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International Conference on Future of Islam on April 6 and 7th at Aligarh Muslim University. Details at http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2015/03/mike-ghouse-of-world-muslim-congress-to.html

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Surah Taubah - chapter 9 verses 20-28 by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad

www.WorldMuslimcongress.com | www.QuraanToday.com 

The clarity of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad's tafseer is incredible. Those of you who may not know the Maulana – he was born and raised in Madinah and moved back to India - his ancestral land. He was a nationalist leader for all of Indians, the Hindu Majority and all minorities, and was the first education minister of independent India and laid the foundation for the educational institutions like IIT’s that rival MIT’s.  I believe Muhammad Yunus, a member and a Muslim scholar listed in the emails is a member of IIT.

Maulana was a pluralist, and an inclusivist, as is Islam  – the phrases like Rabbul Aalameen, Rahmatul Aalameen should lead us to become Mukhlooqul Aalameen. We need to consciously pull us out of the path of political Islam of self-interest and restore it to Islam for common good.
It is in the same line of thinking, I believe the purpose of Islam is to build cohesive societies where no human has to live in fear of the other but God (deviation from truth). Islam is about restoring harmonious, peaceful and a well-functioning cohesive world, God had created.

Some of the statements that jumped at me are:

“It states that they rank the highest who have sacrificed everything in the path of truth and endure steadfastly the trials and tribulations that befell them on the way of truth. That is the criterion of goodness.” – and I will add to this from Sura Hujurat “the best ones among you are those who learn about each other – for knowledge leads to understanding and understanding to acceptance of another point of view.

In Hindu scriptures there is a powerful phrase “Satyamev Jayate - Truth alone triumphs” and Mahatma Gandhi popularized it, and now it is the national symbol of India... The Maulana has clearly distinguished the purpose of war was not victory or the conquest but bringing forth sustainable peace for “all”.

He pulled out the essence of the Sura – that is the truth alone triumphs and gives examples, “It therefore behooved the followers of the faith that they should have nothing to do with even their parents and brothers if they belonged to the enemy camp.” And elsewhere in Quran It lays down that you have to tell the truth even it goes against you or your interests. Indeed, there is no 5th in Islam; truth is given the highest value.

I am presenting the following papers at Aligarh Muslim University:

1. http://www.worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2015/03/mike-ghouse-of-world-muslim-congress-to.html
Mike Ghouse, committed to cohesive societies.
Mike Ghouse, committed to cohesive societies.

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Shared by Rafiq Lodhia


Maulana Abul Kalam Azad – The Tarjuman al-Qur’an – Year: 1968

The criterion of superiority of one over another in the sight of God is indicated in
verse 20. It states that they rank the highest who have sacrificed everything in
the path of truth and endure steadfastly the trials and tribulations that befell them
on the way of truth. That is the criterion of goodness. It is a lesson for the present
day Muslims who have developed an outlook on life and follow a way of living so
alien to the teachings of Islam. Even like the pagan Arabs of the Prophet’s time,
they prefer the traditional way as against the way of life laid down for them by
Islam. Whenever a rich man living a thoroughly un-Islamic life provides booths
(sabil) of cool drinks during the days of Muharram and arranges the celebration
of the Prophet’s Day (mawlud) on a lavish scale or pays for lightning a mosque
or a dargah on a particular day, the entire Muslim community exultingly applauds
him, and no one cares to know whether what he did was for the sake of God.
One should remember that such deeds do not constitute righteousness in the sight
of God. Goodness lies only in the purity of belief in God and sincerity in action and
steadfast endurance of trials in the way of God. That is the criterion of goodness
sponsored by the Qur’an.

It has been pointed out above that this chapter was revealed in the ninth year of
Hijra and that the earlier verses of it were publicly announced during the period
of Hajj that year. This was the time when Mecca had already been conquered
and strength of the enemies put down for ever on the field of Hunain. For the
expedition to Tabuk as many as thirty thousand Muslims, had assembled, so much
so that there remained no party in the Arabian peninsula to challenge the supremacy
of the followers of the Prophet. Still there lurked in the situation a few weaknesses.

Point A: A large number of Meccans who had opposed the Prophet but had been
pardoned by him at the time of his victorious entry into Mecca had joined the Muslim
fold. Being new converts to Islam, they could not fit into its way of life quickly. So
when war was declared on those who were still opposed to the Prophet in the
country and were giving no rest to its followers, a number of new Meccan converts
began to feel concerned about their relations who were in the enemy camps. In fact,
they could not rise above their sense of kinship with them or their tribal prejudices,
and so formed but a weak wing of the Muslim camp.

Point B: There were also in the Muslim camp quite a number of hypocrites and
timid people. They raised the cry that now that much had been gained for the
Muslims, there was no longer any need for them to engage themselves in further

Point C: The victories which the Muslims had won on the battlefield had developed
in them a general sense of indifference to any possible danger lying ahead of them.
The majority of them thought that now that the Arab land had nearly yielded to the
call of Truth and that there was left no strength among those who had not yet
chosen to yield to the call, there was no imperative need to be on the alert. They
hardly could realize at the moment the height of power and influence that destiny
had marked them to reach. This development in the situation was clearly a source
of danger to the security of the Muslims not only at this hour but in the days to
follow as well.

The necessity therefore was felt to revive in the Muslims the spirit of sincere
attachment to their faith and bring home to them once again the high purpose for
which they were to live and work as earnestly as ever before. They were to be told
that the period of trials was not yet over and that on the other hand it was just to
begin. Of the task lying ahead of them, what was of primary importance at the
moment was the liquidating of whatever opposition that there still was to the
mission of the Prophet and to establish perfect peace and order in the land.

It is why verse 16 calls upon the Muslims to reflect over the situation and realize,
that that was not the hour when they should relax their efforts to reach their goal.
It states that the faith which they professed had yet to be tested in full. So in the
succeeding verses after drawing attention to the character that should distinguish
the Muslims, a significant observation is made in verse 23 that the sense of sincere
attachment to one’s faith and the sense of loyalty to those who were opposed to
the faith could not subsist together or felt simultaneously in one’s mind. It therefore
behooved the followers of the faith that they should have nothing to do with even
their parents and brothers if they belonged to the enemy camp.

Verse 24 is emphatic in asserting that in a conflict between faith and denial of faith,
he alone will be regarded as a man of faith or faithful whom nothing in the world,
and even one’s love for those near and dear to him, should weaken his attachment
or devotion to his faith. It is on this basis that the edifice of a civilized society can
be raised. It refers to all the essential ties which one has necessarily to respect in
life. But the principle of devotion to an ideology such as that which function for the
security and welfare of a society as a whole, demands from everyone professing
faith in his ideology that he should rise far above every other form of attachment
and let nothing detract him from serving whole-heartedly the cause of truth which
that ideology upholds.

The Qur’an also draws particular attention to the attachment one feels to one’s
worldly comfort in life and so might like one’s country not to involve itself in any
war. For instance, one might be gaining wealth by pursuing the avocation of
commerce. In a state of war, opportunities for commerce may be lessened. That
is a fear which is bound to stare in the face of every one living on commerce.
Further, in a state of war one stands the risk of losing one’s possessions. The
thought of the risk will naturally disturb one immensely. Before such as these who
are moved by considerations of this nature, the Qur’an places an abiding truth of
life and asks them seriously to reflect over it. The truth is this. When a people are
called upon by the force of circumstances to defend the cause of truth and uphold
it for the good of men, it should behoove everyone who sincerely believes in the
truth to be prepared to sacrifice everything dear to him, so that truth might prevail
and bring happiness to one and all.  The Qur’an gives the tiding to such devotees
of truth that whatever they might lose in the struggle would be repaid to them
manifold when truth shall triumph and bring peace and prosperity to one and all.
“Indeed with God lies the great reward,” says the Qur’an.

