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Thursday, September 30, 2010

Qur’aan Conference, an American event

Qur’aan Conference, an American event

From times immemorial Religion has been “abused” and “misused” to someone gain, usually for controlling others. Are we going to let that happen? As Americans, we can pull ourselves together and not fall for the temptations to divide ourselves. No American has to live in fear of the other, nor live in anxieties or discomfort.

All our faiths reinforce the creed of "One Nation under God, with liberty and justice for all.” Details at http://www.quraanconference.com/

Mike Ghouse is a speaker on Pluralism and Islam offering pluralistic solutions to the media and public on issues of the day. His blogs and sites are listed at www.MikeGhouse.net

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Interfaith marriages, not religion but submission

Muhammad Irtaza compiled these verses, I have not verfied the authenticity of the verses, but Irtaza in general is reliable. When I check, Iwill take off this note. Mike Ghouse
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According to the Quran, the name of the religion does not matter. The submission to God Alone is the only factor that counts.

[2:111] Some have said, "No one will enter Paradise except Jews or Christians!" Such is their wishful thinking. Say, "Show us your proof, if you are right."

[2:112] Indeed, those who submit themselves absolutely to GOD alone, while leading a righteous life, will receive their recompense from their Lord; they have nothing to fear, nor will they grieve.

[2:113] The Jews said, "The Christians have no basis," while the Christians said, "The Jews have no basis." Yet, both of them read the scripture. Such are the utterances of those who possess no knowledge. GOD will judge them on the Day of Resurrection, regarding their disputes.

God loves righteous people irrespective of the name of their religion:

[5:69] Surely, those who believe, those who are Jewish, the converts, and the Christians; any of them who (1) believe in GOD and (2) believe in the Last Day, and (3) lead a righteous life, have nothing to fear, nor will they grieve.

[22:40] They were evicted from their homes unjustly, for no reason other than saying, "Our Lord is GOD." If it were not for GOD's supporting of some people against others, monasteries, churches, synagogues, and masjids - where the name of GOD is commemorated frequently - would have been destroyed. Absolutely, GOD supports those who support Him. GOD is Powerful, Almighty. God decreed a set of rites for each congregation. The righteous must uphold those rites.

[22:67] For each congregation, we have decreed a set of rites that they must uphold. Therefore, they should not dispute with you. You shall continue to invite everyone to your Lord. Most assuredly, you are on the right path.

A righteous Jew upholds the Torah:

[5:44] We have sent down the Torah, containing guidance and light. Ruling in accordance with it were the Jewish prophets, as well as the rabbis and the priests, as dictated to them in GOD's scripture, and as witnessed by them. Therefore, do not reverence human beings; you shall reverence Me instead. And do not trade away My revelations for a cheap price. Those who do not rule in accordance with GOD's revelations are the disbelievers.

[5:45] And we decreed for them in it that: the life for the life, the eye for the eye, the nose for the nose, the ear for the ear, the tooth for the tooth, and an equivalent injury for any injury. If one forfeits what is due to him as a charity, it will atone for his sins. Those who do not rule in accordance with GOD's revelations are the unjust.

A righteous Christian upholds Gospel:

[5:46] Subsequent to them, we sent Jesus, the son of Mary, confirming the previous scripture, the Torah. We gave him the Gospel, containing guidance and light, and confirming the previous scriptures, the Torah, and augmenting its guidance and light, and to enlighten the righteous.

[5:47] The people of the Gospel shall rule in accordance with GOD's revelations therein. Those who do not rule in accordance with GOD's revelations are the wicked.

A righteous Muslim upholds the Quran:

[5:48] Then we revealed to you this scripture, truthfully, confirming previous scriptures, and superseding them. You shall rule among them in accordance with GOD's revelations, and do not follow their wishes if they differ from the truth that came to you. For each of you, we have decreed laws and different rites. Had GOD willed, He could have made you one congregation. But He thus puts you to the test through the revelations He has given each of you. You shall compete in righteousness. To GOD is your final destiny - all of you - then He will inform you of everything you had disputed.

[5:49] You shall rule among them in accordance with GOD's revelations to you. Do not follow their wishes, and beware lest they divert you from some of GOD's revelations to you. If they turn away, then know that GOD wills to punish them for some of their sins. Indeed, many people are wicked.

A righteous Muslim believes in Torah, and Gospel of Jesus. A righteous Jew or a righteous Christian believes in the message of the Quran:

[2:136] Say, "We believe in GOD, and in what was sent down to us, and in what was sent down to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Patriarchs; and in what was given to Moses and Jesus, and all the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction among any of them. To Him alone we are submitters."

[3:199] Surely, some followers of the previous scriptures do believe in GOD, and in what was revealed to you, and in what was revealed to them. They reverence GOD, and they never trade away GOD's revelations for a cheap price. These will receive their recompense from their Lord. GOD is the most efficient in reckoning.

The majority of those who believe including Jews, Christians and Muslims fall into idol worship. The idol worship is the only unforgivable sin if maintained until death:

[12:106] The majority of those who believe in GOD do not do so without committing idol worship.

[4:48] GOD does not forgive idolatry, but He forgives lesser offenses for whomever He wills. Anyone who sets up idols beside GOD, has forged a horrendous offense.

[4:116] GOD does not forgive idol worship (if maintained until death), and He forgives lesser offenses for whomever He wills. Anyone who idolizes any idol beside GOD has strayed far astray.

Thus the Quran teaches us that the righteous people who submit to God alone and do not pollute their worship with idolatry will achieve salvation, regardless of what they call themselves.

The Quran does not see any problem in the inter-religion marriage as long as it is executed between a believing man and a believing woman. The name of the religion does not count!

[2:221]. Do not marry idolatresses unless they believe; a believing woman is better than an idolatress, even if you like her. Nor shall you give your daughters in marriage to idolatrous men, unless they believe. A believing man .is better than an idolater, even if you like him. These invite to Hell, while GOD invites to Paradise and forgiveness, as He wills. He clarifies His revelations for the people, that they may take heed.

[5:5]. Today, all good food is made lawful for you. The food of the people of the scripture is lawful for you. Also, you may marry the chaste women among the believers, as well as the chaste women among the followers of previous scripture, provided you pay them their due dowries. You shall maintain chastity, not committing adultery, nor taking secret lovers. Anyone who rejects faith, all his work will be in vain, and in the Hereafter he will be .with the losers.

[24:32]. You shall encourage those of you who are single to get married. They may marry the righteous among your male and female servants, if they are poor. GOD will enrich them from His grace. GOD is Bounteous, Knower.

Man and woman need to be believers, need to love each other, and man needs to pay dowry to his bride for the marriage.

[30:21]. Among His proofs is that He created for you spouses from among yourselves, in order to have tranquility and contentment with each other, and He placed in your hearts love and care towards your spouses. In this, there are sufficient proofs for people who think.

[4:4]. You shall give the women their due dowries, equitably. If they willingly forfeit anything, then you may accept it; it is rightfully yours.

[4:24]. Also prohibited are the women who are already married, unless they flee their disbelieving husbands who are at war with you. These are GOD's commandments to you. All other categories are permitted for you in marriage, so long as you pay them their due dowries. You shall maintain your morality, by not committing adultery. Thus, whoever you like among them, you shall pay them the dowry decreed for them. You commit no error by mutually agreeing to any adjustments to the dowry. GOD is Omniscient, Most Wise.

[4:25]. Those among you who cannot afford to marry free believing women, may marry believing slave women. GOD knows best about your belief, and you are equal to one another, as far as belief is concerned. You shall obtain permission from their guardians before you marry them, and pay them their due dowry equitably. They shall maintain moral behavior, by not committing adultery, or having secret lovers. Once they are freed through marriage, if they .commit adultery, their punishment shall be half of that .for the free women. Marrying a slave shall be a last .resort for those unable to wait. To be patient is better for you. GOD is Forgiver, Most Merciful.

Thank you and may God guide me,

Muhammed Irtaza

The true history of the Koran in America

The true history of the Koran in America
By Ted Widmer
September 12, 2010

http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/ideas/articles/2010/09/12/the_true_history_of_the_koran_in_america/?page=full

Nine years later, we are still haunted by Sept. 11, and in some ways it’s getting worse. All summer, a shrill debate over whether to build a mosque near the Ground Zero site was fueled by pundits on the right, who drummed up a chorus of invective that made it impossible to focus on the modest facts of the case. Then in the days leading up to the 11th, a church in Gainesville, Fla., sparked a firestorm — almost literally — by inviting Christians to come by on the anniversary for a ceremonial burning of the Koran. The Dove World Outreach Center — a misnomer if ever there was one — has made a cottage industry of its Islam-bashing, promoting its old-fashioned hate crusade with the most modern weapons — YouTube, podcasts, Facebook, and blogs (“Top Ten Reasons to Burn a Koran”).

Obviously, this was an act of naked self-promotion as much as a coherent statement about religion. Its instigator, the church’s pastor, Terry Jones, based his crusade on a series of mind-bending assumptions, including his belief that Muslims are always in bad moods (he asks, on camera, “Have you ever really seen a really happy Muslim?”). But for all of its cartoonish quality, and despite his cancellation under pressure Thursday, the timing of this media circus has been a disaster for US foreign policy and the troops we ask to support it. At the exact moment that we want to act as the careful steward of peace in the Middle East, minds around the world have been filled with the image of Korans in America being tossed onto pyres.

For better or worse, there is not much anybody can do about religious extremists who offend decency, yet stay within the letter of the law. The same Constitution that confirms the right to worship freely protects the right to worship badly. But September is also the anniversary of the 1787 document that framed our government, and in this season of displaced Tea Party anger, it is worth getting right with our history. There is nothing wrong with the desire to go back to the founding principles that made this nation great — but we should take the time to discover what those principles actually were.

