When the religion of Islam and its followers are equated with militancy and extremism, it is essential to understand and appreciate the message of Islam in the light of the Holy Quran. It is no exaggeration to say that Islam and violence are contradictory to each other.

A small section of misguided Muslims are indulging in activities against the teachings of the Quran and tarnishing, thereby tarnishing the beauty of Islam.

The concept of Islamic violence is so obviously unfounded that it saddens me this has become a point of argument and dissent between Islam and the rest of the world. Violence is, to put a point on it, is alien to Islam. An attempt to bracket violence with Islam amounts to casting doubts upon the eternal nature of the Islamic religion.

The Quran says it this way “… The ways of peace …” (Quran: 5:16). It describes reconciliation as the best policy (4:128) and states that God abhors any disturbance of Peace (2:205).

The first verse of the Quran breathes the spirit of Peace; it reads: “In the name of God, the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate.” This verse is repeated in the Quran no less than 114 times. It shows the importance Islam attaches to values like mercy and compassion. One of God’s names, according to the Quran, is As-Salaam, which means Peace.

The Quran states that the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) was sent to the world as a mercy to humankind (Quran: 21:107).

Simply flipping through Quran and picking verses at random, you will find that most of the verses are about Peace or kindness, either directly or indirectly. According to the Quran, the ideal society is Dar As-Salaam, the house of Peace (Quran: 10:25).

The Quran presents the universe as a model characterized by harmony and Peace (Quran: 36:40). When God created Heaven and Earth, He ordered things that each part might perform its function peacefully without clashing. The Quran tells us that “It is not allowable (i.e., possible) for the sun to reach the moon, nor does the night overtake the day, but each, in orbit, is swimming.” (Quran: 36:40).

Therefore, for billions of years, the entire universe has been fulfilling its function in total harmony with His divine plan.

According to Islam, Peace is not simply an absence of war. Peace opens doors to all kinds of opportunities that are present in any given situation. It is only in a peaceful condition that planned activities are possible. For this reason, the Quran says: “…And settlement is best…” (Quran: 4:128). Similarly, Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) has observed: “God grants to gentleness (Rifq) what He does not grant to violence (‘Unf).” (Abu Daawood)

According to Islam, Peace is the rule, and war is only an exception. Even in a defensive war, we have to analyze its result. If the result is doubtful, Muslims should avoid war. Stray acts of aggression are not enough for Muslims to rush into war. They have to assess the whole situation and adopt a policy of avoidance when war is uncertain to achieve a positive result.

The mission of all the Prophets from Adam to Eesaa (may Allah exalt their mention) was the same – of establishing the ideology of monotheism in the world, so that man might worship the One God alone. As we know, there came a large number of Prophets in ancient times, but the message of monotheism remained at the initial stage; it could not culminate in revolution.

So, the need for time for the Muslim nation is introspection and self-reform. If taken seriously, this exercise alone will go a long way in reviving the glory of the great religion of Islam.ost Merciful, the Most Compassionate.”