History has recorded for all times the glorious manner in which the companion of
the Prophet stood the test of devotion to their faith in God. It may be asserted
without exaggeration that there are few parallels in the annals of man to the
devoted support that they offered to the Prophet in his struggle in the cause of
truth. They sacrificed all that they had for the love of God, with the result that
they reaped in return what the pursuit of goodness always offers for the benefit
of man.

But what is our position today? Are we prepared to scrutinize our lives in the light
of this verse of the Qur’an.

Verse 26 refers to the battle of Hunain in eight year of the Hijra, when soon after
the conquest of Mecca, the tribes of Hawazin and Thaqif in co-operation with the
tribes of Bani Nadir and Bani Hilal attacked the Muslims. The Prophet issued forth
from Mecca into the valley of Hunain. In this engagement, the Muslims were thrice
in number. Naturally, therefore, they felt confident of success. But when the hour
of trial arrived, their superiority in numbers could not avail. It was only a handful
of staunch adherents of the Prophet, who, inspired by the example of their leader,
saved the situation and won the victory for the Muslims.

The Muslim force had to proceed through a narrow pass. The enemy force lay in
ambush awaiting the Muslims to enter this pass. They knew that among the Muslims
nearly as many as two thousand were new converts from Mecca. A good many of
these were allies of the enemy. The moment the Muslims moved into the narrow
defile, the enemy force showered arrows over them from their bows. It was a
sudden attack. A large section of the Muslim army took to their heels in a state of
alarm. The situation seemed clearly to go against the Muslims. It was at this juncture
that the Prophet ask, ‘Abbas, his uncle, to cry out to his old comrades of Samra who
had sworn allegiance to him at the time of the treaty of Hudaibiya to steady themselves.
The cry inspired a new courage in the hearts of the staunch among them who forthwith
returned to the Prophet and gave so stiff a fight to the enemy that they had to suffer
a defeat at the hands of the Muslims.

This incident was a great eye-opener for the followers of the Faith. It brought home
to them that mere numbers do not bring victory. The strength of numbers does
contribute to success in warfare. But success does not always depend upon numbers.
It is the strength of will and the determination not to yield which ultimately count and
help even a small band of determined fighters to rout a force many times strong in
numbers. The Qur’an addressing the Muslims points out that there were occasions in
the past when though they were few in numbers they had achieved victory over the
enemy. But that now at this hour in Hunain when they prided themselves over the
largeness of their numbers, mere numbers did not avail. That was a matter for them
to reflect over.

In verse 28 the Quran reverts to the order issued in an earlier verse of this chapter
prohibiting the polytheists to enter the Ka’ba any further. That House of Prayer had
been raised by the Prophet Abraham and his son Ismail for the worship of God, the
One, and was meant to serve as a center of spiritual activity for those who believed
in the unity of God.

In this verse the reference to the uncleanliness of the polytheists is not to their
physical condition but to the uncleanliness of their hearts. Islam does not regard the
person or the body of anyone as unclean. Every man as man stands on the same
footing as every other human being. It is why it has prohibited untouchability and
does not single out any section of humanity as untouchable. In fact, it is clear from
the recorded history of the Prophet that the Prophet maintained social relationships
with not only the People of the Book, the Jews, but with the polytheists of his time.
He used to dine with them and accept their invitations and also offer invitations to
them. History has recorded that he at times had allowed them to stay in his own
mosque at Madina.

The verse under reference has a limited application. It applies to the seat of Ka’ba
along and not to any other Muslim place of worship. In fact, after the issuing of
this order, the Prophet had allowed the Christians of Yemen, and the polytheists
from Ta’if to stay in his mosque.

Surah: 20 – They who have believed in God and abandoned their homes for the
sake of God and striven with their possessions and their persons in the way of
God, shall rank high in the estimation of God. These are they who shall attain
success (in life).

Surah: 21 – Tidings of mercy doth their Lord send them and of His good pleasure
and also of gardens in which lasting joy shall be theirs.

Surah: 22 – Therein shall they abide for ever. Surely (for such people) there is a
great reward from their Lord.

Surah: 23 – O Muslims! Do not take your fathers or brothers for friends if they
prefer unbelief to belief; and whoso of you shall take them for friends they shall
be regarded as those who have been unjust to themselves.

Surah: 24 – Say (to the Muslims, O Prophet!): If your fathers and your sons and
your brothers and your wives, and your kith and kin and the wealth that you have
acquired and the merchandise which ye fear may not have a proper sale, and the
dwellings of which you are very don, be dearer to you than God and His Apostle and
striving in the way of God, then, wait until God disclose what He wills to do. And it is
not in the manner of God to guide the impious.

Surah: 25 – (O Muslims!) This is a fact that God had helped you on many a previous
occasion (when you were few in number) and on the day of Hunain, when despite
the strength over which you had exulted availed you not, and the earth with all its
vastness had straitened on your and you to turn back in fight.

Surah: 26 – It was then, God infused into the Prophet and those faithful (to him)
the spirit of steadiness and self-assurance and succoured them with unseen hosts
and defeated the unbelievers, and that is what the unbelievers deserved.

Surah: 27 – Yet after this, God will turn in mercy towards whomsoever He pleaseth;
for indeed God is Forgiving, Merciful.

Surah: 28 – O ye Muslims! Surely those who ascribe partners to God are an unclean
lot. Let them not after this year approach the Holy Place of Prayer, and if (due to
lack of opportunity to profit by trading with them at the time of Hajj) you apprehend
poverty, (then, do not lose heart for), God, if He please, will soon give you riches
out of His abundance. Verily, God knows (your needs) and He will in His Wisdom
compensate you for your loss.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Anti-Muslim Sentiment in Irving (And the Imam Who Has To Tolerate It)

Anti-Muslim Sentiment in Irving -
Link - http://dallasmuslimcenter.blogspot.com/2015/03/anti-muslim-sentiment-in-irving-and.html

It is waste of public funds and public time, what a husband and wife decide between them is their business and not the GD business of the legislators. They don't believe in life liberty and pursuit of happiness, damned traitors of our constitution.

Look for a few other articles on this site about the topic

Please check this seminal piece on Sharia 101, everything you want to know about Sharia and more. http://sharialaws.blogspot.com/2013/02/genesis-of-sharia-law.html

Mike Ghouse
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Anti-Muslim Sentiment in Irving (And the Imam Who Has To Tolerate It)

Imam Zia ul-Haque Sheikh: "we always seem to take one step forward, two steps back." Photo by Justin Clemons
Imam Zia ul-Haque Sheikh: “We always seem to take one step forward, two steps back.” Photo by Justin Clemons

In the paper today, Avi Selk has a lengthy story about some anti-Muslim foolishness going on in Irving. It centers on a religious tribunal that is supposedly going to usurp the U.S. Constitution and ruin America. (I’m exaggerating only a little bit.) Last night, the City Council voted 5-4 to support a bill authored by Rep. Jeff Leach (R-Plano) that would forbid such tribunals from using foreign law in their rulings (which is already illegal).

I wrote about all this for the April issue of D Magazine, which won’t mail to subscribers for another three days. So I’m posting the article here. Before I wrote my story, I spent some time with Imam Zia ul-Haque Sheikh, the head of the Islamic Center of Irving and a man who has far more patience and compassion than I do. For your edification:
The first thing you notice at the Islamic Center of Irving is its large green dome, or qubba. Representing the vault of heaven, it seems to shine in the afternoon sun atop the center’s bright white mosque, or masjid. The 37,000-square-foot center — a complex that includes the mosque, a school, and a multi-use hall, all currently undergoing expansion — offers an impressive picture in this drab corner of northwest Irving.

