The chairman of a private Pakistani think tank, The Moderates, has written a newspaper column worth taking a gander at. I can’t attest to the historical accuracy of Syed Jawaid Iqbal’s description of the original vision for the “Land of the Pure,” but I do find Iqbal’s conclusion promising:
It is time the Muslims of the world stopped living in some kind of an ‘Islamic’ bubble of their own. There is no question that they are bound together by a common faith but this does not mean that they should harbor hostility towards other communities and see the rest of the world through the prism of religious belief. Islam teaches equality and dignity of man. It establishes freedom from discrimination and exploitation and encourages every believer to struggle against oppression and injustice.
Rather than existing in and promoting a climate of fear and paranoia, there is a dire need for the world’s Muslims to address such issues as democracy and separation of religion from politics so that they too can join the march of human progress. This is something that needs to be particularly addressed by the people and leaders of Pakistan as we are one country that was cut out right from the start as a modern Muslim state where religion and politics would function in their own separate spheres. Let us turn Jinnah’s dream into reality.