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Thread: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

  1. #1
    Time Lord Apostle Malflick's Avatar
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    Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    I stumbled on this:

    http://listverse.com/2009/07/10/top-...s-about-islam/

    I've heard a lot of these misconceptions in my time.

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    Re: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    Sorry junior. But there is a lot of truth to those "misconceptions." Don't drink the kool aid. I was willing to give the article the benefit of the doubt until it said marrying a NINE YEAR OLD doesn't mean you are a pedophile.

    Riiiiiiiiiight.

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    Re: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    It's more a claim that marrying a nine year old 700 years ago isn't directly equivalent to marrying one now.

    Past that, Islam is one of the largest religions on the planet. It will have people who wonderful examples of virtue, it will also have people whose only justification for existence is as an object lesson of how not to live and it'll have a crapton of people spread out between the two extremes. All of the above will think they're true Muslims. That makes it pretty much equivalent to any other large body of humanity.
    "It is not simply enough to know the light…a Jedi must feel the tension between the two sides of the Force…in himself and in the universe."
    ―Thon

    "When to the Force you truly give yourself, all you do expresses the truth of who you are,"

    Yoda

    Yoda told stories, and ate, and cried, and laughed: and the Padawans saw that life itself was a lightsaber in his hands; even in the face of treachery and death and hopes gone cold, he burned like a candle in the darkness. Like a star shining in the black eternity of space.

    Yoda: Dark Rendezvous

    "But those men who know anything at all about the Light also know that there is a fierceness to its power, like the bare sword of the law, or the white burning of the sun." Suddenly his voice sounded to Will very strong, and very Welsh. "At the very heart, that is. Other things, like humanity, and mercy, and charity, that most good men hold more precious than all else, they do not come first for the Light. Oh, sometimes they are there; often, indeed. But in the very long run the concern of you people is with the absolute good, ahead of all else..."

    John Rowlands, The Grey King by Susan Cooper

    "You come from the Lord Adam and the Lady Eve", said Aslan. "And that is both honour enough to erect the head of the poorest beggar, and shame enough to bow the shoulders of the greatest emperor on earth; be content."

    Aslan, Prince Caspian by CS Lewis



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    Copper Member Aeran's Avatar
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    Re: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    Really interesting comment below the article which expands on a lot of these:

