Home > Islam > Religious Tolerance and Some False Hadiths

Religious Tolerance and Some False Hadiths

I watched a video one of David Wood’s Youtube videos recently that outraged me considerably. He showed a film clip of PISSI forcing Yazidis to convert to their religion of Pseudo-Islam. (PISSI is the Pseudo-Islamic State of Syria and Iraq.) He quoted some false hadiths which he thinks inspired PISSI to force people into converting to their religion. I want to talk about those false hadiths and how dangerous it is for people to believe and practice them.

First, watch the video that David Wood posted on Youtube a couple of years ago.

Here are three false hadiths which say that Muhammad was commanded by God to use military means to force people to accept Islamic monotheism. David Wood quoted two of them in his video.

Narrated Abu Huraira: When the Prophet died and Abu Bakr became his successor and some of the Arabs reverted to disbelief, ‘Umar said, “O Abu Bakr! How can you fight these people although Allah’s Apostle said, ‘I have been ordered to fight the people till they say: ‘None has the right to be worshipped but Allah, ‘and whoever said, ‘None has the right to be worshipped but Allah’, Allah will save his property and his life from me, unless (he does something for which he receives legal punishment) justly, and his account will be with Allah?’ “Abu Bakr said, “By Allah! I will fight whoever differentiates between prayers and Zakat as Zakat is the right to be taken from property (according to Allah’s Orders). By Allah! If they refused to pay me even a kid they used to pay to Allah’s Apostle, I would fight with them for withholding it.” ‘Umar said, “By Allah: It was nothing, but I noticed that Allah opened Abu Bakr’s chest towards the decision to fight, therefore I realized that his decision was right.” ( Sahih al-Bukhari 6924, 6925)

It is reported on the authority of Abu Huraira that the Messenger of Allah said: I have been commanded to fight against people so long as they do not declare that there is no god but Allah, and he who professed it was guaranteed the protection of his property and life on my behalf except for the right affairs rest with Allah. (Sahih Muslim, Book 1, Hadith 30)

It has been narrated on the authority of Abdullah b. ‘Umar that the Messenger of Allah said: I have been commanded to fight against people till they testify that there is no god but Allah, that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah, and they establish prayer, and pay Zakat and if they do it, their blood and property are guaranteed protection on my behalf except when justified by law, and their affairs rest with Allah. (Sahih Muslim, Book 1, Hadith 33)

The compiler of the Sahih Bukhari collection of hadiths was born in 810 and died in 870. The compiler of the Sahih Muslim collection of hadiths was born in 815 and died in 875. Muhammad died in 632. Any rational person should be skeptical about a story about someone which was written down over two hundred years after he died. These hadiths are hearsay and totally contradict the Koran.

Enjoin ye righteousness upon mankind while ye yourselves forget (to practise it)? And ye are readers of the Scripture! Have ye then no sense? (Koran 2:44, Pickthall)

In the Koran, it is quite clear that Muhammad was not called by God to be a tyrant who enforces his religious beliefs on others.

We are most knowing of what they say, and you are not over them a tyrant. But remind by the Qur’an whoever fears My threat. (Koran 50:45, Sahih International)

Twice in the Koran, it says that Muhammad was to be a witness, bearer of good tidings, and a warner.

O Prophet! Lo! We have sent thee as a witness and a bringer of good tidings and a warner. (Koran 33:45, Pickthall)

Lo! We have sent thee (O Muhammad) as a witness and a bearer of good tidings and a warner, That ye (mankind) may believe in Allah and His messenger, and may honour Him, and may revere Him, and may glorify Him at early dawn and at the close of day. (Koran 48:8,9, Pickthall)

Numerous places in the Koran is it emphasized that Muhammad was a warner.

Verily We have sent thee in truth as a bearer of glad tidings and a warner: But of thee no question shall be asked of the Companions of the Blazing Fire. (Koran 2:119, Yusuf Ali)
O People of the Book! Now hath come unto you, making (things) clear unto you, Our Messenger, after the break in (the series of) our messengers, lest ye should say: “There came unto us no bringer of glad tidings and no warner (from evil)”: But now hath come unto you a bringer of glad tidings and a warner (from evil). And Allah hath power over all things. (Koran 5:19, Yusuf Ali)

Do they not reflect that their companion has not unsoundness in mind; he is only a plain warner. (Koran 7:184, Shakir)

Say: For myself I have no power to benefit, nor power to hurt, save that which Allah willeth. Had I knowledge of the Unseen, I should have abundance of wealth, and adversity would not touch me. I am but a warner, and a bearer of good tidings unto folk who believe. (Koran 7:188, Pickthall)

(Saying): Serve none but Allah. Lo! I am unto you from Him a warner and a bringer of good tidings. (Koran 11:2, Pickthall)

Then, it may be that you will give up part of what is revealed to you and your breast will become straitened by it because they say: Why has not a treasure been sent down upon him or an angel come with him? You are only a warner; and Allah is custodian over all things. (Koran 11:12, Shakir)

Stretch not thine eyes to that We have given pairs of them to enjoy; and do not sorrow for them, and lower thy wing unto the believers, and say, ‘Surely, I am the manifest warner.’ (Koran 15:88,89, Arberry)

Say: ‘I am not an innovation among the Messengers, and I know not what shall be done with me or with you. I only follow what is revealed to me; I am only a clear warner.’ (Koran 46:9, Arberry)

There are many more such passages in the Koran which emphasize that Muhammad’s mission was to warn people so that they would turn from idolatry and and an immoral life and worship the one true God and serve Him. The Koran also emphasizes that only God can guide someone to the truth. Muhammad could not change another person’s heart so that he believed his message. Only God could do that.

