Muslim scholars tell Islamic State: You don’t understand Islam

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Nihad Awad, center, executive director of the Council of American-Islamic Relations, and more than 10 Muslim-American leaders Wednesday (Sept. 24) endorse a letter written by more than 100 Islamic scholars that denounces ISIS by relying on sacred Muslims texts. Religion News Service photo by Lauren Markoe

Nihad Awad, center, executive director of the Council of American-Islamic Relations, and more than 10 Muslim-American leaders Wednesday (Sept. 24) endorse a letter written by more than 100 Islamic scholars that denounces ISIS by relying on sacred Muslims texts. Religion News Service photo by Lauren Markoe

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WASHINGTON (RNS) "Please stop calling them the 'Islamic State,' because they are not a state and they are not religious," said Ahmed Bedier, a Muslim and the president of United Voices of America.

  • Dave

    Super news, and well reported. Now the big “However…”
    This reminds me of my own Catholic religion. Every time the top people, including the Pope, release a book or document, it is written so that most people can’t make heads nor tails of it, and that it may be interpreted in many ways.
    I am reminded of a comment by a former Mensa president when she replied to a letter, “…if you are so smart, you should be able to relate to and communicate with anyone.”
    They need to say the same things, but dumb it down so that these creatures will understand.

  • The more honest thing to say is “Nobody understands religion”

    There are no checks and balances anywhere in these fossilized philosophies. They are all bankrupt and based on primitive, barbaric nonsense.

    “Slay them wherever you find them” (surah, Quran)
    “Execute them in front of me” – JESUS (Luke 19:27)
    “Kill the unbelievers” – Yahweh (Torah)

    Religion is nothing but needless, dangerous nonsense.
    Even if a god existed it can’t be connected to these ridiculous beliefs.

  • Mark H. Harris

    Thank you, well reported.
    I particularly noted that the open letter is not intended for liberals; that most people will not understand it.
    Arguing against the Qur’an by using the Qur’an is ridiculous. Using the very book that radical extremists use to justify their politics and ideologies is a senseless gesture at best, and silly at worst.
    I have studied the Qur’an extensively (as I have studied the Bible extensively). The Qur’an as a text is a very dangerous ideology easily misused by extreme fundamentalists, because on its surface it contains phrases which (if interpreted and executed ‘literally’) will lead directly to extreme acts of violence and barbaric demonstrations — we have already seen this occurring throughout the Levant area, and now into the world at large.
    The ideologies put forward in the Qur’an are very dangerous to Western civilization and the Western culture and ideology.
    Its too early to say whether the Qur’an should be outlawed in the United States. It does appear, from the facts pointed out in this article, that Islam in the the West is afraid that unless the Qur’an is used to refute extremist fundamentalism that the Qur’an might be placed outside law possibly in the category of hate-speech.
    Time will tell; however, I do not trust these Qur’an ic scholars, any more than I trust ISIL.

  • Curious

    ““It is forbidden in Islam to declare people non-Muslims until he (or she) openly declares disbelief.”

    OK. And after that, what sort of treatment is in store for them? I’m not convinced this is really an important distinction.

    “Even translated into English, the letter will still sound alien to most Americans…”

    Oh, I think I get the gist. No true Scotsman, right?

  • mike

    “Its too early to say whether the Qur’an should be outlawed in the United States.”

    are you insane?

  • @Mark H. Harris,

    “Arguing against the Qur’an by using the Qur’an is ridiculous.”

    That is poorly worded.

    The Q’uran is exhibit A.
    The Q’uran is evidence of the dangerous preachments of Islam. Arguing against the Q’uran by demonstrating those preachments is exactly what needs to happen.

    “Its too early to say whether the Qur’an should be outlawed in the United States.”

    Ridiculous.
    America has nothing to fear from the Q’uran or any other religious speech. It will always be protected. The thing to fear is any breakdown in the separation of church and state. And Christians are working overtime to rip that down.

  • Mark H. Harris

    The following statement, from the article, is also an outright lie:
    ““It is forbidden in Islam to declare people non-Muslims until he (or she) openly declares disbelief.”
    The Qur’an states clearly who the infidels are… those who believe God is One and Three (Christians), also those who believe God is Jesus, the Messiah, the Son of Mary (Christians). The Qur’an further states that the infidels heads should be removed.
    So, um, the “People of the Book,” Qur’an’s code-word for ‘Christians’ really need to read the Qur’an. Its an eye-opener !
    Seriously.

  • mike

    http://lettertobaghdadi.com/index.php

    please this letter is meant for western consumption. or at the very least the 24 point executive summary.

    torture is not allowed in islam? really? it is not only allowed, it is prescribed. no one can be named takfir is a fallacy. see the apostate wars started by the ‘first rightly guided caliphate’ abu bakr.

    i love the one that says you can’t harm ‘people of the scripture’. so what of non-jews and non-christians. so you can kill hindus and buddhists and atheists? how about the japanese/shintos? i haven’t read there explaination on how the yazidi are people of the book, but that is a new one to me? also i wonder why they left out the shabaks?

    anyway the best one is 21. if you can only rise up in armed rebellion if the leader declares his disbelief and not allow the muslims to pray, then why does CAIR support the FSA? i never heard asad or ghadafi declare themselves kufar or not allow muslims to pray in syria or libya? or how about the battle of camel. i think they just declared aisha, the mother of the believers, a terrorist?

  • Mark H. Harris

    @Atheist Max
    I agree with some of what you are saying. I am thinking along the lines of Jesus when he was accused of being influenced by Beelzabub, he stated that a house divided against itself cannot stand… Abraham Lincoln quoted this passage in reference to the war between the States… Islamic scholars cannot argue against radical Islamic fundamentalists when both use the same insane writing to justify their ends… it just doesn’t work; unless, the scholar can show ‘why’ the fundamentalist interpretation is wrong… and they can’t The fundamentalist interpretation is correct, if the Qur’an is correct. And, I’m a Qur’an ic scholar myself.
    And here is my second point in rebuttal to your argument, I believe that the Constitution of the United States does not guarantee freedom of irresponsible hate-speech (that one is tricky) which advocates that certain infidel groups (Christians for example) should have their heads lopped off ! I think it not only might not be protected, I think it might also be out-lawed. … and the sooner the better.

  • @Mark H. Harris,

    “I believe the Constitution of the United States does not guarantee freedom of irresponsible hate-speech (that one is tricky) which advocates that certain infidel groups (Christians for example) should have their heads lopped off !”

    OH, dear.

    Here comes the wind up.

    Brace yourself. 🙂

    Hateful speech against infidels
    is NOT ONLY PROTECTED
    by the Constitution
    but EVERY PRESIDENT PUTS HIS HAND ON IT
    WHEN HE IS SWORN IN!

