Monday, August 03, 2009

The language of death and where to learn how to speak it

I. The vocabulary of Islam

Ahl al-Kitāb: See the "People of the Book."

ayah
: (plural, ayat): Literally, "sign" or "miracle;" a verse in Qur'an

caliphate: The rule of the Caliph, the supreme leader over all of Islam. Only he has the authority to call for offensive jihad; since the caliphate was destroyed by Kemal Ataturk in 1924, today's jihadists cast their violence against non-Muslims as "defensive."

Dar al-harb: The "Abode of War," i.e., all non-Muslim lands, lands where shari'a is not in effect

Dar al-Islam: The "Abode of Islam," i.e., all lands under Islamic rule

dhimma: The "protection" offered to non-Muslims willing to submit to the egregious, vile, discriminatory abuses and humiliations required toward non-Muslims by shari'a. Offered to the "People of the Book" (mainly Jews and Christians), it was a recognition by Muhammad that living slaves are more useful than corpses.

He probably also wanted to punish them for their refusal to accept his "revelations."

dhimmi: A non-Muslim living under dhimma.

female genital mutilation (FGM): Though not specifically commanded in Qur'an or Sunnah, the practice is widespread throughout the lands of Islam. It flows naturally from the position of the female in Islamic society as a piece of meat whose primary purpose in life is to gratify on-demand the "marital urge" of her husband.

ghazi/razzia: Originally, battles in which Muhammad participated personally. Later, battles to expand Muslim territory. Al-Ghazali, “acclaimed in both the East and West as the greatest Muslim after Muhammad," observed with regard to jihad:
"[O]ne must go on jihad (i.e., warlike razzias or raids) at least once a year . . . one may use a catapult against them [non-Muslims] when they are in a fortress, even if among them are women and children. One may set fire to them and/or drown them . . . If a person of the Ahl al-Kitab [People of The Book – primarily Jews and Christians] is enslaved, his marriage is [automatically] revoked . . . One may cut down their trees . . . One must destroy their useless books. Jihadists may take as booty whatever they decide . . . they may steal as much food as they need . . . .
hadith (plural, ahadith): Saying of or about Muhammad. Since Allah calls him a "beautiful pattern of conduct for those who want to please" him, what Muhammad said and did is determinative for Islamic doctrine and practice. Several collections considered traditionally most reliable include Bukhari, Muslim, Abu-Dawud, and Muwatta.

honor killings: Sunni Islam says that parents (and grandparents) will not be punished for murdering their own children:
A manual of Islamic law certified by Al-Azhar as a reliable guide to Sunni orthodoxy says that "retaliation is obligatory against anyone who kills a human being purely intentionally and without right." However, "not subject to retaliation" is "a father or mother (or their fathers or mothers) for killing their offspring, or offspring's offspring." ('Umdat al-Salik o1.1-2).
Couple that with Muhammad's totalitarian demand for absolute obedience, and you've got a recipe for horror, as can be seen in growing numbers of Islamic honor killings in the West.

jihad: Literally, "struggle," it refers primarily to warfare against non-Muslims, though one questionable hadith has Muhammad referring to the much-hailed "inner struggle" as the "greater jihad."

jizya: Oppressive Muslim poll tax demanded of non-Muslims under dhimma, the second of three options allowed to some non-Muslims facing Islam: "invite . . . demand the jizya . . . fight."

infidel: In Islam, a non-Muslim.

Islam: Literally, "submission," as in: "You submit."

kitman: Mental reservation and dissimulation or concealment of intentions, including malevolent ones

mujahid (plural, mujahideen):

Muslim: "One who submits" to Allah.

pagan: idolaters, non-Muslims who are not "People of the Book." They were allowed conversion or death.

People of the Book (Ahl al-Kitāb): Jews and Christians (and some others included later, for example, Zoroastrians, Mandeans, and, in some areas, Hindus and Buddhists). Significantly, this group was allowed -- in addition to conversion or death -- a third option when facing jihad, slavery as dhimmis.

Qur'an: "Recitation;" The perfect, verbatim word of Allah, revealed to Muhammad over the course of his prophetic career. It's chapters are organized by size, with Sura 9 being Allah's (second to) last word before Muhammad died (too late).

razzia: See ghazi.

shahada: The Muslim declaration of faith: “There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah." When you hear the Obamination that Causes Desolation pronounce it during a State of the Union or a press conference, run for the hills.

shari'a: Islamic law as derived from Qur'an and Sunnah.

sira: The biography of Muhammad. The oldest was composed by Ibn Ishaq, portions of which have survived over the centuries in the Sirat Rasul Allah.

Sunnah: Literally, "trodden path." The example of Muhammad, ahadith and sira.

sura: A chapter in Qur'an

taqiyya: Precautionary dissimulation or deception and keeping one's convictions secret

ummah: the whole Muslim world


II. Book recommendations for anyone desiring facts, not propaganda:

Anything by Robert Spencer, especially:
The Politically-Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), by Robert Spencer

The Truth about Muhammad: Founder of the World's Most Intolerant Religion, also by Robert Spencer
The Legacy of Jihad: Islamic Holy War and the Fate of Non-Muslims, by Andrew Bostom

The Legacy of Islamic Antisemitism: From Sacred Texts to Solemn History, also by Andrew Bostom

Bat Ye'or has done outstanding work.

Jihad in the West: Muslim Conquests from the 7th to the 21st Centuries, by Paul Fregosi


III. Online resources

Compendium of Muslim Texts

Tafsir Ibn Kathir

Jihad Watch

Muslims Against Sharia