– What is a Moderate Muslim Organization? (By Dr. Tawfik Hamid)

 Dr. Tawfik Hamid, an  Islamic thinker and reformer, has provided answers to the question, “what is a moderate Muslim?”

This blog is posted here in an attempt to understand what MAC as an organization believes and follows. Since they declared that they are affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood ( http://www.macnet.ca/about/)we would like to understand which part of the MB ideology they follow. Dr. Tawfik Hamid oulines clearly what are the characteristics of  organizations that declares themselves as moderate. The post does not intend to point fingers at our Muslim neighbors. For many years we have lived here together in peace and harmony. MAC, however, is a different case. It publicly admits it is inspired by Al-Banna. Many of us who live in this neighborhood are concerned. We would like to know what kind of Islam MAC follows and teaches. 

According to Dr. Tawfik,  Mosque leaders, Islamic scholars, and organizations who want to be considered Moderates MUST clearly and unambiguously declare the following declaration in their media outlets and on their websites. Muslim moderates must post these principles in English and in Arabic in full public view on their websites and declare them in their media outlets. Failure to publicly post and support these principles should be interpreted as clear evidence that a leader’s mosque or Islamic organization must be considered radical. Dr. Tawfik provided a declaration for the  following beleifs:

 Declaration of Beliefs of Muslim Moderates

I (We) are Muslims who want contemporary understandings of Islam to replace currently predominant harsh and radical (Salafi/Wahabbi) interpretations of our religion. We therefore declare that: 

1-    Redda Law, the Sharia Law that allows the killing of Muslims who convert to other faiths, must be banned in Islamic teachings and in Sharia legal doctrine. Islamic countries that practice Sharia must stop the practice of this law and must admit that Freedom of belief and the right to convert to other faith or believe is a basic right that must be given to all Muslims. 

2-    Current mainstream Sharia doctrines justify the use of violence against women. They encourage men to beat their wives to discipline them. They allow women accused of adultery to be stoned to death. These doctrines are barbarically inhumane, non-egalitarian, and teach Muslim children to be violent. These teachings must be ended by reinterpreting the Islamic text that justifies such violence. 

3-    Traditional Sharia doctrines teach Muslims that they must engage in war so that Islam will dominate the world. When Islam becomes dominant, Non-Muslims are offered three options: to convert to Islam, to pay Jizzia (a humiliating tax), or to be killed. These doctrines run contrary to modern respect for diversity and for personal freedom of speech and belief. This understanding of Jihad that seeks domination of Islam over other peoples must no longer be regarded as an Islamic value and its teaching as a duty for Muslims must end. 

The early Islamic wars known as “Futohaat Islameia” were fought to implement this doctrine of Jihad. These wars therefore should now be regarded as un-Islamic and un-justifiable. 

4-    Jews are individuals who deserve the same respect accorded to all individuals. They should not be called “pigs and monkeys.” The Islamic teaching that Muslims must fight and kill all Jews before the end of days is totally incorrect and unacceptable as it does not exist in the Quran. All teachings that encourage anti-Semitic attitudes, violence or disrespect toward Jews must be declared un-Islamic. 

5-    Slavery is a crime against humanity. All Sharia laws that justify slavery in our modern times must not be taught any more. Muslim scholars must have a clear and loud voice against slavery. 

6-    Islamic Sharia laws currently permit the killing homosexuals. These laws also are advocating a crime against our fellow human beings. They must be declared un-Islamic and their implementation must be considered criminal.

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