Tuesday, January 31, 2006

From a Jihadist to a Human--part five

I started reading the first sura of the Koran, which is just plain prayer from a believer, which later I found out to be of pagan origin incorporated in the Koran as 'Allah's' words. Even the Koran distinguishes it in early Meccan suras from the rest of the Koran by calling it '7 oft-repeated verses'. It was good – I had no problem with that sura but after that when the second sura, called 'the cow', started. My mind was boggled by the 'hocus-pocus' I read in it. There was no point for any verse in it. It was like a mason trying to build a house but all the bricks were spread all around and he said 'ah! It is done'. But anyway, I moved on.

Then, for yet another time, I was shocked – when I came across a verse in the same sura. It called women their husband's 'tilth' – I was taught that Islam placed women at the same level with men but this verse was saying something very inappropriate. The verse literally called women 'things' – property of their husbands whom the husbands were allowed to use the way 'they' pleased. Later on I found out why the verse was revealed and I was even more shocked – 'Allah' took the pains of telling the Moslems on which sexual position was alright for them to have sex in – what great guidance. I wonder why they created the Kamasutra when we have the Koran.

I read on – I came across a lot of shocking things – Sura 4 made women into animals – Sura 5 made heaven into a brothel, a place just for men where they could find women as many as they wanted turned solely into prostitutes bought by the things they did on earth. Frankly it wasn't the Islam I was taught in my school and mosques. Maybe if I had stayed in Saudi Arabia longer I would have come across that teaching and would have accepted it too. But Pakistan was too shy to discuss all that. Mullahs discouraged reading translated Korans and told us that it was even better to read it, if we didn't understand it, because blind faith brings a person closer to 'Allah'.

Then I don't know how – I started finding a soft spot in my heart for Jews and Christians. I was 16 now and I had read many many verses in the Koran that demonize and curse Jews and Christians. Almost every page in the Koran cursed them and most every Moslem conversation ends with the phrase 'Death to Israel'. Even the Friday sermon in the mosque contained, 'May Allah kill the Jews and Christians and give their wives, children and possessions to us.' And everyone said 'Amen' out loud. It was too much hatred for the Jews for me because now, unlike any other time in my life before, I was thinking and not walking in faith blindly.

I read the Koran completely, more than once, and I didn't find it spiritual at all. In fact I found it to be a tyrannical-political system – created for the sole reason of getting power and subjugating others.

I began to read my downloaded Bible. I found the Old Testament plain history so wasn't really impressed with that. It sounded just like the Koran, the only difference was that it seemed to have been written by someone with some writing sense and plus it was going somewhere. I read the New Testament and the love I found in it, especially in John 17, surprised me. The Gospel was all about loving others, and sacrificing yourself for others. It was nothing like the Islamic notion of sacrifice, killing others and then dying if an arrow penetrated your flesh accidentally and then calling it martyrdom. Christianity, I found, had the concept called martyrdom, but it was a totally different idea than the Islamic one. In it – you were not supposed to kick the other person's butt to get him to kill you and then attain the status of martyrdom but if someone attacked you – you were to not resist him but let him and sacrifice your life for God. This was a new concept for me.

John 3.16, where it says, 'God so loved the world…' and the likes were new to me too. This is because, in Islam, 'Allah's' love is purely his favor, he stops favoring the person, that's his hatred. 'Allah' was a senseless being but this God I found in the Bible was a 'person', not a human, but a being who had sense. He wasn't a machine asking its creation to be like robots, but He was a being who created humans in His own image as friends, as His children.

Click here to read the Conclusion


eyesallaround said...

Beautifully said! That's why there is no freedom of religion in muslim countries. They know that if everyone looked, the truth would become obvious.

Freedom to choose is the central issue. Love without choice is not love. Love demanded is not love, but slavery.

John Sobieski said...

AA, when you read the Quran, did you understand the order of the Suras, i.e., that they are not in a time sequence. Without that understanding, and having the correct sequence, the Quran is jaunting. It fleets from one subject to another without order or background. I find the hadiths much easier to understand in comparison.

Avenging Apostate said...

John, nice question :) and you are exactly right - koran has no apparent order. and well truth be told, no one knows about the exact order - not even the scholars. people take guesses (judging by the verses within) and assign the names to suras as 'meccan' or 'medinian' but even in medinian suras many verses are from the meccan period and vice versa. its very confuzing, hadiths are easy to read, i agree.

Why doesnt the moslem world worry about the order of the koran? because they believe it was revealed in this form by allah and that this same book is written on a tablet up in heaven which allah keeps with him. pretty messed up book for a god i'd say - but well since questioning the koran is a sinful act that throws you out of the circle of islam, you wont find many people asking questions, and looking around for answers.

Pretty sad situation huh? ;)

alteredSt8 said...

It is my understanding that the order of the Suras contained in the Quran are arranged in order of their length - lengest to shortest.

alteredSt8 said...

It is my understanding that the order of the Suras contained in the Quran are arranged in order of their length - longest to shortest.

The Doc said...

I understand that there is general agreement in Islam on the chronology of the Suras. It is also useful to know that they have a doctrine of "abrogation", which means that where the teaching of two Suras appears to conflict it is the later of the two which is deemed to be the truer, fuller reflection of the will of Allah. Thus it is that, while an early Sura preaches conversion by persuasion, a later one preaches conversion by the sword. Muslims often quote the earlier Sura as evidence that the rest of humanity has nothing to fear from Islam but, sadly, according to their tradition the later Sura takes precedence.
I know an awful lot of Muslims don't actually subscribe to this teaching (amongst others), but without a central theological authority it is very difficult for them to achieve any official reform of their religion.