Two Solutions for Islamophobia

Although Islamophobia we notice as a concept in Europe since the 8th century, the period the Muslims reached the borders of Europe, played the different roles with different faces, there are always same common similarities between the enmity of Islam and the enmities targeting almost only the Islamic World during the expanding period of the Ottoman Empire.

The Islamphobia applied in a new version after the 60’s in Europe, has the same characteristics.
15 millions of Muslims living in Europe for long, the oppressive regimes in Islamic countries, the effective roles of Muslim countries with the increase of oil consuming, the globalization and the communication capabilities resulted by the technological improvements are the factors forming the new face of the Islamphobia and on the other hand, are improving the capacity of finding solutions for it.

The Islamic World has to study this threat widely and produce the constructive and long lasting solutions.
On December 7, 2004, speaking in the Conference of “the Struggle with Islamphobia: the Education of Tolerance and Understanding” in the United Nations, Mr. Kofi Annan, the Secretary General of the UN stated: “The strategy striving with Islamphobia must be based on the education. The education must cover not only the knowledge of Islam but also, the knowledge of all other religions and traditions; so by this way the mitoses and lies be separated from the truths. We must prevent the misuse of the media and internet calling the hate but we must protect the freedom of speaking and expression. The official authorities are not to just condemn the Islamophobia but also, have to support their promises of being off the discrimination by guaranteeing required the legal applications.”
Those words are pointing the truth we support: It’s likely that one of the most important causes stirring up the Islamphobia is the “deficiency of information”. In other words, it is the result of not forming and not using the mechanisms of the “proper communication” (tabligh) and the “effective representation”.
The main paradox in Islamphobia is that so many people scaring of Islam have actually restricted knowledge about Islam. The only solution against the systematical “activities of disinformation” about the Islam applying in many countries including the Islamic countries is the “systematical activities of information”.
Regarding “the activities of information” which we call “tabligh”, the point we must not neglect is that those activities are to be not just for the non-muslims but also for the Muslims.
The way that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) answered the question of “What is religion?” as “Addeenun Naseehah” three times, that is “Religion is advice.” shows us the way out about this issue clearly. This advice should be given through means in full accordance with necessities and unnecessities of the ummah.
Proper tabligh or information in contemporary words has three principles: 1. Tabligh that reads time well. 2. Sound and honorable tabligh. 3. Persuading and heartfelt tabligh.
Present age requires tabligh based on science and knowledge which has persuasion at heart. Impositions are the sources of prejudices, misunderstandings and misconceptions. Suspicion and anxiety result from ignorance and despotism. Islam treasures individual and bases on persuasion. As Hazret Beduizzaman, the great imam of this age stated that being superior to the civilized is achieved only by persuasion not by coercion and force used against inconsiderate fierce people. He said as follows:
“O Pious Persons! Those who follow their jobs! If you like achievement, if you want success act in accordance with the laws established on earth by Glorified Allah. Otherwise you will receive the answer of rejection with failure and ill-success.”
Knowledge gains or loses value according to its owner’s attitudes. Enlightening is the oldest and most noble mission of man. The most significant attributes of the Prophets throughout the history is the fact that they are honorable and of strong character. This is the most essential potion that makes tabligh powerful and sound.
Tabligh achieves its objective if only it is purified of all types of worldly and political aims and the facts which are conveyed are relied on and trusted in. Taking “the sake of Allah” as a base and in deeds caring about acceptance of Allah rather than the public’s not minding about the rest at all as long as He accepts and we must consider the principle” Duty of Prophets is just tabligh.” (Wama ‘alarrasooli ilal balagh) as our sole reference.
Especially present wrong tabligh methods which question even our value system by going over its objectives have exacerbated Islamophobia and urged Islamophobic attitudes rather than abating it.
There is a consequence, at the time of the deteriorating of the source of information in such an information chaos, and: “Informative Ignorance”.
Increase in the amount of complicated and incorrect information and spread of irregular information strengthen ignorance not knowledge. The only way of getting rid of this modern ignorance for today’s man is to have mechanisms and filters to distinguish information.
The communication and systematical information will be effective as long as it will be equipped with the easily understandable, convincing, acceptable, safe knowledge.
The systemically proper communication covers five topics.
1.The educated human resource
2.Effective use of communication instruments
3.The refined and satisfying publications
4.Material improvements
5.The sustainable coordination and unity.
Two Solutions for
Islamophobia: The Proper Tabligh and Effective Tamsil
The way for saving Islam from being ‘the unknown other’ is to make the communication systematized. The ‘systematical communication’ means the strong and capable communication and only by this way, ‘the deliberate ignorance’ can be removed. Unfortunately, firstly, some prejudices coming from the past and still existing in the West and also in some Muslim countries and secondly, forming the ‘the deliberate ignorance’ about Islam have become the instruments and preferences of power centers taking decisions. ‘The deliberate ignorance’ is the result of the ‘selfish ideas’ and the politic desires. So, using the communication is not enough. It has to be systematized.
The persons who will represent the Islam have to know Islam widely and also, they have to endure it and be equipped with effective blessed causes. The most effective instrument against Islamphobia and the antipathy of Islam is to raise a generation who have the knowledge of ‘solid examples’ , ‘speaking evidences’ and the principle of ‘dissembling’. Having this knowledge is one of the most important characteristics of the Prophets and especially Our Prophet’s(PBUH).
