Religious Dialogue - Isa And Islam - Does Islam Teach Tolerance in Religion? - Muslim Beliefs - Frequently Asked Questions


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Does Islam Teach Tolerance in Religion?

peace blocksIt is fair to say that everyone wishes to live in harmony, especially people that follow a religion – Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc. The world would be more peaceful if religious people lived without conflict.

Does Islam teach tolerance in religion? What do Christianity and Islam teach on how we should treat others? Which teaching is worth following?

fear blocksWhy Do People Accuse Muslims of Intolerance?

Lately, people all over the world have accused Islam of intolerance. Muslims think this is an unfair accusation. Many Muslims are kind, tolerant and peace loving.

This accusation may not be fair, but we can understand why people have made this accusation. Even though Indonesia is considered to be a more tolerant Islamic country, about 1,000 churches have been forced to shut down in the last 11 years. Many others couldn’t obtain permits to build churches.

Moreover, almost every day there are suicide bombers who kill people in the name of the religion. Does Islam deserve to be accused of intolerance? Please tell us via this email.

many photographsDoes Islam Teach Tolerance?

According to Ustadz Farid Ahmad Okbah, Islam is a religion that highly upholds tolerance. He said, “. . . we practice (what) our religion (teaches), you practice (what) your religion (teaches).”

Muslims often quote this verse, “There shall be no compulsion in [acceptance of] the religion . . .” (Qs 2:256 – Sahih International) to show tolerance in Islam. We strongly agree with this statement. Sadly, there are people who agree and practice violence according to Qs 2:191; 9:5, 29, 123.

love blocksIsa Al-MasihTeaches Love

Isa Al-Masih focuses on love, not tolerance. He says, “. . . Love your neighbor as yourself” (Injil, Matthew 22:39). Why? Because love is better than tolerance. We can be tolerant and easily ignore other people. However, when we love people, we show that we care about them.

Isa Al-Masih also teaches “. . . love your enemies . . .” (Injil, Matthew 5:44). Isa told a story about a Samaritan who showed love towards a Jew although they hated each other. The Samaritan helped the Jew when he was robbed and badly battered.  We should show kindness toward each other.

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  1. Why is Islam often accused of being intolerant lately? Is that fair?
  2. In your opinion, does Islam put more emphasis on tolerance or violence? Please elaborate!
  3. Why does Isa focus more on love than tolerance? Which is more important in our lives?

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