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Is Islam really the religion of peace their followers claim it to be?


Alan McDougall
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It is everything but a religion of peace... Just look at it's founder - he raided merchant caravans, raped women captured in war (encouraging his men to do the same) and even forced his son to divorce his wife so he could have her for himself... Not to mention executing people for blasphemy or apostasy. These are all characteristics of a street gang boss, not a spiritual teacher such as Buddha or Jesus.

 

Of course Muslims like to say that their religion is that of peace - but that's because they use the word "peace" in a different context than we do. Islamic "peace" can only achieved when there is nothing left but Islam - all it's enemies are either killed, converted or forced to pay tribute and "feel themselves subdued".

Edited by SlavicWolf
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Is Islam really the religion of peace their followers claim it to be?

 

Looking at the daily news contradicts this claim don't you think?

 

What's the metric for deciding this?

 

Is it peaceful, as compared to other religions, like, say Christianity? Is Christianity considered to not be a religion of peace, because some follower kill in the name of the religion?

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Christianity is a more peaceful religion because Jesus was a good man. He wasn't a rapist, a misogynist and a mass murderer like that Muhammad fella.

 

Of course the Old testament is filled with violence even more than Muslim texts but Jews and Christians can reject that violence as simply historical anachronism while Muslims can't.

Edited by SlavicWolf
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!

Moderator Note

Let's try and steer clean of the racist slurs and try and stick to quantifiable facts. Starting with a way to measure levels of violence would probably be a good start. SlavicWolf, this is especially directed to you. Claiming that Christianity is more peaceful because Jesus was a good guy is a ridiculous and rather meaningless assertion in the context of this thread and you'd do well to avoid it in the future.

Do not respond to this mod note in-thread.

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What exactly are we trying to measure? Whether Muslims as people are peaceful or whether Islam as an ideology is peaceful? The vast majority of Muslims are peaceful people - but the same could be said about the vast majority of Germans during the period between 1933-45 - they were peaceful but the ideology that their country was based at wasn't.

Edited by SlavicWolf
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Is Islam really the religion of peace their followers claim it to be?

 

Looking at the daily news contradicts this claim don't you think?

 

If you're using the daily news as a metric, we're all warmongering savages. Except maybe Canada.

 

I think you're going to find that it's the radicals and fundamentalists in any group that grab headlines; they're the loudest and scariest. The news is a business now, completely, and I doubt they truly feel the need to accurately inform us these days. If a few wackos can be made to sound dangerous and unpredictable, we're not likely to change the channel, and that's what it's all about with the daily news.

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The biggest mistake people make is assuming that Islam is an otherwise peaceful ideology that is misrepresented by radical. In fact it is totally the opposite - it's peaceful and tolerant Muslims who misrepresent Islam, not the violent ones. The violent ones have Quran, hadith and sira on their side, peaceful ones have nothing. Trying to make Islam a peaceful ideology is like trying to make National Socialism an ideology tolerant to Jews - the only way to make Islam peaceful is by rejecting a large part of it's scriptures* and that's of course impossible because it would mean that you put yourself above God, that you know better than him what is good and what is bad.

 

Regarding levels of violence - just compare accusations made against Muslims by Christians to those made by Muslims against Christians. Christians accuse Muslims of bombings, beheadings, mutilations and they have the evidence to back their claims. On the other hand the harshest accusations that Muslims can bring against Christians are accusations of things such as "hate speech", "racism", "mosque vandalism", "prejudice" etc. One Muslim has managed to concoct a laughable list of what he's called "Christian terrorist attacks" - a list consisting mostly of attacks by drug cartels or nationalist organizations. The vast majority of the perpetrators of these attacks weren't even remotely religious (he's been long since trying to purge it off the web, fortunately web archives are all-knowing).

 

*There ais a group of people called "Quranists" or "Ahl Al Quran" who reject hadith (mostly due to being disgusted by it's violence) but they are treated by mainstream Muslims in roughly the same way as Jehovah's Witnesses by mainstream Christians.

