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My Opinion on Sunni and Shia “Debates”

My Opinion on Sunni and Shia “Debates”


Sunni and Shia

Salaam alykum,

I would like to begin this post by asking forgiveness from Almighty God, I fear my arrogance, I fear that I have misplaced confidence in myself and what small pittance of knowledge I have, I feel is far greater than it actually is. I beg for God’s forgiveness, and ask for your understanding if I stray to arrogance, and ask for your guidance and help, insha Allah.

I have been asked by many people over my views of the various “debates” that is waged on tumblr, and my only reaction is hurt and pain as I watch people who say they follow our Prophet, to speak to each other in ways that defy logic. You all insult each other in ways that are despicable, and it is never an acceptable practice; no matter what. I am the first one to raise my hand, because I know I have written dismissive and arrogant things, but I simply ask that you consider why your tone is the way it is: would The Prophet appreciate you doing that?

So when I read your, let’s call them “discussions,” I shake my head, I get mortally hurt, and wonder why we do these things. Do I have things to say? Of course, but, as I read, I realized something, and I beg God’s forgiveness for my arrogance, and I pray that I am able to overcome this feeling and that you can forgive me, insha Allah.

No one here knows what they’re talking about.

Honestly, I sit here, and read and my thought is: “that’s wrong,” “really? When did that happen?” “When did, who? Really?” (I say “really?” a lot) and I get so sad, because there is so much anger, hatred, and viciousness over positions that no one here understands. Truly, I have yet to read a coherent and proper stance on any issue here that captures the holistic reasoning behind why this or that happened.

This is not about a Muslim’s ability to interact and deal with The Qur’an or the Hadith, I am the last person who will argue that you need 3,000 years of education so you can explain what “Bismillah” means, because this Sunni-Shia divide is not found in those sources. They are expressed today in sectarian-tinted tafseer or in sectarian-guided Hadith and understandings of Hadith, the root of these issues exist externally, and when you all quote Qur’an, you are not just quoting Qur’an, you are quoting Qur’an informed by tafseer which suits your position, and thus you cease discussion over The Qur’an and simply bark at each other.

The Holy Qur’an says the following:

“(7) He it is who has bestowed upon thee from on high this divine writ, containing messages that are clear in and by themselves – and these are the essence of the divine writ – as well as others that are allegorical. Now those whose hearts are given to swerving from the truth go after that part of the divine writ which has been expressed in allegory, seeking out [what is bound to create] confusion, and seeking [to arrive at] its final meaning [in an arbitrary manner]; but none save God knows its final meaning. Hence, those who are deeply rooted in knowledge say:
“We believe in it; the whole [of the divine writ] is from our Sustainer – albeit none takes this to heart save those who are endowed with insight.
(8) “O our Sustainer! Let not our hearts swerve from the truth after Thou hast guided us; and bestow upon us the gift of Thy grace: verily, Thou are the “true” Giver of Gifts.
(9) “O our Sustainer! Verily, Thou wilt gather mankind together to witness the Day about [the coming of] which there is no doubt; verily, God never fails to filfil His promise.”“ [3:7-9] Muhammad Asad

Even if there are various aspects of your debates that have kernels of truth, they are either blighted by the manner in which you speak, or by misplaced zeal in thinking you are defending some personality who you admire, but why must your debates be fueled by such anger? From what I’ve seen, it is clear that it is because of a lack of knowledge, and that is not to say that I have any, rather, it is to point to something far more fundamental, something that adolescents know:

When you are truly right, truly correct, there is no need to attack the other, no need to dismiss the other, no need to be angry. I hope that I have not attacked anyone, and I beg for your forgiveness if I have, but I say these things to beg and plead with you all, to please stop. I beg of you, to stop: Stop fighting and start uniting.

I have never experienced this much pain before, and I am so sad, because this disunity, this anger, this misplaced sense of purpose is rooted in your lack of knowledge, not in a religious sense, but simply in a historical way. Read the “other side’s” position, rather than simply exhorting your fellow Muslim to read yours, because no one here does, because if you did, you would have far more nuanced view, and if not, you would realize that no one follows The Qur’an by discarding, angering, or hurting their fellow Muslim. If you want to “bring people” to your side, follow The Prophet, who simply conducted himself in a proper way, which is the ultimate proof of the quality of one’s convictions. Have we still not learned this?

I apologize to everyone, and I am so sorry that this is the most self-righteous post I have ever written, I will strive to never speak like this again, and I hope that Almighty God can grant me forgiveness after you all have forgiven me. I simply cannot watch Muslims fight each other, especially when you are talking overeach other, and frankly, from what little knowledge I have, from positions that are half-right, at best.

If you have asked me a question that is based in the Sunni/Shia paradigm, I have refrained from answering because I have no desire to get into these debates, since my theological ideas are very different and I fear that I will become very dismissive and arrogant, which stems from my insecurities and lack of knowledge, so I apologize to you if you have been offended, I would have apologized to you, but, as these questions are anonymous, I have no way to apologize to you for my stance, so I ask that you forgive me, and hope that you understand that all I want is to see Muslims unite and I could not forgive myself if I have added to this disunity.

For the followers I am certain to lose, I apologize to you for what I have written to have offended you. I promise my goal was simply to underline that we should come together, and insha Allah, I hope that you would feel comfortable enough to voice your discontent with me, so that I may improve myself, insha Allah.

beg that you all can set aside your pride, especially myself, because the pain that I am in, watching you fight, I cannot stand anymore. We are all Muslims, we all say لا إله إلا الله محمد رسول الله. I pray and hope, more than anything, that we can remember this, and never forget it, because if we can finally become one, One Ummah, again, we can improve ourselves and this world for future generations, insha Allah.

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