A few months ago, an Islamophobic website posted an audio-clip in my voice, in which, so they claimed, I justify attacking all Christians. Based on this, they began claiming that I am a 'jihadist' preaching 'radical jihad' to Muslims in America.

Due to the preposterousness of the claim, and the xenophobic nature of those who propagated it, I felt it best to not even dignify this audio clip with a response, as anyone who has read my articles, taken my classes, or seen my videos will know this is completely untrue. However, recently, a number of other figures, including some esteemed religious pastors, have begun reiterating these same claims and spreading this audio clip. This has resulted in me receiving many queries, hate mails, and even death threats. Therefore, I feel compelled to respond to this audio-clip in order to clear up this fabrication.

This audio clip is a shoddy cut-and-paste job from a lengthy theological series (around 15 hours of audio) I gave many years ago, discussing the reality of the Islamic concept of shirk (associating partners with Allah). The series had absolutely nothing to do with politics or jihad. Rather, some theological statements from that lecture have been taped together and made to look political. The audio recording as it stands is a complete distortion. Someone literally took sentences from different parts of that series and constructed a very menacing sounding paragraph in my voice. As such, that paragraph in the audio clip is a complete fabrication.

In one section of that theological series, I discussed some of the differences between a category of shirk called 'major' and another called 'minor'. One of those differences involves the fact that the theory of an ideal Islamic government would not allow Muslims to openly practice idolatry, whereas other forms of shirk (viz., 'minor' shirk) would not be punishable by an Islamic State. (This would be similar to Moses prohibiting the Israelites to worship the Golden Calf). While the wording of that sentence could have been more precise, it is clear from the context of that sentence (which is not quoted in the audio clip) that I am discussing a theoretical Islamic state and attempting to clarify some of the differences between 'major' and 'minor' shirk (I also list five other differences).

In a different section of that series, I mention that believing that God has a Son, or worshipping Jesus, would be in contradiction to the Islamic concept of monotheism, and be classified as a type of shirk. This is a standard Islamic (and Jewish) doctrine.

In a third section of that series, I quote the Qur'an directly when it describes idolatry as being 'filthy'(similar to the Old Testament describing it as an 'abomination').

What this audio clip has done is to cut-and-paste these three statements (and more) in one paragraph, and thus give an impression that since Christians practice 'shirk', they should not be allowed to practice Christianity, and must also be 'filthy'. Of course, this shoddy cut-and-paste job flies in the face of Islamic teachings, and cannot be attributed to Islam or to me.

Never have I claimed that Christians need to be prevented from practicing Christianity, or that they are filthy. This is truly a preposterous claim, as even the most basic exposure to Islamic law would demonstrate that non-Muslims are allowed to worship according to their doctrines in an Islamic state. Therefore (and I have made this point many times in my lectures), if this is the case in an ideal and theoretical 'Islamic state', how can anyone claim that Muslims want to ban Christianity in a non-Islamic land?

In conclusion, my views on jihad can be heard in my lectures and read in my articles (a simple Google will show most of them). In addition, quite a few articles have been written about me and my work (in particular, I reference the New York Times Magazine cover article about me). My message has been consistent and clear: I am a Muslim theologian and teach (and preach) the theology of Islam, but I have never called for violence against any group or religion.

I have made mistakes in the past (and no doubt will continue to do so in the future); however, what this website, with its concocted audio-clip, is accusing me of is an all-out fabrication and sheer slander. It completely contradicts my talks, writings, public and private work, and indeed my own personal beliefs.

I hope this clarifies the misunderstandings surrounding this audio.

20 Responses

  1. Ubaid Seth

    I’m sorry you’re going through this, Shaykh. This is pure deception and a reflection of their own morals and values. If someone has to resort to lies to discredit you, I take that as a good indication that you’re doing well. May Allah bless you and your family for the service to the Ummah and I hope this doesn’t discourage any of our youth from pursuing Islamic knowledge.

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  2. Shabeeb

    I’ve undertaken many lectures and lessons from Sh. Yasir and it is very unfortunate that he is going through this. What’s pitiful is how can people who hear the audio conclude that this is what he’s preaching, the audio is clearly a cut and paste piece of junk. May Allah protect the Sheikh and make this situation easy.

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  3. Fatima

    Assalamu alaikum Sh. Yasir,

    May Allah Ta’ala help you through this ordeal, Aameen.

    You should take legal action against slander with the help of MLF or other attorneys in your community in sha’ Allah.

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  4. Abdul Wahab Saleem

    Over my years of being an avid follower of Sh. Yasir Qadhi and his thought, I have come across many who take him as a friend and a few who take him as a foe. I have never heard a more absurd allegation directed against Sh. Yasir than this. May Allah preserve and protect him!

