Term Paper: Islam Is Not a Violent Religion

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Islam

For all the destruction and bloodshed inflicted upon the world by Muslim fanatics, Islam is, in essence and in its original form, not a violent religion.

Burhan, Faysal. The Prophet of Islam and the Jews: Basis of Conduct, Acceptance,

Respect and Cooperation. Institute of Arabic and Islamic Studies, 2007. Retrieved on November 21, 2007 from www.islamic-study.org/Islam%20%Denounce%20Violence.htm

http://www.islamic-study.org/Islam%20%Denounce%20Violence.htm

The author writes about the basis of conduct as taught by the Koran. The Islamic faith is founded on certain principles. These include free will and choice, peaceful dialogue, acceptance and understanding, disapproval of terrorism and non-violence. Every Muslim is bound to conduct intellectual dialogue with others to establish and improve relations. Islam teaches Muslims to be kind, tolerant, and understanding and to develop bonds with all people. The Koran teaches that the purpose of creation is for people to deal with one another with kindness and that piety is the best virtue. It condemns intolerance, prejudice and bigotry. It also opposes discrimination according to color, creed, national origin and religion. The Muslim is supposed to exhibit this conduct in all of his affairs. Islam teaches proper behavior, control of anger, patience, justice and care towards one's spouse and other family members, the young and the old, friends and enemies, and the environment. A Muslim is required to be wise, sensitive, humble and considerate. The lack of tolerance towards those who are non-Muslims is, under Islamic law, a grave offense.

Islam most certainly disapproves of terrorism, the author continues. It considers the human soul sacred. It does not tolerate bloodshed, prejudice or discriminatory practices or behavior. Indiscriminate killing is expressly forbidden by Islam. It does not in any way approve of killing any race of innocent people, whether Christians, Jews or any other religious group. Prophet Muhammad himself clearly taught so.

Khan, Maulana Wahiduddin. Non-Violence and Islam. Symposium on Islam and Peace,

Non-Violence International and the Mohammad Said Farsi Choir of Islamic Peace:

American University, 2007

The Islamic religion teaches non-violence. The Koran says that God does not love violence. Violence or "fasad" is action, which produces disruption of the social system and loss of lives and property. God thus loves non-violence. He hates violent activity, which destroys lives and property. The entire spirit of the Koran resonates with this principle. It encourages patience above all Islamic virtues and promises immeasurable reward for it. A patient action is non-violent. It considers this "hadith" of non-violence superior to the violent method. By the law nature, everything associated with violence is bad and everything associated with non-violence is good. It is everyday experience that violent activities create hatred among men and non-violent activities conduce to love. Violence destroys while non-violence builds and preserves. Enmity comes out of violence, while friendship develops from non-violence. Negative values derive from the method of violence in dealing with others, while positive values grow out of the method of non-violence. The method of violence creates problems for people, while the method of non-violence allows them to seek out opportunities. Hence, violence equates with death, while non-violence equates with life.

The Koran and the "hadith" ascribe great importance to jihad. Jihad means struggling to the utmost, but the struggle is non-violent. The Koran's interpretation of jihad is an ideological struggle to win people's hearts and minds, using the tenets of Islam. Opposed to jihad is qital, which is violent activism. The Prophet of Islam observed non-violence all his life. The non-violent method has a distinct advantage over the violent method in that nothing is wasted. The opportunities can be explored to their best extent. On the other hand, the violent method dissipates activities in armed conflicts. Militant actions disrupt social traditions. The non-violent method or approach can be initiated and prolonged or preserved without incurring any damage on tradition. Improving or replacing system with the use of violent activism has been found to be counter-productive. One coup d'etat can only be followed by another, no matter how justifiable the objective. The acceptable revolution must allow gradual and beneficial changes and this can only be through non-violence.

