Allama Muhammad Iqbal and Contemporary Social Evils

Professor, doctor Sir, Allama Muhammad Iqbal (R.A) was born on 9th November, 1877 at Sialkot in Kashmiri Pandiths family of the sapru clan. His father’s name was Noor Muhammad and mother’s name was Imam Bibi. Both his father and mother were devoted and Sufi inclined people. So they desired to concentrate on their child physical and spiritual development and grooming. Iqbal during his primary education came in contact with a great intellectual scholar Maulana Syed Mir Hassan. Maulana recognized Iqbal inner capabilities, intellectual capabilities and spirit. Therefore, he takes a keen interest in Iqbal and gave motivation to Muhammad Iqbal.

Due to parent’s concentration and teacher’s attention Iqbal attains international recognition and identity. Muhammad Iqbal passed his intermediate examination from Scotch Mission College Sialkot with distinction. He moved to Lahore for higher education and got admitted in Government College (GC) Lahore. Muhammad Iqbal received his master degree in Philosophy with Gold medal in 1899 from Department of Philosophy, Government College (GC) Lahore. In Lahore Iqbal got the opportunity to explore and polish is intellectual and poetical capabilities.

Lahore a city of Knowledge provides Iqbal opportunities to develop his poetic and intellectual upgrading. Muhammad Iqbal joined the Oriental college Lahore as a reader in Arabic. During his readership in an oriental college Lahore, he wrote his first Urdu Book titled “Ilm Ul Iqtisad” on Economics covered all basic topics of Economics; Population, national and international business, capital, land , labor, profit, wages etc., after some time he Joined GC Lahore as Assistant Professor in Philosophy and English.

Muhammad Iqbal believed on perfection, Excellency so he decided to move to Europe for higher education in Law and Philosophy. He got admission in famous, Trinity College, Cambridge University for Law studies. Meanwhile, he enrolled himself in Munich University of Germany for PhD in Philosophy. He was awarded Decorate degree in Philosophy on his research “The Development of Metaphysics in Persia” on 4th November, 1907.

During his stay in Europe; he got opportunities to explore his intellectual capabilities and to learn expertise in Occidental thoughts. He polished and refined his thoughts by studding European society and people. His stay in Europe made remarkably impressive on his thoughts and philosophical approach. Iqbal was not only a poet but also a person with multidimensional level qualities, from Economic to Metaphysics, from teaching to poet, from Sufi to Researcher and scholar. Iqbal’s mind absorbed both Oriental and occidental thoughts, which made him a great thinker and remembered as the poet of the East. Today in different parts of the World Iqbal is studied and remembered due to his intellectual and philosophical thoughts.

Nowadays our society is passing through different social issues and evils. We have faced certain social challenges due to modernization and the universality of the world. Our society mainly faced social challenges like, corruption, illiteracy, extremism, intolerance, sexual abuse, human rights violation, etc. Muhammad Iqbal greatly emphasized on the use of independent reasoning, Ijtihad. Ijtihad is a method of Islamic sharia, support intellectual reasoning in the light of Quran and Hadith to find the solution of those issues arise in current time due to modernity of globalization. Ijtihad is a primary and fundamental element of Islamic law. The exercise of Ijtihad is to make an individual and social conduct extensive enough so, the society never becomes static as we are observing that our society is static due to closing the door of Ijtihad. Due to closing the door of Ijtihad in our society we are facing social disasters. These disasters result in trouble in our social life. We are going to decay and retrogression. The society has been changed into a heretic. We are puppet in hands of illiterate and semi-literate Mullah who lack wisdom to recognize the need of Ijtihad to review and restructure the society foundations. Muhammad Iqbal favorites Ijtihad because according to him there is need for permanent values but there must be space for change. It is difficult to regulate human of all ages by same rules and regulation. Allama Muhammad Iqbal discussed the importance of Ijtihad in his book “The Reconstruction of Religious thoughts in Islam” as,

“The Ultimate spiritual basis of all life as conceived by Islam is eternal and reveals itself in variety and change. A Society based on such a conception of reality must reconcile, in its life, the categories of permanence and change. It must possess eternal principles to regulate its collective life; for the eternal gives us a foot-hold in the world of perpetual change.”

Allama Muhammad Iqbal was impressed by Turkey experience and he supported that legislative body a competent body to exercise the power of Ijtihad as he discussed in his Book “The Reconstruction of Religious thoughts in Islam as;

“Let us now see how the Grand National Assembly has exercised this power of Ijtihad in regard to the institutions of Khalafat. According to Sunni law the appointment of an imam or khalifa is absolute indispensable. The first question that arises in this connection is this; should the caliphate be vested in a single person? Turkey Ijtihad is that according to the spirit of Islam the caliphate or imamat can be vested in a body of persons or an elected assembly. The religious doctors of Islam in Egypt and India so far as i know have not yet expressed themselves on this point personally I believe the Turkish view is perfectly sound.”

Iqbal wanted to modernize the society in accordance with the teaching of Quran and Islam. Therefore, he was interested in Ijtihad as a tool for modernization of the society in all walk and sphere of life, to interpret the social structure and law of the society in accordance with modern time requirements and demands. Our Society is backward due to blind following without use of reasoning and rationality. Recently, we have observed in Asia Bibi case. Consequently, Government of Pakistan should either announce a task force of Intellect to do exercise Ijtihad in order to bring our society in line of global standards and peoples aspirations.

It is the need of hour to exercise Ijtihad according to Allama Iqbal’s teaching in all walk of life to modernize our society and eliminate all sorts of social evils, corruption, sexual abuse, intolerance, nepotism, favoritism, bribe, drinking alcohol, human right violation, violation of rules and law, malpractice, maladjustment, poverty, unemployment, child labors and gender violence.

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