Muslims have never lagged behind any other people in their love for the motherland; in fact the prophetic teachings which recognize strength of character alone as the test of true faith, have made them the worthiest sons of the land they have inhabited. In appreciating the boons conferred by the lands of their birth, in the search and development of the hidden treasures of their countries, in the quest of knowledge and furtherance of their arts and culture and in maintaining a trustworthy chart and compass of the past endeavor of their forefathers, the Muslims have always been ahead of their contemporaries.
DEVELOPMENT OF HISTORIOGRAPHY BY MUSLIMS
Historiography, in particular, received their special attention since it received impetus from the meticulous care Muslims had to take in the preservation of a trustworthy record of the sayings and acts of the Prophet of Islam. In the very beginning of their literary career, when they started compiling the Traditions, they had to collect the biographical details of the narrators of these Traditions and had also to frame the rules of isnad or historical criticism for the evaluation of voluminous narratives and the biographical data collected for the purpose. To whatever country they went thereafter the taste cultivated for collecting historiographies and biographical details and their critical evaluation set spurs to their attention for portraying the past happenings and achievements of their adopted homelands. In many a country of their descent they have thus been the precursors of historiography and study of the growth of nations.
ISLAM REVEALED THE HIDDEN POTENTIAL OF NATIONS
To whichever country the Muslims took the torch of Islam, it witnessed a great revolution exhibiting a tremendous upsurge in the people in numerous spheres of social and political life. The touch of Islam unfolded the hidden potentialities of each country, lying dormant for thousands of years, in a variety of brilliant colours of light and shade. Taking a leap from the obscurity of dark ages, each one of these countries took Its rightful place in the comity of nations and made valuable contributions towards enriching human knowledge and culture. And what is more, all these lands also adopted these newcomers as their beloved sons and daughters.
ISLAMIC RULE VS COLONIALISM OF THE WEST
- No country conquered by the Muslims was ever treated by them as a milch cow or a beast of burden.
- Muslims never acted as parasites of the conquered land; they never contrived to transfer the riches of the country they held in hand to the land from which they had hailed like the nations of the West.
- Muslims diffused the most valuable treasure they had with them—the wealth of faith in One God and Prophethood.
- Muslims dispersed their conviction in virtues of human dignity and equality, their administrative skill and practical genius and their refined taste of arts and culture among the people of their adopted land.
- In every sphere of life, social or intellectual, in manners and customs, in arts and culture they inevitably impressed their mark.
- The forces they set in motion had always had profound and lasting effect upon society and culture, arts and literature of the land conquered by them.
- They established peace and order, planned and set up new cities, developed agriculture and commerce, promoted fine arts and architecture, set up educational institutions and cultivated new branches of learning not known to those countries. The lands they conquered were actually reborn, with a renewed zest and vigour, in a new and brighter world.