    THE HOLY BIBLE:

    “Kill homosexuals” – (Lev 20:13)
    “Genocide is a good solution to problems” – (JER 13:14)(1 Samuel 15:3)
    “Save the virgins for RAPE” – (Num 31:18)
    “enslave people who surrender” – (Deut. 20:10)
    “Marry your rapist” – (Duet. 22:28)
    “Raping your neighbor’s wife is a good way to punish your neighbor” – (2 Sam 12:11)
    “Sell your daughter for sex money” – (Exodus 21:7)
    “Do some raping and stealing” – (Zech 14:1-2)
    “stop ignoring god’s wonderful slaughter” – (Zeph 3:16)
    “Kill babies joyfully” – (Isaiah 13:15)
    “More genocide just for you” – (Ex 23:23)
    “Kill without mercy” – (Jer 15:1-7)
    “Kill your neighbor” – (Jer 48:10)
    “Let us abort all of the babies” – (Hosea 9:11-16)
    “I am a bigot, I’m only for the Jews” – JESUS (Matt 15:26)
    “Ok, to whip your slaves severely” – JESUS (Luke 12:47-48)
    “Kill them even if they are sorry” – (Jer 15:1-7)
    “Never make peace with them” – (Exod 34:15)
    “Why aren’t you following the stoning laws!?” – Jesus (John 7:19)
    “Execute my enemies” – JESUS (Luke 19:27)
    “Kill unruly children” – JESUS (Matthew 15:3)
    “Kill unbelievers” – (2 Chronicles 15:12-13)
    “Die for me” – JESUS (Matthew 16:25)
    “Ignore the future” – JESUS (Matthew 6:34)
    “Make slaves of those around you” – (Lev 25:44-46)
    “Be a good sex slave, don’t run to freedom” – (1 Peter 2:18)
    “Make slaves permanent property” – (Ex 21:5)
    “Judge them, Remove your PEACE” – JESUS (Matt 10:14)
    “Prepare for battle, buy a sword” – JESUS (Luke 22:36-37)
    “I made Evil for humanity” – GOD (Isaiah 45:7)
    “I shall NEVER forgive you” – JESUS (Matthew 25:46)
    “I have no power against IRON” – God (Judges 1:19)
    “Eat my body, drink my blood, or else no heaven” – JESUS
    “Women, expect to be raped to save your husband” – (Judges 19:25-28)
    “Lesbians and Gays will go to hell” – (romans 1:27)
    “Kill your loved ones for me,” – God” (Judges 11:30-1, 34-5)
    “Kill your son for me” – god (Genesis 22:2)
    “No rights for women” – (Eph 5:22)
    “Women should not lust for PENIS” – (Ezekiel 23:20)
    “Rape is the women’s fault” – (Ezekiel 23:17)
    “conquered people must become your slaves” – (Deut 20:10)
    “Rape the pretty slaves” – (Deut 21:10-14)
    “Mass rape commanded by god” (Numbers 31:18)
    “I came to burn up the world” – JESUS (Luke 12:49-51)
    “I did not come to bring peace, but division.” – JESUS (Luke 12:49-51)

    Jesus agrees with all of it, “The Lord and I are ONE” (John 1:17)

    Be careful
    what you ask for, sir.

    I support freedom of religion – and ALL religious speech.

    Even the Bible.

  • Decathlon Jon

    Atheist Max…at it again, I see.
    Nice slap down as usual! But you must understand that Christians don’t lop off heads. You see….They prefer machetes, bonfires and poison gas as in Rwanda, witchburnings and the holocaust. Just FYI 😉

    Keep up the good work.

  • mike

    mark, you are a koranic scholar? somehow i’m not buying it. you seem to have takfir, shirk, apostasy and simple disbelief confused.

  • Cathy Wynn

    AMAX –
    “I support freedom of religion – and ALL religious speech.
    Even the Bible.” Nailed it. You are an inspiration.

  • mike

    and the one muslim in congress, keith ellison, took his oath on a koran. guess who’s koran it was? wait for it……..thomas jefferson.

  • Is beheading REAL Islam ? search engine: “battle of the trench” and find out.

  • Mark H. Harris

    @AtheistMax
    You raise an interesting and (I believe) valid point. I will restate in the form of a question, “Is the text of any Holy Book prescriptive, or descriptive?”
    The problem with the Qur’an is that its texts (all of them) may be interpreted to be ‘prescriptive’ for non infidels now<—- their actions are prescribed in the Qur'an as the will of Alah (their false God and commander) right now.
    This is especially dangerous for the infidels against whom the prescription is written (Christians).
    Jesus fulfilled the law and the writings, and Jesus said, "love your enemies, do good to them who hate you, pray for them who persecute you…"
    Christians do not believe that death is a suitable punishment for those who leave the faith; Christians do not believe that women are second class citizens who should be beaten and enslaved; Christians do not believe the nonChristians should have their heads lopped off….
    I could go on and on and on… I spare you …

  • Mark H. Harris

    Mike, its the Qur’an (not the Koran) and yes, I am an expert; no brag, just fact.
    If you have not read the Qur’an you are not qualified to comment. If you have read the Qur’an, then you know that I am telling the truth. The problem here is that people in America don’t even read their Bibles, let alone the Qur’an.
    I began my formal study of Qur’an immediately after the 911 attack. I constantly find Americans who still to this day believe that Islam is the religion of peace, and that the Qur’an teaches love.
    My challenge to you and all other commers… READ the Qur’an.

  • Tiffany C.

    It is commendable at the very least that widely known and respected (within the Middle East) Muslim scholars & religiously ordained figures are making a concerted attempt to discredit a violent and dangerous faction. Using their own holy book to argue against a polar opposite utilizing the same holy book is quixotic, yet it has been working to discredit ISIS enough to build a coalition against ISIS, with Turkey, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Bahrain, and Qatar trying to stop them. And working with British, Amerucan, Canadian, French and other western nations. This is unprecedented, to acknowledge and agree upon a common global threat.

    In the comment thread, it’s detroiated into an argument against religious dogma, scripture, and intent. As a Humanistic Atheist, I find it absurd to argue which religion is “safer” when they all intrinsically hold back progress through unnatural social controls over imaginary or mythological forces. To argue that Christians are more peaceful simply because they’ve stopped slaughtering people by the millions by WW2, as compared to Islamic violence happening currently is laughable at best. And a form of circular logic that doesn’t help matters.

    Yes, I’m well aware of the seeming irony in my statements first lauding the international Muslim community for trying to fight religious dogma with more religious dogma, and then calling out the ludicrous nature by which it’s being done in the debate between Christian apologists on this thread. The difference though is within the context. Within the cultural climate of the Middle East, it’s the a rational method to discredit ISIS that doesn’t insult their general population.

    Here in the U.S., it’s not a sussccesful way to neutralize religious influence. Legally fighting to uphold the separation clause is our best method currently. In Western Europe they’ve moved beyond separation clause issues, many nations there have official churches and a selected religion yet the majority of their populace is agnostic or atheist. They currently understand the nuances between tradition and civil liberties on a larger scale than we do as Americans (sigh).

  • Mark H. Harris

    “Legally fighting to uphold the separation clause is our best method currently.” — Tiffany
    @Tiffany, I agree. Jefferson’s ‘high wall of separation’ between church and state is the way, for the United States (IMHO). I am totally in agreement with the ‘high wall’ even though I am a Christian apologist, and Christ follower.
    Having said that, my comments above should not be interpreted as Christian apologetics; far from it. I am only pointing out in deference to Christians that they are willing to coexist with the ‘high wall of separation’ spoken of by Jefferson (I am not speaking of the fundamentalist pinheads, nor the Tea Party, ehem).
    On the other hand, what makes Islam in America so dangerous is that their Holy Qur’an establishes a ‘prescription’ for an ‘American’ theocracy that not only WILL NOT allow for a ‘high wall of separation,’ but which calls for an established law (Sharia) which makes the state ‘equal’ with the faith |clerics, Khalafa, etc.
    This is not nuanced eiter… its blatant.

  • Earold D. Gunter

    Mark, I have also read and studied the qur’an, hadith, and the bible. However, I do not have the arrogance to refer to myself as an “expert”. I wonder, would your teachers at Bethel also call you an expert, or would they recommend you read and study proverbs 16:18 again?

    Your backyard has plenty of leaves, so why do you feel the right to say others should rake theirs?

    Religions all require belief based on faith, and that is faith defined in the traditional sense of the word, which means not only believing without evidence, but even when evidence to the contrary exists.

    That is living life in a delusion, and that, as history can testify, is a very dangerous thing for those who don’t believe like others.

  • Mark

    Please note that far more people were killed in the 20th century in the name of atheistic ideologies than all the so-called religion-inspired conflicts combined. It is not credible to diss all religion by simply citing random verses extracted from their historical and literary context. Of course, there are highly questionable things in Abrahamic scriptures. This does not negate the truth and beauty that religious faith can bring to individuals and for the transformation of society.

