Universal Comments On Islam
September 1 - October 31, 2016
Oct 31 - Halloween
Halloween could be considered a form of begging and God's Messenger does not approve of begging.
Even if Islam was comfortable with kids taking time from their study of the Koran and worship of Allah by going door to door dressed up as their favourite toy or hero you would not see believing kids walking around with a broom or a stick with a silhouette of horse's head between their legs pretending they are riding Al-Burak or dressed as an Adam dragging his rock from Paradise (see previous entry).
That would be mocking Islam and we would not want to do that. The same goes for witches. Not only does Allah confirm the existence of sorceresses, but His revelations warning about their malevolence were some of the last verses recited by the Prophet before he died.
Oct 30 - The Most Important Rock on Earth
A man's landing and takeoff for Paradise on a flying horse consecrated a rock face as the third most sacred artifact in Islam and Jerusalem as the third holiest city of the Faith (see previous entry).
Rock fragments cemented "into a silver frame in the side of the Ka'ba" mark the holiest of holies and Mecca as the city at the center of the Universe.
Medina, the second holiest of cities is the only one of the three municipalities not associated with a bolder of some kind, its place in Islam's trinity of the most sacred consecrated by being the site where the Prophet launched his never-ending wars and where he died and is buried.
It is no ordinary rock to which Mecca owes its first place standing. The original intact stone was the only thing Adam managed to grab onto when he and his wife were unceremoniously tufted out of Paradise.
This concrete (no pun intended) piece of heaven whose provenance is confirmed in secondary accounts of the life and times of the first man (Allah makes no mention of this rock in five recollections of Adam in Paradise, up to and including his expulsion) figures also in Islamic traditions relating to the Flood.
Oct 29 - A Dispute Over the Penultimate Rock
Oct 28 - A Testament to Arab Hospitality
Oct 27 - Veiled Extortions
Sex, honour, shame and blackmail in an online world
A BBC investigation has found that thousands of young women in conservative societies across North Africa, the Middle East, and South Asia are being shamed or blackmailed with private and sometimes sexually explicit images.
In Saudi Arabia, the problem is so serious that the religious police have set up a special unit to pursue blackmailers and to help women who are being threatened. In 2014 the then head of the religious police, Dr Abdul Latif al-Sheikh, told a Saudi newspaper, "We receive hundreds of calls every day from women who are being blackmailed."
BBC News, Oct 27, 2016
It all starts innocently enough; a young girl online agrees to remove her hijab to show her hair to her boyfriend or someone she trusts. Flattery will then be followed by a request to see more. It does not matter how much or how little she reveals, the end result will be blackmail.
If she has no money or valuables of her own or that she can pilfer and pass on to her extortionists, the request then moves on to the truly pornographic – unless, of course, this was always the intent as is often the case.
That the Saudi religious police will now seek out and prosecute the extortionists, not the girls, could be a watershed moment.
It bears shouting for the well-meaning but clueless women who chose to wear the hijab in solidarity with women who should know better: THE VEIL DOES NOT EMPOWER WOMEN, IT EMPOWERS MEN!
Women would be wise to discard this obscene relic from Assyrian times (see Make Like An Assyrian - Sept 23) which is responsible for so much grief courtesy of a middle-aged man with spousal management difficulties who made it mandatory for his assortment of mostly young wives, concubines and slave-girls and which they have thoughtlessly adopted as a sign of piety.
Oct 26 - A Blow Against Christians, Fun and a Balanced Education
At least 12 people have been killed in an attack [on the Kenyan border town of Mandera] by Somalia-based militant Islamist group al-Shabab.
The target was a guesthouse hosting members of a theatre group composed of university students who were in the town for performances in schools.
It is the latest in a spate of deadly attacks targeting Christians in the mainly Muslim region...
Many of the Christians are skilled workers from other parts of Kenya, making a vital contribution to hospitals and schools... if they are driven out, public services will worsen.
BBC News, Oct 25, 2016
In its attack on Christians in predominantly Muslim areas bordering Somalia, Al-Shabab is not only reminding believers there about Allah's warning about associating with Christians, but protecting the believers from Hell's fire.
By seeking through mass-murder to convince non-Muslims it's either leave or die, they remove what the Koran considers a corrupting influence which enjoys mixing fun and devotion and an education not obsessed with scriptures.
Western Civilisation is very much defined by the pursuit of empirical knowledge. Islam would drown everything that defines us as a civilization in a sea of revealed truths (immutable facts communicated to a mortal by a god) which you believe or die.
Oct 25 - Slavery: A Face
A Yazidi woman who was tortured and raped by Islamic State (IS) group militants has won a human rights award.
Iraqi activist Nadia Murad was awarded the Vaclav Havel Human Rights Prize by the Council of Europe.
Miss Murad became the face of a campaign to free the Yazidi people and stop human trafficking after escaping IS in November 2014.
The 23-year-old had been captured and enslaved three months earlier along with about 5,000 women and girls...
During her months in captivity, she was bought and sold several times, and subjected to sexual and physical abuse at the hands of the jihadists.
BBC News Oct 11, 2016
Slavery, as Islamic State has demonstrated, is not a discredited barbaric custom but an integral part of an Islamic way of life.It is a way of life sanctioned by divine decrees like those found in the Koran (see Slavery: Scriptures - Oct 23) and proclaimed by hundreds of millions in daily devotions.
Oct 24 - Slavery: As Good As It Gets
Narrated Abu Burda's father:
Allah's Apostle said "Three persons will have a double reward:
1. A Person from the people of the scriptures who believed in his prophet (Jesus or Moses) and then believed in the Prophet Muhammad (i .e. has embraced Islam).
