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FAQ about Islam

When passions run high…those fed or afflicted with RSS/VHP ideology,
asks these questions…
Before I start to list out some of the common questions raised by
ignorant people living amidst us and following a certain twisted
ideology, most often, the people who have decency of attitude, self
esteem and respect in this society, ask this question, ” What does one
do when confronted with a provocateur, who believes in corroborating
lies against you and uses foul language?

Let’s ask our CREATOR Who had provided us clear guidance in HIS Book
revealed 14 hundred years ago, originally in Arabic, I’ll mention its
English translation here. “Since good and evil, positive and negative
cannot be equal, so repel the evil with something that is better – and
notice how someone who is having enmity will become close
friend!” (Holy Qur’an: Chapter: 41 Verse: 34). And I know, maintaining
composure under such circumstances is not at all an easy job. See what
our LORD says further in the very next Verse! “Yet none is granted
this quality except those who use to be patient in adversity and none
is granted this except the big courageous people.”

So let’s be patient when someone makes us angry and let’s not react in
the same manner. Forgive those who treated you badly in anticipation
of Forgiveness of your LORD to your sins and excesses on The Day of
Judgment. The Prophet (SAW) said: “A believer is not a shameless
person, nor one who curses, nor an obscene person nor is he indecent.
I guarantee a house in the surroundings of Paradise for a man who
avoids quarrelling even if he were in the right, a house in the middle
of Paradise for a man who avoids lying even if he were joking, and a
house in the upper part of Paradise for a man who made his character
good.”" [At-Tirmidhi and Al-Baihaqie].

If we consult the Hadiths, we will see that in general the Muslims are
warned about entering pointless debates. It is a pity to see some
Muslim brothers/sisters engaging in long and often fruitless debates
over Internet chat rooms and Discussion Boards, wasting their valuable
time. Long debates like these result in making the heart and soul dry
and very materialistic. I think the time of a responsible Muslim
should be devoted to his/her efforts to more effective things like
education, prayer and reading Quran, improving his/her purity for the
God, increasing practically useful Islamic knowledge, making him/
herself a good example of a Muslim, helping others and of course
enjoying life and family and friends without committing any sins.

Question 1: When Muslims in India insist on having a separate Muslim
Personal Law for them, why don’t they also insist to implement the
Islamic Criminal Law for the Muslims i.e. the hands should be chopped
off when they rob or killed ‘point blank’ when they murder?

A.1. Muslim Personal Law is a law concerning an individual person and
the persons closely related to him, e.g. laws relating to marriage,
divorce, inheritance, etc. It includes laws which are mutually agreed
upon by a group of people. This law does not include any crime or an
act that will harm the society directly. In any country, the Personal
Law may differ for different groups of people and for different
communities. Since India is a secular and democratic country it allows
different groups of people to follow their own personal law if they
wish. Muslims believe that compared to all the different types of
personal laws available in the world, the best and the most result
oriented is the Islamic Personal Law. Muslims of India prefer
following the Muslim personal law also because of their own belief in

Criminal law is that law which is associated with a crime or an act
which directly affects the society e.g. robbing, raping, murdering,
etc. In any country, the criminal law unlike the Personal Law cannot
be different for different groups of people. It has to be same for all
people of different groups and different religions e.g. In Islam if a
person robs, his hands are chopped off. This punishment is not
prescribed in Hinduism. If a Hindu robs a Muslim, what would be the
robber’s punishment? The Muslim would want the hands of the robber to
be chopped, while the Hindu Law would not agree. The Muslims in India
alone cannot separately follow the Islamic Criminal Law without
involving the Non-Muslims.

Even if a Muslim agrees, that as far as he commits a crime he should
be given the punishment according to Islamic Criminal Law, it would
not be practical. In case an allegation is made against a Muslim for
robbery and if the witnesses are Non-Muslims, and if each one follows
his own Criminal Law, the punishment in Islam for bearing false
witness is 80 lashes, whereas in the Indian Criminal Law, a person
giving false witness can very easily escape. Thus, for a non-Muslim to
falsely accuse a Muslim of any crime is very easy, if both follow
their own criminal law. However, if both follow the Indian Law where
the punishment is lenient for false witnesses and robbers, it will
encourage both the robber to rob as well as encourage the witnesses to
give false witness for their own benefit.

