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Mar 202015
 

By F. W. Burleigh — March 20, 2015

For insight into the workings of Muhammad’s mind, consider Chapter 33 of his Koran, entitled “The Confederates.” 

This is one of the chapters Muhammad composed in Yathrib (later called Medina) where he fled after his Meccan compatriots determined they needed to kill him to preserve their way of life.   mo brain

The chapter is like a wild theme park ride that races in and out of numerous topics.  In the 73 verses that make up the chapter, Muhammad covers the following, using the God-voice he adopted for the Koran: He recaps a recent battle with the Meccans and excoriates people who were afraid to fight and die for him; he gloats about his extermination of the men and boys of one of the Jewish tribes of Yathrib, the confiscation of their property, and the enslavement of their women and children; he authorizes himself to take as many wives as he likes, permits himself to marry the wife of his adopted son, forbids himself from taking any more wives after he has taken as many as he likes, but allows himself sex slaves.

As the verses of this “revelation” continue, Muhammad imposes full body and face cover for women when outside the home, threatens people with humiliating punishment in the afterlife for annoying him, threatens to murder his critics, prohibits the practice of adoption, and dishes up images of sadistic torture in Hell awaiting people who don’t believe in him.  He also praises himself as a “lamp spreading light,” and holds his behavior as a “beautiful pattern” for people to follow if they want to score well with Allah.

Among the verses is a celestial advisory that he must be obeyed:

“It is not fitting for a Believer, man or woman, when a matter has been decided by Allah and His Messenger to have any option about their decision: if any one disobeys Allah and His Messenger, he is indeed on a clearly wrong Path.”  (Koran 33:36)  [All of the Koran quotes in this article are taken from the Yusuf Ali translation.]

Despite their tediousness, it is worth exploring some of these verses because, in addition to providing evidence of his strange mentality, they also show that his Koran was like a blog in which he commented on the happenings of the moment.  The happenings of the moment recorded in Chapter 33 had to do with war, sex, and Muhammad’s betrayal of his adopted son.

In the war part of these verses, Muhammad covers the Meccan assault on Yathrib that came to be known as the Battle of the Trench, so named because of a three-mile defensive trench he dug around vulnerable parts of the valley to fend off the attackers.  By the time of this battle, he had been waging war on the Meccans for almost five years.  The two major battles of Badr and Uhud had already  been fought.[1]

The Battle of the Trench was the third major fight, which took place in A.D. 627.  The Meccans attacked with an army of 12,000 warriors, drawn from numerous tribes who were itching for payback for all the harm Muhammad had caused them.  But they were unable to get beyond the trench and finally gave up after a fierce windstorm leveled their encampments.

Verses 9 to 25 recap the action, but most are Muhammad’s diatribe against cowardly or fake believers who he was certain would have betrayed him had been given the opportunity.  But he declares that Allah did not provide them with the opportunity because he sent the windstorm that disheartened the invaders and sent them packing.  The battle was a test of faith of the believers who held firm, and Allah knows how to reward those who hold firm in their faith.

And rewarded they were: After the invaders left, Muhammad attacked the only remaining Jewish tribe of Yathrib and ended up distributing their wealth to the faithful.  When he arrived in the valley, half of its 20,000 population was Jewish, divided among three major tribes.  By the time of the Battle of the Trench, Muhammad had forced out two of the Jewish tribes.  Hoping to escape the same fate, the remaining tribe at first insisted on not taking sides during the Meccan attack, then agreed to aid the invaders, but then backed out of it.  Muhammad used this as an excuse to behead all of the men and boys.

About this massacre, Muhammad has Allah say:

“And those of the People of the Book (the Jews) who aided them (the invaders) – Allah did take them down from their strongholds and cast terror into their hearts. (So that) some ye slew, and some ye made prisoners.  And He made you heirs of their lands, their houses, and their goods, and of a land which ye had not frequented (before).  And Allah has power over all things.” (Verses 26-27)
The fundamental problem with Islam is the belief that God talked to Muhammad and dictated the contents of the Koran to him. Muslims are indoctrinated into believing this is so, and they act on the numerous incitements to violence that they find in it.

The fundamental problem with Islam is the belief that God talked to Muhammad and dictated the contents of the Koran to him. Muslims are indoctrinated into believing this is so, and they act on the numerous incitements to violence that they find in it.

