Monday, July 5, 2010

The Solution Of Lack Of Spirituality and Intelectual Of Ummah

The word ummah appears sixty-four times in the Qur’an, thirteen of them in plural form (umam). One of the word ummah is in Surah Al Maidah verses 48,’ …..Vie, then wiyh one another in doing good works. Unto Allah you must return; and then He will make you truly understand all that on which you were wont to differ’. In the verse, Abdullah (1988) said that the Qur’an clarifies the meaning of the concept of ummah and then explains the philosophical historical position within which the Muslim ummah stands. In general then, the ummah is a community of law based on certain ideas. All divinely guided ummah carried the message of the unity of Allah (tawhid) under the leadership of their prophet. The followers of Prophet Muhammad comprised one ummah which was a middle community (ummatan wasatan); the best community (khaira ummatin) ever created by Allah.

The ummah is a mandatory factor for establishing Islam foundation. Islam is a religion respected and venerated by people in the world because of many reasons. First, nowadays the population of Muslim is around one and a half billion or almost a half from the total of human being in the world. The population of Muslim increase year by year, even in non Muslim countries such as Europe and America. Second, almost Muslim countries have rich resources such as prosperous land, oil mining and other natural resources (Hamidi, 2007). Therefore, the two strength of ummah is potential factor to bring ummah to be better.

The other strength that own by ummah is the quality of Muslim. Almost every field in our live, Muslim can participate and develop it. Many Muslims has expertise in modern technology and science, even there are a lot of fuqaha discuss about many areas as an answer of the problems that more and more complex. Wahbah Zuhaily as a Muslim scholar said that nowadays is the golden age of fiqh.

Unfortunately, these strengths cannot develop optimally by ummah itself. The condition of Muslim in this century is far from the glory of Islam one thousand and three hundred ago since Prophet Muhammad saw till caliphate era, exactly after the caliphate of Kemal At Taturk has collapsed in 1924. The reality of Muslim faced dis - unity of ummah, poverty problem in almost every country, decreasing of Islamic value, lack of the application of Al Qur’an, ummah fools against to Islam itself and thinking war. Tun Mahatir Muhammad said that even now there is no war, however actually ummah is colonized by western, ummah face thinking war and it is more dangerous. Moreover, Martin Lings (converted to be Abu Bakar Sirajudin) states that the crisis of this modern era is like a watch that shows in number eleven. Even less than one hour reach to the top but it declines significantly and enter the new cycle “the spiritual crisis of modern world in the light of tradition and propherty”.

The ummah problem happen because of lack of spirituality and intellectual. Spirituality of religion is come from the word spiritual, that means sacred things rather than wordly things. Whereas the word spirit has a meaning the vital force that characterizes a human being as being alive. That’s way it is very important to determine the loyalty of people to the religion. As Muslim should have a spirituality aim to close in Allah, have a commitment and consistency to keep Islam in the world even they must sacrifice of theirs life sake to Allah. Nowadays, Muslim become less to do ritual activities such as perform five time prayer, give zakah and charity, fasting, keep promise, to be honest and other obligations that should be practiced by Muslim. It caused they don’t have strong belief to Allah. If every Muslim has spirituality of Islam automatically they will bring Islam with high dignity in this world. It will give benefit life for them selves and ummah. For instance, it’s a little possible there is poverty problem, Muslim come up with Islamic value, pro active and proud to be Muslim where ever, even has a high spirit to keep the religion from the attack. Based on the research of Danah Zohar and Ian Marshal, the vision of same spirituality will unity the different cultures.

Therefore, Muslim whenever they are if they have Islamic spirituality although come from the different culture, however they will unity because of the vision of Islam, Muslim has same vision of Islam.

On the other hand, lack of intellectual has important role to create the problem of ummah. The word intellect means an ability to think, reason and understand. Every Muslim has to think then pursue the knowledge. According to surah Iqra as the first surah that accept the Prophet, shows that Islam teach Muslim to think and to understand even has a critical thinking against everything. In this era, Muslim faced war against to western culture. That’s why, many Muslims were influenced, they copy whatever thing from western. In a fact, they life style likely western people.

