A Scottish Muslim writer is the center of a controversy after claiming ISIS-inspired terror attacks are the result of teachers in mosques misinterpreting the Quran.
As reported by The Herald, Paigham Mustafa, 58, questioned these teachers who base their knowledge of Islam on the hadiths and sunnas, which are later texts inspired by the words and deeds of the religion’s prophet, Mohammed.
In a series of published articles, Mustafa asserts these texts are “replete with violence, misogyny and terror,” and do not reflect the intent of the Quran.
He claims that while the attacks are “partly political,” they are also inspired by the hadiths and sunnas.
Mustafa is no stranger to controversy. In 2001, a fatwa written by 15 imams in Glasgow was distributed to thousands of Muslims in the city. It accused him of wanting to “damage and destroy the doctrines of Islam and “inject poison” into the heads of young people.
At the time, the death threats against him were so bad he was forced to miss his father’s funeral. “I got a phone call saying I shouldn’t go or there’d be trouble. That really scared me. I haven’t been back [to mosque] since. It’s still not really safe,” he said.
His latest remarks coincided with the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha marking the end of the Hajj pilgrimage. Mustafa commented, “I believe the way to reduce terrorism is not by segregating communities, it is to take away division. The only way to take away division is to teach the Koran’s true values. I have had support from all over the world but I also still get death threats.”
Mustafa claims, the “religions” of “Sunnism and Shi’ism have very little to do with the actual contents of the Koran.” Rather, they are based on cultural rites and rituals, whereas the Quran, he says, is a book of values.
“[This type of] religion is there to baffle, control and fleece people. In separation, there is control and money,” he contends.