Intellectual and social reasons for necessity of ideology 2

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Note:
In the second part, the following points will be mentioned the Creators’ polity for planning man‘s happiness / Faith and Intellect, as the fundament al factors for linking to ideology /Different kinds of ideology /Basis of ideologies anthropology

I. The Creator’s policy for planning man’s happiness
Today more than ever man requires a philosophy of life, a philosophy capable of attracting him to the realities beyond the individual and individual interests. There is no longer any doubt about the fact that a school or an ideology is one of the necessities of social life.

Now the question is: who can lay down such an ideology? Undoubtedly the intellect of any single individual cannot do so. Can the collective intellect do that? Can man with the help of his total experience and his past and present information lay down such an ideology? If we admit that man does not know himself, then how can we expect him to know human society and social weal. Then what to do? If we have a right conception of the universe, and believe that the world had a balanced system and there is nothing wrong or absurd in it, we must admit that the great creative machinery has not this big question unattended and has already specified the fundamental outlines of an ideology from a horizon above the horizon of human intellect, that is from the horizon of revelation ( the principle of Prophet hood). The job of intellect and knowledge is to move along these outlines.

How nicely has Avicenna put this question when, while describing the need of mankind to the Divine law (Shari’at) revealed through a man, he said in his book, Najat: “The need of Prophet and exponent of the Divine law human ideology for the continuity of human of human race and man’s attaining perfection of his human existence is far greater than the growth of hair on his every brows, the concavity of his soles or other such things, which are at the most useful for the continuity of human race, but not essential” ((فاالحاجة الی هذا الانسان فی ان یبقی نوع الانسان ویتحصل وجوده اشد من الحاجة الی انبات الشعر علی الحاجبین و تقصر الاخمص من القدمین و اشیاءاخری من المنافع التی لا ضرورة الیها فی البقاء بل اکثر ما لها انها تنفع فی البقاء.)

In other words, how can the great creative machinery which has not left small and superfluous needs unattended, leave the most essential need uncared for?

Z.”Faith “ and “Intellect” as the fundamental factors for linking to ideology
But if we lack the right conception of the universe and creation, we may accept the idea that man has been condemned to bewilderment and error and any human ideology is no more than an interesting pursuit or pastime.

The above discussion not only makes the need of the existence of a school or an ideology clear, but also shows the necessity of an individual’s adhesion to it.

The true adherence to an ideology means to have faith in it, and evidently a true faith cannot be imposed by force nor can it be acquired as a matter of expediency. One can be made to submit to a thing by force, but ideology does not demand submission. It demands faith. It is to be accepted and assimilated.

A useful ideology, on the one hand, must be based on a sort of world conception that may convince reason and feed thinking, and on the other hand, must be able to derive attractive goals from its conception of universe. Conviction and zeal are the two basic elements of faith which go hand in hand and remould the world. However there are question which we must discuss briefly.

A.Kinds of Ideologies
I. There are two kinds of ideologies: human ideology and class ideology.
Human ideology is that which addressed to all mankind, not to any particular class, race or community. The proclaimed aim of a human ideology is the emancipation of human race, not of any particular group or class. Its plan covers all strata of society and does not remain confined to any particular stratum or group.

Class ideology, in contrast, is addressed to a particular class, group or a stratum of society, and its proclaimed am is the emancipation or supremacy of a particular group. The plan that it puts forwards is confined to that group only, from which alone it recruits its supporters and defenders.

R. Basis of ideologies’ anthropology
Each of these two kinds of ideologies is based on particular conception of man. Every general and human ideology like Islamic ideology has that attitude towards man which may be called nature. From Islamic point of view man has been created to be superior to historical and factors. He has a special existential dimension, and has been endowed with high qualities which distinguish him from animals. According to this view, man’s creative design is such that all human beings have been endowed with a sort of consciousness and intuition, which makes them fit to be addressed and enables them to respond to a call. Human ideologies base their preachings on the nature intuition peculiar to mankind and s infuse a spirit of action in man.

Some ideologies have a different view of man. According to them, the human species is not fit that a call be addressed to it, nor can it respond to call. They maintain that the consciousness and the tendencies of man are determined by the historical factors of his national life and the social factors which fire his class status, Should we overlook historical and social factors, then man in the absolute sense has neither consciousness nor any intuitive power nor is he fit to be called upon to perform a mission. In that case he will not be a concrete man his existence will be merely conceptual. Marxism and similarly national philosophies are based on such a view of man. These philosophies aim at class benefits or are based on national and racial sentiments or at the most on national culture.

Q. Human nature, as the basis of Islamic ideology
There is no doubt that the ideology of Islam is of the first kind, and is based on true nature of man. That is why Islam addresses its message to the “common people” (The term “common people” is often misunderstood and considered to be Contd…) and not to a particular group or class. Islam was able to draw its supporters practically from all groups, even from those to fight against which it had risen, namely the groups which it termed the luxuriously living. It was a great achievement of Islam that it was able to draw recruits from a class to fight against that very class and from a group to fight against the interests of that very group, and even to arouse the individual to fight against himself. This is a deed which Islam has performed and is still performing. Islam being a religion which relies on the innate of man and infiltrates into the inmost traits of his existence, can arouse the individual to fight and bring about a revolution against himself. This revolution is called penitence. The revolutionary power of a class or group ideology is limited to the instigation of an individual against another individual or a class against another class, but it cannot persuade an individual to revolutionize himself, nor can it put the inner sentiments and passions of man under his own control.

