Saturday, 28 November 2009

The Qur’an Agrees: Jesus is the most Exalted of All

” Muhammad was a mere helper”

Muslims, and certain Islamic narrations, claim that Muhammad is the most exalted of all of Allah’s creatures. They believe that Allah has preferred Muhammad to the rest of the prophets and messengers. However, the Qur’an does not substantiate this assertion since there is someone else who is presented as being more exalted than Muhammad. In fact, this someone else is presented as superior to all other prophets according to the Qur’an.

For instance, when the Qur’an mentions that Allah has preferred some apostles above certain others it specifically mentions Jesus and David:

Those apostles We endowed with gifts, some above others: To one of them God spoke; others He raised to degrees (of honour); to Jesus the son of Mary We gave clear (Signs), and strengthened him with the holy spirit. If God had so willed, succeeding generations would not have fought among each other, after clear (Signs) had come to them, but they (chose) to wrangle, some believing and others rejecting. If God had so willed, they would not have fought each other; but God Fulfilleth His plan. S. 2:253 Y. Ali

And it is your Lord that knoweth best all beings that are in the heavens and on earth: We did bestow on some prophets more (and other) gifts than on others: and We gave to David (the gift of) the Psalms. S. 17:55 Y. Ali

Notice that Muhammad is not mentioned by name in either one of the citations. We shall see that it is not a coincidence that Jesus and David are mentioned instead.

This next text supposedly quotes David and Solomon as saying:

And We gave David and Solomon knowledge and they said, 'Praise belongs to God who has preferred us over many of His believing servants.' S. 27:15 Arberry

Thus, Allah has preferred David and Solomon above many of his servants. As anyone reading the NT already knows, Jesus is a descendant of David:

"the gospel concerning his Son, who was descended from David according to the flesh" Romans 1:3

"Remember Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, descended from David, as preached in my gospel," 2 Timothy 2:8

By stating that Allah exalted David, the Qur’an is basically agreeing that God chose Jesus’ ancestors above all the rest, a point confirmed by this next text:

Lo! Allah preferred Adam and Noah and the Family of Abraham and the Family of 'Imran above (all His) creatures. They were descendants one of another. Allah is Hearer, Knower. (Remember) when the wife of 'Imran said: My Lord! I have vowed unto Thee that which is in my belly as a consecrated (offering). Accept it from me. Lo! Thou, only Thou, art the Hearer, the Knower! And when she was delivered she said: My Lord! Lo! I am delivered of a female - Allah knew best of what she was delivered - the male is not as the female; and lo! I have named her Mary, and lo! I crave Thy protection for her and for her offspring from Satan the outcast. S. 3:33-36 Pickthall

The family of Imran whom Allah chose above all creatures is supposed to be the family of Jesus, specifically his mother’s parents. The Qur’an even identifies Mary as Imran’s daughter:

And Mary the daughter of 'Imran, who guarded her chastity; and We breathed into (her body) of Our spirit; and she testified to the truth of the words of her Lord and of His Revelations, and was one of the devout (servants). S. 66:12 Y. Ali

Moreover, Islamic traditions state that Allah answered the prayer of Jesus’ grandmother by making him and his mother the only ones whom Satan was unable to touch upon their births:

Narrated Said bin Al-Musaiyab: Abu Huraira said, "I heard Allah's Apostle saying, 'There is none born among the off-spring of Adam, but Satan touches it. A child therefore, cries loudly at the time of birth because of the touch of Satan, EXCEPT MARY AND HER CHILD." Then Abu Huraira recited: "And I seek refuge with You for her and for her offspring from the outcast Satan" (3.36) (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 55, Number 641; see also Volume 4, Book 54, Number 506)

But the Qur’an doesn’t stop there since it goes on to say that Jesus’ blessed mother is the most exalted of all women:

And when the angels said, 'Mary, God has chosen thee, and purified thee; He has chosen thee above all women. S. 3:42 Arberry

In the same Sura, Jesus is shown to have qualities and titles that no one else has such as being the only person called God’s Word and honoured in the next life:

