Role of Masjid in Social Reformation in Contemporary Pashtun Society: A Case Study of District Bannu and Lakki Marwat, Pakistan

From Religion
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Bibliographic Information
Journal Journal of Islamic and Religious Studies
Title Role of Masjid in Social Reformation in Contemporary Pashtun Society: A Case Study of District Bannu and Lakki Marwat, Pakistan
Author(s) Rahman, Fida ur, Rashid Ahmed
Volume 2
Issue 2
Year 2017
Pages 45-60
Full Text Crystal Clear mimetype pdf.png
Keywords Pulpit, Masjid, Reformation, Islam, Pashtun Society, Bannu, Lakki Marwat
Chicago 16th Rahman, Fida ur, Rashid Ahmed. "Role of Masjid in Social Reformation in Contemporary Pashtun Society: A Case Study of District Bannu and Lakki Marwat, Pakistan." Journal of Islamic and Religious Studies 2, no. 2 (2017).
APA 6th Rahman, F. u., Ahmed, R. (2017). Role of Masjid in Social Reformation in Contemporary Pashtun Society: A Case Study of District Bannu and Lakki Marwat, Pakistan. Journal of Islamic and Religious Studies, 2(2).
MHRA Rahman, Fida ur, Rashid Ahmed. 2017. 'Role of Masjid in Social Reformation in Contemporary Pashtun Society: A Case Study of District Bannu and Lakki Marwat, Pakistan', Journal of Islamic and Religious Studies, 2.
MLA Rahman, Fida ur, Rashid Ahmed. "Role of Masjid in Social Reformation in Contemporary Pashtun Society: A Case Study of District Bannu and Lakki Marwat, Pakistan." Journal of Islamic and Religious Studies 2.2 (2017). Print.
Harvard RAHMAN, F. U., AHMED, R. 2017. Role of Masjid in Social Reformation in Contemporary Pashtun Society: A Case Study of District Bannu and Lakki Marwat, Pakistan. Journal of Islamic and Religious Studies, 2.
امام بلاذری بحیثیت سیرت نگار
نبی کریم ﷺ کے "نسب مطہرہ" سے متعلق مارگولیتھ کے خیالات کا تنقیدی جائزہ
طبي خدمات اور سہولیات کے تحفظ کي ضرورت: اسلامي شريعت کے چند رہنما اصول
ذبح سے پہلے عمل تدویخ اور معاصر فقہی تحقیقات
قسط وار خرید و فروخت کے حکم کے متعلق فقہاء کرام کی آراء: ایک علمی جائزہ
کا تنقیدی جائزہ "the First Muslim- the Story of Muhammad" لیزلے ہزلٹن کی کتاب
طبی شعبہ میں ضرورت و حاجت سے متعلقہ فقہی قواعد کی معاصر تطبیقی صورتیں
مفاتیح الغیب (تفسیر کبیر) میں سورۃ التوبہ کی تفسیر میں وارد موضوع احادیث کا علمی مطالعہ
پاکستان میں اتحاد بین المسالک پر منتخب اردو تحریروں کا تجزیاتی مطالعہ
From Jihad to Salam in Pursuit of Political Change: A Perspective based on Qur’ānic Sources
Classical Works on Islamic Political Order: Critical Evaluation of the Methodology of the Modern Scholars
Inequalities in Islamic State and Society: A Critical Review on the Thoughts of Bernard Lewis
Role of Masjid in Social Reformation in Contemporary Pashtun Society: A Case Study of District Bannu and Lakki Marwat, Pakistan
Assessing and Evaluating Ḥadith its Value, Significance, Authority and Authenticity in Islamic Thought
Scope of State in Legislation from Islamic Perspective
من خصائص النصانية القرآنية: النسخ
الحكمة في شعر محمود سامي البارودي
منهج الوسطية لإمام الأشعري في علم الكلام
وجوه الإعجاز عند المتكلمين:الرماني والخطابي نموذجا
مفهوم الأدب الإسلامي و إسلامية الأدب عبر العصور

Abstract

Pulpit and Masjid play very pivotal and productive role in a Muslim society. It not only educates and guides Muslims in religious matters as well shapes the social attitude and role of Muslims. Moreover, it is evident by the history that Islamic State was run by the Head of the State from Masjid. Unfortunately, pulpit and Masjid have been losing sense of their actual responsibility as an agent of social cohesion, integration and reformation. The paper is an attempt of studying the current role of pulpit and Masjid regarding religious education and training, exploring the factors that have been hampering the way of realizing the dream of social reformation in contemporary Pashtun society by not allowing pulpit and Masjid to play its due role in this respect and suggesting feasible recommendation for coping with the issue. The study is based on primary data that was collected through questionnaire in District Bannu and Lakki Marwat.