We Muslims would prefer that in India the Islamic Criminal Law be
implemented on all the Indians, since, chopping the hands of a thief
will surely reduce the rate of robbery in India. Similarly, 80 lashes
for giving false testimony will prevent a person from giving false
witness. Islamic Criminal Law is Most Practical. It’s main benefit
over all others is that besides pointing out a crime, it also gives
you a solution showing how to prevent the crime in the future e.g.
chopping the hands of a robber, death penalty for the rapist. The
punishment is so severe that it is a deterrent for the criminal to
commit the crime. A person will be forced to think a hundred times
before committing a crime. Thus if crime has to be reduced or stopped
in India the best solution is to implement ‘The Common Islamic
Criminal Law’. Yes! If all the parties involved in the Crime are
Muslims, then even that case can be treated according to Shariah and
if any Muslims have any problems with that, they will be pure

Question 2: Even hundreds of years after the major ‘jihads’ that took
the lives of many Muslim martyrs, we still find Muslims believing in
the practice of polygamy. Have such people’s fellow Muslim brothers
neglected to remind them that there is no longer a “shortage” of males
in this world, that in fact the female world population is higher than
that of males, and that such laws were not brought about to promote
promiscuity and perverted behavior? If you are a Muslim woman who just
found out she’s getting a “souten” (second wife) for Christmas (bad
example, I know) then I think it’s a pretty PRESSING issue for you
Muslim girls, not to mention the demographic changes being brought
about by such practise which has seen diminishing population amongst
Hindus and an exponential increase in the population of Muslims by one
Muslim man marrying four women.

A2: SOME of the Western writers, either out of ignorance of teachings
of the Quran and the Hadith or out of malice, have criticized Islam
for not giving enough protection to the rights of women. I have
discussed concept of Polygamy in Islam at length in another article.
It should be an eye opener.

Also, it is a fact that the Holy Qur’an permits polygamy only in
special circumstances for the upkeep of a healthy society. Marriage in
Islam is a form of mutual contract based upon the principle of faith,
love and honor for each other. ‘Nikahnama’ or marriage contract
empowers a Muslim girl to add a clause during the time of the marriage
ceremony, reserving her right of ‘unilateral divorce’ or ‘to be the
ONLY wife of her husband’ until her death. But I am also aware of the
people who break these laws and in turn incur the wrath from God and
sin on themselves. There is never an excuse for law breakers for
either they will get punished here or the hereafter. I know of this
polygamy being exploited by people of various other faiths. Notably
the cine stars like Dharmendra, Shekhar Kapoor and Mahesh Bhatt from
Indian subcontinent are just the few to name. But these, does not
warrant a change in the ‘Divine laws’. Almost all prophets of
Christianity, Judaism and Islam, e.g. Abraham, Moses, David and
Solomon (pbut) were polygamous. Only exception was Jesus(pbuh). As
Jesus was single and his mother Mary was virgin; Christianity
deprecates the institution of marriage and promotes celibacy.

Also, you are not correct when you talk about the abundance of men
over women. There is only a shortage of women in countries like India
(due to large scale female infanticide and extreme poverty) and China.
America and Europe have excess of females over male. The latest Census
of 2001 has revealed that the sex ratio of the girl child population
which was 945 in 1991, decreased to 927, a decrease of 18 points and
further down to 917 per 1000 males in 2001 in the state of Maharashtra
alone. The ratio has thus gone over 6:1. Demographically the 0-6 sex
ratio does not augur well for the future of any country. Because of
the genocide committed against Muslims in Kashmir, Bosnia and Chechnya
there are more Muslim women then men- the fact that there are more men
than women in countries like India and China is irrelevant since
Muslims do not generally marry Hindus or Buddhists or vice-versa. The
Quranic verse permitting polygamy was revealed in the Holy Qur’an out
of necessity and due to the demands of the circumstances. After the
battle of Uhud in 3rd Hijrah, large number of Muslim men were killed
leaving many widows and orphans. The verse came as follows: “If you
fear that you won’t be able to deal justly with the orphans, marry the
woman of your choice, two, three or four; but if you fear that you
will not be able to deal justly (with wives), then (marry) only
one” (Qur’an 4:3).

In the article that I had mentioned above, I have shown that polygamy
amongst Muslims is very rare and practiced far less than most of the
other communities of the world. Your argument about demographic
imbalance in the form of decrease in the percentage of Hindus holds
relevance when seen in the light of mass female infanticide as shown
in this report. In your argument, you forgot to mention that the women
are the child bearing half of the human race, and of every cultural
group, whether it be Hindu, Muslim or Sikh. And this biological
reality is ignored by those Hindus amongst us, who wish to save dowry
by foeticide or infanticide but it, however, remains and the reality
is that “only women reproduce.” According to the report, neither as
many Muslims nor Christians kill female embryos and their growth holds
steady as a result.