If the human resource raised with the appropriate thoughts and works, be equipped with the devotion, it will produce the fruit of strong personalities called as the ‘the pious foundation person’ in the Islamic terminology and that is the base stone of the systematical communication. In other words, they are the trained and well-educated staff.
Just as the power and spread of means of communication urges Islamophobia it may offer solution potential as long as it is used in a good way. As it is the element of effective tabligh we underline it once more.
Another duty of the owners of systematic tabligh in information disorder and publication intensity is the preparation of satisfying, tested, printed and audio-visual publications devoid of extravagances directed at the cures for diseases.
The power and legitimacy of the facts also necessitate power and legitimacy of means. The rightfulness and legacy of conveyed facts does not mean one can refer any means of communication.
“Alhaqqu ya’lu wala yu’la alaih” meaning “Allah is superior to everything.” Nothing can be superior to Allah is a common principle. Ustad Bediuzzaman answers the questions, “Why is power superior to right then? Why is the follower of the truth a loser against the follower of false?” as follows:
If the follower of the truth, the follower of faith does not use right matters will be a loser against the illusion of the follower of false. Here lies the superiority of right against false. There is a reason for creation and mystery of creation. One who attains it uses a true reason.
In that case, tabligh in this time, in other words “i’la kalimatullah” is dependant upon materialistic progress. In relation to the topic, to perform a sound act of service of tabligh, it is very crucial that the Islamic countries, our people and institutions progress in terms of material things and establish powerful structures.
Lastly, the most significant must of the systematic religious communication or the roof that provides the unity of the other necessary things is a sustainable coordination and a permanent unity, the unity of Islam. Here, the unity of NGOs of the Islamic World that makes us get together has a great importance.
Some Islamophobic publishings and policies, and some important events and political games set in this sense benefits from the disconnection, the lack of coordination and cooperation, the inability to experience transfer and prejudices and enmities among Muslims.
In this conjuncture, to insist on fruitless methods, to defend the actions strengthening alignments disconnected from the spirit of union and cooperation in an obstinate and dogmatic way, to ignore the means of tabligh, being closed to the realistic understanding, is a serious disease that must to be urgently treated.
In the struggle against Islamophobia, it is indispensable must that we have to get rid of our own baseless, worthless, rootless imaginary phobias. It constitutes of the systematic religious communication in our world getting smaller that the consciousness of the unity and cooperation, shaped in the catchword “Without any doubt, the believers of Allah are brothers.”
Similarly, another matter that describes the true communication and must be the
result of it is ‘the effective representation’. ‘The problem of representation’ is one of the most vital matters of Muslims. The atony of the subject that can be clarified with chaining of ‘Individual representation’, ‘communal representation’, ‘political representation’ and ‘global representation’ both depicts Islam as aimless and encourages anti-islamic focuses who recognized this atony.
As referred a bit, increasing the right examples and to melt these examples in a pool causes to exist such communities having the capability of representing. By constituting such communities that talks about the moral values of Islam but put them into practice in daily life, we will be able to dispel the
Islamophobia and then it makes Islam a powerful centre of attraction. Anyway, All of the great religious communication and canalizing to the right way were performed in the same way we have mentioned.
“On the condition that we show the perfection of the truths of Islam in our doings in life, the members of the other religions will come to Islam in waves”
Sooner or later, the power of Communal Representation changes into political representation. Political Representation will be possible only if we are able to be successful in every area of life. Our Prophet Muhammed learn us this fact that should be shaped in the background by saying “you are governed as you live” In each corner of Islamic World, it is not possible that some ideas that are not seen in social life and that do not reflect on the mirrors of people obtain the effective representation ability.
Global representation is dependant on the formation of a mechanism that can represent Islamic societies and countries and deserve everyone’s acceptance. In this sense, the Unity of the NGOs of the Islamic World performs quite a great mission. Isn’t it clear the great steps like D-8 and The Organization of Islamic Conference pave the Islamic unity of the world pretty well? We supplicate from the mercy of Allah to lead our way in this line, to remove the internal and external detrimental obstacles and strengthen our unity and coalescence, and to compile our hearts in this tide.
These model activities are not threatening but contrarily these are needs like breathing and a starting point for the people who are crushed under the dominations of brutal power centers. For this purpose, there should be such organizations that are powerful, rightful, well-equipped and effective; and we, all have to support these endeavoring dependent on the Islamic essences and essentials.
Today, especially in the Western World, The Weakness of Muslim people are felt in any area and any time. Some groups looking for people to whom they speak, they either apply to wrong representatives or they cannot find any people or foundations or this inadequacy is to benefit of the politic actors having evil intentions.
To summarize, if right religious declaration is put into practice with an efficient representation, it unsettles the base on which Islamophobia and the anti-Islamism is founded. For this purpose, from the NGOs to the universities, from media to the politic foundations, the systematic information campaign should be accelerated and the prejudices and ignorance caused by disinformation activities should be eliminated.
We expect Allah makes us successful in terms of religious declaration and invitation, conforming to His consent.
Peace and blessings of Allah be upon you.

Ali Kurt is the Secretary General and Turkey Representative of UNIW

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