Seminarski i Diplomski Rad

The pattern of Islamic civilization through history

On the 610 C.E. Islam, the last guidance of Allah the Lord of the universe was revealed to mankind through Muhammad (pbuh), which was raised as His last prophet. This religion was equipped with several distinctive features, which was not possessed by any other religion before. Although previous religions were also al-Islam in terms of substance, only this last revelation was termed Islam, due to these distinctive features. Among the features is the peculiar methodology of the Quran’s message-communication. The Quran bases its message on arguments and evidences, which cover almost fifth and sixth part of the Book, are useful for all times and everyone of every level of intellect. Message-communication with arguments is irrefutable evidence to the fact that the Quran’s address is directed towards human reason and nature.
What was expected of such a message which addresses human reason was that it would be welcomed by everyone and peoples’ minds and hearts would get attracted to it. However, this expectation not fulfilled neither before nor now due to the lack of the understanding and reasoning of the people. When al-Islam appeared, the society was saturated with blind and deaf people as stated clearly in the Quran;

They have hearts with which they fail to grasp the truth, and eyes with which they fail to see, and ears with which they fail to hear. They are like cattle-hay, they are even less conscious of the right way: it is they who are the heedless.” (Al-A’raf:179)

The causes of this ultimate ignorance were the loyalty to their ancestors faiths and practices and their tribal pride. It was because of this national heritage that the Israelites could not accept the Prophet Muhammad’s prophet hood, because he was from the Ismaelite line. That the prophet hood shifted from the Israelite family to the children of Ismael made them feel outraged. This also happened within the Quraysh. The acceptance of the Prophet Muhammad’s prophet hood would make Banu Qusayy, the Prophet’s family superior to them. The Arab Quraysh then also practiced self-worship; wine drinking, gambling, riba transaction, abomination, nudity, sexual anarchy, blood-letting were all justified in the name of natural right, economic consideration, fine arts, and sometimes by national prestige and religious sanctity. Since Islam totally banned these practices, the Quraysh considered it a heavy burden rather than mercy and grace. Certainly they have turned themselves into a deity against whom nothing could have been listened and tolerated.
The story of the strangeness in the early days of Islam continued until the initial stages of the Sahabah’s days. During that time the Prophet trained them with the fundamental Islamic teachings: everyone are Allah’s slaves of equal position, every physical act and movement in the universe as an act of obedience to God, praiseworthy traits of mercy and love, the wide concept of divine-worship that was at that time confined to only meditation and personal reform and many more.
The Prophet succeeded in purifying the Sahabah only after intensive training spread over 23 years. By 632 C.E., the ignorance had completely surrendered, indicating the complete victory of Islam.
After the Prophet (pbuh) parted from the world, the Muslim world was ruled by the Khulafa’ Al-Rashideen for 30 years. Abu Bakr Al-Siddiq (632-634) was the first caliph after the death of Muhammad (pbuh). His successful fight against the Bedouins claimed the entire Arabian Peninsula for Islam, and his declaration of hostility against the Byzantines and Sassanids, who surrounded Arabia, set the stage for his successors to spread Islam beyond the Arabian Peninsula. This political domination was neither monarchial nor colonial in nature, its only objective was to loosen the ideological grip of ignorance-based system on the people, providing them an environment that enables them to seriously listen to and understand Islam’s message. Even though success was evident at this time, the impact of the death of the Prophet Muhammad could still be seen. There was at first the attack against the Islamic fundamental beliefs, such as the belief in the Prophet Hood, by false claimants to Prophet Hood by Musailamah and Aswad al-Ansa which later brought to Shiism, more false prophets and the split of the Muslims to sects. The attack on the Islamic concept of unity of God also swept across the Arabian Peninsula but was crushed by the strong Caliphate.
