Discover the truth of Islam. Discover what great personalities said about Islam and Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him.
The Islam that was revealed to Muhammad (PBUH), is the continuation and culmination of all the preceding revealed religions and hence it is for all times and all peoples. This status of Islam is sustained by glaring facts. Firstly, there is no other revealed book extant in the same form and content as it was revealed. Secondly, no other revealed religion has any convincing claim to provide guidance in all walks of human life for all times. But Islam addresses humanity at large and offers basic guidance regarding all human problems. Moreover, it has withstood the test of fourteen hundred years and has all the potentialities of establishing an ideal society as it did under the leadership of the last Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
It was a miracle that Prophet Muhammad could bring even his toughest enemies to the fold of Islam without adequate material resources. Worshippers of idols, blind followers of the ways of forefathers, promoters of tribal feuds, abusers of human dignity and blood, became the most disciplined nation under the guidance of Islam and its Prophet. Islam opened before them vistas of spiritual heights and human dignity by declaring righteousness as the sole criterion of merit and honor. Islam shaped their social, cultural, moral and commercial life with basic laws and principles which are in conformity with human nature and hence applicable in all times as human nature does not change
It is so unfortunate that the Christian West, instead of sincerely trying to understand the phenomenal success of Islam during its earlier time, considered it as a rival religion. During the centuries of the Crusades this trend gained much force and impetus and a huge amount of literature was produced to tarnish the image of Islam. But Islam has begun to unfold its genuineness to the modern scholars whose bold and objective observations on Islam belie all the charges leveled against it by the so-called unbiased orientalists.
Here we furnish some observations on Islam by great and acknowledged non-Muslim scholars of modern time. Truth needs no advocates to plead on its behalf, but the prolonged malicious propaganda against Islam has created great confusion even in the minds of free and objective thinkers.
“It (Islam) replaced monkishness by manliness. It gives hope to the slave, brotherhood to mankind, and recognition of the fundamental facts of human nature.” Canon Taylor, Paper read before the Church Congress at Walverhamton, Oct. 7, 1887; Quoted by Arnoud in THE PREACHING OF ISLAM, pp. 71-72.
“Sense of justice is one of the most wonderful ideals of Islam, because as I read in the Qur’an I find those dynamic principles of life, not mystic but practical ethics for the daily conduct of life suited to the whole world.” Lectures on “The Ideals of Islam;” see SPEECHES AND WRITINGS OF SAROJINI NAIDU, Madras, 1918, p. 167.
“History makes it clear however, that the legend of fanatical Muslims sweeping through the world and forcing Islam at the point of the sword upon conquered races is one of the most fantastically absurd myths that historians have ever repeated.” De Lacy O’Leary, ISLAM AT THE CROSSROADS, London, 1923, p. 8.
“But Islam has a still further service to render to the cause of humanity. It stands after all nearer to the real East than Europe does, and it possesses a magnificent tradition of inter-racial understanding and cooperation. No other society has such a record of success uniting in an equality of status, of opportunity, and of endeavours so many and so various races of mankind . . . Islam has still the power to reconcile apparently irreconcilable elements of race and tradition. If ever the opposition of the great societies of East and West is to be replaced by cooperation, the mediation of Islam is an indispensable condition. In its hands lies very largely the solution of the problem with which Europe is faced in its relation with East. If they unite, the hope of a peaceful issue is immeasurably enhanced. But if Europe, by rejecting the cooperation of Islam, throws it into the arms of its rivals, the issue can only be disastrous for both.” H.A.R. Gibb, WHITHER ISLAM, London, 1932, p. 379
“I have always held the religion of Muhammad in high estimation because of its wonderful vitality. It is the only religion which appears to me to possess that assimilating capacity to the changing phase of existence which can make itself appeal to every age. I have studied him – the wonderful man and in my opinion for from being an anti-Christ, he must be called the Saviour of Humanity. I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world, he would succeed in solving its problems in a way that would bring it the much needed peace and happiness: I have prophesied about the faith of Muhammad that it would be acceptable to the Europe of tomorrow as it is beginning to be acceptable to the Europe of today.” G.B. Shaw, THE GENUINE ISLAM, Vol. 1, No. 81936
“The extinction of race consciousness as between Muslims is one of the outstanding achievements of Islam, and in the contemporary world there is, as it happens, a crying need for the propagation of this Islamic virtue.” A.J. Toynbee, CIVILIZATION ON TRIAL, New York, 1948, p.205
“The rise of Islam is perhaps the most amazing event in human history. Springing from a land and a people like previously negligible, Islam spread within a century over half the earth, shattering great empires, overthrowing long established religions, remoulding the souls of races, and building up a whole new world – world of Islam. “The closer we examine this development the more extraordinary does it appear. The other great religions won their way slowly, by painful struggle and finally triumphed with the aid of powerful monarchs converted to the new faith. Christianity had its Constantine, Buddhism its Asoka, and Zoroastrianism its Cyrus, each lending to his chosen cult the mighty force of secular authority. Not so Islam. Arising in a desert land sparsely inhabited by a nomad race previously undistinguished in human annals, Islam sallied forth on its great adventure with the slenderest human backing and against the heaviest material odds. Yet Islam triumphed with seemingly miraculous ease, and a couple of generations saw the Fiery Crescent borne victorious from the Pyrenees to the Himalayas and from the desert of Central Asia to the deserts of Central Africa.” –A.M.L. Stoddard, quoted in ISLAM – THE RELIGION OF ALL PROPHETS, Begum Bawani Waqf, Karachi, Pakistan, p. 56.
