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Submitted by Lactantius Jr. (United Kingdom), Mar 9, 2008 at 16:19

To Nadia

Unlike you Nadia, I don't write or "know from the top of my head," what I write is taken from Islam's most authoritative sources, the Qur'an and Qur'anic Tafsir (commentaries on the Qur'an), Sahi ("authentic" "genuine") Hadith, the Sirat (Histories of Muhammad's life) and the Ta'rikh literature (Islamic histories), so if you don't like what you read, please don't blame me, I didn't write it. Are you going to do a little research and "prove these little facts wrong" Nadia, if anyone can?

Islam stands or falls on Muhammad. He is the religion's sole prophet, Islam's solitary messenger, Allah's sole mouthpiece. Without Muhammad, Allah, the Qur'an, and Islam would be unknown, he is in fact, the archetypal Muslim who set the genetic code for Islam, so before looking at Muhammad's women, his marriage to them and treatment of them, let's look at what the Qur'an says about Muhammad:-

"Ye have indeed in the Apostle 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."

Surah 33:21

With Muhammad speaking these words in Mecca, on 7th.March AD 632 in the last sermon he preached:-

"…………….I leave behind me two things, the QUR'AN and my example, the SUNNAH and if you follow these you will never go astray."

So, does the Qur'an allow polygamy with the condition that the man treats all his wives fairly and equally?

In a perplexing and rather incoherent passage at Surah 4:1-4, the Qur'an sanctions a man having up to 4 wives, or does it? because the way 4:3 is formulated, there are three different ways of understanding it.

(see Sam Shamoun at http://answering slam.org.uk/Shamoun/treatment_of_wives.htm) with Islamic scholarship traditionally interpreting the number of wives allowed as 4, so why then did Muhammad violate this by having more than 4, when Surah 4:129 expressly says:-

"You will NOT be able to be equitable between your wives, be you ever so eager;"

Scholars and hadiths are not entirely agreed on the number of Muhammad's wives, but al Tabari says he married 15 women and consummated his marriages with 13 women (Tarikh al Tabari vol 9 pages 126-127, cited at http://www.muslimhope.com/WhyDidMohammedGetSoManyWives.htm)

So just what was Muhammad's "beautiful pattern of conduct?" if anyone could treat all his wives equally, that surely MUST have been Muhammad, mustn't it Nadia?

Sura 4:128-30 actually addresses Muhammad's failure as a husband, specifically in reference to his treatment of Sauda bint Zam'ah, who was one of his first wives after Khadijah's death. Muhammad decided to divorce and desert her when she had become old and was no longer attractive, this fact being documented by renowned Sunni commentator Ibn Kathir

Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Part 5, Sura An-Nisa, ayat 24-147, abridged by Sheikh Muhammad Nasib Ar-Rafa'i [Al-Firdous Ltd., London, 2000 first edition], pp. 193-194

A further indication of Muhammad's inability to treat his wives fairly is seen from his separating them into two groups. He would sleep and have sex more often with one group, than with the other group, and would only have sex with this other group whenever he wished, not when they wished. Noted linguist and commentator Al-Zamakhshari wrote the following regarding this issue:

It is related that the Prophet (refrained from sexual intercourse and) put off temporarily the following wives: Sauda, Juwairiya. Safiyya, Maimuna, and Umm Habiba. In so doing he used to grant them a share (of sexual intercourse) according TO HIS WISH. Among the wives whom the Prophet preferred to take to himself belong ‘A'isha, Hafsa, Umm Salama, and Zainab (bint Jash). Thus, he used to put five off temporarily in order to take four to himself. (On the other hand) it is related that, disregarding divorce and the selection concerned with it, the Prophet treated (all his wives) the same, with the exception of Sauda, who relinquished the night belonging to her to ‘A'isha and said (to the Prophet): ‘Do not divorce me but let me remain in the company of your wives!'… (Helmut Gätje, The Qur'an and Its Exegesis, translated and edited by Alford T. Welch [Oneworld Publications, Oxford England], pp. 90-91; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Even the wives noticed Muhammad's partial and unfair treatment, being clearly aware that he loved his child bride Aisha bint Abu Bakr more than the others. This moved them to jealousy and strife:

Umar gave this advice to his daughter Hafsa, one of Muhammad's wives:

