Was Islam enough to bind us together?

It did not take too long when the dispute arose about the succession of Holy Prophet, even though all of them were muslims. We saw Umayyads fighting Hashimites, Umayyads fighting Abassids, Ottomon Empire being overthrown by Saudis, Ameer Temur beheading Ibrahim Lodhi, Aurangzeb killing his brothers to sit on the throne, even though all of them were muslims. After flipping through these pages of history, I often think that Pakistan was created constituting millions of people not sharing common language, ethnicity and culture, but they did share one common religious identity and that is they all were muslims. And so it was hoped that this common religious identity would seal the nation. Well after 24 years after the creation of Pakistan, we saw another independent country emerging on the world map named as Bangladesh. This proved that Islam alone was not enough to bind a nation together.

Then we tried the process of Islamization as well, declaring a particular sect ‘Ahmadis’ as non muslims, enforcing strict Islamic laws on the society. We created Talibans to help Americans defeating the Soviets in Afghanistan. Soon after this cold war, World ignored Afghanistan but there was a state of civil war in that country with tribes fighting among each other. Pakistani military failing to resolve the disputes among these tribesmen had to take a side of one of those, who today are known as Talibans. We thought that we can use them in defeating India in Kashmir, but who knew that we had a very different future for us.

After 9/11 Pakistan was given two options, either keep nurturing Talibans or help Americans in their War on Terror. This was the point when Pakistan had to take a U-turn, and this was the point when this terrorism in the country started, well we did not have any choice really, a country which is completely run by the Americans, what else would you expect? Well, that U-turn was the decision which price is still being paid as Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) emerged on the scene. They claim that they are the Holy Warriors and they want to impose strict Islamic Shariah in the country, they claim that they are killing people in retaliation of the war against them. Well the Shariah they talk about is actually a Tribal culture. Keeping this as an excuse they have taken thousands of Pakistani lives up till now. Now I see negotiations being proposed to bring the peace in the country, I hope the peace happens but I am not too sure that negotiations will succeed, anyways Pakistanis just want peace no matter how it comes.

Well this is a long story and to cut it short, I do not think that Islam alone was enough to bind Pakistanis together as Islam itself has so many versions that which version will you impose on a country consisting so many people speaking different languages, sharing different cultures and ethnicities and belonging to different religions and different sects of Islam?


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