*** Anyone who begins a sentence with, "When you beat your wife..." should re-think coming to the real world - I don't care WHAT follows after that collection of words.
Speaking of words, the Arabic word, 'idrubuhunna' - translated as 'striking' them should be looked at again. I do not have the space to go into the exegesis of the verse but let me just end the controversy with the simple statement: The Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) never even raised his voice - not to men, not to women and certainly never struck his wife. Who cares about 'not on the face' or 'don't leave a mark' - our Prophet (PBUH) NEVER did such a thing. Is that not good enough for us?
So WWMD (What Would Muhammad Do?) Back to the point of the verb, 'to strike' it is used in many places in the Quran. In the overwhelming majority of cases, it means 'to strike the earth in travel or to get away'. Allah also 'strikes a parable' - He does not literally whack you about (sorry no face and no marks) with an example, but he presents it with IMPACT. THAT is the essence of the word.
Far-fetched interpretation? Far from it: Muhammad (PBUH) - when he became upset with his wives - LEFT his house and stayed in his own apartment (what a great idea, guys! an apt. in the city just to get away from it). He did not hit anyone - he struck the earth and got away and that had impact on everyone.
Unfortunately, the ban may be counter-productive - it will confirm to some Muslims that this is in fact a witch-hunt against any popular Muslim speaker (which is silly because Reviving the Islamic Spirit Conference brings many scholars - good ones and loving ones) as well as many others to come and go freely because the people are 'safe from their fitnah' - an obligation upon Muslims to the people they live with.
Besides, Naik's talks are already available online. A better way to deal with this (in addition to the Islamic approach of counter-ideology) could be to have Agents chat with him - let him in - and if he does violate the law, charge and arrest him.
An Indian Muslim televangelist who was banned from Britain last week for “unacceptable behaviour” will not be allowed into Canada to speak at an upcoming conference in Toronto, sources familiar with the situation have told the National Post.
Dr. Zakir Naik, who has said “every Muslim should be a terrorist” and that Jews are “our staunchest enemy,” was to headline next month’s Journey of Faith Conference — which is billed as one of North America’s largest Islamic conferences and is expected to attract upward of 10,000 people.
Dr. Naik, the Mumbai-based founder of Peace TV and a widely respected lecturer in India, has a laundry list of views that could have led to his exclusion from the U.K. and Canada, both of which require an Indian citizen to obtain a visitor visa.
The 44-year-old medical doctor recommends capital punishment for homosexuals and the death penalty for those who abandon Islam as their faith.
He has said that a man is within his right to beat his wife “lightly,” though in a July 2009 YouTube video he cautioned against hitting her on the face or leaving a mark.
The “Keep Zakir Naik Out of Canada” Facebook group, which was launched over the weekend, also points out his view that western women make themselves “more susceptible to rape” by wearing revealing clothing.
Among the chief reasons, British Home Secretary Theresa May decided to quash Dr. Naik’s U.K. speaking tour later this month, however, were comments he made in a widely circulated 2007 video.
“If [Osama bin Laden] is fighting the enemies of Islam, I am for him … If he is terrorizing a terrorist, if he is terrorizing America the terrorist, the biggest terrorist, I am with him,” said Dr. Naik, who has delivered hundreds of talks in India, Canada, the U.S. and the Middle East. “Every Muslim should be a terrorist.”
Tarek Fatah, founder of the Muslim Canadian Congress, said he and the congress have been informed that Dr. Naik will be “stopped at the airport,” and sources familiar with the situation confirmed Dr. Naik does not have a visa to enter Canada.
“We are very happy that government agencies, having been made aware of his statements, have taken this decision,” Mr. Fatah said, adding that he sent a mass email to federal MPs last week, warning them of Dr. Naik’s views. “We certainly don’t want hate-mongers to come here.”
“To me, the rules as to who can come into this country were written for this kind of person,” echoed Bernie Farber, CEO of the Canadian Jewish Congress. “The comments are highly inflammatory, and highly provocative. When you put them together in one cauldron, you have a stew of hatred.”
Dr. Naik, president of the Islamic Research Foundation in Mumbai, was reached via email on Monday but would not comment on his pending visit to Toronto. In fact, Dr. Naik may not yet know that he is unwelcome in Canada, sources said.
In his email to the National Post, Dr. Naik pointed to a June 20 statement regarding the “overzealous and islamophobic exclusion order” issued by the U.K. The statement seeks to clarify his comments, which the foundation argues were “taken out of context.”
The Journey of Faith Conference is chaired by Imam Saed Rageah, whose Toronto mosque, the Abu Huraira Centre, made headlines last fall after a group of young worshippers vanished and were feared to have joined a Somali militant group.
Imam Ragaeh declined an interview request yesterday, but passed along a web video via email of Dr. Naik defending his comments and promising to challenge the U.K. ban.
According to the Journey of Faith event website, the “hope” of the July 2-4 conference at the downtown Metro Toronto Convention Centre is for Muslims to “renew their forgotten relationship” with the Quran. As of last night, the site still listed Dr. Naik as a featured speaker.
Citizenship and Immigration Canada declined to comment on the case yesterday, citing the Privacy Act.