Then I dressed myself and went to Hafsa and asked her, ‘Does any of you keep Allah's Apostle angry all the day long till night?' She replied in the affirmative. I said, ‘She is a ruined losing person (and will never have success)! Doesn't she fear that Allah may get angry for the anger of Allah's Apostle, and thus she will be ruined? Don't ask Allah's Apostle too many things, and don't retort upon him in any case, and don't desert him. Demand from me whatever you like, and don't be tempted to imitate your neighbor (i.e. ‘Aisha) in her behavior towards the Prophet), for she (i.e. Aisha) IS MORE BEAUTIFUL THAN YOU, AND MORE BELOVED to Allah's Apostle. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 3, Book 43, Number 648)

Muhammad's wives complained about his preferential treatment of Aisha and demanded to be treated equally. Instead of acquiescing to their demands, Muhammad justified his preferential treatment by claiming that divine revelations came to him on no other bed except Aisha's! If Muhammad was correct this meant that Allah himself distinguished Aisha's bed from the rest, thereby implying that it was actually Allah who caused Muhammad to expressly break the supposed divine command of being fair with all of one's wives!!! which portrays Allah as a god with nothing better to do than grant Muhammad's desires, with Aisha herself very shrewdly saying, "I used to look down upon those ladies who had given themselves to Allah's Apostle and I used to say, "Can a lady give herself (to a man)?" But when Allah revealed: "You (O Muhammad) can postpone (the turn of) whom you will of them (your wives), and you may receive any of them whom you will; and there is no blame on you if you invite one whose turn you have set aside (temporarily)." (Surah 33.51) I said (to the Prophet), "I feel that your Lord hastens in fulfilling your wishes and desires." Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 6, Book 60, Number 311

Can Muslim men treat all their wives equally fairly Nadia, did Muhammad?

Domestic Violence In Islam

http://www.answering-islam.org/Silas/beating_badawi.htm

Islam is rightly criticized because at Surah 4:34 the Qur'an commands men to beat disobedient wives, and in saying "the aya refers to hitting ur wife with a misawaak (a light stick) which does not hurt her," you sound remarkably like Dr Jamal Badawi, Professor of economics at the University of Halifax, Novia Scotia, Canada, who also tries to defend Allah's command to beat disobedient wives, and who says, Islam allows beating in cases "in which a wife persists in bad habits and showing contempt of her husband and disregard for her marital obligations."

Here's what Badawi says in endnote 14 to "Gender Equity in Islam"

the husband may resort to another measure that may save the marriage, at least in some cases. Such a measure is more accurately described as a gentle tap on the body, but NEVER ON THE FACE, making it more of a symbolic measure then a punitive one……….. Even here, that maximum measure is limited by the following:…………………………….As defined by hadith, it is NOT PERMISSIBLE TO STRIKE ANYONE'S FACE, CAUSE ANY BODILY HARM OR EVEN BE HARSH. What the hadith qualified as dharban ghayra mubarrih, or light striking, was interpreted by early jurists as a (symbolic) use of miswak (a small natural toothbrush)! They further qualified permissible "striking" as that which leaves no mark on the body………………….

Like Badawi, you miss the mark Nadia, in saying "it does not hurt her." Here's an account of a woman complaining to Muhammad that her husband had slapped her face:-

"A woman complained to Muhammad that her husband slapped her on the face, (which was still marked by the slap). At first the prophet said to her: ‘Get even with him', but then added: ‘Wait until I think about it.' Later on, Allah supposedly revealed 4:34 to Muhammad, after which Muhammad said: ‘We wanted one thing but Allah wanted another, and what Allah wanted is best.'"

The above quote comes from Razi's "At-Tasfir al-Kabir" on 4:34. Razi is one of the best known Muslim scholars, I think he knew what he was talking about. No mention of Muhammad's censure of the man for striking his wife's face and marking her.

Lets look at what the Qur'an says.

Translations of Sura 4:34

These three Muslim translations of Surah 4:34 should be read carefully.

Egyptian-born M.A.S. Abdel Haleem, educated at Al-Azhar University, Cairo, and Cambridge University and now professor of Islamic Studies at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, translates for Oxford University Press (2004), as follows:

"Husbands should take full care of their wives, with [the bounties] Allah has given to some more than others and with what they spend out of their own money. Righteous wives are devout and guard what Allah would have them guard in the husbands' absence. If you fear high-handedness from your wives, remind them [of the teaching of Allah], then ignore them when you go to bed, then hit them. If they obey you, you have no right to act against them Allah is most high and great."

Abdullah Yusuf Ali, a scholar working out of Lahore, Punjab, East Pakistan, began his translation of the Qur'an in 1934, and revised it a third time by 1938. He notes in parenthesis, not original to the Arabic, the sequence of steps and the implied soft meaning of "beat them (lightly)":

" ... As to those women on whose part ye fear disloyalty and ill-conduct, admonish them (first), (next), refuse to share their beds, (and last) beat them (lightly) ..."

