Category Archives: Christianity/Orientalists

Questions for Jehovah’s Witnesses

Many Muslims receive regular visits from Jehovah’s Witnesses. The two religious groups are in constant doorstep dialogues. This booklet is an aid to the act of dialogue. 101 Questions to Ask Jehovah’s Witnesses Jehovah’s Witnesses are trained to deal with Muslims. In their handbook entitled Reasoning from the Scriptures they are taught what they should say to Muslims (see especially pages 23 and 24; 1989 edition). On page 24, for example, Jehovah’s Witnesses are instructed to use the following strategy: When the Muslim says what Islam teaches, ask him to show you the point in the Qur’an. (Wait while he searches for it). When he cannot find it, he may be more willing to let you speak. This and other tactful strategies gives Jehovah’s Witnesses an unfair advantage in dealing with some Muslims who are not equipped to explain their faith. The purpose of this booklet is to correct the imbalance. I feel that just as the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society has taken the pains to teach Jehovah’s Witnesses on how to overcome Muslims in discussion, the scholars should likewise equip Muslims so that they should be at least equal to the task. Then we pray that God will let the discussions bear fruit. Through such discussions the truth, we pray, will become evident. Another point. Jehovah’s Witnesses come fully equipped with reading materials to give Muslims. And Muslims often accept such materials. As a result, long after the Witnesses are gone, their influence and teachings remain in the homes of Muslims. To be fair, Muslims ought to likewise present some reading materials to their visitors. Perhaps this booklet would serve as a beginning. I doubt, however, that Jehovah’s Witnesses would accept this booklet. My experience has taught me that Jehovah’s Witnesses would not accept anyone else’s literature. This I find rather unfortunate. How does one learn anything new with a closed mind? Our visitors may feel that they already have the truth and therefore need to search no more. But I think a closed attitude is a wrong one. Nevertheless, I hope that some of the Jehovah’s Witnesses will prove me wrong by accepting this booklet. I hope they will also go one step further in composing a reply to the points I make here. I appreciate feedback. So I expect, then, that this booklet will help Muslims feel more confident that they too have something to offer anyone who is prepared to examine things. Some of Jehovah’s Witnesses may still be prepared to study a different view, because they read in their Bible the following passage: Make sure of all things; hold fast to what is fine (1 Thessalonians 5:21). They are instructed in that verse to check things out and then to hold on to what proves good. Notice that it cannot work the other way. You cannot hold on to what is good unless you first test it out for yourself.

B


Why this Sort of Booklet?

There are many booklets that explain Islam. Some of these are really excellent materials. However, the Muslim who is involved in a dialogue at his doorstep finds himself confronted with questions those booklets are not meant to answer. This booklet will teach Muslims how to ask the right questions instead of struggling to find answers. It is a matter of reverse psychology. Respond to a question by asking another one. If Muslims can learn this technique they will be in a better position to explain themselves when they are faced with persistent questions from their visitors. Let us make it clear that the purpose of this booklet is not to attack or belittle the faith of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. It is only a response to writings already published by Jehovah’s Witnesses and given to lots of Muslims. One such writing is a booklet entitled The Time for True Submission to God, published 1982, in which they urge Muslims to become Jehovah’s Witnesses. Another such piece is a book entitled Mankind’s Search for God, containing a section on Islam. In that chapter the true nature of Islam is distorted, but I don’t intend to deal with that in this booklet. It is enough to note here that this book too has been left in many Muslim homes. Here I only intend to help readers to deal with such situations. Yet another example is a colourful brochure written specifically for Muslim readership. It even takes on a Muslim appearance with a picture of a mihrab (an architectural design favoured by Muslims). In short, Jehovah’s Witnesses have gone to great lengths to convey their religion to Muslims. The time is now ripe for Muslims to repay that kindness by offering them the chance to understand the religion of God. The series of questions in here are designed to help the Witnesses to think more deeply about some of the matters they may have taken for granted. The idea is to ask the right questions to help them reach the right conclusions. This booklet does not encourage a hostile attitude in dealing with people. The idea is not to bombard them with hard facts or dazzle them with puzzling questions, but rather to lead them gently to the truth. Most of the questions in this booklet may be asked of any Bible teacher, not just Jehovah’s Witnesses. However, this booklet is designed specifically for use with Jehovah’s Witnesses. Although most of the points relating to the Bible apply to almost any Bible, the points are being made specifically for the benefit of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and all the Bible quotations are taken from the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ own Bible. The reason I make this distinction is that the Jehovah’s Witnesses have their own distinctive set of beliefs and this requires a different approach in dealing with them. Other Christians, for example do not need to hear from Muslims that the Bible contains mistakes. They may already know that for themselves. Now, if you go out of your way to show people what they already know they may take offence to it. With other Christians, therefore, the general approach should be to emphasize common beliefs and to explore differences in an extremely gentle fashion. Better still, you would leave aside differences and show a person the true teachings from God right in the Qur’an, God’s final revealed Book. However, such an approach does not work with the Jehovah’s Witnesses. They are too overly confident that their belief is the only correct one. Any attempt to lead them to something else fails unless you can first get their attention and help them to rethink their present position. Jehovah’s Witnesses feel that their belief system is rock solid because of two reasons. Firstly, because it is based on the Bible which is the inerrant Word of Jehovah. Secondly, because Jehovah guides them to the correct interpretation of that book. So, we may as well start by discussing that book if we hope to get anywhere with them.

C


How to Begin an Exciting Series of Dialogues with Jehovah’s Witnesses

If you’re like me, you see Jehovah’s Witnesses all the time busy in their door-to-door preaching work. On the other hand, if you’re not like me perhaps they knock on your door too. I have been denied such visiting rights. I have no grudge against them. I love the Jehovah’s Witnesses as fellow human beings. We are one family, all descendants of our ancestor Adam. I feel they are, despite their hard work, heading in the wrong direction. I would like the opportunity to share with them my understanding of the truth, but I am deprived of this opportunity. Some of them have in the past suggested that if I wish to teach them anything I should go to their place just as they go around teaching other people. I took this as an encouragement, but when I asked for their address they wouldn’t give any. They said I must find it as they go out and look for the homes of the people. I admire the Jehovah’s Witnesses for their sincerity and hard work for the sake of their beliefs. I also feel the same sort of compassion for them which the Caliph Umar felt for a Christian monk. He came across a monk in his cell showing all the signs of hardship that go with his monastic way of life. Umar (Radhiyallahu Anhu) shed tears when he saw this. When he was asked why he wept, Umar (Radhiyallahu Anhu) explained that according to the Qur’an some people will come on the Day of Judgement laden with good works and yet meet a dreadful end because they were on the wrong path. Compassion for this man made Umar (Radhiyallahu Anhu) weep. I feel the same compassion, and the same need to help Jehovah’s Witnesses learn the truth. Since they do not visit me anymore, I can only hope that if I share my information with you then you will be able to pass it on to where it is intended. For starters, if you hope to make proper use of this booklet, you need to develop the kind of compassion I described above. Even if you don’t have it, just assume that you have it and it will come naturally. That’s the power of positive reinforcement. Assume a virtue and you will acquire it. Now, with that correct attitude, begin to ask these questions of Jehovah’s Witnesses and give them a chance to convince themselves that Islam is the truth.

D


How to Lead a Conversation in the Right Direction

Jehovah’s Witnesses receive some of the best possible training on the use of psychological techniques in dealing with their prospects. They will come to you trained and prepared to succeed in every meeting. But you, with the help of this booklet, can change all that. The secret is to take control of the conversation. Let me show you how. Jehovah’s Witnesses will start by saying that they are speaking to people about the possibility of world peace, or some such matter of general interest. Then they will ask your opinion about the matter. But don’t be fooled. Your visitors are not conducting an opinion survey. They are leading you in conversation the way they are trained. If you are to get anywhere with them you have to be willing to seize control of the conversation. What you must do is reply with a question. That’s right! A question. That will certainly break the conversation out of the mould which the Jehovah’s Witnesses expect it to fit into, and help you to proceed on the track you are now being trained to follow. When they ask for your opinion and give you time to speak they are preparing you to listen to them. Psychologically, once you have spoken you will feel that just as they listened to you with patience you must now return the courtesy. You will then have to listen to them telling you what the Word of God says about the matter. By this time, your position appears weak. You gave your opinion and they reply with God’s teachings. Let’s see how we can reverse this situation. The first step is for you to realise that you don’t have to give your opinion when they ask for it. So say something like this: I am glad you asked. But I think the answer should come from God. Do you know where we can find God’s answer to our problems? There! That’s how you do it. With only a few words you’ve turned the situation around. Instead of giving your opinion you have established that their attempt to seek your opinion was a misguided one. Furthermore, you’ve put a question to them. They must now tell you where God’s answer is to be found. If they say, “The Holy Bible,” or whatever else they choose to call their Bible, you are ready to ask a whole series of questions about the Bible. Now you can really teach them something. If, on the other hand, they turn the question back to you, you have an option. Let me assure you at this point that you have nothing to lose no matter which option you choose. For example, if you decide to not answer the question you can turn the question back to them by saying something like this: Well, I was hoping you would be able to come up with an answer, especially since you specialize in speaking to people on this subject. If that doesn’t get them to speak, don’t forget that you can always ask them politely to leave you alone. You may say something like this: Since you don’t seem to have an answer for me, I would like to thank you for coming. Please come again when you have the answer. Bye for now. At this point you may begin closing the door to show your firm resolve to end the conversation. As I have said, you lose nothing with this option. You gain! You maintained control and felt confident. You felt no anger, no frustration. Privately, you were having fun putting these proven techniques to work. On the other hand, they lose. They lost time to visit you and accomplish nothing. They also lost some of the confidence they were charged up with when they left their kingdom hall. And you haven’t run out of options yet. When they ask you where you think God’s answer can be found you may reply, “The Glorious Qur’an,” if you feel confident that you can explain yourself further. Bear in mind that you can always learn more or obtain more written materials from your if necessary. Read, for example, Common Questions People Ask About Islam, or Science in the Qur’an. These will help equip you for the challenge. Now, go ahead. Do your job of spreading Allah’s message, and drop me a line to let me know how much success you are having.

E


Keep Your Cool

If you are going to really do this job right you have to stay cool. Keeping your cool is an attitude that can be developed. It starts with realising that you cannot guide the people you are trying to convince. That remains for Allah to do. Your job is only to convey the message. You may often find this task frustrating. But stick with it. Sometimes you will find it hard to understand why your visitors cannot understand your message. But persevere. Read below what Allah says: See how We make the revelations clear to them, and see how they are turned away! (Qur’an 5:75) You see? Even the Words of Allah, plain as they are, will not convince everyone. Much less the humble attempts we make. If you keep this in mind you will save yourself a lot of frustration and be in a better position to apply the techniques described in this booklet. Now, the questions given here are to be used in a particular way for maximum success. Don’t use them as sledgehammers to clobber your opponents. Use them as fly-swats to sting them a little and wake them up. In other words, use them gently. Give your visitors time to adjust to the new information you are offering them. You will open up new horizons in their thinking with the questions you ask them. Be patient with them while they take time to overcome information-shock. At first they will resist any information coming from you as being from the devil. After all, how could you know anything more about the Bible than they and their Bible teachers? So rather than give them the information in the form of statements of your own, ask them a question to stimulate their thoughts. For example, instead of saying “A is true,” say, “Suppose someone says that A is true. How would you react to that?” This shifts the focus away from you and allows your visitors to think only about the question. As they struggle to come up with an answer they will convince themselves of what you wanted them to learn. Your disposition toward them is very important. You must show them that you have compassion for them, and you really want to help them. You must avoid every chance to ridicule them or their faith. So, do not take on the attitude of a prosecutor obviously trying to tie them up in verbal knots or to prove them guilty. Take the attitude of a sympathetic news reporter who is sincerely trying to understand the case for fair reporting. Here is how this works. They say, “A is true.” They are accustomed to hearing their opponents saying, “No, A cannot be true.” But you are not their average prospect. You must rise above the situation by saying something like this, “If you say A is true, that leads me to conclude that B is also true since A implies B. Do you also believe B?” Now, if they are unable say, “Yes!” quickly, know that they are struggling to make sense of their own contradictions. There are many examples of A and B in the questions that follow. Here is another pattern. Say, for example, “Previously you told me C and I understood you. Now that you are saying D, I would also like to understand, but since C and D are opposites I cannot believe them both. How do you explain this?” Let them deal with the contradictions in their own mind. What you are doing here is helping them to save face by allowing them to think for themselves. Don’t tell them they are wrong. Show them how to believe in their own minds that they are wrong. They may agree with you and yet not admit it. Don’t worry about that. Remember that they always come in pairs. If one of them shows inclination to agree with you, the other one will report him back at their kingdom hall as one who is now wavering in his faith. Even if they both agree with you neither of them dares to make the first move to reveal it for fear of what the other may think. So both will appear to maintain their position, but you ought to be satisfied that you did your best in presenting the truth. Rest assured that Allah has imbued these persons each with a conscience. When they lie in bed at night they may remember your words and secretly affirm true faith before they fall asleep. Again, keep your discussions cool. When you ask the following questions ask them politely. The tone of your voice should reflect courtesy. Let me explain it this way. Imagine for a mo ment that you are a police officer. You have just arrested a dangerous criminal. Now, in your inner voice hear yourself saying to him, “Drop your weapon.” Do you hear the force of your voice? That’s a condescending voice — the voice of a powerful individual speaking to a powerless person. Now for an exercise involving the right use of voice for your situation. Imagine yourself at the airport. You are ready to board your flight. But you don’t know which way to find your gate number 39. So you approach a clerk and ask her politely, “Can you please tell me where I can find gate number 39?” Do you hear the sound of that question? That’s the tone you should try to maintain when asking the questions in this booklet. Practice that tone of voice with this question: “What if I show you a verse in the Bible which claims to be not inspired?” Do the same with all the other questions. May Allah help you and me, and all those who call to His way.

101 Questions

to Ask Visiting

Jehovah’s Witnesses


Five Questions to Get You Started

1 Is 100% of the Bible inspired by God?

Their Answer:

They will say, “Yes! All scripture is inspired of God.” They will also quote from the Bible where it says exactly that in Paul’s 2nd Letter to Timothy, chapter 3, verse 16 . They may then smile happily because they showed you the answer straight from the Bible.

The Truth:

The verse they show you is quoted without regard for its real meaning. Few people really ever think before they quote. If they find something that seems close to what they believe there is no stopping them from quoting it. Let us see now what the passage really means. To really understand the passage we have to know who wrote it, what he meant by it, and what he expected his first readers to understand by it. Who wrote it? Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that Paul wrote that passage in a letter to his student Timothy. What did Paul mean by `all scripture’? Did he mean `the whole Bible’? Many people assume so. But Paul did not say that. He did not say, “the entire Bible is inspired.” He said “All scripture is inspired.” So, back to our question. What did Paul mean by “all scripture”? Some people may say, “But `all scripture’ means `all scripture,’ don’t you understand?” Say, “Should I understand that the Hindu Scripture, the Buddhist Scripture, the Muslim Scripture, the Christian Scripture and all other scripture is inspired by God?” They will say, “No, because Paul would not have meant all that.” But that makes us ask again, “What exactly did Paul mean?” If at this point they say, “The whole Bible,” this takes us back to the beginning of this discussion. Just say, “I feel that we are going around in a circle here. I have already shown that Paul never said, “The whole Bible.” Now you may need to help them understand that the verse they showed you was read out of context. By taking the verse in isolation, they give it a different meaning than what the author had intended. To see the proper context, let us read the verse again, this time starting with the verse that comes before it. Here are verses 15 and 16: 15 . . . from infancy you have known the holy writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through the faith in connection with Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching . . . (2 Timothy 3:15-16) Except where noted, all Bible quotations in this study are from the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures; this is the Bible used by Jehovah’s Witnesses. Explain to them that if they look at the previous verse (i.e. 2 Timothy 3:15) they will realise that Paul was speaking to his student Timothy about the scriptures which Timothy knew from his infancy. It was definitely not the whole Bible. The whole Bible was not yet complete. The Bible is made up of basically two sections. The first is called the Old Testament, and the second is called the New Testament. Many books of the New Testament section were written after Paul’s death. Paul was not telling Timothy that Timothy knew from infancy about books which are not yet written, was he? To show how many books Paul was not referring to here, ask your visitors to look at the Table of Books of the Bible which is shown in their Bible to wards the back. In their usual pocket edition published 1984, this appears on pages 1546 to 1547. Now look with them at page 1547 which displays a list of the Christian Greek Scriptures. In that chart the approximate dates when these books were written are shown in the 4th column. The approximate date given for the writing of 2 Timothy is the year 65 C.E. (i.e. A.D. but contemporary users prefer C.E. instead of A.D.). Now we can see that many books were written much later than that. Consider this list of Books of the New Testament together with their approximate year of authorship as given on the same chart: Revelation 96 C.E. (A.D.) John 98 C.E. (A.D.) 1 John 98 C.E. (A.D.) 2 John 98 C.E. (A.D.) 3 John 98 C.E. (A.D.) Obviously, Paul was not telling Timothy to hold on to the above books which did not exist at the time. Furthermore many other books were written too close to the year 65 C.E. for Timothy to have been familiar with them since his infancy. I leave this for you to explore with your visitors. That scripture Paul was telling Timothy about was the Old Testament, which Jehovah’s Witnesses call the Hebrew-Aramaic Scriptures. These ancient scriptures in the oldest form in which they exist today are written in the Hebrew, Aramaic, and Chaldee languages. A problem, however, is that Timothy was familiar with that book not in its original languages, but in its Greek language translation (the translation of the Old Testament into the Greek language is called the Septuagint Version). That Greek translation was prepared about three hundred years before Christ to enable those who could not read Hebrew to still benefit from the scriptures. This is the version which the early Christians like Timothy were reading. And Paul was telling him to hold on to that book. But is that a problem? Yes! A double problem. First, the translation disagrees with the original in many points. Which should we take as the inspired book — the original or the translation? This presents a dilemma. If the Hebrew original is inspired then the Greek translation is wrong. But if the Greek is wrong then Paul is wrong to call it inspired — unless Paul thinks that a book is still inspired even if it contains mistakes. A second problem is that the Septuagint Greek version contains seven more books than the Hebrew version. These seven books are included in the Catholic Bible but not in the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Bible. But they were included in the Scriptures which Timothy knew from childhood. And Paul said all of it is inspired. If Paul is right here, then Jehovah’s Witnesses are wrong. But if Jehovah’s Witnesses are right, then Paul’s words are wrong even though they are found in the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Bible. The truth is that neither the Old Testament nor the New Testament is 100% from God. But if you believe Paul, then you have to understand that Paul was saying only that the Greek Septuagint Old Testament is inspired. Paul did not say more than this, and it would be wrong to say you believe in the man and then put words into his mouth. Many of Jehovah’s Witnesses unknowingly do exactly that. They believe so much in Watchtower teachings that they assume those teachings must be found in the Bible. Unfortunately, the Bible often disagrees with Watchtower teachings. What we are discussing here is one example of this. Although the Watchtower teaches that the Bible is 100% inspired, the Bible says only that its Old Testament is inspired. The Bible does not say that its entire New Testament section is inspired. If Jehovah’s Witnesses chose to believe what they believe, they must realise that it is a man-made teaching. The Bible does not teach that the entire New Testament is inspired. And that is a very significant part of the Bible. Nor does the Bible teach that the Hebrew text of the Old Testament is inspired. Paul’s statement quoted above only proves that the Greek Version is inspired. But Jehovah’s Witnesses do not follow the Greek Version because they realise it would make no sense to disregard the original and follow a translation. So they rightly choose the Hebrew text. But this choice disagrees with what Paul says in their Bible! Help them out of this confusion. Tell them about Islam with love. The Qur’an says that the entire Qur’an is from Allah (see surah 3:7).

