Islamic civilization at a cross road.

By Faisal Tahir Khan
The recent geopolitical situation and major events that took place in the last few decades forced me to analyze where we are standing as a civilization and what were the causes that lead Islamic civilization to the current situation.

While glancing at the last 1400 years of Islamic history I was delighted to see how Islam brought a system of justice, equality and equity that resulted in making Madinah Munawarah a welfare society at the time of Caliphs as they rightly built the social fabric of the society on right principals and teachings of Islam.

Islamic history witnessed the period of great leaders such as Tariq Bin Ziad, Haroon ur Rasheed, Mahmood Ghaznawi and Salahuddin Ayoubi and cherished the golden era of the scientific discoveries, inventions and scholarly work of Imam Ghazali, Ibn Khaldun, Al Farabi, Al Biruni, Al Khawarizmi, Omar Khayyam, Al Kindi and many more who laid the foundation of modern-day philosophy, science and technology.

As a civilization, we have to ask ourselves self-right questions to ensure that we are in the right direction as Francis Bacon famously said “A prudent question is one half of wisdom”. Today we are around 2 Billion people on the planet with 57 OIC member countries.

But, what is our total accumulative GDP?  What is our average per capita income? How many companies from 57 OIC countries have made it to the fortune 500? , how many Universities from 57 OIC countries have made it to Global 100 Universities? , how many patents are registered every year from 57 OIC countries? do we have minimum wage law for our labours like US and EU?, What is our share in global trade? are we self-sufficient in defence production? do our Courts give proper Justice to our people ?, do we have a governance structure that is close to the hearts and minds of its people ?, is our system of collecting and distributing Zakat efficient and effective ?, what is our unemployment rate in comparison to the global unemployment rate ?,  what is our literacy and infant mortality rate ?, are we meeting as 57 countries our millennium development goals(MDG’s)? do we have an ecosystem of entrepreneurship in our societies? do we have laws that protect human rights violation and a system that enforce laws impartially ?, do we have laws and systems in place to stop genocide irrespective of our political ideologies and beliefs?  And does our education system encourage analytical thinking, creativity and innovation?

These are a few raw questions to which I believe our generation can find answers and solutions and pave the way to achieve the Islamic renaissance in its true spirit.

Prophet Mohamed (P.B.U.H) while giving an example of Unity mentioned that “The Muslim Ummah is like one body. If the eye is in pain then the whole body is in pain and if the head is in pain then the whole body is in pain”

Today we have to think are we united, are we taking good care of each other or whether each nation has its own agenda, and political and vested interests, are free in making our own decisions or strangled into International Relations in such a way that we can’t even stop mass killings of Muslims in daylight just because it is not aligned with our political interest.

I am sure if we are united it will be difficult to use our own resources on unproductive activities against each other and rather same resources can be spent on education, health, social development, research & development and well-being of the people and building a stronger and more productive Islamic civilization.

Islamic civilization is at a crossroads and they collectively have to decide which road they have to choose and how they will help each other to travel the journey.

It is crucial to have more unity among the leaders and nations, so they through collective wisdom and prudence can decide what is good for them and what is not.

As our coming generations will reap what we will sow.
Faisal Tahir Khan is an entrepreneur and strategy consultant. He can be reached at
Posted by: Syed Mussarat Khalil.

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