Abu Bakr had named Umar as the second caliph before his death. During his ten-year rule, Umar had furthered Abu Bakr's territorial gains in Arabia by conquering a great expanse of land surrounding the peninsula: Syria, Egypt, Iraq, and much of Persia and created the second largest empire in the world at that time which was slightly smaller than the Chinese Empire.
‘Uthman was chosen as Umar's successor after the death of Umar by a council of Muhammad's companions. His armies managed to stop the Byzantine attempt to reconquer Alexandria in 645, and in 647 he conducted raids west of Egypt, further into Byzantine North Africa. The conquest of Persia, begun by Umar, was completed in 653 when Muslim forces occupied Khurasan, the eastern-most Persian province, and the eastern boundary of the old Sassanid Empire. However, the unity of the ummah became at stake by the murder of Sayyedna ‘Uthman by a group that demanded his resignation but failed.
This was followed by the demand of ‘Qisas’ by the Umayyad family during the leadership of the fourth Caliph, Sayyedna ‘Ali whom upon the death of ‘Uthman, declared himself as the new caliph. This demand climaxed into the battle of Siffin, killing ninety thousand precious lives. This war ended after the death of Ali and with time, the situation of the ummah became worse as it split into a number of sects, sub-sects and groups. Within a few months after the death of Ali, Mu'awiya established the first Islamic dynasty in the name of his family, the Umayyads. The Umayyad Dynasty (661-750) was placed for 100 years, with Mu'awiya begun ruling for the first 20 years. The Umayyads established the practice of hereditary succession for the caliph, the leader of the Muslim world, not more based on nobility and piety just as the Prophet had predicted some forty years back. This method of crowning gained momentum in the Umayyad, ‘Abbasid and ‘Uthman Caliphates. Umayyads were responsible for the Muslim conquest of North Africa, Spain, and Central Asia. The Islamic empire thus grew considerably during the Umayyad period, and can be considered the first real Islamic state. Until the mid-7th century, North Africa west of Egypt was under Byzantine control. Egypt was conquered during Umar between 640 and 645. The Arabs even succeeded in temporarily bringing the Byzantines out of Tripoli in 645. By 670, the Arabs had taken Tunisia, and by 675, they had completed construction of Kairouan in North Africa. By 710, Arab armies had taken Tangier under the command of a Berber, Tariq, who then led them into Spain in 711. In 732 they were finally defeated by the Franks at the Battle of Poitiers. After that, the Muslims remained on the southern side of the Pyrenees during their 700 years in Europe. From Khurasan, a region in eastern Persia, the Muslims crossed the Jaxartes River into China and briefly occupied the town of Kashgar in 714. In 715, the Muslims took the Central Asian cities of Bukhara and Samarkand. These conquests mark the introduction of Islam to the Turks, who would later establish one of Islam's greatest empires under the ‘Uthmans. The Umayyads were overthrown in 750 by the Abbasids, led by descendants of Muhammad's uncle, Abbas after several military conflicts between the two groups. The Abbasid Dynasty (750-1258) did not simply take over power from the Umayyad Dynasty; they also made significant changes to the Umayyad system of government and its presentation of religious issues. The Abbasids remained in power for 500 years and ended because of the Mongol invasion. This longevity speaks well of the Abbasid system of government, particularly in terms of its ability to accept the development of separate, regional dynasties in order to preserve the Abbasid core in Baghdad. After the Abbasid Dynasty, the Muslim world was run by the Mongol in the beginning of 13th century. By the 16th century, the Islamic empire covered a large part of the world, from West Africa through the Mediterranean, across Central Asia into India, and even across the ocean into Southeast Asia.
What was left of the Caliphate system was completely erased by a so-called freedom fighter, Mustafa Kamal Attartuk, after which the Islamic government’s basic obligations and the comprehensiveness of Islamic concepts became irrelevant and outdated. The Muslim land was split into Arab, Iranian, Afghani, Turkish, Indian, Malaysian, Indonesian etc. different nations and almost all of them replaced Islamic laws with the new Jahiliyyah, hidden behind the name ‘modern civilization’.
All these rise and falls of the Islamic Civilization was already predicted by the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w):

And Islam will go back once again to its early stage of strangeness”.

According to the Prophet’s prediction, the situation began changing and the Muslim society lost most of its brilliance.