Edited by SlavicWolf
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On the other hand the harshest accusations that Muslims can bring against Christians are accusations of things such as "hate speech", "racism", "mosque vandalism", "prejudice" etc.

 

Abortion clinic shootings and bombings, the Crusades …

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The biggest mistake people make is assuming that Islam is an otherwise peaceful ideology that is misrepresented by radical.

 

Can you give me more than just your opinion? Do you have any examples you can point to where Islam is better represented by the extremists who typically make the headlines because of their radical-ness? Because I can point to the fact that Christian extremists also grab headlines with some of their radical stances, and they do so based on their interpretation of the Bible and what it compels them to do as Christians.

 

Northern Ireland has felt one interpretation of Christianity. The Ku Klux Klan in the southern US teaches another interpretation. Some Christians are able to justify killing abortion doctors. The anti-gay stance among those with extreme Christian views has led to many deaths.

 

Rather than targeting Islam, isn't it true that almost any belief system can be warped and abused by taking either a literal or fundamentalist approach to it?

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1. ;/ Yeah, people who attacked these clinics were Christians... But compare the scale - since 1970s there have been several such attacks. Less than 20 people have died. Since 9/11 alone Muslims have perpetrated more than 20000 terrorist attacks. More innocent lives were lost in just a single day on September 11th than during more than 30 years of war in Northern Ireland.

 

2. The Crusades were just a counter attack - Eastern Roman Empire pleaded European royals for help after having their asses whipped at Manzikert - note that by 1095 when the first crusade began Muslims had conquered roughly two thirds of the Christian world and began raiding European coastlines for slaves and raping nuns coming to Palestine. The Crusaders committed a series of atrocities but they weren't ordered by any higher authorities... And today no one praises them....

 

Muhammad raided unprepared and unarmed villages and then executed entire male populations and enslaved women. He assassinated people using lies and wicked deception to make them lower their guard just because they wrote poems critical of him - and there isn't a single word of apology from any Islamic cleric. As he is supposedly the "perfect man", his actions are viewed as absolutely legitimate by all scholars of Islam. The very fact that the most perfect man on Earth felt threatened by mere poets proves how insecure he was.

Edited by SlavicWolf
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I think Islam should be dismissed as a barbarous desert superstition.

 

Am I allowed to express this opinion?

It depends on what the mods think about it - I reject it not because it it superstitious (all religions are to some degree) but because it is an ugly, morally aberrant ideology - people should be allowed to express what they believe but freedom has it's limits - if someone practices a religion claiming that people who don't accept it are "filthy" "deaf, dumb and blind", a religions whose founder encouraged his followers to fight unbelievers until they either die, convert ot pay the jizya and "feel themselves subdued" -then it's good to at least keep an eye on them.

 

I feel deeply disillusioned by the policy of European politicians west of Oder river... They let Islamic clerics preach their hate filled religion in Europe (of course Christians in Muslim countries don't have such a right) and instead of being grateful these scholars demand the imposition of sharia law in EUROPE - where they are nothing more than guests, they issue rulings claiming that it's permissable to rape European women because they don't cover themselves properly. and they open bigoted Islamic schools that teach religious apartheid... Enough.

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The mods probably secretly agree with you. Europeans and Americans resent this barbaric Islamic incursion into Western Civilisation.

 

But it's not permitted to say so. Therefore these posts will result in punishment.

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The mods probably secretly agree with you.

No, not so much.

 

Europeans and Americans resent this barbaric Islamic incursion into Western Civilisation.

There's some truth to this, though.

 

But it's not permitted to say so.

 

No. There's this fallacy I've seen in various places that certain attitudes are all just people being politically correct — that they secretly agree with you, but are succumbing to the PC pressure, and I don't think it's true in general and know it's not true in my case.

 

People do awful things in the name of religion. As far as I'm concerned, much of the rest is simply rationalizing the religion you like at the expense of one you don't like, often by moving the goalposts or deploying the tu quoque fallacy, as can be seen in this thread.

 

Therefore these posts will result in punishment.

Some posts will result in punishment because attacking people based on prejudice — which can lead to exclusion of the targeted people — is not the attitude we want to foster on this site, and it's not limited to religion.

