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Why did prophet Muhammed (pbuh) marry Aisha at such young age (9)?

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posted on May, 5 2015 @ 12:15 PM
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a reply to: OldSchoolContemporary
You know, I really never understood the issue people bring up about the Quran being difficult because it is not in chronological order. That is such a very weird complaint. I mean, who said it should be? Where did you get the expectation that it should be in chronological order? It isn't a history book or a story book that it has a chronology.
You say it gets confusing right from chapter 1. Here is the entirety chapter 1 (from memory), the title of which can be translated as "The Opening" in english:

Surah Al-Fatiha
In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
Praise be to God, Lord of the worlds. Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
Master of the Day of Judgement. You alone do we worship, and you alone do we ask for help.
Guide us on the straight path. The path of those on whom you have bestowed your favours.
Not those who have earned your wrath, or those who have gone astray.

Is there something particularly difficult to understand here?
Or the (beginning) of the next chapter:

Surah Al-Baqara
Alif Laam Mim. That this is the book, there is no doubt. A guidance for the righteous-
Those who believe in the unseen, and establish prayer, and give in charity from that which has been provided to them.
And those who believe what was sent down to you, and sent down before you, and what will come in the Hereafter.
They have found the guidance of their Lord, and they will be successful...

And so on. Once again, is there some confusion here? You might not believe in the book or what it says, but there's no confusion what it is talking about. There some mixed up chronology that is bothering you? What chronological order should an instruction manual be? If the first part of a TV's instruction manual that was written was how to control the volume, would you be confused if that wasn't at the start?

Insofar as your queries about Quran-only muslims "operating within the confines of the Quran" by going on pilgrimage, yes. Several places in the Quran there are instructions to its followers to go on the pilgrimage. So I'm not sure what you mean.

And as for Mary's age, again, it is mostly agreed that she was 12-14. Here is the Catholic Encyclopedia speaking on it. It is all very well to say "Just because it is common it wouldn't be true", but if she actually did something so uncommon, then surely it would've been highlighted or at least mentioned, like the example you gave of Muhammad. Speaking on that, though, brings up another very interesting point- so many claims about Muhammad "enjoying his virgins" or whatever, yet the youngest person he married was Aisha (who we don't know- could have been anything up to 18 or more according to the evidence). His other wives were all widows. In fact, the injunction for a maximum of 4 wives came about due to war widows- which sort of gives background to the hadith you quoted- Muhammad instructing one of his companions to marry someone closer to his own age.

Finally, with regard to the issues on the age of Aisha mentioned in the hadith- there are many. It is hardly "sophisticated muslim historians" writing "stark and unembellished" accounts. There has been centuries of scholarship on hadith methodology, and reliability of authors, not to mention that the age of Aisha also plays an important (and unfortunate) part in medieval rivalry between shia (many who considered her an evil woman who coerced the Prophet and exercised her father's machinations) and sunni (who try to emphasise her 'purity' and holiness by making her as young a virgin as possible).
edit on 5-5-2015 by babloyi because: (no reason given)




posted on May, 5 2015 @ 01:08 PM
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a reply to: babloyi



There some mixed up chronology that is bothering you?


It bothers Muslim believers, my friend. Having skipped past my point about the Qur'an lacking context I wonder, is this an admitted issue in understanding the intended message of the Qur'an?



Insofar as your queries about Quran-only muslims "operating within the confines of the Quran" by going on pilgrimage, yes. Several places in the Quran there are instructions to its followers to go on the pilgrimage. So I'm not sure what you mean.


Perhaps you were worried I was trying to trap you or something, actually it was a sincere question. I'm asking if there are any demands which the traditions of Muhammad make that aren't included or properly defined by way of the Qur'an, I ask as this is a common complaint made by Sunni Muslims against the idea of Qur'an only. Let me give an example, online you can find a "combat kit" of questions to be used against Muslim believers who say they're only instructed by their Qur'an. This isn't something Christian or Jewish believers are writing so to shame or upset Muslims, this was written by and is believed by sincere Muslims who are trying to right who they think are helplessly lost believers. Some of the questions they ask:

(1) How do you know how to pray using the Quran alone?

