Holy Qur’aan Speaks: Religious intolerance breeds contempt

Umari Stambuli

Why all the negative attitude towards Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him).

Religious intolerance breeds contempt.

During the centuries of the Crusades, all sorts of slanders were invented against the Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him), which were manifesting as a result of the religious intolerance at the time.

Every effort was made to discredit his mission and even his own character and personality! It was as though a specific strategy was employed to try and frighten the masses from even wanting to know who this Great Messenger of The Almighty was! A powerful propaganda mill was set up and meticulously fed to stoke the flames of contempt and hatred which were set alight by the very people who claimed to promote and propagate religion! However, Divine will paved the way for the truth to be brought out and with the birth of the modern age, marked with intellectual development, religious tolerance and freedom of thought, there was a great change in the approach of non-Muslim authors and scholars in their portrayal of his life and character (from about the turn of the 18th Century). The writings and acknowledgements of countless non-Muslim authors and scholars regarding Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him), bear testimony to the reality of the greatness of his mission and his own personal character and conduct. These non-Muslims obviously had the opportunity to read and engage in an objective study “for themselves” which resulted in their observance of due “justice”.

History repeating itself?

Unfortunately, as we have entered the new millennium, we seem to find history repeating itself whereby religious intolerance has reared it’s ugly head once again and sadly the very same practice and conduct of spreading propaganda is abound. All it requires is to go a step forward to discover the greatest reality about Muhammed (peace be upon him) and that is, his being the true and the last Messenger (Prophet) of God Almighty for the whole of humanity. In spite of all the acclaimed objectivity and enlightenment in this current millennium, there seems to be very little or no sincere and objective attempt by the larger society to understand the Prophethood of Muhammed (peace be upon him).

The need to observe justice

It is so strange that very glowing tributes are paid to Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him) for his integrity and achievement, from their own midst, but his position and rank as a true Messenger and Prophet of God has been rejected explicitly and / or implicitly. In fact overt and covert attempts to portray contempt and blasphemy against this Great Messenger of The Almighty seem to have gained momentum and one can only be compelled to think that the world is going backwards in terms of religious tolerance and freedom of thought and worship! It is here that a searching of the heart is required, and a review of the so-called objectivity is needed.

In the next few articles, we will highlight just a few quotations from some of those authors and scholars, by way of example and to provoke thought and to encourage further reading.

For further information on Islam or a free copy of the Holy Qur’aan, please contact:

Majlisul Ulama Zimbabwe, Council of Islamic Scholars

Publications Department,

P.O. Box W93, Waterfalls, Harare

Tel: 04-614078 / 614004, Fax : 04-614003

e-mail: [email protected]

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