  • @Mark H. Harris,

    “Jesus said, ‘love your enemies, do good to them who hate you, pray for them who persecute you…”

    No. Because this is limited only to enemies who already love the Lord. Jesus’ message is otherwise incoherent:

    1. Jesus VALIDATED and ENDORSED capital punishment in the 540 stoning laws of Moses:
    “not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law” – JESUS (Matthew 5:18-19)
    “And why do you break the command of God
    for the sake of your tradition? …. ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’ ” (Matthew 15:3)
    This leaves all stoning laws intact.

    2. JESUS: JUDGE OTHERS HARSHLY:
    “…if they are unworthy..REMOVE your blessing of peace.” – JESUS (Matt 10:13)
    “And whosoever will not receive you, when ye go out of that city, shake off the very dust from your feet AS A TESTIMONY AGAINST THEM.” – JESUS (Luke 9:3-5)

    3. JESUS: KILL MY ENEMIES FOR ME
    From the Parable of the Minas where the Nobleman returns:
    “..bring to me those enemies of mine who would not have me as their King, and execute them in front of me.” – JESUS (Luke 19:27)

    4. CHRISTIANITY: MAKE ENEMIES OF YOUR NEIGHBOR:
    “Let him who has done this be removed from among you.” (1 Corinthians 1:13)
    “have nothing to do with him, that he may be ashamed.” (2 Thessalonian 3:14)
    “Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us.” (2 Thessalonians 3:6)
    “If anyone does not love the Lord, let that person be cursed! Come, Lord!” (1 Corinthians 16:22)

    The Bible is indefensible. It is just as guilty as the Quran.

    “Christians do not believe that women are second class citizens who should be beaten and enslaved”
    Prior to the Reformation, murder in the name of Christ was commonplace and women were (and still are) second class citizens in religious countries (ever heard of Hobby Lobby?)

    “Christians do not believe the nonChristians should have their heads lopped off….”
    They prefer bonfires. Even today hundreds of people are burned at the stake for being non-believers. Read about it in Uganda.

    Religion is madness. All of it.

  • @Mark,

    “far more people were killed in the 20th century in the name of atheistic ideologies than all the so-called religion-inspired conflicts combined.”

    That is flat-out WRONG. You don’t know what Atheism is!

    These Straw-men are NOT examples of Atheism:

    Stalin
    was a self-appointed intermediary (CZAR) between God and the religion of the state. He demanded FAITH in that religion including the miracles of Lysenko, or death.
    That is not Atheism – it is FAITH.

    Pol Pot
    was a Theravada Buddhist who ‘divined supernatural heaven’ of which he appointed himself leader and demanded allegiance as head of the religion of the state of Cambodia. He was against all education and science. What Atheist ever did that?
    That is not Atheism – it is FAITH.

    Hitler
    and his SS were sworn Catholics and Christians, hailed allegiance to the Fuhrer (father) under ‘God’, demanded faith in the divinity of the Aryan Race and demanded each Nazi wore the belt buckle which read ‘God on our side’ (“Gott Mit Uns”) or God With Us. Hitler’s first peace treaty was the Vatican Koncordat in 1933 where the church swore allegiance to Hitler and Hitler would choose the Bishops for Germany.
    Hitler’s hatred of Jews was founded on the writings of Martin Luther, he declared Christ ‘his model of the great soldier’ fighting against the evil of the Jews. (Mein Kampf) His favorite words of Jesus ended the Parable of the Minas; “Execute them in front of me.” – Jesus(Luke 19:27)
    That is not Atheism – it is FAITH.

    Emperor Hirohito,
    was the cult of the sun god – the sacrificial Kamikazes and the holy war of ‘sacred’ Japan joining the Axis Powers against the infidel America.
    That is not Atheism – it is FAITH

    North Korea
    is the most religious country on earth.
    Its current leader had a supernatural birth where the birds sang in Korean. All of the subjects must worship the Dear Leader who has supernatural powers or be executed.
    That is not Atheism – it is FAITH.

    However, there is NO FAITH in the United States Constitution which remains the only godless constitution in the world.

    “You show me an example where the non-religious democratic ideals of Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, Voltaire
    and Lucretius spiraled into torture, brutality and dictatorship
    and we’ll have a level playing field.” – Christopher Hitchens

    Don’t slander Atheism.
    It is a beautiful thing to abandon the nonsense of FAITH.

  • Dolores

    That quote you attribute to Jesus was not him giving his own orders, but was the voice of a character in a parable. The NT does not give any orders to force anyone to be Christian or to kill them if they refuse or leave.

  • WARS CAUSED DIRECTLY BY RELIGION:

    500 MILLION PEOPLE HAVE DIED
    at the hands of Christians.


    300 MILLION DIED DIRECTLY FROM ALL OTHER RELIGION:

    War on Aids – 20 Million Dead
    Catholics obstructed condoms over a 20 year period through the Catholic clinics as women begged to be saved from their infected husbands (“Aids is bad but condoms are worse” – Pope John Paul)


    Spanish Inquisitions – 200,000 dead (Catholic Fascists)

    The Crusades (1095 c.e. -1291 c.e.) 2 Million dead – (Catholic Fascist)
    Anti-Semitism – 5 millions dead over 2000 years excluding the Holocaust

    Witch Hunts – (500,000 killed)
    Ireland – 600,000 dead (Catholic vs. Protestant)

    Rwanda 1994 (Catholic Facists killed 1,000,000 with machetes)

    Taipeng Rebellion in China (1850 – 1864) 45 million dead (Christian Fascists)
    Boznia-Herzegovina (Catholic Facists)

    The Ivory Coast civil wars (Catholic Facists)

    Franco, the Spanish Civil War (Catholic Facists)

    Cypriat War (Catholics)

    East Timor civil war

    Sri Lankan civil war

    Syria vs. Israel

    Kashmir civil war

    Chechnya civil war

    Sudan

    Thirty Years War (Protestants VS. Catholics)

    WW1 – War of Christendom (37 Million dead)

    WW2 Nazi Anti-Semitism, “Gott Mit Uns” Axis powers – 50 Million dead

    Albigensian Crusade, 1208-49
    Algeria, 1992-
    Baha’is, 1848-54
    Bosnia, 1992-95
    Boxer Rebellion, 1899-1901

    Constantinian Empire & Christian Romans, 30-313 CE
    Croatia, 1991-92
    English Civil War, 1642-46
    Huguenot Wars, 1562-1598
    India, 1992-2002
    India: Suttee & Thugs
    Indo-Pakistani Partition, 1947

    Iran, Islamic Republic, 1979-

    Iraq, Shiites, 1991-92

    Jews, 1348

    Jonestown, 1978

    Lebanon 1860 / 1975-92
    Molucca Is., 1999-
    Mongolia, 1937-39

    Northern Ireland, 1974-98

    Russian pogroms 1905-06 / 1917-22

    St. Bartholemew Massacre, 1572

    Shang China, ca. 1300-1050 BCE

    Shimabara Revolt, Japan 1637-38

    Sikh uprising, India, 1984-91

    Spanish Inquisition at its peak, 1478-1834
    Tudor England

    Vietnam 1800s

    OTHER Witch Hunts, 1400-1800
    Xhosa, 1857

    Arab Outbreak, 7th Century CE

    Arab-Israeli Wars, 1948-

    Al Qaeda, 1993-

    Dutch Revolt, 1566-1609

    Nigeria, 1990s, 2000s
    Khemr Rouge (red army) led by Pol Pot 1968-1979 – absolutist FAITH in the cult of Pol Pot, claimed purity of the xenophobic Cambodian Nationalist Tribe and the UNWAVERING FAITH in Agrarian Communism: 5 million dead.

    a staggering figure very close to One Billion
    800,000,000 people dead JUST BECAUSE OF RELIGION.

