• This is a political forum that is non-biased/non-partisan and treats every person's position on topics equally. This debate forum is not aligned to any political party. In today's politics, many ideas are split between and even within all the political parties. Often we find ourselves agreeing on one platform but some topics break our mold. We are here to discuss them in a civil political debate. If this is your first visit to our political forums, be sure to check out the RULES. Registering for debate politics is necessary before posting. Register today to participate - it's free!

The Benefits of Islam (1 Viewer)

TDGonDP

DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 11, 2018
Messages
328
Reaction score
116
Location
Brooks, Alberta
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Independent
here have been a few comments about the negative attributes of Islam. While this is some truth to these comments (and the links they provide), these comments are more crafted to cast Islam in the worst possible light, which then indirectly elevates Christianity to the level of absolute superiority. I'll just bring up some points that show what Islam had brought to the world at that time.



1. The Political Unification of the Arabian Peninsula (and beyond). During Mohammed's time, the Arab people were are constant warfare with each other. Various tribes competed for territory and trade routes. Bandits and pirates were everywhere, and the economy really couldn't grow much. Mohammed united these people under one banner (albeit after his death). From there, this civilization flourished and prospered while their neighbors languished.



2. The political climate of those times was very much "conquer or be conquered". If a nation was weak economically, it eventually became weak militarily. And a weak military eventually meant being conquered by someone stronger. So smaller nations eventually became part of bigger nations--without the approval of the smaller nations. Whatever conquesting the Muslims were doing really was no different than what the non-Muslim world was doing--or wanted to do.



3. This flourishing civilization created the field of mechanical engineering. The Muslims devised all sorts of contraptions that moved water around, bringing irrigation to arid land, enabling their population to grow. This engineering eventually led to other technological achievements that were later borrowed by the Europeans.



4. The Muslims invented the concept of the university, where its wisest men could teach young people their wisdom. Elite families of Europe were sending their sons to Toledo, Alexandria, and other university towns to get their education for engineering and medicine. It was the Muslims who indirectly led the Christians out of the Dark Ages.



5. Although Muslims did not invent the rule of law, they were great practitioners of law. Underneath the ruling elites playing their games of power accumulation, the law served the people fairly and honestly. This contributed to the betterment of that society.



6. Around 1000 AD, the Muslim cites of Alexandria, Bagdad, and Tripoli had underground sewers, law and order, night lighting, and other features of an advanced civilization for that time. In contrast, London, Berlin, and Paris were a fraction of the size, with households throwing their waste on the streets and bandits were preying on unarmed escorts.



7. Muslim cities allowed Jewish and Christian communities to grow and flourish under their rule. The Koran has instructed Muslims to be kind to the "people of the Book," and from a historical perspective, this law was followed reasonably well. However there was no provision for Zoroastrian, Buddhist, and Hindi followers; so these groups did indeed suffer from Muslim imperialism.



8. While there were some big battles between Christians and Muslims in the Crusader times, the Muslims, for the most part, allowed the Christians to stay in the Levant. Not only were they adhering to the "be kind to the people of the book" law, it was good for business in that region. Christian pilgrims brought a lot of wealth to the Muslims--which indirectly kept Europeans impoverished, relatively speaking.



9. Sunni Islam eventually split into five main sects (Hanafi, Maliki, Shafii, Hanbali, and Zahiri. Although these groups came to different theological conclusions of the Koran, they, historically speaking, got along reasonably well. If there was any society that first practiced the concept of "freedom of religion," it was the Muslims.



I can already hear the Christian apologists denouncing whatever I have said here. They will be quite eager to depict the harder of edges of the Muslim world at that time (and there were hard edges). The Muslims under the ISIS banner are an aberration of history; incapable of creating any advanced civilization that the followers of Islam did 1000 years ago. We cannot judge an entire religion on this small group.
 
Good job. Theses apologists are ready 24\7 to defame you and anything you will say if it don't fit their narrow views. The concept of freedom of speech for them is their own freedom to criticize others not their own
 
here have been a few comments about the negative attributes of Islam. While this is some truth to these comments (and the links they provide), these comments are more crafted to cast Islam in the worst possible light, which then indirectly elevates Christianity to the level of absolute superiority. I'll just bring up some points that show what Islam had brought to the world at that time.



1. The Political Unification of the Arabian Peninsula (and beyond). During Mohammed's time, the Arab people were are constant warfare with each other. Various tribes competed for territory and trade routes. Bandits and pirates were everywhere, and the economy really couldn't grow much. Mohammed united these people under one banner (albeit after his death). From there, this civilization flourished and prospered while their neighbors languished.



2. The political climate of those times was very much "conquer or be conquered". If a nation was weak economically, it eventually became weak militarily. And a weak military eventually meant being conquered by someone stronger. So smaller nations eventually became part of bigger nations--without the approval of the smaller nations. Whatever conquesting the Muslims were doing really was no different than what the non-Muslim world was doing--or wanted to do.



3. This flourishing civilization created the field of mechanical engineering. The Muslims devised all sorts of contraptions that moved water around, bringing irrigation to arid land, enabling their population to grow. This engineering eventually led to other technological achievements that were later borrowed by the Europeans.



4. The Muslims invented the concept of the university, where its wisest men could teach young people their wisdom. Elite families of Europe were sending their sons to Toledo, Alexandria, and other university towns to get their education for engineering and medicine. It was the Muslims who indirectly led the Christians out of the Dark Ages.



5. Although Muslims did not invent the rule of law, they were great practitioners of law. Underneath the ruling elites playing their games of power accumulation, the law served the people fairly and honestly. This contributed to the betterment of that society.



