.

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IN THE NAME OF ALLAH, THE BENEFICENT, THE MERCIFUL
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"O you who believe! Be careful of your duty to Allah, and be with the truthful." [Noble Quran 9:119]

"If you obeyed most of those on earth they would mislead you far from Allah's way." [Noble Quran 6:116]

Return to the QURAN only - the complete and final STAND-ALONE Divine Message which also contains the authentic sunnah of the beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAAW)

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I bear witness that NONE is worthy of worship except ALLAH, He has NO partner nor partners, and I bear witness that Muhammad is the slave and Final Messenger of Allah.

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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Does "Santa Claus" really originate from the pious St. Nicholas?

"Santa Claus" has become one of the central themes of modern-day Christmas celebrations.  There are plenty of documentary movies and online articles with stories on the Christmas tradition of "Santa Claus"   But the pagan mythical origin of this tradition is always concealed and altered.

If one reads ancient / medieval history, one will find that artists and thinkers back then portrayed the demon and all evil forces as a heavy-set man with a white beard.  There are actually paintings by Michael Angelo of this robust man in a sledge being drawn by snakes with wings!  The man is performing miracles, he's coming on December 25th which is not the birth date of Essa son of Virgin Maryam and it's got nothing to do with the real Christianity. Instead it originates from the celebration of Saturnalia* observed by pagan Romans.  This heavy-set man is shown as representing riotous fun and drunken revelry.  So what happens in the Christmas season today?   People are not even thinking of Prophet Essa, son of Virgin Maryam.   Most of them are thinking of getting drunk.  Even Christmas puddings, cakes and pies are laced with wine or rum.  That represents the spirit of the season.  This riotous occasion that went on during this season in ancient Rome, went so far that after the spread of Christianity the Christian church actually banned it.   The church of England according to several historical sources prohibited it until the year 1647.   Yes!  It was prohibited to celebrate Christmas because they saw Christmas as being a purely pagan holiday with too much drunkenness and debauchery.  This was an official position taken by the church of England up to the 17th century when it was dominated by the Puritans.  

Then later on, what actually happened was that a name was super imposed.  That name was St. Nicholas.    According to some Christian reports, St. Nicholas was a bishop who lived in the 4th century in Asia minor now known as Turkey.  He was supposed to be a very thin man who spent most of his time in prayer and fasting and he loved children.  He is reported spending a lot of time dealing with children.   His name was imposed on that day known as "Christmas" and thus St. Nicholas or St. Nick comes into the position of being the man of that day. 

Modern documentaries and articles on Santa Claus only go up to St. Nicholas to trace its origins.  They conveniently stay silent on what went on prior to Nicholas.

There's also another concept that goes even deeper, that is, St. Nicholas himself is supposed to be coming from the story of the wolves in the Celtic or Scandinavian regions.  In the folklore of this region, the name Nick or Nicker was supposed to be a demon - the demon of the North.  He was known as the evil spirit of the North .. based on the name of Odin, the evil principle.  For many generations people in Germany and other neighboring countries in Northern Europe looked upon this cult as a force of evil.  Parents used this cult image to prevent their children from staying outdoor saying "don't go out or else St. Nick will capture you, put you in his bag and take you away."   St. Nick or Nicholas was used as a very negative and frightening tale.   In the Christian bible, Isaiah, in chapter 14:13, the devil is known as the prince of darkness and it's portrayed that the seat of power of his evil was somewhere in the North.  So, when the Germans depicted this character, Nichols or pels Nichol (which in German means fairy-devil), they described him as man in a red fur coat as the essence of evil with his base in the North.   Thus, the church of England asserted  that this celebration could not go on and this rule lasted up to the 17th century.  That's because the  Christmas occasion actually became the time of evil.  It was the time of belief in Saturnalia*.

Because of the ban implemented by the church of England, this occasion with its loud celebrations and merriment was shifted to "New Year's Eve" which too has a tale of its own filled with pagan origins.

However, the concept of Christmas on December 25th returned later with dozens more fabrications and fantasies.  Briefly put, not only the date, but the large majority of Christmas symbols also include pagan rituals. Christmas largely comprises of nature worshiping with "Christmas trees, hollies, wreaths" etc. a typically pagan practice.

