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Join the discussion on Islam, Hindutva, Dr Zakir Naik – Part II

15 May 2009 1,099 views 64 Comments

I have moved the last few comments on the discussion on Islam, Hindutva, Dr Zakir Naik, Godhra post here to prevent comment overload.

Please continue discussing your thoughts on this thread.

The extract below picks up from the last few comments.

*** Comments Begin ***

*** Comment by Naved

There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad (pbuh) is the Messenger of Allah.

A Muslim believes in the existence of that which is beyond human perception. A Muslim believes in Allah and His attributes. A Muslim believes in the angels, the scriptures, and the Prophets. A Muslim believes in the Hereafter and what it entails of the Resurrection, Heaven and Hell, the Balance, and the Bridge and other details mentioned in the Quran and the authentic Sunnah. So without Imaan, we would not even exist.

From what you guys state here, I am afraid you have read or learnt nothing about Islam.

Anyhow.. Dr Zakir Naik is not trying to prove the Quran to be the word of God, with the help of science. What he is trying to do, he brings a compatibility, and shows the superiority Quran – That what your science has told us yesterday… Quran has told us 14 hundred years ago. He is trying to prove that our yard stick… the Muslim yardstick… the Quran, is far superior to your yard stick – The science. Therefore, you should believe in Quran, which is far superior.

Bible was not revealed in English – It is Old Testament in Hebrew, New Testament in Greek. Though Jesus Christ peace be upon him, spoke Hebrew – But the original Manuscript that you have – it is in Greek. The Old Testament, the original Hebrew is not available – do you know that? The Hebrew translation of the Old Testament is from the Greek – So even the original Old Testament, which is in Hebrew, is not present in Hebrew. So you have a double problem – No wonder you have scribal errors, etc. But the Quran – Alhamdulillah, the original Arabic is maintained. It has been… Alhamdulillah scientifically – you can prove it is the same.

The Quran says in Surah Al-Rad, Chapter. 13, Verse 38, that Allah Subhanawataala has sent down several Revelations. By name only 4 are mentioned – The Torah, the Zaboor, the Injeel and the Quran. The Torah is the Wahi, which was given to Moses, peace be upon him. The Zaboor is the Revelation, the Wahi which was given to David, peace be upon him. Injeel is the Revelation, Wahi which was given to Jesus, peace be upon him. And Quran is the last and final Revelation which was given to the last and final Messenger, Prophet Mohammed, may peace be upon him.

But the present Bible is not the Injeel, which we believe in, which, was revealed to Jesus Christ peace be upon him. This Bible according to us, it may contain the words of God – But it also contains words of Prophets, words of historians, it contains absurdities, obscenity, as well as innumerable scientific errors. If there are scientific points mentioned in the Bible – there are possibilities – why not? It may be part of the word of God, in the Bible. But what about the scientific errors? – What about the unscientific portions? – Can you attribute this to God?

As Jesus Christ, peace be upon him said…‘Search ye the truth, and the truth shall free you.’ We have the Old Testament, we have the New Testament – Now you should follow the Last and Final Testament, which is the Glorious Quran.

We have many a number of versions of the Bible and it does not exist anymore in the original form either in memory or text anywhere on the earth, nor has it existed as such for at least 1,500 or more years. Infact none of the religious scripture exist in its original form… they have been revised. The Quran on the other hand, is exactly preserved and memorized as it was during the lifetime of the holy prophet, peace be upon him. The teachings of Islam from the Quran and the hadeeth of Muhammad, peace be upon him, are very clear and available in the original texts in Arabic for whomsoever would like to read them. Allah has said that he would preserve His deen till eternity.

ISLAM is a great religion – it represents the final word of god – it is a matter of individual conscience whether you accept or reject it at an existential level — one man could not be defeated over a period of 23 years -despite attempts at assasination — there are now 1.3 billion muslims and fourteen centuries of history-god will defend his own faith. If a person could not arrive at belief through the miracle of his own intellect, after obviously having studied Islam thoroughly enough to debate with a Muslim, nothing could turn his heart.

“Allah hath set a seal on their hearts and on their hearing, and on their eyes is a veil; great is the penalty they (incur).” (Qur‘an 2:7).

Prof. Tejasen accepted Islam on the strength of just one scientific ‘sign’ mentioned in the Quran. Some people may require ten signs while some may require hundred signs to be convinced about the Divine origin of the Quran. Some would be unwilling to accept the Truth even after being shown a thousand signs. The Quran condemns such a closed mentality in the verse:

“Deaf, dumb and blind, They will not return (To the path).” [Al-Quran 2:18]

The Quran contains a complete code of life for the individual and society. Alhamdulillah (Praise be to Allah), the Quranic way of life is far superior to the ‘isms’ that modern man has invented out of sheer ignorance. Who can give better guidance than the Creator Himself? I pray that this humble effort is accepted by Allah, to whom I pray for mercy and guidance (Aameen).

Also, all your answers to the questions you posted here are at the below post. I dont intend to attack your thoughts, all I want is to present to you the truth.. Islam as it is and not as many non-muslims think it to be. As I said.. want to clear the air.

http://navedz.wordpress.com/2009/02/06/is-the-quran-god%e2%80%99s-word/

http://navedz.wordpress.com/2008/12/24/the-quran-and-modern-science-compatible-or-incompatible/

http://navedz.wordpress.com/2008/12/30/then-which-of-the-favours-of-your-lord-will-you-deny/

People try and link terrorists with Islam which is wrong. Terrorists do not have a religion. They use it as a mantle to do what their religion forbids. At its heart is the desire to meet their own narrow agenda.