Introduction:

Masjid is a place for congregational prayers and assembly in Islam[1]. It plays a very vital role in a Muslim society[2].A Muslim keeps his spirituality alive, strengthens the bond with his Creator, meets and communicates with his fellow Muslims and renews his sense of belonging through the Masjid. It is not only a place of worship but a center of social reformation as well[3]. When Messenger (peace be upon him) migrated to Madinah, first of all he established the first Masjid called Quba Masjid there[4]. There are three Masajid that are considered highly sacred in Islam; Bait Ullah in Makkah, Masjid Al Nabawi in Madinah and Masjid Al Aqsa in Jerusalem[5]. The aim of establishing the Masjid was that it would not only be a center of worship and education but it was a hub for social and political activities as well. Messenger (peace be upon him) established Masjid Al Nabawi after that and established first residential university namely Suffah that not only provided religious education but special attention was paid to the grooming and training of all the students irrespective of gender.[6][7]. Moreover, it was used as a secretariat of the Islamic State as delegations from various other countries used to meet the head of the state in the Masjid[8]. Besides the fact that Masjid proved to be a hub of religious knowledge, social integration, moral training and reformation during the Prophetic as well as Pious Caliphs era, but Masjid has not been playing such a role since the inception of monarchy in Muslim societies and have been turned into centers of worship rituals only[9]. It is evident from history that Messenger (peace be upon him) made Masjid as a hub of all activities provided that sanctity of Masjid is not violated.[10]. Masjid is not playing its due role as per the requirement, needs and challenges of the contemporary world. Consequently, the characteristics of tolerance, harmony and moderation are vanishing from the contemporary Pashtun society with every new dawn[11].While on the other hand; Masajid and Islamic centers are emerging as important social mechanisms in the adaptation of many new Muslim migrants and for the expression of Islamic interests in Western societies. Moreover, Masajid are providing an important link between Muslim and Western families[12].

There were nine Masajid in Madinah at the time of the Messenger (peace be upon him). The buildings of Masajids were simple but they had effective, marked and enduring impacts in terms of human personality development[13][14]. Today, the Masajid have beautiful and magnificent buildings and trappings but contribute little in the social grooming of the community. Although people are engaged in imparting education with missionary zeal and zest but they are not equipped with modern teaching methodologies and techniques that can enhance the teaching capabilities of teachers and productive outcomes[15].

Same is the situation in both District Bannu and Lakki Marwat. There is a need to revive the role of Masjid for the sake of establishing a peaceful, vibrant and prosperous society having God-fearing individuals with strong moral and conscientious personalities. . Furthermore, it should be used as a place of academics and training, irrespective of the man-made division of secular and religious education. Competent and educated persons, equipped with deep knowledge of Islam and understanding of the modern sciences, should be appointed as Imams of the Masjid. Because they not only lead prayers five times a day, people frequently consult them for various serious religious issues. Consequently, their opinions and explanations of Islam greatly and effectively shape the intellectual grooming and social conduct of the masses.

Bannu

It is one of the main districts of Southern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, adjacent to tribal area of North Waziristan, district Karak and district Lakki Marwat respectively. According to the available historical records, Bannu had an important strategic position in the tribal areas as it was used as a military base during British rule for subjugating the tribal areas. The inhabitants of the said district are known as Banochis and they speak a unique and specific dialect of Pashto. Main ethnic classes are Banochis, Wazir, Niazi and Marwats. Moreover, the ratio of Muslims is 99.5%, Ahmadis 0.3%, Christian 0.19% and Hindus 0.03%. 98.3% inhabitants of Bannu speak Banochi dialect of Pashto while the rest 1.03% speak Urdu and Punjabi respectively. It has total population of 1.073 million consisting 52% male and 48% female population. 95% population belongs to rural area while 5% are residing in urban area.  The total geographical area of the district is 1,227 square kilometers. It has 49 Union Councils and 2 Tehsils, Tehsil Bannu and Domel. Furthermore, it is famous for the drain basin of Kurram and Tochi/Gambila[16].

Lakki Marwat

Lakki Marwat is connected with districts Karak in the North and Bannu in the North-West, districts Dera Ismail Khan in the South and Tank in the South-West. In the West of Lakki Marwat is South Waziristan Agency. The main ethic classes are Marwat, Banochi, Khattak, Wazir, Bhettani, Niazi and Gandapur. Its population is 815000 with the ratio of 51% male and 49% female. 86% population belongs to rural area while 14% are residing in urban area. It has 33 Union Councils and 2 Tehsils, Tehsil Lakki Marwat and Serai Naurang respectively. It was created as a district on July 1, 1992. Before creation as a district, it was a Tehsil of district Bannu[17].

