The Peace of Islam and the Conflict of Ignorance

Peter B. GiblettStarred Page By Peter B. Giblett, 29th Dec 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/1-882upm/
Posted in Wikinut>News>Off Beat

There are too many hate-mongers in the world today and this isn't simply a case of Donald Trump's desire to register all Islamic people in the USA. It seems that part of a western agenda is the need to create turmoil across the world, create hatred focused against a billion people worldwide. The world today is living a conflict of ignorance.

Is the World Breaking Apart?


With all the hatred and conflict it seems the world is determined to follow the route to self destruction, but is that really the case or is the vision we are seeing distorted by "Hate mongers"?

It is a question we should be asking ourselves every time we see news reports as they flash onto our screens.

Islam and Peace

The word “Islam” is derived from the Arabic word for “peace” (al-Salaam), yet today there is in part of the world great fear of Muslim peoples, but in parts of the Islamic world there is also great disrespect of other peoples around the globe. At the beginning of their holy book the reader is promised to be shown the direct path to the favour of God or Allah, but that path in studying the words written in the Qur'an are words of peace and the search for forgiveness.

    "Ye who believe, all of you, enter in peace. You are warned not follow in the footsteps of Satan, for he is thine enemy" Chapter 2, verse 208.

By these words the believer is encouraged to believe in peace and seek out a life of sincerity and honesty and not be tempted by the ways of the devil. Further it is stated:

    "There is no compulsion in religion." Chapter 2, verse 256

Meaning that no person should be compelled to live by Islamic religious thought or morals. Holding a gun to a person's head and demanding they recite specific Surahs, or Verses from a particular religious text, in order that they may live, is as immoral for a Muslim as it would be for a Christian.

Submission or Surrender

Another alternative word, having the same root, is “al-Silm” which means “submission” or “surrender” and the Qur'an actually calls Muslims to submit to God or Allah, to accept its authority and obey its orders, culminating in total submission to God/Allah and serving only its supreme authority. This means that there are indeed dichotomies within the pages of the book as submission is clearly the opposite of the concept of non-compulsion.

That is one of the challenges with root words in Arabic, the root (usually compacted to the three most important consonants, in this case ("S-L-M") from which many meanings are possible, including:

  • al-Salaam
  • al-Silm
  • Islam

So it is as true that Islam has an identical root to two very diverse words and that is one problem with root word interpretations. In both Arabic and Hebrew the majority of words can be boiled down to a three-consonant root word that contains the essence of the word's meaning. It should also be noted that in Hebrew the word for peace "Shalom" is based on the same root S-L-M and this root translates as whole, safe and in-tact.

In Christianity it is frequently said that "God has a plan for our lives", and surrendering to "his will(sic)" ~ Jeremiah 29:11, means that people set aside their own plans in preference to those of this supreme being, thus Islam and Christianity share a common goal in this regard.

Judaism, Christianity, and Islam

Today we see great divergence between the three monotheistic religions of the world, yet according to Reza Aslan, an Iranian-American writer, a scholar of religion:

    Like so many prophets before him, Muhammad never claimed to have invented a new religion. By his own admission, Muhammad's message was an attempt to reform the existing religious beliefs and cultural practices of pre-Islamic Arabia as to bring the god of the Jews and Christians to the Arab people. from No God But God

Muhammad had actually witnessed the fact that pagan Arabs were barbarians, who were drunk, and their armies in battle would rape and pillage in their path, living by a very low set of moral standards. It was his aim to change this. The Qur'an states "Allah/God has established for you the same religion as enjoined on Noah and Abraham as well as on Moses and Jesus and not be divided therein," Chapter 42, Verse 13, thus tying together five of the great prophets and uniting the religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam at the same time as a consistent part of the same thread.

In other words it can be implied that the three religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam are actually tied together in a single continuum, this is also further adhered to through the term "people of the book", used in several places in the Qur'an actually refers to followers of all monotheistic Abrahamic religions that are older than Islam, which includes all Christians, all Children of Israel (including Jews, Karaites and Samaritans), and Sabians. Indeed in many writings Muhammad specifically states that the "people of the book" should always be protected, because they recognise the "God of Abraham" as the same god to which Muslims pray.

The Striving and Jihad

The word jihad means a struggle, a striving, or great effort and is sometimes referred to as the struggle of the soul to overcome sinful obstacles that keep a person from God. Islam sees it very much as an inward struggle and as a key part of submitting to the will of God or Allah. It is also accepted by many Muslims that there is a more general outward struggle for the welfare of humanity, similar to the Christian concept of seeking to save people's souls. In looking at this definition it is clear that at no point can the word be construed to include the concept of holy war. According to Aslan "there are a host of words in Arabic that can definitely be translated as 'war': jihad is not one of them" (my emphasis).

