Friday, 11 January 2013

Liberal Peaceful Islam – I

FFI received the following email from Mr. Sharjeel Hussain. He claims he is a liberal and peaceful Muslim. Below is his email to us (in black) along with our editor’s response to him (in blue).

Dear FFI Editors,
I am a liberal and peaceful Muslim and despite your prejudiced behaviour towards Islam, I hope that you would accept my request to publish the following article at your website.

I am glad you are liberal and peaceful. Can you please clarify to me what you mean by “liberal” and “peaceful”. For example, as a liberal Muslim, are you ready to renounce and denounce Sharia laws as barbaric. Beheading is barbaric. Beating women is barbaric. Executing gays, lesbians and prostitutes, is barbaric. Are you ready to renounce all of that. Being a “liberal” Muslim sounds good, but what does it mean? Are you willing to admit that the Qur’an has many evil teachings in it (i.e. Qur’an 4:34 sanctions, by divine interference, beating women). Are you willing to reject such verses? Look at the following “dripping with evil” verse from the Qur’an:

009.005 YUSUFALI: But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, an seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war); but if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practise regular charity, then open the way for them: for Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.

The above verse abrogated all Islamic peace you are talking about and put all non-Muslims under the threat of swords and submission. I honestly do not understand you when you say you are a peaceful Muslim. If you are a Muslim, you are peaceful despite of Islam, not because of it. In the Jalalyn Tafsir, and commenting on verse 4:90 (which has a little bit nicer tone than verse 9:5 above) we read the following:

Except those who attach themselves to, [who] seek refuge with, a people between whom and you there is a covenant, a pledge of security for them and for whoever attaches himself to them, in the manner of the Prophet’s (s) covenant with Hilāl b. ‘Uwaymir al-Aslamī; or, those who, come to you with their breasts constricted, dejected, about the prospect of fighting you, [being] on the side of their people, or fighting their people, siding with you, in other words, [those who come to you] refraining from fighting either you or them, then do not interfere with them, neither taking them as captives nor slaying them: this statement and what follows was abrogated by the ‘sword’ verse. Had God willed, to give them sway over you, He would have given them sway over you, by strengthening their hearts, so that assuredly they would have fought you: but God did not will it and so He cast terror into their hearts. And so if they stay away from you and do not fight you, and offer you peace, reconciliation, that is, [if] they submit, then God does not allow you any way against them, [He does not allow you] a means to take them captive or to slay them.

In effect, it seems a peaceful Islam is only a mirage. It is good that you are dreaming about a peaceful Islam. But facts tell a contrary story. All “peaceful” verses of the Qur’an were abrogated by the verse of the sword. The last and latest teachings of the Qur’an are found in Sura 9 (Al-Tawbah). Muhammad “revealed” it before he died and went to hell which he thoroughly deserved.

Sir, you also accused FFI of “prejudiced behaviour” against Islam. To be honest with you, I and all other editors, try to look for the truth when we do research on Islam. When we review submitted papers, our main concern is to have truthful research presented to readers. We do not sugar-coat Islamic truths. I find it a sad fact that you call our honesty and hard work of research “prejudiced behavior”. Can you please point out to us where we wrote research that is “prejudiced behaviour”?

I have recently read the following statement on a website which tries to harmonize science and religion.

“Don’t be discouraged! There is hope. The Bible’s message is trustworthy. God is still God, and Jesus is still the Savior who rose again. The Bible isn’t a science book, and Genesis wasn’t written for 21st century intellectuals. God may have allowed a figurative story of His Creation to be recorded, since a scientific explanation wouldn’t have made sense to readers of that time anyway. So continue to trust Him, despite the apparent difficulties in reconciling science with His Word.”
I feel that, we Muslims, have to adopt the same argument to defend Islam during this modern time. I would like to say to my brave Muslims brothers and cute sisters:
“Don’t be discouraged. There is hope. The Qur’anic message is trustworthy. Allah is still Allah and Prophet is still profit and was mercy for mankind and will intercede for us on the Day of Judgement. The Qur’an is for all times that have gone and those that are still to come. Qur’an is not a science book and it was not written for present modern day. Allah may have allowed some soldiers of Iblis to write fake Ahadith and fake verses to be recorded just to give the Iblis full opportunity to complete his wrong doings before the Allah comes into action and sends Messiahs (Jesus and Mahdi). So continue to trust Allah, despite the apparent difficulties in reconciling teachings of Islam with science and modern human rights concepts.

Dear brother
you make some grand claims here. I have some questions for you:

1. You say that the Qur’anic message is trustworthy. How do you know that? Is there is “trustworthiness” scale that you put the Qur’an on and it scored perfectly? Was Muhammad even an honest man to trust what he says. He broke many treaties. He attacked people unprovoked. He pillaged. He raped. He looted. He was a lowly thug. You you say that what he said in the Qur’an is trustworthy. You have big task to prove here. All facts point to the contrary. Nothing in the Qur’an is trustworthy. The man who came with it was a deceiver and a liar. Can you please clarify to me why you say that the Qur’an is trustworthy?
2. You also claim that Muhammad was a mercy to mankind. You have a funny logic. Can you please tell me what kind of “mercy to mankind” was Muhammad when he beheaded all adult males of bani Qurayza, enslaved the women and children, and raped the women who he had just killed. He raped Rayhana on the day he beheaded her husband and all male relatives. Now, for any decent human being, Muhammad is not even worthy of any respect because of the evil he did to bani Qurayza, but to you, my good Muslim friend, Muhammad is a “mercy to mankind”. This is a sad joke indeed.
3. You also admit that there fake hadiths and fake Qur’anic verse. Well, how can we choose which verse of the Qur’an are from Allah, and which are from Iblis (the devil)? The same question applies to Hadiths.
4. You admit the difficulties involved in “reconciling teachings of Islam with science and modern human rights concepts.” I applaud your admittance. Many Muslims try to do acrobatics to make Islam fit science and human rights. The fact of the matter is that you cannot, with good heart, consolidate Islam and the Qur’an with modern scientific facts or with human rights concepts. This is a complicated subject. Many articles are published on our FFI site on the subjects of science and human rights. I encourage our readers to investigate such articles. I just want to mention to you one point regarding human rights. The Jizya tax, which is a tax levied against non-Muslims in a Muslim state, is mandated by the Qur’an. If you are as honest as I think you are, you will have to reject many verses in the Qur’an because of one reason or another.

As a final note to you: Would you not do better by rejecting Islam and seeing all of humanity as one big family? Think about it. I wish you the best in your endeavor to find the truth



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