Appeal to the followers of the self-acclaimed ‘Islamic State (IS/ISIS, ISIL or Daesh) and the faithful Muslims for the defence of the Holy Scripture and the Prophet
After the intensive study of the Holy Qur’an, the Sunna and the Commandments of the Prophet Muhammad as well as the actions of IS/ISIS/ISIL/Daesh and the statements of their self-acclaimed Caliph Ibrahim Awwad Al-Badri alias Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, we declare in addition to
- the analysis of 126 high-ranking Islamic scholars from many different countries in their Open Letter to Dr. Awwad Al-Badri alias Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi from 19 September 2014 (quoted as ‘Open Letter’; attachment 1) and
- the Fatwa on the so-called “Islamic State” by imams and scholars from the United Kingdom from August 2014 (quoted as ‘Fatwa UK’; attachment 2); see “British Muslim leaders issue fatwa against would-be jihadists”; In: the guardian, 31 August 2014 :
The self-proclaimed “Islamic State” (IS/ISIS) in Syria and Iraq is neither Islamic nor does it implement the commandments of God, the Holy Qur’an and the Prophet Muhammad.
In contrast, it is un-Islamic and a continuous insult to God’s words in the Holy Qur’an, the Prophet and his wisdoms and consequentially to all truly faithful Muslims in the world.
In their propaganda videos the radicals only choose and talk about very few of the 6236 verses in the Qur’an, predominantly six strongly-worded sentences. Hence, they ignore 99.99% of the Holy Scripture. Due to that they spin Islam on its head from a rather peaceful to an aggressive message of fighting and muder.
The Open Letter deals extensively with IS and the true Islamic teachings. It rightly criticises that the selection of a very few verses is prohibited in regards to fatwas as Islamic legal opinions. Instead, it is necessary to examine the whole Qur’an and the Hadiths (number 1 and pp.3 in the Executive Summary). The reduction of the Holy Scripture to 00.01 percent is complete nonsense and displays great ignorance as well as an offence to the wise words and the key messages of God.
The Qur’an and its message as well as the exemplary life of the Prophet Muhammad are full of compassion, the virtue of tranquillity and harmony (hilm) and peace (salam). This truth has been forgotten by the members of IS.
The Islamic world needs to return to these roots of Muhammad. Now the silent majority should stand up against this small radical minority and defend God, our Holy Scripture and the Prophet Muhammad against the abuse and defamation. We are the true Islam- not IS.
With its extensive inhuman actions with which it boasts online, the IS breaches numerous commandments and prohibitions of the Holy Qur’an and the Prophet and the clear rules of jihad.
This concerns in particular the beheadings of disarmed opponents and civilians, murder and the expulsion of people of different faiths, especially Yazidis but also Shiites – who as well believe in the Qur’an– and Christians, as well as torture, looting and rape. Additionally, they execute the enslavement of non-Muslim girls and women and the restriction of their rights to education which was given to them by the Prophet. Moreover, the radicals entail the destruction of prayer and cultural sites. The IS trails a desert of destruction and an ocean of blood.
That these severe violations of the IS and its followers are un-Islamic is evident in the following legal sources of Islam from God’s words the Holy Qur’an and the Sunna of the Prophet and his first Caliphs:
- The introductory Surah and the introduction of all Surahs of the Qur’an (with exception of the 9th Surah) describe God as the “Most Gracious, Most Merciful”. Every Muslim needs to emulate this characteristic of Allah. Only the ones who are gracious, are Muslims. The Open Letter emphasises the great importance of mercy in Islam while the leader of IS Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi stresses again and again that “Mohammad was sent unto the earth by Allah with a sword as a symbol of mercy”. Rightfully it emphasises that Allah sent the Prophet unto the earth as mercy (Al-Anbiya̕,21:107) and that the mercy of Allah extends to all things (Al-Aʽraf, 7:156) (Open Letter page 2 ). Hence, the mercy of Allah clearly precedes the sword, and not vice versa. Therefore, the offences of the IS depicted above violate this main duty of a Muslim. They are informed by extreme remorselessness and thus have become an insult to God.
- Additionally, the Muslim greeting “Peace be upon you”, and the practiced aim of harmony of the Prophet to establish a new society of hilm out of respect for Allah and humanity are also extensively disregarded by the IS. The Qur’an condemns people who cause mischief on earth instead of creating peace (see 26, 152; 2,27; 5,33). Every Muslim needs to strive towards a tolerant society of hilm and end the contentiousness of djahiliyyah – like the Prophet in Mecca.
