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CURMALLY: On who maligns other people's religions and the hate taught in Pakistani schools

Reader comment on item: Dueling Fatwas
in response to reader comment: Dueling Fatwas -reply to Plato

Submitted by Plato (India), Oct 17, 2010 at 11:16

Greetings, Curmally, you wrote to me:

>>I have read the Gita as I have read Upanishads translated by India's ex President Mr. S. Radhakhrishnan, who was a great and devout man. They are great works.<<

They are indeed great works of the human mind. The Krishna of the Gita is, I believe, a metaphor for the unity of the universe (monism – Every object in the world is my body; and every movement in the universe is a movement of my body) unlike the Koran where the unity of Allah is all-important (monotheism).

This is what gives Hinduism its all-inclusive nature. You must have read in the Gita says that he (Krishan, God) is present in all and all are in Him. Here is one quote from the Gita: 9.20-24 "I make no distinction between one religion and another. People may worship me in any form they wish. The form of worship does not matter to me; my only concern is the quality of love which is expressed in worship. I accept every kind of worship, because I am supreme."

Now that is a statement worthy of a supreme being. Compare that with the Islamic monotheistic God who rants and raves at anyone daring to associate anyone or anything with him (with the lone exception of His beloved prophet, of course).

>>The Gita and the the lesson it teaches is a very worthwhile and it is a great book and I read them as a much younger man.<<

Undoubtedly most of its teachings are worth pondering over (except its flirting with the caste system once in awhile).

>>I am looking for a worthwhile translation of the Gita in English. Could you recommend one?<<

I once had a translation of Lokmanya Balgandhar Tilak's translation and comments. It is a good one and shows that the Gita emphasies doing one's duty without expecting any reward either in this life or elsewhere in sharp contrast to the Koran where sensual rewards are on offer for generally behaving like slaves towards a master and obeying His every command however unethical and immoral.

>>You have quoted Yusufali's translation and the example you gave was "You are the best of people" Have you tried read a modern translation of the Quran e Karim like Irving's, Mohammad Asad or Professor Ahmed Ali's translation? Not being fluent in Arabic, when I read the Quran e Karim, I read 3 or 4 translations to understand the real meaning. Did you do that or are you proficient in the Quran e Karim in Arabic?<<

I have read at least three translations including Muhsin Khan and Hilali. I know no Arabic but I am happy to accept Allah's claim that the Koran is a clear book easy to understand which tells me that scholars who know Arabic and English will do a good enough job of translation. If one has to read several translations to understand it, it means the Koran must contain lot of gibberish.

>> If you seek the truth and you are studying something in a foreign language it is best to do so by reading more than one translation.<<

The truth is in the Koran which says: 54:40 YUSUFALI: And We have indeed made the Qur'an easy to understand and remember: then is there any that will receive admonition?

You don't need context to understand this crystal clear verse. Why do Muslims keep complaining that the Koran is a badly misunderstood book? Will they ever receive admonition from Allah for ignoring this holy verse?

>>here is Professor Ahmed Ali's Translation of 3:110."Of all the communities raised among men you are the best, enjoining the good, forbidding the wrong and believing in God." The Quran e Karim after saying you are best of people then defines what makes a Muslim the best of people.<<

By corollary the Koran is saying the pagans and Christians and jews do not enjoin what is good i.e. all are sinners and do not forbid wrongs and do not believe in this one God. Now look at what makes a Muslim the best of people. Enjoying what they take in war, including women and children is good: 008.069 YUSUFALI: But (now) enjoy what ye took in war, lawful and good: but fear Allah: for Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.

As to what is forbidden, Allah does not forbid taking slaves and keeping concubines. They can be enjoyed by all Muslims. And you are really the best of people if you believe in only this One god.

Now let us refer to the next reference you gave which is 9:28. I am still quoting from Ahmed Ali."O believers, the idolaters are unclean.o they should not approach the Holy Mosque after this year. In case you fear indigence(*from stoppage of business with them) then God will enrich you from his bounty, if he will, for God is all knowing and all-wise. AS you may know, Musims perform the wudhu before we pray. The wudhu is a cleaning of your arms, feet face and neck which could be normally exposed to dirt. You perform your wudhu five times a day. Now a non Mujslim is not aware of this and therefore will enter the place of prayer unclean.<<

What is this bounty that Allah was going to give them if not the loot obtained from raids on caravans and neighbouring tribes?

How is this translation you have quoted different from the one I quoted:

009.028 YUSUFALI: O ye who believe! Truly the Pagans are unclean; so let them not, after this year of theirs, approach the Sacred Mosque. And if ye fear poverty, soon will Allah enrich you, if He wills, out of His bounty, for Allah is All-knowing, All-wise.

There is nothing in the ayat about the superficial cleanliness you achieve with wudhu. You have added that to make me think that that is the reason for the prohibition of kaffirs from a large stretch of land around your two holy of holies. Perhaps Allah is afraid that the wind might carry the dirt hanging around the infidel to His home in the Kaaba. Some other defender of Islam on this blog had the bright idea that Allah is not talking of superficial physical cleanliness but of spiritual dirt that kaffirs carry. That makes more sense as there is no way a kaffir can get rid of spiritual dirt except by accepting Allah as his overlord.