2 What if I show you a verse in the Bible that claims to be not inspired?

Their answer:

There is no such verse.

The Truth:

There are many such verses. Here is an example which will become clear after you read the following two statements found in the Bible in Paul’s letter to the Corinthians: “To the married people I give instructions, yet not I but the Lord . . .” (1 Corinthians 7:10). “But to the others I say, yes, I, not the Lord . . .” (1 Corinthians 7:12). Notice that in the first statement Paul claims that the Lord is speaking. Jehovah’s Witnesses believe Paul was telling the truth. But how about the second statement? Here Paul is saying that the statement is his very own, and that the Lord does not say it. Would Jehovah’s Witnesses please believe Paul in this statement too? So that would mean that at least one verse of the Bible is not inspired. Then the Bible cannot be 100% inspired by God. Perhaps 99%, or 99.9% but not 100%. Agreed? There are many other examples. Some books of the Old Testament claim only to be the words of a man, while others claim to contain words of God also. Many New Testament passages claim to be the opinion of men. Check these out: Luke said: “I resolved also . . . to write . . .” (The Gospel According to Luke 1:1-4). Paul said: “Now concerning virgins I have no command from the Lord, but I give my opinion . . .” (Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians 7:25). Paul said: “Therefore I think . . .” (1 Corinthians 7:26). Paul said: “. . . according to my opinion” (1 Corinthians 7:40). Paul said: “I certainly think . . .” (1 Corinthians 7:40). Paul said: “See! I, Paul, am telling you . . .” (Paul’s Letter to the Galatians 5:2). But some people do not want to see. Here lies the problem. To save space, and to focus on the point we are making, I have not quoted the above verses in full. But the references are given so that you and your visitors can read them one at a time from the Bible. The same result will emerge. Many verses of the Bible claim to be from man but not from God. Do Jehovah’s Witnesses believe these verses? If so, then how can they say that the Bible is 100% from God when the Bible itself says it is not? They may say that the fact that the writers gave their opinion does not make a difference, because their teachings agree with the rest of the Bible. This is not a good argument, for that would mean that anything that agrees with the Bible is also inspired. There fore if a Hindu writes a brief poem about the importance of charity that should be taken as inspired Word of God. Do Jehovah’s Witnesses accept this? Our point here is not that the opinions of men are good or bad. Paul and Luke quoted above may have been teaching even things which Muslims believe in. That does not make a difference. Many Muslim authors write about teachings which Muslims believe in. We do not call such writings inspired Word of God, do we? Instead, we must stress with our visitors that if they believe Paul they must also believe him when Paul said that he was writing his own opinion; they must also believe Luke when he said that he was writing as a result of his own resolution. Luke did not claim to be inspired to write. Look again at what he said (quoted above). The point we do make here is that human writings, no matter how good and how accurate, must not be attrib uted to God. Let us keep the Words of God separate and distinct from the words of Man. Ask your visitors to read the following verses in their Bible: “For the thoughts of you people are not my thoughts, not are my ways your ways,” is the utterance of Jehovah. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9). Please, let us not confuse the thoughts of men for the Words of God. Notice also that the letters which Paul wrote to various churches and individuals are part of the Bible. Help your visitors to realize that the letters which the prophet Muhammad (on whom be peace, and blessings of Allah) dictated to various kings and leaders do not appear in the Qur’an. The Qur’an is the Word of God. It does not contain any human writings, not even the inspired teachings of Muhammad (pbuh) himself. The inspired teachings of Muhammad (pbuh) are found in separate books called hadith.

3 Was Paul inspired when he said that all scripture is inspired?

Their answer:

Of course!

The truth:

But how do they know? If you ask how they know that the Bible is inspired they say, “Because Paul said so.” Now if you ask how can we trust Paul on this they say “Because Paul’s words are in the inspired Bible and therefore Paul’s words are inspired too.” This is circular reasoning. It is like a witness who defends his countryman by saying, “All men from my country are honest.” Then, when you ask why you should believe the witness, the witness replies, “Because I am a man from my country.” Obviously, this circular reasoning will not convince a thinking individual. On the contrary, we have already seen in the previous question that Paul said many things as his own opinion. When he said that all scriptures are inspired (2 Timothy 3:16) he may have been right. But how can you say so for sure?

4 Did Paul know that his letters are part of the Word of God?

Their answer:

Well, y-yes (actually, not sure).

The truth:

Most people have not considered this question. The letters of Paul were collected and later made part of the Bible without consulting Paul (Paul was, of course long dead by this time). But Paul himself was quite conscious that he often wrote his own opinions (see question 2). In one case, Paul was even aware that he made an error in one of his letters which is now part of the Bible. Read the following passage: I am thankful I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, so that no one may say that you were baptized in my name. Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas. As for the rest, I do not know whether I baptized anybody else (1 Corinthians 1:14:16). It should be clear in the above passage that Paul made a mistake and then a correction. But the mistake and the correction both remain in the Bible, Obviously, we do not object to the correction, but what about the mistake? Is that the Word of God too? If you look at the passage again, you will notice that Paul made the following three statements: (a) I baptized no one else but Crispus and Gaius. (b) Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas. (c) I do not know whether I baptized anybody else. The mistake Paul made is his first statement that he baptized no one else except two persons named Crispus and Gaius. Then he recalled that he had also baptized the household of Stephanas, so he made this slight correction in his next statement. But the mistaken statement is still there. Is this inspired? Paul’s third statement shows that he is not sure of the facts: I do not know whether I baptized anyone else (1 Corinthians 1:16). You see, Paul is not sure who else he baptized. He cannot remember. He knows he needs to correct his statement further by adding more names, but he cannot remember who to mention. So the first statement was a mistake. The second statement is a slight correction to the first. The third state ment is an admission that the correction is not complete. All three remain in the Bible. Are these Words of God? Show them the Qur’an: Have they not considered the Qur’an with care? Had it been from other than Allah they would surely have found therein much discrepancy (surah 4:82).

5 What happened to Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians?

Their answer:

What do you mean? We have it right here in the Bible. Look!

The truth:

They don’t have it. What they show you is not the first letter Paul wrote to the Corinthians. In this very letter, Paul reminds the Corinthians that he had already written to them a letter before this one. Read verses 9 and 11 in the folowing passage from Paul’s so-called first letter to the Corinthians, chapter 5: 9. In my letter I wrote you to quit mixing in company with fornicators . . . . 11. But now I am writing you to quit mixing in company with anyone called a brother that is a fornicator . . . . Obviously, in verse 9 above, Paul is referring to what he had written in a previous letter. In verse 11, Paul is making a change to his previous instruction. Compare below the following two instructions from Paul’s previous letter and his so-called first letter:

COMPARE BELOW:

Paul’s previous instruction on this side

Pauls new instruction on this side

In my letter I wrote you to quit mixing in company with fornicators . . . . But now I am writing you to quit mixing in company with anyone called a brother that is a fornicator . . . .

What we are discussing here is not the change in instruction issued by Paul. I have spelled out the matter in detail only to equip you to deal with anyone who tries to say that even in verse 9 Paul is referring to his current letter. Some people will try to convince you that there was no previous letter. But now you know how to demonstrate this truth to such a person. So, now, where is that previous letter? Obviously, it is lost. Now, if someone believes that Paul’s letters are the words of God, he or she has to also believe that some of the Words of God are lost forever. But will Jehovah’s Witnesses believe this? Ask them to read this Bible verse. The green grass has dried up, the blossom has withered; but as for the Word of our God, it will last to time indefinite (Isaiah 40:8). How does this reconcile with the fact that one letter of Paul has disappeared? Muslims understand that God can reveal a message and then allow it to be forgotten. But a Jehovah’s Witness does not accept that belief. They think once revealed, always preserved. So they have to deal with this question. The loss of Paul’s letter is a good indication that the recipients of Paul’s letter did not take it as the Word of God. If they did, wouldn’t they try to preserve it? Why did they let the Word of God disappear like that? Now someone may say that the rest of Paul’s letter were preserved, and this proves that the people who preserved them regarded them as the Word of God. Let us not stretch things so far. Firstly, no one knows how many other letters of Paul are really lost, and we still have no satisfactory answer for that problem. We have just stumbled upon evidence of one letter being lost. What other evidence will yet turn up? Secondly, people keep letters and other writings for all kinds of reasons. Perhaps people thought the letters of Paul contain important things. Others may have kept such letters with a view to refute the teachings they contain. We have not enough details to settle this mater, but we can safely conclude that just because someone kept some letters of Paul does not mean they took the letters as coming from God. They knew the letters were from Paul.

Show them the Qur’an: Surely We have revealed the scripture (the Qur’an) and surely We are its guardian (surah 15:9).

Gently explain to them that God protects the Qur’an so that none of it will ever be lost.

The Pagan-Christian Origins of “Valentine’s Day”

What is it and Where did it come from?

Consider Valentine’s Day, a day that after dying out a well deserved death in most of Europe (but surviving in Britain and United States) has suddenly started to emerge across a good swath of Muslim countries. Who was Valentine? Why is this day observed? Legends abound, as they do in all such cases, but this much is clear: Valentine’s Day began as a pagan ritual started by Romans in the 4th century BCE to honor the god Lupercus. The main attraction of this ritual was a lottery held to distribute young women to young men for “entertainment and pleasure”– until the next year’s lottery. Among other equally despicable practices associated with this day was the lashing of young women by two young men, clad only in a bit of goatskin and wielding goatskin thongs, who had been smeared with blood of sacrificial goats and dogs. A lash of the “sacred” thongs by these “holy men” was believed to make them better able to bear children.

As usual, Christianity tried, without success, to stop the evil celebration of Lupercalia. It first replaced the lottery of the names of women with a lottery of the names of the saints. The idea was that during the following year the young men would emulate the life of the saint whose name they had drawn. (The idea that you can preserve the appearance of a popular evil and yet somehow turn it to serve the purpose of virtue, has survived. Look at all those people who are still trying, helplessly, to use the formats of popular television entertainments to promote good. They might learn something from this bit of history. It failed miserably) Christianity ended up doing in Rome, and elsewhere, as the Romans did. The only success it had was in changing the name from Lupercalia to St. Valentine’s Day. It was done in CE 496 by Pope Gelasius, in honor of some Saint Valentine. There are as many as 50 different Valentines in Christian legends. Two of them are more famous, although their lives and characters are also shrouded in mystery. According to one legend, and the one more in line with the true nature of this celebration, St. Valentine was a “lovers’” saint, who had himself fallen in love with his jailer’s daughter.

Due to serious troubles that accompanied such lottery, French government banned the practice in 1776. In Italy, Austria, Hungary, and Germany also the ritual vanished over the years. Earlier, it had been banned in England during the 17th century when the Puritans were strong.

However in 1660 Charles II revived it. From there it also reached the New World, where enterprising Yankees spotted a good means of making money. Esther A. Howland, who produced one of the first commercial American Valentine’s Day cards called — what else — valentines, in the 1840s, sold $5,000 worth – when $5,000 was a lot of money – the first year. The valentine industry has been booming ever since.

The history of Valentine’s Day serves as a powerful lesson for Muslims. St.Valentine became a Saint trying to resist free sex. Even though there was an attempt to Christianize it, today St.Valentine’s day is gone back to its roots. No one even knows that the Church even tried to ban the St. Valentine’s Day. Rather, most people think of romance, cupid and his arrow, which are vestiges of pagan Rome.

Pagan Origins of Valentine’s Day

The first information about this day is found in pre-Christian Rome, when pagans would celebrate the “Feast of the Wolf” on February 15, also known as the Feast of Lupercalius in honour of Februata Juno, the Roman goddess of women and marriage, and Pan, Roman god of nature.

On this day, young women would place their names in an urn, from which boys would randomly draw to discover their sexual companion for the day, the year, and sometimes the rest of their lives. These partners exchanged gifts as a sign of affection, and often married.

Christian Influence on Valentine’s Day

When Christianity came onto the scene in Rome, it wanted to replace this feast with something more in line with its ethics and morality. A number of Christians decided to use February 14 for this purpose. This was when the Italian Bishop Valentine was executed by the Roman Emperor Claudius II for conducting secret marriages of military men in the year 270.

Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, so he outlawed marriage for young, single men, who made up his military. Valentine defied Claudius and performed marriages for young couples in secret. When his actions were revealed, Claudius put him to death. Another version of the story says that Valentine was a holy priest in Rome, who helped Christians escape harsh Roman prisons where they were often beaten and tortured.

Valentine was arrested and sent to the prefect of Rome for this. He found that his attempts to make Valentine renounce his faith were useless, and so recommended he be beaten with clubs, and later beheaded. This took place on February 14, 270.

According to the Catholic Encyclopaedia, there are at least three different Saint Valentines, all of whom are Christian martyrs of February 14. One of them is described as a priest from Rome (as mentioned above), another as bishop of Interamna (modern Terni), and the third from Africa.

It was in the year 496 that Pope Gelasius officially changed the February 15 Lupercalia festival to the February 14 St. Valentine’s Day to give Christian meaning to a pagan festival. The holiday become popular in the United States in the 1800’s during the Civil War.

As well, Pope Gelasius ordered a slight change in the lottery for young women that would take place during the pagan festival. Instead of the names of young women, the box would have the names of saints. Men and women were allowed to draw from the box, and the purpose of this was to copy the ways of the saint they had selected for the rest of the year.

Pagan Customs of Valentine’s Day 

A number of the customs connected to Valentine’s Day originate in the belief in England and France during the middle Ages, that on February 14, birds began to pair.

Fourteenth and 15th centuries’ French and English literatures make indirect references to the practice. Those who chose each other as husband and wife on Valentine’s Day apparently called each other their Valentines.

In terms of the Valentine’s greeting “Your Valentine” which today you find on a number of Valentine’s Day cards, the above-mentioned Roman priest Valentine actually sent the first ‘valentine’ greeting himself.

While he was in prison awaiting execution, he apparently fell in love with a young girl who would visit him. Before he died, he allegedly wrote her a letter, signed ‘From your Valentine,’ In terms of the virtually naked, arrow-shooting cupid character, which shoots people with its arrows to make them fall in love, this character is a vestige of Roman pagan times. Cupid was described as the son of Venus, the Roman god of love and beauty. You usually find Cupid’s picture on Valentine cards and other paraphernalia.

Islamic Perspective on Valentine’s Day

We should avoid anything associated with pagan immoral practices – We do not need to honour or celebrate the death of a Christian “saint” – Islam does not encourage flirting or suggestions of romantic relationships before marriage – Love between families, friends and married people does not need to be celebrated on a day with such un-Islamic origins.

Question: In recent times, celebration of the Valentine Day has spread, particularly among female students. It is a Christian celebration, and it is (manifested) with fully red costumes, clothing and shoes, and exchange of red roses. What is the ruling on celebrating this holiday?

Answer: Celebrating the Valentine Day is not permissible because:

Firstly, it is an innovated holiday that has no basis in the Shari’ah.

