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Re: TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM

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  • clickhereforinsignificance
    Bill, I think that the Israel/Palestinian conflict certainly antagonizes the Islamic situation... but it s an entirely different issue. Israel was created as a
    Message 1 of 11 , Aug 1, 2002
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      Bill,

      I think that the Israel/Palestinian conflict certainly antagonizes
      the Islamic situation... but it's an entirely different issue. Israel
      was created as a Jewish homeland in response to centuries of anti-
      Semitism and capped off with the attempt to exterminate them during
      the holocaust. IT's quite understandable Jewish distrust of gentiles.

      However during its creation Palestine lands were appropriated in a
      way that is questionable. Saying your ancestors lived there thousands
      of years ago as a rational argument for illegal immigration would
      open the door to countless wars forever. Imagine if the Indians
      decided they wanted their land back!!!!

      By now though.... I believe that Israel should have a right to
      exist. And I honestly believe that a homeland might transition
      Judaism from a religion to more of a cultural identity and lessen the
      psychological stress and sense of persecution so many Jews feel (It
      is important to note Israeli is not synonymous as Jewish though....
      as is the common preconception. My Jewish friends and former
      girlfriend detested Israeli policies ).

      The current Israeli government believes that if they continue to
      cram people into formally Palestinian lands that the problem will
      eventually disappear. They are currently building a huge wall (which
      seems to be getting very little publicity) that will likely become
      the demarcation point for Israeli lands. This tactic might work, but
      I believe this sense of progress is very short sighted if a
      Palestinian state is not created. They would be creating a people of
      nomads and antagonizing over 300 million Arabs around them who will
      not soon forget. These struggles date back thousands of years and
      even if Israeli completely eliminated every Arab from its lands they
      would be under constant threat for potentially as long as the Islamic
      religion exists. Maybe in a few thousand years Palestinian's will
      want the land of their ancestors back?

      What I find most interesting and perhaps more important, Israeli
      policy seems to be subscribing to the idea that might equals moral
      right. The Nazi's used the same approach albeit in a much more
      disgusting manner.

      I sympathize more with Palestinians on this issue since they are
      being robbed of their identity and country. In addition their
      children are dying at three times the rate (not only the symtex
      strapped ones either). However too many of them are also
      extremistists that demand the complete irradication of Israeli.

      All that being said, what should be done now is not the
      dissolution of Israeli, but a mission by the U.N. They should go in
      and take over, then split the land in a way that is not equitable for
      either party (the sign of a good agreement). A security buffer
      between the countries should then be created (ala Cyprus) This is the
      only rational approach for everyone to save face. Otherwise it
      appears like manipulation of U.S. policy caused by fear of political
      retaliation from extremist Jewish lobby groups.

      This seems apparent as the U.S. has used their security council
      veto power to prevent U.N. resolutions from implementing this
      solution on countless occasions. Where else in the world are there
      high profile wars happening where U.N. is not involved? In addition
      the current Israeli government has attempted to associate the
      Palestinian issue with the larger Islamic fundamentalist (a.k.a 9/11)
      one to hide continued expansion and justify it to the public. They
      calling it terrorist but to the Palestinians it's freedom fighting.
      Sure they blow themselves up, but I suspect they would prefer to have
      the F-16's and tanks Israeli uses to kill it's own citizens. They use
      what they have at there disposal.

      If Israeli tactics are continued (without U.N. intervention), it
      is very short term opportunistic thinking and unfortunately will
      likely continue to propagate anti-Semitism around the world. If only
      the moderates in Israel had not had their Prime Minister executed by
      a fundimentalist.

      ~ peace through superior firepower?

      ---------------------------------------------



      --- In existlist@y..., "Bill Harris" <valleywestdental@q...> wrote:
      > click, Very rational, very positive, very well thought out. I hope
      views like yours prevail, rather than those who strap symtex to their
      young people. Bill
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: clickhereforinsignificance
      > To: existlist@y...
      > Sent: Thursday, August 01, 2002 2:09 PM
      > Subject: [existlist] Re: TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
      >
      >
      >
      > Interesting and educational. However one thing that the
      writer
      > does not differentiate between is theory and actual practice of
      the
      > religion. There is a great deal of conditioning of hatred towards
      the
      > west happening in those countries. Although in the West we too
      have
      > our ridiculous propaganda, I have not observed hundreds of
      thousands
      > of people gathering together to protest 'the great satans of the
      > East'.
      >
      > I believe the people (of Islamic states) themselves are
      capable
      > and as decent as any other, but the system they have implemented
      > (much like communism) is doomed unless the realities of it's
      politics
      > change. They are aggressively pushing religious docterine around
      the
      > world (practically all the hotspots are muslim extremist related)
      and
      > the WORLD (including areas like India, China, Russia, Europe, and
      of
      > course 'the great satan' are responding with balance of power
      theory.
      >
      > The West effectively used a similar technique against
      Communism
      > (another great theory) with the Policy of Containment. In the
      end,
      > they beat them with the innovation the freedom of their
      > economic/political system allows for. And although there has been
      > pains involved in that transition it does not appear most of them
      > wish to return to the 'old ways'.
      >
      > I sympathize with Islamics that don't want to seperate church
      and
      > state, but if they do not they only stiffle there own people's
      > freedom and ability to compete in the realities of today's world.
      > Islam can certainly survive this struggle (much like christianity
      > survived) but Islamic run states will not. They will need to
      > transition to democracy. When they do they will discover Western
      > support for totalitarian Kings will evapourate much like it did
      for
      > military puppet governments after the cold war.
      >
      > There is a cold war of sorts that is now being recognized by
      every
      > non-islamic country in the world. And that war will either be won
      by
      > the non-islamic states... or will lead to the nuclear annhilation
      of
      > both. It is enivitable that democracy will eventually take over
      the
      > world. Perhaps it is 'evil' (subjective) but it is highly
      effective
      > towards accomplishing tasks.
      >
      > Finally, the truth of the matter is... the west (and any other
      > nuclear powers)could obliterate countries like Iran, Iraq, Syria,
      > Israel (interesting that I include it eh?), Jordan, Egypt,
      Algeria,
      > Saudi Arabia, etc.... in a matter of hours. And all the oil would
      > still remain to plunder.
      >
      > And yet they do not.
      >
      > I wish fundimentalist's (of any type) would notice that
      important
      > little fact more often. Many proclaim they are not afraid to
      die...
      > but I suspect they are the ones that are afraid to live.
      >
      > ~ tired of petty wars
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > --- In existlist@y..., "james tan" <tyjfk@h...> wrote:
      > >
      > > well, just a forward..
      > >
      > > From: "bentarawira" <abidin-mz@d...>
      > > Reply-To: Fateha@y...
      > > To: Fateha@y...
      > > Subject: [Fateha] TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
      > > Date: Thu, 01 Aug 2002 09:48:56 -0000
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS
      > > ABOUT ISLAM
      > >
      > > By Huma Ahmad
      > >
      > >
      > > 1.Muslims are violent, terrorists and/or extremists
      > >
      > > This is the biggest misconception about Islam, no doubt
      resulting
      > > from the constant stereotyping and bashing the media gives
      Islam.
      > > When a gunman attacks a mosque in the name of Judaism, a
      Catholic
      > IRA
      > > guerrilla sets off a bomb in an urban area, or Serbian Orthodox
      > > militiamen rape and kill innocent Muslim civilians, these acts
      are
      > > not used to stereotype an entire faith. Never are these acts
      > > attributed to the religion of the perpetrators. Yet how many
      times
      > > have we heard the words 'Islamic, Muslim fundamentalist, etc.'
      > linked
      > > with violence. Politics in so-called "Muslim countries" may or
      may
      > > not have any Islamic basis. Often dictators and politicians
      will use
      > > the name of Islam for their own purposes. One should consult the
      > > source of Islam and separate what the true religion of Islam
      says
      > > from what is portrayed in the media. Islam literally
      > > means 'submission to Allaah Swt ' and is derived from a root
      word
      > > meaning 'peace'.
      > >
      > > Islam may seem exotic or even extreme in the modern world.
      Perhaps
      > > this is because religion doesn't dominate everyday life in the
      West,
      > > whereas Islam is considered a 'way of life' for Muslims and
      they
      > make
      > > no division between secular and sacred in their lives. Like
      > > Christianity, Islam permits fighting in self-defence, in
      defence of
      > > religion, or on the part of those who have been expelled
      forcibly
      > > from their homes. It lays down strict rules of combat, which
      include
      > > prohibitions against harming civilians and against destroying
      crops,
      > > trees and livestock. NOWHERE DOES ISLAM ENJOIN THE KILLING OF
      > > INNOCENTS.... The Quran says: "Fight in the cause of Allaah Swt
      > > against those who fight you, but do not transgress limits.
      Allaah
      > Swt
      > > does not love transgressors." (Quran 2:190) "If they seek
      peace,
      > then
      > > seek you peace. And trust in Allaah Swt for He is the One that
      > > heareth and knoweth all things." (Quran 8:61)
      > >
      > > War, therefore, is the last resort, and is subject to the
      rigorous
      > > conditions laid down by the sacred law. The term 'jihad'
      literally
      > > means 'struggle'. Muslims believe that there are two kinds of
      jihad.
      > > The other 'jihad' is the inner struggle of the soul, which
      everyone
      > > wages against egotistic desires for the sake of attaining inner
      > peace.
      > >
      > > 2: Islam oppresses women
      > >
      > > The image of the typical Muslim woman wearing the veil and
      forced to
      > > stay home and forbidden to drive is all too common in most
      people's
      > > thoughts. Although some Muslim countries may have laws that
      oppress
      > > women, this should not be seen as coming from Islam. Many of
      these
      > > countries do not rule by any kind of Shari'ah (Islamic law) and
      > > introduce their own cultural standpoints on the issue of gender
      > > equality.
      > >
      > > Islam on the other hand gives men and women different roles and
      > > equity between the two is laid down in the Quran and the
      example of
      > > the Prophet. Islam sees a woman, whether single or married, as
      an
      > > individual in her own right, with the right to own and dispose
      of
      > her
      > > property and earnings.
      > >
      > > A marriage gift is given by the groom to the bride for her own
      > > personal use, and she keeps her own family name rather than
      taking
      > > her husband's. Both men and women are expected to dress in a
      way
      > that
      > > is modest and dignified. The Messenger of Allaah Swt said: "The
      most
      > > perfect in faith amongst believers is he who is best in manner
      and
      > > kindest to his wife."
      > >
      > > Violence of any kind towards women and forcing them against
      their
      > > will for anything is not allowed. A Muslim marriage is a simple,
      > > legal agreement in which either partner is free to include
      > > conditions. Marriage customs thus vary widely from country to
      > > country. Divorce is not common, although it is acceptable as a
      last
      > > resort. According to Islam, a Muslim girl cannot be forced to
      marry
      > > against her will: her parents simply suggest young men they
      think
      > may
      > > be suitable.
      > >
      > > 3: Muslims worship a different God.
      > >
      > > Allah Swt is simply the Arabic word for God. Allaah Swt for
      Muslims
      > > is the greatest and most inclusive of the Names of God, it is an
      > > Arabic word of rich meaning, denoting the one and only God and
      > > ascribing no partners to Him. It is exactly the same word which
      the
      > > Jews, in Hebrew, use for God (eloh), the word which Jesus
      Christ
      > used
      > > in Aramaic when he prayed to Allaah Swt . Allaah Swt has an
      > identical
      > > name in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; Allaah Swt is the
      same God
      > > worshiped by Muslims, Christians and Jews. Muslims believe that
      > > Allaah Swt 's sovereignty is to be acknowledged in worship and
      in
      > the
      > > pledge to obey His teaching and commandments, conveyed through
      His
      > > Messengers and Prophets who were sent at various times and in
      many
      > > places throughout history. However, it should be noted that God
      in
      > > Islam is One and Only. He, the Exalted, does not get tired,
      does not
      > > have a son (i.e. Jesus) or have associates, nor does He have
      human-
      > > like attributions as found in other faiths.
      > >
      > > 4: Islam was spread by sword and is intolerant of other faiths.
      > >
      > > Many social studies textbooks for students show the image of an
      Arab
      > > horseman carrying a sword in one hand and the Quran in the
      other,
      > > conquering and forcibly converting. This, however, is not a
      correct
      > > portrayal of history. Islam has always given respect and
      freedom of
      > > religion to all faiths. The Quran says: "Allaah Swt forbids you
      not,
      > > with regards to those who fight you not for [your] faith nor
      drive
      > > you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with
      them; for
      > > Allaah Swt loveth those who are just." (Qur'an 60:8)
      > >
      > > Freedom of religion is laid down in the Quran itself: "There is
      no
      > > compulsion (or coercion) in the religion (Islam). The right
      > direction
      > > is distinctly clear from error." (Qur'an 2:256)
      > >
      > > Christian missionary, T.W. Arnold had this opinion on his study
      of
      > > the question of the spread of Islam: "...of any organized
      attempt to
      > > force the acceptance of Islam on the non-Muslim population, or
      of
      > any
      > > systematic persecution intended to stamp out the Christian
      religion,
      > > we hear nothing. Had the caliphs chosen to adopt either course
      of
      > > action, they might have swept away Christianity as easily as
      > > Ferdinand and Isabella drove Islam out of Spain, or Louis XIV
      made
      > > Protestantism..."
      > >
      > > It is a function of Islamic law to protect the privileged
      status of
      > > minorities, and this is why non-Muslim places of worship have
      > > flourished all over the Islamic world. History provides many
      > examples
      > > of Muslim tolerance towards other faiths: when the caliph Omar
      > > entered Jerusalem in the year 634, Islam granted freedom of
      worship
      > > to all religious communities in the city. Proclaiming to the
      > > inhabitants that their lives, and property were safe, and that
      their
      > > places of worship would never be taken from them, he asked the
      > > Christian patriarch Sophronius to accompany him on a visit to
      all
      > the
      > > holy places. Islamic law also permits non-Muslim minorities to
      set
      > up
      > > their own courts, which implement family laws drawn up by the
      > > minorities themselves. The life and property of all citizens in
      an
      > > Islamic state are considered sacred whether the person is
      Muslim or
      > > not.
      > >
      > > Racism is not a part of Islam, the Quran speaks only of human
      > > equality and how all people are equal in the sight of Allaah
      > > Swt
      > > . "O mankind! We created you from a single soul, male and
      > > female, and made you into nations and tribes, so that you may
      come
      > to
      > > know one another. Truly, the most honoured of you in Allaah
      Swt 's
      > > sight is the greatest of you in piety. Allaah Swt
      > > is All-Knowing, All- Aware."
      > >
      > > 5: All Muslims are Arabs
      > >
      > > The Muslim population of the world is around 1,2 billion. One
      out of
      > > every five people in the world is a Muslim. They are a vast
      range of
      > > races, nationalities, and cultures from around the globe from
      the
      > > Philippines to Nigeria they are united by their common Islamic
      > faith.
      > > Only about 18% live in the Arab world and the largest Muslim
      > > community is in Indonesia. Most Muslims live east of Pakistan.
      > Thirty
      > > percent of Muslims live in the Indian subcontinent, 20% in Sub-
      > > Saharan Africa, 17% in Southeast Asia, 18% in the Arab world,
      and
      > 10%
      > > in the Soviet Union and China. Turkey, Iran, and Afghanistan
      make up
      > > 10% of the non-Arab Middle East. Although there are Muslim
      > minorities
      > > in almost every area, including Latin America and Australia,
      they
      > are
      > > most numerous in Russia and its newly independent states, India
      and
      > > central Africa. There are about 6 million Muslims in the United
      > > States.
      > >
      > > 6: The Nation of Islam is a Muslim group
      > >
      > > Islam and the so-called "Nation of Islam (NOI)" are two
      different
      > > religions. NOI is more of a political organization since its
      members
      > > are not limited to a single faith. Muslims consider this group
      to be
      > > just one of many cults using the name of Islam for their own
      gain.
      > > The only thing common between them is the jargon, the language
      used
      > > by both. "The Nation of Islam" is a misnomer; this religion
      should
      > be
      > > called Farrakhanism, after the name of its propagator, Louis
      > > Farrakhan.
      > >
      > > Islam and Farakhanism differ in many fundamental ways. For
      example,
      > > Farakhan followers believe in racism and that the 'black man'
      was
      > the
      > > original man and therefore superior, while in Islam there is no
      > > racism and everyone is considered equal in the sight of Allaah
      Swt ,
      > > the only difference being in one's piety. There are many other
      > > theological examples that show the NOI's teachings have little
      to do
      > > with true Islam. There are many groups in America who claim to
      > > represent Islam and call their adherents Muslims.
      > >
      > > Any serious student of Islam has a duty to investigate and find
      the
      > > true Islam. The only two authentic sources which bind every
      Muslim
      > > are the Quran and authentic or sound Hadith. Any teachings
      under the
      > > label of "Islam" which contradict or at variance with the direct
      > > understanding of fundamental beliefs and practices of Islam
      form the
      > > Quran and authentic Hadith should be rejected and such a
      religion
      > > should be considered a Pseudo-Islamic Cult.
      > >
      > > In America there are many pseudo-Islamic cults, Farrakhanism
      being
      > > one of them. An honest attitude on the part of such cults
      should be
      > > not to call themselves Muslims and their religion Islam, such an
      > > example of honesty is Bahaism which is an off-shoot of Islam but
      > > Bahais do not call themselves Muslims nor their religion,
      Islam. In
      > > fact Bahaism is not Islam just as Farrakhanism is not Islam.
      Read
      > > about in relation to this misconception, where he found the true
      > > Islam, realising that it is much different than NOI.
      > >
      > > 7: Polygamy is cruelty It is one of favors of Islam
      > >
      > > that it has allowed men to marry more than once. The underlying
      > > wisdom of this command is now becoming manifest as the
      population of
      > > women is increasing. The population of men is decreasing due to
      > wars,
      > > accidents and other such reasons. So if under these
      circumstances
      > men
      > > were allowed to marry once, a large number of women would have
      > > remained unmarried and have turned to adultery and other moral
      > evils.
      > > Therefore, for the protection of orphans and widows and the
      solution
      > > of the problem of marriage of maidens Islam ordained polygamy.
      > > Secondly, during childbirth and menstruation and other ailments
      a
      > > woman becomes unable to fulfil the matrimonial rights of her
      > husband.
      > > So if under these circumstances a man is not allowed to practise
      > > polygamy he might turn to adultery. That is why Islam has given
      men
      > > the permission to remarry.
      > >
      > > Here it must also be remembered that in case of polygamy
      husband is
      > > under obligation to treat his wives with as much equality as
      humanly
      > > possible. If he fails to do so he will have to account for it
      on the
      > > Day of Judgement. In the West monogamy has resulted in horrible
      > > effects. All forms of moral evils are common in their society.
      > >
      > > 8: Muslims are a barbaric, backward people
      > >
      > > Among the reasons for the rapid and peaceful spread of Islam
      was the
      > > simplicity of its doctrine-Islam calls for faith in only one
      Allaah
      > > Swt worthy of worship. It also repeatedly instructs man to use
      his
      > > powers of intelligence and observation. Within a few years,
      great
      > > civilisations and universities were flourishing, for according
      to
      > the
      > > Prophet, 'seeking knowledge is an obligation for every Muslim
      man
      > and
      > > woman'.
      > >
      > > The synthesis of Eastern and Western ideas and of new thought
      with
      > > old, brought about great advances in medicine, mathematics,
      physics,
      > > astronomy, geography, architecture, art, literature, and
      history.
      > > Many crucial systems such as algebra, the Arabic numerals, and
      also
      > > the concept of the zero (vital to the advancement of
      mathematics),
      > > were transmitted to medieval Europe from Islam. Sophisticated
      > > instruments which were to make possible the European voyages of
      > > discovery were developed, including the astrolabe, the quadrant
      and
      > > good navigational maps.
      > >
      > > 9: Muhammad (SAW) was the founder of Islam and Muslims worship
      him
      > >
      > > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was born in Makkah in the year 570. Since
      his
      > > father died before his birth, and his mother shortly
      afterwards, he
      > > was raised by his uncle from the respected tribe of Quraysh. As
      he
      > > grew up, he became known for his truthfulness, generosity and
      > > sincerity, so that he was sought after for his ability to
      arbitrate
      > > in disputes. The historians describe him as calm and meditative.
      > > Muhammad (SAW) pbuh, was of a deeply religious nature, and had
      long
      > > detested the decadence of his society.
      > >
      > > It became his habit to meditate from time to time in the Cave
      of
      > Hira
      > > near Mecca. At the age of 40, while engaged in a meditative
      retreat,
      > > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) received his first revelation
      > > from Allaah
      > > Swt through the Angel Gabriel. This revelation, which
      > > continued for 23 years is known as the Quran. As soon as he
      began to
      > > recite the words he heard from Gabriel, and to preach the truth
      > which
      > > Allaah Swt had revealed to him, he and his small
      > > group of
      > > followers suffered bitter persecution, which grew so fierce
      that in
      > > the year 622 Allaah swt gave them the command to
      > > emigrate.
      > >
      > > This event, the Hijrah or 'migration', in which they left
      Makkah for
      > > the city of Madina, marks the beginning of the Muslim calendar.
      > After
      > > several years, the Prophet (PBUH)and his followers were able to
      > > return to Makkah, where they forgave their enemies and
      established
      > > Islam definitively. Before the death of Prophet r at the age of
      63,
      > > the greater part of Arabia was Muslim, and within a century of
      his
      > > death Islam had spread to Spain in the West and as far east as
      > China.
      > >
      > > While Muhammad SAW (PBUH )was chosen to deliver the message, he
      is
      > > not considered the "founder" of Islam, since Muslims consider
      Islam
      > > to be the same Divine guidance sent to all Prophets before.
      Muslims
      > > believe all the prophets from Adam, Noah, Moses, Jesus etc.
      were all
      > > sent with divine guidance for their peoples. Every prophet was
      sent
      > > to his own people, but Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was sent to all of
      > > mankind. Muhammad Õáì Çááå Úáíå æÓáã is the last and
      > > final messenger
      > > sent to deliver the message of Islam. Muslims revere and honour
      him
      > > (PBUH) for all he went through and his dedication, but they do
      not
      > > worship him.
      > >
      > > "O Prophet(PBUH), verily We have sent you as a witness and a
      bearer
      > > of glad tidings and a Warner and as one who invites unto Allaah
      > > Swt by His leave and as an illuminating lamp."
      > > (Qur'an 33:45-
      > > 46)
      > >
      > > 10: Muslims don't believe in Jesus or any other Prophets
      > >
      > > Muslims respect and revere Jesusu and await his Second Coming.
      They
      > > consider him one of the greatest of Allaah Swt 's messengers to
      > > mankind. A Muslim never refers to him simply as 'Eesa (As) ',
      but
      > > always adds the phraseu. The Qur'an confirms his virgin birth (a
      > > chapter of the Quran is entitled 'Mary'), and Mary is
      considered the
      > > purest woman in all creation. The Quran describes the
      Annunciation
      > as
      > > follows:
      > >
      > > "Behold!" the Angel said, "Allaah Swt has chosen you, and
      purified
      > > you, and chosen you above the women of all nations. O Mary,
      Allaah
      > > Swt gives you good news of a word from Him whose name shall be
      the
      > > Messiah, Eesa (AS) son of Mary, honoured in this world and the
      > > Hereafter, and one of those brought near to Allaah Swt . He
      shall
      > > speak to the people from his cradle and in maturity, and shall
      be of
      > > the righteous." She said: "O my Lord! How shall I have a son
      when no
      > > man has touched me?" He said: "Even so; Allaah Swt creates what
      He
      > > wills. When He decrees a thing, He says to it, "Be!" and it is."
      > > (Qur'an 3:42-47)
      > >
      > > Jesusu was born miraculously through the same power, which had
      > > brought Adamu into being without a father: "Truly, the likeness
      of
      > > Eesa (As) (Jesus) with Allaah Swt is as the likeness of Adam. He
      > > created him of dust, and then said to him, 'Be!' and he was."
      > (Qur'an
      > > 3:59)
      > >
      > > During his prophetic mission Jesusu performed many miracles. The
      > > Qur'an tells us that he said: "I have come to you with a sign
      from
      > > your Lord: I make for you out of clay, as it were, the figure
      of a
      > > bird, and breath into it and it becomes a bird by Allaah Swt 's
      > > leave. And I heal the blind, and the lepers, and I raise the
      dead by
      > > Allaah Swt 's leave." (Qur'an 3:49)
      > >
      > > Neither Muhammad (SAW) (PBUH) nor Jesus u came to change the
      basic
      > > doctrine of the belief in One Allaah (SAW) brought by earlier
      > > Prophets, but to confirm and renew it.
      > >
      > > In the Qur'an Jesusu is reported as saying that he came: "And I
      have
      > > come confirming that which was before me of the Taurat (Torah),
      and
      > > to make lawful to you part of what was forbidden to you; and I
      have
      > > come to you with a proof from your Lord, so fear Allaah Swt and
      obey
      > > me." (Qur'an 3:50)
      > >
      > > The Prophet Muhammad(SAW)PBUH said: "Whoever believes there is
      no
      > > Allaah Swt but Allaah Swt , alone without partner, that
      Muhammad
      > (SAW)
      > > (PBUH) is His messenger, that Eesa (As) is the servant and
      > messenger
      > > of Allaah (SAW) , His word breathed into Mary and a spirit
      emanating
      > > from Him, and that Paradise and Hell are true, shall be
      received by
      > > Allaah (SAW) into Heaven." (Hadith related by Bukhari).
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      _________________________________________________________________
      > > Send and receive Hotmail on your mobile device:
      > http://mobile.msn.com
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      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • james tan
      aiden, perhaps it is not the fundamentalists that are the problem , but rather the extremists. semantic quibbling here?! james. From:
      Message 2 of 11 , Aug 2, 2002
      • 0 Attachment
        aiden,