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What's the metric for deciding this?

 

Is it peaceful, as compared to other religions, like, say Christianity? Is Christianity considered to not be a religion of peace, because some follower kill in the name of the religion?

 

My thread is about Islam in this day and age and is not meant to compare it to Christianity, although admittedly Christianity was guilty of the most hideous crimes in the past. Of course if other members want to compare Islam to other faiths it is their right to do so!

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swansont... I gotta remind you that argumentum ad numerum is a major logical fallacy. Acts of brutality are evil no matter how many people worship the criminal - what would happen if the followers of Anders Breivik founded their own cult and grew so big that in the end they would be considered one of the world's major religions? Would it make Breivik any less evil? Would you then condemn any act of criticizing Breivik "prejudice"?

 

Tehre is no need to engage in fallacious reasoning... The only thing you need to do is prove that Muhammad was NOT a rapist, a mass murderer, a liar and, assassin and a pedophile - and I will renounce all my claims and admit that Islam is a peaceful, tolerant religion. I can bring you examples from canonical Islamic literature (hadith and biographies of Muhammad).

My thread is about Islam in this day and age and is not meant to compare it to Christianity, although admittedly Christianity was guilty of the most hideous crimes in the past. Of course if other members want to compare Islam to other faiths it is their right to do so!

Except Nazism and Communism no ideology got even remotely close to the level of violence by Muslims... Not even Christianity. Just mention 90 mln people killed in India over the course 1000 years (including 300,000 killed on a single day), between 50 and 80mln black slaves from Africa (two thirds of whom died en route to Muslim lands) and about 3mln Hungarians and 2mln Russians uprooted from their country within just 150 years (taken as sex slaves or forcibly enlisted to Ottoman army)

Edited by SlavicWolf
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If you're using the daily news as a metric, we're all warmongering savages. Except maybe Canada.

 

I think you're going to find that it's the radicals and fundamentalists in any group that grab headlines; they're the loudest and scariest. The news is a business now, completely, and I doubt they truly feel the need to accurately inform us these days. If a few wackos can be made to sound dangerous and unpredictable, we're not likely to change the channel, and that's what it's all about with the daily news.

 

Well news today is about the goings in the Muslim majority states below, which have reasonable stability and at are at peace and which are in a state of flux and uprisings?

 

See list below!

 

Note those with # before Muslim Population means that country is in a state of unrest, more ### indicates even more unrest, even civil war.

 

Note those with ? before Muslin Population means I am not sure if there is any unrest and will check!

 

 

http://www.religionfacts.com/islam/places/top_50.htm

 

 

Country

% of Muslims

Muslim Population

 

