Sultan Shahin, editor, New Age Islam
“When I came across this article, actually it is a verbatim of speech given by an Indian Muslim to UNHRC (United Nations Human Rights Council), I recognized the name 'Sultan Shahin' immediately and also his website 'New Age Islam' which claims to be speaking against radical Islam. Previously, I never read his works as I never believed that Islam can be reformed.
“When I read it, I found that, in most places, he says all the right things like hardship of religious minorities in Islamic nations, cruelty of blasphemy law and moderate Muslims having no influence among Muslims, desires of Muslims to implement Shariah law.
“It is quite easy to get carried away by this kind of presentation - seemingly honest - of acceptance of prevailing Islamic extremism and extend trust to believe in whatever he says regarding the nature of Islamic teachings. Because, he completely misrepresents many things, as one will understand while reading, like Islamic stand on other religions, position of Islam on interreligious marriages and teachings of Prophet Mohammad. I never read his work on Jihad, its meaning and implications, but I can imagine how that could be.
“So, is he an Islamic scholar standing for reforms in Islam or a deceiver or a Muslim who believes Islam to be a different one from mainstream line?
“He tells that Islam of terrorists, extremists and Islamic ulema - who spend their life in studying Islamic scriptures - is an aberration of true Islam and is a product of some 'Petro Dollars'; in the process he innovates by telling blatant lies and half-truths. So, the natural question should be 'why'?”
Above quotation is the introductory part of a 6, 000 word essay posted by a blog called Knowing Islam. This blog was created by someone who sought to understand Islam in the wake of dastardly attacks on Mumbai (26/11) by so-called Muslim or Islamic terrorists sent by Pakistan. His studies have led him to believe, like many Muslims themselves, that the Saudi Petrodollar Wahhabi Islam is the real Islam and the mainstream Islam is fake. He also has come to believe, understandably because of the immense visibility of Petrodollar Islam everywhere on the internet, that most Muslims in the world are Petrodollar Islamists. He (possibly she) has written a 6,000 word essay denouncing “Sultan Shahin, editor, New Age Islam,” as in his view “Sultan Shahin” represents moderate Islam. In his view Islam cannot be moderate. Hence the denunciation. He has spent so much time and effort dissecting every point “Sultan Shahin” makes in one of his oral statements to the UN Human Rights Council, that it would appear in his view he must be doing a great service to humanity by exposing the “claims made by Sultan Shahin on behalf of moderate Islam.”
It would be easy for us to denounce such a person as an inveterate enemy of Islam and leave it at that. This is what most of our columnists in Urdu Press would do. But there are several disturbing facts that emerge. One, this person was at least neutral, if not friendly towards Islam until 26/11/2008 Mumbai killings, that is only three years ago. Two, he has reached the conclusions he has because we have left Petrodollar Islamists to dominate the internet discourse on Islam. Three, he has not become an enemy of Islam, only an enemy of moderate Islam. He doesn’t spend time denouncing extremist Islam. Why, apparently because he thinks extremist Islam will demolish Islam by itself. He doesn’t need to expend any energy denouncing extremist Islam. Only stumbling block in the destruction of Islam in his view is moderate Islam, as represented in New Age Islam. That’s why he has to spend so much time and energy fighting New Age Islam. Time we looked within. Why are we creating more enemies of Islam? Why are we allowing extremist Petrodollar Islam to dominate our discourse? Our Prophet (pbuh) had followed the policy of turning determined foes into dedicated friends and followers of Islam. Why are we doing the reverse?
Please read the following essay carefully. You will find this person has not invented arguments, mostly. He is merely using information that has come to him from Islamic, early Arab sources, so-called history books and Hadith books written by Arabs, clearly as part of their effort at Prophet’s character assassination. Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) was presented in these books of hadith and history as a sexual pervert and cruel tyrant, so as to justify the tyranny and sexual deviations of the dynasty that had taken over the Islamic state after killing all the family members of the Prophet merely 48 years after his demise. What kind of Muslims theses Arabs would be who accepted the killers of the Prophet’s family and even their children and grand children as their rulers and allowed them to engage in various perversions.
One of the comments on this blog reads, in part: “One simple reading of biography of Prophet Mohammad, written by pious Muslims like Ibn Ishaq, Tabari, Ibn Sa'ad, will tell that moderate or liberal Islam is simply an oxymoron.”
This is a general refrain on the internet. Not only that the Arabs do not denounce the writing of Ibn Ishaq, Tabari and Ibn Sa'ad, etc., indeed they use them as justification for their own perversions. Even today Saudi courts, of course, “puritan Islamic” courts, give judgements, Islamic judgements, of course, - everything they do is pristine Islamic - allowing, even ordering sexual perversions, like paedophilia, and justify it by presenting the Prophet himself as a paedophile. They cannot find justification for their deviations in the Holy Quran, so they justify it by what they call the conduct of the Prophet and his sayings. Wahhabi Islam is the main ideological support base of Saudi dictatorship and calls itself Islam.
