By Faraz Baig :
One of the biggest signs of a society’s bankruptcy is the demise of its social values. Social values are benchmarks of good and bad, acceptable and rejected, desired and detested and so on. So when society derives these values indigenously from within itself, it’s a living society, on the contrary if it depends on external sources for its values, it’s stagnant! What we’re experiencing today in our society is the latter behavior.
We’ve slowly and gradually approached a point where we look towards the west for our benchmarks of good, bad, success and failure, while abandoning those given to us by our Creator, ALLAH (swt). It’s evident in our individual behavior and ubiquitous in our society. It’s a direct result of our society’s submission to the western culture and our ignorance towards our cultural asset.
However, saying so doesn’t mean that our individual has gone so bankrupt that he doesn’t love religion. It’s one thing to ignore something and quite another to not love it. That’s exactly why that despite our lack of application of religion in our personal lives, we’re always in unison against any attempt towards disgracing our religious symbols. Protests against blasphemy are a case in point. The west and its agents try it time and again and keep testing the level of “Ghairat” left in Muslims. They’re relentless in their approach therefore we’re experiencing these incidents more and more.
One such incident was Tuesday’s collective shaving event held by Gillette. The company has been holding such events in other countries and brought this campaign to Pakistan for the first time. As reported from various sources, the event was to break the world record set by India where a few more than 1800 people shaved their faces simultaneously. The idea was to gather 2500 men who’ll do the same at the signal and shave their beards to “bring glory to Pakistan”. Apparently someone from Guinness was also present to verify the validity of the claim. The event was to be held at 6 pm in an ongoing festival of some sort at Karachi Expo center.
This seemingly innocuous event, whose sole aim was manifested to revive patriotism in our youth, was actually an attempt to make a mockery of the sunnah of our beloved prophet RasooluLLAH (saw). Keeping beard is not only the sunnah of RasooluLLAH (saw) and his Sahaba (ra) but also his order to us. Every Muslim child knows this and every adult understands it. But the magic of these multinationals is so profound that they successfully deceived hundreds of young men to scrap this important sunnah from their faces collectively with the stroke of their blades. But were they successful? What followed is a case study of the power of word of mouth and more importantly, the strength of connection of Muslims with one another. An eyewitness account is narrated below verbatim.
At around 2 in the afternoon, I got an sms from a close friend of mine mentioning this event. I quickly asked him to confirm it to me as, with no disrespect to him, I couldn’t believe such an event could be held in broad daylight in the heart of the country which achieved its independence in the name of Islam. I asked a few other sources within some religious circles but they expressed their ignorance. Anyway, it wasn’t before 3 when I could log on to my pc and find the event’s specifics online.
Truly speaking, I was still not sure if the organizers had the courage to actually hold this event, but there was only one way to confirm. I didn’t know what I would do if I’d confirm it but I just managed to convince myself to go to Expo center. I got at the University road gate of Expo center by 4 and it was, to my bewilderment, deserted as if no event was being held! I moved further and as I turned round the corner, saw some hustle and bustle in front of Sir Shah Suleiman road gate.
There was a mob of around 150 mostly bearded men gathered in front of the gate, there were banners mounted on the building’s fence denouncing the event and the organizers. As I grew nearer, it became evident that a lot had happened already. Although there was a mob gathered there, who seemed to belong mostly from religious schools, but also included individuals who didn’t belong to any religious outfit, there were absolutely no signs of riot or chaos.
The mob wasn’t effectively following a leader but it was extremely peaceful. They were chanting slogans demanding stern action against the organizers and that the event be cancelled. As I was approaching the mob, it suddenly began to disperse. On inquiring a gentleman, I was told that the event has been cancelled and the organizers have guaranteed that this promise wouldn’t be broken.
On asking which party he belonged to I was told simply that it didn’t matter as all of the people there had gathered purely for the love of the Sunnah of RasooluLLAH (saw), I was literally humbled by this response. Soon after a middle aged cleric addressed without any loudspeaker and lambasted the organizers for their compliance with the Zionist Multinational companies. He also criticized Gillette for their provocative attempt and demanded that their trade license in Pakistan be cancelled. He later demanded the Supreme Court to take notice of the event and punish the culprits. There was another short speech by another young man and then the cleric spoke again. The religious students boarded their bus in the meanwhile and the mob dispersed soon after…“
Listening to this account and watching the video of the protest has revived my confidence in this Ummah, I’m sure you’d share the sentiment.
If each individual just decides to do whatever is in his capacity, without thinking whether or not it will make a difference, ALLAH would make it easy for him. These were only 100-150 people, ALLAH knows how many would gather if more time was at hand.
But it must be remembered that no enemy raises his eyes towards any nation who guards its ideological borders. We’ve allowed too much influence by the western and Indian media and it’s hurting us badly.If committing a sin collectively is a sin then we’re all guilty of committing the sin of not struggling for establishment of Islam in this country, which ironically was built in the name of Islam. Failure to do so I’m afraid, will result in even greater threats and those may be too much for our weak nation to handle.
May ALLAH save us from such a fate, ameen.