The Qur’an addresses God as “Lord of the Universe.” It does not mention Him as “Lord of the nation.” This shows that Islam believes in unbounded universality and not in limitation. It is the same Qur’an which hails the Prophet as a “Blessing for the World” and not as “trouble for the world.” This demonstrates that Islam is the religion not of hatred but of love. Again the Qur’an proclaims: “Peace is good.” It does not say, “War is good.” This means that Islam wishes to create an atmosphere of peace and conciliation and does not condone war and confrontation.
The Qur’an commands “Read!” It does not say “Shoot!” This reveals that Islam is the culture of knowledge and not the culture of the gun. The Qur’an stresses tolerance; it does not preach intolerance. This signifies that Islam implores us to endure the pains inflicted by others instead of reacting impulsively and entering conflict. The Qur’an praises a magnanimous outlook, not the attitude of tit-for-tat. This implies that Islam expects a sublime disposition toward others, which overlooks and ignores their faults.
These few references give an idea of what Islam is and what Islamic culture stands for. Islam is the exposure of the divine existence of God. It is the religion of the whole universe. It represents an exalted humanity. A correct interpretation of Islam is that which agrees with these precepts: anything contradicting these values can never explain Islam.
The real Islam is that which inculcates the fear of God in the people, which diverts their attention from this world to the Hereafter, which fills the people’s hearts with love for mankind, which generates the feeling of being well-disposed towards all without any discrimination and which, in its fold, teaches one to become more particular about his duties than his rights.
Those whose hearts are enlightened by Islam become the embodiment of compassion, seeking the welfare only of others. Hatred and hostility cannot be fused with Islam and Islamic culture. (7.SS/9.95