For most Americans, the Koran remains a deeply foreign book, full of strange invocations. Few non-Muslims read it, and most of us carry assumptions about a work of scripture that we assume to be hostile, though it affirms many of the earlier traditions of Christianity and Judaism. Like all works of scripture, it is complex and sometimes contradictory, full of soothing as well as frightening passages. But for those willing to make a genuine effort, there are important areas of overlap, waiting to be found.

As usual, the Founders were way ahead of us. They thought hard about how to build a country of many different faiths. And to advance that vision to the fullest, they read the Koran, and studied Islam with a calm intelligence that today’s over-hyped Americans can only begin to imagine. They knew something that we do not. To a remarkable degree, the Koran is not alien to American history — but inside it.

No book states the case more plainly than a single volume, tucked away deep within the citadel of Copley Square — the Boston Public Library. The book known as Adams 281.1 is a copy of the Koran, from the personal collection of John Adams. There is nothing particularly ornate about this humble book, one of a collection of 2,400 that belonged to the second president. But it tells an important story, and reminds us how worldly the Founders were, and how impervious to the fanaticisms that spring up like dandelions whenever religion and politics are mixed. They, like we, lived in a complicated and often hostile global environment, dominated by religious strife, terror, and the bloodsport of competing empires. Yet better than we, they saw the world as it is, and refused the temptation to enlarge our enemies into Satanic monsters, or simply pretend they didn’t exist.

Reports of Korans in American libraries go back at least to 1683, when an early settler of Germantown, Pa., brought a German version to these shores. Despite its foreign air, Adams’s Koran had a strong New England pedigree. The first Koran published in the United States, it was printed in Springfield in 1806.

Why would John Adams and a cluster of farmers in the Connecticut valley have bought copies of the Koran in 1806? Surprisingly, there was a long tradition of New Englanders reading in the Islamic scripture. The legendary bluenose Cotton Mather had his faults, but a lack of curiosity about the world was not one of them. Mather paid scrupulous attention to the Ottoman Empire in his voracious reading, and cited the Koran often in passing. True, much of it was in his pinched voice — as far back as the 17th century, New England sailors were being kidnapped by North African pirates, a source of never ending vexation, and Mather denounced the pirates as “Mahometan Turks, and Moors and Devils.” But he admired Arab and Ottoman learning, and when Turks in Constantinople and Smyrna succeeded in inoculating patients against smallpox, he led a public campaign to do the same in Boston (a campaign for which he was much vilified by those who called inoculation the “work of the Devil,” merely because of its Islamic origin). It was one of his finer moments.

Other early Americans denounced Islam — surprisingly, Roger Williams, whom we generally hold up as a model of tolerance, expressed the hope that “the Pope and Mahomet” would be “flung in to the Lake that burns with Fire and Brimstone.” But Rhode Island, and ultimately all of New England, proved hospitable to the strangers who came in the wake of the Puritans — notably, the small Jewish congregation that settled in Newport and built Touro Synagogue, America’s oldest. And in theory — if not often in practice (simply because there were so few) — that toleration extended to Muslims as well.

This theory was eloquently expressed around the time the Constitution was written. One of its models was the 1780 Massachusetts Constitution, which John Adams had helped to create, and which, in the words of one of its drafters, Theophilus Parsons, was designed to ensure “the most ample of liberty of conscience” for “Deists, Mahometans, Jews and Christians.”

As the Founders deliberated over what types of people would ultimately populate the strange new country they were creating, they cited Muslims as an extreme of foreign-ness whom it would be important to protect in the future. Perhaps, they daydreamed, a Muslim or a Catholic might even be president someday? Like everything, they debated it. Some disapproved, but Richard Henry Lee insisted that “true freedom embraces the Mahometan and Gentoo [Hindu] as well as the Christian religion.” George Washington went out of his way to praise Muslims on several occasions, and suggested that he would welcome them at Mount Vernon if they were willing to work. Benjamin Franklin argued that Muslims should be able to preach to Christians if we insisted on the right to preach to them. Near the end of his life, he impersonated a Muslim essayist, to mock American hypocrisy over slavery.

Thomas Jefferson, especially, had a familiarity with Islam that borders on the astonishing. Like Adams, he owned a Koran, a 1764 English edition that he bought while studying law as a young man in Williamsburg, Va. Only two years ago, that Koran became the center of a controversy, when the first Muslim ever elected to Congress, Keith Ellison, a Democrat from Minnesota, asked if he could place his hand on it while taking his oath of office — a request that elicited tremendous screeches from the talk radio extremists. Jefferson even tried to learn Arabic, and wrote his Bill for Establishing Religious Freedom to protect “the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and the Mahometan, the Hindoo and infidel of every denomination.”

Jefferson and Adams led many of our early negotiations with the Islamic powers as the United States lurched into existence. A favorable treaty was signed with Morocco, simply because the Moroccans considered the Americans ahl-al-kitab, or “people of the book,” similar to Muslims, who likewise eschewed the idolatry of Europe’s ornate state religions. When Adams was president, a treaty with Tripoli (Libya) insisted that the United States was “not in any sense founded upon the Christian religion” and therefore has “no character of enmity against the laws, religion and tranquility of Mussulmen.”

There was another important group of Americans who read the Koran, not as a legal sourcebook, or a work of exoticism, but as something very different — a reminder of home. While evidence is fragmentary, as many as 20 percent of African-American slaves may have come from Islamic backgrounds. They kept their knowledge of the Koran alive through memory, or chanted suras, or, in rare cases, smuggled copies of the book itself. In the 1930s, when WPA workers were interviewing elderly African-Americans in Georgia’s Sea Islands, they were told of an ancestor named Bilali who spoke Arabic and owned a copy of the Koran — a remarkable fact when we remember that it was a crime for slaves to read. In the War of 1812, Bilali and his fellow Muslims helped to defend America from a British attack, inverting nearly all of our stereotypes in the process.

In 1790, as the last of the original 13 states embraced the Constitution, and the United States finally lived up to its name, George Washington visited that state — unruly Rhode Island — and its Jewish congregation at Newport. The letter he wrote to them afterwards struck the perfect note, and drained much of the antiforeign invective that was already poisoning the political atmosphere, only a year into his presidency. Addressing himself to “the children of the Stock of Abraham” (who, in theory, include Muslims as well as Jews), the president of the United States offered an expansive vision indeed:

“May the children of the Stock of Abraham, who dwell in this land, continue to merit and enjoy the good will of the other Inhabitants; while every one shall sit in safety under his own vine and figtree, and there shall be none to make him afraid.”

For democracy to survive, it required consent; a willingness to surrender some bits of cultural identity to preserve the higher goal of a working community. Washington’s letter still offers a tantalizing prospect, especially as his successor turns from the distracting noise of Gainesville to the essential work of building peace in the Middle East, for all of the children of the Stock of Abraham.

Ted Widmer is the Beatrice and Julio Mario Santo Domingo director and librarian of the John Carter Brown Library at Brown University.

© Copyright 2010 Globe Newspaper Company.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Q3:151 Terror into the hearts of the unbelievers

In Circulation: We will put terror into the hearts of the unbelievers. (3:151)
-- I shall cast terror into the hearts of the infidels. Strike off their heads, strike off the very tips of their tongue

Qur'aan - 3:151

ُلْقِي فِي قُلُوبِ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ الرُّعْبَ بِمَا أَشْرَكُواْ بِاللّهِ مَا لَمْ يُنَزِّلْ بِهِ سُلْطَانًا وَمَأْوَاهُمُ النَّارُ وَبِئْسَ مَثْوَى الظَّالِمِينَ1
Sanulqee fee quloobi allatheena kafaroo alrruAAba bima ashrakoo biAllahi ma lam yunazzil bihi sultanan wamawahumu alnnaru wabisa mathwa alththalimeena

3:151 (Asad) Into the hearts of those who are bent on denying the truth We shall cast dread in return for their ascribing divinity, side by side with God, to other beings - [something] for which He has never bestowed any warrant from on high; [I.e., something which He never permits. The use of the adverb "never" in my rendering is based on the grammatical form lam yunazzil (lit., "He has not been sending down" or "bestowing from on high"), which implies continuity in time.] and their goal is the fire - and how evil that abode of evildoers!
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Mike Ghouse: If you violate certain traffic rules repeatedly you could lose your license, making your life a hell. If you are a repeat offender, you are shut out to prevent you from making others lives hell. Follow the rules, you will be fine.

Under Sharia law, like any other laws, laws are abused. However, a few items in Sharia law need to be updated. Please read on Sharia Law http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mike-ghouse/sharia-law-not-in-america_b_653250.html

Q8:40 - Until idolatry shall cease

In Circulation: Make war on them until idolatry shall cease and God's religion shall reign supreme. (8:40)

Qur'aan - 8:40
وَإِن تَوَلَّوْاْ فَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ مَوْلاَكُمْ نِعْمَ الْمَوْلَى وَنِعْمَ النَّصِيرُ
Wain tawallaw faiAAlamoo anna Allaha mawlakum niAAma almawla waniAAma alnnaseeru

8:40 (Asad) and if they turn away [from righteousness],know that God is your Lord Supreme: [and] how excellent is this Lord Supreme, and how excellent this Giver of Succour!

I will add two more verses as the what is circulated is not in the 8:40, there are many verses like that in circulation.

8:39
وَقَاتِلُوهُمْ حَتَّى لاَ تَكُونَ فِتْنَةٌ وَيَكُونَ الدِّينُ كُلُّهُ لِلّه فَإِنِ انتَهَوْاْ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ بِمَا يَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ
Waqatiloohum hatta la takoona fitnatun wayakoona alddeenu kulluhu lillahi faini intahaw fainna Allaha bima yaAAmaloona baseerun

8:39 (Asad) And fight against them until there is no more oppression and all worship is devoted to God alone. [I.e., until man is free to worship God. Cf. the identical phrase in 2:193, and the corresponding note. Both these passages stress self-defence -in the widest sense of this word -as the only justification of war.] And if they desist-behold, God sees all that they do; [I.e., He knows their motives, and will requite them according to their merits.]