6. Around 1000 AD, the Muslim cites of Alexandria, Bagdad, and Tripoli had underground sewers, law and order, night lighting, and other features of an advanced civilization for that time. In contrast, London, Berlin, and Paris were a fraction of the size, with households throwing their waste on the streets and bandits were preying on unarmed escorts.



7. Muslim cities allowed Jewish and Christian communities to grow and flourish under their rule. The Koran has instructed Muslims to be kind to the "people of the Book," and from a historical perspective, this law was followed reasonably well. However there was no provision for Zoroastrian, Buddhist, and Hindi followers; so these groups did indeed suffer from Muslim imperialism.



8. While there were some big battles between Christians and Muslims in the Crusader times, the Muslims, for the most part, allowed the Christians to stay in the Levant. Not only were they adhering to the "be kind to the people of the book" law, it was good for business in that region. Christian pilgrims brought a lot of wealth to the Muslims--which indirectly kept Europeans impoverished, relatively speaking.



9. Sunni Islam eventually split into five main sects (Hanafi, Maliki, Shafii, Hanbali, and Zahiri. Although these groups came to different theological conclusions of the Koran, they, historically speaking, got along reasonably well. If there was any society that first practiced the concept of "freedom of religion," it was the Muslims.



I can already hear the Christian apologists denouncing whatever I have said here. They will be quite eager to depict the harder of edges of the Muslim world at that time (and there were hard edges). The Muslims under the ISIS banner are an aberration of history; incapable of creating any advanced civilization that the followers of Islam did 1000 years ago. We cannot judge an entire religion on this small group.

Hi. We stopped in Brooks a few weeks back to have lunch in the Timmy's near 13 Ave.

I've studied Islam, so I have a couple of quibbles with what you said. I see you recognize that early Muslims were warriors, just like the rest of the world, so no need to harp on that. I don't think you can support the claim that the Qur'an tells Muslims to be kind to the People of the Book. Verse 9:29, which was "God's" last word on fighting, says to fight them until they either accept Islam or surrender to live as dhimmis. Where do you think it tells them to be kind?

The Quranic Arabic Corpus - Translation
 
Hi. We stopped in Brooks a few weeks back to have lunch in the Timmy's near 13 Ave.

I've studied Islam, so I have a couple of quibbles with what you said. I see you recognize that early Muslims were warriors, just like the rest of the world, so no need to harp on that. I don't think you can support the claim that the Qur'an tells Muslims to be kind to the People of the Book. Verse 9:29, which was "God's" last word on fighting, says to fight them until they either accept Islam or surrender to live as dhimmis. Where do you think it tells them to be kind?

The Quranic Arabic Corpus - Translation

I tried reading the Koran a decade or two back. I found the prose a little too superfluous to comprehend, sort of like Isaiah of the Old Testament or John of the New Testament. I made it about a third of the way through, then realized I wasn't getting much insight from it. I sort of latched on to "Muhammmad and the Course of Islam" by H.M. Balyuzi. Much easier read, but quite long. It ties in with many of the stories of early Islam that Koran doesn't explain very well, at least to beginners. I should read Balyuzi again! And there have been a few other commentaries that I have come across over the years.

I can't recall the "People of the Book" offhand, but I have read about it in several places. But the historical facts are that Islam did allow Christian and Jewish communities within it borders-----most of the time.

The Christian apologists are often quick to point to a millennia of Muslims practicing genocide against Christians, which doesn't make sense because an effective genocide really does not need a 1000 years.

If you say certain passages are in the Koran, I don't have enough background to argue. For sure, Christian apologists will pull the quotes of smiting the enemies of Islam as proof of the evils of Islam. But that is just cherry-picking, kind of what they do with the Bible. Many of these Christians have never talked to a Muslim, but they everything about this religion.

And yes, there are differences in interpretation and perspectives because we have looked at Islam from different angle. But, then again, Islam is a very divided religion. But if one looks closely, there are interesting pockets in Islam looking at new perspectives of what their religion really means. Check out TED talks!
 
I tried reading the Koran a decade or two back. I found the prose a little too superfluous to comprehend, sort of like Isaiah of the Old Testament or John of the New Testament. I made it about a third of the way through, then realized I wasn't getting much insight from it. I sort of latched on to "Muhammmad and the Course of Islam" by H.M. Balyuzi. Much easier read, but quite long. It ties in with many of the stories of early Islam that Koran doesn't explain very well, at least to beginners. I should read Balyuzi again! And there have been a few other commentaries that I have come across over the years.

Reading the Qur'an is no casual endeavour. I've been through it all once, and some of it several times. I spent 7 years in Egypt and learned enough Arabic to read the parts that impact us the most today. I started reading it shortly after 9/11 to prove that the religion was not at fault, that it was truly a religion of peace that had somehow become twisted, but it didn't take me long to figure out that wasn't going to be the outcome.

I can't recall the "People of the Book" offhand, but I have read about it in several places. But the historical facts are that Islam did allow Christian and Jewish communities within it borders-----most of the time.

At the very start, Mohamed cleansed the peninsula of Jews. He either banished them (at first), but then when the Banu Quraiza were the only ones left, he simply wiped them out for not helping him in his war (which he started) against the pagan Meccans. As the empire spread, Christians and Jews were given the choice of conversion or dhimmitude. If they chose to be dhimmis, they were indeed tolerated, albeit as second-class, jizyah paying citizens.

The Christian apologists are often quick to point to a millennia of Muslims practicing genocide against Christians, which doesn't make sense because an effective genocide really does not need a 1000 years.

