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Is Meccan trade as "Bogus" as Dhimmi portrays? Not according to the source he mentioned...

Reader comment on item: Is Allah God? - Continued
in response to reader comment: Our dear Zzazz and it is about Arabic

Submitted by zzazzeefrazzee (United States), Mar 11, 2008 at 01:40

"At last he got it. Our dear zzazz got it"

Another hapless straw man fallacy! How predictable- it' s become so routine, that it's getting boring, you know. If you would kindly review my posts, you would see that I never veered from such a position. Rather, I responded to Oliver, who disagreed with such a position.

"Do not get into something that you do not know"

As if you do? Care to enlighten us?

" No i'm not really interested in debating you about the so called pre-islamic poetry."

OK then, you don't have to debate me but you can debate Arberry's points, much less Zwettler's. By the way- I do own Arberry's book, AND I can read the Arabic, despite your incessant insinuations.

"Then you tell us again: why do Christian Arabs call their God Allah?"

Is there some compelling reason I need to answer you leading questions inviting me to join in a circular argument. of course, I have already answered this in detail in my posts to Oliver, but you always seem to confuse my position wit that of Oliver's. Oh, I forgot; perhaps your English isn't good enough to discern this?

If you think that Allah is derived form Aliha, then fine. I never discounted it, did I? What I will not do is endorse such a position to the exclusion of all else, like you have. After all, you've never really written a cogent argument to that effect. All you've done is posted a litany of denigrating comments (which, need I remind you, is not a logical argument form). Once again, please refer to a peer-reviewed scholarly source that endorses this position to the exclusion of all others.

Regarding Particia Crone's Meccan Trade and the Rise of Islam, I think it's a valuable contribution, but at the same time I don't echo or endorse all of her views. Probably one the best reviews of her book was written by Dr. Michael Bonner, (University of Michigan), who discussed it together with Muhammad's Mecca: History in the Quran by W. Montgomery Watt in International Journal of Middle East Studies, Vol. 22, No. 3 (Aug., 1990), pp. 337-339. Bonner notes how while Crone does make quite a number of important points, she spends far too much time attacking Watt's position to outline an original argument of her own, and how the truth probably lies somewhere between the positions of Watt and Crone.

It is my view that it is better to characterize her position as a re-definition of the trade that existed and the reasons for it, rather than claim it "never existed at all" (a position that she never really takes). While I feel she rightly disputes Watt's claims that trade was the reason for the rise of Islam, and that it was nowhere near as "international" or "luxurious", she does note how it did in fact exist, but only to supply local Hijazi demands for utilitarian goods and foodstuffs. As such, she specifically mentions a more humble trade of items such as leather and cloth, and foodstuffs.

In addition, I do think Crone is right to note that Persia also played a role. I would only add that I do not think that it is entirely implausible that Mecca, being home to a sacred shrine, would not have acquired copious quantities of incense, as it is common to burn it at most shrines in the region at that time. The Quraish were not altogether poor, and it would seem entirely reasonable to have engaged in trade to supply their needs with Yemen in the South, and Syrian in the North.

Then there is the more recent article by Gene Heck (Journal Of The American Oriental Society, 2003, Volume 123, pp. 547-576.). I'm not always a fan of his writings, and I do agree with some of Daniel Pipe's criticisms of another book of his entitled "When Worlds Collide" (except for the first one, i do think the Torah is about as belicose as the Qur;an, but that's for another day). That said, I do think that Heck makes many important observations about the economics of Pre- Islamic Arabic and early Islam, and squarely challenges some points made by Crone.

So back to my main point, it would seem that there would have been reason for Hijazis to engage in trade with Jews, principally in the South in Yemen, and Christians in the North, in Syria. So, if your claim is that the Meccan trade was "bogus", then I'm afraid that Crone is not a very good source for your claim. your stated limitation of Jews having lived in Hijaz is quite irrelevant to the point that I first made.

So when it comes down to it, you really don't have much an argument- certainly not if you're citing Crone. Perhaps it's due to your poor English reading comprehension, which you've routinely displayed? Perhaps it's also due to your inherent sectarian, ethnocentric, and even perhaps chauvinistic biases that you've indulged us in here with regularity? Such views are certainly not rooted in is objective scholarship, so just who are you to throw stones about my scholarly abilities? The tone of your posts only lead one to wonder if you're even capable of being objective, and certainly no scholar of any slight consequence.

For all of your criticisms, you've yet to post anything even mildly objective so as to be persuasive. A scholar, who is capable of behaving like a mature adult than a raving reactionary zealot, is perfectly capable of outlining a logical argument, much less a persuasive one. Perhaps if you would bother to remember Occam's razor, and avoid those pesky logical fallacies, you would actually start to compose one for a change?

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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