Islam Is the true Islamic religion a violent one?
Background Information • The ultimate goal for every Muslim is “Islam” the state of peace, of submission in the certainty and power of Allah • The word Islam is derived from the word SILM, which means reconciliation, peace, submission, and deliverance • Islam considers humanity to be the most honourable of all creatures, and terror is not only a crime in itself but among five others as well • Many people believe that the people who commit the acts of terror in our world are people who follow the Islamic faith • The truth is that the Islamic faith does not promote terrorism and these people are not TRUE followers of the true Islamic religion
Research Questions • What are the true teachings of the Islamic religion? • What are the verses in the Qur’an that are often taken out of context and why? • What is the definition of ‘violence’? • Who are the people who are followers of the true Islamic religion? • Is the true Islamic religion a violent one? • Is the true Islamic religion one of peace and tolerance? • What are the reasons why individuals believe that the true Islamic religion is violent? • What makes these same people believe that the acts of violence are a result of the true Islamic religion? • Extremists; who are they and what do they really stand for?
Thesis Statement The Islamic religion is not a religion of violence because jihad does not claim ‘holy war’, Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance and Islamic extremists do not correctly characterize all Muslims.
Argument #1 – Jihad does not claim ‘holy war’ • Jihad, means “striving” or “struggling”, which is required of Muslim’s to defend themselves • There are different types of ‘Jihad’, the first is ‘jihad bil nafs’, which means “striving within the self”, the second is ‘jihad fi sabil Allah’, which is “striving in the path of Allah” • The phrase ‘holy war’ was coined by the West in its struggle against the Muslims during the time of the Crusades (a war instigated by the Church for religious gain) • If a war is what the jihad was intended to be then more appropriate Arabic words would have been used, such as harb (war) or ma’araka (battle) • Muslims who strive for Allah through violence should not be praised for their obedience and devotion, but punished for their misuse and disrespect of jihad • Jihad is not a command to die for Allah, but a command to live for Him
Arugument #2 – Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance, not one of violence • “Take not life, which Allah has made sacred” – Qur’an – Surah 6:151 • Islam considers all of humanity to be the most honourable of all creatures • Verses from the Qur’an are often taken out of context and are used as an excuse for violence • The Qur’an is a holy text which persuades peace
Argument #3 – ‘Islamic Extremists’ do not correctly characterize all Muslims • Extremists – people or groups of people that are prepared to resort to violence to achieve their goals • What terrorists stand for completely violates the true teaching of the Qur’an • These groups of people do not represent true Islam, but for themselves • These terrorists use the Islam religion as an excuse for their actions
Counter Arguments The Islamic principal of jihad is ‘holy war’ which encourages violence The Qur’an promotes violence The extremists are a part of the Islamic religion
Bibliography • Bannerman, Patrick. Islam in Perspective. London Ontario. 1998 • Boer, Jan H. Muslims: Why the violence? Belleville Ontario. 2004 • Capan, Erguin. Terror and Suicide Attacks. New Jersey. 2004 • Einfeld, Jann. Is Islam a Religion of War or Peace? San Diego: Greenhaven Press. Inc, 2005. • Friedman, Lauri S. What motivates Suicide Bombers? San Diego: Greenhaven Press. Inc, 2005. • Lawrence, Bruce B. Shattering the Myth. Princeton University Press. 1998
Radu, Michael. Islamism and Terrorist Groups in Asia. Mason Crest Publishers. 2006 • Roleff, Tamara L. Extremist Groups: Opposing Viewpoints. San Diego: Greenhaven Press. Inc, 2001 • Ruthven, Malise. Islam: A very short introduction. New York Clarendon Street. 1997 • Winter, Paul A. Islam: Opposing Viewpoints. San Diego: Greenhaven Press. Inc, 1995.