الأحد، 3 فبراير 2013

Famous misconceptions about Islam/Ahmed Rouas


1/2 The famous misconceptions
about Islam
 Ahmed Rouas
It is probably not a secret that one of the most famous misconception about Islam is the Jihad, It is not unfamiliar to find people in Western media ranting that Jihad’s goal is to spread Islam, and from this fallacy came the famous propaganda that Islam was spread by sword! And that people converted to Islam on the knife point!!.   This rumour however, easily vanishes and rapidly evaporates as soon as it is exposed to the reality beams!
Those misled people don’t know that the Holy Quran made it crystal clear that:
Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error: whoever rejects evil and believes in Allah hath grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold, that never breaks. And Allah heareth and knoweth all things.
Al Baqara 256 translation Yusuf Ali   
So, Let us ask this direct question: what is Jihad in Islam?                                             Jihad literally means struggle, working hard, do one’s best, to endeavour, to strive, to fight in a legitimate cause.These are some of synonyms of Jihad, they have been all used in the Holy Quran. For example: In Surat Loqman Quran says:                 Now [among the best of righteous deeds which] We have enjoined upon man [is] goodness towards his parents; yet [even so,] should they endeavour to make thee ascribe divinity, side by side with Me, to something which thy mind cannot accept [as divine], obey then, not: [for] it is unto Me that you all must return, whereupon I shall make you [truly] understand [the right and wrong of] all that you were doing [in life].Muhammed Assad 
  We have enjoined on man kindness to parents: but if they (either of them) strive (to force)thee to join with Me (in worship) anything of which thou hast no knowledge, obey them not. Ye have (all) to return to me, and I will tell you (the truth) of all that ye did. Yusuf Ali
  We have instructed man to honour his parents, but if they endeavour to make you associate with Me something about which you have no knowledge, do not obey them. It is to Me you will return and I will inform you about the things you did.  Aish Bewely.                    "[Revere thy parents;] yet should they endeavour to make thee ascribe divinity, side by side with Me, to something which thy mind cannot accept [as divine], obey them not; but [even then] bear them company in this world’s life with kindness, and follow the path of those who turn towards Me. In the end, unto Me you all must return; and thereupon I shall make you [truly] understand all that you were doing [in life")   Mohammed Assad.                         "But if they strive to make thee join in worship with Me things of which thou hast no knowledge, obey them not; yet bear them company in this life with justice (and consideration.                                                                          "But if they try to make you associate something with Me about which you have no knowledge, do not obey them. Keep company with them correctly and courteously in this world Yusuf Ali
From the above-mentioned translations we find out that the Holy Quran used the same source of the word Jihad to mean : to strive to struggle.to try hardly,  Now we know that Jihad is a neutral word that could mean fight and same time mean other meaning as I stated earlier
Some mainly western writers however, translated Jihaad as a Holy war! This is a big fallacy. There is no such concept as holy war in Islam at all. A war as it is known to humans can’t be considered holy in Islam
The most uses of Jihad in the Holy Quran was for fighting the Muslim’s various enemies; mostly pagans of the Arabia, Byzantines who used to  occupy the western part of Arabia and Palestine who mobilized themselves to eradicate the Deen of Islam in the Arabia after the ¨ Prophet Mohammed PBUH asked them to answer the call of Islam and enter in peace, They amassed in their tens of thousands and decided to conquer the whole Arabia has not the Prophet aborted their plans and nipped it in the bud. And the Persian invaders who killed the Prophet’s messenger  who carried the peaceful message to them. And to fight any tyrant who is persecuting and oppressing innocent people
So, al Jihad is mainly to defend Islam and Muslim against all those deadly enemies who wasted no chance trying to uproot it.                                                                              We can more conveniently decide that Jihad is a defensive war in the broader scale of defence. To understand fully the position of Jihad inside Islam one has to first to have a hint of  what Islam is all about.Not meaning  of course to fulfil the answer to this essential question
The word Islam came from the Asslama which means submit. therefore Islam means submission to God rules and laws. Not only on the ethical level, but on all other various aspects and levels of life. For Islam is a comprehensive religion, that aims at organizing and guiding  human life on all levels. Islam came to afford guidance in every aspect of human life. This is very clear  in Islamic legislations and in the conduct of the Prophet Mohammed.     The Holy Quran said:                                                                We sent aforetime our apostles with Clear Signs and sent down with them the Book and the Balance (of Right and Wrong), that men may stand forth in justice”al Hadid 25Translation Yusuf Ali
