While browsing major websites, forums, blasphemic literature and discussion
threads online, we realize that not only Non-Muslims but some Muslims too are
indulging themselves in a very serious sin or act of blasphemy or hate words
against any religion whose repercussions don't stop at an individual or an
organization but go onto whole humanity. Looking at this subject's importance we
should explore it further and find the answers that pacify our questioning
AS PER CHRISTIANITY & JUDAISM
The punishment for blasphemy in most of the major religions is death. It is
stated in the Old Testament of the Bible, which is the authority for both the
Jews and the Christians:
And he that blasphemeth the name of the LORD, he shall surely be put to death,
and all the congregation shall certainly stone him: [Book of Leviticus 24:16]
AS PER HINDUISM
In the religious book of Manusmriti, the Law book of the Hindus, it says:
“If a man born of a lower class intentionally bothers a priest, the king should
punish him physically with various forms of corporal and capital punishment that
make men shudder.” [Manusmriti 9:248]
AS PER ISLAM
Regarding the punishment for blasphemy in Islam, it is mentioned in the Glorious
“The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and
strive with might for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion,
or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the
land: that is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in
the Hereafter;” [Surah Al-Maidah 5:33].
Hence, it is only Islam that gives 3 different options for blashphmy punishment in addition to death.
In spite of all the negative propaganda against Islam, ironically Islam still
happens to be the fastest growing religion, not just in the west but also across
the world. The more people try to suppress Islam, the more it will prevail.
Allah (swt) will make His Deen (Islam) to prevail over all the other ways of
life irrespective of people mocking and ridiculing His messengers. As Allah says
in the Glorious Quran:
“Mocked were (many) Messengers before thee; but the scoffers were hemmed in by
the thing that they mocked.” [Surah Al-An’aam 6:10].
As a common Muslim or a peace-loving human being, we can also use the following
tactics to stop this type of religious blasphemy;
1. Replies via the Media
The first way is to reply via the media i.e. using the same tool, which is often
used against us. Replies can be in the form of letters, articles, pamphlets and
books, which can be sent to newspapers and magazines and posted on the Internet.
Appearances on satellite TV channels and giving public lectures in order to
present the correct picture of Islam are also another possible way. Common
non-Muslims throughout the world have become victims of a section of the media
and its propaganda. One cannot blame a common non-Muslim for being against Islam
unless we Muslims clarify their doubts and remove the misconceptions prevalent
in their minds. It is the job of every Muslim to respond to allegations against
Islam and clarify misconceptions.
2. Peaceful Protests and Demonstrations
There can be peaceful demonstrations or protests in the form of a congregation.
A large number of Muslims can march to parliament house and protest against what
has happened. Muslims can also give a letter to the embassy of that particular
country and request the Prime Minister to take action against the offender.
3. Filing a Legal Suit
We can even take legal action against the defamer in his country or file a case
in the International Court of Law if the nation where the act has taken place is
condoning the act. We can sue the offenders by pulling them to court, which is
one of the good ways of preventing such things from occurring in the future.
A striking example in this respect can be cited of CAIR (Council on American -
Islamic Relations), which is the largest Islamic civil liberties group in the
U.S. In 1997, CAIR succeeded in shaking down Nike when they filed a defamation
suit objecting to a pair of shoes manufactured by Nike, which had a design on
the heel similar to the Arabic word for “God”, Allah. However, there was an
out-of–court settlement and Nike not only publicly apologized but also agreed to
give several million dollars to the Muslim community, which were spent to build
three playgrounds at Islamic Centers in the United States.
4. Economic Embargo
The fourth strategy is to put an economic embargo, a very effective weapon aimed
at weakening the economy of any country. Muslim countries can get together and
apply economic or business pressure against that country if it continues to
publish defamatory things. It is advisable to boycott certain goods if we know
that boycotting products of that country can create a huge effect on the
country’s economy. During the gulf war, a few countries in the Middle East
boycotted American products and caused a big loss to the U.S. If a section of
the western media has “freedom of expression” then we Muslims too have the
freedom to use or abstain from using a product. Say for example if the western
countries wish not to procure oil from the Muslim world, it is their choice for
which we cannot compel them. Similarly, if the Muslims do not want to buy
products from a particular country, it is illogical for anyone to have any
objections to their decision.
5. Political Pressure
This takes place on a higher level i.e. between political authorities of
countries. The leaders of different Muslim nations can apply pressure on a
political level. The Muslim governments can withdraw their ambassadors from that
country and shut down its embassies as part of a political boycott, if they
refuse to give a public apology and do not stop defaming the Prophet (pbuh).
6. Moderate Force
The sixth strategy is to carry out demonstrations using a limited amount of
force. As far as the first five strategies are concerned, no Muslim or
non-Muslim can have any objections. If there is freedom of speech then we
Muslims also have the freedom to reply in the media, to participate in peaceful
demonstrations, or take legal action seeking punishment or compensation. We can
even boycott goods or apply political pressure since it’s a matter of personal