Research Methodology

Nature of Research

This Research Work is basically empirical in nature as it is mainly based on field work. This research is qualitative as well as quantitative in nature. Primarily, inductive method is adopted in the study and conclusion. The research is based on historical, comparative and analytical approach using both explanatory and analytical methods.

Data Collection

The total population of the targeted region was estimated as Bannu 1.073 million whereas Lakki Marwat has a population of 815000. Data was collected through questionnaire. Moreover, observation and interviews with the experts of local cultures and history were also conducted.

Sampling

Sample size for both districts was estimated as 384, in which 219 questionnaires were allocated to District Bannu and 165 to Lakki Marwat on the basis of their share in population i-e 57% and 43% respectively. 12 union councils from each district were randomly selected for field data collection. Furthermore, samples were distributed on the basis of population, both rural and urban, main ethnic groups, social classes, gender and age. Only married people were included in the study because the study is totally based on the domestic affairs and experiences and a married person can observe and experience all such matters better than an unmarried person. Moreover, the research is a product of the combination of published materials, books, research journals, research papers, survey reports, newspapers, magazines articles and field work. Special attention has been paid while making the questionnaire to ensure neutrality, objectivity and suitability.

Data Analysis

Descriptive statistics such as frequency tables has been used to analyze the data. The main contents of the table were, it contains numerical data of both districts based on the responses of both male and female shown with the exact numbers, percentages of their separate responses as well as aggregate percentages.

Translation of the text of the holy Qur’ān is taken from the English translation of holy Qur’ān compiled by Maulana Wahiduddin Khan.

Table 1.Qur’ān Circles for Adults

Q. Is there any circle of Qur’ānic study for adults in your street/village’s Masjid?
District Variable Male % Female % Aggregate
Bannu Yes 31 27.19 12 11.42 43 (19.63%)
No 83 72.80 93 88.57 176 (80.36%)
Lakki Marwat Yes 24 27.90 13 16.45 37 (22.42%)
No 62 72.09 66 83.54 128 (77.57%)

As the figures mentioned in Table 1 shows that only 19.63% people in Bannu and 22.42% people in Lakki Marwat have the opportunity of attending classes of Quran in their respective Masjids mostly after Esha prayer while the rest of 80.36% people in Bannu and 77.57% people in Lakki Marwat do not have access to such sessions of Qur’ān classes because no circle of studying Qur’ān exists at all.

Observation & Analysis

The most problematic thing in those classes is that none of the participants can dare to ask questions from the Imam during and after the Quran class as it is not considered suitable. An individual is supposed to silently hear the opinion and explanation of the Imam without raising any question. That’s why most of the educated youngsters reported that they were labeled with strange titles for daring to ask questions from Imam regarding the most burning issues of contemporary world in those classes. Due to lack of knowledge, understanding and limited exposure of modern-day world and its rapidly changing needs, the Imams do not encourage asking and raising questions on the political conduct and policies of religious political leadership, reeking of dual standards and inconsistency between their words and deeds[18]. Consequently, most of the youngsters and educated people do not take interest in those Qur’ān classes. Because they believe that instead of losing one’s self-respect it is better not to attend such classes. In fact, the role of Masjid is more important when the religious scholars explore a new religious fact and truth and play their due role of removing doubts regarding certain religious issues in contemporary society[19].

While on the other hand Qur’ān tells about the conduct of Prophet of Peace (peace be upon him) that he is blessing for all humanity. Moreover, it has been explained that good and evil deeds are not equal, so ward off evil with what is better and then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend.

وَلاَ تَسْتَوِى ٱلْحَسَنَةُ وَلاَ ٱلسَّيِّئَةُ ٱدْفَعْ بِٱلَّتِى هِىَ أَحْسَنُ فَإِذَا ٱلَّذِى بَيْنَكَ وَبَيْنَهُ عَدَاوَةٌ كَأَنَّهُ وَلِيٌّ حَمِيمٌ

Good and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with what is better; then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend[20].

The reasons of such conduct have been mentioned in the same verse that such goodness is granted to only those people who exercise patience and self-restraint and who are truly fortunate.

وَمَا يُلَقَّاهَا إِلاَّ ٱلَّذِينَ صَبَرُواْ وَمَا يُلَقَّاهَآ إِلاَّ ذُو حَظٍّ عَظِيمٍ

But no one will be granted such goodness except those who exercise patience and self-restraint—no one is granted it save those who are truly fortunate[21].

