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2.256 could be a solution. Kinda.

Reader comment on item: Arguing over "Can Islam Be Reformed?"
in response to reader comment: Ibn Kathir and Q2:256

Submitted by Alain Jean-Mairet (Switzerland), Oct 7, 2013 at 04:40

Theoretically, Muslims could decide that the verse 2.256 was revealed after the surah 9 (instead of 622 AD, as is generally accepted), thus abrogating the verses 9.5 (conversion or death) and 9.29 (fight the people of the book until they accept dhimma), which are routinely considered as (partial) abrogation of 2.256. One Ibn Ashur, (1879-1979, cited in Friedmann's Tolerance and Coercion in Islam) proposed this already, without much success yet, but why not? It would at least constitute an intellectually honest way to review the standard interpretation of Classical Islam.

But even then, most avid readers of the Koran would be very much tempted to follow Muhammad's example, who killed, tortured and enslaved for years on end, till his death, and never practiced as it is implied in verse 2.256. And we would have over a thousand years of Classical Islam productions to revamp. Nah. The only way out is to dramatically reduce the number of people who are searching for the truth in those scriptures.


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