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Islam and Christianity

ISLAM AND CHRISTIANITY This book is written in the nature of a “key” for those Muslim brothers of ours who have just a smattering of knowledge on how the Islamic religion has developed, and it has been written for those non-Muslims willing to know the fundamentals of Islam. Islam, the most up-to-date and the most immaculate of the world’s existing religions, is based upon very humane and very logical principles. Without going into details, this book touches upon the fundamentals of Islam and makes a comparison of Islam with other religions. It answers criticisms raised against Islam by its adversaries and explains as compendiously as possible the qualifications essential for being a good Muslim. For those who would like to read valuable books on Islam written by Islamic scholars (rahimahumullâhu ta’âlâ) after learning the facts contained in this book, we advise that they read books published in different languages by the Hakîkat Kitabevi (Bookstore) in Istanbul. The names of these books are appended to our books. Read this book slowly and with reflection! Encourage others to read it, too! An ignorant person cannot be a good Muslim. Indeed, it is impossible for a person not to attach all his heart to Islam after learning its fundamentals. After reading this book, you will also realize what a lofty, sacred, logical, and perfect religion Islam is, and you will attach all your heart and soul to it in order to attain salvation and repose in this world and in the hereafter. Islam that abrogated celestial religions of Judaism and Christianity along with their validity is explained first. That Qur’an-ı Karîm is word of Allah; miracles of Muhammad ׳alayhissalâm, his virtues, moral practices and habits; how to be a true Muslim; a comparison of Islam and Christianity; that Muslims are scientifically powerful; are explained next.

‘rahima-hullâhu

‘rahima-hullâhu ta’âlâ’ conquered Akkâ, which was the center of the crusaders, as well as the other cities, thus putting an end to the crusades.” Remaining in the possession of Christians for eighty-eight years, i.e. from 1099 to 1187, Jerusalem was eventually rescued by Salâhaddîn-i-Eyyûbî, in the latter date mentioned. That blessed commander captured Richard the Lion-heart. However, instead of treating him as a prisoner of war, he showed him the same extremely kind and mild hospitality as he would have shown to the king of a neighbouring country paying him a courtesy visit. That was a prime example to show the difference between the ‘wild Islamand the ‘affectionate Christianity’! It is true that Muslims converted some churches into mosques. Yet no churches were destroyed. On the contrary, many of them were reconstructed. When Sultân Muhammad Khân ‘rahimahullâhu ta’âlâ’ conquered Istanbul, he converted Saint Sophia, which was a church, into a mosque. It was one of the conditions stipulated during the negotiations for peace. It was not only a religious event but also a monument representing the Turks’ greatest victory. Our Prophet ‘sall-Allâhu ta’âlâ ’alaihi wa sallam’ had foretold the conquest of Istanbul and had said, “How lucky for them ...,” about the would-be conqueror and his army. Fâtih Sultân Muhammad Khân, who ushered a new era by conquering Istanbul, had to announce the event to the entire world by converting Saint Sophia, which had been a symbol of Christianity, into a mosque, a symbol of Islam. Fâtih Sultân Muhammad Khân never destroyed Saint Sophia. On the contrary, he had it repaired. The Qur’ân al-kerîm does not contain a commandment concerning the demolition of churches. As we shall see later ahead, Muslim governments have always protected churches and other temples against transgression. Now we shall tell you about the conversion of a mosque into a church accomplished by Christians, who consider themselves as affectionate, innocent, and compassionate. The following passage is a paraphrased translation from Spaneien=Spain, prepared in cooperation by Prince Salvatore, Prof. Graus, theologian Kirchberger, Baron von Bibra, and Ms. Threlfall, and published in the Würzburg city of Germany in 1312 [1894 C.E.]: “Cordoba (Qurtuba in the Arabic literature) is one of the most important cities of Spain. It was the capital of the Arab Andalusian state in Spain. When Muslims under the command of – 224 –

Târiq bin Ziyâd ‘rahima-hullâhu ta’âlâ’ (crossed the Gibraltar and) landed in Spain in 95 [711 C.E.], they made the city their capital. The Arabs brought civilization to the city and developed it from a semi-wild habitation into the cultural hub of Spain. They built a grand palace [Al-Qasr], in addition to hospitals and madrasas (Islamic universities). Besides these, they established a Jâmi’a [grand university], which was at the same time the first university established in Europe. Up until that time the Europeans had been far behind civilization in knowledge, in science, in medicine, in agriculture, and in the humanities. Muslims brought them knowledge, science, and culture, and tutored them. “Abd-ur-Rahmân bin Muâwiya bin Hishâm bin Abd-ul-Melik I ‘rahima-humullâhu ta’âlâ’ [d. 172 (788 C.E.)], the founder of the Islamic state of Andalusia, intended to have a grand mosque built in Qurtuba (Cordoba). He wanted the mosque to be larger, lovelier and more gorgeous than the mosques in Baghdâd. He found a plot that he thought would be most suitable for the mosque. The plot belonged to a Christian. The money he demanded for his plot was very high. Being an extremely just ruler, Abd-ur-Rahmân I did not have recourse to compulsion for the expropriation of the plot, which he could have done quite easily. He paid the owner of the plot the money he demanded. The Christians used the money to build a small church for themselves. The Muslims began to build the mosque in 169 [785 C.E.]. During the construction, Abd-ur-Rahmân worked for a few hours with the other workers every day. Materials necessary for the construction were brought from diverse places of the orient. The lumber necessary for the wooden parts was transported from Lebanon, famous for its valuable trees, huge lumps of coloured marble were brought from various parts of the east, and precious stones, pearls, emeralds and ivory were imported from Iraq and Syria, and all these materials formed large heaps on the plot. Everything was extremely beautiful and plentiful. Gradually, the walls of the mosque began to reach the heights to offer the first glimpses of a magnificent building. Abd-ur-Rahmân I did not live long enough to see the completion of the mosque. He passed away in 172 [788 C.E.]. Owing to the great efforts of Hishâm, his son, and Hakem I, his grandson, “rahima-humallâhu ta’âlâ’ who succeeded him, respectively, the mosque was completed in ten years. However, with the annexes added in the course of years, it was not before 380 [990 C.E.], which means two hundred and five – 225 –

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