Is Islam a cult? I looked at many different sources for definitions and listed them below. All the definitions are common in many ways. But that is something you will need to decide for yourself. In my opinion there is not a single doubt though because they do fall under the definition of a cult in almost all the ways possible.
1) Exclusive. They may say, “We’re the only ones with the truth; everyone else is wrong; and if you leave our group your salvation is in danger.”
2) Secretive. Certain teachings are not available to outsiders or they’re presented only to certain members, sometimes after taking vows of confidentiality.
3) Authoritarian. A human leader expects total loyalty and unquestioned obedience.
a relatively small group of people having religious beliefs or practices regarded by others as strange or sinister.“a network of Satan-worshiping cults”a misplaced or excessive admiration for a particular person or thing.
“a cult of personality surrounding the leaders”
1 : formal religious veneration : worship
2 : a system of religious beliefs and ritual; also : its body of adherents
3 : a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious; also : its body of adherents
4 : a system for the cure of disease based on dogma set forth by its promulgator <healthcults>
5 a : great devotion to a person, idea, object, movement, or work (as a film or book); especially : such devotion regarded as a literary or intellectual fad
b : the object of such devotion
The below is from Christianity Today
While the specifics vary from group to group, here are some general characteristics of religious cults that distinguish them from genuine Christian beliefs:
All-knowing leadership. An individual or group of people claims to be sent by God to “rule” the one true religion—which only includes members of that particular cult.
No room for differences. Cult members must believe exactly the same way and in exactly the same things; there is no room for disagreeing with the cult’s rules or doctrines.
A new and better way. Cults often claim they’ve been given a “special revelation” from God that’s superior to the Bible, or explains what the Bible is really trying to say.
Down on Christian doctrine. Cults often depict basic Christian doctrines and beliefs (like the Trinity, deity of Christ, salvation by grace through faith) as “full of holes” and completely illogical.
Scriptures get an added twist. Bible verses are often taken out of context or twisted to mean something very different than what was originally intended.
“Christians are wrong.” Cult members believe God has given their group the job of pointing out “heretical and evil” teachings of Christianity.
Works prove faith. Cult members often claim their good works are superior to those performed by Christians, and they say their works prove their religion is the one-and-only truth.
Salvation is a big unknown. Since cults often teach that salvation is based on performance, cult members can never know if they’ve done everything necessary to get to heaven.
No exit. Leaving the cult is not an option, and intimidation is often used to keep cult members from even thinking about getting out.
Let’s take a look:
They say that Islam is to “Rule the World,” according to God’s will.
They say that their religion is superior to everything else, especially Christianity.
Formal religious veneration: worship. They pray five times a day in one direction, toward the Kaaba in Mecca Saudi Arabia, which holds a black stone (meteorite). They lay their hands on the stone and ask for forgiveness of their sins. It is said that the stone started out white but turned black due to all the sins that it holds.
They are supposed to make at least one trip in their lifetime to the Kaaba to walk around the Kaaba and pray to the stone for forgiveness of sins.
They pledge complete allegiance to Allah AND Muhammad.
They are not given freedom of choice. They are threatened with death if they don’t convert
They are threatened with death if they leave Islam
They are forbidden to question anything Muhammad or their current leaders say.
They have to do good works to get into Heaven. I will add that this is even though their leaders commit horrible sins.
They say the Bible is wrong.
They re-write what the Bible really says.
They can never know if they have done enough (good works) to get to Heaven. They can just hope they have.
If you leave Islam, you can be killed by beheading or another way. Islam is the only religion that will kill you for leaving.
So, what do you think? They match up almost perfectly with the definition of a cult.
About the only definition that doesn’t match up perfectly with Islam being a cult is that, in most cases, it is smaller groups of people, not 1.5 Billion.
The following is from www.inthenameofallah.org/Do%20not%20Question%20the%20Quran.html
Do NOT Question the Quran :-
Q: Why did Muhammad forbid his followers from questioning him or the Quran?
