Muslims, Not Islam, Need Reform

In her recent Wall Street Journal opinion-editorial, Irshad Manji claims that not just Muslims, but the Quran and Islam itself needs reformation. In conflating the two, Manji ignores the possibility that the owner’s manual might be fine, while the issues lie with the owner. Manji concludes by assuming, again incorrectly, that Muslims are not addressing the Muslim-on-Muslim violence or extremist’s “violent ideology.”


The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, who Manji-described Muslim leaders consider heretical, was founded on an interpretation of Islam that is practical, peaceful, and wholly ingrained in the whole of the Quran. Ahmadi Muslims champion a complete separation of mosque and state (4:60), condemn any compulsion in religion (2:257), promote universal religious freedom (22:41), believe in spiritual equality and practical equity between the sexes (4:125), preach universal salvation (2:63), and teach that war can only be in self-defense (22:40) and as an absolute last resort (4:98).

Ahmadi Muslims do believe 5:33 establishes that killing one is to kill all mankind, and demonstrate that the Qur’an defines “villainy in the land” not as political warfare, but religious persecution (22:39-40). As the Iraq war is a political war, the Quran provides no “loophole for British [extremists]” as Manji would have us believe.

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