UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Topic initiated on Monday, October 9, 2006 - 6:08 AM
|This was Islam|
What does our future demand of leaders today?
by Carly Fiorina, Chief Executive Officer of Hewlett Packard
Last portion of the speech
I’ll end by telling a story.
There was once a civilization that was the greatest in the world.
It was able to create a continental super-state that stretched from ocean to
ocean, and from northern climes to tropics and deserts. Within its dominion
lived hundreds of millions of people, of different creeds and ethnic
One of its languages became the universal language of much of the world, the
bridge between the peoples of a hundred lands. Its armies were made up of
people of many nationalities, and its military protection allowed a degree
of peace and prosperity that had never been known. The reach of this
civilization’s commerce extended from Latin America to China, and everywhere
And this civilization was driven more than anything, by invention. Its
architects designed buildings that defied gravity. Its mathematicians
created the algebra and algorithms that would enable the building of
computers, and the creation of encryption. Its doctors examined the human
body, and found new cures for disease. Its astronomers looked into the
heavens, named the stars, and paved the way for space travel and
Its writers created thousands of stories. Stories of courage, romance and
magic. Its poets wrote of love, when others before them were too steeped in
fear to think of such things.
When other nations were afraid of ideas, this civilization thrived on them,
and kept them alive. When censors threatened to wipe out knowledge from past
civilizations, this civilization kept the knowledge alive, and passed it on
While modern Western civilization shares many of these traits, the
civilization I’m talking about was the Islamic world from the year 800 to
1600, which included the Ottoman Empire and the courts of Baghdad, Damascus
and Cairo, and enlightened rulers like Suleiman the Magnificent.
Although we are often unaware of our indebtedness to this other
civilization, its gifts are very much a part of our heritage. The technology
industry would not exist without the contributions of Arab mathematicians.
Sufi poet-philosophers like Rumi challenged our notions of self and truth.
Leaders like Suleiman contributed to our notions of tolerance and civic
And perhaps we can learn a lesson from his example: It was leadership based
on meritocracy, not inheritance. It was leadership that harnessed the full
capabilities of a very diverse population–that included Christianity,
Islamic, and Jewish traditions.
This kind of enlightened leadership — leadership that nurtured culture,
sustainability, diversity and courage — led to 800 years of invention and
In dark and serious times like this, we must affirm our commitment to
building societies and institutions that aspire to this kind of greatness.
More than ever, we must focus on the importance of leadership– bold acts of
leadership and decidedly personal acts of leadership.
With that, I’d like to open up the conversation and see what we,
collectively, believe about the role of leadership.
Posted - Monday, October 9, 2006 - 6:39 AM
|Firstly, many thanks for sharing a brilliant resume of our religions past.Islam is a religion, it is a beacon of light that shows the right path, it is a light house , a source of inspiration and guidance.|
Leaders are elected representatives of a society. They should be the best the society can offer.
Water flows from top to bottom, so it is essential that change comes from the top.
I believe that the responsibility for change lies on every muslim. I am not expecting that every muslim should become a scholar. But for example, every person does not need to be a doctor, but every person should know first aid measures and how to treat basic essentials, like if a child has temp, cold or stomach upset. Every muslim must know the bsic essential about their religion.
The Qur'an tells us that in every society there should be an organisation or jammat , that firstly properly learns about Islam and then practices it and teaches others.I feel that it should be the responsibility of the government in an Islamic country to set up such jammats or have a department that fulfills these responsibilities.they should propogate the true picture of Islam without any bias or sectarianism.
We cannot exclude the responsibilities of common individuals. After all it is there votes that elect leaders.
One thing which I have always found very dificult to understand is that for example in Pakistan, during elections, people cast vote for several reasons, he is a family relative,same sect,feudal Lord.
If individuals had proper education and understanding of Islam, they would realise the importance of their vote. They would understand that they should vote for who is the best person for the country, without any importance to culture, creed, colour or sect.
The leaders have the power to bring change. Islam appreciates it and thus a strong emphasis and reward is given in Islam for a "Just and fair ruler". such a person can influence the future and lives of many.
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Posted - Monday, October 9, 2006 - 7:00 AM
|what went wrong in between that brilliant past and dark present?|
Posted - Monday, October 9, 2006 - 12:23 PM
|increase in quantity but decrease in quality|
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Posted - Monday, October 9, 2006 - 12:41 PM
|or else are we passing through the last stage of the life cycle of a community?|
Posted - Monday, October 9, 2006 - 3:55 PM
|Brother, as I see what we need to focus on is our akhrat. Let us try to be true muslims by learning about it, practisisng it and telling to others who want to know. We must all try to make that small difference in our individual circles and see if we can support any organisation working for propogation of true islam.|
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Posted - Monday, October 16, 2006 - 5:42 AM
By Dr Farrukh Saleem
Al Azhar Mosque was founded on the 14th day of Ramadan the year 359 H or 971 AD (after the name of Sayeda Fatima Al-Zahra). In 975 AD, Chief Justice Abdul Hasan Al-No'man of the Fatimid Caliphate gave his first lecture on Shiite Jurisprudence (the ruling elite of the Fatimid Caliphate belonged to the Ismaili branch of Sh'ism). So began Al Azhar University.
Al Azhar, 1,031 years old, is now the oldest operating university on the face of the planet. Question: How many universities have we built over the past 1,031 years?
