When we talk about a subject like “American Islam” or the other reformist projects in the modern world, what do we mean?
To define “American Islam,” it is really a series of concessions to the American establishment and Western cultural hegemony. That’s all it is. Concession after concession after concession.
The question is, how do you justify watering down the deen with these non-stop compromises? You have to give a reason to justify your distortion. So you say:
1. “We have to compromise because there is an overwhelming need!”
2. “We have to compromise because this is what is means to be compassionate!”
3. “We have to compromise because this is the only way we can catch up to the West!”
4. “We have to compromise because we have to make sure no one is ever Islamophobic and everyone loves us!”
5. “We have to compromise because that is the only way to effectively do dawah!”
In virtually all cases, these are nothing but empty excuses. And it is very clear when we read the Quran and the Sunna.
1. Were the Prophet ﷺ , His Family, the Khulafa, the Sahaba not in dire need?
2. Were they not compassionate?
3. Were they trying to catch up to the superpowers of their time, Rome and Persia, by imitating them?
4. Were they concerned about making sure kuffar liked them?
5. Were they not the best in dawah in a time when Islam was something seen as “strange”?
So these bogus reasons given to justify “American Islam,” they are terrible, myopic, and reminiscent of the jahaliyya Muslims are meant to transcend.
But there is a lot at stake with these reasons. People have internalized them and it has become part of their identity. It is who they have become. And the compassionate imams and faux-traditionalists pushing this narrative of auto-compromise will lash out with a vengeance against anyone who points out the obvious deceit.
We have to continue our work and not let their hot rage stop us.
Do we fear Allah or do we fear ignorant people?