MUHAMMADIYAH.OR.ID, JAKARTA – Muslims worldwide are confronting many issues, including Islamophobia.
“For example, the burning of the holy Qur’an occurred in Sweden. We condemn them for doing it,” said the Chairman of Muhammadiyah Anwar Abbas at the preaching on ‘Islam in the Globalized World: Encountering Islamophobia’ by a prominent Islamic scholar from Saudi Arabia, Sheikh Assim al-Hakeem, at Masjid At-Tanwir of Muhammadiyah, Jakarta, on Sunday (July 16).
Furthermore, Sheikh Assim al-Hakeem mentioned that Islamophobia has happened since 2005 at Guantanamo Bay to provoke Muslim sentiments. This trend then spread to various Western countries with similar motives.
Muslims are not bothered by the disapproval of Islam, but Islamophobia has escalated into hatred and aggression over time.
Sheikh Assim al-Hakeem criticized the West’s hypocrisy and double standards become apparent as they invoke the idea of freedom of speech. On the other hand, while Muslims talk about the Holocaust or the dangers of LGBT, the West often protests and denies it as an expression of freedom of speech.
The aggression and animosity stem from the rise of independent and self-reliant Muslim nations that were once colonized by the West, leading to competitiveness.
Despite these challenges, Sheikh Assim appreciated Muslims’ graceful response, refraining from retaliating in kind.
“Have you ever seen Muslims burning the Bible? Never. It is because we uphold civility,” said Sheikh Assim, referring to Surah Al-An’am verse 108, which prohibits Muslims from insulting those they invoke other than Allah.
“Islam is a highly civilized and refined religion, unlike others,” said Sheikh Assim, an imam in a mosque in Jeddah for the last twenty years.
Moreover, Sheikh Assim praised Kuwait’s response to the Quran burning incident in Sweden by printing 100,000 copies of the Quran with Swedish translation.
“This way, when they read the Quran, may guide them towards Islam,” said Sheikh Assim, who obtained his B.A. in Linguistics from King Abdul-Aziz University in Jeddah in 1987 and graduated with a High Diploma in Islamic Studies from Umm al-Qura University in Makkah, Saudi Arabia in 1998.
“To fellow Muslims, the best response to those who insult Islam is not to respond to their provocations,” said Sheikh Assim, who is of Indonesian descent, with his grandfather’s surname being Hasibuan and his grandmother’s surname being Nasution.
Muslims should embody the true identity of Muslims as discipline, honesty, trustworthiness, and noble character, fulfilling their duty to promote the faith.
Besides, according to Sheikh Assim, Muhammadiyah also plays a crucial role in promoting Islam and moderation through practical da’wa that presents the excellence of Muslims.
“The most effective way to counter this aggression is through da’wa. Muhammadiyah has been doing that. It is the duty of Muhammadiyah,” said Sheikh Assim, well-known for his preaching series on Huda TV and Peace TV.
Sheikh Assim’s preaching is available on the tvMu Youtube channel.