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12/16/1999

Islam, Part IV

Well, it''s time to wrap up our series on Islam. This week I''ll let
the other side have a shot with, of course, a final shot from me.

But first, let us recognize a few newsmakers of just the past few
days. I labeled the nation of Jordan a "heroic loser" last week.
They really are a good ally, forgetting King Hussein''s position in
the Gulf War. [He was in a tough spot and I understand]. This
week the government arrested a dozen terrorists who were
planning Millennium mischief in Jordan (the only Arab nation to
celebrate New Year''s). So a tip of the hat to the Jordanians.

Now, you realize that these terrorists are aligned with Osama Bin
Laden, the world''s top dirtball. And this means that the ruling
government of Afghanistan, the Taliban, are complicit in any
crimes committed by Bin Laden since they harbor him. As the
Taliban are Islamic Fundamentalists, they become the Dirtball
Government of the Year. And may tomahawk missiles rain on
their heads in 2000. Or make that 2000 tomahawks in 2000.
A double Y2K celebration, or Tomahawk Squared.

There are two key web sites if you are ever so interested as to
study the religion of Islam; "muhammad.net" and
"islam101.com." The following comments are taken from these
two sites.

Herewith is the Prophet Muhammad''s Last Sermon (roughly 632
AD). [Exact quote]

"O People, lend me an attentive ear, for I know not whether after
this year, I shall ever be amongst you again. Therefore listen to
what I am saying to you very carefully and take these words to
those who could not be present here today.

O People, just as you regard this month, this day, this city as
Sacred, so regard the life and property of every Muslim as a
sacred trust. Return the goods entrusted to you to their rightful
owners. Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you. Remember
that you will indeed meet your Lord, and that He will indeed
reckon your deeds. Allah has forbidden you to take usury
(interest), therefore all interest obligation shall henceforth be
waived. Your capital, however, is yours to keep. You will
neither inflict nor suffer any inequity. Allah has Judged that there
shall be no interest and that all interest due to Abba ibn ''Abd''al
Muttalib (Prophet''s uncle) shall henceforth be waived...

Beware of Satan, for the safety of your religion. He has lost all
hope that he will ever be able to lead you astray in big things, so
beware of following him in small things.

O People, it is true that you have certain rights with regard to
your women, but they also have rights over you. Remember that
you have taken them as your wives only under Allah''s trust and
with His permission. If they abide by your right then to them
belongs the right to be fed and clothed in kindness. Do treat your
women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and
committed helpers. And it is your right that they do not make
friends with any one of whom you do not approve, as well as
never to be unchaste.

O People, listen to me in earnest, worship Allah, say your five
daily prayers (Salah), fast during the month of Ramadan, and give
your wealth in Zakat. Perform Hajj if you can afford to.

All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority
over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an
Arab; also a white has not superiority over black nor a black has
any superiority over white except by piety and good action.
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.

Remember, one day you will appear before Allah and answer your
deeds. So beware, do not stray from the path of righteousness
after I am gone.

O People, no Prophet or Apostle will come after me and no new
faith will be born. Reason well, there fore, O People, and
understand words which I convey to you. I leave behind me two
things, the Quran and my example, the Sunnah, and if you follow
these you will never go astray.

All those who listen to me shall pass on my words to others and
those to others again; and may the last ones understand my words
better than those who listen to me directly. Be my witness, O
Allah, that I have conveyed your message to your people."

According to Islamic scholars, Islam presents human beings with
a simple two-fold invitation:
--to witness that there is no God but God Almighty
--to witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of God
This declaration is the door to a life of service. One of
participation in a community of believers whose highest duty is to
call on humanity to embrace what is righteous and good and to
reject what is evil and degrading. Muslims are brothers and
sisters of all people of good faith, and wish to strive with them for
peace in this world.

Righteousness is the sole criterion of merit and honor.

Of course, you know what the discussion of the last 4 weeks boils
down to, separation of church and state. If Islam had not become
a key part of every government in the Middle East, save one, I
wouldn''t have written all of this. Think of the leading powers of
today and the role of religion in government. The U.S., Britain,
France, Germany and Japan, to name a few, separate church and
state. China persecutes the faithful as it is still a dictatorship.
Russia has begun to accept religious faith again but their current
problems are not of a religious nature. [For example, in
Chechnya the Russians are systematically cleansing their nation of
the Chechen people under the guise of eliminating Islamic
Fundamentalism. In reality, the Russians are simply racists, as
proven earlier by Stalin when he forced the Chechen people out
of their homes in the ''50s].

