Conversation with a Muslim
I had this conversation with an Egyptian Muslim colleague living in Canada (originally the conversation was in Arabic, 2 weeks ago):
He: Egypt is going through hard times right now with all these elections.
I: Yes, indeed. It’s going to be scary if Muslim Brotherhood took over the country and won the majority in parliamentary elections.. My Christian family living there will be in deep trouble.
He: I agree with you. In all my life I hated Salafis and Muslim Brotherhood. They don’t represent Islam at all.
I: They don’t represent Islam? !! How is that? They use Islamic scriptures to justify what they are doing. While Muslims like you, claiming to be liberals, don’t have an answer from the same scriptures. This is a big problem.
He: No, you’re wrong, they don’t represent true Islam. Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance. All Islamic wars were defensive.
I: Don’t you read history?!!! Don’t you know how Muslims using Quran and Sunna justified invasion of Egypt, Syria, Northern Africa, Spain, Portugal, Constantinople, Persia, Balkan, India …etc
He: All these were wars to prevent dictators and brutal regimes from stopping people to become Muslims.
I: Oh, my … Are you serious? Do you really believe yourself ? You did not even have a Qur’anic translations to allow people to read it themselves so they can choose to become Muslims or not. Didn’t you hear about Khalid Ibn AlWalid who, while invading Iraq, killed 70,000 non combatant Christians. Why didn’t he ask them to become Muslims? Did any Islamic army left a country alone after its people refused to become Muslims?
He: All this is not true. Islam does not teach violence.
I: How about the Quran when It says: Fight against such of those who have been given the Scripture as believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, and forbid not that which Allah hath forbidden by His messenger, and follow not the Religion of Truth, until they pay the tribute readily, being brought low. (AL-TAWBA verse 29).
Also Mohammad frankly was open about fighting non believers. He said as transmitted in Sahih al Bukhari (Volume 1, Book 2, Number 25) “I have been ordered (by Allah) to fight against the people until they testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that Muhammad is Allah’s Apostle, and offer the prayers perfectly and give the obligatory charity, so if they perform that, then they save their lives and property from me except for Islamic laws and then their reckoning (accounts) will be done by Allah.”
You Consider us, as Christians, infidels. And I don’t mind being an infidel. The question is: how you as a Muslim should treat an infidel?
He: No, you’re not an infidel. It is not easy to tag people with “infidel”
I: Your Qur’an does say that, it says: They do blaspheme who say: “Allah is Christ the son of Mary.” (ALMaeda verse 72). We do believe in the full divinity of Jesus as God’s incarnate. So, we are blasphemers or infidels.
He: You are all wrong about Islam. You misinterpret the texts.
I: No, I have been reading your texts with their ancient, not-tampered-with interpretations. They all agree with what I am saying.
He: I have to read more about these topics. I am sure you’re misled by the enemies of Islam.
I: Please go read it. And correct any mistakes I’ve done. I will be waiting for your corrections. I don’t care about solving your internal religious problems. All what I am saying is that liberal Muslims should study more and find more scripture based answers to these issues. If you don’t find the answer, you have to admit what the hardliners like Osama bin Laden, Muslim Brotherhood, Salafis and others believe in is the true Islam. Then you are faced with a bigger a choice, either you change the liberal part or the Muslim part of your belief system.
He did not get back to me since then.