بِسۡمِ اللّٰہِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِیۡمِِ

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The Official Website of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community
Muslims who believe in the Messiah,
Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian(as)Muslims who believe in the Messiah, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani (as), Love for All, Hatred for None.

Does Islam teach Muslims to Hate non-Believers?

by Azhar Goraya, Missionary Ahmadiyya Muslim Community

Islam advocates that true sympathy and justice be shown to the entire world, regardless of religion, creed or nationality. This sympathy, compassion and justice is a form of love, the type which is promoted by the motto, “Love for All, Hatred for None”.

Nevertheless, the highest levels of love defined by the word حب (hubb) in Arabic and the Qur’an, where one becomes absorbed as it were into the other person and becomes a reflection of their characteristics, is only reserved for Allah and true believers.

Many allege that Islam teaches hate against non-Muslims. They believe that Islam tells Muslims not to take non-Muslims for friends. They declare that the motto of Ahmadiyya Muslim community “Love for All, Hatred for None” is therefore un-Islamic. In supporting their erroneous belief, the following source-texts are often cited:

Muslims should Hate Non-Muslims and be “Strict and Hard” against them

The words of Hazrat Ibraheem(as) are sometimes quoted in this regard:

قَدۡ کَانَتۡ لَکُمۡ اُسۡوَۃٌ حَسَنَۃٌ فِیۡۤ اِبۡرٰہِیۡمَ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ مَعَہٗ ۚ اِذۡ قَالُوۡا لِقَوۡمِہِمۡ اِنَّا بُرَءٰٓؤُا مِنۡکُمۡ وَ مِمَّا تَعۡبُدُوۡنَ مِنۡ دُوۡنِ اللّٰہِ ۫ کَفَرۡنَا بِکُمۡ وَ بَدَا بَیۡنَنَا وَ بَیۡنَکُمُ الۡعَدَاوَۃُ وَ الۡبَغۡضَآءُ اَبَدًا حَتّٰی تُؤۡمِنُوۡا بِاللّٰہِ وَحۡدَہٗۤ اِلَّا قَوۡلَ اِبۡرٰہِیۡمَ لِاَبِیۡہِ لَاَسۡتَغۡفِرَنَّ لَکَ وَ مَاۤ اَمۡلِکُ لَکَ مِنَ اللّٰہِ مِنۡ شَیۡءٍ ؕ رَبَّنَا عَلَیۡکَ تَوَکَّلۡنَا وَ اِلَیۡکَ اَنَبۡنَا وَ اِلَیۡکَ الۡمَصِیۡرُ

[60:5] There is a good model for you in Abraham and those with him, when they said to their people, ‘We have nothing to do with you and with that which you worship beside Allah. We disbelieve all that you believe. There has arisen enmity and hatred between us and you forever, until you believe in Allah alone’ — with the exception of this saying of Abraham to his father, ‘I will surely ask forgiveness for thee, though I have no power to prevail upon Allah in favour of thee.’ They prayed to God saying, ‘Our Lord, in Thee do we put our trust and to Thee do we turn repentant, and towards Thee is the final return.

And other verses as well, such as:

مُحَمَّدٌ رَّسُوۡلُ اللّٰہِ ؕ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ مَعَہٗۤ اَشِدَّآءُ عَلَی الۡکُفَّارِ رُحَمَآءُ بَیۡنَہُمۡ ۔۔۔

[48:30] Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. And those who are with him are hard against the disbelievers, tender among themselves…

And

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا مَنۡ یَّرۡتَدَّ مِنۡکُمۡ عَنۡ دِیۡنِہٖ فَسَوۡفَ یَاۡتِی اللّٰہُ بِقَوۡمٍ یُّحِبُّہُمۡ وَ یُحِبُّوۡنَہٗۤ ۙ اَذِلَّۃٍ عَلَی الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ اَعِزَّۃٍ عَلَی الۡکٰفِرِیۡنَ ۫ یُجَاہِدُوۡنَ فِیۡ سَبِیۡلِ اللّٰہِ وَ لَا یَخَافُوۡنَ لَوۡمَۃَ لَآئِمٍ ؕ ذٰلِکَ فَضۡلُ اللّٰہِ یُؤۡتِیۡہِ مَنۡ یَّشَآءُ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ وَاسِعٌ عَلِیۡمٌ

[5:55] O ye who believe! whoso among you turns back from his religion, then let it be known that in his stead Allah will soon bring a people whom He will love and who will love Him, and who will be kind and humble towards believers, hard and firm against disbelievers. They will strive in the cause of Allah and will not fear the reproach of a faultfinder. That is Allah’s grace; He bestows it upon whomsoever He pleases; and Allah is Bountiful, All- Knowing.

And

یٰۤاَیُّہَا النَّبِیُّ جَاہِدِ الۡکُفَّارَ وَ الۡمُنٰفِقِیۡنَ وَ اغۡلُظۡ عَلَیۡہِمۡ ؕ وَ مَاۡوٰٮہُمۡ جَہَنَّمُ ؕ وَ بِئۡسَ الۡمَصِیۡرُ

[66:10] O Prophet! strive hard against the disbelievers and the hypocrites; and be strict against them. Their home is Hell, and an evil destination it is!

As well as

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا قَاتِلُوا الَّذِیۡنَ یَلُوۡنَکُمۡ مِّنَ الۡکُفَّارِ وَ لۡیَجِدُوۡا فِیۡکُمۡ غِلۡظَۃً ؕ وَ اعۡلَمُوۡۤا اَنَّ اللّٰہَ مَعَ الۡمُتَّقِیۡنَ

[9:123] O ye who believe! fight such of the disbelievers as are near to you and let them find hardness in you; and know that Allah is with the righteous.

Muslims Should Not Have Non-Muslim Friends

In like manner, there are other verses which speak of “not taking disbelievers as friends”, especially in regards to the Jews and Christians, such as:

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَّخِذُوۡا بِطَانَۃً مِّنۡ دُوۡنِکُمۡ لَا یَاۡلُوۡنَکُمۡ خَبَالًا ؕ وَدُّوۡا مَا عَنِتُّمۡ ۚ قَدۡ بَدَتِ الۡبَغۡضَآءُ مِنۡ اَفۡوَاہِہِمۡ ۚۖ وَ مَا تُخۡفِیۡ صُدُوۡرُہُمۡ اَکۡبَرُ ؕ قَدۡ بَیَّنَّا لَکُمُ الۡاٰیٰتِ اِنۡ کُنۡتُمۡ تَعۡقِلُوۡنَ

[3:119] O ye who believe! take not others than your own people as intimate friends; they will not fail to corrupt you. They love to see you in trouble. Hatred has already shown itself through the utterances of their mouths, and what their breasts conceal is greater still. We have made clear to you Our commandments, if you will understand.

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَّخِذُوا الۡیَہُوۡدَ وَ النَّصٰرٰۤی اَوۡلِیَآءَ ۘؔ بَعۡضُہُمۡ اَوۡلِیَآءُ بَعۡضٍ ؕ وَ مَنۡ یَّتَوَلَّہُمۡ مِّنۡکُمۡ فَاِنَّہٗ مِنۡہُمۡ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ لَا یَہۡدِی الۡقَوۡمَ الظّٰلِمِیۡنَ

[5:52] O ye who believe! take not the Jews and the Christians for friends. They are friends one to another. And whoso among you takes them for friends is indeed one of them. Verily, Allah guides not the unjust people.

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَّخِذُوا الَّذِیۡنَ اتَّخَذُوۡا دِیۡنَکُمۡ ہُزُوًا وَّ لَعِبًا مِّنَ الَّذِیۡنَ اُوۡتُوا الۡکِتٰبَ مِنۡ قَبۡلِکُمۡ وَ الۡکُفَّارَ اَوۡلِیَآءَ ۚ وَ اتَّقُوا اللّٰہَ اِنۡ کُنۡتُمۡ مُّؤۡمِنِیۡنَ

[5:58] O ye who believe! take not those for friends who make a jest and sport of your religion from among those who were given the Book before you, and the disbelievers. And fear Allah if you are believers;

اَلَمۡ تَرَ اِلَی الَّذِیۡنَ تَوَلَّوۡا قَوۡمًا غَضِبَ اللّٰہُ عَلَیۡہِمۡ ؕ مَا ہُمۡ مِّنۡکُمۡ وَ لَا مِنۡہُمۡ ۙ وَ یَحۡلِفُوۡنَ عَلَی الۡکَذِبِ وَ ہُمۡ یَعۡلَمُوۡنَ

[58:15] Hast thou not seen those who make friends with a people with whom Allah is wroth? They are neither of you nor of them, and they swear to falsehood knowingly.

لَا تَجِدُ قَوۡمًا یُّؤۡمِنُوۡنَ بِاللّٰہِ وَ الۡیَوۡمِ الۡاٰخِرِ یُوَآدُّوۡنَ مَنۡ حَآدَّ اللّٰہَ وَ رَسُوۡلَہٗ وَ لَوۡ کَانُوۡۤا اٰبَآءَہُمۡ اَوۡ اَبۡنَآءَہُمۡ اَوۡ اِخۡوَانَہُمۡ اَوۡ عَشِیۡرَتَہُمۡ ؕ اُولٰٓئِکَ کَتَبَ فِیۡ قُلُوۡبِہِمُ الۡاِیۡمَانَ وَ اَیَّدَہُمۡ بِرُوۡحٍ مِّنۡہُ ؕ وَ یُدۡخِلُہُمۡ جَنّٰتٍ تَجۡرِیۡ مِنۡ تَحۡتِہَا الۡاَنۡہٰرُ خٰلِدِیۡنَ فِیۡہَا ؕ رَضِیَ اللّٰہُ عَنۡہُمۡ وَ رَضُوۡا عَنۡہُ ؕ اُولٰٓئِکَ حِزۡبُ اللّٰہِ ؕ اَلَاۤ اِنَّ حِزۡبَ اللّٰہِ ہُمُ الۡمُفۡلِحُوۡنَ

[58:23] Thou wilt not find any people who believe in Allah and the Last Day loving those who oppose Allah and His Messenger, even though they be their fathers, or their sons or their brethren, or their kindred. These are they in whose hearts Allah has inscribed true faith and whom He has strengthened with inspiration from Himself. And He will make them enter Gardens through which streams flow. Therein will they abide. Allah is well pleased with them, and they are well pleased with Him. They are Allah’s party. Hearken ye O people! it is Allah’s party who will be successful.