Muslim Press never stops gloating over how many non-Muslims are converting
to Islam. But we don’t realise how many Muslims are leaving the fold of Islam openly to join the ex-Muslim brigade. We are not even aware that many Muslims themselves, until recently moderate, liberal, mainstream, have now come to feel, like this non-Muslim blogger, that Islam is an extremist religion inimical to humanity, a curse for mankind. Hence, they have no option but to leave. Some stay within the fold, ostensibly, due to family and other pressures, while denouncing Islam in their heart or in the company of close friends. – Sultan Shahin, editor, New Age Islam
'Moderate' Sultan Shahin on Islamophobia
Posted on Knowing Islam APRIL 30, 2011
When I came across this article, actually it is a verbatim of speech given by an Indian Muslim to UNHRC (United Nations Human Rights Council), I recognized the name 'Sultan Shahin' immediately and also his website 'New Age Islam' which claims to be speaking against radical Islam. Previously, I never read his works as I never believed that Islam can be reformed.
When I read it, I found that, in most places, he says all the right things like hardship of religious minorities in Islamic nations, cruelty of blasphemy law and moderate Muslims having no influence among Muslims, desires of Muslims to implement Shariah law.
It is quite easy to get carried away by this kind of presentation - seemingly honest - of acceptance of prevailing Islamic extremism and extend trust to believe in whatever he says regarding the nature of Islamic teachings. Because, he completely misrepresents many things, as one will understand while reading, like Islamic stand on other religions, position of Islam on interreligious marriages and teachings of Prophet Mohammad. I never read his work on Jihad, its meaning and implications, but I can imagine how that could be.
So, is he an Islamic scholar standing for reforms in Islam or a deceiver or a Muslim who believes Islam to be a different one from mainstream line?
He tells that Islam of terrorists, extremists and Islamic ulema - who spend their life in studying Islamic scriptures - is an aberration of true Islam and is a product of some 'Petro Dollars'; in the process he innovates by telling blatant lies and half-truths. So, the natural question should be 'why'? Two possibilities exist:
1. He really believes what he says. But, like I said his version cannot stand the scrutiny because of false assumptions and deviations from Islamic sacred texts. He himself admits to prevalence of Islamic supremacist beliefs among present day Muslims and failure of his version of 'moderate Islam'.
2. He is just making up things to deceive non Muslims with the result that they continue to remain ignorant of Islamic goal and practices of Muslims in achieving it. This should tell us how dangerous it is for non Muslims to remain ignorant of true Islamic doctrines.
Either way, Islam advances. Finally, I am quite astonished at how he - portraying himself as some liberal as opposed to orthodox Islam - characterizes criticism and discussion of Islam as Islamophobia, probably intending to crush criticism of Islam and free speech. Rather than judging things in harsh manner hastily, it is better to go through his speech and analyze it, which I attempted here and readers can decide what he stands for.
Note: Excerpts from original piece that appeared on his website (can be read from here) are presented in italics, block quotations and in black; followed by my comments.
"Even though The Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action called for elimination of all kinds of human rights violations almost two decades ago, we find that in some areas the situation is only worsening. Article 15 asks us to work against xenophobia and article 19 calls upon governments to protect all human rights of minorities. But xenophobia, particularly in the form of Islamophobia, is growing in several European countries and partly feeds upon the flagrant violation of the human rights of religious minorities in several Muslim-majority countries."
a) He agrees to violation of human rights of religious minorities in Islamic nations but the words 'violation of human rights' are far lesser words to describe humiliation suffered by Non Muslims; closer to real situation, they are being uprooted or facing extermination. Take the example of Pakistan - Hindus have come down to 1.6%, according to year 1998 report - (Many Muslims boast about this) and Bangladesh - Hindus have come down to 7-9% from 23% in the year 1971. Or the examples of Assyrian Christians fleeing Iraq (here, here, here, here ) and Coptic Christians fleeing Egypt (here).
All these should point to:
1. Islam cannot co-exist with others on equal terms as Islam makes an obligation on Muslims for imposing and maintaining Islamic superiority on non-Muslims in all aspects of life whether political or be social.
2. Dichotomy of moderate Muslims and extremist Muslims is pretty useless as so called moderates, if they really exist, do not make any difference to the final outcome i.e. complete Islamization and making of non Muslims as second class citizens. Also, the formulation of definition of 'moderate Muslim' without any basis is deliberate for confusing infidels. Sultan Shahin uses these words 'moderate Muslims' and 'moderate Islam' so many times without ever defining them.