When you enter the complex through the Islamic School of Irving (adjacent to the mosque) after early afternoon prayer, the tranquility of the center is broken, if only slightly. The hallway floods with men, many still wearing the traditional cap for prayer, the taqiyah. Most are smiling and shaking hands and offering best wishes and praise for Allah. Many reflexively say hello to the non-Muslim stranger standing in the hallway, looking confused, asking for the man who has led the prayer: Imam Zia ul-Haque Sheikh.
Imam Zia directs me to his office, wasting no time with small talk. He is a busy man, leading five prayers a day — Friday’s midday prayer can draw as many as 2,000 members. He is also an author (Addressing the Taboos: Love, Marriage and Sex in Islam and Islam: Silencing the Critics) and a lecturer (he speaks five languages).

“This all happened very quickly,” he says. His smile suggests weary bemusement over a social-media firestorm that recently engulfed Imam Zia and the Islamic Center. “It started with the right-wing website story. Then suddenly the mayor [of Irving, Beth Van Duyne] is posting on her Facebook page. From that, hatred and misinformation filled her site and others. And, of course, she had never even spoken with us.”

The website was Breitbart.com, and the post was titled “Islamic Tribunal Confirmed in Texas.” The headline suggested this was something new, even though the tribunal — a panel of four who mediate or arbitrate disputes — had been a registered nonprofit in Texas since 2012. In fact, the 25 or so cases the tribunal hears a year are the sort of family law (divorce proceedings) or business disputes (whether remodeling work was done right) that secular mediators often hear; this tribunal is merely guided by Islamic religious principles.

The day the post went up, it was debunked by Snopes.com, which found its claims “false,” concluding: “[T]he tribunal neither possessed nor claimed any ability to supersede extant laws in its jurisdiction, either civil or criminal. Parties are not obligated to participate in the mediation it offers, nor does the center have any power to operate outside the law.”

Other faiths have similar religious arbitration or mediation groups, such as the Christian Peacemaker Ministries and the Jewish Beth Din. In Dallas, the Catholic Diocese of Dallas has a tribunal. Few consider this unusual—until Muslims are involved.

This certainly seems to have been Van Duyne’s major concern. On February 6, she took to Facebook to express her concern about the Breitbart story and let the world know “Sharia Law Court was NOT approved or enacted by the City of Irving.” (No one had suggested it was.) She continued for a few paragraphs, concluding: “While I am working to better understand how this ‘court’ will function and whom will be subject to its decisions, please know if it is determined that there are violations of basic rights occurring, I will not stand idle and will fight with every fiber of my being against this action. Our nation cannot be so overly sensitive in defending other cultures that we stop protecting our own. The American Constitution and our guaranteed rights reigns [sic] supreme in our nation and may that ever be the case.”

The post was shared more than 700 times and elicited commentary ranging from confused (“How did this even come about this is are country”) to hostile (“Those who don’t like it here are welcome to leave.and immigrate any country that will accept you”). In an effort to better understand the theological and cultural underpinnings of the tribunal, Van Duyne appeared on The Glenn Beck Program and proclaimed, “This is not city-sanctioned, we weren’t given an opportunity even to pass anything, and we’re not supportive of it. … I think you need to put your foot down and say this is America, we have laws here already.”
A few facts worth noting:

Most important, the tribunal is not affiliated with the Islamic Center. Imam Zia is one of four members who constitute the tribunal. Its official address is in North Dallas, but the tribunal meets about twice a month for hearings wherever they can find a suitable office (usually in Arlington).

Second: despite Van Duyne’s claims, the city of Irving has taken no stance on the center or the tribunal (which, again, isn’t even in Irving). It did issue a statement saying that the city wants residents to obey the law and that Irving “is proud to have one of the most diverse ZIP codes in the United States.”

Third: Van Duyne’s confusion is one of willful ignorance. All of the foregoing information is available online. If you want to know what the tribunal is and what it does, it has a website. If you want to learn about the Islamic Center — about its history (started in an apartment in Irving in 1989, became an official nonprofit in 1991, current complex opened in 2004), or its education services (a recent sensitivity training workshop: “What Our Neighbors Think of Us and Why”), or its members — it’s all online.

Better yet, show up for the weekly open house on Sundays at 2:30 pm for a tour of the Islamic Center. You should do so, if for no other reason than to meet Imam Zia, something of a hero to the Muslim community. He was born in a mountainous region known as Azad Kashmir, between India and Pakistan. When he was 4, his family moved to England. At 13, he began 12 years of study in a theology program at an Islamic institute. By 16, he had memorized the Quran. In 1994 he completed his master’s (a doctorate in theological foundation followed). Two years later, he took a job at a mosque in Virginia, eventually making his way to Irving, in 2005, because of the Islamic Center’s expansion plans.

After 10 years in his post, Imam Zia has become a leader outside the church as well. He is part of a regular gathering of community activists, including black pastors, who work to see caring leaders elected to the City Council and the school board. He holds meetings at the mosque with local officials (fire chief, police chief, city department heads) so he can relay relevant issues and concerns to his congregation. He makes aiding all the poor in Irving a priority for his mosque. In the past year alone, the center has given more than $50,000 to various causes to help the needy.

“Imam Zia has been a constant source of help for those in need in our community,” says Anthony Emanuel Bond, founder of the Irving NAACP. “He and all the Muslim brothers and sisters that I have met and worked with are so loving and giving. They truly desire nothing more than to serve God and live in peace.”

Having been in Irving for a decade, Imam Zia has grown accustomed to the small-town grandstanding. Although careful not to be too critical of Van Duyne directly, he says the ignorance she displayed is something Muslim-Americans must face in today’s climate, whether that be in Irving (where emails with subject lines like “IRVING ISD INDOCTRINATING ISLAM” make news) or elsewhere (the recent “cartoon contest of the Prophet Muhammad” held in Garland).

“Unfortunately, in terms of understanding, we always seem to take one step forward, two steps back,” Imam Zia says. “But we will continue to do our level best to educate people.”

Three weeks after her Facebok post, Van Duyne finally met with Imam Zia. She told him that she said nothing wrong in her post or on The Glenn Beck Program, so no apology on her part was needed. Imam Zia told me he was disappointed but held no ill will toward her. All of which you could have guessed without my telling you.

Why Islam Needs a Reformation

Published at www.WorldMuslimCongress.com
Link- http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2015/03/why-islam-needs-reformation.html

I am pleased to respond to this piece.

The 5 points Ms. Ali  has raised have been raised by many Muslims in the last decade, and I have written extensively on each one of the five items.

 This article is a progress for Ayan Hirsi Ali, for the first time she has shown the signs of moving towards the center from the extreme right position she had taken all these years and I welcome it.  Her tone is reflective and not accusatory.

A few positions she has expressed are not based on a thorough study, but her bad experience growing up. Her community should be blamed for it and not Islam.  As a former Muslims she knows the difference, and she cannot blame the principles for the wrong practices.  800 people are murdered in New York every year; do you blame all the New Yorkers for the murderers or blame the murderers for the murder? You cannot blame a religion or law books for the rapes and murder that happen daily.

Here are a few items;

“What I do say is that the call to violence and the justification for it are explicitly stated in the sacred texts of Islam. Moreover, this theologically sanctioned violence is there to be activated by any number of offenses, including but not limited to apostasy, adultery, blasphemy and even something as vague as threats to family honor or to the honor of Islam itself.

Societies have always punished the wrong doers; we still give lethal injection in Texas. Shame on us, we should not be deliberately killing people like they do in Saudi Arabia.  We cannot justify that ours is not as cruel as theirs, both are murders.   All nations need to do away with capital punishment.

Bad practices make you perfect in badness.  She needs to get out of what is fed to her. Quran does no prescribe punishment for apostasy, adultery, blasphemy as practiced in Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Somali and Afghanistan.  It is not an Islamic practice but has been instituted by the Kings and dictators to protect their own tails.

