Friday, January 18, 2013

Freedom of Speech is not Absolute or ‘Gospel Truth!’

A very good eye-opener and a MUST read.


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Freedom of Speech is not Absolute or 'Gospel Truth!'

Exceptions to freedom of speech, recognized in European Convention on Human Rights:
  • interests of national security
  • territorial integrity or public safety
  • prevention of disorder or crime
  • protection of health or morals
  • protection of the reputation or the rights of others
  • preventing the disclosure of information received in confidence
  • maintaining the authority and impartiality of the judiciary


Friday Sermon Sept 21, 2012: True Love for the Holy Prophet Muhammad


Khalifatul Masih V - Mirza Masroor Ahmad

Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih began his Friday sermon by reciting the following verses of the Holy Qur'an. The translation reads:
'Allah and His angels send blessings on the Prophet. O ye who believe! you also should invoke blessings on him and salute him with the salutation of peace.
Verily, those who annoy Allah and His Messenger – Allah has cursed them in this world and in the Hereafter, and has prepared for them an abasing punishment.' (33:57 – 58)
These days an intense wave of indignation has swept through the Muslim world; in Muslims countries as well as among Muslims living in different countries of the world in response to an extremely crude and offensive act of anti-Islam elements. Indeed, Muslims are justified in this. Whether or not a Muslim has proper insight of the real station of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him), he is ready to give his life for his respect and honour. Indignation of every Muslim is natural at the crude and offensive film made about the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and the wicked way in which affront has been directed at him in it. He, who was a benefactor of humanity, mercy for all the worlds and beloved of God and who stayed awake at nights in his sorrow for humanity, who expressed so much anguish to save humanity that God in the heavens said: 'So haply thou wilt grieve thyself to death for sorrow after them if they believe not in this discourse.' (18:7)
The extremely insulting film about this great benefactor of humanity was surely going to make a Muslim's heart bleed and it did. And more than anyone, it pained Ahmadi Muslims for we are the followers of the true and ardent devotee of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) who gave us the insight and perception of the great station of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). Our hearts are torn at this gross act and we are extremely hurt and wounded. We prostrate before God to contend with the perpetrators and make them a cautionary sign that would last till the end of the world.
The perception that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) gave us is thus; he wrote: 'Muslims are those people, who give their lives for the honour of their noble Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). Death is their preference to the dishonour in genuinely reconciling with such people and becoming their friends whose task is to day and night verbally abuse their Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and cite his name extremely insultingly in their magazines, books and advertisements and mention him in utterly degrading words. Remember, such individuals are also not the well-wishers of their own people because they create impediments in their way. I say most truthfully that it is possible that we may reconcile with wild snakes and wilderness beasts, but we cannot reconcile with those people who do not desist from insulting the honour of God's holy Prophets. They think that there is triumph in abusive language and vulgarity but each triumph comes from the heavens. Through the blessing of their pure discourse, those with pure speech ultimately win hearts and minds whereas those of wicked nature have no other skill other than creating discord and conflict in the land in a disorderly way…Experience also bears witness that the ending of such offensive people is not good. The sense of honour of God ultimately comes to pass for His beloveds.' (Chashma Ma'rafat, Ruhani Khaza'in, Vol. 23, pp. 386 – 387)
These days apart from magazines and advertisements other mediums are also used for this vulgarity. Out of their stubbornness these people are contending with God. InshaAllah, they will come under His chastisement. In their obstinacy they continue to perpetrate their excesses. When in 2006 wicked natured people in Denmark made vulgar caricatures of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) while Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih drew the attention of the Jama'at to demonstrate appropriate reaction, he had also said that these people will not stop here and will continue to perpetrate such acts in future. Today we observe that they have resorted to greater vulgarity and meanness. It is their defeat against Islam that is forcing them to be offensive in the name of freedom of speech. As the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said, they are not even the well-wishers of their own people. It will one day be unfolded to them all that what they are doing is in fact harmful for them. These people are mean and selfish.
Right now in the name of freedom of speech politicians and others, in places openly and in places discreetly, are speaking up for these people; some are also speaking up for the Muslims. But it should be remembered that this world is now like a global village and if wickedness is not openly called wickedness, these matters can also destroy the peace of these countries. It should be remembered what the Imam of the age said; that every triumph comes from the heavens and the heavens have decided that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) whom they are insulting will triumph in the world and he will triumph by winning hearts and minds because pure discourse is effective and it does not require extremist measures or to respond to vulgarity with vulgarity. God will deal with these perpetrators in the next life.
To read further click here
Anti-jihad ads reminiscent of McCarthyism, 1950s fear mongering