    I've studied the religion quite extensively, and the list is still a little weak, as a lot of these points have complex layers to them. It helps to be well-versed in Classical Arabic and Middle Eastern culture to understand Islam and its evolution in the 21st century, as opposed to a rudimentary knowledge of Islam through half-baked websites like Wikipedia and popular forums (or even popular imams).
    1. Muslims are Arabs: This is, by far, the biggest misconception, and going through any encyclopaedia will give you the real statistics.
    2. Muslims and Jesus: People who believe in monotheism, Hell, Heaven, Satan, Adam & Eve (Islam rejects the concept of Original Sin, though), and all the prophets from Adam to Mohammad (including Biblical prophets) are considered People of the Book.
    3. Children's Right: Yes, children do have many rights in Islam, especially so because Muhammad was raised an orphan, and he'd presumably be sensitive about such issues. Islam is against corporeal punishment, but you hardly see this being practised.
    4. Religious intolerance: This is much more complex. There are verses that order Muslims to 'kill the enemy where he is found', but these are within the context of a particular war that was being fought. You must understand that the Qur'an is not simply a book of codes, but also a story, whether or not you believe in its historical accuracy. There are many historical evidences to prove that the treatment meted out towards Jews by Muslims was 'relatively' more lenient than those of Christians towards Jews. In fact, before the collapse of the Islamic Golden Age, the Muslim record for religious tolerance was much better than Christianity. This, however, does not mean they espoused philosophies of secularism and religious freedom in the way modern Western democracies do, so they are superior in that nature. But, nevertheless, commendable for its age considering the rigidity and strictness of the religion, and the way it proclaims itself superior to other religious philosophies.
    5. Islamic Jihad: You're spot on about this one. Another point, though: Jihad bis saif can only be waged by a leader who is accepted universally by the Muslim community (or a region, if it's not on a global scale). The jihad we are familiar with becomes more complicated in an age where the Muslim community is divided into nations, whereas, it existed as a large caliphate before. So, now, the Head of State of a nation would be the likely person with the power to declare a Jihad. In an age of religious groups and organisations, each group leader may himself declare Jihad. Now, whether this is a contortion or short-sightedness on part of the religion is up for discussion. As far as the virgin gift to martyrs is concerned... the Qur'an promises women something of equal value. So, I suppose even God doesn't know what women want...
    6. Child Bride: By today's standards, the marriage would essentially be deemed a child marriage, and understandably so. But, there's nothing an apologist can say to defend Mohammad, except that it was norm in Arabian culture to marry a girl as she hit puberty. Life spans were shorter, and hence, it was simply tradition to marry girls as soon as they reached puberty (they would be considered women), and girls were simply raised with the notion of early marriage. Considering the other tradition in Arabic culture whereby the pride of a man lay in the number of children he could produce, it became even more imperative to marry girls who had just hit puberty. The marriage was one of the most celebrated, and Aisha was said to have loved Mohammad immensely, and was extremely proud of having to marry a prophet (the social importance of marrying a noted personality like him, considering her own noble birth, was immense- it was a perfect match, politically). The difference in age between Aisha and Mohammad seems disgusting to us, but if you were born in such an era, you'd find it commonplace. Before Mohammad, Aisha was actually engaged to another man. She was first betrothed to Mohammed after her first engagement broke, and then married 3 years later, when she was around 9-10 years of age. It is still a nasty truth to swallow, but that's how the Arabian society functioned then. Early marriages were common throughout the Byzantine era and pre-Islamic Arabian Peninsula, in Judaism, in South-East Asian cultures, and in Europe. The only difference is that they weren't considered child marriages. As cultures change, so does the idea of how to define a 'child' and what constitutes as 'ethical' in matrimony. I've lived for 18 years in the Middle East, and though child marriages still do happen (mostly, to steal the bride child's dowry - which, by the way, no one but the bride has a right to), it's not common at all. Because child protection laws are weak in Middle Eastern countries, with the general sense of taboo regarding sexual abuse, pedophiles do use this archaic tradition to their benefit. Most people in the Middle East would probably defend Mohammad's decision based on a sensitivity towards their own Arabian culture, but would be grossed out if asked to marry a 9 year old. Also, individual consent is given the highest priority in an Islamic marriage - without the independent consent of the women or man, a marriage cannot be legal (a woman can annul a marriage by proclaiming she was forced into it).
    7. Muslim Savages: There are a few examples of savages like Tamerlaine, but he didn't necessarily represent Muslim rulers. Muslim conquerors, in fact, didn't slay even half as many people as their European counterparts.
    8. Women's Rights: This I have a problem with. There are many legal and religious rights reserved for women that other religions don't guarantee their female followers. Mothers are given a special importance in Islam much above fathers, and women are allowed to hold property, work and study. But, they are only allowed to inherit a smaller amount of their fathers assets as opposed to the sons. This has been a contentious issue. The reasons are that women then were lesser educated and more likely to get married early, and hence, the need to hold equal share in their fathers property was seen unnecessary. That logic, however, does not work nowadays, so, many people feel Islam needs to be revised according to the needs of Muslim communities now. The rights of wives and husbands are also complex because the Qur'an may say one thing but the Hadith (Prophetic Anecdotes and Traditions) may say another. This lead to the creation of a philosophical movement in Islam during the medieval ages called Mu'tazilah that deemed reason more important than tradition (hadith) when there arose a contradiction, or when reason clearly made more sense by Islamic principles. I'll need to go really deep into Islamic jurisprudence and irritate those who bother reading this with obscure terminology to explain why the following things would be against Islamic religion (these are things not specifically mentioned in the Qur'an or Hadith, hence the Qur'anic standing is vague):