2. A slave who discharges his duties to Allah and his master.
3. A master of a woman-slave who teaches her good manners and educates her in the best possible way (the religion) and manumits her and then marries her."
A master who marries a slave to whom he has granted her short-lived freedom not only gets to continue to benefit from her free labour as his wife, but can now have sex on-demand, it's in the marriage contract.
It doesn't get much better than that in the here-and-now, and he will still be entitled to double the reward when he goes to that ostensibly better place.
As to the freed, now married former slave, the flogging may be less severe, and she no longer risks a whipping or being sold for having sex out of wedlock.
Narrated Abdullah bin Zam'a:
The Prophet said, "None of you should flog his wife as he flogs a slave and then have sexual intercourse with her in the last part of the day."
Narrated Abu Huraira and Zaid bin Khalid:
The Prophet said, "If a slave-girl (Ama) commits illegal sexual intercourse, scourge her; if she does it again, scourge her again; if she repeats it, scourge her again."
The narrator added that on the third or the fourth offence, the Prophet said, "Sell her even for a hair rope."
For her too, it's as good as it gets.
Happy Days ....
Oct 23 - Slavery: Scriptures
Dozens of Yazidi women enslaved by ISIS moved from Mosul [to Raqqa] ... In June, a UN report estimated that ISIS holds about 3,500 slaves and that the terror group continues to subject women and children to sexual violence, particularly in the form of sexual slavery.
CNN Oct 20, 2016
Any study beside that of the Quran is a distraction, except the Hadith and jurisprudence in the religion. Knowledge is what He narrated to us, and anything other than that is the whispering of the Satan.
Al-Qaeda's credo as stated in the December 2000 edition of the Taliban's English-language magazine The Islamic Emirate.
Oct 22 - Those Telltale Hairs Again
ISIS rounded up and killed 284 men and boys as Iraqi-led coalition forces closed in on Mosul, the terror group's last stronghold in Iraq, an Iraqi intelligence source told CNN ...
ISIS dumped the corpses in a mass grave at the defunct College of Agriculture in northern Mosul, the intelligence source said. The victims -- some of them children -- were all shot, said the source,
CNN Oct 22, 2016
When the civilized dig up these mass graves and identify the dead, they may find that no male children as defined in Sharia law were massacred, unless circumstances did not allow for the younger candidates for slaughter to be examined before being put to death.
Islamic State does not do anything that the one they seek to emulate in everything would not have done. When God's Messenger ordered the execution of the males of the Banu Qurayzah, they made certain that none were put to death that had yet to show the telltale hairs.
I was among the captives of Banu Qurayzah. They examined us, and those who had begun to grow hair (pubes) were killed, and those who had not were not killed. I was among those who had not grown hair.
Oct 20 - Trump Echoes the Prophet's Warning about Women in Power
During the last presidential debate Donald Trump railed against electing the first female President of the United States, saying "it would be a disaster"; echoing a legendary prognosticator's warning:
Narrated Abu Bakra:
During the battle of Al-Jamal, Allah benefited me with a Word (I heard from the Prophet).
When the Prophet heard the news that the people of Persia had made the daughter of Khosrau their Queen (ruler), he said, "Never will succeed such a nation as makes a woman their ruler."
Oct 19 - Trump and Allah: The Trouble With Eternal Adolescents
Sometimes I say I have two boys at home. I have my young son and I have my husband.
Melania Trump during an interview with Anderson Cooper on CNN, Monday Oct 17
Eternal Adolescent: "an older person whose emotional life has remained at an adolescent level" Wiki, "a phenomenon often associated with pathological narcissism." Dr. Sam Vaknin
Expect the unexpected when you put your faith in an eternal adolescent.
Oct 18 - I've read your book, and I'm voting for Trump!
A woman told me the other day that she had read my book and that she was voting for Trump because he was going to stop the Muslims.
Both flattered and dismayed, I asked, "which book?"
"The first one," she said.
"You mean, The Fractured Nation Interviews?"
"Yes, that's the one."
She went on to explain that she did not care how many women accused Donald of whatever, because that was not what was important. The important thing she said, "he is going to do something about the Muslims."
She was not a young woman; in her seventies would be my guess, quite charming in many ways. There was really no point in trying to clarify what I meant when, on a prayer and a "I love you", she ended the conversation.
The interview with the Ayatollah, in particular, was not meant to warn against Muslim immigration, but that too much accommodation and too little integration would lead to ghettoization which could only mean trouble.
I hope to clarify what I mean in the sequel which may never be completed.
Having said that, Hillary Clinton's failure to even acknowledge what many decent people see as a clear and present danger may cost her the White House.
Oct 17 - The Battle for Mosul and That of Medina
Battle for Mosul: Operation to retake Iraqi city from IS begins
BBC News Oct 17, 2016
At Medina it was a ditch which completely stymied the opposition. At Mosul, Islamic State is counting on ditches and tunnels.
To date, Islamic State has favoured mass executions to expulsions as a way of dealing with any potential threats from within and this has to be the most worrisome for the trapped population.
Oct 16 - Dabiq Captured - End Times Postponed
Turkish-backed rebels have captured the symbolically important Syrian town of Dabiq from the Islamic State group.
BBC News October 26, 2016
It's official, for now, Islamic State will not be the trigger for Allah's Judgement Day Extravaganza whose main stage will be Dabiq unless, Erdogan, not Baghdadi, is the one to usher in a world-wide caliphate following a period of violence, death and destruction which will break the biblical scale.
Turkey's new assertiveness and Erdogan's new-found will to do away, in a time honoured tradition, with the current pretender to the leadership of the believers, could be a sign that he is under the impression that it is he who is expected to create the conditions that will prompt Allah to come down to Dabiq for the ultimate one-night-stand.