Unlike the United States, no other Muslim nation or other nations had the option to govern themselves, indeed, almost all democracies are less than 70 years old and most of them are still maturing.  After the first four rightly guided caliphs for a period of 30 years after the death of the prophet, Muslim did not have a say in the governance, they were always ruled by dictators or monarchs who instituted such policies to protect their rule.  We still have not evolved out of that mind set to look things afresh, like Ayaan Hirsi Ali, we also need to get out of that mold.  What is dished out to us is corrupted and we need to reject it.  

Mike Ghouse
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Why Islam Needs a Reformation
To defeat the extremists for good, Muslims must reject those aspects of their tradition that prompt some believers to resort to oppression and holy war

Courtesy of Wall Street Journal
Updated March 20, 2015 10:00 a.m. ET

“Islam’s borders are bloody,” wrote the late political scientist Samuel Huntington in 1996, “and so are its innards.” Nearly 20 years later, Huntington looks more right than ever before. According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies, at least 70% of all the fatalities in armed conflicts around the world last year were in wars involving Muslims. In 2013, there were nearly 12,000 terrorist attacks world-wide. The lion’s share were in Muslim-majority countries, and many of the others were carried out by Muslims. By far the most numerous victims of Muslim violence—including executions and lynchings not captured in these statistics—are Muslims themselves.
Not all of this violence is explicitly motivated by religion, but a great deal of it is. I believe that it is foolish to insist, as Western leaders habitually do, that the violent acts committed in the name of Islam can somehow be divorced from the religion itself. For more than a decade, my message has been simple: Islam is not a religion of peace.
When I assert this, I do not mean that Islamic belief makes all Muslims violent. This is manifestly not the case: There are many millions of peaceful Muslims in the world. What I do say is that the call to violence and the justification for it are explicitly stated in the sacred texts of Islam. Moreover, this theologically sanctioned violence is there to be activated by any number of offenses, including but not limited to apostasy, adultery, blasphemy and even something as vague as threats to family honor or to the honor of Islam itself.
It is not just al Qaeda and Islamic State that show the violent face of Islamic faith and practice. It is Pakistan, where any statement critical of the Prophet or Islam is labeled as blasphemy and punishable by death. It is Saudi Arabia, where churches and synagogues are outlawed and where beheadings are a legitimate form of punishment. It is Iran, where stoning is an acceptable punishment and homosexuals are hanged for their “crime.”
As I see it, the fundamental problem is that the majority of otherwise peaceful and law-abiding Muslims are unwilling to acknowledge, much less to repudiate, the theological warrant for intolerance and violence embedded in their own religious texts. It simply will not do for Muslims to claim that their religion has been “hijacked” by extremists. The killers of Islamic State and Nigeria’s Boko Haram cite the same religious texts that every other Muslim in the world considers sacrosanct.
Instead of letting Islam off the hook with bland clichés about the religion of peace, we in the West need to challenge and debate the very substance of Islamic thought and practice. We need to hold Islam accountable for the acts of its most violent adherents and to demand that it reform or disavow the key beliefs that are used to justify those acts.
As it turns out, the West has some experience with this sort of reformist project. It is precisely what took place in Judaism and Christianity over the centuries, as both traditions gradually consigned the violent passages of their own sacred texts to the past. Many parts of the Bible and the Talmud reflect patriarchal norms, and both also contain many stories of harsh human and divine retribution. As President Barack Obama said in remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast last month, “Remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ.”

Yet today, because their faiths went through a long, meaningful process of Reformation and Enlightenment, the vast majority of Jews and Christians have come to dismiss religious scripture that urges intolerance or violence. There are literalist fringes in both religions, but they are true fringes. Regrettably, in Islam, it is the other way around: It is those seeking religious reform who are the fringe element.
Any serious discussion of Islam must begin with its core creed, which is based on the Quran (the words said to have been revealed by the Angel Gabriel to the Prophet Muhammad) and the hadith (the accompanying works that detail Muhammad’s life and words). Despite some sectarian differences, this creed unites all Muslims. All, without exception, know by heart these words: “I bear witness that there is no God but Allah; and Muhammad is His messenger.” This is the Shahada, the Muslim profession of faith.
The Shahada might seem to be a declaration of belief no different from any other. But the reality is that the Shahada is both a religious and a political symbol.
In the early days of Islam, when Muhammad was going from door to door in Mecca trying to persuade the polytheists to abandon their idols of worship, he was inviting them to accept that there was no god but Allah and that he was Allah’s messenger.
After 10 years of trying this kind of persuasion, however, he and his small band of believers went to Medina, and from that moment, Muhammad’s mission took on a political dimension. Unbelievers were still invited to submit to Allah, but after Medina, they were attacked if they refused. If defeated, they were given the option to convert or to die. (Jews and Christians could retain their faith if they submitted to paying a special tax.)
No symbol represents the soul of Islam more than the Shahada. But today there is a contest within Islam for the ownership of that symbol. Who owns the Shahada? Is it those Muslims who want to emphasize Muhammad’s years in Mecca or those who are inspired by his conquests after Medina? On this basis, I believe that we can distinguish three different groups of Muslims.
The first group is the most problematic. These are the fundamentalists who, when they say the Shahada, mean: “We must live by the strict letter of our creed.” They envision a regime based on Shariah, Islamic religious law. They argue for an Islam largely or completely unchanged from its original seventh-century version. What is more, they take it as a requirement of their faith that they impose it on everyone else.
I shall call them Medina Muslims, in that they see the forcible imposition of Shariah as their religious duty. They aim not just to obey Muhammad’s teaching but also to emulate his warlike conduct after his move to Medina. Even if they do not themselves engage in violence, they do not hesitate to condone it.
It is Medina Muslims who call Jews and Christians “pigs and monkeys.” It is Medina Muslims who prescribe death for the crime of apostasy, death by stoning for adultery and hanging for homosexuality. It is Medina Muslims who put women in burqas and beat them if they leave their homes alone or if they are improperly veiled.

