Written and collected by Zia H Shah MD, Chief Editor of the Muslim Times
As soon as the Covid 19 raised its ugly head some conservative Hindu pundits were ready to declare that cow urine is a great remedy for this pandemic, relying on their conviction that their dumbed down followers will believe and the masses did oblige.
The Mullahs did not stay behind in advancing that kolonji, a spice also called black seed and honey can provide cure and the Muslims from all walks of life obliged.
The half truths of right wing zealots of every religion were simply exposed by the fact that they had not tried to understand the virus, the pandemic and had come out with their recommendations without even any rudimentary experimentation and analysis.
I also dared to come out with my recommendations but not for a new cure of the Covid 19 but for the cure of its fear: Corona Fear’s Cure: Chanting from the Bible and the Quran. In this article I did not base my recommendations on false or half-true assumptions but widely acknowledged scientific and religious truths. Religious truths acknowledged by more than half the earth’s population of those who follow the Abrahamic faiths.
Reuters reported, a Hindu group hosted a cow urine drinking party early March as they believe it wards off the coronavirus, as many Hindus consider the cow sacred and some drink cow urine believing it has medicinal properties.
Experts have repeatedly asserted that cow urine does not cure illnesses like cancer and there is no evidence that it can prevent coronavirus.
The “party,” hosted by a group called the Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha (All India Hindu Union) at its headquarters in the country’s capital, was attended by 200 people, and the organizers hoped to host similar events elsewhere in India.
“We have been drinking cow urine for 21 years, we also take bath in cow dung. We have never felt the need to consume English medicine,” said Om Prakash, a person who attended the party.
Leaders from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist party have advocated the use of cow urine as medicine and a cure for cancer.
In the end of March, Pakistani President Arif Alvi and provincial governors held a meeting with Sunni and Shiite clerics to convince them to close mosques for congregational prayers across the country amid rapidly increasing COVID-19 cases in the country. The clerics, however, rejected the request.
“We can in no way close mosques … It is not possible in any circumstances in an Islamic country,” said Muneeb-bur-Rehman, a cleric who attended the meeting.
Like in India after the Nizamuddin Markaz congregation, in Pakistan too the Tablighi Jamaat is facing criticism for organising its annual mass assembly at Raiwind Markaz last month in the wake of the outbreak of coronavirus.
According to a Dawn report, the Jamaat organised its annual mass assembly despite strong opposition by the Punjab province government.
The outlet citing a report by the Punjab Special Branch, stated that around 70,000-80,000 members of the organisation gathered to participate in a congregation on March 10. The Jamaat’s management are claiming that over 2,50,000 people participated in its annual event.
The congregation was also attended by 3000 people who had arrived from 40 countries and who could not go back because Pakistan halted all international flights due to worsening pandemic situation.
The Jamaat has been criticized in India and Malaysia after several of its members tested positive for the coronavirus leading to a surge in the number of cases.
The ultra-orthodox Jews in Israel, New York and else where were no different.
New York Daily News reported, as people all over the world began to shelter in place in an effort to control the spread of COVID-19, some ultra-Orthodox Jews defiantly refused to follow social distancing regulations. They continued to attend large weddings; yeshivas stayed open long after public schools closed; and thousands gathered for funerals well into April. Ultra-Orthodox leaders promised that boys’ Torah study, prayer and women’s heightened modesty would keep everyone safe. But by the end of March, the epidemiological disaster was undeniable: There were significant clusters of infections in ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods, and the sick were flooding already strained health-care facilities. Only then did rabbinic leadership acknowledge the threat was real.
The Daily Mail reported, there are grave concerns for how coronavirus will affect members of New York’s Orthodox Jewish communities because many are refusing to stay away from one another and adhere to social distancing laws.
In Brooklyn, the worst hit counties are those with some of the largest Hasidic Jewish population.
Rockland County which is 25 miles outside the city, has 13,506 cases of the virus and 135 people have died from it. The county population is 328,868 and there is a large Orthodox community there; according to The Wall Street Journal in 2014, there were 60,000 Hasidic Jews living in the county’s towns.
It has the highest per capita coronavirus rate of anywhere in the state of New York.
It became clear that tribalism and prejudices of different sects and different religions has nothing to offer in the war against Covid 19.
Science, which is a genuine study of laws of nature, does not bend to the religious dogma or prejudice. Science will offer us medicines and vaccines and nature does not lend itself more to a Muslim, a Jew, a Christian, a Hindu or a Buddhist. The nature does not bare its secrets more to one religion than the other and the whole of the scientific history including the Muslim heritage from the 8th-14th century is testimony for this.
Any attempt by any religious group to bend the arc of science towards them is simply futile.
I therefore, have focused to pool and present the best research that the humanity is offering against Covid 19, below at the end of this post.
I have had a reaffirmation of our mission for universal brotherhood and sisterhood during this pandemic and a complete dedication to rise above ethnic, national and religious tribalism in our global village: All of humanity are intimate neighbors: Coronavirus proves it once again.
In this fight against Covid 19 we continue to find subtle advocates of tribalism of one kind or another and genuine promoters of universal brotherhood and sisterhood, foremost among whom are PM Justin Trudeau of Canada, Senator Bernie Sanders of USA and PM of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern. I will add other names in this hall of fame as we go along.