Rise Factors of Islamic Civilization

Islamic civilization was once among the greatest civilization that rose in this world. It existed for a quite long period, which was for about 800 years (year 800-1600 C.E) and spread in a wide areas forming continental super-state that stretched from ocean to ocean and from northern climes to tropics and deserts. Although this civilization already ended, it is still amazed at for its significant distinctive features and contributions to the other civilization. Its gifts are very much part of our heritage nowadays. Indeed the people today are indebted to them. Dr. Tara Chand, a distinguished scholar and historian of India ever found to say, “For a thousand years this civilization was the central light whose rays illumined the world. It was the mother of European culture, for men reared in this civilization were the masters in the Middle Ages at whose feet the Spaniards, the French, the English, the Italians, and the Germans sat to learn philosophy, science, mathematics, astronomy, chemistry, physics, medicine, and industrial techniques. Their names were household words.”
The question is, how and what are the factors that cause this civilization to achieve such a great success and could benefit all other human being, even the non-Muslims? In this case, without considering the races, creeds, beliefs, nations and colours of the people, Islamic civilization benefited all of them. Fundamentally, the founder of this great civilization is Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was sent down as a mercy to mankind that the civilization he built could only have mercy and justice for them, benefiting all human beings without any exceptions. The factors that give rise to great Islamic civilization are as follow:

Unity of God

Islamic civilization was indeed based on Islamic teaching in which its basic teaching is to belief in Oneness of Allah Alone. Belief in Allah was manifested by believing in His prophet’s teachings and revelation revealed to him. In Al – Qur’an, Allah orders His believers to worship Him Alone, regarding His pleasure as their ultimate goal of life in this world and the hereafter. In addition, only in Him the believer should sought refuge. This is clearly stated in Al- Qur’an:

You (Alone) we worship, and you (Alone) we ask for help (for each and everything). (Al – Fatihah: 4)

In other verse, Allah says:

Say (O Muhammad): “O Allah! Possessor of the kingdom, you give the kingdom to whom you will, and you take the kingdom from whom You will, and You endue with honour whom You will, and humiliate whom You will. In Your hand, is good. Verily, You are Able to do all things.” (Al – ‘Imran: 26)

According to this verse, Allah said that He is the One who will honour and grant also humiliates whom He wants. Believing in this, the Muslims know, there is no other people and thing that could benefit them except for their benevolence God, Allah the Almighty. Hence, they don’t fear in any other power except for Allah and seek help only from Allah, giving them incredibly great strength in fulfilling their mission which also came from Allah, which is to spread the name of Allah in this world.

Spiritual Power

The teachings of Islam give tremendous impulse to Muslims to seek for a better life. Since Allah created all things subservient to human beings, they are urged to explore and benefited all creatures around them so that they will live a better life. For instance, researching about plants will give them new knowledge about those plants and provided them with new medicine for the diseases encountered. Also, these creatures are created with purposes, so Al – Qur’an asks Muslims to ponder on their creations, searching for the reasons for their existence, and be grateful to Allah. Discovering the truth, the Muslims are encouraged to spread them to all mankind so that all of them could share the advantages of a single thing that discovered, at the same time spread the words of Allah, the new pure religion of Islam to save them from hell fire and liberate them. Moreover, every single good deeds are considered as devotional acts to Allah, every deed that benefit others are ‘sadaqah’ and of course all of these will be rewarded by Allah in the hereafter. Consequently, the Muslims working hand in hand, acting in the best of manner and putting marvelously great attempt in every single work they did in order to search for something new that could benefit others in order to seek for Allah’s pleasures alone.

Brotherhood, Humanitarian and Universality

The other flourishing factor of Islamic civilization is its value of brotherhood, humanity and universality. Al – Qur’an declares the unity of mankind in the following verse:

O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of male and female, and made you into nations and tribes so that you may know each other. Verily the most honored of you in the sight of Allah is (one who is) the most God-fearing of you.” (Al- Hujurat: 13)

The facts that all people came from one same ancestor causes all human being to be equal in everything and are actually brother to each other. So, nobody is superior over the other since they are actually one. Hence, because of this, Islam could bring everybody to work together, hand in hand towards excellence. That is why every other civilization except Islamic civilization can take pride in the geniuses of only one race and one nation. But, Islam can take pride in all geniuses’ sons of all those nations and tribes who had joined hands in building the edifice of Islamic civilization. For instance, Islamic civilization has brought forward many renowned men which are the product of sound human thought who are actually having different origins. Those are, Abu Hanifah, Malik, Al Shafi’I, Ahmad Al Khalil, Al-Sibawayh, al-Kindi and so on so forth.
Because of this creed they are willing to appoint anybody as their leader without considering their colours, nations and other reasons which at that time, there was no other people who are willing to do so. In one historical event:

