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Clearing Misconceptions About the Prophet of Islam

Having conferences to present the true character of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) by American Ahmadi Muslims is an educational and civil response and an opportunity to build bridges of understanding.

Headlines like “Woman charged with pushing a man in front of train hated Hindus and Muslims”,“Shooting at Sikh temple in Wisconsin leaves at least 7 dead, including gunman” or “Missouri mosque destroyed in second fire in a month” are examples of an alarming trend of hate taking root in America. Some might say that this rise in anti-Muslim sentiment is the result of “Islamic extremists” disrupting peace and taking innocent lives around the world. There is no doubt that this seems one probable reason but, a study last year also indicates that this rise in “Islamophobia” could also be traced to the millions of dollars spent on mainstream media by several organizations to fan “the flames of anti-Muslim hate in America” in the decade after 9/11.

In this country where one in five chooses to disassociate with any religion or wherereligious knowledge is lacking, there is greater need for people to stop living in fear of the less than one percent population of this country who call themselves Muslims. Ahmadiyya Muslim Community U.S.A is giving Americans of all faiths and ethnicities a unique opportunity to learn about the founder of Islam, Muhammad (Peace be Upon him) by having “Muhammad, Messenger of Peace” conferences to be held by all of its 73 chapters across the nation. While Muslims believe that he was sent as mercy for mankind (Quran 21:108), Muhammad (PBUH) is still a very misunderstood leader in today’s world. In words of Mahatma Gandhi, “I became more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place of Islam….It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet, the scrupulous regard for pledges…his absolute trust in God and his own mission.”

Muslims have great love for their Prophet and they always ready to uphold his honor at all times. But, the willingness of some to take their own lives or of others who might have insulted him is in fact un-Islamic. The current head of the Worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, his Holiness Mirza Masroor Ahmad explained that the right way to show love for Prophet Muhammad is to “make their actions a practical model of Islamic teachings”. He further added that, “it is futile to react by burning or setting fire to properties and possessions…or by killing…Mockery [does] not …affect the honor and dignity of prophet Muhammad (PBUH).”

In today’s world people of other faiths go on with their daily lives whenever their religious founders are disrespected, but in the interest of preserving peace and to reduce animosity between people of different belief systems, mocking, insulting or ridiculing any religious founder should be avoided at all times. This is essential since such actions go beyond the values of compassion and kindness that most world religions share.

While it is important to promote interfaith dialogue and education, it is equally important for Muslims to put a stop to their irrational reaction every time a religious bigot disrespects the prophet of Islam with a cartoon or a movie. Having conferences to present the true character of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) by American Ahmadi Muslims is an educational and civil response and an opportunity to build bridges of understanding. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community (GA) is having such a conference at Baitul Baqi mosque at 6113 Oakbrook Parkway, Norcross, 30093 on March 16 from 5p.m. to 7p.m.

Visit www.muslimsforpeace/events/geo to register and also check outwww.muhammadfactcheck.org to find more information about common misconceptions about the Prophet of Islam.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Adeel Ahmed March 10, 2013 at 04:25 AM
All true, well said and done. Masha'Allah.
Richard T. March 11, 2013 at 08:54 PM
Please explain why a fatwa is ordered for someone simply portrays the prophet in a cartoon. People mock Jesus or the pope or other religions, and it is taken in stride, yet Muslims react like a bunch of adolescent children, without respect or consideration for the opinions of others. An infidel has two choices, he can convert to Islam, or he can die. Doesn't sound all that peace-loving to me. . .
Shahina Bashir March 12, 2013 at 02:52 AM
Richard, thanks for your comment. You brought up a good point. Actually there is no reaction or punishment according to the Quran or the Islamic teachings for mocking the Prophet Muhammad. He was abused and mocked many times when he claimed that he was a prophet of God. Neither he nor his companions meted any punishment for such people. Having said that, I might want to point out that we Muslims revere and respect all religious figures be it Muhammad, Jesus, Moses, or Buddha. We would be as upset if someone were to mock Jesus as we would be for Muhammad. But the reactions that the some Muslims are showing is not in line with Islamic teaching. There is a group of Muslims belonging to the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community who respond to any insult to the prophets of God in a peaceful manner. We use the pen and use rational discourse to defend the honor of Prophet Muhammad.
Bushra Zafar March 12, 2013 at 03:31 AM
Richard, your points are valid, but you cannot judge the teachings based on the actions of those who are misguided. Just as you would not expect Christianity to be judged on the basis of its history of violence against women(witch hunting) and men of science and the crusades. Muslims of the world are going through turmoil but it is more to do with the politics of the day than the teachings of Prophet Muhammad, who like Jesus Christ before him only taught love and compassion, even for your enemies. There is no defending the looting and killing of innocent people in the name of Islam,but that is more reflective of the weak and corrupt governments in the countries where these things take place than the true teachings of the religion.
S. Ahmad March 12, 2013 at 04:21 AM
Mr. Richard, if you read my article again, I am condemning the same actions (or reactions) you are pointing out. Your reaction to my article is exactly why we are inviting people from all walks of life to bring their questions and to begin a much needed interfaith dialogue in a peaceful setting. Hope to see you there.

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