    500,000,000 attributable to Christianity alone.

    Yet God doesn’t appear to exist,
    nor does he apparently take sides in these battles.

  • RELIGION AND THE AMERICAN CIVIL WAR:

    The Southern Baptist Church, FUNDED BY and FOUNDED by Southern Plantation Owners in 1837 argued for the HOLY SANCTITY OF SLAVERY based solely on the Bible.

    The Southern Baptist Church in its religious argument in favor of Slavery was a strong influence in turning the Southern argument for Secession
    into a religious CRUSADE.

    Once you have decided that the ‘Divine’ is on your side, you will do any amount of evil.

  • mike

    lol. koran is an acceptable transliteration. your arrogance is hilarious. i’ve read the koran. so i beg of you your permission to comment, your highness?

    you say who an infidel is made clear in the koran. where does the koran even use the word infidel? so enlighten us, are the jews infidels? zoroatrians? sikhs? unitarian christians? bahai’i? yazidis?

    funny that the muslims can’t agree on who is kufar and who can declare takfir. but clearly in your 13 years of ‘formal study’, you have cracked the code.

  • mike

    not sure if your admiration for western european understanding of the place for religion in society is well placed? their exaggerated sense of a pluralistic society and fear of ‘hate speech’ has lead to a lack of integration. the brits may be in real trouble.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0W73jyoAEQg

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  • mike

    dude, i’m an atheist but that is just silly. ‘war on aids’…lol.

  • Larry

    “In Western Europe they’ve moved beyond separation clause issues, many nations there have official churches and a selected religion yet the majority of their populace is agnostic or atheist. They currently understand the nuances between tradition and civil liberties on a larger scale than we do as Americans”

    Not really.

    They have a lot of problems in how to handle minority religions specifically because of official churches and lack of separation of church and state. National identity is linked to ethnicity and religion. Add to this a lack of sane naturalization processes in most of the region, those nations simply turn minority religious groups into an “other” to be treated differently from the rest of the citizenry. So this leads authorities to treat those religious groups either with kid gloves or like interlopers.

    You would not see head scarf bans or limits on mosque construction seriously debated in the US legislatures because of the rights hardwired into the 1st Amendment. Sharia law in the US is treated like Rabbinical law. Merely a form of contractual civil alternative dispute resolution and nothing more.

  • Gary

    Huh?

  • @mike,

    The war on AIDS was a serious religious crime. The church denied access to condoms despite knowledge they were effective against the spread of disease – on purely religious grounds.

    20 million died. It is beyond disgraceful.

  • Mike,

    The ‘War on AIDS’ was a Religious war on people who in the judgement of the Catholic Church were having ‘unholy’ sexual activity.

    The Catholic Church used their vast network of clinics in Africa and the spread of HIV as direct effort to dictate sexual morality – the Church and the Holy See in particular knowingly used AIDS as a useful threat in a marketing campaign to destroy prostitution (by allowing the deaths of millions of prostitutes) and improving the sexual practices of Africans.

    God is always very careful to not destroy the Devil.
    Satan comes in very handy when Christians want to get people in line!

  • @Delores,

    The Nobleman in the Parable of the Minas is JESUS.

    “BRING TO ME THOSE ENEMIES OF MINE AND EXECUTE THEM IN FRONT OF ME” – JESUS (LUKE 19:27)

    Please read your Bible and listen to your preachers.
    Jesus is telling his followers a story to incite fear and obedience.
    Though it has been interpreted as the Perousia (second coming) the parable has been invoked to kill hundreds of millions of people in the last 2000 years.

    “BRING TO ME THOSE ENEMIES OF MINE WHO WOULD NOT HAVE ME AS THEIR KING AND EXECUTE THEM IN FRONT OF ME.” – JESUS (LUKE 19:27)

    There is no safe way to use the Bible.
    It should come with a warning label.

  • Rei Toei

    Ummm… Dominionism, anyone? Christian nationalism?

  • Larry

    What do the scholars say about these verses or “ayahs” from the Qur’an?:

    From the Qu’ran, Shakir version (not wanting to repeat David’s posting):

    009.030 – And the Jews say: Uzair is the son of Allah; and the Christians say: The Messiah is the son of Allah; these are words of their mouths; them imitate the saying of those who disbelieved before; may Allah destroy them; how they have turned away!

    P.S. there are more like these

    002.191 – And kill them wherever you find them, and drive them out from whence they drove you out, and persecution is severer than slaughter, …

    003.151 – We will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve, because they set up with Allah that for which he has sent down no authority, and their abode is fire, and evil is the abode of the unjust.

    003.156 – Then as to those who disbelieve, I will chastise them with severe chastisement in this world and the hereafter, and they shall have no helpers.

    004.076 – Those who believe fight in the way of Allah, and those who disbelieve fight in the sway of the Shaitan. Fight therefore against the friends of the Shaitan; surely the strategy of the Shaitan is weak.

    008.012 – … I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them.

    009.123 – O you who believe! Fight those of the unbelievers who are near to you and let them find in your hardness; …

  • Laurence Ringo

    Seriously, “Atheist Max”, you gotta put that crack pipe down, dude! You’re sounding more and more like some kind of disconnected lunatic! What is wrong with you??

  • Laurence Ringo

    Wow. You REALLY need to get out of the house, dude.

  • Mark H. Harris

    @EaroldDGunter Your argument is a seriously flawed ad hominem. My qualification (self study, formal study) is not arrogance, nor pride. I am an expert because I wanted to know the truth, and because I believe that it is always wise to know ones enemies— their language, their culture, their books, their ideology. I of course do not see any sense in becoming embroiled in the Sunni | Shia dispute over rightful succession of the Khalafa or who has the ‘right’ to do this or that in Islam (those religious disputes are not at play here).
    I am studying the Qur’an in Arabic (and English) for the same reason I formally studied the O.T. in Hebrew (and English) (and Greek), and the N.T. in Greek (and English) (and Latin).
    The clerics of Islam will declare that the Qur’an may only be studied in Arabic— this is a shameful lie. The Qur’an may be translated (reasonably well) into any language on earth, and many good translations exist in English. The Dawood Penguin Qur’an is excellent; however, there are better ones.
    I particularly recommend “The Meaning of The Holy Qur’an” ‘Abdullah Yusuf ‘Ali : New Edition with Revised Translation, Commentary and Newly Compiled Comprehensive Index (Beltsville Maryland: Amana Publications, 2001)
    The above word has BOTH the Arabic and English ‘together’ and is actually approved for study by Muslim scholars and clerics in the U.S. As a scholar myself, I recommend a student of the Bible have more than one English translation handy. So too, the student of Holy Qur’an should have several translations handy to account for the nuances in translation philosophy from dynamic equivalence to formal equivalence.
    If the ‘People of the Book’, and also the people of America, will just read the Qur’an they will discover why this particular Holy Book is quite different from the Bible, not only in literary quality, but also as an affront to Western culture and ideology, but also as affront to United States national interests as well as U.S. national security.
    All of the comparisons of Qur’an to the Bible here, or Islam to Christianity here, are simply red herrings, and|or straw men. The issue here (from the article above) is that Muslim clerics are attempting to persuade fundamentalist radical ISIL to try to understand Islam—from the Qur’an!! This can not be done.
    My challenge, again, to all people in America (all nations of the West) is to read the Qur’an and see for yourself. I began that journey myself almost thirteen years ago, and I am better for it today. Its never too late to start. Failure to start is a decision now to be willingly ignorant.
    m harris

  • Mark H. Harris

    @AtheistMax Your diatribe here makes you look like as ass. This discussion is not about atheism. This discussion is also not about your opinion of religion. Posting the long lists of alleged or supposed atrocities perpetrated in the name of religion are silly. Events in history usually have a religious component, but most of the myriad list of atrocities you have assembled here have nuances and multiple myriad plethora of cause and effect relationships that literally fill ‘volumes’ only some of which is religion based… so please, knock of with the silly lists, you are only kidding yourself.

