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"Territory of Peace& Territory of War"

 This article was previously published in Arabic on 11th March 2006.

 

 

 

The False Conviction of The

"Territory of Peace& Territory of War"

& Territory of War"

 

The common belief in traditional Jurisprudence and amongst extremists is to divide the world into two conflicting camps: the camp of faith, peace and Islam called the "Territory of Islam” and its opponent the West, the camp of disbelief and is called the "Territory of War". In this division, non-Muslim minorities are treated with suspicion and prosecuted as they are regarded as traitors that belong with the outside camp of the enemy; the "Territory of War."

 

To be fair, this division was not limited to the Arabs and Muslims only, it was the culture of the Middle Ages in general in Europe as well as Muslim Countries. This culture emerged as a result of faith based on internal sectarian, fanatic beliefs and external religious wars with the opposing camp whose price was usually paid by the religious minorities here and there, as well as the defeated camp. As for example per the massacres the Spaniards carried out on the Arab Muslims after the fall of Granada, the last stronghold of Muslims in the Iberian Peninsula. In the same manner Muslims treated the defeated Christians as a people of a lesser value and imposed taxes on them. The Spaniards went as far as to totally eradicate the Muslims and Jews from their country. The fact is, whenever someone is fanatic about his faith in this medieval manner, he becomes more abhorrent of others and seeks to eradicate them. The Spaniards were the most fanatical and the closest to Arabs and Muslims in this sense.

 

The religious basis for this categorization is the division of Muslims to the nation of "Muhammad" and the Christians to the "nation of Christ". Christians believe that Christ p.b.u.h is their savor, and the majority of Christians glorify him.

During the Crusades, the discoveries of new worlds, the mass executions of native nations were all committed in the name of Christ. Generally, the occupation of the Muslim world and the rest of the world took place in modern times by fleets that carried the cross and chanted the teachings of Christianity that are based on love and forgiveness.

 

Christian tolerance that endorses patience and sacrifice is more clearly visible in the history of our Egyptian Coptic ancestors instead. Egyptian Christianity is different in this respect to Western European Christianity, especially the Spanish one.

 

Most Muslims in their actual worship glorify Muhammad, believe in his eternal life in his grave, make pilgrimage to him, offer him prayers and believe that he will intercede for them in the Day of Judgment and give them access to Heaven.

Although the Muslim attestation of faith is one: "There is no God except God" as God addresses His prophets saying: " You shall know that: There is no other god beside GOD, and ask forgiveness of your sins", Muslims have made the attestation of two parts instead of one: No god but God and Muhammad is His Messenger. They never say one without the other and in doing so is a disobedience to what God has ordained in the Quran four times to not distinguish between all His prophets.

 

What is directly implied when one attests that "There is no god but God" is the belief in all God's Messengers that came to confirm this fact: There is no god but God", and one would have believed in all prophets of God without distinguishing between either of them because each one of them struggled, strived and sacrificed for his cause.

God even ordained Muhammad, the seal of prophets, to affirm that he is not, in any way, a unique prophet nor different to the other prophets. He did not know the unknown like other prophets did, he was a mere follower to the revelations and a Warner (The Dunes 9).

Muslims, however, elevate him to the position of deity; in mosques one finds his name at an equal foothold to that of God. In the call to prayer, the testimony of prophecy is made to him alone as well as in all prayers. If one mentions the “prophet” only Muhammad comes to the mind and heart overlooking all other prophets except when he is praised as superior to them.

According to Muslims; Muhammad is the “best of all messengers” the most important, he is the “most honorable”, the “best of all of Adam’s offspring”, was preferred to all other prophets for seven reasons, God created him from light, he’s God’s first creation, was created before Adam, he was already a  prophet when Adam was still mud and water, or perhaps was neither mud nor water as the Sufi Hadiths and fables claim in what is known as the “Muhammadan Truths”. In prayers they make recitations in his glorification instead of the attestation as per God’s saying: “GOD bears witness that there is no god except He, and so do the angels and those who possess knowledge. Truthfully and equitably, He is the absolute god; there is no god but He, the Almighty, Most Wise.” The Amramites, 18

Eventually, they are lead to believe that they are the Ummah (nation) of Muhammad and consider themselves privileged and lucky for this reason.

