Wednesday, August 05, 2009

COMMENT: Further degrees of diasppearance ...

A funny thing has happened to "imam" Afroz Ali on the road to Massey University in New Zealand. An entire period of his life spent in the city of the Noble Prophet (upon whom be peace and blessings) somehow went missing. His lecture, scheduled for August 12 2009 and entitled "Debunking Islamic Myths", is now no longer being delivered by someone who studied at the Islamic University of Madinah in Saudi Arabia.

"imam" Afroz's hosts have not mentioned the Islamic University of Madina anywhere in his profile, part of which I reproduce from the relevant promotional Facebook page:

Mr. Ali, known for his inspiring talks and work in the Muslim community, is the Founder and President of Al-Ghazzali Centre for Islamic Sciences & Human Development, based in Sydney, Australia. He is a qualified Imam in the Islamic Tradition, having studied under Traditional Islam and received license to teach in various Islamic Sciences. Anyone who has had the privilege of attending his talks will tell you that this is something not to be missed.

It's as if all those years (or was it months? Or weeks? Or days? Or hours? Or minutes?) that "imam" Afroz spent studying at the Islamic University of Madinah are no longer worth promoting and no longer matter.

So while years ago, "imam" Afroz and his hosts in New Zealand boasted of him having more than one degree from that august institution, now it barely rates a mention.

But I shouldn't be so cynical. After all, "imam" Afroz has received "license to teach in various Islamic Sciences". Too bad he won't disclose any of the following details:

a. which "Islamic Sciences" he has licensed to teach in;

b. whether his license extends to the entire science or certain departments of that science or just certain books;

c. who provided him with these licenses; and

d. when he obtained these licenses.

But of course, we shouldn't be asking such questions. It is fitnah to ask such questions. Those claiming to be qualified imams should be accepted at their word.

But why stop at imams? We should be able to obtain legal advice from anyone. Who needs accreditation? Who needs a law degree and a practising certificate? And who needs a Fellowship from a College of Surgeons to perform surgery? Just put on a white gown and a white face mask, grab a knife and start cutting.

(Thanks to DB for pointing out a typo.)

Words © 2009 Irfan Yusuf

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