One of the most widespread and yet least challenged fallacies is the notion that the history of thedevelopment of civilisation shows that that there has been a continuous general advance from the prehistorictimes up to the present day; a concept that is no doubt reinforced by the explosive growth of our technologyduring the last fifty or sixty years.
However, this is a completely mistaken assumption; not only has civilisation occasionally remainedvirtually static for centuries at a time, but it has often reversed itself, losing knowledge and skills it had solaboriously acquired. For instance, that the Earth is spherical in shape and spins on its axis in space was knownto educated people more than 400 years B.C., yet hardly a thousand years later the accepted opinion amonglearned men was that it is flat! Also, it is quite common for archaeologists to find that advanced cultures havebeen superseded by relatively inferior social organisations and levels of technology.
The truly outstanding, most notable characteristics of the history of civilisation is that its progress has beenso wildly erratic. There is nothing steady about it. An added complication is that while it might be advancing inone respect, it might at the same time be standing still or even retrogressing in another.In the field of religious teaching where over-piousness, excessive zeal, personal ambition and the credulityof the public at large are some of the many active factors involved, the well-known process of accretion isalways at work. An original teaching tends to become so encrusted with accretionary matter such as pious
embroidery of the truth “for the greater glory of God”, deliberate additions and omissions, falsifications,
paraphrasing at the expense of meaning, mistranslations and so forth that little or nothing of it remains visible.To dislodge the accretions so that the original gems of truth are revealed is no easy task. Not only does itcall for intensive, painstaking research and study, but also for great patience, perseverance, determination,motivation and sheer mental stamina.Above all, it demands nothing less than the highest grade of moral fibre and personal courage; many menhave paid with their lives for much less than Mr. Joommal dares to do in this book.Mr. A.S.K. Joommal, the prolific journalist so well-known to the newspaper reading public in this countryas a defender of Islam against malicious slander and as an exponent of Islamic teachings, is one of South
Africa‟s handful of original, creative thinkers. He is the author of “The Path of Islam” and many articles about
Islam.He is a firm believer in the great religious truths revealed to mankind through the agency of the long line of Prophets whom God had sent to this world through the ages; a series of Messengers that ended with the HolyProphet Muhammad, the last and as such the Seal of the Prophets.Mr. Joommal realises that the most urgent need of these times is to arrive at a true understanding of theRevealed Words of God. Such an understanding calls for the ruthless and uncompromising removal of theaccretions of centuries, accretions that obscure the truth in the various writings which were eventuallyassembled into what we know as the Bible - whether in the King James version or any of the others. He believes
that the Bible still contains the Revealed Words of God, but that man‟s tampering so distorted and beclouded
them that a New Revelation became necessary.