If Islam was explained to me in a pub
The Medium and the Message
Uzza: Muhammad was a very successful merchant and that is evident in the mercantile aspect of many of his sayings and example and in Allah’s revelations. An illiterate merchant would have been taken to the cleaners by the people he dealt with, but that is the miracle of Muhammad, the successful merchant and the most successful prophet of all times, if you believe in miracles. Muhammad told the angel Gabriel that he could not read, so the angel recited the Koran to him. But that is not the point I am trying to make.
Archie: Are you saying that we should read the Koran?
Uzza: If the British population had read Mein Kampf and accepted that the author meant to carry out what he said he would do given the opportunity, do you not think Chamberlain would have been less inclined to pander to a sociopath? If more Germans had taken Hitler's rants seriously, chances are he would never have been made Chancellor. If more people had read the Koran and accepted that the author meant to carry out what He revealed in easy-to-understand “clearly expounded” verses, chances are Western civilization would not be staring into the abyss.
Archie: It's a bit too late for that now, too.
Uzza: Mein Kampf is banned, but not the Koran. There is nothing stopping you from reading it and learning a few verses, if only to save your life when they come for you.
Archie: For what?
Bob: To take your head off like they did at Badr. Can we get back to that battle and what happened next?
Archie: In a minute. Uzza, I always thought that it was Allah who taught the Koran to Muhammad. Now you are telling us that it was an angel all along.
Uzza: Yes. You could consider Gabriel the Messenger to the Messenger.
Archie: So, Muhammad never spoke to God directly, nor God directly to him?
Uzza: I did not say that. Gabriel used to visit Muhammad on a regular basis, usually at night, which is why some have speculated − and there is a saying of Muhammad to that effect − that much of the Koran was delivered in dreams.
Bob: The Koran was all dreamt up?
Uzza: I did not say that either, although we have an authenticated account of a companion of Muhammad, when asked by a believer to show Muhammad receiving a communication from above, pulling open a tent flap to show a snoring Muhammad, and a saying from Muhammad himself where he asks a jealous wife to be kind to Aisha because Allah only sends revelations when he is in bed with her.
Bob: You mean, Allah interrupted the Prophet while he was having sex to talk about the Koran?
Uzza: No, silly, after, when Muhammad and Aisha had drifted off to sleep.
Bob: That had to be some girl for God to make an exception to communicating with the Prophet with a female next to him, and to wait until they were finished doing whatever they were doing before getting in touch.
Uzza: That Aisha was special was revealed early on. In another dream of Muhammad, before they were married, Allah showed her to him when she was still a baby, meaning that they were meant to be together. That it was Allah’s Will.
Archie: You mean, the Prophet dreamt of babies before he married one?
Uzza: Aisha was not a baby! She was six when they got married and nine when they first had sex.
Archie: Like I said…
Uzza: [ignores him] And, as I was saying, the angel Gabriel used to visit Muhammad at night, and sometimes during the day, with the latest of Allah’s revealed truths, which Muhammad committed to memory and repeated word-for-word to his followers the next day or during the Friday sermon.
Bob: What is a revealed truth again?
Uzza: What you commonly refer to as verses. Revealed truths are immutable facts revealed to a mortal by a god. The Koran is a collection of revealed truths.
Bob: That would mean that a saying of the Prophet is not a revealed truth?
Uzza: As you can expect, an observation made by a person tutored by the angel Gabriel carries some weight. A saying, a story reported as the truth, or even an action of Muhammad that has been authenticated as being genuine by scholars, such as the tent flap story, carries as much weight as a revelation if it does not contradict the Koran. That is why the more than fourteen thousand authenticated sayings and example of Muhammad along with the more than six thousands revelations of the Koran are the basis of the Sharia, God’s Law.
Bob: Can we get back to the interesting stuff?