Answer. Yes it is. Polytheism means taking away the right of God and sharing it with someone else. Saying that there is more than one God is wrong as that would imply that gods have the division of labour implying weakness in one god.
Consider: That all time -keeping equipments were produced by a company consisting of three independent partners, with each specializing in only one aspect of these time-keeping equipments. Can such a company be depended on for continual supply of time-keeping equipments? What if one partner (for some reason) decides to withhold his part, or decides to stop making it altogether–where would this leave the consumers? Or what if each of the three partners, thinking that his part is the most important wants his name to be listed first at the top of the product–where would these wrangling leave consumers? Or what if the partners cannot agree on a specific design?
How eloquently Allah God has given us the arguments in the Qur’an for the existence of One God. He asks us to reason that:
1. If there were other gods with Allah then the idolaters with the help of these other gods would have been able to seek a way to the Lord of the Throne–(17:42).
2. If there were other gods besides Allah governing the heavens and the earth wouldn’t there be confusion in them–(21:22).
3. If there were other gods with Allah then each would have taken away what he created, and some of them would have seek to dominate others–(23:91).
If there were other Gods besides Allāh it would be expected that they would send their messengers with their own revelations.
C. Rajagopalachari says in his Ramayana:
“Viswaamitra was a king who attained sainthood through terrible austerities. He had long ago exhibited his spiritual powers by starting to create another Brahma and a rival universe: he had gone as far as the creation of new constellations, but was prevailed upon to stop by the entreaties of the alarmed gods.” (p. 19)
Imagine polytheism with its multiple gods. Imagine half a’ dozen disgruntled or ambitious gods each creating his own “rival universe.”
The suggestion that a great number of men constructing a house or ship, rearing a city and framing a Commonwealth may well be analogous to several deities associating together in framing a world, is a poor one. Such buildings by these great number of men are no guarantee of peace and harmony. There are much strife and infighting among the builders of this same house and city and Commonwealth.
There are those who transgress–who try to subjugate and control other nations; and even try to dominate the world– and they have created not even a gram of dirt, and they want to be lord over all. What if such transgressing nations were creators? Clearly, it can never be better to have many creators instead of one. Even in the human sphere there is only one at the helm–in the home, organization, expedition, or country.
There is order in the universe because one law pervades the whole of it, and one law clearly points to one Author and Maintainer of that law. The unity of law is a clear proof of the Unity of the Maker.
Whereas in polytheism one needs to petition a myriad of Gods (and goddesses) for what is good. In Islam one prays only to Allāh–one brief all-encompassing prayer: “Our Lord grant us good in this world and good in the Hereafter, and save us from the chastisement of the Fire” (Ameen!)–(Qur’an 2:201).
There is no “advantage” in “Idolatry.” There is no “advantage” in subjugating one’s self to monuments of stone. And of depending on this God and on that God for this and for that. Objects fashioned by man’s own hands cannot confer benefit or effect harm. Regardless of how great a “tolerating spirit” idolatry may have, any man who would throw himself at the mercy of idols or would advocate or esteem such a practice of idolatry could be no “genius,” “customary” or otherwise. Much less, those who crown such individual(s) with the distinction of “genius.”
Declared the noble Messenger through Divine revelation: Allah has created man in the best make–(Qur’an 95:4); and has made subservient to him whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth–(31:20); adore not the sun nor the moon, but adore Allah Who created them –(41:37). By taking other humans in worship man has made himself subservient to man. By taking objects of creation in worship man has rendered himself subjective to nature rather than make nature subjective to him.
Idolatry is perhaps the worst of all degradations.
Islam did not and does not preach “hatred” of idolatry or polytheism. Islam preaches only against the futility and degradation of idolatry, and the irrationality of polytheism.
Islam did not nor does it force religion on anyone at the point of the sword. Islam, and Monotheism in general, are not “inherently intolerant”. No religion founded on Divine inspiration is “intolerant.” Such intolerance comes from its followers. Allah God, as He reveals in the Qur’an, has given man a free will to choose his way of life. It is because of this freedom that he (man) will have to give an account for his actions.
It is said that the idol in Hinduism is a medium for concentrating on God. That it is a “symbol” of Hinduism much as the cross is a “symbol” of Christianity and the crescent moon and star is a “symbol” of Islam. But there is no equating this “symbol” of Islam with the idol of Hinduism. The moon and star may be a “symbol” of Islam (althought it is not proved), but Muslims do not stand before it in their worship nor feed milk to it, nor offer it food. Instead of concentrating through the idol, worshippers may consider concentrating through the written name of God; or even better, take the lofty path and follow the Divine universal religion–Islam!