There is a long and raging debate about the role of Islam in terror. Most of the terrorist organizations in the world chiefly operate in Islamic countries such as Iraq and Afghanistan, creating the impression of terrorism being a part of Islam. While it is true that Muslims are more likely to be terrorists than any other elision, the feature is not a function of the religion. It is an attribute of poor governance and the remoteness of some of the Islamic countries, as well as escalating conflicts between the Islamic countries and the west. Where the true essence of the Islamic values is captured, there is no relationship between the religion and terror
The basis of Islam and the Sharia laws
Islam is based on the belief of a single God and his prophet, Mohammed (Aslan, 2005).
The doctrines of Islam follow the natural law because Muslims believe these laws are God’s natural way of governing the universe (Tawheed)
However, in Islamic countries, the laws are derived from the Islamic laws, called the Sharia laws
Where Muslims live in large communities among different people, they are guided by the existing constitution (Aslan, 2005)
Muslims do not compel non-Muslims to comply with the doctrines of the Sharia laws
In the recent Arab springs movement in many Arabic countries, the citizens protested against the religious laws and proposed adaptation of secular laws in governance (Mohammadi, 2015)
The Arab spring’s movement showed the willingness of the Muslims to evolve, just like Christians evolved to adapt secular governance as opposed to the rule of the church (Mohammadi, 2015)
Islamic brotherhoods and communities
Islamic organizations are feared in the west because of the association of these groups with terror (Mohammadi, 2015)
In West Africa, the brotherhoods are a way for people to connect and help each other. Therefore, they are the basis of a community and they instill a sense of belonging to the followers (Akbarzadeh, 2008)
Most of the brotherhoods, such as the Tauregs of western Africa, are non violent people who coexist with their neighbors (Drury, 2015). In fact, the position of women in the Islamic Taureg society challenges the popular notion of Islam and mistreatment of women (Drury, 2015)
Muslims in western Capitalist societies
Islamic laws forbid marital unions between a Muslim and a non-Muslim (Mohammadi, 2015). Therefore, there is limited contact in a social sense between the Muslims and the rest of the society, when where they live together (Bowen, 2014)
When Muslims live in western cultures, such as Britain, they tend to form their own communities within the larger British community wherever they live (Bowen, 2014)
The communities are not defiance to the social values of the community; rather, they are an expression of religious duty (Bowen, 2014). In many cases, the Islamic communities co-exist peacefully with the rest of the community
Where Muslims live in the western culture, they sometimes assimilate the cultural values of the dominant group, such as gender roles and productivity for all members
Source of differences between Muslims and the rest of the community
The biggest source of difference is the existence of different cultural values
Political conflicts between the Muslims and the west are dragged into the scene to pain the negative image of the Muslims to the rest of the society
The existence of different laws between the Muslims and the other cultures also fuel the conflict because of the human nature to mistrust all people with different cultural affiliations
In conclusion, western societies are skewed against Islam as a function of the association between the religion and terror. A deep analysis of the connection reveals the presence of other factors contributing to the terrorism activities. In addition, people in the Islamic countries have similar values as the rest of the societies, as was seen in the Arab Springs movement. Islam does not promote terror or violence. It is based on similar values of universal laws as most other religions in the world.
- Akbarzadeh, S. (2008). Islam and human rights in practice: Perspectives across the ummah.
- Aslan, R. (2005). No god but God: The origins, evolution, and future of Islam. New York: Random House.
- Bowen, I. (2014). Medina in Birmingham, Najaf in Brent: Inside British Islam. London: Hurst.
- Drury, F. (2015, June 25). Sex and the Sahara: Striking photographs of the mysterious Islamic
tribe where women embrace sexual freedoms, dictate who gets what in divorce and don’t wear the veil because men ‘want to see their beautiful faces’ Retrieved September 24, 2015, from http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3131511/Sex-Sahara-Striking-photographs-mysterious-Islamic-tribe-women-embrace-sexual-freedoms-dictate-gets-divorce-don-t-wear-veil-men-want-beautiful-faces.html
- Mohammadi, A. (2015). Islam encountering globalization. London: RoutledgeCurzon.
- Tawheed. (n.d.). Retrieved September 24, 2015, from