Taken from the Against Post-Modern World Conference. Slightly edited for English by Open Revolt – all errors are our own.
1. The value of Islam. In today’s world, Islam is the world religion most actively resisting globalism’s force. It makes the Islamic factor extremely important for the front of traditionalism. In this war with Islam the United States and ideologue of the End of history Francis Fukuyama even tried to suggest the term “Islamofascism” to greater discredit the faith. United States as an empire tends to designate Islam the new enemy number one. This is a almost official U.S. position now while with Bush it was merely formal. And therefore Islam should be treated as a priority field of struggle against U.S. imperialism, the modern and post-modern world and globalization. This determines the value and importance of Islam.
2. Islam is diverse. Attitude toward Islam as something unified and coherent, as something homogeneous, is a delusion or an “empty concept”. This concept is found in three cases: in ignorant masses (which are generally always wrong, as the platitude is incompatible with the truth), in propaganda of the world’s centers of power (using it for specific political purposes); from the of mouth so-called theorists of “Pure Islam” (Salafi, Wahhabi, etc.) sometimes called conventional “Islamic fundamentalism”, “integrism.” The first two cases are clear. The third case is a perfected innovation trying to take the place of existing Islam (traditional Islam)as a confession of faith in the guise of a “return to roots.” Something similar is done by the Protestants, proposing to return to the “true”, early Christianity, but creating something entirely new which hardly has any relation to Christianity. “Pure Islam” – is close to that.
3. We must analyze Islam out of the “myths”, as it is, in its diversity. This should highlight the theological, historical, geopolitical, ethnic aspects in each of its schools. This is a gigantic task, without which we can not seriously talk about Islam. The division must go through its main lines: Sunni – Shia.
4. Shiites. It is clear that the Shiite minority is a completely separate issue – metaphysically, and geo-politically and ethnically. In general, Shiites (and any trunk duodenary and heterodox septenary, and especially rare Ishraq and Iranian Sufism) is very similar to traditionalism. It has no universalist dimension and allows for wide differences. Especially important is its messianic (Mahdi) direction, because in this way it is easier to find common ground with the traditionalist understanding of the nature of the modern and postmodern world as the “discovery of the Cosmic Egg” from the bottom and a “great parody.”
5. Sunni: Traditional Islam and Salafism. The Sunni majority to be divided by several factors: allowing Sufism and not allowing Wahhabism (in the style of the Hanbalite and proper Wahhabism).
6. At-tassavuf. Those Sunni schools that are tolerant to esoterism and thus have a dimension in which to build a rapport with the traditionalist approach. The world of sufism itself is very wide. Many Tariqa are feuding with each other. Some are going to end up proselytizing and the New Age. Others are closed and become almost folkloric ethno-sectarian. The most interesting are followers of at-tassavuf, which are rooted in its traditions, orthodox, but have a broad outlook on the reality of the modern world, in its sociological, geopolitical, axiological and economic aspects. These are few, but they are extremely important. The environment of at-tassavufa is great in whole. Obviously needed is a policy text, emphasizing the radical values and the incompatibility of “Tariqa” with modern and post-modernity also describing the general (without detail) behavioral strategy of a Sufi in the “end of the world.” Preconditions for that are numerous. But the summation work or it’s author are absent. But they should come to be.
7. Traditional Islam as a whole. There is no intellectual guide for the “last days” in the context of the usual traditional Islam. This is understandable, since it does not present any conceptual unity. Traditional Islam is present, it represents the vast majority of modern Muslims, but there is no generalizing eschatological guidance for the global ummah. All that’s found after the initial test is a sect or Salafism. This is not surprising: eschatology is concentrated in the sects, and the Salafis, in general, try to be the Ummah. And yet eschatological, anti-globalist, anti-American, anti-modern and anti-postmodern sentiment among Muslims is extremely developed. It would be desirable to have the appearance of a serial publication such as “Traditional Islam” which would serve as a platform to present the positions of particular varieties of Islamic communities.
