time it may also be admitted that where Islam is modified by contact with
higher civilizations, as in India, the spirit of intolerance which the Sura At-Taubah
(ix) inculcates is much lessened. Amongst Muslims of the new school a friendly
spirit towards men of other creeds is becoming more and more common: but this is
a welcome departure from its earliest principles.
Prayer for unbelievers, though relatives, is now forbidden, yet Abraham
prayed for his father thus: 'Forgive my father, for he was one of the erring.'
Sura Ash-Shu'ara' (xxvi) 86. The tolerant attitude of earlier days was now set
aside, still the alteration had to be explained and the next verse attempts to
justify this new position of intolerance.
This idea of the sacred war incumbent upon all the faithful was only
gradually arrived at. This conception that all 'the religion should be of God,'
that Islam should be supreme, was a grand one, and as political power increased
it took clearer shape in the Prophet's mind. He had now left far behind such