Thursday, July 12, 2007

A textbook defense of Islam for the ignorant and gullible

In response to a note from an acquaintance.
Thank you for writing. My responses to your comments are below.
"Still, what you quoted as 9:111 is different than what is written in the Koran. And I can only assume that by having a false passage from the Koran, you must be gathering information from anti-islamic resources."
No, I am using widely-accepted Muslim translations from Muslim sources:
YUSUFALI: Allah hath purchased of the believers their persons and their goods; for theirs (in return) is the garden (of Paradise): they fight in His cause, and slay and are slain: a promise binding on Him in truth, through the Law, the Gospel, and the Qur'an: and who is more faithful to his covenant than Allah? then rejoice in the bargain which ye have concluded: that is the achievement supreme.

PICKTHAL: Lo! Allah hath bought from the believers their lives and their wealth because the Garden will be theirs: they shall fight in the way of Allah and shall slay and be slain. It is a promise which is binding on Him in the Torah and the Gospel and the Qur'an. Who fulfilleth His covenant better than Allah? Rejoice then in your bargain that ye have made, for that is the supreme triumph.

SHAKIR: Surely Allah has bought of the believers their persons and their property for this, that they shall have the garden; they fight in Allah's way, so they slay and are slain; a promise which is binding on Him in the Taurat and the Injeel and the Quran; and who is more faithful to his covenant than Allah? Rejoice therefore in the pledge which you have made; and that is the mighty achievement.
This is what you sent to me for 9:111:
"Allah has purchased from the muslims their lives and their belongings against this return, that for them is Paradise, they fight in the way of Allah, then they kill and are killed; true promise on His generous responsibility in the Taurah and the Injeel and the Quran. And who is, true to his words than Allah'? Rejoice then in your trade ' which you have done with Him And it is this which is, the great triumph."
If there is any meaningful difference between your translation and the three I have, perhaps you ought to take it up with the ummah.

You continued:
"And yes they [Hadith and Sira] are important for determining the Muslim way of life, but we are discussing what is written in the [k]oran and your [B]ible."
First, the words and deeds of Mohammed are considered authoritative in Islam, so you cannot so dismiss them at all.

Second, no, I was citing Islam's authoritative texts to demonstrate that offensive warfare to make the world Islam is not a perversion of the religion by a "tiny minority of extremists," but the will of Allah as expressed in the words and deeds of Mohammed.
"you must also understand Allah doesn't condone violence against peaceful and ordinary non-muslims, only to be hostile to the violent ones . . . ."

Fight in the cause of God those who fight you . . . ."
Surely you are aware that Allah's position on warfare evolved throughout Mohammed's prophetic career, so Mohammed's revelations on warfare also changed, making Surah 9 the final word on the subject and negating earlier passages that required cooperation or peace with non-Muslims.

When Mohammed and his followers were politically, militarily, and numerically weak, his revelations spoke of cooperation. As his influence and power increased, warfare in self-defense became acceptable. Then it was required (as in the passage you cite above). The last stage in the development of Islamic warfare was that described in Surah 9 -- offensive warfare until the end of time against all non-Muslims who refuse to submit to the rule of Allah.

That is why we see passages like (isn't this first admission enough to demonstrate the utter depravity of Mohammed?):
"the Messenger of Allah . . . would say: 'Fight in the name of Allah and in the way of Allah. Fight against those who disbelieve in Allah. Make a holy war. . . . When you meet your enemies who are polytheists, invite them to three courses of action. . . . Invite them to (accept) Islam; if they respond to you, accept it from them and desist from fighting against them. . . . If they refuse to accept Islam, demand from them the Jizya. If they agree to pay, accept it from them and hold off your hands. If they refuse to pay the tax, seek Allah's help and fight them . . .'" (Muslim Book 019, Number 4294).

"fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war) . . . " (Qur’an 9:5).

"Fight them, and Allah will punish them by your hands, cover them with shame, help you (to victory) over them, heal the breasts of Believers . . . " (Qur'an 9:14).

"Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued" (Qur'an 9:29).

"Say to the Unbelievers, if (now) they desist (from Unbelief), their past would be forgiven them; but if they persist, the punishment of those before them is already (a matter of warning for them). And fight them on until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah altogether and everywhere; but if they cease, verily Allah doth see all that they do" (Qur'an 8:38, 39).

"O ye who believe! fight the unbelievers who gird you about, and let them find firmness in you: and know that Allah is with those who fear Him" (Qur'an 9:123).

"Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not" (Qur'an 2:216).

"Allah's Apostle said: 'I have been ordered (by Allah) to fight against the people until they testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that Muhammad is Allah's Apostle . . . '" (Bukhari Volume 1, Book 2, Number 24).

“Muhammad said, ‘A single endeavor of fighting in Allah’s Cause is better than the world and whatever is in it’” (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 50).

“A man came to Allah’s Apostle and said, ‘Instruct me as to such a deed as equals Jihad in reward.’ He replied, ‘I do not find such a deed’” (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 44).

