Myths and Realities

Since the events of 9/11, Islam has been portrayed in a negative light and its doctrines have not only misunderstood but also misrepresented, sometimes intentionally. “What thoughts and images come to mind when you hear the words ‘Islam’ and ‘Muslims?’ “For many people, when you say ‘Islam,’ the images that come up are pictures of suicide bombers, Osama Bin Laden and the results of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. These violent associations are somewhat ironic since the word “Islam” comes from the Arabic word salaam, meaning “peace.” The truth of what Islam really is and what it stands for is far from what it is commonly perceived to be in the world today. Do Muslims oppress women? Are Muslims violent? Does Islam encourage suicide bombings? Let us examine of these claims and find out what Islam really says about the rights of women and about hurting innocent civilians. We hope to shed light on some important aspects of Islam in an attempt to clear some common misunderstandings.

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