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'Islam stands for peace not for revenge' says religious scholar in Oman.

Muscat: "Oh! Muslims stand up for Islam the religion of tolerance," Sufyaan Khalifa, a religious scholar in Oman and a member of Australian National Imams Council (ANIC), saying that any act of violence or terror will only harm and spill innocent blood "from which we all will suffer". The respected Imam was speaking as the French magazine Charlie Hebdo courted controversy again with its "All is forgiven" front page, the first edition after terror attack on its newsroom in which 12 people were slain. Also read Should the right to freedom of speech be just absolute? On Wednesday, Al Qaeda over the border in Yemen claimed responsibility for the shooting, which saw two gunmen force their way into the Paris headquarters of Charlie Hebdo, shooting 12, including staff cartoonists Charb, Cabu, Honore, Tignous and Wolinski, economist Bernard Maris and two cops, and wounding eleven, four of them seriously. It was an incident that sparked three days of fear in France While there were fears that the latest front page would reignite feelings across the Muslim world, religious scholars in Oman spoke out about Islam and called for its true believers to follow the path of peace. "Let's make it very clear to our fellow Muslims before our non-Muslim friends that "violence is not in the dictionary of Islam." There is no place for violence, either in the Holy Quran or in the Sunnah (Prophetic traditions). It is mentioned at several places in the Holy Quran that Allah does not like those who spread mischief on this earth," Sufyaan said quoting Quranic verses that the biggest violence -- killing innocent people -- is repudiated in such strong words the likes of which are found in no other religious scripture. "Allah does not love those who spread mischief..." (Sura Mai'dah 5:64). "...whoever kills a soul unless for a soul or for corruption (done) in the land - it is as if he had slain mankind entirely... And whoever saves one - it is as if he had saved mankind entirely..."( Mai'dah 5:32). "Muslims must realise the great responsibility upon our shoulders to represent Islam in its crystal and pure form, by first of all being patient and by not refuting false accusations with evil actions. Instead we have to be cautious in our actions and reactions. I advise my fellow Muslims to take advantage of any opportunity that arises to present Islam to our fellow non-Muslim friends, as it is the only way to fight the fear and the misconceptions they have about Islam," he added. Another religious scholar said that while printing a blasphemous image of Prophet on a magazine cover was a condemnable act but so was attacking those responsible . "Holy Quran teaches us to fight evil with good. It teaches us to turn our foes into our lifelong friends. Islam is a religion of love and peace. It doesn't teach us anywhere vengeance," Ummer VCP, the religious scholar, said. "[The] Magazine's stand on freedom of expression is agreeable. But we should not forget the saying that your liberty to swing your fist ends just where my nose begins. Moreover, the magazine should not have taken this kind of liberty by hurting the religious sentiments of believers," Ummer added. Islam teaches us to face criticism with broadmindedness, another religious scholar said. "Prophet has taught us the same. In his period also, Islam was criticised by many. But he has dealt all the attacks with patience and has taught us to follow the same," Sayyid Ibrahim Khalil Buqhari, a religious scholar said. "Prophet's prominence and Islam's values cannot be tarnished by criticisms. Nobody can tarnish the Prophet with a few cartoons or something else. So, true believers should ignore this and follow the path of peace and love. Prophet has never taught us to attack disbelievers by resorting to unwarranted means," Sayyid Ibrahim said. "By unleashing terror on disbelievers in the name of Islam is a devious plan designed by terrorists to establish their ideology," Sayyid Ibrahim added. Meanwhile, another Islam scholar said that those who attacked the magazine and killed the people are not true believers of Islam. "Even if they claim that they are Muslim, they are not," Nizar Saqafi, a religious scholar, said. Mohammed Osama Rawat, a Muslim, said that we should keep a distance from them who are ridiculing Allah's commandments. "As per Khalifa Umar farooq (May Allah be please with him), we should keep a distance from them who are ridiculing Allah's commandments," Mohammed said. Reporter can be reached at

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Publication:Times of Oman (Muscat, Oman)
Geographic Code:7OMAN
Date:Jan 14, 2015
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