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Freedoms, Human Rights, Religion, Tolerance, Yasir Javed

Have we made Blasphemy claim too easy?


I am not a fan of Junaid Jamshed. But I don’t understand what is this fuss about Blasphemy without an unemotional mention of Ahadith behind it. I heard what he said and I also searched ahadith that he mentioned. He mentioned part of a friendly conversation between Prophet SA and Aisha RA (Seems like a very natural interaction between a husband and wife) mentioned in a hadith:

Narrated Al-Qasim bin Muhammad:
`Aisha, (complaining of headache) said, “Oh, my head”! Allah’s Messenger (?) said, “I wish that had happened while I was still living, for then I would ask Allah’s Forgiveness for you and invoke Allah for you.” Aisha said, “Wa thuklayah! By Allah, I think you want me to die; and If this should happen, you would spend the last part of the day sleeping with one of your wives!”….

Reference : Sahih al-Bukhari 5666
In-book reference : Book 75, Hadith 27
USC-MSA web (English) reference : Vol. 7, Book 70, Hadith 570

And then he extrapolated in a casual tone to general conclusion about woman which is also mentioned in another hadith:

Narrated Abu Huraira:
Allah ‘s Apostle said, “Treat women nicely, for a women is created from a rib, and the most curved portion of the rib is its upper portion, so, if you should try to straighten it, it will break, but if you leave it as it is, it will remain crooked. So treat women nicely.”

Reference : Sahih al-Bukhari 3331
In-book reference : Book 60, Hadith 6
USC-MSA web (English) reference : Vol. 4, Book 55, Hadith 548

I am a critic of Junaid’s views about woman (he shared some about woman driving earlier as well) in general, and I would like that views degrading a section of people (e.g. women, minorities etc.) should not be allowed to be broadcasted, but I don’t see anything Blasphemous in that. The hadith about “Rib” is general about woman and does not make any specific exclusions. I have heard most of Molvis holding similar views about woman in general.

I think the real reason behind “extreme reactions” is that people in general do not read Quran, Ahadith or life of Sahaba RA. When one does not understand things, he makes simplified assumptions about them. There had been differences between Sahaba RA and they have used sometimes very harsh language with each other and the issue of Blasphemy never popped up. People have simplified assumptions about correctness of every “hadith” and super-human assumptions about “personalities”. Once one reads ahadith he comes to know that the world was a natural world where people used to differ – often seriously differ – and openly expressed their views even to Prophet SA. That openness was strength of that society and nurtured trust.

The misuse of Blasphemy in our society reminds me of this verse:

And when Moses returned to his people, angry and grieved, he said, “How wretched is that by which you have replaced me after [my departure]. Were you impatient over the matter of your Lord?” And he threw down the tablets and seized his brother by [the hair of] his head, pulling him toward him. [7:150]

Musa AS was so angry about committed “Shirk” in his absence that he “threw down tablets” and seized his brother by head. If it had been Pakistan, “Shirk” would have no problem but “throwing down tablets given by Allah” would have been termed a Blasphemy. I see people comfortable with watching half naked woman on TV all the time but would flare up as soon as word Blasphemy is used even without proper proof of what was said.

The irony of situation is that people like Dr Amir Liaqat openly used vulgar language about Junaid’s mother. What nonsense in the world is that. What is fault of his mother. Amir Liaqat is the same person who was using abusive language right between recording of Qaseeda Burda Shareef in a leaked video, and who also was saying “Uthatay naheen kion nabi ka janaza.. Kahan reh gaya baitian denay walay” (Referring to Hazrat Abu Bakr RA and Umar RA) in a charged crowd in another leaked video.

More hypocritic is the fact that original Hanafi opinion even about a person who commits Blasphemy against Prophet SA is very balanced. It is that he would be spared if he repents. And there is no punishment for woman and non-muslims unless they are known to commit Blasphemy habitually.

Abu Yusuf (Abu Hanifa’s disciple) writes in Kitab al-Kharaj: If a Muslim abuses the Prophet (sws), calls him a liar or ascribes blemishes to him he becomes kafir of the Almighty Allah. His wife is permanently separated from him. If he repents [he will be spared]. Otherwise he will be executed. The same is the ruling regarding such a woman. However, Abu Hanifa [differs on this issue and] says that woman will not be killed. Rather she will be forced to reenter Islam.

