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The Revolution's Motives

The motives for revolution were numerous, some were direct grievances of the general people while others were ideological. The following were the most apparent:

1. The most important motive was the attempt to distort Islamic concepts and ideals. This aspect was of extreme importance and preoccupied the minds of responsible Muslims at that time. The fabrication of Hadiths was all too common, which had a poisonous effect on the lives of Muslims. This was giving the Umayyads for a while, a free hand to carry out their inhuman deeds and policies, but the mask of religion which they used to hide their un-Islamic conduct was extremely dangerous.

In the long run, this could have changed Islamic concepts of ruling and inverted social ideals, thus, stripping off this mask and exposing the true Umayyad's picture was of utmost necessity.

2. The state's structure was built on an un-Islamic basis. Quraish was born to rule, Arabs were second class citizens, and non-Arabs constituted the base of the society's pyramid. That was the general social picture of the Muslim world under the Umayyads dynasty. Freedom of thought and expression were denied, when one dared to express an opinion contrary to that of the Umayyad's; prison became his home, his property was robbed, and even his life was at stake.

3. The Umayyads considered the Muslim world to be their own property. The alms (Zakat) and other Islamic dues were collected, but no one knew nor could they question where that money went. Large gifts and donations were given to a few cruel governors and tribal chiefs in order to secure their allegiance. Large sums of money were wastefully spent on racing, gambling, wine-making, and buying slave women to entertain high-class people in power. Hence, the majority of Muslims were left near starvation level while the ruling group all enjoyed the social and material privileges.

4. The Muslims had apparently got used to the un-Islamic rule of the Umayyads as time passed by. Their resistance slackened and some people began adjusting themselves to the new conditions. Hence, the revolutionary spirit of Islam began to disappear gradually from Muslims’ lives and thoughts. Therefore, a new stimulant to their souls was necessary to activate their lives and try to restore Islamic conduct to the society.

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