“Islam is a religion that is essentially rationalistic in the widest sense of this term considered etymologically and historically. The definition of rationalism as a system that bases religious beliefs on principles furnished by the reason applies to it exactly . . . It cannot be denied that many doctrines and systems of theology and also many superstitions, from the worship of saints to the use of rosaries and amulets, have become grafted on the main trunk of Muslim creed. But in spite of the rich developments, in every sense of the term, of the teachings of the Prophet, the Quran has invariable kept its place as the fundamental starting point, and the dogma of unity of God has always been proclaimed therein with a grandeur, a majesty, an invariable purity and with a note of sure conviction, which it is hard to find surpassed outside the pale of Islam. This fidelity to the fundamental dogma of the religion, the elemental simplicity of the formula in which it is enunciated, the proof that it gains from the fervid conviction of the missionaries who propagate it, are so many causes to explain the success of Muhammadan missionary efforts. A creed so precise, so stripped of all theological complexities and consequently so accessible to the ordinary understanding might be expected to possess and does indeed possess a marvelous power of winning its way into the consciences of men.” Edward Montet, “La Propagande Chretienne et ses Adversaries Musulmans,” Paris, 1890; Quoted by T.W. Arnold in THE PREACHING OF ISLAM, London, 1913, pp. 413-414. “I am not a Muslim in the usual sense, though I hope I am a “Muslim” as “one surrendered to God,” but I believe that embedded in the Quran and other expressions of the Islamic vision are vast stores of divine truth from which I and other occidentals have still much to learn, and ‘Islam is certainly a strong contender for the supplying of the basic framework of the one religion of the future.'” W. Montgomery Watt, ISLAM AND CHRISTIANITY TODAY, London, 1983, p. ix.
What Notable Non-Muslims have said about Islaam
|1) Michael H. Hart of USA who wrote “The 100 most influential persons in history” and placed Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) as number one, on the top of the list.|
|2) Carly Florina, CEO of Hewlett Packard.||3) George Bernard Shaw|
|4) Lamartine||5) Gandhi|
|What Notable Non-Muslim’s have said about Islaam and Muhammad, son of ‘Abdullah, peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him.|
|Michael H. Hart of USA, compiled a ranking list of the 100 most influential persons in the history of the entire humanity, who authored book “The 100 most influential persons”, published in 1978 by Hart Publishing Company Inc. He ranked Muhammad peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him, as the number one, at the top of his list.|
|Following are brief excerpts from the chapter on Muhammad peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him.|
|“My choice of Muhammad to lead the best of the world’s most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the religious and secular levels.|
|Of humble origins, Muhammad founded and promulgated one of the world’s great religions, and became an immensely effective political leader. Today thirteen centuries after his death, his influence is still powerful and pervasive.|
|The majority of the persons in this book had the advantage of being born and raised in centers of civilization, highly cultured or politically pivotal nations. Muhammad, however, was born in the year 570, in the city of Mecca, in southern Arabia, at that time a backwards area of the world, far from the centers of trade, art and learning. Orphaned at the age of six, he was reared in modest surroundings. Islamic tradition tells us that he was illiterate.”|
|“When Muhammad died, in 632, he was the effective ruler of all of Southern Arabia”.|
|About the rapid spread of Islaam which continued after the demise of Muhammad, Michael Hart writes that the lands that accepted Islaam included ”The Northeast of Arabia the larger Neo-Persian Empire of Sassamids; to the northwest bay Byzantine, or Eastern Roman Empire, centered in Constantinople . . . all of Mesopotamia, Syria and Palestine.”|
“By 711, North Africa, to the Atlantic Ocean, then the Visigoth Kingdom of Spain . . . stretching from the boarders of India to the Atlantic Ocean, the largest empire that the world had yet seen”.Return to topGeorge Bernard Shaw:“I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world, he would succeed in solving the problems in a way that would bring the much needed peace and happiness. Europe is beginning to be enamored of the creed of Muhammad. In the next century it may go further in recognizing the utility of that creed in solving its problems.”
