Sir Syed’s Religious Thought: A Critical Analysis


Sir Syed (1817-1897) is considered to be a social, educational, religious, and political reformer of Muslims of British India. During his times, the War of Mutiny (1857) changed the whole fabric of Muslim socio-political structure in India. The British held the Muslims, the sole agitators of rebellion. The Muslims were made deprived of their basic rights, and the Hindus were preferred over them. This manufactured a vast gap between the British and the Muslims, which Sir Syed observed. The emergence of science at the time was equally shattering down the religious foundations. Sir Syed thought science and its modernization affecting Islam and the Muslims. According to him, the conservative and false beliefs and values, engendered by the Mullahs, throughout the course of Muslim history, led astray a common man in understanding Islam. Sir Syed felt the need to interpret Islam, which was considered antagonistic among the Muslim societies. This paper examines Sir Syed’s contentious religious thoughts.

Dr. Noor Muhammad Danish Bettani, Irfan Ali Shah