(2) How do you know how much Zakaah to pay using the Quran alone?

(3) Hadn't the Quran been reached to us from the same sources we received our authentic hadith?

(4) Why would Allah preserve the Quran and not preserve the meaning?

(5) How much is the Jizyah that the People of the Book have to pay?

(6) Does the Quran say that cross dressing is haram?

(7) The Quran says that men could beat up their wives. But we know according to hadith that this is a spiritual beating and not a harmful physical. What is to stop a man from misinterpreting the Quran and beating the hell out of his wife?

(8) Is it permissible for a man to look at a naked man?

(9) Can I pray Salaah naked?

(10) How do we know the order of the alcohol revelations? Maybe the first of the Quranic revelations said it was haram and then the later ones came saying that is was okay except during prayer times. How do you know the order of its revelations by using the Quran alone?

(11) It says in the Quran to shorten the prayer when you travel. How long do you have to travel? How short to cut the prayer?

(12) In Surah 66:3, the Prophet told his wives that he knew because Allah had informed him about it. Show me a Quranic verse where Allah had informed the Prophet about it. You cannot. Does this not prove that there are revelations to Prophet Muhammad besides the Quran?

(13) Surah 2:173 shows that Allah (swt) gave an order for the Muslims to change their Qibla from (Bayt Al Maqdis in Jerusalem) to the Kabah in Mecca. However, there is no Quranic verse that shows the first order that Allah gave to make the Qibla towards Jerusalem. Does this not prove that there are revelations to Prophet Muhammad besides the Quran?

(14) The Quran is passed on to us by Mutawattir narrations. Mutawattir narrations are narrations by so many people that it is just impossible for all of them to get together and plot and lie. However, we have so many Mutawattir hadith List of Mutawatir hadith hadith.al-islam.com... that teach things that are not in the Quran. How can you reject their authenticity with no objective evidence?

I know online people may want to look up combating the combat kit! Although there's really no need to attempt undermining every point, I'm certain both sides have questions the other side can't properly answer, trying to debunk everything would just turn these talks into trash talk. So are these complaints legitimate issues raised by Muslims for Muslims?

Also about the Catholic encyclopedia, it features an awful lot of information. If you've been convinced by it could you quote the portion rather than linking to massive waves of text? Having given it a chance what I did find was this:



The apocryphal writings to which we referred in the last paragraph state that Mary remained in the Temple after her presentation in order to be educated with other Jewish children. There she enjoyed ecstatic visions and daily visits of the holy angels. When she was fourteen, the high priest wished to send her home for marriage.


Daily visits?! My days, this is what I mean when I write about embellished accounts of history. As we know from experience the apocryphal writings aren't always worth the parchment they're written upon. Maybe you'll quote something more powerful from the link, something I've missed out on.



There has been centuries of scholarship on hadith methodology, and reliability of authors, not to mention that the age of Aisha also plays an important (and unfortunate) part in medieval rivalry between shia (many who considered her an evil woman who coerced the Prophet and exercised her father's machinations) and sunni (who try to emphasise her 'purity' and holiness by making her as young a virgin as possible).


The subject is certainly interesting. Almost similar to how there are wings of the Catholic church which believe in the perpetual virginity of Mary.



Finally, with regard to the issues on the age of Aisha mentioned in the hadith- there are many. It is hardly "sophisticated muslim historians" writing "stark and unembellished" accounts.


I certainly wouldn't call the stories around Aisha's marriage embellished, would you?
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posted on May, 5 2015 @ 02:17 PM
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a reply to: OldSchoolContemporary
Which muslims are bothered by the Quran not being in chronological order? After your initial post, I googled "chronological Quran" (or something similar), and hilariously enough, the first couple of links were from non-muslim sources trying to "disprove the Quran", and used language very similar to yours "The Quran is confusing because it is not chronological" "The Quran doesn't make sense", etc. I've never seen such a claim coming from a muslim. The most muslims say is that the hadith expand on the details provided in the Quran. This is why I provided a few quotes from the Quran right from the beginning. Did you have confusion understanding them? Did something seem out of context to you? Does it make sense to talk about "chronology" when you read those verses? You ever tried reading the Quran in chronological order? Entire chapters weren't released together, but in bits and pieces. I'd imagine it'd be really confusing, I've never attempted it myself.