 

As with much of the Koran, substitute Muhammad for Allah and the real meaning comes through. What these verses mean in plain language is that the Jews surrendered after a three-week siege, hoping Muhammad would exile them as he had done to the other Jewish tribes, but he beheaded the men and boys — somewhere between 400 and 900 with 700 being the likely number of victims.  He happily seized all of their wealth of farms, date plantations, fortresses, and homes, and he enslaved all of the woman and children. The booty was distributed among his followers who participated in the siege — minus the 20 percent cut he kept for himself.  The likely reason he attacked the Jews was to seize their wealth to pay off his followers for the hardships they had endured during the Battle of the Trench.  The fact they had briefly taken sides with the Meccans was merely the pretext.[2]

The chapter continues with blog entries concerning his marriage to Zaynab, the wife of Zayd, a slave whom he had adopted three decades earlier.[3]  Muhammad added Zaynab to his harem after pressuring Zayd to divorce her. He lusted for her and wanted her for himself, his adopted son be damned.  This marriage scandalized even some of the truest believers because it was considered taboo among the Arabs for a father to take the wife of his son.  Muhammad made use of Allah to finesse the matter.  To deal with his critics, he had Allah dissolve the practice of adoption and declared that not only was his adopted son no longer his son, but he had never been his son because adoption was a human invention and was displeasing to Allah.  Therefore, Muhammad declared he was blameless in the matter.  Moreover, Allah had granted him the right to marry Zaynab, “and Allah’s command must be fulfilled.”  (Verse 37)  When critics kept up their attacks, Muhammad threatened them with bloody murder: “They shall have a curse on them: whenever they are found, they shall be seized and slain (without mercy).”  (Verse 61)

From a seraglio painting by Austro-French painter Rudolf Ernst (1854-1932). Ernst called it "The Favorite of the Farm," but for the sake of illustration, we have retitled it, "Muhammad with the Wife of his Adopted Son."

From a seraglio painting by Austro-French painter Rudolf Ernst (1854-1932). Ernst called it “The Favorite of the Farm,” but for the sake of illustration, we have retitled it, “Muhammad with the Wife of his Adopted Son.”

This amazing chapter continues with details about the wedding banquet with Zaynab.  It so happened that his anger was sparked when some of the male wedding guests dallied after the banquet was over.  This irked Muhammad to no end, perhaps in part because he was eager to sleep with Zaynab, and they kept him from her, but also because he suspected the men had lingered in order to ogle his bride.  He composed Verses 28-34 that warn all of his wives to watch their behavior.  Then in verse 59, he decides good behavior is not enough.  His wives and all believing women from then on had to cover up so that no part of their body was on display outside of the home. Thus the inspiration for burka was born:

“O Prophet! Tell thy wives and daughters, and the believing women, that they should cast their outer garments over their persons (when abroad): that is most convenient, that they should be known (as such) and not molested. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Verse 59)

But still sulking from the fact that some of male believers — believers in the oneness of Allah and in Muhammad as his messenger, no less! — ogled his woman at the banquet, Muhammad has Allah take time out from ruling the universe to teach such people manners.  In Verse 53, he scolds them for behaving in a way that was upsetting to him, and still fuming over it, his anger spills over into Verse 57 where he threatens hellfire as punishment for anyone who upsets him.

These verses don’t have a firm order.  A topic is taken up, then dropped, only to resume again in later verses.  It makes it difficult to follow, even for people who know the details of Muhammad’s life.

Three of the sequential verses (50-52) have to do with the wives that Muhammad allows himself, and in their blatantly self-serving way they are perhaps the most amusing lines of the Koran:

“O Prophet! We have made lawful to thee thy wives to whom thou hast paid their dowers; and those whom thy right hand possesses out of the prisoners of war whom Allah has assigned to thee; and daughters of thy paternal uncles and aunts, and daughters of thy maternal uncles and aunts, who migrated (from Mecca) with thee; and any believing woman who dedicates her soul to the Prophet if the Prophet wishes to wed her; this only for thee, and not for the Believers.” (Verse 50) 
Muhammad with his many wives.

Muhammad with his many wives.

In the verse that follows, he allows himself to rotate among his wives however he pleases.  In Verse 52, he tells himself it is not lawful for him to marry any more women after all the above have been married “even though their beauty attracts” him, nor to change them for other wives.  However, he allows himself the option of taking slaves as wives.

The chapter is full of self-praise, selfies taken on a celestial selfie stick.  

Verse 21: “Ye have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the Praise of Allah.”  Verses 45-46: “O Prophet! Truly We have sent thee as a Witness, a Bearer of Glad Tidings, and Warner.  And as one who invites to Allah’s (grace) by His leave, and as a lamp spreading light.”

More self-praise can be found in Verse 56 wherein he advises believers to bless him and “salute him with all respect,” because that is what Allah and Allah’s angels do to him.

This is followed by a suite of verses that rail against people who refuse to believe that God talks to him, salutes him, and blesses him.  He threatens infidels that they will pay for their lack of belief in him in blazing hellfire.  “Our Lord! Give them double Penalty and curse them with a very great Curse!” he says in Verse 68.

