Does the Qur'an promote violence towards others, or does it promote peace?

I hear a lot of people saying that it promotes peace, but this seems like wishful thinking to me (both by believers and multiculturalists). Similarly, most people who proclaim it promotes violence have an anti-Islamic (i.e., bigoted) agenda as well.

Please understand I am not asking for any of your personal interpretations of the Qur'an. I am only asking about:

  • The plain meaning of the text (insofar as such a thing is possible with a religious book)
  • Traditional and modern interpretations

Basically, what I'm trying to figure out is if Islamists who

  • murder other Muslims of the same sect who oppose them (link)
  • who murder other "people of the book" (link)
  • or who murder "pagans" (link)


  • perverting their religion (i.e., using it as a veneer for bigotry)
  • or are in fact the few people who take it seriously, while everyone else is just tiptoeing around the offensive parts.

I realize religion is a touchy subject, and any time it comes up, it's hard to make absolute statements. But I would like to get as close to the true meaning of the text as possible.

  • 3
    See also Quran + Islam + Violence – ChrisW Jun 15 '14 at 19:05
  • 6
    I don't think the koran & muslims are any different from the bible and christians. How many christians have been murdered for being the wrong flavour of christianity, with quotes from the bible to justify it? – hdhondt Jun 16 '14 at 1:49
  • 5
    Most likely it promotes violence AND people in different parts. Religious texts are not generally known for their consistency. – Michael Borgwardt Jun 16 '14 at 12:35
  • As @Michael Borgwardt says, there will undoubtedly be different passages that point in different directions. But it sounds like you want to know about the overall "meaning" of the text. I think that is much too subjective for this site: it's a question of theology, not science, and is unlikely to admit an objective answer. (And the charter of this site is "scientific skepticism".) – Nate Eldredge Jun 16 '14 at 15:27
  • 1
    i live in 85% Moslem population country, if yes...15% other religions population is already dead – Ansyori Nov 10 '14 at 8:53

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