Today, the children are taught that this 300 pound man, Santa Claus or St. Nicholas, will come down the chimney on Christmas eve wearing red and white and put gifts for them under the Christmas tree and then fly off into the night.  The poor parents who sweat and toil all year to be able to afford these gifts for their children get no credit at all.  Many kids are raised with this belief.  Many of them also know they're being duped and they often sneak into their living rooms to see their parents putting presents around the tree on the night of December 24th.  The knowledge of this hoax is also more or less a part of the celebration. It's condoned by the usual idea which people babble, "well it's Christmas, don't you want the children to have some fun?"   But the point is, what are these parents and the society teaching their children .. a tradition based on falsehood that goes on from generation to generation?  Having fun is perfectly okay, but it ought not to be based on ideas that alter the truth and distort principles.   They hardly realize that they are using the name of Jesus, son of Virgin Maryam, who was a messenger of Allah Almighty, and associating it with false ideas and mere folklore.  Not just that , but they are using the name of the messenger of Allah and associating it with a character which has for long been recognized in mythical tradition as the devil.  This devil has now taken over the Christmas season which is also falsely assumed as the birth date of Jesus, son of Virgin Maryam.  How disrespectful and depraved traditions can be!

Not to mention, the passage of time has also turned this tradition as a symbol of materialism when one needs to spend and buy presents and cards not just for family but for cousins, aunts, uncles, friends, colleagues and acquaintances and by the time the season is over, everyone is neck deep in debts .. much to the pleasure of the banks and credit card centers. 

So, where is the thought of Jesus?  You get drunk, you fight, you lose the bulk of your savings, you are in debt for six months or more, the stores raise their prices and the business sector carefully monitors the profits of the retailers.  On the other hand, Prophet Jesus was a very humble man who had not more than a few pairs of ordinary clothes to wear.  He was a very simple person, eating very simple food, fasting most of the time, and always striving to work in accordance with the principles of the Divine Power.  Jesus, son of Virgin Maryam, was a strict Monotheist.   Associating him with pagan ideas as the so-called Christians do today is gross on their part!

To conclude, we can clearly see what's going on.  By now, in the third millennium, there are two streams - a stream of polytheism and a stream of Monotheism.   Unfortunately, since most humans are far more readily attracted to evil & falsehood than righteousness & truth, the stream of polytheism (along with its materialism) has taken over the truth of Monotheism.  


* Definition of Saturnalia:
Roman pagans first introduced the holiday of Saturnalia, a week long period of lawlessness celebrated between December 17-25.  During this period, Roman courts were closed, and Roman law dictated that no one could be punished for damaging property or injuring people during the weeklong celebration.  The festival began when Roman authorities chose “an enemy of the Roman people” to represent the “Lord of Misrule.”  Each Roman community selected a victim whom they forced to indulge in food and other physical pleasures throughout the week.  At the festival’s conclusion, December 25th, Roman authorities believed they were destroying the forces of darkness by brutally murdering this innocent man or woman.
          

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Dream and its connection with reality

When I was in college with psychology as one of my majors, our psychology lecturer (though a Muslim) mentioned that from the psychological view point, dreams had no connections with reality.  But we know according to certain information given in the Noble Quran that dreams do at times connote to reality or are symbolic of some future event.  For instance, the dream of Prophet Joseph mentioned at the beginning of Surah Yusuf (12:4) is an indication of his wisdom, quote - "When Joseph said unto his father: O my father! Lo! I saw in a dream eleven planets and the sun and the moon, I saw them prostrating themselves unto me."   Later in life, Prophet Joseph's perseverance, wisdom and insight were the causes of his success amidst very difficult circumstances as we've read in Surah Yusuf.   Thus, this dream as mentioned in Verse 12:4 was a harbinger of what lay ahead of him in his life. 