No, if the government of Libya, Syria or Saudi Arabia, for
example, was a democratic and secularist one, no one would care
if the people practiced Islam or Catholicism. That would be their
business. But when a nation is ruled by Islam (or at the least,
kowtows to its believers for fear of losing power otherwise), then
it''s a different story. And when the leaders, such as in Iran or
Afghanistan, hide behind the cloak of Islam and find justification
for their terrorist acts in the word of the Quran, then it becomes
our problem and needs to be condemned.

You can pick apart the words of Muhammad or the Quran and
find justification for anything. For example, the Quran speaks to
the right to protest against tyranny, which can then be stretched
to mean the right to protest against tyranny (only as followers
believe it to be) across the world, not just in their own nation.

"God does not love evil talk in public unless it is by someone who
has been injured thereby." [Quran]

What does this mean? The Muhammad who states in his farewell
address, "Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you," also allows
for revenge. No turning the other cheek here.

The Quran states, "Whoso slays a soul not to retaliate for a soul
slain, nor for corruption done in the land, should be as if he had
slain mankind altogether." Translation, human blood is sacred in
any use and can not be spilled without justification. And if
anyone violates this sanctity of human blood by killing a soul
without justification the Quran equates it to the killing of entire
mankind. So, what happens to the terrorist who kills innocent
people in the name of Allah?! Well, you see, if he slays a soul
"for corruption done in the land," that''s OK. And who defines
what the specific acts of corruption were? The killer.

And what of the treatment of women? Why more women around
the United States aren''t protesting the way many Islamic nations
treat the female gender is beyond me. Muhammad said, "Do treat
your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners."
And what of the real world? Forget it. Women are largely
persecuted.

In another of Muhammad''s sermons he states, "Women are twin
halves of men. The rights of women are sacred. See that women
maintain (the) rights granted to them." Tell that to the Taliban.
Or even the government of Kuwait where women still don''t have
the right to vote.

Frankly, I''m sick of this garbage. Where are the True Believers
who would condemn the actions of the Fundamentalists? And
Muhammad does make some strong statements against
racial injustice and prejudice. Well, speak out and condemn those
of your Muslim brothers who are intolerant. All I hear is silence.

To sincere believers in the faith, this web site is always open to
you. I promise you this. Any responsible retort will be published
in full and without comment.

Brian Trumbore







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-12/16/1999-      
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Hot Spots

12/16/1999

Islam, Part IV

Well, it''s time to wrap up our series on Islam. This week I''ll let
the other side have a shot with, of course, a final shot from me.

But first, let us recognize a few newsmakers of just the past few
days. I labeled the nation of Jordan a "heroic loser" last week.
They really are a good ally, forgetting King Hussein''s position in
the Gulf War. [He was in a tough spot and I understand]. This
week the government arrested a dozen terrorists who were
planning Millennium mischief in Jordan (the only Arab nation to
celebrate New Year''s). So a tip of the hat to the Jordanians.

Now, you realize that these terrorists are aligned with Osama Bin
Laden, the world''s top dirtball. And this means that the ruling
government of Afghanistan, the Taliban, are complicit in any
crimes committed by Bin Laden since they harbor him. As the
Taliban are Islamic Fundamentalists, they become the Dirtball
Government of the Year. And may tomahawk missiles rain on
their heads in 2000. Or make that 2000 tomahawks in 2000.
A double Y2K celebration, or Tomahawk Squared.

There are two key web sites if you are ever so interested as to
study the religion of Islam; "muhammad.net" and
"islam101.com." The following comments are taken from these
two sites.

Herewith is the Prophet Muhammad''s Last Sermon (roughly 632
AD). [Exact quote]

"O People, lend me an attentive ear, for I know not whether after
this year, I shall ever be amongst you again. Therefore listen to
what I am saying to you very carefully and take these words to
those who could not be present here today.

O People, just as you regard this month, this day, this city as
Sacred, so regard the life and property of every Muslim as a
sacred trust. Return the goods entrusted to you to their rightful
owners. Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you. Remember
that you will indeed meet your Lord, and that He will indeed
reckon your deeds. Allah has forbidden you to take usury
(interest), therefore all interest obligation shall henceforth be
waived. Your capital, however, is yours to keep. You will
neither inflict nor suffer any inequity. Allah has Judged that there
shall be no interest and that all interest due to Abba ibn ''Abd''al
Muttalib (Prophet''s uncle) shall henceforth be waived...

Beware of Satan, for the safety of your religion. He has lost all
hope that he will ever be able to lead you astray in big things, so
beware of following him in small things.