8:41

وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّمَا غَنِمْتُم مِّن شَيْءٍ فَأَنَّ لِلّهِ خُمُسَهُ وَلِلرَّسُولِ وَلِذِي الْقُرْبَى وَالْيَتَامَى وَالْمَسَاكِينِ وَابْنِ السَّبِيلِ إِن كُنتُمْ آمَنتُمْ بِاللّهِ وَمَا أَنزَلْنَا عَلَى عَبْدِنَا يَوْمَ الْفُرْقَانِ يَوْمَ الْتَقَى الْجَمْعَانِ وَاللّهُ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِير
WaiAAlamoo annama ghanimtum min shayin faanna lillahi khumusahu walilrrasooli walithee alqurba waalyatama waalmasakeeni waibni alssabeeli in kuntum amantum biAllahi wama anzalna AAala AAabdina yawma alfurqani yawma iltaqa aljamAAani waAllahu AAala kulli shayin qadeerun

8:41 (Asad) AND KNOW that whatever booty you acquire [in war], one-fifth thereof belongs to God and the Apostle, and the near of kin, and the orphans, and the needy, and the wayfarer.
[According to verse 1 of this surah, "all spoils of war belong to God and the Apostle", i.e., are to be administered by the authorities of an Islamic state in the interests of the common weal. Most of the great Islamic jurists are of the opinion that whereas four-fifths of all spoils may either be distributed among those who actively took part in the war effort or may be otherwise utilized for the welfare of the community, one-fifth must be reserved for the specific purposes enumerated in the above verse, including a share "for God and the Apostle" (which is obviously a metonym for a government that rules in accordance with the laws of the Qur’an and the teachings of God's Apostle); this latter share is to be used for the exigencies of state administration. Since a full discussion of this complex juridical problem would go far beyond the scope of these explanatory notes, the reader is referred, in particular, to Manar X, 4 ff., where the views of the classical exponents of Islamic jurisprudence are summarized. - For the term ibn as-sabil occurring in this verse, see surah 2, note 145. By "the near of kin and the orphans" apparently the relatives of fallen combatants are meant in this context.] [This you must observe] if you believe in God and in what We bestowed from on high upon Our servant on the day when the true was distinguished from the false - the day when the two hosts met in battle. And God has the power to will anything.[Le., "He can grant you victory or can withhold it from you". The battle of Badr is described here as "the day when the true was distinguished from the false" (yawm al-furqan) because on that occasion a small and poorly armed group of believers utterly destroyed an infinitely better equipped army more than three times its number. The revelation referred to in this connection was God's promise of victory, given in verses 12-14 of this surah. (See also note 38 on 2:53.]

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Mike Ghouse - You can pluck a few words and make them sound bad, if that is what your intention is. However, God is about justice, mercy and goodness, you can read it in that light if you so choose.

Q5:51 Do not take Jews or Christians as your friends

A few Muslim scholars from our past have duped us in believe that God is hateful to others... God ain't. God is neither a villain nor a bad guy. God is kind, merciful and just and wants his creation to get along and live in harmony. There are many verses that guide one to be righteous.

We should not accept any translation of Quraan that makes God a villian of his own creation. Those translations reduce him to Rabbul Muslimeen from Aalameen. One has to find the truth on his or her own, what is dished out in the market has marketing feature in it, some one is having some gains in spreading falsities. This and at 59 other verses have been marketed to malign Muslims by the right wingers. Indeed, the right wing Muslims, Christians, Hindus, Jews and Buddhist make it their business to make the others look bad.

In the middle ages, European leaders commissioned a hostile Quraan translation to foster warfare against Muslim invaders. Later, Muslim leaders produced another translation to inflame Muslims against Christians and Jews. The former was done in 1041 to protect the kings and the latter in 1924 to regain the lost Khilafat. Both groups resorted to mistranslating Quraan to produce fear against each other for their own gains; power consolidation.


Normally, I check three verses before and after the given verse to get the full context. Due to time constraints I will do one before and after, and you can check it yourselves.  However, I will warn you, there are two mistranslated versins of Quraan in the market. 


In the middle ages, European leaders commissioned a hostile Quran translation to foster warfare against Muslim invaders. Later, Muslim leaders produced another translation to inflame Muslims against Christians and Jews. The former was done in 1041 to protect the kings and the latter in 1924 to regain the lost Khilafat. Both groups resorted to mistranslating Quraan to produce fear against each other.


In Circulation: Believers, take neither the Jews nor the Christians for your friends. (5:51)


5:50 (Asad) Do they, perchance, desire [to be ruled by] the law of pagan ignorance? [71] But for people who have inner certainty, who could be a better law-giver than God?

[71] By "pagan ignorance" (jahiliyyah) is meant here not merely the time before the advent of the Prophet Muhammad but, in general, a state of affairs characterized by a lack of moral perception and a submission of all personal and communal concerns to the criterion of "expediency" alone: that is, exclusively to the consideration as to whether a particular aim or action is useful or damaging (in the short-term, practical sense of these words) to the interests of the person concerned or of the community to which he belongs. Inasmuch as this "law of expediency" is fundamentally opposed to the concepts of morality preached by every higher religion, it is described in the Qur'an as "the law (hukm) of pagan ignorance".(Quran Ref: 5:50 )

Mike's note: The word Pagan is not a derogatory word, although it was used in that sense. Paganism is just another way of appreciating the divine like Judaism, Hinduism, Christianity and Islam. A few in the religion business from each one of these religious groups will not agree to it, but the public, that makes you and I, have no problems with it. 




Qur'aan - 5:51


يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ لاَ تَتَّخِذُواْ الْيَهُودَ وَالنَّصَارَى أَوْلِيَاء بَعْضُهُمْ أَوْلِيَاء بَعْضٍ وَمَن يَتَوَلَّهُم مِّنكُمْ فَإِنَّهُ مِنْهُمْ إِنَّ اللّهَ لاَ يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الظَّالِمِينَ
Ya ayyuha allatheena amanoo la tattakhithoo alyahooda waalnnasara awliyaa baAAduhum awliyao baAAdin waman yatawallahum minkum fainnahu minhum inna Allaha la yahdee alqawma alththalimeena


5:51 (Asad) O YOU who have attained to faith! Do not take the Jews and the Christians for your allies: they are but allies of one another and whoever of you allies himself with them becomes, verily, one of them; behold, God does not guide such evildoers. 


[According to most of the commentators (e.g., Tabari), this means that each of these two communities extends genuine friendship only to its own adherents-i.e., the Jews to the Jews, and ,the Christians to the Christians-and cannot, therefore, be expected to be really friendly towards the followers of the Qur'an. See also 8:73, and the corresponding note] 


[Lit., "the evildoing folk": i.e., those who deliberately sin in this respect. As regards the meaning of the "alliance" referred to here, see 3:28, and more particularly 4:139 and the corresponding note, which explains the reference to a believer's loss of his moral identity if he imitates the way of life of, or-in Qur'anic terminology-"allies himself" with, non-Muslims. However, as has been made abundantly clear in 60:7-9 (and implied in verse 57 of this surah), this prohibition of a "moral alliance" with non-Muslims does not constitute an injunction against normal, friendly relations with such of them as are well-disposed towards Muslims. It should be borne in mind that the term wali has several shades of meaning: "ally", "friend", "helper", "protector", etc. The choice of the particular term - and sometimes a -combination of two termms-is always dependent on the context]




5:52 (Asad) And yet thou canst see how those in whose hearts there is disease vie with one another for their good will, [74] saying [to themselves], "We fear lest fortune turn against us." But God may well bring about good fortune [for the believers] or any [other] event of His own devising, [75] whereupon those [waverers] will be smitten with remorse for the thoughts which they had secretly harboured within themselves-

[74] Lit., "vie with one another concerning them" - the pronoun referring to the hostile Jews and Christians, for whose good-will the hypocrites within the Muslim community vie with one another by trying to imitate their way of life.

[75] Lit., "from Himself". Some of the commentators assume that the word fath (lit., "victory" or "triumph") occurring in this sentence is a prophetic reference to the conquest of Mecca by the Muslims. This assumption, however, cannot be correct since Mecca was already in the hands of the Muslims at the time of the revelation of this surah. Hence, the term fath has obviously been used here in its primary significance of "opening" - namely, the opening of good fortune. (Cf. the idiomatic expression futiha 'ala fulan, "so-and-so became fortunate" or "possessed of good fortune", mentioned in Zamakhshari's Asas and in the Taj al’ Arus.) The "other event of God's own devising" may conceivably refer to a divine punishment of the hypocrites apart from the good fortune that might be in store for the true believers.(Quran Ref: 5:52 )


# # #


Mike Ghouse - There has been enormous amount of discussion on this verse. It is not a commandment, but an expression of human nature, that the birds of the same feather flock together. You do not associate with evil doers no matter who they are. Unfortunately, some Muslims have come to believe that "evil doers" are Jews or Christians, reinforced by the injustice meted out to the Palestinians or what happened in Bosnia and Crusades still linger on their minds as Holocaust will continue to linger on our psyche.


They forget that Saddam Hussain was an evil doer killing thousands of Kurds, the Muslims in Sudan are evil doers killing millions, who are Muslims as well. Just as the many a Christians believe that every one but them will go to hell, a segment of Muslims believe in that, both groups making a villain out of merciful God. God was clear in 43:18 that the best among us is the one who does good, and the purpose of diversity is for us to know each other.


Misinterpretations like the above give value to the idea of Your God, his God and my God.

Q48:29 Ruthless to unbelievers

Mohammed is God's apostle. Those who follow him are ruthless to the unbelievers but merciful to one another. (48:29).