 

All this preference to Muhammad over his predecessors of prophets and messengers conflicts with Islam and the faith for which he struggled all his life. This excessive glorification and distinguishing of Muhammad over other prophets is in fact a treachery to his message and a stark contradiction to the greatness of Islam that allowed no room for the glorification of any man or stone.

Nevertheless, this glorification of Muhammad is what made Muslims different to other nations and somewhat superior to them.  It is in fact the basis that divided the world into two camps: that of Muhammad – the Camp of Peace- and that of disobedience and heresy or the Camp of War.

 

But does the concept of the “nation of Muhammad” conform to the teachings of Quran?

It surely conforms to the fabricated Hadiths, especially the Hadiths of intercession where, for instance, the prophet Muhammad calls on to God in the Day of Judgment:  “my nation, my nation” and Almighty responds in the same manner and rhythm: “my mercy, my mercy”. Evidently God sides up with the nation of Muhammad in this false, fabricated Hadith that is contradictive to Islam.

 

The concept of “the nation of Muhammad” is contradictive to Islam in the sense that it makes Islam the faith of a group of people or a camp against another camp, in the same way it contradicts the attestation of Unity “there is no god except God”, and contradicts the Quran that has spoken of previous prophets more than it has spoken of Muhammad. In fact it ordained the prophet to follow the path of the previous prophets and made Islam a follower to the faith of Abraham (p.b.u.h). It also confirmed that all its rituals of prayer, fasting, alms and pilgrimage are a continuation of the faith of Abraham and Muhammad has come to mend the distortion that had occurred in this faith.

 

The term “Ummah” appears in the Quran with different meanings that refer to different things. It could refer to a number of years (Hood 8, Joseph 45), or to good qualities (The Bee 120), or to established atheistic practices and customs (Ornamentation 22, 23), or to a group of people in a specific time or place (Heifer 128, 134). Unfortunately there is no room to tackle all these subjects in detail, but with regards to the meaning established here,  the Quran has used the term “Ummah” to refer to the message of all prophets at all times. God talks about His revelation to all prophets and times: “Such is your nation - one nation- and I am your Lord; you shall reverence Me.” (The Believers 52). Thus, all prophets are one nation and worship one God. This is how things were meant to be but what happened is the interference of politics, conflict and worldly ambitions with faith and so followers split up into different parties, sects, camps and cults. This is the historical summary of every religion before Muhammad. God Almighty says: “Your nation is but one nation, and I alone am your Lord; you shall worship Me alone. However, they divided themselves into disputing religions. All of them will come back to us (for judgment” The Prophets 92. These verses are found in the chapter of the Prophets, after God had related the stories of many of them he concluded that all those prophets are one nation that has One God worthy of worship alone. But what happened was division and difference in convictions which God shall judge on in the Day of Judgment when all shall return to Him.

The true religion of all prophets is Islam; in the sense of peaceful dealing with fellow humans, obedience and submission to God alone and His glorification alone. Every prophet was sent to preach in his people’s tongue: “We did not send any messenger except (to preach) in the tongue of his people, in order to clarify things for them. GOD then sends astray whomever He wills, and guides whomever He wills. He is the Almighty, the Most Wise.” Abraham 4.  This, therefore, means that each prophet conveyed Islam in the tongue of his people, and each one of them reaffirmed that there was no god except God: “We did not send any messenger before you except with the message: "There is no god except Me; you shall worship Me alone." (Prophets 25). The nation of Islam is therefore but a set of principles and ideals focused around faith and the belief in the Unity of God and observing Him in our behaviors, in doing what is good and abstaining from what is bad, sinful, wrong and immoral. These principles were initially adapted by Noah and eventually by Muhammad peace be upon them all.

What reaffirms this theory further is the term “Ummah” addressed to the father of all prophets Abraham p.b.u.h when God praised him in a way that he did not praise any other prophet saying that Abraham was an Ummah: “Abraham was indeed an exemplary vanguard in his submission to GOD, a monotheist who never worshipped idols.” The Bee 120 i.e. he was an Ummah of good qualities. Abraham p.b.u.h is a major figure in the religion of Islam (The Heifer 127 to 137) and whatever values, behaviors and monotheistic religious faith he upheld were upheld by all other prophets peace be upon them all.

