by Ali Deria
Valentine is a day that couples express their affection to each other. What better way to show your affection to your spouse than giving her followers and sweets. What's bad about that? Despite the calls from some Muslim extremists to ban celebrations on Valentine's Day, it is now becoming more popular in Muslim communities. They are celebrating Valentine by exchanging flowers and candy with their loved ones.
However, some of the Muslim scholars believe that Valentine's Day is un-Islamic. Is it because Christians invented it? If this is the case, then let's stop other things too. The most destructive weapons of war were invented by Christians. And we all want to have those weapons and not the day of love, which was also invented by a Christian. Thus, rejecting Valentine as "lust" and being Christian is bigotry. Let's celebrate Valentine's Day in Islamic way, and leave others to celebrate it in their own way.
Islam teaches us to be fair and justice to others. The Holy Quran forbids Muslims to initiate hostilities or insult anything viewed sacred by any religion " Do not let your hatred of a people incite you to aggression." (The Quran 5:2).
Likewise, when Omer ibn-al Khattab first entered Jerusalem, Christians asked him to pray in their church. He declined saying that "
Muslims could use this as an excuse to take over the church and build a Masjid." Therefore Muslim scholars should encourage tolerance toward other faiths, and also between Muslims, in the instances where there would be a difference of opinion.
There is beauty in every culture and there are lessons to learn from each other. As Muslims, each one of us is responsible for his/her own deeds and Allah will judge everyone righteously according to our intentions. The Messenger of Allah (peace be on him) said, "Deeds will be judged according to intentions, and everyone will get what he intended." (Reported by al-Bukhari and Muslim).
Even singing and dancing are allowed for Muslims to enjoy during festivities. Aisha narrated that two girls were with her, on Eid-al-Adha, singing and playing when Abu Bakr entered and scolded the girls. The Prophet (peace be on him), uncovering his face, told him , "Let them be, Abu Bakr. These are the days of 'Eid." (Reported by al-Bukhari and Muslim).
Thus, we cannot dictate each other for what is right. However, we can discuss things and have opinions on issues that concern us. Even the extremists have right to suggest their opinions, but have to respect others if they choose not to accept it.
Unfortunately, it seems that the voices of the extremists are heard over the ones of moderates.
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