Qur'aan - 48:29

مُّحَمَّدٌ رَّسُولُ اللَّهِ وَالَّذِينَ مَعَهُ أَشِدَّاء عَلَى الْكُفَّارِ رُحَمَاء بَيْنَهُمْ تَرَاهُمْ رُكَّعًا سُجَّدًا يَبْتَغُونَ فَضْلًا مِّنَ اللَّهِ وَرِضْوَانًا سِيمَاهُمْ فِي وُجُوهِهِم مِّنْ أَثَرِ السُّجُودِ ذَلِكَ مَثَلُهُمْ فِي التَّوْرَاةِ وَمَثَلُهُمْ فِي الْإِنجِيلِ كَزَرْعٍ أَخْرَجَ شَطْأَهُ فَآزَرَهُ فَاسْتَغْلَظَ فَاسْتَوَى عَلَى سُوقِهِ يُعْجِبُ الزُّرَّاعَ لِيَغِيظَ بِهِمُ الْكُفَّارَ وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ مِنْهُم مَّغْفِرَةً وَأَجْرًا عَظِيمًا

Muhammadun rasoolu Allahi waallatheena maAAahu ashiddao AAala alkuffari ruhamao baynahum tarahum rukkaAAan sujjadan yabtaghoona fadlan mina Allahi waridwanan seemahum fee wujoohihim min athari alssujoodi thalika mathaluhum fee alttawrati wamathaluhum fee alinjeeli kazarAAin akhraja shatahu faazarahu faistaghlatha faistawa AAala sooqihi yuAAjibu alzzurraAAa liyagheetha bihimu alkuffara waAAada Allahu allatheena amanoo waAAamiloo alssalihati minhum maghfiratan waajran AAatheeman


48:29 (Asad) MUHAMMAD is God’s Apostle; and those who are [truly] with him are firm and unyielding [This composite gives, I believe, the full meaning of the term ashidda (sing. shadid) in the above context.] towards all deniers of the truth, [yet] full of mercy towards one another.
[Lit., "among themselves". Cf. 5:54 - "humble towards the believers, proud towards all who deny the truth".]

Thou canst see them bowing down, pros­trating themselves [in prayer], seeking favour with God and [His] goodly acceptance: their marks are on their faces, traced by prostration. [The infinitive noun sujud ("prostration") stands here for the innermost consummation of faith, while its "trace" signifies the spiritual reflection of that faith in the believer’s manner of life and even in his outward aspect. Since the "face" is the most expressive part of man’s personality, it is often used in the Qur’an in the sense of one’s "whole being".]

This is their parable in the Torah as well as their parable in the Gospel:
[Regarding the significance of the term Injil ("Gospel") as used in the Qur’an, see the surah 3 note 4] [they are] like a seed that brings forth its shoot, and then He strengthens it, so that it grows stout, and [in the end] stands firm upon its stem, delighting the sowers. [Thus will God cause the believers to grow in strength,] so that through them He might confound the deniers of the truth. [Lit., "infuse with wrath".] [But] unto such of them as may [yet] attain to faith and do righteous deeds, God has promised forgiveness and a reward supreme.[Whereas most of the classical commentators understand the above sentence as alluding to believers in general, Razi relates the pronoun minhum ("of them" or "among them") explicitly to the deniers of the truth spoken of in the preceding sentence - i.e., to those of them who might yet attain to faith and thus achieve God’s forgiveness: a promise which was fulfilled within a few years after the revelation of this verse, inasmuch as most of the Arabian enemies of the Prophet embraced Islam, and many of them became its torchbearers. But in a wider sense, this divine promise remains open until Resurrection Day (Tabari), relating to everybody, at all times and in all cultural environments, who might yet attain to the truth and live up to it.]
# # #

Mike Ghouse: Those who follow the rules for the general wellbeing and goodness of the society, God has rewards for them, those who violate the rules, they get traffic tickets or go to jail depending on the severity of the violation.

Indeed, the Talibans and their likes interpret "those who are good" as their own private club, where as Quraan has been clear that no one needs to worry about earning God's grace whether they are Jews, Christians or others. As Muslims we have a monumental task to let other Muslims understand the universality of Qur'aan; it is about good and bad and not Muslims and non-Muslims.

Q4:101 Unbelievers are inveterate enemies

In Circulation: The unbelievers are your inveterate enemy. (4:101)

Quraan: 4:101

وَإِذَا ضَرَبْتُمْ فِي الأَرْضِ فَلَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَن تَقْصُرُواْ مِنَ الصَّلاَةِ إِنْ خِفْتُمْ أَن يَفْتِنَكُمُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ إِنَّ الْكَافِرِينَ كَانُواْ لَكُمْ عَدُوًّا مُّبِينًا

Waitha darabtum fee alardi falaysa AAalaykum junahun an taqsuroo mina alssalati in khiftum an yaftinakumu allatheena kafaroo inna alkafireena kanoo lakum AAaduwwan mubeenan

Muhammad Asad

4:101 (Asad) AND WHEN you go forth [to war] on earth, you will incur no sin by shortening your prayers [127] if you have reason to fear that those who are bent on denying the truth might suddenly fall upon you: [128] for, verily, those who deny the truth are your open foes.


Note 127 (Quran Ref: 4:101 )
Lit., "the prayer": a reference to the five obligatory daily prayers - at dawn, noon, afternoon, after sunset and late in the evening - which may be shortened and combined (the noon prayer with that of the afternoon, and the sunset prayer with that of the late evening) if one is travelling or in actual danger. While the extension of this permission to peaceful travel has been authorized by the Prophet's sunnah, the Qur’an mentions it only in connection with war situations; and this justifies the interpolation, in the opening sentence, of the words "to war". The prayer described in the next verse - with the congregation praying in shifts - is called salat al-khawf ("prayer in danger").(Quran Ref: 4:101 )


Note 128 (Quran Ref: 4:101 )
Lit., "might cause you an affliction" - implying, according to almost all the commentators, a sudden attack.(Quran Ref: 4:101 )

Mike Ghouse : self explanatory

Q8:55 Vilest animals are disbelievers

In circulation: Surely the vilest of animals in Allah’s sight are those who disbelieve. (8.55)

Quraan: 8:55

إِنَّ شَرَّ الدَّوَابِّ عِندَ اللّهِ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ فَهُمْ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ
Inna sharra alddawabbi AAinda Allahi allatheena kafaroo fahum la yuminoona

Muhammad Asad

8:55 (Asad) Verily, the vilest creatures in the sight of God are those who are bent on denying the truth and therefore do not believe.
Asad (8,58)
[58]


Note 58 (Quran Ref: 8:55 )
Cf. verse 22 of this surah, where the same epithet is applied to human beings "who do not use their reason". In the present instance, it should be noted, the particle fa at the beginning of the phrase fa-hum Ia yu'minun has the meaning of "and therefore" ("and therefore they do not believe"): thus showing that lack of belief in spiritual verities is a consequence of one's being "bent on denying the truth". Expressed in positive terms, this amounts to the statement that belief in any ethical proposition depends on one's readiness to consider it on its merits and to admit the truth of whatever one's mind judges to be in conformity with other-empirically or intuitively established-truths. As regards the expression alladhina kafaru, the use of the past tense is meant here, as so often in the Qur’an, to stress the element of intention, and is, therefore, consistently rendered by me - wherever the context warrants it - as "those who are bent on denying the truth" (see also surah 2, note 6).

# # #

Mike Ghouse: The vilest citizens in your city are those who are bent on violating the traffic rules, those who do not believe in the laws of the land. Those who drink and drive make hell for themselves and for others.

Q98:6 Pagans shall burn in hell

In circulation - "The unbelievers among the people of the book and the pagans shall burn forever in the fire of Hell. They are the vilest of all creatures. (98.6)"

Qur'aan - 98:6

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ أَهْلِ الْكِتَابِ وَالْمُشْرِكِينَ فِي نَارِ جَهَنَّمَ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا أُوْلَئِكَ هُمْ شَرُّ الْبَرِيَّةِ
Inna allatheena kafaroo min ahli alkitabi waalmushrikeena fee nari jahannama khalideena feeha olaika hum sharru albariyyati

98:6 (Asad) Verily, those who [despite all evidence] are bent on denying the truth
Asad(98,8)

[8] - [be they] from among the followers of earlier revelation or from among those who ascribe divinity to aught beside God - will find themselves in the fire of hell, therein to abide: they are the worst of all creatures.

###

Mike Ghouse: It is for those who are bent on denying the truth. We have one constitution to follow in the United States or any nation and we follow that, those who do not follow the one, obviously are creating "hell for others". We cannot have two traffic speeds on the same stretch of the road. Burning in hell is the anguish and chaos that comes with not following a system.

Q3:110 Noblest community

In circulation - “You are the noblest community ever raised up for mankind.” (3:110)

Qur'aan - 3:10

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ لَن تُغْنِيَ عَنْهُمْ أَمْوَالُهُمْ وَلاَ أَوْلاَدُهُم مِّنَ اللّهِ شَيْئًا وَأُولَـئِكَ هُمْ وَقُودُ النَّارِ

Inna allatheena kafaroo lan tughniya AAanhum amwaluhum wala awladuhum mina Allahi shayan waolaika hum waqoodu alnnari

3:110 (Asad) YOU ARE indeed the best community that has ever been brought forth for [the good of] mankind: you enjoin the doing of what is right and forbid the doing of what is wrong, and you believe in God. Now if the followers of earlier revelation had attained to [this kind of] faith, it would have been for their own good; [but only few] among them are believers, while most of them are iniquitous: -

# ##

Mike Ghouse - What do you call that? Good citizenship!