At the opposite end of this is the established atheistic beliefs that glorify the predecessors and their common practices and whatever “the Ummah agrees on”. This is also referred to in the Quran as “Ummah”. But in this context it means a legacy of values defended by the ruling elite with the help of the clergy and intellectuals who have an interest to see things remain as they are. God says confirming a social fact: “The fact is that: they said, "We found our parents carrying on certain practices, and we are following in their footsteps." Ornaments 22

The “Nation of Islam” is the values of peace in belief and behavior and these values are open to all to embrace regardless of time, place , tongue, culture, race, sex, social or economic standing. In brief, these are global, human values descended by God to all humans through all monotheistic revelations; they were preached by all prophets, hoped for by all social reformers, followed by all righteous people at all times and places along the presence of a majority that disagrees and conflicts in religion dividing it into sects and cults. The seal message was descended to people in order not to forget the old source of these high values and clarify the same message to all humans. God addresses all human beings with these values as the narrative in the Quran is not addressed to Arabs or Quraysh alone or to the time of the prophet, it is a narrative that addresses all people saying : “O people…”, “O children of Adam….” and when He addresses a sect or a group of people He liberates them from the temporality of time and place and says: “O those who…”.

God is the Lord of all, the creator of all and to Him alone is the return on the Day of Judgment when we shall all be judged. The prophets will be the first to be judged as they are the custodians of the great values of Islam: “The day will come when GOD will summon the messengers and ask them, "How was the response to you?" They will say, "We have no knowledge. You are the Knower of all secrets." The Feast 109, “Then the earth will shine with the light of its Lord. The record will be proclaimed, and the prophets and the witnesses will be brought forth. Everyone will then be judged equitably, without the least injustice.” The Throngs 69

For this reason God tells all people from the very beginning: “O people, we created you from the same male and female, and rendered you distinct peoples and tribes, that you may recognize one another. The best among you in the sight of GOD is the most righteous. GOD is Omniscient, Cognizant.” The Walls 13 i.e. He created them all from the same father and mother, they are all brothers and sisters and has made them different peoples and clans not to conflict and fight one another but to recognize one another. This recognition can only be achieved through peaceful conduct, civilized interaction, acceptance of others, and appreciation of their human experience, cultural heritage, opening over their culture and being tolerant of their difference out of conviction that variety is needed for the prosperity of human civilization. As to the matter of faith; those who are most righteous are the worthier to God, and not those with more wealth, intelligence, knowledge, best family ties, beauty, health or youth. Righteousness is the basis of God’s judgment in the Hereafter. Those that praise themselves disobey God who said: “Do not exalt yourselves; He is fully aware of the righteous” The Stars 32

One question remains; does Islam not make any reference to two different Camps? A slogan often raised by the extremists and their partisans. What about the Other Camp in the light of what has been said in the Quran about disbelievers and atheists and fighting them?

The Other in Islam is every transgressor and terrorist that kills innocent and peaceful people. Once again, we reiterate that the meaning of Islam in terms of behavior is peaceful dealing on earth, and in terms of faith is the submission to God alone. A Muslim by faith is one who submits his heart and face and senses to God.

 

This is the meaning of Islam from a “faith” point of view on which the judgment is to God alone as He alone knows what lays in peoples’ hearts and no other creature could. A Muslim is everyone who does not wrong anybody nor shed innocent blood. These are the only boundaries within which we can judge people: every individual that is peaceful in his conduct and behavior is a Muslim regardless of his faith, sect, orientation, culture or religion.

The meanings of atheism and idolatry in Quran are associated with belief and behavior, and they are both contradictive to the belief and behavior of Islam. Atheism or idolatry mean belief in other than God and the actual practice of people- and Muslims in particular- is full of glorification of people and stones with their habitual attestation of faith that “there is no god except God”.  Moreover, people are at constant conflict between one another that only they are right and others are wrong, and God alone shall judge on these differences in the Day of Judgment as he’s the ultimate judge and only Him can play this role whilst we can advice and guide one another in seeking righteousness. 