It's not surprising for psychologists to refute the concept of dreams carrying connotations of the future.   Like all sciences, the science of the mind too has its boundaries.  It can research and analyze only the earthly and perceptible aspects of the mind.  Though this perceptible sphere might be wide enough to study from the human perspective, the reality of the human mind goes farther and deeper into the spiritual sphere which doesn't give access to psychology just as science of the universe can only penetrate and read the physical aspects of the cosmos, not the spiritual ones.  Similarly, medical science can grasp many intricate details of human and animal physiology but it cannot answer a single question about the soul. 


In keeping with the same law of the unseen being beyond the bounds of scientific analysis, though psychology has acquired immense expertise in researching earthly aspects of the human mind including its various neurological factors, it has no idea of the interaction between the human mind and the unseen.  

Psychology has also come up with some remarkable findings on the perception of various animals involving their responses to occurrences around them such as pets recognizing their names, dogs being aggressive toward strangers in their homes and their unconditional love for their masters, cats acquiring a sense of belonging to the place they live in etc. etc.  But, phenomena such as dogs predicting epileptic seizures, wild animals being capable of sensing approaching earthquakes & tornadoes etc. are aspects of the unseen concerning the minds of animals which psychologists haven't been able to confirm inspite of extensive research.

Mostly, dreams are simply jumbled up thoughts that get cramped in our conscious or sub-conscious minds as an aftermath of the experiences we go through in our daily lives.  But suddenly we might experience an unusual dream that feels different from the rest and has no connections with our thoughts or experiences .. sometimes it can even have a clear connection with some future incident in our lives.  This can only be explained by God Almighty, not by the psychologists.  If psychologists try to explain it, their explanation will be based on the perspective of their earthly study which isn't broad enough to cover the unseen.  Thus, psychological interpretations on facts beyond their boundaries can only comprise of presumptions or guesswork that cannot take the place of truth.

Something else worth keeping in mind.   On those occasions when a dream does apparently signify something real in life, it's never that direct.  It almost always comes as something symbolic which, only if reflected upon, can be connected with that future event.   For example, one might suddenly see in a dream that one's home has been robbed and ransacked.  They'll wake up the next morning and forget about it.  Then, later in the evening or the next morning they may get the devastating news that a parent of theirs has passed away which might shatter their lives for years to come.  Thus, seeing something unusual and negative as their home being physically ravaged in a dream can be an indication of the emotional devastation that is to follow.  Only Allah Almighty knows the final truth about all similar events/interpretations, but such a perception as described is certainly a possibility.

Similarly, the example of Verse 12:4 is a very apt one.   The future success of Prophet Yusuf is portrayed in a very subtle manner, in that, the reference is allegorical which one can grasp only after putting aside all skepticism and being focused on the truth about the flawless principles of the Divine Power.

The downside is that the human mind lacks diversity of thoughts with plenty of inflexibility.  There are very few accomplished modern researchers who would be brave enough to admit that whatever they know is very little compared to what they do not know .. and might never know.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Conquest of Makhah - the only bloodless conquest in world history

How did it begin?
The event that directly led to the conquest of Makkah was the breaking of the truce of Hudaybiyah by the Qureysh.  The truce of Hudaybiyah was a peace treaty valid for ten years between Qureysh and Medinah when there were to be no wars and no killings.  The treaty was approved in the year 6 A.H. and violated by Qureysh in 8 A.H.  Qureysh attacked and killed many members of a tribe at Makkah which was in alliance with the Prophet.  Soon afterwards, Qureysh became nervous of what it had done.  Abu Sufian of Qureysh was sent to Medinah as emissary to request for the remaining treaty to be renewed and its term prolonged.  Qureysh hoped its emissary would arrive in Medinah before the tidings of the massacre.  But a messenger from the injured tribe arrived in Medinah before Abu Sufian and his embassy was fruitless.


Conquest of Makkah
The Prophet (S) then summoned all Muslims capable of bearing arms and marched to Makkah.  Qureysh was over-awed.  Its cavalry put up a show of defiance before the people of Makkah but to no avail.  It was routed without bloodshed and the Prophet entered his native city as conqueror.  Numerous citizens of Makkah feared vengeance for their past crimes against the Prophet (S) and his followers.  But the Prophet proclaimed general amnesty.  Only a few very notorious criminals were proscribed but only for a while.  They too were soon pardoned.  Abu Sufian was so horrified that he is reported to have fled Makkah.  He returned a fortnight later after being sure that there was general amnesty for all.  He was never harmed after his return even though the crimes by him and his family against Islam were plenty.  In their relief and surprise, the people of Makkah en masse hastened to swear allegiance and embrace Islam.