Behold! the angels said: "O Mary! God giveth thee glad tidings of a Word from Him: his name will be Christ Jesus, the son of Mary, held in honour in this world and the Hereafter and of (the company of) those nearest to God; He shall speak to the people in childhood and in maturity. And he shall be (of the company) of the righteous." She said: "O my Lord! How shall I have a son when no man hath touched me?" He said: "Even so: God createth what He willeth: When He hath decreed a plan, He but saith to it, ‘Be,’ and it is! And God will teach him the Book and Wisdom, the Law and the Gospel, And (appoint him) an apostle to the Children of Israel, (with this message): ‘I have come to you, with a Sign from your Lord, in that I make for you out of clay, as it were, the figure of a bird, and breathe into it, and it becomes a bird by God's leave: And I heal those born blind, and the lepers, and I quicken the dead, by God's leave; and I declare to you what ye eat, and what ye store in your houses. Surely therein is a Sign for you if ye did believe; (I have come to you), to attest the Law which was before me. And to make lawful to you part of what was (Before) forbidden to you; I have come to you with a Sign from your Lord. So fear God, and obey me. It is God Who is my Lord and your Lord; then worship Him. This is a Way that is straight.’" 3:45-51 Y. Ali

Here is what we have thus far gathered from the teaching of the Qur’an:

Allah has preferred some messengers above others.
David and Solomon are some of those messengers that Allah has chosen above the rest.
David is Jesus’ ancestor.
Allah has chosen Imran’s family above all creatures.
Imran is said to be Mary’s father, Jesus’ grandfather.
Allah has chosen Jesus’ mother Mary above all women.
Jesus is the only person explicitly said to be honored in the next world.
Jesus is given specific attributes and titles that are not given to any other messenger.

What this all means is that it is not Muhammad that is the most exalted creature of all according to the Qur’an. Rather, Jesus is the one messenger, the one person, whom Allah has preferred and exalted above all the others. Allah has conferred upon Christ and his family an honour that has not been given to anyone else.

We aren’t the only ones seeing it this way since there is one moderate Muslim writer who candidly admits that, according to the Qur’an, Jesus is the greatest of all prophets. Dr. Nader Pourhassan, after citing surahs 2:253, 3:42-46, and 59, says that:

Moslem religious leaders try to isolate Muhammad from all other prophets by saying, "God kept the best for last." Again, this directly contradicts the Koran's teachings. The Koran says that some prophets have been given more than others - that some even talk to God. The example it gives is that of Jesus Christ, not Muhammad…

These passages clearly show that God considered Jesus to be His best prophet, not Muhammad. After all, Jesus revealed himself to be a prophet from childhood, while Muhammad was not inspired until he was forty years old. The Koran relates a number of miracles from Jesus' childhood, but says nothing of this phase of Muhammad's life. The name "Christ" is also used. Unlike Jesus, Muhammad was not a special messenger of God, but a mere helper, who brought justice to the world, and glorified the name of Jesus by setting the record straight about his deeds on earth. His mission was also to eliminate the corruption of the message of those prophets who had gone before him. On the other hand, of Jesus it is said that he was created in a similar way to Adam…

Bear in mind that when God announced His creation of Adam to the angels He commanded them to bow to him.
(Pourhassan, The Corruption of Moslem Minds [Barbed Wire Publishing, Las Cruces, New Mexico 2002], pp. 34-35)

Christian readers especially will be interested to learn that the Koran teaches that Jesus was God's best prophet, and that Christians will be placed above non-believers until the Day of Judgment... (Ibid., p. 61)

Moslem religious leaders claim that Muhammad was the greatest prophet ever sent. If this was true, then God would have stated so in the Koran. Instead, when God talks of a prophet being greater than others, the name He mentions is that of Jesus. (Ibid., p. 101)

We couldn’t have put it any better!



The Qur’an and Hadith, which is more authentic?

” By Mumin Salih”

The Qur’an is considered like the backbone of Islam although the bulk of the religion is made from the sunna, or Mohammed’s traditions, which is based on his hadiths or sayings and considered second to the Qur’an in its importance. Practicing Islam is impossible without sunna because the Qur’an doesn’t explain anything about the Islamic rituals or sharia and refers Muslims to take Mohammed’s example which only comes through his hadiths (Q.59:7).