3. The argument that only small percentage of Muslims are extremists and their version of Islam is an aberration or perversion of real Islam is a product of political correctness and wilful ignorance of major tenets of Islam. A cursory look at Islamic doctrines explained by many Islamic scholars - both classical and modern - tell that Islam of extremists is close to not just what is in their sacred texts but also how Koran was interpreted for 1400 years and life of Islam's founder, Prophet Mohammad.
b) Like all sly Islamists - he characterizes present day discussion of Islamic Jihad and increasing awareness about Islamic law (Shariah law) as Islamophobia - whose goal is to shut down the discussion and criticism of Islam so that, non Muslims remain ignorant about real goal of Islam thus, Muslims continue their efforts towards 'the whole world being ruled under Shariah'.
Phobia means irrational fear thus, Islamophobia means irrational fear of Islam. Is non Muslim being concerned about Islamic jihad and Shariah law irrational?
Just like people fearing mad dogs, is non Muslims fearing and resenting Jihad - whose purpose is to impose Shariah law, thorough any means, on the world and non Muslims where in they are treated much worse than nominal meaning of second class citizens- irrational? Islamic doctrines like jihad and dhimmitude (non Muslims under Islamic rule) produce natural reaction of dislike, disgust and opposition from infidels (non Muslims); and to term this opposition as irrational (Islamophobia) is insanity and speaks of such people as ignorant or having malicious agenda.
Of course, aim of Muslims and Islamists is to remove this opposition to Islamic rule - terrorists choose to do it by violence and so called 'moderate' Muslims choose to do it peacefully through deceit; the very fact that Muslims like Sultan Shahin, appearing as moderate and reformer (?), are resenting and hating infidels opposition to Islamic rule should give an idea of degree of Islamic intolerance towards non Muslims, so intrinsic to Islamic faith.
Sultan Shahin's remarks on causes of 'Islamophobia in Europe' are incomplete and give an appearance of dishonesty to such an extent that he overlooks basic and every day facts like terrorists blowing up stuff, shooting and killing people are quoting verses from 'Holy' Koran in their defence of their abominable acts (e.g. Al-Qaeda or people behind recent bomb blast in Varanasi), presence of numerous Islamic organizations in West with stated objective of imposing Shariah law on Europe and rest and finally, scenes of Muslims taking over streets for their Friday prayers. Or who can forget those violent protests shouting death to infidels, threatening to take infidel women as sex slaves and praising Osama Bib Laden besides usual chants of Allah Akbar. Overlooking such things, intentions of Sultan Shahin's Islamic ambitions become transparent......!
"Petrodollar Islam has injected the poison of Islam-supremacism in Muslim societies worldwide. Even exemplary moderate countries like Indonesia, Malaysia are now infected with this virus.............." [For next few paragraphs, he dwells mostly on prevailing situation in Pakistan and prevalence of ‘extremist (!)' Islam among even educated middle class, blasphemy law and suffering of religious minorities. He even complains that Govt. being impotent in dealing with extremists.]
c) By using logic of 'petro dollars', he is trying to deny the centrality of Islam - as Islamic doctrines say - behind the scourge of Islamic exclusiveness and extremism. He completely misses the point or intentionally is trying to misguide people. He identifies radical Islam (!) becoming scourge of Pakistan but his diagnosis is completely wrong and ludicrous.
Since the time of its advent in Arabian deserts, Islam has been expansionist with its ultimate goal being whole world under Sharia rule as Allah prophesies Islam prevailing over other religions if his slaves carry on Jihad (verses 9:33, 61:09, 48:28).
Through out the history, except at the time of its weakness in military terms compared to Western civilization, Islam has always been waging relentless wars against non Muslims. It is not their realization of Jihad meaning spiritual struggle and not war against infidels or acceptance that aggression against non Muslims for the sake of religion is is unethical which has stopped Islamic expansion and hindered its ambitions but spectacular advancement of Western civilization in all aspects; strictly speaking, meaning of Jihad as spiritual struggle came in to prominence in 19th century.
It is Islamic beliefs, as they exist in immutable word of Allah (Koran), like the following that are responsible for present day Islamic extremism (!).
1. Allah is the only god with Islam being the only and perfect religion before Allah (verse 3:85);
2. Islam is the only truth and all other religions are false - in Islamic terminology, prevalence of other religions is simply fitna i.e. persecution, oppression, injustice or rebellion against Allah;
3. Muslims are the best people (verse 3:110) and others constitute sub-humanity (verse 98:06);
4. Islam and Muslims are chosen by Allah to rule and govern the earth (verses 2:143 and 3:110) according to his law - this should not be difficult to understand as, in most societies ruling class is considered better than rest - so, with Muslims as best people and superior, as verse 3:110 says, and non Muslims given bestial status so, only Muslims are eligible to rule.
