2 readers online now  |  69 million page views

A Clue to the ABSENCE of Conscience in Islam?

Reader comment on item: Islam and Democracy - Much Hard Work Needed
in response to reader comment: Imago Dei

Submitted by Ron Thompson (United States), Feb 17, 2011 at 15:30

Although I'm not a religious person, I was struck by Professor Eidelberg's pointing out that not only did Muhammad's Allah not create man in the image of God, but that it is blasphemous (a crime punishable by death throughout Islamic history) to claim or suggest that he did.

The thought arises - because of this rendering of God/Allah as a complete abstraction (i.e. without the softening effect of any human-like image of God as a wise old man, let alone the image of 'his son' Jesus, or the fact that his appearance made God literally a Father) then the definition of God/Allah will be the result of the dominant person or persons who give enduring meaning to the idea of God/Allah in the minds of the believers.

And of course no other individual has come close to defining the Muslim idea of God/Allah as has the Founder of the religion, Muhammad. No institution like the Catholic Church, no individual Pope, no Martin Luther, or any other of countless reformers in Christianity, has come close to matching the enduring and remarkably unchanged nature of Islam and its God as defined by Muhammad in the years 610-632. Nor is there any remote parallel to this singular survival of Muhammad's 7th century ideas in Judaism, which has changed and evolved so remarkably from its pre-Exile Old Testament meanings to its post Temple-destruction Diaspora meanings, to its post-Enlightenment meanings.

Having recently read Robert Spencer's The Truth About Muhammad (2006), based on a careful scholarship almost exclusively limited to Islamic sources, it seems hard to deny two things: First, that the more success Muhammad achieved after his first major battlefield victory in 624, the far harsher, more intolerant, and more politically ambitous his ongoing 'revelations' became. (Even though he only achieved full military and political victory in Arabia in 630, barely 18 months before his death, he had already begun, five years earlier, sending out 'invitations' to the rulers of the dominant States of Persia and Byzantium to accept Islam; "Convert, and be safe." Certainly he could never be accused of modesty of ambition)

Second, Muhammad's encouragement, condoning, and actual practice of pitliless violence and cruelty, including personally ordered assassinations, in the cause of establishing Islam as the supreme power in the world, seems undeniable. Indeed all contemporary and post 9/11calls for and justifying of Jihadist acts of violence and terror against non-Muslims, infidels and apostates come straight form the core of the Quran, the Hadith, and the Sira (earliest biographies of Muhammad). There is everything of emulation and nothing of defamation in the words of bin Laden, Zawahiri and all their fellow imitators of Muhammad's words and deeds.

If they should achieve (which they won't) worldwide supremacy, with all of non-Muslim mankind paying the Jizya - the poll tax whose purpose is to institutionalize their inferiority to Muslims - they will have recreated the early centuries of Islamic civilization, which was essentially a protection racket. I.e. the Jizya ("pay and .... perhaps you'll be free of violence from Muslims") was the chief source of revenue for that civilization. Which raises the interesting question - when increasing numbers began to slowly convert to Islam, in order to avoid that hated tax, and the visible signs of inferiority to Islam, thereby depriving the parasite State of its chief source of revenue, could this account for the accelerating collapse of Islamic societies into perennial stagnation, which continued until the artificial lift of oil revenues in the 20th century?

Therefore, if this appalling history of the rise of Muhammad's Islam is true, are we faced with the task of asking ourselves, and demanding that our (so-called) leaders ask - can Islam, and the overwhelming example of Muhammad's words and deeds, survive without the ideology of Jihad?

And doesn't this question become even more important when we have immediately before us the stunning example of a possible true revolution in Egypt, and who knows, throughout the Middle East, which so far has been conducted on the thoroughly unIslamic premise of non-violence?

Ron Thompson

Submitting....

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".

Comment on this item

Mark my comment as a response to A Clue to the ABSENCE of Conscience in Islam? by Ron Thompson

Email me if someone replies to my comment

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".

See recent outstanding comments.

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List
eXTReMe Tracker

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2020 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)