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: Frequently Asked Questions about Islam

Part 1. FAQs by Non-Muslims
Part 2. FAQs by knowledgeable Non-Muslims
Part 3. FAQs by Hindus
Part 4. FAQs by Christian Missionaries
Part 5. Queries on Islam

In conveying the message of Islam to a non-Muslim, it is usually not sufficient to highlight only the positive nature of Islam. Most non-Muslims are not convinced about the truth of Islam because there are a few questions about Islam at the back of their minds that remain unanswered.

They may agree with your contentions about the positive nature of Islam. But, in the same breath, they will say - "Ah! But you are the same Muslims who marry more than one woman. You are the same people who subjugate women by keeping them behind the veil. You are fundamentalists, etc."

I personally prefer asking the non-Muslim upfront, what he feels is wrong in Islam. I prefer asking directly, what they feel is wrong in Islam with their limited knowledge, whether right or wrong and from whichever source it may be. I encourage them to be very frank and open and convince them that I can take criticism about Islam.

In the past few years of my Da’wah experience, I have realized that there are barely twenty most common questions that a common non-Muslim has regarding Islam. Whenever you ask a non-Muslim, "what do you feel is wrong with Islam?", he poses five or six questions, and these questions invariably fall among the twenty most common questions.

Logical replies can convince the majority

Part 1: FAQs by Non-Muslims

The twenty most common questions about Islam can be answered with reason and logic. A majority of non-Muslims can be convinced with these answers. If a Muslim memorizes or simply remembers these answers, Inshallah he will be successful, if not in convincing non-Muslims about the complete truth of Islam, then at least in removing misconceptions about Islam and neutralizing the negative thinking about Islam and Muslims that the non-Muslims have. A very few non-Muslims may have counter arguments to these replies, for which further information may be required.

Q1. Why is a man allowed to have more than one wife in Islam? i.e. why is polygamy allowed in Islam?

Q2. If a man is allowed to have more than one wife, then why does Islam prohibit a woman from having more than one husband?

Q3. Why does Islam degrade women by keeping them behind the veil?

Q4. How can Islam be called the religion of peace when it was spread by the sword?

Q5. Why are most of the Muslims fundamentalists and terrorists?

Q6. Killing an animal is a ruthless act. Why then do Muslims consume non-vegetarian food?

Q7. Why do Muslims slaughter the animal in a ruthless manner by torturing it and slowly and painfully killing it?

Q8. Science tell us that whatever one eats, it has an effect on one’s behaviour. Why then, does Islam allow Muslims to eat non-vegetarian food, since eating of animals could make a person violent and ferocious?

Q9. When Islam is against idol worship why do the Muslims worship, and bow down to the Kaaba in their prayer?

Q10. Why are non-Muslims not allowed in the holy cities of Makkah and Madinah?

Q11. Why is the eating of pork forbidden in Islam?

Q12. Why is the consumption of alcohol prohibited in Islam?

Q13. Why are two witnesses who are women, equivalent to only one witness who is a man ?

Q14. Under Islamic law, why is a woman’s share of the inherited wealth only half that of a man?

Q16. How can you prove the existence of hereafter, i.e. life after death?

Q17. When all the Muslim follow one and the same Qur’an then why are there so many sects and different schools of thoughts among Muslims?

Q18. All religions basically teach followers to do good deeds. Why should a person only follow Islam? Can he not follow any of the religions?

Q19. If Islam is the best religion, why are many of the Muslims dishonest, unreliable, and involved in activities such as cheating, bribing, dealing in drugs, etc.?

Q20. Why do Muslims abuse non-Muslims by calling them ‘Kafirs’?

Part 2: FAQs by knowledgeable Non-Muslims

1. Is it not true that Qur'an is the handiwork of Muhammad and not the work of God ?

2. There were many versions of the Qur’an all of which were burnt by Usman (r.a.) except for one. Therefore is it not true that the present Qur’an is the one compiled by Usman (r.a.) and not the original revelation of God?

3. Doesn’t Islam promote violence, bloodshed and brutality since the Qur’an says that Muslims should kill the kuffar where ever they find them?

4. Does Islam believe in several gods because the Qur’an uses the word ‘We’ when God speaks in the Qur’an?

6. Muslims believe in the theory of abrogation, i.e. they believe that certain earlier verses of the Qur’an were abrogated by verses revealed later. Does this imply that God made a mistake and later on corrected it?

