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24. RELIGION AND RIOTS
JUST AS we do not break one another’s heads in respect of civil matters, so may be not do even in respect of religious matters.
The world is watching some with glee and some with sorrow the dogfight that is proceeding in our midst. We have listened to Satan Religion call it by what name you like is made of sterner stuff?
It is unnecessary to discriminate and apportion the blame between the rival practices. Where both are to blame, who can arbitrate with golden scales and fix the exact ratio of blame? It is no part of self-defence to tell lies or exaggerate.
It matters little to me whether the perpetrators of shameful deeds are Hindus or Musalmans. It is enough to know that some of us are blaspheming a patient God and doing inhuman deeds in the sacred name of religion. I know too that neither assassination nor fratricidal acts can possibly save by religion. Religion worth the name can only be saved by purity, humility and fearlessness of the uttermost type among its professors. It is the only Suddhi and only propaganda.

No Sanction for Strife
Poet Iqbal has written the immortal line:
“Religion does not inculcate mutual strife”. Could there be a greater proof of our cowardice than fighting amongst ourselves?
Islam means peace. Hindus claim to follow the path of Ahimsa. They both swear by god, but in practice they follow Satan. The Muslims stabs the innocent Hindu and the Hindu stabs the innocent Muslim.
We are passing through trying times. There is news of stabbing in Calcutta, Dacca, Allahabad, Bombay and so on. What is more, all this is done in the name of religion. How stabbing and murder of the innocents whether aggressive of retaliatory, can help the cause of religion, I fail to understand. the spirit of religion requires us to make him witness of our littlest of little acts. In Mira’s song that has just been sung at the prayer the devotee prays to god to come to his aid and deliver him from distress. For he alone can do so, none else. Let us pray to god then to deliver us from our distress. If our prayer is sincere, we will rely on him entirely and put away the sword. And if even one party does so, violence would cease.
I ask you to consider for yourselves why innocent women and children have been killed. Is it to any religion? No religion teaches anyone to kill his neighbours. What was done is nothing but wanton destruction. I do not stop think whether it is done from motives of self interest or any other.
The Hindus and the Sikhs by killing and loot and arson are destroying their own religions. I claim to be a student of religions and I know that no religion teaches madness. Islam is no exception.