A simple case of mathematics renders your other argument illogical.
The point of Muslim’s exponential increase in population when compared
to Hindus, will fail to find any credence when someone will ask an
explanation, as to ” How does one man marrying one woman and having
2-3 kids from her, increases a community’s population as a whole when
compared to four different men marrying four different women and each
women giving birth to 2-3 kids?”. The net average of community remains
same and we are dealing with a case of polygamy in Islam here, not
polyandry, which is prohibited amongst Muslims.

Also, why is the example of finding a ‘souten’ at your doorstep worse
than finding out that your husband has been having an affair or has
been regularly visiting someone else?

How about, if you’re a girl and you just discovered that you’re going
to have a baby from a guy who claimed to have been unmarried and
promising to marry you all along and NOW after this news of becoming a
father, he says that he had lied to you about his marital status – so
the child must be aborted as the law prohibits him from marrying again
thus he shrugs off his misdeeds and responsibilities? or you are a
young women with both material and emotional needs and your husband
dies when you’re 23 or 24, thus you cannot marry for the rest of your
life because bachelor boys( no matter, which religion they belong to)
usually prefer never married females and so do most of the widowers?

These are the urgent issues- which must be discussed – not fault
finding amongst the virtues of Islamic principles. Remember, Polygamy
in Islam is an ‘option’, not an ‘obligation’ upon Muslims.

Question 3: Islam not only encourages but advises it’s followers to a
deviant practice of marrying amongst one’s own family members, namely
first cousins etc. thus over looking not only the moral and ethical
consequences of such a union, but also the medical and especially
genetic disorders which would come after procreation. Why is Islam
different? What is the reason behind such a rule? I view all my male
cousins as my brothers or sisters. I wonder, if I was a Muslim, how
would it feel to look at my cousins as prospective lovers or husbands?

A 3: As you already know, Islam doesn’t allow to get married with
blood relations such as your own brothers, sisters etc., lest it might
be accused of incest, which is all so prevalent these days in the
‘deviant’ western society. You call this allowed practice of marriage
amongst the first cousins in Islam as ‘deviant’ but probably you don’t
know that, to some extent, the definition of deviant also varies from
culture to culture and religion to religion. For example, in Islam,
the person who worships anyone’s image or an idol is the greatest
deviant, amongst Hindus, he is most Holy. In Islam someone who doesn’t
believe that all humans are born equal and only attain a higher degree
of spirituality through piety and good action, is a deviant. Amongst
the Hindus, a person born of a Brahmin, attains that degree by birth.
One of the reasons Gandhi was killed, was that he supported the idea
of equality of the downtrodden amongst the Hindus and was thus
considered a ‘deviant’.

Coming to the point of genetic disorders. It’s known that over 700
million people across the world practice consanguinity – marriages
between close relatives such as uncles and nieces or between cousins.
Prof N Appaji Rao, head of the department of biochemistry at the
Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, reported in a seminar
on this subject that, India where consanguinity is prevalent in 33 per
cent of Hindu families, 28 per cent in Muslim families and 18.6 per
cent in Christian families, more than 30 per cent of the 1,20,000
children studied were born to consanguineous couples, while 62.3 per
cent were born to non-consanguineous couples, disproving that the
incidence of genetic disorders is higher in consanguineous
communities. IISc studies have also shown that the third theory that
changing family structure, urbanization and industrialization has
resulted in a large decrease and elimination of close kinship
marriages, is also incorrect. Finally, on the issue of looking at your
cousins as prospective lovers or husbands, then I would like to point
out that according to Islam, each and every woman and man, whether
married or unmarried, Muslim or Non-Muslim, should neither be teased
nor glanced upon with lust. Allah (swt) has commanded the Muslim men
to lower their gaze and guard their sexual parts. “Tell the believing
men that they should lower their gazes and guard their sexual organs;
that is purer for them. Indeed Allah is well-acquainted with what they
do” (24:30). Here “lowering of the gazes” means to avert the eyes from
the faces of the passersby and not to caress the attractive features
of women with the eyes. Same hold good for women too. They are advised
to guard their modesty and chastity, be they their first cousins…until
and unless they get married to them.

The Prophet (saw) considered hungry and lustful looks at any person of
the opposite gender as “the sin of the eye,” according to his saying,
“The eyes also commit sin (arabic:zina), and their sin is the lustful
look” (Al-Bukhari).