        perhaps it is not the fundamentalists that are the 'problem', but rather the
        extremists. semantic quibbling here?!

        james.


        From: "clickhereforinsignificance" <livewild@...>
        Reply-To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
        To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [existlist] Re: TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
        Date: Thu, 01 Aug 2002 19:09:40 -0000


        Interesting and educational. However one thing that the writer
        does not differentiate between is theory and actual practice of the
        religion. There is a great deal of conditioning of hatred towards the
        west happening in those countries. Although in the West we too have
        our ridiculous propaganda, I have not observed hundreds of thousands
        of people gathering together to protest 'the great satans of the
        East'.

        I believe the people (of Islamic states) themselves are capable
        and as decent as any other, but the system they have implemented
        (much like communism) is doomed unless the realities of it's politics
        change. They are aggressively pushing religious docterine around the
        world (practically all the hotspots are muslim extremist related) and
        the WORLD (including areas like India, China, Russia, Europe, and of
        course 'the great satan' are responding with balance of power theory.

        The West effectively used a similar technique against Communism
        (another great theory) with the Policy of Containment. In the end,
        they beat them with the innovation the freedom of their
        economic/political system allows for. And although there has been
        pains involved in that transition it does not appear most of them
        wish to return to the 'old ways'.

        I sympathize with Islamics that don't want to seperate church and
        state, but if they do not they only stiffle there own people's
        freedom and ability to compete in the realities of today's world.
        Islam can certainly survive this struggle (much like christianity
        survived) but Islamic run states will not. They will need to
        transition to democracy. When they do they will discover Western
        support for totalitarian Kings will evapourate much like it did for
        military puppet governments after the cold war.

        There is a cold war of sorts that is now being recognized by every
        non-islamic country in the world. And that war will either be won by
        the non-islamic states... or will lead to the nuclear annhilation of
        both. It is enivitable that democracy will eventually take over the
        world. Perhaps it is 'evil' (subjective) but it is highly effective
        towards accomplishing tasks.

        Finally, the truth of the matter is... the west (and any other
        nuclear powers)could obliterate countries like Iran, Iraq, Syria,
        Israel (interesting that I include it eh?), Jordan, Egypt, Algeria,
        Saudi Arabia, etc.... in a matter of hours. And all the oil would
        still remain to plunder.

        And yet they do not.

        I wish fundimentalist's (of any type) would notice that important
        little fact more often. Many proclaim they are not afraid to die...
        but I suspect they are the ones that are afraid to live.

        ~ tired of petty wars






        --- In existlist@y..., "james tan" <tyjfk@h...> wrote:
        >
        > well, just a forward..
        >
        > From: "bentarawira" <abidin-mz@d...>
        > Reply-To: Fateha@y...
        > To: Fateha@y...
        > Subject: [Fateha] TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
        > Date: Thu, 01 Aug 2002 09:48:56 -0000
        >
        >
        >
        > TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS
        > ABOUT ISLAM
        >
        > By Huma Ahmad
        >
        >
        > 1.Muslims are violent, terrorists and/or extremists
        >
        > This is the biggest misconception about Islam, no doubt resulting
        > from the constant stereotyping and bashing the media gives Islam.
        > When a gunman attacks a mosque in the name of Judaism, a Catholic
        IRA
        > guerrilla sets off a bomb in an urban area, or Serbian Orthodox
        > militiamen rape and kill innocent Muslim civilians, these acts are
        > not used to stereotype an entire faith. Never are these acts
        > attributed to the religion of the perpetrators. Yet how many times
        > have we heard the words 'Islamic, Muslim fundamentalist, etc.'
        linked
        > with violence. Politics in so-called "Muslim countries" may or may
        > not have any Islamic basis. Often dictators and politicians will use
        > the name of Islam for their own purposes. One should consult the
        > source of Islam and separate what the true religion of Islam says
        > from what is portrayed in the media. Islam literally
        > means 'submission to Allaah Swt ' and is derived from a root word
        > meaning 'peace'.
        >
        > Islam may seem exotic or even extreme in the modern world. Perhaps
        > this is because religion doesn't dominate everyday life in the West,
        > whereas Islam is considered a 'way of life' for Muslims and they
        make
        > no division between secular and sacred in their lives. Like
        > Christianity, Islam permits fighting in self-defence, in defence of
        > religion, or on the part of those who have been expelled forcibly
        > from their homes. It lays down strict rules of combat, which include
        > prohibitions against harming civilians and against destroying crops,
        > trees and livestock. NOWHERE DOES ISLAM ENJOIN THE KILLING OF
        > INNOCENTS.... The Quran says: "Fight in the cause of Allaah Swt
        > against those who fight you, but do not transgress limits. Allaah
        Swt
        > does not love transgressors." (Quran 2:190) "If they seek peace,
        then
        > seek you peace. And trust in Allaah Swt for He is the One that
        > heareth and knoweth all things." (Quran 8:61)
        >
        > War, therefore, is the last resort, and is subject to the rigorous
        > conditions laid down by the sacred law. The term 'jihad' literally
        > means 'struggle'. Muslims believe that there are two kinds of jihad.
        > The other 'jihad' is the inner struggle of the soul, which everyone
        > wages against egotistic desires for the sake of attaining inner
        peace.
        >
        > 2: Islam oppresses women
        >
        > The image of the typical Muslim woman wearing the veil and forced to
        > stay home and forbidden to drive is all too common in most people's
        > thoughts. Although some Muslim countries may have laws that oppress
        > women, this should not be seen as coming from Islam. Many of these
        > countries do not rule by any kind of Shari'ah (Islamic law) and
        > introduce their own cultural standpoints on the issue of gender
        > equality.
        >
        > Islam on the other hand gives men and women different roles and
        > equity between the two is laid down in the Quran and the example of
        > the Prophet. Islam sees a woman, whether single or married, as an
        > individual in her own right, with the right to own and dispose of
        her
        > property and earnings.
        >
        > A marriage gift is given by the groom to the bride for her own
        > personal use, and she keeps her own family name rather than taking
        > her husband's. Both men and women are expected to dress in a way
        that
        > is modest and dignified. The Messenger of Allaah Swt said: "The most
        > perfect in faith amongst believers is he who is best in manner and
        > kindest to his wife."
        >
        > Violence of any kind towards women and forcing them against their
        > will for anything is not allowed. A Muslim marriage is a simple,
        > legal agreement in which either partner is free to include
        > conditions. Marriage customs thus vary widely from country to
        > country. Divorce is not common, although it is acceptable as a last
        > resort. According to Islam, a Muslim girl cannot be forced to marry
        > against her will: her parents simply suggest young men they think
        may
        > be suitable.
        >
        > 3: Muslims worship a different God.
        >
        > Allah Swt is simply the Arabic word for God. Allaah Swt for Muslims
        > is the greatest and most inclusive of the Names of God, it is an
        > Arabic word of rich meaning, denoting the one and only God and
        > ascribing no partners to Him. It is exactly the same word which the
        > Jews, in Hebrew, use for God (eloh), the word which Jesus Christ
        used
        > in Aramaic when he prayed to Allaah Swt . Allaah Swt has an
        identical
        > name in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; Allaah Swt is the same God
        > worshiped by Muslims, Christians and Jews. Muslims believe that
        > Allaah Swt 's sovereignty is to be acknowledged in worship and in
        the
        > pledge to obey His teaching and commandments, conveyed through His
        > Messengers and Prophets who were sent at various times and in many
        > places throughout history. However, it should be noted that God in
        > Islam is One and Only. He, the Exalted, does not get tired, does not
        > have a son (i.e. Jesus) or have associates, nor does He have human-
        > like attributions as found in other faiths.
        >
        > 4: Islam was spread by sword and is intolerant of other faiths.
        >
        > Many social studies textbooks for students show the image of an Arab
        > horseman carrying a sword in one hand and the Quran in the other,
        > conquering and forcibly converting. This, however, is not a correct
        > portrayal of history. Islam has always given respect and freedom of
        > religion to all faiths. The Quran says: "Allaah Swt forbids you not,
        > with regards to those who fight you not for [your] faith nor drive
        > you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them; for
        > Allaah Swt loveth those who are just." (Qur'an 60:8)
        >
        > Freedom of religion is laid down in the Quran itself: "There is no
        > compulsion (or coercion) in the religion (Islam). The right
        direction
        > is distinctly clear from error." (Qur'an 2:256)
        >
        > Christian missionary, T.W. Arnold had this opinion on his study of
        > the question of the spread of Islam: "...of any organized attempt to
        > force the acceptance of Islam on the non-Muslim population, or of
        any
        > systematic persecution intended to stamp out the Christian religion,
        > we hear nothing. Had the caliphs chosen to adopt either course of
        > action, they might have swept away Christianity as easily as
        > Ferdinand and Isabella drove Islam out of Spain, or Louis XIV made
        > Protestantism..."
        >
        > It is a function of Islamic law to protect the privileged status of
        > minorities, and this is why non-Muslim places of worship have
        > flourished all over the Islamic world. History provides many
        examples
        > of Muslim tolerance towards other faiths: when the caliph Omar
        > entered Jerusalem in the year 634, Islam granted freedom of worship
        > to all religious communities in the city. Proclaiming to the
        > inhabitants that their lives, and property were safe, and that their
        > places of worship would never be taken from them, he asked the
        > Christian patriarch Sophronius to accompany him on a visit to all
        the
        > holy places. Islamic law also permits non-Muslim minorities to set
        up
        > their own courts, which implement family laws drawn up by the
        > minorities themselves. The life and property of all citizens in an
        > Islamic state are considered sacred whether the person is Muslim or
        > not.
        >
        > Racism is not a part of Islam, the Quran speaks only of human
        > equality and how all people are equal in the sight of Allaah
        > Swt
        > . "O mankind! We created you from a single soul, male and
        > female, and made you into nations and tribes, so that you may come
        to
        > know one another. Truly, the most honoured of you in Allaah Swt 's
        > sight is the greatest of you in piety. Allaah Swt
        > is All-Knowing, All- Aware."
        >
        > 5: All Muslims are Arabs
        >
        > The Muslim population of the world is around 1,2 billion. One out of
        > every five people in the world is a Muslim. They are a vast range of
        > races, nationalities, and cultures from around the globe from the
        > Philippines to Nigeria they are united by their common Islamic
        faith.
        > Only about 18% live in the Arab world and the largest Muslim
        > community is in Indonesia. Most Muslims live east of Pakistan.
        Thirty
        > percent of Muslims live in the Indian subcontinent, 20% in Sub-
        > Saharan Africa, 17% in Southeast Asia, 18% in the Arab world, and
        10%
        > in the Soviet Union and China. Turkey, Iran, and Afghanistan make up
        > 10% of the non-Arab Middle East. Although there are Muslim
        minorities
        > in almost every area, including Latin America and Australia, they
        are
        > most numerous in Russia and its newly independent states, India and
        > central Africa. There are about 6 million Muslims in the United
        > States.
        >
        > 6: The Nation of Islam is a Muslim group
        >
        > Islam and the so-called "Nation of Islam (NOI)" are two different
        > religions. NOI is more of a political organization since its members
        > are not limited to a single faith. Muslims consider this group to be
        > just one of many cults using the name of Islam for their own gain.
        > The only thing common between them is the jargon, the language used
        > by both. "The Nation of Islam" is a misnomer; this religion should
        be
        > called Farrakhanism, after the name of its propagator, Louis
        > Farrakhan.
        >
        > Islam and Farakhanism differ in many fundamental ways. For example,
        > Farakhan followers believe in racism and that the 'black man' was
        the
        > original man and therefore superior, while in Islam there is no
        > racism and everyone is considered equal in the sight of Allaah Swt ,
        > the only difference being in one's piety. There are many other
        > theological examples that show the NOI's teachings have little to do
        > with true Islam. There are many groups in America who claim to
        > represent Islam and call their adherents Muslims.
        >
        > Any serious student of Islam has a duty to investigate and find the
        > true Islam. The only two authentic sources which bind every Muslim
        > are the Quran and authentic or sound Hadith. Any teachings under the
        > label of "Islam" which contradict or at variance with the direct
        > understanding of fundamental beliefs and practices of Islam form the
        > Quran and authentic Hadith should be rejected and such a religion
        > should be considered a Pseudo-Islamic Cult.
        >
        > In America there are many pseudo-Islamic cults, Farrakhanism being
        > one of them. An honest attitude on the part of such cults should be
        > not to call themselves Muslims and their religion Islam, such an
        > example of honesty is Bahaism which is an off-shoot of Islam but
        > Bahais do not call themselves Muslims nor their religion, Islam. In
        > fact Bahaism is not Islam just as Farrakhanism is not Islam. Read
        > about in relation to this misconception, where he found the true
        > Islam, realising that it is much different than NOI.
        >
        > 7: Polygamy is cruelty It is one of favors of Islam
        >
        > that it has allowed men to marry more than once. The underlying
        > wisdom of this command is now becoming manifest as the population of
        > women is increasing. The population of men is decreasing due to
        wars,
        > accidents and other such reasons. So if under these circumstances
        men
        > were allowed to marry once, a large number of women would have
        > remained unmarried and have turned to adultery and other moral
        evils.
        > Therefore, for the protection of orphans and widows and the solution
        > of the problem of marriage of maidens Islam ordained polygamy.
        > Secondly, during childbirth and menstruation and other ailments a
        > woman becomes unable to fulfil the matrimonial rights of her
        husband.
        > So if under these circumstances a man is not allowed to practise
        > polygamy he might turn to adultery. That is why Islam has given men
        > the permission to remarry.
        >
        > Here it must also be remembered that in case of polygamy husband is
        > under obligation to treat his wives with as much equality as humanly
        > possible. If he fails to do so he will have to account for it on the
        > Day of Judgement. In the West monogamy has resulted in horrible
        > effects. All forms of moral evils are common in their society.
        >
        > 8: Muslims are a barbaric, backward people
        >
        > Among the reasons for the rapid and peaceful spread of Islam was the
        > simplicity of its doctrine-Islam calls for faith in only one Allaah
        > Swt worthy of worship. It also repeatedly instructs man to use his
        > powers of intelligence and observation. Within a few years, great
        > civilisations and universities were flourishing, for according to
        the
        > Prophet, 'seeking knowledge is an obligation for every Muslim man
        and
        > woman'.
        >
        > The synthesis of Eastern and Western ideas and of new thought with
        > old, brought about great advances in medicine, mathematics, physics,
        > astronomy, geography, architecture, art, literature, and history.
        > Many crucial systems such as algebra, the Arabic numerals, and also
        > the concept of the zero (vital to the advancement of mathematics),
        > were transmitted to medieval Europe from Islam. Sophisticated
        > instruments which were to make possible the European voyages of
        > discovery were developed, including the astrolabe, the quadrant and
        > good navigational maps.
        >
        > 9: Muhammad (SAW) was the founder of Islam and Muslims worship him
        >
        > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was born in Makkah in the year 570. Since his
        > father died before his birth, and his mother shortly afterwards, he
        > was raised by his uncle from the respected tribe of Quraysh. As he
        > grew up, he became known for his truthfulness, generosity and
        > sincerity, so that he was sought after for his ability to arbitrate
        > in disputes. The historians describe him as calm and meditative.
        > Muhammad (SAW) pbuh, was of a deeply religious nature, and had long
        > detested the decadence of his society.
        >
        > It became his habit to meditate from time to time in the Cave of
        Hira
        > near Mecca. At the age of 40, while engaged in a meditative retreat,
        > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) received his first revelation
        > from Allaah
        > Swt through the Angel Gabriel. This revelation, which
        > continued for 23 years is known as the Quran. As soon as he began to
        > recite the words he heard from Gabriel, and to preach the truth
        which
        > Allaah Swt had revealed to him, he and his small
        > group of
        > followers suffered bitter persecution, which grew so fierce that in
        > the year 622 Allaah swt gave them the command to
        > emigrate.
        >
        > This event, the Hijrah or 'migration', in which they left Makkah for
        > the city of Madina, marks the beginning of the Muslim calendar.
        After
        > several years, the Prophet (PBUH)and his followers were able to
        > return to Makkah, where they forgave their enemies and established
        > Islam definitively. Before the death of Prophet r at the age of 63,
        > the greater part of Arabia was Muslim, and within a century of his
        > death Islam had spread to Spain in the West and as far east as
        China.
        >
        > While Muhammad SAW (PBUH )was chosen to deliver the message, he is
        > not considered the "founder" of Islam, since Muslims consider Islam
        > to be the same Divine guidance sent to all Prophets before. Muslims
        > believe all the prophets from Adam, Noah, Moses, Jesus etc. were all
        > sent with divine guidance for their peoples. Every prophet was sent
        > to his own people, but Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was sent to all of
        > mankind. Muhammad ��� ���� ���� ���� is the last and
        > final messenger
        > sent to deliver the message of Islam. Muslims revere and honour him
        > (PBUH) for all he went through and his dedication, but they do not
        > worship him.
        >
        > "O Prophet(PBUH), verily We have sent you as a witness and a bearer
        > of glad tidings and a Warner and as one who invites unto Allaah
        > Swt by His leave and as an illuminating lamp."
        > (Qur'an 33:45-
        > 46)
        >
        > 10: Muslims don't believe in Jesus or any other Prophets
        >
        > Muslims respect and revere Jesusu and await his Second Coming. They
        > consider him one of the greatest of Allaah Swt 's messengers to
        > mankind. A Muslim never refers to him simply as 'Eesa (As) ', but
        > always adds the phraseu. The Qur'an confirms his virgin birth (a
        > chapter of the Quran is entitled 'Mary'), and Mary is considered the
        > purest woman in all creation. The Quran describes the Annunciation
        as
        > follows:
        >
        > "Behold!" the Angel said, "Allaah Swt has chosen you, and purified
        > you, and chosen you above the women of all nations. O Mary, Allaah
        > Swt gives you good news of a word from Him whose name shall be the
        > Messiah, Eesa (AS) son of Mary, honoured in this world and the
        > Hereafter, and one of those brought near to Allaah Swt . He shall
        > speak to the people from his cradle and in maturity, and shall be of
        > the righteous." She said: "O my Lord! How shall I have a son when no
        > man has touched me?" He said: "Even so; Allaah Swt creates what He
        > wills. When He decrees a thing, He says to it, "Be!" and it is."
        > (Qur'an 3:42-47)
        >
        > Jesusu was born miraculously through the same power, which had
        > brought Adamu into being without a father: "Truly, the likeness of
        > Eesa (As) (Jesus) with Allaah Swt is as the likeness of Adam. He
        > created him of dust, and then said to him, 'Be!' and he was."
        (Qur'an
        > 3:59)
        >
        > During his prophetic mission Jesusu performed many miracles. The
        > Qur'an tells us that he said: "I have come to you with a sign from
        > your Lord: I make for you out of clay, as it were, the figure of a
        > bird, and breath into it and it becomes a bird by Allaah Swt 's
        > leave. And I heal the blind, and the lepers, and I raise the dead by
        > Allaah Swt 's leave." (Qur'an 3:49)
        >
        > Neither Muhammad (SAW) (PBUH) nor Jesus u came to change the basic
        > doctrine of the belief in One Allaah (SAW) brought by earlier
        > Prophets, but to confirm and renew it.
        >
        > In the Qur'an Jesusu is reported as saying that he came: "And I have
        > come confirming that which was before me of the Taurat (Torah), and
        > to make lawful to you part of what was forbidden to you; and I have
        > come to you with a proof from your Lord, so fear Allaah Swt and obey
        > me." (Qur'an 3:50)
        >
        > The Prophet Muhammad(SAW)PBUH said: "Whoever believes there is no
        > Allaah Swt but Allaah Swt , alone without partner, that Muhammad
        (SAW)
        > (PBUH) is His messenger, that Eesa (As) is the servant and
        messenger
        > of Allaah (SAW) , His word breathed into Mary and a spirit emanating
        > from Him, and that Paradise and Hell are true, shall be received by
        > Allaah (SAW) into Heaven." (Hadith related by Bukhari).
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > _________________________________________________________________
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      • james tan
        does the u.n. has such authority as u suggested? james. From: clickhereforinsignificance Reply-To: existlist@yahoogroups.com To:
        Message 3 of 11 , Aug 2, 2002
        • 0 Attachment
          does the u.n. has such authority as u suggested?