US Congressman Mike Honda

By Congressman Mike Honda
Source: The Washington Post
This week felt like a throwback to the 1950s, to McCarthyism and fear mongering. I, and countless others, spoke out in defense of Muslim Americans who were feeling attacked by ads on New York City, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. public transit systems that compared Muslims to "savages". Physical safety was of serious concern for many Muslim Americans, which is why the three transit authorities appropriately delayed or declined the ads, later to be court-ordered into running the ads.
What happened next is what alarms me most. Anyone who stepped up to defend fellow Muslim Americans was deemed by the ads' sponsors as the "enemy." I've heard this accusation before, except when I was much younger, growing up in Colorado in a Japanese internment camp.
This is what the ad says: "In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat jihad." The logical and reasonable inferences here are the following: jihad (read: Muslim, due to etymology) equals savage. Muslims, thus, are savages.
To read further click here
Since 2001, U.S. Congressman Mike Honda has represented California's 15th Congressional District, which includes western San Jose and Silicon Valley.
Love thy Neighbor is a Christian Value, Hate and Stereotyping aren't
Written and collected by Zia H Shah MD
Source: Islam for the West
Dr. Zia H Shah: Chief Editor of the Muslim Times

One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, "Of all the commandments, which is the most important?" "The most important one," answered Jesus, "is this: 'Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.' The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no commandment greater than these."
"Well said, teacher," the man replied. "You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices."
When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, "You are not far from the kingdom of God." And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions. (Mark 12:28-34)
In presence of these clear teachings by Jesus Christ, no believing Christian can condone hate speech against his or her neighbors. Even those who are agnostic and atheist, in the West, often consider Jesus to be a good teacher of moral values, so, in a way this biblical message, in the Gospel of Mark, has a universal appeal. Hillel, a Jewish scholar, was a teacher and a founder of a school (Beit Hillel) in the first century B.C.E. Hillel was born in Babylonia. At age forty, he went to live in Jerusalem. There he became the spiritual leader (Nasi) of the Jews from about 30 B.C.E to 10 C.E. When asked by a non-Jew to relate all the Torah had to say while standing on one foot, Hillel replied, "Do not unto your neighbor what you would not have him do until you; this is the whole Law; the rest is commentary." No one likes hate speech against him or her, especially if it begins to take hold and creates possibility of discrimination, hatred, mayhem and murder. No wonder there are laws against hate speech, against antisemitism and even against holocaust denial. Most Muslims, living in the West are peace loving and have moderate views towards their fellow citizens and are worried about the recent anti-Islam film and negative ads in New York subways and hate speech against them, which is finding some roots in the Western countries, in one form or the other.
How could the Christians hate the Muslims and be brotherly towards the Buddhists, the Hindus, the Jews and atheists, while the Muslims honor Jesus to be an honorable prophet, consider belief in him as part of their essential beliefs, take his mother the chaste Mary as a role model, as described in the Holy Quran and notice all the time that a chapter is named after Mother Mary in the Quran and realize that the name of Jesus appears more often in the Holy Quran than the name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad himself, and all the other religions regard Jesus as a liar, a non-entity or have no opinion about him? Does it make sense? It is self evident that those who hate monger against the Muslims are not well wishers of Islam or the 1.5 billion Muslims, but, are they well wishers of the Christians, leading them into a world of contradictions and chaos?
Your friend and family can contact you through email within a few seconds from the remotest corners of our global village. If a disaster strikes any part of Africa, Australia or Galapagos, we hear about it instantaneously. So, in the context of our global village each and every homo-sapiens is a neighbor! I believe, that is exactly what Jesus would say if he were to come back!
To read further click here

Making Islamic sense of free speech

Harris Zafar – Spokesperson, Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, USA

Source: The Washington Post
By Harris Zafar
While many celebrated the winter holidays, news broke of the arrest in Saudi Arabia of liberal writer Turki Al Hamad for allegedly insulting Islam on Twitter.  We also heard of another Saudi activist, Raif Badawi, who was arrested in June and will now continue with his trial, accused of apostasy for ridiculing Saudi Arabia's religious police and making other comments that officials found insulting.  These incidents have re-ignited the age old debate about the use of freedom of speech, especially with regards to Islam.
The difference between Islam's view on free speech and the view promoted by free speech advocates these days is the intention and ultimate goal each seeks to promote.  Whereas many secularists champion individual privileges, Islam promotes the principle of uniting mankind and cultivating love and understanding among people.  Both endorse freedom for people to express themselves, but Islam promotes unity, whereas modern-day free speech advocates promote individualism.
Let me explain.
The ultimate goal of Islam is to unite mankind under a single banner of peace.  The Koran– Islam's holy scripture – says God created everyone in unity, but our own man-made differences has compromised our unity (2:214).  In order to unite mankind, Islam instructs to only use speech to be truthful, do good to others, and be fair and respectful.  It attempts to pre-empt frictions by prescribing rules of conduct which guarantee for all people not only freedom of speech but also fairness, absolute justice, and the right of disagreement.
The Koran instructs people to speak the truth (33:71), to speak in a manner that is best (17:54), to speak to others kindly (2:84) and to refrain from inappropriate speech (4:149). With Islam's guidance to purify our intentions, it promotes free speech when our intention is to serve a good purpose, promote peace, bring people closer to God and unite mankind.  If, however, our intentions are to insult others or promote disorder or division, we should refrain. Read further.
To read in the Muslim Times.

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'One learned man is harder on the devil than a thousand ignorant worshipers': Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)

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