(Also published at Viewpointonline.net)
Deconstructing Zaid Hamid
All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered. The point, however, is to discover them
Zaid Hamid is a TV-phenomenon popularized by his programmes like Brass Tacksand Iqbal ka Pakistan. Twelve episodes of Iqbal ka Pakistan have been examined by this author in last six issues. Episodes 13 and 14 of Iqbal ka Pakistan, are reviewed below.
Ali azmat confessed at the start of the show that he does not even remember how many episodes of their show have been televised and predicted that he would be killed because of 'this' revolution.
ZH:- The message of Iqbal has been oppossed by molvis, modernists(including capitalists,comunists and people who like democracy) and freemasons.
Comment:- This comment would have been true,if it was made in 1930s or 1940s. After Iqbal's death, his poetry has been used by Islamists(molvis) and Socialists alike,for furthering their agendas. Iqbal and his ideology were a bane to Mullahs during his life time and his lectures aimed at Reconstruction of Islamic thought were considered heretical by orthodox clergy. The situation changed dramatically after Iqbal's death and now his poetry can be heard in the sermons delivered by clergy and by Islamist political leaders. Regarding freemasonary and its alleged opposition of Iqbal, a lot has been written in previous articles.
ZH:-People who opposed creation of Pakistan are rejected by God.
Comment:- That includes most of Hindu and Sikh population of India and also millions of Muslims in India. This kind of sweeping declarations showcase the narrow mind set of Mr. Zaid Hamid. Pakistan was not built exclusively for muslims,as Mr. Jinnah told the Constituent Assembly on 11th August, 1947. There were a lot of non muslims living in the areas that formed Pakistan. We were supposed to ensure minority rights and provide them equal opportunities to live better lives.
ZH:- Terrorists in Pakistan are actualy people who never liked creation of Pakistan.
Comment:- This is another sweeping statement that is not exactly based on facts or research. This statement declares that all the terrorist activities in Pakistan are supported by India and Afghanistan. (Similar allegations have been made by ISPR in last few years). While it is partially correct,it does not take into account the ideology of Takfeer(translated as Rejection). The ideology of Takfeer, proposed in the modern times by Syed Qutub, states that anyone who opposes their definition of faith is excluded from faith and killing him/her is not a sin. This ideology is the basis of brutality of Pakistani Taliban and Al Qaeda. It is worth mentioning that similar ideology was used for the first time by Khawarij, in attacks against Caliph Ali and Caliph Ma'aviya. I would like to refer him and anyone interested in root causes of terrorism in Pakistan to Syed Saleem Shehzad’s book, “Inside Al Qaeda and Taliban” and “The Looming Tower” by Lawrence Wright.
ZH: Modern Science learnt everything from Muslims.
Comment:- It is true that during the reign of Abbasid Caliphs, a lot of muslim scientists did amazing and in some cases groundbreaking work in fields of science. However the notion that “Everything” was learnt from muslims is not true. It should be mentioned here that the attitude of rulers and clergy, towards scientists in those times was pathetic. They were considered heretics. Also, most of the scientific advances occurred when a particular sect i.e “Mu’tazila” were in power. Regarding the myths about “Islamic Science”, read this.
During a question,Ali Azmat mixed the identities of Sharif of Mecca and the House of Saud. That happens when you are doing a show about historical revivalism without learning any basic history.
ZH:- Seculars are immoral people. Religion should not be separated from Politics.
Comment:- The concept that non-religious people are inethical has been propogated ad nauseum by religious people. Blogger, Hazrat Nakhuda says, “Morals and Ethics have evolved to their current state. The "evils" of the society cheating, stealing, wars and oppression taught us that these things are wrong because they hinder the establishment and progress of a cooperative and effective group. It wasn't divine intervention. It was evolution of human thought. In order for societies to function it became necessary to put in some guidelines and rules. Societies that refused to set these guidelines failed to grow ("Survival of the fittest"). Members of that society either moved to another society (immigrations/asylum) or fell victim to the law of the jungle. While the societies which were more advanced intellectually survived better than the others.” Regarding the assertion that “Religion and Politics are inter-linked and should not be separate”, I would like to point towards the last 1432 years of Islamic history. Apart from the reign of the first 4 pious caliphs and Caliph Omer bin Abdul Aziz, the custodianship of matters of state and custodianship of matters of religion have not co-existed. This has happened because there is no prescribed method of government in either Quran or Hadees, the basic texts of Islamic faith. In Pakistan, religious parties have never had an elctoral success and have acted more as pressure groups and proxies in the hands of establishment than act politically.
ZH:- AIDS was spread just to sell medications.
Comment:- Being a medical student and a research-oriented person, I can testify that NO such thing has ever been reported or even discussed in Medical Science Journals or forums. AIDS(Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) is caused by a virus, HIV(Human Deficiency Virus). It was first reported in homosexual males in early 1980s. This disease affects the immune system of body i.e. the defence mechanism of body against pathogens. We are exposed daily to hundreds of pathogens but we do not get sick until our immune system is weak. In AIDS, the immune system loses its strength and patient can easily get sick and recover with difficulty. To put things in perspective, a patient of AIDS can die even from common cold. Thankfully, durgs are available that can protect from frequent illnesses in AIDS patients. In Pakistan, those drugs are provided free of cost by National AIDS prevention and control Programme which is actually funded by World Health Organization and World bank. Meanwhile, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation donated a grand total of US$287 million to variousHIV/AIDS researchers. The Clinton Foundation has helped bring AIDS care and treatment to over 750,000 people living with HIV/AIDS around the world. Can the comment by Zaid Hamid be justified in light of all these figures.?
ZH:- Kufr can be in form of our politicians, in form of Baitullah Mehsud or in form of Zionists.
Comment:- Zaid Hamid is applying the aforementioned concept of “Takfeer” on whoever he does not like. While his opposition to brutal terrorists like Baitullah is laudable, he loses the plot suddenly and includes his favorite target groups i.e. politicians and “Zionists”.
These are the few mistakes/debate-able points that I found, as the rest of these episodes was spent in word to word recitation and translation of Iqbal’s work from some book. There was also repitition of mistakes that we have discussed in the previous issues.