Thank You for Making a Mistake!

The biggest mistake anyone can make is not to make any mistakes!

If we don’t have the freedom to make mistakes, we won’t have the chance to make achievements.

That was a fact of life. It’s also an Islamic rule, a prophetic promise: “If you try and succeed, your reward is double; but if you try and fail, you get a single reward”, so said the Prophet of Islam.

The intellectual struggle to try and distinguish what is right and beneficial was called “ijtihad”. You can think about a problem and come up with a conclusion or a solution that proves wrong after testing. Don’t worry; you still get the reward of trying with a sincere intention to do good. That was the spirit that caused early Muslims to build one of history’s leading civilizations.

Life always brings us something new. The problems we’re facing today are different from what our ancestors faced. Our grandchildren are sure to face challenges that we have no clue about. In Islam, deciding which way to go that is compatible with the Islamic values, once we face such unprecedented challenges, is our necessary and never ending task of ijtihad. Once we gave it up, once we became less tolerant of errors, this civilization collapsed!

If the word “ijtihad” sounds somewhat similar to “jihad” to you, you’re absolutely right. The two words have one linguistic root. As you already know, jihad means struggle (this has been repeated thousands of times, it’s “their” problem if they still don’t get it!). Ijtihad consists in making an effort in order to achieve something. In the scholarly context, the effort is intellectual, aiming at finding new solutions to new problems, while remaining loyal to the core values.

Muslim scholars have summarized the purpose of Islamic Law in two endeavors: eliminating that which is harmful, and doing that which is beneficial to people. The rest is details! That’s where ijtihad comes in. One simplistic example is television, which didn’t exist at the time of the Quran and the Prophet. What’s our religion’s say about it? Ijtihad will easily conclude that if you watch porn, television is haram, religiously forbidden. If you watch it for knowledge or entertainment, it’s permissible.

Imagine if some Muslims come and tell you that whatever the Quran and the Prophet made lawful is what we’re allowed to do, and whatever they named as forbidden we can’t do? Gosh, but the Quran and the Prophet said nothing about cars, planes, cell phones, and the Internet! What should we do now?! You get the idea!

Something similar actually happened. Some Muslims decided that the ijtihad of our ancestors who passed a few centuries after the time of Prophet Muhammad is the best that can be done, and all we need now is read and re-read their books and do what they told us to do. Anyone who tries to engage in ijtihad after them is erring from the straight path. For some reason, those Muslims gave themselves the authority to disable the prophetic good news of those who try and fail getting a single reward. They decided that instead, those who try at all are actually sinning. I don’t know how they made the rewarded intellectual efforts into punishable sins, and why anyone believed them! (Well, I might have some clue: getting the masses into a state of acceptance of the status quo was, and will always be, the best dream of despotic rulers!).

Muslims have been living a grossly misguided time of low mistake tolerance. Interestingly, the less you tolerate mistakes and allow trial and error, the more mistakes will occur and aggravate!

If you look at some of the stories of how Prophet Muhammad dealt with sinners, you’ll see the gap between his example and the harsh ways of some so called religious people. Once a man came to him confessing that he fornicated and asking to be punished, Muhammad told him to pray first then discuss the matter. The man prayed with them and went back to the Prophet for the punishment, Muhammad simply told him to go away, because his prayer erased his sin. The Prophet basically tricked the sinner out of punishment!  Jesus also asked us to throw stones at sinners… if we can be certain we’re free of sins!

Not only the self-righteous are harsh on sinners, they’re also harsh on “intellectual sinners” if you will. If your ideas are not what they like, you’re anywhere from misguided to infidel. Their understanding of religion is God’s understanding Himself, so there is no room for arguing with God!

Until we tolerate mistakes and allow trial and error with open minds and hearts, we will continue downhill… and may be even down in Hell!


Call to The Best Jihad!

I’m all for Jihad. Yes, I invite you to Jihad. You Muslims of the world, I’m not afraid and I’m not scared. Jihad has a bad reputation? I don’t care. I want us all to be Jihadists. Not only Jihadists, no, I want us to do the Best of Jihad! See, I finally revealed my true Muslim self, and gave up my Taqyia!

So, what’s the plan of our Jihad? I mean the Best of Jihad? See, I’m a Salafi too, so I stick to the sources, and our first source is the Prophet. I’m not inventing anything. The Prophet gave us the defintion and the way of this Best Jihad. Are you ready, fellow Muslims?

“The best of Jihad is a word of truth in front of a tyrant/an oppressive ruler!”

I’m sorry if I disappointed you! No, my Jihad is not against the Infidels until they accept Islam. After all, God Himself told us that whoever wants to believe is free to do so, and whoever wants to disbelieve, they’re free to do so as well (Quran 18:29).

An infidel only hurts him or herself. A Tyrant evetually hurts millions, tens of millions, and sometimes even hundreds of millions!

So, my fellow Muslims, imagine if all citizens of Mubarak, Gadhafi, Saddam Hussein (before he invaded Kuwait!), Saud, etc, etc, did the Best Jihad. All of the them said a word of truth to their rulers: You are the trash of our Earth. You are the enemies of Allah. You are the Pharaohs of our time. You’re going to Hell anyway, so we will take you the hell out of our lands, NOW!

I’m not inventing anything. That’s the Best Jihad according to our Prophet!


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