Islam & Its Perspective on Interfaith Dialogue

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  • 'Interfaith dialogue is a must today, and the first step in establishing it is forgetting the past, ignoring polemical arguments, and giving precedence to common points, which far outnumber polemical ones.'
    Fethullah Gulen
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Islam & Its Perspective on Interfaith Dialogue

  1. 1. Islam & Its Perspective on Interfaith Dialogue
  2. 2. What is Islam? <ul><li>“ The religion of Islam is the acceptance of and obedience to the teachings of God which He revealed to His last prophet, Muhammad.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Islam” and “Muslim” are derived from the Arabic word for “submission”. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Islam is intimately connected with the the Judeo-Christian tradition <ul><li>Muslims are strictly monotheistic. </li></ul><ul><li>They believe in the Judeo-Christian God. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Allah” is the Arabic word for God. Christian and Jewish Arabs use the same word to refer to God. </li></ul><ul><li>Muslims believe that people fall away from God and that He sends a new Messenger. </li></ul><ul><li>Muhammed was God’s final Messenger. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Core Islamic Beliefs <ul><li>Belief in God </li></ul><ul><li>Belief in the Angels </li></ul><ul><li>Belief in God’s Revealed Books </li></ul><ul><li>Belief in the Prophets & Messengers of God </li></ul><ul><li>Belief in the Day of Judgment </li></ul><ul><li>Belief in Divine Predestination </li></ul>
  5. 5. Belief in God <ul><li>“Muslims believe in one unique, incomparable God, Who has no son nor partner, and that none has the right to be worshipped but Him alone.” </li></ul>
  6. 6. Belief in the Angels <ul><li>“Muslims believe in the existence of the angels, and that they are honored creatures. The angels worship God alone, obey Him, and act only by His command. </li></ul><ul><li>“Among the angels is Gabriel, who brought down the Qur’an to Muhammad.” </li></ul>
  7. 7. Belief in God’s Revealed Books <ul><li>“ Muslims believe that God revealed books to His messengers as proof for mankind and as guidance for them. </li></ul><ul><li>Muslims believe that the Torah and the Bible, like the Qur’an, is the word of God. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Belief in the Prophets & Messengers of God <ul><li>Muslims believe in all the Judeo-Christian prophets—but Muhammad is the Final Prophet </li></ul><ul><li>Belief in the prophets before Muhammad is a cornerstone of Islam. </li></ul><ul><li>Muslims believe in all the Judeo-Christian prophets (peace be upon them) and their respective stories. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Adam - Noah - Abraham </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ishmael - Isaac - Jacob </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Joseph - Job - Moses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Aaron - David - Solomon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jonah - John - Jesus </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Belief in the Day of Judgment <ul><li>“Muslims believe in the Day of Judgment (the Day of Resurrection) when all people will be resurrected for God’s judgment according to their beliefs and deeds.” </li></ul><ul><li>Muslims hope, but do not have assurance that their sins will be forgiven. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Belief in Divine Predestination <ul><li>“Muslims believe in Divine Predestination, but this belief … does not mean that human beings do not have freewill … This means that they can choose right or wrong and that they are responsible for their choices.” </li></ul>
  11. 11. Islam Today <ul><li>Islam is the second largest religion in the world. </li></ul><ul><li>There are 1.2 billion Muslims, comprising 20% of the world’s total population. </li></ul><ul><li>There are 43 countries with Muslim-majority populations in Southeast Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, North Africa, and Eastern Europe. </li></ul><ul><li>Arabs make up only 20% of the total Muslim population of the world. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Muslims in America <ul><li>3-8 million Muslims in America </li></ul><ul><li>The history of Islam in America dates back to the slave trade. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Abrahamic Religions <ul><li>Judaism, Christianity, and Islam all revere Abraham as their spiritual ancestor. </li></ul><ul><li>Christian and Muslim believes have many aspects in common. </li></ul><ul><li>Judaism too shares many beliefs with Islam. </li></ul>
  14. 14. The Perspective of Islam on Dialogue <ul><li>Jews and Christians are named &quot;the People of the Book&quot; in the Qur’an. </li></ul><ul><li>Places where the People of the Book worship are sacred to Muslims: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>… if God had not driven some people back by means of others, monasteries, churches, synagogues and mosques, where God's name is mentioned much, would have been pulled down and destroyed. God will certainly help those who help Him - God is All-Strong, Almighty. (Surat al-Hajj: 40 ) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>And among people of the book, Christians are named to be closer to Muslims. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>… You will find the people most affectionate to those who believe are those who say, 'We are Christians.' That is because some of them are priests and monks and because they are not arrogant. (Surat al-Ma'ida, 82) </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. The message of Qur’an on Dialogue <ul><li>O People of the Book! Let us rally to a common formula to be binding on both us and you: That we worship none but God; that we associate no partners with Him; that we erect not, from among ourselves, Lords and patrons other than God. (Surat Al 'Imran, 64) </li></ul>
  16. 16. The message of Qur’an on Dialogue <ul><li>O God, Our Creator and Lord: </li></ul><ul><li>Let us rally to a common formula - &quot;faith&quot;. </li></ul><ul><li>Let us love You and follow Your commands. And let us pray You to lead us to an even straighter path. </li></ul><ul><li>Let us understand that we are friends not enemies, </li></ul><ul><li>then the world will become a very different place. </li></ul><ul><li>Let us give an end to misconceptions, fears, enmities and fighting that has raged for ages. </li></ul><ul><li>We “need” dialogue for establishing a future based on love, respect and peace. </li></ul><ul><li>Peace be upon you! </li></ul><ul><li>Thanks for hosting us and listening.. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Allahu Akbar Allah is Great Ashhadu an la ilaha illa Allah I bear witness that there is no god except the One God (Allah) Ashadu anna Muhammadan Rasool Allah I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah Hayya 'ala-s-Salah Hurry to the prayer (Rise up for prayer) Hayya 'ala-l-Falah Hurry to success (Rise up for Salvation) Allahu Akbar Allah is Great La ilaha illa Allah There is no god except the One God (Allah) Athan

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