    Thanks

  • Earold D. Gunter

    Mike, I had no argument, just and observation.

    Here is another – “Expert” is something others call someone when they have demonstrated they should be called that. Someone who calls himself “expert” is simply arrogant.

    This is a common trait among the religious though as all profess to know “the” answer, while all others are wrong.

    Your book is just as dangerous, if taken literally.

  • craig scott

    You may have read an English translation of the Quran…but you fully misrepresent the text….picking IT apart so as bolster your own ideology….You have no more understanding of Islam than the fighters of ISIS.

  • mike

    @earold, my bad. i should have addressed my comment. the reply button disappears after a couple of comments, that was a reply to the koranic scholar mark.

  • mike

    i know all about the catholic church. i went to catholic school for 12 years. i still bought condemns in the 80s. what you said is utter non sense. not providing someone a condomn is not tantamount to waging a war. this is part of the problem today, people redefining words. this kind of hyperbole is rediculous.

    most africans aren’t even catholic. no one put a gun to anyone’s head and told them not to buy a condemn. no one killed people for manufacturing, importing or distributing condemns. that would be somewhat equal to a ‘war’.

  • Larry (the atheist one)

    Max brought up plenty of verses from the Bible on par with this (see September 24, 2014 at 9:11 pm)

    To claim Islam is uniquely violent, and then go through the fiction that Christianity is somehow better (as Mark H. Harris claimed) is utter fiction. All monotheistic religions have these sort of writings. How else are you going to convince people to follow your “one true god” if you don’t murder off all the people who do not?

    Why would out of context Koran passages be treated any worse than out of context Bible passages. Both are used to justify genocide, conquest, slavery, subjugation of women and sectarian strife.

  • Larry (the atheist one)

    Max is simply illustrating the utter fiction of your assertions that Islam is more violent in its nature than Christianity. He is pointing out that religion in general is violence incarnate.

  • mike

    larry, i can tell you what muhammad asad says about them. but it will be a [expletive deleted] ton of typing, so if it’s not going to matter i just as soon not.

  • mike

    exactly what the muslims say when someone like you claims to be an expert in the koran and makes assertions about what the koran means without any historical context. LMFAO.

    something about a mirror, or a pot and a kettle or living in a glass house comes to mind.

    or how about this one; “remove the plank from your own eye, before you worry about the spec in your brother’s”.

  • @Laurence Ringo,

    I sometimes fight Biblical hyperbole with Atheist hyperbole.

    I do believe the Bible (and the Q’uran) are impossible texts leading only to evil behavior if followed. The evidence is all around you that I am correct.

  • @Laurence Ringo,

    It is hilarious that your objection is Jesus himself.
    Yet it is I as the messenger who gets the blame.

    Read your Bible and ask questions about the garbage within it.

  • @Craig Scott,

    All right. Enough defending of the Q’uran – okay?
    These religious texts are bent on WAR.
    So stop pretending otherwise:

    Infidels are those who declare: “God is the Christ, the son of Mary.” (Sura 5:17)

    1. Infidels are those who say ‘God is one of three in a Trinity.” (Sura 5:73)
    2. Make war on the infidels who dwell around you. (Sura 9:123)
    3. The infidels are your sworn enemies. (Sura 4:101)
    4. When you meet the enemy in the battlefield, strike off their heads. (Sura 47:4)
    5. Mohammed is Allah’s apostle. Those who follow him are ruthless to infidels. (Sura 48:29)
    6. Prophet, make war on the infidel. (Sura 66:9)
    7. Kill the disbelievers wherever we find them. (Sura 2:191)
    8. Believers, take neither the Jews nor the Christians for your friends. (Sura 5:51)
    9. Believers, do not make friends with those who have incurred the wrath of Allah. (Sura 60:13)
    10. Never be a helper to the disbelievers. (Sura 28:86)
    11. Fight those who believe not in Allah. (Sura 9:29)
    12. The only reward of those who make war on Allah and His messenger….will be that they will be killed or crucified, or have their hands and feet on alternate sides cut off. (Sura 5:33)

    And on and on…

  • @mike,

    Okay, I’ll accept your point.
    It DOES diminish the brutality of war to say the War on AIDS is equal to that.

    But don’t miss these important facts:

    CONDOMS WERE KNOWN TO BE EFFECTIVE AGAINST THE SPREAD OF AIDS!

    1. The Primary health clinics in Africa are still the Catholic clinics. They forbid use of condoms and do not supply them in some clinics even today!

    2. There are NO CVS stores or regular pharmacies to walk into and buy condoms in most of Africa. I have been to some of these countries – The clinics are ridiculous and full of Catholic superstitions encouraged by Rome. There is a reason why Ebola is running rampant in Africa again.

    3. The Pope KNEW condoms could stop the spread of AIDS. The medical establishment had made it clear to the World Heath Organization in a report in 1987 – From the very beginning of the crisis !!

    4. AIDS was the best thing that ever happened to the Catholic Church in Africa! Financially raising funds to PREACH ABSTINENCE! INSTEAD OF GIVING OUT CONDOMS TO MARRIED WOMEN (AMONG OTHERS) WHO BEGGED FOR THEM EVEN AS LATE AS 2008!

    I CALL THIS A 20 year WAR AGAINST HUMANITY.
    Waged by an opportunistic, superstitious criminal enterprise called the Catholic Church who took advantage of a disease which they found VERY USEFUL TO EXPLOIT!

    20 MILLION PEOPLE DIED OF AIDS IN AFRICA ALONE DURING THIS CLINICAL DENIAL OF EFFECTIVE PREVENTION!

    It is an outrage and someday you will hear some Pope apologize for it – as they always apologize decades later for NOT BEING PERFECT AFTERALL!

  • @Mike,

    “no one put a gun to anyone’s head and told them not to buy a condemn.”

    Wrong. The gun was AIDS.
    Wives wanted help and it was denied to them. Condoms were not freely available in Africa because the governments were following the Catholic directive on this matter because that is who runs the clinics.

    You are blaming women – who have no power in this culture – who went to clinics for condoms and were told to ABSTAIN from sex from their partners INSTEAD! Women do not have the right to abstain from these men in these cultures – it was a death sentence!

    I was a Catholic for 44 years – went to catholic school and supported catholic churches with CASH.

    UPON DISCOVERING WHAT THIS DAMNABLE INSTITUTION HAS BEEN UP TO – I REGRETTED BEING A CATHOLIC SO MUCH – THAT I ALMOST WANTED TO KILL MYSELF FOR MY TINY ROLE IN IT !

    Religion is superstitious, dangerous garbage.

  • Thank you, Larry.
    That is exactly what I’m trying to say.

    People are lopping heads off at the direction of religion.

    Atheism and its healthier position on religions certainly should be part of the conversation.

  • @Mark H. Harris,

    “Your diatribe here makes you look like as ass”

    I had been trying to protect you from doing that to yourself. Unfortunately you are very unschooled at Christianity and religion in general.

    Religion is a disease.
    Atheism is the only healthy treatment.

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  • Larry

    And how does it differ from other what you would find in the Bible or done in practice by other monotheistic religious groups? It doesn’t. Nobody has clean hands here.

    The entire argument is ridiculously superficial anyway. It misses a lot of key facts about the history and culture of much of the “Islamic world” such as:

    -The relative calm of Muslim majority nations such as Bosnia, Bangledesh and Albania, Kosovo where nationalism issues have been largely resolved.