Jihad means to strive to make Shariah law supreme in the entire world; just like terrorism (or violence) is an instrument of Jihad, Petro Dollars are also an instrument - money as weapon - besides Da'wa, immigration and over breeding. Petro Dollars are not the cause of Islamic supremacism or extremism. Petro Dollars are enabling Islamic supremacists to endeavor bringing the whole world under Shariah. It is true that Petro Dollars are responsible for many fold rise in Islamic extremism yet, they play only a secondary role with primary reason being Islamic beliefs and not all madrassas are sponsored by 'Petro Dollars'.
It is a common practice among 'fake' intellectuals to give any reason for rise in Islamic extremism other than the real reason: Islamic doctrines and what Koran teaches. These fake intellectuals try to convince public that Islamic extremism is a product of culture of madrasas being financed by Saudi Arabia and there is nothing to fear about Islam per se. But what do madrasas teach? The answer is Koran, Hadith and Shariah law. What most do not know is that many madrasas are self financed as above report says. Muslims having supremacist beliefs come from all kinds of back ground - not just madrasas - as comments written by Muslims in English suggest their non madrasa background; Sultan Shahin himself points to educated Muslims in Pakistan having supremacist beliefs.
Moreover, how does 'Petro Dollars' explain that many Muslims support death penalty to apostates (Muslims leaving Islam to other faiths) as many opinion polls have suggested? It cannot. What explains this prevailing opinion among Muslims is killing apostates is part of Shariah law because Prophet Mohammad taught it and practiced it.
d) If one wants to know what moderate Islam is or who is a moderate Muslim, they can get a hint from words of Sultan Shahin: "Even exemplary moderate countries like Indonesia, Malaysia are now infected with this virus." So, Malaysia, if not now, at one time was an example of moderate Islam! A close look points to the fact, there is enough in this blog, that Malaysia was an Islamic nation, since its independence from British, where in discrimination against non Muslims - special privileges to Muslims over others- is legalized in constitution. Just because Islamic radical organizations were not vociferous and powerful at given times, it does not mean that Malaysia was not a typical Islamic society.
"Barring a few pockets moderates are losing the war within Islam everywhere. The massive injection of petrodollar-funding to radicals throughout the world since 1974 has virtually changed the nature of the religion. Islam-supremacism is now the rule not only in the Muslim majority countries but also in countries where Muslims live as a minority. Millions of Muslims now look down upon people of other faiths and consider them permanently hell-bound."
e) Sultan Shahin continues his half-acceptance of the reality by telling prevailing trend and beliefs among present day Muslims and giving wrong reasons for them. His own words imply how difficult it is to bring reforms (or changes) in Islamic beliefs and culture esp. in the aspect of Islamic political views towards non Muslims. His entire premises for prevailing Islamic supremacist beliefs among Muslims is 'Petro Dollars' but not Islamic doctrines.
He says moderate Muslims are being defeated everywhere! Without asking who is a moderate Muslim, one would like to know the reason for this 'impotency' of moderate Muslims. The answer, somewhat closer to truth, is himself and many Muslims like him. The 'real' truth is there is nothing really like MODERATE ISLAM or EXTREMIST ISLAM.
It is astonishing to see him complaining about Muslims believing that non Muslims are hell bound because this is what Koran says in no less than 200 verses; Koran - considered by Muslims as literal word of Allah - says all non Muslims will be tortured by Allah by burning them in hell for eternity; in some verses, it even gives graphical details of that torture too and such teachings are just a testimony to exclusivist nature of Islam towards non Muslims.
But the problem is not what Muslims say about hell fire and infidels; non Muslims can tolerate Muslim's choice of religion for believing in such things like, what happens after death (Day of Judgment). The problem is with Muslim's intolerance of other's right to choice of their own faith in this 'real' world and Koran's call for Muslims to wage war, subjugate infidels and impose Shariah law as the following verse says:
Verse (9:29): Fight those - including people of book - who do not believe in Islam until they pay Jizya and live in abasement. It is presence of verses like this in Koran that makes co-existence - based on equality - impossible between Muslims and non Muslims, not some petro dollars.
"According to the Holy Quran and Islamic traditions, we Muslims must believe in all the 124, 000 prophets who have spread the divine message to humanity in different parts of the world and must treat them all as equal to prophet Mohammad in status. We have to treat the followers of all these prophets as People of the Book [Ahl-e-Kitab] with whom close social including marital relations are allowed in Islam."
f) It is here that his real identity comes off. Above words are half truth deliberately said with the purpose of obfuscating nature of Islam and one will understand it shortly. Presenting such half-truths serves double purpose: wins new adherents (or converts) and bolsters Islam's claim of being a peaceful religion and tolerant one esp. in the eyes pseudo and leftist intellectuals and media who never care to investigate these half-truths.