If we look into the historic records, it proves that a large number of terrorist acts in the 20th and 21st century were committed by non-Muslims. The so-called global phenomenon of “Islamic terrorism/militant Islam” was a creation of the western governments and their media outlets. Politics lies at the heart of labeling Muslims across the globe as perpetrators of terror acts.

Dr. Zakir, who is one of the Muslim world’s leading and most prolific speakers, has quoted from the scriptures of other religions and has proved that associating killing with Islam is incorrect.

“It says in the Book of Numbers that whoever worships other than God should be killed,” he said, referring to the Bible, yet such militant verses were conveniently ignored by the Western media.

“In every religion there are black sheep and the media keep putting these people forward. This is a media conspiracy and a way of pushing people away from Islam.” he added.

No religion encourages terrorist acts or violence. Islam is a religion of PEACE. It doesn’t teach us to kill unlike other religions. Muslims start their greetings with “As-salaam-wa Alaikum Wa Rahmatu Allah Wa Barakatuh”, which means in English “May GOD’s peace, mercy and blessings be upon you.”

Allah states : “Whoever kills a human being [unjustly]… then it is as though he has killed all mankind; and whoever saves a human life it is as though he had saved all mankind.”

No one probably ever heard of such a stunning message of peace, which considers killing just one person (be it innocent or not) tantamount to killing the entire humanity? The doubters should not have any more skepticism about Muslim’s claim that “Islam is a religion of peace”. The unjustified criticisms of and spitting venoms at Islam by the hateful Islam-bashers got to stop now.

Palestinians are called terrorists just because they are fighting to get their land back. We can cite the examples of LTTE (in Sri Lanka), IRA (in UK), Lord’s Salvation Army, which trains the young children to conduct terrorist attacks, and many other non-Muslim terrorist outfits. The lives claimed by these outfits are more than the ones by the SO CALLED Muslim terrorists.

Naxalites/Maoists across India and the LTTE in Sri Lanka were non- Muslim terror organisations, which had had developed pan regional bases beyond national boundaries. Other such non-Muslim terror outfits included the United Liberation Front of Asom, National Democratic Front of Bodoland and All Tripura Tiger Force in the Northeast.

On international examples, the Japanese Red Army, Lord’s Salvation Army and the ETA in Spain were also non-Islamic in character and composition.

So nothing is more removed from truth as to suggest that Muslims have monopolized terrorism. The Irish Republican Army, which was considered to be terrorist group, has a history of 100 years of violence against the British, but the British government doesn’t seem to be scared about them as they are about radical Islamic groups. Besides, even a single killing by a Muslim is condemned by Islam, whatsoever the reasons. Islam does not justify using wrong means to reach the right goals. People should not take the law in their hands.

India has seen maximum number of communal riots in recent years. Politicians have been using the ‘Divide and Rule Policy’ to secure their vote banks. However, the masses should not get instigated by them. Terrorism is a monopoly of politicians. People, regardless of their religion, wish to live harmonious lives, but politicians feed the feeling of hatred amongst them.

What is happening in Palestine.. some people have the opinion that it is muslim terrorsim. I think you are not aware of what has been happening.. they need to read the authentic history. you would know about the biggest ever robbery in history for 20th century.. read up on the history of Palestine and Israel.

Read about a group of people homeless in Europe. Read about them set their eyes on a land they not only wanted to live in, but rule over. Read about them coming into Palestine and throwing people out of their homes, bulldozing them down and making people refugees in their own land. Read about bloodshed, read about their domination, occupation spreading like a infectious disease. Read about their sophisticated missiles and tanks, whose design, manufacture was aided in Britain and America; massacre families, and the resistance of the Palestinians named as terrorism. Palestinians who grew up generation after generation in the muddy squalor of refugee camps in their own land attempted to fight this occupation with whatever they had. Read it all.

http://navedz.wordpress.com/2009/01/08/top-5-lies-about-israel%e2%80%99s-assault-on-gaza/

http://navedz.wordpress.com/2008/12/03/the-biggest-robbery-of-the-20th-century/

For further interaction visit my site http://navedz.wordpress.com/

Regards,

Naved Zia

*** Comment by Patriot

@Naved:

What would you have to say about this discourse on your prophet?

http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/Pages/History.htm

And, allah is the only god? What a terribly, terribly narrow view to have … have you looked at my god? You can find his noodlyness here:

http://www.venganza.org

Seriously, get a life or at least stop wasting the one that you currently have.

Cheers

*** Comment by Patriot

“That what your science has told us yesterday… Quran has told us 14 hundred years ago. He is trying to prove that our yard stick… the Muslim yardstick… the Quran, is far superior to your yard stick – The science.”

mmmmmm, really? Some evidence please?

Just the proof that the Quran discovered penicillin should be enough?

Oh and yes, cars.

Thank you.

*** Comment by Patriot

BTW, Naved, you say:

The Quran on the other hand, is exactly preserved and memorized as it was during the lifetime of the holy prophet, peace be upon him”

Reaaaaaaaaaaaaaaalllly? Pls prove this with a proper chain of custody evidence link.

Thank you

*** Comment by Patriot

Oh, Naved, one final thing:

As I read Islamic history and history of the Arabian peninsula, I find that Mohammad drove out the Jews from Medina for being non-believers, and killed all those who refused to convert or leave.

So, if we are setting right historical wrongs, I think we should start with Medina – pls let me know when the muslim community is ready to hand it over to the jews.

Also, since you say that Islam does not justify the killing of any innocent and that wrong means for a right end are unacceptable, I trust that you are going to write a post denouncing Faizullah and Osama bin Laden. Send me a link when you have done that.

