Sadly, no more than 2 days after I introduce an addition to my blog, International Literature, do we face yet another domestic terrorist act. It serves as a reminder that awareness of other cultures is more important than ever.
We’re living in a scary world where no race or culture feels safe, and thoughtless people threaten not just the lives of the citizens of the West, but blacks, whites, hispanics, and Muslims everywhere too. I profess the Muslim faith and can contend that no one claiming terrorism in the name of Islam, is someone who shares Islam with me. It says so in the literature of the Arabs.
It’s important to note that this was never meant to be a religious blog, however, like many readers’ devotion to the Bible, a lot of my love for literature came from classical Islamic literature. As I said in an earlier post, Holocaust and WWII literature begs the question is there ever a time when killing an entire group people simply because the color of their skin or religion is justified? In this case, we must ask, is killing justified because of a person’s sexual orientation? Or is it pure unadulterated evil? I would definitely say this massacre was a form of “evil” in the modern world. In light of these happenings, I thought there was no better time than now to discuss with you some Arabic Islamic literature against violence.
I generally divide Arabic literature into four categories:
- Golden era,
- and Islamic.
There are probably more genres, but unfortunately I am not currently well-versed in them. I see Islamic Arabic literature as categorized into:
- Quran (primary text),
- hadith (secondary texts),
- scholarship (law, theology),
- and commentary (cultural or contemporary perspectives).
All over Arabic texts you will find literature rejecting acts of violence on the innocent. Today I will share with you just a few of those texts.
Let’s visit some oft-repeated controversial statements of the Quran:
The first being:
O you who believe (in Allah’s Oneness and in His Messenger (Muhammad SAW)! ….Fight against those who (1) believe not in Allah, (2) nor in the Last Day, (3) nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger …And the Jews say: ‘Uzair (Ezra) is the son of Allah, and the Christians say: Messiah is the son of Allah. That is a saying from their mouths. They imitate the saying of the disbelievers of old. Allah’s Curse be on them, how they are deluded away from the truth! 9:27-30
These verses are often used to promote the propaganda that Islam is violent. First, Islam is not a person, it is a philosophy of life. Second, the claim that Islam promotes violence? This is untrue. These verses specifically speak about the Battle of Tabuq in 9 AH / 630 AD. It was not Muslims who pursued a Holy Battle, it was Muslims uniting to defend themselves from the armies of a powerful Rome. It was the Roman Empire who started this war. These verses do not promote a modern war with the West. You can find more on the history of these verses at www.discover-the-truth.com.
Further, the text of The Quran says:
Fight in the way of Allah those who fight you but do not transgress. Indeed. Allah does not like transgressors….And kill them wherever you overtake them and expel them from wherever they have expelled you, and fitnah is worse than killing. And do not fight them at al-Masjid al- Haram until they fight you there. But if they fight you, then kill them. Such is the recompense of the disbelievers. 2:190-191
When Islamophobes cite these verses, they claim this is a direct order to kill people. They fail to note the verse right before it: Fight people, if they pick a fight with you. This verse only promotes raising a fist or a gun or sword if the other person first picks one against you. It is a verse promoting self-defense, not mass killings of civilians who choose a gay lifestyle you disagree with. Also, a verse quoted often today, but not often enough by the Mainstream Media is the verse in the Quran which says: “ whoever kills a soul… it is as if he had slain mankind entirely.” 5:32. To kill one person in Islam, it is as if you have killed all of humanity.
Also, here are a few statements compiled in the books of hadith (narrations):
Allah helps those who help others. Whoever alleviates the the lot of a needy person, Allah will alleviate his lot in this world (Muslim)
Oppression is forbidden (Muslim)
There should be no harming others nor reciprocating harm. (Ibn Majah)
Do not get angry. (Bukhari)
Behave well. If you do fall into a minor sin, follow up a bad deed with a good deed and behave well towards people (Tirmidhi)
As you can see, there are endless statements in the books of Arabic Islamic texts that promote the welfare, and well-being of humans. Whoever decides they’re killing innocents in the name Islam, are only acting in their own self-interest and hurting many others by way of their warped theology. One-point-six billion Muslims around the world don’t agree with your militant ideology. True strength lies in living with people, understanding the global world we live in, and serving others, not carrying out a juvenile dream of personal glory.
I hope that this exposed you to some Islamic Arabic texts and that you enjoyed this post. Please pray for the families of the victims and donate blood if you can. Thanks for reading and I will see you later this week for some book reviews.