This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

The transfiguration of everyday life

Modern people worship freedom and see happiness in terms of a maximum of personal liberty. As nonsensical as this is in itself, it also renders the beauty of the Sharia invisible, since the Sharia places certain limits on the actions one takes. Yet there is a certain betrayal of human dignity involved when any system of law becomes secular. What this means is that there is such a thing as ‘non-religious life’ and from thenceforth man must engage in a battle to find deeper meaning in his daily life in a context that has been intentionally emptied of any reference to the sacred. The Muslim, at least if he lives in an Islamic society, is not cursed and degraded in such a way. The Sharia does not so much rob a man of his ability to act, but instead sanctifies the acts that, free or not, all men must perform throughout each day. For the Muslim there is not division between ‘ordinary life’ and ‘religious life’ and spiritual development is something that can be pursued, outwardly and not just inwardly, throughout each day. It is the Sharia that reinforces and supports a vigorous pursuit of sanctification, and whatever problems may be suffered in the traditional Islamic world, we do not encounter the same sense of existential lostness that characterizes the modern ‘free’ countries in the world, namely America, which at present can hardly manage to survive the day without the chemical support of alcohol or an endless variety of pharmaceutical products, all of this in spite of all its wealth and freedom.

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