The Koran is full of such self-regard and oozes with Muhammad’s hatred for people who rejected him. But it is not necessary to read the entire book to realize it is the product on an extremely, shall we say, unusual mind.

Islam is all about Muhammad and his claim that God talked to him.  His claim of communion with the divine was quite possibly brought about by epileptic fits caused by a malformed temporal lobe.  The combination of his belief that he had a special mission, self-regard and fury towards those who do not conform to his edicts informs the faith he founded. Islam represents the institutionalized version of his vision.

All you have to do to understand the truth about the mind that created Islam and the ideology that is threatening the world is to read Chapter 33 of Muhammad’s Koran, which means “Recital.” Here is the Yusuf Ali translation of Chapter 33  (variously called The Clans, The Coalition, The Confederates)

F. W. Burleigh is the author of It’s All About Muhammad, a Biography of the World’s Most Notorious Prophet.  He blogs at www.itsallaboutmuhammad.com.


[1] Ibn Ishaq, The Life of Muhammad, trans. A. Guillaume, Oxford University Press, 1955, pp. 450-460.

[2] Ibid., pp. 461-468.

[3] Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Darussalam, 2000, vol. 7, pp. 695-699. (The Tafsir is a 10-volume exegesis of the Koran by the 14th century scholar Ibn Kathir.)

Apr 012014
 

by Raymond Ibrahim — March 28, 2014 (Originally printed in CBN News)

At a time when terrorism committed in the name of Islam is rampant, we are continuously being assured—especially by three major institutions that play a dominant role in forming the Western mindset, namely, mainstream media, academia, and government—that the sort of Islam embraced by “radicals,” “jihadis,” and so forth, has nothing to do with “real” Islam.

Koran bint

True Islam is synonymous with destruction of the infidel (non-Muslim) by violent means.

“True” Islam, so the narrative goes, is intrinsically free of anything “bad.” It’s the nut-jobs who hijack it for their own agenda that are to blame.

More specifically, we are told that there exists a “moderate” Islam and an “extremist” Islam—the former good and true, embraced by a Muslim majority, the latter a perverse sacrilege practiced by an exploitative minority.

But what do these dual adjectives—“moderate” and “extremist”—ultimately mean in the context of Islam? Are they both equal and viable alternatives insofar as to how Islam is understood? Are they both theologically legitimate? This last question is particularly important, since Islam is first and foremost a religious way of life centered around the words of a deity (Allah) and his prophet (Muhammad)—the significance of which is admittedly unappreciated by secular societies.

Both terms—“moderate” and “extremist”—have to do with degree, or less mathematically, zeal: how much, or to what extent, a thing is practiced or implemented. As Webster’s puts it, “moderate” means “observing reasonable limits”; “extremist” means “going to great or exaggerated lengths.”

It’s a question, then, of doing either too much or too little.

The problem, however, is that mainstream Islam offers a crystal-clear way of life, based on the teachings of the Koran and Hadith—the former, containing what purport to be the sacred words of Allah, the latter, the example (or sunna, hence “Sunnis”) of his prophet, also known as the most “perfect man” (al-insan al-kamil). Indeed, based on these two primary sources and according to normative Islamic teaching, all human actions fall into five categories: forbidden actions, discouraged actions, neutral actions recommended actions, and obligatory actions.

In this context, how does a believer go about “moderating” what the deity and his spokesman have commanded? One can either try to observe Islam’s commandments or one can ignore them: any more or less is not Islam—a word which means “submit” (to the laws, or sharia, of Allah).

The real question, then, is what do Allah and his prophet command Muslims (“they who submit”) to do? Are radicals “exaggerating” their orders? Or are moderate Muslims simply “observing reasonable limits”—a euphemism for negligence?—when it comes to fulfilling their commandments?

In our highly secularized era, where we are told that religious truths are flexible or simply non-existent, and that any and all interpretations and exegeses are valid, the all-important question of “What does Islam command?” loses all relevance.

Hence why the modern West is incapable of understanding Islam.

Indeed, only recently, a Kenyan mosque leader said that the Westgate massacre, where Islamic gunmen slaughtered some 67 people, “was justified.  As per the Koran, as per the religion of Islam, Westgate was 100 percent justified.” Then he said: “Radical Islam is a creation of people who do not believe in Islam. We don’t have radical Islam, we don’t have moderates, we don’t have extremists. Islam is one religion following the Koran and the Sunna [emphasis added].

Note his point that “Radical Islam is a creation of people who do not believe in Islam,” a clear reference to the West which coined the phrase “radical Islam.”  Ironically, the secular West, which relegates religious truths to the realm of “personal experience,” feels qualified to decide what is and is not “radical” about Islam.