The Prophet (S) ordered all idols which were within the Kaaba to be destroyed which was the prime goal of his mission as the Messenger of Allah.  Soon after, the Muslim call for prayer was heard at Makkah.

In the same year (8 A.H.) there was an angry gathering of a few pagan tribes to regain the Kaaba.  The Prophet (S) led an army of 12,000 against them.  This was known as the battle of Huneyn which was a difficult one.  In a deep ravine at Huneyn, the Muslim army was ambushed by the enemy.  It was with much effort that they rallied to the Prophet (S) and his bodyguards of the faithfuls who stood firm.  And victory, when it came, was complete.

The Thaqif tribe of the city of Taif was among the enemies of Huneyn.  After the victory at Huneyn, the Muslim army besieged Taif and this city soon surrendered.


Return to Medinah
After the conquest of Makkah and having dealt with the uprising at Huneyn that followed, the Prophet (S) appointed a governor at Makkah and himself returned to Medinah to the boundless joy of the Ansars (the citizens of Medinah) who always loved the Prophet dearly and feared lest, now that he had regained his native city, he might forsake them and make Makkah the capital.  But that was not to happen.  The Prophet (S) was back in Medinah which continued being the capital of the first Islamic state until his death in the year 10 A.H.


The official proclamation concerning the Kaaba
Although Makkah was conquered in 8 A.H., its citizens embraced Islam and the idols had been removed from the Kaaba, the pagans were still allowed to visit the sanctuary and perform in their manner and the Muslims in their manner.

It was a year later in 9 A.H., after the Muslim pilgrims' caravan left Medinah when the Declaration of Immunity (as its called) was promulgated.*  Abu Bakr and Ali led this caravan of pilgrims.  The Prophet (S) sent a copy of the Declaration through Abu Bakr with the instruction that it was to be read to the multitudes in Makkah by Ali.  The Declaration of Immunity announced that after that year (9 A.H.), only Muslims were to make the pilgrimage to the Kaabah, exception being made for those idolaters who had a treaty with the Muslims and who had never broken their treaty nor supported anyone against them.  This condition would be valid until the treaty expired.  This proclamation of Declaration of Immunity marks the end of idol-worship in Arabia.

The 9th year of the Hijrah was one of the busiest for the Prophet (S).  Deputations came to Medinah from all parts of Arabia to swear allegiance to the Prophet and to hear the Noble Quran.  The Prophet (S) had become, in fact, the emperor of Arabia but his way of life remained no different from that of a common citizen of Medinah and just as simple as ever before.

The Prophet (S) made his final pilgrimage to Makkah in the year 10 A.H., often known as the "farewell pilgrimage."  His final sermon was given on this occasion from Mount Arafat in Makkah.  At the end of the discourse, he confirmed with the people of having conveyed Allah's message to them (that is, the Noble Quran).  It was indeed a very moving moment.  Surah An-Nasr (Succour), Chapter 110 of the Quran, which is generally taken to be revealed at Medinah was most likely revealed at Makkah during the final pilgrimage and was one of the final Divine Revelations.  The final verse quite definitely is portion of Verse 5:3 of Surah Al-Maidah, quote: "This day have I perfected your religion for you and completed My favour unto you, and have chosen for you as religion al-Islam."  Soon after the Prophet's arrival in Medinah from his final pilgrimage, he became ill and passed away a few weeks later.  The Prophet (S) is buried in Medinah. 


* Refer to Verses 9:3-7 of Surah At-Taubah and also refer to our post Surah At-Taubah, interpretation of Verses 2 to 14.  Non-Muslims often blatantly misunderstand and misinterpret this topic. 