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  5. alynch4047

    It’s an irritation to have to respond to fabricators and liars but sometimes necessary. Your truthfulness stands in clear contradistinction to the lying efforts of these people. May God reward you for your patience, wassalaam, Abdulhaq

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  6. Nida

    May Allah protect you and your family Shaykh. Its unfortunate that such garbage needs a response, but it does before it becomes too widespread. If you are getting death threats, I would suggest reporting them to the police and not ignoring them.

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  7. Abez

    Yasir Qadhi’s work speaks for itself, and the fact that someone has to fabricate something to make him look bad is proof of that.

    Ya Shaykh, May Allah reward you and increase you in blessings. May He preserve your “honor” in this world and raise you in ranks in Jannah, InshaAllah. :)

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  8. Nam

    SubhanaAllah. May Allah rectify your affairs, ameen

    I don’t think we realize the struggles our shuyoukh go through to teach us. May Allah have mercy on them and protect them and their families, ameen

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  9. Muslims4Liberty

    not acknowledging their propaganda and rhetoric is exactly what they want. They want to spread their hate unchecked. That’s why we created Muslims 4 Liberty. A group devoted to challenging the haters on their own ground, at their events, in front of their fans. Academic challenging, asking for references, challenging knowledge levels. All done in a respectful ‘guerilla activism” style.

    The haters hate to be challenged, nice to see a mainstream islamic speaker finally bellying up to the bar.

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  10. Swaleh

    May Allah protect our shuyoukh and grant them steadfastness so that they can continue to benefit us with their great work, Ameen

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  11. rayz

    Assalamu alaikum Sh. Yasir,

    May Allah Azzawajal help you through this ordeal. Ameen

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  12. Safa Anwar

    Sheikh yasir, your best attorney is Allah SWT. InshAllah you will be given justice. I hope this hate clears up against you inshAllah.

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  13. Sheena

    Yasir Qadhi’s work has helped me growing my knowledge and I can tell that the fabricated claims are far away from his and Islam’s teaching.

    I pray that Allah make this ordeal easy for him and make him steadfast and protect his honor ameen

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  14. Allama Iqbal (@iqbaliyat)

    If this is true then somebody is dedicating their time in doing this stuff to malign you. And for this matter they are ready to go to any extent to malign you. My advice is that you must take help from a professional lawyer who is trustworthy also. In fact I advice you to learn the Constitutional laws which are related to these events.
    This experience I am telling is based on Hollywood movies, believe me, there is a tinge of truth in such movies.
    Also if we look into the history of Islam, we can find such events. If we do not respond in a timely manner then it will be too late, History will repeat again.

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  15. Nadia

    Alhumdulillah, Yasir Qadhi has helped me in many ways with his classes and lectures in guiding me to my Islamic faith. He is one of the most well-respected sheikhs out there and without a doubt what these Islamophobes are saying about him are truly disappointing and hurtful. Without him in this Ummah and his knowledge, I and other Muslims would be far away from where we stand now.

    May Allah SWT help you Sheikh Yasir Qadhi and protect you from these claims along with your family as well, ameen.

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  16. Ummer Farooq (@faro0485)

    I think rather than just making a statement, you should go after the makers of this and with a video… ask them why they cut and pasted your speech.

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  17. @stevestonesr

    I stand by my Brother, Yasir, and know him to be a person of peace who works to unite people of all faiths at those points where we share common values. There are differences between all peoples of the major Abrahamic faiths, but what binds us together is plenty enough to work together for the common good, and to the glory of the one true God.

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  18. Halima

    May Allah protect you from the defamers and fabricators. Us Muslims should help by donating to fund legal costs for you and for any other of our brothers and sisters who go through this all the time.

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  19. Habesha Muslimah

    The muslim Ummah need precious Muslim scholars like sheikh Dr. Yassir Qadhi. I’m sure that Allah (swt) has guided many young Muslims through him to go back to their deen and practice it and I’m proud to say that I’m one of them! May Allah continue to bless him and may he protect him from all evils and reward him with the greatest rewards.

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  20. Amiyn al-Ansare

    On the topic of Islamaophobia, Dr. Yasir, do you think it is worthwhile to debate Robert Spencer and David Wood (both of them in particular). I honestly am dissatisfied with the reality that they debate Muslims who are only about 60% prepared to correct the misunderstandings that these two men spread about various controversies such as the satanic verses incident, which you explained adequetely, barik ALLHU feek. I also dislike how they quickly jump to conclusions about certain personalities in Islamic scholarship being widely accepted by the masses of Muslims, but the do not appear to recognize those who strive to adhere to orthodox and those who do not ascribe to strange notions of such personalities.

    In my humble opinion, you, barik ALLAHU feek, are likely the most prepared to debate these men in the manner which they public claim to seek:

    Without relying on the ‘Tu quoque’ , which David Wood says is Muslims using biblical references or realities in Christianity to say that “your religion has these problems too”, and without denying early historical references. Clearly, these men to not often understand that unreliability of the references they use, but often their opponents are not expert enough to clarify this reality. You’ll see exactly what I’m talking about here in Wood’s debate with Ali Atie:

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