I’d like to talk to you about what I find a fascinating topic that is the topic of Islamic ethics, but in particular, a part of Islamic ethics which is called sacred deception or Taqiyya.
Let me give you a few ethical rules that come from the Hadith:
- a Muslim does not cheat another Muslim in business
- a Muslim doesn’t kill another Muslim
- a Muslim doesn’t touch another Muslim’s wife and
- a Muslim doesn’t lie to another Muslim
You notice something here? That’s right. You and I are left out because you see Islam is not a symmetric ethical system. The golden rule is symmetric. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” That is, there’s a balance here; the other and yourself are seen as equal. But in Islam if you’re a Kafir, you’re never equal to the Muslim. Islam does not have a golden rule. The Kafir is always inferior.
Now then, let’s talk about lying and deception. First let’s start with the fact that Allah has 99 names and one of those 99 names is he is the best of deceivers.
But Allah is also the best of plotters and schemers so given that, it isn’t too surprising that we find in the
Koran 16:106 “Those who disbelieve in Allah after having believed, who open up their hearts to disbelief will feel the wrath of Allah and have a terrible punishment.”
In other words, apostates can be killed or otherwise punished. But it goes further. “But there is no punishment for anyone who is compelled to deny Allah in words but whose heart is faithful.” So in other words, a Muslim can lie about Islam if it serves Islam. And one of the ways he can serve Islam is that the Muslim is not discriminated against.
Here we have another in
Koran 3:28: “Believers should not take Kafirs (unbelievers) as friends in preference to other believers. Who ever does this shall have no relationship left with Allah.” (In other words, if you’re a real friend [to a Kafir], you’re no longer friend of Allah). “ . . . unless you but guard yourself against them [Kafirs], taking precautions.”
What this is interpreted to mean is that a Muslim can act friendly but he’s not actually the friend. That’s what is wrong. In other words, a Muslim may never give preference to a Kafir over a Muslim. There are, by the way, no less than 12 verses which say that a Muslim is not the friend of the Kafir.
Now let’s turn to the Hadith.
“Mohammed: ‘Who will kill Ka’b bin Ashraf who has offended Allah and his prophet?’
A Muslim: ‘I will Mohammed. Would you have me do so?’
‘In order to kill him, I will need to deceive him. May I do that?’
So, the Muslim deceived Ka’b bin Ashraf and he did kill him.
What is this? This is the Sunna of Mohammed; it is possible to lie to the Kafir as long as it advances Islam. This is the nature of Taqiyya.
Now there is another way in which a Muslim can lie. There’s a hadith, a fairly well-known hadith, in which there are three reasons for Muslims to lie. One is jihad, that is the struggle against the Kafir. So a Muslim can lie to you anytime he needs to advance Islam
The other is a Muslim a lie to another Muslim if it will make the situation better. And a husband and wife may lie to each other as long as it smooths the relationships in the household.
So deception is part of Islam. Allah is a deceiver. Mohammed was a deceiver, and therefore, every Muslim can be a deceiver. It is so special that it has a name, Taqiyya. So the next time you’re hearing something about Islam that just doesn’t sound right, and it comes from the mouth of a Muslim, you’re right. It’s not right. It’s a lie. It is Taqiyyah.