Islam has attained great success with the use of non-violent methods. One example is the Prophet's adoption of pacifism or non-violence in the first 13 of his 23 years of prophethood. In the 13 years in Mecca, there were many issues, which could have led to clashes and bloodshed. Yet the Prophet confined himself to the peaceful spread of the words of Allah. In the same first 13 years of dawah work, men of high moral distinction join the Islamic fold and later formed the history of Islam. These men included Abu Bakr, Umar, Usman and Ali. Another example was the near-confrontation between the Quraysh leaders and the Prophet in Mecca. Rather than react and retaliate, the Prophet secretly migrated to Medina. Migration is another form of non-violent activism. This peaceful option led to the establishment of a powerful center of Islam in Medina. The history of Islam would not have evolved if he took the other option. His opponents, however, decided to wage war against the Prophet. But in response, he accepted all their conditions and offered a 10-year peace treaty. It was a distinctive victory in Qur'an. The peace treaty was the first of a series of activities, which ultimately led to the conquest of Mecca and the entire Arabia.

The Prophet distinctively taught in plain words that, despite tyrannical and unjust rule, Muslims should not use swords against them. They should prefer to escape to the mountains and by all means avoid political clash and confrontation. His dogma was so clear the Muslim ulema formed a consensus, which outlawed insurrection.

The author asserts that Islam as an eternal religion is a peaceful religion. Islam is fundamentally based on peace and non-violence. Modern times and thought have rejected communism, Nazism and fascism for their use of violence. Islam, in principle, the author says, is a religion of nature. As such, it has rejected violence from the start. Instead, it upholds peace. Records show that it has played an important part in the development of humanity. Muslim today seem far off from the expectations of their faith. Their aggressive or violent attitude itself accounts most of all for their being displaced in modern times. Present-day Muslims are short-tempered and get easily provoked when things do not go the way they think or want. While not all Muslims are violent, those who are not do not disown or condemn those who are. The involved Muslims may be directly responsible, but the Islamic shariah itself makes uninvolved Muslims indirectly responsible. Muslim religious secular leaders are specifically responsible for the current violent approach of modern-day Muslims. They teach their young how to respond with violence to problems they face. The violent approach of their ulema is at the root of their violent mentality, which, in turn, has alienated them from others everywhere. This shows that they no longer observe the original ideal of universal brother taught by their faith.

The author points out that gleaning from the bloody acts of Muslims today, Islam is thought to be a religion of violence. But Verse 5:32 of the Koran specifically declares that "whoever kills a human being should be looked upon as though he had killed all mankind. If Muslims would stop their violent activities, others would be able to appreciate what Islam really teaches in its original form.

Samir Khalil Samir. Islam Condemns Violence? AsiaNews CF, 2005. Retrieved on November 21, 2007 at http://www.asianews.it/indexphp?l=en&art=4055

The author comments that the Islamic world does not follow clear principles but contradicts itself. Muslims say that Islam is peace and tolerance but evidence says otherwise. The Islamic faith intermingles with politics, even in the Koran. It has not even determined whether violence is legitimate or not in itself. Those who claim that Islam is a religion of peace are really opportunists who detest and fear a strong anti-Islam in the West. They come to the defense of the politics of Muslims and always find something to condemn in the West. Islamic violence grows out of the mix of religion and politics. Religion and politics should be separated. This is something the West can do by refusing Islamic requests made in Europe on head coverings, acceptable meat, freedom of Islamic teaching and freedom of mosques. The requests are really only a form of terrorism, cultural terrorism, that is. They are aimed at culturally "islamisizing" citizens.

Omar, Rashied. Islam and Violence. The Ecumenical Review: World Council of Churches, April 2003

The series of dramatic and bloody world events at the beginning of this century points to and reinforces the already extensive perception that Islam is in some way linked with terrorist violence. In order to achieve greater accuracy of perception, the author writes about the need to analyze the teachings of Islam in the Koran, the conduct of the Prophet, and the current global political situation. Analysis shows that the religious dimension, Islam, is the root of contemporary terrorist violence. For their part,… [END OF PREVIEW]

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