The second group—and the clear majority throughout the Muslim world—consists of Muslims who are loyal to the core creed and worship devoutly but are not inclined to practice violence. I call them Mecca Muslims. Like devout Christians or Jews who attend religious services every day and abide by religious rules in what they eat and wear, Mecca Muslims focus on religious observance. I was born in Somalia and raised as a Mecca Muslim. So were the majority of Muslims from Casablanca to Jakarta.
Yet the Mecca Muslims have a problem: Their religious beliefs exist in an uneasy tension with modernity—the complex of economic, cultural and political innovations that not only reshaped the Western world but also dramatically transformed the developing world as the West exported it. The rational, secular and individualistic values of modernity are fundamentally corrosive of traditional societies, especially hierarchies based on gender, age and inherited status.
Trapped between two worlds of belief and experience, these Muslims are engaged in a daily struggle to adhere to Islam in the context of a society that challenges their values and beliefs at every turn. Many are able to resolve this tension only by withdrawing into self-enclosed (and increasingly self-governing) enclaves. This is called cocooning, a practice whereby Muslim immigrants attempt to wall off outside influences, permitting only an Islamic education for their children and disengaging from the wider non-Muslim community.
It is my hope to engage this second group of Muslims—those closer to Mecca than to Medina—in a dialogue about the meaning and practice of their faith. I recognize that these Muslims are not likely to heed a call for doctrinal reformation from someone they regard as an apostate and infidel. But they may reconsider if I can persuade them to think of me not as an apostate but as a heretic: one of a growing number of people born into Islam who have sought to think critically about the faith we were raised in. It is with this third group—only a few of whom have left Islam altogether—that I would now identify myself.
These are the Muslim dissidents. A few of us have been forced by experience to conclude that we could not continue to be believers; yet we remain deeply engaged in the debate about Islam’s future. The majority of dissidents are reforming believers—among them clerics who have come to realize that their religion must change if its followers are not to be condemned to an interminable cycle of political violence.
How many Muslims belong to each group? Ed Husain of the Council on Foreign Relations estimates that only 3% of the world’s Muslims understand Islam in the militant terms I associate with Muhammad’s time in Medina. But out of well over 1.6 billion believers, or 23% of the globe’s population, that 48 million seems to be more than enough. (I would put the number significantly higher, based on survey data on attitudes toward Shariah in Muslim countries.)
In any case, regardless of the numbers, it is the Medina Muslims who have captured the world’s attention on the airwaves, over social media, in far too many mosques and, of course, on the battlefield.
The Medina Muslims pose a threat not just to non-Muslims. They also undermine the position of those Mecca Muslims attempting to lead a quiet life in their cultural cocoons throughout the Western world. But those under the greatest threat are the dissidents and reformers within Islam, who face ostracism and rejection, who must brave all manner of insults, who must deal with the death threats—or face death itself.
For the world at large, the only viable strategy for containing the threat posed by the Medina Muslims is to side with the dissidents and reformers and to help them to do two things: first, identify and repudiate those parts of Muhammad’s legacy that summon Muslims to intolerance and war, and second, persuade the great majority of believers—the Mecca Muslims—to accept this change.
Islam is at a crossroads. Muslims need to make a conscious decision to confront, debate and ultimately reject the violent elements within their religion. To some extent—not least because of widespread revulsion at the atrocities of Islamic State, al Qaeda and the rest—this process has already begun. But it needs leadership from the dissidents, and they in turn stand no chance without support from the West.
What needs to happen for us to defeat the extremists for good? Economic, political, judicial and military tools have been proposed and some of them deployed. But I believe that these will have little effect unless Islam itself is reformed.
Such a reformation has been called for repeatedly at least since the fall of the Ottoman Empire and the subsequent abolition of the caliphate. But I would like to specify precisely what needs to be reformed.
I have identified five precepts central to Islam that have made it resistant to historical change and adaptation. Only when the harmfulness of these ideas are recognized and they are repudiated will a true Muslim Reformation have been achieved.
Here are the five areas that require amendment:
1. Muhammad’s semi-divine status, along with the literalist reading of the Quran.
Muhammad should not be seen as infallible, let alone as a source of divine writ. He should be seen as a historical figure who united the Arab tribes in a premodern context that cannot be replicated in the 21st century. And although Islam maintains that the Quran is the literal word of Allah, it is, in historical reality, a book that was shaped by human hands. Large parts of the Quran simply reflect the tribal values of the 7th-century Arabian context from which it emerged. The Quran’s eternal spiritual values must be separated from the cultural accidents of the place and time of its birth.
2. The supremacy of life after death.
The appeal of martyrdom will fade only when Muslims assign a greater value to the rewards of this life than to those promised in the hereafter.
3. Shariah, the vast body of religious legislation.
Muslims should learn to put the dynamic, evolving laws made by human beings above those aspects of Shariah that are violent, intolerant or anachronistic.
4. The right of individual Muslims to enforce Islamic law.
There is no room in the modern world for religious police, vigilantes and politically empowered clerics.
5. The imperative to wage jihad, or holy war.
Islam must become a true religion of peace, which means rejecting the imposition of religion by the sword.
I know that this argument will make many Muslims uncomfortable. Some are bound to be offended by my proposed amendments. Others will contend that I am not qualified to discuss these complex issues of theology and law. I am also afraid—genuinely afraid—that it will make a few Muslims even more eager to silence me.
But this is not a work of theology. It is more in the nature of a public intervention in the debate about the future of Islam. The biggest obstacle to change within the Muslim world is precisely its suppression of the sort of critical thinking I am attempting here. If my proposal for reform helps to spark a serious discussion of these issues among Muslims themselves, I will consider it a success.
Let me make two things clear. I do not seek to inspire another war on terror or extremism—violence in the name of Islam cannot be ended by military means alone. Nor am I any sort of “Islamophobe.” At various times, I myself have been all three kinds of Muslim: a fundamentalist, a cocooned believer and a dissident. My journey has gone from Mecca to Medina to Manhattan.
For me, there seemed no way to reconcile my faith with the freedoms I came to the West to embrace. I left the faith, despite the threat of the death penalty prescribed by Shariah for apostates. Future generations of Muslims deserve better, safer options. Muslims should be able to welcome modernity, not be forced to wall themselves off, or live in a state of cognitive dissonance, or lash out in violent rejection.
But it is not only Muslims who would benefit from a reformation of Islam. We in the West have an enormous stake in how the struggle over Islam plays out. We cannot remain on the sidelines, as though the outcome has nothing to do with us. For if the Medina Muslims win and the hope for a Muslim Reformation dies, the rest of the world too will pay an enormous price—not only in blood spilled but also in freedom lost.
This essay is adapted from Ms. Hirsi Ali’s new book, “Heretic: Why Islam Needs a Reformation Now,” to be published Tuesday by HarperCollins (which, like The Wall Street Journal, is owned by News Corp). Her previous books include “Infidel” and “Nomad: From Islam to America, A Personal Journey Through the Clash of Civilizations.”

Quran formula for law and order verses


Mike Ghouse, World Muslim Congress, Dallas | Washington (214) 325-1916 |SpeakerMikeGhouse@gmail.com
.............................................................. ..................................................
Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer and a commentator on 
Pluralism,IslamIndiaIsrael-PalestinePolitics and other issues of the day. He is a human rights activist, and his book standing up for others will be out soon | He is producing a full feature film ” Sacred” to be released on 9/11 and a documentary “Americans together” for a July 4 release.  He is a frequent guest commentator on Fox News and syndicated Talk Radio shows and a writer at major news papers including Dallas Morning News and Huffington Post. All about him is listed in 63 links at www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are at www.TheGhousediary.com – Mike is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Can Muslims lead a conglomeration of faith communities? International Conference at Aligarh Muslim University

Published at www.WorldMuslimCongress.com
International Conference   
"Intellectual Crises of the Muslim Ummah: Rethinking Traditional Solutions"
Aligarh Muslim University, April 6-7, 2015

by Mike Ghouse

Can Muslims lead a conglomeration of faith communities?  Implications of Kalmae siwa

Muslims can lead a willing conglomeration of faith communities if they start believing in being Mukhlooqul Aalameen, representing the interests of all humanity.  It is an extension of their belief in God as Rabbul Aalameen and prophet as Rahmatul Aalameen.

Was Islam ever meant to be a religion for Muslims? Indeed the message of Islam was for those who submitted to the idea of oneness of humanity, universe and its creator, and further believed in accountability of their actions in preserving the harmony of the universe.
God has set himself up as a God of universe - the very first verse in the first and last chapters of Quran declares “Rabbul Aalameen” and “God of humanity” and throughout the Quran the theme is the same.

Quran is not for Muslims, and by making it exclusively ours, we are reducing God to be our property and denying him to others and thus creating a Muslim specific God, as if others have their own.
Implications of 3:64and 3:85God is advising to be truthful, state your belief and acknowledge the otherness of other's belief (109.6) , but come to common terms and figure out how to work together. The best ones among you are the ones who learn about each other. Knowledge leads to understanding and understanding to acceptance and appreciation of another point of view. 
We have an obligation to lead the world in creating cohesive societies where no one has to live in apprehension or fear of the other.

Mike Ghouse, World Muslim Congress, Dallas | Washington (214) 325-1916 | SpeakerMikeGhouse@gmail.com
Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer and a commentator on
Pluralism, Islam, India, Israel-Palestine, Politics and other issues of the day. He is a human rights activist, and his book standing up for others will be out soon | He is producing a full feature film ” Sacred” to be released on 9/11 and a documentary “Americans together” for a July 4 release.  He is a frequent guest commentator on Fox News and syndicated Talk Radio shows and a writer at major news papers including Dallas Morning News and Huffington Post. All about him is listed in 63 links at www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are at www.TheGhousediary.com – Mike is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.