Muslim armies did indeed attack Europe over several decades on several fronts.

If you say certain passages are in the Koran, I don't have enough background to argue. For sure, Christian apologists will pull the quotes of smiting the enemies of Islam as proof of the evils of Islam. But that is just cherry-picking, kind of what they do with the Bible. Many of these Christians have never talked to a Muslim, but they everything about this religion.

Quoting verse 9:29 is definitely not cherry picking. It was the last verse written about fighting, and became the pattern for the coming invasions. It was an outright declaration of war.

And yes, there are differences in interpretation and perspectives because we have looked at Islam from different angle. But, then again, Islam is a very divided religion. But if one looks closely, there are interesting pockets in Islam looking at new perspectives of what their religion really means. Check out TED talks!

The only thing that would disappoint Mohamed about today's Islam is the sectarian division that happened. The Ismaelis and Ahmadiyas are peaceful (I don't know how they can read the Qur'an and see peace, but there you have it). Unfortunately, over 80% are Sunnis, and they're the source of most of the trouble along with the second largest contingent, the 12ers of Shia Islam (Iranians). That leaves about 5% for the other 70 odd sects.
 
Reading the Qur'an is no casual endeavour. I've been through it all once, and some of it several times. I spent 7 years in Egypt and learned enough Arabic to read the parts that impact us the most today. I started reading it shortly after 9/11 to prove that the religion was not at fault, that it was truly a religion of peace that had somehow become twisted, but it didn't take me long to figure out that wasn't going to be the outcome.



At the very start, Mohamed cleansed the peninsula of Jews. He either banished them (at first), but then when the Banu Quraiza were the only ones left, he simply wiped them out for not helping him in his war (which he started) against the pagan Meccans. As the empire spread, Christians and Jews were given the choice of conversion or dhimmitude. If they chose to be dhimmis, they were indeed tolerated, albeit as second-class, jizyah paying citizens.



Muslim armies did indeed attack Europe over several decades on several fronts.



Quoting verse 9:29 is definitely not cherry picking. It was the last verse written about fighting, and became the pattern for the coming invasions. It was an outright declaration of war.



The only thing that would disappoint Mohamed about today's Islam is the sectarian division that happened. The Ismaelis and Ahmadiyas are peaceful (I don't know how they can read the Qur'an and see peace, but there you have it). Unfortunately, over 80% are Sunnis, and they're the source of most of the trouble along with the second largest contingent, the 12ers of Shia Islam (Iranians). That leaves about 5% for the other 70 odd sects.

You have studied this topic quite well and it seems you are bringing a neutral point-of-view. I went to your 9:29 quote. It was great that this website provided several translations of the Koran, is this is often a contention amongst scholars.

Going to Balyuzi, Mohammed was persecuted by his own people. While settling in Medina to find some peace, the Meccans raided Medina several times and were driven back. On one of those invasions, Mohammed asked a Jewish clan to provide protection to a certain quarter of Medina. They betrayed him, and the battle became a lot more difficult. After the battle, Mohammed was not kind to that Jewish clan. Later, Mohammed decided that a good defense was a good offence and took the war to Mecca. The Muslims won handily, and the Meccans joined the Muslim fold.

From what I can gather from Balyuzi, the Arab people of that time joined a religion on a clan-by-clan basis. Some were Jewish; some were Christians, and some were idolators. But they weren't overtly religious; they were clinging to Arabic traditions as their source of guidance, not the teachings of their stated religion. And the clans were often at war with each other.

While I'm not a scholar on this topic, I wonder if many of these warlike quotes are mostly applicable in Mohammed's time; i.e. directly mostly at the Meccans. This is sort of like the many "smite thy enemies" quotes of the Old Testament, which no longer really applies to Christians. Or all the kosher laws the Jewish Faith which are still preserved, but the real application was for a community to live in a desert in days where science was not well known.

Going back to modern times, do the Copts in Egypt pay the Jizyah today? If so, how much? The Copts are a significant minority in Egypt and most belong to the upper class. There are still many Christian communities in the Arabic world. What is their status?

And up until 1980, there were many Jewish sectors in the Arabic world. Did they pay and how much?

Sunni Islam is far from united in theological thought and action. I would not consider any one scholar's interpretation as representative of the entire faith.

If all Muslims were following 9:29 to the letter, the world would be a much different place. If most Muslims were of ISIS mentality, . . . . . . .

Go to Ted Talks and listen to a video by Simina Ali (for some reason, youtube is not giving me the exact URL, but she and other moderate Muslims are getting time on TED). There is a renaissance happening.
 
You have studied this topic quite well and it seems you are bringing a neutral point-of-view. I went to your 9:29 quote. It was great that this website provided several translations of the Koran, is this is often a contention amongst scholars.

Going to Balyuzi, Mohammed was persecuted by his own people. While settling in Medina to find some peace, the Meccans raided Medina several times and were driven back. On one of those invasions, Mohammed asked a Jewish clan to provide protection to a certain quarter of Medina. They betrayed him, and the battle became a lot more difficult. After the battle, Mohammed was not kind to that Jewish clan. Later, Mohammed decided that a good defense was a good offence and took the war to Mecca. The Muslims won handily, and the Meccans joined the Muslim fold.

From what I can gather from Balyuzi, the Arab people of that time joined a religion on a clan-by-clan basis. Some were Jewish; some were Christians, and some were idolators. But they weren't overtly religious; they were clinging to Arabic traditions as their source of guidance, not the teachings of their stated religion. And the clans were often at war with each other.

