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For those interested, I'll also be asking this question on Christianity.SE and Mi Yodeya (with respect to those religions).

In recent rallies, protesting what is perceived as bigoted policies by president Donald Trump, several individuals who are not in fact Muslim and do not subscribe to the Islamic faith have claimed they are Muslim in a show of solidarity with the Muslim world.

We are all Muslim

(Michael Moore)

Would a non-Muslim sin if he proclaimed himself a Muslim for the sake of solidarity?

While I generally understand that not subscribing to the faith in general is sinful, I'm curious about the act of proclaiming that you are an adherent when that is not true (I'm asking in particular about the sin of falsely claiming adherence to the faith, this should be understood as being a different or greater magnitude sin than simply violating any general rules about lying or telling falsehoods).

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    If they are clearly not Muslim by their actions and what they do and say that they are Muslims then it is hypocrisy (nifaq) Commented Feb 20, 2017 at 21:54
  • The key words here is 'for the sake of solidarity'; the gesture by Michael Moore for example is purely political gesture and not a religious gesture affirming faith and he takes that to be understood by his audience; in this sense its neither sinful or not. Commented Feb 21, 2017 at 10:43

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There are always two sides of the medal: If the intention is good I'd say it can be considered as a good deed, so it isn't sinful. But from an other perspective (pure theologically) it could be considered as hypocrisy. Again on the other hand showing solidarity and having a clear position is anything but hypocrisy! This of course is my analysis from the perspective of Islam.

But the Quran and sunnah seem to reflect that good deeds of a disbeliever (as long as he doesn't convert) won't help him on judgement day:

From The Quran:

  • ... And whoever of you reverts from his religion [to disbelief] and dies while he is a disbeliever - for those, their deeds have become worthless in this world and the Hereafter, and those are the companions of the Fire, they will abide therein eternally. (2:217)
  • ... And whoever denies the faith - his work has become worthless, and he, in the Hereafter, will be among the losers. (5:5)
  • And We have already sent [messengers] to nations before you, [O Muhammad]; then We seized them with poverty and hardship that perhaps they might humble themselves [to Us]. (6:42) Then why, when Our punishment came to them, did they not humble themselves? But their hearts became hardened, and Satan made attractive to them that which they were doing. (6:43)
  • And what prevents their expenditures from being accepted from them but that they have disbelieved in Allah and in His Messenger and that they come not to prayer except while they are lazy and that they do not spend except while they are unwilling. (9:54)
  • And it was already revealed to you and to those before you that if you should associate [anything] with Allah , your work would surely become worthless, and you would surely be among the losers." (39:65)

From the sunnah:

  • I said: Messenger of Allah, the son of Jud'an established ties of relationship, fed the poor. Would that be of any avail to him? He said: It would be of no avail to him as he did not ever say: O my Lord, pardon my sins on the Day of Resurrection. (sahih Muslim)
  • When a non-believer does good he is made to taste Its reward in this world. And so far as the believer is concerned, Allah stores (the reward) of his virtues for the Hereafter and provides him sustenance in accordance with his obedience to Him. (sahih Muslim)
  • "Whoever says, 'None has the right to be worshipped but Allah', faces our Qibla during the prayers, prays like us and eats our slaughtered animal, then he is a Muslim, and has got the same rights and obligations as other Muslims have." (sahih al-Bukhari)

At the end it is up to Allah not to us to judge! Allah says:

So whoever does an atom's weight of good will see it, (99:7)
And whoever does an atom's weight of evil will see it. (99:8)

Note that the whole surah addresses the people -in general- not explicitly the Muslims! So one could conclude "whoever" here as referring to both Muslims and non-Muslims. And this surah is Madani or Makki according to some sources (see wikipedia). If it is Makki one could conclude that it was abrogated by the verses quoted above.

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Would a non-Muslim sin if he proclaimed himself a Muslim for the sake of solidarity?

Regardless of the issue of solidarity, do non-Muslim sin when they eat pork, worship before statues, or fail to perform the five pillars of faith? From a Muslim perspective, non-Muslims are by definition living in a continual state of sin. This specific act would be no different.