Ahmed Ali was an author of fiction, and he translates the relevant line for Princeton University Press (1984, rev. 1986), adding parenthetic glosses not originally found in Arabic:

"As for women you feel are averse, talk to them suasively; then leave them alone in bed (without molesting them) and go to bed with them (when they are willing)."

This translation flatly contradicts the two others cited here and many others: The Arabic word idribhunna used in 4:34 is derived from the three-consonant root D-r-b (Daraba). Let's look at how translators of the Qur'an render it. "beat" (Fakhry); "scourge" (Pickthall); "beat" (Dawood); "beat (lightly)" (Hilali and Khan); "chastise" (Maulana); "chastise" (Khan); "beat" (Maududi); "beat" (Salahi and Shamis, Muslim translators of Sayyid Qutb); "beat" (Committee of Muslim translators of Ibn Kathir); "beat" (Shakir); "chastise" (Khalifa); "beat" (Sher Ali); and "beat" (Asad, whom Hathout quotes in her article).* "beat" (Arberry) "beat" (Palmer) "scourge" (Rodwell) "chastise" (Sale)

To be beaten, chastised, or scourged will hurt, which is the intention, to bring a rebellious wife into submission.

Sahi hadith narrated by Aisha about wife beating

"Rifa'a divorced his wife whereupon 'AbdurRahman bin Az-Zubair Al-Qurazi married her. 'Aisha said that the lady (came), wearing a green veil (and complained to her (Aisha) of her husband and showed her a green spot on her skin caused by beating). It was the habit of ladies to support each other, so when Allah's Apostle came, 'Aisha said, "I have not seen any woman suffering as much as the believing women. Look! Her skin is greener than her clothes!"

Sahi Bukhari Volume 7, Book 72, Number 715:

The following report is narrated by Aisha, Muhammad's favourite young wife, to whom he was betrothed when she was 6 (six) years old, and sexually consummated the marriage when he was in his fifties and she was around nine (nine) years old. The context shows Muhammad sneaking out of the house, to visit a graveyard and pray over the dead. Aisha followed him. She returned just before he did, but he noticed she was out of breath and he asked her why. She told him, and apparently fearing for his life as he saw her in the shadows, he punished her. Says Aisha: "He struck me on the chest which caused me pain" (Sahi Muslim, vol. 2, no. 2127). So Muhammad committed domestic violence on his young wife.

These Internet publications fully document domestic violence and its Islamic sanction.

http://www.answering-islam.org/Authors/Arlandson/beating.htm

http://www.answering-islam.org/Authors/Wood/women.htm

http://www.answering-islam.org/Silas/beating_badawi.htm

Muhammad, Islam and slavery

Islam institutionalized slavery. Muhammad was a slaver, and slaves were taken by him from his time in Medina.

Slaves of Muhammad - Prophet of Freedom and Equality!

Muhammad owned numerous slaves after he proclaimed himself to be a prophet. Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya, one of the greatest scholars and chroniclers of Islam, says in his book, "Zad al-Ma'ad" (Part I, p. 160):-

"Muhammad had many male and female slaves. He used to buy and sell them, but he purchased (more slaves) than he sold, especially after Allah empowered him by His message, as well as after his immigration from Mecca. He (once) sold one black slave for two. His name was Jacob al-Mudbir. His purchases of slaves were more (than he sold). He was used to renting out and hiring many slaves, but he hired more slaves than he rented out."

The Names of Muhammad's Slaves

Male Slaves:

Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya always relies on the Sirat literature (Muhammad's biographies written by great ancient scholars) for his information, he is regarded therefore by Muslims as an authority, a primary source and a leader among the students of the Islamic religion. Al-Jawziyya says the following in his book, "Zad al-Ma'ad" (part 1, pp. 114, 115, and 116):-

"These are the names of Muhammad's male slaves: Yakan Abu Sharh, Aflah, 'Ubayd, Dhakwan, Tahman, Mirwan, Hunayn, Sanad, Fadala Yamamin, Anjasha al-Hadi, Mad'am, Karkara, Abu Rafi', Thawban, Ab Kabsha, Salih, Rabah, Yara Nubyan, Fadila, Waqid, Mabur, Abu Waqid, Kasam, Abu 'Ayb, Abu Muwayhiba, Zayd Ibn Haritha, and also a black slave called Mahran, who was re-named (by Muhammad) Safina (`ship').

