Originally Published in the Rochester Hills Patch
A few days back, a good friend of mine and I were discussing religion like we always do. He being a Christian and I being a Muslim, you could imagine the different debates we get into. The divinity of Christ, salvation through deeds or faith, whether or not religion should play a role in politics. No topic is taboo for us. This day, though, struck me pretty hard because my Christian friend brought up an interesting point. He said, “I believe that Islam is a religion of peace. I believe that Islam and Muhammad treated women with respect, cared for the poor, and promoted brotherhood amongst people. I do not believe, however, that Muslims help the poor, treat women with respect, or promote peace and harmony in this world. If you want to convince people of anything, you’ll need to stop talking so much and actually start showing some action.”
At first I wanted to yell at him. I wanted to explain the number of humanitarian efforts my community has been involved in. But I realized, it’s not that the actions don’t exist. The problem is the actions are not known. People only know what they learn. Today the media, social networks, and general public, are able to portray Muslims in a hateful way, because radical Muslims continue to hijack the news. So here is my attempt to publish an answer to the question “What are the real Muslims who follow the true Islam doing?”
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community of Metro Detroit has made it their personal commitment to be true Muslims and followers of Islam. The Prophet Muhammad once said “He is not a Muslim, who goes to bed satiated while his neighbor goes hungry.” In this spirit, we Ahmadi Muslims have continuously donated and served at soup kitchens. Almost every month, 80 lbs of chicken gets donated to Detroit Rescue Mission. We have held “Feed the Hungry” campaigns where over 200 bags of healthy lunches were packed and handed out directly to the homeless of Detroit. Canned Food Drives are frequently held at our Mosque and all items are donated to Gleaners Food Bank of South Eastern Michigan.
The Holy Quran says in Chapter 4 Verse 20, “Oh ye who believe! It is not lawful for you to inherit women against their will; nor should you detain them wrongfully.” It is in this spirit that the male youth of our organization decided to hold fundraisers to purchase and collect necessary household items for the HAVEN House. A battered women’s shelter of Oakland County. Ahmadi Muslims, both men and women said with one voice “Stop Domestic Violence!”
The Holy Quran says in Chapter 5 Verse 33, “Whosoever killed a person…it shall be as if he had killed all Mankind; and whosoever gave life to one, it shall be as if he had given life to all Mankind.” It is in this spirit that the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community across its 72 chapters have launched an annual “Muslims for Life” campaign to honor 9/11 victims by collecting and donating 10,000 + pints of blood. If 1 pint can save 3 lives, than 10,000 pints can save 30,000 lives.
Yes there are Muslims in this world that do not practice True Islam. Yes there are extremists who are doing their best to disarm the fabric of rational righteous society. However, Islam would never condone such acts, and the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community refuses to allow our neighbors to be terrorized. It is said that the best way for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing. We all need to do more, we all can do more, for the sake peace.