What Does Islam Teach About…Deception, Lying and Taqiyya
Posted on June 4th, 2019

Courtesy thereligionofpeace.com

Does Islam permit Muslims to lie? 

Muslim scholars teach that Muslims should generally be truthful to each other, unless the purpose of lying is to “smooth over differences” or “gain the upper-hand over an enemy”There are several forms of lying to non-believers that are permitted under certain circumstances, the best known being taqiyya (the Shia name).  These circumstances are typically those that advance the cause of Islam – in some cases by gaining the trust of non-believers in order to draw out their vulnerability and defeat them. 
QuranQuran (16:106) – Establishes that there are circumstances that can “compel” a Muslim to tell a lie.Quran (3:28) – This verse tells Muslims not to take those outside the faith as friends, unless it is to “guard themselves” against danger, meaning that there are times when a Muslim may appear friendly to non-Muslims, even though they should not feel friendly.Quran (9:3) – “…Allah and His Messenger are free from liability to the idolaters…” The dissolution of oaths is with pagans who remained at Mecca following its capture. They did nothing wrong, but were evicted anyway.  (The next verse refers only to those who have a personal agreement with Muhammad as individuals – see Ibn Kathir vol 4, p 49)Quran (66:2) – “Allah has already ordained for you the dissolution of your oaths…”Quran (40:28) – A man is introduced as a believer, but one who had to “hide his faith” among those who are not believers.Quran (2:225) – “Allah will not call you to account for thoughtlessness in your oaths, but for the intention in your hearts”Quran (3:54) – “And they (the disbelievers) schemed, and Allah schemed (against them): and Allah is the best of schemers.” The Arabic word used here for scheme (or plot) is makara, which means ‘cunning,’ ‘guile’ and ‘deceit’. If Allah is supremely deceitful toward unbelievers, then there is little basis for denying that Muslims are allowed to do the same. (See also 8:30 and 10:21)Taken collectively these verses are interpreted to mean that there are circumstances when a Muslim may be “compelled” to deceive others for a greater purpose.
Hadith and SiraSahih Bukhari (52:269) – “The Prophet said, ‘War is deceit.'” The context of this is thought to be the murder of Usayr ibn Zarim and his thirty unarmed companions by Muhammad’s men after they were “guaranteed” safe passage (see Additional Notes below).

Sahih Bukhari (49:857) – “He who makes peace between the people by inventing good information or saying good things, is not a liar.” Lying is permitted when the end justifies the means.

Sahih Bukhari (84:64-65) – Speaking from a position of power at the time, Ali confirms that lying is permitted in order to deceive an “enemy.”  The Quran defines the ‘enemy’ as “disbelievers” (4:101). 

Sahih Muslim (32:6303) – “…he did not hear that exemption was granted in anything what the people speak as lie but in three cases: in battle, for bringing reconciliation amongst persons and the narration of the words of the husband to his wife, and the narration of the words of a wife to her husband (in a twisted form in order to bring reconciliation between them).”

Sahih Bukhari (50:369) – Recounts the murder of a poet, Ka’b bin al-Ashraf, at Muhammad’s insistence. The men who volunteered for the assassination used dishonesty to gain Ka’b’s trust, pretending that they had turned against Muhammad. This drew the victim out of his fortress, whereupon he was brutally slaughtered.

From Islamic Law:

Reliance of the Traveler (p. 746 – 8.2) – “Speaking is a means to achieve objectives. If a praiseworthy aim is attainable through both telling the truth and lying, it is unlawful to accomplish through lying because there is no need for it. When it is possible to achieve such an aim by lying but not by telling the truth, it is permissible to lie if attaining the goal is permissible (N:i.e. when the purpose of lying is to circumvent someone who is preventing one from doing something permissible), and obligatory to lie if the goal is obligatory… it is religiously precautionary in all cases to employ words that give a misleading impression…  (See the Permissible Lying section on the Sharia page for more)

“One should compare the bad consequences entailed by lying to those entailed by telling the truth, and if the consequences of telling the truth are more damaging, one is entitled to lie.”
NotesThe Hadith makes it clear that Muslims are allowed to lie to unbelievers in order to defeat them or protect themselves. There are several forms:

Taqiyya – Saying something that isn’t true as it relates to the Muslim identity.  This is a Shiite term: the Sunni counterpart is Muda’rat.

Kitman – Lying by omission. An example would be when Muslim apologists quote only a fragment of verse 5:32 (that if anyone kills “it shall be as if he had killed all mankind”) while neglecting to mention that the rest of the verse (and the next) mandate murder in undefined cases of “corruption” and “mischief.” 

Tawriya – Intentionally creating a false impression.

Muruna – ‘Blending in’ by setting aside some practices of Islam or Sharia in order to advance others.

Though not called taqiyya by name, Muhammad clearly used deception when he signed a 10-year treaty with the Meccans (known as Hudaibiya) which allowed him access to their city while he secretly prepared his own forces for a takeover. The unsuspecting residents were conquered in easy fashion after he broke the treaty two years later. Some of the people in the city who had trusted him at his word were executed. 

