Sep 14, 2010

Jihad Against Ignorance (9-11 attacks)

Today is the first post in a series of posts that will handle the issue of the ignorance that controls the minds of a big percentage of non-Muslims in Western countries, and specifically in USA toward Islam.

I'll do my best to be simple and briefed in this series as my friends on BlogOfBlogs gave me their comments about previous posts of being so long to be read at once. Thanks Rory, Thanks Ann.

The name of the series is (Jihad Against ignorance). Please don't be frighten. Don't shut your PC, it will NOT explode.. :P
Unfortunately, the word "Jihad" is misunderstood by wide range of people in the West. They mainly remember an explosive strap, or an attack against innocents when they hear the word "Jihad". Many in the West have a negative perspective against this word. However, I have insisted to name this series as "Jihad" for two reasons..

The first reason is to relate this word to a positive action, which is Understanding a misunderstood religion and Building bridges of peaceful communication based on understanding.

On the other hand, "Jihad" is the exact title that suits the target of this series. The goal of this series is raising the awareness of non-Muslims regarding Islamic religion, its main pillars, its history, and the followers of this great religion. It's not an easy task when 49% of Americans has generally unfavorable views of Islam (Washington Post, Sep 2010). And Islam is generally mentioned in the same context of extremism, bombings and enemies of America. Plus, 63% of Americans either never heard about Islam or have very little knowledge about Islam (Gallup, 2009). In addition, nearly a third of all Americans see mainstream Islam as encouraging violence (Washington Post).
It's not an easy job to change all of this. It's hard to change the view of someone about something from negative into positive. It takes a lot of time to erase the ignorance of a person regarding something he doesn't know about.
So, when "Jihad" according to its basic meaning in Islamic perspective is "struggle or making all efforts".
For that, the title must has been "Jihad". It's a real struggle.

I was planning to start the series by talking about the "Five Pillars of Islam", but when America is remembering the 9th anniversary of the horrible attacks against the twin towers in New York, USA that caused the killing of 2,977 innocents from over 70 nationalities. And these attacks are -unfortunately- related to Muslims, so a change in the subject was a must.

The subject of today's post is a story that happened 14 centuries ago when Muslims ruled Egypt. It's about a Muslim who hurt a non-Muslim, and how Muslim authorities dealt with him.
Here you're the story..

A man from the Copts (Christians living in Egypt) came to Omar ibn al-Khattab (The 2nd Muslim Caliph) in Al-Madinah, and said, "O Commander of the Faithful! I seek refuge in you from oppression." Omar replied, "You have sought refuge where it is to be sought." The Egyptian said, "I was racing the son of `Amr ibn al-`Aas (Muslim Governor of Egypt), and defeated him. Then he began to beat me with a whip saying: "I am the Son of Nobles!""

So Omar wrote to `Amr commanding him to appear before him with his son. So they appeared before him. Omar inquired, "Where is the Egyptian? He is to take the whip and beat him!" Then the Egyptian began to beat the son of `Amr with the whip as `Umar said to him, "Beat the Son of Nobles!"
So he beat him.
Then Omar said to the Egyptian, "Now beat the whip upon `Amr's bald head!" He replied, "O Commander of the Faithful! For it was his son who beat me, and I have evened the score with him."
Upon this Omar said to `Amr, "Since when do you enslave the people when their mothers bore them as free men?" He said, "O Commander of the Faithful! I was unaware of this, and he did not come to me (for justice)."

The story need no explanation, but there are 2 points to highlight regarding the anniversary of 9-11 attacks..

*Anyone who contemplate at yesterday's situation -14 centuries ago- will observe how far Islam respected justice -with all it what justice means- towards non-Muslims. Here he is a non-Muslim who was oppressed, and was given his right by the Caliph of Muslims. There is no way then for a question like; Did Islam order Muslims to hurt non-Muslims? It's exactly the contrary.

*This story for Islamic Sharia (Legislation) is not just for fun or nonsense, that's completely wrong. One of the most important sources of Islamic Sharia after Holy Qur'an and Sunnah are the deeds of first Muslims (Sahaba) those who lived with Prophet Muhammad, and witnessed him treating others. So, if we knew that the hero of this story, Omar ibn al-Khattab, lived for 17 years with Prophet Muhammad and witnessed his deeds, we must realize then that the core of this story which is respecting non-Muslims, giving them their rights and not oppressing them is one of the fundamentals of Islamic Sharia.

If first Muslims were punishing those who hurt non-Muslims even from Muslims, how can the ordinary mind accept any claim that Islam allegedly order Muslims to kill non-Muslims! It will be just out of absurdity and deep ignorance of basis of the merciful Islamic Sharia.