For example in dress, food, drugs, entertainment, always enjoy life in pleasure and reject in simple life and other western culture. The most jeopardy is when the Muslim follows the thinking of the west. Muslims should aware that western value is part of secularization process to establish a western civilization. Even in the education area, Professor Aslam Hanif said that the main problem that Muslim facing in this century is knowledge and education. What Muslim study in most schools and university is the knowledge (discipline) from the west and that are not value neutral, but western value. For instance in economics field, economics that as a discipline knowledge has been started since three hundreds years ago by observation of west scholars. The important thing as an intellectual response is ummah should be develope economics not only by observation but also by revelation that integrate modern economics and heritage of Islam to build Islamic economics. Everything that come, moreover from the west, Muslim must has critical thinking to accept or reject the western value. As long as it is not opposite with Islamic rule, Muslim can accept it to give benefit to ummah.

Ummah must have a spirit and intellect to bring back the glory of Islam. Non Muslim countries are not the good sample in every area. In education for example, Professor Ken Kawan Soetanto who lecturer lives in Japan for thirty five years, he said that there are academic refugee happens in Japan, Korea, Taiwan, China and Italia. Although education has important role in a civilization. The developing of education system will influenced the civilization of the nation. Moreover, the research by Thomas Bambang Murtianto showed that more developed a country actually was followed by the more crimes take place, such as killing, alcoholism and sexual ablution. The fact shows that more than a half of medical patient in the hospital consist of the mental disorder patient. Even though the majority of Muslim countries is not developed and may be loser than non Muslim countries in technology or economic area for instance, however if Muslim have high spirituality and intellectual it is not possible that Muslim countries will develop better than others countries and Islamic civilization will be come true.

Islam is a comprehensive religion, which regulates all parts of life. Every Muslim hopes they will not become more in weakness ummah because of many problems. The problem is should be solve immediately. Since the problem happens is a part of the negative effect of globalization beside from the internal of ummah itself, it would require joint efforts from the Muslim countries. My opinion, the key solution is ummah must back to Al Qur’an, everything has been provided there. Al Quran is a vehicle to bring back the glory of ummah. There are two ways to solve the problems:

First, the unity of ummah. This can be realize by strengthen cooperation among Muslim countries to strengthen the position of Islam in the world such as by OIC (Organization of Islamic Conference), youth Muslim assembly and it can be started from where ever Muslim from many countries live together. Even Muslim countries have different culture but if the spirit of Islam in every Muslim grows, they can unity. The important thing is use the strength of every countries to cooperation in which facing the western agenda.

Second, Islamization of knowledge and have a control. Islamic education generates an Islamic civilization. Based on Naquib Al Attas, the Islamization can be realized by epistemological and methodological endeavor activity, interactive and integrate between heritage and modern science. These process will establish critical thinking, Islamic values and ethics and theory of universal. Indeed, it needs long process even three generations, however the important thing is start from now to build Islamic civilization in knowledge. When Muslim has critical thinking they can be able to control the knowledge even the negative effect of globalization specially in technology and the form of thinking war in this era.

Let’s start from our self, since now and give the best for ummah with whatever we have. Wallahu a’lam.
by: Yuni Yulia Farikha

1. Al Ahsan Abdullah.(1988). OIC, The Organization of The Islamic Conference. USA: The International Institute of Islam Thought.
2. Hamidi Luthfi M. (2007). Gold Dinar. Jakarta:Senayan Abadi Publishing
3. Nafis Wahyuni M. (2006). 9 Jalan untuk Cerdas Emosi dan Cerdas Spiritual. Bandung: Mizan
4. ISEFID Forum: Islamization of Knowledge The Why, What and How , IIUM February 12, 2010 by Prof Aslam Hanif
5. Leadership Talk: Sustainibility of Thinking Paradigm Towards National Perception Development, KBRI Malaysia in February 11, 2010 by Tun Mahatir Muhammad, Tan Da’i Bachtiar, DR. Nasir Tamara and Prof. Ken Kawan Soetanto

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