It is true that Islam calls Christians and Jews (Parsis and Magians are also treated as people of book) as people of book but, does this mean that mere coining of few words translates in to Islamic tolerance towards Christians and Jews? How about all those verses forbidding friendship between Muslims and people of book (Jews and Christians)?
Koran tells Muslims to venerate Biblical figures like Abraham, Moses and Jesus and claiming Abraham and Jesus were Muslims (Verses:5:111-112, 3:67) - even before Mohammad - and also were messengers of Allah. Koran tells Jesus was not crucified on cross (verses 4:156-157) while, crucifixion of Jesus is central to faith of Christianity. Koran also treats Jesus not as son of God but just as a ordinary messenger (verse 5:75), completely contradicting another central tenet of Christianity. Finally, Islam denigrates the Christian concept of trinity (verses: 5:72-73).
One can come up with many other contradictions between Biblical stories and their versions in Koran but more astounding is that Koran depicts Torah of Judaism and Gospels in Bible as earlier revelations by Allah before Allah reveled Koran to Mohammad (verse 5:46, 5:113-114). So, naturally, the question arises on discrepancies between Bible and Koran which should not exist in the first place as they were from the one true God (Islamic claim); discrepancies have to be explained and one of Bible and Koran should be wrong as logic dictates. When we consider the chronological order, Bible came first and Koran came after another 300 years.
Koran also makes another claim i.e. coming of Prophet Mohammad was fore told in Torah and Bible. Jews and Christians at the time of Mohammad have rejected this claim and refused to recognize him as Prophet; in the process, this rejection invited wrath of Prophet Mohammad and lead to expulsion and extermination of Jewish tribes of Medina physically
But, theologically, to explain away these contradictions - including non existence of prediction of coming of Prophet Mohammad - between Bible and Koran, present day Islamic scholars and Muslims charge that Bible and Torah were corrupted by Jews and Christians by adding and deleting certain words i.e. present day Torah and Bible are not the original ones but distorted. So when Muslims say they respect Bible and Torah, they refer to fictitious Bible and Torah, - in Islamic words, unadulterated Bible and Torah - not the ones in usage at any time in history. From where do Muslims get evidence to say such things regarding Bible and Torah? The answer from Muslims is 'Koran is the evidence'.
This is what an Islamic scholar says on this: "Allah Almighty sent down the Torah and the Gospel, and charged the Jews and Christians with guarding them. They (however) distorted and changed them. Then He sent down the Qur'an, and made it the eternal constitution for Muslims. Therefore Allah ensures its [Korans] preservation (alone), excluding the rest of his books.......The previous divine books have been distorted and changed. The Qur'an is overflowing with verses (which) reveal the reasons for the distortion and change, among which was wiping out the description of the Messenger (peace be upon him) which (the Christians and Jews) could find written in the Torah and the Gospel, as the verse mentioned......"
Robert Spencer's website observes on this kind of practice of saying half-truths, "Islamic teachings appropriate almost every major religious figure in Judaism and Christianity and recast them as prophets and messengers of Islam. Therefore, when a spokesperson tells you Muslims follow Abraham, Moses, and Jesus and believe in the Torah (Taurat) and Gospel (Injil), they mean the unspoiled, Islamically correct copies they believe existed before Jews and Christians allegedly falsified them to remove references to the coming of Muhammad, and to insert non-Islamic ideas like, for example, ......."
Finally, Allah curses Christians and Jews in the verses 9:30-31 and ratifies the kind of relations that should exist between Muslims and People of Book in the infamous verse of dhimmitude 9:29 (already stated above) where in message is not of tolerance, peace and co-existence but Islamic imperialism over non Muslims.
And ultimate humiliation to Christianity comes from following sayings of Prophet Mohammad regarding Jesus:
Allah's Apostle said, "By Him in Whose Hands my soul is, son of Mary (Jesus) will shortly descend amongst you people (Muslims) as a just ruler and will break the Cross and kill the pig and abolish the Jizya (a tax taken from the non-Muslims, who are in the protection, of the Muslim government). Then there will be abundance of money and no-body will accept charitable gifts. (Sahih Bukhari; vol. 3, book 34, # 425 , vol. 4, book 55, # 657)
The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: There is no prophet between me and him, that is, Jesus (peace_be_upon_him). He will descent (to the earth). When you see him, recognise him: a man of medium height, reddish fair, wearing two light yellow garments, looking as if drops were falling down from his head though it will not be wet. He will fight the people for the cause of Islam. He will break the cross, kill swine, and abolish jizyah. Allah will perish all religions except Islam. He will destroy the Antichrist and will live on the earth for forty years and then he will die. The Muslims will pray over him. (Sunan Abu Dawood; book 37, # 4310)
It has been narrated by 'Umar b. al-Khattib that he heard the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) say: I will expel the Jews and Christians from the Arabian Peninsula and will not leave any but Muslim. (Sahih Muslim; book 19, #4366)
Ever since those times, neither a church nor a synagogue was allowed or constructed in Saudi Arabia.
g) Sultan Shahin making no mention of the verse 9:29 along with his claim of Islam (or Koran) allowing inter religious marriages deserves to be treated with utmost contempt.
