To Ferdos on the pure authentic way of Islamic life
Submitted by Plato (United Arab Emirates), Jan 9, 2007 at 04:11
Ferdos, you wrote:
"...People of different socio-economic, background, and race get attracted to the beautiful islamic way of life because of its purity and authenticity. I advise that you get a copy of a qura'an translation and read it with an open mind to see for yourself."
Ferdos, what exactly do you mean by "purity and authenticity" of the Islamic way of life. Hiding your women folk under the all-encompassing niqab/burka seems to be pure and authentic Islamic way of life for you. And the really strange reasoning often given for this practice is that it protects the women from the prying eyes of men and rape. This is equivalent to saying that since criminals are likely to attack me I should go to jail where I will be protected. The potential victim is made to suffer for the malevolence of the victimiser. This is again typical Islamic inversion. Like attack becoming defence. Refer the gazwas of the Prophet.
Let us examine another "pure and authentic" Islamic practice. Prayer. Ferdos, if you are, like the vast majority of the one and half billion Muslims, a non-Arab, I am willing to take a wager that when you pray you only mutter Arabic sounding words without really comprehending the meaning of what your mind is articulating. Your madrassa has probably given you a general idea of whatever it is you are reciting, but at the moment of recitation it is just strange sounds or words to you. When you are praying to your lord should you not clearly understand what you are saying. How "authentic" is this kind of prayer?Why can't you recite your prayers in your own language. You will then know what it is that you are telling god during all those genuflections. Most of the rest of the world prays more authentically.
Would you consider the recently concluded Eid Al Adha a pure and authentic Islamic practice. Most Muslims labour under the illusion that there is no more "pure" and authentically monotheistic religion than Islam. No symbols, no images, no representations of the gloriously lonely Allah. But then what does this verse about the Haj mean:
Read carefully about it not being a sin to run between them. Why is it not a sin. Let me tell you. Because the pagans had installed idols on them and they used to run between them and touch them. The Prophet merely removed the idols but continued the pagan practice and calls Safa and Marwa the symbols of God. Some Muslims of the time rightly considered this a pagan ritual. So an ayat to legitimised it.
You also are expected to kiss the Black stone with reverence. What has happened to the "purity and authenticity" of Islamic way of life?
Have you given thought to the meaning of the Haj ritual apart from what the clerics tell you. Consider what is supposed to have happened. God asking Abraham to sacrifice his son to prove his absolute loyalty to Him. This raises the question of whether God did not know before hand that Abraham would do as bidden and so why did he let the poor old man go through the trauma of placing his son's neck on the chopping block merely to prove his loyalty of which he already knew. And then God plays this sick joke of replacing his son with a lamb. I call it a sick joke because it is a trick an all-knowing merciful god should not have played on an old man. And now you have been commemorating this sick joke by slaughtering millions of animals all over the world for nearly 1500 years. Do you find "purity and authenticity" in this Islamic ritual?
You start your sentence with "...People of different socio-economic, background, and race get attracted to the beautiful islamic way of life ...." Please read what a respected professional historian has to say about this so called "attraction" to Islam:
India before the advent of Islamic imperialism was not exactly a zone of peace. There were plenty of wars fought by Hindu princes. But in all their wars, the Hindus had observed some time-honoured conventions sanctioned by the Sastras. The Brahmins and the Bhikshus were never molested. The cows were never killed. The temples were never touched. The chastity of women was never violated. The non-combatants were never killed or captured. A human habitation was never attacked unless it was a fort. The civil population was never plundered. War booty was an unknown item in the calculations of conquerors. The martial classes who clashed, mostly in open spaces, had a code of honor. Sacrifice of honor for victory or material gain was deemed as worse than death.
Islamic imperialism came with a different code--the Sunnah of the Prophet. It required its warriors to fall upon the helpless civil population after a decisive victory had been won on the battlefield. It required them to sack and burn down villages and towns after the defenders had died fighting or had fled. The cows, the Brahmins, and the Bhikshus invited their special attention in mass murders of non-combatants. The temples and monasteries were their special targets in an orgy of pillage and arson. Those whom they did not kill, they captured and sold as slaves. The magnitude of the booty looted even from the bodies of the dead, was a measure of the success of a military mission. And they did all this as mujahids (holy warriors) and ghazls (kafir-killers) in the service of Allah and his Last Prophet.
Hindus found it very hard to understand the psychology of this new invader. For the first time in their history, Hindus were witnessing a scene which was described by Kanhadade Prabandha (1456 AD) in the following words:
"The conquering army burnt villages, devastated the land, plundered people's wealth, took Brahmins and children and women of all classes captive, flogged with thongs of raw hide, carried a moving prison with it, and converted the prisoners into obsequious Turks."
That was written in remembrance of Alauddin Khalji's invasion of Gujarat in the year l298 AD. But the gruesome game had started three centuries earlier when Mahmud Ghaznavi had vowed to invade India every year in order to destroy idolatry, kill the kafirs, capture prisoners of war, and plunder vast wealth for which India was well-known.
I have pasted only a part of the story of the conquest of India. You should look up Durant to get the full picture of the horrors that were committed. You think the Hindus of diferent socio-economic, background and race were attracted by this beautiful Islamic way of life?
YUSUFALI: Behold! Safa and Marwa are among the Symbols of Allah. So if those who visit the House in the Season or at other times, should compass them round, it is no sin in them. And if any one obeyeth his own impulse to good,- be sure that Allah is He Who recogniseth and knoweth.
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".
Reader comments (2097) on this item
Comment on this item
You can help support Daniel Pipes' work by making a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum. Daniel J. Pipes