It is frustrating that whenever ‘intellectual’ Muslims are debated they become very quick to distance themselves from any hadith that seems implicate their religion, no matter how authentic that hadith was. Denying a hadith is an easy defence tactic by Muslim apologists in their effort to maintain the integrity of Islam. Their logic is that Islam doesn’t fall by the loss of one hadith or two because Islam is kept up by the Qur’an. On the other hand, those Muslims are not ashamed to quote other hadiths, no matter how unauthentic they are, to boost their argument. However, most ordinary Muslims remain strong believers in both the Qur’an and hadith, which they rightly consider to complement each other. The main stream Muslims consider those who deny the hadith as infidels who would eventually deny the Qur’an as well.

Behind the declared reason for denying the hadith is another undeclared, but true, reason. The hadiths come in detailed language and with several narrations that support each other, which leaves little room for word games or manipulating the meanings. On the other hand, the Qur’an comes in a vague abridged and self contradicting format that leaves more room to twist the language and meanings of its words. The Qur’an is covered with a thick layer of haze and some Muslims use that lack of clarity to argue and claim they can see a different picture from the others.

How authentic is the hadith?

There are different collections of hadiths that Muslims consider to be the most authentic; the most well known collections are Sahih al Bukhari and Sahih Muslim. Other collections include Al Nissaey, Al Tirmithy, Ibn Dauod and Ibn Maja. Together, these six collections are called the authentic six, the Sahih Sitta.

The ‘science of hadith’ or ‘Ilmul Hadith’ is a well known and prestigious speciality in all Islamic universities. It teaches how those scholars managed to gather their collections and how they travelled the Islamic world to accomplish their objective. The methodology they used, considering its time, was exemplary. They studied each hadith in details; its text and its chain of narrations and classified them into grades according to their authenticity. Even by today’s standards, their scholarship and dedication to objectivity was amazing. Most of the two hundred thousand or so hadiths that were subjected to their thorough assessment were rejected and only a few thousands made it to their Sahih (correct) books. Their objectivity meant that many ‘good looking’ hadiths had to be rejected while others, not so good looking ones, had to be included. If Muslims can be proud of anything at all it is that objective academic approach adopted by those scholars who collected the hadiths.

Those early Muslim scholars, like Al Bukhari and Muslim, were no ordinary people; they were well informed highly educated and intelligent. In short, they were the geniuses of their time. It is laughable that some Muslims of today, with questionable knowledge and education, dare to dismiss the works of those scholars as faulty just because it happens not to go well with their biased opinions.

How authentic is the Qur’an?

Q.2: 106.
Any verse We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, We substitute with something better or similar  Don’t you know that Allah can do anything?

The above verse is a short answer to those who claim the Qur’an was preserved. The verse is a clear admission that the Qur’an contains contradicting (Muslims call it abrogated) verses, as well as verses that have been completely forgotten! But not to worry, Allah was capable to bring similar to those verses or even better!

Unlike the hadith, the collection of the Qur’an was politically motivated with none of methodology or high standards of scrutiny that characterized the hadiths’ collection. The vulnerability of the Qur’an lies in the fact that the presence of only one error, say a misplaced word or letter, is a good enough proof that the entire book is a hoax.

It is essential in Islam to believe that the Qur’an is the preserved word of Allah. Therefore, it has an unquestionable authenticity. Indeed the Muslims do not question the authenticity of the Qur’an, which is where their problem lay. The Muslims believe that the reason why Islam came to existence was the distortion which the previous holy scriptures were subjected to. In other words, the Muslims believe that Allah revealed the Qur’an with the determination to preserve it. With that in mind, one would expect Allah to have employed extra ordinary measures to preserve what is supposed to be the most important document to mankind. But He didn’t! On the contrary, all the circumstances created an ideal setting for the Qur’an to be lost, which it did.

The Qur’an was revealed to Mohammed who was, as Muslims insist, illiterate and therefore unable to verify the accuracy of the scripts written for him by some volunteering scribes. Trusting Mohammed with the Qur’an is like trusting an illiterate person to edit a newspaper. With a document as important as the Qur’an, it would not be enough just to assume that the scribes were honest and trustworthy, especially that at least one of them, Abdulla Ibn Abi Al Sarh, admitted that he regularly made changes to the text of the Qur’an without Mohammed even noticing!(1)

Although the Muslims claim that the Qur’an was completely written during Mohammed’s life time, but there is no acceptable evidence to support such a claim. It is logical to believe that the Qur’an was not properly written in the first thirteen years of Islam while Mohammed was still in Mecca because he simply didn’t have the resources to do it. One would expect writing the Qur’an to be Mohammed’s first priority after he assumed power in Medina, but he was too busy in wars to think of it (an hadith is ascribed Umar saying: why are we doing something that Muhammad didn’t do (i.e. writing down the Qur’an)??).

