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Page url: http://www.soundvision.com/Info/christmas/ctreat.asp

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abooismail, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia - wrote on 12/26/2009 12:20:05 AM
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Comment:Relations with non-Muslims is thoroughly explained in Islam via the rights that Allah has set forth for human beings and other living things. The Messenger of Allah said; "Show mercy to those on earth so the One in Heaven will show mercy on you". A bit of study will teach the Muslim how merciful Islam is to all living things. The Messenger of Allah said; "if your neighbor is hungry add water to the soup". He did not specify the belief of the neighbor. Understanding Islam will teach the Muslim how to treat all human beings. Yet, when we begin to 'skate on thin ice' as some Muslims have begun by going deep into "interfaith" activities that often place the Muslim in situations that are questionable Islamically. The Messenger of Allah was the best of all human beings and his treatment of disbelievers is still our guiding principle in relations with non-Muslims and spreading the message of Truth, yet he never, ever, came close to seemingly accept any practices akin to kufr or otherwise. We as Muslims must hate what Allah hates and dissaproves of and love what Allah loves and approves of. This is Wala wa Bara, one of the essential elements of the our belief. There is absolutely no respect for acts related to disbelief. That said, that does not mean being rude or disrespectful. On the contrary, practicing Islam from authentic sources with wisdom, knowledge and "fair preaching" is closer to Islam than what we see today in many instances of "prayer vigils" and the like. It does not matter that x-mas or any other holiday is important to non-Muslims. What is important is treating all human beings with the respect that Allah has granted them in this life, without making them equal in any way, shape or form in our beliefs. The peace we seek is through the submission to Allah and obedience to Him and His Messenger. If we follow authentic sources of knowledge and not do as the disbelievers do by cutting and pasting their religion then we will, Insha Allah be successful in giving the Message to to them, which is part of the mission of being a Muslim, not seeing cooperation to the extent that some people believe we are "cousins" , believing in the same God, so, why become a Muslim.

Zainab Oyebamiji, St. Louis - wrote on 12/25/2009 5:52:41 PM
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Comment:Great article to discuss at this time of the year, thanks to all that have contributed. Yes, respect does not mean compromise to emulate lessons from the life of great prophets, these creatures respect and do no criticise, they tried to win souls with everything they have including good characters and conduct. It's necessary to be kind and respectful and at the same truthful and faithful. Believer of Jesus christ (AS)should emulate from his life and teaching, so also believer of Prophet Muhammed (SAW) should act according to his teachings. Then there would be no time for all these critiscim about christmas which a lot of them are now money making strategies. Allow our children to know who is this jesus christ be muslim or christian in a non dogmatic manner. It is very important to accomodate, respect and tolerate ourselves especially where we are today without compromising our faith. Every religion preaches "do unto others what you want for yourselves" The two noble prophets in question were too busy helping and saving others than what some believers are doing today. Thank you

Saifullah, Manila, Philippines - wrote on 12/24/2009 11:28:58 PM
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Comment:I'm glad to see this article and see it make its way around the world. In this day and age there is so much trying to separate us from our Christian and Jewish brothers and sisters. I call them brothers and sisters because they, like us, have the core of their faith focused on the One God. Yes, Christmas is FULL of pagan tradition. Yes, Santa Clause is a fictional character (actually a combination of about a dozen fictional characters and at least 4 real historical figures). Yes, Jesus (AS) was actually born in late April rather than in December. So what? Christians don't use the pagan concepts to worship Pagan dieties. The focal point is the Virgin Birth of Jesus (AS) which we as Muslims also believe in. The secondary focal point is a commemmoration of family and tradition; although for non-Christians in the USA this is the primary focus. It is hard for those outside the USA to comprehend the phenomenon that occurs during the holiday season and how, as Americans, the celebration of Christmas is very different from elsewhere in the world. In the Philippines, for example, where I've been living for a few years, the Christmas celebration is still very pagan and downright creepy at times. It wierds me out in a lot of ways. However, I know that when i return to the USA and go to my parent's house (who are also Muslims) that we'll have our own commemmoration of Christmas along with our Christian family members. We decorate the same tree every year with ornaments which bear Qur'an verses referring to Jesus (AS) and we read the story of Mary (RA) as outlined in the Qur'an. This is one time a year when our Christian friends and family members are willing to hear about Islam through these channels. We don't have piles of gifts under the tree like we did back in the days when we were Christian; we give gifts of food to each other, family, friends and strangers. We don't sing carols or have a nativity scene; but we do keep everything in context. In becoming Muslim, we feel that we became better Christians as we know Jesus (AS) better than ever. Why shouldn't we take a day or two out of our year to acknowledge the truth of Jesus (AS) that we have learned? We take 3 days to recognize Abraham (AS) and almost every day to recognize Muhammad (SAWS). Why can't we take 2 days to acknowledge one of the greatest of all the Prophets? The one who will return to signal the Day or Judgment? The one who will lead us all to perfect Victory against our oppressors? Unity in faith is what will bring more Christians and Jews into the light of Islam; not ridicule and nitpicking. One more thing... I do not say "Merry Christmas" because of the implication of the word Christmas itself; however I do return the greeting with "Happy Holidays." I see no sin in returning a kind greeting with one of equal and sincere strength. I do wish the Christians a happy time during their feast just as I would hope they would wish me a happy time during my own Eids. May Allah guide and guard us all.

