Revisiting History: A Conversation with Hayat Aamir Hussaini – VII
By Mudasir Al-Majdey
While discussing and analyzing history we face the problem of truth and falsity. The Quran, as the only revealed book safe and preserved from all adulteration gives us a broad, genuine and rational concept of history. It treats it as ‘the days of God’, ‘Ayam ullah”. As such history is a creative process and narration of the process. The Quranic position is a logical, spiritual and humane one. On the other hand, we face a grave and bewildering problem, the problem of the genuineness of historical record or recording history. It is a fact, clear and lucid that histories are of three types: a) History, genuinely and truthfully recorded events, b) False and coined history and c) Falsified history.
Goebbels, the information minister of Hitler, is quoted saying that a lie should be repeatedly and tirelessly told so that people accept it as a truth. This cannot be applied to Goebbels only. It has been the common feature of polytheistic cultures and tyrannical regimes and rulers.
There is a difference of degrees and intensity of narration between false and coined history and falsified history. Falsified history is the false treatment of historical events. It is not totally a false presentation. It is defacing of history, historical events and the historical process.
Falsified history consists of baseless stories nourished for the creation of a false history to govern ungodly culture. It nourishes a culture of myths, false and untold events and stories to save polytheistic religion, culture and so called traditions, which are never acceptable to common sense and reason. Falsified history and falsification of history are various steps of false history. The ultimate end of the falsification is the creation of false events, episodes and personalities that have no existence. They are simply created and pasted on the walls of history.
‘The days of God’ is the creative process of God and man. God’s creation does not fall in the realm of history. It is a meta-historical process and is beyond any understanding, and categories of understanding. But, the events related to man fall in the realm of history, and are justified and analyzed within the boundaries of categories of understanding. It is the process which takes place in time and space order. The entire universe is time and space bound. Man as the vicegerent of God, is empowered to control and conquer the universe. But, it should be clearly understood that there are some important events of history which do not fall in the realm of the categories of understanding. These events are not easily accessible. They are related to creative intuitions of the artists, scientists and mystics. But, when they are translated into concepts, words and analyses, they become the part of history and fall in the realm of history, historical process and categories of understanding. These artistic movements, scientific inventions and mystical experiences are always subjective, immediate, direct and personal. They have nothing to do with history or historical process as such. (Such a process is meta-historical). It is the jump of soul or mind and is beyond the limits of senses and reason.
The artistic movements and creations are historical but these are not history. Their inclusion in a creative structure, that is, a poem, a painting, a drama, a novel does not make them history. The very creation of these is historical events not history or historical records. They are the creative modes and models of an artist. Same is the case with a mystic. His experiences are absolutely his modes of experiences. They are not a part of a society. They become a part of society, only after their narration by a mystic. They are a part of his personal history and not of the collective history.
I do not reject the effect of these expressed experiences in the development of social order or religious history. It is only the Prophet(SAW), whose every event though falls in the realm of meta-history, becomes historical and the record of history because it changes the entire mode of human order. Even then, the real depth of these experiences are only known to the Prophet(SAW) and at that level, they are not a part of history, because of their irrelevance to the time-space order.
My classification of history is evident and self spoken. It holds only those records a part of history that is genuinely and unbiased(ly) recorded and analyzed often and critically verified by the scientific tools and justified by reason and acceptable to reason. If anything or any event fails to face such process it cannot be held as history or historical. All the histories based on myths can be treated as creative misadventures but not history. Religious fervor and ethos and emotions do not make history. Emotions can be good, bad, ugly, beautiful, useful and harmful.
The present era is an era of propaganda. Anything can be coined in any form and propagated to the world. But, the propagation of a coined event or a little episode, cannot be treated as history on historical record or proof. Truth is falsified and lie is elevated at the level of truth. This does not make truth false and false truth. Truth and lie are two categories of understanding and analysis of the facts. Both truth and lie are facts. It cannot be denied. Truth is the record or exposition of an event that happened and a lie is the record of fabrications and frauds and the denial of the facts and factual positions. Polytheism is the greatest lie of the universe and history. It is the denial of all fact and truth. It is simply a fraud coining of events or personalities, names and places in the name of truth.
To meet its end, the falsification of history is its prime tool. Propaganda and fabrication of stories is its second tool. But, even then the truth stands out and explains its logical, human and spiritual position.
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