Every religion has its roots in early myths and traditions. The Christian celebration of Easter for example is a replacement of the pagan spring festival of fertility and the worship of Ishtar, the goddess of spring. Islam today however is creating its own myths; for example, we read on forums and comments from Muslims that Islam means peace, it does not, it means submission.
As well,we see Islamic myth-building in the attempt to convince infidels that Islam is neither racist, nor misogynistic, nor violent.
The biggest myth Muslims like to broadcast is that Islam is the religion of tolerance (1), and as proof, they offer the following verse - Qu`ran, 2:256: "Let there be no compulsion in religion."
Infidels, upon reading this phrase, want to believe that Islam expresses a tolerant view of other religions. But this verse was written when Mohammed was weak in power and his followers few in number and thus needed to seem tolerant to Christians and Jews. Muslims fail to mention to infidels that this verse was later abrogated when Mohammed became dictator and had a powerful army - Qu`ran, 9:29: "Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued."
For those of my readers who cannot parse the meaning of the Qu`ran correctly: when a country becomes dar al-Islam (a Muslim ruled state) the inhabitants have three choices: either accept Islam, submit as a dhimmi inside that Islamic state and pay the infidel tax, or be killed. See? You are not compelled to become a Muslim - you can live as a slave or die. The choice is yours.
How do I know that "convert, submit, or be killed" is the text that was followed in the past 1400 years of Islam? Perhaps because a hundred million Hindu were slaughtered by Muslims when they chose neither conversion to Islam nor slavery. Or did those hundred million souls die when they accidentally bled to death by papercuts from reading the Qu`ran?
Perhaps it was the 49 formerly Christian-, Zoroastrian-, Buddhist-majority countries that are now Muslim-majority countries, over ⅓ of which are almost 100% Muslim today and the other ⅔ heading in that direction?
Muslims did not visit a country as tourists and open up the Qu`ran to convince the native populations to go Islam. They opened their sheaths and persuaded conversion with the shiny glint of their swords.
When Arab armies came into countries the populations did not all instantly become Muslim. So one has to ask how did a small minority have power over the majority to force them into conversion or dhimmitude? Was it the power of their words, or the power of their swords?
If you read history, you do not need to ask the question. For example, Islamic armies (with swords in hand, not books) conquered most of Spain in 711 A.D. They weren't booted out until centuries later. People who are convinced by word do not rebel, only those who have been persuaded by sword rebel. But still today there are those who believe Spain was conquered by force of truth, reason and logic.
Why are there so many Muslims living today that are seemingly not under the threat of a sword? Because there is a sword holding them in their religion. Those who turn to disbelief see that sword shortly before leaving this world.
Then of course there are Muslim countries like Malaysia that simply by force of law do not permit anyone to leave Islam (2).
Islam: forces one to become a Muslim and then forces one to stay a Muslim.
IslamReligion.com, Let There Be No Compulsion in Religion
One of the fundamental truths established by the sacred texts is that no one can be compelled to accept Islam. It is the duty of Muslims to establish the proof of Islam to the people so that truth can be made clear from falsehood. After that, whoever wishes to accept Islam may do so and whoever wishes to continue upon unbelief may do so. No one should be threatened or harmed in any way if he does not wish to accept Islam.
Among the many decisive pieces of evidence in this regard are the following. God says:“Let there be no compulsion in religion. Truth has been made clear from error. Whoever rejects false worship and believes in God has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that never breaks. And God hears and knows all things.”(Quran 2:256)
The Chronicles of Islam, 5 Feb 2012, Malaysians FORBIDDEN to follow Conscience!
An Indian Malaysian father of three, Zaina Abdin Halim @ S. Maniam, who has been declared a Muslim on his identity card, has been seeking to have the National Registration Department (NRD) strike it off since 2002.
Fahri Azzat , lawyer for the litigant, told The Malaysian Insider today: “If a person’s mother and father are Muslims, that provision under section 2 of the Selangor State Enactment restraints the person from professing a faith of choice.”
Born of an ethnic Indian father and a Malay Muslim mother, the Zaina Abdin has said in court documents that he was raised to be a Hindu and has brought up his three children in the religion their whole lives.
In a sworn statement, he has put his real name down as Balachandran son of S. Maniam, taking the cue from his father’s name before the latter embraced Islam to marry.
The government agency, however, has refused to allow Zaina Abdin, also known as Balachandran, to change his religious status, based on a provision of the Selangor State Enactment concerning Islamic affairs.
Under section 2 of the state Islamic law, children of Muslim parents are automatically deemed to be Muslim as well.