After establishing his Islamic state in Medina, Mohammed could have ordered a formal recording, indexing and safe keeping of the most important document of Islam. Even he could have stamped it because he owned a stamp. But Mohammed did nothing of that, which indicates that he never took the matter seriously. In fact, there are reasons to believe that Mohammed actually benefitted from that chaotic state of the Qur’an. An undocumented Qur’an gave Mohammed the freedom to change his mind or contradict himself and get away with it because the earlier verses were forgotten or faded away from memory. Recording the ‘revealed’ verses in Medina took place in a casual manner that was carried out by whoever was available from those volunteering scribes. Some verses were written by more than one scribe, causing confusion, while others may never had the chance to be written at all, causing even more confusion.

The Qur’an was revealed in the seventh century in Arabic, a language that had not yet a well developed script. Many Arabic words with different meanings shared the same script. The Arabs solved this problem by adding different numbers of dots to the letters that share the same appearance, but that solution came years after Mohammed’s death. As an example, the Arabic word harb, which means war, has the same appearance like a dozen other words with completely different meanings, like these:

(The above words mean: war, damaged, party, tried, sadness, rewarded, caused pain, stored)

If you strip the letters from their dots, all the words look exactly the same, and it was left to the readers’ common sense and intelligence to work out which particular word was meant by a particular script.

Ideally, for a better preservation of the Qur’an, Allah should have educated Mohammed and created the dots before ‘revealing’ the Qur’an.

The Arabs claim that their language is a superior language, hence chosen by Allah as His official means of communication. Other Muslims agree with that claim and praise the language as the most beautiful, without even speaking the language. The truth is that Arabic is a complicated language that is difficult to develop especially that it is now attached to the Qur’an, which is holding it back.

Even in our time, and after the ‘invention’ of the dots, reading an Arabic text is still a guess work. Arabic books and newspapers are printed without the diacritical marks to reduce the clutter around the words. The diacritical marks were ‘invented’ over a century after the dots. Without the diacritical marks, the fourth word in the above example, Jarab, could be read as follows: Jarraba=tried, Jurriba=has been tried, Jarab=plague, Jurub= suffering of plague!

Writing technology in Arabia was very primitive and employed poor quality and perishable writing materials like palm leaves and bones.

Although we only read the Islamic history from it’s heavily biased Islamic sources, but we frequently stumble upon some historical facts like the following:

Ibn Massoud was renowned among Mohammed’s companions as the most notable in his knowledge of the Qur’an; it is claimed that he recorded his own copy which he kept with him. Ibn Massoud’s copy of the Qur’an was significantly different from the official copy of Uthman, which he refused to recognize (2). Some verses were lost, even the ones kept in Mohammed’s own house! Aysha admitted that she used to keep the stoning verse under her bed until it was eaten by a goat! (3)

Al Hajaj Ibn Youssef Al Thakafi, the ruthless ruler of Iraq during the Umayyad dynasty, made many changes to the official Qur’an many years after Uthman (4).

Political corruption, power struggle and instability characterised the period of Uthman’s rule. It was in such unhealthy political climate when Uthman ordered the compilation of the Qur’an.

Uthman sent four copies of his official Qur’an to the various regions of the expanding Islamic state and kept one copy in Medina. None of those copies seem to have survived. There is no evidence that any of the old copies of the Qur’an we have today dates back to Uthman’s time. The oldest copy available, which is the manuscripts of Sanna/Yemen, dates back to many decades after Uthman and contains significant differences from the current copies of the Qur’an (5).

Many Muslim scholars are aware of the weakness of the argument that the Qur’an was documented during Mohammed’s time. They claim that the Qur’an was preserved mainly in the Muslims chests, the written documentation was only a backup! Unfortunately for them, making such a claim is like digging the grave for the Qur’an because the main reason behind writing a formal copy of the Qur’an, and burning all the others, was to stop the disagreements between Muslims. The Qur’anic verses that were preserved in the Muslims’ chests were so different that they accused each other with kufr (unbelieving)!