Secondly, it calls to love and passion.

Thirdly, it calls to keeping one’s heart busy with nonsense matters which contradict the guidance of the righteous predecessors, may Allah be pleased with them.

So it is not permissible that anything from the signs of that holiday takes place on that day, whether it relates to eating, drinking, clothing, giving gifts, or other than that. It is incumbent upon the Muslim to be proud of his/her religion and that he/she does not blindly follow every crier. May Allah the Exalted protect Muslims from every trial, apparent and hidden, and that He give them protection and guidance. Ameen.

Question

Some people celebrate Yawm al-Hubb (Valentine’s Day) on February 14 [the second month of the Christian Gregorian calendar] every year by exchanging red roses as gifts. They also dress up in red clothing, and congratulate one another (on this occasion). Some sweet shops produce special sweets – red in colour – and draw hearts upon them. Some shops advertise their goods which are specially related to this day. What is the Islaamic view [concerning the following]: Celebrating this day? Buying from these shops on this day? Selling – by shop-owners who are not celebrating – the things which are used as gifts, to those who are celebrating?

Response: The clear evidence from the Qur’aan and Sunnah – and this is agreed upon by consensus (Ijmaa) of the early generations of the Muslim Ummah – indicates that there are only two ‘Eeds in Islaam (days of celebration): ‘Eed al-Fitr (after the fast of Ramadhan) and ‘Eed al-Adha (after the standing at ‘Arafah for pilgrimage).

Every other ‘Eed – whether it is to do with a person, group, incident or any other occasion – is an innovated ‘Eed. It is not permissible for the Muslim people to participate in it, approve of it, make any show of happiness on its occasion, or assist in it in any way – since this will be transgressing the bounds of Allah: “…and whoever transgresses the bounds of Allah, he has wronged his own self,” [Surah at-Talaaq, Aayah 1]

If we add to this fabricated ‘Eed the fact that it is one of the ‘Eeds of the disbelievers, it is sin upon sin. This is because it is Tashabbuh (imitation) of the disbelievers, and a type of Muwaalaat (loyalty) to them. And Allah has prohibited the believers from imitation of them and having love or loyalty for them in His Mighty Book (Qur’aan). It is also confirmed from the Prophet (sal-Allaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam) that he said: “Whoever imitates a people is one of them.”

‘Eed al-Hubb (the celebration of Valentine’s Day) comes under the category of what has been mentioned here, since it is one of the pagan Christian holidays. Hence it is not permissible for any Muslim, who believes in Allah and the Last Day, to participate in it, approve of it, or congratulate (anyone on that occasion). On the contrary, it is obligatory to abandon it and stay far away from it – in response to Allah and His Messenger, and to distance oneself from the anger of Allah and His punishment.

Additionally, it is forbidden for a Muslim to assist or help in this Valentine’s Day, or any other of the forbidden/illegal celebrations in any way whatsoever – whether by food or drink, selling or buying, production, gift-giving, correspondence, announcements, etc. All of these things are considered as co-operating in sin and transgression and disobedience of Allah and His Messenger. Allaah, the Glorious and Most High, says:

“… and co-operate with one another in righteousness and piety, and do not co-operate in sin and transgression. And fear Allaah! Verily Allaah is severe in punishment,” [Surah al-Ma’idah, Aayah 2]

Likewise, it is obligatory for every Muslim to adhere strictly to the Qur’aan and Sunnah in every situation – especially in times of temptations and corruption. It is incumbent that he/she understand, be aware and be cautioned from falling into the deviations of those whom Allaah is angry with and those who are astray and the immoral people who have no fear of punishment – nor hope of reward – from Allaah, and who give no attention at all to Islaam.

It is necessary for the Muslim to flee to Allaah, the Most High, seeking His Hidaayah (Guidance) and Thabaat (Firmness) upon the Path. Verily, there is no Guide except Allaah, and no One Who can Grant Firmness except Him.

Differences Between Hadiths and Gospels

Some Christian apologists when trying to describe the Gospels to the Muslims, claim that the Gospels are much like the Hadiths, in that the Gospels were written-collected by men, and are based on the sayings-teachings of Jesus just as the Hadiths are with the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon them both).
But in reality there are vast differences between Hadiths & the Gospels.
The main difference between the Hadiths and the Gospels is that in regards to the Hadiths, we know who actually collected the Hadiths, and we know who passed them on, and we know who actually made the original statement that was passed on. So for example person A said something, then person B heard it and he decided to pass it on and tell other persons C-D-E, and then they passed it on to others and so forth. Basically throughout the chain of transmission of the hadith, we know who is who, we know who is passing the story, and we know from where the original story came from, there is a complete line of transmission.
This is very crucial, because it means the reports are not anonymous, the reports are coming from people we know, names and persons we can identity, we know where they lived, when they were born, when they died and so forth. Again this is very important because if you know the person, you also know if they’re reliable or unreliable, for example someone who is reporting the Hadith, a person in the chain, could have been known as a liar, as someone unreliable, someone who would make things up, and therefore we know if he is passing or narrating a Hadith that we can question the authenticity. Vice versa the person narrating the Hadith can also be known as a truthful person, someone reliable etc, and therefore we know the Hadith he passing is reliant, or it’s highly likely that it is reliant.
In the case of the Gospels, we have none of this, we literally don’t know who was passing the stories, they’re all anonymous. Even the supposed collectors Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John, were not Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John! The Gospel accounts are all anonymous accounts written-collected by persons-authors we don’t actually know, and they are narrating stories-incidents from people we don’t know either, the entire chain of transmission in the Gospels is unknown and anonymous.
Basically in the Gospel account we have the source Jesus, and then we have person A-B-C-D-E passing on the stories-teachings of Jesus, but we have no idea who these sources A-B-C-D-E are, whether they’re reliable people and so forth, we literally know nothing about them. The only person who we can say with some confidence who we know about was Paul, and yet he barely wrote anything about the life-sayings-teachings of Jesus, and oddly enough in his own writings we can see that he was at odds with the actual disciples of Jesus.
So when it comes to the Gospel of Mark, and we read all these stories and sayings of Jesus (pbuh), we are reading accounts that have been passed by people we don’t know, and they were collected in a book called Mark by an author we don’t know either, though there is much speculation about who the exact author is. On the other hand when it comes to the Hadiths, when we read a story about the Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wasallam), we know exactly who passed on the story and who narrated it, we have a complete line of transmission of the people who heard the saying, and who passed the saying, and who it got passed to, and we know whether these people are sound people or not.
All of this is obviously crucial, let us give an example, let’s say you heard a news story, and it’s a very big news story but there is no source, you’re not likely going to believe it are you? Especially in this day and age when there are all kind of sources-websites on the internet that sometimes report some very crazy stories, which you then find out are false, but most times you yourself know to doubt and not believe certain news stories coming from certain organizations-websites because you know they’re not reliable. And you’re also aware of organizations-websites-persons that are reliable, and so you can trust what they’re saying because you know who they are etc. So it’s very important to know your source, if you don’t know your source then as you can see you have some big issues.
Now take the same simple logic and apply it to the Gospels and Hadiths (for some strange reason people often don’t like to use this simple logic, acting like we’re dealing with some other realm), it’s important to know our sources, who we’re dealing with, who’s passing on the story, whether the person passing is it is a reliable person, or an unreliable person.
In conclusion, the Hadiths are a far more reliable and trustworthy collection of sayings-teachings than the Gospels, to put simple, in news terms, nobody would ever accept the Gospel as a source of information because it has no sources, all of its sources comes from anonymous sources, basically people we don’t know, and that my friends is not a proper source of information you can get anything from, let alone the actual teachings of God.

The Origin of the Qur’an: Demonic or Divine?

By Abu Zakariya

A popular attack against the  Qur’an is the claim that Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, was inspired by occult forces such as the Devil or demons. This claim is typically put forward by Christian apologists and missionaries. Now the obvious response is to point out that such an argument is self-defeating, as Muslims can easily make the same lazy accusation against the Bible. However, with this article I wanted a unique approach to refuting this claim, one that involves comparing the Qur’an to a real work associated with the occult. This is a practical approach that will highlight just how wrong such a claim really is.

ANALYSIS OF “THE BOOK OF THE LAW

Aleister Crowley was an English ceremonial magician and poet. By the time of his death in 1947, he was the world’s leading occultist. A prolific writer, he published numerous works on the theory and practice of magic over the course of his life. He is most famous for the text known as The Book of the Law. Although it was Crowley’s own hand that penned the work, he never claimed to be its author. Crowley claimed that during his travels to Egypt in 1904, a supernatural entity that called itself Aiwass made contact with him. Aiwass, described by Crowley to be a being of intelligence far beyond that of human beings, proceeded to dictate The Book of the Law directly to him over the course of three days. After this experience, Crowley identified himself as a prophet and claimed that he had been entrusted by the gods to guide humanity into a new spiritual age. He went on to found the religion of Thelema, which he based on the principles of The Book of the Law.

What makes Crowley’s book the ideal candidate for comparison against the Qur’an is that Crowley’s claims mirror that of Prophet Muhammad, in the sense that he also claimed to be divinely inspired with revelation and appointed as a prophet to enlighten mankind. Before we get into the details of The Book of the Law, it’s important to note that in Islam it is strictly prohibited to dabble in magic. The Prophet Muhammad said:

“Avoid the seven deadly sins.” People asked, ‘What are they?’ The Prophet replied, “Polytheism, magic, unlawful killing of a person, living on money from interest, usurping an orphan’s wealth, retreating at the time of battle and accusing an innocent married woman of fornication.”[1]

Be reassured that The Book of the Law is not a book of magic, but rather a book on philosophy and morality for Crowley’s religion of Thelema. Now what follows is an analysis of some verses of The Book of the Law. This will not only give us an insight into the teachings of a real occult work, but will also make us appreciate just how radically different its philosophy and morality is compared to the Qur’an:

Had! The manifestation of Nuit. [Chapter I, verse 1]

The Book of the Law begins in the name of two ancient pagan Egyptian deities, Had and Nuit. Had, was believed to be the lord of the sky and was depicted in the form of the winged disk of the Sun. Nuit was believed to be a goddess and was depicted as a naked woman covered with stars. The twin pairing of the male and female divine aspects is very common in pagan and occult religions. The praising of pagan deities occurs throughout The Book of the Law, as well as Crowley’s own personal writings. Contrast this with the Qur’an, which begins in the name of God Almighty:

In the name of Allah, the Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful   [Qur’1:1]

The Qur’an teaches that Allah (the Arabic name for God Almighty) is the only true God, the creator of the heavens and the earth, the One who inspired prophets such as Abraham, Moses and Jesus. The Qur’an expressly forbids for worship to be directed to anything other than Him and renounces idolatry, the worship of false gods, in all its forms. Pagan and occult religions tend to deify nature, a practice that the Qur’an rejects in the following verse:

And of His signs are the night and day and the sun and moon. Do not prostrate to the sun or to the moon, but prostate to Allah, who created them, if it should be Him that you worship. [Qur’an 41:37]

We can see that from the very first verse, both books could not be more different when it comes to worship and the concept of God.

Every man and every woman is a star. [Chapter I, verse 3]

This is a typical example of how The Book of the Law engages with its reader. It commonly appeals to the arrogance and pride of people – in fact it encourages such traits. This is typical of occult religions, with their extravagant costumes, lavish ceremonies and elaborate rituals.

Contrast this with the Qur’an, which reprimands those who have such characteristics:

Allah loves not the arrogant, the vainglorious. [Qur’an 4:36]

Arrogance and pride are considered to be negative traits in Islam, in fact major sins. The Qur’an provides the perfect antidote for those inflicted with this disease – it humbles us by reminding us of our lowly origins:

Does man not consider that We created him from a [mere] sperm-drop – then at once he is a clear adversary? [Qur’an 36:77]

The Bible also shares a similar outlook to the Qur’an in this regard:

Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. [Proverbs 16:18]

The Qur’an highlights the danger of such traits when it relates the story of the downfall of Satan, whose arrogance and pride prevented him from obeying Allah’s command to prostrate to the first human being, Adam:

[Allah] said, “What prevented you from prostrating when I commanded you?” [Satan] said, “I am better than him. You created me from fire and created him from clay.” [Qur’an 7:12]

Christians readers should note that the Bible also highlights arrogance and pride as Satanic traits:

How you have fallen from heaven,
morning star, son of the dawn!
You have been cast down to the earth,
you who once laid low the nations!
You said in your heart,
“I will ascend to the heavens;
I will raise my throne
above the stars of God;
I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly,
on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon.
I will ascend above the tops of the clouds;
I will make myself like the Most High.” [Isaiah 14:12-14]

From the perspective of both the Qur’an and the Bible, The Book of the Law  is diabolical in its methodology when it appeals to and encourages such traits, which as we can see are Satanic in essence.

Every number is infinite; there is no difference. [Chapter I, verse 4]

The Book of the Law is filled with such seemingly nonsensical statements. Here are some more examples:

The Perfect and the Perfect are one Perfect and not two; nay, are none! [Chapter I, verse 45]

In the sphere I am everywhere the centre, as she, the circumference, is nowhere found. [Chapter II, verse 3]

Let’s analyse Crowley’s commentary on verse I.4:

It must be understood from the beginning that this book contains the keys of all the knowledge necessary for the operation of the Magical Formulae of the world during the Aeon which it initiates. In this very early verse is already given a Master Key to mathematics and metaphysics. On applying this to current problems of thought, it will be discovered that the long-fast doors fly open at a touch. [2]

As Crowley states, this apparently nonsensical statement is one of the keys of knowledge in his religion. Now, even if one tries to make sense of it by taking some metaphysical interpretation, there is a wider problem at hand. His new religion is supposed to enlighten mankind, but very few can grasp such concepts. Contrast this with the Qur’an, which also claims to be a guide for mankind, but whose message can be understood by everyone. It uses simple speech rather than metaphysical, and employs analogies which are universal in application in order to help us to understand its arguments.

Let my servants be few & secret: they shall rule the many & the known. [Chapter I, verse 10]

Secrecy is another hallmark of the occult, which operates in the shadows. Very little of what goes on behind closed doors is known to the public. Outsiders are offered glimpses in order to lure them in, but it’s only when one is initiated into the occult and rises through its ranks that one gains access to all its teachings. Elsewhere The Book of the Law states:

But she said: the ordeals I write not: the rituals shall be half known and half concealed: the Law is for all. [Chapter I, verse 34]

By contrast, the Qur’an encourages Muslims to make themsleves known:

And who is better in speech than one who invites to Allah and does righteousness and says, “Indeed, I am of the Muslims.” [Qur’an 41:33]

In Islam there is no such thing as hidden knowledge, in fact it condemns those who have knowledge and conceal it from others:

Indeed, those who conceal what We sent down of clear proofs and guidance after We made it clear for the people in the Scripture – those are cursed by Allah. [Qur’an 2:159]

There is no secret knowledge, no requirement to rise through the ranks for access to information. Islam’s teachings are freely available to all who wish to acquire it.

Who calls us Thelemites will do no wrong, if he look but close into the word. For there are therein Three Grades, the Hermit, and the Lover, and the man of Earth. Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law. [Chapter I, verse 40]

“Do what you want” is the central tenet of the religion of Crowley’s religion. There are no restrictions, no rules, it is the religion of lawlessness. Do you want is the essence of Satanism, and in fact it debases human beings to the lowly position of animals, for what are animals other than creatures of desire, acting on impulse with no regard for what is morally right or wrong. By comparison, the Qur’an is not in line with the whims and desires of human beings. It commands us to do that which is good and beneficial, and forbids that which is evil and harmful. To sacrifice and forego our bestial instincts for the sake of God elevates us to a position that is higher than the angels, for angels lack free will and have no choice but to worship God. The Book of the Law commands the Thelemite to worship the self, the Qur’an commands Muslims to do what is just and right, even if it means going against one’s own self-interests:

O you who have believed, be persistently standing firm in justice, witnesses for Allah, even if it be against yourselves or parents and relatives. [Qur’an 4:135]

Even from a societal point of view, there are major problems with the philosophy of The Book of the Law. Doing whatever you want is counterproductive to a healthy and functioning society. If everyone did whatever they want, then it will result in anarchy. We can see that the origin of The Book of the Law, be it demonic, the Devil, or other than that, is only concerned with the here and now; it does not have concern for the long-term flourishing of humanity. Whereas Islam created a society that established justice in all the lands it ruled and the greatest empire the world had ever seen at the time, exactly what we’d expect if its origin is God.

Another problem with “do what you want” is that it is inherently contradictory. What happens when there is a conflict of wills among its followers? Does the will of one trump the other? The Book of the Law states that its followers, here referred to as a Kings, should not infringe upon one another’s rights:

Beware lest any force another, King against King! Love one another with burning hearts; on the low men trample in the fierce lust of your pride, in the day of your wrath. [Chapter II, verse 24]

Since compromise is in order, then it means one is prevented from following one’s own will. Suppressing one’s own will goes against the central tenet of Crowley’s religion, “do what you want”. We can see that as a philosophy it is not scalable, the more it spreads among people, the greater the chance of a conflict of wills, and thereby a forced compromise on one’s own will.

