Today the world is riddled with problems; East to West, North to South, everywhere there are countless troubles and difficulties; in brief, every part of this planet is surrounded with huge discomfort. Human beings are suffering through poverty, fighting, killing, unrest, disorder, as well as with social and economical crisis. Natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, rains, famine, lack of food, etc. are also seen in large numbers and on a huge scale.
But, unfortunately, and very amazingly, for man who is already riddled with endless problems, there are certain powers, certain organisations, and certain groups of people who are building walls of hatred. And these walls are getting higher nowadays, even more now than ever before in the history of mankind.
Now there are reports in the media that the members of the ‘Dove World Outreach Centre’, based in the United States, are planning to burn copies of the Holy Quran on 11 September, on the occasion of the 9th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre. They claim that “Islam is a danger” and “are using this act to warn about the teaching and ideology of Islam, which we do hate as it is hateful”.
Aren’t the walls of hatred already too high; is there any need to make them even higher? Aren’t the bridges, which can unite us, already lacking? Isn’t the world already full of unrest, instability and uncertainty? Aren’t these walls of hatred already causing so many troubles on this planet?
In these circumstances such actions will only help in destroying world peace. This would be a most provocative act and would achieve nothing but to cause distress and anger to millions of peace-loving persons worldwide. Burning any religious scripture is a horrific act and is directly contrary to the teachings of all the world’s major religions.
The Holy Quran and the Holy Bible are both sacred books and were revealed by the Almighty God for the guidance of mankind, and they both deserve to be respected and shown great honour.They are sacred to the people so we should not offend them. I think tolerance and respect for each other is very important.
But, I am afraid, if however the burning of the Holy Quran will take place maybe some Muslims in return may try to harm or burn the Holy Bible, thus more troubles may occupy the world.
Here, let me make it very clear that the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat condemns in the strongest terms any such action done by Muslims, Christian, Jews or anyone else. And strongly discourages any plan to burn or damage any sacred book or scripture of any religion, for any reason whatsoever. If someone tries to burn the Holy Quran still there is no reason why any Muslim should burn the Holy Bible or any sacred book of any other religion; because Islam like other religions teaches to respect and honour all the sacred books and scriptures. Two of the six articles of faith of a Muslim are, to believe in the Prophets of God and to believe in the Divine Scriptures. So, how can a true Muslim harm or disrespect any sacred book or divine scripture? And if someone does so, truly he is not following the true teachings of Islam.
These actions are not a service to humanity or to any religion, but they will surely destroy the peace, tranquility and serenity of the world. We have to show great respect to all the sacred books of all the religions, whatever the name is.
However, it is true that there are some differences in the teachings of every religion, but this is also a reality that there are hundreds commonalities among them; we have so much in common. How nice and decent it would be if believers of all the religions would focus on commonalities rather than on differences, to create the atmosphere of harmony and tolerance.
But, if someone wants to discuss and to get answers to his questions, still this is not the way to disrespect the Sacred and Holy Books and to play with the sentiments of their believers. These discussions, exchange of ideas, experiences and teachings can take place; and I think they must take place, so we come to know more about each other, but in a very decent and respectful way, with the aim of knowledge and establishing harmony amongst believers of different faiths.
There is nothing wrong with intellectual or theological debate but this should be conducted with the bounds of decency and tolerance. These discussions should take place in a peaceful and respectful environment.
Today the world needs peace, love and brotherhood. The world needs an end to wars. Instead of walls of hatred being erected we need peace to prevail and for this to occur people of all faiths must join together.
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat with great sympathy and sincerity appeals to the world that this is not a time to sow the seed of hatred, malice, disrespect and intolerance because they will ultimately destroy the peace of our societies and will create disorder on this beautiful planet. But, please, let us sow the seed of love, harmony, tolerance and universal brotherhood, because these values will grow fruitful trees and gardens of peace, tranquility and serenity for the whole mankind.
It also appeals to different schools of thought and people of different religions and faiths to join together in building bridges which will unite us, and let us demolish all the walls of hatred and malice which separate us from each other. Let us all carry the message of peace and brotherhood to everyone, and let us spread the message of love for all and hatred for none to all corners of the world so we can all enjoy security and peace of mind, and pass something valuable to our children and generations to come, and let us save humanity.