He himself relates his own story; he says:

"The apostle of Allah and his companions went on a trip. (When) their belongings became too heavy for them to carry, Muhammad told me, `Spread your garment.' They filled it with their belongings, then they put it on me. The apostle of Allah told me, `Carry (it), for you are a ship.' Even if I was carrying the load of six or seven donkeys while we were on a journey, anyone who felt weak would throw his clothes or his shield or his sword on me so I would carry that, a heavy load. The prophet told me, `You are a ship"' (refer to Ibn Qayyim, pp. 115-116; al-Hulya, Vol. 1, p. 369, quoted from Ahmad 5:222).

The story shows their ruthlessness and does not need explanation or clarification. The ill treatment Muhammad and his companions made of Mahran is very repulsive. Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya is not the only one who recorded this episode and the list of names of Muhammad's slaves. The Tabari also (in his Chronicles, Volume 2 p. 216, 217, 218) presents us with these accounts. No one among the contemporary Muslim leaders denies these matters, especially if he is faced with the Tabari's and Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya's records.

Female Slaves:

In this same Section (One, p. 116), Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya as well as other Muslim authors of chronicles recorded the list of names of Muhammad's female-slaves. They are Salma Um Rafi', Maymuna daughter of Abu Asib, Maymuna daughter of Sa'd, Khadra, Radwa, Razina, Um Damira, Rayhana, Mary the Copt (Egyptian Christian), in addition to two other maid-slaves, one of them given to him as a present by his cousin, Zaynab, and the other one captured in a war.

Slaves were usually taken in war, either through offensive or defensive actions. Islam allows the taking of slaves as "booty", or reward for fighting. This has led to numerous jihads by Muslim states and tribes, to attack other non-Muslim groups and obtain slaves. There are hundreds of Sahi Hadith of Bukhari dealing with slavery. Whole chapters of Hadith are dedicated to dealing with the taxation, treatment, sale, and jurisprudence of slaves. In addition to this, numerous Hadith mention slaves, and their relation to their Muslim masters. Islamic jurisprudence laid down regulations for the proper treatment of slaves, but abuses have occurred throughout history.

The Qur'an justifies slavery, and often mentions slaves, for example

"Prophet, We have made lawful to you the wives to whom you have granted dowries and the slave girls whom Allah has given you as booty."

Surah 33:50

This verse clearly shows Muslims believe taking slaves in war was an Allah-given right. These slaves were considered 'booty' or the spoils of war. With the following passage detailing how Muslim males are allowed to have sex with their wives and slave girls. Implicit in this, is that Muslim males had slave-concubines.

"The believers must (eventually) win through. Those who humble themselves in their prayers. Who avoid vain talk. Who are active in deeds of charity. Who abstain from sex. Except with their wives and slave girls, for these are lawful to them. But those who exceed those limits are transgressors."

Surah 23:5

Surah 70:30 is basically a repeat of Surah 23:5, saying:-

"Except with their wives and the (captives) whom their right hands possess, - for (then) they are not to be blamed,"

The Quran also instructs Muslims to free their slaves at times, as a penalty for crime or sin. Surah's 4:92, 5:89, 58:3

The above verses show that taking slaves was ordained by Allah, that it was permissible for Muslim males to have sex with their female slaves, also showing that slaves were a valuable commodity to the Muslims, otherwise, Allah would not have imposed the penalty of freeing a slave to make up for a crime.

Muhammad is Islam, he sets its genetic code, and he trafficked in slavery and allowed sex with women prisoners of war, in their most helpless condition, and the following Internet publications deal extensively with Islam, Muhammad and slavery, fully documented from within the record of Islam itself.

The article Slaves of Muhammad- Prophet of Freedom and Equality demonstrates that Muhammad owned slaves.

http://www.answering-islam.org/BehindVeil/btv5.html#owner

The article Muhammad And The Female Captives quotes the Qur'an and many hadith passages on sex with women prisoners of war.

http://www.answering-islam.org/Silas/femalecaptives.htm

The article Women In Islam analyzes Islam's permission for men to have sex with slave-girls

http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/women_in_islam3.htm

The article Adultery Do It! Do It! Do It! provides further details on Muhammad's encouragement to his soldiers to "do it" with women prisoners of war.

http://www.muhammadanism.org/Hadith/Topics/Adultery.htm

As for slavery generally, the article Slavery In Islam demonstrates that Muslims practiced the slave trade. The article tracks this dirty business up to the present day in the Islamic world. http://www.answering-islam.org/Silas/slavery.htm

The article Slavery In Islam gives an overview on slavery in Islam, quoting ancient and modern Islamic scholars, including those of Islam's prestigious Al-Azhar University, which majors on Islamic law and theology .

http://www.answering-islam.org/BehindVeil/btv5.html

Does the Qur'an recycle stories and is it "……….a known fact that Islam has a view that judaism, christanity and islam all have the same roots....hence they have the same basic beliefs?"