O People, it is true that you have certain rights with regard to
your women, but they also have rights over you. Remember that
you have taken them as your wives only under Allah''s trust and
with His permission. If they abide by your right then to them
belongs the right to be fed and clothed in kindness. Do treat your
women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and
committed helpers. And it is your right that they do not make
friends with any one of whom you do not approve, as well as
never to be unchaste.

O People, listen to me in earnest, worship Allah, say your five
daily prayers (Salah), fast during the month of Ramadan, and give
your wealth in Zakat. Perform Hajj if you can afford to.

All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority
over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an
Arab; also a white has not superiority over black nor a black has
any superiority over white except by piety and good action.
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.

Remember, one day you will appear before Allah and answer your
deeds. So beware, do not stray from the path of righteousness
after I am gone.

O People, no Prophet or Apostle will come after me and no new
faith will be born. Reason well, there fore, O People, and
understand words which I convey to you. I leave behind me two
things, the Quran and my example, the Sunnah, and if you follow
these you will never go astray.

All those who listen to me shall pass on my words to others and
those to others again; and may the last ones understand my words
better than those who listen to me directly. Be my witness, O
Allah, that I have conveyed your message to your people."

According to Islamic scholars, Islam presents human beings with
a simple two-fold invitation:
--to witness that there is no God but God Almighty
--to witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of God
This declaration is the door to a life of service. One of
participation in a community of believers whose highest duty is to
call on humanity to embrace what is righteous and good and to
reject what is evil and degrading. Muslims are brothers and
sisters of all people of good faith, and wish to strive with them for
peace in this world.

Righteousness is the sole criterion of merit and honor.

Of course, you know what the discussion of the last 4 weeks boils
down to, separation of church and state. If Islam had not become
a key part of every government in the Middle East, save one, I
wouldn''t have written all of this. Think of the leading powers of
today and the role of religion in government. The U.S., Britain,
France, Germany and Japan, to name a few, separate church and
state. China persecutes the faithful as it is still a dictatorship.
Russia has begun to accept religious faith again but their current
problems are not of a religious nature. [For example, in
Chechnya the Russians are systematically cleansing their nation of
the Chechen people under the guise of eliminating Islamic
Fundamentalism. In reality, the Russians are simply racists, as
proven earlier by Stalin when he forced the Chechen people out
of their homes in the ''50s].

No, if the government of Libya, Syria or Saudi Arabia, for
example, was a democratic and secularist one, no one would care
if the people practiced Islam or Catholicism. That would be their
business. But when a nation is ruled by Islam (or at the least,
kowtows to its believers for fear of losing power otherwise), then
it''s a different story. And when the leaders, such as in Iran or
Afghanistan, hide behind the cloak of Islam and find justification
for their terrorist acts in the word of the Quran, then it becomes
our problem and needs to be condemned.

You can pick apart the words of Muhammad or the Quran and
find justification for anything. For example, the Quran speaks to
the right to protest against tyranny, which can then be stretched
to mean the right to protest against tyranny (only as followers
believe it to be) across the world, not just in their own nation.

"God does not love evil talk in public unless it is by someone who
has been injured thereby." [Quran]

What does this mean? The Muhammad who states in his farewell
address, "Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you," also allows
for revenge. No turning the other cheek here.

The Quran states, "Whoso slays a soul not to retaliate for a soul
slain, nor for corruption done in the land, should be as if he had
slain mankind altogether." Translation, human blood is sacred in
any use and can not be spilled without justification. And if
anyone violates this sanctity of human blood by killing a soul
without justification the Quran equates it to the killing of entire
mankind. So, what happens to the terrorist who kills innocent
people in the name of Allah?! Well, you see, if he slays a soul
"for corruption done in the land," that''s OK. And who defines
what the specific acts of corruption were? The killer.

And what of the treatment of women? Why more women around
the United States aren''t protesting the way many Islamic nations
treat the female gender is beyond me. Muhammad said, "Do treat
your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners."
And what of the real world? Forget it. Women are largely
persecuted.

In another of Muhammad''s sermons he states, "Women are twin
halves of men. The rights of women are sacred. See that women
maintain (the) rights granted to them." Tell that to the Taliban.
Or even the government of Kuwait where women still don''t have
the right to vote.

Frankly, I''m sick of this garbage. Where are the True Believers
who would condemn the actions of the Fundamentalists? And
Muhammad does make some strong statements against
racial injustice and prejudice. Well, speak out and condemn those
of your Muslim brothers who are intolerant. All I hear is silence.

To sincere believers in the faith, this web site is always open to
you. I promise you this. Any responsible retort will be published
in full and without comment.

Brian Trumbore