When Muslims conquered Egypt and advanced to the Fort of Bablion, Muqauqis the ruler of Egypt sent a delegation to speak to Muslim in order to find out what they want. He also expressed a desire to receive a delegation of Muslim. Therefore, ‘Amr ibn Al ‘As sent a delegation which comprising of ten people. This delegation was led by ‘Ubada al Samit, and he alone was authorized to talk to Muqauqis. ‘Ubada was tall and very black, and when this delegation approached Muqauqis to speak to him, he was struck by his appearance alone, and he said to the members of delegation, “Keep this black person away from me, and bring forward somebody else to speak to me.” The members of the delegation unanimously said to him, “He is superior to us in intellect, knowledge, opinion, insight and in every other way. He is our leader. We all turn to him for his opinion and advice. Moreover our governor has given him some particular instructions, and has ordered us not to go against him in any matter whatsoever.”

This event become a clear prove that Islam indeed honours a person based on his attributes and not because of any other reasons. Because of that, everybody has an equal chance to be great in others’ and Allah’s eyes. Furthermore, this value also brings all people dear to each other, cooperating toward the goodness of mankind.

Priority of Moral Principle

Another important factor that established Islamic civilization in the world is the priority of moral principle. Islam has placed moral principle on top of every aspect of their lives. Thus, these moral values governed the lives of the rulers, the ruled, governance, learning process, arts, legislation, war, economy and familial affair. The virtues were their ultimate consideration in every action. Resulting from this, Islamic civilization managed to give birth to just, humble rulers, intellectuals who only eager to find the truth without taken into consideration about the worldly rewards, kind-hearted armies and soldiers who showed mercy to nature and mankind even during the war and many other marvelous characters that any other civilization fail to build.
There were once history witnessed the scene where the non-believer complained to the head of Islamic state that the son of his governor had flogged his son. Hearing this, the head of the state became infuriated and called the governor’s son to account; he was then flogged by the one who was originally wronged. Here, the status of the person didn’t became the reason for the ruler to not to be just to them since who did wrong should deserve a punishment even the wrong deed can actually be considered as a small matter. But, for the ruler of Islamic state there was no room for injustice at all.
Even during the war, the Islamic state soldiers uphold the good moral values. In history, the first Caliph of the prophet has issued some instructions to the army led by Usama. The instructions were; do not mutilate and disfigure the enemies after they have killed them, do not kill the children, old people or women, do not destroy the palm trees or burn them, do not cut down a tree bearing fruits, slaughter only as many animal as they actually need for their food, and leave the person who have devoted themselves to churches and monasteries so that they can pursue the mission for which they have renounce the world. Since the purpose of war was only to uphold justice, and to get Allah’s pleasures, such war is restricted by these principle of mercy until either of two take place: peace or victory. There were many other brilliant evidences for this kind of manner, but of course we were not capable of stating them all.

Religious Tolerance

Additional features of Islamic civilization which cause this civilization to be at the peak were its religious tolerance. In Islam, the revealed religions are believed to spring from the same fountain and the Prophets who brought them were brothers. Thus, all Muslims should believe in all of them. The Qur’an says:

We believe in Allah and in that which He has revealed to us and to Ibrahim, Isma’il, Ishaq, Ya’qub, al-Asbat and that which was revealed to Musa, ‘Isa, and that which was revealed to the prophets from their Lord, We make no difference between one and another and we bow in submission to Him.”
(Al-Baqarah: 33)

As a result, there was no one superiority over another, also there is no compulsion in religion. Everybody has their own right to choose and believe in which religion which they favour.
All places of worship of all divine religion are respectable, thus Muslims are not allow to destroy any of them. In Al – Qur’an, Allah says:

For had it not been for Allah’s checking some men by means of others, monasteries, churches, synagogues and mosques, wherein the name of Allah is often mentioned, would have been destroyed.” (Al-Hajj: 40)

During the event when Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) entered Makkah, he ordered that whosoever entered the place of worshipped will be safe; here it was clear that he honoured the place of worship of other religion.
Moreover, it is not allowed for people to kill one another due to difference in creeds and beliefs. Instead, they should cooperate with one another to promote the cause of good and to eradicate the evil. The difference between them, only Almighty Allah should judge who are the righteous among them in the Day of Judgment. About this, Al- Qur’an as below:

Help one another in benevolence and piety, and help not one another in sin and transgressions.” (Al-Maidah: 2)
The Jews said, the Christians were misguided, and the Christians said it was the Jews who were misguided; although both are readers of the Book (Torah and Gospel). Those who know nothing said the same. Allah will judge between them on the Day of Judgment concerning that wherein they differ.” (Al-Baqarah: 113)

That’s why, when once the Christians were under the Islamic ruler, they were given full freedom to perform their religious rituals and also given full authority to manage their churches until the churches institutions were as if small state in a countries. The Christians themselves felt the difference atmosphere when they were under Islamic ruler; indeed they enjoyed full freedom to practice their religion.

Political Freedom

The nobility and loftiness in understanding the unity of Allah had a huge effect in elevating the position of man, freeing the common people from tyranny kings, the noble people, and the mighty and of the people of religion, rectifying the relationship between the ruler and the ruled since they were all focusing on the vision of Allah alone.
Before the Islamic era, the right of people to account on their ruler was not recognized. The rulers were totally having freedom on how he would like to treat his people. But Islam came and declared that the ruler were only the trustees and employees of his people in which his duty was to honestly guard the interest of the people. As a result, the ruler for the first time in history was publicly asked to account for his clothes until he needed to explain his position until the complainer became satisfied with him. Knowing that he was only the employee of his people, he realized that it was his duty to sincerely serve the nation.
It was this spirit that induced the other nations to become dynamic, preparing themselves for revolution and broke the chains and became free persons. Before this, they were lack of knowledge that calling the ruler to account or the support of the oppressed was their basic right. Thus, this is one of the everlasting traces of Islamic civilization in the life of nations and civilization. The nations whom Islamic civilization has infused the spirit of liberation from slavery are indeed indebted to them.

Intellectual Freedom

Islamic civilization has faith in the true principles of knowledge and appreciates the faculty of reasoning (intellect) simultaneously with heart (sentiments). In Al – Qur’an many different terms are used to refer to faculty of reasoning which are: tafakkara, aqila, faqiha, tadabbara and so on. These terms shows and encourages the people to use their reasoning to search for truth. It prevents the people from superstitions and blind imitation without sound evidence. Instead, it enjoys people to think critically and creatively about things.
During the Islamic civilization, there used to be academics circles which managed to attract men of various creeds to sit together, discussing and learning together. Since they consist of different creeds, they were prohibited to use evidences from their religious books in order to prevent sectarian conflict. Ma’mun Al-Rashid used to say: “Keep your discourse and discussion limited to learning and the arts, and do not bring forth evidence from your religious books”. In a circle, there may be a Jew, atheist, polytheist, Sunni, Shiite, Christian, Sabian, and Magian and so on. These people used to sit together to discuss various problems, historical events and to recite poems. It was such a friendly atmosphere that no one could expect that they were actually come from various conflicting creeds.

The Spirit of Seeking Knowledge

Most of the rulers of Islamic civilization, specifically the rulers of Banu Umayyah and the first two centuries of al-Abbasiyyin dynasties were educated or scholars. They encouraged learning and scientific enquiry and used to spend on it generously. This spirit of seeking knowledge has given rise to the establishment of hundreds and thousands of schools and universities such as al-Nizamiyyah in Baghdad, al-Azhar in Egypt, al-Qayrawan, Madrasah Salahiyyah and so on. The students came from various part of world, from far away even some Europeans went to these institutions to seek knowledge.
These institutions were independent institutions. This was because there was generous expenditure on education. Lots of endowments were given to the people of education, whether they were the teachers or the students. The poor students were given full support to study in which they were given shelter and foods. These endowments also play a great role in developing educational institutions in which some of these endowments were used to build the place for studying, shelter for the students, staffs, principals and also the teachers. From these traditions that there exists quarters for teachers and hostel for students in educational field nowadays.
In reality, there were many other significant features of Islamic civilization that support this civilization until it ever emerged as the greatest civilization in history. And all of those feature are actually come from the teachings of Islam in which there is no doubt that it is pure and the only accepted religion by Allah, The God of the Universe.