Is United Islam Possible? International Conference at Aligarh Muslim University, India

Published at: www.WorldMuslimCongress.com
International Conference   
"Intellectual Crises of the Muslim Ummah: Rethinking Traditional Solutions"
Aligarh Muslim University, April 6-7, 2015

by Mike Ghouse

II. Is United Islam Possible?
United Islam is not a reality, nor do Muslims have an appetite for it.  Given the unwillingness to acknowledge the otherness of others, a deep chasm has developed and pushed the denominational plates too far apart. However, we should pursue alternatives and strengthen ad hoc federations as a part of existential needs. One Islam is a pipe dream.

Human division is purely based on the God given uniqueness to each one of us. Quran advises in 49:13, “you have been created into many tribes, communities and nations from a single couple” and in another place it tells us that “had God willed, he would have created all of us alike.”

So, what is the alternative to a united Muslim community?  God knows that our uniqueness generates conflict, and as we continue to seek security for our space, fight for sustenance and defend our nurturance, he offers the solution; the best ones amongst you are those who know each other. Accepting diversity is very Islamic and that is the guidance found in Quran.

Prophet Muhammad understood that Islam is a reflection of human nature, and said that his followers will divide themselves up into 72/73 tribes – an elusive number to indicate many. Indeed that is story of all religions.

Everything God has said in Quran is demonstrated by the actions of the prophet. When we become Amins and respect the otherness of others and accept the God given uniqueness to each one of us then conflicts fade and solutions emerge.

Mike Ghouse, World Muslim Congress, Dallas | Washington (214) 325-1916 |SpeakerMikeGhouse@gmail.com
Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer and a commentator on Pluralism, Islam, India, Israel-Palestine, Politics and other issues of the day. He is a human rights activist, and his book standing up for others will be out soon | He is producing a full feature film ” Sacred” to be released on 9/11 and a documentary “Americans together” for a July 4 release.  He is a frequent guest commentator on Fox News and syndicated Talk Radio shows and a writer at major news papers including Dallas Morning News and Huffington Post. All about him is listed in 63 links at www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are at www.TheGhousediary.com – Mike is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.

Does Islam need a Reform or we just need new interpreters?

Published at www.WorldMuslimCongress.com

International Conference   
"Intellectual Crises of the Muslim Ummah: Rethinking Traditional Solutions"
Aligarh Muslim University, April 6-7, 2015
by Mike Ghouse

Does Islam need a Reform or we just need new interpreters?

Reform is one of the most detested words among Muslims. On the one hand the academics see the corrupted versions of Islamic interpretations and rightfully want to fix it, whereas, the firebrand religious leaders take it as an attack on their tradition and willing to shed the blood to defend it.

Click on the image for larger image

And how do we bring the change? The key is communicating the intent (niyya) and a need to understand the issue without pulling the rug from underneath their feet. 

Justice is one word in Islam that wraps balance, harmony, fairness, mercy and equity together for the society to function cohesively, where no one has live in fear of the other but God. Without it, things will degenerate into a dysfunctional society.
In the last decade the pristine Islam we knew has been mangled up, and it is our duty to restore it.

Sharia is central to all this, which was designed to offer complete guidance to personal and public behavior of a Muslim, and justice to humanity. However, due to human management Justice was not served.

We have identified a few problems in “applications” of the Sharia laws that undermine the principles of justice in dealing with apostasy, blasphemy, rape, divorce, dhimmi, separation, marriage, child custody, and inheritance, interfaith and other issues.

We need to
fix the laws  without it a large swatch of population becomes rudderless. In the Indian context, we may want to go with UCC as it’s’ intent is Justice and is enforceable.

Mike Ghouse, World Muslim Congress, Dallas | Washington (214) 325-1916 |SpeakerMikeGhouse@gmail.com
Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer and a commentator on Pluralism, Islam, India, Israel-Palestine, Politics and other issues of the day. He is a human rights activist, and his book standing up for others will be out soon | He is producing a full feature film ” Sacred” to be released on 9/11 and a documentary “Americans together” for a July 4 release.  He is a frequent guest commentator on Fox News and syndicated Talk Radio shows and a writer at major news papers including Dallas Morning News and Huffington Post. All about him is listed in 63 links at www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are at www.TheGhousediary.com – Mike is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.

13 Doctrines of Radical Islam ISIS.

13 Doctrines of Radical Islam and ISIS |
Published at  www.QuraanToday.com - www.WorldMuslimCongress.com

I am responding to the following surreal claims by an unknown, but well circulated piece called “13 Doctrines of Radical Islam ISIS “ with a singular purpose; To provide the moderate majority (of all faiths) with facts, and to help them  not entertain any doubts about the word of God. God loves us all and has given us the free will to manage peace and harmony in the world, so all of us can live without fear of the other. 

False propaganda

Finding the truth is your own responsibility, if you are curios about these propaganda verses,  please buy at least three different translations of Quran and figure it out yourselves for your peace of mind is your business.

However, if you want to counter any one of those guys who either innocently or deliberatly circulate false material, here is a ready made response for you to forward. Always go to www.WorldMuslimCongress.com or www.Quraantoday.com and search up for Maligned verses.

I will tear this propaganda apart, and present the right quotes to  each one of these 13 misquotes. These guys write whatever they want and pass it out as the verses from Quran. I have responded to many of these men and women including Noni Derwish and others. The one that made  the biggest mess was Geert Widlers, the hate filled man from Sweden who duped the US Congress and Senate members with his falsities and sold them the 14 minute film called Fitna.
In the Middle Ages, European leaders commissioned a hostile Quran translation to foster warfare against Muslim invaders. Later, Muslim leaders produced another translation to inflame Muslims against Christians and Jews. The European Kings commissioned the monastery of Abbey to deliberately mistranslate Quran to paint as a cult that wil threaten their lives – and coined the word “Muhammadan” for the first time in 1142 AD.  It was all for politics, and we need to reject these false translation, the other one was by an Muslim man “Hilali Khan”  who has deliberately mistranslated nearly 60 verses to cause ill-will towards Jews, Chrsitians and others. Please reject those.

The most popular and authenitc translations are by Muhammad Asad, Yusuf Ali and Picktal, however there are a few verses not dealt well in their translations and Dr. Laleh Bakhtiar has righted the wrong understanding in verse 4:34 for example.


 # # #
Many of the following verses are not in Quran, and where additional explanation is needed, I have added two or three translations to give little more clarity. To get the full understanding, the simple formula is read three verses before and after the give verses, and you simply cannot go wrong.

Mike Ghouse ,
Muslim Speaker, thinker and a writer. World Muslim Congress, Dallas, Texas  Link

American way and Quran Formula

When it comes to law and order, Quran formula is similar to American laws, here is how it works.
1. If bad guys stop in front of your property and march in to throw you out

2. You tell them to back off
3. If they still come towards you, you warn them to back off

4. If they make an attempt to attack you
5. You attack and chase them

6. If they run and hide behind the bushes

7. You  hunt them down wherever you can find them and kill them on your property  
Click on the image to get the larger readable version

Every one of those verses that advocate, “ Hunt them down where ever you can find and  kill them” verse,  the same formula is adopted and in addition Quran advocates the following – Stop the pursuit, if they repent, surrender and retreat from attacking you”
I am sick of these guys who present only half truth.  Finding the truth is your own responsibility, go buy three different translations and figure it out yourselves.  Your peace of mind is your business.

Now, here are those 13 propaganda verses and my response directly from Quran.I hope no one is gullible enough to buy this propaganda. In the future if you see these, please visit the Quran, read three verse before and three verses after the verse,  and you will appreciate the wisdom of all loving merciful and just God.     