Since the Coup, Erdogan's rule has very much taken on the trappings of a caliphate.
All caliphates have sought to extend their dominion – the last being that of the Ottoman's – to encompass all of humanity to make Allah's dream of a religion which triumphs over all others and brings peace on earth.
Once Paradise, Islamic style, has been achieved on earth by the "blood, sweat and tears" of his minions, the Almighty will deign come down at Dabiq and, like a bully who tramples the sand castle built by a child on a beach, destroy all they have accomplished, for which He will take credit, and they will be thankful. Go figure!
Oct 15 - Death's Pregnancy/Suckling Pause
As reported by the BBC, it may only be a matter of days before Iran hangs 22 year old Zeinab Sekaanvand, convicted of killing an alleged abusive husband, now that she has given birth to a stillborn baby.
Her death sentence could perhaps have been delayed a further two years if her child had not been born dead.
The precedent that a pregnant woman should not be put to death until she has given birth and suckled her offspring for Allah's mandated two years was established by God's greatest and last spokesperson when he delayed the stoning of a pregnant woman, who admitted to having had sex with a man other than her husband.
Remember, authentic sayings or acts of God's Messenger, the so-called hadiths are incontrovertible legal precedents if they do not contradict the even more incontrovertible Koran.
One of the more wretched sentences pronounced by the Prophet of Mercy:
Malik related to me from Yaqub ibn Zayd ibn Talha from his father Zayd ibn Talha that Abdullah ibn Abi Mulayka informed him that a woman came to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and informed him that she had committed adultery and was pregnant.
The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said to her, "Go away until you give birth."
When she had given birth, she came to him. The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said to her, "Go away until you have suckled and weaned the baby."
When she had weaned the baby, she came to him. He said, "Go and entrust the baby to someone."
She entrusted the baby to someone and then came to him. He gave the order and she was stoned.
The preceding hadiths, or portions thereof, may be quoted as proof that the man considered the embodiment of the perfect human being, whose every action must be emulated as closely as possible, cared for the welfare of children because he did not have their poor mothers horribly put to death until they no longer needed her breast milk.
Oct 14 - Trump v. Stoynoff: Who Would God Believe and Why
[In December 2005] I traveled to Mar-a-Lago to interview the couple for a first-wedding-anniversary feature story.
Our photo team shot the Trumps on the lush grounds of their Florida estate, and I interviewed them about how happy their first year of marriage had been.
When we took a break for the then-very-pregnant Melania to go upstairs and change wardrobe for more photos, Donald wanted to show me around the mansion. There was one “tremendous” room in particular, he said, that I just had to see.
We walked into that room alone, and Trump shut the door behind us. I turned around, and within seconds he was pushing me against the wall and forcing his tongue down my throat … I was grateful when Trump’s longtime butler burst into the room a minute later, as I tried to unpin myself.
Natasha Stoynoff, People Magazine Reporter
The Trump camp has already denied the accusation. If you were God, who would you believe?
For the likely answer, we only have to look to Allah's account of the attempted seduction of Joseph, son of Jacob.
Based on God's simple, straightforward standard of proof and what He condemns in His Koran as a propensity of "guile" in females, there is only one possible conclusion: Stoynoff is lying about what actually happened.
Like the governor's wife, she probably tried to seduce the righteous Republican candidate for the Presidency and might have had her way with him if the butler had not walked in – and now would pretend otherwise.
It is in a female's nature to be devious as Her creator makes clear, and He should know. And, of course, there is the unsayable proof of Trump's unruffled clothing, as far as we know, back or front.
Oct 13 - The Politics of God and Donald Trump
The only woman mentioned by the name in the Koran is Mary. Of all the people God could have chosen to deny that Jesus was His son, the most trustworthy had to be his mother. That was reason enough to make her the exception.
Of all the people the Trump campaign could have sought out to deny that what the republican candidate for the Presidency said he did was not sexual assault, the most believable had to be women. The only surprise was that so many came forward to defend Donald's Trumps actions without being asked.
A significant number of women will not vote for another woman. It may have to do with an intractable low self-esteem. Whatever the reason, enough of them voting for Trump means trouble for Clinton.
Oct 12 - Trump: Assessing the Assessor
"Gracious and a gentleman" is how Kellyanne Conway, Trumps Campaign manager,the most prominent of the now ubiquitous female TV apologist, described her client on CNN after the release of the infamous bragger's groping tape.
The Prophet's assessment of women who would come to the defence of a man, whom Glenn Beck described as immoral, lewd, and depraved is probably the more accurate.
Narrated abu Said al-Khudri:
The Prophet said, "Isn’t the witness of a woman equal half that of a man?"
The women said, "Yes."
He said: "This is because of the deficiency of the woman’s mind."
Oct 11 - The Example of the Perfect Human Being Lives On
Girl under 15 married every seven seconds, says Save the Children
The UN children's agency, Unicef, estimates that the number of women married in childhood will grow from 700 million today to around 950 million by 2030.
The Save the Children's report coincides with International Day of the Girl on Tuesday.
BBC News, Oct 11
Oct 10 - Sweden's Other Export
Sweden is a peaceful democratic state that has long been a safe haven for those fleeing conflict. Yet many young people whose families took refuge there are now turning their back on the country. More than 300 people have gone to fight in Syria and Iraq, making Sweden per capita one of the biggest exporters of jihadists in Europe.
BBC News October 7
Canada, like Sweden, is a significant net exporter of terrorism. By not only tolerating but subsidizing the teaching of a violent anti-Western ideology to the children of immigrants in their respective countries under the guise of religious freedom they have allowed a situation to develop where they are now faced with a choice of favouring people getting killed close to home or farther afield.