Factors of fall of Islamic Civilization

The closing of the door of ijtihad

The Muslim scholars and jurists (important person in Islamic civilization) declared that the Gate of Ijtihad (the individual struggle for understanding) was closed. They believed all possible human’s problem had been answered and henceforth only learning by taqlid (blind imitation of the past) would be permissible. The start or the 13th century saw the beginning of the relative decline of Islamic civilization. And by the fifteenth century, the effect of the closing of the door to ijtihâd on scientific progress in the Islamic world was unmistakable. Then, especially after the fourteenth century, the theological and speculative education at the expanse of secular and empirical knowledge is stressed by the ulama’. It denotes that the codes of human conduct, including all aspects of life, should be examined according to four mazhab (schools of morals and legal interpretation) developed by Imam Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i and Hanbali. Consequently, the Islamic state began to rot from within. A cultural shift began to occur. While Islamic scholarship sluggished and turn far away from Qur’anic spirit.

Distinction and division between sciences

The appearance of distinction between religious science or Islamic science (ulum shar’iyah) or traditional science (ulum ‘aqliyah) and the rational or secular science (‘ulum ‘aqliyah or gyar shar’iyah) has occurred. The question right now is what is actually religious science? It is not possible that the great scientific achievements of the classical Islamic civilization were simply “Muslim science” but it is science done by Muslims, with religion-cultural characteristics to differentiate it in any meaningful way from science that came before or after. Within this distinction, the secular science was placed as the ‘step child’ of scholarly activities. Usually, people might think they should fix priorities since the knowledge is very wide while life is short. These will naturally be in favor in religious science, thus success in hereafter. Moreover, we can divide knowledge into two which are fard a’in and kifayah:
i) Fard a’in- obligation to every Muslim to perform it.
ii) Fard kifayah- can be carried by sufficient number of Muslims, the remaining will redeemable from sins (referred as not sinful).
It can be concluded then, that in human affairs there is no perfection. The Quran (book of shar’iyah and hidayah) is a guide towards spiritual salvation and gives general guidance towards temporal laws. No religious book is a tome on laws. Laws are derivative from the religious principles. Furthermore, it is decided that the sacred science (shar’iyah) which is may be revealed by empirical observation as well as from the Qur'an are superior to the profane science (ghayr shar’iyah) which have been discovered either by reason, experiment or hearing.

Did not have faith in Allah

The first characteristic is the fact that it is civilization based on Islamic faith, imbued with its values and principles. It is a monotheistic civilization based on the belief in the oneness of Allah Almighty, the Creator of men and all creatures. However, some of the Muslims deviate from this faith. They think that everything they achieve is due to their hardworking, not from Allah. They forget to thank Allah and show their gratitude to Him. Lastly Allah takes back what He had given to them as stated in Qur’an;

But if they turn away, say thou: “I have warned you of a stunning
Punishment (as of thunder and lightning) like that which (overtook)
the ‘Ad and the Thamud !
(4: 13)

They are not only denying the blessings from Allah and reject to do the righteous deeds as a sign of gratitude, but also using these blessings to disobey Allah. To be boastful about one’s knowledge and refusal to deny it as a gift from Allah is considered bad and also will be punished by God.

Lacking in resource and knowledge

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing, more dangerous than ignorance itself. One who possesses ‘a little knowledge’ will incapable of understanding something correctly, and also refuse to acknowledge his capacity. Today, Muslims are generally a deprived group, insufficient in resources and capability. Their position is not that of a people (some previous nations) who are strong in faith, progressive, united, and tolerant and knowledge. They are not ready to change to new situations and are unable to cope with the challenges posed by the current centers of established knowledge. As a result, Muslims can easily being conquered by the non-Muslims and are dependent on others for their well-being.

Verily, the vilest of all creatures in the sight of God are those deaf,
those dumb ones who do not use their reason.
(8: 22)

Failure of continuing the strength in Islamic administration

Before, Islamic community failed to continue in its fullest strength. This is because of the Institutional structure of Arabian society was too flimsy to support the new principles of Islamic political and organization. The quality of Islamic public administration, as well as education and knowledge began to deteriorate. Meanwhile, the colonial administrators of Muslim countries often viewed Islamic culture as inimical to development and progress. In the analysis of Western thinkers Islam’s conduct to material values, to work, thrift, productive investment, honesty in commercial relations, experimentation and risk bearing, and to equality of chance were all unhelpful to growth and development. The choice for Muslim leaders was between "Deen" and "Duniya" or "mechanization". Mechanization is the act of implementing the control of equipment with advanced technology; usually involving electronic hardware; "automation replaces human workers by machines. It appears the Muslims concentrated on "Deen" at the expense of "Duniya". Furthermore, there is widespread of injustice, tyranny, corruption and other forms of bad attitude in the government’s administration. Nepotism (reestablishing the hereditary kinship in governing the Islamic empire), with weak leadership will result to the break off of the process of political democratization and rejected of the masses from political participation.

