Inside Islam: A Guide for Catholics

(Jacob Rumans) #1


Islam glories in the clear simplicity of its doctrine and
demands. The faith of the Muslim can be understood by the
least educated person, and the religion offers a promise of
eternal happiness in a paradise appealing to the senses.
Muslims criticize Christianity for a number of reasons, but
chief among them is that Christianity is too complex a
mystery to be true. Furthermore, the belief in a heaven
where the blessed see God face to face seems blasphemous
to the Muslim.

Despite Islam’s profession of a simple, clear faith, this
religion is not well known to most Westerners. The media
presents many news stories about Muslims without offering
any real explanation of Islam and its tenets. Rarely does one
encounter an article or program which explains the essential
differences between secular Arab nationalism and Islamic
religious movements. Many Western Christians remain
unclear about the differences between the various Muslim
sects: How do Sunni and Shiite differ? What are Wahhabi

Since the conflicts in the Middle East have involved
America in two wars and terrorism has inflicted horrors
upon our own shores and abroad, the sale of the Koran in its
English translation has greatly increased in the United
States. Many American Christians want to better understand
Islam but find that the more closely they approach this
enigmatic faith, the more complex it seems. Since the Koran
is not organized chronologically or thematically, it is

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