birdlynn, Sacramento - wrote on 12/24/2009 8:45:36 PM
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Comment:"Won’t you agree that respecting what amounts to no more than an accumulation of falsehood, inventions and consumerism mixed with a hint of diluted religion is a huge compromise in itself"? No, in respecting Christmas, the real Christmas, it is celebrating Jesus's birth, and all that the Prophet taught while here on earth. What society and the world does with that (in the material sense, by which the previous writer posted) does not change the real reason and observation of Christmas. If your view of Christmas is based upon the worldly standards of practice then that is your choice, but the true meaning of Christmas is not something to be compromised. Just as in the Muslim tradition of Ramadan, do all Muslims practice fasting and abstaining from alcohal? Since some Muslims don't practice the ways of fasting and abstaining from halal things, do we dismiss the celeveration of Eid or Ramadan? Of course not. We look at the true intent and meaning of Islam and Ramadan, not on what other people do.

Mohamed Ashour, Inverness - wrote on 12/24/2009 5:08:37 PM
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Comment:Respecting Christmas is a compromise in itself I agree that the issue is of significant importance to us, and needs to be properly addressed. Around this time of the year at work, if one is a practicing Muslim, quite often he/she is driven to make an awkward statement or act in such a manner to avoid taking part in Christmas office parties, secret Santa presents and all the rest of it. This can be tricky for many of us and in some situations nightmarish. Islam and tolerance Surely it goes without saying that being tolerant and accommodating to others and their beliefs is fundamental to our religion. It was the Muslims who “invented” religious tolerance and put it into practice in the first place, whilst medieval European Christians were notorious for their non-forgiveness and lack of forbearance especially when it comes to faith. This can be easily evidenced from history when you examine (for example) the treaty signed by Omar (RA) for the Christian residents of Jerusalem after it was opened in 638, in comparison to the brutality of Christian crusaders that followed. This Christian brutality was primarily motivated by religious hatred and intolerance. However times have changed now and we as Muslims living in the West today should respect and accommodate others for their beliefs as long as it is mutual and does not involve compromising those of ours. It is part of how we need to promote our religion, and it is perhaps included in the meaning of “the wisdom and the good advice” mentioned in the Quran. How much religion? Now back to commenting on the article. A legitimate question arises here: is the substance of Christmas of a religious nature, as brother Mujahid, the writer of the article, suggests? The answer from experience is an emphatic NO. It is probably safe to say that Christmas is as Christian as Hogmanay and New Year in real life for the majority of people today. So what does Christmas really mean to the vast majority of people here in the West today? The Christmas tree (which is a pagan symbol)? Santa (which is as fictitious as Superman and Cat woman)? Or is it the excessive shopping frantic that proceeds the festive? Where is religion in the midst of all this? And how often do you hear your non-Muslim work colleagues telling you about the position of celebrating the birth of Jesus PBUH in their plan? This is not to mention the timing of the festive, which in a utopian world would only be recognized by Catholic Christians and none else. Even when the story of Jesus according to the Bible is finally mentioned in a random children TV programme, it is often presented in a fairy tale humorous fashion. This is probably because it is often presented by people who don’t even believe it! In short, respecting people for their beliefs is fair enough. But respecting Christmas?!! Hmm, I’m not quite sure what this means. Won’t you agree that respecting what amounts to no more than an accumulation of falsehood, inventions and consumerism mixed with a hint of diluted religion is a huge compromise in itself? Hadeeth Al-Mubahala Now regarding the paragraph where brother Mujahid presents the Mubahala/the intense supplication Hadeeth of the Christian delegation of Najran. This Hadeeth, like many other Hadeeths, should only be presented in its context otherwise it will give a misleading and an unbalanced picture. Brother Mujahid writes in his article “Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, was so accommodating of Christians that ... the Prophet even allowed a delegation of 60 Byzantine Christians from Najran in Yemen to worship in his own mosque in Madinah .. they had come to discuss a number of issues with him. When time of their prayer came, they asked the Prophet's permission to perform this in the mosque”! Well, I can quote other Sahih Hadeeths to you, which if taken out of context could give you a not “so accommodating” picture. For example the Hadeeth which is in Sahih Muslim in which the prophet (SAW) is instructing Muslims not to be the first to salute with “salam” when meeting Christian people, and if met on the road, to force them to walk through the narrowest part of it. This can give a completely different picture if not carefully understood. In short, the delegation of Najran was engaged in an intense Muslim/Christian debate with the messenger (SAW), and he clearly wanted to show them tolerance as well as hospitality. This was solely done for the purpose of Da’wa, and to send Islam to reach new lands, which can be understood from reading the whole Hadeeth as well as reading the commentary of Hadeeth Commentators. My point is we shouldn’t use Hadeeth without presenting enough details of its context and circumstances for the purpose of promoting one opinion over the other. Finally I must admit that I respect the Christmas Holiday because at least I can be at home in these freezing conditions!

