Saturday, June 9, 2012

The Hashemite King as the Caliph of Islam - after 7 centuries of the Holy Ottoman Caliphate

10. The King
I held his hand,
This dying king,
But in his eyes,
I saw nothing.

No castles, no knights
No courtiers bold
No helms raised high
No lovers of old.

Only the eyes of a king
Returning to his King,
So ends one flight
Of a dragonfly’s wing.

Thus ended the Holy Ottoman Caliphate almost 100 years ago. For a long time it was already referred to as the sick old man of Europe. It was indeed old, 700 years old. And alas, sickly it was also - With the rise of the Young Turks within the ranks of the imperial Turkish army, the rebellion of the Arabs and the dwindling authority and influence of the last Caliph of the Ottomans, the caliphate was in its final death throes.

Istanbul, previous seat of the Holy Ottoman Caliphate for 7 centuries. And now where
is the seat of the Caliphate? Why, wherever the living Caliph is of course...

But worst was yet to come. Slowly the history and stories of the caliphates began to be modified, adjusted and finally ignored totally. There was a movement within the Muslim world, fueled by oil money that propagated a revisionist program, casting doubts over the relevance and indeed, the legitimacy of the caliphates after the Kalifah ar-Rashiddin (the four rightly-guided caliphs immediately after the passing of Prophet Muhammad(pbuh), Abu Bakar, Umar, Usman and Ali).

For almost 1300 years, Muslims have lived under the authority of a living Caliph. In less than one century of revisionist programs of ‘New Islam’ and ‘reformation’, they have been taught to unlearn history. To forget and cast away the memories of the Caliphates - the Umayads, the Abbasids, the Andalusia-Umayads, the Fatimids and lastly, the longest reigning caliphate of the Turkish Ottomans. At best, they were recalled like two-dimensional comic characters of a comic book, a fairy tale even.

But the Sufis have not forgotten. And now that a living, breathing Caliph has been proclaimed, King Abdullah II of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, they are revisiting the old songs and prose. Prophecies of hope and love…

11. Songs Revisited
Songs have ceased to bear
The same old meanings;

The King is taking the clothes of the rebel
And making it His own,
The King is taking the words of the jester
And making it His speech.
His claim is Highest and True.
And into the hearts of men,
He is now saying,
I have not forsaken you!

Ho, words now weigh heavier,
Sighs are drawn longer,
Passions have become eternal,
Tears run into a deep clear water,
As Love grows bold and Hope mightier!

Already aspersions and doubts have been passed over His Majesty’s ‘right’ and ‘entitlement’ to be the Caliph of Islam, Commander of the Believers. He doesn’t seem the sort, does he? A bit too Westernised. A bit too close (especially his late father, al-Malik Hussein) to the British Royal Family. I am told he is a Star Trek fan and loves big bikes. Surely, this is not the Caliph!?

Oh, but he is, sunshine..,

Oh, well. You cannot please everyone. But my friends are happy. Well pleased to be alive in the time of a living Caliph, no matter if he does not fit the mental image that many Muslims may have of a ‘proper’ Caliph. Not Arab enough. Not traditional enough. Not conservative enough. And perhaps not tall enough. And not even a mustache now (above picture is old)! But that is okay. People will have their own standards that they aspire to.

But my friends are fine with this Caliph. Indeed, they have already given their solemn oath to His Majesty. They do not care at all if he is not a ‘proper’ Caliph. To them, he is already THE Caliph, the Shadow of God on Earth. And, insyaAllah, they will follow him to the ends of the Earth.

How beautiful faith is. And crazy.


God bless you, sunshine. Thank you for dropping in today.

wa min Allah at-taufiq

Hate has no place in Islam
Love will find the Way

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