     1. You can rape, marry and divorce pre-Pubescent girls; Qur’an 65:4

Real Verse: 65:4 (Asad) Now as for such of your women as are beyond, the age of monthly courses, as well as for such as do not have any courses, [10]their waiting-period - if you have any doubt [about it] - shall be three [calendar] months; and as for those who are with child, the end of their waiting-term shall come when they deliver their burden. And for everyone who is conscious of God, He makes it easy to obey His commandment:

This is goofy and there is nothing to discuss, next?

2.  You can enslave for Sex and work; Qur’an 4:3, 4:24, 5:89, 33:50, 58:3, 70:30

I will pick first and the last of the 6 verses.

4:3 (Asad) And if you have reason to fear that you might not act equitably towards orphans, then marry from among [other] women such as are lawful to you 
[3] - [even] two, or three, or four: but if you have reason to fear that you might not be able to treat them with equal fairness, then [only] one - or [from among] those whom you rightfully possess. [4] This will make it more likely that you will not deviate from the right course.

70:30 (Asad) [not giving way to their desires] with any but their spouses - that is, those whom they rightfully possess [through wedlock] - : 
[13] for then, behold, they are free of all blame,

Self-Explanatory and the verse quote in the propaganda is completely false

3. You can beat sex slaves, work slaves, and wives  Qur’an 4:34 

4:34 (L.Bakhtiar) Men are supporters of wives because God gave some of them an advantage over others and because they spent of their wealth. So the females, ones in accord with morality are the females, ones who are morally obligated and the females, ones who guard the unseen of what God kept safe. And those females whose resistance you fear, then admonish them (f) and abandon them (f) in their sleeping places and go away from them (f). Then if they (f) obeyed you, then look not for any way against them (f). Truly, God had been Lofty, Great.

Comment:  “beat them” was the interpretation that was produced for its full history, however, a scholar by the name Laleh Bakhtiar, had done thorough research in 2012 and has rectified the error. The Arabic word for beat is Daraba, which was used 21 other times in Quran to mean “separation” and sorry to say, men have always interpreted what suits them, and this is one of the few instances. Quite a lot is written about it including my own presentation at World Muslim Congress: http://www.worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2014/05/wife-beating-is-culture-of-men-and-not.html

4:34 (Asad) MEN SHALL take full care of women with the bounties which God has bestowed more abundantly on the former than on the latter, [42] and with what they may spend out of their possessions. And the right­eous women are the truly devout ones, who guard the intimacy which God has [ordained to be] guar­ded. [43] And as for those women whose ill-will [44] you have reason to fear, admonish them [first]; then leave them alone in bed; then beat them; [45] and if thereupon they pay you heed, do not seek to harm them. Behold, God is indeed most high, great!

4. You will need 4 Muslim male witnesses to prove a rape; Qur’an 24-4

24:4 (Asad) And as for those who accuse chaste women [of adultery],
[6] and then are unable to produce four witnesses [in support of their accusation], flog them with eighty stripes [7] and ever after refuse to accept from them any testimony - since it is they, they that are truly depraved!

[6]  The term rnuhsanat denotes literally ‘‘women who are fortified [against unchastity]", i.e., by marriage and/or faith and self-respect, implying that, from a legal point of view, every woman must he considered chaste unless a conclusive proof to the contrary is produced. (The passage relates to women other than the accusers own wife, for in the latter case - as shown in verses 6-9 - the law of evidence and the consequences are different.(Quran Ref: 24:4 )

[7] By obvious implication, this injunction applies also to cases where a woman accuses a man of illicit sexual intercourse, and is subsequently unable to prove her accusation legally. The severity of the punishment to be meted out in such cases, as well as the requirement of four witnesses - instead of the two that Islamic Law regards as sufficient in all other criminal and civil suits - is based on the imperative necessity of preventing slander and off-hand accusations. As laid down in several authentic sayings of the Prophet, the evidence of the four witnesses must be direct, and not merely circumstantial: in other words, it is not sufficient for them to have witnessed a situation which made it evident that sexual intercourse was taking or had taken place: they must have witnessed the sexual act as such, and must be able to prove this to the entire satisfaction of the judicial authority (Razi, summing up the views of the greatest exponents of Islamic Law). Since such a complete evidence is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to obtain, it is obvious that the purpose of the above Quranic injunction is to preclude, in practice, all third-party accusations relating to illicit sexual intercourse - for, "man has been created weak’’ (4:28) - and to make a proof of adultery dependent on a voluntary, faith-inspired confession of the guilty parties themselves.(Quran Ref: 24:4 )

Self-explanatory – everything in Quran is a two way street, if a woman is suggested to wear modest clothing, invariably, men are told to lower their gaze.

5. Kill Jews and Christians if they do not convert or pay Jiziya Tax; Qur’an 9:29

9:29 (Asad) [And] fight against those who - despite having been vouchsafed revelation [aforetime] [40] -do not [truly] believe either in God or the Last Day, and do not consider forbidden that which God and His Apostle have forbidden, [41] and do not follow the religion of truth [which God has enjoined upon them] [42] till they [agree to] pay the exemption tax with a willing hand, after having been humbled [in war]. [43]

There is no mention of Jews and Christians, the propaganda masters have made it up.

“pay the exemption tax with a willing hand, after having been humbled” . Humbled- meaning acceptance of their wrong, not necessarily subduing. It is a common practice in the US if the suing party is silly and outrageous, the attorney fee incurred is granted to the wrong doer. It is a penalty for the unwanted aggression.

Full discourse is at:

6. Crucify and amputate Non-Muslims; Qur’an 8:12 and 47:4

8:12 (Asad) Lo! Thy Sustainer inspired the angels [to convey this His message to the believers]: "I am with you !" 
[13] [And He commanded the angels:] "And, give firmness unto those who have attained to faith [with these words from Me]: [14] `I shall cast terror into the hearts of those who are bent on denying the truth; strike, then, their necks, [O believers,] and strike off every one of their finger-tips!" [15]

8:13 (Asad) This, because they have cut themselves off from [16] God and His Apostle: and as for him who cuts himself off from God and His Apostle - verily, God is severe in retribution

47:4 (Asad) NOW WHEN you meet [in war] those who are bent on denying the truth, 
[4] smite their necks until you overcome them fully, and then tighten their bonds; [5] but thereafter [set them free,] either by an act of grace or against ransom, so that the burden of war may be lifted: [6] thus [shall it be]. And [know that] had God so willed, He could indeed punish them [Himself]; but [He wills you to struggle] so as to test you [all] by means of one another. [7] And as for those who are slain in God’s cause, never will He let their deeds go to waste

7. You will kill non-Muslims to receive 72 Virgins in heaven: Qur’an 9:111

9:111 (Asad) BEHOLD, God has bought of the believers their lives and their possessions, promising them paradise in return, ,[and so] they fight in God's cause, and slay, and are slain: a promise which in truth He has willed upon Himself in [the words of] the Torah, and the Gospel, and the Qur'an. And who could be more faithful to his covenant than God? Rejoice, then, in the bargain which you have made with Him: for this, this is the triumph supreme!

9:111 (Y. Ali) Allah hath purchased of the believers their persons and their goods; for theirs (in return) is the garden (of Paradise): they fight in His cause, and slay and are slain: a promise binding on Him in truth, through the Law, the Gospel, and the Qur'an: and who is more faithful to his covenant than Allah. Then rejoice in the bargain which ye have concluded: that is the achievement supreme.

Two translations have been checked, and there is no mention about Virgins. Some men have interpreted Supreme Achievement to getting girls, but that is not in Quran. Wrong people always resort to propaganda to malign religion,  or recruit guys with girl greed. 