The Qur’an is probably the! least authentic document in Islam as evidenced from the state of confusion and disagreements that prevailed among the early Muslims. The early Muslims disagreed on what constituted part of the Qur’an and what didn’t. Ibn Massoud’s copy of the Qur’an included two chapters less than Uthman’s copy because he did not believe the last two chapters were actually Qur’anic chapters (2). Others reported that surat Tauba (chapter nine, which contains 129 verses) used to be as long as surat Bakara (chapter two, which contains 286 verses) before the verses gone missing (2). Abdullah Ibn Umar reportedly said, ‘
Let none of you say, “I have got the whole of the Qur’an.” How does he know what all of it is? Much of the Qur’an has gone’. Let him say instead, I have got what has survived (6). The enormous amounts of repetitions and contradictions could be an indication of some degree of duplication and manipulation of the original text.

According to the existing Qur’an, the penalty of adultery is only described in verses Q. 24:2 (flogging hundred lashes) and Q4: 15 (house detention) and nowhere in the Qur’an is stoning mentioned. However, Muslims agreed for fourteen hundreds years that the penalty of adultery is stoning to death because the verse, which abrogated the above two verses, was there and remains effective in its orders hukman even though its words were cancelled kawlan. We can add this logic to the pile of other bizarre justifications used by Muslims to understand the Qur’an. However, we have the right to ask: why Allah keeps in the Qur’an the obsolete verses and omits the valid ones?

1. Ali Dashti, 23 years, a study of prophetic career of Mohammed.
2. Al Itqan fi ulum al Qur'an - Al Suyuti. ‘Arabic’
3. Ibn Maja,1944, Musnad Ahmed 25784 ‘Arabic’
4. Al Masahif- Sajistani ‘Arabic’
6. Abu Bakr al Suyuti, "al Itqan fi `ulum al Qur'an", 1935/1354, pt 2, p. 25) ‘Arabic’



Friday, 27 November 2009

Muhammad: The Wise Assassin

”The Assassination plot ordered by Muhammad of Ka’b bin al-Ashraf”

By Ibn Kammuna and Ibrahim Lone


Many people don’t know it, but the holy prophet was a wise man. Even when he ordered the assassination of other people, he made sure there are some lessons to be learned by the Muslim Ummah. In this article, we discuss the “holy” assassination of Ka’b Bin Al-Ashraf.”…We need to tweak some supposedly “negative” moral concepts like assassinations, so that they look good if the holy prophet did them. The story of this assassination can be found in many sources. Let us start from the “Sirat” (The Life of Muhammad – A translation of Ibn Ishaq’s SIRAT RASUL ALLAH. Translated by A. Guillaume). The full story can be found on pages 364 through 368.

The “Sirat” Story of the assassination of Ka’b

In the battle of Badr, which the Meccans lost to the Muslims, many were killed. Amongst them were some of the Meccan respected leaders (pp.364-5). When Ka’b, one of the Bani Al-Nadir leaders (A Jewish tribe that lived in Medina) heard of the news, he was very upset and saddened, especially on hearing the death of two of the Meccan leaders whom he respected and loved (Zayd and Abdullah bin Rawaha). He was saddened by the news, and went to Mecca. And stayed with Al-Muttalib bin Abu Wada’a who was married to Atika bint Abul Is. She took him in and entertained him hospitably. As a side note here we can see how the role of women in Mecca in pre-Islamic times was honorable. They were an active part of the household. Nowadays, when you go to a true Muslims house, women are hidden in the inner part of the house. You can only visit with the men if you are a male. From all that I read about the role of women in Pre-Islamic times in the Arabian peninsula was more dignified and had an active participation in the social life of the community that went staggered when Islam ruled. Moving along, Ka’b bewailed the slain of Quraysh in the battle of Badr. He composed some poetry that was mostly grieving for the dead (pp.365-7). Then he composed amatory verses of an insulting nature about the Muslim women. Does such a behavior demand a plot of assassination? Off course not. But, according to the holy prophet it does. Here is what Muhammad said:

Who will rid me of Ibnul’Ashraf (Meaning Ka’b. Muhammad Just wanted him killed). Muhammad bin Maslama answers the call of the prophet of doom and says: I will deal with him for you, O apostle of Allah, I will kill him. And Muhammad answers: Do so if you can
Note how the holy prophet is not pushing it. He is telling him to do it if only he can! This is a good moral lesson for us good Muslims. We only assassinate when we can! The idea that assassination is morally wrong just does not exist in the mind of an evil cult leader like Muhammad.