It has been recommended by Allah the Almighty in the holy Qur’ān that people should be called to the way of Allah with great wisdom and fair exhortation, and healthy academic dialogue and reasoning should be done with them in a way that is best;

ٱدْعُ إِلِىٰ سَبِيلِ رَبِّكَ بِٱلْحِكْمَةِ وَٱلْمَوْعِظَةِ ٱلْحَسَنَةِ وَجَادِلْهُم بِٱلَّتِى هِىَ أَحْسَنُ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ هُوَ أَعْلَمُ بِمَن

ضَلَّ عَن سَبِيلِهِ وَهُوَ أَعْلَمُ بِٱلْمُهْتَدِينَ

Call to the way of your Lord with wisdom and fair exhortation and reason with them in a way that is best. Your Lord knows best those who have strayed away from His path, and He knows best those who are rightly guided[22].

Teacher has a high and prestigious status in Islamic perspective of education. He is not only custodian of the cultural and moral values of Islam and Muslim society but, at the same time he preserves the unique cultural traditions of Islam by transmitting it to upcoming generation for the growth of the society[23].Consequently, he has a two-fold responsibility of preserving existing cultural discourses and traditions and creating mobility about it as well as bringing it into closer contact with the spirit and needs of modern times while keeping its originality[24].

There is a dire need of educating and informing the Imams about the gravity of their responsibilities in terms of communicating with the people in terms of being a representative of Islam, because their attitude and behavior are keenly and critically observed on various occasions. Moreover, inconsistence between their words and deeds can create further misconceptions and misperceptions in the minds of people. And most of the time the youngsters go astray just because of the irresponsible and unfriendly behavior of the Imams. Most of them have very limited knowledge of Islam. Consequently, when they observe and face the poorly and non-academic approach of the Imams, they waste no time to turn toward heresy by questioning the obligations and teachings of Islam either openly or secretly.

Table 2.Ratio of Study of Qur’ān in Adults

Q. Have you ever studied Qur’ān?
District Variable Male % Female % Aggregate
Bannu Yes – With Translation 17 14.91 9 8.57 26 (11.87%)
Yes – Without translation 79 69.29 67 63.80 146 (66.66%)
No 18 15.78 29 27.61 47 (21.46%)
Lakki Marwat Yes – With translation 19 22.09 13 16.45 32 (19.39%)
Yes – Without translation 58 67.44 47 59.49 105 (63.63%)
No 9 10.46 19 24.05 28 (16.69%)

As the above-mentioned figures show that only 11.87% people in Bannu and 19.39% in Lakki Marwat have studied Qur’ān with translation that enabled them to understand and get the divine inspiration and knowledge of important teachings mentioned in the holy Qur’ān. While 66.66% in Bannu and 63.63% in Lakki Marwat could just recite the holy Qur’ān without knowing the meaning of the text and understating the message and teachings of the holy Qur’ān. The main reason is that the entire focus is on getting rewards (Sawab) instead of attaining the spirituality and wisdom that are essential outcomes of the study of The Qur’ān. 21.46% people in Bannu and 16.69% people in Lakki Marwat are unable to read and recite the Qur’ān. The ratio of female illiterates of the Qur’ān is higher as compared to male in both districts.

Observation & Analysis

The above-mentioned figures paint a very alarming situation that exists in both the areas even though majority of the population is Muslim. But unfortunately, a large number of the population either does not know the meaning of the verses of the Qur’ān and unable to understand or does not have the ability to read at least few words of the holy Qur’ān. In such a situation it cannot be expected that people should follow the divine commandments when majority does not have direct access to the meaning and understanding of the divine message.

One of the main factors responsible for this dilemma is the opinion and approach of majority of the religious leaders in the said region. They discourage every such Muslim who sincerely wishes to read the holy Qur’ān with translation in order to get direct access to the message of Allah, the Almighty. The religious leaders warn the masses of going astray if they  attempt self-study of the Quran by quoting such Qur’ānic verse like that Allah lets many go astray through the Qur’ān, and guides many by it as well. But he let only disobedient to go astray.

يُضِلُّ بِهِ كَثِيراً وَيَهْدِى بِهِ كَثِيراً وَمَا يُضِلُّ بِهِ إِلاَّ ٱلْفَاسِقِينَ

He lets many go astray through it, and guides many by it. But He makes only the disobedient go astray[25].

The above-mentioned verse clearly concludes that Allah Almighty misleads only disobedient (Fasiq) through the Qur’ān. And the reason is that a disobedient does not read the Qur’ān for guidance but for validating and legalizing his vested interests and whims.  While on the other hand, Allah says that the Quran is guidance for mankind.

There are a lot of verses that prove that the Qur’ān is guidance for all mankind and especially for those who seek guidance, truth and divine inspiration. Some of the verses are mentioned as under:  

شَهْرُ رَمَضَانَ ٱلَّذِيۤ أُنْزِلَ فِيهِ ٱلْقُرْآنُ هُدًى لِّلنَّاسِ وَبَيِّنَاتٍ مِّنَ ٱلْهُدَىٰ وَٱلْفُرْقَانِ

The month of Ramadan is the month when the Quran was sent down as guidance for mankind with clear proofs of guidance and the criterion by which to distinguish right from wrong[26].

كَذٰلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ ٱللَّهُ آيَاتِهِ لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَّقُونَ

Thus He makes clear His commandments to mankind, so that they may guard themselves [against evil][27].

نَزَّلَ عَلَيْكَ ٱلْكِتَابَ بِٱلْحَقِّ مُصَدِّقاً لِّمَا بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ وَأَنْزَلَ ٱلتَّوْرَاةَ وَٱلإِنْجِيلَ.مِنْ  قَبْلُ هُدًى لِّلنَّاسِ وَأَنْزَلَ ٱلْفُرْقَانَ

He has sent down the Book to you with truth, which fulfills [the predictions] in the Scriptures that preceded it: He sent down the Torah and the Gospel in the past as guidance for mankind; He has [also] sent down the Standard by which to discern the true from the false[28].

هَـٰذَا بَيَانٌ لِّلنَّاسِ وَهُدًى وَمَوْعِظَةٌ لِّلْمُتَّقِينَ

This Quran is an exposition for the people and a guidance and admonition for those who fear God[29].

هَـٰذَا بَلاَغٌ لِّلنَّاسِ وَلِيُنذَرُواْ بِهِ وَلِيَعْلَمُوۤاْ أَنَّمَا هُوَ إِلَـٰهٌ وَاحِدٌ وَلِيَذَّكَّرَ أُوْلُواْ ٱلأَلْبَابِ

This is a message for mankind. Let them take warning from it and know that He is but one God. Let those possessed of understanding may take heed[30].

بِٱلْبَيِّنَاتِ وَٱلزُّبُرِ وَأَنْزَلْنَا إِلَيْكَ ٱلذِّكْرَ لِتُبَيِّنَ لِلنَّاسِ مَا نُزِّلَ إِلَيْهِمْ وَلَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَفَكَّرُونَ

[We sent them] with clear signs and scriptures. We have sent down the Reminder to you, to enable you to make clear to mankind what has been sent down to them, so that they may reflect upon it[31].

وَلَقَدْ ضَرَبْنَا لِلنَّاسِ فِى هَـٰذَا ٱلْقُرْآنِ مِن كُلِّ مَثَلٍ لَّعَلَّهُمْ يَتَذَكَّرُونَ

We have set forth to men all kinds of parables in this Quran so that they may take heed[32].

إِنَّآ أَنزَلْنَا عَلَيْكَ ٱلْكِتَابَ لِلنَّـاسِ بِٱلْحَقِّ

We have sent down to you the Book for mankind with the truth[33].

هَـٰذَا بَصَائِرُ لِلنَّاسِ وَهُدًى وَرَحْمَةٌ لِّقَوْمٍ يُوقِنُونَ

This [Book] brings enlightenment and guidance to mankind, and is a blessing for those who have steady belief[34].

Unfortunately, Masajid are being turned into political arena where the religious leadership settles scores with their political opponents by delivering fiery speeches without knowing or ignoring the fact that such irresponsible actions ignite hatred and bias in the hearts of fellow Muslims, causing irreparable rifts in the society. These rabble-rousers imperil social cohesion and harmony. Instead of exploiting religious sentiments of people for political motives and power, Masajid should be turned into the institutions of training and educations as they had been in the past.

In fact, Islam connects a believer with his Creator on one hand and with other believers and society on the other hand. Two fundamental worship rituals play very pivotal role in attaining the objective i-e Salat and Zakat. The one reason for emphasis on congregational prayers in Islam is due to the above-mentioned fact. Masjid is a center of worship, remembering Allah, the Almighty, getting religious education and training and social integration[35]. Visiting Masjid for attending congregational prayer is source of growth of Islamic civilization and development. It is the most sacred way of integration and exchange of opinions[36].

Another unfortunate observation is that there is a competition between various schools of thoughts for occupying as many Masajid as possible. And the main objective of this act is just to enhance number of followers of their respective schools of thought, instead of using the noble and effective platform of pulpit and Masjid for religious guidance, education, training and social reformation. Such Masajid are no more houses of Allah but bastions of different schools of thought used for defending their respective school of thought and rejecting other schools of thought.

