Who says that there is no Freedom in Being a Muslim?

Who says that in Islam the concept of ‘Freedom’ does not exist? Let me break it down for you.

Being Muslim is just promising God that you would be good. That’s the general idea. Good to who?

Good to God, I guess in the first instance. In fact, finding Him is sort of finding yourself – being good to Him through being good to yourself and your fellowman. Thats it. Now that was not hard is it, to deduce was it? Yeah, yeah, I know many people don’t look at their calling to God that way.

Anyway, too often, people think, and this includes Muslims, that anyone that identifies with Islam is a ardent Believer. Wrong! Well, every Believer is a Muslim, but not every Muslim is a Believer. You see, being Muslim is the act of bearing witness to a set of truths and obligations, such as:

(1) testifying that there is only One, Unique God (Allah, in Arabic) and that Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) is this last Prophet and Messenger

(2) promising to establish prayer at proscribed times

(3) redistributing a proscribed amount of wealth to poor and needy Muslims

(4) abstaining from food, drink and copulation during the daytime hours of a proscribed month

(5) and making pilgrimage to the first house built for the worship of God, in your lifetime, if you can afford to.

And you know what? A Muslim is not obliged to do any of it, he or she can choose to adhere or break their promises, but – and there is a BIG BUT – that will be breaking a most solemn oath with God and with that comes consequences in this life and in the life to come. Well, one is not even obliged to believe in those consequences at all; because if you did, then you’d be a ‘Believer’ for that moment.

Now here is another aspect of believing. The Holy Prophet, Muhammad (peace be upon him) promised that adherence to those five aforementioned acts is sufficient for anyone to be rewarded entry into Paradise. He once told one of his followers, Mu’aadh Ibn Jabal (may Allah be pleased with him): ‘Whosoever, says ‘There is only One, Unique God, with sincerity, will enter Paradise.’ Bemused with the news, he said, ‘Shall I tell the people? The prophet then replied, ‘No, they will rely on that alone.’ http://www.abc.se/~m9783/n/lail_e.html

Now you would have to believe that Prophets and Messengers once walked the earth and bring revealed books of guidance to many and that these men preached in the existence of a Unique God and a promise of a life after this world. Well if you could agree with that you’d be halfway there to earning the title of being a ‘Believer’.

Wait up, not so quick. There are three more articles of belief: to accept that all ones actions are accounted for by supernatural beings called angels and that they are only collecting evidence against you because Allah already knows all of the choices and non-choices you will make.

Aha! I know what you’r thinking now. If I am free why are all of my choices not really choices because they are already preordained by a God? Well, you don’t have to believe and then you’d already been preordained to be a non-believer. Not everyone can be a believer you know and today you maybe and tomorrow you are not. That’s why you got to keep living the good life in the hope that you please your creator and fulfilled your promises. Its a tough life, but don’t worry. Everyone makes mistakes.

The Holy Prophet, Muhammad (pbuh) on another occasion when the Prophet said that ‘anyone who acknowledged that there was only One Unique Creator, sincerely from his heart will enter Paradise, was asked by one of his companions, Abu Dhar al-Ghifaari (ra) thrice: ‘Even if he committed fornication, adultury or stole?’ The prophet (pbuh) replied, ‘even if he fornicated or did adultery and stole … The Prophet (pbuh) sensing Abu Dhar hesitations said, despite any objections you may have Oh Abi Dhar (raghima anfak).”

Don’t get excited. You will obtain Paradise after paying for the price for your transgressions against the rights of others. Now, if you ended up in prison, don’t ask, why are there laws that persecute me for my injustices – why there are laws that violate and dictate the extent of my freedoms. Lol.

Well, someone knew that you would violate the rights of others and that you’d have to be curtailed. Someone knew that someone had to set the example of evil and its consequences. That doesn’t have to be you? If you are already in such a position – role-playing evil that is. You must really be enjoying it, not to want to change what you are? If you feel that you have no power to change your situation, then you are a danger to you and me.

Now if you are not on the wrong end of justice, then you are making the right choices until now, aren’t you?

What if you didn’t get caught? What if someone is doing you injustice, did not get caught?

Look, the bottom line is, you don’t have to be a Muslim, if thats what you ORDAINED for yourself. You don’t have to be a Believer also. Be anything you want to be. You prefer hell over heaven, that is your choice. Just don’t break the laws that keep you and me safe.

Malick Elias

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Malick Elias

The vision of 'Vivaislam' is to provide a space for Muslim and non-Muslim activists to air their voices on how best to organise and manage their world. The aim is to focus upon recommending solutions to issues of social injustices, freedoms and citizenship facing predominantly Muslim and non-Muslim societies, rather than offering descriptions of problems. It is our hope that these voices will reach the echelons of power and influence.