Had Allah willed, they had not been idolatrous. We have not set thee as a keeper over them, nor art thou responsible for them. (Koran 6:107, Pickthall)

Say, “With Allah is the far-reaching argument. If He had willed, He would have guided you all.” (Koran 6:149, Sahih International)

If it had been thy Lord’s will, they would all have believed,- all who are on earth! wilt thou then compel mankind, against their will, to believe! No soul can believe, except by the will of Allah, and He will place doubt (or obscurity) on those who will not understand. (Koran 10:99,100, Yusuf Ali)

For verily thou (Muhammad) canst not make the dead to hear, nor canst thou make the deaf to hear the call when they have turned to flee. Nor canst thou guide the blind out of their error. Thou canst make none to hear save those who believe in Our revelations so that they surrender (unto Him). (Koran 30:52,53, Pickthall)

Muhammad was not to be concerned about those who disbelieved his message.

And if they argue with thee, (O Muhammad), say: I have surrendered my purpose to Allah and (so have) those who follow me. And say unto those who have received the Scripture and those who read not: Have ye (too) surrendered? If they surrender, then truly they are rightly guided, and if they turn away, then it is thy duty only to convey the message (unto them). Allah is Seer of (His) bondmen. (Koran 3:20, Pickthall)

And they say, “[We pledge] obedience.” But when they leave you, a group of them spend the night determining to do other than what you say. But Allah records what they plan by night. So leave them alone and rely upon Allah. And sufficient is Allah as Disposer of affairs. (Koran 4:81, Sahih International)

And with the truth We have sent the Qur’an down, and with the truth it has descended. And We have not sent you, [O Muhammad], except as a bringer of good tidings and a warner. And [it is] a Qur’an which We have separated [by intervals] that you might recite it to the people over a prolonged period. And We have sent it down progressively. Say, “Believe in it or do not believe. Indeed, those who were given knowledge before it – when it is recited to them, they fall upon their faces in prostration, And they say, “Exalted is our Lord! Indeed, the promise of our Lord has been fulfilled.” (Koran 17:105-108, Sahih International)

Hast thou seen him who chooseth for his god his own lust? Wouldst thou then be guardian over him? (Koran 25:43, Pickthall)

God said that He would deal with the unbelievers.

Perhaps those who disbelieve will wish that they had been Muslims. Let them eat and enjoy themselves and be diverted by [false] hope, for they are going to know. (Koran 15:2,3, Sahih International)

Far from easy for those without Faith. Leave Me alone, (to deal) with the (creature) whom I created (bare and) alone! (Koran 74:10,11, Yusuf Ali)

Muhammad was not in charge of those who disbelieve, nor was he responsible for their unbelief.

Thy people (O Muhammad) have denied it, though it is the Truth. Say: I am not put in charge of you.(Koran 6:66, Pickthall)

Had Allah willed, they had not been idolatrous. We have not set thee as a keeper over them, nor art thou responsible for them. (Koran 6:107, Pickthall)

Your Lord knows you best; He will have mercy on you if He pleases, or He will chastise you if He pleases; and We have not sent you as being in charge of them. (Koran 17:54, Shakir)

And (as for) those who take guardians besides Him, Allah watches over them, and you have not charge over them. (Koran 42:6, Shakir)

The Koran stresses that man has a choice to accept the message of Muhammad or reject it.

There is no compulsion in religion. The right direction is henceforth distinct from error. And he who rejecteth false deities and believeth in Allah hath grasped a firm handhold which will never break. Allah is Hearer, Knower. (Koran 2:256, Pickthall)

Lo! This is a Reminder. Let him who will, then, choose a way unto his Lord. (Koran 73:19, Pickthall)Lo! this is an Admonishment, that whosoever will may choose a way unto his Lord. (Koran 76:29, Pickthall)

Someone might say that these nice verses of the Koran were abrogated by the Sword Verse.

Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them, and take them (captive), and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then leave their way free. Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. (Koran 9:5, Pickthall)

This verse must be read in the context of the whole passage in order to understand it properly.

