Evil is good

Re-reading this book was a joy again
Evil is good

For a change, let it be a book today. A book that is hard tounderstand, harder to comment on. An old book from the shelf calling for are-read. It deals with a problem we have been confronting since creation. Theproblem of Evil.

The problem of Evil In Muslim Philosophy: A case study ofIqbal by Dr. Muhammad Maroof Shah is a profound read. A book that merits to beread (and re-read). It's a serious attempt to explore the paradox humanityfaces. There are no answers, there are questions. Mere approaching a questionlike this needs deep insight, vast knowledge and a keen analytical mind. On allcounts Dr. Maroof has delivered and delivered well. For a  student of philosophy in general and of Iqbalianstudies in particular, there is a lot to learn.

The book is about the theme of evil without which the themeof good is incomplete and unthought of. Evil gives meaning to a meaninglessworld. Evil makes us understand the virtue. Evil is the reverse side of allnobility and kindness. The author tries to explain the problem through apost-modern perspective. Here the hard concepts of sin and defiance areredefined. Classifying deeds as absolute good or absolute evil is not the wayto understand a shady and dicey philosophy of evil. Maroof supports his thesisby profusely quoting from Western tradition and tries to cover almost the wholegamut of philosophy which sees good and evil supplementing each other.  The concept of devil – in total contrast tothe traditional understanding – appears to be deeply creative.

Evil is a beauty without which human life is featureless.Iqbal  has a different approach towardsevil and his Iblees, unlike the conventionally denigrated devil personifiesself realization. Iblees is a  characterwhich epitomizes Selfhood and  musterscourage to have his own say, his own way. At one moment it appears to be aparallel religion which gets glorified by projecting Evil as an attraction, butdeeper a reader delves the layers begin to unfold. God is a forgiver more thana punisher. You find the echoes of this verse by Saidi Sheerazi.

Shuneedam Ki Dar Roze Umeed-o-Beem

Badan Ra Ba Naikah Babakhshad Kareem

(I have heard that on the day of judgment a compassionateGod will forgive all good and evil alike)

Silence, Maroof believes is everything. This silence doesnot mean absence of speech, it means the speech itself. A silence that Rumiprayed for when he asked for a station from where he could communicate with Godwithout words.

All said, the book has a fundamental flaw. Explaining thepower of silence and the beauty of evil purely from a philosophic point of viewis half the story. From social perspective these themes are more real thanabstract. Imagine the world where evil is good . On the ground, there issomething monstrously wrong with human volition if evil is the intent. There isa difference between studying evil as philosophy and evil as policy. Maroofneeds to dumb down his discourse a little for an ordinary reader to understand.Moreover language too needed a finer, brighter touch.

Anyways unlike those who crank out books like bricks, thisone is something that deserves to be called a book.

Related Stories

No stories found.
Greater Kashmir