Looking for a higher education in extremism, England, where Sweden's first suicide was radicalized, seems to be the place.
More tolerance means more people killed over there, less tolerance and the risk of terror attacks at home by home-grown radicals increases accordingly.
France let it happen first, and then tried to avoid the hard decision by implementing a variation of a successful cold-war tactic, that of containment: it declared its public school system and many public institutions and public spaces god-free zones until the contained came to their senses.
The containment of Islamic extremism within national borders proved impossible, and in trying to have it both ways, all the French managed to do was to get more people killed at home and abroad.
Unthinking tolerance has given rise to a generation of home-grown extremists in countries where we least expected it. For now, except for France, they seem more interested in killing people over there. But that won't last according to the experts.
Can intolerance of the type we see in Saudi Arabia where other religions are concerned save future generations and Western Civilization? Maybe, but at what cost.
The third modern condition where believers are required to fight you to the death if necessary.
3. To remove any government that will not allow the free practice of Islam within its borders.
Perhaps we should simply concede defeat and accept a regulated systematic slaughter of Allah's enemies where children and women will be spared as was done when the Prophet was in charge (which Islamic State would emulate) and avoid a messy bloody war.
Oct 9 - Dabiq and Other End-Times Nonsense to Die For
"The Syrian town of Dabiq, which Turkish-backed Syrian rebels are seeking to wrest back from so-called Islamic State (IS), has figured heavily in the jihadist group's propaganda since 2014 and is the name of its English-language magazine."
Oct 8 - The Advantages of a Petrified Legal Tradition
Oct 7 - Stoning Women as a Sanctity! Insane is What They Are!
A writer and human rights activist has been sentenced to six years' imprisonment in Iran for penning a story about stoning.
Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee faces years behind bars even though her writing has not been published. She was convicted of "insulting Islamic sanctities" and "spreading propaganda against the system".
Victims of stoning are executed by having rocks thrown at them until they are dead. In Iran, most are women accused of adultery.
Ms Ebrahimi Iraee's work describes the emotional reaction of a young woman who watches the film The Stoning of Soraya M - which tells the true story of a young woman stoned to death - and is so enraged that she burns a copy of the Koran.
BBC News, Oct 6, 2016
Grown men throwing rocks at girls and women buried up to their shoulders in sand until they are dead as a sanctity?
Alice's bizarro world just keeps getting weirder with an increasingly implacable brutal punishment being meted out to those who refuse to put up with the insanity.
Oct 6 - The Danger In Not Being Allowed To Hold Hands
Nigerian actress Rahama Sadau sorry for 'offensive hug'
A leading Nigerian actress, who was banned from the Hausa-language film industry because of her "immoral" behaviour, has apologised.
Rahama Sadau's appearance in a music video "hugging and cuddling" Nigerian pop star Classiq offended some people.
Ms Sadau said sorry to those she upset, but said her actions were "innocuous".
Hausa films are popular in the mostly Muslim northern Nigeria where it is taboo for men and women to hold hands in public.
BBC News October 4, 2016
Oct 5 - God's Editor II
Creating a coherent narrative by bringing grammar and sentence structure to bear on what was revealed to an illiterate and recalled by a mostly untutored audience was one challenge faced by Zayd ibn Thabit.
Another was separating genuine revealed truths, immutable facts communicated to a mortal by a god, from what could have been construed as God's Messenger adlibbing from what he already knew.
Was the Prophet, getting caught up in the moment, revealing more than he had been told?
To put an end to any speculation for all times, what God's mouthpiece is reported to have said which did not make it into the Koran later scholars elevated to the equivalent of revealed truths like those you find in the Koran.
The doctrine that Mohammed was ‘implicitly’ inspired in all his sayings was due simply to the necessity of safeguarding his infallibility as the interpreter of the Koran.
If it were held that he was inspired in those sayings which interpret the Koran but not in other sayings which refer to the trivial events of daily life, the difficulty of distinguishing between them would arise; and further, as we have seen, the legists needed an infallible source for precisely all these trivial details.
Any possibility of questioning whether in fact this or that solution was inspired had to be avoided at all costs, and so the danger was parried by declaring all his acts and sayings inspired.
Mohammedanism, H. A. R. Gibb, Oxford University Press, 1962
Oct 4 - God's Editor I
Pierre Berton said, "all writers need an editor", and that has been my experience.
An outstanding appraisal of my first attempt to write a guide to the Koran, which included the entire Book, ended with the critic deploring the typos, in a book he rated worthy of a Ph. D.
It does not matter that the latest edition has fixed that shortcoming, the damage has been done. You seldom get a second chance to make a good first impression.
British historian Thomas Carlyle described the edited words of God as “a confused, jumble, crude, incondite, endless iteration …” and Edward Gibbon as “toilsome a reading as I ever undertook; a wearisome confused jumble.”
Still, it's a best seller and has been for more than a thousand years.
Oct 3 - Chess, the Hijab and the Easily Distracted
In my posting Smart Women I speculated about, what if Allah, to alleviate the boredom of waiting thousands of years in a hole in the ground for Judgement Day, had provided His greatest and last spokesperson with in-the-ground cable or satellite television reception.
When you read the following, assume that He has.
Female chess players forced to wear hijab as governing body awards world female championship to Iran
The Daily Telegraph, Sept 29, 2016
The Almighty, his spokesperson revealed, expected women to be covered from head to toe or remain behind a screen when in the presence of men to whom they were not married or closely related.
God's Messenger was a cerebral diviner of the future and the past and a fine strategist, so it's quite likely that, with not much else to do, he will be watching the televised chess matches. Better for all concerned, men included, that players cover their hair.
