Islam and Tolerance
Arshad Alam, New Age Islam
It is not also
enough to say that when Prophet of Islam went to Medina, women sang in his
honour. It is also not enough to cite Hadiths where it is stated through Aisha,
the Prophet’s wife that women used to come and sing in her house in the
presence of the Prophet. What is required is an attempt to break this scholarly
consensus which argues that music and singing is forbidden in Islam. Doing so
does not require an exegetical exercise of sifting through the pages of Islamic
literature, but to argue boldly and consistently that Islam needs to be one
with the fundamental marker of contemporary modernity: that of expanding choice
and freedom. It is up to these Mullahs and overtly sensitive Muslims to decide
whether they want Islam to become an ossified, irrelevant doctrine or whether
they want it to be a flag bearer of inclusivity and freedom....
We may feel
appalled by the Islamic State and dismiss and condemn them as “Kharijites,” but
what about the apologies for the very philosophy that they are acting on? Are
they not found all over Pakistan? Or sitting in the next cubicle at your
workplace? Religious zeal and puritanism sound like nice ideas but they need to
understand that the fabric of the society cannot remain intact without the
necessary tolerance for the faith of each other....
Ahok’s opponents seem to have concluded that the surest path to victory
is to pander to the sectarians. Both Mr Baswedan and Mr Yudhoyono attended dawn
prayers with Mr Shihab at the latest rally, even though moderate Muslim groups
had told their members to stay away. Mr Baswedan, who was once feted as a model
of tolerance, also gave a speech at FPI’s headquarters in January alongside Mr
Shihab, who has twice been convicted of hate speech and used to be shunned by
We need to take a hard look at our Blasphemy Law and discuss whether,
as a society, we want to have a law that allows the imposition of a majority’s
subjective religious right at the expense of others’ basic rights with little
or no limitation, and a society whose culture of rightful subjective imposition
is unchallenged and unmoderated. Hopefully, the answer is no....
A number of new factors, however, are contributing to an increasingly
intolerant trend. One has been the rise of Salafism, a conservative, often
puritanical, movement within Sunni Islam originating mainly from Saudi Arabia.
In Southeast Asia, despite certain differences, the term is frequently used
interchangeably with Wahhabism, a branch of the Islam often associated with
ISIS and Al-Qaeda....
Malik Muhammad Ashraf
become hostage to the self-proclaimed righteous guardians of the religious
tenets as interpreted by them against the spirit of Islam, which believes in
building social harmony, peace and protection of the minorities living in an
At least in the
popular imagination, Sindhi culture is seen as the last vestige of religious
and cultural syncretism that was once spread all over Pakistan, including
Jhang. For example, Jhule Lal, a deity of the Sindhi community, is revered by
Muslims and Hindus alike. Lal Shahbaz Qalandar a Muslim mystic who tapped into
Shaivistic asceticism and translated it into a Muslim ethos...
plural legal system is similar to those of India, Switzerland, Canada, Belgium
and Spain in providing a mixture of individual and collective forms of recognition.
Indonesia’s mass Islamic organisations are similar to those of Senegal, Egypt,
and Turkey as well as to mass Christian organisations in Northern Europe and
The use of
blasphemy laws is linked to rising religious intolerance. In recent years
hard-line Islamists have become increasingly assertive, railing against
deviants, heretics and their ilk. Muslim parties in parliament have pushed laws
against alcohol, pornography and sexual minorities. Yet it is not at all clear
that these moves have widespread support….
Our entire religious discourse revolves around worshiping the name of
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) rather than following in his footprints. The whole life
of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was an epitome of tolerance, and that too with
everyone including the non-believers. Not everyone embraced Islam neither was
it required of the scheme of God when Islam was revealed. ....
The issue of whether ‘Alī or Abū Bakr should have succeeded the Prophet is completely historical and absolutely irrelevant to our world today. Any attempt to use it to take a view on today’s world is an attempt to manipulate history to serve present interests and/or to take the world 14 centuries back in time. In both cases, it is ultimately about exercising power and control. There is nothing godly or religious about playing out this difference of the past in today’s world......
S M Hali
Islam lays great emphasis on religious tolerance but currently, it is at its lowest in many Muslim societies. Islamic State’s (IS's) destruction of churches and massacre of members of the Shia faith has also tarnished the image of Islam. In Pakistan too, certain segments of society show a lack of tolerance towards other sects of Islam and other religious and ethnic minorities....