We must recognise that the word jihad has been warped and distorted by fundamentalist zealots and extremists in order to support their viewpoint. According to the Qur'an war has many interpretations, it can be considered just or unjust, but never holy. Interpreting the writing of that day can be complex because Muhammad, who at one time held the city of Medina, sought to also conquer the city of Mecca and the holy site of Kaaba Muazzama within it and to many this conquest could have been defined by followers as a holy war. but it isn't the type of war advocated by ISIS, Boko Haram, Al-Sheebab plus many other Islamic Militant or Al Quada splinter groups who seek wanton destruction of anyone who doesn't agree with their interpretation of the world.

Theirs is a war that is unholy at the core, a war that seeks to set back the unity of humanity hundreds of years. It is more akin to the thinking of groups like white supremacists such as the Aryan Brotherhood or the paramilitary Army of God that openly promotes killing abortion providers. Truth is Islamic extremist groups are not alone in fighting an insane holy war.

Terrorism and the Conflict of Ignorance

Its easy to pretend that these terror groups are the sum total of all Muslims, they're not, indeed they represent a tiny minority of the population, yet they are seen to speak for the whole of Islam. Truth is the real voice of Islam is the moderate family that prays and labours for their daily bread toiling to give their family a better future than they, their parents or grand-parents had, they are the refugees who are forced to flee tyranny. Truth is this side of Islam that have the same concerns and worries as any Christian, Hindu, or family of any other religious background, live in fear of terror groups.

Whatever they may think the person who threatens the life of another, even in the name of religion is a terrorist, they aren't holy, they are tempted by the way of the devil.

Terrorism is big news, but there is another aspect to consider, the West needs an enemy to hate, which it has had since the Russian revolution, nearly 100 years ago. The fall of the Berlin Wall of course brought an end to decades of hatred between the capitalist West and Soviet East and left a cavity in the culture of HATE, there was no longer an evil empire to hate, until Osama Bin Laden, but this is a conflict based on ignorance. The aim is to keep us focused on an enemy that is almost irrelevant while we hate nearly a billion people, those who are guilty of nothing but follow a particular faith..

Image credits

  • Peace in Arabic by joaoleieo.com
  • Quran Search by shariaunveiled.com
  • Three religions
  • Striving from a quotation published on tumblr.com
  • Jihadi Terrorist by the Huffington Post

The Author and Religion

The writer of this article opposes all religion and is an atheist. Every person should have the right to follow whatever religion they wish, including none at all, and should not feel threatened because of those choices. This article is presented because the people of the world seem constantly threatened by terrorism, particularly religious based terror, a threat which should be taken seriously, but must be examined at the same time.

Recent articles

Peter Giblett regularly publishes here on Wikinut and contributes a semi-regular column on Two Drops of Ink, a site dedicated to the improvement of writing, grammar, and prose and his own blog called GobbledeGoox. Recent works on Wikinut include:

Wikinut is great a place to share some of your own personal wisdom by adding a comment or becoming a writer, join Wikinut and write.

Tags

Christianity, Hate-Mongers, Ignorance, Islam, Jihad, Judaism, Peace, Reza Aslan, Self Destruction, Striving, Submission, Surrender, Terrorism

Meet the author

author avatar Peter B. Giblett
Author of "Is your Business Ready? For the Social Media Revolution"

Social media consultant, with C-Level background.

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Comments

author avatar Joginder
30th Dec 2015 (#)

Dear sir, you profess you are a atheist. You may be aware atheists are equated in Saudi Arabia as terrorists. This one point Trash's your article as a lot of nonsense. Perhaps its fashionable to prove your credentials to write that Islam is a religion of peace, which it is not.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
30th Dec 2015 (#)

The fact that I am an Atheist doesn't men I have an inability to read and research any subject I wish, nor write about it to the best of my ability. I do not have to prove any credentials. Sadly Joginder you have been pulled in by the culture of hate that exists in much of the west.

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
30th Dec 2015 (#)

Joginder sounds like a typical; ignorant right- winger, probably one of Jessica's echo chamber.

Fantastic article Peter. It should be required reading for every Trump supporter.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
30th Dec 2015 (#)

Thank you Steve.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
30th Dec 2015 (#)

Well explained Peter, thanks.

It is obviously the tyranny of the minority that stands out, so I feel the majority should speak out against them and make it clear they don't represent their religion at all.

Sometimes, I get a feeling they tend to remain quiet when terrorism affects others - sort of it is "good" terrorism.

I feel Indonesia shows the way as 99% are up in arms against the jihadists and back strong action.

It looks like every religion speaks about peace but the satanist among them prevail!