While I'm not a scholar on this topic, I wonder if many of these warlike quotes are mostly applicable in Mohammed's time; i.e. directly mostly at the Meccans. This is sort of like the many "smite thy enemies" quotes of the Old Testament, which no longer really applies to Christians. Or all the kosher laws the Jewish Faith which are still preserved, but the real application was for a community to live in a desert in days where science was not well known.

Going back to modern times, do the Copts in Egypt pay the Jizyah today? If so, how much? The Copts are a significant minority in Egypt and most belong to the upper class. There are still many Christian communities in the Arabic world. What is their status?

And up until 1980, there were many Jewish sectors in the Arabic world. Did they pay and how much?

Sunni Islam is far from united in theological thought and action. I would not consider any one scholar's interpretation as representative of the entire faith.

If all Muslims were following 9:29 to the letter, the world would be a much different place. If most Muslims were of ISIS mentality, . . . . . . .

Go to Ted Talks and listen to a video by Simina Ali (for some reason, youtube is not giving me the exact URL, but she and other moderate Muslims are getting time on TED). There is a renaissance happening.

I'm in the middle of a family trip, so if you're willing to wait, I'll get back to this when I have some down time.
 
You have studied this topic quite well and it seems you are bringing a neutral point-of-view. I went to your 9:29 quote. It was great that this website provided several translations of the Koran, is this is often a contention amongst scholars.

Going to Balyuzi, Mohammed was persecuted by his own people. While settling in Medina to find some peace, the Meccans raided Medina several times and were driven back. On one of those invasions, Mohammed asked a Jewish clan to provide protection to a certain quarter of Medina. They betrayed him, and the battle became a lot more difficult. After the battle, Mohammed was not kind to that Jewish clan. Later, Mohammed decided that a good defense was a good offence and took the war to Mecca. The Muslims won handily, and the Meccans joined the Muslim fold.

From what I can gather from Balyuzi, the Arab people of that time joined a religion on a clan-by-clan basis. Some were Jewish; some were Christians, and some were idolators. But they weren't overtly religious; they were clinging to Arabic traditions as their source of guidance, not the teachings of their stated religion. And the clans were often at war with each other.

While I'm not a scholar on this topic, I wonder if many of these warlike quotes are mostly applicable in Mohammed's time; i.e. directly mostly at the Meccans. This is sort of like the many "smite thy enemies" quotes of the Old Testament, which no longer really applies to Christians. Or all the kosher laws the Jewish Faith which are still preserved, but the real application was for a community to live in a desert in days where science was not well known.

Going back to modern times, do the Copts in Egypt pay the Jizyah today? If so, how much? The Copts are a significant minority in Egypt and most belong to the upper class. There are still many Christian communities in the Arabic world. What is their status?

And up until 1980, there were many Jewish sectors in the Arabic world. Did they pay and how much?

Sunni Islam is far from united in theological thought and action. I would not consider any one scholar's interpretation as representative of the entire faith.

If all Muslims were following 9:29 to the letter, the world would be a much different place. If most Muslims were of ISIS mentality, . . . . . . .

Go to Ted Talks and listen to a video by Simina Ali (for some reason, youtube is not giving me the exact URL, but she and other moderate Muslims are getting time on TED). There is a renaissance happening.

Hi again. I only have time today for a quick drive-by, but I wanted to counter what you read by Balyuzi. Mohamed was not persecuted, he was mocked and ignored. The Meccans did not mount any offensives against Mohamed until they were forced to, as it was Mohamed who began the war with Mecca by raiding their caravans. Medina, which was a largely Jewish city named Yathrib when Mohamed moved there, was purged of all Jews within 5 years. They didn't betray Mohamed, they simply didn't help him. I haven't read all the following yet, but it started well, so I though I'd post the link. Have a good Christmas.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_career_of_Muhammad
 
Hi again. I only have time today for a quick drive-by, but I wanted to counter what you read by Balyuzi. Mohamed was not persecuted, he was mocked and ignored. The Meccans did not mount any offensives against Mohamed until they were forced to, as it was Mohamed who began the war with Mecca by raiding their caravans. Medina, which was a largely Jewish city named Yathrib when Mohamed moved there, was purged of all Jews within 5 years. They didn't betray Mohamed, they simply didn't help him. I haven't read all the following yet, but it started well, so I though I'd post the link. Have a good Christmas.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_career_of_Muhammad

Sorry for the late response. Christmas kind of got in the way.

I went to your Wikipedia article. It's been about 15 years since I read Balyuzi. He did mention that caravan raiding was a common practice throughout the Arabian peninsula. But I don't recall that was the reason for the Meccans to attack the Medinins. But it could have been even though I believe Balyuzi framed the attacks mostly as a religious battle. Maybe religion was used as a pretext to eliminate some business competition.

As for no more Jews in Medina, Balyuzi said that religion in those days with the Arabs was somewhat fickle. Mohammed managed to convert many Medinin Jews, Christians, and idolators to his way.

I also went to the talk section of the wikipedia article. Sometimes the talk is more interesting than the original article. There was a flurry of edits, it seems, in 2006. Then the article stopped evolving. Not sure what to make of this.

I also googled "Balyuzi". From what I could gather, he is not a scholar that other scholars refer to in their deliberations of early Islam.

But history is quite clear that Islam was more powerful than Christianity as Islam was in a conquering position for many centuries. The Muslims were at the gates of Vienna because they had a superior social structure that produced an economy to support a big army. Had Islam produced a backward society (relatively speaking), the siege of Vienna would never have happened. A few verses in the Koran cannot muster and motivate an army by themselves.

The siege of Vienna was the turning point. The Muslim world became weaker in terms of social order; the Christian world became stronger. And the Muslims were slowly pushed out of SE Europe. It was just one empire replacing another.
 
