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Hatred against non-Muslims unwarranted ‘Islam is a religion of peace, Quran stresses saving lives’

 I continue to believe that Islam is a peaceful religion which calls for the protection of human life and to respect the sanctity of life. However, in an age where Jihadism, fanaticism and outright extremist interpretations of the Holy Quran are rife, one needs to bring to light anti-terrorism themes in the Quran.

In fact, an attentive reader of our holy book finds in the Quran and in Islamic Feqh great emphasis on protecting human life; whether Muslim, Christian, Jewish, or Buddhist lives. What follows is a brief discussion of how the Quran actually calls for the protection of human life and how it does not condone acts of terror in the name of Islam. For example, in the Quran a Muslim is required to protect human life: “And do not kill the soul which Allah has forbidden [to be killed] except by [legal] right. This has He instructed you that you may use reason” (6:151).

The reference in the Quran to “legal right” means any process of law practiced in an official Islamic court, and not on a fabricated field of Jihadism! No individual has the right to interpret the Quran according to their personal views; but a Muslim has to follow the most acceptable and usually moderate interpretations.

Moreover, the Quran does not condone violence against any human being; for “whoever kills a soul unless for a soul or for corruption [done] in the land — it is as if he had slain mankind entirely. And whoever saves one — it is as if he had saved mankind entirely.” (5:32). Our fellow human beings, especially “people of the book,” Christians and Jews occupy a sanctified position in traditional Islamic views.

Being “people of the book,” Christians and Jews share with Muslims the concept of revelation, similar moral values and rituals. A well-read Muslim understands easily that one cannot label Christians and Jews as “infidels.” Those who are ‘infidels” or Kaffers were few groups of pre-Islam Arabs who fought against early Muslims. Our Christian and Jewish brothers and sisters are our fellow humans and they deserve all respect.

Furthermore, if Islam is the religion of peace; it is expected of Muslims to be peace-loving people who “do not let the hatred of a people for having obstructed you from al-Masjid al-Haram lead you to transgress. And cooperate in righteousness and piety, but do not cooperate in sin and aggression. And fear Allah; indeed, Allah is severe in penalty [sic]” (5:2). Good Muslims do not transgress against non- Muslims and should continue to deal righteously with their fellow humans; for surely “Allah orders justice and good conduct and giving to relatives and forbids immorality and bad conduct and oppression. He admonishes you that perhaps you will be reminded.” (16:90).

God in the Holy Quran calls upon all “mankind, indeed we have created you from male and female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another. Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you” (49:13).

Real Muslims are those who continue to believe that they are an integral part of the human family; therefore, one does not harm their sisters and brethren.

Follow me on Twitter @khaledaljenfawi

By: Khaled Aljenfawi

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