A Critical Examination of Violence in the Sacred Scriptures of Islam and Christianity
In the Feb. 20 seminar, Violence and Compulsion in Religion was the theme for both the first and second sessions. First up, Jim Walker aptly provided support from Islamic sources and history indicating that indeed violence has been an integral part of Islam since it first began taking root in Arabia, especially from the Medinan period beginning in 622.
Muhammad's initial hesitancy to believe his to-be role of God's prophet was mentioned along with his attempts at suicide-which would have been a more honorable end than shaming his family name by his perceived lunacy of receiving divine revelation. After finally finding support and accepting this role, Muhammad's life showed incredible resolve in the face of early persecution. He preached one God and non-violence in these early days with very little fruit for the first ten years or so. Indeed, he was persecuted. But that changed after his flight to Medina (Al Hijra) as his acceptance and power grew.