And a proclamation from Allah and His messenger to all men on the day of the Greater Pilgrimage that Allah is free from obligation to the idolaters, and (so is) His messenger. So, if ye repent, it will be better for you; but if ye are averse, then know that ye cannot escape Allah. Give tidings (O Muhammad) of a painful doom to those who disbelieve, excepting those of the idolaters with whom ye (Muslims) have a treaty, and who have since abated nothing of your right nor have supported anyone against you. (As for these), fulfil their treaty to them till their term. Lo! Allah loveth those who keep their duty (unto Him). (Koran 9:3,4, Pickthall)

The Muslims were to attack the idolaters with whom they did not have a treaty. The reason for doing this is found in verses 12 and 13.

And if they break their pledges after their treaty (hath been made with you) and assail your religion, then fight the heads of disbelief – Lo! they have no binding oaths – in order that they may desist. Will ye not fight a folk who broke their solemn pledges, and purposed to drive out the messenger and did attack you first? What! Fear ye them? Now Allah hath more right that ye should fear Him, if ye are believers. (Koran 9:12,13, Pickthall)

The idolaters had attacked the Muslims first. The war was in self-defense. They broke their treaty with the Muslims. They also assailed the Muslims’ religion. So, the war was also because of religious persecution.In verse 6, we can see that polytheists were not required to accept Islamic monotheism against their will.

And if anyone of the idolaters seeketh thy protection (O Muhammad), then protect him so that he may hear the Word of Allah, and afterward convey him to his place of safety. That is because they are a folk who know not. (Koran 9:6, Pickthall)

An abrogating revelation must be either better than or similar to the abrogated revelation.

None of Our revelations do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, but We substitute something better or similar: Knowest thou not that Allah Hath power over all things? (Koran 2:106, Yusuf Ali)

War is not similar to religious tolerance, nor is it better. “Peace is better.” (Koran 4:128) People need to ignore those false hadiths and not use them to establish a religious practice of forced conversions like PISSI is doing.

Those hadiths quoted earlier in this blog post clearly contradict the teachings of the Koran. They were written down over two hundred years after Muhammad died. They are hearsay. Why should anyone believe that God told Muhammad to engage in military conflict with non-Muslims in order to force them to convert to Islamic monotheism?

Here is another video about hadiths. It is very informative.

Believing and practicing these false hadiths is not a good idea. Forcing people to change their religious faith only alienates them in their hearts. They believe with their mouths because they are forced to do so, but in their hearts they resent having been forced to accept a religion they disagree with. Eventually, people will rebel against their oppressors. The Koran does not teach that people should be forced to accept Islamic monotheism. It teaches that conversion is a combination of man’s free will and God’s grace working together. Man must choose, but God must give the ability to believe and change one’s conduct.

People have been known to use religion for political ends. Maybe, those false hadiths originated with rulers who wanted to motivate people to engage in military conflict to expand their kingdoms. They most likely do not contain the words of Muhammad at all. Muhammad was a witness, a bringer of good tidings, and a warner to mankind. Nowhere in the Koran does it say that he was supposed to be a warlord. The war verses in the Koran indicate that the seventh century Muslims were fighting wars because of religious persecution, oppression, and in self-defense against others who started a conflict.

One should be critical of those hadiths written down over two hundred years after Muhammad died. They are hearsay. Believing them is foolish. Those false hadiths, in the end, only produce conflict and not peace which is always better.

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  1. January 25, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    Hello, Do you follow hadeeth rejectors ?
    If not, read this: http://comparativreligion.blogspot.com/2012/09/i-have-been-ordered-to-fight.html

    • January 27, 2017 at 7:10 pm

      I think that the hadiths are hearsay. The Sunni hadiths were written down over 200 years after the Islamic prophet died. In my opinion, they are largely hearsay and untrustworthy. The Koran is generally much more benign than many of the hadiths. Extremists use the hadiths to justify their barbaric practices, such as stoning women to death for committing zina, calling Jews pigs and hating them, forcing non-Muslims to accept Islam, killing apostates, etc. I know that there are some injustices that the Jews have done in the Middle East. However, both Jews and Muslims need to obey the Zabur and “seek peace and pursue it.” (Psalm 34:14) Anyone who rejects this commandment of Allah has “wandered far astray.” (Koran 4:136) There are some very good hadiths that teach kindness and love towards one’s fellow man. If someone wants to follow the hadiths, I think that he should keep the good ones and scrap the bad ones. Can anyone really produce a nine volume encyclopedia of what one has done and said 200 years after he has died? Think of some ancestor of yours who died two hundred years ago. Can you produce a nine volume encyclopedia of what he has done and said? I know that I cannot do that. However, Sunni Muslims have six such encyclopedias about what Muhammad did and said. All of them produced over 200 years after his death. Be real! These are hearsay.

      (O man), follow not that whereof thou hast no knowledge. Lo! the hearing and the sight and the heart – of each of these it will be asked. (Koran 17:36, Pickthall)

      And they have no knowledge thereof. They follow but a guess, and lo! a guess can never take the place of the truth. (Koran 53:28, Pickthall)

      None of the compilers of the hadiths had a time-machine. How do they know for certain that those narrations about the Islamic prophet are genuinely true?

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