Friday, December 9, 2011

Hadith Conspiracy and the Distortion of Islam

By Muhammad Asadi

The Quran and the History of Religion
"Humankind were one community, then God sent prophets as bearers of good news and as warners and revealed with them the Book with the truth that it [the Book] might judge between humankind concerning that in which they differed. And only those to whom the book was given differed concerning it, after clear proofs had been given them, through mutual hatred and rivalry." (Noble Quran 2:213)

Muslims have fallen victim to inventions against the word of God, the Quran. These inventions have distorted the way that God sent down via all the prophets. The message that God has been sending down has been the same  throughout history ..   Even though the Quran says in well over 15 places, that it is explained in detail (Verses 6:114 etc.) and contains a full explanation of whatever is needed by a believer (Verse 16:89) and should be enough, Kaafi, for them (Verse 29:51), and contains the complete law of God (Verse 45:18 and 42:13), as against man-made law or Shariah (Koran 42:21), "Muslims" insist that the Koran needs supplements to be understood, and lacks details. This amounts to disbelieving what God himself says in unequivocal terms in the Quran.

The Quran and the Hadith
The Quran states explicitly that the messenger's duty was only to convey (Balagh) the message (Verse 29:18) contained in the Quran (Verse 69:44) and that the Quran was the only Wahi (revelation) given to the Prophet (S) to be conveyed to people (Verse 6:19) by testimony of God Himself. Therefore to follow the words of God in the Quran would be to follow the Messenger. Thus following God is the same as following the Messenger, who only conveyed the Quran (see Verse 4:80)

The inventions against the true words of God revealed to the messengers are the so called "Hadith" (stories about the sayings and doings of the prophets) as narrated by the writers of the Old Testament, the Gospels of Jesus (i.e. the "Hadith" about Jesus), and the various Hadith about Prophet Muhammed contained in the many "extra-Qoranic" books believed in by the Sunni and Shiia schools of thought. People have attributed these things throughout history to the messengers, whereas the messengers could never have said them given the history of the documents and the Criterion (Furqaan) of the Quran (Verse 2:185)

The Quran states:
"Do they not consider the Quran with care, If it had been from anyone other than Allah, it would contain many discrepancies" (4:82).

Any document that claims to be from God but in actuality is not would contain some form of error.  What we see on analysis is that the Hadith attributed to Prophet Muhammad and the Gospels attributed to Jesus fail this test of authenticity. What we also see is the subjectivity of the various Muslims groups. They reject the Gospels of Jesus based on the same test as being corrupt whereas similar defects found in the books of Hadith are overlooked by them and they accept them as being authentic sayings of Muhammed. Let us have a look at the books of Hadith:

Hadith are the various traditions contained in specific books, believed in by the majority of Muslims to be the sayings of the Prophet Muhammed (S). These are extra-Quranic, i.e. from outside the Qoran. They either contradict or add to the Quran.  Muslims often present them as an explanation of the Quran or as an integral part of Islamic law, even though the Quran does not confirm them.

A minority among the Muslims does not accept the various books of Hadith as being an accurate representation of what the Prophet Muhammed said.  They take the Quran as Criterion (Furqaan) according to the Quran's own assertion (Verse 2:185), accepting only those Hadith [tradition or narration attributed to the Prophet] which the Koran confirms and attests in totality. I represent that view in this paper. Opposition to the Hadith and the whole body of extra-Quranic literature as doctrine, has existed from the early days of Islam. This is well documented by Shafi (died 204AH/ 819AD).

The Quran historically predates any written Hadith and there is no mention of Hadith or the Sunnah of the Prophet in what we possess as writings before the third century after the Prophet. Quran and rationality based on its principles formed the basis of religion for first century Muslims.  Thus contrary to being an innovation, following the Quran alone is historically the original Islam and hadith, and other extra-Quranic literature is the innovation introduced in its written form in the 3rd century after the Prophet.

The Hadith and the Gospels
The various books of Hadith that we see in Muslim society today are the same in relation to Prophet Muhammed as the gospels are to Prophet Jesus. They are both similar in that both were complied centuries later  [unlike the Koran which was memorized and written down at the time of its revelation] and they both present no proof of authenticity [unlike the Koran in which numerous verses say: "In this is a sign (or proof)" and then asks you to refute it]. Therefore, objectively speaking, both the Hadith and the gospels do not present any evidence as to be considered a 100% reliable representation of the words of the Prophets, Muhammad and Jesus.  Modern scholarship of both the gospels and the Hadith finds them an unreliable representation of the words of the prophets or even their close companions.