    -The recency of Islamicist terrorism (outside of Egypt’s MB, almost none date back to before 1979)

    -Secular Nationalism and Radicalism were the most dominant political/cultural ideas for much of that part of the world until recently.

    -The role of Saudi Arabia and Iran in supporting Shia/Sunni proxy forces in their decades long conflict with each other.

    -The relative calm of America’s Muslim population compared to other nations with Muslim minorities.

  • Muhammad

    @mark H. Harris
    you are not a quranic scholar as u claim, studying it alone can’t give enough insight into its meaning. That is why I agree that the information contained in the scholars ruling isn’t made for the liberals.

  • mike

    muhammad, did you read this open letter?

  • @mike,

    “If you are dumb enough to **** a prostitute, good on ya.”

    And when AIDS gets transmitted to the wife when the man gets back – despite her pleadings to the clinic – I guess you’ll blame her too.
    If you are an Atheist, you the rare cruel sort.
    You talk like a Christian full of judgment.

  • I agree with Atheist Max

  • Rashid.M

    Self declared expert Mark H. Harris asserts >>”The following statement, from the article, is also an outright lie:““It is forbidden in Islam to declare people non-Muslims until he (or she) openly declares disbelief.” The Qur’an states clearly who the infidels are… those who believe God is One and Three (Christians), also those who believe God is Jesus, the Messiah, the Son of Mary (Christians). The Qur’an further states that the infidels heads should be removed.”

    Hi Mark. I’m responding because as a Muslim reader of the Quran, reading your expert posts, I fear I may be doing it all wrong.

    Let’s start with the above broad ranging statement by you, and we can move on to your other assertions later if you like. I look forward to your referencing the Quran to back it up.

  • mike

    yes max, by your judgement i may be cruel. your hypocrisy cracks me up. so you judge the catholic churches’ inaction. you judge me to be cruel and appearently a liar. then you seem to indicate my judgement is not allowed. lol. this political correctness of ‘i don’t judge people’ is part of the problem. speaking of africa it reminds me of a program on pbs i was watching once. henry louis gates took his family to africa. they were on a train and it broke down. he comment on how well everyone reacted and how they sang songs and were in a good mood as they walked, carrying their luggage miles to the nearest road to wait for buses.

    did you not say you are for freedom of speech and religion? you would force a religious institution to go againsts its principles?

    btw; a “War on Aids” would imply an action to wide out aids. you may want to change your hyperbole to maybe: war on africa, with aids as a weapon. war on the poor. war on sex or fornication.

  • mike

    such judgement. 44 years and you never heard, ‘judge not, lest…’ or wait you do know it. you only apply it to others. first disease is war and now religion is disease. truely abrahamic of you. from the koran 2:10
    Sahih International
    In their hearts is disease, so Allah has increased their disease; and for them is a painful punishment because they [habitually] used to lie.
    or have you ever read the ‘book of jihad’ by ibn nuhaas. he says that disbelief is the disease and
    jihad is the cure.

    http://www.khilafahbooks.com/wp-content/ebooks/english/khilafah/book_of_jihad.pdf

    you speak just like they do.

  • mike

    rashid, sup? was that less excrutiating? having been declared takfir yourself, maybe you can explain the concept to mark.

    so do i need to go to the other link? did you reply to me? what were we last talking about, logic?

  • @mike,

    “you would force a religious institution to go againsts its principles?”

    Umm. gee– well, yeah.
    A religious institutions principles?

    So you don’t challenge the head-chopping principles of ISIS?
    “Slay them wherever you find them” – (SURAH)

    Good to know you aren’t being ‘politically correct’ or anything.

  • @mike,

    “you speak just like they do.”

    What is wrong with you?

    I’m not lopping of heads or forcing my beliefs on others! I claim the right to call religions ‘garbage’ because they fit that definition.

    Secondly,
    “Judge not that ye be not judged” – Jesus (Matthew 7:1-3)

    More garbage. It is an incoherent blip on an ocean of judgement! And it is directed only at those who already follow Jesus. Not ‘others’.

    Jesus spends the entire Gospel judging everyone HARSHLY
    and warning why it is vital for followers to JUDGE OTHERS HARSHLY! He is a despicable monster:

    JESUS – JUDGE OTHERS FOR GOD’S WRATH!
    “And whosoever will not receive you, when ye go out of that city, shake off the very dust from your feet AS A TESTIMONY AGAINST THEM.” – JESUS (Luke 9:3-5)

    “DO NOT ASSOCIATE WITH ANYONE…IF HE IS GUILTY..”
    (1 Corinthians 5:11)

    “Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.” (1 Corinthians 15:33)

    “But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one.” (1 Corinthians 5:11)

    “If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting” (2 John 1:10)

    “Avoid Them” (Romans 16:17)

    “For whoever greets him takes part in his wicked works.” (2 John 1:11)

    “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault.” (Matthew 18:15)

    “As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.” (Titus 3:9-11)

    “Let him who has done this be removed from among you.” (1 Corinthians 1:13)

    “have nothing to do with him, that he may be ashamed.” (2 Thessalonian 3:14)

    “Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us.” (2 Thessalonians 3:6)

    “If anyone does not love the Lord, let that person be cursed! Come, Lord!” (1 Corinthians 16:22)

    JESUS : JUDGE THEM HARSHLY

    “deem them unworthy…remove your blessings of peace.” – JESUS (Matthew 10:13)

    “Don’t waste….on the people who are unholy. Don’t throw your pearls to pigs!” – JESUS (Matthew 7:6)

    “shake the dust off…FOR A TESTIMONY AGAINST THEM.” – JESUS (MARK 6:11)

    and on
    and on
    and on…

    Despicable, divisive garbage.

  • @mike,

    You are as unschooled as the other people here who defend Jesus.

    You know nothing of the bible. It is just as indefensible and evil as the Koran.

  • Art

    To you all… religion, politics, truth in this world, unfortunately, will be interpreted by the greatest power; several books have predicted this… all this posturing by any to come into line is just part of the master plan. Eventually we will all worship the beast or die. Choose your best path my friends.
    P.S. AM… ho hum – boring. With all due respect.

  • @Art,

    “With all due respect”

    Your God theory goes like this:

    “I shot my son with the first century’s version of an AK47
    and I did it just for your personal benefit. If you don’t believe me
    I’ll do worse things to you.” – Yahweh.

    Get help.

  • Aunt Raven

    Mike says, “not sure if your admiration for western european understanding of the place for religion in society is well placed?”
    —-Exhibit A: Austria, which is officially Catholic.
    Culturally It is a delightfully batty place. Austrians (Catholic, lapsed Catholic, and non-Catholic), live and let live; they produce great music, great cuisine & pastry; great art & architecture (if you like Baroque) and great nightlife.
    I think my admiration for the harmonious place of religion in Austrian society is well placed.
    Ireland could learn a thing or two from Austria on how to get it right. 🙂

  • @Mike,

    1. Stop misspelling ‘condom’. It is ridiculous that you don’t read your own writing.

    2. For THOUSANDS OF clinics to KNOWINGLY deny effective medical care for religious reasons IS A CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY.

    Shame on you for thinking anything else.
    And yes!!!! I DID send Condoms to Africa through the Doctors Without Borders Campaign when it started!

    Religion is a disease against humanity and it needs to be abandoned. All of it is inhuman!

  • @Mike,

    THE CRUEL CATHOLIC CHURCH
    DESTROYED THE CHANCES OF CONDOMS
    GETTING TO AFRICA ON MULTIPLE OCCASIONS.

    IN 2003 THE US GOVERNMENT FINALLY STEPPED UP TO ITS HUMANITARIAN RESPONSIBILITIES – 15 YEARS AFTER THE CRISIS WAS FULL BLOWN!

    http://www.kaiserhealthnews.org/Daily-Reports/2003/January/30/dr00015771.aspx?p=1

  • Rashid.M

    Hi Mike. Reading your post this time was relatively painless.

