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Islam is for all mankind

Reader comment on item: Ban Islam?
in response to reader comment: KEITH

Submitted by Keith Williams (United States), Oct 14, 2008 at 21:20

Hi btilly,

I am impressed in your interest in Islam. It seems that you are doing a lot of study on Islam. However, some of the books, websites, and/or people that you got your information from may be biased and some of your information is wrong or you may have misinterpreted some of the information. Please allow me to help you.

No racism in Islam

O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things). (The Noble Quran, 49:13)"

The prophet Muhammad (PBUH) stated:

"All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over a black, nor a black has any superiority over a white- except by piety and good action. Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood. Nothing shall be legitimate to a Muslim, which belongs to a fellow Muslim unless it was given freely and willingly. Do not therefor, do injustice to yourselves." Muhammad the Messenger of God (PBUH)

Also, let me correct you on Ishaq 243. This Hadeeth is considered a weak Hadeeth being narrated in a Mu'allaq form. Mu'allaq hadeeth is one in which one or more narrators are omitted from the beginning of its isnaad by the muhaddith who compiled the book or Every hadeeth which is mentioned in the books with the isnaad omitted and which is attributed to the Prophet (PBUH), without being attributed to any of the books of Sunnah, is a mu'allaq hadeeth.

Ibn-Ishaq and other sources are extremely doubtful and unauthenticated. Most Muslim scholars today firmly and strongly believe in this. As most Muslim Scholars agree, we Muslims can't take them as absolute Truth or accurate information. Much of these volumes are either corrupt or taken out of context. Again, this is according to the Muslims scholars. This is why these volumes are considered "unauthenticated".

Someone made some mistakes with the translation. Here is what this hadeeth translates to in English.

"If what Muhammad says is the truth, then we are worse than donkeys, "after which God revealed concerning him: "They swear by God that they said nothing (bad), but really they said the word of disbelief, and they disbelieved after accepting Islâm, and they resolved that (plot to murder Prophet Muhammad SAW) which they were unable to carry out, and they could not find any cause to do so except that God and His Messenger had enriched them of His Bounty. If then they repent, it will be better for them, but if they turn away, God will punish them with a painful torment in this worldly life and in the Hereafter. And there is none for them on earth as a Walî (supporter, protector) or a helper."

Ibn Ishaq said: "It was claimed that he repented to God for this and that his repentance was genuine. And (among the hypocrites from Banu Lawzan Ibn ‘Amr Ibn ‘Awf) was Nabtal Ibn Al-Harith; it was he of whom the Messenger of God said, according to my information: ‘Whoever wishes to look at Satan may look at Nabtal Ibn Al-Harith.' And he was a large man with long, black hair, red eyes and dark cheeks." Biography of the Prophet by Shaikh Abdullah ibn Al-Shaikh Muhammad ibn Abdul Wahab

Also incorrect, God did not say to kill anyone who refuses Islam as you said. Just type in "no compulsion in religion" in your favorite search engine and see what the results are. Were they not on Islam???

The best example of this was when the Prophet (saw) went to a place called Ta'if. This was at the time when the followers of Islam were at their weakest and the Prophet himself had suffered the loss of both his wife Khadijah (May Allah be pleased with her) and his uncle Abu Talib. He went to this town in the hope that they would listen to what he had to say. Instead he was insulted and chased out of the town by the children who threw stones at him till (it was described) the blood flowed from his body to his feet making his sandals sticky with his own blood. The Prophet was so depressed that he prayed to Allah, who then sent down the Angel of the mountains who asked for the Prophet's permission to fold the mountains together and crush to death all those that lived there. But what was the prophet's reply? "Yes, kill them all as they did not listen to me"? No, off course not! His answer was "No, I hope Allah will bring from them people who will worship Allah alone, associating none with Him."

This was the example of the Prophet, even though he felt bitterness and was very angry with them, he had the discipline and control to not let his emotions control his actions and he forgave them realizing that they were merely misguided.

Another example, a warning, this may bring tears to your eyes, is of the first young man to embrace Islam, it was ‘Ali, the last of the Rightly-Guided Caliphs, the cousin and son-in-law of Prophet Mohammed and the Lion of God, who came to represent the supreme example of youthful manly perfection. Known for his selflessness, courage, generosity, loyalty, wisdom and honour, he was the invincible warrior of his day. His nobility on the battlefield shows the purity of Islam and guidance for all of what a true warrior should be on the battlefield today.

In one battle, ‘Ali had overpowered an enemy warrior and had his dagger at the man's throat when the man spat in his face. Immediately ‘Ali got up, sheathed his dagger, and told the man, "Taking your life is unlawful to me. Go away." The man was amazed, "O ‘Ali," he asked, "I was helpless, you were about to kill me, I insulted you and you released me. Why?" "When you spat in my face," ‘Ali answered, "it aroused the anger of my ego. Had I killed you then it would not have been for the sake of God, but for the sake of my ego. I would have been a murderer. You are free to go." The enemy warrior was profoundly moved by this show of great nobility and so he embraced Islam on the spot.

In another of his battles against the unfaithful, ‘Ali encountered a handsome young warrior who moved to attack him. His heart was full of pity and compassion for the misguided youth. He cried out, "O young man, do you not know who I am? I am ‘Ali the invincible. No one can escape from my sword. Go, and save yourself!" The young man continued toward him, sword in hand. "Why do you wish to attack me? Why do you wish to die?" ‘Ali asked. The man answered, "I love a girl who vowed she would be mine if I killed you." "But what if you die?" ‘Ali asked again. "What is better than dying for the one I love?" he countered. "At worst, would I not be relieved of the agonies of love?" Hearing this response, ‘Ali dropped his sword, took off his helmet, and stretched out his neck like a sacrificial lamb. Confronted by such nobility, the love in the young man's heart was transformed into love for the great ‘Ali and for the love of God, the One Most Exalted Whom ‘Ali loved.