(A Collection of writing of some of the eminent scholars, 1935). Lamartine’s tribute to the Prophet: “If greatness of purpose, smallness of means and astounding results are the three criteria of human genius, who could claim to compare any great man in modern history with Muhammad?”
(Histoire de la Turquie, 1855). Gandhi: “I become more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet, the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers and his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission. These and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle”.
(Young India, 1922).Return to top
Part of the speech given by Carly Florina, CEO of Hewlett Packard, at Minnesoata, Minneapiolis September 26, 2001
Titled “WHAT DOES OUR FUTURE DEMAND OF LEADERS TODAY?”
There was once a civilization that was the greatest in the world.
|It was able to create a continental super-state that stretched from ocean to ocean, and from northern climes to tropics and deserts. Within its dominion lived hundreds of millions of people, of different creeds and ethnic origins.|
|One of its languages became the universal language of much of the world, the bridge between the peoples of a hundred lands. Its armies were made up of people of many nationalities, and its military protection allowed a degree of peace and prosperity that had never been known. The reach of this civilization’s commerce extended from Latin America to China, and everywhere in between.|
|And this civilization was driven more than anything, by invention. Its architects designed buildings that defied gravity. Its mathematicians created the algebra and logarithms that would enable the building of computers, and the creation of encryption. Its doctors examined the human body, and found new cures for disease. Its astronomers looked into the heavens, named the stars, and paved the way for space travel and exploration.|
|Its writers created thousands of stories. Stories of courage, romance and magic. Its poets wrote of love, when others before them were too steeped in fear to think of such things.|
|When other nations were afraid of ideas, this civilization thrived on them, and kept them alive. When censors threatened to wipe out knowledge from past civilizations, this civilization kept the knowledge alive, and passed it on to others.|
|While modern Western civilization shares many of these traits, the civilization I’m talking about was the Islamic world from the year 800 to 1600, which included the Ottoman Empire and the courts of Baghdad, Damascus and Cairo, and enlightened rulers like Suleiman the Magnificent.|
|Although we are often unaware of our indebtedness to this other civilization, its gifts are very much a part of our heritage. The technology industry would not exist without the contributions of Arab mathematicians. Sufi poet-philosophers like Rumi challenged our notions of self and truth. Leaders like Suleiman contributed to our notions of tolerance and civic leadership.|
|And perhaps we can learn a lesson from his example: It was leadership based on meritocracy, not inheritance. It was leadership that harnessed the full capabilities of a very diverse population–that included Christianity, Islamic, and Jewish traditions.|
|This kind of enlightened leadership — leadership that nurtured culture, sustainability, diversity and courage — led to 800 years of invention and prosperity.|
|In dark and serious times like this, we must affirm our commitment to building societies and institutions that aspire to this kind of greatness. More than ever, we must focus on the importance of leadership– bold acts of leadership and decidedly personal acts of leadership.” CEO of Hewlett Packard Carly Florina|
- An Explanation of Certain Terminology Used by the Orientalists
- Thomas Carlyle in ‘Heroes and Hero Worship and the Heroic in History’
- A. S. Tritton in ‘Islam’
- De Lacy O’Leary in ‘Islam at the Crossroads’
- Edward Gibbon in ‘The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire’
- Edward Gibbon in ‘History of the Saracen Empire’
- Lane-Poole in ‘Speeches and Table Talk of the Prophet Muhammad’
- Annie Besant in ‘The Life and Teachings of Mohammad’
- W.C. Taylor in ‘The History of Muhammadanism and its Sects’
- Reverend Bosworth Smith in ‘Muhammad and Muhammadanism’
- Edward Montet, in ‘La Propagande Chretienne et ses Adversaries Musulmans, 1890.
