The Media and Mass Misinterpretation of Islam

885 Words4 Pages
The Media and Mass Misinterpretation of Islam

As the cross is the symbol of Christianity, the Star of David the symbol of Judaism, the Crescent Moon and Star are supposedly the symbols of Islam. Islam at its core is a peaceful religion, which like many other religions over the ages has at times been misunderstood not only as to the values it preaches, but also in relation to its core beliefs.

Although in today’s post September 11th world Islam and its followers, who are also known as Muslims, tend to be associated with acts of terrorism, the Middle East and anti-American beliefs, Islam at its core is radically different than what most people perceive it to be. Being the fastest-growing religion in the world, Islam’s 1.2 billion practitioners reside throughout the hemispheres. Although generally linked with the Middle East, Muslims can be found residing throughout Asia, Europe, Africa, Australia and even in the Americas. The fact that Islam is such a profound religion in terms of size and influence can be very deceiving. For example, amongst Roman Catholics if there is a dispute regarding Catholic tradition, morals, symbols, or teachings, all of these issues could and often are addressed by the Vatican. However, within Islam there is no such thing as a central authoritative body which can resolve disputes, manage problems, etc. Thus when most non-Muslims see violence or acts of terror inflicted on a group of people by Muslims, who often boldly state that what they have done is in the name of their religion, no central body exists which one can go to in an effort to see if this religion really is one of violence or peace.

Within Islam’s holy book or Quran, which is akin to our largely Christian-based culture’s Bible, ...

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...s a radically different religion that what most people perceive it to be. Due to the fact that through today’s “media rich” world billions of people world-wide are exposed to the opinions of a daring few, the views we have regarding groups of people as well as individuals themselves can often be misconstrued. In the case of the Muslim religion, a lack of a central authoritative body within the religion itself, general historical misconceptions as well as those recent ones promoted by the media have led the majority of the non-Muslim world to a mass misinterpretation of Islam, its followers and their beliefs.

Works Cited

About.com. Crescent Moon: Symbol of Islam?

http://islam.about.com/library/weekly/aa060401a.htm

Discover Islam.

http://www.discoverislam.com/

Stevenson, Seth. Islam? A Peaceful Religion. 24 Oct. 2001

http://slate.msn.com/?id=117525

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