Book Review

  • Issue 50 / April - June 2005



    Terror and Suicide Attacks: An Islamic Perspective

    Oleg L. Kuznestov

    Frankly, I was happy to accept the request to prepare a foreword for the readers of the present collection of articles, Terror and Suicide Attacks: An Islamic Perspective, which had been extended to me by the Turkish publishers and the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, the RAEN Department of Problems of Civilization. Firstly, the issue that has been taken under consideration by the Turkish scientists, and public and religious leaders, led by the outstanding thinker of the Islamic world, Fethullah Gulen, has gained global importance. Secondly, the natural scientists to whom I have adhered for almost half a century have for a long time relentlessly been engaged in issues of the stable development of humanity, bearing in mind that any model of the world that excludes the Islamic factor would be incorrect. Without false modesty, I’d like to mention that it was the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences who launched an initiative to publish anew the fundamental works of the outstanding Islamic expert, Agafangel E. Krymskiy (1871-1942), entitled The Muslim History (M., 2003), which was enthusiastically accepted both by the Muslim world and certain Russian faith groups.

    Let me remind you that the broad circle of our readers are not interested much in Islamic dogma, but rather in everyday realities, which sometimes are tragic. Unlike Christianity, Islam is not Orthodox (from the Greek “orthos,” meaning correct and “doxa” meaning opinion), but rather Orthopracsic (from the Greek “pracsis,” meaning practice or activity). The latter means that in Islam not only are there postulated spe-cific, and quite clear concrete, dogmas of faith, but there are also obligations that all Muslims must follow in their everyday life; these are the norms of behavior as pre-scribed by Islam. Fifteen hundred years of staunch Islamic belief and its practical im-plementation in everyday life and politics have ensured, to a larger extent, the stable development of Islamic civilization and contributed in particular into putting an end to the shameful yoke of colonialism for humanity.

    In the last quarter of the twentieth century and more specifically at the turn of the millennium, and in connection with the activated radical-and sometimes extrem-ist-tendencies in the Islamic world, voices can be heard-more often in the media than in science-that claim that Islam is an almost ideal ground for the military and political conflicts and for its extreme form of personal terrorism, under the guise of martyrdom, jihad, etc.

    The current collection reveals in full and in detail the concept of incompatibility and non-acceptance for a faithful Islamic believer, from the position of the Holy Qur’an, to attempt to take away the highest gift of the Almighty, a human life. For the first time, a mass readership is able to acquaint itself with the five ultimate values of perfect Islam: Faith, life, family, mind, and property. The comparison made within the collection between the perceptions envisaged in the Qur’an and the Bible (made with a scientific basis and provable via the holy texts of the Qur’an and the Bible) is one of the assets of the work.

    In the same balanced and dialectic way (based on the Qur’an and the hadith) the thesis concerning the idea that suicide is an act of revenge on the “infidels” is rebuffed; this is shown to be a product of profanity, propagated by child-killers and outcasts without faith and honor. The authors being Muslim, and reputable scholars themselves, support the principle idea that life is exclusively in the Hands of God, contrary to the belief of kamikaze terrorists, and underline the fact that murder is unacceptable for a true Muslim believer. Those who hide behind the name of God and deprive others of life, in particular children, women, elderly people, as well as themselves, arbitrarily assume the responsibility of the Creator. But indeed, “God does not love those who trespass the limits” (Baqara 2:190). A terrorist commits five sins: Against God, humanity, the specific victims, regardless of their religion, to themselves and their family.

    The published articles written by the wellknown Turkish experts in the matters of religion, sociology and psychology are of value not only due to a complex description of the prime postulates, but to the very aura of care for humanity, life, and our civilization, which is adherent to those who are truly elated and caring about the integrity of our world scientists and preachers.

    Several decades of our research have revealed the existing link between the selforganization of the Earth and the external management of outer space. Our common home, the Earth is a dynamic system that is managed by the universal laws of nature. In the framework of this brief introduction, it does not seem proper to discuss the place of God in this system. It is important to point out that the reason for all kinds of criticism and conflict situations in today’s society, including the very phenomena that has upset the balance of the stable development of the world, a imbalance that comprises the misunderstanding of the essence of Islam with the extremism that is the terrorism of those who feel that they can speak on behalf of the whole of Islam, is a lack of correspondence between the decisions and programs with the laws of nature and the Almighty.

    Independently from each other, we and our Turkish colleagues have been involved in natural and scientific research; we have all come to the same conclusion about the absolute necessity to follow the universal laws of nature for the benefit of the stable development of humanity. The authors have proved that an ugly and dangerous distortion of God’s Will and the natural laws, as revealed in the present work, are rebuffed by the Almighty and contradict the fundamental principles of existence.

    Merhaba and thank you to the authors and editors of this useful work. I wish mutual understanding, peace, and harmony for all readers.


    *Oleg L. Kuznetsov holds a Ph.D. on Technical Sciences and currently teaches at the Moscow State University. He is the President of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, Rector of the International University of Man, Nature and the “Dubna” society, President of the UNEP/UN Russian Committee.

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