Then Muhammad bin Maslama goes on a fasting spree for three days aside from what is absolutely necessary. The prophet summoned him after that and asked him why he gave up eating and drinking. Bin Maslama tells the prophet that this assassination undertaking may be difficult to fulfill. And, again, the prophet assures Muhammad bin Maslama by saying “All that is incumbent upon you is that you should try.” What a passionate prophet! He is just giving Bin Maslama the green light to try to kill someone, and assures him that things will be okay, even if he fails to kill Ka’b. And again, the moral predicate of killing another human being for no good reason, if a reason at all, does not come to the mind of this evil prophet. Muhammad bin Maslama, then, tells the prophet “ O apostle of Allah, we shall have to tell lies” upon which the prophet answers “Say what you like, for you are free in the matter”.

So far we have two major moral dilemmas that are rejected by any decent human being, but are accepted and encouraged by prophet Muhammad: assassination and lying.

The story continues, and Bin Maslama and others, including a foster brother of Ka’b, go to see Ka’b and visit with him and recite poetry and talk in a negative tone about the prophet. They ask Ka’b to give them food for their families on account of paying him back later. An agreement issues that they’ll come back for this end and bring him weapons to leave as a pledge that they’ll pay him back. It was Ka’b’s foster brother who suggested weapons. Ka’b accepted that. But his foster brother’s idea is not to get him, Ka’b, alarmed when he sees them back carrying weapons. The men go back and meet with the prophet. The prophet was supportive and walked with them a good distance on their night trip to go and assassinate Ka’b. Then he sent them saying “Go in Allah’s name. O Allah help them.” As you can see, prophet Muhammad was such a supportive man. He enlisted Allah’s help to assassinate a man!

The story continues with these men going to Ka’b’s castle. His foster brother calls him while he is in bed. Ka’b had been recently married. His wife had a sixth sense and said to him “ You are at war, and those who are at war do not go out at this hour”. Ka’b is not bothered by her comment, I suspect mainly because his foster brother was calling. Those of us who have foster children or brothers or sisters know that such individuals are family. It is this sense of security, I believe, that delivered Ka’b to his enemies (by the way, using a family member to kill another was utilized at least twice by Muhammad. This incident is one of them. Ali Sina mentions another interesting story about a son plotting and killing his father. This is a behavior that can be seen in cult members – see Sina’s book 2nd edition, pages 232-3).

In any case, Ka’b’s wife still tells him about his foster brother “ By God, I can feel evil in his voice”. Even so, her words did not get through to Ka’b and he goes out to see the men who came to see him. They play a cheap trick of smelling the perfume on his head and complementing him on that. Bin Maslama finally gets a hold of his head and tells his companions “Smite the enemy of Allah”. To his credit, Ka’b gave out a good fight, but with many men attacking him, he was on the losing end, and died. After that assassination, the four Muslim men involved in the incident go to the apostle of Allah, prophet Muhammad, at the end of the night and salute him while he was praying! (that must have been some prayer considering the evil he had plotted that very night!). Muhammad comes out to them and they tell him that they had just killed Allah’s enemy. One of the men was wounded and bleeding from the attack on Ka’b. Muhammad spat on the wounds and all men went back to their families afterwards. The Muslim Ummah had triumphed again, by assassinating another human being.

One of the interesting parts of the above story is having a foster brother of Ka’b, who is really just like a blood brother, involved in the assassination incident. It is very difficult to understand this without understanding the mentality of a cult member, and how a cult transforms family members to become real enemies. It is this part of the story that made Ka’b vulnerable to the Muslims. Without his foster brother involved with the Muslims, we believe Ka’b would have been able to live another day. However, this was not to be. Prophet Muhammad’s evil intentions against him fully materialized on that cursed night.

