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Islamic Society (05 Dec 2018 NewAgeIslam.Com)

Views of Islamic Extremists Are At Odds With Followers of Moderate Islam



By Ifty Rafiq


Preconceptions, in some ways, influence many of us much of the time. We make snap judgements about people – about what they wear, where they live, what they eat, what school they went to. There’s scarcely a limit at which the conscious or subconscious mind will stop, in forming opinions. There is no doubt that, whatever our preconceived ideas, they are almost always based on fleeting assumptions, and certainly not grounded in fact or based on hard evidence. Sometimes, these views are harmless, trivial and inconsequential, and we actively shrug them off. In other cases, the judgements are made on the basis of people’s race, gender or religion. In these incidences, the consequences can be very damaging.

We’re all aware of the horrors of racism and the long fight for racial parity, which has become a fundamental on the school history curriculum, and rightly so. Equally, the gender struggle, especially this year, the centenary of the Representation of the People Act 1918, is increasingly becoming a feature in schools around the country. Of course, the battle against prejudice in these areas is far from over but importantly, it’s on the radar of most right-minded people. Religious persecution is as ancient as religion itself and throughout history; millions of people have been murdered because of their faith. Such genocide persists today. Yet, strangely, the campaign for mutual respect of religion does not seem to be afforded the same weight.

Whether anti-Semitism, Islamophobia or anti-Christianism, religious hatred of all kinds is a huge problem. Regular readers of this blog will not be surprised that I’m going to take a deeper look at what I consider to be one of the issues behind continued Islamic prejudice.

Since 11 September 2001, the anti-Western attitude of some radical, hate-preaching Muslims has been brought to the fore, with little representation being made on behalf of ordinary, peace-loving moderate Muslims. There can be no doubt that there are some who espouse these extreme views but in the international community of 1.5billion Muslims, they are in the most minuscule minority. So the pre-conceived idea here, is that all Muslims must hold these radical views, and that they are therefore to be feared and mistrusted.

It’s really important, in the “crusade” against Islamophobia, that we equip people with the knowledge they need to identify what actually constitute extremist Islamic practices. In the first instance, the difference between religious and cultural practices needs to be addressed.

In Greece, it is a common custom for baby teeth, not to be left under a pillow for the tooth fairy to collect, but to be thrown up onto the roof of the family home. Yet, we do not assume that this must therefore be a practice among Greek Orthodox Christians. Why then, is it so commonplace to associate cultural practices in Muslim states with the religion? Female genital mutilation, forced-marriage, so-called “honour-based” violence; these are all cultural practices, and as far as Islam is concerned, they are red herrings, unrelated to the faith. But the message from extremists, intent on pitting Islam against the West, and vice-versa, is that these practices are innate in the religion.

Islamic extremists, in their quest to build animosity, recruit the weak-willed, and fight against non-Muslims, misrepresent the religion in order to widen the divide between states. They paint Muslims as intolerant, sectarian, violent and misogynistic, generating and embedding a stereotype, which is what lots of people see when they glimpse a long beard or a Burqa on the high streets of Britain. But adhering to a religion or even following a cultural practice does not mean that Muslims are terrorists, or should be judged as such.

Here in Britain, the views of Islamic extremists are at odds with British values. They actively discourage engagement in democratic elections, and spurn and flout the tolerance and freedoms inherent in the United Kingdom. Followers of moderate Islam, conversely, are completely in sync with British values. They live happily and at peace with the state, enjoying the rights afforded by society.

Preconceptions and stereotypes are dangerous, by following them we risk delivering exactly what the extremists want.

Source: huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/how-to-differentiate-between-islamic-extremism-and_uk_5bffe19ae4b09fc8536bbe3f?utm

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-society/ifty-rafiq/views-of-islamic-extremists-are-at-odds-with-followers-of-moderate-islam/d/117070



  • Hats Off is spewing his usual venom at those Muslims who migrate to Western countries and Naseer sb. has nothing to say about that!

    By Ghulam Mohiyuddin - 12/6/2018 1:38:55 PM

  • Pakistan is corrupt. In the name of religion its power-begging people seek public votes, show its hypocrisy in the west and play double standard game in its country
    By Bassam Shafei - 12/6/2018 2:04:32 AM

  • What Hats Off has said is not far from the truth. Why no "Islamic" country has spoken for Asia Bibi or any "Muslim/Islamic" organization? There is far too much hypocrisy among the Muslims.
    By Naseer Ahmed - 12/6/2018 1:41:50 AM

  • What a hateful comment from Hats Off! He tries to juxtapose unrelated entities in order to vilify Muslims and spread his hate propaganda.

    By Ghulam Mohiyuddin - 12/5/2018 11:32:43 PM

  • how many types of islam are there?

    at least two.

    one which you peddle when begging for green cards and european visas. this is the whining, ingratiating and "moderate", blah-blah and blah-blah.

    two that other which you establish once you are in the majority. like in saudi arabia, pakistan, indonesia, malaysia, bangladesh, iran, iraq and turkey. eliminate minorities, prevent them from public offices and generally disappear them. it is precisely these islamic countries that will cry murder at myanmarese when the myanmarese are just simply copying a page out of the islamic nations' book.

    what astounding split tongues and double speak!

    By hats off! - 12/5/2018 2:29:14 PM

  • True! Extremism in religion is abhorrent.

    By Ghulam Mohiyuddin - 12/5/2018 10:30:08 AM

  • I fully agree with this idea "Whether anti-Semitism, Islamophobia or anti-Christianism, religious hatred of all kinds is a huge problem."

    By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي - 12/5/2018 9:10:37 AM

  • The writer has expressed his concern over the people making snap judgment. 
    In other terms, I would put it clearly that making snap judgements about the people spiritually harm the mind, spirit and body of a man who commits it. 
    If religionists of the world start studying hard to remove their mutual confusion or misunderstanding, they will know that any religion could be used for misuse, and finally they too will realise that Islam in this age is being misused by its hidden haters. 
    Only the fact-seeking people can reach this sort of realisation. 
    This is another concern that which source will help him reach fact. 
    The so-called believers of Sufism have never sought any spiritual guide, while they, like many others, have restricted their journey of realisation only to their whimsical understanding and selective nature.

    By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي - 12/5/2018 7:02:58 AM

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