The word of Sin is Restriction. O man! refuse not thy wife, if she will! O lover, if thou wilt, depart! There is no bond that can unite the divided but love: all else is a curse. Accursed! Accursed be it to the aeons! Hell. [Chapter I, verse 41]

Here, The Book of the Law takes the concept of sin as it is defined in Abrahamic religions and inverts it; to restrict oneself is a sin. Crowley makes some interesting comments on this verse in light of sex and violence:

The sexual act is a sacrament of Will. To profane it is the great offence. All true expression of it is lawful; all suppression or distortion is contrary to the Law of Liberty. To use legal or financial constraint to compel either abstention or submission, is entirely horrible, unnatural and absurd. Physical constraint, up to a certain point, is not so seriously wrong; for it has its roots in the original sex-conflict which we see in animals, and has often the effect of exciting Love in his highest and noblest shape. Some of the most passionate and permanent attachments have begun with rape. Rome was actually founded thereon. Similarly, murder of a faithless partner is ethically excusable, in a certain sense; for there may be some stars whose Nature is extreme violence. The collision of galaxies is a magnificent spectacle, after all… [3]

This is the inevitable result of the philosophy of The Book of the Lawwhen taken to its logical conclusion. There will be Thelemites who incline towards extreme acts such as rape and murder, and in his comments Crowley implies that if this be their will then so be it. Interestingly, in his commentary on later verses, he expressly forbids acts such as rape:

“As ye will.” It should be abundantly clear from the foregoing remarks that each individual has an absolute and indefeasible right to use his sexual vehicle in accordance with its own proper character, and that he is responsible only to himself. But he should not injure himself and his right aforesaid; acts invasive of another individual’s equal rights are implicitly self-aggressions. A thief can hardly complain on theoretical grounds if he is himself robbed. Such acts as rape, and the assault or seduction of infants, may therefore be justly regarded as offences against the Law of Liberty, and repressed in the interests of that Law. [4]

So here we can see that Crowley forbids acts such as rape on the grounds that it violates the rights of others. Yet in his commentary on the very next verse, he makes rape permissible on the grounds that it can produce positive results:

To bring down this doctrine to a practical rule for every man or woman by which they may enjoy, in perfection, their sexual life and make it what it rightly is, the holiest part of the religious life, I say ‘holiest’ because it redeems even physical grossness to partake with spiritual saintship, the intention of this Book of the Law is perfectly simple. Whatever your sexual predilections may be, you are free, by the Law of Thelema, to the star you are, to go your own way rejoicing. It is not indicated here in this text, though it is elsewhere implied, that only one symptom warns that you have mistaken your true Will, and this, if you should imagine that in pursuing your way you interfere with that of another star. It may, therefore, be considered improper, as a general rule, for your sexual gratification to destroy, deform, or displease any other star. Mutual consent to the act is the condition thereof. It must, of course, be understood that such consent is not always explicit. There are cases when seduction or rape may be emancipation or initiation to another. Such acts can only be judged by their results.[5]

What should we make of such contradictory reasoning? Crowley’s followers today may argue that these are only Crowley’s personal ramblings and are therefore not binding. But The Book of the Law itself makes Crowley an authority for its commentary:

My scribe Ankh-af-na-khonsu, the priest of the princes, shall not in one letter change this book; but lest there be folly, he shall comment thereupon by the wisdom of Ra-Hoor-Khuit. [Chapter I, verse 36]

In fact, Crowley forbade Thelemites from even interpreting the book for themselves, all must refer to his own writings. In the closing remarks of The Book of the Law, Crowley wrote:

All questions of the Law are to be decided only by appeal to my writings, each for himself.

When it comes to contradictions, the Qur’an gives us an objective principle by which we can judge the origin of any scripture:

Then do they not reflect upon the Qur’an? If it had been from [any] other than Allah, they would have found within it much contradiction. [Qur’an 4:82]

In other words, if a scripture is from a source other than God – whether it be demon, the Devil or other than that – then it will contain contradictions, because only God Himself is perfect and inspires perfection. This is exactly the problem that we’ve seen withThe Book of the Law and the authoritative commentary of its prophet Crowley, the presence of glaring contradictions. By comparison, the Qur’an is free of such issues, so clearly they do not share the same origin.

One final point worth discussing is Crowley’s attitude toward women. From his point of view, the natural sexual state of women is one of absolute depravity. In his commentary on verse I.41 he wrote:

…Blind asses! who pretend that women are naturally chaste! The Easterns know better; all the restrictions of the harem, of public opinion, and so on, are based upon the recognition of the fact that woman is only chaste when there is nobody around. She will snatch the babe from its cradle, or drag the dog from its kennel, to prove the old saying: ‘Natura abhorret a vacuo. For she is the Image of the Soul of Nature, the Great Mother, the Great Whore. [6]

While the reader will no doubt recoil with horror at such a view, Christians should reflect on their own doctrine of Original Sin. The New Testament claims that all human beings have inherited the sin of Adam and Eve when they ate from the forbidden fruit in the garden. Christian theologians say that as a consequence of this, mankind is considered to be in a state of “total depravity” or “pervasive depravity”, which is the inability to refrain from evil. Crowley may have put it in more vulgar terms, but both are making the same essential point, that depravity is the natural state of women.

It is only the Qur’an that speaks of mankind’s natural state in positive terms, it says that our natural disposition, known as the ‘Fitrah’, is one of Godliness:

So [Prophet] as a man of pure faith, stand firm and true in your devotion to the religion. This is the natural disposition God instilled in mankind… [Qur’an 30:30]

The Fitrah is the pure state that we are born in, and the Prophet Muhammad explained that it is outside influences such as our parents that take us away from this natural state of devotion to God:

Every child is born according to the Fitrah and then his parents make him Jewish, Christian or Magian. [Sahih Muslim]

I am the Magician and the Exorcist. I am the axle of the wheel, and the cube in the circle. “Come unto me” is a foolish word: for it is I that go. [Chapter II, verse 7]

Here The Book of the Law mentions magic in conjunction with exorcism. The common link between the two is demons, for demons are summoned by magical ritual and banished by exorcism. The invocation of demons was a common practice of Crowley and is the mechanism by which magic works. The Qur’an strictly prohibits the practice of magic in all its forms. In fact, it is considered to be a sin that takes one out of the fold of Islam, such is its severity:

And they followed [instead] what the devils had recited during the reign of Solomon. It was not Solomon who disbelieved, but the devils disbelieved, teaching people magic and that which was revealed to the two angels at Babylon, Harut and Marut. But the two angels do not teach anyone unless they say, “We are a trial, so do not disbelieve [by practicing magic].” And [yet] they learn from them that by which they cause separation between a man and his wife. But they do not harm anyone through it except by permission of Allah. And the people learn what harms them and does not benefit them. But the Children of Israel certainly knew that whoever purchased the magic would not have in the Hereafter any share. And wretched is that for which they sold themselves, if they only knew. [Qur’an 2:102]

These are dead, these fellows; they feel not. We are not for the poor and sad: the lords of the earth are our kinsfolk.

Is a God to live in a dog? No! but the highest are of us. They shall rejoice, our chosen: who sorroweth is not of us.

Beauty and strength, leaping laughter and delicious languor, force and fire, are of us.

We have nothing with the outcast and the unfit: let them die in their misery. For they feel not. Compassion is the vice of kings: stamp down the wretched & the weak: this is the law of the strong: this is our law and the joy of the world. Think not, o king, upon that lie: That Thou Must Die: verily thou shalt not die, but live. Now let it be understood: If the body of the King dissolve, he shall remain in pure ecstasy for ever. Nuit! Hadit! Ra-Hoor-Khuit! The Sun, Strength & Sight, Light; these are for the servants of the Star & the Snake. [Chapter II, verses 18-21]

The Book of the Law has a callous attitude toward the vulnerable. Showing compassion to the poor and weak, who are spoken of in dehumanising terms, is said to be a vice. The irony is that later in life, Crowley himself became the very thing that these verses despise. At a young age Crowley inherited a small fortune from his father, but due to his lavish lifestyle he very quickly squandered his wealth. His final years were spent in poor health, drug addicted and penniless. One can’t help but wonder if this irony dawned on the prophet while he lay on his deathbed.

The Qur’an takes a very different attitude to the vulnerable. Compassion toward the poor and weak is considered one of the greatest virtues. In fact, every Muslim who has in their possession a certain amount of wealth is required on an annual basis to give away a small portion in charity. One wisdom behind this is that it prevents people from hoarding excess wealth and ensures that it circulates throughout society, reaching those that are in need of it.

I am the Snake that giveth Knowledge & Delight and bright glory, and stir the hearts of men with drunkenness. To worship me take wine and strange drugs whereof I will tell my prophet, & be drunk thereof! They shall not harm ye at all. It is a lie, this folly against self. The exposure of innocence is a lie. Be strong, o man! lust, enjoy all things of sense and rapture: fear not that any God shall deny thee for this. [Chapter II, verse 22]

The Book of the Law promotes vices such as promiscuous sex, alcohol and drugs. Such ethics are exactly what we would expect of an evil source such as demons or the Devil. By comparison the Qur’an warns us against such vices and tells us not to follow in the footsteps of the Devil:

O mankind! Eat of that which is lawful and wholesome in the earth, and follow not the footsteps of the devil. Lo! he is an open enemy for you. [Qur’an 2:168]

The Book of the Law encourages a lifestyle that is harmful not only to the individual but also wider society. Promiscuous sex, alcohol and drugs bring with them a whole host of issues such as disease, unwanted pregnancy, addiction and financial ruin. So the claim that such things are not harmful is absurd. From a psychological perspective, it’s interesting that The Book of the Law happens to condone the very vices that Crowley indulged in before he was a prophet. As far back as Adam and Eve, Satan has used temptation as a means to deceive man, so from this perspective The Book of the Law is devilish in its methodology.

By contrast Islam wants believers to be strong in mind, body and spirit. Anything that is harmful to the individual or wider society is prohibited. The Qur’an points out that immorality is the handiwork of Satan himself:

Satan threatens you with poverty and orders you to immorality, while Allah promises you forgiveness from Him and bounty. And Allah is all-Encompassing and Knowing. [Qur’an 2:268]

Unlike The Book of the Law, the Qur’an does not condone the harmful vices that the seventh century pre-Islamic Arabs indulged in; it prohibited them. This shows us that the one behind the Qur’an prioritises the well-being of mankind over our whims and desires.

I am the Master: thou art the Holy Chosen One. [Chapter II, verse 65]

Such grand claims are typical ofThe Book of the Law, it frequently asserts its authority and Crowley’s prophethood without putting forward any kind of evidence or means of verification. We are just expected to blindly accept its credentials. Whereas the Qur’an puts forward objective arguments for its divine origin, for example:

Say, “If mankind and the jinn gathered in order to produce the like of this Qur’an, they could not produce the like of it, even if they were to each other assistants.”   [Qur’an 17:88]

Lift up thyself! for there is none like unto thee among men or among Gods! Lift up thyself, o my prophet, thy stature shall surpass the stars. They shall worship thy name, foursquare, mystic, wonderful, the number of the man: and the name of thy house 418. [Chapter II, verse 78]

Notice how this verse glorifies Crowley, virtually deifying him. By contrast the Qur’an emphasises the humanity of Prophet Muhammad:

Muhammad is not but a messenger. [Other] messengers have passed on before him. So if he was to die or be killed, would you turn back on your heels [to unbelief]? And he who turns back on his heels will never harm Allah at all; but Allah will reward the grateful. [Qur’an 3:144]

Prophet Muhammad himself warned Muslims against deifying him:

Do not exaggerate my praises as the Christians have done with the son of Mary. Verily, I am only a servant, so refer to me as the servant of Allah and his messenger.[7]

The Qur’an even corrects Prophet Muhammad in instances where he made mistakes, for example:

The Prophet frowned and turned away. Because there came to him the blind man, [interrupting]. But what would make you perceive, [O Muhammad], that perhaps he might be purified. Or be reminded and the remembrance would benefit him? As for he who thinks himself without need, to him you give attention. And not upon you [is any blame] if he will not be purified. But as for he who came to you striving [for knowledge]. While he fears [Allah], from him you are distracted. [Qur’an 80:1-10]

What should we make of this lofty claim that Crowley’s stature “shall surpass the stars”? In light of the historical record thus far, it’s debatable as to whether this has been fulfilled. On the one hand, Crowley is revered within the world of the occult and magic. He became a cultural icon in the 1960s, with his libertine attitude to sex and drugs striking a chord with the counter-culture movement. However on the other hand, it has been over a century since The Book of the Law was first written, and over half a century since Crowley’s death, yet his religion is still not mainstream. Now if we interpret the claim that Crowley’s stature “shall surpass the stars” in light of the preceding statement of the same verse, that “there is none like unto thee among men or among Gods”, then this prophecy is an abject failure. Crowley has always had a tiny following and his impact on the world stage is negligible when compared to other religions and movements that emerged contemporary to him.

This is just one example of a problematic prophecy in The Book of the Law, it is filled with ambiguous and inaccurate predictions. We can conclude that whatever entity inspired this book, be it demons, the Devil or even Crowley’s own mind, what we know for certain is that it is not the product of a divine being. This is because divine beings have knowledge and control over the future. By comparison, the Qur’an and teachings of Prophet Muhammad are filled with accurate prophecies about the future.

What this shows is that the one who inspired the Qur’an and Prophet Muhammad has knowledge of the unseen which is a characteristic of God, not His creation such as demons or the Devil. Even according to the Bible, accurate knowledge of the future is a sign that someone has been genuinely inspired by God:

You may say to yourselves, “How can we know when a message has not been spoken by the Lord?” If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the Lord does not take place or come true, that is a message the Lord has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously, so do not be alarmed. [Deuteronomy 18:21-22]

The Book of the Law fails to fulfil this biblical standard, whereas the Qur’an more than satisfies it.

For perfume mix meal & honey & thick leavings of red wine: then oil of Abramelin and olive oil, and afterward soften & smooth down with rich fresh blood.

The best blood is of the moon, monthly; then the fresh blood of a child, or dropping from the host of heaven; then of enemies; then of the priest or of the worshippers; last of some beast, no matter what.

This burn: of this make cakes & eat unto me. This hath also another use; let it be laid before me, and kept thick with perfumes of your orison: it shall become full of beetles as it were and creeping things sacred unto me. [Chapter III, verses 23-25]

This section of The Book of the Law goes into detail about the offerings that should be made by it followers. We can see that the emphasis of the ritual is blood, the verses go into great detail in specifying a hierarchy of blood. By comparison, the Qur’an tells us that when animal offerings are made by Muslims, it’s not the blood that matters to Allah, but rather the pious act of obedience in performing the sacrifice:

And the camels and cattle We have appointed for you as among the symbols of Allah; for you therein is good. So mention the name of Allah upon them when lined up [for sacrifice]; and when they are [lifeless] on their sides, then eat from them and feed the needy and the beggar. Thus have We subjected them to you that you may be grateful. Their meat will not reach Allah, nor will their blood, but what reaches Him is piety from you. Thus have We subjected them to you that you may glorify Allah for that [to] which He has guided you; and give good tidings to the doers of good. [Qur’an 22:36-37]

Sacrificing an animal for the sake of Allah is said to be a way of showing gratitude to Him for the numerous blessings He has bestowed upon us, as well as a righteous act in feeding the poor and needy. These are the purposes behind the animal offering, the spilt blood is of no value in and of itself. It’s important to note that human sacrifice is prohibited in Islam, only animals can be offered. When it comes to the occult and pagan religions in general, rituals involving human blood have been used throughout history. We’ve seen that The Book of the Law informs its followers that human blood – be it menstrual, the blood of children, or the blood of one’s enemies – is of higher value than animal blood.

I am in a secret fourfold word, the blasphemy against all gods of men.

Curse them! Curse them! Curse them!

With my Hawk’s head I peck at the eyes of Jesus as he hangs upon the cross.

I flap my wings in the face of Mohammed & blind him.

With my claws I tear out the flesh of the Indian and the Buddhist, Mongol and Din.

Bahlasti! Ompehda! I spit on your crapulous creeds.

Let Mary inviolate be torn upon wheels: for her sake let all chaste women be utterly despised among you! [Chapter III, verses 49-55]

One of the roles of religious scripture is to highlight the falsehood of beliefs that are contrary to its own teachings. Guidance is not just about stating what is correct, but also about negating that which is incorrect. The Book of the Law  does not do this in any meaningful way. These verses mention the likes of Jesus and Muhammad, but instead of intellectually dismantling the teachings of these prophets, it instead insults them in a very petty manner that comes across as insecure. This is quite unbefitting of religious scripture, and certainly not what one would expect were its author a divine being.

By comparison, the Qur’an respectfully engages with the beliefs of those it deems to be upon falsehood. Muslims are commanded to refrain from insulting the gods of other religions:

And do not insult those they invoke other than Allah, lest they insult Allah in enmity without knowledge. [Qur’an 6:108]

The Qur’an commands believers to engage with non-believers in a respectful and dignified manner:

Invite to the way of your Lord with wisdom and good instruction, and argue with them in a way that is best. [Qur’an 16:125]

When it comes to dismantling the theology of false religion, the Qur’an uses intellectual arguments, never petty insults. The prophets of the Jewish and Christian scriptures are acknowledged as genuine prophets, and are even mentioned more times by name in the Qur’an than Muhammad himself. This is an indication that the one who authored the Qur’an and inspired Muhammad is the same entity that inspired the prophets of old like Abraham, Moses and Jesus.