Sorry for the late response. Christmas kind of got in the way.

I went to your Wikipedia article. It's been about 15 years since I read Balyuzi. He did mention that caravan raiding was a common practice throughout the Arabian peninsula. But I don't recall that was the reason for the Meccans to attack the Medinins. But it could have been even though I believe Balyuzi framed the attacks mostly as a religious battle. Maybe religion was used as a pretext to eliminate some business competition.

As for no more Jews in Medina, Balyuzi said that religion in those days with the Arabs was somewhat fickle. Mohammed managed to convert many Medinin Jews, Christians, and idolators to his way.

There were 3 Jewish tribes who called Yathrib home when Mohamed rolled in. Two he expelled, but the third, the Banu Quraiza, he obliterated. He had the men and youths beheaded, and the women and children taken as slaves. They didn't realize until it was too late that they had invited a snake into their house.

I also went to the talk section of the wikipedia article. Sometimes the talk is more interesting than the original article. There was a flurry of edits, it seems, in 2006. Then the article stopped evolving. Not sure what to make of this.

I also googled "Balyuzi". From what I could gather, he is not a scholar that other scholars refer to in their deliberations of early Islam.

But history is quite clear that Islam was more powerful than Christianity as Islam was in a conquering position for many centuries. The Muslims were at the gates of Vienna because they had a superior social structure that produced an economy to support a big army. Had Islam produced a backward society (relatively speaking), the siege of Vienna would never have happened.

Correct as far as I know.

A few verses in the Koran cannot muster and motivate an army by themselves.

You would be surprised. In my 7 years in Egypt I witnessed how the verses of the Qur'an defined what they thought and how they lived. Instead of family photos, most had verses from the Qur'an on their cubicle walls. Verse 9:29 was "god's" final word on fighting, and it became the rallying cry for the first conquests. An excellent, non-judgmental, book by Hugh Kennedy, The Great Arab Conquests, details the formation of the Islamic Empire's first hundred years.

The siege of Vienna was the turning point. The Muslim world became weaker in terms of social order; the Christian world became stronger. And the Muslims were slowly pushed out of SE Europe. It was just one empire replacing another.

And thank the Habsburgs and Charles Martel for that.
 
There were 3 Jewish tribes who called Yathrib home when Mohamed rolled in. Two he expelled, but the third, the Banu Quraiza, he obliterated. He had the men and youths beheaded, and the women and children taken as slaves. They didn't realize until it was too late that they had invited a snake into their house.



Correct as far as I know.



You would be surprised. In my 7 years in Egypt I witnessed how the verses of the Qur'an defined what they thought and how they lived. Instead of family photos, most had verses from the Qur'an on their cubicle walls. Verse 9:29 was "god's" final word on fighting, and it became the rallying cry for the first conquests. An excellent, non-judgmental, book by Hugh Kennedy, The Great Arab Conquests, details the formation of the Islamic Empire's first hundred years.



And thank the Habsburgs and Charles Martel for that.

Somewhere along the line, Mohammed had to have made converts coming from the pre-existing religions in Medina. He could not have expelled the entire city and filled it with his followers who were few at those times. So I'm not seeing the logic there.

If I recall Balyuzi correctly, Mohammed was rather cruel to one Jewish clan---after they had betrayed him in the defense of Medina. So your take on the Banu Quraiza probably correct, but there was reason.

Again, where is the evidence that the Muslims are somehow going to take over? They are a weakened society in so many ways. They cannot defeat their worst enemy (Israel) even though they outnumber them 100 to 1. Other than a few terrorists who are able to get a lot of media attention, there is very little social or military force to dominate the world. They can put a few cherry-picked quotes on their walls, but the results of their actions speak for themselves.

I found Balyuzi fairly non-judgemental. But he regards Shia Islam the rightful successor over the Sunnis. I tried reading a few books on early Islam. Some authors believed they were neutral but it became clear they had a Christian agenda. And I read a Sunni version, but that too was very biased. I have Kennedy on my kindle reader, and will get to it in short time.

But the bottom line is that with Mohammed's teachings and principles, the Arabs became united and focused, thus easily conquering their weakened neighbors. Had their neighbors been strong socially and economically, thus militarily, the Arab invasion would not have gone very far. Holy quotes by themselves do not make effective conquerors.

In a like manner, Islam went on a decline and its territory became part of "Christian" colonies. They can spout off all the holy quotes they want, but their effective actions are almost non-existent.
 
Somewhere along the line, Mohammed had to have made converts coming from the pre-existing religions in Medina. He could not have expelled the entire city and filled it with his followers who were few at those times. So I'm not seeing the logic there.

Regardless of where his followers came from, the fact remains that he used expulsion and genocide to turn a largely Jewish city into an exclusively Muslim city.

If I recall Balyuzi correctly, Mohammed was rather cruel to one Jewish clan---after they had betrayed him in the defense of Medina. So your take on the Banu Quraiza probably correct, but there was reason.

There was only Mohamed's reason. The vast majority of the Jews of Yathrib did not heed his pleas to convert. They remained Jewish, and that was the "betrayal". Mohamed seemed to have some serious rejection issues. He claims to have barely escaped Mecca with his life, but that's his side of it. Given that the Meccans had 12 years to kill him but didn't, and that they didn't pursue him when he left, it's just as likely that he made the story up to save face.

When the Meccans attacked the Muslims in The Battle of the Trench, the Jews stayed out of it. There was no betrayal, there was only inaction. They had no reason to help Mohamed, and that was all he needed to turn against them and wipe them out. He turned into a ruthless warlord after moving to Yathrib.

