February 1986: Page 1, 2, 3

Submitters Perspective

Page 3


Knowledge and ignorance

Qamaruddin Khan

Iran & Iraq Squander Muslim Peoples' Money

Continued from Page 1

Tucson, Wednesday, February 12, 1986

The Arizona Daily Star

Iran claims sweep across tip of S. Iraq

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) – Iran said yesterday its force swept across the southern tip of Iraq near the Kuwaiti border on the second day of its new offensive, and both nations reported killing thousands of enemy soldiers.

Kuwait called on all Arab nations to join in defending Iraq. Although both warring nations are Moslem, Iran’s people are Persian and Iraq’s are Arabic.

Iran’s Islamic Republic News Agency, monitored in Nicosia, said 5,000 Iraqis were killed or wounded and 1,100 captured since the Iranian offensive began Sunday night. It said 10 Iraqi planes were shot down yesterday and told of pushing across south Iraq.

For its part, Iraq said more than 1,900 Iranians were killed in Iraq’s 3rd Army Corps sector of the 730-mile front and that “countless thousands” more died in other areas.

The pattern and curricula of the existing religious educational institutions were devised during a phase of decadence in Islamic society and since then there has been little revision. Knowledge in these institutions is frozen and fossilized, and has become entirely irrelevant to the needs of contemporary society. They were made by the men of an age for the requirements of that age. Their interpretation of Koran and the Sunnah was their own; it was not Divine, nor eternal, nor unchangeable. And now, although most of the teaching has become obsolete, it is regarded as sacred and immutable and goes under the name of real Islam, and real knowledge. It is this reluctance to learn, to reform, and to understand Islam in relation to the changing needs of social order and compulsions of history, that is the real cause of ignorance in Muslim society today.

The maintenance of the status quo, the continuance of the feudal system, the theological hold on the masses and the superstitious, dogmatic approach to religion, have all provided very strong support for the advancement and assertion of ignorance.


The greatest calamity is that qualified, competent and sincere scholars are discredited and maligned as enemies of Islam, and every effort is made to muffle and repress them, depriving them even of the right to live. New ideas and new thoughts can come only from such men, but they are looked upon with suspicion and distrust. Hence, Muslim society now suffers from intellectual stagnation. The greatest appeal in the Koran is the intellectual appeal. God has asked men again and again to think and ponder over. His signs (ayat), commandments and wisdom. Finally, we should remember that Islam is a world religion. Its message is addressed to the whole of mankind. The responsibility of carrying this message to other men lies primarily with the present believers. But when these believers are themselves steeped in ignorance how can they lead others to knowledge? Islam is knowledge itself, and not ignorance, for God says: ‘But it is clear revelations in the hearts of those who have been given knowledge, and none deny our revelation save wrongdoers [29:49]