By M.S.N. Menon
It is claimed by Islamists that the Prophet of Islam showed no disrespect for other religions. Is that why he asked Muslims to change the direction (Quibla) of their prayer from Jerusalem to Mecca, when the Jews of Medina refused to accept Islam? Is that why he drove the Jews out of Medina? And, later, out of Arabia itself?
Then , again, the Quran says: ?O ye who believe! Take not Jews and Christians for friends.? What is this but disrespect?
The Prophet is called the ?mercy of Allah? to the entire mankind. But the Quran says: ?Then, when the sacred months are away, slay the idolators wherever you find them.? Is this ?mercy?? And did the Prophet show any mercy to his enemy Abu Jehl, when he was captured and presented before the Prophet?
It is claimed: ?There is no coercion in Islam.? How can this be true? Was not ?jazia? a coercion? Were not public murders of apostates a coercion? And were not conversions by the threat of the sword coercion? After the death of the Prophet most Muslims reverted to their ancient faith. Were they not forced to go back to Islam by Khalif Abu Bakr?
It is said that idol worship is a deep offence in Islam. But the Haj ceremony, which is entirely pre-Islamic, is as much representative of idolatry today as it ever was.
The Quran declares the equality of all Muslims. Yet it is said that only the Quraish can be the rulers. And the mosques of Mecca and Medina are said to be ?more sacred? than other mosques. Muslim scholars admit that the emergence of monarchy and feudalism brought inequality into Islam. Prof. Rashiduddin Khan writes: ?But, alas, the Islamic tenet of equality among the Muslim fraternity is only observed at times of prayer in mosque and pilgrimage at Mecca and Medina…Otherwise, the class distinction… is as transparent among the Muslims as among other religious communities.?
Wahiduddin Khan, an Islamic scholar, says that ?Islamic living is living in peace.? But is it ? Read the following: ?Acting as Allah'ssoldier for one night in a battlefield is superior to saying prayers at home for 2000 years.? And the Prophet tells the Arabs: ?Before long, you (Arabs) will conquer many countries and cities.? So, conquest was in the Prophet'smind from the time the revelations began. And has not Islam declared perpetual war on the infidels?
The Quran repeatedly mentions Allah as ?merciful, compassionate, forgiving?. But these did not extend to non-Muslims. Allah thought of non-Muslims as the ?worst animals?. He declares himself an ?enemy of the infidels.?
Rafiq Zacharia, a reputed Muslim scholar, says that the Prophet ?gave the highest sanctity to human life?. But this is not what Muslim history records. Islam has been the cause of the massacre of millions of non-Muslims. And the Chechen Muslims brutally murdered hundreds of children in Moscow only recently.
Maulana Azad says: ?Commitment to universal humanism is indeed the essence of the Quranic message.? Is this why non-Sunni sects are thrown out of Islam? Is this why Shias are killed in Pakistan? Is this why Hindus were oppressed in India?
Prof. Rashiduddin Khan says that ?the Prophet'srecognition of human fraternity took mankind by great leaps?. What are we to make of this prettification? Islam never recognised the fraternity of mankind. It considered the non-Muslims as children of the devil, to be destroyed. The Quran divides the people into Momins and Kafirs, and the earth itself as Dar-ul-Islam and Dar-ul-Harb.
In December 2001 Mohammed al-Sabil, the Imam of the Grand Mosque of Mecca, denounced the suicide killing of innocent civilians prohibited in Sharia. And yet Islamic terrorists have taken to suicide killing as a means to terrorise innocent people.
Wahiduddin Khan says that world religions are of two kinds: those who believe in the multiplicity of reality and those who believe in the oneness of reality. He says Aryan (Hindu) religions belong to the first, and Semitic religions belong to the second. It is fantastic that a scholar like him should make such false claims! Hinduism proclaims the oneness of reality (Advaita), although it recognises the multiplicity of manifestations. Semitic religions believe in the duality of matter and spirit. The Creator and the created are two separate entities in Semitic faiths. This view was held till recently. It was Einstein who exploded the belief in dualism.
It is said that it is against the Quranic injunction to vandalise anyone'splace of worship. Is that why Somnath was vandalised seventeen times? Is that why the Shiva temple in Varanasi was destroyed?
It is true, no religion strictly follows the precepts in practices. But is it not true that Islam is somewhat very odd in this matter? It practises just the opposite of what it claims to believe.