And yeah, I'm sorry, I didn't realise you were asking me about pilgrimage in the Quran. I understood your tone as one of someone who knew the answer and was asking me so that I'd find out myself. Apologies if I am wrong. As for your "combat kit" of questions, perhaps it'd be best to ask someone who is Quran only. There are many many sites online that deal in great detail with these very points.

As for the Catholic link, it is not something that bothers me, but obviously it is generally accepted detail (at least to Catholicism, which makes up a huge percentage of Christianity). As you say, debating or disproving every point in the Catholic Encyclopedia is not the point, the point is that that viewpoint exists and is widely accepted. Someone mentioned earlier about how there isn't any proof of Jesus existing, and that may very well be correct- more important (at least in terms of Christian theology) is what is believed by the followers. Do you have any proof that Mary was NOT 12-14 when she was married?

And I wouldn't know the level of embellishment of the stories involving Aisha. I wasn't around to see the actual event. If the hadith says she was 6 when married and 9 when the marriage was consummated, and the surrounding evidence speaks against that, isn't that an embellishment?



posted on May, 5 2015 @ 03:29 PM
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a reply to: babloyi



Do you have any proof that Mary was NOT 12-14 when she was married?


The reasonable thing for a person to do is to remain agnostic on the subject of Mary's age, this is the stance any honest person would hold to. If I started writing about Mary being this age and that age I'd look as silly as people who try making Aisha 21.



As for the Catholic link, it is not something that bothers me,


Once more, if you have been convinced by this link can you perhaps quote which portion convinced you. If not people can assume you didn't bother reading it and ignore it as you have.



And I wouldn't know the level of embellishment of the stories involving Aisha. I wasn't around to see the actual event.


This is just confused my friend, you don't need to be involved in an actual event so to judge if there's been legendary embellishment written into the story itself. The only people who can honestly say 'I wouldn't know' concerning embellishment are the illiterate. Joseph Smith (for example) told several stories of his first visitation by the angel Moroni, some say as many as nine different versions were told by the same man about the same event! Some of these versions are less awesome, whereas others were clearly embellished by the tale teller Smith. Now you may think you need to be part of one of these nine versions of the event so to discover embellishment, but you really don't.



If the hadith says she was 6 when married and 9 when the marriage was consummated, and the surrounding evidence speaks against that, isn't that an embellishment?


No. That would just point to a factual error.



the first couple of links were from non-muslim sources trying to "disprove the Quran", and used language very similar to yours "The Quran is confusing because it is not chronological" "The Quran doesn't make sense", etc.


This isn't a fruitful way to write to others.
edit on 5-5-2015 by OldSchoolContemporary because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 5 2015 @ 03:45 PM
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a reply to: OldSchoolContemporary
I meant no offense. Perhaps at most I implied that you had obtained your opinion on the confusingness of the Quran from sites that had a goal to somehow disprove the Quran. I did provide some verses of the Quran (since your initial statement said something along the lines of "from chapter 1, muslims will be confused by the Quran") to show that they shouldn't be confusing to anyone at all with basic comprehension.

Also, since the accepted and established tradition shows that jewish women of the time were married that young, and being married much later was in fact an uncommon occurrence, and that Judaism (and the Christianity that derived from it) saw no issue with that age, I don't see why we should remain agnostic.
I mean, for a less contentious analogy, norms of the time would suggest Jesus had short hair (just like most men his age at that time), and there is no specific mention of Jesus having long hair, or his hair being any different from anyone else, and if (for the sake of the example) we had some apocryphal writings that said he had short hair, should we assume he had long hair (or stay agnostic to the fact) simply because it is more convenient and in this day and age the image of Jesus in everyone's mind is a person with long hair?