This is a highly recommended website for future hadeeth research:

http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/reference/searchhadith.html

To answer your question about Muslims, Jews, Christians, Sabians, etc… being friends. I think you are referring to the quranic verse:

O YOU who have attained to faith! Do not take the Jews and the Christians for your allies: they are but allies of one another and whoever of you allies himself with them becomes, verily, one of them; behold, God does not guide people who are unjust. (Quran 5:51)

This verse is often quoted to show that Islam is intolerant.

Quran is a complete book of guidance and while studying various issues it should be kept in mind that a particular issue may be discussed over several chapters or several verses in the same chapter. A complete understanding can only be achieved by understanding the whole issue as presented over all the verses and chapters and not by looking at only part of the Quran. God specifically warns us against doing just that, upholding part of the Quran while disregarding the rest.

.. Then is it only a part of the Book that ye believe in, and do you reject the rest? but what is the reward for those among you who behave like this but disgrace in this life? - and on the Day of Judgment they shall be consigned to the most grievous penalty. For God is not unmindful of what ye do. (Quran 2:85)

To understand the issue of befriending the Jews, Christians or people of any other faith, we have to study all the concerned verses from the Quran collectively.

Let us look at some other verses about this issue. The following two verses regulate relations with any people, regardless of faith:

As for such [of the unbelievers] as do not fight against you on account of [your] faith, and neither drive you forth from your homelands, God does not forbid you to show them kindness and to behave towards them with full equity: for, verily, God loves those who act equitably. (Quran 60:8)

God only forbids you to turn in friendship towards such as fight against you because of [your] faith, and drive you forth from your homelands, or aid [others] in driving you forth: and as for those [from among you] who turn towards them in friendship; it is they, they who are truly wrongdoers! (Quran 60:9)

From the above verses, we learn that we are only discouraged from befriending those who fight Muslims because of their religion. Now let's go back to the verse immediately after 5:51, to see if it sheds some further light on the issue.

And yet you can not see how those in whose hearts there is disease vie with one another for their good will (the hostile Jews and Christians), saying [to themselves], "We do fear lest a change of fortune bring us disaster." But God may well bring about good fortune [for the believers] or any [other] event of His own devising, whereupon those [waverers] will be smitten with remorse for the thoughts which they had secretly harboured within themselves- (Quran 5:52)

During the time of the Prophet when the Jews and Christians were in open conflict with the Muslims, there were some Muslims who were more concerned about maintaining there alliances with the Jews and Christians at the expense of the Muslim community. The above verse is referring to such situations where Muslims with doubts in their hearts will ally themselves with the enemy.

Chapter 5 Verse 57 of the Quran makes it clear again, who are not to be taken as friends; O you who believe! take not for friends and protectors those who take your religion for a mockery or sport,- whether among those who received the Scripture before you, or among those who reject Faith; but remain conscious of God, if you are (truly) believers. (Quran 5:57)

God teaches us throughout the Quran that there are righteous Jews and Christians. As such there is no prohibition for Muslims to be friends with Jews, Christians or people of any other faith who are of good character.

Quranic verses referring to the righteous Jews and Christians:
Of the people of Moses there is a section who guide and do justice in the light of truth. (Quran 7:159)

And We caused Jesus, the son of Mary, to follow in the footsteps of those (earlier prophets), confirming the truth of whatever there still remained of the Torah; and We sent him the Gospel, wherein there was guidance and light, confirming the truth of whatever there still remained of the Torah, and as a guidance and admonition unto the God-conscious. (Quran 5:46)

Verily, those who have attained to faith [in this divine writ], as well as those who follow the Jewish faith, and the Christians, and the Sabians - all who believe in God and the Last Day and do righteous deeds-shall have their reward with their Sustainer; and no fear need they have, and neither shall they grieve. (Quran 2:62)

Not all of them are alike: Of the People of the Book are a portion that stand (For the right): They rehearse the Signs of God all night long, and they prostrate themselves in adoration. They believe in God and the Last Day; they enjoin what is right, and forbid what is wrong; and they hasten (in emulation) in (all) good works: They are in the ranks of the righteous. (Quran 3:113-114)

And there are, certainly, among the People of the Book, those who believe in God, in the revelation to you, and in the revelation to them, bowing in humility to God. They will not sell the Signs of God for a miserable gain! For them is a reward with their Lord, and God is swift in account. (Quran 3:199)

Here is a very good website for Qur'an search and learning Qur'an recitation or just to listen to beautiful recitations of the Qur'an:

www.quranexplorer.com

The following verse from the Quran capsulates this issue:

O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know each other (not that you may despise (each other). Verily the most honored of you in the sight of God is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things). (Quran 49:13)

Yes, the pact of Umar required Christians in liberated lands to submit to Islamic laws which were better than the oppression and religious intolerance they had under the Byzantines and was one of the main reasons that allowed the ease of Islam to liberate the middle east, Africa, and other lands from the Romans/Byzantines and in return for their loyalty they were unmolested. This compares well with the treatment meted out to non-Christians in Christian Europe.

I hope this helps,

God bless,

Keith

Submitting....

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