8. You will kill anyone who leaves Islam; Qur’an 2:217, 4:89

I will be presenting three translations for you to see the difference in expression.

2:217 ( L. Bakhtiar) They ask thee about the Sacred Month and fighting in it. Say: Fighting in it is deplorable and barring from the way of God and ingratitude to Him. And to bar from the Masjid al-Haram, and expelling people from it are more deplorable with God. And persecution is more deplorable than killing. And they cease not to fight you until they repel you from your way of life, if they are able. And whoever of you goes back on his way of life, then, dies while he is one who is ungrateful, those, their actions were fruitless in the present and in the world to come. And those will be the Companions of the Fire. They are ones who will dwell in it forever.

2:217 (Y. Ali) They ask thee concerning fighting in the Prohibited Month. Say: "Fighting therein is a grave (offence); but graver is it in the sight of Allah to prevent access to the path of Allah, to deny Him, to prevent access to the Sacred Mosque, and drive out its members." Tumult and oppression are worse than slaughter. Nor will they cease fighting you until they turn you back from your faith if they can. And if any of you Turn back from their faith and die in unbelief, their works will bear no fruit in this life and in the Hereafter; they will be companions of the Fire and will abide therein.

2:217 (Asad) They will ask thee about fighting in the sacred month.
[202] Say: "Fighting in it is an awesome thing (grave transgression); but turning men away from the path of God and denying Him, and [turning them away from] the Inviolable House of Worship and expelling its people there from - [all this] is yet more awesome (greater transgression) in the sight of God, since oppression is more awesome (greater transgression) than killing." [Your enemies] will not cease to fight against you till they have turned you away from your faith, if they can. But if any of you should turn away from his faith and die as a denier of the truth - these it is whose works will go for nought in this world and in the life to come; and these it is who are destined for the fire, therein to abide.  (please note I have used the world Awful in place of Awesome)

Please read the Quran formula above.  

9.  You will behead non-Muslims,  Quran 8:12 and 47:4 ( 8:12 was covered earlier)

47:4 (Y. Ali) Therefore, when ye meet the Unbelievers (in fight), smite at their necks; At length, when ye have thoroughly subdued them, bind a bond firmly (on them): thereafter (is the time for) either generosity or ransom: Until the war lays down its burdens. Thus (are ye commanded): but if it had been Allah's Will, He could certainly have exacted retribution from them (Himself); but (He lets you fight) in order to test you, some with others. But those who are slain in the Way of Allah,- He will never let their deeds be lost.

47:4 (Asad) NOW WHEN you meet [in war] those who are bent on denying the truth, 
[4] smite their necks until you overcome them fully, and then tighten their bonds; [5] but thereafter [set them free,] either by an act of grace or against ransom, so that the burden of war may be lifted: [6] thus [shall it be]. And [know that] had God so willed, He could indeed punish them [Himself]; but [He wills you to struggle] so as to test you [all] by means of one another. [7] And as for those who are slain in God’s cause, never will He let their deeds go to waste:

47:4 (L.Bakhtiar) So when you met those who were ungrateful, then, strike their thick necks until you gave them a sound thrashing. Then, tie them fast with restraints. And afterwards either have good will towards them or take ransom for them until the war ends, laying down its heavy load. Thus, it is so! But if God willed, He Himself would have, certainly, avenged you. But it is to try some of you with some others. As for those who were slain in the way of God, He will never cause their actions to go astray.

Please read the Quran formula above.  

10. You will kill and be killed for Allah; Quran 9:5 

M.Asad, “And so, when the sacred months are over, slay those who ascribe divinity to aught beside God wherever you may come upon them, and take them captive, and besiege them, and lie in wait for them at every conceivable place! Yet if they repent, and take to prayer, and render the purifying dues, let them go their way: for, behold, God is much forgiving, a dispenser of grace.”

Y.Ali “But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, an seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war); but if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practise regular charity, then open the way for them: for God is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. “

Personally, as a pluralist, I have a problem with the translations. Glad to see Asad explain “ascribe divinity to aught beside God” versus the world “Pagan” used by Yusuf Ali, and “Polytheists by many others”. I would not use the word Pagan, as God does not mean all Pagans, but those who are in war with you , forcing you to disbelieve. Asad is much closer to the meaning of Quran. Someday, I will write, to make it communicate the meaning to a Hindu, Jews, Christian or a Pagan.

Please read the Quran formula above. 

11.  You will terrorize non-Muslims, Quran 8:12 , 8:60

8:60 (Asad) Hence, make ready against them whatever force and war mounts [64] you are able to muster, so that you might deter thereby the enemies of God, who are your enemies as well, [65] and others besides them of whom you may be unaware, [but] of whom God is aware; and whatever you may expend [66] in God's cause shall be repaid to you in full, and you shall not be wronged.

[64] Lit., "tethering of horses" (ribat al-khavl): an expression which signifies "holding in readiness mounted troupes at all points open to enemy invasion (thughur)"; hence, tropically, the over-all maintenance of military preparedness.(Quran Ref: 8:60 )

[65] Lit., "God's enemy and your enemy" - implying that every "enemy of God" (i.e., everyone who deliberately opposes and seeks to undermine the moral laws laid down by God) is, eo ipso, an enemy of those who believe in Him.(Quran Ref: 8:60 )

Please read the Quran formula above.  

12. Steal from Non-Muslims; Quran Chapter 8The chapter has 75 verses… unless one is pointed out 

13.  Lie to Strengthen Islam: Quran 3:26, 3:54, 9:3, 16:106, 40:28

3:26 (Asad) SAY: "O God, Lord of all dominion! Thou grantest dominion unto whom Thou willest, and takest away dominion from whom Thou willest; and Thou exaltest whom Thou willest, and abasest whom Thou willest. In Thy hand is all good. Verily, Thou hast the power to will anything. 

3:54 (Asad) And the unbelievers schemed [against Jesus]; [44] but God brought their scheming to nought: for God is above all schemers.

16:106 (Asad) As for anyone who denies God after having once attained to faith-and this, to be sure, does not apply to [133] one who does it under duress, the while his heart remains true to his faith, [134] but [only, to] him who willingly opens up his heart to a denial of the truth-: upon all such [falls] God's condemnation, and tremendous suffering awaits them:

[134] Lit., "one who is coerced, the while his heart is at rest in [his] faith". This relates to believers who, under torture or threat of death, ostensibly "recant" in order to save themselves. Although the Qur'an makes it clear in several places that martyrdom in the cause of faith is highly meritorious, "God does not burden any human being with more than he is well able to bear" (cf. 2:233 and 286, 6:152, 7:42, 23:62, and many other Qur'anic statements to the same effect).(Quran Ref: 16:106 )

40:28 (Asad) At that, a believing man of Pharaoh’s family, who [until then] had concealed his faith, exclaimed: 
[19] “Would you slay a man because he says, ‘God is my Sustainer’ - seeing, withal, that he has brought you all evidence of this truth from your Sustainer? Now if he be a liar, his lie will fall back on him; but if he is a man of truth, something [of the punishment] whereof he warns you is bound to befall you: for, verily, God would not grace with His guidance one who has wasted his own self by lying [about Him]. [20] 

If you cannot put your name to what you believe,
then it is not worth sharing it.
 Thank you


Mike Ghouse, President
America Together Foundation
(214) 325-1916 text/talk


Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer and a commentator on Pluralism, Islam, India, Israel-Palestine, Politics and other issues of the day. He is a human rights activist, and his book standing up for others will be out soon | He is producing a full feature film " Sacred" to be released on 9/11 and a documentary "Americans together" for a July 4 release.  He is a frequent guest commentator on Fox News and syndicated Talk Radio shows and a writer at major news papers including Dallas Morning News and Huffington Post. All about him is listed in 63 links at www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are at www.TheGhousediary.com - Mike is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.