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَّخِذُوۡا عَدُوِّیۡ وَ عَدُوَّکُمۡ اَوۡلِیَآءَ تُلۡقُوۡنَ اِلَیۡہِمۡ بِالۡمَوَدَّۃِ وَ قَدۡ کَفَرُوۡا بِمَا جَآءَکُمۡ مِّنَ الۡحَقِّ ۚ یُخۡرِجُوۡنَ الرَّسُوۡلَ وَ اِیَّاکُمۡ اَنۡ تُؤۡمِنُوۡا بِاللّٰہِ رَبِّکُمۡ ؕ اِنۡ کُنۡتُمۡ خَرَجۡتُمۡ جِہَادًا فِیۡ سَبِیۡلِیۡ وَ ابۡتِغَآءَ مَرۡضَاتِیۡ ٭ۖ تُسِرُّوۡنَ اِلَیۡہِمۡ بِالۡمَوَدَّۃِ ٭ۖ وَ اَنَا اَعۡلَمُ بِمَاۤ اَخۡفَیۡتُمۡ وَ مَاۤ اَعۡلَنۡتُمۡ ؕ وَ مَنۡ یَّفۡعَلۡہُ مِنۡکُمۡ فَقَدۡ ضَلَّ سَوَآءَ السَّبِیۡلِ

[60:2] O ye who believe! take not My enemy and your enemy for friends, offering them love, while they disbelieve in the truth which has come to you and drive out the Messenger and yourselves from your homes merely because you believe in Allah, your Lord. If you go forth, to strive in My cause and seek My pleasure, take them not for friends, sending them messages of love in secret, while I know best what you conceal and what you reveal. And whoever of you does so, has, surely, lost the right path.

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَوَلَّوۡا قَوۡمًا غَضِبَ اللّٰہُ عَلَیۡہِمۡ قَدۡ یَئِسُوۡا مِنَ الۡاٰخِرَۃِ کَمَا یَئِسَ الۡکُفَّارُ مِنۡ اَصۡحٰبِ الۡقُبُوۡرِ

[60:14] O ye who believe! make not friends of a people with whom Allah is wroth; they have indeed despaired of the Hereafter just as have the disbelievers despaired of those who are in the graves.

Ahadith about Hating Non-Believers

There are ahadith that speak about this concept as well, such as:

عَنْ أَبِي أُمَامَةَ عَنْ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ مَنْ أَحَبَّ لِلَّهِ وَأَبْغَضَ لِلَّهِ وَأَعْطَى لِلَّهِ وَمَنَعَ لِلَّهِ فَقَدْ اسْتَكْمَلَ الْإِيمَانَ

(سنن أبي داود، كتاب السنة، باب الدليل على زيادة الإيمان ونقصانه، حدیث ۴۶۸۱)

Abu Umamah reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Whoever loves for the sake of Allah, hates for the sake of Allah, gives for the sake of Allah, and withholds for the sake of Allah has perfected the faith.” (Sunan Abi Daud, The Book of Sunnah, Chapter on the Proof of the Increase and Decrease in Faith, Hadith #4681)

Ahmadiyya Response:

Islam is a religion of peace, that in no way teaches hatred against anyone. The Qur’an teaches Muslims to be compassionate to all of mankind, regardless of creed or religion. Muslims are allowed to have non-Muslim friends. The motto of the Jama’at, “Love for All, Hatred for None” is fundamentally grounded in the Islamic teachings and is no way runs contrary to them.

The Holy Qur’an

The Holy Qur’an is our primary source about Islam. It is the word of Allah and provides detailed explanations about every aspect of the faith:

وَ نَزَّلۡنَا عَلَیۡکَ الۡکِتٰبَ تِبۡیَانًا لِّکُلِّ شَیۡءٍ وَّ ہُدًی وَّ رَحۡمَۃً وَّ بُشۡرٰی لِلۡمُسۡلِمِیۡنَ

[16:90]… And We have sent down to thee the Book to explain everything, and a guidance, and a mercy, and glad tidings to those who submit to God.

The Qur’an teaches us that a Muslim must live compassionately, and must not hate even his enemies.

Islam is a religion whose meaning is peace. Allah is a God of Mercy, Compassion and Love:

اَلۡحَمۡدُ لِلّٰہِ رَبِّ الۡعٰلَمِیۡنَ [] الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِیۡمِ

[1:2] All praise belongs to Allah, Lord of all the worlds,

[1:3] The Gracious, the Merciful,

وَ ہُوَ الۡغَفُوۡرُ الۡوَدُوۡدُ

[85:15] And He is the Most Forgiving, the Loving;

There is no doubt that His punishment is severe (15:51), but He reminds us that His Mercy encompasses all things:

قَالَ عَذَابِیۡۤ اُصِیۡبُ بِہٖ مَنۡ اَشَآءُ ۚ وَ رَحۡمَتِیۡ وَسِعَتۡ کُلَّ شَیۡءٍ

[7:157] ‘I will inflict My punishment on whom I will; but My mercy encompasses all things

In no place has Allah stated in the Holy Qur’an that He hates His creation. Rather, He consistently states that only evil actions and disbelief are hateful to Him:

اِنَّ الَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا یُنَادَوۡنَ لَمَقۡتُ اللّٰہِ اَکۡبَرُ مِنۡ مَّقۡتِکُمۡ اَنۡفُسَکُمۡ اِذۡ تُدۡعَوۡنَ اِلَی الۡاِیۡمَانِ فَتَکۡفُرُوۡنَ

[40:11] An announcement will be made to those who disbelieve in the words: ‘Greater was the abhorrence of Allah when you were called to the faith and you disbelieved than your own abhorrence of yourselves today.’

کَبُرَ مَقۡتًا عِنۡدَ اللّٰہِ اَنۡ تَقُوۡلُوۡا مَا لَا تَفۡعَلُوۡنَ

[61:4] Most hateful is it in the sight of Allah that you say what you do not do.

وَ لَا تَنۡکِحُوۡا مَا نَکَحَ اٰبَآؤُکُمۡ مِّنَ النِّسَآءِ اِلَّا مَا قَدۡ سَلَفَ ؕ اِنَّہٗ کَانَ فَاحِشَۃً وَّ مَقۡتًا ؕ وَ سَآءَ سَبِیۡلًا

[4:23] And marry not those women whom your fathers married, except what has already passed. It is a thing foul and hateful and an evil way.

Muslims have been instructed to follow the attributes and Sunnah (practice) of Allah:

صِبۡغَۃَ اللّٰہِ ۚ وَ مَنۡ اَحۡسَنُ مِنَ اللّٰہِ صِبۡغَۃً ۫ وَّ نَحۡنُ لَہٗ عٰبِدُوۡنَ

[2:139] Say, ‘We will adopt the colour/atrributes of Allah; and who is better than Allah in terms of attributes, and Him alone do we worship.’

Therefore, as Allah does not hate His creation, Muslims can in no way ever hate their fellow human beings.

The Holy Qur’an has spoken about how Allah sent the Holy Prophet(sa) as “a mercy for all of mankind”:

وَ مَاۤ اَرۡسَلۡنٰکَ اِلَّا رَحۡمَۃً لِّلۡعٰلَمِیۡنَ

[21:108] And We have sent thee not but as a mercy for all peoples.

It speaks about his ardent, heart-felt desire to help his people through the teachings of Islam:

فَلَعَلَّکَ بَاخِعٌ نَّفۡسَکَ عَلٰۤی اٰثَارِہِمۡ اِنۡ لَّمۡ یُؤۡمِنُوۡا بِہٰذَا الۡحَدِیۡثِ اَسَفًا

[18:7] So haply thou wilt grieve thyself to death for sorrow after them if they believe not in this discourse.

لَعَلَّکَ بَاخِعٌ نَّفۡسَکَ اَلَّا یَکُوۡنُوۡا مُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ

[26:4] Haply thou wilt grieve thyself to death because they believe not.

Thus, the practice of the prophet of Islam also teaches us that Islam does not advocate hate for non-Muslims. Rather the Qur’an tells us that Prophet Muhammad(sa) grieved himself almost to death in his compassion towards them and his desire to help them improve their condition.

The Qur’an teaches Muslims to supress their anger and to forgive mankind (3:135), to be meek and to respond to ignorant speech with words of peace (25:64) and to maintain their values and dignity before hurtful comments (25:73):

الَّذِیۡنَ یُنۡفِقُوۡنَ فِی السَّرَّآءِ وَ الضَّرَّآءِ وَ الۡکٰظِمِیۡنَ الۡغَیۡظَ وَ الۡعَافِیۡنَ عَنِ النَّاسِ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ یُحِبُّ الۡمُحۡسِنِیۡنَ

[3:135] Those who spend in prosperity and adversity, and those who suppress anger and pardon men; and Allah loves those who do good;

وَ عِبَادُ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الَّذِیۡنَ یَمۡشُوۡنَ عَلَی الۡاَرۡضِ ہَوۡنًا وَّ اِذَا خَاطَبَہُمُ الۡجٰہِلُوۡنَ قَالُوۡا سَلٰمًا

[25:64] And the servants of the Gracious God are those who walk on the earth in a dignified manner, and when the ignorant address them, they say, ‘Peace!’

وَ الَّذِیۡنَ لَا یَشۡہَدُوۡنَ الزُّوۡرَ ۙ وَ اِذَا مَرُّوۡا بِاللَّغۡوِ مَرُّوۡا کِرَامًا

[25:73] And those who bear not false witness, and when they pass by anything vain, they pass on with dignity;

It directs them to always be kind and just towards peaceful non-believers (60:9). It tells us that “Allah does not like the uttering of unseemly speech in public…” (4:149). Moreover, it teaches absolute justice, doing good to others and adopting all of mankind as if they were one’s children as hallmarks of Islamic conduct (16:91).

لَا یَنۡہٰٮکُمُ اللّٰہُ عَنِ الَّذِیۡنَ لَمۡ یُقَاتِلُوۡکُمۡ فِی الدِّیۡنِ وَ لَمۡ یُخۡرِجُوۡکُمۡ مِّنۡ دِیَارِکُمۡ اَنۡ تَبَرُّوۡہُمۡ وَ تُقۡسِطُوۡۤا اِلَیۡہِمۡ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ یُحِبُّ الۡمُقۡسِطِیۡنَ

[60:9] Allah forbids you not, respecting those who have not fought against you on account of your religion, and who have not driven you forth from your homes, that you be kind to them and act equitably towards them; surely Allah loves those who are equitable.

لَا یُحِبُّ اللّٰہُ الۡجَہۡرَ بِالسُّوۡٓءِ مِنَ الۡقَوۡلِ اِلَّا مَنۡ ظُلِمَ ؕ وَ کَانَ اللّٰہُ سَمِیۡعًا عَلِیۡمًا

[4:149] Allah likes not the uttering of unseemly speech in public, except on the part of one who is being wronged. Verily, Allah is All-Hearing, All-Knowing.

اِنَّ اللّٰہَ یَاۡمُرُ بِالۡعَدۡلِ وَ الۡاِحۡسَانِ وَ اِیۡتَآیِٔ ذِی الۡقُرۡبٰی وَ یَنۡہٰی عَنِ الۡفَحۡشَآءِ وَ الۡمُنۡکَرِ وَ الۡبَغۡیِ ۚ یَعِظُکُمۡ لَعَلَّکُمۡ تَذَکَّرُوۡنَ

[16:91] Verily, Allah enjoins justice, and the doing of good to others; and giving like kindred; and forbids indecency, and manifest evil, and wrongful transgression. He admonished you that you may take heed.

