You are here

“Can I criticize Islam without fearing for my life?”

“Can I criticize Islam without fearing for my life?”

Date Published: 
Sunday, 26 February, 2017
Summary: 

The answer is, in fact, no. We may surmise this from how Islamic tradition records Muhammad himself dealing with criticism. Abu Afak was a poet who was over one hundred years old, and had mocked Muhammad in his verses. Muhammad asked the Sahaba: “Who will avenge me on this scoundrel?” One of the companions murdered Abu Afak in his sleep. Likewise with another poet who mocked him: the poetess Asma bint Marwan. Muhammad on another occasion cried out, “Will no one rid me of this daughter of Marwan?” One of Muhammad’s companions, Umayr ibn Adi, went to her house that night, where he found her sleeping next to her children. The youngest, a nursing babe, was in her arms. But that didn’t stop Umayr from murdering her and the baby as well. Muhammad commended him: “You have done a great service to Allah and His Messenger, Umayr!” (Ibn Ishaq, 674-676)