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Fear, not love, drives people to Allah

Reader comment on item: Salman Rushdie and British Backbone
in response to reader comment: To Henrik:

Submitted by Henrik Ræder Clausen (Denmark), Jul 2, 2007 at 17:13

" Henrik, could you provide few examples where you (and I really mean you) have been discouraged while going through Quran."

Absolutely. Here's but one example:

040.021 "Do they not travel through the earth and see the end of those before them? They were superior to them in strength, and in the traces (they have left) in the land, yet Allah seized and destroyed them, and they had no one to defend them against Allah. That was because their Messengers kept bringing them Clear (Signs and Proofs) (of Allah's Sovereignty), but they rejected them: So Allah seized and destroyed them: for He is Strong, Severe in Punishment and Retribution."

Here's one more:

[005:032] Because of that, We ordained for the Children of Israel that if anyone killed a person not in retaliation of murder, or to spread mischief in the land – it would be as if he killed all mankind, and if anyone saved a life, it would be as if he saved the life of all mankind. And indeed, there came to them Our Messengers with clear proofs, evidences, and signs, even then after that many of them continued to exceed the limits (e.g. by doing oppression unjustly and exceeding beyond the limits set by Allâh by committing the major sins) in the land!

[005:033] The recompense of those who wage war against Allâh and His Messenger [sal-Allâhu 'alayhi wa sallam] and do mischief in the land is only that they shall be killed or crucified or their hands and their feet be cut off from opposite sides, or be exiled from the land. That is their disgrace in this world, and a great torment is theirs in the Hereafter.

Here's finally a place where Allah speaks of love:

002.195 "Spend your wealth in Allah's Cause [fighting infidels], and be not cast by your own hands to perdition; and do good. Lo! Allah loves the doers of good."
And (you've guessed it) - Allah loves killers who sacrifice everything in his cause. In my book, that's Bad.

"Henrik, Quran starts with:"

""In the name of Allah, The Merciful, The All-merciful""

Yes. Now I happen to have read much more than the beginning, and I tell you (as well as everyone else here) that the rest does not live up to this fancy beginning. The quotes above are but examples of the vengeful god one encounters through this book.

But there's more. If we leave 'The Merciful, the All-merciful' untranslated, it says: "Ar-Rahman, Ah-Rahim", which happens to be names of Yemenite gods, not simply attributes to Allah. In AH 6, the treaty of Hudaybiya, Muhammad tries to open the treaty text in the same manner as this. Interestingly, the Meccans refuse to recognize Ar-Rahman and Ah-Rahim, accepting only Allah as a god. Muhammad accepts this, and from then onwards worships only Allah. Ibn Ishaq, page 504 in the Guillaume translation.

Theologically, that is a severe mess, but I've strayed a bit beside the point of the debate here. Having read the Quran in detail, I stand by my statement that 'fear' is completely dominating over 'love' in this book. A quick search reveals 190 instances of 'fear', only 40 of 'love', and a closer study would probably discard most of the 'love' references as being from footnotes, not the main text.

The affinity Allah has for fire (just like Djinns) is odd. I have a severe reservations towards any spirit being who spends his time in Hell stoking the fires with the bodies of those who do not worship him. To my taste, that sounds awfully like a being who doesn't deserve worship in the first place.

I stand by my statement that Allah is depicted as unreasonably vengeful in the Quran.


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