The Qur’an addresses peoples of other religions at length. Where it addresses theological differences and moral failings on their part, it never advocates for hate or violence against them. On the contrary, the Qur’an stresses that there are good people amongst them that sincerely practice their faith according to the dictates of justice and piety. It addresses the Jews, saying that “they are not all alike”, and that there is a group amongst them that spend their nights in prayer and practice good deeds (3:114-116). It says that the Christians are the “closest to the Muslims” because they are not prideful (5:83). It has identified such people as believers:

لَیۡسُوۡا سَوَآءً ؕ مِنۡ اَہۡلِ الۡکِتٰبِ اُمَّۃٌ قَآئِمَۃٌ یَّتۡلُوۡنَ اٰیٰتِ اللّٰہِ اٰنَآءَ الَّیۡلِ وَ ہُمۡ یَسۡجُدُوۡنَ [] یُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ بِاللّٰہِ وَ الۡیَوۡمِ الۡاٰخِرِ وَ یَاۡمُرُوۡنَ بِالۡمَعۡرُوۡفِ وَ یَنۡہَوۡنَ عَنِ الۡمُنۡکَرِ وَ یُسَارِعُوۡنَ فِی الۡخَیۡرٰتِ ؕ وَ اُولٰٓئِکَ مِنَ الصّٰلِحِیۡنَ [] وَ مَا یَفۡعَلُوۡا مِنۡ خَیۡرٍ فَلَنۡ یُّکۡفَرُوۡہُ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ عَلِیۡمٌۢ بِالۡمُتَّقِیۡنَ

[3:114] They are not all alike. Among the People of the Book there is a party who stand by their covenant; they recite the word of Allah in the hours of night and prostrate themselves before Him.

[3:115] They believe in Allah and the Last Day, and enjoin what is good and forbid evil, and hasten, vying with one another, in good works. And these are among the righteous.

[3:116] And whatever good they do, they shall not be denied its due reward; and Allah well knows the God-fearing.

وَ لَتَجِدَنَّ اَقۡرَبَہُمۡ مَّوَدَّۃً لِّلَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوا الَّذِیۡنَ قَالُوۡۤا اِنَّا نَصٰرٰی ؕ ذٰلِکَ بِاَنَّ مِنۡہُمۡ قِسِّیۡسِیۡنَ وَ رُہۡبَانًا وَّ اَنَّہُمۡ لَا یَسۡتَکۡبِرُوۡنَ

[5:83]… and thou shalt assuredly find those who say, ‘We are Christians,’ to be the nearest of them in love to the believers. That is because amongst them are savants and monks and because they are not proud.

The Qur’an encourages Muslims and Jews to eat together and establish friendly relations with each other. Dietary laws (kosher and halal) could have been an obstacle in such social gatherings, so Allah declared that kosher food was lawful for the Muslims and advised the Jews that halal food was also legitimate for them to consume as well.

It also states that in certain circumstances, Muslim men may can marry Jewish and Christian women:

اَلۡیَوۡمَ اُحِلَّ لَکُمُ الطَّیِّبٰتُ ؕ وَ طَعَامُ الَّذِیۡنَ اُوۡتُوا الۡکِتٰبَ حِلٌّ لَّکُمۡ ۪ وَ طَعَامُکُمۡ حِلٌّ لَّہُمۡ ۫ وَ الۡمُحۡصَنٰتُ مِنَ الۡمُؤۡمِنٰتِ وَ الۡمُحۡصَنٰتُ مِنَ الَّذِیۡنَ اُوۡتُوا الۡکِتٰبَ مِنۡ قَبۡلِکُمۡ اِذَاۤ اٰتَیۡتُمُوۡہُنَّ اُجُوۡرَہُنَّ مُحۡصِنِیۡنَ غَیۡرَ مُسٰفِحِیۡنَ وَ لَا مُتَّخِذِیۡۤ اَخۡدَانٍ ؕ وَ مَنۡ یَّکۡفُرۡ بِالۡاِیۡمَانِ فَقَدۡ حَبِطَ عَمَلُہٗ ۫ وَ ہُوَ فِی الۡاٰخِرَۃِ مِنَ الۡخٰسِرِیۡنَ

[5:6] This day all good things have been made lawful for you. And the food of the People of the Book is lawful for you, and your food is lawful for them. And lawful for you are chaste believing women and chaste women from among those who were given the Book before you, when you give them their dowries, contracting valid marriage and not committing fornication nor taking secret paramours. And whoever rejects the faith, his work has doubtless come to naught, and in the Hereafter he will be among the losers.

Such social gatherings and even marriage between Muslims and Christians and Jews would be unthinkable if Islam truly taught all Muslims to hate non-Muslims.

It tells Muslims to work together with all people, whether believers or non-believers, to spread positive values and righteousness in society (5:3). It teaches that even the animosity of a group towards you should not stop you from acting justly towards them (5:9):

وَ لَا یَجۡرِمَنَّکُمۡ شَنَاٰنُ قَوۡمٍ اَنۡ صَدُّوۡکُمۡ عَنِ الۡمَسۡجِدِ الۡحَرَامِ اَنۡ تَعۡتَدُوۡا ۘ وَ تَعَاوَنُوۡا عَلَی الۡبِرِّ وَ التَّقۡوٰی ۪ وَ لَا تَعَاوَنُوۡا عَلَی الۡاِثۡمِ وَ الۡعُدۡوَانِ ۪ وَ اتَّقُوا اللّٰہَ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ شَدِیۡدُ الۡعِقَابِ

[5:3] … And let not the enmity of a people, that they hindered you from the Sacred Mosque, incite you to transgress. And help one another in righteousness and piety; but help not one another in sin and transgression. And fear Allah; surely, Allah is severe in punishment.

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا کُوۡنُوۡا قَوّٰمِیۡنَ لِلّٰہِ شُہَدَآءَ بِالۡقِسۡطِ ۫ وَ لَا یَجۡرِمَنَّکُمۡ شَنَاٰنُ قَوۡمٍ عَلٰۤی اَلَّا تَعۡدِلُوۡا ؕ اِعۡدِلُوۡا ۟ ہُوَ اَقۡرَبُ لِلتَّقۡوٰی ۫ وَ اتَّقُوا اللّٰہَ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ خَبِیۡرٌۢ بِمَا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ

[5:9] O ye who believe! be steadfast in the cause of Allah, bearing witness in equity; and let not a people’s enmity incite you to act otherwise than with justice. Be always just, that is nearer to righteousness. And fear Allah. Surely, Allah is aware of what you do.

The Qur’an teaches Muslims to abhor all types of falsehood, injustice and evil (16:91), both open and hidden (6:121). It tells them to be courageous in presenting their beliefs, and that the fear of reproach from their detractors should never be an obstacle for them in proclaiming the truth (5:55).

اِنَّ اللّٰہَ یَاۡمُرُ بِالۡعَدۡلِ وَ الۡاِحۡسَانِ وَ اِیۡتَآیِٔ ذِی الۡقُرۡبٰی وَ یَنۡہٰی عَنِ الۡفَحۡشَآءِ وَ الۡمُنۡکَرِ وَ الۡبَغۡیِ ۚ یَعِظُکُمۡ لَعَلَّکُمۡ تَذَکَّرُوۡنَ

[16:91] Verily, Allah enjoins justice, and the doing of good to others; and giving like kindred; and forbids indecency, and manifest evil, and wrongful transgression. He admonished you that you may take heed.

وَ ذَرُوۡا ظَاہِرَ الۡاِثۡمِ وَ بَاطِنَہٗ ؕ اِنَّ الَّذِیۡنَ یَکۡسِبُوۡنَ الۡاِثۡمَ سَیُجۡزَوۡنَ بِمَا کَانُوۡا یَقۡتَرِفُوۡنَ

[6:121] And eschew open sins as well as secret ones. Surely, those who earn sin will be rewarded for that which they have earned.

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا مَنۡ یَّرۡتَدَّ مِنۡکُمۡ عَنۡ دِیۡنِہٖ فَسَوۡفَ یَاۡتِی اللّٰہُ بِقَوۡمٍ یُّحِبُّہُمۡ وَ یُحِبُّوۡنَہٗۤ ۙ اَذِلَّۃٍ عَلَی الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ اَعِزَّۃٍ عَلَی الۡکٰفِرِیۡنَ ۫ یُجَاہِدُوۡنَ فِیۡ سَبِیۡلِ اللّٰہِ وَ لَا یَخَافُوۡنَ لَوۡمَۃَ لَآئِمٍ ؕ ذٰلِکَ فَضۡلُ اللّٰہِ یُؤۡتِیۡہِ مَنۡ یَّشَآءُ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ وَاسِعٌ عَلِیۡمٌ

[5:55] O ye who believe! whoso among you turns back from his religion, then let it be known that in his stead Allah will soon bring a people whom He will love and who will love Him, and who will be kind and humble towards believers, hard and firm against disbelievers. They will strive in the cause of Allah and will not fear the reproach of a faultfinder. That is Allah’s grace; He bestows it upon whomsoever He pleases; and Allah is Bountiful, All- Knowing.

Therefore, according to the teachings of the Holy Qur’an, a Muslim must be filled with compassion towards mankind and act justly and compassionately towards them, but at the same time abhor all sinful acts.

If any person involves themselves in sin, Islam teaches Muslims that they must try and save them from it through admonition, advice, compassion and prayers. This was the practice of the prophets.

We must not hate people, rather we must hate evil actions. This idea is clearly explained in the story of Hazrat Lut(as) (Lot), where he stated that he hated the evil actions of his people, but never that he hated them (26:169).

قَالَ اِنِّیۡ لِعَمَلِکُمۡ مِّنَ الۡقَالِیۡنَ

[26:169] He said, ‘Certainly I hate your practice.

The Life of the Holy Prophet(sa)

The Prophet Muhammad(sa) is an “excellent model” of Islamic teachings (33:22). His life was based upon high moral principles (68:5), and the Qur’an has in many places mandated Muslims to follow his example (3:32)(4:81)(24:55).

لَقَدۡ کَانَ لَکُمۡ فِیۡ رَسُوۡلِ اللّٰہِ اُسۡوَۃٌ حَسَنَۃٌ لِّمَنۡ کَانَ یَرۡجُوا اللّٰہَ وَ الۡیَوۡمَ الۡاٰخِرَ وَ ذَکَرَ اللّٰہَ کَثِیۡرًا

[33:22] Verily you have in the Prophet of Allah an excellent model, for him who fears Allah and the Last Day and who remembers Allah much.

