The following is a transcript of His Holiness Younus AlGohar's speech.
What is Islam and what is the Religion of God? I would also like to discuss today what religions which were established by messengers sent by God are still valid. From Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism or whatever religions there are - what religions are still valid and can legitimately be serving humanity and connecting them to God?
Number 1 - it is not any religion that connects you to God; it is the messenger or appointed, anointed spiritual guide in that religion which are delegated by God to render spiritual techniques, spiritual power, the production of energy and how to embark upon spiritual journey. When you are out of contact with these messengers and spiritual guides, then even if the religion is valid, you do not find connection to God. However, today, in the trouble-stricken society, in a society where mischief is vividly visible and observation of religious practice is not seen.
In this society today where there are different people who come from different religions and groups of faith, you see them carrying out rituals, they are engaged in all sorts of worship and practice of the religion; however, these religious people, in their own personal capacity, appear to be manimals. A manimal is a man who looks like a man but behaves like an animal.
It is very unfortunate that lessons on religions have been given to people by wrong teachers, by wrong clerics, by wrong seminaries, by wrong religious colleges. You needed somebody who was discerning and who had a profound insight into the outer form of the religion and into the inner form of the religion. The moment you were deprived from the auspicious company and association of such spiritual dignitaries, you got lost.
Religion is not about carrying out different forms of worship, and like a parrot, reciting the Holy Scriptures. A religion socially teaches you to become a good human being, spiritually it connects you to God and economically it fills your heart with justice. There are so many things a religion can offer to a devout practitioner of that religion.
If a man is not socially disciplined and he deprives others from their fundamental rights, that person can never be connected to God spiritually.
When you are ill - for example, if you have the flu - you have so many complaints about your health, about your feelings, about your ability to perform your day-to-day routine. When you have the flu, you are coughing, you have a blocked nose, you have feverish conditions, you run down on energy, the entire body is aching badly; but the moment you take the first dose [of medicine], you start to feel better.
In a similar way, a religion will definitely turn you into a good man; if a religion doesn't turn you into a good man, then either you cannot be a good man or the religion is invalid.
If you go to mosques, temples, synagogues and churches, you recite the Bible, the Quran, the Talmud, the Torah, Bhagvad Gita, and Guru Granth but still your brain is messed up, your character is screwed up, you are doing every bad thing of the book - and you still think you are a religious man? You know what God said? 'If your heart does not remember God, then in the eyes of God, there is no difference between you and an animal on four legs.' What does it mean? When your heart is not engaged in the remembrance of God, you have animal instincts; you behave like an animal, you have no respect for humanity. You have no respect for your mother, for your father, for your sisters, for your brothers or for your fellowmen and we can see that. Today we see every single Muslim is blamed to be a terrorist - it is not just Islam; it has happened to every religion.
When spiritual guides were discontinued in some religions, people were unable to connect to God and as a result of which, they were disconnected to God. Their practice of the religion filled their hearts with hatred, arrogance, jealousy and malice - either they are Christians, Hindus, Jews or Muslims.
Muslims are not the only nation which has slipped into the lap of terrorism today. If you go back into history, you will see Hindus were extremists. As we see in Northern Ireland, there have been groups that are planting bombs. A few days ago, we saw Jerry Adams was arrested for some crime. Jerry Adams is from the IRA (Irish Republican Army). They [extremists in Ireland] were Protestants, they were against Catholics; they had so much hatred in their hearts that they couldn't bear the presence of Catholics.
Catholics still have some spirituality. For example, a previous pope, John Paul II, he was a spiritual man. He was enlightened. The one who just retired, Pope Benedict XVI, he was also a good man. I read his book and his understanding about religions is remarkable; he carries an MFI attitude, an MFI understanding.
You see, those who do not have respect for their prophets, for their messengers, they are always extremists. Wahhabis in Islam: they do not respect the Prophet. Because they don't respect the Prophet, their hearts are harder than stones. Wahhabis in Islam, they don't like anybody praising Mohammad; in a similar way, Protestants do not like anybody praising Jesus Christ. Wahhabis say, 'An image is haram (prohibited),' Protestants say the same.
Gandhi Jee was a wonderful man and he respected all religions. From time to time, he used to study the Quran. Because of his efforts with Mohammad Ali Jinnah - the non-violent movement that he carried out - the British had to pull up from India. He didn't hate anybody. When Gandhi Jee said, 'Muslims who are migrating from India to Pakistan should not be killed, they should not be disgraced, they should not be disrespected,' Hindus turned against Gandhi Jee. One of the Hindu extremists killed Gandhi Jee. Even today there are fractions in Hinduism. You can clearly see them: they are being very, very racist, like the party BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) - they are Hindu extremists. And Narendra Modi was an activist in RRS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) initially.
So, why every religion is stained with hatred, extremism and fanaticism? Do you know what fanaticism is? Fanaticism is when you lose sanity of your mind and you lose rationalism. For example, if one of the priests said, 'Go, rape that girl. That girl is Kafir (infidel),' you do not rationalise this, you blindfoldedly follow the instructions and do it. This is fanaticism; when you do not use common sense, when you do not use your brain. When you do not ask yourself, 'This thing is really bad. Why would God want me to do this bad thing?' [It is] when you don't use your brain, when you don't rationalise, when you have lost the sanity of your mind when you only follow the [orders] of your extremist bosses, this is fanaticism. In fanaticism, you are brainwashed. You are not allowed to make decisions; you do as you are told to do.
It is very unfortunate that today, it is not extremism in Islam, Hinduism or anywhere else; it is fanaticism. Extremism is lower than fanaticism, but people have gone far beyond extremism.
What is the difference between the religion of God and Islam? I am going to tell you, in the light of the Holy Quran, if any religion today exists and is legitimately allowed by God to connect people to God.
يَٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا۟ مَن يَرْتَدَّ مِنكُمْ عَن دِينِهِۦ فَسَوْفَ يَأْتِى ٱللَّهُ بِقَوْمٍۢ يُحِبُّهُمْ وَيُحِبُّونَهُۥٓ أَذِلَّةٍ عَلَى ٱلْمُؤْمِنِينَ أَعِزَّةٍ عَلَى ٱلْكَٰفِرِينَ يُجَٰهِدُونَ فِى سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ وَلَا يَخَافُونَ لَوْمَةَ لَآئِمٍۢ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ فَضْلُ ٱللَّهِ يُؤْتِيهِ مَن يَشَآءُ ۚ وَٱللَّهُ وَٰسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ
Is it addressed to one religion? Like, 'When some people from among you will renegade from the religion, then God will bring a kind of people'? Or is it, 'O' those who believe, when people will renegade from their respective religions, then God will bring a nation'?
For example, there are 11 players in a cricket team, right? If the middle order is not performing well or the openers are not performing well, what will be said? 'I will replace the openers.' Have you ever hear, 'Oh, the openers are not performing well, so I will replace the entire team'? No.
I say, if somebody is becoming Murtid (Apostates) and God will bring another nation - there have been so many incidents after Islam was established by the Prophet. Even at the time of Prophet Mohammad, so many people became Murtid, but God didn't bring a nation. Whoever became Murtid, he was killed. Even in that era, people became Murtid but that nation didn't come. So what is it?
The Quran says that when people in different religions have left their religions, then God will bring forth a particular nation of people - and what will they do? 'They will love God and God will love them.'
The gist of every religion was love; when they left their religion, they didn't acquire God's love. Now, God will introduce, God will bring forth a nation and that nation will love God. Those people will love God and God will love them. God is not mentioning the religion of these people. God didn't mention any religion in respect of this nation.