- The Duality of Islam
Now let’s talk about the fact that there are two decidedly different facets to the ideology of Islam.
Once again, we want to stress and remind you that we are talking about the political, social and religious ideology called Islam and not about individual Muslims. We have found that Islam makes a clear distinction between how Muslims should treat fellow believers and how they should treat non-believers. Islam has two faces – a stern but relatively benign one for believers and a hate-filled, harsh and uncompromising one for non-believers. Because of this duality, it is critical for us non-believers to understand how Muslims are instructed to treat us. As we are creating this website primarily for the benefit of non-believers, we will be concentrating on this facet of the duality of Islam.
Many Muslims are “nice” people. We often hear anecdotal reports by people who say that some of the nicest people they have met are Muslims. We have known and worked with a relatively small number of Muslims. Based on our limited experience, we have no reason to doubt these reports because we have also met some really nice Muslims. But it is just as foolish to believe all Muslims are peaceful and trust-worthy based on our experience with a few Muslims as it is to condemn all Muslims as violent because of the actions of Islamic terrorists.
Many Muslims are law-abiding and honest. We hear reports about the lack of crime in Islamic countries and, again, there is no reason to doubt that these are true. The guidance documents for Islam provide comprehensive instructions about how Muslims are expected to live. These documents demand obedience and compliance and can impose harsh punishment on those who disobey or fail to comply with the Islamic rules and standards (Sharia law). Many requirements of Sharia law are echoed in the civil laws of some Islamic countries. This leads to a generally peaceful and well-ordered society. Law-abiding Muslims who openly profess to believe in Allah and Mohammad and who do not openly question the Islamic model for society can apparently live a very peaceful and enjoyable life under Islamic rule. The formula for a peaceful and successful life within Islam seems to be submission, obedience and conformity. In fact, the word Islam is most accurately translated as “submission”.
On the other hand, law-breakers, people who do not conform to Islamic moral standards or people that openly deny that Allah is the Creator God or that Mohammad was God’s prophet can expect harsh treatment in almost every Islamic-dominated society. This is particularly true for non-believers but it certainly applies to all people in these categories. On this website we do not look closely at the issue of the quality of life for Islamic believers. Nor will we explore the treatment of law-breakers in Islamic countries at any length. Instead, we will concentrate on issues relating to non-Muslims in and outside Islamic-dominated countries. We will also briefly explore the attitude and treatment of Muslims who fail to conform to the moral standards of Islam or who actually leave Islam.
It is in the treatment of non-believers that the ideology of Islam is most odious. Non-believers who live in close proximity to Muslims or who come into regular contact with Muslims are wise to be aware of the Islamic instructions concerning relationships between Muslims and non-Muslims. As most visitors to this website will probably not be Muslims, this is an issue that should be of great interest to us all.
Most religions concentrate on teaching their followers how to live a better life and say very little about those who do not follow that religion. This is not true in Islam. The words and teachings of Mohammad are found in different bodies of documentation that we call “Islamic scripture”. Islamic scripture makes it very clear that Allah does not love unbelievers. In fact, a very high percentage of the content in the teachings of Mohammad deals with the treatment of non-believers. We go much more deeply into this elsewhere on this website, but for now we simply want to point out that Muslims are taught that Islam is to be the dominant faith throughout the earth and that non-believers must be dominated, humiliated and forced to submit to Islam.
There are two critical points we would like to make about the duality of Islam. First, we need to be constantly mindful of the duality of Islam and we should not assess Islam based on the actions and personalities of the Muslims we meet. We think that we should be accepting and non-judgemental with individual Muslims and at the same time be very aware of the danger in the teachings of Mohammad. Another thing that we can be quite confident about is that devout Muslims are taught from birth that Mohammad is the best example of a good Muslim. His deeds and actions are considered fully acceptable and admirable. And, as you will see in these website pages, Mohammad did not treat non-believers very well at all!