We sent Our Messengers with the Clear Signs and sent down the Book and the Balance with them so that mankind might establish justice. Aicha Bewely
This is an essencial declaration that sums up the final objective  of all Allah’s messages concluded and sealed  with Islam.:” …), that men may stand forth in justice. and establishjustice and equity . Because it won’t do good for humanity to believe in a religion merely on the ethical and moral level, and then indulge in various secular and  none-religious or  laic activities implemented and imposed  by a secular state. That would totally contradict the very basis of that religion and undermine its message. In such case, religion would have no real or fundamental effect on human life. And hence, humanity will continue to tumble down in misguidance, and this is not the case with Islam. Islam interferes in every aspect of life, let it be economical, social, marital , martial, political or whatever. The basic teachings and legislations of  all these is in the Holy Quran and thousands of authentic Hadiths of the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) gathered in many Hadith encyclopedias. Islam came with both Aqida and Sharia . Aqida means creed and beliefs, while Sharia is a set of laws and legislations that govern the individual relations within the community and state, and also govern the nation as a whole in its relation with its rulers, and the rulers relations with other nations in the glob. All these are discussed abundantly in thousands of jurisprudence books. The Islamic Fiqh is spectacularly   all-inclusive that it is almost impossible to come up with any legal situation or any case, no matter  how complicated it might be , without finding the basis of its solution in it. Among these laws and legislations came the principles of al Jihad. It is absolutely not a Vague concept or an undefined task ready to be adopted by any Muslim at any given time! It is rather a very restrictive and a well-defined and completely surrounded by heavy conditions far superior than any warfare  laws known to man even in the 21stcentury
Al Jihaad can only be considered legal when a legitimate and responsible Islamic state declared it, and urged its people to join its rows as part of its effort to defend the nation territory or to help in stopping blatantly aggression and injustice. No one has the right to fight in the name of Jihad without the permission of the head of the Islamic state, except when the enemy raided the Muslim country territory and occupied it, in this case, no permission is necessary to launch a repulse. That is why invaders of Muslim land are facing an unavoidable defeat in both Iraq and Afghanistan because a lot of fighters feel free of any permission from their countries, and they will continue to flow through boarders to these occupied Muslim countries 
Among the essential and necessary tasks of  Jihad is meant to end hostilities and Fitna or chaos,  and force law and order. The Holy Quran says
And fight them on until there is no more Tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah. but if they cease, Let there be no hostility except to those who practise oppression
And fight against them until there is no more oppression and all worship is devoted to God alone. And if they desist-behold, God sees all that they do. M Assad
 And why should ye not fight in the cause of Allah and of those who, being weak, are ill-treated (and oppressed)?- Men, women, and children, whose cry is: "Our Lord! Rescue us from this town, whose people are oppressors; and raise for us from thee one who will protect; and raise for us from thee one who will help.Chapter Annissa 75 
So, Jihad is not a substitute for war, Jihad is to exert one’s utmost effort in  promoting a cause. A just one.  All those barbaric acts of violent groups who indulged themselves in an indiscriminate  terrorists attacks in open public places such as markets, underground stations and Mosques in Iraq and in Pakistan, civilian aeroplanes  had no link to Jihad in Islam  and those who commit those heinous crimes are violating the most basic rules  of Islam. Bombing worshiping places is an atrocity that undermines the basics of Jihad in Islam which states that churches ,synagogues and monasteries and other worship places shouldn’t be attacked. Those violent groups who attack churches and even Mosques of other sects and groups  have indeed hijacked Islam and offered an excellent service to the deadly enemies of Islam by such coward acts either against innocent civilians in the west or even against innocent civilians in Islamic countries. "Those who would hinder (men) from the path of Allah and would seek in it something crooked: they were those who denied the Hereafter."
And those who commit those crimes against innocent people are in deed doing just that and they can’t be true believers in the judgment Day even if they claim to do so because their crimes disclaim their parole            

    To be continued 

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