Islam, being a religion, and for that matter the final religion, has come, more than any other religion, to set up a system of social justice. (Surely We sent Our messengers with clear proofs, and revealed with them the Book and criterion so that people may observe justice.) (Surah al-Hadid,57: 25) ((لقد ارسلنا بالبینت و انزلنا معهم الکتب و المیزان لیقوم النا س باالقسط 25: 57)
Say: My Lord has ordered me to fair. (Surah al-Ar’raf, 7: 29) (قل امر ربی با القسط 29: 7)Naturally it aims at the emancipation of the oppressed and the underprivileged. But it does not direct its message to the oppressed and the underprivileged alone. Islam has not recruited its supporters from this class only. As history [synonymous with “masses” as distinguished from higher classes. As Islam addresses the common people, it is claimed that Islam is the religion of the messes. Incidentally, this is considered to be a merit of Islam. But we must remember that Islam does not address its message to the messes only, nor is its ideology a class ideology. The real merit of Islam lies in the fact that it advanced with the support of the messes, not that it was addressed to them only. What is more meritorious is that Islam has worked up the sentiments of the well-to do classes among the Muslims for the benefit of the underprivileged classes.] bears witness to it, relying on the force of faith and the innate nature of man, Islam has been able to draw its supporters even from among those classes to fight against which it had risen. Islam presents a theory of the triumph of humanity over anima-lity, of knowledge over ignorance, of justice over tyranny, of equality over discrimination, of virtue over depravity, of piety over sensuality, and of monotheism over polytheism. The success of the oppressed people against the tyrants and the despots is a manifestation of this triumph.

B. Human nature, as the way of culture ‘s uniformity
In consequence of the foregoing discussion a question arises whether the genuine human culture is a of a uniform character or there exists no human and uniform culture, and all that exists and will in future is a series of many cultures each of them having national, communal or class characteristics?

This question is linked with another question. Has or has not man a genuine and uniform innate nature, giving uniformity to human culture? If human nature is uniform, it should impart uniformity to human culture also. Otherwise it will be reasonable to believe that culture is a product of historical, national and geographical factors or a product of class financial interests. Islam, because of its particular world conception, believes in the uniformity of human nature. It supports the idea of the uniformity of ideology and culture also.

C. Relationship between values and ideologies
Evidently it is only a human, not class ideology, a uniform ideology, not one based on the division of mankind, and a natural ideology, not one inspired by profiteering interests, that can be established on human values and can have human characteristics.

D. Relation of ideology with time and place
Does the nature of every ideology depend on its time and place? Is it necessary for man to have a different ideology with every change in times, circumstances and environment? Is ideology subject to the principle of a change with a variation in place, and subject to the principle of cancellation with a variation in time? Is human ideology uniform or multiform?

In other words, is it absolute or relative? The question, whether an ideology from the viewpoint of time and place is absolute or relative depends on another question: whether its source is human nature and its goal is the prosperity of human race, or its source is group interests and national and class feelings.

From another angle this question depends on what we think about the nature of social changes. When society undergoes a change and enters a new era, does its nature change so essentially that it is no longer governed by the laws by which it was governed previously, as for example, when water with the increase in its temperature, turns in the steam, it is governed by the laws of gases and not by those of liquids. Or do we believe that this is not the case with social changes and developments, and the social changes constitute only a stage in the evolution of society and do not affect the fundamental laws or the course of evolution, just as we find in the case of animals that as they develop, their way of life changes, but the laws of their development remain fixed and constant?

From another angle the question whether an ideology is absolute or relative to time and place, is dependent on whether its conception of the world is scientific, philosophical or religious. Scientific conception of the world being transient, an ideology based on it cannot be lasting. On the contrary the philosophical conception of the world is based on self –evident truths and the religious conception on Divine revelation and Prophet hood. later.

E.Nature of the governed principles of ideology
Now the question is whether an ideology itself is governed by the principle of constancy or the principle of change. In the foregoing we have discussed whether human ideology is different in different periods and places. There the question was that of the abrogation and cancellation of an ideology. Now we take up a different question, namely that of the development of an ideology. Irrespective of the fact whether it is absolute or relative and whether in regard to its content it is general or particular, an ideology is phenomenon. As all phenomena are subject to changes, development and evolution, naturally a question arises whether the same is true of the ideology also. Is the reality of an ideology at the time of its birth different from that during its growth and during the period of its maturity? In other words, should an ideology be constantly revised, improved and modernized by its leaders and ideologists, as we find in the case of the materialistic ideologies of our time? If the modern ideologies are not constantly revised, they soon lose their vitality and become obsolete and outdated. Anyhow, the question is whether it is possible to have an ideology, which may be in complete harmony with the course of the development of man and society so that there should be no need of its further revision and improvement. In the case of such an ideology the role of its leaders and the ideologists will be confined to the interpretation of its meaning and content, and the ideologists will be confined to the interpretation of its meaning and content, and the ideological development will be in the field of interpretation, not in the text of ideology itself.

Sources

Man and Universe- part Man and Faith - pages: 34to40

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