Militant Islam

Question

I am a Muslim from India. I want to know why has the history of the followers of Islam been so bloody and continues to be so. It pains me to see my fellow followers of the faith getting killed every single day, somewhere in the world.Is acceptance of change not a part of Islam? Is the message of peace not understood and propogated by our religious leaders? Is forgiveness not a bigger force compared to vengeance in our religion?


Answer

I fail to understand how deeds of the adherents of a religion render that particular religion evil. If you want to learn the cause of the (so called) aggressive nature of the Muslim you need to study their history. It is not essentially true that they have always been unjustly aggressive. To forgive is a great virtue but none of the societies in the civilized world condones that culprits be forgiven and that the killers be set to walk free. Therefore, if a state declares war against another it is not always unjust. Don't you see other societies and countries fighting for what they believe to be just causes? Do you think that these are only Muslims who introduced wars?

I totally agree with you on the present circumstances where people are out to fight in individual groups and violating the principle guidance of Islam itself. But I would like you to study the Islamic stance on Jihad objectively making distinction with what Islam teaches and what the Muslims do.

Therefore to say that Muslims are essentially aggressive and that Islam promotes militancy would not be justified. This notion indeed is an outcome of lack of understanding on all parts. Some of the Muslims interpret the Qur'anic directives wile stripping them off their context and hold it legal to kill those who are polytheists in their opinion. This interpretation of the texts has gained acceptance among many schools of thought in the Muslim world. Most of the Muslims tend to believe that they enjoy position of divine agents who can punish the adherents of the other religions if they do not accept Islam or agree to live the life of submission. This is a misinterpretation of Islam and has arisen by not understanding the specific position of the Prophet (sws) and his Companions.

As for the Non Muslims they try to understand the wars fought against the rejecters of the Rasul of Allah in the light of the present attitude the Muslims have adopted which of course is erroneous. Present interpretation of the Islamic stance should not be related to the circumstances during the birth of Islam. It is imperative that the Muslims should interpret the Qur'anic verses related to the issue in their proper context considering various facts which render some of the directives specific for the Messengers of Allah. For a detailed discussion on the issue please refer to the following article: Understanding the Quran: A fundamental Premise (http://www.monthly-renaissance.com/novqur20.htm)

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