- The actions of the IS in Syria and Iraq also contradict the example of the Prophet during his conquer of Mecca in 630 A.D. and his vision of a harmonic state from 630-632 A.D. In Mecca, Muhammad did not establish a totalitarian theocracy but he maintained the old political structures and even pardoned all his enemies. The inhabitants of Mecca – infidels from a Muslim perspective – were neither killed nor forced to convert or expulsed. Muhammad did not kill his enemies who expulsed him from his home in 622 A.D., placed a bounty on his head, injured him during battle and raged war against him for eight years. He pardoned all of them, practiced generous forgiveness and preached a new harmony. He maintained the political structures and let the officials remain in their posts. The IS violated this example from the Sunna several times.
- Muhammad despised tyrants, fanatics and oppressors who associate themselves with God and therefore breach the prohibition of association with God in Surah 4,48. “One who walks with a tyrant, in the full knowledge that he is a tyrant, in order to strengthen him, is such as has already left the hold of Islam“ (Hadith of Al-Bayhaqi on the Authority of Aus Ibn Shurahabil). “A man who acquired a stretch of land by tyranny will be made to wear a yoke made of seven earths around his neck on the Day of Judgement” (Hadith of Al-Bukhari and Muslim on the Authority of Saʽid Ibn Zayd in: Maulana Wahiduddin Khan, p. 34). “On the Day of Judgement, the tyrant’s own tyranny will descent upon him in the form of darkness” (Narrated Ibn Umar, Bukhari vol. 3, book 43, number 627). The IS and their leaders act like tyrants against who the Prophet clearly spoke out. The Fatwa UK depicts the IS as an “oppressive and tyrannical group” (attachment 2, number 2). Hence, the IS has left the land of rightful Islam.
- The numerous references to the validity of the old holy scriptures of the Jews and Christians and the other 14 prophets in the Qur’an which are also followed by Muslims (see 10,37; 2,62; 6,92; 40,53; 42,13) are simply ignored by the IS. Those are binding provisions for every Muslim.
- There are at least 27 verses in the Qur’an which call upon Muslims to be tolerant, among them the six core proclamations of tolerance: That there is no coercion in religion (2,256), each confrontation should occur “with means better” (29,46), the God of Muslims, Jews and Christians “is one” (29,46; 42,15) and Allah desired religious pluralism (5,48) with the tolerant acknowledgement “To you be your Religion, and to me mine” (109,6). The Qur’an focuses on faith in Allah, and that the conversion of others can only occur through the word of Allah rather than and not with the sword and forceful islamfication. “So strife as in a race in all virtues” urges 5,48 for example. The IS ignores these important demands in the Qur’an and therefore opposes God.
- The rules of jihad are violated systematically (for details see open letter number 8, pp.6). This includes the clear restriction of the use of violence for self-defence in the Qur’an, and only as long as the aggressor displays an imminent threat, and never against uninvolved civilians according to 2,190-192. “If any one slew a person – unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land – it would be as if he slew the whole people”, urges Surah 5,32. As soon as an aggression against a Muslim has ended, the defence needs to stop. The decapitation of soldiers after their captivation is illegitimate.
- Uninvolved civilians must not be attacked or killed by any Muslim. Especially not members of humanitarian organisations (like the British David Haines) or neutral reporters of the media (like the journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff) (see Al-Isra’, 17:33, Al-Anʽam 6:151 – see Open Letter, number 7 and 8). Other religious convictions do not legitimise aggression. According to 4,90 and 8,61, there is a duty of peace for Muslims. The killings of innocents are haram, meaning that it is prohibited by Islamic law (compare to Open Letter p. 5,6). The IS violated these provisions of Allah several times.
- The eternal validity of no less than 14 contracts with Christians, including the protection of religious freedom, are an example from the times of the Prophet and the first two Caliphs.Four contracts with the Saint Catherine Monastery (Sinai) in 623 A.D., Dumat al-Djandal, Ayla and Nadjran in 631 A.D. were negotiated by the Prophet in person. Afterwards, ten more treaties followed by the first Caliphs in Hira, Raqqa and Edessa in 633 A.D., Damascus in 635 A.D., Baalbek, Hums and Jerusalem in 638 A.D., then Adharbaydjan and Dabil and finally Cairo in 641 A.D. The IS severely violated these 14 protective treaties of the Prophet and his Caliphs by expulsing or even killing Christians, and enslaving their girls if they did not agree to convert to Islam (see Open Letter p. 11).The unmercifully killed and expulsed Yazidis have elements of the religion of the Iranian Zoroastrians and are therefore worthy of protection according to Islam. The 126 high-ranking Islamic experts of the open letter regard them as magicians who in Islam– like all owners of the Scripture, the Jews, Christians as well as the Sabians and Zoroastrians – were treated with respect for 1000 years. These experts refer to the requests of the Prophet “treat them like the people of Scripture” (Narrated by Al-Imam Malik in al-Muwatta, in Kitab al-Zakat, no. 617, and Al-Shafi‘ i in his Musnad, n.1008; so Open Letter Seite 11f) as well as in the Qur’an Al-Hadjj, 22:17: “…the Sabians, Christians, Magians, … – Allah will judge between them on the Day of Judgment.