For the dynamic duo, the sight of a single strand of a woman’s hair could cause a man to get all excited about you know what.
We would not want men tuning in to get turned on. That would be even more demeaning for women, I would think, than having to cover their hair with a piece a cloth because men are easily distracted.
Oct 2 - The Fiction of DDS Becomes Reality
A teenage blogger has been handed a prison sentence after he was found guilty by a Singapore court of "wounding religious feelings".
Amos Yee, 17, will spend six weeks in jail for deliberately posting videos and comments critical of Christianity and Islam.
Judge Ong Hian Sun told the court that Yee's actions could "generate social unrest".
BBC News Sept 29, 2016
It was only a matter of time, but I never expected it would be Singapore to be the first, not only to confirm the existence of Dogmatic Distress Syndrome, but to prosecute the cause to avoid an epidemic.
Sept 27 - The Root Cause of Islamophobia
… if you look at the spectrum and understand that 90 percent of us are traditionalists and have an affinity for Christianity, Judaism, I mean we’re all the three monotheistic religions, us being the younger one, and that our faith decrees the understanding of Judaism and Christianity, then we understand where we all are.
It’s that misperception with the takfiri ("a Sunni Muslim who accuses another Muslim of apostasy. The accusation itself is called takfir, derived from the word kafir" Wiki) jihadists, that’s where the fight is. And they represent probably two percent of Sunni Islam.
That’s where the problem is. And if we’re being pushed into the corner through Islamophobia, that’s where the danger is, where we as allies, are not understood.
King Abdullah II of Jordan during an interview on 60 Minutes broadcast on Sept 26, 2016.
Muslims' understanding of Christianity and Judaism is skewed by the Koran's pejorative assessment of both faiths.
In that context, the king's affirmation that traditionalists, those who live their lives according to the Koran and the sayings and example of the Prophet, have an "affinity" for the other two earlier "monotheistic religions" has to be taken with a grain of salt. Especially where Christianity is concerned, the teachings of Muhammad and Jesus being polar opposites
As to the King's affirmation that Islamophobia is playing into the hands of the jihadists, he is correct. But, whose fault is it when anyone who dares to present evidence that Islam is not the religion it pretends to be is brutally murdered or threatened with death?
A religion which invites its followers to kill would-be reformers and sceptics does not inspire confidence but fear i.e. islamophobia.
In allowing the prosecution of people like Nahid Hattar, who was later murdered, like so many other leaders of the faithful, the King is spreading what he rails against.
Sept 26 - The Fault Is Also In Our Governments
A Jordanian writer charged with offending Islam after allegedly sharing a satirical cartoon on his Facebook page has been killed.
Nahid Hattar, a Christian, was hit by three bullets outside the court in the capital Amman where he was standing trial, state news agency Petra said...
The writer was detained in Aug for 15 days on charges of insulting God. The cartoon he shared depicts a bearded man lying in bed with two women and smoking, asking God to bring him a drink.
Mr Hattar was attacked on social media for being anti-Islam.
He said he had not meant to cause offence and wanted to expose radical Islamists' view of heaven.
BBC News, Sept 25, 2016
If the Jordanian government had been supportive of the truth instead of prosecuting the messenger, would it have turned out differently? Perhaps.
Keeping our fingers crossed.
Sept 25 - The Belly Dancer and the Mosque
A singer has apologised for belly dancing in front of a mosque in Tatarstan, one of Russia's largest Muslim regions, after criticism from religious leaders.
Rezeda Ganiullina filmed a music video in front of the White Mosque in the town of Bolgar, performing her song My Soul while clad in a bejewelled, midriff-baring outfit.
That didn't please the Mufti of Tatarstan, Kamil-khazrat Samigullin.
"A mosque is not a place for dancing," he's quoted as saying on the local Evening Kazan website.
BBC Sept 23, 2016
If she performed her dance more than a stone's throw from the mosque in which we can assume there were believers engrossed in worship of the one-and-only god; or better still, more than a stone's throw from the Musalla (the praying area outside a mosque) then she did not desecrate anything. No more than a dog or an ass passing by not close enough to breach the Prophet's proclaimed perimeter.
Ikrimah reported on the authority of Ibn Abbas, saying:
I think the Apostle of Allah said: '"When one of you prays without a sutrah (a barrier), a dog, an ass, a pig, a Jew, a Magian, and a woman cut off his prayer, but it will suffice if they pass in front of him at a distance of over a stone's throw.'”
Abu Dawud 2.704
The things which annul the prayers were mentioned before me. They said, Prayer is annulled by a dog, a donkey and a woman (if they pass in front of the praying people).
I said [to Muhammad], "You have made us (i.e. women) dogs ...
Under Sharia law, a believer is authorized to use deadly force to stop anyone from interfering with his devotions.
On the flip side, a believer who does not perform the prayers exactly as the Prophet demonstrated, without a good reason e.g. physical limitations, risks execution.
Narrated Abdullah bin Masud:
The Prophet recited Suratan-Najm at Mecca and prostrated while reciting it and those who were with him did the same except an old man who took a handful of small stones or earth and lifted it to his forehead and said, "This is sufficient for me."
Later on, I saw him killed as a non-believer.
Sept 23 - Make Like An Assyrian
The bombastic Assyrians, in 1200 BC, almost two thousand years before Allah and His Messenger came to the same conclusion, and for more or less the same reason, decreed that some women must not be seen in public unless veiled.
For the Assyrians, it was so that women of a certain class would not be mistaken for prostitutes or slave-girls.