In my part of the world, 'The Great Mughal Empire' began in 1526 AD and lasted for 181 years. Hamida Banu Begum, Emperor Nasiruddin Humayun's widow, spent 8 years building Humayun's tomb. Emperor Jalaluddin Akbar built Fatehpur Sikri, a walled capital encompassing palaces for each of Akbar's senior queens. Emperor Jehangir built Hiran Minar in memory of his favourite antelope. Emperor Shahbuddin Mohammed Shah Jahan had 22,000 workers spend 23 years building a mausoleum for Arjumand Bano Begum (like his predecessors Shah Jahan's court included a hundred wives, c***s and dancing girls). Arjumand was Shah Jahan's favourite wife.
Taj Mahal, in essence, represents two things: First, the Mughal era's artistic achievement and, second, Mughal Empire's financial bankruptcy because of indulging in outrageously expensive buildings just when resources were shrinking (by the time Aurangzeb took over the Empire was heavily taxed and financially insolvent).
One hundred and eighty-one long years, not a single university. Did the Americans stop the Mughals from building universities?
Next. The Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC), dedicated "to serving the interests of the world's 1.4 billion Muslims", has 57 Member States. Afghanistan, Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Guinea, Indonesia, Iran, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Pakistan, Palestine, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sudan, Somalia, Tunisia, Turkey, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Syria, U.A.E., Sierra Leone, Bangladesh, Gabon, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Uganda, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Comoros, Iraq, Maldives, Djibouti, Benin, Brunei, Nigeria, Azerbaijan, Albania, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Mozambique, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Suriname, Togo, Guyana and Cote d'Ivoire all put together have less than 600 universities; a university for every 2 million Muslims. Israel has 25 institutes of higher learning for a total of 6.3 million Israelis; a university for every 250,000.
Of the 600 universities how many have produced a Nobel Laureate? Answer: Ahmed Zewail (1999 Nobel Prize in Chemistry) received his first degree from University of Alexandria but his Nobel Prize-winning work was done at the California Institute of Technology. Second, Abdus Salam (1979 Noble Prize in Physics) received his M A from Government College, University of the Punjab, but pursued his scientific work in Italy and the UK.
Of the 600 universities is there one -- just one -- responsible for a major technological breakthrough? The House of Saud, for instance, has taken in over a trillion US dollars. What have they to show for it? Has any one of their universities produced a medical breakthrough? Have the Israelis kept our universities from producing a major scientific or technological breakthrough?
When we were busy building palaces for Akbar's senior queens, they were busy granting incorporation to the University of Oxford. When we were busy building for Jehangir's favourite antelope, they were busy laying the foundation of Puteano College at the University of Pisa. When we were busy building a mausoleum for Shah Jahan's favourite wife, they were busy establishing Harvard College (Harvard's faculty has produced over 40 Nobel laureates). By the time we were finished with Mumtaz Mahal's memory they had put up some four-dozen universities.
Look what we have done to Al Azhar. Government control over syllabus and the politics involved in the appointment of professors is dragging the oldest operating university down the drain.
9/11 can't turn us into winners. Universities can.
Edited by: raushan on Monday, October 16, 2006 8:10 AM
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Posted - Wednesday, October 18, 2006 - 1:26 PM
|entirely agree with you waseem.|
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Posted - Sunday, October 22, 2006 - 9:26 AM
|Islam's Downward Spiral|
By S. Abdullah tariq
...There were more than 200 bookshops per street on many streets of Baghdad in the 10th Century AD where the students from Europe visited to buy books. Among the top 132 scientists of the world 121 were Muslims at one time while the rest were educated in Islamic universities. When Muslim army entered a city, the terms of peace with the conquered invariably included a clause that they should be given possession of all works of Greek knowledge, a clause to which the conquered readily agreed as they were a useless heap for them.
The most revered religious scholars of the darkest Muslim era (19th and early 20th century) ruled that the women were forbidden education. While they still talked of the golden era with pride, they declared the universities were the abattoirs of humanity. They ordered to shut all eyes from whatever wisdom came from the West. They classified knowledge into the worldly knowledge (rejectable) and the knowledge pertaining to Hereafter (attainable). The Prophet’s classification of knowledge was Ilm-e-Nafey (the knowledge that benefits) and Ilm-e-Ghair Nafey (the knowledge that does not benefit the humanity). Whatever knowledge was there in the languages other than Arabic, Persian, Turkish and Urdu was taboo. The list is very long. All this happened in the name of Islam through the most revered scholars of Islam.
The Muslims have started learning. It is a transitional phase. The out of context Islam and Qur’an, by those alone who had no scientific knowledge of the universe and their self proclaimed exclusive right to interpret has given rise to many contradictions. The colonization, suppression and discrimination of the have-nots by those yielding power have driven some Muslims youths of a resurgent community in the third world to take to terrorism in the name of Jihad.
The dilemma of a majority of sane Muslims is two-fold. Their attitude towards the interpretations of the clergy of the recent past and their attitude towards the aggrieved champions of democracy and freedom who have scant respect for the freedom and democracy of others. We are rightly indebted to the clergy who have safeguarded Islamic texts and tenets through the centuries to pass on to us unadulterated but misinterpreted, some unadulterated texts in the socio-political compulsions of the past. We shall always revere them but a rational sense has to be prevailed to correct their mistakes.
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