          james.


          From: "clickhereforinsignificance" <livewild@...>
          Reply-To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
          To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: [existlist] Re: TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
          Date: Thu, 01 Aug 2002 21:28:26 -0000


          Bill,

          I think that the Israel/Palestinian conflict certainly antagonizes
          the Islamic situation... but it's an entirely different issue. Israel
          was created as a Jewish homeland in response to centuries of anti-
          Semitism and capped off with the attempt to exterminate them during
          the holocaust. IT's quite understandable Jewish distrust of gentiles.

          However during its creation Palestine lands were appropriated in a
          way that is questionable. Saying your ancestors lived there thousands
          of years ago as a rational argument for illegal immigration would
          open the door to countless wars forever. Imagine if the Indians
          decided they wanted their land back!!!!

          By now though.... I believe that Israel should have a right to
          exist. And I honestly believe that a homeland might transition
          Judaism from a religion to more of a cultural identity and lessen the
          psychological stress and sense of persecution so many Jews feel (It
          is important to note Israeli is not synonymous as Jewish though....
          as is the common preconception. My Jewish friends and former
          girlfriend detested Israeli policies ).

          The current Israeli government believes that if they continue to
          cram people into formally Palestinian lands that the problem will
          eventually disappear. They are currently building a huge wall (which
          seems to be getting very little publicity) that will likely become
          the demarcation point for Israeli lands. This tactic might work, but
          I believe this sense of progress is very short sighted if a
          Palestinian state is not created. They would be creating a people of
          nomads and antagonizing over 300 million Arabs around them who will
          not soon forget. These struggles date back thousands of years and
          even if Israeli completely eliminated every Arab from its lands they
          would be under constant threat for potentially as long as the Islamic
          religion exists. Maybe in a few thousand years Palestinian's will
          want the land of their ancestors back?

          What I find most interesting and perhaps more important, Israeli
          policy seems to be subscribing to the idea that might equals moral
          right. The Nazi's used the same approach albeit in a much more
          disgusting manner.

          I sympathize more with Palestinians on this issue since they are
          being robbed of their identity and country. In addition their
          children are dying at three times the rate (not only the symtex
          strapped ones either). However too many of them are also
          extremistists that demand the complete irradication of Israeli.

          All that being said, what should be done now is not the
          dissolution of Israeli, but a mission by the U.N. They should go in
          and take over, then split the land in a way that is not equitable for
          either party (the sign of a good agreement). A security buffer
          between the countries should then be created (ala Cyprus) This is the
          only rational approach for everyone to save face. Otherwise it
          appears like manipulation of U.S. policy caused by fear of political
          retaliation from extremist Jewish lobby groups.

          This seems apparent as the U.S. has used their security council
          veto power to prevent U.N. resolutions from implementing this
          solution on countless occasions. Where else in the world are there
          high profile wars happening where U.N. is not involved? In addition
          the current Israeli government has attempted to associate the
          Palestinian issue with the larger Islamic fundamentalist (a.k.a 9/11)
          one to hide continued expansion and justify it to the public. They
          calling it terrorist but to the Palestinians it's freedom fighting.
          Sure they blow themselves up, but I suspect they would prefer to have
          the F-16's and tanks Israeli uses to kill it's own citizens. They use
          what they have at there disposal.

          If Israeli tactics are continued (without U.N. intervention), it
          is very short term opportunistic thinking and unfortunately will
          likely continue to propagate anti-Semitism around the world. If only
          the moderates in Israel had not had their Prime Minister executed by
          a fundimentalist.

          ~ peace through superior firepower?

          ---------------------------------------------



          --- In existlist@y..., "Bill Harris" <valleywestdental@q...> wrote:
          > click, Very rational, very positive, very well thought out. I hope
          views like yours prevail, rather than those who strap symtex to their
          young people. Bill
          > ----- Original Message -----
          > From: clickhereforinsignificance
          > To: existlist@y...
          > Sent: Thursday, August 01, 2002 2:09 PM
          > Subject: [existlist] Re: TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
          >
          >
          >
          > Interesting and educational. However one thing that the
          writer
          > does not differentiate between is theory and actual practice of
          the
          > religion. There is a great deal of conditioning of hatred towards
          the
          > west happening in those countries. Although in the West we too
          have
          > our ridiculous propaganda, I have not observed hundreds of
          thousands
          > of people gathering together to protest 'the great satans of the
          > East'.
          >
          > I believe the people (of Islamic states) themselves are
          capable
          > and as decent as any other, but the system they have implemented
          > (much like communism) is doomed unless the realities of it's
          politics
          > change. They are aggressively pushing religious docterine around
          the
          > world (practically all the hotspots are muslim extremist related)
          and
          > the WORLD (including areas like India, China, Russia, Europe, and
          of
          > course 'the great satan' are responding with balance of power
          theory.
          >
          > The West effectively used a similar technique against
          Communism
          > (another great theory) with the Policy of Containment. In the
          end,
          > they beat them with the innovation the freedom of their
          > economic/political system allows for. And although there has been
          > pains involved in that transition it does not appear most of them
          > wish to return to the 'old ways'.
          >
          > I sympathize with Islamics that don't want to seperate church
          and
          > state, but if they do not they only stiffle there own people's
          > freedom and ability to compete in the realities of today's world.
          > Islam can certainly survive this struggle (much like christianity
          > survived) but Islamic run states will not. They will need to
          > transition to democracy. When they do they will discover Western
          > support for totalitarian Kings will evapourate much like it did
          for
          > military puppet governments after the cold war.
          >
          > There is a cold war of sorts that is now being recognized by
          every
          > non-islamic country in the world. And that war will either be won
          by
          > the non-islamic states... or will lead to the nuclear annhilation
          of
          > both. It is enivitable that democracy will eventually take over
          the
          > world. Perhaps it is 'evil' (subjective) but it is highly
          effective
          > towards accomplishing tasks.
          >
          > Finally, the truth of the matter is... the west (and any other
          > nuclear powers)could obliterate countries like Iran, Iraq, Syria,
          > Israel (interesting that I include it eh?), Jordan, Egypt,
          Algeria,
          > Saudi Arabia, etc.... in a matter of hours. And all the oil would
          > still remain to plunder.
          >
          > And yet they do not.
          >
          > I wish fundimentalist's (of any type) would notice that
          important
          > little fact more often. Many proclaim they are not afraid to
          die...
          > but I suspect they are the ones that are afraid to live.
          >
          > ~ tired of petty wars
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > --- In existlist@y..., "james tan" <tyjfk@h...> wrote:
          > >
          > > well, just a forward..
          > >
          > > From: "bentarawira" <abidin-mz@d...>
          > > Reply-To: Fateha@y...
          > > To: Fateha@y...
          > > Subject: [Fateha] TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
          > > Date: Thu, 01 Aug 2002 09:48:56 -0000
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS
          > > ABOUT ISLAM
          > >
          > > By Huma Ahmad
          > >
          > >
          > > 1.Muslims are violent, terrorists and/or extremists
          > >
          > > This is the biggest misconception about Islam, no doubt
          resulting
          > > from the constant stereotyping and bashing the media gives
          Islam.
          > > When a gunman attacks a mosque in the name of Judaism, a
          Catholic
          > IRA
          > > guerrilla sets off a bomb in an urban area, or Serbian Orthodox
          > > militiamen rape and kill innocent Muslim civilians, these acts
          are
          > > not used to stereotype an entire faith. Never are these acts
          > > attributed to the religion of the perpetrators. Yet how many
          times
          > > have we heard the words 'Islamic, Muslim fundamentalist, etc.'
          > linked
          > > with violence. Politics in so-called "Muslim countries" may or
          may
          > > not have any Islamic basis. Often dictators and politicians
          will use
          > > the name of Islam for their own purposes. One should consult the
          > > source of Islam and separate what the true religion of Islam
          says
          > > from what is portrayed in the media. Islam literally
          > > means 'submission to Allaah Swt ' and is derived from a root
          word
          > > meaning 'peace'.
          > >
          > > Islam may seem exotic or even extreme in the modern world.
          Perhaps
          > > this is because religion doesn't dominate everyday life in the
          West,
          > > whereas Islam is considered a 'way of life' for Muslims and
          they
          > make
          > > no division between secular and sacred in their lives. Like
          > > Christianity, Islam permits fighting in self-defence, in
          defence of
          > > religion, or on the part of those who have been expelled
          forcibly
          > > from their homes. It lays down strict rules of combat, which
          include
          > > prohibitions against harming civilians and against destroying
          crops,
          > > trees and livestock. NOWHERE DOES ISLAM ENJOIN THE KILLING OF
          > > INNOCENTS.... The Quran says: "Fight in the cause of Allaah Swt
          > > against those who fight you, but do not transgress limits.
          Allaah
          > Swt
          > > does not love transgressors." (Quran 2:190) "If they seek
          peace,
          > then
          > > seek you peace. And trust in Allaah Swt for He is the One that
          > > heareth and knoweth all things." (Quran 8:61)
          > >
          > > War, therefore, is the last resort, and is subject to the
          rigorous
          > > conditions laid down by the sacred law. The term 'jihad'
          literally
          > > means 'struggle'. Muslims believe that there are two kinds of
          jihad.
          > > The other 'jihad' is the inner struggle of the soul, which
          everyone
          > > wages against egotistic desires for the sake of attaining inner
          > peace.
          > >
          > > 2: Islam oppresses women
          > >
          > > The image of the typical Muslim woman wearing the veil and
          forced to
          > > stay home and forbidden to drive is all too common in most
          people's
          > > thoughts. Although some Muslim countries may have laws that
          oppress
          > > women, this should not be seen as coming from Islam. Many of
          these
          > > countries do not rule by any kind of Shari'ah (Islamic law) and
          > > introduce their own cultural standpoints on the issue of gender
          > > equality.
          > >
          > > Islam on the other hand gives men and women different roles and
          > > equity between the two is laid down in the Quran and the
          example of
          > > the Prophet. Islam sees a woman, whether single or married, as
          an
          > > individual in her own right, with the right to own and dispose
          of
          > her
          > > property and earnings.
          > >
          > > A marriage gift is given by the groom to the bride for her own
          > > personal use, and she keeps her own family name rather than
          taking
          > > her husband's. Both men and women are expected to dress in a
          way
          > that
          > > is modest and dignified. The Messenger of Allaah Swt said: "The
          most
          > > perfect in faith amongst believers is he who is best in manner
          and
          > > kindest to his wife."
          > >
          > > Violence of any kind towards women and forcing them against
          their
          > > will for anything is not allowed. A Muslim marriage is a simple,
          > > legal agreement in which either partner is free to include
          > > conditions. Marriage customs thus vary widely from country to
          > > country. Divorce is not common, although it is acceptable as a
          last
          > > resort. According to Islam, a Muslim girl cannot be forced to
          marry
          > > against her will: her parents simply suggest young men they
          think
          > may
          > > be suitable.
          > >
          > > 3: Muslims worship a different God.
          > >
          > > Allah Swt is simply the Arabic word for God. Allaah Swt for
          Muslims
          > > is the greatest and most inclusive of the Names of God, it is an
          > > Arabic word of rich meaning, denoting the one and only God and
          > > ascribing no partners to Him. It is exactly the same word which
          the
          > > Jews, in Hebrew, use for God (eloh), the word which Jesus
          Christ
          > used
          > > in Aramaic when he prayed to Allaah Swt . Allaah Swt has an
          > identical
          > > name in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; Allaah Swt is the
          same God
          > > worshiped by Muslims, Christians and Jews. Muslims believe that
          > > Allaah Swt 's sovereignty is to be acknowledged in worship and
          in
          > the
          > > pledge to obey His teaching and commandments, conveyed through
          His
          > > Messengers and Prophets who were sent at various times and in
          many
          > > places throughout history. However, it should be noted that God
          in
          > > Islam is One and Only. He, the Exalted, does not get tired,
          does not
          > > have a son (i.e. Jesus) or have associates, nor does He have
          human-
          > > like attributions as found in other faiths.
          > >
          > > 4: Islam was spread by sword and is intolerant of other faiths.
          > >
          > > Many social studies textbooks for students show the image of an
          Arab
          > > horseman carrying a sword in one hand and the Quran in the
          other,
          > > conquering and forcibly converting. This, however, is not a
          correct
          > > portrayal of history. Islam has always given respect and
          freedom of
          > > religion to all faiths. The Quran says: "Allaah Swt forbids you
          not,
          > > with regards to those who fight you not for [your] faith nor
          drive
          > > you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with
          them; for
          > > Allaah Swt loveth those who are just." (Qur'an 60:8)
          > >
          > > Freedom of religion is laid down in the Quran itself: "There is
          no
          > > compulsion (or coercion) in the religion (Islam). The right
          > direction
          > > is distinctly clear from error." (Qur'an 2:256)
          > >
          > > Christian missionary, T.W. Arnold had this opinion on his study
          of
          > > the question of the spread of Islam: "...of any organized
          attempt to
          > > force the acceptance of Islam on the non-Muslim population, or
          of
          > any
          > > systematic persecution intended to stamp out the Christian
          religion,
          > > we hear nothing. Had the caliphs chosen to adopt either course
          of
          > > action, they might have swept away Christianity as easily as
          > > Ferdinand and Isabella drove Islam out of Spain, or Louis XIV
          made
          > > Protestantism..."
          > >
          > > It is a function of Islamic law to protect the privileged
          status of
          > > minorities, and this is why non-Muslim places of worship have
          > > flourished all over the Islamic world. History provides many
          > examples
          > > of Muslim tolerance towards other faiths: when the caliph Omar
          > > entered Jerusalem in the year 634, Islam granted freedom of
          worship
          > > to all religious communities in the city. Proclaiming to the
          > > inhabitants that their lives, and property were safe, and that
          their
          > > places of worship would never be taken from them, he asked the
          > > Christian patriarch Sophronius to accompany him on a visit to
          all
          > the
          > > holy places. Islamic law also permits non-Muslim minorities to
          set
          > up
          > > their own courts, which implement family laws drawn up by the
          > > minorities themselves. The life and property of all citizens in
          an
          > > Islamic state are considered sacred whether the person is
          Muslim or
          > > not.
          > >
          > > Racism is not a part of Islam, the Quran speaks only of human
          > > equality and how all people are equal in the sight of Allaah
          > > Swt
          > > . "O mankind! We created you from a single soul, male and
          > > female, and made you into nations and tribes, so that you may
          come
          > to
          > > know one another. Truly, the most honoured of you in Allaah
          Swt 's
          > > sight is the greatest of you in piety. Allaah Swt
          > > is All-Knowing, All- Aware."
          > >
          > > 5: All Muslims are Arabs
          > >
          > > The Muslim population of the world is around 1,2 billion. One
          out of
          > > every five people in the world is a Muslim. They are a vast
          range of
          > > races, nationalities, and cultures from around the globe from
          the
          > > Philippines to Nigeria they are united by their common Islamic
          > faith.
          > > Only about 18% live in the Arab world and the largest Muslim
          > > community is in Indonesia. Most Muslims live east of Pakistan.
          > Thirty
          > > percent of Muslims live in the Indian subcontinent, 20% in Sub-
          > > Saharan Africa, 17% in Southeast Asia, 18% in the Arab world,
          and
          > 10%
          > > in the Soviet Union and China. Turkey, Iran, and Afghanistan
          make up
          > > 10% of the non-Arab Middle East. Although there are Muslim
          > minorities
          > > in almost every area, including Latin America and Australia,
          they
          > are
          > > most numerous in Russia and its newly independent states, India
          and
          > > central Africa. There are about 6 million Muslims in the United
          > > States.
          > >
          > > 6: The Nation of Islam is a Muslim group
          > >
          > > Islam and the so-called "Nation of Islam (NOI)" are two
          different
          > > religions. NOI is more of a political organization since its
          members
          > > are not limited to a single faith. Muslims consider this group
          to be
          > > just one of many cults using the name of Islam for their own
          gain.
          > > The only thing common between them is the jargon, the language
          used
          > > by both. "The Nation of Islam" is a misnomer; this religion
          should
          > be
          > > called Farrakhanism, after the name of its propagator, Louis
          > > Farrakhan.
          > >
          > > Islam and Farakhanism differ in many fundamental ways. For
          example,
          > > Farakhan followers believe in racism and that the 'black man'
          was
          > the
          > > original man and therefore superior, while in Islam there is no
          > > racism and everyone is considered equal in the sight of Allaah
          Swt ,
          > > the only difference being in one's piety. There are many other
          > > theological examples that show the NOI's teachings have little
          to do
          > > with true Islam. There are many groups in America who claim to
          > > represent Islam and call their adherents Muslims.
          > >
          > > Any serious student of Islam has a duty to investigate and find
          the
          > > true Islam. The only two authentic sources which bind every
          Muslim
          > > are the Quran and authentic or sound Hadith. Any teachings
          under the
          > > label of "Islam" which contradict or at variance with the direct
          > > understanding of fundamental beliefs and practices of Islam
          form the
          > > Quran and authentic Hadith should be rejected and such a
          religion
          > > should be considered a Pseudo-Islamic Cult.
          > >
          > > In America there are many pseudo-Islamic cults, Farrakhanism
          being
          > > one of them. An honest attitude on the part of such cults
          should be
          > > not to call themselves Muslims and their religion Islam, such an
          > > example of honesty is Bahaism which is an off-shoot of Islam but
          > > Bahais do not call themselves Muslims nor their religion,
          Islam. In
          > > fact Bahaism is not Islam just as Farrakhanism is not Islam.
          Read
          > > about in relation to this misconception, where he found the true
          > > Islam, realising that it is much different than NOI.
          > >
          > > 7: Polygamy is cruelty It is one of favors of Islam
          > >
          > > that it has allowed men to marry more than once. The underlying
          > > wisdom of this command is now becoming manifest as the
          population of
          > > women is increasing. The population of men is decreasing due to
          > wars,
          > > accidents and other such reasons. So if under these
          circumstances
          > men
          > > were allowed to marry once, a large number of women would have
          > > remained unmarried and have turned to adultery and other moral
          > evils.
          > > Therefore, for the protection of orphans and widows and the
          solution
          > > of the problem of marriage of maidens Islam ordained polygamy.
          > > Secondly, during childbirth and menstruation and other ailments
          a
          > > woman becomes unable to fulfil the matrimonial rights of her
          > husband.
          > > So if under these circumstances a man is not allowed to practise
          > > polygamy he might turn to adultery. That is why Islam has given
          men
          > > the permission to remarry.
          > >
          > > Here it must also be remembered that in case of polygamy
          husband is
          > > under obligation to treat his wives with as much equality as
          humanly
          > > possible. If he fails to do so he will have to account for it
          on the
          > > Day of Judgement. In the West monogamy has resulted in horrible
          > > effects. All forms of moral evils are common in their society.
          > >
          > > 8: Muslims are a barbaric, backward people
          > >
          > > Among the reasons for the rapid and peaceful spread of Islam
          was the
          > > simplicity of its doctrine-Islam calls for faith in only one
          Allaah
          > > Swt worthy of worship. It also repeatedly instructs man to use
          his
          > > powers of intelligence and observation. Within a few years,
          great
          > > civilisations and universities were flourishing, for according
          to
          > the
          > > Prophet, 'seeking knowledge is an obligation for every Muslim
          man
          > and
          > > woman'.
          > >
          > > The synthesis of Eastern and Western ideas and of new thought
          with
          > > old, brought about great advances in medicine, mathematics,
          physics,
          > > astronomy, geography, architecture, art, literature, and
          history.
          > > Many crucial systems such as algebra, the Arabic numerals, and
          also
          > > the concept of the zero (vital to the advancement of
          mathematics),
          > > were transmitted to medieval Europe from Islam. Sophisticated
          > > instruments which were to make possible the European voyages of
          > > discovery were developed, including the astrolabe, the quadrant
          and
          > > good navigational maps.
          > >
          > > 9: Muhammad (SAW) was the founder of Islam and Muslims worship
          him
          > >
          > > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was born in Makkah in the year 570. Since
          his
          > > father died before his birth, and his mother shortly
          afterwards, he
          > > was raised by his uncle from the respected tribe of Quraysh. As
          he
          > > grew up, he became known for his truthfulness, generosity and
          > > sincerity, so that he was sought after for his ability to
          arbitrate
          > > in disputes. The historians describe him as calm and meditative.
          > > Muhammad (SAW) pbuh, was of a deeply religious nature, and had
          long
          > > detested the decadence of his society.
          > >
          > > It became his habit to meditate from time to time in the Cave
          of
          > Hira
          > > near Mecca. At the age of 40, while engaged in a meditative
          retreat,
          > > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) received his first revelation
          > > from Allaah
          > > Swt through the Angel Gabriel. This revelation, which
          > > continued for 23 years is known as the Quran. As soon as he
          began to
          > > recite the words he heard from Gabriel, and to preach the truth
          > which
          > > Allaah Swt had revealed to him, he and his small
          > > group of
          > > followers suffered bitter persecution, which grew so fierce
          that in
          > > the year 622 Allaah swt gave them the command to
          > > emigrate.
          > >
          > > This event, the Hijrah or 'migration', in which they left
          Makkah for
          > > the city of Madina, marks the beginning of the Muslim calendar.
          > After
          > > several years, the Prophet (PBUH)and his followers were able to
          > > return to Makkah, where they forgave their enemies and
          established
          > > Islam definitively. Before the death of Prophet r at the age of
          63,
          > > the greater part of Arabia was Muslim, and within a century of
          his
          > > death Islam had spread to Spain in the West and as far east as
          > China.
          > >
          > > While Muhammad SAW (PBUH )was chosen to deliver the message, he
          is
          > > not considered the "founder" of Islam, since Muslims consider
          Islam
          > > to be the same Divine guidance sent to all Prophets before.
          Muslims
          > > believe all the prophets from Adam, Noah, Moses, Jesus etc.
          were all
          > > sent with divine guidance for their peoples. Every prophet was
          sent
          > > to his own people, but Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was sent to all of
          > > mankind. Muhammad ��� ���� ���� ���� is the last and
          > > final messenger
          > > sent to deliver the message of Islam. Muslims revere and honour
          him
          > > (PBUH) for all he went through and his dedication, but they do
          not
          > > worship him.
          > >
          > > "O Prophet(PBUH), verily We have sent you as a witness and a
          bearer
          > > of glad tidings and a Warner and as one who invites unto Allaah
          > > Swt by His leave and as an illuminating lamp."
          > > (Qur'an 33:45-
          > > 46)
          > >
          > > 10: Muslims don't believe in Jesus or any other Prophets
          > >
          > > Muslims respect and revere Jesusu and await his Second Coming.
          They
          > > consider him one of the greatest of Allaah Swt 's messengers to
          > > mankind. A Muslim never refers to him simply as 'Eesa (As) ',
          but
          > > always adds the phraseu. The Qur'an confirms his virgin birth (a
          > > chapter of the Quran is entitled 'Mary'), and Mary is
          considered the
          > > purest woman in all creation. The Quran describes the
          Annunciation
          > as
          > > follows:
          > >
          > > "Behold!" the Angel said, "Allaah Swt has chosen you, and
          purified
          > > you, and chosen you above the women of all nations. O Mary,
          Allaah
          > > Swt gives you good news of a word from Him whose name shall be
          the
          > > Messiah, Eesa (AS) son of Mary, honoured in this world and the
          > > Hereafter, and one of those brought near to Allaah Swt . He
          shall
          > > speak to the people from his cradle and in maturity, and shall
          be of
          > > the righteous." She said: "O my Lord! How shall I have a son
          when no
          > > man has touched me?" He said: "Even so; Allaah Swt creates what
          He
          > > wills. When He decrees a thing, He says to it, "Be!" and it is."
          > > (Qur'an 3:42-47)
          > >
          > > Jesusu was born miraculously through the same power, which had
          > > brought Adamu into being without a father: "Truly, the likeness
          of
          > > Eesa (As) (Jesus) with Allaah Swt is as the likeness of Adam. He
          > > created him of dust, and then said to him, 'Be!' and he was."
          > (Qur'an
          > > 3:59)
          > >
          > > During his prophetic mission Jesusu performed many miracles. The
          > > Qur'an tells us that he said: "I have come to you with a sign
          from
          > > your Lord: I make for you out of clay, as it were, the figure
          of a
          > > bird, and breath into it and it becomes a bird by Allaah Swt 's
          > > leave. And I heal the blind, and the lepers, and I raise the
          dead by
          > > Allaah Swt 's leave." (Qur'an 3:49)
          > >
          > > Neither Muhammad (SAW) (PBUH) nor Jesus u came to change the
          basic
          > > doctrine of the belief in One Allaah (SAW) brought by earlier
          > > Prophets, but to confirm and renew it.
          > >
          > > In the Qur'an Jesusu is reported as saying that he came: "And I
          have
          > > come confirming that which was before me of the Taurat (Torah),
          and
          > > to make lawful to you part of what was forbidden to you; and I
          have
          > > come to you with a proof from your Lord, so fear Allaah Swt and
          obey
          > > me." (Qur'an 3:50)
          > >
          > > The Prophet Muhammad(SAW)PBUH said: "Whoever believes there is
          no
          > > Allaah Swt but Allaah Swt , alone without partner, that
          Muhammad
          > (SAW)
          > > (PBUH) is His messenger, that Eesa (As) is the servant and
          > messenger
          > > of Allaah (SAW) , His word breathed into Mary and a spirit
          emanating
          > > from Him, and that Paradise and Hell are true, shall be
          received by
          > > Allaah (SAW) into Heaven." (Hadith related by Bukhari).
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          _________________________________________________________________
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        • james tan
          informative article by huma ahmad, and interesting if somewhat skeptical response on ur part. james. From: swmirsky@aol.com Reply-To:
          Message 4 of 11 , Aug 2, 2002
          • 0 Attachment
            informative article by huma ahmad, and interesting if somewhat skeptical
            response on ur part.