Thanks.

*** End of Comments ***

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Please continue the discussion below and please do read:

Join the discussion on Islam, Hindutva, Dr Zakir Naik, Godhra – Part I

64 Comments »

  • 1. Desi said:

    *** COMMENT DELETED ***

    *** NOTE ***

    Desi: Pl. avoid cut-and-paste comments. The verses you had quoted are well-documented and do not really contribute anything new to the discussion.

  • 2. K. Harapriya said:

    It might be that the belief in a higher power is merely a genetic predisposition and that our religious concepts of God are merely the result of a collective delusion. Having said that, what would motivate a people to have an idea of God as a powerful, venegeful, punitive being who is always angry. Why would anyone want to believe in this joyless one who hates music and dance (not to mention sex). Why would we want to be in heaven with this eternal judgemental father figure whose love is so conditional that it lacks the magnanimity of the love even a human being has for his own child.

  • 3. wagamama said:

    *** COMMENT EDITED ***

    Islam and Christianity are the two faces of the same coin.

    …If one wants to know the similarities in Islam and Christianity, visit http://www.box.net/shared/1szuc5kpro

    *** NOTE by MODERATOR ***

    Please be careful in your comments especially regarding abuse of a particular faith, personal abuse and unsubstantiated remarks.

    Thanks.

  • 4. Mahendra said:

    *** COMMENT EDITED ***

    A fair way to judge a religion is by the way they live. All Muslim countries are intolerant of non-Muslims and are distinguished by the violence that they perpetrate on others and each other. Compare this with the gentle Hindus who made the only Hindu country in the world a secular one (Nepal)and have encourage Muslims to become a dominant minority in India even as the Hindus are almost wiped out in Pakistan. It is high time that Muslims thought of reforming their religion.

    *** NOTE by MODERATOR ***

    Mahendra: I am happy to re-instate the deleted bit once you provide a link or a reference.

  • 5. Mahendra Mathur said:

    The exact quotation from ‘The Decline and Fall of Roman Empire’ is reproduced below:
    “I canot perceive in the life or writings of Mahomet that his prospect was far extended beyond the limits of the Arabian world. The faith which, under the name of Islam, he preached to his family and nation, is compounded by an eternal truth and a necessary fiction. That there is only one God, and that Mahomet is Apostle of God”

    What follows is part of verse 13, Surah 13 to describe raising heavens without pillars!
    13. Al – Ra’ad [13:2] GOD is the One who raised the heavens without pillars that you can see, then assumed all authority. He committed the sun and the moon, each running (in its orbit) for a predetermined period.

  • 6. B Shantanu (author) said:

    Thanks Mahendra

  • 7. B Shantanu (author) said:

    Courtesy Amitabh, this interesting YouTube video (8 mins long). In particular, pl. watch from the 4th minute onwards:

  • 8. Khandu Patel said:

    I do not claim to be an expert on the scriptures but I am descerning enough to know the difference what offers hope and what perpetuates misery. It is certainly true as said in the Old Testament that the Jews in their hour of victory put many to the sword. Sometimes it was with divine backing and others without. At any rate, their God was forgiving to them. For a people who God is claimed to have created in his image and his chosen people, it shines forth in their vast contribution to every endeavour in human history because such favour does not come without great responsibility. They number no more than an insignificant few million of the worlds population: the world would indeed be an insignificant and very poor place without them. As one Hindu out of near a billion of my religious affectation, I am truely humbled: all our claims for greatness as a civilisation in relation are insigniifcant and that is no less true for Islam’s modest achievements. I do not doubt the capacity of Islam to wreck vengence on the great Jewish people and their nation. If Islam is as great as it claims to be, that it is an idea that should never have entered their heads. We shall know when Iran’s election results are out how much reason and good sense have prevailed in at least one Islamic country. It can certainly be said of the Koran that it contains beautiful passages. Surely, it is the message that is important: the bearing of the Jewish people is testiment to their message of goodwill. The Jewish people never claimed that any divine hand wrote their book but it is a record of their dialogue with their God. It is not surprising either that Jesus should have been produced by the Jewish people. As with the old testiment, the new testiment is a product of many great minds. The magnificance of the Greek mind is reflected in it, and it is as perfect a religion that the world has produced for liberating the worlds peoples from all manner of evils. For me as a Hindu, the rigid prescription of orthadox Hindu thought and practice have been rendered obsolete by these sismic sift in world history. What is absolutely clear to me is that we should determine the core values of our religion which we want to preserve and strenghten. At its heart should be felicity towards our co-religionists and social intercourse that aims to strengthen our society. Difficult choices will have to be made.

  • 9. Mahendra Mathur said:

    The core values of our religion were determined more than 1200 years ago by Adi Shankaracharya – Brahma is Truth, the world is Maya and there is no difference between Brahman and the Atman – meditate and work for the good of the world. None of this harms or hurts followers of any other religion. But Islam’s teaching of violence against Jews, Christians and ‘Non-believers’ is causing death and destruction all over the world and that is why it is now necessary to discard those verses of Hadith and Quran which are not applicable to today’s world.

  • 10. Khandu Patel said:

    Thanks for enlighting me Mahendra. What I see today in the Hindu today is that our Hindu religion has helped very little to make him or her want to work for a better Bharat for his co-religionists. I would settle any day for a dedication to the improvement of the daily lot of the Hindu in particular even at the expense of dedication to any universal cause and messgae. The Shankarcharya’s message seems little different to the dedication shown by Jesuit priests in their missionary work. There is a huge gulf between the missionary work of such Christians which have worked for an all round improvement is the conditions of their converts and achievement of our work. There is no doubt about the good work done by Hindu charities but it seems that all such Hindu endeavours are done in the absence of comprehending the whole picture of the nation. It seems that Christianity and Islam do not lose sight of their lofty aims. Poverty, deprivation and above all ignorance endemic in Hindus of India has opened it up to all manner of assaults on the Indan state. I expect this government to renew the assault on one institution that has stayed true to Hindus: the armed forces. My message to it is that they do so at the peril.