وَ اِنَّکَ لَعَلٰی خُلُقٍ عَظِیۡمٍ

[68:5] And thou dost surely possess high moral excellences.

قُلۡ اِنۡ کُنۡتُمۡ تُحِبُّوۡنَ اللّٰہَ فَاتَّبِعُوۡنِیۡ یُحۡبِبۡکُمُ اللّٰہُ وَ یَغۡفِرۡ لَکُمۡ ذُنُوۡبَکُمۡ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ غَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِیۡمٌ

[3:32] Say, ‘If you love Allah, follow me: then will Allah love you and forgive you your faults. And Allah is Most Forgiving, Merciful.’

مَنۡ یُّطِعِ الرَّسُوۡلَ فَقَدۡ اَطَاعَ اللّٰہَ ۚ وَ مَنۡ تَوَلّٰی فَمَاۤ اَرۡسَلۡنٰکَ عَلَیۡہِمۡ حَفِیۡظًا

[4:81] Whoso obeys the Messenger obeys Allah indeed; and whoso turns away, then We have not sent thee as a keeper over them.

قُلۡ اَطِیۡعُوا اللّٰہَ وَ اَطِیۡعُوا الرَّسُوۡلَ ۚ فَاِنۡ تَوَلَّوۡا فَاِنَّمَا عَلَیۡہِ مَا حُمِّلَ وَ عَلَیۡکُمۡ مَّا حُمِّلۡتُمۡ ؕ وَ اِنۡ تُطِیۡعُوۡہُ تَہۡتَدُوۡا ؕ وَ مَا عَلَی الرَّسُوۡلِ اِلَّا الۡبَلٰغُ الۡمُبِیۡنُ

[24:55] Say, ‘Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger.’ But if you turn away, then upon him is his burden, and upon you is your burden. And if you obey him, you will be rightly guided. And the messenger is not responsible but for the plain delivery of the Message.

The Prophet Muhammad(sa) showed the most exemplary standard of kind and compassionate treatment of people who did not accept his message. Rather, his treatment of even his enemies is unequalled.

During the first 13 years of his prophetic mission, he and his followers were relentlessly persecuted by his opponents. Dust and garbage would be thrown on his home. He was attacked personally several times in the streets. He was ridiculed by his neighbors and fellow citizens. For three years, he and his followers were boycotted in the valley of Abu Talib, where they suffered under a severe economic and social blockade. His wife, the Lady Khadija, died as a result of the hardships of the boycott. His daughter suffered a miscarriage because of the mischief of his enemies. Many of his followers suffered persecution and were forced to flee from their homes, seeking refuge in far-off lands like Abyssinia and distant cities like Medina. The major tribes of his city attempted to assassinate him on the night that he migrated to Medina.

Nevertheless, he always advocated for peace and kind-treatment of non-Muslims and even his enemies. Arriving in Medina, one of his first major actions as governor was to draw up the Charter of Medina, which guaranteed the rights and religious freedoms of each of the major groups living in the city.

When there was a severe drought and famine in Mecca, he sent them food and supplies. During the battle of Badar, he did not deny the enemy troops access to water which was under his control. He pardoned the lives of the Jewish tribe of Banu Qainaqa who betrayed their pact with the Muslims and let them leave the city of Medina peacefully. When he was injured during the battle of Uhud, he would wipe the blood from his brow and pray, “O Allah, forgive my people, for they know not what they do.”

He returned more than required when returning a debt, even if the creditor was a Jew who was rude and forceful in demanding the return of a loan. He taught that anyone who killed a Zimmi, a non-Muslim who was under the protection of the Islamic state, would not smell the fragrance of paradise. When a group of Christians visited him from Najraan, they exchanged views for several days. They did not accept Islam, but even still the Prophet allowed them to use his mosque for their worship services.

He extended common human dignity to all people. He was part of an organization named Hilf-ul-Fudul, whose members had sworn to defend the human rights of all people, regardless of their social status or religious affiliation. The funeral procession of a Jew once passed by and he stood up out of respect. When he was asked about it by his companions, he stated, “Is he not a human being?”.

When he returned to Mecca as a victor after over a decade of persecution, he pardoned his enemies. The common practice in those days was to kill the enemies or enslave them. This enormous gesture of good-will and peace led to the wide-scale conversion of many of his previous enemies. Those that decided not to accept Islam were allowed were allowed to remain in the city as free men.

There are numerous other examples from his life that show how in matters of compassion, good-will and justice, he made no difference between Muslims and non-Muslims. He demonstrated that Islam does not teach hate for non-Muslims.

Explanations of the Promised Messiah(as)

The Promised Messiah, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as) advised in many of his writings that mankind should be treated compassionately, regardless of whether they are Muslims or not. Even enemies were to be treated with sympathy and kindness. He writes:

دین کے دو ہی کامل حصے ہیں۔ ایک خدا سے محبت کرنا اور ایک بنی نوع سے اس قدر محبت کرنا کہ ان کی مصیبت کو اپنی مصیبت سمجھ لینا اور ان کے لئے دعا کرنا۔ ( روحانی خزائن جلد  ۱۹، نسیم دعوت، صفحہ ۴۶۴)

There are two perfect parts of faith; one is to love God and the other is to love mankind to such an extent that one considers its difficulties one’s own difficulties and to pray for it. (Ruhani Khazain, vol. 19, Naseem Dawat, pg. 464)

اللہ تعالیٰ فرماتا ہے کہ بغیر لحاظ مذہب و ملت کے تم لوگوں سے ہمدردی کرو۔ بھوکوں کو کھلاؤ۔ غلاموں کو آزاد کرو۔ قرضہ داروں کے قرض دو۔ زیر باروں کے بار اٹھاؤ اور بنی نوع سے سچی ہمدردی کا حق ادا کرو۔  (روحانی خزائن جلد۹، نور القرآن نمبر ۲، صفحہ ۴۳۴)

‘Allah the Exalted states: be sympathetic to people regardless of faith and nationality. Feed the poor, free slaves, and relieve those in debt and support those under burdens and pay the dues of true compassion with humanity.’  (Ruhani Khazain, vol. 9, Nur-ul-Qur’an number 2, pg. 434)

تم مخلوقِ خدا سے ایسی ہمدردی کے ساتھ پیش آؤ کہ گویا تم ان کے حقیقی رشتہ دار ہو جیسا کہ مائیں اپنے بچوں سے پیش آتی ہیں … جو ماں کی طرح طبعی جوش سے نیکی کرتا ہے وہ کبھی خودنمائی نہیں کر سکتا۔   (روحانی خزائن، جلد ۱۹، کشتی نوح صفحہ ۳۰)

You should extend compassion to God’s creation as if you are their blood relative, just like mothers are with their children. One who does good with natural passion like that of a mother can never be ostentatious.  (Ruhani Khazain, vol. 19, Noah’s Ark, pg. 30)

He declared that he had no enemies, and was only against false ideologies:

میں تمام مسلمانوں اور عیسائیوں اور ہندوؤں اور آریوں پر یہ بات ظاہر کرتا ہوں کہ دنیا میں کوئی میرا دشمن نہیں ہے۔ میں بنی نوع سے ایسی محبت کرتا ہوں کہ جیسے والدہ مہربان اپنے بچوں سے بلکہ اس سے بڑھ کر۔ میں صرف ان باطل عقائد کا دشمن ہوں جن سے سچائی کا خون ہوتا ہے۔ انسان کی ہمدردی میرا فرض ہے اور جھوٹ اور شرک اور ظلم اور ہر ایک بدعملی اور ناانصافی اور بد اخلاقی سے بیزاری میرا اصول۔  (روحانی خزائن، جلد ۱۷، اربعین، صفحہ ۳۴۴)

I declare before all Muslims, Christians, Hindus and Aryas that I have no enemy in the world. I love mankind as a mother loves her children, nay even more so. I am only an enemy to those false ideologies that run counter to the truth. Compassion towards mankind is my duty, and to shun deceit, idolatry, injustice and every type of evil action, oppression and immorality is my principle. (Ruhani Khazain, vol. 17, Arbaeen, pg. 344)

He advised not to hate one’s enemies. Rather, one should have pity on them and pray for them owing to their fallen condition:

مخالفین کے ساتھ دشمنی کے   ساتھ نہیں پیش آنا چاہئے، بلکہ زیادہ تر دعا سے کام لینا چاہئے  اور دیگر وسائل سے کوشش کرنی چائیے۔ (ملفوظات جلد ۲، صفحہ ۶)

One should not harbour malevolence against one’s adversaries. Instead, a person ought to pray for such people more than anything else and use other means to reform them. (Malfuzat vol. 1, pg. 6. Eng. Trans. Pg. 7)

Advising his followers, he stated once:

۔۔۔دلوں کو پاک کریں اور اپنے انسانی رحم کو ترقی دیں اور درد مندوں کے ہمدرد بنیں۔ زمین پر صلح پھیلا ویں کہ اسی سے اُن کا دین پھیلے گا۔۔۔ (روحانی خزائن، جلد ۱۷، گورنمنٹ انگریزی اور جہاد، صفحہ ۱۵)

…(I instruct my followers) to purify their hearts, to foster sympathy, and to be compassionate towards the suffering. They should spread peace on earth, because that will cause their faith to spread in return…  (Ruhani Khazain, vol. 17, The British Government and Jihad, pg. 15, Eng. Trans. Pg. 17)

Explanation of Certain Verses and Ahadith that Supposedly Teach Hate for Non-Muslims

Meaning of the words of Hazrat Ibraheem(as)

قَدۡ کَانَتۡ لَکُمۡ اُسۡوَۃٌ حَسَنَۃٌ فِیۡۤ اِبۡرٰہِیۡمَ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ مَعَہٗ ۚ اِذۡ قَالُوۡا لِقَوۡمِہِمۡ اِنَّا بُرَءٰٓؤُا مِنۡکُمۡ وَ مِمَّا تَعۡبُدُوۡنَ مِنۡ دُوۡنِ اللّٰہِ ۫ کَفَرۡنَا بِکُمۡ وَ بَدَا بَیۡنَنَا وَ بَیۡنَکُمُ الۡعَدَاوَۃُ وَ الۡبَغۡضَآءُ اَبَدًا حَتّٰی تُؤۡمِنُوۡا بِاللّٰہِ وَحۡدَہٗۤ اِلَّا قَوۡلَ اِبۡرٰہِیۡمَ لِاَبِیۡہِ لَاَسۡتَغۡفِرَنَّ لَکَ وَ مَاۤ اَمۡلِکُ لَکَ مِنَ اللّٰہِ مِنۡ شَیۡءٍ ؕ رَبَّنَا عَلَیۡکَ تَوَکَّلۡنَا وَ اِلَیۡکَ اَنَبۡنَا وَ اِلَیۡکَ الۡمَصِیۡرُ

[60:5] There is a good model for you in Abraham and those with him, when they said to their people, ‘We have nothing to do with you and with that which you worship beside Allah. We disbelieve all that you believe. There has arisen enmity and hatred between us and you forever, until you believe in Allah alone’ — with the exception of this saying of Abraham to his father, ‘I will surely ask forgiveness for thee, though I have no power to prevail upon Allah in favour of thee.’ They prayed to God saying, ‘Our Lord, in Thee do we put our trust and to Thee do we turn repentant, and towards Thee is the final return.