A close and short scrutiny reveals that Koran allows Muslim men marrying women from Christianity and Judaism (people of book) but, it does not allow Muslim women to marry non Muslim men (verses: 2.221 and 5.005). As the social custom dictates that women go to men's house, such an arrangement - in the long run - becomes death knell for other cultures and religions as they vanish. Shariah law imposes death penalty to non Muslim men marrying Muslim women. Calling this kind of set up (marital) as proof of Islamic tolerance and inclusiveness, he shows his true colors; this kind perpetuation of lies by him should give an indication of his deceit in his discourses on other Islamic subjects like Jihad.
"Instead Muslim children in religious seminaries [madrasas everywhere] as well as in government-run schools [in the case of Pakistan and some other Muslim countries] are now being taught to look down upon other religious communities. Many of us already have developed contempt for followers of other religions. The so-called religious scholars tell us that people of other religions may be ahl-e-kitab but they are nevertheless kafir (non-believers, infidels). They never explain how they hold and reconcile these two contradictory positions in one breath. Any community holding others in contempt is apparently not likely to be able to live peacefully in an increasingly globalised multi-cultural world."
h) By now, I am getting sick of his analysis. How possibly he can justify that because Koran calls Christians and Jews people of book is equivalent to Koran teaching tolerance to Muslims regarding Christians and Jews? No one asked him the evidence in support of his claims and even if they did he was sure to come up with his own and strange interpretation of some verses.
Those religious scholars are teaching Muslim children based on how Islam and Koran was understood for 1400 years and biography of Prophet Mohammad. It is Sultan Shahin who really has to explain what makes his version of Islam as authentic and how those scholars were wrong; but, first he really has to believe in his own version other than using it to fool the infidels and keep them in a state of vulnerability.
"Even if we Muslims constitute a simple majority in a country, we want to impose man-made Sharia laws calling them of divine origin which they are not. Now even in countries where Muslims are a minority they want to be governed by the Sharia laws. Apart from India, no other country allows this and no society is prepared to do so. This is leading to avoidable tensions and increasing Islamophobia in some societies."
i) Apart from calling Shariah man made, he does not say anything else like how cruel and discriminatory Shariah is esp. towards non Muslims and women. Does he accept that implementing Shariah in any society puts non Muslims and their culture in a disadvantageous position relative to Islam and Muslims? We all knew that it does and this is what makes some of non Muslims criticize Koran, Islam and Shariah for which they are labelled as Islamophoebes.
"When the term Islamofascism was used for the first time, many of us in the civil society considered it a vast exaggeration. But that no longer looks like the case. Islamofascism is even more dangerous because it is sustaining and encouraging a wave of Islamophobia, creating dangers for the religious minorities in several countries of Europe."
j) Look at his words: Islamofascism is dangerous because of Islamophobia it is generating and putting Muslims living in infidel majority nations at great risk. In other words, it should be overlooked if it does not generate Islamophobia; he indirectly might be suggesting to Islamists to be more discreet and stealthy in conducting Jihad.
Lives and dignity of non Muslims? Because, in his own words, Muslims want to implement Sharia even when they are in minority. So, for him the dignity, property and lives of non Muslims are un-important. Can he recognize and respect the right of non Muslims to defend themselves from naked aggression of Islamic supremacism? If he does, can he suggest any non violent method other than what concerned non-Muslims are doing now i.e. spreading the message of how Koran is understood by Muslims to other non-Muslims?
"This makes it imperative for the world community to urgently work out a strategy to fight this growing menace. It also makes it incumbent on the moderate elements in the Muslim community to take the ideological war within Islam more seriously. Let us remind ourselves of the last sermon Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) in which he said: “All of mankind is from Adam and Eve (Hawwa), an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; a white has no superiority over a black nor does a black have any superiority over a white, EXCEPT BY PIETY AND GOOD DEEDS. Do not therefore do injustice to yourselves. Remember one day you will meet Allah and answer for your deeds. So beware: do not stray from the path of righteousness after I am gone.”