            james.


            From: swmirsky@...
            Reply-To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
            To: WisdomForum@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [WisdomForum] TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
            Date: Thu, 1 Aug 2002 19:42:45 EDT

            More time now so will have a go at commenting on the material you posted
            below (my comments in caps):

            In a message dated 8/1/2002 1:22:38 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
            tyjfk@... writes:

            > well, just a forward..
            >
            > From: "bentarawira" <abidin-mz@...>
            > Reply-To: Fateha@yahoogroups.com
            > To: Fateha@yahoogroups.com
            > Subject: [Fateha] TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
            > Date: Thu, 01 Aug 2002 09:48:56 -0000
            >
            > TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS
            > ABOUT ISLAM
            >
            > By Huma Ahmad
            >
            > 1.Muslims are violent, terrorists and/or extremists
            >
            > This is the biggest misconception about Islam, no doubt resulting
            > from the constant stereotyping and bashing the media gives Islam.
            > When a gunman attacks a mosque in the name of Judaism, a Catholic IRA
            > guerrilla sets off a bomb in an urban area, or Serbian Orthodox
            > militiamen rape and kill innocent Muslim civilians, these acts are
            > not used to stereotype an entire faith. Never are these acts
            > attributed to the religion of the perpetrators.

            THE REASON IS THAT EITHER SUCH ACTS ARE ANOMOLOUS BEHAVIOR
            > FOR THE GROUP REPRESENTED OR THEY ARE NOT PRESENTED BY THE PERPERTATORS
            AS
            > DRIVEN BY A RELIGIOUS IMPERATIVE. RADICAL MUSLIM TERRORISTS, ON THE
            > CONTRARY, PERSISTENTLY CLAIM THEIR RELIGION AS THEIR JUSTIFICATION AND
            SUCH
            > CLAIMS AND CLAIMANTS ARE VERY COMMON IN THE UMMAH. THEREFORE IT IS NOT
            > SURPRISING THAT THEY WILL BE DESCRIBED IN THE MEDIA AS MUSLIM TERRORISTS.
            > THEY PROCLAIM THIS AS THEIR JUSTIFICATION AS THOUGH FROM THE ROOF TOPS.
            IF
            > MUSLIMS DON'T LIKE THIS CHARACTERIZATION THEN THEY SHOULD DENOUNCE THESE
            > ACTS WHEN THEY OCCUR, NOT APPLAUD THEM!


            Yet how many times have we heard the words 'Islamic, Muslim fundamentalist,
            > etc.' linked with violence. Politics in so-called "Muslim countries" may
            or
            > may
            > not have any Islamic basis. Often dictators and politicians will use
            > the name of Islam for their own purposes. One should consult the
            > source of Islam and separate what the true religion of Islam says
            > from what is portrayed in the media. Islam literally
            > means 'submission to Allaah Swt ' and is derived from a root word
            > meaning 'peace'.
            >
            > Islam may seem exotic or even extreme in the modern world. Perhaps
            > this is because religion doesn't dominate everyday life in the West,
            > whereas Islam is considered a 'way of life' for Muslims and they make
            > no division between secular and sacred in their lives. Like
            > Christianity, Islam permits fighting in self-defence, in defence of
            > religion, or on the part of those who have been expelled forcibly
            > from their homes.

            THIS SEEMS TO BE A SPECIAL CASE CLAIM DESIGNED TO JUSTIFY PALESTINIAN >
            > ACTIONS.

            It lays down strict rules of combat, which include
            > prohibitions against harming civilians and against destroying crops,
            > trees and livestock. Nowhere does Islam enjoin the killing of
            innocents....
            > The Quran says: "Fight in the cause of Allaah Swt
            > against those who fight you, but do not transgress limits. Allaah Swt
            > does not love transgressors." (Quran 2:190)

            OKAY, WHAT ARE THE LIMITS CITED?

            "If they seek peace, then > seek you peace. And trust in Allaah Swt for He
            is
            > the One that heareth and knoweth all things." (Quran 8:61)
            >
            > War, therefore, is the last resort, and is subject to the rigorous
            > conditions laid down by the sacred law. The term 'jihad' literally
            > means 'struggle'. Muslims believe that there are two kinds of jihad.
            > The other 'jihad' is the inner struggle of the soul, which everyone
            > wages against egotistic desires for the sake of attaining inner peace.

            BUT MUSLIMS ALSO BELIEVE IN THE JIHAD AS HOLY WAR WHICH IS NOT, IN
            PRINCIPLE,
            DIFFERENT FROM THE CHRISTIAN CRUSADE. IN FACT, THE MUSLIMS PURSUED JIHAD
            LONG
            BEFORE EUROPE INVENTED THE CRUSADE AND ONE COULD ARGUE THAT THE CRUSADES
            BEGAN AS A REACTION TO JIHAD.


            > 2: Islam oppresses women
            >
            > The image of the typical Muslim woman wearing the veil and forced to
            > stay home and forbidden to drive is all too common in most people's
            > thoughts. Although some Muslim countries may have laws that oppress
            > women, this should not be seen as coming from Islam. Many of these
            > countries do not rule by any kind of Shari'ah (Islamic law) and
            > introduce their own cultural standpoints on the issue of gender
            > equality.
            >
            THIS IS TRUE. NOT ALL MUSLIM COUNTRIES OR CULTURES ARE AS EXTREMIST IN THIS
            REGARD THE SAUDIS AND THE TALIBAN.

            > Islam on the other hand gives men and women different roles and
            > equity between the two is laid down in the Quran and the example of
            > the Prophet. Islam sees a woman, whether single or married, as an
            > individual in her own right, with the right to own and dispose of her
            > property and earnings.
            >
            > A marriage gift is given by the groom to the bride for her own
            > personal use, and she keeps her own family name rather than taking
            > her husband's. Both men and women are expected to dress in a way that
            > is modest and dignified. The Messenger of Allaah Swt said: "The most
            > perfect in faith amongst believers is he who is best in manner and
            > kindest to his wife."
            >

            I SUSPECT THAT WESTERN FEMINISM MAY NOT BE ENTIRELY DELIGHTED WITH THIS CALL
            FOR KINDNESS TO ONE'S WIFE SINCE IT IMPLIES SHE IS LESS THAN, AND DEPENDENT
            ON, HER MALE PARTNER. THE ISLAMIC TEACHING, EVEN THOUGH IT DEMANDS KINDNESS
            TO WOMEN (WHILE NOT ALWAYS CLEARLY DEFINING THAT) DOES NOT ENVISION THE
            MARRIAGE BOND AS ONE OF EQUAL PARTNERSHIP, WHATEVER ELSE ONE SAYS ABOUT IT.

            > Violence of any kind towards women and forcing them against their
            > will for anything is not allowed. A Muslim marriage is a simple,
            > legal agreement in which either partner is free to include
            > conditions. Marriage customs thus vary widely from country to
            > country. Divorce is not common, although it is acceptable as a last
            > resort. According to Islam, a Muslim girl cannot be forced to marry
            > against her will: her parents simply suggest young men they think may
            > be suitable.
            >
            THIS IS MOST LIKELY PRACTICED MORE IN PRINCIPLE THAN FACT THOUGH I HAVE NO
            STATISTICAL DATA TO SUPPORT MY CLAIM AND SO MUST ACKNOWLEDGE IT IS ONLY A
            SENSE I HAVE FROM OBSERVING ISLAMIC CULTURE IN VARIOUS PARTS OF THE WORLD.

            > 3: Muslims worship a different God.
            >
            > Allah Swt is simply the Arabic word for God. Allaah Swt for Muslims
            > is the greatest and most inclusive of the Names of God, it is an
            > Arabic word of rich meaning, denoting the one and only God and
            > ascribing no partners to Him. It is exactly the same word which the
            > Jews, in Hebrew, use for God (eloh), the word which Jesus Christ used
            > in Aramaic when he prayed to Allaah Swt . Allaah Swt has an identical
            > name in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; Allaah Swt is the same God
            > worshiped by Muslims, Christians and Jews. Muslims believe that
            > Allaah Swt 's sovereignty is to be acknowledged in worship and in the
            > pledge to obey His teaching and commandments, conveyed through His
            > Messengers and Prophets who were sent at various times and in many
            > places throughout history. However, it should be noted that God in
            > Islam is One and Only. He, the Exalted, does not get tired, does not
            > have a son (i.e. Jesus) or have associates, nor does He have human-
            > like attributions as found in other faiths.
            >

            NO ARGUMENT HERE EXCEPT TO POINT OUT THAT ALL THE THREE MONOTHEISTIC
            RELIGIONS ASSUME AN ANTHROPOMORPHIC GOD. WHAT ELSE IS A GOD WHO ACTS IN THE
            WORLD, WHO SPEAKS WITH HUMANS, ETC.? EVEN IF THE IMAGE IS NOT ONE OF AN OLD
            MAN WITH A LONG WHITE BEARD FLOATING IN THE SKY, IT IS STILL ANTHROPOMORPHIC
            TO CLAIM GOD SPEAKS TO MAN, SENDS MESSENGERS, ACTS IN HISTORICAL TIME, ETC.

            > 4: Islam was spread by sword and is intolerant of other faiths.
            >
            > Many social studies textbooks for students show the image of an Arab
            > horseman carrying a sword in one hand and the Quran in the other,
            > conquering and forcibly converting. This, however, is not a correct
            > portrayal of history. Islam has always given respect and freedom of
            > religion to all faiths. The Quran says: "Allaah Swt forbids you not,
            > with regards to those who fight you not for [your] faith nor drive
            > you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them; for
            > Allaah Swt loveth those who are just." (Qur'an 60:8)
            >
            SO ALLAH DOESN'T FORBID YOU FROM "DEALING KINDLY AND JUSTLY WITH THEM"? I
            TAKE IT HE DOESN'T INSIST ON IT THEN? SO IT'S A MATTER OF CHOICE?