The rest of your post deserves a separate response.
 
Again, where is the evidence that the Muslims are somehow going to take over?

I think we can agree that there has been a rebirth of Islamic fervor over the last few decades. My opinion is that the creation of Israel started that ball rolling again.

When you look at the number of Muslims in Europe compared to 50 years ago and add in their birth and immigration rates, it doesn't take a demographer to figure out that they will eventually become a majority. I won't see it in my life time, but it only takes a couple of generations to happen. When it does, Europe will come under Sharia.

They are a weakened society in so many ways. They cannot defeat their worst enemy (Israel) even though they outnumber them 100 to 1. Other than a few terrorists who are able to get a lot of media attention, there is very little social or military force to dominate the world.

They're gaining societal strength by the day. Britain bowed out of offering asylum to Asia Bibi and her family because they're worried about a back-lash from their Muslim community. Such un-British cowardice and acquiescence was heretofore unthinkable. Churchill must have lurched in his grave.

They can put a few cherry-picked quotes on their walls, but the results of their actions speak for themselves.

I'm not sure what you mean by that.

I found Balyuzi fairly non-judgemental. But he regards Shia Islam the rightful successor over the Sunnis. I tried reading a few books on early Islam. Some authors believed they were neutral but it became clear they had a Christian agenda. And I read a Sunni version, but that too was very biased. I have Kennedy on my kindle reader, and will get to it in short time.

But the bottom line is that with Mohammed's teachings and principles, the Arabs became united and focused, thus easily conquering their weakened neighbors. Had their neighbors been strong socially and economically, thus militarily, the Arab invasion would not have gone very far. Holy quotes by themselves do not make effective conquerors.

In a like manner, Islam went on a decline and its territory became part of "Christian" colonies. They can spout off all the holy quotes they want, but their effective actions are almost non-existent.

I disagree. They have much of the world cowed. Remember how Western newspapers didn't publish the Mohamed cartoon "out of respect for Islam?" That was pure BS. They didn't want to end up like Charlie Hebdo. Richard Reed killed exactly zero people, but because of him we all have to remove our shoes at airports. Every such example is just another incremental gain for those who would rule the world in the name of Allah.
 
Good job. Theses apologists are ready 24\7 to defame you and anything you will say if it don't fit their narrow views. The concept of freedom of speech for them is their own freedom to criticize others not their own

We dont't need any Muslim apologists here trying to insult Christianity ...
 
Good job. Theses apologists are ready 24\7 to defame you and anything you will say if it don't fit their narrow views. The concept of freedom of speech for them is their own freedom to criticize others not their own

The difference is this, Islam doesn't allow "freedom of speech", try standing up in a Islamic country and blaspheme Mohammad, see how far that gets you. Then try and claim your freedom of speech.
 
I think we can agree that there has been a rebirth of Islamic fervor over the last few decades. My opinion is that the creation of Israel started that ball rolling again.

When you look at the number of Muslims in Europe compared to 50 years ago and add in their birth and immigration rates, it doesn't take a demographer to figure out that they will eventually become a majority. I won't see it in my life time, but it only takes a couple of generations to happen. When it does, Europe will come under Sharia.



They're gaining societal strength by the day. Britain bowed out of offering asylum to Asia Bibi and her family because they're worried about a back-lash from their Muslim community. Such un-British cowardice and acquiescence was heretofore unthinkable. Churchill must have lurched in his grave.



I'm not sure what you mean by that.



I disagree. They have much of the world cowed. Remember how Western newspapers didn't publish the Mohamed cartoon "out of respect for Islam?" That was pure BS. They didn't want to end up like Charlie Hebdo. Richard Reed killed exactly zero people, but because of him we all have to remove our shoes at airports. Every such example is just another incremental gain for those who would rule the world in the name of Allah.


Thanks for your time on this post. This topic is complicated. But I'm not convinced that the Muslim expansion can be attributed to mostly force and fear. Demographics are always changing. Many Catholics are still lamenting the loss of their hegemony throughout Europe.

And I see an Islamic Renaissance happening. There will be a gentler version of Islam a century from now. But if one does not want to go to TED Talks to hear some out-of-the-box Muslims, one will not see the future.

Hopefully, I'll be able to get to your suggested book soon.
 
I do not see any benefits of Islam as the OP. In fact throughout history the religion has a lot of baggage that brings with it total destruction.

Their own demise is found in their Quran. examples below.

There will appear in this nation….. a group of people so pious apparently that you will consider your prayers inferior to their prayers, but they will recite the Quran, the teachings of which will not go beyond their throats and will go out of their religion as an arrow darts through the game, whereupon the archer may look at his arrow, its Nasl at its Risaf and its Fuqa to see whether it is blood-stained or not (i.e. they will have not even a trace of Islam in them). [Volume 9, Book 84, Number 65:]

Mohammed foretold that the end of Islam would be strange just like its beginning and that it would shrink back to the limited area where it came from - - between the two mosques of Mecca and Medina.
Could that prediction by Mohammed himself be a signal of the inevitable demise of Islam?
Mohammed’s predictions of Islam crawling back like a snake to where it came from were repeated extensively in several other hadiths:
“Belief returns and goes back to Medina like a snake.” (Sahih Bukhari, 3.30.100.)
“Muslims will be the scum and the rubbish even though their numbers may increase; the enemy will not fear Muslims anymore. This will be because the Muslims will love the world and dislike death...
(Sunaan Abu Dawud, 37.4284.)
“Muhammad’s contemporaries were the best Muslims; after three generations, the Muslims will be mainly treacherous and untrustworthy.” (Sahih Bukhari, 5.57.2, 3.)
“There will be much killing during the last days of the Muslim."
(Sahih Bukhari, 9.88.183.)
"Verily, Belief returns and goes back to Medina as a snake returns and goes back to its hole (when in danger)."
(Volume 3, Book 30, Number 100: Narrated Abu Huraira.)
Mohammed also predicted a large movement of apostasy out of Islam:
“Muslims will diminish in number and they will go back to where they started [before Islam]” (Sunaan Abu Dawud, 2.19.3029.)

