Myths and Misconceptions About The Religion of Islam

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  • Presented by: Malik Khan and Anjum AliPresented to: EncoreprenoursFebruary 2, 2016At Muslim Community Center, Chesterfield VA

  • Ten Misconceptions about Islam and MuslimsThe Quran teaches Muslims to kill Christians and Jews Muslims cannot have Christians and Jews as friendsIslam does not tolerate other religionsWomen have little or no rights in Islam

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    The word Islam refers to a religion or a way of life. The term Islam is derived from the Arabic root s-l-m, which generates interrelated words, such as peace, submission, and obedience. Islam is commonly translated as Peace through submission to God that implies both, belief in and a commitment to God through following His commandments. Notice that Islam is not named after a particular person, but rather reflects an idea that followers of Islam embrace. Islam is viewed by its follower, not as a new religion, but as a continuation and confirmation of the primordial monotheistic message. Although Islam is commonly described as a religion it is more accurately a complete and comprehensive way of life which addresses important aspects of our life such as clothing, diet, family life, as well as social, economic, and political aspects.

  • Ten Misconceptions about Islam and MuslimsJihad means to kill for GodMost Muslims are Arab or Middle Eastern and speak ArabicMuslims and Jews have never lived in peace

  • Ten Misconceptions about Islam and MuslimsAmericans and overseas Muslims have not condemned 9/11 and other heinous crimesSuicide bombings are the way to get to heavenMuslims hate the West. ..and there are many more misconceptions that should be responded to

  • Misconception #1: The Quran teaches Muslims to kill Christians and JewsThere are verses that encourage the Muslims to engage in combat, however, it is important to know the frame of referenceWhen Islam was introduced in Makka, it was inhabited by pagan Arabs who were idolaters. They were extremely hostile to the Monotheistic message of Islam. They killed Muslims, they took away their homes, they put the Muslims in a restricted area (more like a concentration camp), took away their wealth etc. This is who the Quran is referring to. The word used in these verses is Qital. The translation within the proper frame of reference would be to engage in combat with Pagan Arabs.The Quran refers to the Christians and Jews as People of the Book. Individually the Quran refers to the Christians as Nassara (helpers of Jesus pbuh ) and Yehud or Bani Israel for the Jews.NOTE: the verses have been taken completely out of context.

  • Misconception #2: Muslims cannot have Christians and Jews as friendsA verse in the Quran says Muslims should not have Christians and Jews as Awliya. Some translations use the word friends. In Arabic wali is singular, and awliya is plural. But it does not mean friend, it means spiritual protector. The Quran allows Muslims to marry Christians or Jews. How could it tell us that they can be spouses but not friends?Note: Not logical and Incorrectly understood.

  • Misconception #3: Islam does not tolerate other religionsFrom the Quran: La ikraha fid-deen There is no compulsion in religionlakum deenakum wal yadeen to you your religion and to me mine wa laqad karramna bani Adam which means We (God) have bestowed dignity on the descendants of Adam meaning all of mankind.

    NOTE: While some Muslims are not practicising this, it should not be generalized to include all Muslims

  • Misconception #4: Women have little or no rights in IslamMarriage (She has the right to choose her husband) & Divorce (She can initiate divorce proceedings)Islam allowed prenuptial agreements 1400 years agoRight to dispense her wealth as she pleases (after marriage i.e.)Right to own Property, and through inheritance & marriageRaising a family is extremely important in Islam (btw husbands have an equal responsibility in raising a family. Husbands must bear financial responsibility)Must maintain balance, if handling a career & family at homeMuslim women are forced to wear the hijab and other Islamic clothing. NOTE: Women in some countries do live subservient lifestyles. But this is not because of Islam, its the culture (which does not make it right).

  • Misconception #5: Jihad means to kill for GodJihad is derived from the word Jahd which means to struggle. The best jihad according to a tradition narrated from Prophet Mohamad the best Jihad is to speak the truth in front of a tyrant or an oppressive ruler. Prophet Mohammad encouraged Muslims to better themselves, to be better human beings, to control our desires. He is recorded to have said when he came back from the battlefront, that we have come back from a lesser jihad to a higher jihad.

  • Misconception #6: Most Muslims are Arab or Middle Eastern and speak ArabicThere are close to 1.5 billion Muslimsonly 15 to 20% are ArabsMost of the overseas (80 to 85%) Muslims reside either in Southeast Asia or Southwest Asia. Indonesia and Bangladesh have the largest Muslim populationsA sizable population of Arab Christians live in the Middle East:7 million Christians live in Egypt45% of the Lebanese population is Christian.

  • Misconception #7: Muslims and Jews have never lived in peaceHow many Arab-Israeli wars were there prior to the creation of Israel? None! Were the Jews treated better under Muslim or under Christian rule? The Golden Age of Jews was under Muslim rule in SpainArab Muslims ruled Spain from 711 CE to 1492 C.E., almost 800 years. The Coexistencia when all three faiths - Christianity,Islam, and Judaism not just coexisted but actually thrived. During WWII Bosnian Muslims gave refuge to Jews who were fleeing Nazi Germany.

  • Misconception #8: Americans and overseas Muslims have not condemned 9/11 and other heinous crimesThis is a false allegation against US Muslims as well as Muslims overseas. Condemnation of 9/11 attacks from US and Muslims abroad were immediate. Muslims in the US have condemned and continue to condemn these heinous crimes repeatedly on Radio, TV and the newspaper.If the media does not reflect Muslim condemnation, it does not mean it is not happening.

  • Misconception #9: Suicide bombings are the way to get to heavenContrary to popular belief, suicide is not acceptable or permissible in Islam. Renegade organizations consider suicide attacks (World Trade Center, Paris for example) as martyrdom. This is against Islamic tenets.Killing innocent people is the worst crime: .If anyone kills an innocent person, it is like killing the entire humankind (Quran 5:32)

  • Misconception #10: Muslims hate the WestMillions of refugees pouring into Europe is proof that this is not true. If you have the chance to visit a Muslim country, just stop by the US Embassy or Consulate. The Immigration lines are huge. Overseas Muslims might not agree with US governmental policies or European governmental policies, just as we do sometimes. But it does not mean they hate the West. However, renegade and terror organizations are a different story.

  • Additional Misconceptions:. ..and there are many more misconceptions that should be responded to All Muslims want Sharia law to be imposed upon non- Muslims in the US. (This is ludicrous!)Islam does not support Democracy ( ditto)All Muslims are recent immigrants

  • Verses from other scripture what if taken out of context?Numbers 31: 17-18 Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman who has known man intimately.Deuteronomy 7:1-2 when you defeat them, you shall utterly destroy them Deuteronomy 20:10-17 Do not leave any thing alive that breathes... Luke 19:26-27 But these enemies of mine who did not want me to reign over them bring them here and slay them in my presence.

  • Shukran!Thank you for attending the program todayIt was a pleasure to meet with all of you

    Contact us for more questions.

    Malik KhanAnjum AliAnnette Khan

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    The word Islam refers to a religion or a way of life. The term Islam is derived from the Arabic root s-l-m, which generates interrelated words, such as peace, submission, and obedience. Islam is commonly translated as Peace through submission to God that implies both, belief in and a commitment to God through following His commandments. Notice that Islam is not named after a particular person, but rather reflects an idea that followers of Islam embrace. Islam is viewed by its follower, not as a new religion, but as a continuation and confirmation of the primordial monotheistic message. Although Islam is commonly described as a religion it is more accurately a complete and comprehensive way of life which addresses important aspects of our life such as clothing, diet, family life, as well as social, economic, and political aspects.