Coexistence and tolerance in Islam
When the prophet (PBSL) emigrated to Madinah, he founded a Muslim community based on two social pillars:
- Brotherhood among Muslims
- The coexistence between them the non-Muslims
Thus, this coexistence had two dimensions:
The first dimension is political, crowned by the Charter of Madinah which includes a treaty between Muslims and Jews, we quote some clauses:
- Jews are one community with believers.
- Jews and monotheistic believers in Madinah have a mutual defense pact between two groups. To honor this pact, they must pay the necessary cost.
- Every Jew who adheres to this charter must have the help and assistance of believers and all the rights of believers must be given to him.
- Jews and monotheistic believers in Madinah will advise each other and their mutual relations must be based on righteousness, while sin is forbidden.
- the aggrieved party must be helped.
From this point, we can consider that this charter illustrates a beautiful web of Islamic civilization that sought to foster human relations based on tolerance, living together and mutual aid.
The second dimension is social, illustrated by the exemplary and humane behavior of the prophet (PBSL) towards the Jews. We take up below some illustrations of this ideal and unequaled behavior in no other religion.
Abd ar-Rahman Ibn Abi Layla said: “Sahl ibn Hounayf and Qays ibn Sa’d once sat in al-Qadisiyya when a funeral convoy came to pass by them. As they had risen, they were told: It is the convoy of a local man, that is, a tributary *. – The Prophet (PBSL), they replied, rose one day before a funeral convoy, and, as it was pointed out to him that it was that of a Jew, he replied: Isn’t that a soul?! “
“A Jewish boy who served as a servant of the Prophet (Blessing and Salvation be upon him) fell ill and he (the Prophet) went to his bedside to inquire about his state of health. He sat down near her head and said to her: Convert to Islam. The boy looked at his father who was standing near his head. The latter said to him:
Obey Abul Qassim. May Allah bless him and greet him. The boy converted to Islam. The Prophet (blessing and salvation be upon him) left the place saying: Praise be to Allah who saved him from hell. (Reported by al-Bokhari,1356).
Allah sent two angels who told the prophet that he had witchcraft and pointed out to him the place where the spell was hidden. The prophet said: Two men (i.e. two angels in human form) came to me. One sat near my head and the other near my feet. The first one asked: what happened to him? The other replied: magic was used against him. The first one asked: who used it?
He replied: Labid Ibn Asam. He asked: what is it contained in? He replied: in a comb and hair covered with the bract of a male date palm. He asked: where is he? He replied: under a stone at the bottom of Dhi Arwan (or Dharwan), the well of Bani Zurayq. He asked: what should be done about it? He replied, the well should be emptied and this should be removed from under the stone.
The Prophet sent Alî, Amar Ibn Yasir and Zubair to remove the spell from a well. The water was removed and the spatula was found. There, they discovered a rope with 11 knots and a wax figure pierced with pins.
Jabrael came and told him to recite the Mu`awwidhatayn. As he recited, verse after verse, a knot fell off and a pin came out each time, until at the last word, all the knots were undone and all the pins removed, and he was completely free of the spell.
After that, he called the Jew Labid and questioned him. He confessed and the Prophet let him go because he never took revenge on anyone who had hurt him. He even refused to tell the others, saying that Allâh had restored his health; and that he, therefore, did not want to incite people against anyone. (Hadith reported by El Boukhari)
According to Jabir, a Jewess from Khaybar had poisoned a sheep and offered it to the prophet who was surrounded by some of his honorable companions. He then invited them to eat with him and took a piece of his shoulder. At his first bite, the Messenger of Allâh (PBUH) said: “Raise your hands, the shoulder of this sheep tells me that it is poisoned”. They immediately slowed down.
The prophet Mouhammad then summoned Zaynab and asked him: “Have you poisoned this sheep?” She replied, “Yes. He then asked her: “Why did you do that? “She said: “I thought if you were a prophet then God would protect you and you would not be harmed. But if you were a liar, people would be relieved by your death. Zaynab went on to say: “I now have proof of your truth, and I take you as a witness that there is no god but Allâh and that you are Mohammad the Messenger of Allah. I am your religion! the prophet then forgave her.
Thus, precepts such as coexistence and tolerance draw their foundations from the Koranic principle illustrated in the verses of the surahs of The Woman tested and The Chambers (Al Mumtahina and Al Hujurat).