And pardon me, I was taking "embellishment" as meaning an exaggeration or essentially an untruth- like someone trying too hard to prove the holiness of Aisha (in opposition to people who may have been trying to prove the opposite) by making her as pure and young a virgin as possible. Already the surrounding evidence doesn't match up with the age provided in that specific narration, so as I said, I wouldn't know what else had been embellished.
edit on 5-5-2015 by babloyi because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 5 2015 @ 04:24 PM
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a reply to: babloyi



Perhaps at most I implied that you had obtained your opinion on the confusingness of the Quran from sites that had a goal to somehow disprove the Quran.


As outrageous as it may sound I do love my study of the Islamic scripture and traditions! And I can assure you my Qur'an is worn out from over reading. I've certainly read the anti-islam websites which litter the web, in addition to die hard sites devoted to spreading Islam at any cost. The fact of the matter is if the major truth claims of Islam are true every man, woman and child needs Muhammad in their life. But similarly that is true for Smith and his book of Mormon, if everything Joseph Smith wrote was truthful both you and I are horribly (and perhaps irreversibly) in error! But as Lewis wrote, we two aren't atheists, we're not tied to the idea that at the core of every God fearing religion is one big mistake. Instead I can safely say when Muslims look to one God who made the universe, that and not a pantheon of gods, they've got it right. However, I'm fully confident when I read that every knee shall bow, and every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.



Also, since the accepted and established tradition shows that women were married that young, and that Judaism (and the Christianity tha derived from it) saw no issue with that age, I don't see why we should remain agnostic.


As a Muslim who can see through the faulty traditions of Islam, or at least the faulty traditions concerning Aisha, I'm not sure why you would so easily accept the traditions of another faith based on the fact that they're accepted and established. Since an awfully old mistake, the mistake being that Mary was such and such an age when being married, is still a mistake none the less, and an awfully well established mistake can never be so established that it becomes accurate.



Already the surrounding evidence doesn't match up with the age provided in that specific narration, so as I said, I wouldn't know what else had been embellished.


What exactly is this evidence? I'm looking forward to seeing it now!
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posted on May, 5 2015 @ 04:45 PM
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a reply to: OldSchoolContemporary
I'm pretty sure it was posted in this thread in much greater detail than I can provide. I encourage you to look it up. Since I have easier access to what I myself have written on these forums, however, let me quote (probably for the dozenth time) what I had written when this exact same topic came up almost 8 years ago (and a dozen times since):


originally posted by: babloyi
There is much debate about the actual age of A'ishah when she got married to Muhammad. Originally she was meant to marry another person, but he broke it off due to religious differences. While there is 1 Hadith from Sahih Bukhari that says directly that A'ishah was 9 at this time, it contradicts numerous other Hadith, and one of the people in the chain of narration (Hisham ibn `urwah) was very old, and suffered memory loss at the time that he related this and other Hadith (many of which are considered suspect).

Here is a (disorganised
) list:
* A'ishah got married in 1AH (1 year after the muslims migrated to Medinah from Mecca)
* According to Tabiri, all of Abu Bakr's (A'ishah's father) children were born during the Pre-Islamic period, which would put A'ishah at being AT LEAST 14 when she got married.
* When the 1st migration (to Abyssinia) occurred, Abu Bakr took Ayesha to the house of her betrothed (the guy before Muhammad), and asked him to take her into his house, which he refused for religious reasons. The Migration to Abyssinia took place 8 years before AH, so if Ayesha was 6 when she married Muhammad, she couldn't have even been alive at this time!
* According to the Kitab-ul-Tasfir, A'ishah was a "young girl" (as opposed to an infant) when the 54th Surah of the Quran was revealed. Surah Al-Qamar (the 54th surah) was revealed 9 years before AH.



posted on May, 5 2015 @ 04:52 PM
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a reply to: babloyi

I'll look forward to studying the issue in-depth before returning to the community with a verdict. Also 'Peace be with you' is a favourite at Catholic mass! So I'll wish you peace and await Krazysh0t's reply, I'm sure they'll have a good few views on the issue.
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posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 03:48 AM
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a reply to: babloyi

Aren't many of the above points simply using tradition so to disprove tradition? Which (if any) fulfil criteria by which people may discern their authenticity? To name just a few.

