By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor
A consortium of one hundred and twenty Islamic Scholars have placed onto the internet an Open Letter to Islamic State (ISIS) leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi denouncing the organization’s violent and extremist actions in the Middle East. The letter, in the form of an interactive website, provides the world with an opportunity to read a perspective of the Islamic State’s affront to civilization from an academic analysis by scholars. The letter addresses the fundamental and basis in canon for disputing the claims of Al-Baghdadi that his is the only pure and legitimate form of Islam–refuting his claims of divine assent.
The original, in the Arabic, is presently being translated into other languages. The English is presently available.
There has been unfortunately much misconception in the Western World that there lacks true dissent to the terrorist outrages in the Muslim World. This letter can serve a secondary goal to educate those in other cultures having concerns.
Here follows the contents of the Open Letter:
- It is forbidden in Islam to issue fatwas without all the necessary learning requirements. Even then fatwas must follow Islamic legal theory as defined in the Classical texts. It is also forbidden to cite a portion of a verse from the Qur’an—or part of a verse—to derive a ruling without looking at everything that the Qur’an and Hadith teach related to that matter. In other words, there are strict subjective and objective prerequisites for fatwas,and one cannot ‘cherry-pick’ Qur’anic verses for legal arguments without considering the entire Qur’an and Hadith.
- It is forbidden in Islam to issue legal rulings about anything without mastery of the Arabic language.
- It is forbidden in Islam to oversimplify Shari’ah matters and ignore established Islamic sciences.
- It is permissible in Islam [for scholars] to differ on any matter, except those fundamentals of religion that all Muslims must know.
- It is forbidden in Islam to ignore the reality of contemporary times when deriving legal rulings.
- It is forbidden in Islam to kill the innocent.
- It is forbidden in Islam to kill emissaries, ambassadors, and diplomats; hence it is forbidden to kill journalists and aid workers.
- Jihad in Islam is defensive war. It is not permissible without the right cause, the right purpose and without the right rules of conduct.
- It is forbidden in Islam to declare people non-Muslim unless he (or she) openly declares disbelief.
- It is forbidden in Islam to harm or mistreat—in any way—Christians or any ‘People of the Scripture’.
- It is obligatory to consider Yazidis as People of the Scripture.
- The re-introduction of slavery is forbidden in Islam. It was abolished by universal consensus.
- It is forbidden in Islam to force people to convert.
- It is forbidden in Islam to deny women their rights.
- It is forbidden in Islam to deny children their rights.
- It is forbidden in Islam to enact legal punishments (hudud ) without following the correct procedures that ensure justice and mercy.
- It is forbidden in Islam to torture people.
- It is forbidden in Islam to disfigure the dead.
- It is forbidden in Islam to attribute evil acts to God.
- It is forbidden in Islam to destroy the graves and shrines of Prophets and Companions.
- Armed insurrection is forbidden in Islam for any reason other than clear disbelief by the ruler and not allowing people to pray.
- It is forbidden in Islam to declare a caliphate without consensus from all Muslims.
- Loyalty to one’s nation is permissible in Islam.
- After the death of the Prophet, Islam does not require anyone to emigrate anywhere.
You are invited to read the letter in its entirety. It may be found below. As an aid in navigation, click on the link for [Read The Letter] followed by page turning navigation arrows at the upper left of the screen.
So far, the Facebook Page has over 103,000 Likes and growing–a welcome start.
By Darren Smith
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