This world’s great religion of Islam preaches peace built on the strong basis of understanding, respect for conscience and expression, freedom of beliefs, and belief in the sacredness and protection to human life.
The Quran that lays down the principle of religious freedoms in Surat Kafiruun: 6, (You have the right to your religion, and I should have mine), the Roundtable common ground talks between Muhammedan Islam and the Biblical beliefs, etc in “Ale- Imran :61 (O ye the people of the scripture, come to a word- common- between us and yourselves…); and the recognition of the biblical prophets and kings as Muslims, and the numerous textual references in the Quran and prophet Muhammad’s traditions give us the basis to believe, profoundly, that Islam has the capacity to redeem its self from the scourge of its adherents’ critics and failures.
There is nowhere, in Islam, where it is encouraged to commit suicide or torture animals; let alone taking other peoples’ lives. In surat Haj: 40, the destruction of the churches, synagogues etc, for the lack of restraint, and recklessness, is tantamount to the destruction of mosques, and in surat An-‘aam: 108; the insult to non- believers (non- Muslims) is a direct insult to Allah!
Yet it is very regrettable to register dozen incidents of bloody violence meted out on Muslims by fellow Muslims in Sufi and Shiite mosques that are blown up in Egypt, Iraq, Kuwait, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and specifically when it pleases a religious zealot to gun down the Shiite leader in Mayuge (Uganda).
More to that, is the acute pain we are consistently suffering when schools, Churches and Synagogues, weddings and funerals are attacked claiming the innocent human lives. Our hearts are locked therein with their bodies in the coffins, in the caskets, and together to their graves.
However, in our scholarly habits of reading, and the interface with the top Ayatollahs, I see a glimpse of hope in the Shi’a Islam accommodative literature, and also- frankly- I trust the non- belligerence and powerful influence they have on Muslims.
The Iraqi Grand Ayatollah Sistani said: (Sunnis are our selves); following that statement the Iraqi Shi’a protected the Sunnis, and not forgetting that such attitude has made Baghdad city to have more than two million Sh’ia- Sunni couple (in mixed marriages), and as Muslims in Egypt protected the Coptic churches during Christmas after the “so called” Islamic state attack on them!
I am convinced that no Shiite was involved, even indirectly, in the 9/11 attacks on the United States or in the BOKO- HARAM attacks in West Africa, nor in the Al Shabab attacks on Uganda when they hit football loving fans who were watching televised match at Lugogo- Kabalagala (Uganda). Nairobi and Dar- es- Salam, TAJ MAHAL in India, BALI resort beaches, Kabul, Lahore, Paris, Brussels, Bosnia, Moscow, London, all US attacks, etc.
And finally I am of the view that policy makers and experts on religious inspired Fundamentalism seek assistance from Shi’a Muslim top scholars so that the Textual Realities of the Peaceful Teachings of Islam be understood and applied.