* Embarrassment
* Multiple, independent sources
* Dissimilarity
* The Criteria of the Tendencies of the Developing Tradition

Two great examples of criteria, though not applicable to all historic persons, are the criterion of Aramaic linguistic phenomena, or the criterion of Palestinia environmental phenomena. An example of how we can use these tools to discover good history from bad would be to see how we challenged communists who tried to rewrite history in their heyday, as the history revisionist often refuses to work with these tools. Or better yet, as it's already been touched upon in the topic, an excellent way to discern good history from bad is to check our data against the various Jesus stories throughout history. Compare Jesus as found in the Qur'an to the many different (though complimentary) descriptions of Him as found in the New Testament.



In fact, the Qur’an contains demonstrably legendary stories about Jesus which evolved during the centuries after his death. I’m referring to stories about Jesus which are found in the so-called apocryphal gospels–these are forgeries which appeared in the second and third centuries after Christ–and which the Qur’an unwittingly repeats as facts. For example, the Qur’an mentions the story–borrowed from the legendary forgery entitled The Infancy Gospel of Thomas–of how the boy Jesus made a bird out of clay and then made it come to life (III.70, V.100-110). Such stories are fictional. Thus, the Qur’an offers us no independent historical source for Jesus.


Perhaps this is why many Muslim believers have no off switch in term of what apocryphal writings they're willing to share, since their Qur'an already contains the tainted work they must assume these are useful. Or we can find the misstep of history revisionism in that the Qur'an claims Jesus wasn't really crucified, which brings about swoon theory and many others:



Perhaps the single most egregious historical error found in the Qur’an is its claim that Jesus was not in fact crucified. Not only is there not a single shred of evidence in favor of this remarkable hypothesis, but the evidence supporting Jesus’ crucifixion is, as Johnson says, “overwhelming.” Those of you who are Muslims need to appreciate that no one who is not already a Muslim believes that the historical Jesus was not crucified. The crucifixion of Jesus is recognized even by the sceptical critics in the Jesus Seminar as–to quote Robert Funk–”one indisputable fact.” Indeed, Paula Frederickson, whose book From Jesus to Christ inspired the PBS special by the same name, declares roundly, “The crucifixion is the strongest single fact we have about Jesus.”


When studying history it's not about whether or not said book is inerrant or infallible, rather it's about which narrative has the strongest collection of core facts. An example of core facts:

* Jesus’s Trial and Crucifixion
* The discovery of Jesus' empty tomb by "a group of His women followers"
* The burial of Jesus by Joseph of Arimathea

Strangely enough the Qur'an decides to agree with notions like the virgin birth, which most historians now wish they'd be able to throw away, while disagreeing with historic facts that are so obviously confirmed! Perhaps using these tried and tested methods would help strengthen the case either way concerning Muhammad's sex life.
edit on 11-7-2015 by OldSchoolContemporary because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 09:21 AM
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a reply to: dukeofjive696969


Defending someone from a fairy tale, to discreted another fairy tale storie while using 21st century logic is funny as hell.

Would that be a fact or your fairy tale? '



posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 09:28 AM
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a reply to: dukeofjive696969


All religon books are fantasy tales,

Keep chin up and head straight. Will prevent brains from escaping head.



posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 10:19 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t


So Joseph, an old man, having sex with a 14-16 year old is ok?


KrazyshOt June 30, 2015--
Quote
I think your God is the worst thing created by man. This means that I could give a damn if the marriage (meaning at this time same sex) is recognized by your God. Your God appears to be an intolerant asshole. I want nothing to do with THAT
Unquote
My, My do the hypocrites roar.



posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 10:25 AM
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a reply to: windword


Yeah well, these so called Holy Scriptures, seem to take a lot of liberties with age numbers. I wonder if these numbers are more symbolic than literal. What does the number 9 symbolize, as in Aisha the 9 year old bride and Joseph the 90 year old husband?

Horse feathers -- Get real.



posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 10:30 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

It's OK for a God to shag a 12 year old and get her knocked up......



posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 10:48 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t


That's why I brought up Joseph and Mary (who actually lived centuries BEFORE Muhammad did).

I am glad you have seen the light.