"Allah hath purchased of the believers their persons and their goods; for theirs (in return) is the garden (of Paradise): they fight in His cause, and slay and are slain: a promise binding on Him in truth, through the Law, the Gospel, and the Qur'an: and who is more faithful to his covenant than Allah?" (Qur'an 9:111).

"O ye who believe! what is the matter with you, that, when ye are asked to go forth in the cause of Allah, ye cling heavily to the earth? Do ye prefer the life of this world to the Hereafter? But little is the comfort of this life, as compared with the Hereafter. Unless ye go forth, He will punish you with a grievous penalty, and put others in your place . . . " (Qur'an 9:38, 39).

"Remember thy Lord inspired the angels (with the message): 'I am with you: give firmness to the Believers: I will instill terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers: smite ye above their necks and smite all their finger-tips off them'" (Qur'an 8:12).

“Allah’s Apostle said, ‘I have been made victorious with terror. The treasures of the world were brought to me and put in my hand’” (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 220).

"Those who believe fight in the way of Allah, and those who disbelieve fight in the way of the Shaitan. Fight therefore against the friends of the Shaitan; surely the strategy of the Shaitan is weak" (Qur'an 4:76).

"The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion, or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the land: that is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter . . . " (Qur'an 5:33).

"It is not for any prophet to have captives until he hath made slaughter in the land. Ye desire the lure of this world and Allah desireth (for you) the Hereafter, and Allah is Mighty, Wise" (Qur'an 8:67).

"Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him" (Bukhari Volume 9, Book 84, Number 57).

"Allah's Apostle said, 'The Hour will not be established until you fight with the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say. "O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him"'" (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 177).
How can you justify even one of these passages? If Mohammed fabricated these revelations, is he not a monster? If Allah truly did reveal these to Mohammed, was he not deceived by a devil?
"I must also send you this from your bible: When the LORD thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it . . . thou shalt smite them, and utterly destroy them . . . ."
You are unable to demonstrate that I misrepresented any of the passages revealing the bloodlust of Allah and his apostle, so instead you engage in a tu quoque argument. That is not intellectually honest.

But since this is an important point, I will address it.

In citing the command from Deuteronomy, you are making a false moral equivalence. Do you not see the difference between Israel's command for warfare -- at one time and in one place, and in divine judgment of the people of that land only -- and Allah's universal, unlimited commands to war against all who refuse to submit to his rule?

Superficial similarities between Israel's one-time command and Allah's repeated, universal commands for non-Muslim blood are in no way morally or substantively equal.

In fact, by arguing, "Your religion is just as bad!" are you not admitting the utterly reprehensible nature of your god and prophet's words and deeds?
"Yet my religion is a religion a terror?"
Mohammed said he was "made victorious by terror." He is considered the "Ideal Man" in Islam, and Allah calls him a "beautiful pattern of conduct." Since Islam's founding to this very moment, Muslims have raped, enslaved, and slaughtered non-Muslims in the name of Allah, at his command, and in imitation of his false prophet.

What would you call a religion whose god and founder require such evil?
". . . Do not kill women or children or an aged, infirm person. Do not cut down fruit-bearing trees. . . ."
Another verse that is supposed to make Islam the Religion of Peace, but it does nothing to nullify the passages cited above.

And I wish that were all Allah says on the subject. Did you forget:
"The Prophet . . . was asked whether it was permissible to attack the pagan warriors at night with the probability of exposing their women and children to danger. The Prophet replied, "They (i.e. women and children) are from them (i.e. pagans) . . ." (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 256)?

It is permissible for Muslims to kill inviolable infidels if they are aiding the fighting in deed, word, opinion, or any other way. This is because of the Prophet's order to kill Duraid ibn Al-Simma, who was 120 years old and went with the Hawazin tribe [to fight against the Muslims] to give them counsel. Ibn Qudama notes that the Prophet ordered him killed in the Battle of Hunein because he knew military stratagems. See Al-Tamhid 16:142.

"the Messenger of Allah . . . ordered the date-palms of Banu Nadir to be burnt and cut. These palms were at Buwaira. Qutaibah and Ibn Rumh in their versions of the tradition have added: So Allah, the Glorious and Exalted, revealed the verse:" Whatever trees you have cut down or left standing on their trunks, it was with the permission of Allah so that He may disgrace the evil-doers" (Muslim, Book 019, Number 4324)?
Another of your peaceful verses negated by revelation or prophetic practice.

What can we conclude? You falsely charged I misrepresented Qur'an; you engaged in an ad hominem attack; you cited a verse on self-defense that does nothing to negate Allah's numerous, final commands to engage in offensive warfare against those who will not submit to his rule; and you made a false moral equivalence in resorting to a tu quoque argument.

Every one of your errors leans in favor of Jihad by misrepresenting your god and prophet to non-Muslims. That does not speak well of you.

If you seek to know the true God, to whom should you go, the one who commanded terror, enslavement, and genocide, or the One Who committed no sin, performed only good deeds, spoke the very words of YHWH, and rose from the dead?

In whom should your trust be, the one who lied, stole, enslaved, raped (including a nine-year-old child), and butchered -- and commanded his followers to do the same -- or the One Who reconciled you to the true God by paying for all your sins with His own blood?