Q3:85 Other than Islam

Verse 3:85 is one of the most quoted verses,  and there are two different understandings of it, depending on your view of Islam between a limited exclusive  religion for Muslims or an open religion as wide as the milky way for humanity. URL : http://quraan-today.blogspot.com/2010/09/q385-other-than-islam.html

IN CIRCULATION BY INSECURE  MUSLIMS

Qur'aan - 3:85 - In circulation among Muslims: "If anyone desires a religion other than Islam, never will it be accepted of him." (3: 85)


وَمَن يَبْتَغِ غَيْرَ الإِسْلاَمِ دِينًا فَلَن يُقْبَلَ مِنْهُ وَهُوَ فِي الآخِرَةِ مِنَ الْخَاسِرِينَ
Waman yabtaghi ghayra alislami deenan falan yuqbala minhu wahuwa fee alakhirati mina alkhasireena

Also 3:64 - http://quraan-today.blogspot.com/2015/03/364-other-than-your-religion-related.html

THE UNIVERSAL MEANING OF THE VERSE


The above understanding is based on making God to play the role of good-cop and bad-cop which is funny, as God does not play games. The word Islam is the general meaning for those who subscribe to the the system of harmonious living. Here are a few translations from the most accepted translators of Quran, that differ from the circulated version above.  The usage of Word Allah is not about a specific God, but simply a name of God.


3:85 (Asad) For, if one goes in search of a religion other than self-surrender unto God, it will never be accepted from him, and in the life to come he shall be among the lost.

3:85 (Pickthall) And whoso seeketh as religion other than the Surrender (to Allah) it will not be accepted from him, and he will be a loser in the Hereafter. 

3:85 (Y. Ali) If anyone desires a religion other than Islam (submission to Allah., never will it be accepted of him; and in the Hereafter He will be in the ranks of those who have lost (All spiritual good).
.......

The above scholars have had full understanding of Quran. They have studied verses that guarantee God's grace to Jews, Christians and others, if they are good to fellow beings, where as the insecure Muslims chose to ignore the other verses of Quran. Islam is not a private club determined to keep people out of Paradise, Islam guides all humanity to subscribe to justice so all of us can live in harmony in that elusive paradise.

My understanding of Islam is, it is a way of life, indeed it is a way of life perfected to create cohesive societies where every thing functions in relative harmony.

The general meaning of Islam is subscribing to the system that assure a smooth functioning of the society, and the bottom line is the behavior that creates such societies.  It is indeed the behavior, the key word is “self-surrender unto the creator”. Any one who follows the laws of goodness (surrender) to keep peace in the society is following the deen, the dharma, the righteous path to sustain peace.


Technically it is submission to the will of God; which is caring for life and environment and maintaining the balance within oneself and with others, it establishes ones duty towards self and towards God's whole creation.

Politically, it is a private club bent on individuals and self appointed guardians of faith deciding who is in and who is out of faith, based on their narrow understanding of the faith.

God assures the humanity of this:

[2:62] Surely, those who believe, those who are Jewish, the Christians, and the converts; anyone who (1) believes in GOD, and (2) believes in the Last Day, and (3) leads a righteous life, will receive their recompense from their Lord. They have nothing to fear, nor will they grieve.


[2:136] Say, "We believe in GOD, and in what was sent down to us, and in what was sent down to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Patriarchs; and in what was given to Moses and Jesus, and all the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction among any of them. To Him alone we are submitters."

[22:17] Those who believe, those who are Jewish, the converts, the Christians, the Zoroastrians, and the idol worshipers, GOD is the One who will judge among them on the Day of Resurrection. GOD witnesses all things.

[4:152] As for those who believe in GOD and His messengers, and make no distinction among them, He will grant them their recompense. GOD is Forgiver, Most Merciful.



Finding the truth is our own responsibility; we are accountable for our actions as individuals. God assures that those who are responsible to preserve peaceful societies and work on maintaining harmony between life and environment, they will earn his grace. No matter what faith you follow.

Islam is meant to be a universal faith and created one world under one god, and not the political one to keep every one out of it. 


Mike Ghouse
http://mikeghouse.net/MuslimSpeaker.MikeGhouse.asp


 

Q3:19 What is acceptable to God

In Circulation -“ the (only) religion (acceptable) before God is Islam." (3:19)

Qur'aan 3:19

إِنَّ الدِّينَ عِندَ اللّهِ الإِسْلاَمُ وَمَا اخْتَلَفَ الَّذِينَ أُوْتُواْ الْكِتَابَ إِلاَّ مِن بَعْدِ مَا جَاءهُمُ الْعِلْمُ بَغْيًا بَيْنَهُمْ وَمَن يَكْفُرْ بِآيَاتِ اللّهِ فَإِنَّ اللّهِ سَرِيعُ الْحِسَاب
Inna alddeena AAinda Allahi alislamu wama ikhtalafa allatheena ootoo alkitaba illa min baAAdi ma jaahumu alAAilmu baghyan baynahum waman yakfur biayati Allahi fainna Allaha sareeAAu alhisabi


3:19 (Asad) Behold, the only [true] religion in the sight of God is [man's] self-surrender unto Him; and those who were vouchsafed revelation aforetime [12] took, out of mutual jealousy, to divergent views [on this point] only after knowledge [thereof] had come unto them. [13] But as for him who denies the truth of God's messages - behold, God is swift in reckoning!

Note 12 (Quran Ref: 3:19 )

Most of the classical commentators are of the opinion that the people referred to are the followers of the Bible, or of parts of it - i.e., the Jews and the Christians. It is, however, highly probable that this passage bears a wider import and relates to all communities which base their views on a revealed scripture, extant in a partially corrupted form, with parts of it entirely lost.
Note 13 (Quran Ref: 3:19 )

I.e., all these communities at first subscribed to the doctrine of God's oneness and held that man's self-surrender to Him (islam in its original connotation) is the essence of all true religion. Their subsequent divergencies were an outcome of sectarian pride and mutual exclusiveness.

# ##
Mike Ghouse: The key word is “self-surrender unto the creator”. Any one who follows the laws of goodness (surrender) to keep peace in the society is following the deen, the dharma, the righteous path to sustain peace. Jesus also said those who surrender are Muslims in the Aramaic version, meaning submission to the will (caring for his creation) of the creator.

Muslims for Freedom of Speech

A DEFENSE OF FREE SPEECH BY AMERICAN AND CANADIAN MUSLIMS

We, the undersigned, unconditionally condemn any intimidation or threats of violence directed against any individual or group exercising the rights of freedom of religion and speech; even when that speech may be perceived as hurtful or reprehensible.

We are concerned and saddened by the recent wave of vitriolic anti-Muslim and anti-Islamic sentiment that is being expressed across our nation.

We are even more concerned and saddened by threats that have been made against individual writers, cartoonists, and others by a minority of Muslims. We see these as a greater offense against Islam than any cartoon, Qur’an burning, or other speech could ever be deemed.

We affirm the right of free speech for Molly Norris, Matt Stone, Trey Parker, and all others including ourselves.

As Muslims, we must set an example of justice, patience, tolerance, respect, and forgiveness.

The Qur’an enjoins Muslims to:
* bear witness to Islam through our good example (2:143);
* restrain anger and pardon people (3:133-134 and 24:22);
* remain patient in adversity (3186);
* stand firmly for justice (4:135);
* not let the hatred of others swerve us from justice (5:8);
* respect the sanctity of life (5:32);
* turn away from those who mock Islam (6:68 and 28:55);
* hold to forgiveness, command what is right, and turn away from the ignorant (7:199);
* restrain ourselves from rash responses (16:125-128);
* pass by worthless talk with dignity (25:72); and
* repel evil with what is better (41:34).

Islam calls for vigorous condemnation of both hateful speech and hateful acts, but always within the boundaries of the law. It is of the utmost importance that we react, not out of reflexive emotion, but with dignity and intelligence, in accordance with both our religious precepts and the laws of our country.

We uphold the First Amendment of the US Constitution and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Both protect freedom of religion and speech, because both protections are fundamental to defending minorities from the whims of the majority.

We therefore call on all Muslims in the United States, Canada and abroad to refrain from violence. We should see the challenges we face today as an opportunity to sideline the voices of hate—not reward them with further attention—by engaging our communities in constructive dialogue about the true principles of Islam, and the true principles of democracy, both of which stress the importance of freedom of religion and tolerance.


SIGNATORIES:

Prof. Hassan Abbas, Quaid-i-Azam Chair, South Asia Institute, Columbia University
Anisa Abd el Fattah, Founder and Chairwoman, National Association of Muslim American Women (NAMAW)
Khaled M Abdel-Hamid, MD, PhD, writer
Ammar Abdulhamid, Executive Director, Tharwa Foundation
Imam Johari Abdul Malik, Director of Outreach, Dar-Al-Hijrah Islamic Center
Mehnaz M. Afridi, PhD, Adjunct Professor (Judaism, Islam & Genocide Studies) Antioch University
Asma Afsaruddin, PhD, Professor of Islamic Studies, Indiana University, Bloomington
Imad-ad-Dean Ahmad, PhD, Director, Minaret of Freedom Foundation
Ahrar Ahmad, PhD, Professor of Political Science, Black Hills State University
Prof. Akbar S. Ahmed, PhD, Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Studies, American University
Osman Ahmed,PhD, President Islamic Society of Essex County, Newark, NJ
Prof. Parvez Ahmed, PhD, Fulbright Scholar & Assoc. Prof. Univ. of North Florida
Barbara Al-Bayati, Co-Founder, Orphan Whispers
Aman Ali, writer, stand-up-comedian
Javed Ali, founder and publisher, Illume magazine
Wajahat Ali, playwright, journalist, and producer of “Domestic Crusaders”
Sumbul Ali-Karamali, JD, LLM (Islamic Law), author of “The Muslim Next Door”
Shaykh al-Hajj Dawud Ahmad al-Amriki, Director, Muslim America
Salam al-Marayati, Pres., Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC)
Shahed Amanullah, Editor-in-Chief, Altmuslim
Patricia Anton, Board member, Muslim Peace Fellowship
M. Saud Anwar, Co-Chair, American Muslim Peace Initiative
Abdul Cader Asmal MD, PhD, Past President, Islamic Council of Mew England
Aref Assaf, PhD, President, American Arab Forum
Hussam Ayloush, Exec. Director, CAIR Greater Los Angeles Area
Hazami Barmada, Pres, American Muslim Interactive Network (AMIN)
Bahar Bastani, M.D., Professor of Medicine, S.L.U., Secy. General Shia Islamic Education Center, VP of IMANA-St. Louis
Victor Ghalib Begg, Senior Advisor, Chairman Emeritus, Council of Islamic Organizations of Michigan
Jannah bint Hannah, activist, al-Fatiha Foundation
Farah Brelvi, Board of Directors, ACLU-NC
Arsalan Bukhari, Executive Director, CAIR-WA
M. Ali Chaudry, PhD, President, Center for Understanding Islam (CUII)
Kamran Cheikh, Activist, Committee member, Muslims for Peace, Justice & Progress (MPJP), researcher for Deen Research Center (DRC)
Noor-Malika Chishti, Vice Chair, So. CA Committee for a Parliament of the World’s Religions, Representative, the Sufi Order International, Member, World Council of Muslims for Interfaith Relations
Robert D. Crane, JD, author of numerous books
Prof Golam Dastagir, PhD, Visiting Research Scholar, New College, University of Toronto, Canada
Almoonir Dewji, blogger - “That We May Know Each Other”
Mustafa Stefan Dill, blogger;/PR/social media analyst for Muslim issues; musician
Ramsey El-Moslimany, member, Board of Directors, Islamic School of Seattle
Lamia El-Sadek, political and human rights activitist
Mohamed Elsanousi, Director of Communications and Community Outreach for the Islamic Society of N America (ISNA)
Mona Eltahawy, journalist
Aziz Enhaili, Political analyst, columnist for Tolerance.ca
Yusuf Estes, Chaplain ret., author of many books, public speaker
Prof. Mohammad Fadel, PhD
Fatemeh Fakhraie, Editor-in-Chief, Muslimah Media Watch
Mike Ghouse, President, World Muslim Congress
Iftekhar Hai, President, UMA Interfaith Alliance
Rabia Terri Harris, Founder and Coordinator, Muslim Peace Fellowship
Hesham Hassaballa, M.D., author, journalist, blogger - “God, faith, and a pen”
Amir Hussain, PhD, Professor of Theological Studies, Loyola Marymount University
Iftekhar Hussain, Chair, Board of Directors, CAIR-PA
Arsalan Iftikhar, author, human rights lawyer, blogger - “The Muslim Guy”
Jeffrey Imm, Director, Responsible for Equality And Liberty (R.E.A.L.)
Ghazala Irshad, journalist, blogger - “The Floating Lotus”
Nakia Jackson, writer
M. Zuhdi Jasser, MD, President, American Islamic Forum for Democracy
Safi Kaskas, President & CEO Strategic Edge
Mohja Kahf, PhD, Assoc. Professor of Comparative Literature, Univ. of Arkansas, author “The Girl in the Tangerine Scarf”
Prof. Muqtedar Khan, PhD, author of several books, Blogger - “Globalog”
Farah Kinani, Journalist, blogger - “Global Voices”
Shaikh Ahmad Kutty, Resident Senior Scholar, Islamic Institute of Toronto
Faisal Kutty, Visiting Asst. Prof. of law, Valparaiso University School of Law and Adjunct Professor of Law, Osgoode Hall Law School (Toronto)
M. Junaid Levesque-Alam, writer, blogger - “Crossing the Crescent”
David Liepert, M.D., blogger and author of “Muslim, Christian AND Jew”
Radwan A. Masmoudi, PhD, President, Center for the Study of Islam & Democracy (CSID)
Melissa Matos, President, Al-Ghazali Legal Society, Saint Louis University
Shelina Merani, community activist, artist, blogger “Muslim Presence”
Yahya Merchant, Interfaith Worker, Outreach contact for Islamic Center of Conejo Valley CA
Melody Moezzi, JD, MPH, writer and attorney
Daniel Abdal-Hayy Moore, author of many books of poetry
Ebrahim Moosa, Assoc. Professor of Islamic Studies, Dept. of Religion, Duke University
Lt. Col. Abdul-Rasheed Muhammad, U.S. Army Chaplain
Imam Abdul Malik Mujahid, President Sound Vision
Arman Musaji, artist
Sheila Musaji, Editor, The American Muslim (TAM)
Muneeb Nasir, President, Olive Tree Foundation, Editor IQRA Canada
Q. Amin Nathari, National Representative, Islam in America Movement (IAM)
Ahmed Naumaan, PhD, Director, Karsaz Inc.
Imam Abdul Hai Patel, Dir. Interfaith Relations, Canadian Council of Imams, Muslim Chaplain University of Toronto & York Regional Police
Aziz H. Poonawalla, PhD, scientist and blogger - “City of Brass” on Beliefnet
M.Waheed-uz-Zaman Rana, Imam, Prof. Emeritus, Dept. of Surgery, Saint Louis University
Hasan Zillur Rahim, PhD, journalist
Shaykh Ahmed Abdur Rashid, The Circle Group
Prof. Hussein Rashid, PhD, blogger - “Religion Dispatches”
Shafi Refai, President, United Muslims of America
Irfan Rydhan, Co-Founder of Muslim Unity Foundation
Muhamed Sacirbey, lawyer, diplomat, writer
Louay Safi, PhD, Common Word Fellow, Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Christian Muslim Understanding, Georgetown University
Ghulam Abbas Sajan, Director Islamic Ahlul Bayt Assembly of Canada
Robert Salaam, blogger - “The American Muslim”
Raquel Evita Saraswati, activist, writer, blogger
Sarah Sayeed, President of One Blue
Sophia Rose Shafi, MA, MTS, doctoral candidate (Islamic Studies), writer
T.O. Shanavas. MD, Vice President, Islamic Research Foundation, author
S. Abdallah Schleifer, Distinguished Prof., Dept. of Journalism & Mass Com, American University Cairo
Ricka Shorish, M.S., R.N., volunteer/consultant, Avicenna Community Health Center
Jihad Shoshara, community organizer and activist, Chicago
Jafar Siddiqui, blogger - “Penjihad”
Prof. Laury Silvers, PhD
Gwendolyn Zoharah Simmons, PhD, Sr. Lecturer, Islamic Studies & African American Religion, University of Florida
Prof. Ibrahim B. Syed, PhD, President of Islamic Research Foundation International, Inc., author
Dr. Sayyid M. Syeed, Nat’l Director, Office for Interfaith & Community Alliances, Islamic Society of N America (ISNA)
J.Tayeb, MD, President, CAIR-MI, ISNA founders committee member, Vice chair, HUDA free Clinic, Detroit
Pamela Taylor, Co-founder Muslims for Progressive Values, Panelist for On Faith
Tayyibah Taylor, Editor, Azizah Magazine
Dr. Hashim El-Tinay, President, International Peace Quest Institute (IPQI)
Mahdi Toourage, PhD, Assistant Prof., U of Western Ontaio
Tarik Trad, writer, humorist, photographer, artist and activist
Asma T. Uddin, Attorney, The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty and Editor, Altmuslimah
Wahida Valiante, President, Canadian Islamic Congress and Chair of Islamic History Month Canada
Jason van Boom, Host of “Islam and Authors”, writer
Amina Wadud, PhD, consultant on Islam and gender, visiting scholar Starr King School for the Ministry
Danya Wellmon, Co-Founder Women Transcending Boundaries interfaith group
Svend White, blogger - “Akram’s Razor”, activist, writer
G. Willow Wilson, author of “Butterfly Mosque” and “Air” graphic novel series
Ani Zonneveld, President, Muslims for Progressive Values

http://www.theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/a_defense_of_free_speech_by_american_and_canadian_muslims/0018241

Friday, September 24, 2010

Did Prophet Muhammad marry a 6 year old?

Did Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) marry a 6 year old? | www.QuraanToday.com

We the people, the Muslims have failed in our duty to correct many historical misrepresentations. There are many wrongs that have been presented as Islamic, we know it does not make sense, but we have not taken the time to correct it. Nay, we don’t have the courage to speak the truth.

There is no punishment for Apostasy or Blasphemy in Quran,  evidence of rape is what is required and during the times of Prophet, 4 witnesses was considered the evidence, but today, nothing is more conclusive than DNA evidence, and we need to accept that.  Triple Talaq is not what Quran calls for, but we have mis-interpreted it and have carried it on.

The age of Hazrat Ayesha has been ‘propagated ‘to be 6 when Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) married her and the marriage was consummated when she was 9. There is only one single Hadith to support that, unlike multiple chains of narrations are considered for a Hadith to be valid.

I hope one of these days; Muslims come together and make a universal declaration that this Hadith is weak and unreliable against the evidence that she was 16 when the Prophet married her.  We have to do what is right.

Mike Ghouse
www.MuslimSpeaker.com

Mission of World Muslim Congress - http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2012/01/mission-of-world-muslim-congress.html


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Did Ayesha(R.A) marry Prophet Muhammad(PbuH) at the Age of 6?

Courtesy Hidayat.org 


By Abdul H. Fauq

The Quran has not given names and other details of Prophet’s wives but it has confirmed that all marriages of the Prophet (PbuH) were lawful (33:50). The age of Hazrat Ayesha (R.A), wife of the prophet, is disputed on the basis of a calligraphic error in history books. Narrated history, however sacred, is not above scrutiny, particularly where dignity and honour of the prophet is at stake. The following article is an attempt to dig out reality from the same history.

Rev. Jerry Vines while speaking to the Pastors’ Conference of the Southern Baptist Convention, St. Louis, Missouri on June 10, 2002, called the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad (PbuH) a pedophile and demon-possessed. The Muslims all over the world were deeply offended by his remarks, as were many people of other faiths. While certainly both of these allegations about the person of the Prophet of Islam can be effectively rebutted, the author of this article proposes to present the Qur’anic concept of marriageable age as well as an in-depth analysis of the issue of Ayesha’s age at the time of her marriage with the Messenger of Allah (PbuH). This critique is based on many historical reports as documented in the history books of Islam.

