Islam and Racism (Part 1)
By Animashaun Afeez Funsho
In the Name of Allah Most Gracious Most Merciful.
Assalam alaekum everyone.
I would start by apologizing on my unavailability for the past few weeks. It however, was not intentional as I had a whole lot of personal issues to contend with.
I woke up this morning with a notification on a group on Facebook I am an admin with some Orthodox Christians and a fellow Muslim brother. The notification is titled RACISM IN ISLAM. This is rather the first time I would be seeing such topic raised to speak against Islam. I would consider it Islamophobic. However, I would scrutinize the topic to the best of my ability in-sha Allah.
Islam is known as a faith for all people and for all times. Muslims come from all continents and backgrounds, encompassing 1/5 of humanity. In the heart of a Muslim there is no room for arrogance and racism. Allah tells us that the diversity of life, and the various languages and colors of human beings, is a sign of Allah’s majesty, and a lesson for us to learn about humility, equality, and the appreciation of differences.
“And among His wonders is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the diversity of your tongues and colors. For in this, behold, there are messages indeed for all who are possessed of innate knowledge!” (Quran 30:22).
“Do you not see that Allah sends down rain from the sky? With it We then bring out produce of various colors. And in the mountains are tracts white and red, of various shades of color, and black intense in hue. And so amongst men, and crawling creatures, and cattle – they are of various colors. Those truly fear Allah, among His Servants, who have knowledge. For Allah is Exalted in Might, Oft-Forgiving” (Quran 35:27-28).
“Oh men! Behold, We have created you all out of a male and a female, and have made you into nations and tribes, so that you might come to know one another. Verily, the noblest of you in the sight of Allah is the one who is most deeply conscious of Him. Behold, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware” (Quran 49:13).
“And He it is who has brought you all into being out of one living entity, and has appointed for each of you a time-limit on earth, and a resting-place after death. Clearly, indeed, We have spelled out these messages unto people who can grasp the truth!” (Quran 6:98).
“And among His wonders is this: He creates you out of dust, and then, behold! You become human beings ranging far and wide!” (Quran 30:20).
“For Muslim men and women, for believing men and women, for devout men and women, for true men and women, for men and women who are patient and constant, for men and women who humble themselves, for men and women who give in charity, for men and women who fast, for men and women who guard their chastity, and for men and women who engage much in Allah’s praise – for them, Allah has prepared forgiveness and a great reward” (Quran 33:35).
God said: ‘What prevented you (O Satan) that you did not prostrate when I commanded you?’ Iblees (the Satan) replied: ‘I am better than him (Adam). You created me from fire, and him You created from clay.” (Quran 7:12)
So begins the history of racism. Satan thought himself superior to Adam on account of his origins. Since that day, Satan has misled many of Adam’s descendants into also believing themselves superior to others, causing them to persecute and exploit their fellow man. Quite often, religion has been used to justify racism. Judaism, for example, despite its Middle-Eastern origins, is readily passed off as a Western religion; but the entry of Jews into all levels of Western society actually betrays Judaism’s elitist reality. A pious reading of the bible verse:
“There is no God in all the world but in Israel.” (2 Kings 5:15)
…would be to suggest that in those days God, or God, was not worshipped except by Israelites. However, Judaism today remains centered around its boast of ‘chosen’ racial superiority.
“Say: ‘O Jews! If you pretend that you are the beloved slaves of God to the exclusion of the rest of humanity, then long for death if you are really truthful.’” (Quran 62:6)
Conversely, while most Christians are overwhelmingly non-Jew, Jesus, as the last of the Israelite Prophets, was sent to none but the Jews.
“And (remember) when Jesus, son of Mary, said: ‘O Children of Israel! I am the Messenger of God sent unto you, confirming the Torah before me and bearing glad tidings of a Messenger after me whose name shall be Ahmad…’” (Quran 61:6)
And likewise every Prophet was sent exclusively to his own people, every Prophet, that is, except Muhammad.
“Say (O Muhammad): ‘O People! I am the Messenger of God sent to you all…’” (Quran 7:158)
As Muhammad was God’s final Prophet and Messenger, his mission was a universal one, intended for not only his own nation, the Arabs, but all the peoples of the world. The Prophet said:
“Every other Prophet was sent to his nation exclusively, while I have been sent to all of humanity.” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)
“And We have not sent you (O Muhammad) except as a bearer of glad tidings and a Warner to all mankind, but most of people know not.” (Quran 34:28)
The bible agrees. Jesus is reported to have said: ‘I have not been sent except ONLY to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.’ (Matthew 15:24). Hence, every one of his famous twelve disciples was an Israelite Jew. The one biblical passage where Jesus tells them to: ‘Go and preach unto all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.’ (Matthew 28:19), commonly quoted to prove the Gentile mission as well as the Trinity, is not found in any pre-16th century manuscript and thus considered ‘a pious fraud.’
One of the names of Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him.
And We sent to every nation a Messenger (saying): ‘Worship God (alone) and shun false deities.’ (Quran 16:36)
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