Your claim is that the translater (the ones I quote) has got the meaning wrong. So let me quote for you from an ancient and revered commentator. Ibn Kathir' exegesis on this verse given in Vol 2 Dar al kotob al almiya, Beirut edition (you can of course say that this translator has got his meaning wrong also) page 733: "Allah Almighty has ordered the faithful believers to expel the pagans who are a source of abomination, from the sacred mosque, and not let them approach it as of the date ……This holy (?) verse signifies the fact that the non-Muslim is, by all means, an impure (in faith) unlike a Muslim who is always pure, according to a correct Hadith in which the Messenger of Allah "PBUH" says: "A Muslim never gets impure." But this does not mean that the body or food of the non-Muslim is impure, since Allah Almighty makes lawful for Muslims his food."

This is from an Arab closer to the time and place of the Prophet. He says nothing about wuduh. In fact he also says the uncleanness is that of faith. The prophet also said a Muslim never gets impure which means the wuduh is just a empty ritual before prayers.

You seem to think that washing dirt off one's hands, face and feet makes you clean. What of the dirt that has been oozing out of your body including the nether regions all the time. And what of the dirt inside your body like the urine sloshing around in your bladder and the brown stuff creeping down the intestines. The all-seeing Allah has no problem with people entering His holy mosques with all that still inside them? He sure can see and smell them.

>> Do you understand the meaning of the ayat now that you have read it in its complete form.?<<

I quoted exactly the same one in complete form. It was from a different translator. You have not shown me that the two are different in any way. But if by complete you mean that I should include the words you have attached to Allah's about wudu then I agree the ayat is not in complete form. If this is how you are going to present this ayat then one of those ignorant Mullahs you mention will bring down a fatal fatwa on head.

>>You have quoted a part of the whole and a part that suited your purpose.By doing this you destroyed the meaning of the Ayat . To do that is very bad manners because it is selective and shows your intent.<<

What do you mean by saying I have quoted part of the whole? I would naturally quote the parts that I think should be brought to your notice. If you mean I have quoted part of the whole Koran you are right. You don't expect me to quote all the 114 surahs do you? If you mean I have quoted only part of the ayat you would be wrong because what you have re-quoted is exactly what I have quoted (and from one of the most respected translator at that).

As is usual with most Muslims when confronted with an indigestible verse you also say that one should consider the totality of the Koran. Or that the translator is no good and you trot out the names of your own personal favourites. And how do you know your favourite translators have got it right. For the record I have also read Asad, Muhsin Khan & Hilali, and Moulvi Mohammed Ali (the Ahmedia). I also have had a look at Rashad Khalifa's translation on the Internet.

Out all of them Asad is the most tendentious, unsuccessfully indulging in linguistic contortions to make the Koran less threatening.

>>In my first reply I had asked you to lay things aside because of our common history we shared till 1947and the hatred that exists between our countries and religion. We barely tolerate each other.<<

What things do you expect us to lay aside? You saw the rousing welcome we gave to your CWG sports men. The hatred it seems is one-sided. The religion of the Hindus does not call for any hatred of another religion or people. You must have already read the quote from the Hindus' holy book I have given at the beginning. But what do your madrassas and schools teach? Let me quote just a few paras from a report prepared by your own educationists on what you teach your children. It is a long report and you must read it as you love reading. Here is the link:

http://www.sdpi.org/whats_new/reporton/State%20of%20Curr&TextBooks.pdf

And here are some excerpts

Madrassas in Pakistan have recently been a focus of world attention for creating this kind of exclusionary and sectarian worldview. The religious education mixed with militancy is supposed to be the deadly mix, giving rise to the narrow vision that breeds hate and irrationality and results in the international jehad. This however is not entirely true. Madrassas are not the only institutions breeding hate, intolerance, a distorted worldview, etc. The educational material in the government run schools do much more than madrassas. The textbooks tell lies, create hatred,inculcates militancy, and much more. In May 2002, a group of academics were gathered by SDPI to examine the curricula and textbooks that are presently being used in public schools. The group investigated curriculum documents and textbooks in the disciplines of Social Studies/ Pakistan studies, Urdu English and Civics from class I to Class XII. It is in these four disciplines that students are exposed to the issues of religious and national identity, tolerance and social relationships that shape their worldview. Classes I to XII were chosen because the curricula and textbooks are all prepared for them by the same institutions, namely the Curriculum Wing of the Government of Pakistan, and the Provincial Textbook Boards. These institutions are primarily responsible for the character

and content of the educational material that determines what happens in classrooms across the country.

Hate Material

Associated with the insistence on the Ideology of Pakistan has been an essential component of hate against India and the Hindus.