First, I would like to point out that according to the faith of Islam the vast majority of the Muslims professes, there are two sources of the Divine Guidance–the Qur’an and the Sunnah. The Quran is the actual Word of Allah (God) revealed by the archangel Gabriel to Prophet Muhammad (PbuH) over a period of 23 years during the period 610-632 A.D in the Arabian Peninsula. The Qur’an that was revealed as Guidance and Light (17:9) for all mankind was written and properly documented by some forty scribes during the lifetime of the Prophet. There is historical as well as the Qur’anic internal evidence to that effect (80:11-16 and 25:5) as well as God’s personal guarantee against any possible corruption in the Scripture (15:9). Additionally, the Qur’an was not only written and documented but it was committed to memory in its entirety during the lifetime of the Prophet (PbuH). This noble tradition of memorization of the Qur’an continues to this day. One can find hundreds of thousands of individuals around the world who know the entire Qur’an by heart. It is noteworthy that although there are several sects in Islam, the Qur’an remains perfectly preserved to the letter in its original Arabic language and recited, understood and referred to for explanations by all sects the same way. Thus, while the interpretations may vary, the original Arabic text has remained the same without sectarian bias.

The Qur’an enjoined Muhammad (and all believers) to strictly follow the Quran (6:106; 10:109; 33:2) and it stands witness to the fact that Muhammad and his followers did exactly that all their lives (7:203; 46:9; 6:50). In fact, Muhammad himself was warned in rather stern terms not to go against the Qur’anic teachings (17:39, 10:94-95, 69:40-48). Furthermore, the Qur’an declares Muhammad (PbuH) to be a man of highest moral standards (68:4; 33:21) and the best exemplar for humanity. The Qur’an enjoins the believers in scores of verses to follow Muhammad’s teachings and accept him as a final authority in all their affairs.

The Second generally accepted source of Islamic faith is the Sunnah. The Sunnah is the summation of Islamic teachings related to faith and code of conduct as personally practiced and perpetuated by Muhammad (PbuH) for all believers to implement and follow in their personal lives as well as in proper Islamic governance. The Sunnah protocols related to articles of Islamic faith and rituals are continuous from the day of the Prophet but a great many others are largely derived from a huge body of compilations of oral narrations referred to as Hadith. The Hadith, commonly known as traditions of the Prophet, consists of many books of compilations of reported accounts of Muhammad’s sayings, actions, and tacit approvals. There are six books of Hadith (Sihah Sita) that are considered authentic by the main stream Sunni Muslims. There is also a different set of four Hadith books for the Shia Muslim community. All these books were written 200-300 years after the death of Muhammad (PbuH). The documentation of these books proceeded based on collection of hundreds of thousands of stories from the then living people who transmitted accounts or stories about Muhammad or his companions as they heard from earlier generations. Thus, the process of oral transmission (word of mouth) made the basis of all these collections.

This process commonly known as ‘Isnaad’ or ‘chain of narration’ comprised a chain of 4-6 or more narrators in time going back to the companions of Muhammad and to Muhammad himself over a period of 250-300 or more years. These accounts seek to portray the Muslim culture and history during the lifetime of the Prophet of Islam. Nonetheless, it must be pointed out that the only true surviving book, call it Islamic history or Divine Guidance, that was memorized by thousands of Companions of the Prophet and written in a completely and carefully documented form is none other than the Qur’an itself. The first non-Qur’anic history book, ‘Seerat Rasoolallah’ (Seerah), by Ibn Ishaq (d. 767 A.D) was written more than 90 years after the death of Muhammad. That book of history was also based on oral transmissions. Ibn Ishaq was severely criticized by some notable scholars of Islam such as Malik bin Anas, the originator of the Maliki School of though in Islamic jurisprudence mainly practiced in Africa.

The majority of Muslims considers two of the six Hadith books, those authored by Al-Bukhari (d. 870 A.D) and Al-Muslim (d. 875 A.D) most authentic after the Qur’an despite the fact that they were written 200-300 years after the advent of Islam. These scholars of Islam exercised great caution in selecting what they called correct traditions and proceeded with purest of intentions but one must not lose sight of the fact that they still collected ‘narrations’ from living people who were not primary or even secondary and tertiary sources of the accounts of the life and sayings of Muhammad (PbuH) and his companions. Some Islamic historians (and/or exegetes of the Qur’an) whose books about early Islamic history are considered of high importance and who derive their history of early Islam from Ibn Ishaq’s Seerah include Tabari (d. 923 ), Ibn Katheer, Ibn Hisham (d. 827 A.D) and Ibn Hajar Al-asqalani, to name a few.

The introduction given above of the two sources of Islam (the Qur’an and the Sunnah/Hadith) is necessary for the reader to understand the issue at hand—the age of Ayesha, the third wife of Prophet Muhammad at the time of her marriage.

How does the Qur’an define ‘marriageable age’?

There are several Hadith reports that Prophet Muhammad (PbuH) married his third wife Ayesha when she was 6 year old and consummated her marriage when she was 9. If this is true, then it must be consistent with the Qur’an that tells us that Muhammad himself followed the Qur’an before he asked others to follow it. The Qur’an does not assign a definite number to the age at which a man or a woman becomes ‘adult’ or ready to marry. However, there is a clear definition of the marriageable age as per 4:6:

Make trial of orphans until they reach the age of marriage; if then ye find sound judgment in them, release their property to them; [An-Nisa' 4:6]

This verse is taking about two concepts here: First of all, the trustee of a property should first test the ability of the grown up orphan to see if he or she is capable of managing his or her own affairs well. Second, the Qur’an provides guidelines for the trustee as to the time at which the property of the orphans is to be handed over–it is the time when the orphan has attained adulthood or marriageable age and that he or she has attained a good degree of mental maturity. Thus, the Qur’an gives a clear definition of adulthood or marriageable age as the one when one has attained a good measure of mental maturity. This should raise the question: Does a 6- or 9-year old have that level of quality of sound judgment? The answer is a resounding NO. If Muhammad married a 6 year old girl (and consummated her marriage at age 9), one wonders if he actually followed the Qur’anic guidelines regarding this issue. Please recall that the Qur’an states that Muhammad is a model for all mankind and that he himself followed the Qur’an in its entirety while ordering the same for his devout followers.

The Qur’anic guidelines as described clearly in 4:6 tell us that Muhammad could not have married a young girl of age 6 or 9. There are other verses where the marriage bond has been described as “solemn covenant/solid contract—Meethaqan ghaleezan” (4:21). It is mighty revealing to me that in 4:21 for husband-wife relationship the same composition “meethaqan ghaleezan” has been used for the covenant that Allah took from all the prophets including our own prophet (33:7). Not only that, the same expression was also used when Allah took covenant from the Jews not to violate the Sabbath (4:154). Thus, according to the Qur’an ‘tying the knot’ is going for a “Meethaqan Ghaleezan” (a solemn covenant of mutual trust and faithfulness for each other). This a definition of marriage, which later, when developed and nourished, gives rise to love, tranquility and mutual feelings of caring (30:21), as well as to our offspring as comfort of our eyes (25:74).

These verses, as far as the author of this article is concerned, should suffice and bury the issue of the age of Ayesha’s marriage with the Prophet of Allah (PbuH) for good. Ayesha could not have been 6 years of age because:

1. She could not have been an adult woman capable of making her own sound decisions, and,

2. She could not have entered into a ‘solemn covenant’ at the age of 6 with a 55-year old man. This defies all reasons for a productive and meaningful union.

3. The Prophet, according to the Qur’an, is a model for all humanity. The Qur’an tells us that he was at the highest of moral pedestal. Even if child marriages were common in his community, he could not have gone for it because it went against the Qur’anic injunctions of 4:6 and 4:21.

Nonetheless, since the charge of paedophilia by Rev. Vines rested solely on some Hadith reports and not on any of the Qur’anic verses, the attention is now turned to those Hadith accounts and many other observations related to Ayesha’s age, and their in-depth analysis.

Was Ayesha really 6 years old when she married Muhammad?
A few comments about Muhammad’s marriages are in order. Muhammad married his first wife, Khadijah, several years before his announcement as a prophet of Islam. Khadijah was a reasonably well-to-do woman of Makkah and was 15 years his senior. Muhammad was 25 and Khadijah was 40 at the time of their marriage. This loving and caring monogamous relationship continued for 25 years until her death. Muhammad, now over 50 years of age, married a relatively aged woman by the name of Saudah. It is thus important to note here that Muhammad’s twenty five prime youth years were spent in purely monogamous relationship with a lady 15 years his senior. This speaks volumes about this man’s piety and loyalty in spousal matters as well as about the fact that his later marriages could not have been motivated by any human wild sexual desires. In 620-621 A.D, he and his devout companions migrated from Makkah to Medina. Then a couple of years later, he married Ayesha, a daughter of his closest companion, Abu Bakr, in the 3rd Hijrah (Islamic calendar–623-24 A.D). This information coming from diverse historical and Hadith sources is widely agreed upon and therefore can be, a priori, considered authentic. Based on this information, and a host of other related bits and pieces detailed below, it can be shown that Ayesha could have been at least 16-19 of age at the time of her marriage with Muhammad (PbuH). The following is the detail of the analysis of these historical and Hadith accounts.

1. Several books of Hadith (Al-Bukhari and Al-Muslim, Abu Dawood, among others) and Islamic history (Tabari, among others) report that Ayesha was married to the Prophet at 6 but her marriage was not consummated until she was 9. Although, this information is widely quoted and found in many Hadith and history books, it must be noted that most of this information has come from a single person, Hisham bin Urwah, who is the last narrator of this Hadith Isnaad (chain of narration) on the authority of his father. Thus, this Hadith is primarily a single Hadith. Some other narratives mention the same Hadith but their narration has been found weak and unacceptable. In general, a Hadith has more credibility if it is narrated by more people independently from diverse chains of narrators. In this case, there is basically only on
e source.