The words of Hazrat Ibraheem(as) in (60:5) where he stated “There has arisen enmity and hatred between us and you forever, until you believe in Allah alone’” can have various meanings.

It does not necessarily mean that hate was being demonstrated from Hazrat Ibraheem(as) and his followers. Allah describes the words enmity and hate here as impersonalized objects that are not attributed to either party directly. Rather, the Qur’an only states that “it has appeared” between them. The meaning is that the enemies of Hazrat Ibraheem(as) harboured hatred towards him and his followers in their hearts, but they (the followers of Abraham) did not harbour the same towards them.

Their hatred impeded them from maintaining amicable relations with the believers, while the love of Allah and the teachings of “turning away from the ignorant”obliged the believers to separate themselves from them. Of course, this situation was only until “they would believe in Allah” at which point there would be no question of hate or turning away from each other. They had become so far-removed from common human values and respect and had so sealed their hearts that only sincere belief in Allah could remedy their situation.

The Qur’an teaches believers to hope, pray and strive to bring about this day of reconcliation where Allah places love in the hearts of such disbelievers instead of hate:

 

عَسَی اللّٰہُ اَنۡ یَّجۡعَلَ بَیۡنَکُمۡ وَ بَیۡنَ الَّذِیۡنَ عَادَیۡتُمۡ مِّنۡہُمۡ مَّوَدَّۃً ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ قَدِیۡرٌ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ غَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِیۡمٌ

[60:8] It may be that Allah will bring about love between you and those of them with whom you are opposed to; and Allah is All-Powerful; and Allah is Most Forgiving, Merciful.

The other meaning is that the hate that the believers felt was only towards their evil actions and disblief, and not towards them as human beings, as was explained earlier.

Meaning of (48:30) “Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. And those who are with him are hard against the disbelievers” and similar wordings of being hard and strict against the disbelievers in (5:55), (9:74), (9:123) and (66:10)

The verb used for “hard” in Arabic is اشداء (Ashiddaa). It’s root is ش د د, which means being firm and resolute, as well as rejecting the influence of others and remaining firm on your habits:

وقوله تعالى: حَتَّى إِذا بَلَغَ أَشُدَّهُ وَبَلَغَ أَرْبَعِينَ سَنَةً
[الأحقاف/ 15] ، [ففيه تنبيه أنّ الإنسان إذا بلغ هذا القدر يتقوّى خلقه الذي هو عليه، فلا يكاد يزايله بعد ذلك (مفردات، امام راغب)

And Allah has stated: “At length, when he reaches the age of full strength (Ashaddahu) and attains forty years” (Al-Ahqaf/15). In it there is a warning that when man reaches this age the nature upon which he is is strengthened and he is no longer able to change it thereafter. (Mufradat, Imam Raghib)

The other verb used for hardness appears in (9:123) as غلاظ (Ghilaaz). It’s root is غ ل ظ, which has the underlying meaning of becoming thick or firm:

الغِلْظَةُ ضدّ الرّقّة۔۔۔ وأصله أن يستعمل في الأجسام (مفردات، امام راغب)

Ghaleez is the opposite of Ar-Riqqatu (fineness)…and it is literally used as a description of bodies (Mufradat, Imam Raghib)

It is also used in certain cases in the sense of rejecting the influence of others and remaining firm upon one’s path. Lanes Lexicon gives one meaning as being “Incompliant”.

Therefore, the meaning of the words “hard against the believers” is in the sense of not accepting their influence and propositions and remaining firm and resolute upon the teachings of Islam.

This meaning is also supported by various other verses of the Holy Qur’an, such as:

فَلَا تُطِعِ الۡمُکَذِّبِیۡنَ [] وَدُّوۡا لَوۡ تُدۡہِنُ فَیُدۡہِنُوۡنَ [] وَ لَا تُطِعۡ کُلَّ حَلَّافٍ مَّہِیۡنٍ [] ہَمَّازٍ مَّشَّآءٍۭ بِنَمِیۡمٍ [] مَّنَّاعٍ لِّلۡخَیۡرِ مُعۡتَدٍ اَثِیۡمٍ [] عُتُلٍّۭ بَعۡدَ ذٰلِکَ زَنِیۡمٍ

[68:9] So comply not with the wishes of those who reject the truth.

[68:10] They wish that thou shouldst be pliant so that they may also be pliant.

[68:11] And yield not to any mean swearer,

[68:12] Backbiter, one who goes about slandering,

[68:13] Forbidder of good, transgressor, sinful,

[68:14] Ill-mannered and, in addition to that, of doubtful birth.

As well as:

قُلۡ یٰۤاَیُّہَا الۡکٰفِرُوۡنَ [] لَاۤ اَعۡبُدُ مَا تَعۡبُدُوۡنَ [] وَ لَاۤ اَنۡتُمۡ عٰبِدُوۡنَ مَاۤ اَعۡبُدُ [] وَ لَاۤ اَنَا عَابِدٌ مَّا عَبَدۡتُّمۡ [] وَ لَاۤ اَنۡتُمۡ عٰبِدُوۡنَ مَاۤ اَعۡبُدُ [] لَکُمۡ دِیۡنُکُمۡ وَلِیَ دِیۡنِ

[109:2] Say, ‘O ye disbelievers!

[109:3] ‘I worship not that which you worship;

[109:4] ‘Nor worship you what I worship.

[109:5] ‘And I am not going to worship that which you worship;

[109:6] ‘Nor will you worship what I worship.

[109:7] ‘For you your religion, and for me my religion.’

Therefore, the mere wording of “hard against the disbelievers” in no way supports the idea that Muslims should hate non-Muslims or act unjustly towards them, even if they are their enemies. The influence that the Qur’an is telling Muslims to be wary of is that which is unholy and immoral, as the previous verses indicate.

The way to reject such influence is through turning away from it, showing dignity before displays of ignorance, engaging in dialogue and prayer.

Where the influence is of a positive nature, one that promotes goodness and righteousness, the Qur’an tells Muslims to not only accept such an influence, but to work together with each other (i.e. Muslims and non-Muslims) to promote such positive values:

وَ لَا یَجۡرِمَنَّکُمۡ شَنَاٰنُ قَوۡمٍ اَنۡ صَدُّوۡکُمۡ عَنِ الۡمَسۡجِدِ الۡحَرَامِ اَنۡ تَعۡتَدُوۡا ۘ وَ تَعَاوَنُوۡا عَلَی الۡبِرِّ وَ التَّقۡوٰی ۪ وَ لَا تَعَاوَنُوۡا عَلَی الۡاِثۡمِ وَ الۡعُدۡوَانِ ۪ وَ اتَّقُوا اللّٰہَ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ شَدِیۡدُ الۡعِقَابِ

[5:3] … And let not the enmity of a people, that they hindered you from the Sacred Mosque, incite you to transgress. And help one another in righteousness and piety; but help not one another in sin and transgression. And fear Allah; surely, Allah is severe in punishment.

Another meaning of being strict or hard against the non-believers is in the context of those who are spreading mischief in society.

Islam teaches us that society must be guided by rules, and those that would seek to be destroy the peace of society and are all out to bring about destruction and harm should not be allowed to do so. Rather, they should be dealt with strictly by the authorities so that others may be saved. In this case, Islam gives guidance on legal punishments and punitive measures that can be adopted.

There is nothing objectionable in this teaching either, as every society has laws that are enforced by the authorities, and in certain cases those laws must be enforced strictly and unyieldingly for the good of the society. In these cases, friendly and amicable relations should not be kept with mischief-makers out of cowardice before their strength and fear of doing the right thing.

Islam teaches us the philosophy of mercy and punishment:

وَ جَزٰٓؤُا سَیِّئَۃٍ سَیِّئَۃٌ مِّثۡلُہَا ۚ فَمَنۡ عَفَا وَ اَصۡلَحَ فَاَجۡرُہٗ عَلَی اللّٰہِ ؕ اِنَّہٗ لَا یُحِبُّ الظّٰلِمِیۡنَ

[42:41] “The recompense for an injury is an injury equal thereto (in degree): but if a person forgives and makes reconciliation, his reward is due from Allah: for (Allah) loves not those who do wrong.”

That is, a crime should be punished according to its seriousness, but there is also the possibility of forgiveness if it brings about a positive change in the individual. Islam teaches that neither punishment nor forgiveness is the purpose – rather the authorities should choose whichever method is most likely to bring about a reformation in the individual and bring about peace and justice in the society, which is the desired objective.

This meaning is also born out of other verses which speak of not letting one be overcome by feelings of compassion in those situations where the betterment of society rests in administering punishment:

اَلزَّانِیَۃُ وَ الزَّانِیۡ فَاجۡلِدُوۡا کُلَّ وَاحِدٍ مِّنۡہُمَا مِائَۃَ جَلۡدَۃٍ ۪ وَّ لَا تَاۡخُذۡکُمۡ بِہِمَا رَاۡفَۃٌ فِیۡ دِیۡنِ اللّٰہِ اِنۡ کُنۡتُمۡ تُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ بِاللّٰہِ وَ الۡیَوۡمِ الۡاٰخِرِ ۚ وَ لۡیَشۡہَدۡ عَذَابَہُمَا طَآئِفَۃٌ مِّنَ الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ

[24:3] The adulteress and the adulterer (or the fornicatress and the fornicator) — flog each one of them with a hundred stripes. And let not pity for the twain take hold of you in executing the judgment of Allah, if you believe in Allah and the Last Day. And let a party of the believers witness their punishment.

In this particular context, the verse tells Muslims that not even compassion towards a fellow Muslim who has committed the crime of public fornication or adultery should impede them from administering a just punishment. In regard to non-Muslims, the same principle applies: compassion towards them should not be an obstacle in the application of just punishments.

In short, if it is decided that it is better to give a punishment, then feelings of compassion should not come in the way of administering the punishment. This is a possible meaning of being “hard or strict” against the disbelievers.

Meaning of verses which speak about not taking disbelievers as friends, especially Jews and Christians in (3:119), (5:52, 58), (58:15,23) and (60:2,14)

The aforementioned verses of (3:119), (5:52,58), (58:15,23) and (60:2,14) speak about not “taking as (close) friends” those disbelievers who are not respectful of different religious beliefs and continue to make a jest of Islam, as well as those who are in a state of war with the Muslims. That is to say, they should not be close confidants of the Muslims, given the great damage that could result from this intimacy to the Muslim community, both worldly and spiritually.