Another example of lying is when Muhammad used deception to trick his personal enemies into letting down their guard and exposing themselves to slaughter by pretending to seek peace. This happened in the case of Ka’b bin al-Ashraf (as previously noted) and later against Usayr ibn Zarim, a surviving leader of the Banu Nadir tribe, which had been evicted from their home in Medina by the Muslims.

At the time, Usayr ibn Zarim was attempting to gather an armed force against the Muslims from among a tribe allied with the Quraish (against which Muhammad had already declared war). Muhammad’s “emissaries” went to ibn Zarim and persuaded him to leave his safe haven on the pretext of meeting with the prophet of Islam in Medina to discuss peace. Once vulnerable, the leader and his thirty companions were massacred by the Muslims with ease, probably because they were unarmed – having been given a guarantee of safe passage (Ibn Ishaq 981, Ibn Kathir v.4 p.300).

Such was the reputation of early Muslims for lying and killing that even those who “accepted Islam” did not feel entirely safe. Consider the fate of the Jadhima. When Muslim “missionaries” approached their tribe, one of the members insisted that they would be slaughtered even though they had already “converted” to Islam (to avoid just such a demise). However, the others insisted that they could trust the Muslim leader’s promise that they would not be harmed if they simply offered no resistance. (After convincing the skeptic to lay down his arms, the unarmed men of the tribe were tied up and beheaded by the missionaries – Ibn Ishaq 834 & 837).

Today’s apologists often rationalize Muhammad’s murder of his critics at Medina by falsely claiming that they broke a treaty with their actions. Yet, these same apologists place little value on treaties broken by Muslims. From Muhammad to Saddam Hussein, promises made to non-Muslim are distinctly non-binding in the Muslim mindset.

Leaders in the Arab world sometimes say one thing to English-speaking audiences and then something entirely different to their own people in Arabic.  Palestinian leaders routinely tell Westerners about their desire for peace with Israel, even as they whip Palestinians into a hateful and violent frenzy against Jews.  Yassir Arafat even referenced “Hudaibiya” – an admission to conning guillible non-Muslims.

The 9/11 hijackers practiced deception by going into bars and drinking alcohol, thus throwing off potential suspicion that they were fundamentalists plotting jihad. This effort worked so well that John Walsh, the host of a popular American television show, claimed well after the fact that their bar trips were evidence of ‘hypocrisy.’

The transmission from Flight 93 records the hijackers telling their doomed passengers that there is “a bomb on board” but that everyone will “be safe” as long as “their demands are met.” Obviously none of this was true, but these men, who were so intensely devoted to Islam that they were willing to “slay and be slain for the cause of Allah” (as the Quran puts it) saw nothing wrong with employing taqiyya to facilitate their mission of mass murder.

The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) insists that it “has not now or ever been involved with the Muslim Brotherhood, or supported any covert, illegal, or terrorist activity or organization.”  In fact, it was created by the Muslim Brotherhood and has bankrolled Hamas.  At least nine founders or board members of ISNA have been accused by prosecutors of supporting terrorism. 

The notorious Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) is so well known for shamelessly lying about its ties to terror and extremism that books have been written on the subject.  They take seriously the part of Sharia  that says “it is permissible to lie if attaining the goal is permissible and obligatory to lie if the goal is obligatory”.  The goal being the ascendency of Islam (and Sharia itself) on the American landscape. 

In 2007, CAIR’s Ibrahim Hooper published an op-ed with a fabricated story about Muhammad that portrayed him as a forgiving man:There was a lady who threw garbage in the path of the prophet on a daily basis. One day, she didn‘t do it. The prophet went to inquire about her health, because he thought she might be sick. This lady ended up converting to Islam. So, that‘s how you respond to people who attack you, with forgiveness and with kindness.Hooper is not ignorant, of course, and knew what he was doing.  After getting caught, he changed the wording slightly to say that it is a tradition “Muslims are taught,” but he continues to promote the story without qualifying it as untrue – thus causing others to unwittingly repeat a lie.

Prior to engineering several deadly terror plots, such as the Fort Hood massacre and the attempt to blow up a Detroit-bound airliner, American cleric Anwar al-Awlaki was regularly sought out by NPR, PBS and even government leaders to expound on the peaceful nature of Islam. 

In 2013, a scholar at the prestigious al-Azhar university decreed that Muslims may wear the cross in order to deceive Christians into thinking they are friendly.  He cited 3:28 which says not to be friends with non-Muslims unless it is a way of “guarding” yourself against them.

“Hiding faith” can mean deceiving others about Islam in order to make it appear more attractive.  For example, a prominent Muslim activist in the United States, Linda Sarsour, bills herself as a “progressive” and says that gays, women and religious minorities need not worry about Sharia being imposed.  She even says that money is lent free of charge under Islamic law (more about that here).   

The Quran says in several places that Allah is the best at deceiving people.  

There are a few early Quran verses that seem to encourage truthfulness: 70:32-33, and it bears mentioning that many Muslims are no less honest than anyone else.  But, when lying is addressed in the Quran, it is nearly always in reference to the “lies against Allah” – meaning the Jews and Christians who rejected Muhammad’s claim to being a prophet.

