Its probably the same annoyance, which is why I'm putting them in the same post. The first was from something I read in Fazlur Rahman's Modernist tome 'Islam' (1965). He is not particularly impressed by Sufism. Appreciating some of the great personalities produced by it from time to time he sees problems in;
- the spiritual delinquency it has caused, often exploited by clever Sufi leaders for their own ends.
- the various deep and paralysing effects that it has on society
- the army's and masses resistance to reform of it
- its Messianism
Now NGOisation. Rather than social reform through innovative means, folks set up organisations that, as James Ferguson points out in 'The Anti-Politics Machine' (1994), switch of the politics and turn everything into little problems to be solved technocratic. They often take money from (home or foreign) governments and service their interests rather than anything interesting. In the UK we see government turning the third sector into limp service providers. In places like Bangladesh, we see a lucrative disgusting and hopeless development industry.
But why not NGOise? It is satisfying, target can be set and reached, it seems a whole lot more virtuous that selling out completely to soulless individualistic, liberolic capitalism.
That's my annoyance. The abdication and misleadingness of copping out. Copping out doesn't answer the question or the challenge. It's like Muslims being secularist, personally it might satisfy, but in reality it is a failure of faith and imagination
Once one has copped out there are so many more problems. You observe cool and once funky people behaving oddly: ingratiating themselves with government; monopolising access to their scholastic leaders; doing crap development work; ungling themselves in narrow alleyway and sometimes even using the 'S' word.