  • 11. Mahendra Mathur said:

    Thanks Khandu for your kind words. The main difference between Shankaracharya’s message and that of Jesuit priests is that while Shankara’s philosophy is that of ‘Adveta’ – God and all souls are one – Jesuit priests preach that you can reach God only though Christ! However desirable it may be for the sake of Hindu nation, it is just not in Hindu psyche to discriminate against even barbarians. The answer – a difficult one, I admit – is to try and reform the ideology of Christianity, and more importantly, of Muslims. Some violent verses of Hadith and Quran need to be declared obsolete. This can begin in Indian madarsas which are funded by the Government.

  • 12. Khandu Patel said:

    I am going to be as charitable as it posible for me to be. The Jesuit does not confine himself just to preaching the message of his religion. Their movements founder saw God in all things and therefore dedicated his life to excelling in all things in their lives. Their schools, hospitals and unviersites are dotted all over the world as a testiment to their good work: that sort of work truely transformed West so that poverty and ignorance is absent from it. I may be being simplistic in believing that advaita sees reality no differently: so why is it that we havee failed to progress? Is it because despite believing in very similar philosophical ideas, we have embraced a mechanistic reality against the west’s moral one? The answer simply is that in the Pope, the West found an officer who was willing to bridge the gap between the politcal world intent on profit and exploitation and Christian religious beliefs which wanted so much to relieve suffering. When Jesuits say that you can only reach God through Jesus, they are only repeating Jesus’s own words and that message is at the core of Christian teaching. As I understand it, Christianity is forgiving of any sinner who has repented, and that is predicated on a God who is concerned with human suffering. As far as I can see we Hindus have to pay a heavy price because we are born in to a life of poverty, and then suffer a million or more births if we are to redeem ourselves: if it is so frightning to contemplate such a fate, it soon loses the hold of any but the weakest of our society. Firmness of our religious beliefs and institutions have suffered as a consequence. If for the rest of humanity one life is more than sufficient, we should settle on only on the reincarnation of our Gods as being more than adequate for our religious purposes. The Buddists hold no or little store in reincarnation, so it is hardly the most radical departure might choose to make in Hinduism. Our primary focus should be to bring the best out of our religion, so I am not even going to consider trying to change Muslim behaviour. A great deal can be said against the Muslim madarsas, but they have offered to Muslims universally an education even if it has been a study of their religious scriptures. I see no comparable Hindu effort because the desirability of affording any Hindu education in their religion is considered undesirable or unnecessary. We know the Indian state has failed them, but should our religion fail them too? That failure means that Hindu pupils are now enrolling in madrasas fundeded by the Hindu tax payer! We should not then be surprised when Islam’s appeal will grow on them because of very serious lapse on our part. At the heart of the problems we have as Hindus is that the Indian state has absolved itself of all responsibility for our well being and not least because for all the spirituality we claim as a people, it has been superficial at best. If my comments make you angry enough to sit up and take notice, I would have achieved the first part of my objective. The second is that I want your dedication to make a difference to the life of all Hindus because it is right and your duty to our country and religion.

  • 13. Mahendra mathur said:

    I am not at all angry with your comment. In anticipation of your orders I have been writing in ‘Tattva’, the international magazine for the youth on the Gita and Great Gurus since October 2007 (you can access the magazine on internet)and lecturing in various temples for the last 15 years. You may also like to read Indian History from Indus Valley Civilization to the European and Muslim invasions of India. You need no further advice.

  • 14. georgina said:

    woman no rights in islam???????????

  • 15. georgina said:

    With regard also to the comment that was refuted about the quran being perfectly preserved, it came in arabic was memorised in arabic and is still learned in arabic what argument can you offer that. Sadly I feel some people spend their lives questioning everything instead of seeking knowledge which in Islam is accessable to both male and interestingly enough FEMALES. As HUMAN BEINGS it is our responsibility to learn and teach through respect this is what Islam has taught me.

  • 16. Patriot said:

    Ummmmm, Georgina … you say:

    “it came in arabic was memorised in arabic and is still learned in arabic what argument can you offer that”

    How about poor memory? Poor interpretation? Poor writing skills? Poor copying skills from one manuscript to another?

    Finally, how about if the relevation was (gasp) in Farsi, and the prophet translated it in his head?

    Lots of doubts, in my opinion.

    Cheers

  • 17. Dirt Digger said:

    @Khandu,
    Great points. But not sure that all sects of the Hindu religion follow the million or so birth theories and that it is a significant factor in changing people’s mind about the religion. In most cases social structure and economic reasons are primary reasons why people convert or are forced to convert.

  • 18. Khandu Patel said:

    @Dirt Digger

    The British when they first came to India found that Hindus on the promise of rice and food being distribted did convert, but as soon as it was convenient converted back. The British then were seen as occupiers and people found the greatest comfort in the religion of their forefathers.

    The conversion activity that is being carried out in India is in an altogether contexr. At the forefront are Indian converts and not the British. They are able to call on a community of like believers in the world who are willing to make investments in the other things to matter them as human beings: schools, hospitals, jobs and a sense of identity which honours them as human beings. Hindus cannot rely on the Indian state for delivery on any of these things and for that it stands as a failed Hindu state.