- Dr. Gustav Weil in ‘History of the Islamic Peoples’
- Alphonse de LaMartaine in ‘Historie de la Turquie,’ 1854.
- Mahatma Gandhi, statement published in ‘Young India,’ 1924.
- Sir George Bernard Shaw in ‘The Genuine Islam,’ 1936.
- Michael Hart in ‘The 100, A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons In History’
- Dr. William Draper in ‘History of Intellectual Development of Europe’
- J.W.H. Stab in ‘Islam and its Founder’
- Washington Irving in ‘Life of Muhammad’
- Arthur Glyn Leonard in ‘Islam, Her Moral and Spiritual Values’
- Charles Stuart Mills in ‘History of Mohammadanism’
- Philip K. Hitti in ‘History of the Arabs’
- Stanley Lane-Poole in ‘Studies in a Mosque’
- Rodwell in the Preface to his translation of the Holy Qur’an
- W. Montgomery Watt in ‘Muhammad at Mecca’
- D. G. Hogarth in ‘Arabia’
- Washington Irving ‘Mahomet and His Successors’
- James Michener in ‘Islam: The Misunderstood Religion’
- Lawrence E. Browne in ‘The Prospects of Islam’
- K. S. Ramakrishna Rao in ‘Mohammed: The Prophet of Islam’
- Jules Masserman in ‘Who Were Histories Great Leaders?’ in TIME Magazine
- Full Article in the Muslim History,
Muslims in the Indian Subcontinent, and E-Book
In the quotations below, Western writers have used the word Muhammadanism for Islam. The word Muhammadanism connotes worship of Muhammad, an absolutely unworthy statement for any learned man to use. Prophet Muhammad’s mission was to propagate the worship of the One and Only God (in Arabic Allah), the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe. His mission was essentially the same as that of earlier Prophets of God. In the historical context, many such terminologies about Muhammad, Islam, and Muslims were borrowed from earlier European writings of the Eleventh to the Nineteenth century, a time when ignorance and prejudice prevailed. The quotations below attest to the facts.
Thomas Carlyle in ‘Heroes and Hero Worship and the Heroic in History,’ 1840
“The lies (Western slander) which well-meaning zeal has heaped round this man
(Muhammad) are disgraceful to ourselves only.”
“A silent great soul, one of that who cannot but be earnest. He was to kindle the world, the
world’s Maker had ordered so.”
The picture of the Muslim soldier advancing with a sword in one hand and the Qur’an in the other is quite false.
History makes it clear, however, that the legend of fanatical Muslims sweeping through the world and forcing Islam at the point of sword upon conquered races is one of the most fantastically absurd myths that historians have ever repeated.
The good sense of Muhammad despised the pomp of royalty. The Apostle of God submitted to the menial offices of the family; he kindled the fire; swept the floor; milked the ewes; and mended with his own hands his shoes and garments. Disdaining the penance and merit of a hermit, he observed without effort of vanity the abstemious diet of an Arab.
“The greatest success of Mohammad’s life was effected by sheer moral force.”“It is not the propagation but the permanency of his religion that deserves our wonder, the same pure and perfect impression which he engraved at Mecca and Medina is preserved after the revolutions of twelve centuries by the Indian, the African and the Turkish proselytes of the Koran….The Mahometans have uniformly withstood the temptation of reducing the object of their faith and devotion to a level with the senses and imagination of man. ‘I believe in One God and Mahomet the Apostle of God’ is the simple and invariable profession of Islam. The intellectual image of the Deity has never been degraded by any visible idol; the honors of the prophet have never transgressed the measure of human virtue, and his living precepts have restrained the gratitude of his disciples within the bounds of reason and religion.”
“Head of the State as well as the Church, he was Caesar and Pope in one; but he was Pope without the Pope’s pretensions, and Caesar without the legions of Caesar, without a standing army, without a bodyguard, without a police force, without a fixed revenue. If ever a man ruled by a right divine, it was Muhammad, for he had all the powers without their supports. He cared not for the dressings of power. The simplicity of his private life was in keeping with his public life.””In Mohammadanism every thing is different here. Instead of the shadowy and the mysterious, we have history….We know of the external history of Muhammad….while for his internal history after his mission had been proclaimed, we have a book absolutely unique in its origin, in its preservation….on the Substantial authority of which no one has ever been able to cast a serious doubt.”
Edward Montet, ‘La Propagande Chretienne et ses Adversaries Musulmans,’ Paris 1890. (Also in T.W. Arnold in ‘The Preaching of Islam,’ London 1913.)