A few days ago you posted -
Quote
6/30/15 -- "Your God appears to be an intolerant asshole. I want nothing to do with THAT.
Unquote



posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 10:53 AM
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a reply to: haman10


warminglday is a freaking saint .

Yes I believe she is a Saint and a good teacher. Open your ears a bit and listen to wisdom.



posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 11:52 AM
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a reply to: Seede

Right.....because numbers are NEVER symbolic in the Bible or the Koran......



posted on Jul, 11 2015 @ 12:50 PM
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a reply to: OldSchoolContemporary

originally posted by: OldSchoolContemporary
Aren't many of the above points simply using tradition so to disprove tradition? Which (if any) fulfil criteria by which people may discern their authenticity?

I am, yes, because that is the only source we have of Muhammad's life. Following his death, his followers were asked about his sayings and deeds and these were matched and recorded and memorised. As for discerning their authenticity, hadith scholarship is a huge and complicated field, and has had people investigating authenticity for over a thousand years. This was mostly done through investigation of the narrators of the traditions in question.
Traditions of Muhammad were collected from soon after he died, but the books we have today were collected together about a century after the fact. The chain of narrators of a hadith would be something along the lines of "A said that B said that C said that Muhammad said/did ...". So a tradition would be considered authentic if each person in the chain was known to be trustworthy and reliable, hadn't mentioned any false traditions, if the chain was continuous (there wasn't a gap between two people in the chain when they didn't live at the same time or place) and so on.
So that is your answer as to how at least muslim scholars discerned the authenticity of Hadith. In the case of the hadith in question (relating to Aisha's age) all the ones we have that say it was 9 are along the lines of "A said that Hisham said C said that ..." or "B said that D said that Hisham said that C said that ..." or "E said that Hisham said that F said that..." and so on. You'll notice the common part in all these chains?

Now you might disagree with this methodology (although it matches much of your criteria), but its result is, as I said, the only information we have on Muhammad's life.

Anyhow, after that, you segue into a discussion on the historicity of Jesus. I'm really not sure this is the best place for that discusion? I mean, sure, most historians just accept that someone named Jesus existed, but theories range all the way from him being an illegitimate son of a roman soldier to a member of a violent group that tried (and failed) to overthrow the romans. I'm not sure if any meaningful discussion lies in that direction, because it isn't usually biblical passages that are used to support the historicity of Jesus- mostly it is just stories that have been repeated so much they've become engrained in our history. So your "core facts" would be meaningless in this case, especially since the core facts aren't even going to be shared among all the historians. About the only large scale common "core fact" you might get would be that Jesus was crucified, but even that has its naysayers (some who say he dodged crucifixion and escaped to India).

Anyhow, is this a discussion on Bible vs Quran? Because really, that does seem very pointless.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 11:51 AM
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a reply to: babloyi

For the sake of speed and the word limit I'll refer to these quotes in the form of numbers whenever possible.

(1) And as for Mary's age, again, it is mostly agreed that she was 12-14 (as detailed in the apocryphal sources.)
(2) I mean, sure, most historians just accept that someone named Jesus existed, but theories range all the way from him being an illegitimate son of a roman soldier to a member of a violent group that tried (and failed) to overthrow the romans.
(3) it isn't usually biblical passages that are used to support the historicity of Jesus.
(4) So your "core facts" would be meaningless in this case, especially since the core facts aren't even going to be shared among all the historians.
(5) About the only large scale common "core fact" you might get would be that Jesus was crucified, but even that has its naysayers (some who say he dodged crucifixion and escaped to India).
(6) The chain of narrators of a hadith would be something along the lines of "A said that B said that C said that Muhammad said/ did ...".
(7) Anyhow, is this a discussion on Bible vs Quran? Because really, that does seem very pointless.

A combination of points (1), (3) and (5) make for an absolute puzzler. Point (1) appears to be alluding to a sort of scholarly consensus, but to write as if there's a consensus regarding the age in which an obscure teenager consummated her marriage and no consensus concerning the crucifixion is downright ridiculous! There's no sound method by which someone could take an apocryphal story seriously while supposing that the Biblical material, which makes for our earliest references, doesn't inform modern Jesus studies (point three.) To allow the debate to be informed by documents of the early 7th century and not material coming from within five years of the crucifixion is to give up on honest dialogue. In fact, I'd not only consider points (1) and (3) in opposition, but points (2) and (3) also.

