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Both Mr. Pipes and Mr. Auster are right to an extent

Reader comment on item: [The Search for Moderate Islam:] A Reply to Lawrence Auster

Submitted by Quennel Gale (United States), Jan 31, 2005 at 16:53


I think both are right on each of their perspective points. I do agree with Mr. Auster that Radical Islam for all practical purposes is Islam. When I take a look at the Sunnah/Hadith and the Quran it is impossible not to reach this conclusion:

Narrated Abu Burda:

Abu Musa said, "I came to the Prophet along with two men (from the tribe) of Ash'ariyin, one on my right and the other on my left, while Allah's Apostle was brushing his teeth (with a Siwak), and both men asked him for some employment. The Prophet said, 'O Abu Musa (O 'Abdullah bin Qais!).' I said, 'By Him Who sent you with the Truth, these two men did not tell me what was in their hearts and I did not feel (realize) that they were seeking employment.' As if I were looking now at his Siwak being drawn to a corner under his lips, and he said, 'We never (or, we do not) appoint for our affairs anyone who seeks to be employed. But O Abu Musa! (or 'Abdullah bin Qais!) Go to Yemen.'" The Prophet then sent Mu'adh bin Jabal after him and when Mu'adh reached him, he spread out a cushion for him and requested him to get down (and sit on the cushion). Behold: There was a fettered man beside Abu Muisa. Mu'adh asked, "Who is this (man)?" Abu Muisa said, "HE WAS A JEW AND BECAME A MUSLIM AND THEN REVERTED BACK TO JUDAISM." Then Abu Muisa requested Mu'adh to sit down but Mu'adh said, "I will not sit down TILL HE HAS BEEN KILLED. THIS IS THE JUDGMENT OF ALLAH AND HIS APOSTLE (for such cases) and repeated it thrice. Then Abu Musa ordered that the man be killed, and he was killed. Abu Musa added, "Then we discussed the night prayers and one of us said, 'I pray and sleep, and I hope that Allah will reward me for my sleep as well as for my prayers.'" Sahih Bukhari Volume 9, Book 84, Number 58

Take a look at some of Muhammad's last words before his death concerning the Jews:

Narrated 'Aisha and 'Abdullah bin 'Abbas:

When the last moment of the life of Allah's Apostle came he started putting his 'Khamisa' on his face and when he felt hot and short of breath he took it off his face and said, "MAY ALLAH CURSE THE JEWS AND CHRISTIANS for they built the places of worship at the graves of their Prophets." The Prophet was warning (Muslims) of what those had done. (Sahih Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 8, Number 427)

While in the Quran we find this:

And the Jews say: Ezra is the son of Allah, and the Christians say: The Messiah is the son of Allah. That is their saying with their mouths. THEY IMITATE THE SAYING OF THOSE WHO DISBELIEVE OF OLD. ALLAH (HIMSELF) FIGHTETH AGAINST THEM (Arabic: qaatalahumu llahu anna yu'fakoona-- Literally-May Allah KILL THEM) . HOW PERVERSE ARE THEY! S. 9:30

... Now Mr. Pipes is right from a historical perspective in that many Muslims are moderate and aren't violent. This is something I totally agree with. There was a point in time where Islamic civilization was the envy of the world, but like Mr. Pipes said, this was due to the subjects of the empire itself. In a way both are correct though I would always say, "you judge a religion by its scripture and authentic sources, apostles early companions, and not its modern day followers".

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