Allah says: “O people! We created you from a male and a female, and made you races and tribes, that you may know one another. The best among you in the sight of God is the most righteous. God is All-Knowing, Well-Experienced”
Allah also said: “As for those who have not fought against you for your religion, nor expelled you from your homes, God does not prohibit you from dealing with them kindly and equitably. God loves the equitable”.
We note, therefore, that the Quran has urged Muslims to base their behavior with Jews and Christians on the values of “unknowledge”, “Beneficence” and “equity”, that is, impartiality.
Thus, on the scale of human values, equity, inter-knowledge, and tolerance occupy a higher place than those of coexistence and tolerance.
In addition, Allah refers in a Koranic verse to “mutual aid” “cooperate with one another in virtuous conduct and conscience”. (5/2)
Thus, this verse was revealed to guide Muslims’ behavior towards non-Muslims.
This was, therefore, the way in which the prophet (PBSL) maintained his relations with Jews and Christians from the political and social point of view. In revenge, from the point of view of the creed (uniqueness). The prophet (PBSL) has always condemned all forms of idolatry and paganism that have intruded into Judaism and Christianity.
Indeed, the positions of the prophet (PBSL) rejecting the cults of idolatry are numerous, we quote only one in relation to the question of the call to prayer.
Abu Omyr reports from Anas, who received him from his Ansar uncles, that the Prophet was concerned about finding the best way to bring people together for prayer. It was suggested that he use a flag whose display indicates the arrival of the time of prayer and would imply that those who would see it would inform others. But this opinion did not meet with his agreement. Then he had mentioned the use of a trumpet like the Jews, which made him say as disapproval that it was a Jewish matter. Then we talk about the use of a bell in the Christian way, which he rejected when he said that it was also a Christian practice. Abd Allah Ibn Zayd Ibn Abd Rabbih left the scene very concerned because of the concern of the Messenger of Allah. Then he had a dream during which he was shown the adhan. The next day he presented himself to the Prophet (blessing and salvation be upon him) and said to him: “O Messenger of Allah! I was half asleep when someone came to show me the modality of the call to prayer. Previously, Omar Ibn al-Khattab had had an identical dream and had hidden it for 20 days. Then he informed her and said, “What was it that kept you from telling me? – Abd Allah Ibn Zayd preceded me and I was ashamed… said Omar. The Messenger of Allah says: Bilal, get up and do as Abd Allah Ibn Zayd tells you. So, Bilal pronounced the adhan. (reported by Abu Dawud – May Allah grant him His mercy – in his Sunan, 420
The great scholar Ibn Taymia says in “اقتضاء الصراط المستقيم (1/ 356, “The prophet (PBSL) rejected the use of the trumpet like the Jews and the use of the bell like the Christians because they are Jewish and Christian practices.
To describe a thing after having ruled on it legally is to be the reason for it.
If then the use of a Christian or Jewish practice has been disapproved by the prophet (PBSL), what about mixing the call to prayer with Christian and Jewish songs?
To reject all its practices reflects an ardent desire for reform for which Allah sent His messenger, in order to remedy the deficiencies in dogma that have reached Judaism and Christianity and thus purge their beliefs of any worship of idolatry that associates the divinity with anyone other than Allah has never begotten, has never been begotten, has never been begotten, nor is anyone equal to Him. »
Theologists and historians have thus revealed that Christianity was marked by Roman, Greek and Persian paganism, from which it drew its dogma and its practice of worship.
The trinity is a perfect illustration of this because it was practiced among Hindus, Buddhists long before Christians. We quote Faber who says in his book “the origin of paganist idolatry”: “Just as we find among Hindus a triad composed of Brahma Vishnu and Shiva, we also find among Buddhists a triad that considers Buddha to be God.
This was also the case for ancient Egyptians who believed in the trinity of God: “Osiris, Isis, and Horus”. Persians, Greeks, Romans, Assyrians, Phoenicians, Scandinavians, Mongols, as well as Mexicans and Canadians, were also believers in the Trinity of God.
Thus, Islam strictly condemned all forms of idolatry and formally refuted the idea that Jesus peace and blessing upon him would have any divine character or that he was related to God and considered this a serious falsification of the message of the prophet Moses and Jesus.
The Jews said, “Ezra is the son of God,” and the Christians said, “The Messiah is the son of God.” These are their statements, out of their mouths. They emulate the statements of those who blasphemed before. May God assail them! How deceived they are! They have taken their rabbis and their priests as lords instead of God, as well as the Messiah son of Mary. Although they were commanded to worship none but The One God. There is no god except He. Glory be to Him; High above what they associate with Him. (9/30-31).