Still, the circumstances by which Muhammad allowed a believer to lie to a non-spouse are limited to those that either advance the cause of Islam or enable a Muslim to avoid harm to his well-being (and presumably that of other Muslims as well).  Although this should be kept very much in mind when dealing with matters of global security, such as Iran’s nuclear intentions, it is not grounds for assuming that the Muslim one might personally encounter on the street or in the workplace is any less honest than anyone else.

Additional Reading: 
Taqiyya: TROP’s Response to the Apologists
Taqiyya about Taqiyya (Raymond Ibrahim)
Knowing the Four Forms of Lying
Muruna: Violating Sharia to Fool the West

5 Responses to “What Does Islam Teach About…Deception, Lying and Taqiyya”

  1. Ratanapala Says:

    Looks like they have perfected the “Art of Lying”! What a religion, what a prophet, what a following and a civilization based on deceit!

  2. Ancient Sinhalaya Says:

    All the sins (crimes) any two legged creature can do anywhere under the sun:
    1 killing
    2 stealing
    3 sexual misconduct
    4 lying
    5 drug/alcohol abuse.

    The above five are the basis for penal codes for every country in the world. If they aren’t sins, why on earth the
    culprits get punished. Murder tops the list and gets the maximum punishment. 72 virgins? Must be brain dead or
    brainless. They head straight to animal kingdom to suffer 100s/1000s lifetimes before get the ‘promotion’ to be
    two legged creatures again (Theory of Evolution?). If you look at your teeth in the mirror and then look at cat’s/
    dog’s/lion’s (in a pic of course to avoid being part of him for a day or two), it will tell you what sort of diet you
    should be eating. Animals aren’t our food and they too have a right to life. They also contribute a lot to pollute the
    planet and pass on their diseases to the two legged creatures (their revenge?).

    People used to worship trees, mountains, rivers, gods in the olden days in the absence of science. Today, we all
    know how the two legged creatures came to being thanks to Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. Then his book, The
    Tree of Life, explained how all these other creatures came to be being. Today, no honest person disputes the
    Theory and every museum in the world dedicates a large section to the Theory of Evolution. 0 gods displayed.

    Then NASA’s missions showed the world that the earth’s size is a grain of sand in the vast vast vast universe
    (just like Buddha explained) where distances are measured in light years. Any doubter can find out by just
    Googling NASA’s missions Voyager etc. etc. We also know the earth, moon, etc. etc. are all round in shape due to the gravitational forces (pulling towards the centre) and which also make them orbit. There is nothing divine about the two legged creatures or earth, moon etc. etc. then. It’s all science. It’s all Buddhism.

    Buddhism disappeared from its birth place since it didn’t fit the society there with caste systems, animal
    sacrifices etc. and people quickly reverted back to religions of conveniences to pay for their sins in the next
    100s/1000s years in animal kingdom and get the ‘promotion’ to be two legged creatures again (Theory of
    Evolution?). Then invading mussies killed all the Buddhist monks and burnt down the Buddhist Universities (a world’s first) and got rid of the only true religion in the world completely. Buddhism doesn’t have paid staff or
    rich, powerful organisations or profess its followers to have large families to propagate it since it is up to the individual to live this life well and make sure the next one is even better and finally escape being reborn again.
    See it’s all science, it’s all Buddhism. Most people don’t agree since Buddhism isn’t a religion of convenience!

  3. Ancient Sinhalaya Says:

    All the sins (crimes) any two legged creature can do anywhere under the sun:
    1 killing
    2 stealing
    3 sexual misconduct
    4 lying
    5 drug/alcohol abuse.

    Refraining from them is Buddhism’s Five Precepts.
    It’s just 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. No 1:10:100 or 2:20:100 etc. etc.

  4. Ananda-USA Says:

    Good riddance to bad rubbish!

    All such ILLEGAL CON-ARTISTES committing CRIMES in Sri Lanka should be SPEEDILY deported!

    Sixty Moulavis among 600 deported

    June 5, 2019, 10:06 pm

    Six hundred foreigners including 60 Moulavis who had arrived here on tourist visas have been deported during the last two weeks.

    Some of those deported recently, had earlier come here on the recommendations of the Muslim Religious Affairs Ministry

  5. Dilrook Says:

    Not just lying but also all 5 sins.

    Islamic teachings violate all 5 precepts.

    1. abstain from onslaught on breathing beings – killing of humans (including non-believers) and animals not only allowed but also encouraged. Executions, etc. are encouraged. Most terrorist groups follow this religion.

    2. abstain from taking what is not given – the introductor of the religion of pieces himself waged war on others’ lands and captured them and their women.

    3. abstain from misconduct concerning sense-pleasures – multiple wives (even sex with children – under 18 and as young as 7) are allowed.

    4. abstain from false speech – telling lies is commanded to promote or protect the religion of pieces.

    5. abstain from alcoholic drink or drugs that are an opportunity for heedlessness – most Sri Lankan drug dealers are from the followers of the religion of pieces. Asia’s narcotics growing and export hubs are all these religious republics.

    A follower of this religion and a follower of Buddhism cannot coexist.

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