When the whole world is slowly becoming Islamophobic , truth remains that Islam is an apostle of tolerance and pluralism.
“For us are our deeds and for you , your deeds. There is no contention between us and you. Allah will gather us together , and to him is our eventual coming” (Surah Shura: 15)
Muslims and Hindus have been living together for centuries in harmony. It’s a result of shared heritage, tolerance and cultural assimilation. Quran has been explicit in acknowledging tolerance and pluralism. Some verses of Quran to support this thoughts
“There is no compulsion in religion” (Surah Baqara:256)
“All children of Adam are equally honored by God” (Surah Bani-Israil: 70)
These two verses are significant because it simply disproves that Islam is intolerant. On the contrary, it goes on to prove that Islam doesn’t distinguish between Muslims and non-Muslims. It also emphasizes that religious diversity is accepted as the reality of human existence.
While these verses prove theologically that Islam is tolerant , it is the implementation of these principles on ground that matter. Followers of Islam haven’t shied away from showing that they are a tolerant bunch. Here are a few examples
- A Muslim gau bhakt went on a 12000 kilometre padayatra to create awareness among the masses on Cow Protection , medicinal values of Cow Products and to portray Cow as an icon of communal harmony among communities. Among his other initiatives are Gau Kathas as well as authoring a novel called “Ek Gai ki Atmakatha”.
- Muslims of Puratan Bazar, Kharagpur raised over Rs.50000 for treatment of a Hindu Cancer patient Abir Bhunia, by cancelling the annual Muharram procession. By taking this extraordinary step, Muslims of the area put Humanity before religious beliefs.
- 16 year Old Nadeem Khan won a state level essay competition of “Bhagawat Gita” organized by the Akshaya Patra Foundation at Jaipur in Rajasthan. Afreen Rauf stood first in Gita recitation held for Lucknow Division Municipal Schools. Afreen recited the Gita while wearing a hijab.
- Muslims havent been left behind when it comes to Yoga either. In a place called Mazar-e-Sharif, Afghanistan , a Muslim Yoga Teacher Ghulam Askari Zaidi has made Yoga very popular among the local population.
- Those in Government positions havent shied away from displaying respect for other religions as well. Sufia Farukhi performed the customary pooja and also carried the Paduka of Shankaracharya on her head during a yatra in Mandala, Madhya Pradesh.
- Sarvar Ali , a resident of Purkaji, Muzzafarnagar, UP, donated 2 bighas of his land for a Gaushala attached to Balaji Temple in Purkaji. This isnt the only instance of Muslims at the forefront when it comes to Gaushalas. The Marwar Muslim Education and Welfare Society runs a Gaushala called Adarsh Gaushala where old , sick and abandoned cows are taken care of. The caretaker of the Gaushala is also a Muslim couple , Hakim Khan and his Wife Allahrakhi.
These instances are the tip of the iceberg. There are many such instances which cannot all be written here due to lack of space. There are innumerable such instances which don’t get reported. They remain unknown, just like the left hadn not knowing what the right hand does.