8. Salafism and the global Salafi project. Salafism, pure Islam are on the front wing of the political struggle in the Muslim sector of the modern world. It is a fact and that can not be denied. It is here that we meet the most clear and simple strategy, global thinking, well-defined goals: the establishment of the global Islamic State, the imposition of Sharia law, the organization of society on Islamic principles on a global scale, the doctrine of the “house of war” (dar al-harb) wherever there is no “house of Islam (” Dar ul-Islam “), etc. Obviously, in this program there is acceptable and unacceptable for parts for Traditionalism. Acceptable is the struggle against the common enemy; unacceptable in regard to the proposed alternative, in fact, this “Islamic Project”, is more accurately called the “Salafi project.” It is important to understand the metaphysics of the “Salafi project.” Their metaphysics are not neutral, they are built on denial of esotericism and traditionalism, which are defined here as “shirk”, a deviation from “pure Islam”. The roots of the dispute go back to the Mu’tazilites and opponents of the philosophers and Sufis. The “Salafi project,” radical anti-shia,anti-sufi, and anti-traditional. And this is not a distinctive feature of individual Salafis, but the obligatory metaphysics of all this movement. This ambiguity is reflected geopolitically in the close relations of Salafism (in particular, bin Laden and Al Qaeda), Brzezinski and the CIA during the Afghan war, that Americans have always Salafis services, giving rise to interfere in the sovereign affairs of those countries which try to resist the United States (Iraq, Libya, Syria, anti-Russian Salafism in the North Caucasus), but on the other hand it’s Salafis we also see active in anti-globalization attacking U.S. forces. This ambiguity should conceptualize time and time again to bring round this dialogue, to explain all sides in the conflict. In the global battle against the Dajjal – the role played by Salafism? We have left this question open.
9. Islam in Russia. Position, role and place of Islam in Russia, we must consider with the eschatological and traditionalist positions. For this we must seriously apply all of the previous theses to the Russian situation. Islam is a part of Russia’s space and it has developed over the centuries. But Russia has not become entrenched in their positions in the West, globalization, the U.S., liberalism, post-modernism. The position of authorities is evasive and can be interpreted in different ways. Forces of “Dajjal” are easy to speculate here. Pointing to the globalist and liberal Russian side they play against the Muslims on it, but at the same time, Russian Muslims – as “migrants”, “immigrants”, etc. This is a strategy to reduce the potential enemy of the West. We must work hard to oppose to it an eschatological alliance of Muslims and Orthodox Christians ( all Russia wide) against the U.S., Western liberalism and modernization. The closest point of contact with a Russian traditional Islam, this is not always fact, but theoretically there is clear direction for this dialogue. In the intellectual sphere, and especially even more in the Neoplatonic similarities. And at the outer level brings us together opposition to the West, liberalism and post-modernity. But here traditional Islam is often passive and limited with diplomatic formulas, rather than proposing a common strategy. The liberal pro-Western “modernization” aspects of Russian power, corruption and decay of society, traditions, manners are abhorrent to us and Muslims, we must fight it with them, fight together and not against each other. The main problems arise with Salafism. It plays the role of “scarecrow” to discredit the whole of Islam and its radical projects exacerbate the conflict between Muslims and oriented eschatology and similar orientated forces of other faiths, or merely instinctive opponents of globalization. Here, room for significant and challenging dialogue.
10. Summary: Islam and tradition. Islam is directly related to the Tradition. It is an indisputable fact. And as such it should be recognized by traditionalists. Islam is active and in favor of a traditional society. This should be supported. But Islam is not identical with the Tradition. Tradition can be un-Islamic. If Muslims accept it, agree to the terms of multipolarity, an active dialogue and close cooperation, including military, against post-modern world and the Antichrist / Dajall, should be encouraged. If we are dealing with an innovative and committed contemporary Protestant version of universalism and exclusivism, under the guise of treatment to the “pure Islam”, there must be a cautious and carefully effort to untangle the tangled geopolitical and metaphysical knot to derail the thread in one way or another. Islamophobia is an evil, but evil can become activity and Islamization, which moves under the banner of “pure Islam”. Everyone should follow their tradition. If we fail, then blame us, not Tradition. On a purely individual level choice is possible, but the Russian, converted to Islam en masse, makes me disgusted, they seek power outside themselves and outside their tradition, so they are crippled, weak and cowardly.