    A beginning has to be made by Hidnuism not oppressing other fellow Hindus by any failed Hindu practice such as caste. Even as the state has failed the poor Hindus, they need to assume responsibility for their uplift. The only way to do that is by assuming the leavers of state power, and in that their failure has been equally abject. Of course this is what we are trying to do in our discussions, that is to address our faulures.

  • 19. Dirt Digger said:

    @Khandu,
    Absolutely true. We are looking at the same issue from different views, you from the converters and me from the convertees (if there are actually words like that :) )
    The problem is the caste based system while being professed as evil by one and all is a very powerful political tool and something which will not be released by the political parties given the investment they have made in crafting their identities.
    Conversely it might be easier to illuminate the machinations of the various conversion groups and banning their activities while providing service at all levels of society.

  • 20. Khandu Patel said:

    @DD
    I do not mean to harp on about caste but it is symptomatic of all that is wrong.

    I am right in thinking that the RSS has not been caste centric but its approach to the Hindu religion has been to stay clear of it including even Islam. In fact it was the inclusiveness of other faiths in the RSS that created the first fissures with Savarkar. On the other hand, the VHP is so orthadox that it does not dare to challenge or care to reform the worst practices in Hinduism. Now I come to the BJP if its latest pronouncements are to be believed will move it even further than the RSS to the left. That is an area so over-subscribed that I am sceptical of any success in that approach.

    In essence the Sangh’s positions are spread so wide that they have no coherence. All that it will lead to as has been made abundantly clear is further internal feuds as to who best represents the Hindus. Quite frankly, none of them do so with any conviction, strength of purpose or foresight.
    I hope in these discussions we can not only go beyond them by arriving at a view poit that we can all share but strike out a path that will inspire many more to follow with us.

    The machinations you speak is not possible were it not for the disarray in the ranks of the Hindus and what it stands for. Hindus like other ancient societies have assumed that incorporating the Gods of their conquered enemies increased their power. There are no deities in Islam and Christianity but whole packages to be accepted or rejected which would render the precedings relevant. Hindus of the orthadox school (they mean by that they pagan) have decried that the world’s religion was truely Hindu until they were brutally suprressed by Christianity and Islam. As for Christianity in its early days because it was rent with ethnic and racial divisions (as Hinduism is today) it imposed brutal singular control. Those divisions were totally eliminated. European kings made those decision based on what was best for governance and they were proved right.

    The Indian state cannot now what European kings did over the preceding 2,000 nor can it stand on the present state of Hinduism and governance of the country. In this I do not have any wish to supplant the BJP, RSS and the VHP but for the Indian state to inherentlty subscribe to a Hinduism as its foundation that is rational and better able to stand up to close scrutiny. Under such a polity, the present constitution has to make way to a constitutional monarchy headed by a Hindu king. Government by the republic which is the present instrument of government in India cannot decisively reset the muddle that presently exists.

    as the national religion that is rooted in more rational construct than it is as present.

  • 21. georgina said:

    Errr???????? Farsi?????????? some proof, evidence ect please,as far as poor writing skills, the Quran was not written when it came it was memorised though it began recording in the Prophets lifetime. Errr, also the Prophet(pbuh) was not an educated person so as for translating it in his head????? also why would God give this task to the Prophet???? and one other thing, Islam is an Arabic word meaning submission/obedience note Arabic not Farsi, why would God have made work for the Prophet by making him translate?????? and for what you said about bad memory, poor translation ect I give you this quote from the Quran sura(15:9)”Surely, We have revealed this reminder and lo, We verily are its Guardian.” This is God himself declairing that he will give protection from everything to his Quran, ie alteration, now who would you be to question God????

  • 22. Patriot said:

    @ Georgina:

    “Farsi?????????? some proof, evidence ect please”
    God told me that she dictated the Quran in Farsi. The prophet made a mess of the translation.

    “why would God give this task to the Prophet???? ”
    Unfortunately, she refused to tell me this. I will ask her again the next time I speak with her”

    “Quran sura(15:9)”Surely, We have revealed this reminder and lo, We verily are its Guardian.” ”
    Who is We? God told me that she was singular.

    “now who would you be to question God????”
    Given that she has been telling me that the prophet made a hash of his job (pun intended), I thought I would bring it to your notice.

    Cheers

  • 23. Rohit said:

    Dr Zikr Naik is a cunning salesman who preaches lies (It is a contradictory statement… Salesman always tells lies). The thing he will not do is try to sell his web of lies to Osama Bin Laden, Mullah Omar and company because then he will have a chance to meet Allah sooner than expected.

  • 24. B Shantanu (author) said:

    Richard Dawkins on Islam (YouTube video): “We may be being naively over-optimistic”

  • 25. Rohit said:

    Here is excerpt from Robert Wright who tried to break free from organized religion and purpose

    “All you have to do is go read the Old Testament to be convinced that people back then would not have taken a dim view of that sort of slaughter; it was proscribed by God back then. Wipe out whole cities because they believe in the wrong god.”

