Among the non-believers, the Western Christians and Jews in general used to have ignorance and indifference about Islam prior to 9/11. But after 9/11 they have become paranoid about Islam and Muslims. On the other side, majority Hindus of Indian sub-continent have been harbouring distaste and hatred towards Muslims since centuries. Many Hindus consider Muslims as crude, shallow, religion-centric and violent people who plundered their temples, violated their women and converted people at the point of sword or under the grinding heels of Dhimmitude. Whatever bad feelings the Hindus may have about Muslims, the Hindu religious scriptures do not support them to do so in specific terms. However, the majority Hindus continue to show hatred towards Muslims even today. In spite of this there are many Hindus who maintain a very cordial relationship with Muslims. The religion of Hinduism, however, follows the most notorious ‘caste system’ within it with all shades of untouchability, hatred and oppression even today.
The picture is different with Muslims. As per the Islamic laws (based of Qur’an and traditions of Prophet), non-believers are worse creation, evil, untrustworthy, enemy of Islam and hell goers. The term Kafir connotes extreme hatred. There is no question of being friendly with a Kafir. On the contrary, he should be avoided or converted to Islam (even by force) or worse should be killed. Kafir are not entitled to any respect from the believers and he should not be given any position of respect by the believers. The apologists in Islam try to put forward some abrogated Qur’anic verses (this term is a gift from Ulema) of Macci period to dilute the situation. But the Ulema (barring the exceptional ones) condemn the apologists for showing such concession to Kafir. And they are right as per the Islamic laws. In the face of this, the pseudo-seculars and socialists behave like ostriches.
My personal life experiences with Muslims of Pakistan, India and Bangladesh have mostly been just the opposite of what are prescribed under Islamic laws. I am sure that all the non-believers/atheists who visit this site have such experiences about their Muslim acquaintances. This does not mean that there are no Muslims who hate non-believers. They may even be the majority Muslims. The fact is there are both types of Muslims. Therefore stereotyping Muslims, in general, as Kafir basher is unjustified.
In a nut shell, there are many Muslims who are friendly and helpful to non-believers though being religious otherwise. It is unlikely, that they are ignorant of the Islamic rulings pertaining to the non-believers. The seed of hatred towards non-believer is sown in the brains of Muslims during their childhood by Huzurs. But over the years many Muslims find such teachings to be uncivilised and false. Thus as per their conscience and understanding, they do contrary to the teachings of Islam. If the Ulema (fanatic ones) want to declare all such Muslims as apostates, then the figure will run in tens of thousands. In spite of the intolerant and totalitarian guardianship of Ulema, Islam has changed in its interpretation to many Muslims; so far the Kafir are concerned.
If Ulema can openly accept such change of the interpretation of Islamic laws towards Kafir, the world will be a much better place to live in. But they are power hungry and self righteous people. They are definitely in dilemma about this subtle shift of mind set in a major group of Muslims. Islam is run by the Ulema in the name of Qur’an, Hadith and Sunnah. They are the ‘Super Priests’ of Islam. Acceptance of such change will loosen their grip on Muslims and their false paradise will be lost. Thus they are unlikely to do so in near future. However, I am optimistic about far future.
Will “Bangla Spring” address this issue also?