Source: stabroeknews.com | Maqsood Ahmad
I’ve been watching the news about the Paris attacks and their responses. Someone rightly said that if you respond to ignorance with ignorance it will only cause more ignorance. The problem is twofold. Some of the Muslims’ reaction to “blasphemy” is completely un-Islamic, while insulting/mocking is being carried out in the name of freedom of speech. Both of these issues need to be addressed accurately.
Islam does not say to punish persons who blaspheme the Prophet Muhammad. There are numerous incidents in the life of Prophet Muhammad, where non-Muslims committed blasphemy against the Prophet Muhammad, but they were not killed or punished. As Muslims, we believe that only Allah would punish them. Now, the question is why some Muslims still respond with violence. They simply do not have divine leadership which can guide them. In the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at, we have a Successor system, where all Ahmadies are united globally. History is a witness that Ahmadies have never taken law into their own hands and have never responded with violence. If someone slanders our Prophet we respond with dialogue and education, but never with swords or guns.
The current World Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, the Fifth Khalifa, His Holiness, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad has categorically condemned the terrorist attacks by saying,
“The perpetrators of this brutal attack may seek to justify their acts in the name of Islam and its Holy Founder (peace be upon him) but their acts have no relation whatsoever to the true teachings of Islam. Nowhere does Islam permit taking the law into one’s own hands or to injure or murder anyone. Yet these so-called Muslims and Muslim groups still do not abstain from such cruelties and atrocities.
“Today, it is the task of the members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community to pray for peace and to pray that all parties desist from every form of cruelty or injustice.”
I was also very happy when I read the pope’s wording on freedom of speech. He said that religions had to be treated with respect, so that people’s faiths were not insulted or ridiculed.
To illustrate his point, he told journalists that his assistant could expect a punch if he cursed his mother.”
Freedom of speech is one thing, but insulting, mocking, or slandering is a different thing altogether. If someone insulted or slandered my mother, it would hurt me, and if she had passed away, it would hurt me even more. Prophet Muhammad is dearer to Muslims than their parents, children and even themselves. If someone makes a racist, sexist or an anti-Semitic joke, then he or she is condemned by the media immediately. But when the Prophet Muhammad is mocked, then it is considered freedom of speech. This is a double standard that is creating a social divide among us. Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad said:
“In this day and age the media has great power – if it is irresponsible then it can fuel disorder and unnecessarily provoke, but if it is responsible then it can play a great role in creating peace and harmony within society.”