The Mongol invasions

The golden age of Islam, particularly the scientific pursuits that required greater stability in the Arab heartland, declined by the 12th century and came to end in 1258 after the brutal Mongol’s invasion. The Mongols devastated the eastern lands of Islam and ruled from the Sinai Desert to India for a century. It is proven that the last Abbasid caliph in Baghdad, Al-Musta’sim, was a weak leader. When Mongol attacked Baghdad, he proved no match. So, Mongol was successfully entered Baghdad in February 1258 while al-Musta’sim and 300 of his officials were murdered. Though the Mongol conquered adopted Islam within fifty years, their ruling was tribal. There is a spread of the Black Death-the host of Chenghiz Khan through Hulegu’s Mongol forces, in their terrific inroad, destroyed the most important universities, massacred the learned men and burned and plundered the city. With the vast destruction of manuscripts and libraries, gradually a majority of Ulama (religious jurists and scholars) came to the view that the Islamic civilization had reached its apogee and all the interpretations (Ijtihad) needed have been accomplished. However, they soon converted to Islam and became known as the Il-Khanids. They were in turn succeeded by Timur and his descendants who made Samarqand their capital and ruled from 1369 to 1500.

The emergence of western power

Civilizations take generations to rise and recede. It was stated that the French Revolution was a censorious development in 18th century Western history. This event stimulates the worldwide dissemination of the idea of civil liberty, liberal democracy that leads to a new way of life depending on secular ethics. Simultaneously, while the Age of Enlightenment led Europe to scientific and geographic discoveries, and while European countries developed new trade and, succeeded in their liberation from religious domination of the Catholic Church, Islamic civilization had decline. On the top of that, Western science developed independently from the church. Because of the church’s authority regulate the word ‘shrank’, the secularization took place. Meanwhile, reason and science become the gods of the thinkers. The freedom of thought gradually gained ground in the 18th century, and has come to be known as the ‘Age of Reason’. With this came the unleashing of sciences, leading to better technology and the start of colonial expansion.
By the mid 19th century the ‘Industrial Revolution’ had taken hold, particularly the war technology and exploration leading to world dominance and colonialism. The colonialism and the ascendance of the West were in part caused by the weakness in Islamic societies. As a result, it can be sum up that the penetration of lands of Islam by western knowledge occurred by three factors: superior technology, more efficient in public administration and economic competition. And the impacts of the emergence of Western are following:
1) Secularism
They are separating religious and worldly life. So, whatever activities that they do, they never care either it is following the law of Allah or not. Secularists also believe all things happen by chance.
2) Extinction of Authentic Cultures
Westernization leads to a uniform mode of thought and style of life all over the world. This idea destroys all multiplicities of authentic culture. Culture is required to prolong the dignity of certain society and tide the society together.
3) The flawed knowledge of the divinity:
Western perception underlying Western civilization does not have a neat, clear-cut vision of God living up to His true dimension is rather a hazy and blurred vision.
4) Conflict:
It is a civilization pervaded by conflict, a civilization which does not believe in peace, quietude or love. It is marked by conflict between man and himself, between man and his fellows and finally between man and his Creator.

No unification

Unity is very important to show the silent strength of a society. Every Muslim is supposed to belong to a Muslim community where there are some common cause, common feelings, and mutual solidarity. Believers are brethren.

"And hold fast all of you together to the Rope of Allah, and be not divided among yourselves: and remember Allah's favor on you, for you were enemies and He joined your hearts together, so that by His Grace you became brethren..." [3: 103]

No unification in this context includes disobeying the command of the leader. So, it is easier for their enemy to attack them and may delay the development process. For example, during the war of Uhud where the Muslims people did not obey the prophet’s command that is not to leave their place (Mount Uhud) no matter what happen. However they did not follow prophet’s instruction. At the end, they lose the battle even though they win at the beginning. This denotes the important of unification in order to success and wins the battle.