Amanda Foreman, writer and narrator of the BBC documentary The Ascent of Woman, in the first episode, introduces us to this first ever recorded law requiring women to be veiled.
... married women, widows, Assyrian women must not go out on the street with their head uncovered. Daughters of the upper classes must be veiled with a veil, an abaya body cloak or a long robe.
A concubine who goes out on the street with her mistress must veil herself. A prostitute must not veil herself; her head must be uncovered.
Any man who sees a veiled prostitute should arrest her. She is to receive 50 lashes with a bamboo cane.
Any man who sees a veiled slave-girl is to arrest her and bring her to court. Her ears will be cut off and the man who arrested her may take her clothes.
She tells us that, for Islam, the veil was also to set some women apart (in this instance the wives of the Prophet are assumed), and only later was it widely accepted by believing women as a sign of piety.
Just like in the time of the Assyrians, the veil advertises that you are better than them. Then, it was prostitutes and slave-girls. Today, it is any woman who does not care to dress up like an upper-class Assyrian snob.
Sept 22 - Mustard in Scriptures and On the Battlefield
ISIS suspected of mustard attack against US and Iraqi troops
CNN, Sept 21, 2016
It's called mustard gas because of its color and odor which resembles that of the mustard plant. Only the mustard seed gets a mention in Islamic scriptures and it is as a measure of one's faith, and what that will get you.
Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri:
Allah's Apostle said, "When the people of Paradise have entered Paradise, and the people of the Fire have entered the Fire, Allah will say. 'Take out (of the Fire) whoever has got faith equal to a mustard seed in his heart.'
They will come out, and by that time they would have burnt and became like coal, and then they will be thrown into the river of Al-Hayyat (life) and they will spring up just as a seed grows on the bank of a rainwater stream."
The Prophet said, "Don't you see that the germinating seed comes out yellow and twisted?"
The idea that the punishment must fit the crime finds its fullest and most faithful expression under Islamic Talion Law i.e. law of retaliation where the punishment is the crime committed, but in reverse e.g. an eye for eye.
You have a variation of this concept in the unwitting accomplice to your misdeeds in the here-and-now dishing out the punishment in the Hereafter. For example, forget to pay the religious tax on your camels and they will give you a good stomping on Judgment Day.
Narrated Abu Huraira:
... Allah's Apostle added, "If the owner of camels does not pay their Zakat, then, on the Day of Resurrection those camels will come to him and will strike his face with their hooves ..."
Wouldn't it be something if Allah anticipated the use of mustard gas, and to show His less than wholehearted approval of its use, has His Messenger recite the mustard seed analogy to remind those associated with its use that they may get into heaven, but will bear a strange resemblance to the infamous plant.
Sept 21 - A McLuhanish Take on the Banality of Evil in the Age of the Internet
Hannah Arendt's evil, in the person of Adolf Eichmann, was meek and clean shaven, leading to her memorable observation about the "banality of evil".
Islamic State's horrific videos, for a time, completely obliterated the stereotype. That is, until the medium which made voyeurism respectable became the message and it's the message, in its repetition and accessibility, which has become banal, the messenger all but forgotten.
The medium, to borrow a quote from Jean-Louis Comolli, "can only celebrate this descent into Hell."
Sept 20 - Modern Explosives are Un-Islamic
Bombing suspect captured live after shootout.
CNN Sept 20, 2016
"Every innovation is a misguidance and every misguidance goes to Hell fire." said the Prophet.
Stones and your left hand as demonstrated by the man himself is still the preferred method of the Salafists of Islamic State, and their Wahabi cousins in Saudi Arabia for doing what needs to be done after answering the call of nature, toilet paper not having been invented when God's Messenger issued his edict against innovation.
It is unfortunate that terrorists who tend to be adherents of one or the other of the nearly identical theologies don't show the same respect for the wishes of their Prophet in their use of modern explosives and weapons.
Sept 18 - Microterrorism Comes to America
Islamic State says its 'soldier' carried out stabbing at Minnesota mall that injured nine
The Associated Press Sept 18, 2016
Sept 17 - Twits and Tweets
The women tweeting for their freedom in Saudi Arabia
In Saudi Arabia, every woman has a male guardian -- often a father or husband, sometimes a brother or son -- who has the power to make a range of critical decisions on their behalf.
"I'm a dead soul in a living body and I hope that doesn't happen to my little sister," Sara (not her real name), a Saudi woman, tells CNN.
Sara is one of a growing number of Saudi women who are challenging the country's male guardianship system using social media (#TogetherToEndMaleGuardianship) …
CNN Sept 16, 2016
A tweet I would like to respond to:
We are entrusted with raising the next generation but you can't trust us with ourselves. It does not make any sense.
Rania (not her real name)
No Rania, it makes a whole lot of Islamic sense.
The embodiment of the perfect human being said that females are twits. An affirmation with which the god he spoke for wholeheartedly agreed.
No reasonable man or caring deity would leave the raising of the next generation to twits. You should know better, unless you have yet to experience the joys of motherhood and fulfilling your responsibility to expose your children to the most violent, degrading hate-filled religious text known to man and scriptures that shout FEMALES ARE TWITS, proving the Prophet's and Allah's point.
Mothers and Men in a Nutshell
Women are told: The future of society is in your hands, so listen to the men. The men hear: The future of society is in your hands, so make sure the women listen to you.
Brian Murphy. The Root of Wild Madder: Chasing the History, Mystery, and Lore of the Persian Carpet. Simon & Shuster, 2005
Sept 16 - Salafism: The New Norm
From another interview in Le Point with Suleiman Mourad, professor of Islamic history and religion at Smith College, Massachusetts, about his book, The Mosaic of Islam.