Hadith Narrations Regarding the Assassination of Ka’b

Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 271: Narrated Jabir: The Prophet said, “Who is ready to kill Ka’b bin Ashraf (i.e. a Jew).” Muhammad bin Maslama replied, “Do you like me to kill him?” The Prophet replied in the affirmative. Muhammad bin Maslama said, “Then allow me to say what I like.” The Prophet replied, “I do (i.e. allow you).

Bukhari Volume 3, Book 45, Number 687: Narrated Jabir bin ‘Abdullah: Allah’s Apostle said, “Who would kill Ka’b bin Al-Ashraf as he has harmed Allah and His Apostle ?” Muhammad bin Maslama (got up and) said, “I will kill him.” So, Muhammad bin Maslama went to Ka’b and said, “I want a loan of one or two Wasqs of food grains.” Ka’b said, “Mortgage your women to me.” Muhammad bin Maslama said, “How can we mortgage our women, and you are the most handsome among the Arabs?” He said, “Then mortgage your sons to me.” Muhammad said, “How can we mortgage our sons, as the people will abuse them for being mortgaged for one or two Wasqs of food grains? It is shameful for us. But we will mortgage our arms to you.” So, Muhammad bin Maslama promised him that he would come to him next time. They (Muhammad bin Maslama and his companions came to him as promised and murdered him. Then they went to the Prophet and told him about it.

Bukhari Volume 5, Book 59, Number 369: Narrated Jabir bin ‘Abdullah: Allah’s Apostle said, “Who is willing to kill Ka’b bin Al-Ashraf who has hurt Allah and His Apostle?” Thereupon Muhammad bin Maslama got up saying, “O Allah’s Apostle! Would you like that I kill him?” The Prophet said, “Yes,” Muhammad bin Maslama said, “Then allow me to say a (false) thing (i.e. to deceive Ka’b). “The Prophet said, “You may say it.” Then Muhammad bin Maslama went to Ka’b and said, “That man (i.e. Muhammad demands Sadaqa (i.e. Zakat) from us, and he has troubled us, and I have come to borrow something from you.” On that, Kab said, “By Allah, you will get tired of him!” Muhammad bin Maslama said, “Now as we have followed him, we do not want to leave him unless and until we see how his end is going to be. Now we want you to lend us a camel load or two of food.” (Some difference between narrators about a camel load or two.) Kab said, “Yes, (I will lend you), but you should mortgage something to me.” Muhammad bin Mas-lama and his companion said, “What do you want?” Ka’b replied, “Mortgage your women to me.” They said, “How can we mortgage our women to you and you are the most handsome of the ‘Arabs?” Ka’b said, “Then mortgage your sons to me.” They said, “How can we mortgage our sons to you? Later they would be abused by the people’s saying that so-and-so has been mortgaged for a camel load of food. That would cause us great disgrace, but we will mortgage our arms to you.” Muhammad bin Maslama and his companion promised Kab that Muhammad would return to him. He came to Kab at night along with Kab’s foster brother, Abu Na’ila. Kab invited them to come into his fort, and then he went down to them. His wife asked him, “Where are you going at this time?” Kab replied, “None but Muhammad bin Maslama and my (foster) brother Abu Na’ila have come.” His wife said, “I hear a voice as if dropping blood is from him, Ka’b said. “They are none but my brother Muhammad bin Maslama and my foster brother Abu Naila. A generous man should respond to a call at night even if invited to be killed.” Muhammad bin Maslama went with two men. (Some narrators mention the men as ‘Abu bin Jabr. Al Harith bin Aus and Abbad bin Bishr). So Muhammad bin Maslama went in together with two men, and sail to them, “When Ka’b comes, I will touch his hair and smell it, and when you see that I have got hold of his head, strip him. I will let you smell his head.” Kab bin Al-Ashraf came down to them wrapped in his clothes, and diffusing perfume. Muhammad bin Maslama said. ” have never smelt a better scent than this. Ka’b replied. “I have got the best ‘Arab women who know how to use the high class of perfume.” Muhammad bin Maslama requested Ka’b “Will you allow me to smell your head?” Ka’b said, “Yes.” Muhammad smelt it and made his companions smell it as well. Then he requested Ka’b again, “Will you let me (smell your head)?” Ka’b said, “Yes.” When Muhammad got a strong hold of him, he said (to his companions), “Get at him!” So they killed him and went to the Prophet and informed him. (Abu Rafi) was killed after Ka’b bin Al-Ashraf.”