    Takfir is the declaration by one Muslim of another as kafir (i.e. an unbeliever, non Muslim etc). The Ahmadi position is that no one has the authority to declare another person non Muslim other than that person themselves. If that person affirms the shahada (basic Muslim oath), then they are considered Muslim. Beyond that there may be disagreements in interpretations and practice, but no one has the right to be a takfiri and declare them non Muslim.

    Can’t remember what we were talking about last time. I generally stop replying when the article leaves the main page.

  • mike

    OMAM, again with the shame? rather than shame on me, why don’t you shame the africans who infect their wives with aids.

    now there is a ‘war on humanity’? lol. let me guess. the illuminatti? (or is there only one t in that) watchout for the rothschilds, i hear they are shapeshifters.

  • mike

    rashid, yeah i know what takfir is. it’s mark, ‘the koranic scholar’ who seems to be unclear on the concept.

    we were discussing the abrogation of rajam by the verse 24:2, or rather 24:3 in your version of the koran. and then you said something about logic, so i asked if it was logical for your ‘all-knowing’ god to have first told his prophets to stone people, and then to say not to?

    that’s a lack of logic in my book.

  • mike

    yes. and italy is catholic (friends of mine just got back from their hineymoon there and loved it. great food and wine) and england angelican.

    but no of that has to do with allowing muslims to impose sharia.

    btw, zionism rose out of vienna in 1896 due to europeans hatred of the jews. annexed by nazi germany peacefully doesn’t bow well for the history either, but i guess things have changed, regardless of religion.

  • mike

    lol. you might want to change your name. looks to much like gog and magog. funny how the ‘people of the book’ are worried about 9:5 when it should be you.

    muhammad hated pagans. he destroyed 360 idols when taking mecca.

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  • Fran

    I will only read, study and meditate on God’s Word, the Bible; never the Qur’an. The God of the Bible is Jehovah (Psalm 83:18), whose son is Jesus; and the god of the Qur’an is Allah, who has no son and is a false god.

  • Rashid.M

    Muslims believe that the Quran is the complete and final religious law for all mankind. Religious law prior is considered to be people and circumstance specific. Within new laws there can be reference to the old.

    So for example, Jews were taught:

    “Show no pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot” (Deuteronomy 19:21)

    Christians were taught:

    “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth. But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also” (Matthew 5:38-39)

    Muslims are taught:

    “Remember that the recompense of an injury is an injury the like thereof; but whoso forgives and thereby brings about an improvement, his reward is with Allah. Surely, He loves not the wrongdoers” (Quran 42:41)

  • @Rashid,

    “his reward is with Allah”

    Humanity will be better off when all of this is abandoned.
    We don’t need ancient texts to tell us how to behave. We know right from wrong without them and they add nothing but misery.

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  • mike

    [5.38] And (as for) the man who steals and the woman who steals, cut off their hands as a punishment for what they have earned, an exemplary punishment from Allah; and Allah is Mighty, Wise.

    [5.45] And We prescribed to them in it that life is for life, and eye for eye, and nose for nose, and ear for ear, and tooth for tooth, and (that there is) reprisal in wounds; but he who foregoes it, it shall be an expiation for him; and whoever did not judge by what Allah revealed, those are they that are the unjust.

    so a thief has their hand cut off, but a murderer can be set free if the victims family accepts blood money?

    it also says to crucify people for spreading mischief. that could be almost anything. adultery, apostasy, sorcery, blasphemy…

  • mike

    rashid, so you find it logical that your god starts with one set of laws and they kind of changes it 1000 years latter and then gives his final thought (which isn’t even clear) 600 years after that. wouldn’t logic dictate you just start with what you want? and state your case clearly?

  • Aasiyah

    Mark, I’ve never in my whole exsistence have felt goose bumps as I just did by reading your comment. Neither have I discovered a non muslim to show so much respect for the Quraan, knowing the contents of it. I applaud you and I thank you, trying to make people believe that the Quraan doesn’t teach violence, hate and discrimination,is one of the hardest thing I had to endure as a muslim. I really and truly commend you for taking the time to not only read but understand my Quraan. The proudness is overwhelming, I wish there were more people like you in this world, in hope that it will bring nations together and respect to all no matter what religion, creed, color or race.

  • Aasiyah

    Beheading with a sword or axe goes back a very long way in history, because like hanging, it was a cheap and practical method of execution in early times when a sword or an axe was always readily available.
    The Greeks and the Romans considered beheading a less dishonourable and less painful form of execution than other methods in use at the time. The Roman Empire used beheading for its own citizens whilst crucifying others.
    Beheading was widely used in Europe and Asia until the 20th century, but now is confined to Saudi Arabia, and Iran. One man was reportedly beheaded in Iran in 2003 – the first for many years. It remains a lawful method in Qatar and Yemen, although no executions by this method have been reported.
    Beheading continued in Britain up to 1747 and was the standard method in Norway (abolished 1905), Sweden (up to 1903) and Denmark (last in 1892) and was used for some classes of prisoners in France (up until the introduction of the guillotine in 1792) and in Germany up to 1938.  (Copy & pasted 🙂 ) doesn’t seem too long ago does it ?

  • Muslimshamed

    Get it right – Luke 19 is the parable of the Ten Pounds. I assume you know what I parable is. Whereas “Slay them wherever you find them” is a command to be to be obeyed.

  • Muslimshamed

    If I could up vote your comment I would.

  • Bryan

    You’ve got a pretty large misinterpretation there. Yes, the master in the parable is supposed to be Jesus/God/etc. But it is to do with using the gifts (talents) one is given in life. The master going away and coming back is analogous to Jesus going away and coming back (2nd coming, revelations and all that jazz) and people being judged for how they’ve used their talents. The quote you use is referencing judgement after the second coming, basically that bad people are gonna go to hell. It is not inciting violence or call to kill anyone. In fact, it’s shortly after that there’s the famous refusal of Jesus to rebel against Rome when he says to give unto Caesar what is Caesar’s.

    I’m not a christian, nor particularly religious at all. But I do recognize that while christian teachings are often twisted to rationalize violence that does not mean they are violent teachings. I’m not familiar enough with the other quoted religions, but I can say for certain that the teachings of christianity are not violent. In fact…they’re pretty wussified. Turn the other cheek and such.

  • rob

    @A Max
    you said Hitler’s hatred of Jews was founded on Martin Luther.. that’s not true..

    Hitler just used peoples ignorance’s about what Luther wrote to promote Hitler’s own hatred ..

    in fact Luther’s whole treaties that is so famously used AGAINST HIM when investigated shows that it was Luther
    who was the one opposed to racism .. and he openly mocks them for their racism.
    yet of course one would have to read the whole treatie to find that out .. yet that very treatie so often quoted and used against Luther vindicates Luther .

    it proves Luther disliked racism and that what he had against the Jews was their theology that also caused there racism .. Luther never hated Jewish people he only hated there theology.. reading the whole treatise proves that ..

  • rob

    @A Max

    why not prove what you say A Max— WHY not move to a Muslim country and show us how well you would be around them ! why not sprout your crap around them instead of around Christians ..
    my guess is you would more than likely be dead in less than a week.
    and we all know it….

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  • Brian McM

    Atheist Max makes good points (logical). I am not an atheist, but I appreciate solid logic. All religious texts are flawed in my view. Religion is the way humans explain God (the Universe) and their own existence. It is a product of the human imagination, not words given by God (the Creator of the Universe, whomever / whatever that might be). No God would bother himself / herself with the mundaneness / stupidity of human existence when there is an entire Universe to look after. That is the point of Free Will. All this aside, I can agree that most religious texts are dangerous on the wrong hands. How society at large deals with those who would use the words of those texts, coming from a common man, not from God, is the key to perpetuation of the species. Religion is alter ego to the Mind. Can religion be harnessed for good (solid societal obligations and boundaries), or does society allow it to be used for evil? That is a reasonable question. We are in the process of finding that answer.