    -Female circumcision isn't allowed. It's a largely African practice (Muslims are ordained to follow the Faith of Abraham, so male circumcision becomes the only kind given importance)
    -There is no mention in the Qur'an of burqas and abayas. These cloaks are actually modern inventions, and women in those days wore similar clothes as men, but more elaborate and feminine. The interpretation of hijab is very diverse depending on which school or sect you belong to. Technically, the Qur'an asks women to show only what is natural to them whilst hiding the rest (which traditionally includes the region from chest to knees). The additions come with Hadith and local culture, so it's really up to a Muslim woman to decide what interpretation she chooses (Qur'an does allow people freedom of choice, but you deal with it yourself). But, it definitely does not allow halters, low-rise jeans that shows your navel, bikinis and thongs. Sorry, guys...
    -Marital rape is not allowed. It's a contentious issue because some traditional scholars will say anything is permitted within a marriage, but others constitute it as bodily harm and a loss of right of body. It's not complicated, just time-consuming to explain.
    -There is no such verse in the Qur'an that disallows women from being jurists and interpretors. You can learn about women jurists in Islam through books and online, but that freedom has been taken away thanks to Wahabbism.
    -Men can't beat their wives. I am familiar with the verses (4:34) in the Qur'an that are amongst the most famous. However, the classical Arabic meaning of the particular word used to mean 'beat' is diverse- from 'beat' to 'to go away' or 'leave'. It has been translated as 'beat' for over centuries, but scholars have raised an objection to it by pointing out simply to the nature of Mohammad - he never used any kind of physical or verbal attacks on any of his wives, and he had quite a handful. Even when Aisha was accused of adultery and went into a 'silent strike' (she didn't speak to Mohammad until 'the truth came out') refusing to defend herself from such dangerous accusations, he didn't beat her. Divorce laws in Islam are also surprising lenient, but quite complicated, so every nation has its own rendition, and South Asian nations triumph all others in turning them into the most pervert kind. When the relationship is that bad where the man is unable to get through to his wife, it's not 'beating', but divorce that is ruefully encouraged, so the wife can leave with dignity, and the man can choose a better spouse.
    9. By the Sword: Yea, that's just a really stupid misconception to have, and only shows you of the shamelessly biased and convoluted teaching of history.
    10. Islamic terrorism: The only threatening kind of Islam is Wahabbi Islam, and even I, as a Muslim, can't guarantee if the world can breathe peacefully while it exists. Its spread through Saudi-funded madrasas in India, Bangaldesh, Pakistan, the Balkans, Russia, China, Africa and South-East Asia is scary. I've seen the way it manages to manipulate dozens of people, and it's easy for them to do it: They have Mecca, so Muslims around the world, being as stupid as they are, will kneel down to their supposed superiority in Islamic matters. It's Saudi Arabia... a country where clerics once proposed women to breastfeed men (so, they'd technically be their mothers) so they can work with them side-by-side in the office or the legalisation of misyar marriage - marriage for sex without financial responsibilities on the husbands part (which goes against a gazillion laws set out in the Qur'an, invalidating the marriage itself).
    There's also stoning that people have a problem with. First, stoning has his history in Semitic religions. Second, stoning is hardly used as a punishment simply because the legal criteria to be convicted of adultery is lengthy and difficult. No one best elaborates on stoning as Sabria Jawaher, an internationally renowned Saudi journalist:
    "The Qur'an never mentions stoning as a punishment and there are conflicting interpretations of the Prophet's involvement in implementing it. The most common interpretation is of a woman consumed with guilt over an adulterous affair that resulted in a child. She pestered the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) literally for years for him to wash away her sins with a death sentence. He refused, but when he could no longer find an excuse to send her away, he reluctantly agreed to punish her. What non-Muslim Sharia "experts" fail to mention is that stoning a person who commits adultery requires four eyewitnesses to the actual act of sexual intercourse. This fantastical burden of proof is almost impossible to fulfill. And rightly so. It's designed as prevention, not an actual punishment. Allegations of adultery are easy to make but virtually impossible to prove. Sharia makes stoning extremely unlikely to carry out."
    There are, however, other punishments (amputation) that are clearly mentioned. Maybe, Arabian society was just that barbaric in the way it committed crimes that a punishment of equal barbarism needed to instil a fear in people alongside reforming the society through Islamic principles. Safe to say, these are completely outdated in this day and age. In fact, it's quite disrespectful to assume that even Arabs are uncivilised enough to warrant such archaic and brutal punishments for crimes. Rest assured, I have yet to see an armless thug in Saudi Arabia, though.
    I realise there are no references, but I'm assuming no one will read this. For the few that do, I'll be likely to share sources if you're actually interested in living a life not consumed with hatred for Islam, but rather, have pity for the stupidly ignorant and imbecilic Muslim guy out there. Hey! Nothing pisses a Muslim than a 'non-Muslim' schooling him about his own religion.
    So... yea. There are pros and cons to every religion, and most of the 'cons' come not because of an inherent flaw in the religion or simply due to its so-called barbaric philosophies, but out of its quality of being so precise that it doesn't factor in cultural evolution and trends that irreversibly change a society. So, you're left with archaisms that are incongruous with living conditions and lifestyles now, even if you practise orthodoxy. As more cultures got exposed to Islam, so did the different kinds of interpretations. With different political climates, meanings changed to cater to political needs. Islamic religion in its time has anachronistic qualities that did make it superior to other faiths being practised, because it was radical, and it was marketed brilliantly by accepting most Biblical stories but toning them down to make them more credible (like Noah's story).