If there is a majority of Deobandis and Barelvi then a Barelvi or Deobandi even cannot dare to go there. Same is the case with other schools of thought. Such an unfortunate conduct of religious leadership, resulting in sharp polarization of society, is one of those factors responsible for social disorder and anarchy. Barelvis do not allow the activists of Tablighi Jamaat even to enter their Masajid. Same is the case of Dawat-e-Islami that is attached with Barelvi school of thought and engaged in Dawah work. It seems very absurd as well as it is against the spirit of Islamic Dawah to preach Islam in a certain area demarcated by a certain school of though. As it has been proved earlier that the Divine Guidance, the holy Qur’ān, is for entire mankind, irrespective of their caste, creed, race, region, colour etc. but the dilemma is that none of the existing schools of thought allow each other to enter their Masajid, preach the teachings and message of Islam and play their role for religious harmony, religious training and social reformation.

The foundation of relationship and cooperation among Arabs in Jahilliyah period was tribal and family attachments and bias. Qur’ān provided new foundations for uniting the Islamic society and established a relationship between Ansaar and Muhajireen that was based on faith, Islam, migration and Jehad[37].

There is a need that Masajid should be turned into the same places of religious education and training as per the example of Madinan period in which Masjid played role as a center for spreading and teaching comprehensive and complete religious education, science and divine laws[38]. Common people always seek guidance and advice regarding various religious issues they are confronted with. So, instead of questioning their intentions and motives, they should be guided and advised the way they can be satisfied while keeping the spirit and world view of Islam in mind. In the present-day world of technological advancement and knowledge explosion, people sincerely and honestly want to study and understand the message of the Allah, the holy Qur’ān, for getting reasonable and satisfying answers of those questions raised by the modern-day science, philosophy and other sciences.

People should be educated with all the essential knowledge of the Islam which they are supposed to acquire for playing a better and ideal role in the society so that they are included among the Chosen People on the Day of Judgment.

Table 3.Role of Masjid in Child Education & Training

Q. Do you think Masjid has any effective role in child education and training these days?
District Variable Male % Female % Aggregate
Bannu Yes 96 84.21 94 89.52 190 (86.75%)
No 18 15.78 11 10.47 29 (13.24%)
Lakki Marwat Yes 80 93.02 65 82.27 145 (87.87%)
No 6 6.97 14 17.72 20 (12.12%)

As the figures in (Table:3) indicate that 86.75% parents in Bannu and 87.87% parents in Lakki Marwat believe that Masjid has been playing important and vital role in child education and training regarding religion, while 13.24% parents in Bannu and 12.12% parents in Lakki Marwat believed that Masjid has been losing its line of duty due to unnecessary engagement of religious leadership in other activities like politics.

Observation & Analysis

Although pulpit and Masjid are still considered as decisive and dynamic elements regarding moral training and religious education of children, but at the same time it was learnt that the process of education and training in Masajid are not as per the requirements and needs of rapidly changing times. As the next Table: 4shows that only 13.24% Imams in Bannu and 12.12% Imams in Lakki Marwat teach The Qur’ān with translation. Consequently, the learning of the Qur’ānic knowledge and wisdom becomes hopelessly unproductive. Because, as it is believed that Qur’ān is the ideal and best way for individual as well as collective reformation and it brings incredible changes in character and conduct of an individual, his social conduct and way of thinking as a believer.

Those parents who are not convinced about the present role of Masjid regarding religious training and education of children have hired private religious teachers for their children for tutoring the Qur’ān with translation. Moreover, the parents also complained about the violent and aggressive behavior of most of the Imams that discourages children to visit Masajid for getting religious education. Most of the Imams are not well-trained and competent for the position of teaching the Qur’ān; because they have still adopted outdated teaching methodology of rote-learning the pervasive use of corporal punishment also discourage parents to send their wards to Masajid.   . Consequently, the trend of hiring religious teachers for children at home is growing very rapidly. There is nothing bad in this trend but it will pave way for alienation among children regarding the most important and dynamic element of a Muslim society i-e Masjid. Moreover, it will hamper the way of getting spiritual inspiration from the environment of Masjid.

A good teacher must be God-fearing believer, complying with the teachings of Islam, having sound character and personality, kind-hearted, gentle, lenient, having missionary zeal and zest and good motives, competent intellectually[39].

Table 4. Method of Teaching Qur’ān

Q. Does the Imam teach Quran with translation?
District Variable Male % Female % Aggregate
Bannu Yes 18 15.78 11 10.47 29 (13.24%)
No 96 84.21 94 89.52 190 (86.75%)
Lakki Marwat Yes 6 6.97 14 17.72 20 (12.12%)
No 80 93.02 65 82.27 145 (87.87%)

The figures showed in Table 4 show that 13.24% Imams in Bannu and 12.12% in Lakki Marwat teach The Qur’ān with translation while the rest 86.75% in Bannu and 87.87% in Lakki Marwat teach the Qur’ān without translation.