As one can see, the Prophet did not say a Muslim has any superiority over a non-Muslim. For him superiority was entirely a matter of “Piety and good deeds”. That is all. Let us remember that and fight the growing power of the pernicious ideology of Islam-supremacism which renders us unfit to live as a worthy component of the present-day globalised multicultural world as a peaceful community that we mainstream Muslims have always been."
k) Finally, his call for moderate Muslims to be more assertive can be judged from how he misrepresents sayings of Prophet Mohammad for the consumption of infidels. The part of farewell sermon by Prophet Mohammad he quoted is very often used by Islamists to preach Islamic commitment to humanity and converting infidels to their faith that too, without ever quoting entire textual context.
So called sermon was given near Mecca at Mount Arafat - which is still out of bounds for all non Muslims - in his final year (10th year of Hijrah). With this, to see the context, one can just look at the following verses which were revelled in the 9th year of Hijrah:
9:005 (SHAKIR): So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.
9:28 (SHAKIR): O you who believe! the idolaters are nothing but unclean, so they shall not approach the Sacred Mosque after this year; ........
Later verse effectively removes any chance of non Muslims invited and attending to speech meaning, audience of Prophet Mohammad's sermon was strictly Muslim. So, he was addressing his own folks. Unless, he mentions non Muslims particularly, whatever he said applies only within the brotherhood of Muslims. To realize this, you just have to read only the next lines in that sermon (some other versions: here, here):
"Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood. Nothing shall be legitimate to a Muslim which belongs to a fellow Muslim unless it was given freely and willingly. Do not, therefore, do injustice to yourselves."
Prophet Mohammad's bandits, having already converted much of Arabian Peninsula in to Islam, are making inroads in to adjacent areas - parts of Persian Empire and Byzantine Empire - so, they were sure to encounter many non Arabs and appeasements of this kind are necessary to spread the faith. When he stated 'an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab', it means that an Arab Muslim has no superiority over non-Arab Muslim and vice versa except by 'piety' in religious affairs. Moreover Koran unambiguously tells Muslims that they are the best of people of the world in the verse 3:110.
Whenever Muslims or Islamic scriptures quote brotherhood or Prophet Mohammad referring to brotherhood, it refers to brotherhood with in Muslims and Islam. Prophet Muhammad starts by saying "all mankind is from a common father and mother", but soon follows it with "Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood." It could not be stated any clearer than that; Only Muslims are brothers to Muslims.
In the collection of traditions (sayings) of Prophet Mohammad, - Hadith of Sahih Bukhari, which is the second most important book in Islam - there are 209 hadiths that mention the word "brother". Of those 209 hadiths, 96 concern blood kinsman ship and the other 103, each and every one, are about spiritual brotherhood where a Muslim is a brother to other Muslims.
From Koran, we have a verse 49:10 saying Muslims constitute one brotherhood and another verse 48:29 saying Muslims are those who are harsh against non Muslims and compassionate towards other Muslims.
l) To give more on this Islamic idea of brotherhood, I am presenting more hadith from Sahih Bukhari below:
The Prophet said, "None of you will have faith till he wishes for his (Muslim) brother what he likes for himself." (Volume 1, Book 2, Number 13)
Allah's Apostle said, "A Muslim is a brother of another Muslim. So he should neither oppress him nor hand him over to an oppressor. And whoever fulfilled the needs of his brother, Allah will fulfill his needs." (Volume 9, Book 85, Number 83)
The Prophet said, "None of you should point out towards his Muslim brother with a weapon, for he does not know, Satan may tempt him to hit him and thus he would fall into a pit of fire (Hell)" (Volume 9, Book 88, Number 193)
The Prophet said, "A believer to another believer is like a building whose different parts enforce each other." The Prophet then clasped his hands with the fingers interlaced. (At that time) the Prophet was sitting and a man came and begged or asked for something. The Prophet faced us and said, "Help and recommend him and you will receive the reward for it, and Allah will bring about what He will through His Prophet's tongue." (Volume 8, Book 73, Number 55)
The Prophet, said, "Abusing a Muslim is Fusuq (evil doing) and killing him is Kufr (disbelief)." (Volume 9, Book 88, Number 197)
Allah's Apostle said, "A Muslim is a brother of another Muslim, so he should not oppress him, nor should he hand him over to an oppressor. Whoever fulfilled the needs of his brother, Allah will fulfill his needs; whoever brought his (Muslim) brother out of a discomfort, Allah will bring him out of the discomforts of the Day of Resurrection, and whoever screened a Muslim, Allah will screen him on the Day of Resurrection . "(Volume 3, Book 43, Number 622)
The Prophet said, "A believer to another believer is like a building whose different parts enforce each other." The Prophet then clasped his hands with the fingers interlaced (while saying that). (Volume 3, Book 43, Number 626)
Some people asked Allah's Apostle, "Whose Islam is the best? i.e. (Who is a very good Muslim)?" He replied, "One who avoids harming the Muslims with his tongue and hands." (Volume 1, Book 2, Number 11)
The following hadith is said - by some critics of Islam - to be based on farewell sermon but we will never find it in modern day sources of sermon. I have not even read it in Ibn Ishaq's Sirat Rasul Allah. Considering the fact that hadith is from Sahih Bukhari, most reliable hadith, I am mentioning. It may or may not be part of farewell speech but the fact that it is from Sahih Bukhari makes this hadith to be important part of beliefs of Muslims:
Allah's Apostle said: "I have been ordered (by Allah) to fight against the people until they testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that Muhammad is Allah's Apostle, and offer the prayers perfectly and give the obligatory charity, so if they perform a that, then they save their lives an property from me except for Islamic laws and then their reckoning (accounts) will be done by Allah." (Volume 1, Book 2, Number 25) or (Volume 1, Book 8, Number 387)
m) Wide gulf existing between what Muslims like Sultan Shahin say about their scriptures and actual scriptures is easily perceptible and also explains why 'moderate Islam' is a myth and remains a myth; such deliberate attempts like Sultan Shahin presenting half truths and lies are too many in public discourse (in media) with the aim of allaying fears and any concerns non Muslims might have and to reduce opposition to gradual imposition of Shariah.