“Islam is a religion that is essentially rationalistic in the widest sense of this term considered etymologically and historically….the teachings of the Prophet, the Qur’an has invariably kept its place as the fundamental starting point, and the dogma of unity of God has always been proclaimed therein with a grandeur a majesty, an invariable purity and with a note of sure conviction, which it is hard to find surpassed outside the pale of Islam….A creed so precise, so stripped of all theological complexities and consequently so accessible to the ordinary understanding might be expected to possess and does indeed possess a marvelous power of winning its way into the consciences of men.”
“Never has a man set for himself, voluntarily or involuntarily, a more sublime aim, since this aim was superhuman; to subvert superstitions which had been imposed between man and his Creator, to render God unto man and man unto God; to restore the rational and sacred idea of divinity amidst the chaos of the material and disfigured gods of idolatry, then existing. Never has a man undertaken a work so far beyond human power with so feeble means, for he (Muhammad) had in the conception as well as in the execution of such a great design, no other instrument than himself and no other aid except a handful of men living in a corner of the desert. Finally, never has a man accomplished such a huge and lasting revolution in the world, because in less than two centuries after its appearance, Islam, in faith and in arms, reigned over the whole of Arabia, and conquered, in God’s name, Persia Khorasan, Transoxania, Western India, Syria, Egypt, Abyssinia, all the known continent of Northern Africa, numerous islands of the Mediterranean Sea, Spain, and part of Gaul.“If greatness of purpose, smallness of means, and astonishing results are the three criteria of a human genius, who could dare compare any great man in history with Muhammad? The most famous men created arms, laws, and empires only. They founded, if anything at all, no more than material powers which often crumbled away before their eyes. This man moved not only armies, legislations, empires, peoples, dynasties, but millions of men in one-third of the then inhabited world; and more than that, he moved the altars, the gods, the religions, the ideas, the beliefs and the souls.
“On the basis of a Book, every letter which has become law, he created a spiritual nationality which blend together peoples of every tongue and race. He has left the indelible characteristic of this Muslim nationality the hatred of false gods and the passion for the One and Immaterial God. This avenging patriotism against the profanation of Heaven formed the virtue of the followers of Muhammad; the conquest of one-third the earth to the dogma was his miracle; or rather it was not the miracle of man but that of reason.
“The idea of the unity of God, proclaimed amidst the exhaustion of the fabulous theogonies, was in itself such a miracle that upon it’s utterance from his lips it destroyed all the ancient temples of idols and set on fire one-third of the world. His life, his meditations, his heroic revelings against the superstitions of his country, and his boldness in defying the furies of idolatry, his firmness in enduring them for fifteen years in Mecca, his acceptance of the role of public scorn and almost of being a victim of his fellow countrymen… This dogma was twofold the unity of God and the immateriality of God: the former telling what God is, the latter telling what God is not; the one overthrowing false gods with the sword, the other starting an idea with words.
“Philosopher, Orator, Apostle, Legislator, Conqueror of Ideas, Restorer of Rational beliefs…. The founder of twenty terrestrial empires and of one spiritual empire that is Muhammad. As regards all standards by which human greatness may be measured, we may well ask, is there any man greater than he?”
I wanted to know the best of the life of one who holds today an undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind…. I became more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days in the scheme of life. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission. These and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle. When I closed the second volume (of the Prophet’s biography), I was sorry there was not more for me to read of that great life.
“If any religion had the chance of ruling over England, nay Europe within the next hundred years, it could be Islam.”“I have always held the religion of Muhammad in high estimation because of its wonderful vitality. It is the only religion which appears to me to possess that assimilating capacity to the changing phase of existence which can make itself appeal to every age. I have studied him – the wonderful man and in my opinion for from being an anti-Christ, he must be called the Savior of Humanity.”
“I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world he would succeed in solving its problems in a way that would bring it the much needed peace and happiness: I have prophesied about the faith of Muhammad that it would be acceptable to the Europe of tomorrow as it is beginning to be acceptable to the Europe of today.”
My choice of Muhammad to lead the list of the world’s most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the secular and religious level. …It is probable that the relative influence of Muhammad on Islam has been larger than the combined influence of Jesus Christ and St. Paul on Christianity. …It is this unparalleled combination of secular and religious influence which I feel entitles Muhammad to be considered the most influential single figure in human history.