Point (2) could be referencing many documents, it isn't made clear, however the son of a Roman soldier myth came about between three to four hundred years after the actual Jesus lived by way of the Talmud, for which it's far from a source of interest to modern scholars. In 1922 both Joseph Klausner and R. Travers Herford came to the conclusion 'that the evidence [for a historical Jesus] in the Talmud is scanty and does not contribute much to our knowledge of the historical Jesus; much of it is legendary and reflects the Jewish attempt to counter Christian claims and reproaches. Similarly in 1978 Johann Maier wrote 'Jesus von Nazareth in der talmudischen Überlieferung, in which he concludes that there is virtually no evidence of the historical Jesus in the Talmud, and that the references to Jesus were "legendary" and probably added late in the Talmudic era "as a reaction to Christian provocations."'

For a more modern take I'd suggest Raymond E. Brown, who explains: 'the story of Panthera is a fanciful explanation of the birth of Jesus which includes very little historical evidence.' The sheer volume of different opinions doesn't make any one story less likely to have taken place, rather what people should understand is that not all historical narratives are created equal. Considering that these documents are extremely late, apologetical and reactive to Christian provocation, there's little to show they're good historical sources. Considering they also undermine both the goodness of Mary and virgin birth of Jesus that's another reason for people with a prior commitment to Islam to avoid using them.

So people can entertain the son of a Roman soldier story, if only for the purpose of later dismissing it as a clear fiction. Secondly and where there's an obvious complication, point (2) alludes to the fact that certain writers have envisaged the historic Jesus as a failed jihadist or radical, whereas point (3) asserts that historians aren't informed by way of Biblical passages, yet the two most well known writers of these failed hypothesis (Shmuley Boteach and Reza Aslan) both use the Biblical passages to justify their reimagining of Jesus! In short, modern scholarship around Jesus knows exactly where to look for its answers, and it's not in any of the late, highly suspect writings thus far. Point (5) would also fall for the sheer lack of evidence surrounding it, including the fact that the writings we do have, writings that can fulfil historic criteria, go entirely against it.

Point (4), which is adjacent to your third point, starts up a string of doubts concerning points (1), (2), (3) and point (6.) Quoting on a more thorough level: 'I'm not sure if any meaningful discussion lies in that direction, because it isn't usually biblical passages that are used to support the historicity of Jesus' This is false, as shown by Reza, Rabbi Shmuley and every other writer on the subject. I'd go so far as to say it's common knowledge for anyone who's done so little as dabble in the subject.



mostly it is just stories that have been repeated so much they've become engrained in our history.


To write "repeated so much" points to how the traditions of Islam were formed (if true), that being a laborious process of he said she said etc, that isn't the data we have with regards to Christ. Neither is it the method modern or even early Christians used so to confirm their sources, the appeals in the Gospel narratives to eyewitness testimony is sign enough of that. Rather what the Christian can enjoy is an early Pre-Pauline tradition as found in 1 Cor. 15.3-5 which confirms the reality of the empty tomb narrative:



For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve.


Writing "repeated so much" and "ingrained into our history" don't fit with regards to traditions that go back to as early as years after the crucifixion event. 'In fact, the prominent New Testament scholar James Dunn dates this very creed of Paul back to within 18 months of Jesus’ death. Even on the more sceptical end, this creed is dated no later than five years after Jesus’ death on the cross. That is extraordinarily early, and is something that New Testament scholar Mike Licona says, “… is what historians drool over.”'

