The Future of Islam
The Future of Islam
To Mohammedans the author owes more than a word of apology. A stranger and a sojourner among them, he has ventured on an exposition of their domestic griefs, and has occasionally touched the ark of their religion with what will seem to them a profane hand; but his motive has been throughout a pure one, and he trusts that they will pardon him in virtue of the sympathy with them which must be apparent in every line that he has written. He has predicted for them great political misfortunes in the immediate future, because he believes that these are a necessary step in the process of their spiritual development; but he has a supreme confidence in Islam, not only as a spiritual, but as a temporal system the heritage and gift of the Arabian race, and capable of satisfying their most civilized wants; and he believes in the hour of their political resurgence.
it, and with them of the populations they in some measure represent. The pilgrimage is of course no certain guide as to the composition of the Mussulman world, for many accidents of distance and political circumstance interfere with calculations based on it. Still to a certain extent a proportion is preserved between it and the populations which supply it; and in default of better, statistics of the Haj afford us an index not without value of the degree of religious vitality existing in the various Mussulman countries. My figures, which for convenience I have arranged in tabular form, are taken principally from an official record, kept for some years past at Jeddah, of the pilgrims landed at that port, and checked as far as European subjects are concerned by reference to the consular agents residing there. They may therefore be relied upon as fairly accurate; while for the land pilgrimage I trust in part my own observations, made three years ago, in part statistics obtained at Cairo and Damascus. For the tabl