- The traditions of tolerance in the Sunna documented by the close friendship of the first 100 Muslims with the Christians in exile in Abyssinian 615-630 A.D. and the golden age of Islam in the 9th century are also disregarded by IS. In 615 A.D. the Prophet himself sent 100 of his first followers from Mecca into exile to the Christian kingdom of Negus Abyssinian to Negus so they could survive there. The Christians rejected the expulsion from Mecca by the powerful rulers of Mecca and began a long-lasting friendship. They persuaded and could even persuade the enemies to lift the ban against Muslims. The open interfaith exchange between Christians and Jews in the golden heyday of Islam in the 9th century in Bagdad, Cordoba and the entire Islamic empire, demonstrates that Islam only unfolds its inner strength, dynamic and global recognition through a fair dialogue and respect towards other religions. Intolerance and the preaching of hatred make it despiteful, small and eventually powerless. The Fatwa UK critics rightfully the violation of the Islamic tolerance as it was practiced by the great empires of Moguls and Ottomans for centuries (number 4).
- The IS violates the duty of Muslims to comply with the UN Charter and Human Rights Charter as transformed and valid laws in Islamic countries based on verse 5,1 and 17,34. Because every Muslim is obliged to abide by existing agreements according to these rules.
- The treatment of women by the IS contradicts with the Sunna of the Prophet. God chose an emancipated and successful business woman from Mecca for him: Khadidjah bint Khuwaylid (approx. 555-620 A.D.). The first wife of the Prophet played a formative role during the birth of Islam and sufficiently supported the spread of the new religion. She employed the young Muhammad and proposed marriage to him through a mediator. There is only one world religion that was financed by a woman – Islam. Not a man, but a woman was “the first Muslim.” A woman was the most important adviser and supporter of the Prophet. She is a model for all present Muslim women because God consciously chose an emancipated woman for his messenger. Khadidjah is the opposite of the image of women propagated today by IS, who instead should neither go to school nor work in the year 2014 – supposedly and absurdly “in the name of the Prophet.” The rules of the Qur’an should grant women not less but many more rights. The Qur’an granted them six so far unknown rights including the law of inheritance, the right to personal property, the necessity to agree to marriage and the prohibition to kill female descendants. However, it is nowhere written in the Qur’an that women should not be granted more rights. The Qur’an does not impose a limit to progress but indicates a clear direction towards emancipation. The Prophet promoted the emancipation and education of women. In contrast to the Prophet, thus, the treatment of women by IS is un-Islamic. The enslavement of women contradicts as well with the actions of the Prophet, who declared all his female and male slaves to be free, according to the Open Letter (see Ibn Kathir’s Al-Bidayah wal-Nihayah, Vol. 5, p. 284: see Open Letter p. 12). The abduction of children violates Qur’an 4:75.
The members of IS have severely insulted the words of God in the Holy Book and the teaching of the Prophet several times and therefore placed themselves outside the rightful Islam. The IS violated the proclamation stated above numerous times.
Because of the systematic anti-Islamic mischiefs which are even justified in the name of Islam, the Holy Qur’an and the Prophet, all functionaries, members, fighters and supporters of this un-Islamic terror organisation IS have become infidel perpetrators of great sins (mubiqat).
The Fatwa UK rightfully depicted IS as an organisation of heretics and religiously prohibited any support (haram) (number 6).
We call upon all members and supports of the IS to stop these un-Islamic acts now.
A Muslim in the IS organization can return to the community of believers (ummah or al-ummah al-islamiyah) as a law-abiding Muslim if he did not actively participate in severe violations of the rules of jihad against the proclamations of the Holy Qur’an, and joined IS in the wrong assumption that he is acting in the name of the Qur’an and the Prophet. Thereto, he needs to stop his fight and support for IS immediately.
We are Islam – IS is not.
We are faithful to God (Allah) – IS is not.
We respect the Holy Qur’an and the directions of the Prophet – not IS.
We call upon all faithful Muslims to thoroughly defend:
- Our God
- his Holy Book and
- the Prophet
against the pretensions and too many sins of the IS.
Want to learn more?
126 Scholars Dispute Al-Baghdadi
Disputing the claims of Al-Baghdadi that his is the only pure and legitimate form of Islam and refuting his claims of divine assent the open letter’s facebook page already has more than 100.000 followers.