            AS A MATTER OF FACT, ISLAM WAS FIRST ESTABLISHED IN A CONFLICT WITH OTHER
            TRIBAL GROUPS IN ARABIA AND IT MADE ITS INITIAL SWEEP ONTO THE WORLD STAGE
            AS
            PART OF A WAR OF CONQUEST IN WHICH CONVERSION BY THE SWORD WAS HELD TO BE A
            LEGITIMATE AIM OF ITS SOLDIERY. ITS SUBSEQUENT HISTORY WAS LARGELY ONE OF
            WAR
            AND CONFLICT, FIRST WITH OTHERS (EUROPEANS, ETC.) AND LATER WITHIN ITS OWN
            MILIEU AS ONE ISLAMIC GROUP BROKE OFF AND CONTESTED WITH ANOTHER.

            > Freedom of religion is laid down in the Quran itself: "There is no
            > compulsion (or coercion) in the religion (Islam). The right direction
            > is distinctly clear from error." (Qur'an 2:256)
            >

            BUT CONVERSION BY THE SWORD IS AUTHORIZED AND EVEN ADVOCATED. OF COURSE ONE
            MUST SINCERELY EMBRACE THE FAITH, EVEN AFTER THE SWORD HAS BEEN WITHDRAWN OR
            ONE COULD BE SUBJECT TO FURTHER INDUCEMENTS. NOW, TURTHFULLY, ISLAM, SHORTLY
            AFTER ITS EMERGENCE ON THE WORLD STAGE, DECIDED NOT TO FORCE CONVERSION ON
            CHRISTIANS AND JEWS SINCE THEY WERE DEEMED RESPECTABLE AS PEOPLES OF THE
            BOOK
            (EVEN IF MISGUIDED). BUT ALL PAGANS AND OTHER RELIGIOUS ADHERENTS (LIKE THE
            ZOROASTRIANS) WERE NOT AFFORDED THAT SAME LUXURY. IT WAS CONVERT OR DIE. AS
            FOR CHRISTIANS AND JEWS, WELL SOMEBODY HAD TO PAY TAXES AND IN THOSE EARLY
            DAYS ONLY INFIDELS WERE EXPECTED TO DO THAT!

            > Christian missionary, T.W. Arnold had this opinion on his study of
            > the question of the spread of Islam: "...of any organized attempt to
            > force the acceptance of Islam on the non-Muslim population, or of any
            > systematic persecution intended to stamp out the Christian religion,
            > we hear nothing. Had the caliphs chosen to adopt either course of
            > action, they might have swept away Christianity as easily as
            > Ferdinand and Isabella drove Islam out of Spain, or Louis XIV made
            > Protestantism..."
            >

            NICE THOUGHT BUT NOT CONSISTENT WITH HISTORICAL FACTS. ISLAM EVERYWHERE
            FORCED CONVERSION WHEN IT SWEPT THROUGH OTHER LANDS IN ITS EARLIEST DAYS.
            LATER, THEY ESTABLISHED A MORE TOLERANT QUID PRO QUO TO ENSURE TAX REVENUES.

            > It is a function of Islamic law to protect the privileged status of
            > minorities, and this is why non-Muslim places of worship have
            > flourished all over the Islamic world. History provides many examples
            > of Muslim tolerance towards other faiths: when the caliph Omar
            > entered Jerusalem in the year 634, Islam granted freedom of worship
            > to all religious communities in the city. Proclaiming to the
            > inhabitants that their lives, and property were safe, and that their
            > places of worship would never be taken from them, he asked the
            > Christian patriarch Sophronius to accompany him on a visit to all the
            > holy places. Islamic law also permits non-Muslim minorities to set up
            > their own courts, which implement family laws drawn up by the
            > minorities themselves. The life and property of all citizens in an
            > Islamic state are considered sacred whether the person is Muslim or
            > not.
            >
            WHEN CHRISTIANITY WAS AT ITS MOST INTOLERANT AND ISLAM MILITARILY
            TRIUMPHANT,
            THE MUSLIMS WERE, INDEED, MORE TOLERANT THAN THE CHRISTIANS. BUT THEY ALSO
            HAVE A CLEAR HISTORY OF INTOLERANCE, WITNESS WHAT THEY DID TO THE BA'HAIS
            AND
            JUST LOOK AT HOW THEY TREAT OTHER RELIGIONS IN MANY OF THE CORE MUSLIM
            COUNTRIES TODAY (LIKE SAUDI ARABIA). IT IS DISINGENUOUS TO CLAIM THAT ISLAM
            IS A TOLERANT RELIGION AT ITS CORE. IT HAS STRANDS OF TOLERANCE AND
            INTOLERANCE BUT PLAINLY THE INTOLERANT STRANDS APPEAR TO BE DOMINATING IN
            KEY
            MUSLIM COUNTRIES TODAY.

            > Racism is not a part of Islam, the Quran speaks only of human
            > equality and how all people are equal in the sight of Allaah
            > Swt
            > . "O mankind! We created you from a single soul, male and
            > female, and made you into nations and tribes, so that you may come to
            > know one another. Truly, the most honoured of you in Allaah Swt 's
            > sight is the greatest of you in piety. Allaah Swt
            > is All-Knowing, All- Aware."
            >
            TRUE, BUT THE QU'RAN ALSO SPEAKS OF ACCEPTING WHOMEVER ALLAH HAS PLACED OVER
            YOU, EVEN IF HE BE BLACK AS NIGHT WITH A HEAD LIKE A RAISIN! NICE THOUGHT
            THAT WE ARE ALL EQUAL, BUT THERE'S AN IMPLICIT NEGATIVITY ABOUT PEOPLE OF
            AFRICAN DESCENT IN ISLAM WHICH COMES OUT VERY CLEARLY FROM THIS KIND OF
            STATEMENT. AS WITH THE MATTER OF BEING NICE TO OUR WIVES, I THINK THIS
            DOESN'T REALLY GO FAR ENOUGH, GIVEN TODAY'S MORE ENLIGHTENED CONCEPTS.

            > 5: All Muslims are Arabs
            >
            > The Muslim population of the world is around 1,2 billion. One out of
            > every five people in the world is a Muslim. They are a vast range of
            > races, nationalities, and cultures from around the globe from the
            > Philippines to Nigeria they are united by their common Islamic faith.
            > Only about 18% live in the Arab world and the largest Muslim
            > community is in Indonesia. Most Muslims live east of Pakistan. Thirty
            > percent of Muslims live in the Indian subcontinent, 20% in Sub-
            > Saharan Africa, 17% in Southeast Asia, 18% in the Arab world, and 10%
            > in the Soviet Union and China. Turkey, Iran, and Afghanistan make up
            > 10% of the non-Arab Middle East. Although there are Muslim minorities
            > in almost every area, including Latin America and Australia, they are
            > most numerous in Russia and its newly independent states, India and
            > central Africa. There are about 6 million Muslims in the United
            > States.
            >

            AGREED, ALL MUSLIMS ARE NOT ARABS AND, IN FACT, NOT ALL ARABS ARE MUSLIMS
            (THOUGH MOST ARE).


            > 6: The Nation of Islam is a Muslim group
            >
            > Islam and the so-called "Nation of Islam (NOI)" are two different
            > religions. NOI is more of a political organization since its members
            > are not limited to a single faith. Muslims consider this group to be
            > just one of many cults using the name of Islam for their own gain.
            > The only thing common between them is the jargon, the language used
            > by both. "The Nation of Islam" is a misnomer; this religion should be
            > called Farrakhanism, after the name of its propagator, Louis
            > Farrakhan.
            >

            IT WASN'T CREATED BY FARRAKHAN BUT BY A MAN NAMED W. D. FARD WHO CLAIMED TO
            BE THE INCARNATION OF ALLAH AND HIS DESIGNATED PROPHET, A MAN NAMED ELIJAH
            POOLE WHO TOOK THE NAME ELIJAH MUHAMMED. IT IS THE CASE, THOUGH, THAT ITS
            TEACHINGS ARE NOT CONSISTENT WITH TRUE ISLAM.

            > Islam and Farakhanism differ in many fundamental ways. For example,
            > Farakhan followers believe in racism and that the 'black man' was the
            > original man and therefore superior, while in Islam there is no
            > racism and everyone is considered equal in the sight of Allaah Swt ,
            > the only difference being in one's piety. There are many other
            > theological examples that show the NOI's teachings have little to do
            > with true Islam. There are many groups in America who claim to
            > represent Islam and call their adherents Muslims.
            >
            > Any serious student of Islam has a duty to investigate and find the
            > true Islam. The only two authentic sources which bind every Muslim
            > are the Quran and authentic or sound Hadith. Any teachings under the
            > label of "Islam" which contradict or at variance with the direct
            > understanding of fundamental beliefs and practices of Islam form the
            > Quran and authentic Hadith should be rejected and such a religion
            > should be considered a Pseudo-Islamic Cult.
            >
            > In America there are many pseudo-Islamic cults, Farrakhanism being
            > one of them. An honest attitude on the part of such cults should be
            > not to call themselves Muslims and their religion Islam, such an
            > example of honesty is Bahaism which is an off-shoot of Islam but
            > Bahais do not call themselves Muslims nor their religion, Islam. In
            > fact Bahaism is not Islam just as Farrakhanism is not Islam. Read
            > about in relation to this misconception, where he found the true
            > Islam, realising that it is much different than NOI.
            >
            > 7: Polygamy is cruelty It is one of favors of Islam
            >
            > that it has allowed men to marry more than once. The underlying
            > wisdom of this command is now becoming manifest as the population of
            > women is increasing. The population of men is decreasing due to wars,
            > accidents and other such reasons. So if under these circumstances men
            > were allowed to marry once, a large number of women would have
            > remained unmarried and have turned to adultery and other moral evils.
            > Therefore, for the protection of orphans and widows and the solution
            > of the problem of marriage of maidens Islam ordained polygamy.

            OH GIVE ME A BREAK! IT WAS AND IS A CULTURAL THING WHICH ISLAM ACCEPTED AND
            ENDORSED WITH CERTAIN LIMITATIONS. IF ISLAM HAD DEVELOPED IN A PLACE WHERE
            MONOGAMY WAS THE RULE, THEN YOU CAN BET MUHAMMED WOULD HAVE ENDORSED
            MONOGAMY.

            > Secondly, during childbirth and menstruation and other ailments a
            > woman becomes unable to fulfil the matrimonial rights of her husband.
            > So if under these circumstances a man is not allowed to practise
            > polygamy he might turn to adultery. That is why Islam has given men
            > the permission to remarry.
            >

            I LOVE THIS IDEA BUT MY WIFE DOESN'T. GO FIGURE.

            > Here it must also be remembered that in case of polygamy husband is
            > under obligation to treat his wives with as much equality as humanly
            > possible. If he fails to do so he will have to account for it on the
            > Day of Judgement. In the West monogamy has resulted in horrible
            > effects. All forms of moral evils are common in their society.
            >
            BUT ISLAM HAS NO MORAL EVILS IN ITS SOCIETY? PERSONALLY I THINK DRACONIAN
            MEDIEVAL LAWS ENFORCED AGAINST PEOPLE, AND DISCRIMINATION AGAINST OTHER
            RELIGIONS (AS IS PRACTICED IN PLACES LIKE SAUDI ARABIS) ARE PRETTY MORALLY
            REPUGNANT. AND ISLAM HAS BEEN A BASTION OF SLAVERY FOR CENTURIES. ALSO,
            SODOMY IS HARDLY UNKNOWN IN ISLAMIC LANDS. I SUGGEST THAT THE CHRISTIAN WEST
            DOES NOT HAVE A LOCK ON MORAL EVILS AND THAT ISLAM CAN HOLD ITS OWN IN THIS
            REGARD!


            > 8: Muslims are a barbaric, backward people
            >
            > Among the reasons for the rapid and peaceful spread of Islam was the
            > simplicity of its doctrine-Islam calls for faith in only one Allaah
            > Swt worthy of worship.
            >
            ISLAM SPREAD RAPIDLY AND PEACEFULLY IN LANDS IT LARGELY CONQUERED FIRST. I
            SUPPOSE IT'S GENERALLY A GOOD IDEA TO JOIN YOUR CONQUEROR IF HE'S WILLING TO
            ADMIT YOU TO THE FOLD!

            It also repeatedly instructs man to use his >
            > powers of intelligence and observation. Within a few years, great
            > civilisations and universities were flourishing, for according to the
            > Prophet, 'seeking knowledge is an obligation for every Muslim man and
            > woman'.
            >

            ISLAM DID, INDEED, SUPPORT A GOLDEN AGE IN WHICH SCHOLARSHIP AND LEARNING
            FLOURISHED, AS DID MANY ASCENDANT CIVILIZATIONS DURING THEIR PERIODS OF
            ASCENDENCY.

            > The synthesis of Eastern and Western ideas and of new thought with
            > old, brought about great advances in medicine, mathematics, physics,
            > astronomy, geography, architecture, art, literature, and history.
            > Many crucial systems such as algebra, the Arabic numerals, and also
            > the concept of the zero (vital to the advancement of mathematics),
            > were transmitted to medieval Europe from Islam. Sophisticated
            > instruments which were to make possible the European voyages of
            > discovery were developed, including the astrolabe, the quadrant and
            > good navigational maps.
            >

            TRUE ENOUGH! ISLAM HAD A GREAT AND GLORIOUS CIVILIZATION AT ITS HEIGHT!


            > 9: Muhammad (SAW) was the founder of Islam and Muslims worship him
            >
            > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was born in Makkah in the year 570. Since his
            > father died before his birth, and his mother shortly afterwards, he
            > was raised by his uncle from the respected tribe of Quraysh. As he
            > grew up, he became known for his truthfulness, generosity and
            > sincerity, so that he was sought after for his ability to arbitrate
            > in disputes. The historians describe him as calm and meditative.
            > Muhammad (SAW) pbuh, was of a deeply religious nature, and had long
            > detested the decadence of his society.
            >
            > It became his habit to meditate from time to time in the Cave of Hira
            > near Mecca. At the age of 40, while engaged in a meditative retreat,
            > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) received his first revelation
            > from Allaah
            > Swt through the Angel Gabriel. This revelation, which
            > continued for 23 years is known as the Quran. As soon as he began to
            > recite the words he heard from Gabriel, and to preach the truth which
            > Allaah Swt had revealed to him, he and his small
            > group of
            > followers suffered bitter persecution, which grew so fierce that in
            > the year 622 Allaah swt gave them the command to
            > emigrate.
            >
            > This event, the Hijrah or 'migration', in which they left Makkah for
            > the city of Madina, marks the beginning of the Muslim calendar. After
            > several years, the Prophet (PBUH)and his followers were able to
            > return to Makkah, where they forgave their enemies and established
            > Islam definitively. Before the death of Prophet r at the age of 63,
            > the greater part of Arabia was Muslim, and within a century of his
            > death Islam had spread to Spain in the West and as far east as China.
            >

            YEP, VIA A SERIES OF WARS OF CONQUEST LED BY MUHAMMAD'S SUCCESSORS!

            > While Muhammad SAW (PBUH )was chosen to deliver the message, he is
            > not considered the "founder" of Islam, since Muslims consider Islam
            > to be the same Divine guidance sent to all Prophets before. Muslims
            > believe all the prophets from Adam, Noah, Moses, Jesus etc. were all
            > sent with divine guidance for their peoples. Every prophet was sent
            > to his own people, but Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was sent to all of
            > mankind. Muhammad ��� ���� ���� ���� is the last and
            > final messenger
            > sent to deliver the message of Islam. Muslims revere and honour him
            > (PBUH) for all he went through and his dedication, but they do not
            > worship him.
            >

            EXCEPT THAT THE BA'HAIS DON'T ACCEPT THAT AND SO WERE DRUMMED OUT OF ISLAM.
            SO TOO WERE THE DRUZE. AND, OF COURSE, THE SIKHS MELDED ISLAM AND ELEMENTS
            OF
            HINDUISM TO CREATE THEIR OWN NEW RELIGION. SO WHO IS TO SAY THAT ISLAM IS
            RIGHT AND THAT MUHAMMAD WAS THE LAST PROPHET? DIDN'T THE CHRISTIANS ALSO SAY
            THAT CHRIST WAS THE LAST, THE CULMINATION OF GOD'S REVELATIONS? THERE IS NO
            BASIS FOR CLAIMING THAT MUHAMMAD CAPPED ALL REVELATIONS EXCEPT THAT
            MUHAMMAD'S FOLLOWERS ASSERT THIS AND, IN THEIR HEYDAY, ENFORCED THIS VIEW
            VIA
            THE SWORD.

            > "O Prophet(PBUH), verily We have sent you as a witness and a bearer
            > of glad tidings and a Warner and as one who invites unto Allaah
            > Swt by His leave and as an illuminating lamp."
            > (Qur'an 33:45-
            > 46)
            >
            > 10: Muslims don't believe in Jesus or any other Prophets
            >
            > Muslims respect and revere Jesusu and await his Second Coming. They
            > consider him one of the greatest of Allaah Swt 's messengers to
            > mankind. A Muslim never refers to him simply as 'Eesa (As) ', but
            > always adds the phraseu. The Qur'an confirms his virgin birth (a
            > chapter of the Quran is entitled 'Mary'), and Mary is considered the
            > purest woman in all creation. The Quran describes the Annunciation as
            > follows:
            >
            > "Behold!" the Angel said, "Allaah Swt has chosen you, and purified
            > you, and chosen you above the women of all nations. O Mary, Allaah
            > Swt gives you good news of a word from Him whose name shall be the
            > Messiah, Eesa (AS) son of Mary, honoured in this world and the
            > Hereafter, and one of those brought near to Allaah Swt . He shall
            > speak to the people from his cradle and in maturity, and shall be of
            > the righteous." She said: "O my Lord! How shall I have a son when no
            > man has touched me?" He said: "Even so; Allaah Swt creates what He
            > wills. When He decrees a thing, He says to it, "Be!" and it is."
            > (Qur'an 3:42-47)
            >
            > Jesusu was born miraculously through the same power, which had
            > brought Adamu into being without a father: "Truly, the likeness of
            > Eesa (As) (Jesus) with Allaah Swt is as the likeness of Adam. He
            > created him of dust, and then said to him, 'Be!' and he was." (Qur'an
            > 3:59)
            >
            > During his prophetic mission Jesusu performed many miracles. The
            > Qur'an tells us that he said: "I have come to you with a sign from
            > your Lord: I make for you out of clay, as it were, the figure of a
            > bird, and breath into it and it becomes a bird by Allaah Swt 's
            > leave. And I heal the blind, and the lepers, and I raise the dead by
            > Allaah Swt 's leave." (Qur'an 3:49)
            >
            > Neither Muhammad (SAW) (PBUH) nor Jesus u came to change the basic
            > doctrine of the belief in One Allaah (SAW) brought by earlier
            > Prophets, but to confirm and renew it.
            >
            > In the Qur'an Jesusu is reported as saying that he came: "And I have
            > come confirming that which was before me of the Taurat (Torah), and
            > to make lawful to you part of what was forbidden to you; and I have
            > come to you with a proof from your Lord, so fear Allaah Swt and obey
            > me." (Qur'an 3:50)
            >
            > The Prophet Muhammad(SAW)PBUH said: "Whoever believes there is no
            > Allaah Swt but Allaah Swt , alone without partner, that Muhammad (SAW)
            > (PBUH) is His messenger, that Eesa (As) is the servant and messenger
            > of Allaah (SAW) , His word breathed into Mary and a spirit emanating
            > from Him, and that Paradise and Hell are true, shall be received by
            > Allaah (SAW) into Heaven." (Hadith related by Bukhari).
            >

            OH WELL. I WILL NOT DISPUTE HERE WHAT THE Q'URAN IS REPORTED TO SAY. ONLY
            POINT OUT THAT IT IS BUT ONE BOOK AMONG A MULTITUDE OF ALLEGEDLY HOLY BOOKS.
            AND WHO IS TO SAY ONE IS MORE HOLY OR MORE TRUE THAN THE OTHERS? ISN'T IT TI
            ME WE LOOKED AT THINGS OBJECTIVELY INSTEAD OF ENABLING FANATICISM THROUGH
            SELF-PROCLAIMED ASSERTIONS OF THE "ONE TRUTH"?




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          • james tan
            As I ve done previously, I question your claim about the corrupt and immoral state you claim Israel to be. You have held this position for some time and none
            Message 5 of 11 , Aug 2, 2002
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              As I've done previously, I question your claim about the "corrupt and
              immoral
              state" you claim Israel to be. You have held this position for some time and
              none of my arguments against it seem to have made a dent in your claim, even
              when it was clear that you were wrong on facts and that your generalizations
              went well beyond what your marshalled facts could support. I have long
              since,
              therefore, given up on having any real kind of dialogue with you on a matter
              to which you are clearly ideologically committed, for whatever spurious
              reasons you may marshall. One cannot argue with "true believers" whatever
              their claims since they are not interested in facts or in anything that
              might
              prompt them to change their minds.

