Did Muawiya want to please the Christians?

The Details of the Question

- I saw an article mentioning the Prophet Muhammad (pubh) in a non-Islamic source of a website of Islamic awareness. I found this in the article:
 ”Many Arabs gathered in Jerusalem and made Muawiya the king. Muawiya sat on Golgotha and prayed there. He went down to the tomb of the Virgin Mary in Gethsemane and prayed there.”
- Is it possible that Muawiya wanted to be favored by the Christians and did so? Can you explain it?
- The following is also stated there: “Muawiya was not crowned like other kings in the world.” He placed his throne in Damascus and refused to go to the seat of Muhammad.” Why? Because he was not the legitimate caliph?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

We could not find that information in sound Islamic sources.

We can say that the sentence “Many Arabs gathered in Jerusalem and made Muawiya the king” is not true because the place where Muawiya lived was Damascus, not Jerusalem. Muawiya served as the governor of Damascus for 19 years during the caliphate of Uthman (ra), and continued living there.

In none of the Islamic sources did we come across any information that Muawiya prayed in a Christian church; on the contrary, there is a lot of information showing that he remained firmly attached to Islam throughout his life.

We think that such information - very likely - may have been fabricated by the Shiites to imply that Muawiya sanctified the religion of Christianity.

However, today we recite al-Fatiha for the Prophet Isa (Jesus) and Maryam (Mary), pray for them and ask help from their spirits. There is nothing wrong with it in terms of our religion.

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