CONCLUSION

To argue that the Qur’an is the product of some unknown force of unknown motives would be tantamount to invoking the existence of any unknown entity to explain anything. From this perspective, the Christian claim that the Qur’an was inspired by occult forces such as the Devil or demons is an intellectual cop-out. Everything can be reduced to absurdity by attributing it to occult forces, so this is also a self-defeating scepticism as it means that nothing can be true.

In this article we have tackled this claim by taking the unique approach of comparing the Qur’an to The Book of the Law, a typical occult work. After doing a detailed comparison we’ve seen that they share very little in common, which is contrary to the claim that they come from the same source. Not only are they opposites in terms of their theology and morality, but it is only the Qur’an that puts forward objective evidence to support its claims of divine origin. Crowley himself was a master occultist and would have had access to the same dark forces that allegedly inspired Prophet Muhammad. Yet we’ve seen that The Book of the Law pales in comparison to the phenomenon that is the Qur’an, both in terms of its content and impact on the global stage.

References.

1 – Sahih Bukhari & Sahih Muslim.

2 – Aleister Crowley, The Law is for All, see commentary on verse I.4.

3 – Ibid., see commentary on verse I.41.

4 – Ibid., see commentary on verse I.51.

5 – Ibid., see commentary on verse I.52.

6 – Ibid., see commentary on verse I.41.

7 – Sahih Bukhari.

Christian Calendar and Intercalation

CHRISTIAN CALENDAR

Many Muslims today use the Christian calendar system in their daily affairs, not realizing that some of the practices inherent to this calendar are forbidden in Islam (notably intercalation or nasee).

Moreover, many of those who use the Christian calendar, Christians and otherwise, think that it is an accurate system or that it has had a fixed and true reference point. Thus, when the calendar tells us today is the first Tuesday of the month of May of the year 1999 for example, then this is what today actually is. But the truth is, no one knows for sure what the day, the month or the year actually is. Not only that, but the need for correction is continuous and is inescapable. Intercalation, for example, is done at least every four years through the process called the leap year.

The Christian calendar has years that are 365 or 366 days long. It is divided into 12 months that have no relationship to the motion of the moon, and it employs a system of weeks that group the days in sets of 7. It had three main versions: The Roman, the Julian and the Gregorian calendars, the difference between which lies in the way they approximate the length of the tropical year and in their rules for  approximating the occurrence of Easter.

THE ROMAN CALENDAR

Originally, the year started on March 1, and consisted of only 304 days or 10 months (Martius, Aprilis, Maius, Junius, Quintilis, Sextilis, September, October, November, and December). These 304 days were followed by an unnamed and unnumbered winter period. The Roman king Numa Pompilius (c. 715-673 BC, although his historicity is disputed) allegedly introduced February and January (in that order) between December and March, increasing the length of the year to 354 or 355 days. In 450 BC, February was moved to its current position between January and March.

In order to make up for the lack of days in a year, an extra month, Intercalaris or Mercedonius, (allegedly with 22 or 23 days) was introduced in some years. It was the duty of the priesthood to keep track of the calendars, but they failed miserably, partly due to ignorance, partly because they were bribed to make certain years long and others short. Furthermore, leap years were considered unlucky and were therefore avoided in times of crisis, such as the Second Punic War. In order to clean up this mess, Julius Caesar made his famous calendar reform in 45 BC. “Julius Caesar made all odd numbered months 31 days long, and all even numbered months 30 days long (with February having 29 days in non-leap years). In 44 BC, Quintilis was renamed ‘Julius’ (July) in honor of Julius Caesar, and in 8 BC Sextilis became ‘Augustus’ in honor of emperor Augustus. When Augustus had a month named after him, he presumably wanted his month to be a full 31 days long, so he removed a day from February and shifted the length of the other months so that August would have 31 days. This fact, however, is not confirmed, and could be  a fabrication dating back to the 14th century.

THE JULIAN CALENDAR

It was introduced by Julius Caesar in 45 BC. It was in common use until the 1500s. However, some countries (Greece and Russia, for example) used it well into this century. In the Julian calendar, the tropical year is approximated as 365.25 days. This gives an error of 1 day in approximately 128 years. The approximation 365 1/4 is achieved by having 1leap year every 4 years. Furthermore, the way it calculated the Easter occurrence was inaccurate, it had to be refined depending on the fact that most felt that 21 March was the proper day for vernal equinox (because 21 March was the date for vernal equinox during the Council of Nicaea in AD 325). The Gregorian calendar was therefore calibrated to make that day vernal equinox. By 1582 vernal equinox had moved (1582-325)/128 days = approximately 10 days backwards. So 10 days had to be dropped. This change in sequence of the calendar is known in Islam as intercalation, which is prohibited to do for any reason.

THE GREGORIAN CALENDAR

The Gregorian calendar is commonly used today by the non-Muslims. Pope Gregory XIII adopted it in accordance with instructions from the Council of Trent (1545-1563). In the Gregorian calendar, the tropical year is approximated as 365 97/400 days = 365.2425 days. Thus it takes approximately 3300 years for the tropical year to shift one day with respect to the Gregorian calendar. The approximation 365 97/400 is achieved by having 97 leap years every 400 years.

LEAP YEARS

In the Gregorian calendar, every year divisible by 4 is a leap year. Also, every year divisible by 100 is not a leap year, but every year divisible by 400 is a leap year. And so, 1800, 1900 and 2100 are not leap years, while 1600 and 2000 are.

WHO USES THE GREGORIAN CALENDAR?

As we mentioned above not all countries adopted this calendar, and some of those who did, had their own changes added to it. Italy, Poland, Portugal, and Spain adopted it and other Catholic countries followed shortly after, but Protestant countries were reluctant to change. Later, the Orthodox Church in Greece decided to switch to the Gregorian calendar in the 1920s, but they tried to improve on the Gregorian leap year rules, replacing the “divisible by 400” rule.

Thus the beginning of their calendar is still different from the rest of the Christian world. In an attempt to unify their Christmas and Easter celebrations, both churches tried to change both Calendars. The meeting happened in Aleppo, Syria (5-10 March 1997), organized by the World Council of Churches and the Middle East Council of Churches, Representatives of several churches and Christian world communions suggested that the discrepancies between Easter calculations could be resolved by adopting calculations of the vernal equinox and the full moon. This new method for calculating Easter should take effect from the year 2001.

WHEN IT HAPPENED?

Was Prophet Eesa (Jesus), alayhis salam, born in the year 0? No. The reasons for this is that there is no year 0 in the Gregorian calendar and that Eesa, alayhis salam, was born before 4 BC. The concept of a year “zero,” which was introduced by the Muslims was not known to Romans when they devised their calendar. Therefore, CE 1 follows immediately after 1 BC with no intervening year zero. The exact year Eesa, alayhis salam, was born is not known. Also, he, alayhis salam, was not born in December.

And when did the 1st century start? In the year CE 1. Therefore, the 2nd century should have started in CE 101. Thus, the 21st century must have started in the year CE 2001 (and not 2000). And although the 20th century started in 1901, the 1900s started in 1900. The Gregorian system therefore is not standard by any means. It is neither accurate nor widely used.

INTERCALATION
[By Syed Khalid Shaukat]

Every calendar except one, at any time in the entire history of the world, has had to make corrections by either adding or subtracting time. The Jewish, Chinese, or Hindu calendars add a thirteenth month periodically, to bring the lunar calendar in line with the solar calendar. This is called “intercalation” or “Nasee” (in Arabic). Two kinds of Nasee’ were in practice at the time of Prophet Muhammad, sallallahu alayhi wasallam. One was inserting a thirteenth month, and the other was transposing a sacred month with another for certain social or political needs and advantages. During the Prophet’s farewell message, two revelations regarding the Islamic calendar were given to humankind, Allah says, “The number of months in the sight of Allah is twelve (in a year). So ordained by Him, the day He created the heavens and the earth. Verily the transposition (of a prohibited month or intercalation) is an addition to disbelief.” [9:36-37]

This indicates that the use of a calendar with intercalation is against nature and prohibited by Allah, subhanahu wa ta’ala. Intercalation of a month is used by Jewish, Chinese, and Hindu calendars, while Gregorian calendar uses intercalation of days in several months to increase the number of days to 30 or 31. The one calendar that does not add or subtract time is the Islamic calendar. Despite the figures presented by some calendars, the reality is that among all the prevailing calendars in the world, the Islamic calendar is the oldest in practice in its original form without any correction or modification. The Islamic calendar, because of its inherent cycles of the visible crescent, does not require any corrections, and has remained intact in its principle since it was given to humankind by Allah through Messenger Muhammad, sallallahu alayhi wasallam.

کرسمس اور اسلام

ﺑﺴﻢ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﺍﻟﺮﺣﻤﻦ ﺍﻟﺮﺣﯿﻢ

ﻏﯿﺮ ﻣﺴﻠﻤﻮﮞ ﮐﮯ ﺗﮩﻮﺍﺭﻭﮞ ﻣﺜﻼ ﮐﺮﺳﻤﺲ ﻭﻏﯿﺮﮦ ﮐﯽ ﺧﻮﺷﯽ ﻣﻨﺎﻧﺎ

ﺗﺤﺮﯾﺮ : ﺳﺎﺟﺪ ﺧﺎﻥ ﻧﻘﺸﺒﻨﺪﯼ

ﻧﻮﭦ : ﯾﮧ ﻣﻀﻤﻮﻥ ﻓﯿﺼﻞ ﺍٓﺑﺎﺩ ﮐﮯ ﺍﯾﮏ ﺟﻌﻠﯽ ﭘﯿﺮ ﮐﮯ ﺧﻼﻑ ﻟﮑﮭﺎ ﮔﯿﺎ ﺗﮭﺎ ﺍﺏ ﻣﻮﻗﻊ ﮐﯽ ﻣﻨﺎﺳﺒﺖ ﺳﮯ ﺍﻥ ﮐﺎ ﻧﺎﻡ ﻧﮑﺎﻝ ﮐﺮ ﻣﻨﺎﺳﺐ ﺗﺮﺍﻣﯿﻢ ﮐﺮﮐﮯ ﺷﺎﯾﻊ ﮐﯿﺎ ﺟﺎﺭﮨﺎ ﮨﮯ ۔

ﻗﺎﺭﺋﯿﻦ ﺍﮨﻠﺴﻨﺖ ! ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯽ ﺍﺳﻼﻡ ﮐﯽ ﻧﻈﺮ ﻣﯿﮟ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻥ ﮐﯽ ﻧﺠﺎﺕ ﺍﺱ ﻭﻗﺖ ﺗﮏ ﻣﻤﮑﻦ ﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﺟﺐ ﺗﮏ ﺍﭘﻨﮯ ﺑﺎﻃﻞ ﻣﺬﮨﺐ ﮐﻮ ﭼﮭﻮﮌ ﮐﺮ ﺍﺳﻼﻡ ﻗﺒﻮﻝ ﻧﮧ ﮐﺮﻟﯿﮟ ﭼﻨﺎﻧﭽﮧ ﺭﺏ ﺗﻌﺎﻟﯽ ﮐﺎ ﺍﺭﺷﺎﺩ ﮨﮯ ﮐﮧ:

ﻟَﻘَﺪْ ﮐَﻔَﺮَ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﯾْﻦَ ﻗَﺎﻟُﻮْ ٓﺍ ﺍِﻥَّ ﺍﻟﻠّٰﮧَ ﮬُﻮَ ﺍﻟْﻤَﺴِﯿْﺢُ ﺍﺑْﻦُ ﻣَﺮْﯾَﻢَ ﻭَ ﻗَﺎﻝَ ﺍﻟْﻤَﺴِﯿْﺢُ ﯾٰٓﺒَﻨِﯽْ ﺍِﺳْﺮَﺍٓﺋِﯿْﻞَ ﺍﻋْﺒُﺪُﻭْﺍٓ ﺍﻟﻠّٰﮧَ ﺭَﺑِِّﯽْ ﻭَ ﺭَﺑَّﮑُﻢْ ﺍِﻧَّﮧ ‘ ﻣَﻦْ ﯾُّﺸْﺮِﮎْ ﺑِﺎﻟﻠّٰﮧِ ﻓَﻘَﺪْ ﺣَﺮَّﻡَ ﺍﻟﻠّٰﮧُ ﻋَﻠَﯿْﮧِ ﺍﻟْﺠَﻨَّۃَ ﻭَﻣَﺎْﻭٰﮦُ ﺍﻟﻨَّﺎﺭَ ﻭَﻣَﺎ ﻟِﻠﻈَّﺎِﻟﻤِﯿْﻦَ ﻣِﻦْ ﺍَﻧْﺼَﺎﺭٍﻟَﻘَﺪْ ﮐَﻔَﺮَ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﯾْﻦَ ﻗَﺎﻟُﻮﺍٓ ﺍِﻥَّ ﺍﻟﻠَّﮧَ ﺛَﺎﻟِﺚ ‘’ ﺛَﻼَﺛَۃ ﻭَﻣَﺎ ﻣِﻦْ ﺍِﻟٰﮧٍ ﻭَّﺍﺣِﺪ ‘’ ﻭَّ ﺍِﻥْ ﻟَّﻢْ ﯾَﻨْﺘَﮭُﻮْﺍ ﻋَﻤَّﺎ ﯾَﻘُﻮْﻟُﻮْﻥَ ﻟَﯿَﻤَﺴَّﻦَّ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﯾْﻦَ ﮐَﻔَﺮُﻭْﺍ ﻣِﻨْﮭُﻢْ ﻋَﺬَﺍﺏ ‘’ ﺍَﻟِﯿْﻢ ‘’ ۔
‏( ﺳﻮﺭۃ ﺍﻟﻤﺎﺋﺪﮦ : ﺍٓﯾﺖ ۷۲۔۷۳ ‏)

ﺗﺮﺟﻤﮧ : ﺑﮯ ﺷﮏ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﯿﮟ ﻭﮦ ﻟﻮﮒ ﺟﻮ ﮐﮩﺘﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﻭﮨﯽ ﻣﺴﯿﺢ ﺍﺑﻦ ﻣﺮﯾﻢ ﮐﺎ ﺑﯿﭩﺎ ﮨﮯ ﺣﺎﻻﻧﮑﮧ ﻣﺴﯿﺢ ﻧﮯ ﺗﻮ ﯾﮧ ﮐﮩﺎ ﺗﮭﺎ ﮐﮧ ﺍﮮ ﺑﻨﯽ ﺍﺳﺮﺍﺋﯿﻞ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﮐﯽ ﻋﺒﺎﺩﺕ ﮐﺮﻭ ﺟﻮ ﻣﯿﺮﺍ ﺑﮭﯽ ﺭﺏ ﮨﮯ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺗﻤﮩﺎﺭﺍ ﺑﮭﯽ ﺑﻼﺷﺒﮧ ﺟﺲ ﻧﮯ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﮐﺎ ﺷﺮﯾﮏ ﭨﮭﺮﺍﯾﺎ ﺗﻮ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﻧﮯ ﺍﺱ ﭘﺮ ﺟﻨﺖ ﺣﺮﺍﻡ ﮐﺮﺩﯼ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺟﮭﻨﻢ ﺍﺱ ﮐﺎ ﭨﮭﮑﺎﻧﮧ ﮨﮯ ﺍﻭﺭ ﻇﺎﻟﻤﻮﮞ ﮐﺎ ﮐﻮﺋﯽ ﻣﺪﺩﮔﺎﺭ ﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺑﮯ ﺷﮏ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﯿﮟ ﻭﮦ ﺟﻮ ﮐﮩﺘﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ ﺑﮯ ﺷﮏ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﺗﯿﻦ ﺧﺪﺍﻭٔﮞ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺳﮯ ﺍﯾﮏ ﮨﮯ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺧﺪﺍ ﺗﻮ ﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﮨﮯ ﻣﮕﺮ ﺍﯾﮏ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﮔﺮ ﯾﮧ ﺍﭘﻨﮯ ﺑﺎﺕ ﺳﮯ ﺑﺎﺯ ﻧﮧ ﺍٓﺋﮯ ﺗﻮ ﺟﻮ ﺍﻥ ﻣﯿﮟ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ‏( ﻣﺮﯾﮟ ﮔﮯ ‏) ﺿﺮﻭﺭ ﺍﻥ ﮐﻮ ﺩﺭﺩﻧﺎﮎ ﻋﺬﺍﺏ ﭘﮩﻨﭽﮯ ﮔﺎ۔

ﺍﻥ ﺍٓﯾﺎﺕ ﻣﺒﺎﺭﮐﮧ ﻣﯿﮟ ﻭﺍﺿﺢ ﻃﻮﺭ ﭘﺮ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﭘﺎﮎ ﻧﮯ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﻮ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮐﮩﺎ ﺍﻭﺭ ﻭﺍﺿﺢ ﻓﺮﻣﺎﺩﯾﺎ ﮐﮧ ﺍﮔﺮ ﯾﮧ ﺍﭘﻨﮯ ﻣﺸﺮﮐﺎﻧﮧ ﻋﻘﺎﺋﺪ ﺳﮯ ﺗﻮﺑﮧ ﻧﮧ ﮐﺮﯾﮟ ﺗﻮ ﺍﻥ ﮐﺎ ﭨﮭﮑﺎﻧﮧ ﺟﮩﻨﻢ ﮨﮯ ۔ﺍﻭﺭ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯿﻮﮞ ﺍﻭﺭ ﯾﮩﻮﺩﯾﻮﮞ ﺳﮯ ﺩﻭﺳﺘﯽ ﮐﮯ ﻣﺘﻌﻠﻖ ﺍﺭﺷﺎﺩ ﻓﺮﻣﺎﺗﺎ ﮨﮯ ﮐﮧ :