Mauritania

99.9%

?3,083,772

Maldives

99.9%

?348,756

Western Sahara

99.8%

#272,461

Somalia

99.5%

##8,548,670

Turkey

99%

#68,963,953

Iran

99%

#67,337,681

Algeria

99%

?32,206,534

Afghanistan

99%

###29,629,697

Yemen

99%

##20,519,792

Tunisia

99%

##9,974,201

Oman

99%

#2,971,567

Comoros

99%

?664,534

Djibouti

99%

?471,935

Morocco

98.7%

?32,300,410

Iraq

97%

###25,292,658

Libya

97%

##5,592,596

Pakistan

96.35%

#156,491,617

Saudi Arabia

95.7%

?25,281,642

Tajikistan

95%

?6,805,330

Jordan

95%

#5,471,745

Qatar

95%

?819,898

Senegal

94%

#10,459,222

Azerbaijan

93.4%

?7,389,783

Egypt

91%

###70,530,237

Mali

90%

###11,062,376

Niger

90%

#10,499,343

Gambia

90%

#1,433,930

Uzbekistan

89%

?23,897,563

Turkmenistan

89%

?4,407,352

Indonesia

88.22%

?213,469,356

Bangladesh

88%

#127,001,272

Syria

88%

####16,234,901

Guinea

85%

?8,047,686

Kuwait

85%

?1,985,300

Bahrain

85%

#585,093

Palestine

84%

###3,159,999

Kyrgyzstan

80%

#4,117,024

United Arab Emirates

76%

?1,948,041

Lebanon

70%

###2,678,212

Albania

70%

?2,494,178

Brunei

67%

#249,481

Sudan

65%

##26,121,865

Malaysia

60.4%

##14,467,694

Sierra Leone

60%

#3,610,585

Burkina Faso

55%

#7,658,922

Chad

54%

?5,306,266

Nigeria

50%

##64,385,994

Eritrea

50%

#2,280,799

Ethiopia

47.5%

#34,700,310

Kazakhstan

47%

?7,137,346

Edited by Alan McDougall
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My thread is about Islam in this day and age and is not meant to compare it to Christianity, although admittedly Christianity was guilty of the most hideous crimes in the past. Of course if other members want to compare Islam to other faiths it is their right to do so!

 

You didn't answer the question, though. By what metric do we decide the answer? Without that, it's just an excuse to bash the religion.

swansont... I gotta remind you that argumentum ad numerum is a major logical fallacy.

Why do you need to remind me of this? I haven't made such an appeal.

 

Acts of brutality are evil no matter how many people worship the criminal - what would happen if the followers of Anders Breivik founded their own cult and grew so big that in the end they would be considered one of the world's major religions? Would it make Breivik any less evil? Would you then condemn any act of criticizing Breivik "prejudice"?

That would be a non-sequitur. The OP asks if Islam is a religion of peace, and does not mention Muhammed at all. You were the one who moved those goalposts.

 

 

Tehre is no need to engage in fallacious reasoning…

Indeed. Please stop it, then.

 

 

The only thing you need to do is prove that Muhammad was NOT a rapist, a mass murderer, a liar and, assassin and a pedophile - and I will renounce all my claims and admit that Islam is a peaceful, tolerant religion. I can bring you examples from canonical Islamic literature (hadith and biographies of Muhammad).

Massive failure of logic, stemming from the previous goal-post-movement. Surely this isn't the only way to show whether or not it is a religion of peace, and surely movements can take on attributes not shared or displayed by the founder. Or else we are left with the conclusion that e.g. India is a completely peaceful country because Gandhi was a pacifist and preached non-violence.

 

Except Nazism and Communism no ideology got even remotely close to the level of violence by Muslims... Not even Christianity. Just mention 90 mln people killed in India over the course 1000 years (including 300,000 killed on a single day), between 50 and 80mln black slaves from Africa (two thirds of whom died en route to Muslim lands) and about 3mln Hungarians and 2mln Russians uprooted from their country within just 150 years (taken as sex slaves or forcibly enlisted to Ottoman army)

tu quoque, again.

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Islam, I'm sure was born of the needs of the time coupled with the, fundamental, truths of humanity; Islam was born of war and so reflects that; as does Christianity to a lesser extent. It's peaceful intent, though, has, no doubt, been diminished through an age of misunderstanding the original lingual intent.

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Simply saying a religion is peaceful does not indicate if it is or not. The answer is what the scriptures ACTUALLY says and how these scriptures are interpreted by its followers. Though really if a religion is good or not is subjective. If you find something severe others might find it necessary for some reason. If its under my logic I believe everyone should be treated equally and that we should respect each other and that while one person might have certain limitations in some instances they should be allowed to try and if proven incapable should pursue something which better suits there abilities. I also believe people should take personal responsibility for there actions and take preventive actions apposed to panicking and destroying whatever end result they get. I believe if there is not a logical reason for your action than your action is wrong.

Edited by Marshalscienceguy
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On the other hand the harshest accusations that Muslims can bring against Christians are accusations of things such as "hate speech", "racism", "mosque vandalism", "prejudice" etc.
Whether Muslims are well informed about Christian bad stuff or not, we who are familiar with Christian violence in, say, America, can come up with harsher accusations than that - the overt Christianity of the Air Force and other military command that rained hell on Iraq and set up torture prisons all over the planet in W's (overtly Christian President) war was noted at the time, with this kind of person and topic familiar to many of us: http://www.commondreams.org/views04/0520-03.htm.