Idolatry and atheism in their practical sense refer to wrong doing, disobedience, transgression and crime. These terms were all used in the Quran in the description of idolaters and atheists. The judgment is not passed on their hearts or faith, but on their acts and criminal deeds, on their murder, rape, corruption, theft and wrongdoing to innocent people. These people were deemed bad because of their actions, and we unfortunately, judge by the opposite standard. Whoever utters the declaration of faith is made a Muslim regardless of how many crimes he commits, and social reformers who do good and belong to Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism or secularism are considered disbelievers and idolaters although they are practically Muslims in conduct. We had rather revised ourselves and amended our beliefs and practices that are more involved in the glorification of tombs and saints than other faiths are.

On the basis of faith alone, all advocates of peace inside and outside the United Nations would be the greatest Muslims even if they have never uttered the attestation of faith. Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela and all western advocates of human rights are true Muslims from the perspective of conduct. Equally, according to judgment by conduct alone, the worst disbelievers, war criminals and transgressors would not only be Stalin and Hitler, but also Saddam Hussein, Ben Laden, Dawahiri and all the blood thirsty warlords that have turned Iraq to a human abattoir. The list is long and there is no need to mention all the names as some of them are enjoying praise and glorification although they have wronged other people, occupied their land and subordinated their people for the mere fact that they cannot defend themselves.

There is no division of the world to two camps, nor is the transgression on other people and taking their land just like the Qurayshis did in the era of the guided Caliphs and the non guided ones is acceptable. Quraysh was the tribe addressed in the description of disbelief and idolatry when the Quran descended. They had practiced idolatrous and atheistic faith in the worship of saints and idols, and practiced idolatrous and atheistic conduct in the prosecution and mistreatment of defenseless Muslims in forcing them to abandon their religion until they fled to Ethiopia twice and eventually migrated to Medina.

Quraysh still did not leave them alone and waged war at them at a time when Muslims were patient as usual as they were ordered not to fight back. After they were ordained to fight these transgressions back the situation changed gradually until it became in favor of Muslims from power and faith perspectives. Quraysh became alienated as Islam spread and the masses of Arabs realized the idiocy of worshipping idols and tombs. Quraysh eventually recognized that their interest lay in joining the new religion and so they converted after a long history of animosity to Muslims. They had only converted shortly before the death of the prophet, and after his death they regained control over power seizing the circumstances of Riddah (the wars waged against the apostates after the death of the prophet) turning the victory over these people into invasions against others in the Roman Empire (in the Levant), the Persians and thus followed what had come to be known as “Islamic Conquests” which is a concept that is totally against Islam. For the same reason the companions fought one another, and religious difference resulted from political disagreement dividing Muslims to different sects overlooking God’s warning against religious division as its evidence of idolatrous belief and conduct: “This is My path - a straight one. You shall follow it, and do not follow any other paths, lest they divert you from His path. These are His commandments to you, that you may be saved” “Those who divide themselves into sects do not belong with you. Their judgment rests with GOD, then He will inform them of everything they had done. Livestock 153-159, “You shall submit to Him, reverence Him, observe the Contact Prayers (Salat), and - whatever you do - do not ever fall into idol worship.  (Do not fall in idol worship,) like those who divide their religion into sects; each party rejoicing with what they have.” The Romans 31-32

In order to justify their invasions and carry them out in the name of Islam, the following Hadith was fabricated and attributed the prophet: “I was ordained to fight people until they say there is no god but God and Muhammad is His prophet” and so transgression against other innocent people became a form of Jihad.

When Muslims invaded the Romans, war erupted between the two empires that apparently had different faiths, but practically the same practices of despotism, oppression, coercion and the abuse of religion to transgress against innocent people and spread corruption on land. Thus was the notion of religion in the Middle Ages due to which the blood of millions was shed from both parties whilst each of them believed firmly that they were in the right, doing good and accused the other camp of heresy.

Europe raised and liberated itself from the shackles of the Church and the clergy and set off on the path of rational secular and scientific reform. Egypt tried following on these footsteps with the beginning of the 19th century and had indeed realized some positive achievements if it were not for the return of the medieval legislations and fables of Wahhabism that represent the worst culture ever produced by Muslims in the Middle Ages. Thanks to oil resources this ideology was spread under the name of Islam in a scam that was the biggest of its kind in the history of Islam. This scam has embraced all aspects of religious extremism and legislated whatever is contradictive to our faith like killing apostates and Jihad against the camp of unbelievers. Thus is the historical basis of the false conception of The “Camp of Islam” and the “Camp of War”.

 

 

  

 

 

  


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