Recycled stories abound in the Qur'an, being derived in part from the Jewish Talmud, the Midrash and many apocryphal works, all of which is well documented in numerous publications.

One of the best documented and damaging facts about Qur'anic recycling, is that Muhammad used heretical "Christian" Gnostic gospels and their fables for material in the Qur'an, Encyclopaedia Britannica saying, "The Gospel was known to him chiefly through apocryphal and heretical sources" (15:648) and this has been demonstrated many times by various scholars.

The Qur'an incorporates material from spurious and unreliable second and third century AD infancy and apocryphal Gospel stories and recycles them! For instance, the Quran in Surah 3:49, and 5:110 claims that the infant Jesus fashioned clay birds and was able to tell people what they had hidden in their homes. The Qur'an also claims in Surah 3 and 19 that Zechariah was Mary's guardian while she remained in the temple, that God miraculously fed her, that rods were cast for her, that Jesus spoke from the cradle 19:29-31 and that Mary received refreshment from a palm tree.

All these details come from second and third century documents, as the following articles demonstrate:

http://answering-islam.org/Books/Tisdall/Sources/chap4.htm
http://answering-islam.org/Quran/Sources/cradle.html

This is a fact that even some Muslims have no problem admitting. In his note on Surah 3:44, Qur'an translatorAbdullah Yusuf Ali states quite bluntly:

"Christian" apocryphal writings mention the contention between the priests as to the honour of taking charge of Mary, and how it was decided by means of rods or reeds in favour of Zakariya. (Ali, The Holy Qur'an - taken from the ALIM CD-ROM version)

Ali's footnote 388 states:

... Some apocryphal Gospels describe him as preaching from infancy. (Ibid.)

Ali going on to say in footnote 390:

The miracle of the clay birds is found in some of the apocryphal Gospels ... (Ibid.)

For more info on the Qur'an's use of spurious apocryphal material, please consult the section "Sources of the Qur'an" at http://answering-islam.org/Quran/Sources/index.htm

Muhammad also recycled some ideas from Zoroastrianism and Hinduism. (Sell, Studies, pages 219ff)

Conclusion

I will not attempt to contest your assertion of it being "a known fact that Islam has a view that judaism, christanity and islam all have the same roots," leaving Judaism to someone better acquainted with it than I am, but being a deeply committed follower of the Lord Jesus Christ, I will strongly challenge your assertion that Christianity and Islam "have the same basic beliefs." No they do not Nadia, they make mutually-exclusive and completely different truth-claims. Most crucially, they do not worship the same God. The God revealed in the printed words of the Bible, and supremely revealed in the living, loving Word of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, are not the same at all, the Christian God is not the Qur'anic Allah whoever he is.

I do not adore the same God with those who reject the Incarnation, reject the Cross, reject the Resurrection and reject God's Unity in Tri-Unity ("the Trinity.") I no more adore and worship the same God that Muslims adore and worship, than I do any religion that defines itself first and foremost as a denial of the heart of my trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for my salvation, defining salvation as God's "rescue-plan," His saving of us from our sins, being His solution to the whole problem of sin, in all its aspects, and in the Lord Jesus Christ's teaching, being deliverance from sin through Himself, the Bible clearly teaching this, and saying, "there is no other Name by which we may be saved, but the Name of Jesus." Acts 4:12 and someone has said so well, "As far as the way of salvation is concerned, there are only two religions the world has ever known or will ever know—the religion of divine accomplishment, which is biblical Christianity, and the religion of human achievement, which includes all other kinds of religion, whatever name they may go under."

I warmly commend the Lord Jesus Christ to you Nadia, He'll have you if you'll have Him, no messing, no if's, no but's, no maybe's, and with Him on your case, your future is wonderfully taken care of, and an eternity with Him is your confident expectation.

If you have a sound-card and speakers on your PC, have a listen to this spontaneous outpouring of Praise by the late Dr S.M.Lockridge "That's My King."

http://lukeplant.me.uk/articles.php?id=7

I wish I could describe Him to you Nadia, but as Dr Lockridge says, "He's indescribable."

With kind regards and best wishes

Lactantius Jr.

Submitting....

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