Imam Abu Hanifa said, non muslim will not be killed on the basis of shatam-e-rasool. The crime of shirk that he is already committing, that in itself is a much bigger crime. This was narrated by Imam Khatabi in his book Ma`alim al-sanan `ala sunan Abi Dawud

Imam Ibn Abidin is one of the most important authorities in Hanafi Madhab after the first generation of scholars. His book radd-ul-mukhtar is seen as an authority in issuing fatwas and investigating the popular opinions in hanafi fiqh over various issues. He has discussed the matter of sabb-e-rasool in great detail in this book as well as in Rasael-Ibn-Abidin.

Imam Ibn Abidin explains that the first Hanafi Scholar who claimed that the repentance of one who commits sabb-e-rasool will not be accepted was Bazazi in the 15th century AD. There is not a single Hanafi Scholar before him that has said something along the same line. Imam Ibn Abidin further explains that even Bazazi seems to have mis-interpreted the legal opinions of other scholars.

Unfortunately, religious scholars do not educate people by telling them the truth about original Hanafi opinion. There is a tussle in our society between “Barelvis” and “Deobandis” about who is more “Ashiq-e-Rasool” than other. Probably they think that anyone telling the truth about original Hanafi position on Blasphemy would be deemed as a lesser “Ashiq-e-Rasool”. So instead they just opt to talk more loudly in favour of Blasphemy law. Strengthening the position of their “Firqa”, but in the process weakening “Islam”. With current law it has become very difficult for any one to preach Islam to non-muslims. If you would talk to a non-muslim he would not discuss his real beliefs just because it would endanger his life as his words would be considered Blasphemy. Even I writing this post feel threatened that someone will start considering this post as Blasphemous. But the reason I am sharing it is that its not just job of scholars but also common men to keep a check on scholars. Prophet SA told us that we would tread the same path as those of Jews and Christians:

Abu Sa’id al-Khudri reported Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: You would tread the same path as was trodden by those before you inch by inch and step by step so much so that if they had entered into the hole of the lizard, you would follow them in this also. We said: Allah’s Messenger, do you mean Jews and Christians (by your words)” those before you”? He said: Who else (than those two religious groups)?
Muslim :: Book 34 : Hadith 6448

And one of issues with Jews and Christians was that they gave the right of deciding things as Halal and Haram solely to their Scholars. This was termed as making the Scholars partners with Allah (See tafseer of 9:31). So I think its our duty to spread the word and change the Blasphemy law to original Hanafi position so that no more lives are taken in the name of Islam and it becomes easier to preach Islam.


3 thoughts on “Have we made Blasphemy claim too easy?

  1. I think JJ apologised for what he said while describing a woman’s nature. He said that, ” even our Prophet’s (pbuh) company couldnot change a woman’s nature, so ….. ”
    And he mentioned that more than once I think. Thus the hasty apology.

    Posted by Mahwish Qayyum | December 6, 2014, 12:17 am
  2. indeed we have let the claim and charges of this offence v easy and loose…this is a bit controversial hence even scholars try to avoid discussion even, there is no clear cut answer, the fact of the matter is in the time of Muhammad SAW had anyone been v abusive towards Prophet SAW or did an obvious “blasphemy” and persisted not repented were often killed and Prophet SAW didnt reprimand them, this is about non Muslims while a Muslim as its mentioned wud be not considered a Muslim and could hav been killed or threatened to be, there is prob no incidence in which a Muslim not hypocrite did any obvious as we call Gustakhi! At the time of Makkan Conquest, some people who included people who either read verses maligning abusing Prophet SAW were told not to be spared at all even if they go inside the Kaaba! what is the verdict on Ghazi Ilm Deen surely our liberalists would say it was wrong of him to kill Rajpal on publishing Rangila rasool.(Maaz Allah!) while the Quaid fought his case unsuccessfully I gather and Iqbal our “hero” also hailed openly….same should go for the likes of Rushdi, but who does it out of innocence realizes and repents should be set free! in my view scholars should sit down from different “mazahib” and make a ruling in specific circumstances, some sentences and rules ought to be changed with time and conditions prevailing. In a Muslim society obviously people like Rushdi should be hanged, but not in the current world especially if living in a different country whether he declares himself a Muslim or not! while i agree in case of JJ it was a minor issue and a fact he stated in a bad way depicting women generally in a bad way, in a personal gathering it is fine not publically, many of the great scholars views on women including Ghazali
    are not necessarily liked by feminists but true infact!

    Posted by Shakil Akhtar | December 6, 2014, 12:31 am
  3. those who have considered JJ an innocent can make talk with Muzaffar shah about this matter, who have already challenge his words otherwise please stop this topic discussion in social media. we don`t have enough deen knowledge to claim the Ulama words.

    Posted by shamshad | December 11, 2014, 10:12 pm

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