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Islam and Religious Freedom

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One of the great teachings of the Quran is it’s respect and tolerance for others, the Quran is very explicit in regards to religious freedom, and for the right of free will and choice:

Say: O ye that reject Faith! (Islam) I worship not that which ye worship nor will ye worship that which I worship. And I will not worship that which ye have been wont to worship nor will ye worship that which I worship. 
To you be your Way, and to me mine. 
Unto you your religion, and unto me my religion. you shall have your religion and I shall have my religion. (Chapter 109)

The above is one entire chapter of the Quran simply devoted to religious freedom! As it clearly states, the none-Muslim has his path and religion, and the Muslim has his path and religion, each to their own way.

The Quran goes on to also state:

Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error: whoever rejects evil and believes in Allah hath grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold, that never breaks. And Allah heareth and knoweth all things. (2:256)

So there is no compulsion in religion, no one is forced to be Muslim, everyone has a right to be a none-Muslim if he/she chooses such a path, it is his or her personal right and freedom guaranteed by the Quran itself.

Another verse from the Quran that preaches religious tolerance is the following:

But if they turn away, thy duty is only to preach the clear Message. (16:82)

This verse is addressing the prophet Muhammed (PBUH) in regards to the people who choose to not accept his message, and as the passage clearly states, if they turn away, then his duty is to simply preach the message, the passage does not state that if they turn away, then you must get the sword out and force them into Islam.

This similar message is repeated in another Quranic verse:

The duty of the messenger is only to convey (the message). Allah knoweth what ye proclaim and what ye hide. (5:99)

So this passage once it again makes it clear that the prophet Muhammed’s (PBUH) duty is to simply convey the message of Islam, it does not state that the prophet Muhammed’s (PBUH) duty is to preach the message, and if they reject, then force them all into Islam.

So in conclusion it is quite clear that the holy Quran absolutely preaches for the freedom of religion & the freedom of belief.

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