But should this incident be considered blasphemous, disrespectful, or offensive?

When Michael Moore and others hold up those signs, they really don't mean it literally, and don't expect anyone else to take it literally. They aren't making a false claim in order to hurt anyone or to take personal advantage of it (e.g. to visit holy sites).

What they are saying to the offenders is "When you attack Islam, you also attack me. When you offend Muslims for their beliefs, you also offend me for my beliefs.". What they are saying to Muslims is "I recognize the injustice you have received. I share your pain.".

The sign itself might be too short and simple, but its intended message is far from being a sin.

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  • it would be more complete if you've included evidences from the quran and sunnah. Commented Sep 14, 2021 at 13:38
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How can helping an oppressed people, even in such a way a showing solidarity, ever be considered a sin? Moroever I don't think it is their intention to actually become Muslim or even pretend to be Muslim, it is just a way of showing their support.

So I don't think it is a sin, but Allah is the Judge and He Knows best.

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How a Christian person will be judged against Islamic Fiqh, to say his deed whether is a sin or not? Does his marriage has been a sin or not? ... They have their own rules, and each deed will be judged in the context of the belief system the person has accepted, or should have been accepted (that is, expected from him). One may even, mistakenly, ask if Jacob PBUH did a sin when he married two sisters at the same time. No it was Halal at his time. Rather the question asked here is wrong by itself. But let me engrave my point with two witnesses.

  1. A companion of Imam Sadiq PBUH was once walking in with Imam in a street, he saw a Christian or a man of other religion anyway. The man did something wrong if my memories help, and the companion objected to his act with an insult, calling him something like he has been born out of fornication. Imam PBUH objected to his companion's insult badly, explaining every people have their own rules.

  2. If a Shia Muslim grows old enough to be expected by Islam to practice Islamic rules, but he practices Islam the way he thinks to be correct, or the way he has heard about from regular people, not bothering himself to learn from authenticate sources, then after years he decides to learn and follow the authenticate sources, at this point, it is sometimes said that whatever he has done (even unknowingly) which was the same as what was expected from him will be accepted from him, and what he did wrongly will need to be compensated.

This was one aspect of the problem ... another aspect will be like to question if such people are not really Muslims. Indeed, according to Quran islam is the only religion which will be accepted, but then there are arguments which demonstrate maybe this ISLAM is somewhat broader that what we usually think. Islam means submitting toward Allah, whose one another name is the Truth ( ذَلِكَ بِأَنَّ اللَّهَ هُوَ الْحَقُّ which is translated into "That is because Allah is the Truth"), and so anyone who submit toward the Truth, he will be a Muslim, even if he identifies himself as a Christian. Otherwise, how can any people beside "Muslims in name" enter the Heaven ("إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَ الَّذِينَ هَادُوا وَ النَّصَارَيٰ وَ الصَّابِئِينَ مَنْ آمَنَ بِاللَّهِ وَ الْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ وَ عَمِلَ صَالِحًا فَلَهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِنْدَ رَبِّهِمْ وَ لَا خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَ لَا هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ" which is translated into "Indeed, those who believed and those who were Jews or Christians or Sabeans [before Prophet Muhammad] - those [among them] who believed in Allah and the Last Day and did righteousness - will have their reward with their Lord, and no fear will there be concerning them, nor will they grieve")? Or one may rather ask do everyone who identify himself as a Muslim really enter the Heaven? certainly not! People should be testified and Dunya is a place for it, no matter if you were born in a Muslim family/culture, or deep in the jungle of Amazon which might have never heard before about the holy prophet PBUHH and Quran. So now let me rephrase the main question of the topic this way: Is it sin for someone who is Christian in name, to stand for the truth? certainly not, good for him and anyone like him. Allah doesn't require us for us to support Him and His religion, but rather we need to be on the side of Truth, to remain human, and to be a true Muslim. If we believe in Islam in the specific way will be way better of course, but not to dehumanize nonMuslims, even if they are better than us withstanding for the Truth, better than us submitting themselves to the Truth the way they learned it ... may God bless them and guide them to whatever path that prefer for them ...

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