The Jihadi Mindset


When the Quran was revealed to the Prophet, he used to present its message to whomever he would meet. The Prophet's real duty was to convey the Quran to people. The period in which the Prophet came was prior to the printing press. In those times, paper was a very rare commodity. Before the coming of the Prophet, when people used to write down the revelations of holy books, they included their own opinions in it. It was because of this that the Prophet cautioned his followers to write down the Quranic revelations in separate sheets of paper. The Prophet was very strict in telling people to not write down the Quranic verses and the advice they received from him on the same sheet of paper. This was because there was fear of prophetic words being taken for God's revelation. To prevent this confusion, the Prophet advised his Companions to be very meticulous about writing the Quran on separate sheets. After the death of the Prophet, Muslims had to engage in wars with others. This developed a mindset among the Muslims of the later generations, according to which they should fight and do jihad. This period of conflict continued for long, which put away the concept of doing dawah -- that is, presenting the message of the Quran to people of the world. The Prophet was originally sent to humanity to convey to them God's message contained in the Quran. But due to their changed mindset, Muslims forgot their duty of dawah towards others and thought that the greatest task to engage in was jihad and war. The Islamic sciences that were developed in those times, such as jurisprudence, prophetic sayings, Quranic exegesis, had no chapter devoted to dawah. All that acquired importance in the minds of Muslims was that they had to defeat their enemies. This situation requires Muslims to de-condition their jihadi mindset.