Friday, February 20, 2015

Islam encourages terrorism?

Misconception #2
Islam encourages terrorism
A terrorist is one who favours or uses terror-inspiring methods of governing or of coercing government or community. (The Concise oxford Dictionary)
Islam encourages terrorism. How does that sound to you? Sound like the truth? I think not! How about, absurd? Questionable? Now, that’s more like it. Which religion, way of life, and system of government that has had billions of followers throughout it’s history, would encourage such ruthlessness?
I appeal to your rationality. Think logically. If Islam encouraged terrorism the 1.6 billion muslims today would be very bad terrorists, unable to ‘do the job.’ If islam really did encourage terrorism, do you believe that you would be alive today? Do you think Islamic societies would really thrive upon the innocent blood of millions killed? Do you think Islam, really would be able to contain and maintain such a large number of geographically dispersed people through terrorism? The answer is no.
Moreover looking at recent statistics; the majority of terrorist acts, recently and before collected statistics prove that Terrorism is not encouraged in Islam. Rather as Allah says in the Qu’ran, “Whoever kills a soul, unless it be for murder or spreading corruption in the land, it is as if, he has slain mankind entirely.” (Surah Mai’dah 05:32) Islam takes the killing of innocent human beings seriously. No one no one has the right to take the life of another, unless such a person was a criminal or murderer. Life is not something to be played with.
Even suicidal attempts are condemned in Islam. Suicide bombings are not from Islamic teachings. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “whoever kills himself with something will be punished with it on the Day of Resurrection.” (Bukhari and Muslim) Suicide bombings are among the major sins in Islam and are as such impermissible.
Islam, is not about establishing a great empire, colonising, acquiring lands, and riches, or even destroying people and culture. Islam is here to simply establish the worship of One God alone, without associating partners with him. Allah says, “And He created you into nations and tribes that you may know one another. Verily the most honoured in the sight of Allah, is the most righteous.” The purpose of nations and tribes, as we understand from this verse, is not for one to overcome the other. Rather it is to create unity and increase righteousness between us; terrorism has no place in Islam.
Moreover, Allah says, “And We have not sent you (Muhammad) except as a mercy for the Alameen (mankind, jinns, and all that exists),” (Al-Anbiyaa 21:107) Muhammad (peace be upon him) was sent to teach us good manners, and instruct us in the worship of Allah. His aim was not to establish a large empire by instilling fear in the hearts of people, or committing acts of terror against them. If he really wanted an empire he would have accepted the offer of kingship and wealth from the tribe of Quraysh, if he would stop teaching Islam. But did Muhammad give up his message or accept Kingship? No. Rather, his famous saying was, “if they put the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left, I would not give up this message.” Meaning even if they gave me control over the solar system and the greatest of the celestial bodies, I would not give up preaching Islam. Muhammad (Peace be upon him) had no interest in building up an empire like the colonialists, Romans or Persians. His only objective was to preach the Oneness of God.
Islam teaches us to be patient, and peaceable. It teaches us to repulse evil with that which is better.  Allah says, “and let not the enmity and hatred of others make you avoid justice. Be just: that is nearer to piety.” (Al-Ma’idah 05:08) Justice is of high value in Islam, it is not be neglected even in the most dire situations. To use the mistakes of a few and generalise it to the religion is incorrect. The actions of 9/11, 7/7 and others was an injustice and wrongdoing upon the people. Renowned and obscure scholars across the muslim world, have time and again denounced such actions. Terrorism is a form of transgression, hence it has no connection to Islam.
Allah says, “Allah does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion, and did not drive you out of your homes. Verily Allah loves those who deal with equity.” (Al-Mumtahanah 60:08) Muslims are to deal justly with neighbours, acquaintances, co-workers, colleagues, and anyone they meet; be they muslim or not.
Islam protects the rights of non-muslims, especially if they live under muslim rule. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “whoever kills a mu’aahid, will not smell the fragrance of paradise, although it fragrance can be detected from a distance of forty years.” (Bukhari)  What is meant by the word mu’aahid, is a non-muslim, living in muslim lands, or a non-muslim who has a deal or treaty with the muslims. Thus, Islam protects their lives, and ensures they are granted safety. How can we claim that Islam promotes terrorism?
Nonetheless, it is only natural that if you are attacked that you defend yourself. Those in Iraq, Palestine, Syria, have every right to fight back. But as the saying goes, ‘one man’s freedom fighter is another man’s terrorist.’ It seems that those who stand up to defend their lives as long as they are muslims, they are labelled as terrorists. Islam is not a way of life that accepts humiliation. The concept of Jihad which has been exploited by the media, is in place to defend and protect muslims, and convey the word of Allah. Jihad was not prescribed to target innocent civilians, or encourage violence or inspire fear amongst masses. Jihad is not a Holy War, or a form of terrorism. The word Jihad translates as ‘struggle’ or ‘strive’ and it can be applied to any situation in which a muslim struggles and strives to practice their religion.
In addition, when muslims are commanded to fight, they have codes of conduct to uphold. Firstly, they are to fight those that fight them. In the Qu’ran Allah says, “And fight in the way of Allah those who fight you, but transgress not the limits.” (Al-Baqarah 2:190) This is clear evidence that muslims are not on a rampage, destroying everyone and everything in their path.
Secondly, we have no right to target women, children or the old. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Fight, but do not steal (from the captured goods), commit treachery, mutilate the dead, or kill a child, or those who reside in houses of worship.” (Muslim)
Lastly, we are to stop, when the opponent stops. Allah says, “And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is for Allah. But if they desist, then let there be no hostility except against wrong-doers.” (Al-Baqarah 2:193)
Now, I ask you, how can jihad be termed as terrorism? Look at the above mentioned rules governing combat in Islam. It does not infringe upon anyone’s rights. It ensure justice and fairness, amongst combatants. How can Islam be a religion of terrorism or encourage terrorism? Islam is a religion whose followers are increasing daily. Do you honestly feel that 1.6 billion plus people are following a religion inclined to violence? I’ll leave you to be the judge.
I ask Allah to guide us all to the truth.
(note: I do write for this blog, but this is not written by me. source: )

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