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Countering Anti-Islam Propaganda

Question and answer details
Z Khan
2013/11/18
I have been having a discussion by correspondence with a friend of mine about Hadith, but he sent me a link to a website which denies the position of Hadith altogether. I feel that such sites are created by hypocrites or deviants. How to refute the falsehoods they publish?
Adil Salahi
Answer
This answer first appeared at www.arabnews.com. It is republished with kind permission with slight editorial modifications.

Salam dear brother,

Thank you for your question.

There are many websites that are intent on undermining Islam. Some are openly hostile, while others adopt an apparently objective stance making their criticism sound more plausible. Other websites have a more subtle approach, citing some Hadiths when they make an argument, but relying always on using half truths.

There are some, which try to show themselves as truth seekers, but they twist arguments and rely on false reports presenting them as solid truth. Those who run and manage these websites belong to different trends and have different agendas.

To what extent should we take up the challenge and how? If we were to answer every point on every website, we will find ourselves immersed in a long-winded argument that will benefit no one.

To start with, our answer will not be placed side by side with the criticism, to allow a reader to weigh up both arguments. Therefore, the person who reads the criticism will most probably remain unaware of the answer.

Secondly, our argument will never be as powerful as that of the Quran. These people twist the Quran and Hadith to serve their purpose. What will they do with our arguments?

Thirdly, there are too many websites that criticize Islam, and trying to answer them all requires an army of scholars who devote all their time to this ultimately impossible task.

The other day a reader sent me a link to one of these websites. The link speaks about what the writer calls "contradictions in the Quran." Apparently he listed these after someone wrote to him that there are 101 contradictions in the Bible.

He retorted by listing close to 200 points of so-called contradictions in the Quran. My reader asked me to reply to these. I looked at them and found out that they all rely on a mixture of inaccuracy, deliberate twisting of facts, and sheer ignorance.

To write an answer to each one of them would require me to devote a few months to the task during which I do nothing else. What would I come up with in the end? Nothing other than refuting a small section on a single website. Would the users of that website be aware of our refutation? Most likely not. Then what is the gain?

What is the proper policy to adopt, then? The first point is to listen to what God tells us in the Quran what means:

{Do not argue with the people of earlier revelations in other than the most kindly manner, except for those of them who are intent on wrongdoing; and say: 'We believe in that which has been revealed to us, as well as that which has been revealed to you, for our God and your God is one. It is to Him that we submit ourselves.'} (Al-`Ankabut 29:46)

This is indeed the proper attitude: an argument in a kindly manner that points out that we basically believe in God who is the Lord of all the worlds.

In addition, we should have our own websites which present Islam in its rightful image, so that people who seek to know the truth about Islam can find it. A number of scholars have their own websites, and this trend is on the increase.

We should also remain confident that the truth of Islam is overpowering. No argument can stand to the truth that emanates from God Almighty. Therefore, we need not be scared by such hostile adversaries.

Over the centuries, there were many like them who used the best means available to them in their own times, but they could not mar the image of Islam. Their present and future successors will end up with the same failure.

Many are those who tried over the years to undermine the position of Hadith in Islam. They dress their argument with a seemingly appropriate clothing, saying that the Quran is God’s word and we do not need anything other than His word.

They simply overlook two basic principles: the first is that to be a Muslim one declares his belief in God's Oneness and at the same time declares his belief that Muhammad was God's messenger. Unless he believes in both, he is not a Muslim.

The other is the Quranic commandment:

{Whatever the Messenger gives you, take it, and whatever he forbids you, refrain from it.} (Al-Hashr 59:7)

The Prophet gave us both the Quran and the Hadith. If we abandon the Hadith, how can we account for disobeying God's order?

I hope this answers your question. Please keep in touch.

Salam.

Useful Links:

The Muslim Predicament and the Media

Stereotypes of Islam

The Propaganda of Terrorism

Challenges Facing Da`wah to Islam

The Development of Hadith

Collecting the Hadith: Brief History

Authenticity of Al-Bukhari


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