Saturday, May 07, 2005

Superiority Complex?

How would you feel if somebody comes to you and says, "Hey, 'know what, I got the best religion in the world!"?

How would I feel?

Perhaps some indignant defensiveness. Perhaps a spark of curiosity. Perhaps a confident smirk.

How would you respond?
Anything from this list?
- "Push off, ye self-righteous preacher!"
- *rolls eyes*
- "Yeah, cool. so what?"
- "Interesting. Care to back that up?"
- "Good for you. I'm occupied right now, maybe later we can talk this over a drink, eh?"

Okay, so far I've nailed the Loathing, the Don't Care, the Interested, the Too Busy responses... anything else that I'm missing?

Anyways, my point of contention is: I have all these while seeketh here and there, and so far, what I found led me to this conclusion:

"Hey, 'know what, I got the best religion in the world!"

By no means I am saying that my claim is final; By no means I am saying that I have done a thorough and objective analysis of every possible aspects. But I do examine lots of arguments from both sides, heck even from other sides, from those that don't wanna take sides as well. Admittedly, I still have some unresolved issues with this religion of mine, which I hope time will shed more light onto it. But as it is now, compared to other belief systems, I find Islam to be the best religion of all.

I find this conclusion to be reinforced again and again especially as I get to learn more about these topics:

Muhammad as a Person
This guy is the Ultimate Role Model for us Muslims. Namely, a Prophet. Even when being viewed in secular terms, he is still the greatest person in humankind history, as attested by lots of scholars (non-Muslims & Muslims alike). He is a balanced character, not just being great in one aspect and bad in the rest; rather, great in ALL aspects. Character, leadership, wisdom, clarity of thoughts, you name it.

*eep... Generalizing Statement Alert*
A more accurate claim: He is not just great in a few aspects like other great figures of history; rather, if we list down all his great attributes, and compare them to those of others, we will find his résumé list not only quantitatively superior, but also qualitatively so as well... such a holistically well-rounded GREAT person he is.

Qur'an as a proclaimed Scripture
The more I get to know about it, even in material aspects, the more improbable it is to think of it to come from human source. Its touted strengths (authenticity of propagation, beauty of language that transcends poetry and prose, internal & external consistency, soundness of claims be it of factual matter or human nature) are by large undisputed by scholars, and the replies towards arguments against it are empirically provable. This is impressive especially comparing it to how proclaimed scriptures of other faiths stand to scrutiny.

Islamic creed as a Belief System
The proposed Muslim way of life is so uplifting in all aspects - spiritually, emotionally, intellectually, economically... it is so complete, so thorough. It is optimistic, yet practical. It is balanced, and it doesn't violate anybody's rights. It is deceptively constrictive, but as I get to know more the reasoning behind all the do's and don'ts, I began to appreciate their existence. It's not a naive misguided "the ends justifies the means"... rather, the ends as well as the means are both justified. And not simply dogmatically justifiable, but actually through knowledge and reasoning.
Incredulous eh? Perhaps I have a serious problem of superiority complex there? Well, perhaps I do, and maybe in future I will be proven wrong, humiliatingly even. But nevertheless, based on what I know so far, I believe my stand is correct. Whether you agree or not, that is up for you to decide, after you do your own share of research and Truth-Seeking.

If you care at all, that is.


Blogger brown-eyed girl said...

Man, I found it hard to read that entry. I will be very honest. I am very afraid of Islam. I don't like what happens in Muslim countries. I don't like how it works. I don't like the attitude some people in those countries have towards non-Muslims. I don't know whether it's the culture or the religion, but I don't like it.

You know what, if it works for you than that's okay. I understand what you're saying in the sense that it's just how you feel. You're just being honest about how you feel about it. I also have opinions that I really believe to be true that would be greatly criticised and not easily accepted.

9:28 AM, May 09, 2005  
Blogger haya_shiloh said...

Sorry for this late reply. Went back to home in Malaysia last week. It's almost on the opposite side of the planet, can you believe it?

anyways, back to your point. Yes, I agree with what you say. There are bad things that happen in Muslim countries. There are some frightening people among our lot.

That is the main problem with us Muslims today. A lot of us have deviated much from the original teaching, committing various kinds of hideous acts despite the clear prohibition by the religion, while ignoring what is prescribed by it. It advocates peace, but the people favors violence. It stresses gender rights, but there are people who confuse their own oppressive culture with their a priori doctrine. it exhorts rationality and knowledge-seeking, but still there are people who dogmatically choose to stick to ignorance.

If you take a serious look into the matter, you'll see a divergence between the teaching, and how some Muslims actually behave today. What's worse, they thought/claimed that they are doing it for the sake of their religion, when it is clear that they are going against it.

This is not to say I myself am blameless, of course. I have my own set of misbehaviours, which I hope to cure as I live on.

On the other hand, this IS to say that my religion, in its purest form, is blameless. In its purest form as in, as prescribed by the two main scriptures (Qur'an and Sunnah, i.e. the recorded acts and sayings of the Prophet Muhammad). Although from an outsider's perspective, what constitutes "the purest form" may sound arbitrary, I guess you have to find out for yourself before you would agree with me on this definition, if at all.

blergh... sorry if my speech bore you.

11:59 PM, May 21, 2005  
Blogger brown-eyed girl said...

It didn't bore me. How was your trip?
I guess I would have to read the texts myself to really know what I think of it. I don't know.

11:22 PM, May 22, 2005  
Blogger brown-eyed girl said...

Hi Nik! Go check out my blog. I've tagged you!!

1:11 AM, May 27, 2005  

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