Chapter 41: THE MURDER OF KA’B B. ASHRAF, (THE EVIL GENIUS) OF THE JEWS; Book 019, Number 4436:

It has been narrated on the authority of Jabir that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: Who will kill Ka’b b. Ashraf? He has maligned Allah, the Exalted, and His Messenger. Muhammad b. Maslama said: Messenger of Allah, do you wish that I should kill him? He said: Yes. He said: Permit me to talk (to him in the way I deem fit). He said: Talk (as you like). So, Muhammad b. Maslama came to Ka’b and talked to him, referred to the old friendship between them and said: This man (i. e. the Holy Prophet) has made up his mind to collect charity (from us) and this has put us to a great hardship. When be heard this, Ka’b said: By God, you will be put to more trouble by him. Muhammad b. Maslama said: No doubt, now we have become his followers and we do not like to forsake him until we see what turn his affairs will take. I want that you should give me a loan. He said: What will you mortgage? He said: What do you want? He said: Pledge me your women. He said: You are the most handsome of the Arabs; should we pledge our women to you? He said: Pledge me your children. He said: The son of one of us may abuse us saying that he was pledged for two wasqs of dates, but we can pledge you (cur) weapons. He said: All right. Then Muhammad b. Maslama promised that he would come to him with Harith, Abu ‘Abs b. Jabr and Abbad b. Bishr. So they came and called upon him at night. He came down to them. Sufyan says that all the narrators except ‘Amr have stated that his wife said: I hear a voice which sounds like the voice of murder. He said: It is only Muhammad b. Maslama and his foster-brother, Abu Na’ila. When a gentleman is called at night even it to be pierced with a spear, he should respond to the call. Muhammad said to his companions: As he comes down, I will extend my hands towards his head and when I hold him fast, you should do your job. So when he came down and he was holding his cloak under his arm, they said to him: We sense from you a very fine smell. He said: Yes, I have with me a mistress who is the most scented of the women of Arabia. He said: Allow me to smell (the scent on your head). He said: Yes, you may smell. So he caught it and smelt. Then he said: Allow me to do so (once again). He then held his head fast and said to his companions: Do your job. And they killed him.

Muslim Apologetics Defense of Muhammad’s crime in Assassinating Ka’b Bin Al-Ashraf

Sami Zaatari

In a response to a gentleman named Silas, who raised some issues against Muhammad regarding his assassination of Ka’b, Mr. Zaatari is keen on defending the prophet no matter what. According to Zaatari, Ka’b brought that upon himself. He says:

the prophet Muhammad killed Kab because Kab incited people to kill Muhammad. So therefore no crime was done.

Zaatari’s defence rests on the fact that Ka’b went to Mecca and incited people to kill Muhammad. True, Ka’b did talk negative about the Muslims camp. His Meccan friends were killed by the Muslims. He was weeping with the Meccans in Mecca for the death of their honorable men who were also his friends. What would you do if those leaders of slain Meccans were your friends? Are you supposed to go to the Muslim camp and recite the Shahada? I find Kab’s reaction very understandable. But at the same time, he was not conspiring to assassinate Muhammad. In fact, the story of assassinating Ka’b shows that Ka’b never talked about assassinating Muhammad. It did show his belief that those who follow Muhammad are doing themselves a disservice. But it is evident he had no “killing” claims against the Muslims. His foster brother was one of the Muslims, and he, Ka’b, was willing to give them food they requested for sustenance. That does not tell me that Ka’b had it in him to kill the Muslims. The claim that Ka’b just wanted to kill Muslims does not stand critical scrutiny. But wait, this is not the total picture here. Let us assume that Ka’b did in fact incite the Meccans to go to war against the Muslims, does that make his assassination a morally acceptable behavior? Does not a prophet of Allah need to warn Ka’b about his behavior first? Does not a prophet of Allah need to have a direct combat with Ka’b if he wanted him dead? An honorable route of killing Ka’b would be a direct face-to-face combat with the Muslims. Did Muhammad do that? No. He resorted to trickery, lying and to sending assassins in the dark of the night. That does not speak but one thing about Muhammad: He was an EVIL man.