By: David Tandoh | Dorcas Tamatey | Daniel Bonsu | The Holy Qu’ran, the spiritual text of the Muslim speaks volumes on peace and unity of a religion. However this religion time again has experienced marginalization because of the acts and dealings of extremists. So that our claims and rationalizations are informed we begin with a deeper insight into the subject matter from a Muslim’s point of view by reading this article by Tariq Ramadan titled: There is no war between Islam and the West Yes, there always will be extremists but similarly there also will be the rational who do not condone such violence. The million dollar question however is this: Which of these two groups are being heard the most? To confirm we make a few enquiries from our mates as we sit and discuss the content of this blog. Question: What comes to our minds when Islam is mentioned in the context of Africa? Daniel: Misunderstood Anthony: Boko Haram David: Al shabab Dorcas: Violence Julateh: Terrorism Darlington: Boko Haram Daniel: Well thats two votes for Boko Haram. Any reason why Anthony? Anthony:Because they have recently been making the news … Daniel: HAHA. Fair argument. They always seem to be making the news but so we understand everyone’s point of view, Why violence Dorcas? Dorcas: The ‘Zongo boys” …….always fighting and are rowdy. It is like a default setting for them. I have received an unwarranted slap in a line to buy kenkey. Daniel: Why Terrorism?…Julateh Julateh: That’s what their extremists have made us to believe. Always committing atrocities all in the name of Islam. Again, that’s all we see on the news nowadays. Most recently the news is either about ISIS or ….. Daniel: Why Al Shabab? I think its because of the footage I saw during the crisis in Kenya: the Westgate Mall. Daniel: Why Misunderstood for me? I feel anytime something has to do with religion the parties involved are always misunderstood or taken out of context. It’s always a case of the Qur’an being interpreted in a certain way or the teachings of the Bible being interpreted in another. So what is causing our colleagues to SEE Islam in this light? SIGHT FOR SORE EYES Its because we CHOOSE to SEE Islam this way. The bitter truth is everyone sees Islam from a shallow perspective and sometimes its difficult to point fingers at them. Even in probability sampling conclusions for a larger group are inferred from that of a smaller sample so are our friends wrong for harboring these misconceptions? Over the past decade Muslim’s have been easy targets for prejudice and discrimination but lets take a trip down memory lane to the twentieth century. The Jews endured their fair share of discrimination at the hands of the Germans during the holocaust, accusations although mostly untrue still stuck and led to mass killings. Religion is indeed a dangerous tool but even more dangerous are the people who follow these religions. We decided to ask a different set of questions this time. Daniel: What comes to mind when you think about Islam in general in regards to the West? Daniel: Terrorism Anthony: Primitive David: Sexist Dorcas: Irrational Julateh: Barbaric Darlington: Aggresive THE DIVIDE Again can you really blame us for our answers? The divide between the West and Islam after 9/11 painted the United States of America as fragile victims of a violent and aggresive religion. A great nation had been shocked by an entire religion. This has had the consequence of making Muslim hostility seem natural or normal. We are slowly arriving at a point of being regarded as a political ideology of a certain group. Indeed, it is a shame. How the con-TEXT is misinterpreted In class Kobby incessantly reminds us of looking at every argument from not only different sides but different angles as well as viewpoints from Muslim vs Christian to White vs Black. So we end our post with a thought to ponder. Here is a verse from the Qu’ran which we discovered as someone’s justification for Islam being violent. The Quran: Quran (2:191-193) – “And kill them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out. And Al-Fitnah [disbelief or unrest] is worse than killing…but if they desist, then lo! Allah is forgiving and merciful. And fight them until there is no more Fitnah [disbelief and worshipping of others along with Allah] and worship is for Allah alone. But if they cease, let there be no transgression except against Az-Zalimun (the polytheists, and wrong-doers, etc. | This response would surprise you. | This leaves us with our final question : If everything can be coined to look legitimate through contextualization then who is telling the truth and who is lying? You decide, but no matter what, NEVER ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE CONNED BY THE TEXT.