"There will be no trace of Islam in some believers..." (Sahih Bukhari, 9.84.65.)

Mohammed's fears of large apostasy movements and envy of other religions continue...…

There will appear in this nation….. a group of people so pious apparently that you will consider your prayers inferior to their prayers, but they will recite the Quran, the teachings of which will not go beyond their throats and will go out of their religion as an arrow darts through the game, whereupon the archer may look at his arrow, its Nasl at its Risaf and its Fuqa to see whether it is blood-stained or not (i.e. they will have not even a trace of Islam in them). [Volume 9, Book 84, Number 65:]

Since its inception, Islam has been at war with civilization. You can not be at war with civilization because if you are you can not portray the love of G-d for all mankind.
 
Go to Ted Talks and listen to a video by Simina Ali (for some reason, youtube is not giving me the exact URL, but she and other moderate Muslims are getting time on TED). There is a renaissance happening.

Ok, I listened to her and sorry to say I'm not impressed. Much of what she says is questionable. She conveniently didn't mention 2 verses that would have contradicted her narrative:

4:34 says men are the boss and women must obey them. If they don't obey, they are to be beaten.
2:223 says, "Your wives are as a tilth unto you, so approach your tilth when or how you will". This verse gives women exactly zero choice in whether to have sex, and is at the heart of Afghanistan's infamous marital rape law; an edict of overt misogyny symbolized by the burqa, which is nothing more than a head to foot chastity belt signifying ownership.

Muslim men are allowed to rape their slaves and captives of war, none of which she found relevant. She also forgot to mention that Mohamed said women are deficient in mind and in religion. A question period would have proved troublesome for her, so she didn't have one.

Yeah, I know. I'm a downer on Islam.
 
Ok, I listened to her and sorry to say I'm not impressed. Much of what she says is questionable. She conveniently didn't mention 2 verses that would have contradicted her narrative:

4:34 says men are the boss and women must obey them. If they don't obey, they are to be beaten.
2:223 says, "Your wives are as a tilth unto you, so approach your tilth when or how you will". This verse gives women exactly zero choice in whether to have sex, and is at the heart of Afghanistan's infamous marital rape law; an edict of overt misogyny symbolized by the burqa, which is nothing more than a head to foot chastity belt signifying ownership.

Muslim men are allowed to rape their slaves and captives of war, none of which she found relevant. She also forgot to mention that Mohamed said women are deficient in mind and in religion. A question period would have proved troublesome for her, so she didn't have one.

Yeah, I know. I'm a downer on Islam.



Thanks for taking a look at Ms. Ali's video. I have recommended this video to other "Islam downers", and I think you are the first person to actually go to this link.

Martin Luther and other Christian reformers faced persecution during the Renaissance. They were a minority facing a corrupt establishment. Many Biblical quotes were thrown at them to "prove" how wrong they were. Yet Christianity reformed, including the corrupt establishment.

I see history repeating itself; a minority of Muslims are taking a different approach to the Koran, just as Luther challenge the popular interpretation of Bible. I would say this minority is more reasonable and more conducive to building a better civilization. And it probably is more representative of Islams from 1000 AD than Islam, in general, is today. Remember that these Muslims face all sorts of threats after stepping off the TED podium. They live with assassination on their minds, along with estrangement from family and friends. Please respect their courage.

Just as there is a lot of difference in Christian theology (2000+ sects), Muslims are not united in their interpretation of the Koran. You can't pull out quotes, put your interpretation on it, then claim all Muslims believe in this way. And when we look at Islam in history and today, we see many Muslims not really abiding by your interpretation. For example, I live in a town of 14,000. There are about 2,000 Muslims, mostly immigrants. I do not fear my safety as your quotes suggest I should. And I've been here for 18 years.

I occasionally go to my wife's church and often I find myself criticizing (internally) the theology of the pastor. I could put him in an embarrassing corner if I want. Instead I look at the positive side of how people are using the Christian theology to become better people and find a positive community. These are more important than any theology.
 
Thanks for taking a look at Ms. Ali's video. I have recommended this video to other "Islam downers", and I think you are the first person to actually go to this link.

Martin Luther and other Christian reformers faced persecution during the Renaissance. They were a minority facing a corrupt establishment. Many Biblical quotes were thrown at them to "prove" how wrong they were. Yet Christianity reformed, including the corrupt establishment.

I see history repeating itself; a minority of Muslims are taking a different approach to the Koran, just as Luther challenge the popular interpretation of Bible. I would say this minority is more reasonable and more conducive to building a better civilization. And it probably is more representative of Islams from 1000 AD than Islam, in general, is today. Remember that these Muslims face all sorts of threats after stepping off the TED podium. They live with assassination on their minds, along with estrangement from family and friends. Please respect their courage.

Just as there is a lot of difference in Christian theology (2000+ sects), Muslims are not united in their interpretation of the Koran. You can't pull out quotes, put your interpretation on it, then claim all Muslims believe in this way. And when we look at Islam in history and today, we see many Muslims not really abiding by your interpretation. For example, I live in a town of 14,000. There are about 2,000 Muslims, mostly immigrants. I do not fear my safety as your quotes suggest I should. And I've been here for 18 years.