7. Why do certain Surahs in the Qur’an begin with Alif Laam Meem, Haa Meem, Yaa Seen. What is the significance of such terms or phrases?

8. Qur’an says that Allah has made the earth for you as a carpet. This gives an indication that the earth is flat. Does this not contradict established modern science?

9. The Qur’an says that only Allah knows the sex of the child in the womb of the mother but now science has advanced and we can easily determine the sex of the child in the womb by ultrasonography. Isn’t this verse of the Qur’an conflicting with medical science?

10. According to the Qur’an when a man enters paradise, he will get hoor, i.e. beautiful maidens. What will a woman have when she enters paradise?

13. If Allah has sealed the hearts of the Kuffar i.e. non-Muslims, then why are they to be blamed for not accepting Islam?

14. The Qur’an mentions in several places that the heavens and the earth were created in 6 days but in Surah Fussilat it says that the heavens and the earth were created in 8 days. Isn’t this a contradiction? The same verse also says that the earth was created in 6 days and then later on the heavens were created in 2 days. This is against the Big-Bang theory that the heavens and the earth were created simultaneously.

15. At one place the Qur’an mentions that man is created from sperm and in another place it mentions that man is created from dust. Are these two verses not contradicting? How can you scientifically prove that man is created from dust?

16. It is mentioned in one verse of the Qur’an that Allah is the Lord of two Easts and two Wests. How can you explain this verse of the Qur’an scientifically?

17. A particular verse of the Qur’an says that one day in the sight of Allah is equal to 1000 years. In another verse of the Qur’an it says that one day is equal to 50,000 years. Isn’t the Qur’an contradicting itself?

18. The Qur’an in several places says that Iblis was an angel, but in Surah Kahf it says that Iblis was a Jinn. Isn’t this a contradiction in the Qur’an?

19. According to Arun Shourie there is a mathematical error in the Qur’an. In chapter 4 verses 11 and 12 when you add up the different parts of inheritance given to the heirs, it is more than one. Therefore the author of the Qur’an does not know mathematics.

20. The Qur’an says several times that Allah is most Merciful and Forgiving but also says many times that He gives severe punishment. Is He Forgiving or Revengeful?

Part 3: FAQs by Hindus

1. The Hindu Pundits and Scholars agree that the Vedas and other Hindu religious scriptures prohibit idol worship, but initially because the mind may not be matured, an idol is required for concentration while worshipping. After the mind reaches higher consciousness, the idol is not required for concentration.

2. Water is called by different names in different languages: in English as water, in Hindi as paani, in Tamil as tanni. Similarly if God is called either Allah, Ram or Jesus, is it not one and the same?

3. Hinduism is the oldest of all the religions and thus the, most pure, authentic and best of all the religions of the world.

4. "Allah" is the most appropriate name for God in the Qur’an. Is this name "Allah" mentioned in other religious scriptures besides the Qur’an?

5. Why do Muslims bury dead bodies instead of cremating them, i.e. burning them?

6. Why do the Muslim married women not put bindi or tika on the forehead and wear Mangalsutra, like Hindu married women?

7. Why do Muslims take the name of Emperor Akbar while calling people to pray?

8. When Muslims in India insist on having a separate Muslim Personal Law for themselves, why don’t they also insist on implementing the Islamic Criminal Law for the Muslims; for example implementing the rule that the robber’s hands should be chopped off if a Muslim robs?

9. If according to Islam, messengers or prophets were sent to each and every nation of the world, then which prophet was sent to India? Can we consider Ram and Krishna to be messengers of God?

10. If Allah has sent His books and revelations in every period, then which revelation was sent to India? Can we consider the Vedas and other Hindu scriptures to be the word of God?

Part 4: FAQs by Christian Missionaries

1. Wasn't Quran plagiarized from the Bible? Is it not true that Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has copied the Qur’an from the Bible?

2. Difference between Mary and Miriam. It is mentioned in your Qur’an that Mary was the sister of Aaron (pbuh). Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) who wrote the Qur’an did not know the difference between Miriam the sister of Aaron (pbuh) and Mary the Mother of Jesus (pbuh), the time span between both of them was about a thousand years.

