“Innocence of Muslims” : An out-and-out Provocation

2012-09-13 11:22

The violent attack that killed US ambassador to Libya and three other embassy staff should be condemned in the strongest possible terms. Whatever the motive or circumstances for the killings, it just cannot be justified; is totally wrong and will not serve the interest of the Libyan people. At all cost life should be persevered and respected. There is absolutely no glory or reward in committing such despicable actions or aggression.

Similarly, the movie or YouTube clip, “Innocence of Muslims” is an out-and-out provocation, unacceptable and a mischievous effort to provoke Muslim sensitivities.

Describing Islam as a “cancer” and poking fun at Prophet Mohamed (PBUH) is malicious, insensitive and should be condemned by every conscience driven individual.

Most certainly Prophet Mohamed never promoted violence or terrorism. As Muslims we believe that Prophet Mohamed was sent to the world as a mercy for mankind. Such blasphemous films, cartoons or caricatures would not affect the noble personality of the Prophet but would most definitely hurt the feelings of the Muslims as Prophet Mohamed is most dear to every Muslim, thus ridiculing him is very painful and hurtful to Muslims.

Islam demands that Muslims respect all of God’s creations, prophets and religious scriptures. Muslims don’t mention the names of prophets, be it Moses, Noah, Lot, Joseph and Jesus, just to name a few, without adding the salutation “May peace be upon him”.

It’s important to remember that ignorance breeds fear and fear breeds myths, violence and destruction. Hence, a humble piece of advice towards anti-Islamic sentiments and Islamophobes is to become familiar with the personality of Prophet Mohamed through the numerous objective, non-hagiographic biographies authored by non- Muslim scholars.

In reading of such biographies it will become evident that Prophet Mohamed never provoked or initiated any kind of derogation or physical attack on non- fellow religionists. His style was that of conciliatory epistles, albeit being unlettered himself. This he did through the most literate among his companions. He always propagated peace, respect and tolerance as the first course of action.

Unfortunately, recently, Muslims’ are being provoked and challenged on all fronts- Palestine, wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Chechnya, Salman Rushdi’s controversial book, Danish cartoons, banning minarets, banning the veil in some European countries, social networking sites promoting ignorance and now this ignorant film. All these seem to be deliberate attempts by vested agents to dehumanise Muslims and Islam.

A word of advice to Muslims, they should register their protests in constructive and meaningful ways. For that is what the Holy Prophet Mohamed would have approved.

Although Prophet Mohamed was in a position of strength and power when he returned to Makkah after years of abuse, torture, difficulties and exile, he did not seek or take revenge, but instead he forgave his tormentors and offered wide-ranging amnesties.

This is the direction Muslims should pursue as we state and communicate our pain when confronted with such vitriolic depiction of one of the most exalted prophets of Almighty God.

The best and most productive response is not to react negatively or harmfully to the film and opinionated cartoons as one of the possible aims of these fringe groups or provocateurs is to test Muslim approach and mindset- expecting violent retaliation.

Freedom from insults and provocation and freedom to practise religion is an essential right which should be guaranteed to every community, globally.

Every attack on civilians in any part of the global village, against any race, gender, class, creed, or religious sect, must be condemned with integrity in the strongest possible terms.

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