A: As you all know by now, Muhammad had a huge problem regarding TRUTH and VERACITY. Neither the pagan Quraysh nor the Judaised Arabs accepted his version of Islam because whenever they questioned him about the differences between the Biblical versions of events and his, he became upset, violently angry and full of ignorant replies.
His rage was exactly because he could not answer the questions truthfully and simply since his version of events was entirely invented by himself as he went along, as I have demonstrated conclusively in several of the earlier chapters. It is symptomatic of all LIARS that they get very agitated, defensive and angry whenever they are found out.
Ladies and gentlemen, freedom of opinion refers to man’s total freedom of creed and thinking, as well as his freedom of declaring and expressing his points of view peacefully without the use of coercion or terror
The Almighty, according to the Bible, created man free, either to obey Him or not; either to believe in Him or not. Moreover, God created man capable of keeping all his secrets, desires, feelings, concerns and thoughts away from anybody else in order to enjoy his independence.
If man wants to be free, he will be, and if he wants to be a slave to another man or any system or thought, he will be too. What is important is that man is able to choose, and through choice, man can use his freedom however he wants.
Every human being has the right to choose to be a nonbeliever, and deny his or her inner instinct and God’s existence without others trying to dominate him with their human laws and seize his right of being a nonbeliever. To this extent, God Almighty created man with free will.
The Cult of Muhammadan Islam on the other hand, is an information control system like all CULTS. Information control cults usually have cute terms to describe materials that are hostile to their religion.
You will find out if you read their literature, that all these cults make statements that are basically identical such as: Ungodly, Blasphemy, Heresy, Spiritual Pornography, Idolatry, Kufr etc. All false Belief systems react negatively when basic common sense questions are asked of them and Muhammadan Islam is no exception.
Theocratic officials represent the biggest threat to any nation’s future in particular and to human civilization in general. They pave the way for the establishment of a religious state that considers having a different opinion to theirs a sin deserving of death, thus giving the religious elite divine sanctification to murder any and all opposition as we had seen with the Taliban of Afghanistan and as we see with the mullas of Iran
Al Ma’ida 5: 101 “O ye who believe! ask not questions about things which if made plain to you may cause you trouble. But if ye ask about things when the Qur’an is being revealed they will be made plain to you: 102 Some people before you did ask such questions and on that account lost their faith
Let us examine the verse above for meaning or logic.
“O ye who believe! ask not questions about things which if made plain to you may cause you trouble” Why would ANSWERING a question which if made plain would hence CONFUSE the questioner? The Quran clearly states “if made plain”. That means the answer is clear. If so, then why and how would this CLEAR answer now CONFUSES the Questioner?
The first part of the verse also admonishes “..ask not questions..” whereas the second part of the same verse tells us “if ye ask about things when the Qur’an is being revealed they will be made plain to you” which CONTRADICTS the first part by allowing questioning and the answers are ” made plain to you” WITHOUT any confusion in this case.
Al Furqan 25: 4 “But the Misbelievers say: “Naught is this but a lie which he has forged and others have helped him at it.” In truth it is they who have put forward an iniquity and a falsehood. 5 And they say: “Tales of the ancients which he has caused to be written: and they are dictated before him morning and evening.”
For a change, Muhammad reveals the TRUTH in his Quran, showing how his own tribe rightly cast very serious doubts about the veracity and originality of his new Cult Belief System.
Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.92 Narrated by Abu Musa
The Prophet was asked about things which he did not like, but when the questioners insisted, the Prophet got angry. He then said to the people, “Ask me anything you like.” A man asked, “Who is my father?” The Prophet replied, “Your father is Hudhafa.”
Then another man got up and said, “Who is my father, O Allah’s Apostle ?” He replied, “Your father is Salim, Maula (the freed slave) of Shaiba.” So when ‘Umar saw that (the anger) on the face of the Prophet he said, “O Allah’s Apostle! We repent to Allah (for having offended you).”
Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 2.555 Narrated by Ash shabi
The clerk of Al-Mughira bin Shu’ba narrated, “Muawiya wrote to Al-Mughira bin Shu’ba: Write to me something
which you have heard from the Prophet So Al-Mughira wrote to Muawiya: I heard the Prophet saying, “Allah has hated for you three things:
- Vain talks, (useless talk) that you talk too much or about others.