3. Jesus did not die. Is it not true that your Qur’an mentions in Surah Maryam, Chapter 19 verse 33 that Jesus (pbuh) died and was resurrected?

4. Jesus is a "word" of Allah and a "spirit" from Allah. Does not your Qur’an mention that Jesus is Kalimatullah –"The Word of Allah (swt)", as well as Ruhullah – "The Spirit of Allah", indicating his Divinity?

5. Is not the Quran written by satan? The Qur’an is not the Word of God but on the contrary the handiwork of Satan.

Part 5: Queries on Islam

1. Praying Behind Beardless Imam

2. In Japan, only eight rakat Tarawih is followed. Can my son pray individually the remaining 12 rakat at the mosque or home or is it also right to perform 8 rakat only.?

3. Is it allowed for an ulcer patient to leave the Fast ?

4. Issal-e-Sawab through Recitation of the quran

5. If at a particular time, a lady has no desire for sex with her husband, but he insists for it, what is her right of refusal in this context ?

6. In the light of the teaching of the Qur'an and the Sunnah, is it a correct Islamic practice to visit graveyards on the night of Shab-e-baraat? please narrate the Hadith related to this night.

7. A muslim youth has a wet dream. What should he do?

8. What is the concept of social service in Islam? Do we have to work for the Muslim community only or for the whole of humankind as was done by Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) ? Please clarify.

9. Are menstruating women permitted to recite Surah Fatiha, Ikhlaas, Falak, Nas and Ayatul Kursi at night before going to sleep ? Can menstruating women touch and read the Qur'an ? Does this word in the Qur'an 'Mutahhareen' (none can touch except those who are clean) relate to the Qur'an or to the Tablet Preserved (Lauh-a-Mehfuz) ? Is one allowed to touch Qur'an without wudhu ? Please explain with reference to Hadith.

10. Why do we quote Allah (swt) as - Him/His ?

11. Islam and Universal Brotherhood

13. Which school of thought should a muslim follow ?

15. Why Islam proposes a discriminatory share of Inheritance by giving women only half of what men receive?

17. Does Islam make the Face Veil Obligatory for Muslim Women?

19. I heard a Maulana saying that it is Biddat to quote the Bible to do Daw’ah to the Ahle-Kitab (People of the Book; i.e. the Jews and the Christians). I would like to get the answer from Dr. Zakir Naik whether it is allowed as he very often quotes the Bible.

20. Is the Qur'an God's Word ?

21. A lady I know converted to Islam, but her Christian parents want her to visit the church with them. If she denies, then they have family problems. Can the lady go to church, just to have normal relationship with the parents?

22. I am a revert to Islam from a very orthodox Christian family. However my hunger to delve deep into Islam and other religions never ceased. The sad part of the story is that I never found anyone able to give at least most of the answers for the questions I ask. But your newsletter seems to be doing a good job. Here are a few questions I wish you could answer. Why aren’t Islamic missionaries active the way Christian missionaries are? Won’t Islam grow much faster and misunderstandings removed if there are good scholars to preach the faith? Why is there such a slack among Muslims? Is it permissible in Islam to sponsor an orphan? Not adoption. Something like sponsoring his education, etc.? Are the views of the so-called ‘terrorists’ like bin Laden really wrong or justifiable? I mean should a Muslim support his activities? Can children and innocent people be killed in wars when the prophet had declared not to do so?

23. Do the Muslims Believe in Jesus (pbuh) and his Second Coming?

24. Is it Compulsory to Wear the Trousers Above the Ankles?

25. Dr. Zakir Naik interview, How Shameful, We Don't Have a Media of Our Own!

25a. If anything pertaining to faith cannot stand to logic, does that mean it does not stand at all?

25b. What are your views about the Islamic revivalist movements initiated by Iqbal and Maulana Moududi in the sub-continent and Sayyid Qutb and Hasanul Banah in Egypt. What can be the possible reasons for their apparent failure?

25c. How can the oppression of global powers be combated?

25d. Does Islam permit birth control and family planning?

25e. How long can a wife wait in case a husband disappears and does not return?

25f. Why does not a grandchild inherit from his grandfather in case his father dies while the grandfather still alive?

25g. Should women work?

25h. With the fast devaluation of currency and ever changing economic pattern, can the concept of interest be altered within the framework of Islam?