'In concluding, [the radical] atheist New Testament scholar from Germany Gerd Ludemann notes: “the elements in the tradition are to be dated to the first two years after the crucifixion of Jesus…not later than three years…the formation of the appearance traditions mentioned in 1 Cor. 15:3-8 falls into the time between 30 and 33 C.E.”' Moreover William Lane Craig, who many consider the world's leading debater on religion and an expert on the subject, explains: 'The evidence that Paul is not writing in his own hand in I Cor. 15.3-5 is so powerful that all New Testament scholars recognize that Paul is here passing on a prior tradition.'
edit on 12-7-2015 by OldSchoolContemporary because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 11:56 AM
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In what space of time does a myth or legend form, surely not within decades or years, certainly not to the point that it removes simply by virtue of it's existence the factual narrative which supposedly existed alongside it. So although many will assume these traditions to be smuggled in as legend or chosen arbitrarily, or even accepted without having been placed under a microscope by both believers and sceptics, that's clearly inaccurate. Point (5) is also undermined by the above, as not only is the empty tomb story early, multiply attested and backed by the criteria of embarrassment, it also has enemy attestation on its side.



So your "core facts" would be meaningless in this case, especially since the core facts aren't even going to be shared among all the historians.


Despite the above you then appear to agree with the core fact that Jesus was crucified: 'About the only large scale common "core fact" you might get would be that Jesus was crucified,' Albeit you did add the unevidenced silliness of Jesus escaping into India. Nevertheless based on the historical method not only do we get the crucifixion of Jesus beyond a reasonable doubt, we're also so lucky as to have:

* Jesus' belief in that He could forgive sin
* The disciples had experiences both in groups and alone where they encountered the risen Jesus
* The empty tomb
* Paul had a radical experience of Jesus alive after His death
* The burial account by Joseph of Arimathea
* Jesus' self understanding as being above the prophets and even above the angels

Alongside of many many more historically accurate details. Initially we don't consider any historic claim in the red or black until it conforms to certain criteria, so when it does fulfil any of the aforementioned benchmarks it's an awesome find. Every one of these claims enjoys the benefits of multiple attestation and/or earliness, though the burial account also has the criterion of embarrassment in its favour, Jesus' sense of authority has dissimilarity authenticating its truth value, and the discovery of the empty tomb has embarrassment and dissimilarity combined!

Therefore the core facts are far more than first thought. Women discovering the empty tomb hindered the narrative as women were considered untrustworthy in the culture (embarrassment), Matthew countering an early accusation that the disciples "stole away" Jesus' body is enemy attestation of the empty tomb, Jesus' parable of the workers in the vineyard shows multiple attestation according to hardened sceptics, in addition to the "Only the Father knows the Son" saying of Jesus which departs from both Jewish beliefs of His day and later Christian beliefs (dissimilarity.) The same shows that Jesus believed Himself to have a unique connection with God.
So what was first a faint concession of Jesus' crucifixion quickly snowballs into the burial, empty tomb and a wealth of other facts surrounding the life, death and ministry of Christ. For the sceptic of course none of this means He was the messiah or divine, they can confirm these indisputable facts while seeking alternative means to explain the data.

Points (6) and (7) in closing, as if the chain itself is a forgery then it's irrelevant who's in fact mentioned in the chain. That's plain to see having read your own criticism of the traditions. For (7) however I'd point out that within the first page of this very topic the words Bible, Christian and New Testament figures like Mary and Joseph have been mentioned, for which there must be solid comparisons and illustrative examples made if only for the sake of showing good sources and beliefs from prejudiced ones. So rather than build a house upon suspicious foundations, these being the many bogus writings and theories that are already entertained, every person involved in the subject ought to put their preferred traditions properly to the test. I'm certainly not suggesting we should compare the 27 greatest documents we have on the life of Jesus to a lone book which came about over 600 years after the events it purports to record.



Now you might disagree with this methodology (although it matches much of your criteria), but its result is, as I said, the only information we have on Muhammad's life.


I'd agree without the traditions the historical Muhammad is all but lost to us. What's more the pedophilc traditions of Muhammad remain. Yet what are we to make of the next quotation:



When Muhammad al-Bukhari began collecting Hadith in the 9th century, he said that he had collected more than 600,000 different "sayings of the prophet", of which only 1.2% could be reasonably verified.


Are people to believe that that 1.2% is also corrupted, be it in part or full fold?
edit on 12-7-2015 by OldSchoolContemporary because: (no reason given)




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