“The 99 Superheroes”: Are Islamic Cartoons justified?

Posted by Abdullah Mahmood on 3:45 AM with No comments

“The 99 Superheroes”: Are Islamic Cartoons justified?

In Islam, every man or woman who enters the fold of the ‘Divinely ordained’ religion is bound by a number of laws and beliefs that he is to adopt for sustaining in the material world. No doubt, the most important faith among these is to believe in the uniqueness of the Creator, His Powers and His Attributes. It is thus, known to be the responsibility of Muslims to not only commit their lives to their creator but also convey the message to those who still dwell in ignorance.

A few days ago, while skimming through some news websites on the internet I came across one of president Obama’s speech that he delivered during a Summit on Entrepreneurship a month ago. The speech covered topics on what areas he wanted American citizens to look upon to add on to their productivity and how they should collaborate with each other to promote their common goals of sustenance. Among this speech was also a topic that caught all my eyes and ears. The president shed light on a Muslim figure; Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa for his contributions on capturing the imagination of youngsters through a message of tolerance with his comic series entitled “The 99 superheroes”.

This series of comic heroes as I discovered later were actually derived from the 99 names of Almighty Allah. The founder of Teshkeel Comics, Mutawa, considered his act to be a way of building a bridge between the Muslim extremists and the Western ideology by making use of the Islamic concepts to promote universal virtues. The comic book with a monthly subscription around US, UK, Middle East and several other countries since first printed in May 2006, for me was hard to swallow.

The Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) himself once mentioned that angels would never enter the house of those who had pictures. For every believer it should be clear that images and portraits of any living thing or cartoons for that matter cannot be justified in the jurisdiction of Islam. In this regard, not only the images but those personifying the attributes of God in cartoon characters cannot be allowed. A human being can possess one or many virtues attributable to God for His 99 names, but the use of cartoons in this case raise questions and controversies similar to the past incidents at Denmark and recently reincarnated on Facebook.

One cannot deny alcohol to be condemned, interest to be forbidden and the taste of pork to be justified in Islam. Cartoons or any other expressions of art, no matter what angelic purpose they might seem to pursue cannot be allowed in any case no matter what.

The author is an associated editor at IslamTribune a US based Online News Magazine, which tries to address the issues pertaining to people around the world especially the muslim community. Visit IslamTribune.com for Breaking News, Current Affairs and blogs run by people who have more to share with this world.