Muslims have only themselves to blame for Islamists

Tabish Khair
Tabish KhairMar 03, 2016 | 09:41

Muslims have only themselves to blame for Islamists

You know it because you are a mature person: the first, and perhaps only, sign of maturity is the ability to assume responsibility for your own life. Children blame something else for the bad things that happen to them. The chair bumps into them. The floor trips them over.

Then they grow up and learn to take responsibility for their actions. That is when they start becoming mature. They know that not everything is within their control and that other factors play a part in their successes and failures, but - if they are mature - they also learn that finally they are responsible for their own lives. They cannot just blame their lives or actions on others.


It often appears to me that a lot of adults never mature, at least politically. I am tired of hearing many religious Muslims blame Islamist excesses - including terrorism - on everything and everyone else. Some Muslims even refuse to face up to evidence of extremism in the community - blaming it on American spy agency CIA or Mossad or "state propaganda" or whatever.

Even if the CIA, etc, were involved - and there is no denying the fact that the United States, being a global power, inevitably has a fat finger in many pies, some of them unsavoury - it would not take the burden of responsibility away from Muslim societies, leaders and, yes, individuals.

It is, finally, the Muslim's responsibility (not America's) to ensure that his or her societies are peaceful and fair - and that also means fair to non-Muslims.

If Muslims cannot do so, the failure is theirs. If extremists (mis)use the purportedly peaceful faith of Islam to commit violent excesses and persecute innocent people, then alas it is every Muslim's burden. Blaming it on the CIA is a child's gambit.


But if many Muslims seem to lack the maturity to face up to their responsibilities, a large section of the Hindutva crowd is following in their wake too - by blaming every ill of India, real or imagined, on the Mughals, or the British, or Mahatma Gandhi, or Jawaharlal Nehru, or the Congress, or an "envious elite who cannot accept a PM from a poorer background", etc.

It seems to be the plight of postcolonial societies to shirk their share of responsibility - perhaps because it has become a (colonial) habit with us to blame everything on the past or on others. We prefer blaming the next person, not questioning ourselves.

Whatever the proportion of truth in such accusations, they also show a clear lack of maturity. It is like an adult refusing to accept responsibility for his or her life.

(Courtesy of Mail Today.)

Last updated: March 03, 2016 | 09:41
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