I cannot understand the real intentions of America. Why can't they come down from the high horse and cooperate for peace? The days of prima donna are over. There is as much divide within their society too, if not more, with the rich getting richer at the cost of the poor - siva

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
30th Dec 2015 (#)

My mother in law prayed every day, she prayed that her children would have a good life, she believed in the goodness of people, something that I have always respected, she was like the majority in her faith, peaceful and living by submitting to the will of Allah, for she was a real Muslim, one that believed in peace and goodwill to all mankind.

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author avatar spirited
30th Dec 2015 (#)

Scholarly, and informative article, very well researched and put together, Peter.

I had to agree with all of the points mentioned.

Every time I had a question it was answered in your article.

The mark of a great article, I think.

I think the current trend of a lot of people in the world wanting revenge on some people for their past sins is tied in with this too.

It's all an overkill to me, in some degrees, to punish someone for something committed in another time, fifty years ago.

If they haven't committed any crimes since, why not just let the matter lie.

The pursuit of former war criminals, for example, and the harassment of people in their eighties and nighties is too much I reckon, and a lot of it is fuelled by hatred, the need for revenge, and the concept of forgiveness has gone out of the door, forgotten about altogether, I feel.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
30th Dec 2015 (#)

Thank you Spirited for your thoughts.

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author avatar Shamarie
30th Dec 2015 (#)

Excellent article! Thanks!!!

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
1st Jan 2016 (#)

my pleasure

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author avatar onenow
1st Jan 2016 (#)

I agree that this was an excellent article. Haters will hate regardless of where they express their ignorance. Good job Peter.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
1st Jan 2016 (#)

I feel we need to put a stop to the work of the hate mongers.

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author avatar Tony
3rd Jan 2016 (#)

We all can think that Islam is a religion of peace. But the orthodox Muslim thinks that every non-Muslim deserves to be either converted or killed. This is a fact, otherwise you wouldn't find so many terrorist organizations that are Islamic, viz. Laskar-e-toiba, boko haram, jaishe Mohammad, Taliban, Isis, and many more. They exist in almost every country. They just behave secular until they become a majority. Then, we would see their true colors.

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author avatar Retired
5th Jan 2016 (#)

Tony, you need to define what you mean by "the orthodox Muslim" - there are many Muslim orthodoxies, Sunni and Shia to name but two.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
5th Jan 2016 (#)

John, this particular individual is clearly interested in applying the label "terrorist" to all Muslim people.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
5th Jan 2016 (#)

Tony, you are clearly confused as an orthodox Muslim doesn't believe that every non-Muslim deserves to be converted or killed - it is not a fact. You have been conned by the culture of hate that permeates in our society today. Those terrorist groups exist outside the orthodox religion and are condemned by most Muslims as EVIL.

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author avatar Retired
5th Jan 2016 (#)

Peter, This is an excellent piece that contains a great deal of cogent reasoning.

Unfortunately - as you say - people use religion as a sticking-plaster to hold together their own warped views and hatreds.

They may believe - wholeheartedly - that their actions are soundly based on religious precepts, but this is often not so. Their foundations are in reality a distortion or development of the original religion, and have therefore become something else - a new variant of the original that is in effect a new religion.

It is therefore perfectly legitimate to argue both that Islam is a religion of peace - which it is for many millions of people - and that it is not. The latter is true for all those who follow "distorted Islam".

Similarly, Christianity has cased to be a religion of peace for all those who have abandoned its original precepts and prefer to use it as a weapon of hate and a tool for controlling the lives of others - i.e "distorted Christianity".

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
5th Jan 2016 (#)

John, As we all know there are parts of the Bible that describe wars and the struggles of the Israelites, this doesn't make Christians or Jews terrorists.

You are right for 99.9% of its followers Islam is a religion of peace. Sadly for a very small minority they follow that distorted view of Islam their fate is facing the fiery pits of hell.

As you say there are plenty of Christians that follow a distorted view as well.

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author avatar Retired
26th Nov 2016 (#)

Great article. Totally unbiased approach and I appreciate your in depth knowledge even if you are a skeptic.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
27th Nov 2016 (#)

Skeptics are necessary in this life.

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author avatar Ray
2nd May 2017 (#)

Joginder is a Sikh and Hindu name. Sadly, some people from these great traditions have a very, very strong dislike of Islam and in fact support the likes of Donald Trump and Pam Geller; Islamophobic hate mongers and right wing extremists. Recently, there were even "Bollywood" concerts organised by certain Hindu groups in support of Trump.

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author avatar Ray
2nd May 2017 (#)

Lest we forget the extremists in India who go around burning down churches, burning Christian books, burning monks alive and raping nuns in the name of Hinduism. Also, the so called Buddhist terrorists in Burma killing en masse innocent Rohingya women & children.

Lest we forget the so called "Buddhist" atrocities in Sri Lanka & Thailand.

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