Professor Schacht .. did not believe that the Hadith or the concept of "Sunna of the Prophet" were part of first century Islam.  Shafi [150-204/767-819] introduced them, at the earliest, nearly two hundred years after the death of the Prophet. The Quran states exactly the same. The Quran was the only "Hadith" that was conveyed by the Prophet and formed the guidance for the early Muslim community.

Most Muslims who have taken on themselves the responsibility of teaching Islam to others have themselves abandoned the Quran by upholding Hadith. They say without hesitation: "The majority of Shariah (Law) in Islam is contained outside the Quran, in books of Hadith and fiqh."  Such a saying is a direct attack on the validity of the Quran which claims to contain the complete Islamic law from God. We need to ask ourselves, what kind of submission is this when you are rejecting God's words to follow your traditions.

"...If any do fail to judge by what Allah(God) has sent down (i.e the Quran), they are unbelievers (Kaafiroon)." (Verse 5:45).

"...If any do fail to judge by that which Allah has sent down, they are tyrants (dhilamoon)." (Verse 5:45)

"...If any do fail to judge by that which Allah has sent down, such are evil-livers (fasikoon)." (Verse 5:47)

The Quran reports that the messenger himself will complain to God about his so called followers abandoning the Quran:

"And the messenger says,"O my Lord, my OWN people have forsaken the Quran." (Quran 25:30)

Those Muslims who claim to believe in the Hadith need to be objective and not subjective. They should, as concern for truth demands not change standards while evaluating phenomena. If they reject the Gospels as being contradictions etc. (and they almost all do), then they should also reject the Hadith on the same criteria.  Hadith has the same problems of authenticity as the gospels do. Hadith do not represent the words of Muhammed just like the gospels don't represent the words of Jesus.

Both the Hadith and the Gospels are based on oral traditions that were written down, in the written form that we have today, centuries after the prophets, Muhammed and Jesus.  In recalling events, a gap of even a year can be distorted by memory beyond recognition.  When the gap is of more than a hundred years, and you're narrating something to support a point of view [the Ahl-al Kalam and Mutizila, against the Ahl al Hadith in early Islam or the Judeo Christians against the Pauline Christians in early Christianity], your own as against conflicting points of view, the distortions are immense. Since history shows that eventually the followers of the Hadith and the followers of Pauline Christianity, politically dominated the scene both the teachings of Muhammed and Jesus got distorted. Modern scholarship recognizes this.  Except for the QURAN, we have NO reliable historical record of the message that Prophet Muhammed conveyed.

The Noble Quran captures the similarity of what has happened in the case of both Jesus and Muhammed in this statement:
 
"Is not the time ripe for the hearts of those who believe to submit to Allah's reminder and to the truth which is revealed, that they become not as those who received the scripture of old but the term was prolonged for them and so their hearts were hardened, and many of them are evil-livers."  (57:16). 

"Science of Hadith"
Hadith believing Muslims make big claims on the so-called scientific compilation of Hadith. Let it be clear however, that no matter how "scientific" you are in your compilation of what is false to start with, the compilation cannot make it true. Even the criteria that is presented are un-objective, i.e. the truthfulness of a particular narrator with a story of how truthful he was. To repeat, falsehood is not converted to truth by its "scientific" compilation.

The scientific method demands that "subjective" proof (i.e. how truthful a person was) be ignored and the item tested on objective criteria. What does the content say?
 

The Dilemma
Hadith doctors have traditionally evaluated Hadith on its chain of narrators and its body text, according to their own criteria of what should be correct. However even according to their own standards, they fell into a dilemma.  Some Hadith exist which have according to them a "sound" chain of narrators but they dispute the text of the Hadith.  One example of this and their whole system collapses.  The Quran gives us the standard for judging anything that is presented.  If the Quran confirms it in total, its true.  If the material adds to or contradicts the Quran, its source is not God nor His messenger.

To read the history of Hadith compilation and the verdict of the Noble Quran, continue reading at MUSLIM VILLA.