    There is no difference between foundations of Islam and Christianity. The only difference as of now is in approach. Christian approaches you with refined language.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/lifestyleMolt/idUSTRE58D1RT20090914

  • 26. Rohit said:

    One small para to summarize Judaism, Christianity and Islam

    All these religion originated from deserted region where food etc was scarce due to absence water for farming. The area was inhabited by barbaric nomads who had to fight for whatever little desert could offer. Anybody who had to rule over barbaric nomads had to have great strength to kill all others or have some sort of mental superiority. The area knew nothing but dominance by great warriors of rome and greek civilizations, by brute force, the only language these people could understand. First thinkers to unite some flocks came to be known later as Jews but they had some sensibility so wrote a book to define what is good life and how a person should behave etc. They were sensible people and didn’t impede freedom of speech. Quite possible, someone hungry for power (rebel) had to do something better than the Jew book. Comes in Bible, collection of writings of four people which doesn’t tally anywhere. Again the same monolithic teaching governing all aspects of life… How to think, how to walk etc. The main thing it exploited for superiority was concept of washing of SINS, which these people were habitual to anyways. The propagator (mark, samuel etc) of the book to have flock of his own couldn’t rely on hebrew text so he may have taken borrowed the script from other flock and would have asked someone else to write it. Seeing the success of this book, some other power hungry person would have written a book with more perfection… Out comes Islam with a book whose lingo is most probably of a tribal bunch of nomads whom the founder wanted to influence in order to rule. His experiments continued and it contained all provisions that would ensure the superiority of book interpreter over the warrior. There is a possibility that the experiment would have been repeated more often but ultimately these three books survived and they have common things like creation, prophet etc all borrowed from Jews and Jerusalem, the center of power and universe of these religion. So Israel prblem solved. Israel is of Jews. It doesn’t belong to Christians and Muslims.

    Mentally and philosophically, people of these religion are still in infancy and all they can do is debate what is the right and what is the wrong interpretation. Despite having the only book Zakir Naik has to come out and tell what is the right meaning of book… Question is does he even know what is the right meaning of book? Why doesn’t he go and tell his interpretation to Mullah Omar, Bhaitulah Mehsood and their lineages? Most probably becaise he would be dead even before he is able to say Allah is Great!

    Now coming down to Naved, his book, his sharia perfection etc. As one great person Az says, “The Humor of Islam…you’ll die laughing.” The title is a twist on an Islamic Sharia law that forbids laughing too much…which made me laugh too much. I used actual ancient texts, I didn’t make them funny, they’ve always been funny…hence the sharia laughing law.

    http://www.thehumorofislam.com/

    Naved doesn’t even have freedom to think and act beyond the book. Naved in other words is slave. His thought process has stopped to develop. All he can do is think about the book and how to make it more scientific. He cannot appreciate the fact that thought process like that of he himself, didn’t create any peace in world, not even in Islamic world. In order to throw out a UAE government all a person needs to do is create and illusion of interpretation of Koran, excite person to indulge in act of genocide. The next person who has to throw out the same person has to do more rigid act of genocide, macabre preaching. Afghanistan government got thrown out by Taliban due to this only. To throw out a Taliban, one needs to advocate more genocide, more violence, from the same book. Pakistan is also fighting the same situation. So at end of day all this book can do is create more and more fanatics with their fanatical theories.

    Thought process of common sense flourishes when there is no influence of anger, pain, love, sex, power etc. and this thought process doesn’t come by reading books of slavery.

  • 27. B Shantanu (author) said:

    Adding this link here as a reminder to myself:
    WHY DO PEOPLE CONDEMN HINDU NATIONALISM? THE ANSWER MAY BE CONNECTED TO A DISDAIN FOR ZIONISM by Seth J. Frantzman
    http://www.think-israel.org/frantzman.condemninghindunationalism.html

  • 28. Rohit said:

    Thanks Shantanu! The article is an eyeopener.

  • 29. B Shantanu (author) said:

    Some of you may remember this *update* at the end of Part-I of this post in which I had raised this question:

    Is it really possible for a Muslim who is a believer to:

    1. Acknowledge that all religions are equal?
    2. Reject gender discrimination?
    3. Have transcending loyalty to host country?
    4. Renounce the establishment of worldwide Islamic rule at a future date and universal imposition of sharia?

    I would like to add these points to the above.

    Is it possible for a Muslim who is a true believer to:

    a] accept that secular and/or democratic institutions could be superior to Islamic law?

    b] accept that there are alternative paths to God?

    c] renounce the idea of violent jihad (holy war) against those un-willing to convert or submit to Islam?

    d] delink and renounce the political aspects of Islam to its practice as a faith?

    What do readers think?

  • 30. Mahendra said:

    Shantanu your questions have been answered by the sword of Islam for the last 1400 years and continue to be answered dramatically in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan even as we you raise the question. Answer is a violent ‘No’ to all your questions. The only remedy for world peace is now to wean young people away from Islam by education in universal human values. Many organizations in the world, I am happy to note, have begun work in this direction.

  • 31. संदीप नारायण शेळके said:

    Some information from
    Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in Hindu scriptures
    by Dr. Zakir Naik

    I. Muhammad (pbuh) prophesised in Bhavishya Purana

    According to Bhavishya Purana in the Prati Sarag Parv III Khand 3 Adhay 3 Shloka 5 to 8.
    “A malecha (belonging to a foreign country and speaking a foreign language) spiritual teacher will appear with his companions. His name will be Mohammad. Raja (Bhoj) after giving this Maha Dev Arab (of angelic disposition) a bath in the Panchgavya and the Ganga water (i.e. purifying him of all sins) offered him the present of his sincere devotion and showing him all reverence said, “I make obeisance to thee. O ye! The pride of mankind, the dweller in Arabia, Ye have collected a great force to kill the Devil and you yourself have been protected from the malecha opponents.”

    The Prophecy clearly states:

    The name of the Prophet as Mohammad.
    He will belong to Arabia. The Sanskrit word Marusthal means a sandy track of land or a desert.
    Special mention is made of the companions of the Prophet, i.e. the Sahabas. No other Prophet had as many companions as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
    He is referred as the pride of mankind (Parbatis nath). The Glorious Qur’an reconfirms this
    “And thou (standest) on an exalted standard of character”
    [Al-Qur'an 68:4]|

    …more
    http://www.irf.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=201&Itemid=131

    Jai HInd!