For the upholders of the Ideology of Pakistan, the existence of Pakistan is defined only in relation to Hindus, and hence the Hindus have to be painted as negatively as possible. That the pathological hate against Hindus is only because of adopting the so-called Ideology of Pakistan is borne out by the fact that the pre-Ideology (before the 1970s) textbooks of Pakistan did not contain this hatred. Although a lot of animosity towards Hindus might well have been expected in the newborn Pakistan because of the bloody riots of the partition, the early textbooks in Pakistan, many written after the partition, were free of the pathological hate that we see in textbooks today.

……..

Curriculum documents state the following as the specific learning objectives:

[The child should be able to] understand the Hindu and Muslim differences and

the resultant need for Pakistan98

Develop understanding of the Hindu Muslim Differences and need for Pakistan99

98 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Classes K-V, Integrated and Subject Based, National Bureau of

Curriculum and Textbooks, Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, 1995, p 151

99 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education

(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 35

20

Hindu-Muslim Differences in Culture, .. India's evil designs against Pakistan (the

three wars with India)100 Identify the events in relation to Hindu-Muslim differences, which laid the foundations for Pakistan101

The textbooks then respond in the following way to the above curriculum instructions:

Hindu has always been an enemy of Islam.102

The religion of the Hindus did not teach them good things -- Hindus did not

respect women...

Now Mr. Curmally show me anything even remotely comparable in India, the land of najees, to this education of hate that young minds undergo in Pakistan, the land of the pure.

>>I was born in IndiaI know what I am saying. I will not quote from your scriptures to put you on the defensive because that is not my aim.<<

The compilers of the report on Pakistani hate education also know what they are saying.

Don't quote from Hindu scripture but I challenge you to quote something from Allah which sounds even remotely like this verse, from the Gita which is in your library: 6.40-47 "Yet even those who fail to control their minds, will be saved – so long as they serve others. No one who does good works, will ever come to a bad end."

Instead of such large heartedness you will find verses like those below in the Koran:

009.053 YUSUFALI: Say: "Spend (for the cause) willingly or unwillingly: not from you will it be accepted: for ye are indeed a people rebellious and wicked." [REFERENCE TO HYPOCRITES]

009.054 YUSUFALI: The only reasons why their contributions are not accepted are: that they reject Allah and His Messenger; that they come to prayer without earnestness; and that they offer contributions unwillingly.

024.039 YUSUFALI: But the Unbelievers,- their deeds are like a mirage in sandy deserts, which the man parched with thirst mistakes for water; until when he comes up to it, he finds it to be nothing: But he finds Allah (ever) with him, and Allah will pay him his account: and Allah is swift in taking account.

>>I wrote initially a comment on Duellng Fatwas and I said that any Mullah or every Mullah is not qualified to read a fatwa and it has turned to be a defense of Islam. Islam, my religion is there and will be there after I am gone to defend it is my duty.<<

A fatwa is only an opinion and every Mulla is entitled to give his opinion. Every one is entitled to defend her/his religion but when her/his religion calls on its followers to fight and subjugate followers of other religions then it is the duty of all right thinking people to point out this defect and in their religion.

>>I have desisted from maligning anyone's religion because all religions are good and you should respect it and its followers.<<

Now that is a good thought but you will not find such thoughts in the Koran. Just read the verses quoted above for illustration.

>>To put down some one or someone's belief is really not on and bad manners. <<

Is it bad or good manners to call another man's god a lowly human. Is it right to mock the belief of pagans that consider their idols to be sacred? You know who I am referring to.

>>It goes against the the teachings of my religion (You can refer to Surah Al-Kafirun or he Disbelievers for proof. It is the 109th Surah and is barely six or seven lines long) and the right to belief as is enshrined in the Declaration of Human Rights.<<

The one Surah so beloved of our "moderate" Muslims to mislead gullible kaffirs. The last ayat is especially interesting: "To you be your religion, and to me my religion."

Why then did Allah tell Muhammad to seek converts to Islam from among the pagans who had their religion and the Jews and Christians, who also had their religion? This Surah is used as a convenient form of taqia to fool unsuspecting infidels. Mr. Curmally you are also indulging in taqia by quoting this verse which you very well know was revealed in Mecca and generally later ayas supercede, if not abrogate, the earlier ones. For instance 9:29 and 9:33 make a complete mockery of this sugar-coated verse with their call to fight unbelievers until they believe and saying Islam is the only acceptable religion to Allah and His apostle.

>>Go in peace, you have great works to inspire you to be a better human being and lead a fuller life. For sure you will not be greater by comparing or misquoting but because you have the courage to believe in what you consider to be the truth. This is what I wish for you.<<

Thanks for that lovely thought, only you went and spoiled it by accusing me of misquoting the Koran, which I have shown is not the truth.

Why do you say "go in peace"? We are only conducting a verbal duel here. Are you letting me off without the violence you threatened Grand Infidel with? It is interesting that you greet each other with "salam aleikum" meaning peace be upon you. I have always wondered why. Is it because of the constant violence Islamic societies suffer from and hence you try to reassure the other party that you come in peace?

With Regards

Plato

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