In Pakistan, stirring religious hatred is unlawful. The law clearly states that any act or speech which instigates sectarian odium, whether inadvertently or wilfully, can lead up to a possible prison sentence for nearly seven years. Yet, there are hundreds of these clerics on the loose, who incite hatred every day....
S. Binodkumar Singh
"Al-Qaeda in Indian Sub-Continent (AQIS) is taking responsibility of killing Ananta Bijoy." AQIS, in another message posted on justpaste.it declared: "We want to say to atheist bloggers! We don't forget and we will not forget others who insult our beloved Prophet Muhammad and Allah. Another file closed! Stay tuned for next target....
Ananda Bijoy Das
Ananda Bijoy Das was killed just two days ago in Sylhet, Bangladesh for simply saying, writing and expressing his opinions. Bangladesh had a strong secular tradition which is now being eroded. I was always proud of the fact that Bangladesh hadn't fallen to the scourge of Islamic fundamentalism….
K. Anis Ahmed
In the long and ongoing contest between an intolerant conception of Islam and a rationalist idea of what it means to be Bengali Muslim, the bloggers sadly are not the first victims. Sceptics, including prominent literary figures like Daud Haider in the 1970s and Taslima Nasreen in the 1990s, have faced strong Islamist backlash and have had to leave the country for good....
Ananda Bijoy Das
The group have been marked for death by Hefazat-e-Islam, quite an effective arm of Jamaat-e-Islami, the religious-political organisation that wants Bangladesh to become like Pakistan, the country it broke away from. Ananda Bijoy Das has been hacked to death, meeting the same fate. He was walking out of his home in Sylhet when four people chased him and clobbered his head with machetes....
She continued to condemn the mainstream media who continue to "severely criticize Muslims and their religion" and to use them as scapegoats. Ironically, during her time with PEGIDA, Oertel had condemned the media for not being critical enough of Islam, immigration and the rising numbers of asylum seekers in Germany....
In conversations with scholars, many pinpointed the frailty of institutions and economies compared to those of other world powers as the source of intolerance in the Arab world. “We are weak,” says Mohamed Farag, a journalist from a Muslim family who describes himself as agnostic. “We need something to protect ourselves from the outside world and Islam is the only option we have....
The Prophet of Islam faced much difficulty and opposition in his own birth- place, the city of Mecca. He was eventually forced to migrate to Medina. But in spite of all the opposition and even physical torture that his followers suffered in Mecca, Prophet Muhammad always approached the unbelievers of Mecca with tolerance....
Md. Asadullah Khan
Devout Muslims are always shocked to hear that the name of their faith, which means submission to Allah, can summon up such images of violence. Despite all the past visions of Saracens battling Crusaders, today's confrontations, as we see, is not a devotional conflict but a clash between perceptions of reality....
Bangladesh, historically a country of sedate Muslims who, more or less, believed, till recently, in peaceful coexistence of many faiths and many beliefs, has started losing the collective tolerance bit by bit....
Every religion preaches forgiveness, but there comes a time when forgiveness is no longer the answer. There is no room for forgiveness, as far as justice is concerned. The finger that pulls the trigger and the hand that throws the acid or grips the knife must be cut....
the past decade, headlines from the Middle East have reintroduced Westerners to
terms from centuries past. “Heresy,” “blasphemy,” “apostasy” — these are some
of the charges that the radical Salafist group known as the Islamic State
invokes when it executes its enemies, sometimes by crucifying or burning them
alive. Some Muslim governments, including United States allies, also mete out
harsh punishments for similar offenses. The liberal blogger Raif Badawi was publicly
flogged in Saudi Arabia last month on a charge of heresy, which he allegedly
committed by criticizing the oppressive Saudi religious establishment.
Indonesia’s religion problem is part of a broader regional trend. In nearby Brunei, the government has banned at least eight “deviant” religions and fines schools for teaching any non-Islamic religious subjects. Similarly, Malaysia has banned 56 “deviant” interpretations of Islam, including Ahmaddiyah, Islamailiah, Shi'a, and Bahai. In Myanmar, the government has dealt harshly with Rohingya Muslims and Buddhist religious leaders……