Abu Tabari, Ohio, USA - wrote on 12/24/2009 3:25:09 PM
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Comment:This was a great article and a needed topic to discuss amongst Muslims due to this holiday's pervasiveness in the religious, economical, and cultural world in and outside our families, and also a great way to respectfully practice dawah. Not only is it Christmas for the Christians, it also falls on a Friday, i.e., Jumuah. My Christian mother invited me to dinner, and I invited her to Jumuah. And it also happens to be the month of Muharram of the Islamic calendar, and there are great blessings in fasting the Day of Ashoora (which falls on Dec. 27th, and the day before). These are all great times of dawah in word and deeds. We, as Muslims are not to shun the way others worship regardless of there persecution. We are not to allow oppression by any means, no, but we have to show that Islam is a beautiful alternative if truth is being sought. Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, allowed Christians their worship in his masjid, but yet destroyed the idols in the Kaaba because it is Allah's house alone, which started with the foundational work of Adam to Ibrahim and Ishmaeel, peace be upon them. Jesus, peace be upon him, never said "Merry Christmas". In the Bible he would say "Peace be upon you", i.e., "As-Salaamu Alaikum". I personally wouldnt greet with "Merry Christmas" due to the historical origin of the pagan symbols, i.e., Santa Claus, Christmas Trees, Winter Solstice (Dec. 25th), Agricultural worship via Yultide Lore, Mithraic origins, and the such, but to acknowledge the Christian celebration of Allah, Whom none should be worshipped but Him, giving the world Esaa ibnu Maryam al Masih (Jesus the messiah, the son of Mary), who foretold the coming of the final prophet Muhammad ibn Abdullah, then it should be good for our relationship with our Christian family in faith, and a great time to join humanity without leaving Quran and Sunnah to compromise. Besides, my Christian mother cooks a mean halal turkey! :)) Allahu Alim.

zainib ahmad, lino lakes - wrote on 12/24/2009 2:42:01 PM
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Comment:I love the Sound Vision website and the excellent information in it, like this article. I think it is important to remember though that this is the celebration of the birth of what Christians consider to be thier god...not simply a prophet that we can just join in. As for being respectful and kind, there is no doubt about it. Muslims do need to be careful how our children in public schools are influenced by the celebrations of Christmas in thier schools, esp. at the elementary level. Other holidays should be included as well, plus the school needs to recognize and respect our holidays of EID, as an overwhelming emphasis on Christmas endorses the Christian faith and that should not be happening in a public school. For this, parents need to speak out in a polite and respectful manner, requesting that the teachers be sensitive of the fact that not every child celebrates Christmas, it is ok to have a different holiday and there should be choices in activities and songs that make our children uncomfortable and confused. Alhamdolillah our Christian brothers and sisters and kind, tolerant and accomodating and are willing to make small changes so going to school in December is not so hard on our kids.

, - wrote on 12/24/2009 1:04:27 PM
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Comment:yemi Rabiu from uk May alha subuhana wa taalah inrease the knowledge of this sheik am really happy with this write-up because I don't belive thhat islam is just about making thing hard or rude to your neighour but about respect the other as you might want them to respect you as well

Donal Jonathan, Karachi, Pakistan - wrote on 12/8/2009 6:28:04 PM
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Comment:Salam to all... This article here, is a very good definition of Christmas...as it really is a great occasion for everyone in the world...not only the Christians but all humans... But you can bet on that... those who still didn't learn anything from this are really hapless to be exact.. But Infact The birth Of the Christ is for All Humanity.. Thanks. Peace be with All.

Donal Jonathan, Karachi, Pakistan - wrote on 12/8/2009 6:24:47 PM
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Comment:Salam to all... This article here, is a very good definition of Christmas...as it really is a great occasion for everyone in the world...not only the Christians but all humans... But you can bet on that... those who still didn't learn anything from are really hapless to be exact.. But Infact The Of the Christ for All Humanity.. Thanks.

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