avoiding the extremism.

Surah Al-Baqara

Thus We have appointed you a middle nation, that ye may be witnesses against mankind, and that the messenger may be a witness against you. And We appointed the qiblah which ye formerly observed only that We might know him who followeth the messenger, from him who turneth on his heels. In truth it was a hard (test) save for those whom Allah guided. But it was not Allah’s purpose that your faith should be in vain, for Allah is Full of Pity, Merciful towards mankind. (143)

سُوۡرَةُ البَقَرَة

وَكَذَٲلِكَ جَعَلۡنَـٰكُمۡ أُمَّةً۬ وَسَطً۬ا لِّتَڪُونُواْ شُہَدَآءَ عَلَى ٱلنَّاسِ وَيَكُونَ ٱلرَّسُولُ عَلَيۡكُمۡ شَهِيدً۬ا‌ۗ وَمَا جَعَلۡنَا ٱلۡقِبۡلَةَ ٱلَّتِى كُنتَ عَلَيۡہَآ إِلَّا لِنَعۡلَمَ مَن يَتَّبِعُ ٱلرَّسُولَ مِمَّن يَنقَلِبُ عَلَىٰ عَقِبَيۡهِ‌ۚ وَإِن كَانَتۡ لَكَبِيرَةً إِلَّا عَلَى ٱلَّذِينَ هَدَى ٱللَّهُ‌ۗ وَمَا كَانَ ٱللَّهُ لِيُضِيعَ إِيمَـٰنَكُمۡ‌ۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ بِٱلنَّاسِ لَرَءُوفٌ۬ رَّحِيمٌ۬ (١٤٣)

..

Many Muslims around the world are now are familiar with the clarion call to be moderate and to practise moderationModeration is something in the middle, as equitable balance, as the opposite of all sorts of extremismAccording to the above verse 143 of the– al-Baqarah, Muslims are characterised as ummah wasa and, are held accountable as witnesses over the rest of mankind while the Prophet in turn acts as a witness over them.

Ummah wasa has been translated as:

  1. “an Ummat justly balanced “by Abdullah Yusuf Ali,
  2. “a middle nation” by Marmaduke Pickthal and
  3. “a community of the middle way”, by Muhammad Asad,
  4. justice (adl)” in a number of narrations of the Prophetic sayings. Justice in Arabic connotes both al-adalah and al-istiqamah.

Al-istiqamah = “one’s being steadfast and partial to truth”,

Al-adalah consists of al-itidal , or adl and basically signifies “being in a right balance”, pointing to “a state intermediate between two opposing conditions, whether quantitatively (fi kamm) or qualitatively (fi kayf).”

Hence, justice, as al-Sayyid al-Sharif Ali al-Jurjn, is an intermediate position between the two extremes of excess and deficiency”.

In that sense, therefore, to be just is to not transgress one’s limit nor fall short of it.

And as such, justice epitomises virtue just as the extreme typify vices.

The aforementioned, however, is only a general outline or a formal structure of justice qua moderation as conceived of in Islam.

In order that such an outline or structure not be reduced to mere slogan or pure rhetoric, one needs to be clear and definite of its contents or substance.

And this, to my mind, has largely to do with what should be identified or regarded as extreme.

In this regard, it is equally important, as rendered explicit by the foregoing definitions, that one be cognisant that in almost all contexts or cases of extremes not only take the form of excess but also that of deficiency.

For an extreme of one form normally breeds an extreme of another sort.

Gist extracted from this source-StarOnline: Practising justice and moderation, IKIM VIEWS By DR MOHD ZAIDI ISMAIL SENIOR FELLOW / DIRECTOR CENTRE FOR SCIENCE AND ENVIRONMENT STUDIES

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One Response to “Muslims need to avoid extremism to get a moderate middle path leading to justice”

  1. God: the fundamental capacity to perceive and identify « power of language blog: partnering with reality by JR Fibonacci Says:

    […] Muslims need to avoid extremism to get a moderate middle path leading to justice (drkokogyi.wordpress.com) […]

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