Review By Khalid Mecci
Author : Syed Jalaluddin Umri
Translator: U.Mohammed Iqbal
Publishers: Islamic Research Institute
Distributors : Islamic Foundation Trust, 78 Perambur High Road, CHENNAI -12.
Pages : 67, Price : Rs.50/-
Freedom of will and action are at the heart of the issues that confront man in his existence. His attitudes towards his fellow men, their reactions and consequently social relations all seem to revolve round his viewpoint in the matters of will and action. Is he free to do as he wills? Can he then appropriate to himself the property and lives of others? If not who decides what is to be done?
These are the issues the author raises, to begin with, in his attempt to find a solution to man and his environment. Political theories and philosophies are attempts to organise manís life. Democracy breeds capitalism, communism destroys human initiative, nationalism and autocracy are the curse of mankind. What then is the answer?
All man-made systems breed some form of materialism or other. Only Godís legislation provides the answer. Divine legislation can favour no one. Or if you please, it favours all. It is the ultimate legislation which provides for all needs, covers all drawbacks and administers absolute justice. Only absolute will can legislate with absolute justice.
The author then takes us through a journey which establishes a hierarchy of relationships that shows man to be the starting point of the family, which in turn is the unit of a larger group, the tribe and so on. Godís legislation works through the hierarchy which is an all-encompassing law that legislates and unites. The law of Allah is an all-embracing law that cuts across cultural, ethnic and historical barriers, indeed all barriers, because ultimately human beings are united in their emotional response to all basic issues.
In the last chapter we come back to the fundamental problem of rebellion which is in turn connected to the problem of freedom. Manís rebellion and its causes are discussed and analysed.
The author has avoided the abstruse and verbose language and approach of philosophy and has struck the right note by touching the heart of the problem-manís attitude towards life, his social relations and the concept of law. The author is a world renewed scholar of Islam and has produced a simple yet scholarly work which is the need of the hour.
The work has been translated into excellent English by Prof. U.M. Muhammad Iqbal, an English scholar in his own right.