2. Despite the abundance of information available during the 71 years that Hisham bin Urwah lived and taught in Medina, it is rather odd that no one else—not even his famous pupil Malik ibn Anas—reported Ayesha’s age from Hisham in Medina. Furthermore, all the narrators of this Hadith were Iraqis. Hisham is reported to have moved to Iraq in his later years. An extensive list of biographical sketches of all narrators including these Iraqis is available in some books.

3. Yaqub ibn Shaibah is reported to have said, “narratives reported by Hisham are reliable except those that are reported through the people of Iraq“. Malik ibn Anas (d. 795), a student of Hisham in fact discredited all narratives of Hisham that were reported through people of Iraq.

(Tehzibu’l-tehzib, by Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani, Arabic, Dar Ihya al-turath al-Islami, one of the most well known books on the life and reliability of the narrators of the traditions of the Prophet (PbuH), vol 11, pg 48 – 51).

4. It is reported that Hisham bin Urwah’s memory suffered in his later years to the extent that some of the traditions reported from Hisham bin Urwah could not be trusted for authenticity.

(Mizanu’l-ai`tidal, by Al-Zahbi , Arabic, a book on the life sketches of the narrators of the Hadith, Al-Maktabatu’l-athriyyah, Sheikhupura, Pakistan, Vol 4, pg 301).

5. Even though Ayesha is reported to have been born about eight years before Hijrah (around 614 A.D.), one can find another narrative in Bukhari (kitabu’l-tafseer) whereby Ayesha is reported to have said that she was a ‘young girl’ at the time of revelation of the 54th chapter of the Qur’an which came 9 years before Hijrah (around 612 A.D). Thus, according to this tradition, Ayesha was a young girl (Jariyah—as she calls herself and not an infant in which case she would be sibyah). Additionally, this narrative stands in direct contrast to the one reported on Ayesha’s age by Hisham bin Urwah. This puts Ayesha’s age significantly higher than 9 as reported by Hisham bin Urwah—possibly 15 or even higher. Obviously, if this narrative is held to be true, it is in clear contradiction with the narratives reported by Hisham ibn Urwah. There is no compelling reason as to why this tradition should be considered less accurate vis-à-vis Hisham’s narrative).

(Sahih Bukhari, kitabu’l-tafsir, Arabic, Bab Qaulihi Bal al-sa`atu Maw`iduhum wa’l-sa`atu adha’ wa amarr)

6. According to many narratives, Ayesha participated in the battles of Badr and Uhud. No one older than 15 was allowed to accompany the Prophet’s army in the battle of Uhud. This applied across the board to all participants, men and women alike. The battle of Uhud took place around the 2nd Hijrah, a time line close to her marriage with the Prophet. Obviously, she was at least older than 15 at that time.

7. A narrative regarding Ayesha’s participation in the battle of Uhud is given in Bukhari, (Kitabu’l-jihad wa’l-siyar, Arabic, Bab Ghazwi’l-nisa’ wa qitalihinna ma`a’lrijal; that all boys under 15 were sent back is given in Bukhari, Kitabu’l-maghazi, Bab ghazwati’l-khandaq wa hiya’l-ahza’b, Arabic).

8. Most historians have consensus on the age of one of the oldest female companions of the Prophet, namely, Asma, the elder sister of Ayesha that was ten years older than Ayesha. It is also reported in Taqri’bu’l-tehzi’b as well as Al-bidayah wa’l-nihayah that Asma died in 73 Hijrah when she was 100 years old. Clearly, if Asma was 27 or 28 years old at the time of Hijrah, Ayesha was 17 at the time of Hijrah and 19 at the time of consummation of her marriage with Muhammad. (For Asma being 10 years older than Ayesha, see A`la’ma’l-nubala’, Al-Zahabi, Vol 2, Pg 289, Arabic, Mu’assasatu’l-risalah, Beirut, 1992. Ibn Kathir confirms this fact, [Asma] was elder to her sister [Ayesha] by ten years” (Al-Bidayah wa’l-nihayah, Ibn Kathir, Vol 8, Pg 371, Arabic, Dar al-fikr al-`arabi, Al-jizah, 1933). For Asma being 100 years old, see Al-Bidayah wa’l-nihayah, Ibn Kathir, Vol 8, Pg 372, Arabic, Dar al-fikr al-`arabi, Al-jizah, 1933). Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani also has the same information: “She [Asma (ra)] lived a hundred years and died in 73 or 74 AH.” Taqribu’l-tehzib, Ibn Hajar Al-Asqalani, Pg 654, Arabic, Bab fi’l-nisa’, al-harfu’l-alif, Lucknow).

9. Tabari informs in his treatise on Islamic history that Abu Bakr had four children and all four were born during the pre Islamic period. The pre-Islamic period ended in 610 A.D, a fact that makes Ayesha to be at least 14 years of age at the time of her marriage around 613-624 A.D.

(Tarikhu’l-umam wa’l-mamlu’k, Al-Tabari, Vol 4, Pg 50, Arabic, Dara’l-fikr, Beirut, 1979).

10. Ibn Hisham, the historian, reports that Ayesha (ra) accepted Islam quite some time before `Umar ibn al-Khattab which only means that Ayesha (ra) accepted Islam close to the time of first revelation (around 610 A.D). This means she must have been at least a young girl at that time. Assuming she was barely 6 or 7 at that time this information puts the age of Ayesha at 20 or more at the time of her marriage with Muhammad (623-624 A.D.), (Al-Sirah al-Nabawiyyah, Ibn Hisham, vol 1, Pg 227 – 234 and 295, Arabic, Maktabah al-Riyadh al-hadithah, Al-Riyadh).

11. Tabari reports that before migrating to Habashah, Abu Bakr planned to hand over his daughter, Ayesha to Mut’am’s son to whom she was engaged. But fearing persecution by the Quraish, Mut’am refused and his son divorced Ayesha. The migration to Habashah happened 8 years before Hijra. Obviously, at the time she was ready to take on responsibilities as a wife (possibly 9 or 10 years of age). If she married Muhammad in the 2nd Hijrah (623-624 A.D), she could not be less than 19 years of age (a secondary reference for this argument is: Tehqiq e umar e Siddiqah e Ka’inat, Habib ur Rahman Kandhalwi, Urdu, Pg 38, Anjuman Uswa e hasanah, Karachi, Pakistan).

12. A famous Sunni imam, Ahmad ibn Hanbal, reports in His Musnad, that after the death of Khadijah, Khaulah came to the Prophet (PbuH) and advised him to marry again. She had two propositions for the Prophet: Either Muhammad could marry a virgin (bikr), or he could go for woman who had already been married (thayyib)”. Khaulah named Ayesha for a virgin (bikr). It is common knowledge that the term bikr in the Arabic language refers to a well formed lady and not to a 9 year old, playful, immature lass. If she were nine, the word used by Khaulah would have been jariyah and not bikr.

(Musnad, Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Vol 6, Pg 210, Arabic, Dar Ihya al-turath al-`arabi, Beirut).13. Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani has reported that Fatimah, Muhammad’s daughter, was five years older than Aye
sha and that Fatimah was born when the Prophet was 35 years old. Thus, Ayesha, according to Ibn Hajar, was born when Muhammad was 40 and consummated her marriage when he was 54 or 55. That makes Ayesha at least 15-16 years of age.


(Al-isabah fi tamyizi’l-sahabah, Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani, Vol 4, Pg 377, Arabic, Maktabatu’l-Riyadh al-haditha, al-Riyadh,1978)

Finally, it must be pointed out that Ayesha’s age at the time of her marriage has never been an issue. If it were, his enemies must have picked up on this issue as they did to him on some other issues. Also, the reader must note that none of these Hadith reports concerning Ayesha’s controversial age of marriage with the Prophet goes back to the Prophet himself. In other words, it is not the Prophet himself who said Ayesha was 6 or 9. These reports came from a single individual and the Iraqis reported from him when he grew old and his memory started failing.

In conclusion, this article is an attempt to prove that the books written 200-300 years after the death of Muhammad, while providing a good deal of historical information about him are not free from faulty, less than perfect and self-contradictory materials. These should not be taken as the final word for a Muslim. There is a Final Word for a Muslim and that is the Book of God, the Holy Qur’an—the book that defines the marriageable age for a man or woman when he or she attains soundness of judgment (Al-Qur’an 4:6). If Muhammad is a model for mankind, if he followed the Qur’an all his life, if Allah stands witness to his rock-solid character, there is no way that he could have taken a 6-9 year old, immature young, playful girl as a responsible wife.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAtsGLHCbJc
This video is also available for download (permanent link) in following formats:

KINDLY ALSO SEE:

The Myth Exposed! Hazrat Ayesha (R.A)’s Age at the time of Nikah/Marriage

Hazrat Ayesha was 17 at Nikah, Not 7

What was Ayesha (R.A)’s Age at the Time of Her Marriage?


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What was Ayesha (R.A)’s Age at the Time of Her Marriage?
Hazrat Ayesha was 17 at Nikah, Not 7
Words of Wisdom from Prophet Mohammad (PbuH) – 50 Selected aHadith
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Did Prophet Muhammad Marry a 9 year old girl?
http://www.misconceptions-about-islam.com/muhammad-married-young-girl.htm

This is an essential requirement of this article that the following video MUST BE WATCHED!!!
The Myth Exposed! Hazrat Ayesha (R.A)’s Age at the time of Nikah/Marriage
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAtsGLHCbJc

Here is an explainer video- good points are raised
https://www.facebook.com/TheDeenShowTV/videos/10152585581981104/