Salafisation (sic) of the minds relentlessly marches on …
These people believe that Islam is superior and should be imposed on other religions, justifying their intolerance. They also think that only they are good Muslims, which excludes not only the Sufis and Shiites, but also Sunnis considered too westernized.
... the reformist discourse exists, but it is inaudible, or threatened, not only by the Islamists but also by moderate Muslims who consider them [the reformers] traitors.
They are accused of trying to reform an allegedly perfect religion, and of siding with the enemy, the West ...
And who is the West listening to, not the reformers, whom they consider not representative of the majority of Muslims
Echoes of Houda-Pépin
I am from Morocco, a country open [to the world] and tolerant. When I was growing up, I had Jewish, Christians and Muslim playmates; we went to school together we celebrated each other's [religious] holidays. I bear no grudges, having lived Islam in harmony.
I only got to know what fundamentalist Islam was when I came to Canada. It is here that I got to know the most intolerant, the best organized, the most structured and the best financed groups, with means and worldwide connections. It was quite a shock.
Nonetheless, the vast majority of Muslims try hard to integrate; their children do well in school, they have a future. This is not well-known because the fundamentalists have the upper-hand (control the message) and have the ear of the media.
They (the fundamentalists) have become the tree which hides the forest.
From an interview with the former Muslim member of the National Assembly.
Sept 15 - Who's Teaching the Imams?
"An unprecedented inquiry into how a proselytizing state exports the most rigorous and intolerant version of Sunni Islam, which inspires the worst jihadists of Al Qaeda and Daesh." wrote Le Point, France's Time magazine, about Pierre Conesa's book "Dr. Saud and Mr. Jihad (my translation)
The former senior official with the French Defence Ministry, in an interview with Le Point, explained that the Saudi strategy not only involves spending huge sums of money – more than twice what the Soviets ever spent in any given year on spreading communism beyond its borders – but in the training of imams in Saudi colleges and universities.
Zealots, who will then go out and preach "a sectarian, racist, anti-Semitic, homophobic, misogynistic theology which psychologically prepares the faithful, to, on a moment's notice, deal violently with those it damns as 'miscreants'."
The most notorious institution, he explains, is that of the University of Medina, where, in return for full scholarships, room and board... graduates promise to do their best to indoctrinate the masses back home in Wahhabi theology.
Fort McMurray's imam polished his credentials at a Saudi university, that of Riyadh, therefore there was no explicit undertaking on his part to spread Wahhabi theology. He should be given benefit of the doubt as he requested in an interview with the Globe and Mail (you will find an excerpt here).
Nonetheless, instead of screening new immigrants, we should perhaps make sure that when they get here, old hatred and prejudices are not re-enforced.
Surely, we can all agree that Saudi values are not Canadian values. Then again, we did sell them billions of dollars' worth of mobile killing platforms.
About twenty years ago the Canadian International Development Agency, with McGill University, looked at establishing a program in Canada for prospective imams, who might otherwise have gone to Saudi Arabia, to teach them a kinder more tolerant version of Islam, not the rabid Wahhabi theology.
Most Canadian imams are foreign trained or invited imams from Muslim countries sponsored by communities of the faithful e.g. Ottawa.
The Canadian government may want to revisit the idea with a view of training its imams so there will be some assurance that they will not, even inadvertently, spread values that are inherently alien to ours.
The author also refers to the length countries will go to secure the goodwill of the unabashed preeminent exporter of terror and thereby gain a commercial advantage, even if deals with the Saudis are never as lucrative as promised.
In 1979, the French government accepted that non-Muslim gendarmes (GIGN, "National Gendarmerie Intervention Group") convert to Islam so that their presence would not defile the precinct of the Ka'ba before being allowed to assist the Saudis "to liberate the Great Mosque which had been taken over by radical Islamist students who denounced the corruption of the regime."
Sept 14 - The Saudi/Islamic State Rivalry: What the Shiites have to do with it?
From Le Point's interview with Pierre Conesa author of Dr. Saud and Mr. Jihad (my translation), Editions Robert Laffont.
In the West, we are constantly reminded that this country [Saudi Arabia] is our friend and our best customer …
For years we sold them weapons they never used ... until the war in Yemen where they have shown a total lack of restraint in their use.
Between Shia radicalism and Sunni radicalism, we did not have to choose. But we did ...
Saudi Arabia did not create Daesh; it created its parent, Salafism. Both [Wahhabis & Salafists] are into public beheadings, and hate the Shiites.
When Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi proclaimed a caliphate, it directly challenged the Saudis.
The self-appointed caretakers of the holy places have no connection to the Prophet. So when someone like al-Baghdadi proclaims himself Caliph, it is a challenge to the Saudis.
The Saudis don't care to confront Daesh; they are in competition with it for influence. The competition is about showing who is better at protecting Sunni interests, and that rivalry is reflected in their attacks on Shiites.
[The intervention in Yemen] allowed Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries to withdraw their aircraft in the war against Daesh.
Why has Saudi Arabia committed its entire air force to fighting the lesser threat that is Yemen?
How is it that we, the West, are practically the only ones fighting Islamic State...
Daesh is a practical application of Salafism. Its Dr. Frankenstein is Saudi Arabia.
We are in the schizophrenic position where we fight radicalism while protecting its father. In the novel by Mary Shelley, the monster disappears with its creator.
You can always hope.
Sept 13 - Sociopaths and Animal Cruelty
Psychopath and sociopaths tend to be cruel to animals and will show absolutely no remorse.
Yesterday, believers around the world celebrated the festival of Eid al-Adha. It is a celebration of Abraham's willingness to sacrifice, on God's command, the son he had with Hagar.
