Philosophy : Interpreting Islamic Ethics of War and Peace

The Jihad under the Islam is a holy war; it is a war, which is sanctified under the Islamic religion. There has been a rather peculiar believes, that Jihad meant just a war that one could ignite, participate and in the end lead an eternal life. Many people still have the same believe mostly due to the ignorance regarding the actual concepts behind the war as captured in the Islamic holy book of Quran. Moreover, the concept of Jihad is widely misunderstood in the United States, mainly among the huge Christian population, who are the majority in the nation. The Christians believe in peace and the Bible calls for peace amongst the human population. However, the article written by (Weigel & Minch, 2008, p. 289-291) enunciates the meaning and the circumstances under Jihadist. It has completely changed the misconception towards Jihadist.

The author delved into the deeper conditions of war under the Islamic holy book, which asserts that every Islamic faithful must always fight the perpetrators of evil and those against the spread of Islam, a concept termed as “just war”. However, if such an idea was to be employed, there would be increased instances of war and the likelihood of people using the religious principles of “just war” to initiate war even when it might have been unnecessary. Moreover, the diversity in views, religious beliefs and other disparities brought about by the economic inequalities could be used as an excuse to start war, with a claim of fighting a “just war”. Therefore, the misconceptions of the ethics of Islamic laws regarding war could easily be misconstrued and be used to perpetrate ill motives against the vulnerable societies and thus leading to frequent wars.

Based on the author’s work on the Islamic traditions on war, there is a general misconception amongest non-Muslims that Islamic means war and that they Islam believe that it is through war that one is guaranteed sanctity and eternity after-life. However, a better understanding of the traditional Islamic teachings as enshrined in the Islamic holy teachings in the Quran can create a better understanding between the West and the Islamic states. Most of the misunderstandings regarding the Islamic teachings on the essence of war are the major reasons behind the great resistance against Islam from the West- who hold Christian views of peace and total disregard of any form of war.

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