Please forgive any errors that occur in this post because I wanted to quickly post it in response to the tragic current events.
Unfortunately, today I awoke to the very tragic news of Taliban attack on a school in Peshawar where the overwhelming majority of the victims were innocent children. First of all, I send my sincere condolences to the families of all of the innocent victims and Inshallah Allah s.w.t provides them with sabr jameel or beautiful patience.
My heart breaks for the innocent victims and their families but I am also deeply angered that this cruel and inhumane act of terror is committed in the name of the peaceful religion of Islam. These so-called Muslim Taliban are going completely against the teachings of the holy Quran and the Prophet (p.b.u.h).
The reality is that the term Islam comes from the root slm which is related to peace. The greeting shared by all Muslims As-Salaam-alaikum literally means "peace be with you". Furthermore, the holy Quran, contrary to what many people believe, is a strong proponent of peace and it strongly emphasis the sanctity of human life. As it is often quoted the Quran teaches us that if you kill one person it is as if you have killed all of humanity and if you save the life of one person it is as if you have saved all of humanity. The only time the Quran allows any form of violence is only as an act of self-defense and as a final resort when all other options are blocked. The holy prophet (p.b.u.h) was a Mercy to all of mankind. One of the greatest examples of this is the conquest of Makkah. After decades of facing inhumane persecution and torture and being forced to leave their homeland the Prophet and his companions eventually became victorious and they returned to Makkah as the leading side. At that moment the Prophet had the opportunity to punish all of those who had done wrong unto him and his family and companions. Yet, being the merciful prophet that he was he forgave all of his opponents. Not only did he pardon them but he appointed the house of Abu Sufyan (one of his strongest opponents) a safe haven for all those who desired to seek refuge in it.
Perhaps what makes this particular act of terror especially tragic is that the majority of victims were innocent children. It is especially tragic that such a crime against children has been committed in the name of Islam. Whereas the reality is that the holy Prophet (p.b.u. h.) consistently emphasized and demonstrated his affection towards children. He enjoined his followers to respect their elders and to show kindness and love towards the children. He himself demonstrated his love towards his beloved grandchildren by taking an extra long time in prayer sujood (prostration) while they were on his back. In another instance he showed disapproval to a man who had ten children yet he had never kissed or showed affection to any one of them.
As mentioned earlier the only time Islam allows any form of violence is during an act of self-defense. Even in such conflicts the Prophet (p.b.u.h) ordered his companions to avoid harming non-combatants such as the elderly, women, and children. It is even a sin to harm the nearby environment.
The Taliban, ISIS, al-Qaeda, and all other terror groups acting in the name of Islam are not Muslims at all because they do not follow the core teachings of the Holy Quran and Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h). Being Muslim simply means to submit to the teachings of Allah as mentioned in the Quran and the authentic sunnah of the Prophet (p.b.u.h.). These are the teachings that promote belief in the One Almighty and Merciful creator. These are the teachings that promote goodness to all of mankind, the teachings that promote peace and serenity and the teachings that strongly prohibit acts of aggression and violence.