‘Religion’?

Religion is a strawman that secularism invented. The religious, and thus something opposed to the secular, is a concept that wouldn’t have been recognized by more ancient societies: there is no single word in ancient Greek or Latin, nor in the Hebrew Bible, nor in Arabic that we can accurately translate as “religion.” (And no, deen is not religion, it predates the word by more than a thousand years.)

In ancient times, people were simply referred to by their nations and the gods they worshipped, such as the Phoenicians worshippers of Hu-bal, or the Assyrians worshippers of Ashur, etc. The Arabs were worshippers of Lat, Uzza and Manat.

But subsequently, the Arabs were sent a divine message that reminded them of an ancient monotheism from which they had lost their way, that of Abraham. The Lord God; El, Elohim, Eloi, Elah (also transliterated as Allah), was whom they were commanded to serve, and shun all false deities.

If we were to focus on the Most High, we would engage in the most productive and inspiring conversations that’d explore who God is, what He wants, how, and what the mutual relationship means, rather than angst-inducing debate on dogma, or pedantry on the details of ritualisms.

The construct of religion imputes on us a way of thinking about the world which demarcates our interaction with the God of Abraham on one side, and interaction with material world on the other. This is a false dichotomy.

Set aside religion, live life and do God constantly. Rather than seeking to be religious and becoming thoroughly confused, be godly.

– From www.facebook.com/shaykhmnizami

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