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Praise to the Creator of the universe. Without His mercy and will humans would never have come this far in knowledge.
This reminds me how weak we are in front of God’s strenght. I remember how a modern world was humbled by just ash from a volcano.
Today Curiosity landed on Mars. Another big step in science.
By ARJUWAN LAKKDAWALA | ARAB NEWS
Published: Jun 10, 2011 23:50 Updated: Jun 10, 2011 23:50
JEDDAH: Many Internet surfers say that there is an online propaganda to taint Islam by spreading lies, with many non-Muslims being misguided.
In response to this, they try to rectify lies posted about Islam in online forums, blogs, chatrooms and on newspaper sites.
The surfers say that people who make anti-Islam comments blatantly tell lies, often quoting out of context Qur’anic verses, Hadiths and fatwas (edicts).
“It hit me gradually that there are people going on the Internet and posting lies in the comments section of sites and in forums,” Syed Mansour, who works as an accounts manager in a foodstuff company in Jeddah, told Arab News.
“At first I was just stunned by the lies, then I decided that wherever I found lies posted about Islam on the Internet, I would post a correction. It’s not easy, as the Internet is a huge place, but I try to do as much as I can.”
Othiman Abu Akram, who is a librarian at an Islamic bookstore in Jeddah, also tries to defend Islam online, adding he has engaged in debates in forums and the comments section of newspaper sites many times. He added that sometimes these debates go on for days, accompanied by sleepless nights of research while he goes through authentic books to prove every point he makes.
“But you have to always be polite when arguing or debating, because love is always more effective than hate,” he told Arab News.
Abu Akram gave the example of a man he knew back home in India.
“There was this non-Muslim who hated Muslims so much that he would avoid an area in Mumbai called ‘Mohammed Ali Road,’ a mainly Muslim area with mosques. So this man would always take the longer road,” he said.
“This man had been fed lies about Islam almost all his life, but I had a friend who patiently for years extended the hand of friendship to him, even though he received only rudeness in return.”
Abu Akram said he recently spoke to the friend in India and was shocked to learn that the man now sends text messages to his friends about the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
“My friend told me that after years of hating Islam, this guy finally decided to read some Islamic books to find out what Islam really is and when he did, he started to respect the religion.”
Nazeeya Siraj, who is a receptionist at a clinic in Jeddah, said she had noticed negative comments on social networking sites and other websites where users can post opinions. She said she used to ignore them until she received an e-mail about Muslims allegedly cutting off a little boy’s hand for stealing bread.
“As a Muslim I know what is permitted by my religion and what is not, so I knew this was a lie even before I read the whole e-mail. But a non-Muslim could believe these lies because they are not informed about Islam in the first place,” she said.
The e-mail contained a series of pictures of a car going over a boy’s hand.
Siraj says that when she researched the image on the Internet she found that it belonged to a group of street performers and that there was another picture that showed the boy’s hand was ok. This last shot was not included in the e-mail.
“The images in the e-mail have been described incorrectly, and moreover the senders urge whoever receives the e-mail to forward it to as many people as possible. This e-mail is clearly a lie just to malign Islam. That was when I decided I would defend Islam online in as many places I could.” she said.
Shaker Al-Majed, who owns an accessories shop in a mall, also regularly surfs the Internet and said people who are anti-Islam often visit chat rooms for discussing Islam and target non-Muslims, especially curious Westerners who want to learn about Islam.
“A friend told me about this and so I decided to log in with a Western name and see for myself. In the chat room I claimed to be from the UK or US and after just a few visits I met chatters who pretended to have studied Islam,” said Al-Majed.
They spoke ill of Islam, quoting edicts and Hadith that were false. Because I’m a Muslim I knew they were not true, but a non-Muslim would not know the difference.”
Al-Majed says that people surfing the Internet for information about Islam should make sure that the site uses from authentic sources.
“It is nearly impossible for a non-Muslim person to be able to discern if a Hadith or edict has been quoted out of context or is false. But the best place in my opinion to find information about Islam for those who are curious is through Islamic books printed by Islamic printing houses, or the person can visit an Islamic center,” he said.
All those interviewed paid tribute to the 21-year-old Saudi student Mashari Abdul Mohsen Al-Siralhi, who died after rescuing an American boy in a lake in Ohio in April, as well as the Pakistani man Farman Ali Khan who died saving lives in the Jeddah floods in November 2009. They said they hoped this would make the world see that there are Muslims willing to risk their lives to save people, regardless of race or religion.