ﯾٰﺎَﯾُّﮭَﺎ ﺍﻟَّﺬِﯾْﻦَ ﺍَﻣَﻨُﻮْﺍ ﻟَﺎ ﺗَﺘَّﺨِﺬُﻭْﺍ ﺍﻟْﯿَﮭُﻮْﺩَ ﻭَ ﺍﻟﻨَّﺼَﺎﺭٰﯼ ﺍٓﻭْﻟِﯿَﺎٓﺉً ﺑَﻌْﻀُﮭُﻢْ ﺍَﻭْﻟِﯿَﺎٓﺉَ ﺑَﻌْﺾٍ ﻭَّ ﻣَﻦْ ﯾَّﺘَﻮَﻟَّﮭُﻢْ ﻣِﻨْﮑُﻢْ ﻓَﺎِﻧَّﮧ ‘ ﻣِﻨْﮭُﻢْ ﺍِﻥَّ ﺍﻟﻠَّﮧَ ﻻَ ﯾَﮭْﺪِﯼ ﺍﻟْﻘَﻮْﻡَ ﺍﻟﻈَّﺎﻟِﻤِﯿْﻦَ۔ ‏( ﺳﻮﺭۃ ﺍﻟﻤﺎﺋﺪﮦ : ﺍٓﯾﺖ ۵۱ ‏)

ﺗﺮﺟﻤﮧ : ﺍﮮ ﺍﯾﻤﺎﻥ ﻭﺍﻟﻮ ! ﯾﮩﻮﺩ ﻭ ﻧﺼﺎﺭﯼ ﮐﻮ ﺩﻭﺳﺖ ﻧﮧ ﺑﻨﺎﻧﺎ ،ﺍﻥ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺑﻌﺾ ﺑﻌﺾ ﮐﮯ ﺩﻭﺳﺖ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺟﻮ ﮐﻮﺋﯽ ﺗﻢ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺳﮯ ﺍﻥ ﮐﯽ ﻃﺮﻑ ﭘﮭﺮﺍ ﺗﻮ ﻭﮦ ﺍﻧﮩﯽ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺳﮯ ﮨﮯ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﻇﺎﻟﻤﻮﮞ ﮐﻮ ﮨﺪﺍﯾﺖ ﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﺩﯾﺘﺎ۔
ﺍﺱ ﺍٓﯾﺖ ﻣﯿﮟ ﻭﺍﺿﺢ ﻃﻮﺭ ﭘﺮ ﺍﺭﺷﺎﺩ ﻓﺮﻣﺎﺩﯾﺎ ﮐﮧ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯿﻮﮞ ﺍﻭﺭ ﯾﮩﻮﺩﯾﻮﮞ ﺳﮯ ﮨﺮ ﮔﺰ ﺩﻭﺳﺘﯽ ﺍﻭﺭ ﻣﺤﺒﺖ ﮐﮯ ﭘﯿﻨﮕﮯ ﻧﮧ ﺑﮍﮬﺎﻧﺎ ﯾﮧ ﺗﻤﮩﺎﺭﮮ ﺩﻭﺳﺖ ﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﺑﻠﮑﮧ ﺍٓﭘﺲ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺍﯾﮏ ﺩﻭﺳﺮﮮ ﮐﮯ ﺩﻭﺳﺖ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﺱ ﻭﺍﺿﺢ ﻣﻤﺎﻧﻌﺖ ﮐﮯ ﺑﻌﺪ ﺑﮭﯽ ﺍﮔﺮ ﺗﻢ ﺑﺎﺯ ﻧﮧ ﺍٓﺋﮯ ﺗﻮ ﭘﮭﺮ ﯾﮩﯽ ﺳﻤﺠﮭﻮ ﮐﮧ ﺗﻢ ﺧﻮﺩ ﺑﮭﯽ ﺍﻧﮩﯽ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺳﮯ ﮨﻮ۔ﺣﻀﺮﺕ ﻗﺎﺿﯽ ﻋﯿﺎﺽ ﻣﺎﻟﮑﯽ ﺭﺣﻤۃ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﻋﻠﯿﮧ ﻓﺮﻣﺎﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ :

’’ ﻭﻣﻦ ﻟﻢ ﯾﮑﻔﺮ ﺍﺣﺪﺍ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻟﻨﺼﺎﺭﯼ ﻭﺍﻟﯿﮭﻮﺩ ﻭﮐﻞ ﻣﻦ ﻓﺎﺭﻕ ﺍﻟﻤﺴﻠﻤﯿﻦ ﺍﻭ ﻭﻗﻒ ﻓﯽ ﺗﮑﻔﯿﺮﮬﻢ ﺍﻭ ﺷﮏ ﻗﺎﻝ ﺍﻟﻘﺎﺿﯽ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺑﮑﺮ ﻻﻥ ﺍﻟﺘﻮﻗﯿﻒ ﻭﺍﻻﺟﻤﺎ ﻉ ﺍﺗﻔﻘﺎ ﻋﻠﯽ ﮐﻔﺮﮬﻢ ﻓﻤﻦ ﻭﻗﻒ ﻓﯽ ﺫﺍﻟﮏ ﻓﻘﺪ ﮐﺬﺏ ﺍﻟﻨﺺ ﺍﻟﺘﻮﻗﯿﻒ ﻭﺍﻟﺸﮏ ﻓﯿﮧ ﻭﺍﻟﺘﮑﺬﯾﺐ ﺍﻭ ﺍﻟﺸﮏ ﻓﯿﮧ ﻭﻻ ﯾﻘﻊ ﺍﻻ ﻣﻦ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ۔ ‏( ﺍﻟﺸﻔﺎﺀ : ﺝ۲ : ﺹ ۱۷۰۔ﺣﻘﺎﻧﯿﮧ ‏)

ﺗﺮﺟﻤﮧ : ﺍﺟﻤﺎﻉ ﮨﮯ ﺍﺱ ﮐﮯ ﮐﻔﺮ ﭘﺮ ﺟﻮ ﮐﺴﯽ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯽ ﯾﮩﻮﺩﯼ ﯾﺎ ﮐﺴﯽ ﺍﯾﺴﮯ ﺷﺨﺺ ﮐﻮ ﺟﻮ ﺩﯾﻦ ﺍﺳﻼﻡ ﺳﮯ ﺟﺪﺍ ﮨﻮﮔﯿﺎ ﮨﻮ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﻧﮧ ﮐﮩﮯ ﯾﺎ ﺍﺱ ﮐﮯ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮐﮩﻨﮯ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺗﻮﻗﻒ ﮐﺮﮮ ﯾﺎ ﺷﮏ ﮐﺮﮮ ﺍﻣﺎﻡ ﻗﺎﺿﯽ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺑﮑﺮ ﻧﮯ ﺍ ﺳﮑﯽ ﻭﺟﮧ ﯾﮧ ﻓﺮﻣﺎﺋﯽ ﮐﮧ ﻧﺼﻮﺹ ﺷﺮﻋﯿﮧ ﻭ ﺍﺟﻤﺎﻉ ﺍﻣﺖ ﺍﻥ ﻟﻮﮔﻮﮞ ﮐﮯ ﮐﻔﺮ ﭘﺮ ﻣﺘﻔﻖ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺗﻮ ﺟﻮ ﺍﻥ ﮐﮯ ﮐﻔﺮ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺗﻮﻗﻒ ﮐﺮﺗﺎ ﮨﮯ ﻭﮦ ﻧﺺ ﻭ ﺷﺮﯾﻌﺖ ﮐﯽ ﺗﮑﺬﯾﺐ ﮐﺮﺗﺎﮨﮯ ﯾﺎ ﺍﺱ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺷﮏ ﺭﮐﮭﺘﺎ ﮨﮯ ﺍﻭﺭ ﯾﮧ ﺑﺎﺕ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﯽ ﺳﮯ ﮨﻮﺳﮑﺘﯽ ﮨﮯ ۔

ﺍﻥ ﺗﻤﺎﻡ ﻧﺼﻮﺹ ﺳﮯ ﯾﮧ ﺑﺎﺕ ﻭﺍﺿﺢ ﮨﻮﺋﯽ ﮐﮧ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯽ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﻧﮧ ﺳﻤﺠﮭﻨﮯ ﻭﺍﻻ ﺑﮭﯽ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﮯ ﺍﻥ ﺳﮯ ﺩﻭﺳﺘﯽ ﻭ ﻣﻮﺍﻻﺕ ﺣﺮﺍﻡ ﮨﮯ ﻣﮕﺮ ﺍﻓﺴﻮﺱ ﮐﮯ ﺳﺎﺗﮫ ﮐﮩﻨﺎ ﭘﮍﺗﺎ ﮨﮯ ﮐﮧ ﺑﻌﺾ ﻧﺎﻡ ﻧﮩﺎﺩ ﻣﺴﻠﻤﺎﻥ ،ﻣﺤﺒﺖ ،ﺍﺧﻮﺕ ،ﺑﮭﺎﺋﯽ ﭼﺎﺭﮦ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻣﻦ ﮐﮯ ﺧﻮﺑﺼﻮﺭﺕ ﻧﺎﻣﻮﮞ ﮐﯽ ﺍٓﮌﻣﯿﮟ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﮯ ﺳﺎﺗﮫ ﭘﯿﺎﺭ ﻭﻣﺤﺒﺖ ﺩﻭﺳﺘﯽ ﯾﺎﺭﯼ ﮐﮯ ﺍﯾﺴﮯ ﺗﻌﻠﻘﺎﺕ ﻗﺎﺋﻢ ﺭﮐﮭﻨﺎ ﭼﺎﮨﺘﺎ ﮨﮯ ﮐﮧ ﺗﻤﺎﻡ ﻣﺬﺍﮨﺐ ﺍﯾﮏ ﮔﻠﺪﺳﺘﮧ ﮐﯽ ﺷﮑﻞ ﺍﺧﺘﯿﺎﺭ ﮐﺮﻟﯿﮟ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻣﻦ ﮐﮯ ﻧﺎﻡ ﭘﺮ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﮯ ﻣﺬﮨﺒﯽ ﺗﮩﻮﺍﺭ ’’ ﮐﺮﺳﻤﺲ ‘‘ ﮐﻮ ﺣﻀﺮﺕ ﻋﯿﺴﯽٰ ﻋﻠﯿﮧ ﺍﻟﺴﻼﻡ ﮐﺎ ﺟﻨﻢ ﺩﻥ ﻣﺎﻥ ﮐﺮ ﺑﮍﮮ ﺩﮬﻮﻡ ﺩﮬﺎﻡ ﺳﮯ ﺍﺱ ﺩﻥ ﮐﻮ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﮯ ﺳﺎﺗﮫ ﻣﻞ ﮐﺮ ﻣﻨﺎﯾﺎ ﺟﺎﺭﮨﺎ ﮨﮯ ۔ﺣﺎﻻﻧﮑﮧ ﻋﻠﻤﺎﺀ ﺍﺳﻼﻡ ﻧﮯ ﮐﺎﻓﺮﻭﮞ ﮐﮯ ﺗﮩﻮﺍﺭﻭﮞ ﮐﯽ ﺗﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﺱ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺷﺮﮐﺖ ﮐﻮ ﮐﻔﺮ ﻟﮑﮭﺎ ﮨﮯ۔

ﮐﺮﺳﻤﺲ ﮐﮯ ﺩﻥ ﺧﺪﺍ ﮐﺎ ﻏﻀﺐ ﻧﺎﺯﻝ ﮨﻮﺗﺎ ﮨﮯ

ﺍﺧﺒﺮﻧﺎ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺑﮑﺮ ﺍﻟﻔﺎﺭﺳﯽ ﺍﻧﺎ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺍﺳﺤﺎﻕ ﺍﻻﺻﺒﮭﺎﻧﯽ ﻧﺎ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺍﺣﻤﺪ ﺑﻦ ﻓﺎﺭﺱ ﻧﺎ ﻣﺤﻤﺪ ﺑﻦ ﺍﺳﻤﺎﻋﯿﻞ ﺍﻟﺒﺨﺎﺭﯼ : ﻗﺎﻝ : ﺍﺑﻦ ﺍﺑﯽ ﻣﺮﯾﻢ ﻧﺎ ﻧﺎﻓﻊ ﺑﻦ ﯾﺰﯾﺪ ﺳﻤﻊ ﺳﻠﯿﻤﺎﻥ ﺑﻦ ﺍﺑﯽ ﺯﯾﻨﺐ ﻭ ﻋﻤﺮﻭ ﺑﻦ ﺍﻟﺤﺎﺭﺙ ﺳﻤﻊ ﺳﻌﯿﺪ ﺑﻦ ﺍﺑﯽ ﺳﻠﻤۃ ﺳﻤﻊ ﺍﺑﺎﮦ ﺳﻤﻊ ﻋﻤﺮ ﺑﻦ ﺍﻟﺨﻄﺎﺏ ﺭﺿﯽ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﺗﻌﺎﻟﯽ ﻋﻨﮧ ﺍﻧﮧ ﻗﺎﻟـ : ﺍﺟﺘﻨﺒﻮﺍ ﺍﻋﺪﺍٓﺀ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﺍﻟﯿﮭﻮﺩ ﻭﺍﻟﻨﺼﺎﺭﯼ ﻓﯽ ﻋﯿﺪﮬﻢ ﯾﻮﻡ ﺟﻤﻌﮭﻢ ﻓﺎﻥ ﺍﻟﺴﺨﻂ ﯾﻨﺰﻝ ﻋﻠﯿﮩﻢ ﻓﺎﺧﺸﯽ ﺍﻥ ﯾﺼﯿﺒﮑﻢ ﻭﻻ ﺗﻌﻠﻤﻮﺍ ﺑﻄﺎﻧﺘﮭﻢ ﺗﺨﻠﻘﻮﺍ ﺑﺨﻠﻘﮭﻢ۔
‏( ﺷﻌﺐ ﺍﻻﯾﻤﺎﻥ : ﺝ۷ : ﺹ ۴۳۔ﺩﺍﺭﺍﻟﮑﺘﺐ ﺍﻟﻌﻠﻤﯿﮧ ﺑﯿﺮﻭﺕ ‏)

ﺗﺮﺟﻤﮧ : ﮨﻤﯿﮟ ﺧﺒﺮ ﺩﯼ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺑﮑﺮ ﻓﺎﺭﺳﯽ ﻧﮯ ﺍﻥ ﮐﻮ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺍﺳﺤﻖ ﻧﮯ ﺍﻥ ﮐﻮ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺍﺣﻤﺪﻧﮯ ﺍﻥ ﻣﺤﻤﺪ ﺑﻦ ﺍﺳﻤﻌﯿﻞ ﺑﺨﺎﺭﯼ ﻧﮯ ﻭﮦ ﮐﮩﺘﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ ﺍﺑﻦ ﻣﺮﯾﻢ ﻧﮯ ﺍﻧﮑﻮ ﺧﺒﺮ ﺩﯼ ﻧﺎﻓﻊ ﺑﻦ ﯾﺰﯾﺪ ﺳﮯ ﺍﺱ ﻧﮯ ﺳﻨﺎﺳﻠﯿﻤﺎﻥ ﺑﻦ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺯﯾﻨﺐ ﺳﮯ ﺍﻭﺭ ﻭﮦ ﻋﻤﺮ ﺑﻦ ﺣﺎﺭﺙ ﺳﮯ ﺍﺱ ﻧﮯ ﺳﻌﯿﺪ ﺑﻦ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺳﻠﻤﮧ ﺳﮯ ﺍﺱ ﻧﮯ ﺍﭘﻨﮯ ﻭﺍﻟﺪ ﺳﮯ ﺳﻨﺎ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻧﮩﻮﮞ ﻧﮯ ﺣﻀﺮﺕ ﻋﻤﺮ ؓ ﺳﮯ ﮐﮧ ﺍٓﭖ ؓ ﻧﮯ ﻓﺮﻣﺎﯾﺎ ﮐﮧ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﮐﮯ ﺩﺷﻤﻨﻮﮞ ﯾﮭﻮﺩ ﻭ ﻧﺼﺎﺭﯼ ﺳﮯ ﺑﭽﻮ ﺍﻥ ﮐﯽ ﻋﯿﺪ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻥ ﮐﮯ ﺍﮐﮭﭩﮯ ﮨﻮﻧﮯ ﮐﮯ ﺩﻧﻮﮞ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺑﮯ ﺷﮏ ﺍﻥ ﭘﺮ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﮐﯽ ﻧﺎﺭﺍﺿﯽ ﺍﺗﺮﺗﯽ ﮨﮯ ﻣﯿﮟ ﮈﺭﺗﺎ ﮨﻮﮞ ﮐﮧ ﮐﮩﯿﮟ ﻭﮦ ﺗﻤﮩﯿﮟ ﺑﮭﯽ ﻧﮧ ﭘﮩﻨﭻ ﺟﺎﺋﮯ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻥ ﮐﯽ ﺍﻧﺪﺭﻭﻧﯽ ﺑﺎﺗﯿﮟ ﻣﺖ ﺟﺎﻧﺎ ﮐﺮﻭ ﮐﯿﻮﻧﮑﮧ ﺗﻢ ﺍﻥ ﮐﯽ ﻋﺎﺩﺗﯿﮟ ﺳﯿﮑﮫ ﺟﺎﻭ ﮔﮯ ‏( ﯾﻌﻨﯽ ﺍﻥ ﺳﮯ ﻣﺘﺎﺛﺮ ﮨﻮﺟﺎﻭﮔﮯ ‏) ﺍﺳﯽ ﻃﺮﺡ ﺍﯾﮏ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺭﻭﺍﯾﺖ ﻣﯿﮟ ﮨﮯ ﮐﮧ :