              However, I will address your point that Jews are not as tolerant as I
              suggested. In fact, as in all religions (including Islam), there are many
              strands. The Jews have their true believers and fanatics too. I was
              referring
              to the main body of Jews which have historically been among the most liberal
              groups in modern history, supporting the rights of others, decrying
              prejudice
              and discrimination wherever it arises, largely reflecting their own history
              of being on the receiving end of such behavior, culminating in the events in
              Europe during the period when Nazi Germany was ascendant. I know you have
              questioned whether Hitler was really so bad afterall and have raised claims
              that he was justified in his desire to eliminate the Jews since Jews
              allegedly collaborated in the defeat of Germany during World War I. But that
              is historically spurious clap-trap and though you (and the Nazis before you)
              can claim it, it doesn't make it true. People can and do claim all sorts of
              nonsense and it is incumbent upon us to point out errors to them, when they
              occur, and contest such silliness, but when that falls on deaf ears, there
              is
              no reason to push the matter further. Bottom line is that my point that the
              Jews learned what it is like to be victims from their history and reacted in
              a variety of ways, one of the main ways being a decided penchant for
              liberalism, is still sound.

              Of course, there were those who came out of the crucible of Nazism with a
              determination never to be a victim again and these did not all shift toward
              liberalism but rather to a hard-headed nationalist mentality and some of
              that
              got infused into zionism, one of your pet bug-a-boos, so there is certain
              mixture here, as with all groups. But my point remains the same, that modern
              Jews, on balance, are tolerant, as are modern Christians, while modern
              Muslims, on balance, are much less so and certainly their religious leaders
              even less than that!

              As to your questioning my "suggestion" that Islam was founded as a religion
              of conquest, why not just go back and look at the historical facts? Within a
              generation of Muhammad's death, his followers swept out of Arabia and
              conquered the Middle East, the northern coast of Africa and Persia.
              Thereafter Islam pressed forward into Spain and France in the west, into the
              Caucasus in the north and into India in the east. Unlike Christianity, which
              was generally spread by missionaries, Islam traveled with the sword. Granted
              there are other, less violent elements in Islam, as I've already noted, but
              at its core was conquest and the sword. The rhetoric of its most assertive
              adherents today reflects that. We don't hear about Christian, Jewish or
              Buddhist clerics today threatening individual Muslims or the Islamic world
              generally as we hear of Muslim clerics calling for fatwas and worse against
              us. To disregard this in order to make the claim that Islam is no more
              threatening to the West than we are to them is the height of hypocrisy and
              selective reasoning.

              SWM

              In a message dated 8/2/2002 8:27:45 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
              tommy@... writes:


              > At 2:00 pm -0400 1/8/02, swmirsky@... wrote:
              > >Judaism in its formative years was extremely intolerant
              > >though after 2000 years of exile they have learned the value of
              tolerance.
              >
              > This generalisation seems highly questionable. Especially when it
              > accompanies a suggestion that Islam was founded as a religion of
              > conquest.
              >
              > I don't know who the "they" you claim have learned the value of
              > tolerance are: do you mean Jews, Zionists, orthodox believers in
              > Judaism? It is difficult to make generalisations without also lying
              > or being inaccurate as we have seen.
              >
              > It does seem to me quite obvious though that whatever you think about
              > "the Jews" as a people, that have, to the extent that they can be
              > considered a homogeneous entity, been forced to live as a diaspora,
              > living in host countries as well as they can, you must conclude that
              > the state of Israel being the entity of zionism (rather than,
              > necessarily of "the Jews") is an entity that exemplifies intolerance
              > rather as did Nazi Germany or apartheid South Africa. In other words
              > that it disriminates overtly on the basis of ethnicity and religion.
              >
              > I thought James Tan's quoted material was quite apt making the
              > distinction between what occurs politically in "Islamic" countries
              > and the tenets of Islam.
              >
              > Just because Israel is a corrupt and immoral state that has no basis
              > for existence in the modern world is no reason to condemn "the Jews"
              > or Judaism. This is analogous to the argument about Islamic countries
              > and the Muslim religion.
              >
              > Tommy
              >





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            • clickhereforinsignificance
              James, The last I heard the U.N. has buffer outposts all around the world (including Cyprus... as I mentioned). I don t understand your question. Are you
              Message 6 of 11 , Aug 3, 2002
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                James,

                The last I heard the U.N. has buffer outposts all around the world
                (including Cyprus... as I mentioned). I don't understand your
                question. Are you asking if the the U.N. has the ability to pass
                resolutions? Or the aforementioned ability to place peace keepers
                around the world? Or something else?

                ~ confused

                ------------------

                --- In existlist@y..., "james tan" <tyjfk@h...> wrote:
                >
                > does the u.n. has such authority as u suggested?
                >
                > james.
                >
                >
                > From: "clickhereforinsignificance" <livewild@h...>
                > Reply-To: existlist@y...
                > To: existlist@y...
                > Subject: [existlist] Re: TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
                > Date: Thu, 01 Aug 2002 21:28:26 -0000
                >
                >
                > Bill,
                >
                > I think that the Israel/Palestinian conflict certainly
                antagonizes
                > the Islamic situation... but it's an entirely different issue.
                Israel
                > was created as a Jewish homeland in response to centuries of anti-
                > Semitism and capped off with the attempt to exterminate them during
                > the holocaust. IT's quite understandable Jewish distrust of
                gentiles.
                >
                > However during its creation Palestine lands were appropriated
                in a
                > way that is questionable. Saying your ancestors lived there
                thousands
                > of years ago as a rational argument for illegal immigration would
                > open the door to countless wars forever. Imagine if the Indians
                > decided they wanted their land back!!!!
                >
                > By now though.... I believe that Israel should have a right to
                > exist. And I honestly believe that a homeland might transition
                > Judaism from a religion to more of a cultural identity and lessen
                the
                > psychological stress and sense of persecution so many Jews feel (It
                > is important to note Israeli is not synonymous as Jewish though....
                > as is the common preconception. My Jewish friends and former
                > girlfriend detested Israeli policies ).
                >
                > The current Israeli government believes that if they continue to
                > cram people into formally Palestinian lands that the problem will
                > eventually disappear. They are currently building a huge wall (which
                > seems to be getting very little publicity) that will likely become
                > the demarcation point for Israeli lands. This tactic might work, but
                > I believe this sense of progress is very short sighted if a
                > Palestinian state is not created. They would be creating a people of
                > nomads and antagonizing over 300 million Arabs around them who will
                > not soon forget. These struggles date back thousands of years and
                > even if Israeli completely eliminated every Arab from its lands they
                > would be under constant threat for potentially as long as the
                Islamic
                > religion exists. Maybe in a few thousand years Palestinian's will
                > want the land of their ancestors back?
                >
                > What I find most interesting and perhaps more important, Israeli
                > policy seems to be subscribing to the idea that might equals moral
                > right. The Nazi's used the same approach albeit in a much more
                > disgusting manner.
                >
                > I sympathize more with Palestinians on this issue since they are
                > being robbed of their identity and country. In addition their
                > children are dying at three times the rate (not only the symtex
                > strapped ones either). However too many of them are also
                > extremistists that demand the complete irradication of Israeli.
                >
                > All that being said, what should be done now is not the
                > dissolution of Israeli, but a mission by the U.N. They should go in
                > and take over, then split the land in a way that is not equitable
                for
                > either party (the sign of a good agreement). A security buffer
                > between the countries should then be created (ala Cyprus) This is
                the
                > only rational approach for everyone to save face. Otherwise it
                > appears like manipulation of U.S. policy caused by fear of political
                > retaliation from extremist Jewish lobby groups.
                >
                > This seems apparent as the U.S. has used their security council
                > veto power to prevent U.N. resolutions from implementing this
                > solution on countless occasions. Where else in the world are there
                > high profile wars happening where U.N. is not involved? In addition
                > the current Israeli government has attempted to associate the
                > Palestinian issue with the larger Islamic fundamentalist (a.k.a
                9/11)
                > one to hide continued expansion and justify it to the public. They
                > calling it terrorist but to the Palestinians it's freedom fighting.
                > Sure they blow themselves up, but I suspect they would prefer to
                have
                > the F-16's and tanks Israeli uses to kill it's own citizens. They
                use
                > what they have at there disposal.
                >
                > If Israeli tactics are continued (without U.N. intervention), it
                > is very short term opportunistic thinking and unfortunately will
                > likely continue to propagate anti-Semitism around the world. If only
                > the moderates in Israel had not had their Prime Minister executed by
                > a fundimentalist.
                >
                > ~ peace through superior firepower?
                >
                > ---------------------------------------------
                >
                >
                >
                > --- In existlist@y..., "Bill Harris" <valleywestdental@q...> wrote:
                > > click, Very rational, very positive, very well thought out. I
                hope
                > views like yours prevail, rather than those who strap symtex to
                their
                > young people. Bill
                > > ----- Original Message -----
                > > From: clickhereforinsignificance
                > > To: existlist@y...
                > > Sent: Thursday, August 01, 2002 2:09 PM
                > > Subject: [existlist] Re: TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > > Interesting and educational. However one thing that the
                > writer
                > > does not differentiate between is theory and actual practice of
                > the
                > > religion. There is a great deal of conditioning of hatred
                towards
                > the
                > > west happening in those countries. Although in the West we too
                > have
                > > our ridiculous propaganda, I have not observed hundreds of
                > thousands
                > > of people gathering together to protest 'the great satans of
                the
                > > East'.
                > >
                > > I believe the people (of Islamic states) themselves are
                > capable
                > > and as decent as any other, but the system they have
                implemented
                > > (much like communism) is doomed unless the realities of it's
                > politics
                > > change. They are aggressively pushing religious docterine
                around
                > the
                > > world (practically all the hotspots are muslim extremist
                related)
                > and
                > > the WORLD (including areas like India, China, Russia, Europe,
                and
                > of
                > > course 'the great satan' are responding with balance of power
                > theory.
                > >
                > > The West effectively used a similar technique against
                > Communism
                > > (another great theory) with the Policy of Containment. In the
                > end,
                > > they beat them with the innovation the freedom of their
                > > economic/political system allows for. And although there has
                been
                > > pains involved in that transition it does not appear most of
                them
                > > wish to return to the 'old ways'.
                > >
                > > I sympathize with Islamics that don't want to seperate church
                > and
                > > state, but if they do not they only stiffle there own people's
                > > freedom and ability to compete in the realities of today's
                world.
                > > Islam can certainly survive this struggle (much like
                christianity
                > > survived) but Islamic run states will not. They will need to
                > > transition to democracy. When they do they will discover
                Western
                > > support for totalitarian Kings will evapourate much like it did
                > for
                > > military puppet governments after the cold war.
                > >
                > > There is a cold war of sorts that is now being recognized by
                > every
                > > non-islamic country in the world. And that war will either be
                won
                > by
                > > the non-islamic states... or will lead to the nuclear
                annhilation
                > of
                > > both. It is enivitable that democracy will eventually take over
                > the
                > > world. Perhaps it is 'evil' (subjective) but it is highly
                > effective
                > > towards accomplishing tasks.
                > >
                > > Finally, the truth of the matter is... the west (and any
                other
                > > nuclear powers)could obliterate countries like Iran, Iraq,
                Syria,
                > > Israel (interesting that I include it eh?), Jordan, Egypt,
                > Algeria,
                > > Saudi Arabia, etc.... in a matter of hours. And all the oil
                would
                > > still remain to plunder.
                > >
                > > And yet they do not.
                > >
                > > I wish fundimentalist's (of any type) would notice that
                > important
                > > little fact more often. Many proclaim they are not afraid to
                > die...
                > > but I suspect they are the ones that are afraid to live.
                > >
                > > ~ tired of petty wars
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > > --- In existlist@y..., "james tan" <tyjfk@h...> wrote:
                > > >
                > > > well, just a forward..
                > > >
                > > > From: "bentarawira" <abidin-mz@d...>
                > > > Reply-To: Fateha@y...
                > > > To: Fateha@y...
                > > > Subject: [Fateha] TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
                > > > Date: Thu, 01 Aug 2002 09:48:56 -0000
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > > TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS
                > > > ABOUT ISLAM
                > > >
                > > > By Huma Ahmad
                > > >
                > > >
                > > > 1.Muslims are violent, terrorists and/or extremists
                > > >
                > > > This is the biggest misconception about Islam, no doubt
                > resulting
                > > > from the constant stereotyping and bashing the media gives
                > Islam.
                > > > When a gunman attacks a mosque in the name of Judaism, a
                > Catholic
                > > IRA
                > > > guerrilla sets off a bomb in an urban area, or Serbian
                Orthodox
                > > > militiamen rape and kill innocent Muslim civilians, these
                acts
                > are
                > > > not used to stereotype an entire faith. Never are these acts
                > > > attributed to the religion of the perpetrators. Yet how many
                > times
                > > > have we heard the words 'Islamic, Muslim fundamentalist,
                etc.'
                > > linked
                > > > with violence. Politics in so-called "Muslim countries" may
                or
                > may
                > > > not have any Islamic basis. Often dictators and politicians
                > will use
                > > > the name of Islam for their own purposes. One should consult
                the
                > > > source of Islam and separate what the true religion of Islam
                > says
                > > > from what is portrayed in the media. Islam literally
                > > > means 'submission to Allaah Swt ' and is derived from a root
                > word
                > > > meaning 'peace'.
                > > >
                > > > Islam may seem exotic or even extreme in the modern world.
                > Perhaps
                > > > this is because religion doesn't dominate everyday life in
                the
                > West,
                > > > whereas Islam is considered a 'way of life' for Muslims and
                > they
                > > make
                > > > no division between secular and sacred in their lives. Like
                > > > Christianity, Islam permits fighting in self-defence, in
                > defence of
                > > > religion, or on the part of those who have been expelled
                > forcibly
                > > > from their homes. It lays down strict rules of combat, which
                > include
                > > > prohibitions against harming civilians and against destroying
                > crops,
                > > > trees and livestock. NOWHERE DOES ISLAM ENJOIN THE KILLING OF
                > > > INNOCENTS.... The Quran says: "Fight in the cause of Allaah
                Swt
                > > > against those who fight you, but do not transgress limits.
                > Allaah
                > > Swt
                > > > does not love transgressors." (Quran 2:190) "If they seek
                > peace,
                > > then
                > > > seek you peace. And trust in Allaah Swt for He is the One
                that
                > > > heareth and knoweth all things." (Quran 8:61)
                > > >
                > > > War, therefore, is the last resort, and is subject to the
                > rigorous
                > > > conditions laid down by the sacred law. The term 'jihad'
                > literally
                > > > means 'struggle'. Muslims believe that there are two kinds of
                > jihad.
                > > > The other 'jihad' is the inner struggle of the soul, which
                > everyone
                > > > wages against egotistic desires for the sake of attaining
                inner
                > > peace.
                > > >
                > > > 2: Islam oppresses women
                > > >
                > > > The image of the typical Muslim woman wearing the veil and
                > forced to
                > > > stay home and forbidden to drive is all too common in most
                > people's
                > > > thoughts. Although some Muslim countries may have laws that
                > oppress
                > > > women, this should not be seen as coming from Islam. Many of
                > these
                > > > countries do not rule by any kind of Shari'ah (Islamic law)
                and
                > > > introduce their own cultural standpoints on the issue of
                gender
                > > > equality.
                > > >
                > > > Islam on the other hand gives men and women different roles
                and
                > > > equity between the two is laid down in the Quran and the
                > example of
                > > > the Prophet. Islam sees a woman, whether single or married,
                as
                > an
                > > > individual in her own right, with the right to own and
                dispose
                > of
                > > her
                > > > property and earnings.
                > > >
                > > > A marriage gift is given by the groom to the bride for her
                own
                > > > personal use, and she keeps her own family name rather than
                > taking
                > > > her husband's. Both men and women are expected to dress in a
                > way
                > > that
                > > > is modest and dignified. The Messenger of Allaah Swt
                said: "The
                > most
                > > > perfect in faith amongst believers is he who is best in
                manner
                > and
                > > > kindest to his wife."
                > > >
                > > > Violence of any kind towards women and forcing them against
                > their
                > > > will for anything is not allowed. A Muslim marriage is a
                simple,
                > > > legal agreement in which either partner is free to include
                > > > conditions. Marriage customs thus vary widely from country to
                > > > country. Divorce is not common, although it is acceptable as
                a
                > last
                > > > resort. According to Islam, a Muslim girl cannot be forced to
                > marry
                > > > against her will: her parents simply suggest young men they
                > think
                > > may
                > > > be suitable.
                > > >
                > > > 3: Muslims worship a different God.
                > > >
                > > > Allah Swt is simply the Arabic word for God. Allaah Swt for
                > Muslims
                > > > is the greatest and most inclusive of the Names of God, it
                is an
                > > > Arabic word of rich meaning, denoting the one and only God
                and
                > > > ascribing no partners to Him. It is exactly the same word
                which
                > the
                > > > Jews, in Hebrew, use for God (eloh), the word which Jesus
                > Christ
                > > used
                > > > in Aramaic when he prayed to Allaah Swt . Allaah Swt has an
                > > identical
                > > > name in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; Allaah Swt is the
                > same God
                > > > worshiped by Muslims, Christians and Jews. Muslims believe
                that
                > > > Allaah Swt 's sovereignty is to be acknowledged in worship
                and
                > in
                > > the
                > > > pledge to obey His teaching and commandments, conveyed
                through
                > His
                > > > Messengers and Prophets who were sent at various times and in
                > many
                > > > places throughout history. However, it should be noted that
                God
                > in
                > > > Islam is One and Only. He, the Exalted, does not get tired,
                > does not
                > > > have a son (i.e. Jesus) or have associates, nor does He have
                > human-
                > > > like attributions as found in other faiths.
                > > >
                > > > 4: Islam was spread by sword and is intolerant of other
                faiths.
                > > >
                > > > Many social studies textbooks for students show the image of
                an
                > Arab
                > > > horseman carrying a sword in one hand and the Quran in the
                > other,
                > > > conquering and forcibly converting. This, however, is not a
                > correct
                > > > portrayal of history. Islam has always given respect and
                > freedom of
                > > > religion to all faiths. The Quran says: "Allaah Swt forbids
                you
                > not,
                > > > with regards to those who fight you not for [your] faith nor
                > drive
                > > > you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with
                > them; for
                > > > Allaah Swt loveth those who are just." (Qur'an 60:8)
                > > >
                > > > Freedom of religion is laid down in the Quran itself: "There
                is
                > no
                > > > compulsion (or coercion) in the religion (Islam). The right
                > > direction
                > > > is distinctly clear from error." (Qur'an 2:256)
                > > >
                > > > Christian missionary, T.W. Arnold had this opinion on his
                study
                > of
                > > > the question of the spread of Islam: "...of any organized
                > attempt to
                > > > force the acceptance of Islam on the non-Muslim population,
                or
                > of
                > > any
                > > > systematic persecution intended to stamp out the Christian
                > religion,
                > > > we hear nothing. Had the caliphs chosen to adopt either
                course
                > of
                > > > action, they might have swept away Christianity as easily as
                > > > Ferdinand and Isabella drove Islam out of Spain, or Louis XIV
                > made
                > > > Protestantism..."
                > > >
                > > > It is a function of Islamic law to protect the privileged
                > status of
                > > > minorities, and this is why non-Muslim places of worship have
                > > > flourished all over the Islamic world. History provides many
                > > examples
                > > > of Muslim tolerance towards other faiths: when the caliph
                Omar
                > > > entered Jerusalem in the year 634, Islam granted freedom of
                > worship
                > > > to all religious communities in the city. Proclaiming to the
                > > > inhabitants that their lives, and property were safe, and
                that
                > their
                > > > places of worship would never be taken from them, he asked
                the
                > > > Christian patriarch Sophronius to accompany him on a visit to
                > all
                > > the
                > > > holy places. Islamic law also permits non-Muslim minorities
                to
                > set
                > > up
                > > > their own courts, which implement family laws drawn up by the
                > > > minorities themselves. The life and property of all citizens
                in
                > an
                > > > Islamic state are considered sacred whether the person is
                > Muslim or
                > > > not.
                > > >
                > > > Racism is not a part of Islam, the Quran speaks only of human
                > > > equality and how all people are equal in the sight of Allaah
                > > > Swt
                > > > . "O mankind! We created you from a single soul, male and
                > > > female, and made you into nations and tribes, so that you may
                > come
                > > to
                > > > know one another. Truly, the most honoured of you in Allaah
                > Swt 's
                > > > sight is the greatest of you in piety. Allaah Swt
                > > > is All-Knowing, All- Aware."
                > > >
                > > > 5: All Muslims are Arabs
                > > >
                > > > The Muslim population of the world is around 1,2 billion. One
                > out of
                > > > every five people in the world is a Muslim. They are a vast
                > range of
                > > > races, nationalities, and cultures from around the globe from
                > the
                > > > Philippines to Nigeria they are united by their common
                Islamic
                > > faith.
                > > > Only about 18% live in the Arab world and the largest Muslim
                > > > community is in Indonesia. Most Muslims live east of
                Pakistan.
                > > Thirty
                > > > percent of Muslims live in the Indian subcontinent, 20% in
                Sub-
                > > > Saharan Africa, 17% in Southeast Asia, 18% in the Arab world,
                > and
                > > 10%
                > > > in the Soviet Union and China. Turkey, Iran, and Afghanistan
                > make up
                > > > 10% of the non-Arab Middle East. Although there are Muslim
                > > minorities
                > > > in almost every area, including Latin America and Australia,
                > they
                > > are
                > > > most numerous in Russia and its newly independent states,
                India
                > and
                > > > central Africa. There are about 6 million Muslims in the
                United
                > > > States.
                > > >
                > > > 6: The Nation of Islam is a Muslim group
                > > >
                > > > Islam and the so-called "Nation of Islam (NOI)" are two
                > different
                > > > religions. NOI is more of a political organization since its
                > members
                > > > are not limited to a single faith. Muslims consider this
                group
                > to be
                > > > just one of many cults using the name of Islam for their own
                > gain.
                > > > The only thing common between them is the jargon, the
                language
                > used
                > > > by both. "The Nation of Islam" is a misnomer; this religion
                > should
                > > be
                > > > called Farrakhanism, after the name of its propagator, Louis
                > > > Farrakhan.
                > > >
                > > > Islam and Farakhanism differ in many fundamental ways. For
                > example,
                > > > Farakhan followers believe in racism and that the 'black man'
                > was
                > > the
                > > > original man and therefore superior, while in Islam there is
                no
                > > > racism and everyone is considered equal in the sight of
                Allaah
                > Swt ,
                > > > the only difference being in one's piety. There are many
                other
                > > > theological examples that show the NOI's teachings have
                little
                > to do
                > > > with true Islam. There are many groups in America who claim
                to
                > > > represent Islam and call their adherents Muslims.
                > > >
                > > > Any serious student of Islam has a duty to investigate and
                find
                > the
                > > > true Islam. The only two authentic sources which bind every
                > Muslim
                > > > are the Quran and authentic or sound Hadith. Any teachings
                > under the
                > > > label of "Islam" which contradict or at variance with the
                direct
                > > > understanding of fundamental beliefs and practices of Islam
                > form the
                > > > Quran and authentic Hadith should be rejected and such a
                > religion
                > > > should be considered a Pseudo-Islamic Cult.
                > > >
                > > > In America there are many pseudo-Islamic cults, Farrakhanism
                > being
                > > > one of them. An honest attitude on the part of such cults
                > should be
                > > > not to call themselves Muslims and their religion Islam,
                such an
                > > > example of honesty is Bahaism which is an off-shoot of Islam
                but
                > > > Bahais do not call themselves Muslims nor their religion,
                > Islam. In
                > > > fact Bahaism is not Islam just as Farrakhanism is not Islam.
                > Read
                > > > about in relation to this misconception, where he found the
                true
                > > > Islam, realising that it is much different than NOI.
                > > >
                > > > 7: Polygamy is cruelty It is one of favors of Islam
                > > >
                > > > that it has allowed men to marry more than once. The
                underlying
                > > > wisdom of this command is now becoming manifest as the
                > population of
                > > > women is increasing. The population of men is decreasing due
                to
                > > wars,
                > > > accidents and other such reasons. So if under these
                > circumstances
                > > men
                > > > were allowed to marry once, a large number of women would
                have
                > > > remained unmarried and have turned to adultery and other
                moral
                > > evils.
                > > > Therefore, for the protection of orphans and widows and the
                > solution
                > > > of the problem of marriage of maidens Islam ordained
                polygamy.
                > > > Secondly, during childbirth and menstruation and other
                ailments
                > a
                > > > woman becomes unable to fulfil the matrimonial rights of her
                > > husband.
                > > > So if under these circumstances a man is not allowed to
                practise
                > > > polygamy he might turn to adultery. That is why Islam has
                given
                > men
                > > > the permission to remarry.
                > > >
                > > > Here it must also be remembered that in case of polygamy
                > husband is
                > > > under obligation to treat his wives with as much equality as
                > humanly
                > > > possible. If he fails to do so he will have to account for it
                > on the
                > > > Day of Judgement. In the West monogamy has resulted in
                horrible
                > > > effects. All forms of moral evils are common in their
                society.
                > > >
                > > > 8: Muslims are a barbaric, backward people
                > > >
                > > > Among the reasons for the rapid and peaceful spread of Islam
                > was the
                > > > simplicity of its doctrine-Islam calls for faith in only one
                > Allaah
                > > > Swt worthy of worship. It also repeatedly instructs man to
                use
                > his
                > > > powers of intelligence and observation. Within a few years,
                > great
                > > > civilisations and universities were flourishing, for
                according
                > to
                > > the
                > > > Prophet, 'seeking knowledge is an obligation for every Muslim
                > man
                > > and
                > > > woman'.
                > > >
                > > > The synthesis of Eastern and Western ideas and of new thought
                > with
                > > > old, brought about great advances in medicine, mathematics,
                > physics,
                > > > astronomy, geography, architecture, art, literature, and
                > history.
                > > > Many crucial systems such as algebra, the Arabic numerals,
                and
                > also
                > > > the concept of the zero (vital to the advancement of
                > mathematics),
                > > > were transmitted to medieval Europe from Islam. Sophisticated
                > > > instruments which were to make possible the European voyages
                of
                > > > discovery were developed, including the astrolabe, the
                quadrant
                > and
                > > > good navigational maps.
                > > >
                > > > 9: Muhammad (SAW) was the founder of Islam and Muslims
                worship
                > him
                > > >
                > > > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was born in Makkah in the year 570. Since
                > his
                > > > father died before his birth, and his mother shortly
                > afterwards, he
                > > > was raised by his uncle from the respected tribe of Quraysh.
                As
                > he
                > > > grew up, he became known for his truthfulness, generosity and
                > > > sincerity, so that he was sought after for his ability to
                > arbitrate
                > > > in disputes. The historians describe him as calm and
                meditative.
                > > > Muhammad (SAW) pbuh, was of a deeply religious nature, and
                had
                > long
                > > > detested the decadence of his society.
                > > >
                > > > It became his habit to meditate from time to time in the Cave
                > of
                > > Hira
                > > > near Mecca. At the age of 40, while engaged in a meditative
                > retreat,
                > > > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) received his first revelation
                > > > from Allaah
                > > > Swt through the Angel Gabriel. This revelation, which
                > > > continued for 23 years is known as the Quran. As soon as he
                > began to
                > > > recite the words he heard from Gabriel, and to preach the
                truth
                > > which
                > > > Allaah Swt had revealed to him, he and his small
                > > > group of
                > > > followers suffered bitter persecution, which grew so fierce
                > that in
                > > > the year 622 Allaah swt gave them the command to
                > > > emigrate.
                > > >
                > > > This event, the Hijrah or 'migration', in which they left
                > Makkah for
                > > > the city of Madina, marks the beginning of the Muslim
                calendar.
                > > After
                > > > several years, the Prophet (PBUH)and his followers were able
                to
                > > > return to Makkah, where they forgave their enemies and
                > established
                > > > Islam definitively. Before the death of Prophet r at the age
                of
                > 63,
                > > > the greater part of Arabia was Muslim, and within a century
                of
                > his
                > > > death Islam had spread to Spain in the West and as far east
                as
                > > China.
                > > >
                > > > While Muhammad SAW (PBUH )was chosen to deliver the message,
                he
                > is
                > > > not considered the "founder" of Islam, since Muslims consider
                > Islam
                > > > to be the same Divine guidance sent to all Prophets before.
                > Muslims
                > > > believe all the prophets from Adam, Noah, Moses, Jesus etc.
                > were all
                > > > sent with divine guidance for their peoples. Every prophet
                was
                > sent
                > > > to his own people, but Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was sent to all of
                > > > mankind. Muhammad Õáì Çááå Úáíå æÓáã is the last and
                > > > final messenger
                > > > sent to deliver the message of Islam. Muslims revere and
                honour
                > him
                > > > (PBUH) for all he went through and his dedication, but they
                do
                > not
                > > > worship him.
                > > >
                > > > "O Prophet(PBUH), verily We have sent you as a witness and a
                > bearer
                > > > of glad tidings and a Warner and as one who invites unto
                Allaah
                > > > Swt by His leave and as an illuminating lamp."
                > > > (Qur'an 33:45-
                > > > 46)
                > > >
                > > > 10: Muslims don't believe in Jesus or any other Prophets
                > > >
                > > > Muslims respect and revere Jesusu and await his Second
                Coming.
                > They
                > > > consider him one of the greatest of Allaah Swt 's messengers
                to
                > > > mankind. A Muslim never refers to him simply as 'Eesa (As) ',
                > but
                > > > always adds the phraseu. The Qur'an confirms his virgin
                birth (a
                > > > chapter of the Quran is entitled 'Mary'), and Mary is
                > considered the
                > > > purest woman in all creation. The Quran describes the
                > Annunciation
                > > as
                > > > follows:
                > > >
                > > > "Behold!" the Angel said, "Allaah Swt has chosen you, and
                > purified
                > > > you, and chosen you above the women of all nations. O Mary,
                > Allaah
                > > > Swt gives you good news of a word from Him whose name shall
                be
                > the
                > > > Messiah, Eesa (AS) son of Mary, honoured in this world and
                the
                > > > Hereafter, and one of those brought near to Allaah Swt . He
                > shall
                > > > speak to the people from his cradle and in maturity, and
                shall
                > be of
                > > > the righteous." She said: "O my Lord! How shall I have a son
                > when no
                > > > man has touched me?" He said: "Even so; Allaah Swt creates
                what
                > He
                > > > wills. When He decrees a thing, He says to it, "Be!" and it
                is."
                > > > (Qur'an 3:42-47)
                > > >
                > > > Jesusu was born miraculously through the same power, which
                had
                > > > brought Adamu into being without a father: "Truly, the
                likeness
                > of
                > > > Eesa (As) (Jesus) with Allaah Swt is as the likeness of
                Adam. He
                > > > created him of dust, and then said to him, 'Be!' and he was."
                > > (Qur'an
                > > > 3:59)
                > > >
                > > > During his prophetic mission Jesusu performed many miracles.
                The
                > > > Qur'an tells us that he said: "I have come to you with a sign
                > from
                > > > your Lord: I make for you out of clay, as it were, the figure
                > of a
                > > > bird, and breath into it and it becomes a bird by Allaah
                Swt 's
                > > > leave. And I heal the blind, and the lepers, and I raise the
                > dead by
                > > > Allaah Swt 's leave." (Qur'an 3:49)
                > > >
                > > > Neither Muhammad (SAW) (PBUH) nor Jesus u came to change the
                > basic
                > > > doctrine of the belief in One Allaah (SAW) brought by earlier
                > > > Prophets, but to confirm and renew it.
                > > >
                > > > In the Qur'an Jesusu is reported as saying that he
                came: "And I
                > have
                > > > come confirming that which was before me of the Taurat
                (Torah),
                > and
                > > > to make lawful to you part of what was forbidden to you; and
                I
                > have
                > > > come to you with a proof from your Lord, so fear Allaah Swt
                and
                > obey
                > > > me." (Qur'an 3:50)
                > > >
                > > > The Prophet Muhammad(SAW)PBUH said: "Whoever believes there
                is
                > no
                > > > Allaah Swt but Allaah Swt , alone without partner, that
                > Muhammad
                > > (SAW)
                > > > (PBUH) is His messenger, that Eesa (As) is the servant and
                > > messenger
                > > > of Allaah (SAW) , His word breathed into Mary and a spirit
                > emanating
                > > > from Him, and that Paradise and Hell are true, shall be
                > received by
                > > > Allaah (SAW) into Heaven." (Hadith related by Bukhari).
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > _________________________________________________________________
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              • Bill Harris
                Click, I cannot disagree with your look at the middle east. All sides claim moral superiority while acting in narrow self interest. Two things can break the
                Message 7 of 11 , Aug 5, 2002
                • 0 Attachment
                  Click, I cannot disagree with your look at the middle east. All sides claim moral superiority while acting in narrow self interest. Two things can break the deadlock. The oil runs out, or the Jews give up. I really see the Arabs slowly gaining the upper hand in this. The bomber strategy is very effective and fits the religious model of the Islamic warrior. A foolish zealot makes a cost effective delivery system.
                  Listening to on the street interviews from Telaviv, I denoted a defeatist attitude in some of the populace. I do not think the Jews can hold out fifty years until the oil runs out. I think many of those with money and connections are migrating out. Living seems more important than religion. The Arabs have little to lose but when the oil money stops the mideast will return to the hell hole it was before WW1.
                  One thing I think the Bush people clearly understand is that our national interest is a three letter word, OIL. . The US will twist and turn and play many games to assure we have what we need. Blood for oil is a hard political sell and Bush has to get reelected. I think a second term for Bush means a general war in that region. Bill
                  ----- Original Message -----
                  From: clickhereforinsignificance
                  To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
                  Sent: Thursday, August 01, 2002 4:28 PM
                  Subject: [existlist] Re: TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM



                  Bill,

                  I think that the Israel/Palestinian conflict certainly antagonizes
                  the Islamic situation... but it's an entirely different issue. Israel
                  was created as a Jewish homeland in response to centuries of anti-
                  Semitism and capped off with the attempt to exterminate them during
                  the holocaust. IT's quite understandable Jewish distrust of gentiles.

                  However during its creation Palestine lands were appropriated in a
                  way that is questionable. Saying your ancestors lived there thousands
                  of years ago as a rational argument for illegal immigration would
                  open the door to countless wars forever. Imagine if the Indians
                  decided they wanted their land back!!!!

                  By now though.... I believe that Israel should have a right to
                  exist. And I honestly believe that a homeland might transition
                  Judaism from a religion to more of a cultural identity and lessen the
                  psychological stress and sense of persecution so many Jews feel (It
                  is important to note Israeli is not synonymous as Jewish though....
                  as is the common preconception. My Jewish friends and former
                  girlfriend detested Israeli policies ).

                  The current Israeli government believes that if they continue to
                  cram people into formally Palestinian lands that the problem will
                  eventually disappear. They are currently building a huge wall (which
                  seems to be getting very little publicity) that will likely become
                  the demarcation point for Israeli lands. This tactic might work, but
                  I believe this sense of progress is very short sighted if a
                  Palestinian state is not created. They would be creating a people of
                  nomads and antagonizing over 300 million Arabs around them who will
                  not soon forget. These struggles date back thousands of years and
                  even if Israeli completely eliminated every Arab from its lands they
                  would be under constant threat for potentially as long as the Islamic
                  religion exists. Maybe in a few thousand years Palestinian's will
                  want the land of their ancestors back?

                  What I find most interesting and perhaps more important, Israeli
                  policy seems to be subscribing to the idea that might equals moral
                  right. The Nazi's used the same approach albeit in a much more
                  disgusting manner.

                  I sympathize more with Palestinians on this issue since they are
                  being robbed of their identity and country. In addition their
                  children are dying at three times the rate (not only the symtex
                  strapped ones either). However too many of them are also
                  extremistists that demand the complete irradication of Israeli.

                  All that being said, what should be done now is not the
                  dissolution of Israeli, but a mission by the U.N. They should go in
                  and take over, then split the land in a way that is not equitable for
                  either party (the sign of a good agreement). A security buffer
                  between the countries should then be created (ala Cyprus) This is the
                  only rational approach for everyone to save face. Otherwise it
                  appears like manipulation of U.S. policy caused by fear of political
                  retaliation from extremist Jewish lobby groups.

                  This seems apparent as the U.S. has used their security council
                  veto power to prevent U.N. resolutions from implementing this
                  solution on countless occasions. Where else in the world are there
                  high profile wars happening where U.N. is not involved? In addition
                  the current Israeli government has attempted to associate the
                  Palestinian issue with the larger Islamic fundamentalist (a.k.a 9/11)
                  one to hide continued expansion and justify it to the public. They
                  calling it terrorist but to the Palestinians it's freedom fighting.
                  Sure they blow themselves up, but I suspect they would prefer to have
                  the F-16's and tanks Israeli uses to kill it's own citizens. They use
                  what they have at there disposal.

                  If Israeli tactics are continued (without U.N. intervention), it
                  is very short term opportunistic thinking and unfortunately will
                  likely continue to propagate anti-Semitism around the world. If only
                  the moderates in Israel had not had their Prime Minister executed by
                  a fundimentalist.

                  ~ peace through superior firepower?