With such teachings from Prophet Mohammad and Koran, it must come as no surprise that Muslims hold such supremacist (imperialist) beliefs and global ambitions. Now, it is much clear that Islam of those so called radicals and extremists is much closer to teachings from Islamic sacred texts. It is these teachings that provide the perfect answer to my earlier question: "Why Moderate Islam has lost the battle with in Islamic ummah?” Existence of Moderate Islam is a myth.
Who is a 'moderate' Muslim? Some people say that majority of Muslims are moderates based on the observation that majority of them do not participate in violence. But, this is erroneous as one cannot say anything about beliefs they hold. How should a Muslim be considered when he supports and strives for imposing Shariah law - which treats non Muslims as sub humans - in a peaceful manner?
Most Muslims are well aware of ultimate goal of Islam, as part of obedience to Allah, is world under Islamic rule. Most of them do support extreme positions like apostates (those leaving Islam to other religion) being put to death. Most of them may not be willing to become part of military forces and suicide bombing but they believe in achieving worldwide Islamic rule through peaceful means as they firmly believe imposition of Islamic rule is only to the benefit of mankind and only Islam can save mankind.
When one hears of 'moderate Islam', they better ask themselves why they cannot see it in almost all Islamic countries. Yet, continuing to believe in its existence is wishful and pernicious.
blah blah .......
What else you could say? Same old trites.
Please show me how liberal Islam or moderate Islam looks like?
One simple reading of biography of Prophet Mohammad, written by pious Muslims like Ibn Ishaq, Tabari, Ibn Sa'ad, will tell that moderate or liberal Islam is simply an oxymoron.
Dear Sir, No religion has claimed universality and seeks to impose its dominance over the entire world like Islam does.
Come with some sensible stuff!
You know, if you feel like that Islam can be reformed then you need to agree that there are inherent problems and structural fallacies in it; until one recognizes this basic fact, so called reforms will be never seen.
Since, you imply that moderate Islam does exist, why not read your own books and come to a honest conclusion.
It is not going to be easy, however. But, if you decide what is important to you, like if you put humanity above your identity of Muslim, it might help.
I have never written a single lie in this blog; it is people like Sultan Shahin who use lies and half truths so blatantly.
If his aim was truly moderation or reformation, he would never have lied, of course you would like to call that his interpretation - to be more precise, it is innovation -, but there were certain things that cannot be overlooked if we value humanity and civility.
Just ask this one question: what kind of man will kill a woman's relatives and torture her husband by putting fire on his chest and then rape her same night?
Of course you and many Muslims will call it a marriage and mercy! And that is the problem with Muslims. Reason and logic are never used.
To believe that some kind of good exists in such man's teachings is pretty naive and stupidity and I am not a stupid.
I have been following your blog for a few weeks now and find it well researched and argued. Your clear understanding of the goals and methods of Islam is refreshing given the prevailing tolerance (submission?) of/(to) this evil ideology.
Thank you, sir.
I wasn't really thinking about writing on this as I am busy in other matters.
What forced me to write is his half truths and lies on things like Islam respecting all prophets, Islam allowing inter- religious marriages and narrow ethics in Islam presented as universal ethics.
By any coincidence, these are deliberate; that is why I took pains for writing this lengthy piece.
This is just another of many anti-Muslim diatribes. Such hate literature has the common theme of propagating the lie of zionists, sanghis and apostates that there is no such thing as moderate, progressive or liberal Islam. Such hate pieces can be written about any religion, but it seems only the enemies of Islam have the time and the resources to put such stuff in circulation.