The one who ponders over the nation's conditions today finds out that there are many reformative voices, ideas, writings, and visions that aim to change the deteriorated reality in which our nation live today. Moreover, these reformative powers endeavor to improve and promote that reality for the better.
However, styles, methods, visions, and theories of these reformative groups may differ in achieving change and reformation, but reality makes us wonder:
• What is the kind of reform which the nation needs?
• What kind of change that we should all endeavor to achieve?
• Does the remedy for the nation's wounds lie in making political and economic changes or making cultural and intellectual changes?
The difference between the political and economic change from on side and the cultural and intellectual change from the other is wide because political changes in any society may take place suddenly without any introduction, for example, the collapse of Saddam Hussein's regime and they may take place due to a military victory, the change of effective political figures, an international power, or due to economic, military, or psychological pressure for this or that reason.
As speed as these political or economic changes take place, their impacts are removed rapidly such as the fall of the Soviet Union and the Communist system where things returned to the first condition when the political or economic reasons changed.
As for the cultural or intellectual changes, they are not that fast at all, but often take a lot of time so that they can have impacts in the life of the nation, perhaps the one who implants the seed does not see the fruit, but the seed will grow and become fruits for the next generation and often their effects show up on the long run.
One of the main features of cultural change is that it is difficult to root out but after a long period.
Of the nature of these cultural and intellectual changes that they always clash with the usual habits, customs, heritage, and corrupt beliefs which the nation got used to by the pass of time.
Thus, customs and traditions are very important aspects which the colonial powers did not neglect during its long-term imperialization to our nation. All evil powers which tried to control our nation subjugated their possibilities and sacrificed with the low and the precious to control our customs and traditions. They defeated the nation in its customs and traditions one by one such as women's Hijab and worked on rooting them out. Moreover, they planted many distorted habits and customs which helped to distort and control the Muslim personality.
Therefore, reformers [whether callers, intellectuals, journalists, and instructors] have to know this fact.
They should also be aware that customs and traditions are the greatest barrier which hinder our advancement as they were the barrier before Allah's Prophets and Messengers in the past. Since they have tried to change these worn customs and blind traditions according to the way of Allah, they were faced by the famous saying: "And when it is said to them: "Come to what Allâh has sent down and to the Messenger (Muhammad peace be upon him)," you (Muhammad peace be upon him) see the hypocrites turn away from you (Muhammad peace be upon him) with aversion."[Surat Al Ma'idah: 104].
The greatest responsibilities and consequences lie on the shoulders of the elite to get rid of the customs and traditions which invaded and distorted our societies, distorted its character, and weakened its potentials but at the same time have reinforced the situation of the enemies of the nation.
Anyone wants to make a cultural or intellectual change in our society has to know that the indicator of his success lies in his ability to break into the center of customs and traditions, control them, and working to change the corrupt customs, and replace them with inherent traditions so as to be useful to man as Allah Almighty wills.
Helping the nation and taking its hands to achieve cultural and intellectual reform is the hope and challenge which should be faced in order to achieve happiness to the nation and restore its leadership to the world and lead the new world.
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