Question 4 : While it is sad to see the way women are treated in Saudi
Arabia, it is also sad to see the infighting amongst our own people in
India based on north-south, languages etc….
When will Indian Muslims wake up to realize life? When will Indian
Muslims realize they are far better off in India than anywhere in
Islamic countries like Saudi Arabia or Pakistan ? If those countries
are better or even the region of Persia where Muslims originally came
from, migration is also an option.

A4: From where do you get the bright idea, that Indian Muslims want to
be like Saudis or live in Saudi Arabia? Do you think when Martin
Luther King was fighting for civil rights of blacks, Kennedy bros.
should have told him, ‘Aren’t you black guys better off here than any
of the African countries of Ghana, Iberia or Zambia or aren’t you glad
you LIVE in much better countries than African continent??!! As an
Indian, please don’t try to give us permission because we don’t need
any for staying in our own country. India is the land where millions
of Muslims have existed for over 1350 years now. It is the place where
our greatest art, culture, architecture and history is situated.
Muslims belong to the land and the land (in an emotional sense) to the
Muslims. The day when Aryans decide to go back to Asia minor, Anglo
Saxon go back to England from America and so does blacks, Irish or
Jewish Germans return back to Germany, Africa & where ever they came
from only a few hundred years ago, you can start advocating your
veiled ideas of genocide. The return/emigration of Indian Muslims who
are residing there from the year 642 AD (Refer to this link ), makes
no sense at all and to call them as those who came as invaders to
India, forcing people to convert on the point of sword, is a blatant
historical lie. The first Muslims who came in as invaders (as was the
norm everywhere in the world of Medieval ages), was much later in the
Year 1192 AD, when Muhammad of Gaur established his Kingdom in India
after winning the second battle of Tarain. (source:
With respect to your claim that women are generally (more) oppressed
in Arab/Islamic countries, please refer to my report : Women –
oppressed in Arabia.

Question 5 : Why do Muslims condemn and abuse Hindu idols and their
worship when they themselves worship Kaaba and it’s black stone?

A 5: First of all, those Muslims who abuse Hindu idols, acts
contradictory to a verse of Quran and can be out rightly condemned for
this deed as they are committing a form of sin by going against the
diktats of Qur’an. A verse in Qur’an states: “And insult not those,
whom they (non-Muslims) worship besides Allah, lest they insult Allah
wrongfully, without knowledge. Thus we have made fair seeming to each
people their own doings, then to their Lord is their return and He
shall then inform them of all that they used to do.” (Quran 6:208).
Coming to the point of Muslims worshipping kaaba and to say that it is
a form of an idol worship too, then I would like to state that, an
idol is something people “idolize” in the sense of giving some of gods
attributes and abilities to it – for instance the ability to answer
prayers of bring them good etc- one might protest that Muslims worship
the kaaba, Sikh the guru granth and Jews the wailing wall because they
bow down to it – but in the Muslims ‘sajda’ (prostration) during their
prayers when they face ‘kaaba’ in the city of Mecca ‘, is a sign of
humbleness to god and unity amongst themselves in their act of
worshipping – not worshipping the stone or the structure of Kaaba –
this is seen by the fact that it is not obligatory to have the
physical kaaba in front of you when you pray and a person can go his
or whole life without praying in front of the kaaba and there prayers
are still valid – the reason all Muslims pray facing the kaaba is to
create a sense of unity (so Muslims do not have a physical
representation of the kaaba in their homes and mosques – unlike
statues ) – no Muslim worships the Kaaba, believes it to be a god or
believes it can harm or benefit (otherwise they would not be a Muslim
but an idolater!!) – I fear this is different from other faiths who
feed statues, ask them for help etc. Bowing in front of something is
not idolatry since one might bow down to kiss a child or out of love
to kiss a black stone – believing that something other than God can
harm or benefit (such as a statue or a stone or another person).
The best thing to refute your charge of idolizing ‘kaaba’ is that
during olden days, when there were no speakers or amplifiers, Muslims
are known to have stood on the roof of the ‘kaaba’ to give a call for
prayer ‘azaan’, which is meant for inviting and informing fellow
Muslims of the vicinity about due prayer times.

Hence, The very concept of standing over something you’re supposed to
worship, makes the thing unworthy of your worship and this proves that
Muslims are and were never supposed to worship Kaaba or it’s black

Hope this answers your question – to summarise, the ‘kaaba’ stones are
not an integral part of a Muslims worship as you are asking One true
God alone for help. Circumambulating ‘kaaba’ during the process of Haj
also depicts the same concept of ‘Unity or Oneness’) of God as every
circle has ONLY one center.