I occasionally go to my wife's church and often I find myself criticizing (internally) the theology of the pastor. I could put him in an embarrassing corner if I want. Instead I look at the positive side of how people are using the Christian theology to become better people and find a positive community. These are more important than any theology.

First, you have to understand that I'm not interpreting the Qur'an. I'm merely reading it. It's not my claim, or interpretation, that verse 9:29 says to fight infidels until they either accept Islam or agree to pay the Jizyah, rather it's simply what 9:29 says in plain Arabic. There simply is no interpretation on my part. It is also a fact that 9:29 was used as the template for the conquests of ensuing centuries. Again, just a fact, not an interpretation.

The fact that the Sudanese meat-packers in Brooks have not gone all jihad is irrelevant. How could they possibly achieve anything by doing so? One thing you and I can't possibly know is how many of them want Sharia in Canada and would support its implementation. Maybe all of them, maybe none of them. None of that changes the fact that verses such as 9:29 exist, and that those who wish us ill follow those verses. They are the reason the first Muslims created their empire, and they are the reason we have Islamic terrorism today.
 
I do not see any benefits of Islam as the OP. In fact throughout history the religion has a lot of baggage that brings with it total destruction.

Their own demise is found in their Quran. examples below.

There will appear in this nation….. a group of people so pious apparently that you will consider your prayers inferior to their prayers, but they will recite the Quran, the teachings of which will not go beyond their throats and will go out of their religion as an arrow darts through the game, whereupon the archer may look at his arrow, its Nasl at its Risaf and its Fuqa to see whether it is blood-stained or not (i.e. they will have not even a trace of Islam in them). [Volume 9, Book 84, Number 65:]

Mohammed foretold that the end of Islam would be strange just like its beginning and that it would shrink back to the limited area where it came from - - between the two mosques of Mecca and Medina.
Could that prediction by Mohammed himself be a signal of the inevitable demise of Islam?
Mohammed’s predictions of Islam crawling back like a snake to where it came from were repeated extensively in several other hadiths:
“Belief returns and goes back to Medina like a snake.” (Sahih Bukhari, 3.30.100.)
“Muslims will be the scum and the rubbish even though their numbers may increase; the enemy will not fear Muslims anymore. This will be because the Muslims will love the world and dislike death...
(Sunaan Abu Dawud, 37.4284.)
“Muhammad’s contemporaries were the best Muslims; after three generations, the Muslims will be mainly treacherous and untrustworthy.” (Sahih Bukhari, 5.57.2, 3.)
“There will be much killing during the last days of the Muslim."
(Sahih Bukhari, 9.88.183.)
"Verily, Belief returns and goes back to Medina as a snake returns and goes back to its hole (when in danger)."
(Volume 3, Book 30, Number 100: Narrated Abu Huraira.)
Mohammed also predicted a large movement of apostasy out of Islam:
“Muslims will diminish in number and they will go back to where they started [before Islam]” (Sunaan Abu Dawud, 2.19.3029.)

"There will be no trace of Islam in some believers..." (Sahih Bukhari, 9.84.65.)

Mohammed's fears of large apostasy movements and envy of other religions continue...…

There will appear in this nation….. a group of people so pious apparently that you will consider your prayers inferior to their prayers, but they will recite the Quran, the teachings of which will not go beyond their throats and will go out of their religion as an arrow darts through the game, whereupon the archer may look at his arrow, its Nasl at its Risaf and its Fuqa to see whether it is blood-stained or not (i.e. they will have not even a trace of Islam in them). [Volume 9, Book 84, Number 65:]

Since its inception, Islam has been at war with civilization. You can not be at war with civilization because if you are you can not portray the love of G-d for all mankind.

These discussion invariably focus on the Koran. I suggest that equal attention be given to the hadiths (the hadith for the Sunni and the Shia differ) the so-called 'sayings of the prophet'. These reinforce the malevolent intentions of both varieties of Islam.
 
here have been a few comments about the negative attributes of Islam. While this is some truth to these comments (and the links they provide), these comments are more crafted to cast Islam in the worst possible light, which then indirectly elevates Christianity to the level of absolute superiority. I'll just bring up some points that show what Islam had brought to the world at that time.

Monotheism.

Islam is the only monotheistic religion, and it was the first monotheistic religion.

Neither Jews nor christians are monotheists.

Jews and christians are monaltrists. Monaltry is the worship of one god to the exclusion of all other gods.

And, according to the Old and New Testaments, there really are other gods.

The Old Testament clearly states in no uncertain terms that other gods exist, and some of those gods are specifically identified by name.

In monotheism there is only one god and no other gods ever existed.
 
The Old Testament clearly states in no uncertain terms that other gods exist, and some of those gods are specifically identified by name.

I've never heard this claim before. Can you give examples?
 
Monotheism.

Islam is the only monotheistic religion, and it was the first monotheistic religion.

Neither Jews nor christians are monotheists.

Jews and christians are monaltrists. Monaltry is the worship of one god to the exclusion of all other gods.

And, according to the Old and New Testaments, there really are other gods.

The Old Testament clearly states in no uncertain terms that other gods exist, and some of those gods are specifically identified by name.

In monotheism there is only one god and no other gods ever existed.

In fact, this verse says otherwise:

Isaiah 44:6 English Standard Version (ESV)

Thus says the Lord, the King of Israel
and his Redeemer, the Lord of hosts:
“I am the first and I am the last;
besides me there is no god."
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Back
Top Bottom