The perfidy of certain Muslims

Some Muslims are bad than their enemies. They are hypocrite. They betrayed their own brethren and sided with their enemies. They tried to carry favour with them and hankered after honours and titles from them. They never regret for what they have done. These kinds of acts are done when these foreigners (enemies of Islam) have committed the whole affair to Muslim. This leads to the destruction of the Ummah. These Muslims fear others (non-Muslim) more than God. That is what Allah says in the Quran:

Be ye not afraid of them, but fear me, if ye have Faith. (3:175)



You are the best of people ever raised up for mankind; you enjoin Al-Ma’ruf and forbid Al-Munkar, and you believe in Allah…’ (3:110)

The heavenly revelation of Muslims, the Qur’an, has already pointed out to them that they are the best nation among the other nations of the world. The outstanding acknowledgement by Allah is not because of the races, wealth or gender, instead this is due to two reasons stated in the above verse, enjoin goodness and forbid the evil. This morality creed is what is lacking in the dominant civilization today, which caused them to fall into dire stage and need to be rescued immediately. Since Muslims are the bearers of those creeds, they are the one that will save the humanity and bring into the existence of a civilization.
Islamic civilization is believed to have collapse years ago, but the truth is it is not. There is an Egyptian thinker, Fouad Mohamed Chebel, who says, “Collapse does not mean exactly the end of growth”. In history, there is no indication as to what are the limits of life expectancy of a society. Even though the condition of Islamic ummah nowadays is in disarray, the basis and foundation of the Islam is still preserved and held by the Muslims. The Islamic civilization is the civilization of the future which has been promised by Allah s.w.t. and it is the Muslims’ responsibility to revive it back.
When we revised the Western civilization today, the major thing that it is lacking is believe in God i.e. the religion. Religion brings about the pure and perfect unity of God. It’s teaching dignified human morality which keeps man away from injustice and deficiency in equality. It also keeps balance between love, duty and its laws. It emphasizes on easiness rather than difficulty and hardship, so that man will not feel burden in following its teaching. Thus Muslims must renew their faith and believe as well as the practicing of all the comprehensive teachings of Islam sincerely in order to get Allah’s pleasure and blessing. Islam creates the path of excellence for the individual due to the balance it provide to the man; intellect development as well as material and the spiritual needs. Islam does provide peace and security to mankind.
The second most important aspect to be looked thoroughly and deeply in reviving the civilization is the need to have vision. Islamic teaching emphasizes on intellect and gives huge space for the intellect to grow. Thus using the intellect, Muslims must make effort in producing a systematic plan of action as well as daring to come with a new idea to achieve the vision. The plan must comprise the exploration of science; nature and human science, to produce more advanced technology which undoubtedly benefits the mankind. It is not like the technology the Western provides today. Even though it looks good, the truth beyond it is it is still hazardous to human health as well as to the environment. The plan also must consist of the development in economic and business field. The economic will strengthen the Muslims position hence will help them in upgrading their life.
To make the vision established, Muslims must have power i.e. political power to make legislation towards achieving the vision. A great poet and philosopher, Muhammad Iqbal said, “Vision without power does bring moral elevation but cannot give a lasting culture. Power without vision tends to become destructive and inhuman. Both must combine for the expansion of humanity.” To attain the power, the Muslims must exploit their own natural resources and did their best to be independent of the West manufacturing. Here, the role of leadership is very important to lead the others driven the coming back of Islamic civilization. The leader must be chose using the system of meritocracy, so that the leader chosen is really capable, religious and sincere in holding the responsibilities.
Last but not least, Muslims must practice the virtue of brotherhood. The unity of brotherhood plays an important role in supporting the effort to revive the Islamic civilization. The Muslims support each other without concerning the races, skin colour, status or gender. The Muslims must unite to get free of the evil elements of the West and immunize themselves against it. The social unification of Muslims will ensure the revival of Islamic civilization to the top of the world.
The Muslim students must also play their role in seeking knowledge and read about their ancestor work on driving such a great civilization before. By reading their achievement, students will be motivated to form a constructive work, vision and plan to contribute in reviving their civilization to a new era, even better and more superior than the present one. Allah Knows best.


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