Those non-Muslims who are not in a state of war with the Muslims nor do they unjustly attack Islam should be treated with the utmost kindness and compassion, and can be taken as friends, as many verses previously mentioned attest to.

On a personal level, the Qur’an only cautions that believers should be wary of adopting any customs, practices or ideas from them that run counter to their Islamic values, and specifically preferring them as friends over believers because of an inferiority complex:

لَا یَتَّخِذِ الۡمُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ الۡکٰفِرِیۡنَ اَوۡلِیَآءَ مِنۡ دُوۡنِ الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ ۚ وَ مَنۡ یَّفۡعَلۡ ذٰلِکَ فَلَیۡسَ مِنَ اللّٰہِ فِیۡ شَیۡءٍ اِلَّاۤ اَنۡ تَتَّقُوۡا مِنۡہُمۡ تُقٰٮۃً ؕ وَ یُحَذِّرُکُمُ اللّٰہُ نَفۡسَہٗ ؕ وَ اِلَی اللّٰہِ الۡمَصِیۡرُ

[3:29] Let not the believers take disbelievers for friends in preference to believers — and whoever does that has no connection with Allah — except that you cautiously guard against them. And Allah cautions you against His punishment; and to Allah is the returning.

As previously mentioned, the Qur’an speaks of followers of other religions. Where it speaks at length about their failings in theological and practical aspects, it also acknowledges the good that is found in those who are sincere adherents, and never advocates for hate or violence against them.

Those that attack innocent Muslims solely based on their faith should be repelled, and those that verbally attack Islam should be responded to with solid arguments. Nevertheless, in neither of these two cases does the Qur’an permit Muslims to harbor hatred in their hearts.

Islamic Guidelines on Making Friends

The Holy Qur’an tells us that Muslims should keep company and make friends with the righteous:

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللّٰہَ وَ کُوۡنُوۡا مَعَ الصّٰدِقِیۡنَ

[9:119] O ye who believe! fear Allah and be with the truthful.

It tells them to avoid keeping company with those who are not righteous and their actions exceed all bounds of decency, as doing so will eventually make them neglectful of Allah and their duties as Muslims:

وَ اصۡبِرۡ نَفۡسَکَ مَعَ الَّذِیۡنَ یَدۡعُوۡنَ رَبَّہُمۡ بِالۡغَدٰوۃِ وَ الۡعَشِیِّ یُرِیۡدُوۡنَ وَجۡہَہٗ وَ لَا تَعۡدُ عَیۡنٰکَ عَنۡہُمۡ ۚ تُرِیۡدُ زِیۡنَۃَ الۡحَیٰوۃِ الدُّنۡیَا ۚ وَ لَا تُطِعۡ مَنۡ اَغۡفَلۡنَا قَلۡبَہٗ عَنۡ ذِکۡرِنَا وَ اتَّبَعَ ہَوٰٮہُ وَ کَانَ اَمۡرُہٗ فُرُطًا

[18:29] And keep thyself attached to those who call on their Lord, morning and evening, seeking His pleasure; and let not thy eyes pass beyond them, seeking the adornment of the life of the world; and obey not him whose heart We have made heedless of Our remembrance and who follows his evil inclinations, and his case exceeds all bounds.

وَ یَوۡمَ یَعَضُّ الظَّالِمُ عَلٰی یَدَیۡہِ یَقُوۡلُ یٰلَیۡتَنِی اتَّخَذۡتُ مَعَ الرَّسُوۡلِ سَبِیۡلًا [] یٰوَیۡلَتٰی لَیۡتَنِیۡ لَمۡ اَتَّخِذۡ فُلَانًا خَلِیۡلًا [] لَقَدۡ اَضَلَّنِیۡ عَنِ الذِّکۡرِ بَعۡدَ اِذۡ جَآءَنِیۡ ؕ وَ کَانَ الشَّیۡطٰنُ لِلۡاِنۡسَانِ خَذُوۡلًا

[25:28] Remember the day when the wrongdoer will bite his hands; he will say, ‘O, would that I had taken the same way with the Messenger!

[25:29] ‘Ah, woe is me! Would that I had never taken such a one for a friend!

[25:30] ‘He led me astray from the Reminder after it had come to me.’ And Satan is man’s great deserter.

The prophet Muhammad(sa) stated:

۔۔۔مَثَلُ الْجَلِيسِ الصَّالِحِ كَمَثَلِ صَاحِبِ الْمِسْكِ إِنْ لَمْ يُصِبْكَ مِنْهُ شَىْءٌ أَصَابَكَ مِنْ رِيحِهِ وَمَثَلُ جَلِيسِ السُّوءِ كَمَثَلِ صَاحِبِ الْكِيرِ إِنْ لَمْ يُصِبْكَ مِنْ سَوَادِهِ أَصَابَكَ مِنْ دُخَانِهِ۔۔۔

(سنن ابی داود، كتاب الأدب، باب مَنْ يُؤْمَرُ أَنْ يُجَالَسَ، حیدث ۴۸۲۹)

…A good companion is like a man who has musk; if nothing of it goes to you, its fragrance will (certainly) go to you; and a bad companion is like a man who has bellows; if its (black) soot does not go to you, its smoke will (certainly) go to you.  (Sunan Abu Daud, the Book of Manners, Chapter: With whom we are ordered to accompany, Hadith # 4829)

In another saying he gives similar advice:

لرَّجُلُ عَلَى دِينِ خَلِيلِهِ فَلْيَنْظُرْ أَحَدُكُمْ مَنْ يُخَالِلُ

(سنن ابی داود، كتاب الأدب، باب مَنْ يُؤْمَرُ أَنْ يُجَالَسَ، حیدث ۴۸۳۳)

A man follows the religion/path of his friend; so each one should consider whom he makes his friend. (Sunan Abu Daud, the Book of Manners, Chapter: With whom we are ordered to accompany, Hadith # 4833)

Therefore, Muslims should be cautious of who they accept as their friends. Nevertheless, it is permitted to have any person as friend, Jews and Christians included, who are not hostile and are respectful and have good moral values and ethics.

Meaning of the Hadith “Love for Allah and Hate for Allah”.

Ahadith such as these in no way justify hating anyone. Loving for the sake of Allah means that a person loves all those things that Allah loves, and hating for the sake of Allah means that a person hates all those things that Allah hates.

As was shown previously, Allah does not hate individuals, rather He hates evil actions. Therefore, hating for the sake of Allah would be in the same manner that Allah hates, which means that a person can only hate evil actions and beliefs, and not human beings. Human beings are free-willed individuals, who are not characterized absolutely by their beliefs and actions, rather they always have the possibility of change until the moment of their death.

This is a meaning that has also been mentioned by classical scholars of Hadith:

وقال عظيمابادي وَأَبْغَضَ لِلَّهِ لَا لِإِيذَاءِ مَنْ أَبْغَضَهُ لَهُ بَلْ لِكُفْرِهِ وَعِصْيَانِهِ

(عون المعبود شرح سنن أبي داود، ومعه حاشية ابن القيم: تهذيب سنن أبي داود وإيضاح علله ومشكلاته،  کتاب السنة، بَاب الدَّلِيلِ عَلَى زِيَادَةِ الْإِيمَانِ وَنُقْصَانِهِ)

 “That he hates for the sake of Allah does not mean he harms the one he hates. Rather, the hatred is for his unbelief and disobedience.” (Aun al Mabood Sharah Sunan Abi Daud Ma’a Hashia Ibn-e-Qayyim, the Book of Sunnah, Chapter on the Proof of the Increase and Decrease in Faith)

History of the Motto, “Love for All, Hatred for None”

The Promised Messiah(as) used this phrase first. Later the third Khalifa, Hazrat Mirza Nasir Ahmad(rh) took it up as a motto .While laying the foundation stone for a mosque in Pedroabad, Spain on October 9, 1980, he stated:

“Islam teaches us to live with mutual love and affection and with humility. It teaches us no distinction between a Muslim or a non-Muslim. My message to everyone is that you must have ‘Love for all, Hatred for none!’

This drew huge applause from the people of Pedroabad. It was in this background that the spontaneous words uttered by Hazrat Khalifatul Masih III(rh) became the unique slogan of the Ahmadiyya Muslim community. It was repeated again at a press conference and at the Cafe Royale in Piccadilly in London at another press conference.” (Love for All, Hatred for None – Historical Trip to Spain. March 1, 2008. The Review of Religions)

Nevertheless, this motto is to be understood within the context of the teachings of the Holy Qur’an, Ahadith and explanations furnished by the Promised Messiah(as). Twisting its meanings to try and show that Ahmadis do not follow Islam is unjust and deceitful.

Moreover, it cannot be stated that the motto is an innovation in Islam. The true motto of the Jama’at has only ever been the Kalima Shahadah, which is “There is none worthy of worship except Allah, and Muhammad(sa) is the messenger of Allah”. All other mottos, including “Love for all Hatred for None”, are branches of this overarching motto and are employed according to the need of the time and to emphasize certain aspects of Islam. This always been the consistent view of the Jama’at from the time of the second Khalifa, Hazrat Musleh Maud(ra), when the idea of the Jama’at having a motto was first presented.

Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba), the Fifth Khalifa of the Promised Messiah(as), stated:

“We should not feel smug by merely raising slogans that the world appreciates and through which we are praised in various places. We should be mindful that this slogan is just one source to attain the broader objective for which man was created. Our humanitarian works, our promotion and practice of love and our rejection of hatred and our hatred for hatred itself is to attain God’s love and to establish Unity of God…

This slogan is in fact a means to an end, the end being the objective of our life. It is a stepping stone towards the objective for which the advent of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) took place and then in his subservience the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) was sent by God in the current age to attain the objective. And that objective is to instil true insight into Unity of God and to try and practice all of God’s commandments…

Our motto is the entire Holy Qur’an, however, if another motto is required, Hazrat Musleh Maud (may Allah be pleased with him) said God has appointed it through the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and it is:

لا الہ الا اللہ محمد رسول اللہ

(There is none worthy of worship except Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger). This is the essence of the entire Holy Qur’an and the fact is that all teachings and all higher objectives as accessed with Unity of God…

It should be remembered that all Quranic commandments are excellent and beneficial in their own right but لا الہ الا اللہ is dominant over them all. This is the real motto which we need to keep in sight at all times and we need to reflect over the need for Unity of God and its establishment…

Thus, our motto which is appointed by God is لا الہ الا اللہ (There is none worthy of worship except Allah) the rest are all details which can be useful as advice…”

(Friday Sermon, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, May 9, 2014)

Explanation of the Promised Messiah(as) – True Love vs. Compassion for Disbelievers

The objection that Islam only teaches love for Muslims and hate for non-Muslims was answered by the Promised Messiah(as) himself.

