Sign in or
A) What is Islam and who are Muslims?
See Discover Islam page here.
The poster begins:
Islam simply means to achieve peace—peace with God, peace with oneself, and peace with the creations of God—through wholly giving oneself to God and accepting His guidance.(For ease of identification, direct quotations from the Discover Islam posters will be shown in bold print.)
According to a large number of Muslim sources, Islam does not mean "to achieve peace." Islam means "submission" or "surrender." According to the Muslim Student Association at USC, this issue is first in a list of "Ten Misconceptions of Islam":
Misconception 1: Islam is 'the religion of peace' because: the Arabic word Islam is derived from the Arabic word "Al-Sallam" which means peace.The explanation:
The root word of Islam is "al-silm" which means "submission" or "surrender." It is understood to mean "submission to Allah." In spite of whatever noble intention has caused many a Muslim to claim that Islam is derived primarily from peace, this is not true... A secondary root of Islam may be "Al-Salaam" (peace), however the text of the Qur'an makes it clear that Allah has clearly intended the focus of this way of life to be submission to Him.To drive home the point, consider three English translations of the Qur'an itself provided on the Web by the same USC Muslim Student Association. The authors of these translations, Abdullah Yusuf Ali, Marmaduke Mohammad Pickthall, and M. H. Shakir, were all Muslims. At the USC site, it's easy to search for all verses that contain the word "Islam." As the search results show, sometimes the authors chose not to translate the word Islam to English, but often they did, translating the word not to "peace" but to "submission" or "surrender." Sometimes "(to Allah)" is also appended. For example, in verse 3.85, Shakir writes, "And whoever desires a religion other than Islam, it shall not be accepted from him, and in the hereafter he shall be one of the losers." In the same verse, Pickthall does not use the word Islam but instead writes "Surrender (to Allah)." Yusuf Ali writes "Islam (submission to Allah)." Other examples can be found in verses 43.69, 46.15, and 2.132.
Finally, according to Islam Vision,
The Arabic world ‘Islam’ simply means ‘submission’, and derives from a word meaning ‘peace’.Farther down, the poster also asserts:
For a fifth of the world's population, Islam is not just a personal religion, but a complete way of life.The implications of this statement are staggering. As echoed without apology on BeConvinced.com (apparently run from Quebec), citing one Dr. Muhammad Al Alkhuli from Islamway.com:
Islam is a religion, but not in the western meaning of religion. The western connotation of the term "religion" is something between the believer and God. Islam is a religion that organizes all aspects of life on both the individual and national levels.These unequivocal statements about Islam leave little wiggle room for Muslims such as Mustafa Akyol, who believe that some of the harshest elements of Islam—such as the death penalty for those who leave Islam—can be shed: "We Muslims should get rid of those politically needed but religiously irrelevant rules that still persist in the religious texts of Islam." Unfortunately, the bold assertions from Discover Islam and BeConvinced reinforce the challenges laid out in author Robert Spencer's reply to Akyol:
Islam organizes your relations with God, with yourself, with your children, with your relatives, with your neighbor, with your guest, and with other brethren. Islam clearly establishes your duties and rights in all those relationships.
Islam establishes a clear system of worship, civil rights, laws of marriage and divorce, laws of inheritance, code of behavior, what not to drink, what to wear, and what not to wear, how to worship God, how to govern, the laws of war and peace, when to go to war, when to make peace, the law of economics, and the laws of buying and selling. Islam is a complete code of life.
Islam is not practiced in the mosque only, it is for daily life, a guide to life in all its aspects: socially, economically, and politically.
When he asserts that “the real consideration was political and, by time, this turned into a religious rule as well,” he seems to be assuming a distinction between the political and religious spheres that never existed in the Islamic world until it was introduced from the West in relatively modern times. This distinction is still strenuously rejected by most Islamic authorities. Because Sharia, including its political and societal aspects, is considered to be the very law of God, all too many Islamic scholars share the view of Tunisian theorist Mohamed Elhachmi Hamdi: “Islam should be the main frame of reference for the constitution and laws of predominantly Muslim countries.”
Thus Muslims may be unmoved by Akyol’s argument that the death penalty for apostasy be rejected because it was originally instituted on political, not religious grounds. I share his hope that in the future this may provide peaceful Muslims a pathway to rejecting the death penalty for apostasy, but a great deal of work would first have to be done to secure widespread acceptance among Muslims of a Western-style distinction between the sacred and secular spheres—a distinction that, under pressure from jihadists, is in fact in retreat everywhere in the Islamic world today.
Continue to the next poster.
Latest page update: made by kamala
, Nov 14 2006, 3:56 PM EST
(about this update
About This Update
Edited by kamala
- complete history)
Keyword tags: None
More Info: links to this page
|Started By||Thread Subject||Replies||Last Post|
|Anonymous||Al Salam!||0||Nov 24 2006, 11:46 AM EST by Anonymous|
Showing 1 of 1 threads for this page