Observation & Analysis

There is a need to convince them to at least teach some part of the holy Qur’ān or those verses which are directly related with daily life with translation as per the mental capacity and understanding of those children who can read The Qur’ān with correct pronunciation. Observation shows that the Qur’ānic stories of previous Prophets (peace be upon them) play very vital, positive, effective and productive role in religious training and education of children. These stories are full of inspiration, motivation and moral lessons that are very closely related with the present-day life. Moreover, the process of teaching and learning can be made more productive if these stories are related with the present-day life. The finest example of the Messenger (peace be upon him) shows that he always delivered sermons on those matter that Muslims were confronted with and that were need of the time[40].

Imams should adopt the modern techniques and tools of teaching. They should have access to the modern technological advancement for knowing the emerging trends and approaches regarding teaching and learning. More importantly, they must be taught child psychology before allowing them to teach religious studies to the children because, due to lack of knowledge, understanding of different human traits and individual difference in terms of learning cannot bring fruitful result. Instead of wasting own time and energy as well as of children it is better to train the Imams first so that they can perform their duties in an ideal and productive manner. Being staunch believers in Islam, people of the region expect a lot from the Imams. Furthermore, people ask for the desired role of Masjid to be played for the sake of social order, fraternity and peace that will help establish a stable society[41]. If these initiatives, attaining competence in religious knowledge and understanding needs of the time, are taken, Imam would be the most effective reformer of the society[42].

Conclusion

Pulpit and Masjid are the most effective and productive forums of a Muslim society having decisive and everlasting effects in terms of social reformation, cohesion and integration. It not only educates the masses in religious matters as well as creates awareness in masses regarding challenges and issues of the modern day world. The prestige and position of pulpit and Masjid should be reestablished so that a prosperous, vibrant and productive welfare society is formed with spiritually awakened, morally strong and socially integrated members.

Findings

1.      People are not satisfied with the present role of pulpit and Masjid as well as religious leaders in terms of dispensation of their duties as a guide in religious matters.

2.      Most of the Imams are untrained and incompetent in terms of sound religious knowledge, exposure and knowledge of modern tools and techniques of teachings and learning as well as child psychology.

3.      Most of the people do not have access to circles of Qur’ānic study due to incompetence of Imams, lack of interest on the part of masses, discouragement of studying Qur’ān with translation by Imams and emphasis on religious and sectarian differences taught and raised in these circles.

4.     Trend of private tuition of Qur’ān is gaining popularity with the passage of time due to poor performance and unfriendly behavior of the Imams.

Recommendations

1.      Religious leaders should retain their real and required position.

2.      Well-trained and competent persons should be prepared and appointed as an Imam who has sound religious knowledge, exposure and knowledge of modern tools and techniques of teaching and learning and child psychology.

3.      Circle of Qur’ānic study should established by well-trained and competent Imams so that people take interest in studying Qur’ān and individuals should be encouraged to study Qur’ān with translation in case one does not have access to circles of Qur’ānic study.

4.      Circles of Qur’ānic study should be free from teaching religious and sectarian differences so that the dream of social cohesion and integration is realized.

5.      Teaching and learning method should be student-friendly, based on sincerity and cooperation.

6.      Leadership of all the concerned schools of thought should be contacted, consulted and engaged for reviving the lost position of pulpit and Masjid.

7.      State should play its due role of taking care of Masajid as it is practiced in other Muslim countries.

8.      Strict recruitment policies and criteria, in terms of strong academic background, sect-free approach and religious tolerance, should be introduced and implemented for the selection of Imams for Masajid.

9.      Print and electronic media should be engaged in this respect for advocacy and promotion of the idea of reviving the lost status of Masjid and people should be educated regarding the decisive and effective role of Masjid.


References

[1]Alles, Robert S. Ellwood and Gregory D. The Encyclopedia of World Religions. (New York: Infobase Publishing, 2007).

[2]Saleem, S. (2015).Selected Essays of Javed Ahmed Ghamidi. (Lahore: Al Mawrid).

[3]Ayaz, Dr Qibla. "Role of Masjid in Promotion of Tolerance, Moderation and Social Cohesion." ACTA Islamica 4, no. 1 (2016): 1-13.


[4]Mansoorpuri, Qazi Muhammad Suleman Salman. Rahmat Ul Lil Alameen. Vol. 01. 02 vols. (Lahore: Maktaba Rahmaniya, 2010).

[5]Alles, Robert S. Ellwood and Gregory D. The Encyclopedia of World Religions. (New York: Infobase Publishing, 2007).

[6]Hamidullah, Dr Muhammad. The Muslim Conduct of State. (Lahore: Tayyab Publishers, 2012).


[7]Ab. Halim Tamuri, Muhamad Faiz Ismail and Kamarul Azmi Jasmi. "A New Approach in Islamic Education: Masjid Based Teaching and Learning." Journal of Islamic and Arabic Education 4, no. 1 (2012): 1-10.