Question 6: Why do Muslims practice burial of their dead instead of
cremation and end up wasting precious lands for those who are still
living in the society, by making tombs and cemented graves. Isn’t God
powerful enough to raise man from any place and from any state He
wishes to?

A6: Yes! Allah(swt) is able to recollect the scattered elements of a
person’s body from any place of earth which is only a very small part
of His creation when compared to the vastness of the Universe. It is
quite easy for Him. The Qur’an declares: “And they say: When we are
bones and fragments, shall we forsooth, be raised up as a new
creation? Say: Be you stones or iron or some created thing that is yet
greater in your thoughts- (Yet shall you be raised up)! Then they will
say: Who shall bring us back (to life)? Say He who created you the
first time” (Quran 17:49-51)
Islam has a unique style of building graves and cemeteries that is
characterized by humility, simplicity and economy in costs and that
avoids glorifying the dead with elaborate monuments. It can thus
rightly be said that all the tombs and monuments that belong to the
Mughal era in India, including the magnificent Taj Mahal, have nothing
to do with the tenets of Islam and were purely matter of personal
choice of those emperors. According to Islam, it is prohibited to
build any form of construction on the grave, or decorate the grave.
From the authentic traditions, it is clear that to erect domes over
graves or build mausoleums or Mosques on graves is strictly forbidden.
Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said: “ Do not build Mosques in the graveyard
” (Muslim). It is prohibited to plaster the grave, whitewash the
grave, or use cooked stones. Jabir also reported: “Prophet Muhammad
forbade the whitewashing of a grave, sitting on it, or erecting any
type of structure on it ” (Muslim). Hence, it can be deduced that a
graveyard for Muslims can be re-used over and over again in the
absence of any permanent graves.

The fact that the dead bodies of saints and children amongst Hindus
(in the case of a male child below 11 years old and a female who is 7
years and below), burial is practiced instead of being burnt. It
probably means that those who are supposedly innocent are buried while
the rest being sinners are burnt. Even Shri Jayendra Sarasvati, 69th
Shankaracharya of the Kamakoti Peetham, Kanchipuram, highlights the
‘Cremation of ordinary and burial of great men’, as one of the basic
tenets of Hinduism.
There may be another reason of Hindus burning their dead, “agni’ in
Sanskrit means ‘fire’. According to Panini, the highest ancient
Sanskrit authority on Philology, the word is derived from ‘Agrini’
which means ‘the first’ or ‘ the foremost’. Agrini was previously used
for One God and later its derivative Agni replaced it. Now the same
word, Agni in the Vedas is used for God as well as for fire according
to the context. The dead had to be surrendered to one God agrini. With
the passage of time, the word was changed to Agni which also means
fire. So, the people from the land of Sanskrit started surrendering
their dead to fire. It may be noted that mention of burial can even
today be found in Vedas;
“Let me not yet O Varuna, enter into the house of clay (the grave);
Have mercy, spare me, Mighty Lord.. O Bright and Powerful God, through
lack of strength I erred and went astray, have mercy, spare me Mighty
Lord.” (Rigveda 7:89:1,3)

“Have thyself, Earth not press thee downward heavily (after the
burial); Afford him easy access gently tending him; Cover him as
mother wraps her skirt over her child, O Earth.. I stay on the earth
from thee, while over thee I place this piece of earth. May I be free
from injury. Here let the fathers keep this pillars firm for thee, and
there let Yama (The Lord of death) make thee an abiding
place.” (Rigveda 10:18:11,13)

It may be mentioned that a large number of Hindus in South India and
Orissa, often bury their dead, instead of burning them, although the
reasons for doing so are debatable.

The Muslims bury their dead because the prophet (Pbuh) guided them and
as all the earlier prophets sent to all nations including India would
have guided their people. All the prophets preached Islam, the
religion of nature although every prophet would have used the word in
the language of his nation, instead of the Arabic word ‘Islam’. It may
be that ‘Svadharma’ (Nature’s religion) was used in place of Islam in
India and ‘Sanatan Dharma’ (The Eternal Religion) in place of its
Arabic synonym ‘Deen-e-Qayyim’. The true Sanatan Dharma or Svadharma
preached burial of the dead as it is according to nature. The burning
of millions of men requires a huge quantity of firewood which creates
ecological imbalance. The fumes add to pollution. The electrical pyres
also are not the solution, as they consume energy, much needed by the
living. Burial is echo friendly, pollution-free and energy saving.

Credits – Dr. Zakir Naik, Mr. Moin Amjad, Mr. Nizamuddin Khalid &
other Anonymous forum contributors. (Who's computer is this?)

Where you can get the newsgroup alt.religion.islam