I hate to break down your heart-warming story, but lets have a look at it a second.
Originally posted by Anonymous ATS
When we asked for the 99 names I"m sure the person selling the lists new I wasn"t a practitioner of Islam specifically because I was white and
wearing American Clothes.
So you were asking about his religion, basically. Something he is singularly obsessed with, as is the entire Middle East.
Originally posted by Anonymous ATSHe looked at me with this look of peace and brotherly love on his face.
He thought he was gaining a convert. All religions, but Islam in particular, are focused on proselytizing. It's about the human need for
Originally posted by Anonymous ATSI realized right then that the superficial differences between us only existed in the by and by world
of daily frivolities
Yes, that is exactly what religion is.
And I doubt his personal revelation on the subject was anything like yours. If he was a market trader, it was probably "how can I get this chump to
buy something?". No offense meant, but that's what they're thinking the world over.
Originally posted by Anonymous ATSbut that underneath I could see the deep serenity and beauty that his faith and his appreciation of my
apparent interest in faith brought forward in him.
I suspect this story would have had a radically different ending had to been trying to explain to him the finer points of idolatry.
People will talk about their own interests until the proverbial cows come home. If you'd been trying to have a chat about, say, Hinduism, he'd have
been far less forthcoming.
Originally posted by Anonymous ATSAnyone who claims Islam is a violent faith is an abhorrent human being and is nothing short of a devil
incarnate. I have known few people as pious as some of my Islamic friends.
Piety does not equal morality, especially when the single canon text of your entire religion endorses genocide, sexual discrimination and slavery.
I'm sure the Crusades are a good counter-example against the wildly-pious medieval Christians, who somehow thought you could fight for Jesus.
To call me an abhorrent human being because I can objectively look at something and come to a logical conclusion is so wildly offensive to me, it's
hard to know where to start explaining why this is so wrong.
With that statement you've actually said "there are some things above criticism", whereas nothing is above criticism because everything is made by
the hand of man, and is therefore subject to the same intrinsic imperfection as anything else man has done.
The Quran, and therefore Islam, is clearly the development of Muhammad's personal quest for power - in the early, less powerful days he's quite
restrained, but as his power and influence grows, so the suggested levels of violence increase, and the edicts from "God" come thick and fast and at
a very personal level, surreally applicable to the most minor of events happening in his life at the time.
War is a common motif throughout the Quran and is possibly the strongest political motivator going. It has many supporting verses in the Quran.
This is not entirely surprising when you think about the morality of 7th century Arabia - an area of the world so useless that nobody else has ever
had the desire to conquer it. The Ancient Persian empires, Alexander, the Romans leading into the Byzantines, the Sassanids, nobody has bothered
annexing Arabia because there was nothing in it (there is now, of course, because we have a use for oil).
This means the entire peninsular was not unified and stagnating under the weight of inter-tribal feuding while the world progressed past them at quite
an alarming rate - the Dark Ages not being quiet as dark as everyone makes out.
Muhammad could see the need for unity amongst the Arabian peoples, and quite brilliantly managed to persuade everyone that, not only was he not a
babbling madman, he was actually chosen by God to do his holy mission of uniting the pagans Arabians under the Christian and Jewish teachings he had
learned from neighbouring Jewish tribes.
Unfortunately, unity can only be brought via conquest or invasion, and since noone was ever going to invade Arabia, it was up to Muhammad to drive
them out of the peninsular via conquest.
This means that Muhammad had obviously had to express peace in times of overwhelming adversity (such as the battle in which Khalid ibn al-Walid
defeated him) and fire the zeal of his followers lest they desert him in fear of destruction.
Ergo, he had to use some pretty racy language. It's all about God's divine mission to get the infidel idol-worshippers slain, and how they must
conquer or die, etc.
Islam was a religion born for war, by a man forced from his tribe because of his radical beliefs, and then his determination to return and conquer
them. He smartly banned alcohol (I would not want drunk troops either - see the Battle of Karasabe for a good example of why not) and enforced
various reforms, like Moses, to ensure the survival and breeding of a healthy population of warriors.
If I were a Dark Ages warlord, I would have done it in exactly the same way, because his way was the smart way.
Now, what were you ignorantly saying about me being an "abhorrent human being", and the "Devil incarnate"?