  • Tim

    No, here we just hope the secret drug mix works before a judge checks the shelf life.

  • yassin

    No one will listen to Fatawa from a bunch of unbearded, tie wearing “imitators” (thats what they will call them)

  • Muhammed Tayyib

    “Fight for the cause of God those who wage war against you, but do not commit aggression. Indeed, God does not love aggressors.” (2:190)

    The sūrah goes on to reaffirm the rightness of war against those who had subjected the Muslims to campaigns of terror and persecution, and driven them out of their homeland. The Muslims were urged to confront their enemies and kill them wherever they happen to be, except within the vicinity of the Sacred Mosque in Makkah unless their enemies were to attack them there first. Those orders would stand unless the unbelievers accepted Islam, in which case it was forbidden to fight them, regardless of any killings or atrocities they might have perpetrated against Muslims earlier.

    “Slay them wherever you may come upon them, and drive them away from wherever they drove you away; for oppression is even worse than killing. Do not fight them near the Sacred Mosque unless they fight you there first. Should they fight you, then kill them. Such is the reward of the unbelievers. But if they desist, know that God is much forgiving, Merciful.” (2:191-192)

    The above verses were reveal to Muhammad (pbuh) on the occasion when the idolaters tried to force the the Muslims that deviated from there religion back to it by waging war against the Muslims and forced them out of there homes, but it’s there home and Allah commanded them to take it back.. And in the end of verse 192 is says ” But if they desist, know that God is much forgiving, Merciful” that is how merciful our Lord most Gracious is. So every time you read the Quran, sometimes there’s a story(occasion of revelation) behind it. Don’t just read the Quran but get the tafsir(commentary) by the

  • Anwar

    Curious, This letter was meant for the ISIL, especially, to its leader. It may not be clear to Non-Muslims.

  • Anwar

    Actually beheading and drowning probably render death quicker than any of the other forms of killing. Electricution was not an easy way to die. The lethal injection may look generous from outsiders but does anyone know how the dying person feels during that time?

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  • Dear ‘Max Atheist’ brother,

    If you believe there is not one god, you are in error. Your quoting’s from the Quran, Torah, and Bible are all true. I mean why shouldn’t the unbelievers be given any penalty? They disbelieve in what is in front of their eyes. (For example, the day and night.) Think about this questions: Who created the moon and the sun, Who created mankind, Who created you, Who created your parents, Who created everything? When you think about these questions you will come to know THERE IS A GOD. There is a hell for the unbelievers and for the bad believers. There is a heaven for the pious/righteous ones. Who created the Earth your on? God. (If you want more information on the Creator brother, please look into the religion of Islam.

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  • Eliz Black

    Hey, that is great that you at least tried to find evidence before just throwing away the faith you were probably born with. This means you are a person who likes to search for truth. But you are a bit too hurried and as all of us are skeptic. I am very upset to admit that I was on same track until some unexplained things began to happen to me. And I would have probably been lost forever, but found the truth. I hope you do too. Faith is not violence, it is a belief in creator that made us, and belief that we shall serve a good purpose in our life. There is God, indeed, and I hope that one day you would understand it too. 🙂 Believe from heart, do not reject it and try to prove it against. Seek the truth and you should find it. Best wishes.

  • Eliz Black

    Hello. I agree that old texts are hard to interpret, and could lead misconception. But I do not truly think that those groups really get its meaning in best, but what I also think those terrorists do not even use it for majority. They are murdering people, and every true Muslim knows that it is not Islam. People who knew Prophet Mohammed (Peace be upon him) were observing many characteristics of kindness and humanity in him. Islam respects Abrahamic religions, and it demands to have respect for the Jews and Christians as well, and believe in their prophets. I also want to mention to be careful about what Qur’an you are using, just like the Bible versions, but even less noticeable. There are lots of false books nowadays, even from approved sources of webs or libraries. I studied this faith as well as others too, and have found lots of great things in it most of the time. Good luck!

  • Eliz Black

    Sorry, it is me again. Just wanted to add that it meant specifications of individuals, that’s one, and the second is that it also includes that a Christian, a Jew, and even, in cases other religion’s “individual” is a Mu’min (believer) and whoever believes in ONE GOD with HEART is a believer like a Muslim.

  • Eliz Black

    About Aysha, it was actually the Shi’a group of Muslims who called her so. Often it is a high danger to even ware this name there now. But Sunni still oppose this claim and they respect her. She is one of the lightest figures. Islam is not all same, it is split like Christianity, and only one real faith of Islam remains, which is one of beliefs so many Muslims seem uneducated about their faith. The people of Macca were tortured with horrible ways, and God gave them the right to fight, they did not torture their enemy.

  • Eliz Black

    Hey, that’s a good point right there! 🙂

  • Eliz Black

    Hitler, and later USSR (as said) BTW were both in search of something, they were competing for it and seems like found it, in hands of bad people now, it is hidden. Seems interesting as it matches with all my researches. Just sharing excitement of thought. 🙂 Sorry, I need to stop commenting and start my research on health care argument. Hope you have a nice day, fun discussion.

  • Eliz Black

    That is the mistakes of the human beings right there, not the religion.

  • Eliz Black

    Hey mike, he is a human that is why he gets frustrated and stuff. I agree on some of your points too 🙂

  • Eliz Black

    Hey I like your ideas. They are logical and yet conservative and moderate 🙂

  • lgladdingjr

    Atheism, is a religion friend……

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  • Jason Quick

    All the verses that you mentioned were taken out of context. For all the Old Testament verses you mentioned, these verses were written for the time they occurred. Israel when it was freed from Egypt went into the land of the Midianites and the Ammonites to destroy the people who lived there so that Israel would not be seduced into worshiping false Gods. By doing this they would inherit the land that was promised to them by God. God told Israel to kill everyone so they wouldn’t turn from Him, but they didn’t listen. They took many of those people to be their own wives. Because of this Israel was eventually conquered by the Babylonians, and ultimately Rome from roughly 63 B.C to the 2nd and 3rd century A.D.

    Now onto the verses about Jesus, which were also taken out of context. Jesus was talking in parables for all of the verses you were talking about. He was using the current culture, in which slavery (Servants) were common place, to foretell his second coming. Slavery during those times was used as punishment for a debt. They didn’t have IOUs and credit cards in the 1st and 2nd century so they used their labor to pay for debts.

    It was because of Christians that most of the greatest humanitarian movements have occurred. Including the destruction of slavery, civil rights movement (Martin Luther King was a Christian), modern medicine/hospitals, women’s rights, and not to mention western society as you see it today. Our founding fathers wrote our constitution based on Biblical beliefs, which gives everyone the right to their own beliefs and freedoms. Including the ones you have to take things out of context in regards to the bible.

    Please research the historical context on the cultural times before assuming that Christianity and Judaism support genocide, murder, and slavery.

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  • th

    I do not disagree with you. This point is especially important for the youths in western societies where Islam is a minority. Many of these people who end up embracing extremist ideologies do so out of ignorance and the subsequent brainwashing results in ireversible damage to the minds and hearts of these men and women who are no more than laymen.

    From the Islamic perspective these trials are a test. Islam requires thought and the Quran commands all people to think, both with the mind and the heart. Every human is born with a conscience. To ignore it is to condemn ones self to a lifetime of heedlessness from which there is no recovery. Once Allah shuts that door it will remain closed. Unless a person repents and amends their life then the end is dire for the person.
    At the same time if someone asks for knowledge Allah will grant the person knowledge in abundance. Hence the great understanding of the righteous scholars past and present may Allah reward them.

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