25i. How can we explain the philosophy behind the Quranic verse where Allah says that he has sent the Prophet (Pbuh) to make Islam conquer all other religions of the world?

25j. If every religion claims the same power and authority, will it not give birth to a great anomaly where one faith will be pitted against the other?

25k. A word about Muslims the world over?

25l. Are you happy with the way Indian Muslims behave in India?

25m. Does Islam permit organ transplant?

25n. Who has inspired you the most?

25o. Your memory is absolutely incredible? Do you strive for that or you just read and it gets engraved on your mind?

25p. How do you maintain a balance between Dr. Naik as a medico and Dr. Naik as a scholar?

27. I am a dentist by profession, my questions are: If a husband and wife have a mutual divorce, Is there an ‘Iddah period to be observed by the divorced wife? Should the divorced husband give the maintenance money for her? Can the divorced husband have sex with the divorced wife? Can the two talk on the phone to each other after the divorce?

28. Is a Muslim woman permitted to go out for a job (organization belongs to Muslims with all women staff) even if her husband can support the family well? What does Islam say about it? In this case the main reason why this woman wants to join this organization is to keep her busy and to mould herself completely in an Islamic environment.

29. Can a rich Muslim wife give portion of her Zakat to her poor husband? Can a Muslim husband compel his wife (working in a public sector undertaking) to spend all her earnings on family needs and invest his earnings and his wife’s savings on assets solely in his name and not even in her name? What portion, if at all, of a Muslim wife’s salary a Muslim husband can claim for needs of the family although it is the onus on him to provide for the family?

30. Is it allowed for a wife to address her husband by his name, as our previous generation didn’t do so?

31. What is the Islamic Ruling on Contraception?

32. Da'wah or Islaah - which is more important?

33. Is Islam a cult? I don't understand how this religion can be embraced by so many. It's inconceivable that such hatred has ever been collected in a single population such as that which calls itself Muslim. Mohammad, and indeed, his followers, are way off the path. Stop your attacks on non-Muslims?

34. Religion, if it is true, should be able to stand scientific scrutiny. Is there an Islamic arena where this kind of discussion is possible?

35. Hinduism is the oldest of all the religions and thus the most pure, authentic and best of all the religions of the world, and not Islam!

36. When Muslims in India insist on having a separate Muslim Personal Law for themselves, why don’t they also insist on implementing the Islamic Criminal Law for the Muslims; for example implementing the rule that the robber’s hands should be chopped off if a Muslim robs?

37. Why do Muslims bury dead bodies instead of cremating them, i.e. burning them?

38. Is there no such thing as a 'Will' in Islam? In Islam, can a person 'Will' his assets or property as per his wishes, after his death, to people other than those prescribed in the methods of the Shari’ah? Is this 'Will' legally valid in India?

39. Does a Muslim man require explicit consent from his first wife, to marry a second woman?

40. Similarities Between Islam and Hinduism - Part 1

41. A few people in our locality raise their hands before and after doing ‘Rukoo’. Is it a correct act while praying?

42. I am told by many people that it is not permissible to read the Qur’an or do Sajdah after Asr prayers and that we cannot pray, be it reading Qur’an or Namaz at 12.00 clock. Kindly reply!

43. Can a Muslim man marry a Christian or a Jew? Please explain.

44. It is mentioned in your Qur’an that Mary was the sister of Aaron (pbuh). Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) did not know the difference between Miriam the sister of Aaron (pbuh) and Mary the Mother of Jesus (pbuh), as the time span between both of them was about a thousand years.

45. I have a doubt about playing of musical instruments. Is this an act of Satan?

46. Is man created from sperm or dust?

47. I’d like to know about hair coloring according to Qur’an and Hadith. I came to know that it is permissible. Is it right? Please explain providing evidence from authentic sources of Islam.

48. Is it true that my last prayer should be witr or is this merely recommended as a prudent course of action by the Prophet (saw). Once I pray witr after Isha and later I want to pray Nafil, can I do so?

50. Why are women not allowed in the mosque?

51. Why do Muslims follow the lunar calendar instead of the solar calendar?

52. Why are all prayers and supplications not answered or fulfilled by Allah (SWT)?

53. Why is building of temples and churches and the propagation of any religion other than Islam not allowed in Islamic countries like Saudi Arabia?

Courtesy: Dr.Zakir Naik from http://www.irf.net

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