- Wasting of wealth (by extravagance).
- And asking too many questions (in disputed religious matters) or asking others for something (except in great need). (See Hadith No. 591, Vol. Ill)
Al-Tirmidhi Hadith 593 Narrated by Hasan ibn Ali
I have learnt from the Prophet and preserved this (in my memory):
Leave those things which create doubts in your mind and adopt that which does not create any doubt in your mind.
*** This means do not study or investigate anything else beyond the Quran and Hadiths thus mooring the followers of Muhammad forever, in the TIME WARP of his 7th century Arabia ***
Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith6.146 Narrated by Ibn Abbas
Some people were asking Allah’s Apostle questions mockingly. A man would say, “Who is my father?” Another man whose she-camel had gone astray would say, “Where is my she-camel? “So Allah revealed this Verse in this connection: “O you who believe! Ask not about things which, if made plain to you, may cause you trouble.” (5.101)
*** Allah invaraiably saved Muhammad with an After thye Event very convenient ‘revelation’ to explain away Muhammad’s predicament. As we all know by now, Allah is only Muhammad’s Mouthpiece since the ventriloquist is Muhammad***
Bukhari Hadith 9. 400 Narrated Ibn Masud:
I was with the Prophet at one of the farms of Medina while he was leaning on a date palm leaf-stalk. He passed by a group of Jews and some of them said to the other, Ask him (the Prophet) about the spirit.
Some others said, “Do not ask him, lest he should tell you what you dislike” But they went up to him and said, “O Abal Qasim! Inform us about the spirit.” The Prophet stood up for a while, waiting.
I realized that he was being Divinely Inspired, so I kept away from him till the inspiration was over. Then the Prophet said, “(O Muhammad) they ask you regarding the spirit, Say: The spirit its knowledge is with my Lord (i.e., nobody has its knowledge except Allah)” (17.85)
*** As we have demonstrated in earlier chapters, Muhammad’s Allah was ALWAYS waiting at Muhammad’s beck and call whenever he needed a convenient and MADE to ORDER revelation ***
Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 8.6 Narrated by Al Mughira
The Prophet said..Allah has disliked that (A) you talk too much about others ( B), ask too many questions (in religion), or (C) waste your property.”
Sahih Muslim Hadith 246 Narrated by Abu Hurayrah
The Apostle of Allah observed: People will constantly ask you questions pertaining to knowledge till they would say: Allah created us, but who created Allah? …AbuHurayrah… said: Allah and the Messenger told the truth. Two persons have already put me this question, and this is the third one…
Bukhari Hadith 9.391 Narrated Abu Huraira:
The Prophet said, “Leave me as I leave you for the people who were before you were ruined because of their questions and their differences over their prophets. So, if I forbid you to do something, then keep away from it. And if I order you to do something, then do of it as much as you can.”
Bukhari Hadith 9. 392: Narrated Sa’d bin Abi Waqqas:
The Prophet said, “The most sinful person among the Muslims is the one who asked about something which had not been prohibited, but was prohibited because of his asking.”
***Ironially, Umar ibn al Khattab falls in this category because of him the verses of Hijab and Wine prohibitions were allegedly revealed ***
Again and again and again, the Hadiths demonstrate beyond a shadow of a doubt that Muhammad’s revelations were actually his own creation as and when he needed them but very cleverly projected into the mouth of the unsuspecting Allah to give them divine sanction.
The Meaning of the Qur’an, Maududi, vol. III, pgs. 76-77
“The Holy Prophet himself forbade people to ask questions …so do not try to probing into such things.”
All FALSE belief systems react negatively when basic common sense questions are asked of them and Muhammadan Islam is a prime example.
O ye who believe! Ask not questions about things which, if made plain to you, may cause you trouble. But if ye ask about things when the Qur’an is being revealed, they will be made plain to you, Allah will forgive those: for Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Forbearing.