A R Rahman, one of the finest music directors of India responded to a fatwa by clerics of Raza Academy by quoting from the Holy book of Quran. An Indian Islamic group had issued a fatwa against Iranian film-maker Majid Majidi and the Oscar-winning Indian composer AR Rahman over the depiction of the prophet Muhammad in a new film.
Rahman in his response wrote – “Nothing will happen to us except what Allah has ordained for us: He is our protector and on Allah let the Believers put their trust” Qu’ran (Surah Tawba, Verse 51)
Text of A.R. Rahman’s letter (With No intention to offend anyone: A.R. Rahman on blasphemy controversy.)
“This letter is for all those people, who have been aware of the recent events concerning me. I’m not a scholar of Islam. I follow the middle path and am part of traditionalist and part rationalist
I live in the western and eastern worlds and try to love all people for what they are, without judging them.
I didn’t direct or produce the movie Muhammad (PBUH), Messenger Of God.” I just did the music. My spiritual experiences of working on the film are very personal and I would prefer not to share these.
Mr. Noori, a member of the Raza Academy, has said in an interview featured in “The Bayside Journal”, why he believes it is important to voice a complaint:
Mr Noori: “See, as Muslims we have to do something about it since it is against our religion so that tomorrow, if and when I face Allah he doesn’t say that you didn’t do anything to stop this from happening. So we have to try”.
My decision to compose the music for this film was made in good faith with no intentions of causing offence.
In fact, the decision was based on similar point of view as expressed by Mr. Noori. What, and if, I had the good fortune of facing Allah (Sbt), and he was to ask me on Judgement Day:
“I gave you faith, talent, money, fame and health…why did you not do music for my Beloved Muhammad (sals) film? A film whose intention is to unite humanity, clear misconceptions and spread my message that life is about kindness, about uplifting the poor, and living in the service of humanity and not mercilessly killing innocent in my name”.
Today there is a blur between the real world and the virtual world and I have taken aback to see that, for some years now, unethical, unacceptable and unkind remarks are made online concerning the Holy Prophet. These abhorrent comments are no doubt due to the lack of understanding. I have always felt that we must counter this reaction with love and kindness, and through the audio-visual media reach out to people who wish to broaden their understanding
We are indeed fortunate and blessed to live in a country like India where religious freedom is practiced and where the aim of all communities is to live in peace and harmony sans confusion and violence.
Let us set a precedent in clearing conflict with grace and dignity and not trigger violence in words or actions
Let us pray for forgiveness, and from our hearts bless those who suffer in the world and bless the country that we live in. To so pray is to reflect the noble and enlightened nature of our Beloved Muhammad (PBUH).”