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November 2007

1. DEAR ABE: Are Muslims supposed to propagate love or hate?   --MAIL GIRL, GERMANY

DEAR GERMAN RESIDENT: T The Quran shows how hatred is used as a tool of the Devil, and not something we should rally for [1].  Anyone who propagates hate in the name of God is disobeying God [2].  The Quran also gives many verses about God’s love.  Striving to attain God’s love should be our main priority.  When our priorities are straight, everything else falls into place, God willing.  The Quran tells us that God loves the believers, those who love and trust in God, the repenters, the charitable, the righteous, the just, the equitable, the steadfast, the good doers, the benevolent, the pure, and those united in His cause [3]. 

Relevant Quran Verses: [1] 5:91, 59:10, 5:2, 3:118, 85:8, 3:118-119;  [2] 2:256, 43:87-89, 25:63;  [3]  2:165, 2:190, 2:195, 2:205, 2:222,  3:30-32, 3:57, 3:76, 3:134, 3:146, 3:148, 3:159, 4:107, 5:13, 5:18, 5:42, 5:54, 5:93, 6:141, 7:31, 7:55, 8:58, 9:4, 9:7, 9:24, 9:108, 16:23, 19:96, 22:38, 28:76-77, 30:21, 30:45, 42:40-42, 49:7, 49:9, 52:21-22, 57:23, 59:9, 60:7-8, 61:4, 61:13, 100:6-8.


2. DEAR ABE: Is it permissible for a Muslim woman to marry a Sikh man?  Believing women should marry believers, as stated in the Qur'an.  But if the man believes in One True God, as is the case with Sikhism, is he considered a believer? --ANWARA, DOWN SOUTH

DEAR ANWARA: You are correct in your analysis; there are believers in groups outside of yours [1].  Many religious groups, including traditional Muslim sects, claim their members are the only ones who will be redeemed by God just for belonging.  So, you are one step ahead by not taking on this exclusive belief.  When determining if the potential spouse is a believer or an idol-worshipper, it can’t be based on their religious group; since there can be idol-worshippers in any group [2].  If that person worships, or attributes any power to other than God, then they are idol-worshipping [3].  When God advises us not to marry other than a believer who does not idol-worship; this would be based on what we know of the individual at the time [4].

Relevant Quran Verses: [1] 2:62-63 , 5:69 ;   [2] 3:113 , 5:65-66 , 2:81-82 , 66:10-11 ;   [3] 2:165 , 2:135-136 , 4:116 , 6:82 , 3:116 ;  [4] 2:221.


3. DEAR ABE: I just recently got a tattoo, and now I’ve heard that tattoos are not OK in Islam.  I've looked on quite a few websites and have been getting so many different responses.  I would really like to know whether my prayers are being accepted, and whether the tattoo is OK.  Could you please help me out? -- LONDON, ENGLAND

DEAR LONDON: Since God does not specifically mention tattoos, then they do not automatically nullify ablution, or daily Salat prayers. Our prayers may or may not be acceptable to God, depending on whether we devote our worship to God alone [1]. Tattoos are like pictures and words, some are okay and others are offensive. The Quran does not forbid tattoos; rather it tells us to use our hearing, eyesight, and brain to make such decisions [2].  As long as the tattoo does not interfere with your ability to worship God as we are commanded to in the Quran [3], then treat the tattoo the same way you would treat your jewelry, or your clothes.  It is a material thing and nothing more.

Relevant Quran Verses: [1] 39:11, 2:38, 2:45, 2:277, 4:36, 39:66, 39:2, 17:25; [2] 16:78, 17:36, 33:72;  [3]  4:43, 5:6, 2:110, 2:112, 2:153, 4:106, 4:110, 2:277.

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The answers provided by Abe and friends represent the understanding of the
writers, and should not be taken as the only acceptable approach. The reader is encouraged to research the topics further using the Quran.

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