On this sacred holiday, on par with the feast of Eid al-Fitr which marks the end of Ramadan, millions of farm animals are horribly slaughtered, not only in halal certified abattoirs, but in the open, often in front of children.
Could there be any connection with exposing children to this deliberate viciousness and the casual, assured way sympathizers and recruits for Islamic State and other terrorist organizations commit cold-blooded murders?
I have asked this question before, and for good reason.
It is both a cliché and a truism that children are the future. Do you want them, as they grow up, to abhor violence or revel in it? Accustom children to animal cruelty and you risk making them immune to the violence done to human beings with all the horrors that entails.
Sept 12 - Lying To Those Who Know Better
It was hoped that an Australian "how-to guide to fight militant propaganda" would be an improvement over a Canadian handbook on how to combat youth radicalization.
No such luck!
While Undermining Violent Extremist Narratives in South East Asia does exhibit a more professorial, academic approach, i.e. does not make for light reading, the strategy is the same: lie to those who know better, and hope for the best.
1. Reinforce the concept of jihad as an internal struggle (“greater jihad” or al-jihad al-akbar), not a physical or violent one.
2. Emphasize that Islam is tolerant and accepting of all people within communities, including all ethnicities and other religions.
The Australian Guide, on the same page, recommends who to call to make the lies more believable.
... refute and dismantle the religious and ideological elements of the violent extremist narratives, utilizing religious texts and religious leaders to refute religious claims...
That is what we did, left it to religious leaders, and the result was the counter-productive United Against Terrorism which denies any connection between the violence perpetrated by Islamists and the Koran accusing those even intimate such a connection of being "loud-mouthed hate-mongers and sensational media headlines (sic) … [who] demonize Islam using the same cut-and-paste approach to the Quran to argue that Islam condones terrorism."
Early on, the Australian Guide, in a reference to the founders of Abu Sayef Group (ASG) in the Philippines does acknowledge that the Koran might have something to do with the violence in Allah's name, but that is about it.
Qadhafy Janjalani, references Surat At-Tawbah (29) and Surat Al-Anfal (39) to justify the concept of violent jihad, including against non-Muslims as well as those who “Claimed themselves to be Muslims” and civilians.
If the Koran is part of the problem, these guides would be a good place to have a straightforward talk about why the Book is so good at what it does. But that would reveal them to be the fraud that they are to people who are unfamiliar with Islamic scriptures.
Sept 11 - When Killing 2,996 IS Like Killing All of Mankind
In the history of the modern world, there probably was never a more representative sample of humanity than the nearly three thousand people who were brutally murdered today fifteen years ago.
They gave truth to a lie that was a snippet of verse 5:32 about "whoever kills a soul ... is like one who has killed the whole of mankind" which was repeated ad nausea in the days that followed their deaths by influential people who had to know better.
Sept 10 - The Anthropological Impact of the Hajj
Muhammad Atta, the leader of the 911 terrorists, is said to have done the Hajj twice, the last time in 1998. When he returned he "had grown a thick long beard, and, according to people who knew him 'seemed more serious and aloof.'"
With the beginning of the Hajj coinciding with the 15th anniversary of the 911 massacre, it is as good a time as any to ask if the two are related, even remotely.
Islam is a religion which in both its sacred text and in banal rituals promotes hatred and violence.
The ritual stoning of Satan every year at Mecca is not simply a re-enactment of a superstition… Its impact is anthropological.
It is a ceremony to which every Muslim is encourage to participate, and which sanctifies and encourages violence…
Le Figaro (my translation)
Sept 9 - Hajj Safety and Little Green Men
Hajj: Saudis stiffen security after crush deaths
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei accused the Saudi authorities of "murdering" pilgrims who were caught up in a deadly stampede during last year's Hajj ...
The stampede killed 2,426 people, according to an unofficial tally. The Saudi authorities, who say only 769 died, have made few details of the official investigation into the incident public.
BBC Sept 9, 2016
Last week, what was first thought to be a communication from extraterrestrials was detected.
It may be only a matter of time before we are visited by interstellar neighbours.
If they come in any great number and submit to the Will of Allah, not even my suggestions to improve Hajj safety while increasing the number of pilgrims which can be accommodated will make much difference, and the pilgrimage as a pillar of Islam will be discredited.
Unless, of course, the Koran's description of the Universe is correct, and what lies beyond the orbit of the moon is an illusion and we are truly alone in a universe whose size is an infinitesimal fraction of what science tells us it is.
Sept 8 - Girls! Listen Up! I Repeat! It's NOT Worth It!
Three women who were likely planning an "imminent and violent" attack were arrested near Paris on Thursday, French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said.
According to Cazaneuve, the women, whom he referred to as radicalized, were arrested in connection with gas cylinders found this week inside a car left in front of Notre Dame cathedral in Paris.
CNN Sept 8, 2016
Guys blowing themselves up and shredding or setting men, women and children on fire on a god's promise of an eternity of orgiastic sex with multiple partners including those famous female facsimiles, the infamous houris, makes more sense, in a ghastly sort of way, than it does for females who do the same thing.
What Allah offers women and teenaged girls for committing mass-murder in His Cause they can get here on earth with perhaps just a little more effort and a lot less pain. Unless, of course, her goal is to be joined in matrimony with someone who is already enjoying Allah's hospitality for doing what she plans to do.
Joining a boyfriend killed after committing an act of microterrorism seemed to have been the motivation of at least one of the woman arrested:
Sarah H, 23 intended to marry Larossi Abballa, just before he assassinated policeman Jean-Baptiste Salvaing and his wife Jessica Schneider a their home in Magnanville (Yvelines) last June.
Le Point, Sept 16, 2016