Islam–the name itself means “salute.” But the salute is directed at only those that adhere to Koran.
Islam is a religion of brotherhood and it transcends national boundaries. In fact, the God (Allah) had bequeathed the earth to Muslims. It is recorded in Koran, which is dictated by none other than the God himself.
Islam classifies people into two categories. It goes beyond the normal “us and them” classification. The classes are Muslims and kaafirs. Kaafir is one who commits “kufr” (that is sin). By this definition, if a person commits sin, he must be a kaafir even if he professes Islam. But the practical interpretation is that any one who is not a Muslim is a kaafir. That is, all Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Taoists, Shintoists, Jains, Sikhs, and Hindus are all kaafirs. Even some sects of Islam like the Ahmadiyas are kaafirs. Make no mistake, if you are not a Muslim, you are a kaafir.
So what, you may say, is the difference?
There is. It is in the matter of rights allowed to the kaafirs. Islam is generous in this matter. Islam grants the right to convert to Islam to all kaafirs. Other than that, none else, no other right is available to kaafirs. Not even the right to life.
Islam goes one step further. It mandates that Muslims have the sacred duty to release the souls of those kaafirs that are recalcitrant enough not to see the light of the day and convert to Islam, so that they can be re-born as Muslims. Islam doesn’t believe in rebirth but yes, the souls of kaafirs can be reborn as Muslims. This is the only exception. This duty goes something like this. When a Muslim meets a kaafir, he has to give three warnings ordering the kaafir to convert to Islam. If the kaafir doesn’t relent, the Muslim has no alternative except to release the soul through the act of Jaba (slitting the throat half way and leaving the person to release the sinful blood and suffer for all his sins and then die) to release his soul to be born again as a righteous Muslim.
Supposing, a Muslim meets a kaafir woman, what are his duties? As the kaafir marriage is not valid, the Muslim is free to possess her as his wife or offer her as a wife to any other Muslim who may desire her. She need not be killed. And who, you may ask, is a woman? Any female above the age of 8 years of age is termed as a woman.
You may get another doubt. What if the kaafir is stronger than the Muslim? Well there are two alternatives. One is to wait till the kaafir is vulnerable either thru illness or sleeping or injured or is somehow weak, he can be killed without a fair warning and from behind the back.
Some more information about the peaceful religion of Islam in the future.
New translations of the Ramayana by Dr. Murali Chemuturi!