dominance of personality cult in the Arab and Muslim nation and
the Third World
in the Arab Muslim world have to acquire the courage of practicing
objective criticism to every political, social and religious official.
There is nobody above the law.
Asked in his
weekly seminar the following question: Our
Arab and Muslim nation suffers from a problem that could be
considered the mother of its cultural social, political and even
religious problems. It is the problem of inflating certain
dignitaries and sanctifying those who are not actually sacred…
This was reflected even on the way we live. It also trapped the
necessary process of change in a vicious circle.
How do you
view this state and how could we change it?
Authority Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah said:
Actually, the problem
of sanctifying those who are not sacred in themselves, or even in
their aims, is a critical problem the Arab and Islamic society
So critical is this
problem that it has had negative repercussions, and became an
obstacle to intellectual development, scientific thinking and the
attempt to understand the controversial issues in a renewed matter
that is independent from the approach of old thinkers who lived in a
different societies and environments.
If this problem is of a
social or a political origin, it has become more dangerous when it
finds some guards and sponsors from within our religious circles who
guided the nation in the wrong direction, directing it to stand in
the face of the religious reform movement that aims at correcting
the mistakes and deviation that religious scholars made in their
understanding of the texts… Prominent historic personalities were
presented as sacred symbols whose ideas can not be discussed, just
as the wrong mainstream understanding of certain ideas could not be
challenged by obvious facts. Thus, the understanding of these texts
become fixed and preventing any new approach in jurisprudence or
doctrinal thinking that is supposed to further clarify the issues
and respond to new ones that life creates to take hold.
sanctification of past ideas and judgments has contributed in
universalizing the culture of backwardness, and in creating a state
of stagnancy. It also prevented any creative culture from finding
its way into the Islamic community… It was the basis of glorifying
certain social symbols that made their fortune or position by means
that are not necessarily lawful or virtuous, which in turn led to
the collapse of the movement of criticism that constitutes a meter
to measure how much the nation is alive.
On the political level,
we might find political parties that promote personality cult to the
extent that the leadership becomes infallible in the stances it
takes. This personality cult would then be inflated to give the
leadership scientific, religious and moral qualifications that it
does not actually possess. In these conditions, any objective
criticism to any idea, would lead either to the kicking out of those
who dare to criticize, or punish them in other ways. Adopting such
an attitude will make these parties, which presented themselves as
an alternative to the kings and regimes, follow the same way of
these regimes. This in turn will make our societies ruled by various
laws of emergency, whether those of the regimes or the parties.
In these societies, it
is impossible to charge or try any official except by a coup or a
regime change induced through foreign intervention, even if the
charge is that of corruption or theft. And this is especially true
in the multi-sectarian societies where accusing an official of a
certain sect of any crime will be considered as offending the sect
itself. What is more tragic is that this is true even in the case of
the regimes that claim to adhere to the teachings of Islam or those
that claim to be Arab nationalists.
Why is the law above
all in non-Muslim countries? Why should the tyrant Sharon, for
example, be tried while no official in our countries could be held
accountable? We, in the Arab and Muslim East and in the Third World,
make tyrants and worship them ignoring all the dirty crimes they
People have to acquire
the courage of practicing objective criticism to every political,
social and religious official. There is nobody above the law.
Our Messenger Muhammad
(p.) had explained that nations were perished because they had left
the thieves if they came from a noble origin and punished the
weakened ones. He added: “If
Fatima the daughter of Muhammad would steal, I would cut her hand”.