Moderate Islam is an oxymoron....

Moderate Islam is an oxymoron….

Consider one example: Allah commands Muslims to “Fight those among the People of the Book [Jews and Christians] who do not believe in Allah nor the Last Day, nor forbid what Allah and His Messenger have forbidden, nor embrace the religion of truth [i.e., Islam], until they pay the jizya [tribute] with willing submission and feel themselves subdued”  [Koran 9:29].

How can one interpret this verse to mean anything other than what it plainly says?  Wherein lies the ambiguity, the room for interpretation?  Of course there are other teachings and allusions in the Koran that by necessity lend themselves over to the fine arts of interpretation, or ijtihad.  But surely the commands of Koran 9:29 are completely straightforward?

In fact, Muhammad’s 7th century followers literally acted on this and similar verses (e.g., 9:5), launching the first Muslim conquests, which saw the subjugation of millions of Christians, Jews, and others, and the creation of the “Muslim world.”  Such jihadi expansion continued until Islam was beaten on the battlefield by a resurgent West some two or three centuries ago.

Western scholarly works, before the age of relativism and political correctness set in, did not equivocate the meaning of jihad.  Thus the authoritative Encyclopaedia of Islam’s entry for “jihad” states that the “spread of Islam by arms is a religious duty upon Muslims in general …  Jihad must continue to be done until the whole world is under the rule of Islam … Islam must completely be made over before the doctrine of jihad [warfare to spread Islam] can be eliminated. Islamic law expert and U.S. professor Majid Khadduri (1909-2007), after defining jihad as warfare, wrote that “jihad … is regarded by all jurists, with almost no exception, as a collective obligation of the whole Muslim community.”

(As for the argument that the Bible contains similar war verses, yet Jews and Christians are not out to conquer the world—so why say Muslims are?—see “Are Judaism and Christianity as Violent as Islam” for a detailed breakdown of the similarities and differences.  Also see “Islamic Jihad and the Doctrine of Abrogation” to understand how the Koran’s more tolerant verses have been abrogated by its more militant ones, such as 9:29.)

kaaba

To be a true Muslim is to be a fanatic….

In short, how can a sincere Muslim—by definition, one who has submitted to the teachings of Allah—“moderate” verses like 9:29?  How can he “observe reasonable limits” vis-à-vis these plain commands to combat and subjugate non-Muslims?

Must Muslims not, at the very least, admit that such teachings are true and should be striven for—even if they do not personally engage in the jihad, at least not directly (but they are encouraged to support it indirectly, including monetarily or through propaganda)?

Just recently, reports appeared telling of how Islamic groups in Syria were following Koran 9:29 to a tee—forcing Christian minorities to pay them jizya, i.e., extortion money, in exchange for their lives.  In fact, all around the Islamic world, Christians and other minorities are regularly plundered by Muslims who justify their actions by referring to the aforementioned verse.

Are all such Muslims being “extreme” in light of the commands of Koran 9:29—which specifically calls for the taking of money from Christians and Jews—or are they simply upholding the unambiguous teachings of Islam?

One may argue that, if Muslims are to take Koran 9:29 literally, why are Muslim nations the world over not declaring an all-out jihad on all non-Muslim nations, including America? The ultimate reason, of course, is that they simply can’t; they do not have the capability to uphold that verse (and Islamic teaching allows Muslims to postpone their obligations until circumstances are more opportune).

It would obviously be silly, if not suicidal,  for, say, Saudi Arabia, birthplace of Islam, to issue a statement to the West saying either accept Islam, pay jizya/tribute, or die by the sword.  But just because Muslim nations do not currently have the capacity to actualize Koran 9:29, does not mean that they do not acknowledge its veracity and try to actualize it in other places when they can.

A quick survey of history before the meteoric rise of Western military might put Islam in check makes this especially clear.

Bottom line: If Islam teaches X and a Muslim upholds X—how is he being “extreme”?  Seems more logical to say that it is Islam itself that is being “extreme.”  Similarly, if a self-professed Muslim does not uphold Islamic teachings—including prayer, fasting, paying zakat, etc.—how is he being a “moderate”?  Seems more logical to say that he is not much of a Muslim at all—that is, he is not submitting to Allah, the very definition of “Muslim.”

It’s time to acknowledge that dichotomized notions like “moderate” and “extreme” are culturally induced and loaded standards of the modern, secular West—hardly applicable to the teachings of Islam—and not universal absolutes recognized by all mankind.

See the video below where Raymond Ibrahim discusses this idea that “moderate Islam” is an oxymoron.

via Why ‘Moderate Islam’ Is an Oxymoron | FrontPage Magazine.