The Birth of Sociology :
Man is the only creation among living beings created by Allah Almighty who has a complete sense of consciousness having the ability of knowing and expressing himself. The history of human beings tells and testifies this that human race always flourished in the social life and the social philosophers in the field of social life always kept on trying to answer the questions regarding the reason of making families, worshiping of Allah Almighty, deviating from social regulations by some and respecting the same by others, poverty and richness, the factors keeping a society coherent and continuous changing of societies with passage of time.
A few years back, the answers to these questions were given through revelation, wisdom, guessing and whims which were called folk wisdom and it kept on being transferred race by race with reference to wisdom. Up to the eighteenth century, the study of sociology remained the sovereignty of the social philosophers and these men always kept on thinking about the nature of a society whereas had changed this thinking altogether.
The Basic point of view or insight:
The beginning of sociology took place from the logic that "Basically man is a social animal. (Aristotle)" "The existence of society is not our habit but it is a matter of our existence" (Robertson) We pass our life whether good or bad in the a matter of our existence" (Robertson) We pass our life whether good or bad in the society and in our opinion after our death, the society will exist. We are all born in human groups and get our identity, hopes, determination, fear, problems and human groups and get our identity, hopes, determination, fear, problems and satisfaction from these groups.
C.W. Mills (1959) Sociological Imagination:
According to him, "The consciousness of relations of an individual and society is the basic viewpoint of sociology."
The Origin: The new knowledge of sociology began in the middle of the nineteenth century when Europe was passing through rapid revolutionary changes. The industrial progress was upsetting the social values and traditions. The societies that existed since centuries were strong and stable, the industrial progress and new invention affected the social life to the extent of deterioration. The physical and social environment (material culture) changed in such a way that even strong and stable values of the change was not clear social stability was in danger. and the conditions were such as to be understood in a better way. In the circumstances, the social thinkers gave their attention to the forces which could provide the guarantee to the stability of the society. Among these, sociologists are:
1. August Comte (1798-1857)
2. Herbert Spencer (1820-1905)
3. Emile Durkheim (1858-1917)
4. Max Weber (1864-1920)
These sociologists arranged the subject of sociology as a scientific knowledge but among these, a great Muslim thinker, Allama Abdur Rehman. Muhammad Ibn-e-Khaldun (1332-1406) is not be ignored who before four hundred years of European Industrial Revolution while writing the history of Barbers tribes, felt that the "Social conditions are charging again and again in the same manner under the influence of social forces." (Moqadma Ibn Khaldun). Therefore; the knowledge of these social forces, he gave the name of 'Alm Al-Imran' and thus he was called Father of Sociology but with the downfall of Muslims this knowledge also went under the dust of the time.
The Nature and Definition of Sociology:
From Ibn-e-Khaldun's point of view, "Sociology is the logical reason of historical formulas." Ibn-e-Khaldun in his writing `Al-Mokadarna' presented and described the society, state, beginning of rule, group life, prejudices, theory of social variation, influence of environment on population along with views about rise and fall of nations and also derived principles and rules for those that facility to understand social variation.
2. August Comte (1798-1857) :
The French philosopher who gave the name Sociology to that social knowledge is composed of two roots 'socious and logus'. Comte had the belief that social phenomena and natural laws are alike and a formal study of society can help to make human circumstances better.
According to Comte, "Sociology is the sense of thought about society, aimed to probe the basic laws."
3. Emile Durkheim (1858-1917) :
He stressed group unity and has defined sociology as the "Study of social institution." He gives great importance to social institutions and thinks these five basic institutions-family, religion, education, economy and politics, necessary for the formation of society and its functions. Family and religion as institution plays
an important part in social unity. According to him, the incidents of group life of an individual differ from his incidents of individual life which are called social facts and are helpful in understanding social life.
4. Talcott Parsons :
He was fundamentally a functionalist and was interested in explaining the functions of different parts of society with reference to its formation. That is why he has stressed the structure and function while defining the sociology. According to him, "Sociology is the study of structure and function of human groups."
The basic element of structure of human society is a sum of social groups. Therefore, to understand its structure and function, the study of structure and function of social groups play an important part which can be understood in a better way and this is the basic aim of sociology.
5. Max Weber :
He is considered among original sociologists and according to him, "Sociology is the study social action." Social action has the status of soul of the social life. Every society in every movement is busy in social action because "the social life. Every society in every movement is busy in social action because "the social action is such an internal and external activity of an individual to which he gives objective meaning." (Max Weber) These activities of individual of the gives objective meaning." (Max Weber) These activities of individual of the society are the social life which takes the form of cooperation, competition, conflicts and reconciliation and the study of these social phenomena is the focal point of Sociology. That is why Max Weber thinks the study of social action is the Sociology.
6. N.S. Timashaff :
According to him, Sociology is the study of those individuals who are inter-dependent on each other. In his own words, "Sociology is the study of Men Interdependent."
According to the view holders of the beginning of society—Thomas Hobbes, John Locke and Rousseau, the passion for cooperation became a cause of group life that brought society into existence. Group life is dependent on cooperation from others. An individual cannot live without depending upon others and is needy of others' help in getting all of his aims of life. This dependence gives rise to social action and gives stability to society. According to S.N.Timashaff, sociology has interest in the study of such individuals who play an important role in the promotion of social life because its flow and existence are social interdependence relations.
7. Alex Inkles:
According to him, "Sociology is the scientific study of social order and disorder."
8. Park and Burges:
According to them, "Sociology is the scientific study of collective behavior." All of the above definitions merge into W.G, Summer's definition that, "The sociology is the science of the society." When Durkheim talks about the social institutions, he really pinpoints the basic ingredients of society. When Talcott talks about the study of functions and structures of the group, he talks Talcott talks about the study of functions and structures of the group, he talks about the study of micro level of society. Just like, Timashafis manner of saying Er study of individual is sociology who are interdependent on each other, it is also. in fact, the study of society because this interdependence upon each other is a.source of existence of society.
In the light of these definitions, we can say with certainty that sociology is study of all aspects of social life which take place in collective life, whether groups or basic social institutions, group behaviors social actions or some constructive or destructive characters. in fact, according to August Comte, this knowledge is that sense of thought which aims at finding out social laws which are evident from historical incidents that social life has always been under the influence of specific social laws and according to Ibn-e-Khaldun it is a logical
reason of the historical formulas. In the light of all of these, comprehensive definition of sociology can be given in the words:
"Sociology is the study of all aspects of collective life of a human society in a scientific way."
"Sociology is the scientific study of all dimension of collective human life