He emphasized that there was a difference between complete love which penetrates the heart and makes one take on the characteristics of another, and compassion, which means to have sympathy towards and show kindness to another. The former is reserved for Allah and the righteous, and the latter for non-believers. He writes:

چوتھا اعتراض یہ ہے کہ اسلامی تعلیم میں غیر مذہب والوں سے محبت کرنا کسی جگہ حکم نہیں آیا۔ بلکہ حکم ہے کہ بجز مسلمان کے کسی سے محبت نہ کرو۔ ۔۔

ابؔ جاننا چاہئے کہ محبت کوئی تصنع اور تکلف کا کام نہیں بلکہ انسانی قُویٰ میں سے یہ بھی ایک قوت ہے اور اس کی حقیقت یہ ہے کہ دل کا ایک چیز کو پسند کر کے اس  کی طرف کھنچے جانا اور جیسا کہ ہریک چیز کے اصل خواص اس کے کمال کے وقت بدیہی طور پر محسوس ہوتے ہیں یہی محبت کا حال ہے کہ اس کے جوہر بھی اس وقت کھلے کھلے ظاہر ہوتے  ہیں کہ جب اتم اور اکمل درجہ پر پہنچ جائے اللہ تعالیٰ فرماتا ہے 3۱؂ ۔ یعنی انہوں نے گو سالہ سے ایسی محبت کی کہ گویا ان کو گو سالہ شربت کی طرح پلا دیا گیا۔ درحقیقت جو شخص کسی سے  کامل محبت کرتا ہے تو گویا اسے پی لیتا ہے یا کھا لیتا ہے اور اس کے اخلاق اور اس کے چال چلن کے ساتھ رنگین ہو جاتا ہے اور جس قدر زیادہ محبت ہوتی ہے اسی قدر انسان بالطبع اپنے محبوب کی  صفات کی طرف کھینچا جاتا ہے یہاں تک کہ اسی کا روپ ہو جاتا ہے جس سے وہ محبت کرتا ہے۔ یہی بھید ہے کہ جو شخص خدا سے محبت کرتا ہے وہ ظلی طور پر بقدر اپنی استعداد کے اس نور کو  حاصل کر لیتا ہے جو خدا تعالیٰ کی ذات میں ہے۔ اور شیطان سے محبت کرنے والے وہ تاریکی حاصل کر لیتے ہیں جو شیطان میں ہے پس جبکہ محبت کی حقیقت یہ ہے تو پھر کیونکر ایک سچی کتاب  جو منجانب اللہ ہے اجازت دے سکتی ہے کہ تم شیطان سے وہ محبت کرو جو خدا سےکرنی چاہئے اور شیطان کے جانشینوں سے وہ پیار کرو جو رحمٰن کے جانشینوں سے کرنا چاہئے۔۔۔

محبت کی حقیقت بالالتزام اس بات کو چاہتی ہے کہ انسان سچے دل  سے اپنے محبوب کے تمام شمائل اور اخلاق اور عبادات پسند کرے اور ان میں فنا ہونے کے لئے بدل و جان ساعی ہو تا اپنے محبوب میں ہوکر وہ زندگی پاوے جو محبوب کو حاصل ہے سچی محبت  کرنے والا اپنے محبوب میں فنا ہو جاتا ہے۔ اپنے محبوب کے گریبان سے ظاہر ہوتا ہے اور ایسی تصویر اس کی اپنے اندر کھینچتا ہے کہ گویا اسے پی جاتا ہے اور کہا جاتا ہے کہ وہ اس میں ہوکر اور  اس کے رنگ میں رنگین ہوکر اور اس کے ساتھ ہوکر لوگوں پر ظاہر کر دیتا ہے کہ وہ درحقیقت اس کی محبت میں کھویا گیا ہے۔ محبّتایک عربی لفظ ہے اور اصل معنی اس کے پُر ہوجانا ہے چنانچہ  عرب میں یہ مثل مشہور ہے کہ تَحَبَّبَ الْحِمَارُ یعنی جب عربوں کو یہ کہنا منظور ہو جاتا ہے کہ گدھے کا پیٹ پانی سے بھر گیا تو کہتے ہیں کہ تَحَبَّبَ الْحِمَارُ اور جب یہ کہنا منظور ہوتا ہے کہ اونٹ نے اتنا پانی پیا کہ وہ پانی سے پُر ہوگیا۔ تو کہتے ہیں شربت الابل حتّٰی  تحببت اور حَبّ جو دانہ کو کہتے ہیں۔ وہ بھی اسی سے نکلا ہے۔ جس سے یہ مطلب ہے کہ وہ پہلے دانہ کی تمام کیفیت سے بھر گیا اور اسی بناء پر اِحْبَاب سونے کو بھی کہتے ہیں۔ کیونکہ جو دوسرے  سے بھر جائے گا وہ اپنے وجود کو کھودے گا گویا سو جائے گا اور اپنے وجود کی کچھ حِسّ اس کو باقی نہیں رہے گی۔۔۔

سو تعلیم قرآنی ہمیں ؔ یہی سبق دیتی ہے کہ نیکوں اور ابرار اخیار سے محبت کرو اور فاسقوں اور کافروں پر شفقت کرو۔ اللہ تعالیٰ فرماتا ہے عَزِیۡزٌ عَلَیۡہِ مَا عَنِتُّمۡ حَرِیۡصٌ عَلَیۡکُمۡ بِالۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ رَءُوۡفٌ رَّحِیۡمٌ  یعنی اے کافرو یہ نبی ایسا مشفق ہے جو تمہارے رنج کو دیکھ نہیں سکتا اور نہایت درجہ خواہشمند ہے کہ تم ان بلاؤں سے نجات پا جاؤ پھر فرماتا ہے ہےلَعَلَّکَ بَاخِعٌ نَّفۡسَکَ اَلَّا یَکُوۡنُوۡا مُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ ؂  یعنے کیا تو اس غم سے ہلاک ہو جائے گا۔ کہ یہ لوگ  کیوں ایمان نہیں لاتے۔ مطلب یہ ہے کہ تیری شفقت اس حد تک پہنچ گئی ہے کہ تو ان کے غم میں ہلاک ہونے کے قریب ہے اور پھر ایک مقام میں فرماتا تَوَاصَوۡا بِالصَّبۡرِ وَ تَوَاصَوۡا بِالۡمَرۡحَمَۃِ  یعنی مومن وہی ہیں جو ایک دوسرے کو صبر اور مرحمت کی نصیحت کرتے ہیں یعنی یہ کہتے ہیں کہ شدائد پر صبر کرو اور خدا کے بندوں پر شفقت کرو اس جگہ بھی مرحمت سے مراد شفقت ہے کیونکہ مرحمت کا لفظ زبان عرب میں شفقت کے معنوں پر مستعمل ہے  پس قرآنی تعلیم کا اصل مطلب یہ ہے کہ محبت جس کی حقیقت محبوب کے رنگ سے رنگین ہو جانا ہے بجز خدا تعالیٰ اور صلحاء کے اور کسی سے جائز نہیں بلکہ سخت حرام ہے جیسا کہ فرماتا ہےوَ الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡۤا اَشَدُّ حُبًّا لِّلّٰہِ   اورفرماتا ہےیٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَّخِذُوا الۡیَہُوۡدَ وَ النَّصٰرٰۤی اَوۡلِیَآءَاور پھر دوسرے مقام میں فرماتا ہےیٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَّخِذُوۡا بِطَانَۃً مِّنۡ دُوۡنِکُمۡ یعنی یہود اور نصاریٰ سے محبت مت کرو اور ہر ایک شخص جو صالح نہیں اس سے محبت مت کرو۔

ان آیتوں کو پڑھ کر نادان عیسائی دھوکا کھاتے ہیں کہ مسلمانوں کو حکم ہے کہ عیسائی وغیرہ بے دین فرقوں سے محبت نہ کریں لیکن نہیں سوچتے کہ ہریک لفظ اپنے محل پر استعمال ہوتا ہے جس چیز کا نام محبت ہے وہ فاسقوں اور کافروں سے اسی صورت میں بجا لانا متصور ہے کہ جب ان  کے کفر اور فسق سے کچھ حصہ لے لیوے نہایت سخت جاہل وہ شخص ہوگا جس نے یہ تعلیم دی کہ اپنے دین کے دشمنوں سے پیار کرو ہم بارہا لکھ چکے ہیں کہ پیار اور محبت اسی کا نام ہے کہ اس  شخص کے قول اور فعل اور عادت اور خلق اور مذہب کو رضا کے رنگ میں دیکھیں۔ اور اس پر خوش ہوں اور اس کا اثر اپنے دل پر ڈال لیں اور ایسا ہونا مومن سے کافر کی نسبت ہرگز ممکن نہیں۔ ہاں مومن کافر پر شفقت کرے گا اور تمام دقائق ہمدردی بجا لائے گا اور اس کی جسمانی اور روحانی بیماریوں کا غمگسار ہوگا جیسا کہ اللہ تعالیٰ بار بار فرماتا ہے کہ بغیر لحاظ مذہب ملت کے تم لوگوں  سے ہمدردی کرو بھوکوں کو کھلاؤ غلاموں کو آزاد کرو قرض داروں کے قرض دو اور زیر باروں کے بار اٹھاؤ اور بنی نوع سے سچی ہمدردی کا حق ادا کرو۔اورؔ فرماتا ہےاِنَّ اللّٰہَ یَاۡمُرُ بِالۡعَدۡلِ وَ الۡاِحۡسَانِ وَ اِیۡتَآیِٔ ذِی الۡقُرۡبٰی یعنی خدا تعالیٰ تمہیں حکم دیتا ہے کہ عدل کرو اور عدل سے بڑھ کر یہ کہ احسان کرو۔ جیسے بچہ سے اس کی والدہ یا کوئی اور شخص محض قرابت کے جوش سے کسی کی ہمدردی کرتا ہے اور پھر فرماتا ہےلَا یَنۡہٰٮکُمُ اللّٰہُ عَنِ الَّذِیۡنَ لَمۡ یُقَاتِلُوۡکُمۡ فِی الدِّیۡنِ وَ لَمۡ یُخۡرِجُوۡکُمۡ مِّنۡ دِیَارِکُمۡ اَنۡ تَبَرُّوۡہُمۡ وَ تُقۡسِطُوۡۤا اِلَیۡہِمۡ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ یُحِبُّ الۡمُقۡسِطِیۡنَ یعنی نصاریٰ وغیرہ سے جو خدا نے محبت کرنے سے ممانعت فرمائی تو اس سے یہ نہ سمجھو کہ وہ نیکی اور احسان اور ہمدردی کرنے سے تمہیں منع کرتا ہے نہیں بلکہ جن لوگوں نے تمہارے قتل کرنے کے لئے لڑائیاں نہیں کیں۔ اور تمہیں تمہارے وطنوں سے نہیں نکالا وہ اگرچہ عیسائی ہوں یا یہودی ہوں بے شک ان پر احسان کرو ان سے ہمدردی کرو انصاف کرو کہ خدا ایسے لوگوں سے پیار کرتا ہے اور پھر فرماتا ہے: اِنَّمَا یَنۡہٰٮکُمُ اللّٰہُ عَنِ الَّذِیۡنَ قٰتَلُوۡکُمۡ فِی الدِّیۡنِ وَ اَخۡرَجُوۡکُمۡ مِّنۡ دِیَارِکُمۡ وَ ظٰہَرُوۡا عَلٰۤی اِخۡرَاجِکُمۡ اَنۡ تَوَلَّوۡہُمۡ ۚ وَ مَنۡ یَّتَوَلَّہُمۡ فَاُولٰٓئِکَ ہُمُ الظّٰلِمُوۡنَ یعنی خدا نے جو تمہیں ہمدردی اور دوستی سے منع کیا ہے تو صرف ان لوگوں کی نسبت جنہوں نے دینی لڑائیاں تم سے کیں اور تمہیں تمہارے وطنوں سے نکالا اور بس نہ کیا۔ جب تک باہم مل کر تمہیں نکال نہ دیا۔ سو ان کی دوستی حرام ہے۔ کیونکہ یہ دین کو مٹانا چاہتے ہیں۔ اس جگہ یاد رکھنے کے لائق ایک نکتہ ہے اور وہ یہ ہے کہ تَوَلِّیْ *عربی زبان میں دوستی کو کہتے ہیں جس کا دوسرا نام مودت ہے اور اصل حقیقت دوستی اور مودت کی خیر خواہی اور ہمدردی ہے۔ سو مومن نصاریٰ اور یہود اور ہنود سے دوستی اور ہمدردی اور خیر خواہی کرسکتا ہے۔ احسان کرسکتا ہے مگر ان سے محبت نہیں کرسکتا یہ ایک باریک فرق ہے اس کو خوب یاد رکھو۔