 

In recent domestic history we have the Ku Klux Klan and its heirs, the anti-abortion movement, that kind of thing.

 

Islam is not an attractive religion - those like me who fear fundamentallist monotheism have much to fear from Islam - but it's not the only violent creed on the planet.

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1. ;/ Yeah, people who attacked these clinics were Christians... But compare the scale - since 1970s there have been several such attacks. Less than 20 people have died. Since 9/11 alone Muslims have perpetrated more than 20000 terrorist attacks. More innocent lives were lost in just a single day on September 11th than during more than 30 years of war in Northern Ireland.

 

This type of argument isn't going to help you at all. You cherry-pick one type of Christian attack, abortion clinics, and then tell me it conflates with all the bloodshed in the Middle East since the 1970s?!

 

My thread is about Islam in this day and age and is not meant to compare it to Christianity, although admittedly Christianity was guilty of the most hideous crimes in the past. Of course if other members want to compare Islam to other faiths it is their right to do so!

 

But it's through comparison that we see many religions have their fundamentalists, and the deeds of those fanatics are usually what the public hears about, and forms their opinions of the religion based on them. If you say Islam is an inherently violent religion based on it's teachings, then you need to examine what other religions are teaching their followers.

 

I'm not saying everyone who follows Islam has peaceful intentions. Because I can't say that about any religion. So it seems like you're just bashing the parts of Islam you don't like, which is understandable, but you're trying to indict the whole religion to do so. Why is this? Why do you think this is acceptable logic?

 

Well news today is about the goings in the Muslim majority states below, which have reasonable stability and at are at peace and which are in a state of flux and uprisings?

And you blame this all on Islam? You don't think it has anything to do with democratic reform, or the fact that many of these countries have recently undergone changes in political leadership? How much of this unrest has been engineered by the West to keep these countries from banding together?

 

 

 

 

There was a study done at Texas Tech that showed, while religious beliefs themselves didn't lead to an increase in domestic violence in the home, fundamentalist Christian homes were much more likely to be violent.

 

http://courses.ttu.edu/jkoch/Research/Koch%20Ramirez%20Religion%20and%20Partner%20Violence%20Final%20Feb%2009.pdf

Second, Christian fundamentalism is positively associated with two of the three measures of partner violence. The greater the level of Christian fundamentalist beliefs among our respondents, the more likely they were to approve of violence and to use violent behavior in their intimate relationships.

 

 

This supports the concept that it's fundamentalists who find violence an acceptable solution more often than others. The news, being a business, owned by other businesses, is giving lots of air time to fundamentalists all over the world. There is certainly violence out there but a great deal of the news coverage of it is sensationalized, and I don't trust it fully. Countries have been led into war using artfully placed media, and many corporations get rich from unrest.

 

I'm not religious at all, but I would be offended at having my religion's perception tarnished by fundamentalists and the media who give them their voice. Terrorism relies on marketing, and in this business model the terrorists don't have to pay for advertising.

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Also one should note that it is not necessarily religion that causes the issues, though it is a convenient rallying point for extremists to push radical agendas. The more important thing to look at is stability of a region and wealth (as well as distribution thereof). And of course there is a huge bias in terms what we see in Western media.

Just to pick an example, remember the Rwandan genocide in 1994 with nearly a million deaths? While it was an ethnic cleansing, the killings were sanctioned by parts of the church (Rwanda is about 93% Christian). Essentially they created a moral climate in which these killings were justified (Timothy Longman, Christianity and Genocide in Rwanda New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010)

 

The same arguments are made for Islam and e.g. honor killings. In a similar note one could decry Christian influence in outlawing homosexuality.

 

Bottom line is that religiosity can and is being abused to legitimize atrocities and no religion has a monopoly on it. Their overall policy change over time but it always depends on who the persons in power are and what they agendas may be.

Something that media like to tell us is that it is the others who do the atrocities. What history (and psychology and sociology) has taught us is that it is everyone of us, given the right (or wrong) circumstances and excuses.

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