    NOTE: some clarification needs on this

  • 32. B Shantanu (author) said:

    Sandeep, I’d a look at the link…I would not waste my time on this.

    Few thoughts.

    1] The original Sanskrit text(s) are neither included nor linked to. This alone raises my suspicions. There is no mention of the source of the translation.

    2] The “Puranas” are more of sacred stories than scriptures.

    3] Where is the link between killing the devil and idol-worship (first para)?

    4] The “Raja Bhoj” is a red-herring. “Bhoj” is not the same as Pharaoh.

    The rest of the article is a hash not worth any serious analysis.

    Ignoring such articles may be the best approach rather than giving them the oxygen of publicity (my personal opinion).

    Thanks.

  • 33. Mahendra said:

    Zakir Naik is only partially right. Mohammed is prophesized in Bhaivashya Puran but only as an incarnation of Devil who comes like a ghost. The actual translation is reproducd below.
    Bhavishya purana (futuristic mythology)(Circa 3000 B.C)

    Translation source
    http://www.indiadivine.org/articles/188/1/Bhavishya-Purana-The-Prediction-of-Islam/Page1.html

    [From the third part of the Pratisarga Parva.]

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Shri Suta Gosvami said: In the dynasty of king Shalivahana, there were ten kings who went to the heavenly planets after ruling for over 500 years. Then gradually the morality declined on the earth. At that time Bhojaraja was the tenth of the kings on the earth. When he saw that the moral law of conduct was declining he went to conquer all the directions of his country with ten-thousand soldiers commanded by Kalidasa. He crossed the river Sindhu and conquered over the gandharas, mlecchas, shakas, kasmiris, naravas and sathas. He punished them and collected a large ammount of wealth. Then the king went along with Mahamada (Muhammad), the preceptor of mleccha-dharma, and his followers to the great god, Lord Shiva, situated in the desert. He bathed Lord Shiva with Ganges water and worshipped him in his mind with pancagavya (milk, ghee, yoghurt, cow dung, and cow urine) and sandalwood paste, etc. After he offered some prayers and pleased him.

    Suta Goswami said: After hearing the king’s prayers, Lord Shiva said: O king Bhojaraja, you should go to the place called Mahakakshvara, that land is called Vahika and now is being contaminated by the mlecchas. In that terrible country there no longer exists dharma. There was a mystic demon named Tripura(Tripurasura), whom I have already burnt to ashes, he has come again by the order of Bali. He has no origin but he achieved a benediction from me. His name is Mahamada(Muhammad) and his deeds are like that of a ghost. Therefore, O king, you should not go to this land of the evil ghost. By my mercy your intelligence will be purified. Hearing this the king came back to his country and Mahamada(Muhammad) came with them to the bank of the river Sindhu. He was expert in expanding illusion, so he said to the king very pleasingly: O great king, your god has become my servant. Just see, as he eats my remnants, so I will show you. The king became surprised when he saw this just before them. Then in anger Kalidasa rebuked Mahamada(Muhammad) “O rascal, you have created an illusion to bewilder the king, I will kill you, you are the lowest…”

    That city is known as their site of pilgrimage, a place which was Madina or free from intoxication. Having a form of a ghost (Bhuta), the expert illusionist Mahamada(Muhammad) appeared at night in front of king Bhojaraja and said: O king, your religion is of course known as the best religion among all. Still I am going to establish a terrible and demoniac religion by the order of the Lord . The symptoms of my followers will be that they first of all will cut their genitals, have no shikha, but having beard, be wicked, make noise loudly and eat everything. They should eat animals without performing any rituals. This is my opinion. They will perform purificatory act with the musala or a pestle as you purify your things with kusha. Therefore, they will be known as musalman, the corrupters of religion. Thus the demoniac religion will be founded by me. After having heard all this the king came back to his palace and that ghost(Muhammad) went back to his place.

  • 34. संदीप नारायण शेळके said:

    Read yourself what the preachers (read Mullahs) of religion of PEACE are spreading.
    http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/atlas_shrugs/2009/10/michigan-islamic-leader-killed-during-gun-battle-with-feds.html

    I’m (not) shocked.

    Jai Hind!

  • 35. ashok said:

    In one of his talks our great Dr Naik says ‘ wife beating is permitted in holy Quran provided no bone is broken and beating is for improving the wife’ What trash. And all great intellectuals in that gathering were shaking their thick heads

  • 36. kmr.krishnan said:

    “Dr.Zakir Naik’s fraud exposed”

    I recommend the following link to the readers:
    http://agniveer.com/naikexposed/

    You will be surprised to find there how Dr.Naik plagiarised from a book published in 1936 by Maulana Abdul Haque Vidyarthi titled“Muhammad in World Scriptures”!!

    This Abdul Haque Vidyarthi belongs to Ahamadiyya Muslim cult
    which almost the entire Muslim world, and especially the sects which believe in ideology of Dr Zakir Naik considers as non-Muslim. They are in fact banned in Pakistan and many other countries. Ask any Muslim scholar, and he would start hurling abuses on them for disgracing Islam and Muhammad.