[8]Hady, Zakkarya Mohamad Abdel. "The Masjid, Yesterday and Today." (Georgetown University: Center for International and Regional Studies), no. 02 (2010).

[9]Ab. Halim Tamuri, Muhamad Faiz Ismail and Kamarul Azmi Jasmi. "A New Approach in Islamic Education: Masjid Based Teaching and Learning." Journal of Islamic and Arabic Education 4, no. 1 (2012): 1-10.


[10]Ayaz, Dr Qibla. "Role of Masjid in Promotion of Tolerance, Moderation and Social Cohesion." ACTA Islamica 4, no. 1 (2016): 1-13.


[11]Ayaz, Dr Qibla. "Role of Masjid in Promotion of Tolerance, Moderation and Social Cohesion." ACTA Islamica 4, no. 1 (2016): 1-13.


[12]Bouma, Gary D. Masjids and Muslim Settelment in Australia. Bureau of Immigration and Population Research, Canberra: Government Publishing Service, 1994, 87 and 90-97.


[13]Ab. Halim Tamuri, Muhamad Faiz Ismail and Kamarul Azmi Jasmi. "A New Approach in Islamic Education: Masjid Based Teaching and Learning." Journal of Islamic and Arabic Education 4, no. 1 (2012): 1-10.


[14]Khan, K.A. "The Masjid Schools in Pakistan: An Experiment in Integrating Non Formal and Informal Education." UNESCO: International Institute for Educational Planning, Paris, 1981.

[15]Muzahid, Kamiz Uddin Ahmed Alam & Mohammad Aman Uddin. "Informal Islamic Education and its Role in Human Resource Development in Society: A Theoretical Evaluation." IIUC Studies 3 (December 2006): 83-92.


[16]http://www.bannu.financekpp.gov.pk/

[17]http://www.kpktribune.com/index.php/en/lakki-marwat.

[18]Chishti, Prof Habib Ullah. Ummat-e-Muslima Ka Urooj-o-Zawal. Lahore: Zia Ul Qur'an Publications, 2005.


[19]Raeisian, Gholamreza and Mohammad Badreh. "The Role of Masjid in Urban Development." Journal of Civil Engineering and Urbanism (Scienceline Publication) 3, no. 3 (2013): 101-103.


[20]Al Quran 41:34

[21]Al Quran 41:35

[22]Al Qur’an 16:125

[23]Iqbal, Zafar. Teacher's Training: The Islamic Perspective. Islamabad: The Institute of Policy Studies and International Institute of Islamic Thought, 1996.


[24]Siddiquee, Bakhtiar Hossain. Education: An Islamic Perspective. Islamabad: University Grant Commission, 1986 with reference to Iqbal, Zafar. Teacher's Training: The Islamic Perspective. Islamabad: The Institute of Policy Studies and International Institute of Islamic Thought, 1996.

[25]Al Qur’an 2:26

[26]Al Qur’an 2:185

[27]Al Qur’an 2:187

[28]Al Qur’an 3:03-04

[29]Al Qur’an 3:138

[30]Al Qur’an 14:52

[31]Al Qur’an 16:44

[32]Al Qur’an 39:27

[33]Al Qur’an 39:41

[34]Al Qur’an 45:20

[35]Masood, Khalid. Hayat-e-Rasool-e-Ummi. 4th. Lahore: Dar Ut Tazkeer, 2009.

[36]Mansoorpuri, Qazi Muhammad Suleman Salman. Rahmat Ul Lil Alameen. Vol. 01. 02 vols. Lahore: Maktaba Rahmaniya, 2010.

[37]Masood, Khalid. Hayat-e-Rasool-e-Ummi. 4th. Lahore: Dar Ut Tazkeer, 2009.

[38]Raeisian, Gholamreza and Mohammad Badreh. "The Role of Masjid in Urban Development." Journal of Civil Engineering and Urbanism (Scienceline Publication) 3, no. 3 (2013): 101-103.


[39]Iqbal, Zafar. Teacher's Training: The Islamic Perspective. Islamabad: The Institute of Policy Studies and International Institute of Islamic Thought, 1996.


[40]Mansoorpuri, Qazi Muhammad Suleman Salman. Rahmat Ul Lil Alameen. Vol. 01. 02 vols. Lahore: Maktaba Rahmaniya, 2010.

[41]Muzahid, Kamiz Uddin Ahmed Alam & Mohammad Aman Uddin. "Informal Islamic Education and its Role in Human Resource Development in Society: A Theoretical Evaluation." IIUC Studies 3 (December 2006): 83-92.


[42]Alvi, Khalid. Islam Ka Maasharti Nizam. Lahore: Al Faisal Nashiran Wa Tajiran-e-Kutub, 2005.