A Tribute to Maulana Wahiduddin Khan
By Linta Mustafa
Maulana was an Islamic scholar who was a complete advocator of peace. Born before the partition of the subcontinent and losing his father at an early age, Maulana was raised by his mother and his uncle. According to him, being an orphan trained him to cope with difficult situations in every step of life. His teachings were a fundamental entity in the light of Islam. It is one of the reasons why many renowned teachers went to great lengths to learn even a few lines from him. Rahila Abdul Aziz, coordinator for hibakidz, mentioned how Dr. Farhat Hashmi travelled abroad specifically to learn directly from Maulana Wahiduddin Khan and then proceeded to teach his books entitled Paighambar-e-Inqilab and Islam aik Ta’aruf to her students.
Surrounded by the constant turmoil of the partition, Maulana was fascinated by the beauty of peace. Having received both Islamic and modern education, he successfully amalgamated a sense of positivity and hope coupled with his knowledge of Islam in his writings. One such example quoted by Rahila Abdul Aziz is:
“One of the purposes of a plane flying high is to keep it from hitting mountains or high cliffs. The same is true of human life. The journey of our lives takes place between countless human beings. If you travel on, there will be clashes with others again and again. The only solution is for a person to reach such a height in terms of thoughts and ideas that the possibility of collisions with others disappears for him. This is the Islamic principle that gives man this height. Object is in fact the same thing which some thinkers have given as the superior solution to the problems of life.” (Maulana Wahiduddin in Superior Solutions)
As a scholar, one of his achievements has been the critique of the political interpretation of religion. In an interview held with Saleem Safi on 21st January 2016, Maulana shared his views regarding the modern world and religion. He disapproved of politics and religion being combined together and presented as one. He stated that the media held a great influence on the people’s emotions and thought. Changing the psyche of the present time Muslims that had been immensely affected by politics was one of Maulana’s main objectives. He said that political domination is an event of the material world which is related to this world.
The desire for domination makes you a rival to others. Furthermore, he continued to stress on the notion that even in this ever-changing world, Muslims should promote peaceful Dawah. In the end, what would matter would not be the rate of success or failure, rather it would be how far the message of Islam has spread.
Maulana also prioritized the significance of Quran and Sunnah. When asked about the division of Muslims, Maulana quoted “And hold firmly to the rope1 of Allah all together and do not become divided…” (Al Imran 3:103) and then proceeded to explain that division among the Muslims is mainly due to the different interpretations each sect holds regarding a particular belief.
Humaira Nasim, relationship and wellness coach, shares her sentiments: “Maulana was a mentor for the entire Ummah in the present times. He has left a rich legacy behind for us to take inspiration from. Maulana believed that the path of self-consciousness can lead to Marift-e-Ilahi. He emphasized on introspection and his methods of self-reflection are based on extracting deeper meaning from everyday life situation. He was a personification of acceptance and tolerance and his teachings have a universal message of love, peace, and compassion.”