ﺍﺧﺒﺮﻧﺎ ﺍﺑﻮ ﺍﻟﻘﺎﺳﻢ ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﻟﺮﺣﻤﻦ ﺑﻦ ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﺍﻟﺤﺮﻓﯽ ﻧﺎ ﻋﻠﯽ ﺑﻦ ﻣﺤﻤﺪ ﺑﻦ ﺍﻟﺰﺑﯿﺮ ﺍﻟﮑﻮﻓﯽ ﻧﺎ ﺍﻟﺤﺴﻦ ﺍﺑﻦ ﻋﻠﯽ ﺑﻦ ﻋﻔﺎﻥ ﻧﺎ ﺯﯾﺪ ﺑﻦ ﺍﻟﺤﺒﺎﺏ ﻧﺎ ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﺑﻦ ﻋﻘﺒﮧ ﺣﺪﺛﻨﯽ ﻋﻄﺎﺀ ﺑﻦ ﺩﯾﻨﺎﺭ ﺍﻟﮭﺬﻟﯽ ﺍﻥ ﻋﻤﺮ ﺑﻦ ﺍﻟﺨﻄﺎﺏ ﻗﺎﻝ : ﺍﯾﺎﮐﻢ ﻭ ﻣﻮﺍﻃﻨۃ ﺍﻻﻋﺎﺟﻢ ﻭ ﺍﻥ ﺗﺪﺧﻠﻮﺍ ﻋﻠﯿﮩﻢ ﻓﯽ ﺑﯿﻌﮭﻢ ﯾﻮﻡ ﻋﯿﺪﮬﻢ ﻓﺎﻥ ﺍﻟﺴﺨﻂ ﯾﻨﺰﻝ ﻋﻠﯿﮩﻢ۔
‏( ﺷﻌﺐ ﺍﻻﯾﻤﺎﻥ : ﺝ۷ : ﺹ۴۳ ‏)

ﺣﻀﺮﺕ ﻋﻤﺮ ؓ ﻧﮯ ﻓﺮﻣﺎﯾﺎ ﺗﻢ ﺍﭘﻨﮯ ﺍٓﭖ ﮐﻮ ﺑﭽﺎﻭٔ ﺍﮨﻞ ﻋﺠﻢ ﮐﮯ ﺳﺎﺗﮫ ﺑﻮﺩ ﻭ ﺑﺎﺵ ﺳﮯ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﺱ ﺑﺎﺕ ﺳﮯ ﻣﻨﻊ ﮐﯿﺎ ﮐﮧ ﺍﻥ ﮐﮯ ﻋﺒﺎﺩﺕ ﺧﺎﻧﻮﮞ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺍﻥ ﮐﮯ ﻋﯿﺪ ﮐﮯ ﺍﯾﺎﻡ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺩﺍﺧﻞ ﮨﻮﺍ ﮐﺮﯾﮟ ﮐﮧ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﮐﺎ ﻏﻀﺐ ﺍﺱ ﺩﻥ ﻧﺎﺯﻝ ﮨﻮﺗﺎ ﮨﮯ ۔

ﻗﺎﺭﺋﯿﻦ ﺍﮨﻠﺴﻨﺖ ! ﺣﻀﺮﺕ ﻋﻤﺮ ؓ ﺗﻮ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﻮ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﮐﺎ ﺩﺷﻤﻦ ﮐﮩﮧ ﺭﮨﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﻭﺭ ﮐﺮﺳﻤﺲ ﮐﮯ ﻣﻮﻗﻊ ﭘﺮ ﺟﻤﻊ ﮨﻮﻧﮯ ﺳﮯ ﻣﻨﻊ ﮐﺮﺭﮨﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ ﺍﺱ ﺩﻥ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﮐﺎ ﻏﻀﺐ ﻭ ﻧﺎﺭﺍﺿﮕﯽ ﻧﺎﺯﻝ ﮨﻮﺗﯽ ﮨﮯ ﻣﮕﺮ ﯾﮧ ﺟﻌﻠﯽ ﺻﻮﻓﯽ ﮐﮩﺘﺎ ﮨﮯ ﮐﮧ ﯾﮧ ﺧﯿﺮ ﻭ ﺑﺮﮐﺖ ﻭﺍﻻ ﺩﻥ ﮨﮯ ۔ﺍﺏ ﮨﻢ ﺍﺱ ﮐﯽ ﻣﺎﻧﯿﮟ ﯾﺎ ﺣﻀﺮ ﺕ ﻋﻤﺮ ؓ ﮐﯽ ؟

ﮐﺎﻓﺮﻭﮞ ﮐﮯ ﺍﯾﺎﻡ ﮐﯽ ﺗﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﮐﺮﻧﺎ ﮐﻔﺮ ﮨﮯ

ﻣﻼ ﻋﻠﯽ ﻗﺎﺭﯼ ﺣﻨﻔﯽ ﺭﺣﻤۃ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﻋﻠﯿﮧ ﻓﺮﻣﺎﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ : ؎

ﻓﯽ ﻓﺘﺎﻭﯼ ﺍﻟﺼﻐﺮﯼ ﻣﻦ ﺍﺷﺘﺮﯼ ﯾﻮﻡ ﺍﻟﻨﻮﺭﻭﺯ ﺷﯿﺌﺎ ﻭ ﻟﻢ ﯾﮑﻦ ﯾﺸﺘﺮﯾﮧ ﻗﺒﻞ ﺫﺍﻟﮏ ﺍﺭﺍﺩ ﺑﮧ ﺗﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﺍﻟﻨﻮﺭﻭﺯ ،ﮐﻔﺮ ﺍﯼ ﻻﻧﮧ ﻋﻈﻢ ﻋﯿﺪ ﺍﻟﮑﻔﺮۃ۔ )) ﺷﺮﺡ ﻓﻘﮧ ﺍﻻﮐﺒﺮ : ﺹ ۴۹۹ ۔ﺑﯿﺮﻭﺕ ‏)

ﺍﮔﺮ ﮐﺴﯽ ﻧﮯ ﻧﻮﺭﻭﺯ ‏( ﻣﺠﻮﺳﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﯽ ﻋﯿﺪ ‏) ﮐﮯ ﺩﻥ ﮐﻮﺋﯽ ﺍﯾﺴﯽ ﭼﯿﺰ ﺧﺮﯾﺪﯼ ﺟﻮ ﺍﺱ ﺳﮯ ﭘﮩﻠﮯ ﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﺧﺮﯾﺪﺗﺎ ﺗﮭﺎ ،ﺍﺱ ﮐﺎ ﺍﺭﺍﺩﮦ ﺍﺱ ﺍﺷﺘﺮﺍﺀ ﺳﮯ ﻧﻮﺭﻭﺯ ﮐﮯ ﺩﻥ ﮐﯽ ﺗﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﮐﺮﻧﺎ ﺗﮭﺎ ﺗﻮ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﻮﺟﺎﺋﮯ ﮔﺎ،ﺍﺱ ﻟﺌﮯ ﮐﮧ ﺍ ﺱ ﻧﮯ ﮐﺎﻓﺮﻭﮞ ﮐﯽ ﻋﯿﺪ ﮐﯽ ﺗﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﮐﯽ۔

ﻣﺰﯾﺪ ﻟﮑﮭﺘﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ :

ﻟﻮﺍﻥ ﺭﺟﻼ ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﺧﻤﺴﯿﻦ ﻋﺎﻣﺎ ﺛﻢ ﺟﺎﺀ ﯾﻮﻡ ﺍﻟﻨﻮﺭﻭﺯ ﻓﺎﮬﺪﯼ ﺍﻟﯽ ﺑﻌﺾ ﺍﻟﻤﺸﺮﮐﯿﻦ ﯾﺮﯾﺪ ﺗﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﺫﺍﻟﮏ ﺍﻟﯿﻮﻡ ﻓﻘﺪ ﮐﻔﺮ ﺑﺎ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﺍﻟﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﻭ ﺣﺒﻂ ﻋﻤﻠﮧ ﺧﻤﺴﯿﻦ ﻋﺎﻣﺎ۔
‏( ﺷﺮﺡ ﻓﻘﮧ ﺍﻻﮐﺒﺮ : ﺹ ۵۰۰ ‏)

ﺍﮔﺮ ﮐﺴﯽ ﺷﺨﺺ ﻧﮯ ﭘﭽﺎﺱ ﺳﺎﻝ ﺗﮏ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﮐﯽ ﻋﺒﺎﺩﺕ ﮐﯽ ﭘﮭﺮ ﻧﻮﺭﻭﺯ ﮐﺎ ﺩﻥ ﺍٓﮔﯿﺎ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﺱ ﻧﮯ ﮐﺴﯽ ﻣﺸﺮﮎ ﮐﻮ ﮐﻮﺋﯽ ﮨﺪﯾﮧ ﮐﺮﺩﯾﺎ ﺍﺱ ﮐﯽ ﻧﯿﺖ ﺍﺱ ﮨﺪﯾﮧ ﺳﮯ ﺍﺱ ﺩﻥ ﮐﯽ ﺗﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﮐﺮﻧﺎ ﺗﮭﯽ ﺗﻮ ﺍﺱ ﻧﮯ ﺍﻟﻠﮧ ﮐﮯ ﺳﺎﺗﮫ ﮐﻔﺮ ﮐﯿﺎ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﺱ ﮐﯽ ﭘﭽﺎﺱ ﺳﺎﻝ ﮐﯽ ﻋﺒﺎﺩﺕ ﺑﺮﺑﺎﺩ ﮨﻮﮔﺌﯽ۔

ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍٓﮔﮯ ﻟﮑﮭﺘﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ :

’’ ﻭ ﻋﻠﯽ ﻗﯿﺎﺱ ﻣﺴﺎﻟۃ ﺍﻟﺨﺮﻭﺝ ﺍﻟﯽ ﺍﻟﻨﯿﺮﻭﺯ ﺍﻟﻤﺠﻮﺳﯽ ﺍﻟﻤﻮﺍﻓﻘۃ ﻣﻌﮭﻢ ﻓﯿﻤﺎ ﯾﻔﻠﻌﻮﻥ ﻓﯽ ﺫﺍﻟﮏ ﺍﻟﯿﻮﻡ ﯾﻮﺟﺐ ﺍﻟﮑﻔﺮ ‘’

ﯾﻌﻨﯽ ﺍﺳﯽ ﻃﺮﺡ ﻣﺠﻮﺳﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﮯ ﻧﻮﺭﻭﺯ ﮐﮯ ﺟﺸﻦ ﮐﮯ ﺩﻥ ﻧﮑﻠﻨﺎ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺟﻮ ﮐﭽﮫ ﻣﺠﻮﺳﯽ ﺍﺱ ﺩﻥ ﮐﺮﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﻥ ﻣﯿﮟ ﺍﻥ ﮐﯽ ﻣﻮﺍﻗﻔﺖ ﮐﺮﻧﺎ ﯾﮧ ﺑﮭﯽ ﮐﻔﺮ ﮐﻮ ﻻﺯﻡ ﮐﺮﺗﯽ ﮨﮯ ۔

ﺍﺏ ﻧﺎﻡ ﻧﮩﺎﺩ ﻣﺴﻠﻤﺎﻥ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻥ ﮐﮯ ﭼﯿﻠﮯ ﺟﻮ ﮐﺮﺳﻤﻦ ﮐﮯ ﺩﻥ ﮐﯿﮏ ﮐﺎﭨﺘﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﯽ ﻃﺮﺡ ﮔﯿﺖ ﮔﺎﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺟﺸﻦ ﻣﻨﺎﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﯿﺎ ﯾﮧ ﻣﺴﻠﻤﺎﻥ ﺭﮨﮯ؟
ﻋﻼﻣﮧ ﻣﺤﻤﺪ ﺑﻦ ﺷﮭﺎﺏ ﯾﻮﺳﻒ ﺍﻟﮑﺮﺩﺭﯼ ﺍﻟﺤﻨﻔﯽ ؒ ﻟﮑﮭﺘﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ :

’’ ﻭﮐﺬﺍ ﺍﺟﺘﻤﺎﻉ ﺍﻟﺴﻤﻠﻤﯿﻦ ﯾﻮﻡ ﻓﺼﺢ ﺍﻟﻨﺼﺎﺭﯼ ﻟﻮ ﻣﻮﺍﻓﻘۃ ﻟﮭﻢ۔ ‏( ﻓﺘﺎﻭﯼ ﺑﺰﺍﺯﯾﮧ : ﺝ۳ : ﺹ ۱۸۶ ‏)

ﺍﺳﯽ ﻃﺮﺡ ﻣﺴﻠﻤﺎﻧﻮﮞ ﮐﺎ ﺍﺟﺘﻤﺎﻉ ﻋﯿﺴﺎﺋﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﯽ ﻋﯿﺪ ﮐﮯ ﺩﻥ ﺍﮔﺮ ﺍﻥ ﮐﯽ ﻣﻮﺍﻓﻘﺖ ﮐﺮﻧﮯ ﮐﯿﻠﺌﮯ ﮨﮯ ﺗﻮ ﯾﮧ ﺳﺐ ﺑﮭﯽ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﻮﮔﺌﮯ۔

ﻋﻼﻣﮧ ﺑﺰﺍﺯﯼ ﻧﮯ ﺍﯾﮏ ﺑﮍﯼ ﻋﺠﯿﺐ ﺑﺎﺕ ﮐﯽ ﺟﻮ ﺻﻮﻓﯽ ﻣﺴﻌﻮﺩ ﮐﮯ ﺣﺎﻻﺕ ﮐﮯ ﺑﺎﻟﮑﻞ ﻣﻮﺍﻓﻖ ﮨﮯ ﻭﮦ ﮐﮩﺘﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﮐﮧ ﻧﻮﺭﻭﺯ ﮐﮯ ﺩﻥ ﻧﮑﻠﻨﺎ ﺍﻭﺭ ﻭﮦ ﺍﻓﻌﺎﻝ ﺳﺮﺍﻧﺠﺎﻡ ﺩﯾﻨﺎ ﺟﻮ ﻣﺠﻮﺳﯽ ﺍﺱ ﺩﻥ ﮐﺮﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﺱ ﺩﻥ ﮐﯽ ﺗﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﮐﯽ ﻭﺟﮧ ﺳﮯ ﺗﻮ ﯾﮧ ﮐﻔﺮ ﮨﮯ ،ﺍﻭﺭ ﯾﮧ ﮐﺎﻡ ﺍﮐﺜﺮ ﻭﮦ ﻣﺴﻠﻤﺎﻥ ﮐﺮﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺟﻮ ﻣﺠﻮﺳﯿﺖ ﭼﮭﻮﮌ ﮐﺮ ﺍﺳﻼﻡ ﻻﺋﮯ ﭘﺲ ﻭﮦ ﺍﺱ ﺩﻥ ﺍﻥ ﻣﺠﻮﺳﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﯽ ﻃﺮﻑ ﻧﮑﻠﺘﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﻭﺭ ﻣﺠﻮﺳﯿﻮﮞ ﮐﯽ ﻣﻮﺍﻓﻘﺖ ﮐﺮﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﺱ ﮐﯽ ﻭﺟﮧ ﺳﮯ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﻮﺟﺎﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻓﺴﻮﺱ ﮐﮧ ﺍﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﻋﻠﻢ ﺑﮭﯽ ﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﮨﻮﺗﺎ ‘‘ ۔ ‏( ﻓﺘﺎﻭﯼ ﺑﺰﺍﺯﯾﮧ : ﺝ۳ : ﺹ ۱۸۶ ‏)

ﻗﺎﺭﺋﯿﻦ ﮐﺮﺍﻡ ﺍﻥ ﺗﻤﺎﻡ ﺣﻮﺍﻟﮧ ﺟﺎﺕ ﺳﮯ ﯾﮧ ﺑﺎﺕ ﺭﻭﺯ ﺭﻭﺷﻦ ﮐﯽ ﻃﺮﺡ ﻭﺍﺿﺢ ﮨﻮﮔﺌﯽ ﮐﮧ ﮐﻔﺎﺭ ﮐﮯ ﻣﺬﮨﺒﯽ ﺗﮩﻮﺍﺭﻭﮞ ﮐﯽ ﺗﻌﻈﯿﻢ ﮐﺮﻧﺎ ،ﺍﺱ ﺩﻥ ﺍﻥ ﮐﮯ ﺳﺎﺗﮫ ﺟﻤﻊ ﮨﻮﻧﺎ،ﻭﮦ ﺟﻮ ﺍﻓﻌﺎﻝ ﮐﺮﺗﮯ ﮨﯿﮟ ﺍﻥ ﮐﻮ ﮐﺮﻧﺎ ﯾﮧ ﺳﺐ ﮐﻔﺮ ﮨﮯ ﺍﻭﺭ ﺍﻥ ﺳﺐ ﮐﺎ ﮐﺮﻧﮯ ﻭﺍﻻ ﺍﺳﻼﻡ ﮐﯽ ﻧﻈﺮ ﻣﯿﮟ ﮐﺎﻓﺮ ﮨﮯ ۔

The REAL Christmas Story: How a Prophet was turned into a god

By Abu Zakariya

On December 25th, most Christians around the world will be celebrating Christmas, a day that commemorates the birth of who they believe is their Lord and saviour, Jesus Christ. A lot of Muslim commentaries at this time of the year tend to focus on highlighting links between Christmas and the pagan celebrations of old such as Saturnalia. We typically argue on the basis that the date of December 25th, and symbolic practices such as adorning trees with gold and silver, have direct parallels with paganism, and therefore such celebrations should be avoided.