Four years after the death of Justinian, A.D. 569, was born in Mecca, in Arabia, the man who, of all men, has exercised the greatest influence upon the human race… To be the religious head of many empires, to guide the daily life of one-third of the human race, may perhaps justify the title of a Messenger of God.
It was the genius of Muhammad, the spirit that he breathed into the Arabs through the soul of Islam that exalted them. That raised them out of the lethargy and low level of tribal stagnation up to the high watermark of national unity and empire. It was in the sublimity of Muhammad’s deism, the simplicity, the sobriety and purity it inculcated the fidelity of its founder to his own tenets, that acted on their moral and intellectual fiber with all the magnetism of true inspiration.
Within a brief span of mortal life, Muhammad called forth of unpromising material, a nation, never welded before; in a country that was hitherto but a geographical expression he established a religion which in vast areas suppressed Christianity and Judaism, and laid the basis of an empire that was soon to embrace within its far flung boundaries the fairest provinces the then civilized world.
Mohammad’s career is a wonderful instance of the force and life that resides in him who possesses an intense faith in God and in the unseen world. He will always be regarded as one of those who have had that influence over the faith, morals and whole earthly life of their fellow men, which none but a really great man ever did, or can exercise; and whose efforts to propagate a great verity will prosper.
His readiness to undergo persecution for his beliefs, the high moral character of the men who believed in him and looked up to him as a leader, and the greatness of his ultimate achievement – all argue his fundamental integrity. To suppose Muhammad an impostor raises more problems that it solves. Moreover, none of the great figures of history is so poorly appreciated in the West as Muhammad…. Thus, not merely must we credit Muhammad with essential honesty and integrity of purpose, if we are to understand him at all; if we are to correct the errors we have inherited from the past, we must not forget the conclusive proof is a much stricter requirement than a show of plausibility, and in a matter such as this only to be attained with difficulty.
Serious or trivial, his daily behavior has instituted a canon which millions observe this day with conscious memory. No one regarded by any section of the human race as Perfect Man has ever been imitated so minutely. The conduct of the founder of Christianity has not governed the ordinary life of his followers. Moreover, no founder of a religion has left on so solitary an eminence as the Muslim apostle.
He was sober and abstemious in his diet and a rigorous observer of fasts. He indulged in no magnificence of apparel, the ostentation of a petty mind; neither was his simplicity in dress affected but a result of real disregard for distinction from so trivial a source.In his private dealings he was just. He treated friends and strangers, the rich and poor, the powerful and weak, with equity, and was beloved by the common people for the affability with which he received them, and listened to their complaints.
His military triumphs awakened no pride nor vain glory, as they would have done had they been effected for selfish purposes. In the time of his greatest power he maintained the same simplicity of manners and appearance as in the days of his adversity. So far from affecting a regal state, he was displeased if, on entering a room, any unusual testimonials of respect were shown to him. If he aimed at a universal dominion, it was the dominion of faith; as to the temporal rule which grew up in his hands, as he used it without ostentation, so he took no step to perpetuate it in his family.
“No other religion in history spread so rapidly as Islam. The West has widely believed that this surge of religion was made possible by the sword. But no modern scholar accepts this idea, and the Qur’an is explicit in the support of the freedom of conscience.”“Like almost every major prophet before him, Muhammad fought shy of serving as the transmitter of God’s word sensing his own inadequacy. But the Angel commanded ‘Read’. So far as we know, Muhammad was unable to read or write, but he began to dictate those inspired words which would soon revolutionize a large segment of the earth: “There is one God”.”
“In all things Muhammad was profoundly practical. When his beloved son Ibrahim died, an eclipse occurred and rumors of God ‘s personal condolence quickly arose. Whereupon Muhammad is said to have announced, ‘An eclipse is a phenomenon of nature. It is foolish to attribute such things to the death or birth of a human being’.”
“At Muhammad’s own death an attempt was made to deify him, but the man who was to become his administrative successor killed the hysteria with one of the noblest speeches in religious history: ‘If there are any among you who worshiped Muhammad, he is dead. But if it is God you Worshiped, He lives for ever’.”
Incidentally these well-established facts dispose of the idea so widely fostered in Christian writings that the Muslims, wherever they went, forced people to accept Islam at the point of the sword.
My problem to write this monograph is easier, because we are not generally fed now on that (distorted) kind of history and much time need not be spent on pointing out our misrepresentations of Islam. The theory of Islam and sword, for instance, is not heard now in any quarter worth the name. The principle of Islam that “there is no compulsion in religion” is well known.