Notes: Islam and Christianity in Africa

The Light (Pakistan), 16th August 1922 Issue (Vol. 1, No. 17, p. 1)

It is an open secret that Islam and Christianity are engaged in a spiritual struggle in Africa. The Christian Church is working very hard to win over the whole of Africa to Christ. Islam, however, has got no regular propaganda, but its moral force and the spiritual influence are enough to check the progress of Christianity.

Even the Christian writers who have studied the teachings of both the religions and their effect on the natives of Africa have admitted the superiority of Islam. Mr Bosworth Smith says:

“Christian travellers, with every wish to think otherwise, have remarked that the native who accepts Islam acquires at once a sense of the dignity of human nature not commonly found even among those who have been brought to accept Christianity.

Wherever the African is found in Christian lands, his leading trait is not docility as has often been alleged, but servility. He is slow and unprogressive. On the other hand, there are numerous native Moslem [Muslim] communities and States in Africa that are self-reliant, productive, indepen­dent and dominant, and self-supporting without the patronage of the parent country, Arabia, whence they derive their political, literary and ecclesiastical institutions. In Sierra Leone, the Moslems, without any aid from the Government, imperial or local, or contri­butions from Mecca [Makkah] or Stamboul [Istanbul], erect their mosques, keep up their services, conduct their schools, and contribute to the support of mission­aries from Arabia, Morocco or Futah when they visit them. The same compliment cannot be paid to the native Christian.”