knew the Truth

He died in his favorite wife Aisha’s arms, unable to lift himself up and attend prayers in the mosque. he raised his hand, said, “with the most high companion,” and died. But the call to arms against the infidel remained…

There remain the extraordinary fate of a complex man, full of contradictions and weaknesses, and a religion today that is followed by about 1.4 billion persons. Almost fourteen centuries after Mohammed’s death, their lives continue to be shaped by the mental universe of the Prophet. Through the Koran every Moslem believes he is in contact with divine reality.

—IN 1985, THE Saudi Prince Sultan bin Salman was a member of the crew on the Space Shuttle Discovery, and thus became the first Saudi, the first Arab, and the first Muslim to travel into space. The trip took place during the holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset. The Prince, unsure how to fulfill this obligation while in orbit, decided to ask Saudi Arabia’s highest religious authority, Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Baz, for advice. But Sheikh bin Baz had previously issued a fatwa claiming that because the Earth was flat orbiting it was impossible. Contemporary Saudi Arabia butted against the country’s age-old ways. This is just one of the many contradictions that define modern Saudi Arabia, and which Karen Elliot House skillfully examines in her new book.—Read More: image:

The results of this belief continue to weigh in the social development of Moslem countries: the pull of tradition, the defenders of the faith, against the pull of change and the fears and uncertainties that it arouses. But beneath this eternal tug of war in practical matters, like the treatment of women and the observance of Ramadan, there is a deeper, more profound, Koran controlled consciousness, a readiness to submit to a hihher will, a resignation to human imperfection.

The Moslem world is not afflicted by angst in the Western sense of the word; there is no deep longing for the unattainable, this breaking of limits and sense of salvation and the role of miracle bred of the disparity between the human condition and a Christian vision of perfectability. The Moslem heritage teaches the lesson of absorbing one’s misfortunes, and of refusing to despair. The heroic tension ending in sacrifice, which through the Crucifixion has become a deeply ingrained aspect of the Western heritage, yet is completely absent from the example of the Prophet; and Mohammed himself chose to maximize these differences rather than the similarities between Islam and Christianity.

—Abdul Aziz’s eldest son and immediate successor, Saud, spent lavishly on everything. He built “a garish pink and gold palace,” writes House, which consumed more electricity and water than the rest of Riyadh combined. The new king destroyed the state’s finances, sometimes literally throwing money away. He would drive through the streets tossing gold and silver coins out of his car windows. By the time his brothers intervened in 1958, they found 317 riyals (about $100) in the kingdom’s coffers. Since Saud’s removal, the royal family has learned to better manage its finances, though the country’s riches have not been evenly distributed. Saudi Arabia is known for its vast wealth. But while its princes gallivant in private jets and build massive air-conditioned palaces in the desert, 40 percent of Saudis live on less than $850 per month and almost 20 percent live on less than $480 per month. Read More: image:

Mohammed, rich in years and achievements, died a natural death, despite dying when planning yet another military expedition. Still, he imposed a great design in adverse conditions and his brand of monotheism, based on the central tenet that one god created the universe, was an improvement on Meccans in the Kaaba praying to 360 idols cut from stone in human form, some of them dressed in costumes and perfumed with saffron and spices. He was able to make credible the unlikely proposition that,alone in the world, a rag-tag small group of Arabs, living in the desert and overlooked by history, knew the Truth. And, most remarkable of all, like myself, and like you, he was no more than a man.

Aung San Suu Kyi’s continued silence on the plight of Burma’s Rohingya Muslims is sparking concern that the Nobel Peace Prize winner is failing to live up to her stature as one of the world’s most celebrated pro-democracy campaigners.
Scores of people have been killed and tens of thousands have been made homeless during three months of inter-communal rioting between Buddhist and Muslim gangs in western Burma. Although there have been deaths on all sides, the Rohingya Muslims have been hit disproportionately hard in a state where they are already routinely discriminated against.—Read More: image:


(see link at end):Nowhere in this reference or anywhere in Rambam’s legal works is there praise for Islam or Muslims. Indeed, in the uncensored penultimate chapter of this great legal work, Rambam points out that while Christianity and Islam were prophesized by Daniel to be tests for the Jewish people, they both had the benefit of spreading the belief in one G-d ([Hebrew] But beyond the correctness of monotheism, what does Rambam say of Islam and its founder, Mohammed?

One of Rambam’s most well-known public letters is his letter to the Jews of Yemen who were suffering during the “Golden Age,” as it is so often called, of Islam. Just as Rambam had been chased out of Andalusia (Spain) by marauding Muslim armies from the Maghreb, the Jews of Yemen were being persecuted by the Muslim mujahideen in the Arabian Peninsula. In this famous letter, Rambam terms Mohammed the psychopath (

shugunnah) and describes the ugliness and the viciousness of the Muslims toward Jews as the worst the Jews had experienced since the Exile. Indeed, Rambam, who most certainly understood the theology of Islam, points out in this letter that Islam was theologically corrupt as well, having taken the Jewish Torah and effectively rewritten it for its own purposes.

… But even here, Rambam has no good words for Islam or Islamic philosophy. What Rambam does appreciate and pay respect to are a handful of Muslim neo-Aristotelians, notably Alfarabi. But the Muslim neo-Aristotelians — those who sought to apply Reason to Revelation — lost out. Islam thoroughly rejected such innovations and never adopted Reason. Thus the end of the “Golden Age.” Al Ghazili, Ibn Taymiyyah, and their progeny — the Muslim Brotherhood, the Wahhabis, and the Deobandis, among the Sunni — were the theological, legal, and social victors, …

…Unfortunately, no one of substance in the anti-sharia movement is trying to ban Islamic law. …where it is in the legislative process for enactment — is prohibiting state courts from applying any foreign law or judgment (sharia being only one of many possible offending foreign laws) which violates fundamental constitutional liberties like due process and equal protection.Read More:

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