Any ordinary Muslim who deeply believes in his religion, and really understand the principles of Islamic religion will strongly denounce 9-11 attacks. Following are examples of Muslim famous organizations or scholars who denounced 9-11 attacks and all attacks against innocents:

*In its fatwa, The Fiqh Council of North America declared at July 28, 2005 that ;
-"All acts of terrorism targeting the civilians are Haram (forbidden) in Islam."
-"It is Haram for a Muslim to cooperate or associate with any individual or group that is involved in any act of terrorism or violence. "
This Fatwa was endorsed by over 344 Muslim organizations, mosques and imams.
Read Fatwa and endorsing Muslim organizations and mosques HERE

*A historical launching of a Fatwa against terrorism happened on March 2, 2010 by Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri, the founding leader and patron-in-chief of Minhaj-ul-Quran International in London. The fatwa consists of 600 pages that refute most of the claims used by extremists to justify their crimes. Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri said in the press conference that:
-the suicide bombers are out of the pale of Islam.
-those who want to impose the Islamic order on others by means of force belong to the group of Khawarij who, during the Caliphate of Ali, took up arms and initiated rebellion against the Islamic state in the name of enforcing the Divine Order. The terrorists of today also belong to the same breed of Khawarij.
Read an article about the conference HERE

*Sheikh Qardawi, the head of the European Council for Fatwa and Research, an Islamic scholarly entity established in Ireland and the chairman of International Union for Muslim Scholars has denounced the attacks against civilians and encouraged Muslims to donate their bloods for the victims of 9-11 attacks. He said;
-"Our hearts bleed for the attacks that has targeted the WTC, ..."
-"haphazard killing where innocents are killed along with wrongdoers is TOTALLY FORBIDDEN in Islam"
Read an article about the fatwa HERE
Read Fatwa in Arabic HERE

-If we will add names of Muslim preachers we will say; Amr Khaled, Dr Tarek al-Suwaidan, Moez Masoud, etc and many other famous Muslim talkers.

When an extremist commits a crime, we will blame him .. not his faith.
When a driver makes an accident, we will blame the driver .. not the car!!



Mohamed - In your "Good Belief, Bad Believers" Post you stated some basic truths; I believe it was your very best effort.

On Sept 14th you have tried again to build a "bridge to understanding" comparing the 'Moderate" and "Extreme"
examples of Islam.

The Question Remains: "How can the non-Muslim tell which Imam follows
the violent path, and which hopes for tolerance and equal respect for all faiths, and which has the hidden agenda of world domination?

Which Imam in the USA holds the poisoned fruit of Taqiyya? - reb
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Mohamed said...

Snake Hunters,

Good question.

I cannot tell you if someone has a real belief or he's just looking like that, but I can tell you about 3 things..

1- If non-Muslims will doubt any moderate and peaceful action from Muslims, then there is no way for exchanged trust among both of us. The future will be a disaster.

2- You have your mind, you can judge those Muslims who really believe in Islam and want to live in peace with others as Islam tough us, and those extremists who live in blindness and have dark hearts, those who are out of the pale of Islam. You can easily see the difference between them both.

3- You have also your own mind, that can judge those who share you the same land, same language, same nation and same history who want really to accept the peaceful efforts by Muslims and want to live side by side in the same world in peace with Muslims, and you can judge also those extremists who want to mislead Americans and spread hatred against Islam and Muslims using the golden chances given to them by extremist name-called Muslims and using distorted understanding of Islamic texts. Beware of them!!

You know, after rethinking.. the best way to understand who has hidden agenda and who really want peace is listening carefully to their words and their quotes. Watch their actions. Read their books.
And you can even read the first source for their beliefs, Holy Qur'an. Is what they do and say exist in Qur'an?

I'm not an expert in marketing, but you're. However, I can understand that one of the basics of promoting a washing machine is reading its manual, so as to realize its advantages and disadvantages. A failure marketing employee will never do this. He is lazy enough to be satisfied by only looking at the machine from outside, listening to non-expert people. But will never read the manual. Will he ever succeed in promoting the washing machine?!!



Mohamed - Certain brands of quality washing machines will have a long history of useful service.
Maytag in the U.S. is a good brand.

In the bible it gives this advise:

"By their fruits ye shall know them."

If there is a long history (many centuries) of violence, mayhem and invading warriors, only then may a fair judgement be certain.

I've never heard of a Buddhist Army
'invading' anyone. Conclusion:

Buddhism Is "The Religion of Peace"

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