                  ---------------------------------------------



                  --- In existlist@y..., "Bill Harris" <valleywestdental@q...> wrote:
                  > click, Very rational, very positive, very well thought out. I hope
                  views like yours prevail, rather than those who strap symtex to their
                  young people. Bill
                  > ----- Original Message -----
                  > From: clickhereforinsignificance
                  > To: existlist@y...
                  > Sent: Thursday, August 01, 2002 2:09 PM
                  > Subject: [existlist] Re: TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > Interesting and educational. However one thing that the
                  writer
                  > does not differentiate between is theory and actual practice of
                  the
                  > religion. There is a great deal of conditioning of hatred towards
                  the
                  > west happening in those countries. Although in the West we too
                  have
                  > our ridiculous propaganda, I have not observed hundreds of
                  thousands
                  > of people gathering together to protest 'the great satans of the
                  > East'.
                  >
                  > I believe the people (of Islamic states) themselves are
                  capable
                  > and as decent as any other, but the system they have implemented
                  > (much like communism) is doomed unless the realities of it's
                  politics
                  > change. They are aggressively pushing religious docterine around
                  the
                  > world (practically all the hotspots are muslim extremist related)
                  and
                  > the WORLD (including areas like India, China, Russia, Europe, and
                  of
                  > course 'the great satan' are responding with balance of power
                  theory.
                  >
                  > The West effectively used a similar technique against
                  Communism
                  > (another great theory) with the Policy of Containment. In the
                  end,
                  > they beat them with the innovation the freedom of their
                  > economic/political system allows for. And although there has been
                  > pains involved in that transition it does not appear most of them
                  > wish to return to the 'old ways'.
                  >
                  > I sympathize with Islamics that don't want to seperate church
                  and
                  > state, but if they do not they only stiffle there own people's
                  > freedom and ability to compete in the realities of today's world.
                  > Islam can certainly survive this struggle (much like christianity
                  > survived) but Islamic run states will not. They will need to
                  > transition to democracy. When they do they will discover Western
                  > support for totalitarian Kings will evapourate much like it did
                  for
                  > military puppet governments after the cold war.
                  >
                  > There is a cold war of sorts that is now being recognized by
                  every
                  > non-islamic country in the world. And that war will either be won
                  by
                  > the non-islamic states... or will lead to the nuclear annhilation
                  of
                  > both. It is enivitable that democracy will eventually take over
                  the
                  > world. Perhaps it is 'evil' (subjective) but it is highly
                  effective
                  > towards accomplishing tasks.
                  >
                  > Finally, the truth of the matter is... the west (and any other
                  > nuclear powers)could obliterate countries like Iran, Iraq, Syria,
                  > Israel (interesting that I include it eh?), Jordan, Egypt,
                  Algeria,
                  > Saudi Arabia, etc.... in a matter of hours. And all the oil would
                  > still remain to plunder.
                  >
                  > And yet they do not.
                  >
                  > I wish fundimentalist's (of any type) would notice that
                  important
                  > little fact more often. Many proclaim they are not afraid to
                  die...
                  > but I suspect they are the ones that are afraid to live.
                  >
                  > ~ tired of petty wars
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > --- In existlist@y..., "james tan" <tyjfk@h...> wrote:
                  > >
                  > > well, just a forward..
                  > >
                  > > From: "bentarawira" <abidin-mz@d...>
                  > > Reply-To: Fateha@y...
                  > > To: Fateha@y...
                  > > Subject: [Fateha] TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT ISLAM
                  > > Date: Thu, 01 Aug 2002 09:48:56 -0000
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > TOP TEN MISCONCEPTIONS
                  > > ABOUT ISLAM
                  > >
                  > > By Huma Ahmad
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > 1.Muslims are violent, terrorists and/or extremists
                  > >
                  > > This is the biggest misconception about Islam, no doubt
                  resulting
                  > > from the constant stereotyping and bashing the media gives
                  Islam.
                  > > When a gunman attacks a mosque in the name of Judaism, a
                  Catholic
                  > IRA
                  > > guerrilla sets off a bomb in an urban area, or Serbian Orthodox
                  > > militiamen rape and kill innocent Muslim civilians, these acts
                  are
                  > > not used to stereotype an entire faith. Never are these acts
                  > > attributed to the religion of the perpetrators. Yet how many
                  times
                  > > have we heard the words 'Islamic, Muslim fundamentalist, etc.'
                  > linked
                  > > with violence. Politics in so-called "Muslim countries" may or
                  may
                  > > not have any Islamic basis. Often dictators and politicians
                  will use
                  > > the name of Islam for their own purposes. One should consult the
                  > > source of Islam and separate what the true religion of Islam
                  says
                  > > from what is portrayed in the media. Islam literally
                  > > means 'submission to Allaah Swt ' and is derived from a root
                  word
                  > > meaning 'peace'.
                  > >
                  > > Islam may seem exotic or even extreme in the modern world.
                  Perhaps
                  > > this is because religion doesn't dominate everyday life in the
                  West,
                  > > whereas Islam is considered a 'way of life' for Muslims and
                  they
                  > make
                  > > no division between secular and sacred in their lives. Like
                  > > Christianity, Islam permits fighting in self-defence, in
                  defence of
                  > > religion, or on the part of those who have been expelled
                  forcibly
                  > > from their homes. It lays down strict rules of combat, which
                  include
                  > > prohibitions against harming civilians and against destroying
                  crops,
                  > > trees and livestock. NOWHERE DOES ISLAM ENJOIN THE KILLING OF
                  > > INNOCENTS.... The Quran says: "Fight in the cause of Allaah Swt
                  > > against those who fight you, but do not transgress limits.
                  Allaah
                  > Swt
                  > > does not love transgressors." (Quran 2:190) "If they seek
                  peace,
                  > then
                  > > seek you peace. And trust in Allaah Swt for He is the One that
                  > > heareth and knoweth all things." (Quran 8:61)
                  > >
                  > > War, therefore, is the last resort, and is subject to the
                  rigorous
                  > > conditions laid down by the sacred law. The term 'jihad'
                  literally
                  > > means 'struggle'. Muslims believe that there are two kinds of
                  jihad.
                  > > The other 'jihad' is the inner struggle of the soul, which
                  everyone
                  > > wages against egotistic desires for the sake of attaining inner
                  > peace.
                  > >
                  > > 2: Islam oppresses women
                  > >
                  > > The image of the typical Muslim woman wearing the veil and
                  forced to
                  > > stay home and forbidden to drive is all too common in most
                  people's
                  > > thoughts. Although some Muslim countries may have laws that
                  oppress
                  > > women, this should not be seen as coming from Islam. Many of
                  these
                  > > countries do not rule by any kind of Shari'ah (Islamic law) and
                  > > introduce their own cultural standpoints on the issue of gender
                  > > equality.
                  > >
                  > > Islam on the other hand gives men and women different roles and
                  > > equity between the two is laid down in the Quran and the
                  example of
                  > > the Prophet. Islam sees a woman, whether single or married, as
                  an
                  > > individual in her own right, with the right to own and dispose
                  of
                  > her
                  > > property and earnings.
                  > >
                  > > A marriage gift is given by the groom to the bride for her own
                  > > personal use, and she keeps her own family name rather than
                  taking
                  > > her husband's. Both men and women are expected to dress in a
                  way
                  > that
                  > > is modest and dignified. The Messenger of Allaah Swt said: "The
                  most
                  > > perfect in faith amongst believers is he who is best in manner
                  and
                  > > kindest to his wife."
                  > >
                  > > Violence of any kind towards women and forcing them against
                  their
                  > > will for anything is not allowed. A Muslim marriage is a simple,
                  > > legal agreement in which either partner is free to include
                  > > conditions. Marriage customs thus vary widely from country to
                  > > country. Divorce is not common, although it is acceptable as a
                  last
                  > > resort. According to Islam, a Muslim girl cannot be forced to
                  marry
                  > > against her will: her parents simply suggest young men they
                  think
                  > may
                  > > be suitable.
                  > >
                  > > 3: Muslims worship a different God.
                  > >
                  > > Allah Swt is simply the Arabic word for God. Allaah Swt for
                  Muslims
                  > > is the greatest and most inclusive of the Names of God, it is an
                  > > Arabic word of rich meaning, denoting the one and only God and
                  > > ascribing no partners to Him. It is exactly the same word which
                  the
                  > > Jews, in Hebrew, use for God (eloh), the word which Jesus
                  Christ
                  > used
                  > > in Aramaic when he prayed to Allaah Swt . Allaah Swt has an
                  > identical
                  > > name in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; Allaah Swt is the
                  same God
                  > > worshiped by Muslims, Christians and Jews. Muslims believe that
                  > > Allaah Swt 's sovereignty is to be acknowledged in worship and
                  in
                  > the
                  > > pledge to obey His teaching and commandments, conveyed through
                  His
                  > > Messengers and Prophets who were sent at various times and in
                  many
                  > > places throughout history. However, it should be noted that God
                  in
                  > > Islam is One and Only. He, the Exalted, does not get tired,
                  does not
                  > > have a son (i.e. Jesus) or have associates, nor does He have
                  human-
                  > > like attributions as found in other faiths.
                  > >
                  > > 4: Islam was spread by sword and is intolerant of other faiths.
                  > >
                  > > Many social studies textbooks for students show the image of an
                  Arab
                  > > horseman carrying a sword in one hand and the Quran in the
                  other,
                  > > conquering and forcibly converting. This, however, is not a
                  correct
                  > > portrayal of history. Islam has always given respect and
                  freedom of
                  > > religion to all faiths. The Quran says: "Allaah Swt forbids you
                  not,
                  > > with regards to those who fight you not for [your] faith nor
                  drive
                  > > you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with
                  them; for
                  > > Allaah Swt loveth those who are just." (Qur'an 60:8)
                  > >
                  > > Freedom of religion is laid down in the Quran itself: "There is
                  no
                  > > compulsion (or coercion) in the religion (Islam). The right
                  > direction
                  > > is distinctly clear from error." (Qur'an 2:256)
                  > >
                  > > Christian missionary, T.W. Arnold had this opinion on his study
                  of
                  > > the question of the spread of Islam: "...of any organized
                  attempt to
                  > > force the acceptance of Islam on the non-Muslim population, or
                  of
                  > any
                  > > systematic persecution intended to stamp out the Christian
                  religion,
                  > > we hear nothing. Had the caliphs chosen to adopt either course
                  of
                  > > action, they might have swept away Christianity as easily as
                  > > Ferdinand and Isabella drove Islam out of Spain, or Louis XIV
                  made
                  > > Protestantism..."
                  > >
                  > > It is a function of Islamic law to protect the privileged
                  status of
                  > > minorities, and this is why non-Muslim places of worship have
                  > > flourished all over the Islamic world. History provides many
                  > examples
                  > > of Muslim tolerance towards other faiths: when the caliph Omar
                  > > entered Jerusalem in the year 634, Islam granted freedom of
                  worship
                  > > to all religious communities in the city. Proclaiming to the
                  > > inhabitants that their lives, and property were safe, and that
                  their
                  > > places of worship would never be taken from them, he asked the
                  > > Christian patriarch Sophronius to accompany him on a visit to
                  all
                  > the
                  > > holy places. Islamic law also permits non-Muslim minorities to
                  set
                  > up
                  > > their own courts, which implement family laws drawn up by the
                  > > minorities themselves. The life and property of all citizens in
                  an
                  > > Islamic state are considered sacred whether the person is
                  Muslim or
                  > > not.
                  > >
                  > > Racism is not a part of Islam, the Quran speaks only of human
                  > > equality and how all people are equal in the sight of Allaah
                  > > Swt
                  > > . "O mankind! We created you from a single soul, male and
                  > > female, and made you into nations and tribes, so that you may
                  come
                  > to
                  > > know one another. Truly, the most honoured of you in Allaah
                  Swt 's
                  > > sight is the greatest of you in piety. Allaah Swt
                  > > is All-Knowing, All- Aware."
                  > >
                  > > 5: All Muslims are Arabs
                  > >
                  > > The Muslim population of the world is around 1,2 billion. One
                  out of
                  > > every five people in the world is a Muslim. They are a vast
                  range of
                  > > races, nationalities, and cultures from around the globe from
                  the
                  > > Philippines to Nigeria they are united by their common Islamic
                  > faith.
                  > > Only about 18% live in the Arab world and the largest Muslim
                  > > community is in Indonesia. Most Muslims live east of Pakistan.
                  > Thirty
                  > > percent of Muslims live in the Indian subcontinent, 20% in Sub-
                  > > Saharan Africa, 17% in Southeast Asia, 18% in the Arab world,
                  and
                  > 10%
                  > > in the Soviet Union and China. Turkey, Iran, and Afghanistan
                  make up
                  > > 10% of the non-Arab Middle East. Although there are Muslim
                  > minorities
                  > > in almost every area, including Latin America and Australia,
                  they
                  > are
                  > > most numerous in Russia and its newly independent states, India
                  and
                  > > central Africa. There are about 6 million Muslims in the United
                  > > States.
                  > >
                  > > 6: The Nation of Islam is a Muslim group
                  > >
                  > > Islam and the so-called "Nation of Islam (NOI)" are two
                  different
                  > > religions. NOI is more of a political organization since its
                  members
                  > > are not limited to a single faith. Muslims consider this group
                  to be
                  > > just one of many cults using the name of Islam for their own
                  gain.
                  > > The only thing common between them is the jargon, the language
                  used
                  > > by both. "The Nation of Islam" is a misnomer; this religion
                  should
                  > be
                  > > called Farrakhanism, after the name of its propagator, Louis
                  > > Farrakhan.
                  > >
                  > > Islam and Farakhanism differ in many fundamental ways. For
                  example,
                  > > Farakhan followers believe in racism and that the 'black man'
                  was
                  > the
                  > > original man and therefore superior, while in Islam there is no
                  > > racism and everyone is considered equal in the sight of Allaah
                  Swt ,
                  > > the only difference being in one's piety. There are many other
                  > > theological examples that show the NOI's teachings have little
                  to do
                  > > with true Islam. There are many groups in America who claim to
                  > > represent Islam and call their adherents Muslims.
                  > >
                  > > Any serious student of Islam has a duty to investigate and find
                  the
                  > > true Islam. The only two authentic sources which bind every
                  Muslim
                  > > are the Quran and authentic or sound Hadith. Any teachings
                  under the
                  > > label of "Islam" which contradict or at variance with the direct
                  > > understanding of fundamental beliefs and practices of Islam
                  form the
                  > > Quran and authentic Hadith should be rejected and such a
                  religion
                  > > should be considered a Pseudo-Islamic Cult.
                  > >
                  > > In America there are many pseudo-Islamic cults, Farrakhanism
                  being
                  > > one of them. An honest attitude on the part of such cults
                  should be
                  > > not to call themselves Muslims and their religion Islam, such an
                  > > example of honesty is Bahaism which is an off-shoot of Islam but
                  > > Bahais do not call themselves Muslims nor their religion,
                  Islam. In
                  > > fact Bahaism is not Islam just as Farrakhanism is not Islam.
                  Read
                  > > about in relation to this misconception, where he found the true
                  > > Islam, realising that it is much different than NOI.
                  > >
                  > > 7: Polygamy is cruelty It is one of favors of Islam
                  > >
                  > > that it has allowed men to marry more than once. The underlying
                  > > wisdom of this command is now becoming manifest as the
                  population of
                  > > women is increasing. The population of men is decreasing due to
                  > wars,
                  > > accidents and other such reasons. So if under these
                  circumstances
                  > men
                  > > were allowed to marry once, a large number of women would have
                  > > remained unmarried and have turned to adultery and other moral
                  > evils.
                  > > Therefore, for the protection of orphans and widows and the
                  solution
                  > > of the problem of marriage of maidens Islam ordained polygamy.
                  > > Secondly, during childbirth and menstruation and other ailments
                  a
                  > > woman becomes unable to fulfil the matrimonial rights of her
                  > husband.
                  > > So if under these circumstances a man is not allowed to practise
                  > > polygamy he might turn to adultery. That is why Islam has given
                  men
                  > > the permission to remarry.
                  > >
                  > > Here it must also be remembered that in case of polygamy
                  husband is
                  > > under obligation to treat his wives with as much equality as
                  humanly
                  > > possible. If he fails to do so he will have to account for it
                  on the
                  > > Day of Judgement. In the West monogamy has resulted in horrible
                  > > effects. All forms of moral evils are common in their society.
                  > >
                  > > 8: Muslims are a barbaric, backward people
                  > >
                  > > Among the reasons for the rapid and peaceful spread of Islam
                  was the
                  > > simplicity of its doctrine-Islam calls for faith in only one
                  Allaah
                  > > Swt worthy of worship. It also repeatedly instructs man to use
                  his
                  > > powers of intelligence and observation. Within a few years,
                  great
                  > > civilisations and universities were flourishing, for according
                  to
                  > the
                  > > Prophet, 'seeking knowledge is an obligation for every Muslim
                  man
                  > and
                  > > woman'.
                  > >
                  > > The synthesis of Eastern and Western ideas and of new thought
                  with
                  > > old, brought about great advances in medicine, mathematics,
                  physics,
                  > > astronomy, geography, architecture, art, literature, and
                  history.
                  > > Many crucial systems such as algebra, the Arabic numerals, and
                  also
                  > > the concept of the zero (vital to the advancement of
                  mathematics),
                  > > were transmitted to medieval Europe from Islam. Sophisticated
                  > > instruments which were to make possible the European voyages of
                  > > discovery were developed, including the astrolabe, the quadrant
                  and
                  > > good navigational maps.
                  > >
                  > > 9: Muhammad (SAW) was the founder of Islam and Muslims worship
                  him
                  > >
                  > > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was born in Makkah in the year 570. Since
                  his
                  > > father died before his birth, and his mother shortly
                  afterwards, he
                  > > was raised by his uncle from the respected tribe of Quraysh. As
                  he
                  > > grew up, he became known for his truthfulness, generosity and
                  > > sincerity, so that he was sought after for his ability to
                  arbitrate
                  > > in disputes. The historians describe him as calm and meditative.
                  > > Muhammad (SAW) pbuh, was of a deeply religious nature, and had
                  long
                  > > detested the decadence of his society.
                  > >
                  > > It became his habit to meditate from time to time in the Cave
                  of
                  > Hira
                  > > near Mecca. At the age of 40, while engaged in a meditative
                  retreat,
                  > > Muhammad SAW (PBUH) received his first revelation
                  > > from Allaah
                  > > Swt through the Angel Gabriel. This revelation, which
                  > > continued for 23 years is known as the Quran. As soon as he
                  began to
                  > > recite the words he heard from Gabriel, and to preach the truth
                  > which
                  > > Allaah Swt had revealed to him, he and his small
                  > > group of
                  > > followers suffered bitter persecution, which grew so fierce
                  that in
                  > > the year 622 Allaah swt gave them the command to
                  > > emigrate.
                  > >
                  > > This event, the Hijrah or 'migration', in which they left
                  Makkah for
                  > > the city of Madina, marks the beginning of the Muslim calendar.
                  > After
                  > > several years, the Prophet (PBUH)and his followers were able to
                  > > return to Makkah, where they forgave their enemies and
                  established
                  > > Islam definitively. Before the death of Prophet r at the age of
                  63,
                  > > the greater part of Arabia was Muslim, and within a century of
                  his
                  > > death Islam had spread to Spain in the West and as far east as
                  > China.
                  > >
                  > > While Muhammad SAW (PBUH )was chosen to deliver the message, he
                  is
                  > > not considered the "founder" of Islam, since Muslims consider
                  Islam
                  > > to be the same Divine guidance sent to all Prophets before.
                  Muslims
                  > > believe all the prophets from Adam, Noah, Moses, Jesus etc.
                  were all
                  > > sent with divine guidance for their peoples. Every prophet was
                  sent
                  > > to his own people, but Muhammad SAW (PBUH) was sent to all of
                  > > mankind. Muhammad Õáì Çááå Úáíå æÓáã is the last and
                  > > final messenger
                  > > sent to deliver the message of Islam. Muslims revere and honour
                  him
                  > > (PBUH) for all he went through and his dedication, but they do
                  not
                  > > worship him.
                  > >
                  > > "O Prophet(PBUH), verily We have sent you as a witness and a
                  bearer
                  > > of glad tidings and a Warner and as one who invites unto Allaah
                  > > Swt by His leave and as an illuminating lamp."
                  > > (Qur'an 33:45-
                  > > 46)
                  > >
                  > > 10: Muslims don't believe in Jesus or any other Prophets
                  > >
                  > > Muslims respect and revere Jesusu and await his Second Coming.
                  They
                  > > consider him one of the greatest of Allaah Swt 's messengers to
                  > > mankind. A Muslim never refers to him simply as 'Eesa (As) ',
                  but
                  > > always adds the phraseu. The Qur'an confirms his virgin birth (a
                  > > chapter of the Quran is entitled 'Mary'), and Mary is
                  considered the
                  > > purest woman in all creation. The Quran describes the
                  Annunciation
                  > as
                  > > follows:
                  > >
                  > > "Behold!" the Angel said, "Allaah Swt has chosen you, and
                  purified
                  > > you, and chosen you above the women of all nations. O Mary,
                  Allaah
                  > > Swt gives you good news of a word from Him whose name shall be
                  the
                  > > Messiah, Eesa (AS) son of Mary, honoured in this world and the
                  > > Hereafter, and one of those brought near to Allaah Swt . He
                  shall
                  > > speak to the people from his cradle and in maturity, and shall
                  be of
                  > > the righteous." She said: "O my Lord! How shall I have a son
                  when no
                  > > man has touched me?" He said: "Even so; Allaah Swt creates what
                  He
                  > > wills. When He decrees a thing, He says to it, "Be!" and it is."
                  > > (Qur'an 3:42-47)
                  > >
                  > > Jesusu was born miraculously through the same power, which had
                  > > brought Adamu into being without a father: "Truly, the likeness
                  of
                  > > Eesa (As) (Jesus) with Allaah Swt is as the likeness of Adam. He
                  > > created him of dust, and then said to him, 'Be!' and he was."
                  > (Qur'an
                  > > 3:59)
                  > >
                  > > During his prophetic mission Jesusu performed many miracles. The
                  > > Qur'an tells us that he said: "I have come to you with a sign
                  from
                  > > your Lord: I make for you out of clay, as it were, the figure
                  of a
                  > > bird, and breath into it and it becomes a bird by Allaah Swt 's
                  > > leave. And I heal the blind, and the lepers, and I raise the
                  dead by
                  > > Allaah Swt 's leave." (Qur'an 3:49)
                  > >
                  > > Neither Muhammad (SAW) (PBUH) nor Jesus u came to change the
                  basic
                  > > doctrine of the belief in One Allaah (SAW) brought by earlier
                  > > Prophets, but to confirm and renew it.
                  > >
                  > > In the Qur'an Jesusu is reported as saying that he came: "And I
                  have
                  > > come confirming that which was before me of the Taurat (Torah),
                  and
                  > > to make lawful to you part of what was forbidden to you; and I
                  have
                  > > come to you with a proof from your Lord, so fear Allaah Swt and
                  obey
                  > > me." (Qur'an 3:50)
                  > >
                  > > The Prophet Muhammad(SAW)PBUH said: "Whoever believes there is
                  no
                  > > Allaah Swt but Allaah Swt , alone without partner, that
                  Muhammad
                  > (SAW)
                  > > (PBUH) is His messenger, that Eesa (As) is the servant and
                  > messenger
                  > > of Allaah (SAW) , His word breathed into Mary and a spirit
                  emanating
                  > > from Him, and that Paradise and Hell are true, shall be
                  received by
                  > > Allaah (SAW) into Heaven." (Hadith related by Bukhari).
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  _________________________________________________________________
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