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My friend and I had an argument a few days ago about destroying idols

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.  (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)


One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:


My friend and I had an argument a few days ago about destroying idols. I said that a few years ago, the taliban destroyed the Buddha Idols in Afghanistan and there is nothing wrong with it as the Prophet P.B.U.H also did the same when he entered makkah although he could have saved them and given them to the idol worshippers to carry home and do their own worship. My argument being that Shirk is the biggest Zulm in Islam and hence the practise of idol worship cannot be tolerated as it is unIslamic to tolerate zulm. But he said that Islam allows other religions to practise their own religions and gives them rights.

Please help solve the confusion. 


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Budha and destroy Idols

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.


Dear and Beloved Brother, the Holy Precincts of Makkah and its surroundings were Declared sanctified by Allah Subhanah, and Allah Subhanah specifically commanded the Prophet (saws) to strive to cleanse this Holy Precinct not only from the idols which desecrated its sanctity, but also to disallow and forbid anyone who associates another god with Allah from entering this most sacred of sacred sites.


Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 9 Surah Taubah verse 28:

28 O ye who believe! Truly the pagans are unclean; so let them not after this year of theirs approach the Sacred Mosque. And if ye fear poverty soon will Allah enrich you if He wills out of his Bounty, for Allah is All-Knowing All-Wise.


Thus when the believers won control over the city of Makkah, the Prophet (saws) cleansed the Sacred House of Allah from the idols and upon receipt of the above Command of Surah Taubah, the Messenger of Allah (saws) declared it forbidden for any ‘mushrik’ (idolator) to approach the Sacred Mosque, and Alhamdolillah, the believers after him and until this day strove to fulfill this commandment of Allah Subhanah.


After the death of the Noble Messenger (saws), when the noble companions and those who followed them conquered pagan lands and territories, they did not break nor destroyed the ‘idols’ or the ‘gods’ of the pagans and idolators, nor even touched their places of worship! The inhabitants of these conquered nations were invited to Islam, and every individual was given a choice to accept Islam or follow his own religion. If the individual chose to follow Islam he became their brother in faith; and for those who refused to accept Islam, they were allowed to worship whomever they wished to worship, however they wished to worship in their homes or in their dedicated places of worship like churches, temples, etc. The Muslim rulers of the land respected and honored the right of every individual to choose whichever religion they wished to follow and recorded history is proof of this fact!


Coming to the specific issue of the Buddha statues in Afghanistan, it is a known fact that these statues were created thousands of years ago, even before the birth of Prophet Mohamed (saws)! History records that the nation of Afghanistan came under muslim rule during the reign of the third Khalifa, Hadrat Uthman ibn Affan (r.a.) and remains under Islamic rule until this day….but neither the noble companions (r.a.), nor the muslim rulers after them ever tried to destroy or break these idols!


What instigated the Talebaan rulers to destroy these idols, when neither the noble companions and rulers of the stature of Hadrat Uthmaan (r.a.) and Hadrat Ali (r.a.) nor the muslim rulers after them destroyed them, is best known to Allah Subhanah!


Almost all the good scholars who are well-versed in the laws of Islam are unanimous in their opinion that it was wrong of the Taleban to destroy those Buddha statues under Islamic rules of governing.


Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.



Your brother and well wisher in Islam,




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