Such arguments are unconvincing for many Christians. Putting to one side the possibility that many of the parallels may be purely coincidental (think about it, most calendar dates will coincide with a pagan festival as there are so many different pagan religions with so many different celebrations dotted throughout the year). Christians even manage to put a positive spin on things, they acknowledge such parallels but retort that the early Church Fathers assimilated many of the pagan practices that were popular with the masses and purified them in the process, taking people away from the worship of the pre-Christian, Graeco-Roman gods to the worship of the God of Abraham. In their minds, this is a good thing.

Even in the Islamic tradition, there are some rituals which have parallels with other religions. The example of Ashura springs to mind:

It was narrated from Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) that when the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) came to Madinah, he found them fasting on one day, i.e., ‘Ashura’. They said: This is a great day; it is the day on which Allah saved Musa and drowned the people of Pharaoh, so Musa fasted in gratitude to Allah. He (the Prophet) said: “I am closer to Musa than they are.” So he fasted on that day and issued instructions to fast on that day. [1]

In another narration, we find the companions questioning the Prophet (peace be upon him) about the parallels of Ashura with the religions of the People of the Book:

Ibn ‘Abbas reported: The Messenger of Allah fasted on the day of ‘Ashura’ and ordered the people to fast on it. The people said, “O Messenger of Allah, it is a day that the Jews and Christians honour.” The Prophet said, “When the following year comes, Allah willing, we shall fast on the ninth and the tenth.” [2]

We can see that the Prophet (peace be upon him) didn’t just assimilate this Jewish practice but differentiated it by changing some underlying elements, in this case by adjusting the date.

The point is that simple, ritualistic parallels in and of themselves should not be our focus. Coming back to Christmas, elements such as the date of Christmas are superficial when compared to the actual paganism that lies at the heart of Christian belief. There is a far more powerful strategy that we can adopt in our dawah, and that is showing the links between pagan belief and the fundamental doctrines of Christianity such as the Trinity. So rather than focussing on the when of Christmas, instead try to focus on the what. What is the essence of Christmas? It’s a celebration of the incarnation of the second person of the Trinity, God the Son, in the bodily form of Jesus. This shall be the focus for the rest of the article.

TO GRASP THE PRESENT, WE MUST UNDERSTAND THE PAST

In order to understand the influence of paganism on the doctrine of the Trinity, we need to first understand the world into which Christianity was born and developed. The early followers of Jesus were followers of Judaism. In fact, Christianity started out as a movement within Judaism. Like Jews since the time of Moses, these early believers kept the Sabbath, were circumcised and worshiped in the Temple. The only thing that distinguished the early followers of Jesus from any other Jews was their belief in Jesus as the Messiah, that is, the one chosen by God who would redeem the Jewish people. Today, many Christian scholars agree that authors of the New Testament such as Matthew were Jewish believers in Jesus. The influence of Judaism on the New Testament is important because it helps us to correctly understand its message. The New Testament is full of terminology like “son of God.” Such language is interpreted literally by Christians today to mean that Jesus is God the Son, but is this correct? What was the intention behind the Jewish writers of the New Testament when they used such language? What did these terms mean at the time of Jesus?

THE LANGUAGE OF THE BIBLE

When we turn to the Old Testament we find that such language permeates its pages. For example, Moses calls God “Father”: Is this the way you repay the Lord, you foolish and unwise people? Is he not your Father, your Creator, who made you and formed you? [Deuteronomy 32:6] Angels are referred to as “sons of God”: Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them. [Job 1:6] The Old Testament even goes so far as to call Moses a god: “And the LORD said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet.” [Exodus 7:1] The Israelites are also referred to as “gods”: “I said, ‘You are “gods”; you are all sons of the Most High.’”  [Psalm 82:6] What we can conclude is that such highly exalted language was commonplace and is intended figuratively; it is not a literal indication of divinity.

Even as late as the end of the first century, when the New Testament writers started penning their accounts of the life of Jesus, Jewish people were still using such language figuratively. In a conversation between Jesus and some Jewish teachers of the law, they say to Jesus: “…The only Father we have is God himself.” [John 8:41] The Gospel of Luke calls Adam a son of God when it recounts the lineage of Jesus: “the son of Enosh, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.” [Luke 3:38] Jesus even says that anyone who makes peace is a child of God: “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” [Matthew 5:9] If the New Testament writers understood such language to be a claim to divinity, then they would have used it exclusively in relation to Jesus. Clearly, it denotes a person that is righteous before God and nothing more.

So we can see that such language, in and of itself, does not denote the divinity of Jesus. So where did such ideas come from?

THE MINDSET OF THE PEOPLE WHO RECEIVED THE GOSPEL MESSAGE

The turning point in history came when Christianity ceased being a small movement within Judaism and Gentiles (non-Jews) started to embrace the faith in large numbers. We need to look to the pagan world of the Gentiles in order to understand the mindset of the people that received the New Testament message. Since the time of Alexander the Great, Gentiles had been living in a Hellenistic (Greek) world. Their lands were dominated by Roman armies, with the Roman Empire being the superpower of the world at the time. The Roman Empire itself was heavily influenced by Hellenistic religion, philosophy and culture. Greek gods and goddesses like Zeus, Hermes and Aphrodite, as well as Roman gods and goddesses like Jupiter, Venus and Diana, dominated the landscape. There were temples, priesthoods, and feasts dedicated to the patron god or goddess of a city or region; statues to the deities dotted the forums of the cities. Even rulers themselves were frequently worshipped as gods.

Gentiles from such a polytheistic background would have naturally understood Christian preaching about the “son of God” in light of a Greek or Roman god having been begotten by another. We can see this mindset manifested in the New Testament. In the Book of Acts there is an incident where the Gentile crowds think that Paul is Zeus come among them when he heals a crippled man:

When the crowd saw what Paul had done, they shouted in the Lycaonian language, “The gods have come down to us in human form!” 

Barnabas they called Zeus, and Paul they called Hermes because he was the chief speaker.

The priest of Zeus, whose temple was just outside the city, brought bulls and wreaths to the city gates because he and the crowd wanted to offer sacrifices to them.

But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard of this, they tore their clothes and rushed out into the crowd, shouting: 

“Men, why are you doing this? We too are only men, human like you. We are bringing you good news, telling you to turn from these worthless things to the living God, who made heaven and earth and sea and everything in them. [Acts 14:11-15]

Here we see that the Graeco-Roman peoples that Paul and Barnabas were preaching to were in the habit of taking humans for gods. Despite Paul protesting that he was not a god, the people persisted in their belief: “Even with these words, they had difficulty keeping the crowd from sacrificing to them.” [Acts 14:18] From this example we can see that according to Christian history, it was a common practice for people to attribute divinity to other humans. In spite of Paul openly denying being a god, the people continued to worship and sacrifice to him. We can conclude that even if Jesus himself rejected being God at that time, the mindset of the people was such that they would still have found a way to deify him.

With this background in mind, it’s easy to see how Judaic phrases like “son of God” took on a different meaning when transported out of their Jewish monotheistic context into pagan Greco-Roman thought. The Trinity doctrine arose neither in a vacuum, nor strictly from the text of Scripture. It was the result of the influence of certain beliefs and attitudes that prevailed in and around the Church after the first century. The Church emerged in a Jewish and Greek world and so the primitive Church had to reconcile the notions they had inherited from Judaism with those they had derived from pagan mythology. In the words of the historian and Anglican bishop John Wand, “Jew and Greek had to meet in Christ” [3]

LINKS TO THE PAGANISM OF OLD

It’s interesting to note that the Greco-Roman religions were filled with tales of gods procreating with human beings and begetting god-men. The belief that God could be incarnate, or that there were sons of God, were common and popular beliefs. For example, the chief god in the Greek pantheon, Zeus, visited the human woman Danae in the form of golden rain and fathered Perseus, a “god-man.” In another tale Zeus is said to have come to the human woman Alcmena, disguised as her husband. Alcmena bore Hercules, another “god-man.” Such tales bear a striking similarity to Trinitarian beliefs of God being begotten as a man. In fact, the early Christian apologist Justin Martyr, considered a saint in the Catholic Church, said the following in response to pagan criticisms that Christianity borrowed from their beliefs about the sons of God:

When we say that the Word, who is our teacher, Jesus Christ the first born of God, was produced without sexual union, and that he was crucified and died and rose again, and ascended to heaven, we propound nothing new or different from what you [pagans] believe regarding those whom you consider sons of Jupiter. [4]

According to ancient Roman myth, Jupiter was the king of all the gods. Here Justin Martyr is telling Roman pagans that what the Christians believe about Jesus being the son of God is nothing different than what they believe about the sons of the god Jupiter. That the Church Fathers’ conception of the Trinity was a combination of Jewish monotheism and pagan polytheism can be seen in the testimony of Gregory of Nyssa, a fourth century bishop who is venerated as a saint in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches. He also happens to be one of the great figures in the history of the philosophical formulation of the doctrine of the Trinity. He wrote:

For the truth passes in the mean between these two conceptions, destroying each heresy, and yet, accepting what is useful to it from each. The Jewish dogma is destroyed by the acceptance of the Word and by belief in the Spirit, while the polytheistic error of the Greek school is made to vanish by the unity of the nature abrogating this imagination of plurality. [5]

The Christian conception of God, argues Gregory of Nyssa, is neither purely the polytheism of the Greeks nor purely the monotheism of the Jews, but rather a combination of both.

Even the concept of God-men who were saviours of mankind was by no means exclusive to Jesus. Long before Jesus was born, it was not uncommon for military men and political rulers to be talked about as divine beings. More than that, they were even treated as divine beings: given temples, with priests, who would perform sacrifices in their honour, in the presence of statues of them. In Athens for example, Demetrios Poliorcetes (Demetrios the Conqueror of Cities, 337–283 BCE) was acclaimed as a divine being by hymn-writers because he liberated them from their Macedonian enemies:

How the greatest and dearest of the gods are present in our city! For the circumstances have brought together Demeter and Demetrios; she comes to celebrate the solemn mysteries of the Kore, while he is here full of joy, as befits the god, fair and laughing. His appearance is solemn, his friends all around him and he in their midst, as though they were stars and he the sun. Hail boy of the most powerful god Poseidon and Aphrodite! For other gods are either far away, or they do not have ears, or they do not exist, or do not take any notice of us, but you we can see present here, not made of wood or stone, but real. So we pray to you: first make peace, dearest; for you have the power… [6]

The Athenians gave Demetrios an arrival that was fit for a god, burning incense on altars and making offerings to their new deified king. It must be pointed out that as time passed by, he did some other things that the Athenians did not approve of, and as a consequence they revoked their adoration of him. It seems that in the days before Jesus, divinity could be stripped away from human beings just as easily as it was granted. Perhaps the best known examples of God-men are the divine honours bestowed upon the rulers of the Roman Empire, starting with Julius Caesar. We have an inscription dedicated to him in 49 BCE discovered in the city of Ephesus, which says this about him [7]:

Descendant of Ares and Aphrodite

The God who has become manifest

And universal savior of human life

So Julius Caesar was believed to be God manifest as man, the saviour of mankind. Sound familiar? Now prior to Julius Caesar, rulers in the city of Rome itself were not granted divine honours. But Caesar himself was – before he died, the senate approved the building of a temple for him, a cult statue, and a priest. Soon after his death, his adopted son and heir, Octavian, promoted the idea that at his death, Caesar had been taken up to heaven and been made a god to live with the gods. There was a good reason that Octavian wanted his adopted father to be declared a God. If his father was God, then what does that make him? This deification of Caesar set the precedent for what was to happen with the emperors, beginning with the first of them, Octavian himself, who became “Caesar Augustus” in 29 BCE. There is an inscription that survives from his lifetime found in the city of Halicarnassus (modern Turkey), which calls Augustus [8]:

…The native Zeus

and Savior of the human race

This is yet another example of a divine saviour of mankind. Now Octavian happened to also be the “son of God” by virtue of his divine father Julius Caesar. In fact Octavian became known as ‘Divi filius’ (“Son of the Divine One”). These, of course, are all titles widely used by Christians today to describe Jesus. We must realise that the early Church did not come up with these titles out of the blue, they are all things said of other men before they were said of Jesus. For early Christians, the idea was not that Jesus was the only person who was ever called such things, this is a misconception. The concept of a divine human being who was the saviour of mankind was a sort of template that was applied to people of great power and authority. We’ve seen that the history of paganism is littered with such examples, and Jesus was just another divine saviour in a long list of divine saviours that had preceded him.

HOW ISLAM ELIMINATED IDOLATRY

Pre-Islamic Arabia was a dreadful place to live in. Slavery was an economic institution with male and female slaves being bought and sold like animals. Illiteracy was common among the Arabs, as were alcoholism and adultery. Those with power and money took advantage of the poor by charging extremely high interest on loans. Arabia was a male-dominated society; men could marry any number of women. When a man died, his son “inherited” all his wives except his own mother. Women had virtually no legal status, for example they had no right to possess property and had little to no inheritance rights. Female infanticide was widely practiced with daughters often being buried alive.

It was not only the rights of human beings that were violated, but also the rights of God. The Arabs were a highly idolatrous people. The idolatry of pre-Islamic Arabia seeped into every facet of day-to-day life. Idols adorned their places of worship. Today the Ka’ba, situated in Saudi Arabia and the holiest place of worship for Muslims, contains neither idols nor images. But before Islam, the pagan Arabs housed 360 different idols in the Ka’ba. Idols were their travel partners whenever they set out on a journey, for the Arabs were very superstitious and believed that they would provide protection in a land plagued by highway robbery and kidnapping. They were also the source of their livelihoods, so central was the Ka’ba to idolatry that pagans from all over Arabia would make pilgrimage there.

In just 23 years, Islam managed to completely reform not only the social ills of Arabian society, but also its idolatry, taking people away from the worship of carved images and stones back to the worship of the One true God of Abraham. This is the testimony of Ja’far bin Abi Talib, who was a contemporary of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Here he informed the king of Abyssinia about the condition of his people and the positive change that Islam brought for them:

O King, we were an uncivilised people, worshipping idols, eating carrion, committing abominations, breaking natural ties, treating guests badly, and our strong devoured our weak. Thus we were until God sent us an apostle whose lineage, truth, trustworthiness, and clemency we know. He summoned us to acknowledge God’s unity and to worship Him and to renounce the stones and images which we and our fathers formerly worshipped. He commanded us to speak the truth, be faithful to our engagements, mindful of the ties of kinship and kind hospitality, and to refrain from crimes and bloodshed. He forbade us to commit abominations and to speak lies, and to devour the property of orphans, to vilify chaste women. He commanded us to worship God alone and not associate anything with Him, and he gave us orders about prayer, almsgiving, and fasting. We confessed his truth and believed in him, and we followed him in what he had brought from God, and we worshipped God without associating aught with Him. [9]

Just how did the Qur’an go about winning the hearts and minds of people, completely transforming every level of Arabian society in such a short space of time? The Qur’an takes into account the psychology of its audience, which is demonstrated in its use of language. In defining the relationship between God and mankind, the Qur’an avoids terms like “Father” when referring to God and “sons of God” when referring to human beings. Such language can be easily misunderstood, especially in the minds of those who come from a background of idolatry and are used to interpreting such language literally. There are even those who might take advantage of such ambiguous language in Scripture, by interpreting it in such a way as to try and justify idolatry. The Qur’an warns mankind against using ambiguity as the foundation for our beliefs:

It is He who has sent this Scripture down to you [Prophet]. Some of its verses are definite in meaning – these are the cornerstone of the Scripture – and others are ambiguous. The perverse at heart eagerly pursue the ambiguities in their attempt to make trouble and to pin down a specific meaning of their own [3:7]

The Qur’an confirms that those who believe that Jesus is the literal Son of God are imitating an ancient pagan concept: “The Christians said, ‘The Messiah is the son of God’: they said this with their own mouths, repeating what earlier disbelievers had said.” [9:30] When the Qur’an defines the relationship between God and mankind, it instead uses terms like Creator when referring to God, and we as the creation. Such terms leave no room for confusion and clearly distinguish between what is God and what is not – everything else. Such careful use of language shows the wisdom of the Qur’an’s source and the insight He has into the human condition. Our Creator knows the inner thoughts of man: “We created man – We know what his soul whispers to him: We are closer to him than his jugular vein.” [50:16]

Source: http://www.islam21c.com