AOBM stands by Dr Usama Hasan

By Paul Salahuddin Armstrong
Co-Director, AOBM

Imam Usama Hasan is not wrong to state that Muslims need to move on from a basic children’s understanding of creation. He has every right to hold the views he does. No amount of disagreement gives anyone the right to issue death threats. Life is a sacred gift from Allah and not something to be taken lightly. We should be thanking Allah for every moment of the lives He’s given us, not threatening the lives of others.

Issuing death threats is completely unacceptable. Islam is a religion that upholds the principles of Law and Universal Human Rights of all human beings. But this new trend of some wayward folk, who seem to think it’s acceptable to threaten or take the lives of others, is a new low that has no place whatsoever in the deen of Islam. Murder is a crime against God and humanity, a crime Muslims have a duty to, where possible, try to prevent, not be the cause of! How far astray have these people gone, that they seem to think it permissible for them to kill or threaten the lives of their brothers and sisters in our human family?

Imam Usama Hasan’s scientific views are not in any way contradictory to Islam, it’s not like he was suggesting we change aspects of the religious practices of Islam or something like that. Even if someone were to do so, the appropriate response would be to discuss the matter with them, not to threaten their life and wellbeing. All Dr Hasan did, was to state a scientific view which he holds, one that is based upon well established scientific enquiry and evidence. The fact that he has been forced to publicly retract his views (which he obviously still holds) brings great shame on the Muslim community, and just shows how far we’ve departed from the ways of our great forerunners from the 13th Century CE. While the West has indisputably developed, largely based on knowledge learned in the Middle Ages from Muslims; it seems that some Muslims have devolved back to a state of ignorance (jahiliyya), far removed from the high academic understanding of truly great scholars of Islam, such as Al-Jahiz, Ibn Sina, Al-Hazen and others like them.

As a person who deeply loves Allah, His Beloved Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, and this deen of grace, mercy, reason and understanding that Allah has gifted unto us, I feel compelled to speak out against this ignorance and stand up for people like Imam Usama Hasan, who are simply trying to help Muslims grow in knowledge and understanding, both in terms of their faith and in other areas of learning.

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