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Amir- re:Missionary Joins in

Reader comment on item: How the Cartoon Protests Harm Muslims [by Leading to a Separation of Civilizations]
in response to reader comment: A challenge for Pat, Howard, hr and Pagan BIBLE and VIOLENCE (thanks Amir)

Submitted by Rashid (Canada), Feb 20, 2006 at 18:13

For your info I'm not a Christian.

I was born a Muslim. But I abandoned that religion some 20 years ago (I was utterly ashamed of it). At first I thought I would further educate myself by reading some Islamic literature other than the Koran, for I found reading the Koran alone extremely frustrating. I was already pretty well versed in works of philosophy from Arab authors of the middle ages, but I wanted to read religious works to make some sense out of the Koran. So I began reading Hadith and other History.

Honestly, the more I read the more I was gripped with a feeling of embarrassment and disbelief. But I continued and continued. My curiosity was getting the best of me. I read extensively from Buhkari's Hadith. A colossal work of 15000 or 20000 pages. After a "sample" of some 2000 pages... I had enough ! I also read a few thousand pages from Tabari's History (the Ta'arikh). This too proved to be a behemoth of a piece of unbelievable rubbish. Frankly I was embarrassed, for these books are Islam's sacred scriptures.

Oddly enough these two works provide some context and chronology to the Koran. They provide an explanation or a meaning to many many verses of the Koran that don't otherwise make any sense.These two authors lived some 200+ years after the death of Mohammed. In their work they quote extensively from another author, Ibn Ishaq, who lived a century before and who wrote a biography of Mohammed (Sirat Rasul Allah) which I couldn't find. It may no longer be extant. Ibn Ishaq may have had the advantage of using and relying on shorter Isnads, and therefore more accurate

Most muslims, you can't read the Koran, let alone understand it. But Arabic speaking muslims of average education can understand these books. I wish they read them. And you too.
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