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    Fundamentalist Dumuzi's Avatar
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    Re: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    Thanks for posting this Malflick!

    If anyone has more questions, they can always post it in the Questions about Islam thread
    Do they not, then, ponder about the Qur‘an? Had it been from someone other than Allah, they would have found in it much discrepancy. [4:82]

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    Re: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    Quote Originally Posted by Monster View Post
    Sorry junior. But there is a lot of truth to those "misconceptions." Don't drink the kool aid. I was willing to give the article the benefit of the doubt until it said marrying a NINE YEAR OLD doesn't mean you are a pedophile.

    Riiiiiiiiiight.
    For just one thread...can you just stop being so disrespectful and rude? not to mention offensive....paaalease?
    AND for the record...back in the day, it was quite normal to get married at a very young age and to have children at the age of only 12 and 13..sometimes younger. and NOT only in the Muslim culture may i add!!!

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    Silver Member Tylluan Penry's Avatar
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    Re: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    Quote Originally Posted by Lilium of the Valley View Post
    AND for the record...back in the day, it was quite normal to get married at a very young age and to have children at the age of only 12 and 13..sometimes younger. and NOT only in the Muslim culture may i add!!!
    Absolutely - King Henry VII's mother was only twelve when she had him!
    www.thewolfenhowlepress.com


    Phantom Turnips never die.... they just get stewed occasionally....

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    Re: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    Quote Originally Posted by Lilium of the Valley View Post
    For just one thread...can you just stop being so disrespectful and rude? not to mention offensive....paaalease?
    AND for the record...back in the day, it was quite normal to get married at a very young age and to have children at the age of only 12 and 13..sometimes younger. and NOT only in the Muslim culture may i add!!!
    Doesn't make it right...no matter who did it. Just because you've drank the "can't we all get along" kool aid doesn't mean I have to. The "religion of peace".....isn't. At its very heart, Islam wants to convert the entire world. And who it can't convert, it will kill and enslave. You're in Europe. They've gotten more of a toehold in over there so you should *know* what I'm talking about. Having "Muslim only" zones and wanting Sharia Law implemented in democratic countries.

    All this "nicey nicey" about good/bad Muslims? It PR to lull you into a false sense of security. Wake up. On 9/11, when the Towers were struck.....MILLIONS of Muslims took to the streets in celebration and support of the hijackers. They are, right now, running schools to turn children into suicide bombers. Even so called moderate Muslims, support the radical ones.

    No...not every Muslim is a terrorist. But a true Muslim moderate is the exception and not the rule.

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    Silver Member Tylluan Penry's Avatar
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    Re: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    I have never drunk cool aid. Cider yes. Mead - copiously. But cool aid - whatever it is, no.
    You are a racist shithead.
    www.thewolfenhowlepress.com


    Phantom Turnips never die.... they just get stewed occasionally....

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    Re: Link: 10 misconceptions about Islam

    Quote Originally Posted by Tylluan Penry View Post
    I have never drunk cool aid. Cider yes. Mead - copiously. But cool aid - whatever it is, no.
    You are a racist shithead.
    Why thank you, ma'am. I'd always heard those of you in the UK were very proper and well mannered. Its nice to see I wasn't wrong.

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