Queen Rania al-Abdullah and her recent speech.

“There is no compulsion in religion, the right direction is clearly distinguished from the wrong.” (Qur’an 2:256)

“And say, “Truth has come, and falsehood has departed. Indeed is falsehood, [by nature], ever bound to depart.” (Qur’an 17:81)

The American vicegerent Rania al-Abdullah gave a recent speech and in that speech she made it clear what is at stake for the believers.

The speech she gave was very eloquent. There were many things in the speech that one would want to applaud. Whoever wrote the speech, her self or her speech writer did a very well.

Rania al-Abdullah gives her pitch for the Third Way which is the Only Path.

@6:55 “The Third way is the Only Path” …. which is an exclusivist statement.

So she claims the world is divided into two camps and two extremes. A world of binaries. Yet, her proposal is to give the world another binary!

A binary that is supposed to be a third way but it turns out this binary is as follows:

‘A world in which no one can be certain that their values, ethics, metaphysics are true. The only truths are those given to us by science’. Versus the opposing view that people can be certain about matters of ethics, values, metaphysics.

She states:

@ 4:05 “A path I will call the Third way. This third way is not the average of extremes; but rises above the binary elevating us to higher ground that can become common ground as well. To walk this path we must recognize that none of us is wholly right or wrong. Villain or victim. Enlightened or in the dark.”

None of us is wholly right or wrong. This is the sweet buzzing of the bee and the swift sting that follows.

You all have a place at the table just don’t believe in absolutes. Problematic for a Muslim.

“And say Allah is absolute.” (Qur’an 112:1)

ih’dinā l-ṣirāṭa l-mus’taqīm -The Straight Path

When Muslims say 17 times a day (2 in fajr, 4 in dhur, 4 in asr, 3 in maghrib and 4 in Isha)

“ih’dinā l-ṣirāṭa l-mus’taqīm” translated often as “guide us to the straight path” can also be translated as “keep us guided on the straight path”.

This is clarified further here:

“As for those who believe in Allah and hold fast to Him, He will admit them into His mercy and grace and guide them to Himself through the Straight Path.” (Qur’an 4:175)

This is important because Rania seemed to use this as Muslims were not already on the straight path.

Understand that the life of a Muslim is the prayer five times a day. The plead to keep us guided on the straight path is that between Isha and fajr keep us on the path that we already on. Between fajr and dhur keep us on the path that we already on. Between dhur and asr keep us on the path that we already on. Between asr and maghrib keep us on the path that we already on. Between maghrib and Isha keep us on the path that we already on.

“Only that we need other points of view to see a multi-dimensional picture.” -Rania.

“To walk this path means avoiding sound bites and embracing nuance. It means respecting science and research, data and detail. And when someone makes the claim that defies those things rather online or in print or behind a podium it means we refuse to dignify it with our attention.”-Rania

Who are the one’s that give us the science, the research, the data and the details? Are they free of biases? Are they themselves peer reviewed?

In the New Testament there is a verse that explicitly tells believers in Christ not to marry non believers.

It is a very powerful verse it states:

“Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” (2 Corinthians 6:14)

So in my own way of showing that I too am multi-dimensional I have quoted this verse from the Christian Bible to say that we as Muslims can take something from it.

For what partnership has righteousness and lawlessness? In what fellowship has light with darkness.

Rania al-Abdullah may be well intentioned. She may be speaking from a good place. But her proposed third way being the only path is problematic. There could be a fourth way or a fifth way for that matter.

I have found that often when people speak like this it is used to buttress and solidify leftist ideology and left leaning world views. Indeed the idea that none of us are wholly right is a left leaning talking point. It is not about coming from a place of humility but what kind of people look for comfort and security and do not want certainty that comes with comfort and security?

Certainty that even if I am not in a place of comfort or security, even if I am suffering from injustice I will have my share not only in this life (which is fleeting) but in the eternal here after.

The one thing I can say about Rania al-Abdullah and her husband Abdullah the 2nd is that they have done the very best they can in dealing with the refugees from Syria. So for that may Allah (swt) reward everyone in the great country of Jordan who has aided their brothers in sisters in faith and those in humanity.

Though we do not need to just talk about embracing refugees. We need to deal with why people become refugees to begin with. It is not often that people want to leave their cities, countries, farms, the familiar, their day to day to seek refuge in foreign lands. So, though it is great to see Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey take in the refugees we need to be laser focused on why this happens?

Surely, Jordan feels the economic strains of displaced people in their territory. Each country does its level best to assist those in need. Indeed Rania mentioned that we live in a world of abundance. As she hob knobs with the wealthy and the influential and the powerful she will work with them not just on delivering powerful speeches but bringing tangible concrete solutions to those who do not see that world of abundance.

Many Muslim women around the world face discrimination and oppression for choosing to loving embrace and follow what Allah (swt) has laid down in wearing the khimar, the head scarf. I long for the day in which such a woman can be given the spot light in a way that Rania is.

As regards living in a multicultural world that is something we as Muslims embraced and have embraced. As far as living in a world where we have to give up a belief in absolutes that is a leftist agenda. It is a poisoned well. It is not something that the wary traveler finds relief from thirst but that which will still the very life away.

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