Religious extremism

by Prince Yusadolat

Editorial from the Daily Observer of the Gambia, West Africa

Religion, as can be seen today, is at the centre of global debate, mainly because of the controversies surrounding it (thanks to the level of misinterpretation) and not because of the genuine love between man and his creator. Today, if there is any single issue that is closest to the heart of the majority of the world’s population, it is religion. This is not something bad though; what is unfortunate, however, is that this man-and-God relationship is being exploited to the discomfort of the human race, contrary to the divine purpose.The world over, religious leaders command tremendous respect. While this influence has been used in some quarters for the advancement of humanity, for others, unfortunately, religious influence means propagating chaos and destruction. This is particularly true of Islam. In fact, a number of analysts prefer associating any possible World War (III) to religious causes. And to a large extent, the predominant occurrences of our day give this prophesy a fair level of credibility.We are all living witnesses to the fact that it has now become rampant in the world that some unscrupulous elements of society masquerade themselves under the banner of Islam to commit atrocities in the world. This has shaped world opinion against the noble and non-violent religion of Islam as many now see it as a religion that is synonymous with terrorism and extremism. Even though most of such people are resident in Muslim countries and often pretend to rally behind the Qur’an to commit the most heinous crimes against God and humanity; the fact remains that such people have nothing to do with the Qur’an or Islam. They are people who are unable to properly appreciate Allah, who fail to live by the true Islamic moral values commanded by Him, who live far removed from the fine, warm and loving moral values of our prophet and have fallen under material indoctrination.

It is therefore not surprising that President Jammeh in his unrelenting bid to contribute to the advancement of Islam in the country and the world at large, once more expressed his total rejection of such people and reaffirm that The Gambia would not entertain them. The president’s remarks, is both timely and fundamental. At this time that the Islamic Ummah is under constant criticism simply because of the deceitful attitudes of these so-called Muslims, defending the truth about Islam and ensuring that people are committed to the virtues of the religion is not only rewarding but also part of the fulfillment of one’s mission on earth. We therefore applaud the Gambian leader for ensuring the country does not fall to the grip of those recalcitrant elements of society.

It is certain that it is impossible for sincere Muslims who fully abide by the Qur’an to support and be part of such a repressive system that exists in opposition to the Qur’an. The people who carry out extremism in the world are the followers of the devil. They are people who foolishly attempt to apply the aberrant ideas of bloody materialists in the name of Islam, and who think in a way diametrically opposed to the moral values of the religion. After all, unjustified killing is a sin in Islam, as Allah reveals that it is as sinful to kill one person as to kill all mankind. There is no question of someone who maintains the bounds set by Allah of harming a single person, let alone slaughtering thousands of innocent individuals.

The President’s move is to ensure that such people are not entertained in the country in the interest of the progress, peace and prosperity that the country is enjoying. It is therefore a moral obligation on all citizens to complement the efforts of the Gambian leader in that respect. The religious leaders, particularly the Imams should take the lead role in this crusade by ensuring that in their quest to spread Islam, the Qur’an is not falsely interpreted to suit personal ends or in a manner that will indoctrinate the people with violent and radical ideas. Those who are engaging in spreading radical ideologies under the pretext of Islam must desist from such. The entire Muslim community of the country should also be vigilant to ensure that conditions that can generate extremism are discredited and totally destroyed.
 
Author: Daily Observer
Originally Published Thursday, September 01, 2011

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