* نوٹ: تولی کی تا اس بات پر دلالت کرتی ہے کہ تولی میں ایک تکلف ہے جو مغائرت پر دلالت کرتا ہے مگر محبت میں ایک ذرّہ مغائرت باقی نہیں رہتی۔ منہ

روحانی خزائن، جلد ۹، نور القرآن، صفحہ ۴۲۹ تا ۴۳۶

“The fourth objection is that Islamic teaching never enjoins love for the followers of other religions; it only enjoins love for Muslims…

Remember, love is not pretence or affectation. It is one of the human faculties. The essence of love is to have sincerity for something and to be drawn irresistibly towards it. Just as the real characteristics of an object are only truly perceived when it reaches perfection, the same is the case with love, in that its qualities are openly revealed when it is extreme and reaches perfection. Referring to this, Allah the Almighty says:

وَأُشْرِبُوا فِی قُلُوبِہِمُ الْعِجْلَ

[2:94] …and their hearts were permeated with the love of the calf…

That is: ‘They loved the calf as if their hearts were permeated with it.’

In point of fact, when a person falls in love with someone and his love is total, it becomes his food and his drink, as it were. Indeed he takes on the complexion of the character and lifestyle of the beloved. The greater the love, the more a person is involuntarily drawn towards the qualities of the loved one, so much so, that he becomes his very reflection. That is why, consistent with his capacity, a person who loves God acquires, metaphorically speaking, God’s light. Similarly, those who love Satan acquire the darkness which belongs to Satan. This being the reality of love, how can a true Scripture, which is from God, ever permit that you should love Satan as you love God, or love the successors of Satan the way you ought to love the successors of the Gracious One…

The true lover loses himself in the beloved. He becomes the manifestation of the beloved and reflects in himself the image of the beloved to the extent that it becomes part and parcel of his person. After acquiring his complexion and by standing with him, he demonstrates to the people that for a fact he is totally lost in love for his beloved.

Muhabbat [love] is an Arabic word which literally means ‘to be filled’. The well-known Arabic idiom

تَحَبَّبَ الْحِمَارُ

(tahabbabal himaaru)

is used when an Arab wants to say that a donkey’s belly is full of water. When he wants to say that the camel drank water to its full capacity, he says:

شَرِبَتِ الْاِبِلُ حَتّٰی تَحَبَّبَت

(sharibatil ibilu hatta tahabbabat)

[meaning, the camel drank until it became filled (tahabbabat)]. Hub, meaning grain, is also derived from the same root, meaning that it is full of the qualities of the grain. Similarly, Ihbab also means to sleep, for he who is filled with something else loses himself as if he had gone to sleep and he had been deprived of all consciousness of his own self…

The Holy Qur’an teaches us to love the virtuous, the pious and righteous, and also to have compassion for the wicked and the disbelievers. Almighty Allah says:

عَزِیۡزٌ عَلَیۡہِ مَا عَنِتُّمۡ حَرِیۡصٌ عَلَیۡکُمۡ بِالۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ رَءُوۡفٌ رَّحِیۡمٌ

 [9:128] …grievous to him is that you should fall into trouble; he is ardently desirous of your welfare; and to the believers he is compassionate, merciful.

That is: ‘O disbelievers, this Prophet is so compassionate that he cannot stand the sight of your suffering and is highly solicitous for your safety from these hardships.’ It then states:

لَعَلَّکَ بَاخِعٌ نَّفۡسَکَ اَلَّا یَکُوۡنُوۡا مُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ

[26:4] Haply thou wilt grieve thyself to death because they believe not.

That is: ‘Will you die worrying why they do not believe?’ This means that, your compassion has reached the limit where your anguish for them has brought you close to death.

تَوَاصَوۡا بِالصَّبۡرِ وَ تَوَاصَوۡا بِالۡمَرۡحَمَۃِ

[90:18] …exhort one another to perseverance and exhort one another to mercy.

That is: ‘The faithful are those who counsel patience and compassion to one another,’ i.e., they advise patience in adversity and compassion towards God’s creatures. Here too Marhamah means compassion, for this is what the word Marhamah implies in Arabic.

In short, the true meaning of the Qur’anic teaching is that love, which in reality means to reflect in one’s person the qualities of the beloved, is not permissible except for God Almighty and for the righteous ones. Indeed it strictly forbidden for all others. For instance, the Holy

Qur’an says:

وَ الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡۤا اَشَدُّ حُبًّا لِّلّٰہِ

[2:166] But those who believe are stronger in their love for Allah

It also says:

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَّخِذُوا الۡیَہُوۡدَ وَ النَّصٰرٰۤی اَوۡلِیَآءَ

[5:52] O ye who believe! take not the Jews and the Christians for friends…

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَّخِذُوۡا بِطَانَۃً مِّنۡ دُوۡنِکُمۡ

[3:119] O ye who believe! take not others than your own people as intimate friends…

That is to say, do not love the Jews and Christians, nor those who are not righteous.

Reading these verses, the uninformed Christians are misled. They think that Muslims are enjoined not to love Christians and other non-believers, but they do not realize that every word is used with reference to the context. What constitutes love can be entertained for evildoers and the disbelievers only when one partakes of their disbelief and impiety. Ignorant indeed would be the person who enjoined love for the enemies of his faith. We have pointed out several times that love means to look with pleasure on the words, actions, habits, morals, and faith of the beloved, to be pleased with them, and to accept his influence. But this is not possible on the part of a believer with regard to a disbeliever.

A believer will, however, have compassion for the disbeliever and will have full sympathy for him and will seek to help him in his physical and spiritual ailments. Allah the Almighty has repeatedly admonished that we should have sympathy for people regardless of their religion, should feed the hungry, procure freedom for slaves, pay off the debts of those burdened with them, and have true sympathy for the whole of mankind. He says:

اِنَّ اللّٰہَ یَاۡمُرُ بِالۡعَدۡلِ وَ الۡاِحۡسَانِ وَ اِیۡتَآیِٔ ذِی الۡقُرۡبٰی

[16:91] Verily, Allah enjoins justice, and the doing of good to others; and giving like kindred;

This means that: ‘God commands you to be just or, even more than just, to be benevolent like a mother to her child, or like a person who is kind to another because of the feelings of kinship.’

لَا یَنۡہٰٮکُمُ اللّٰہُ عَنِ الَّذِیۡنَ لَمۡ یُقَاتِلُوۡکُمۡ فِی الدِّیۡنِ وَ لَمۡ یُخۡرِجُوۡکُمۡ مِّنۡ دِیَارِکُمۡ اَنۡ تَبَرُّوۡہُمۡ وَ تُقۡسِطُوۡۤا اِلَیۡہِمۡ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ یُحِبُّ الۡمُقۡسِطِیۡنَ

[60:9] Allah forbids you not, respecting those who have not fought against you on account of your religion, and who have not driven you forth from your homes, that you be kind to them and act equitably towards them; surely Allah loves those who are equitable.

That is: ‘The fact that Allah forbids you from loving the Christians and others should not be taken to mean that He forbids you from doing good or showing compassion and sympathy. No. Be compassionate, sympathetic and just to those who have not fought to kill you, nor have they driven you out of your homes, whether they are Jews or Christians, for Allah loves the people who do so.’

اِنَّمَا یَنۡہٰٮکُمُ اللّٰہُ عَنِ الَّذِیۡنَ قٰتَلُوۡکُمۡ فِی الدِّیۡنِ وَ اَخۡرَجُوۡکُمۡ مِّنۡ دِیَارِکُمۡ وَ ظٰہَرُوۡا عَلٰۤی اِخۡرَاجِکُمۡ اَنۡ تَوَلَّوۡہُمۡ ۚ وَ مَنۡ یَّتَوَلَّہُمۡ فَاُولٰٓئِکَ ہُمُ الظّٰلِمُوۡنَ

[60:10] Allah only forbids you, respecting those who have fought against you on account of your religion, and have driven you out of your homes, and have helped others in driving you out, that you make friends of them, and whosoever makes friends of them — it is these that are the transgressors.

That is: ‘Allah forbids you from being friendly and intimate with only those who have waged religious wars against you and have driven you out of your homes, and have aided others in driving you out of your homes. Friendship with them is forbidden, because they are bent upon destroying your faith.’

Here there is a point that is worth remembering and that is that تولّی (tawalli)* in Arabic means friendship, whose synonym is مودت (mawaddat) and the reality behind friendship and mawaddat  is well-wishing and compassion. So a believer can, therefore, have friendship, sympathy and goodwill for Christians, Jews, and Hindus and can exercise benevolence towards them, but cannot love them. This is a fine distinction, which should always be kept in mind.”

* the ت (ta) in tawalli (friendship) points to the fact that there is an inhibition in tawalli that indicates estrangement, but in muhabbat (complete love) no such estrangement remains [this is in accordance with the rules of Arabic grammar].

(Ruhani Khazain, vol. 9, Nur-ul-Qur’an, pgs. 429-436. Eng. Trans. Essence of Islam vol. 3, pgs. 36-42)