  • 37. Ashish Deodhar said:

    @Shantanu

    In response to the points you raised here: http://satyameva-jayate.org/2008/01/09/freedom-team-for-india/comment-page-3/#comment-77015

    Yes I happen to believe that I was conditioned to believe in certain gods by my parents because they believed in them too. If was born in a muslim family, I have no doubt in my mind that I would be conditioned to believe in Allah. We all, generally speaking, are conditioned to believe when it comes to religious matters. The idea of a shiva or hanuman doesn’t sound so weird to us because we have been hearing it from childhood. But the idea that a monkey flew the length of India with a mountain on his index finger is as unbelievable to a Muslim as the idea that a man flew to heaven on a horse with wings is to a Hindu. Because we haven’t been told these stories as historical facts, we find them unbelievable. Would you have believed in the “hanuman” story if you were born in a muslim family?

    And yes, I happen to have a problem with all such stories! I find every single religious story equally unbelievable. But yes I do agree with you that the three monotheistic religions – Christianity, Islam and Judaism are more aggressive in guarding these stories than Hinduism or Buddhism are. But that doesn’t make the stories any less weird!

    On the topic of historicity of the prophets/gods. I am sure you would agree that it could never be conclusively proven that they existed or not. Let us assume that they actually existed. Let us assume that all of what Ramayana and Mahabharata, which I refer to as great Indian literature, actually happened. My question is, so what? As we try to find our just place in the 21st century world, how does a Ram temple in Ayodhya make any difference? What should we concentrate our energies on?

    And that’s where I think Hinduism has missed the plot. In fighting against monotheistic religions, Hinduism has itself turned into one of them. The RSS, Bajrang Dal, Ram Sena and so on are no different from the many radical islamic, jewish and christian organisations all over the world.

  • 38. Mahendra Mathur said:

    The points that Ashish has raised need serious consideration. All the doubts about all religions stem from the fact that all religions have some myths. But most followers of every religion believe that their myths are true while that of others are false.All myths – Ram is God, Christ is son of God, Mohammed is prophet of God etc – are to be understood as metaphors directing their respective people towards fulfillment of life. The ultimate truth is there is one Supreme Reality and this world is His manifestation that is called Maya or God’s play. If people realize this truth the world peace will follow.

  • 39. Indian said:

    @Ashish. D

    —The RSS, Bajrang Dal, Ram Sena and so on are no different from the many radical islamic, jewish and christian organisations all over the world—.

    If you cannot find any difference than you don’t know anything. May be you are attempting to malign other peaceful religions by equating. Myth and fairy stories is ok.,as long at it is not barbaric.

    I see lot of difference.

  • 40. Sid said:

    Ashish,
    DISCLAIMER: I did not follow your debate FTI thread, I am only considering the points you raised in this post, so if you find anything out of context, my apologies in advance.
    Broadly speaking, your last post relies on two central arguments:
    1. Themes shown in Bible, Qur’an and Ramayana/Mahabharata are simply not believable given our knowledge of nature of world/universe. Most of us do not question them as we are led to believe in them from childhood.
    2. The observation that, today, Hindus (at least the “fanatic” ones) are not any better than those who talk about Muslims or Christians.

    Now, I am giving you following points for consideration:
    1. Ramayana/Mahabharata does not constitute Hindu Dharma solely. Those who consider this history, agree that it may have occurred so many millennium ago, that practically no architectural proof would sustain them. Even if it is considered to be history, consider the many years of hyperbole and poetic licenses. For example, some critics of “Ramcharit Manas” (like BR Ambedkar, I can not remember where I read it) pointed out that in the original Valmiki Ramayana, Valmiki wrote that when Rama was invited in an Ashram of a sage, the sage welcomed him using the meat of veal. Since I do not know enough Sankritam, I can not confirm this. But knowing that Ambedkar was not JL nehru or Romila Thapar, I can not distrust him either. The point, however, is not whether Rama ate the veal or not. The point is that every translator added their own poetic licenses over time and since these books are very old, only few can verify stuff against the originals.
    2. In our Puranas, a technique is over-used. Using mind-numbing themes, complex ideas are explained. The root of this technique is a concept called “Rupaka” in “Alankara Sastra”. For example, 10 heads of Ravana signifies the fact that he knew (or could remember) four Vedas and six Upanishada. Once again, I do not know a lot to write a long note on this, but I hope this answers some of the “things that is hard to believe”. What is Rupaka and what is not, is real hard to determine. Sandeep B wrote a pretty long post related to this in here:
    http://www.sandeepweb.com/2010/03/16/symbolism-and-literalism/
    3. Religion like Christianity or Islam are all about scriptures, Dharma is not. It was a way of life. So what is the book that provides all the thumb rules of Dharma? None. This article below attempts to decipher the many facets of our Dharma and what kind of literature provides what facets (look at the chart)
    http://rajivmalhotra.sulekha.com/blog/post/2006/02/follow-up-on-manusmriti-to-my-article-in-outlook-india.htm
    4. Let us come to point 2. RSS is not an organisation dedicated to rioting or killing minorities (in fact, their vision never included a Hindu bharat, but they never agreed to Muslim appeasement). I am not a RSS member. RSS got some people issues and PR issues, but, if they are Hindu chauvinists, they would not create sister organizations like Rastravadi Muslim Manch, Rastriya Sikh Sangat or Bharat Tibet Parivar. This, however, does not mean that people like Pramod Muthalik are not active, but if you want to save yourself from Indian media’s biltzkreig of mis-information, you have to differentiate between them.
    5. Finally, let us come to the temple issue. A person who knows something about Hindu Dharma, knows that existence of the temple or idols are not central to our Dharma. This is exactly opposite in most sects of the Christianity or Islam. So during Muslim rule, temple after temples are broken and idols are mined for gold in the hope that this was how the indigenous religions can be destroyed (and true enough, Buddhism was eliminated except in far away places like Tibet or Nepal or Bhutan). This action, however, did nothing except creating irreconcilable gaps between the communities. Ayodhya is a holy site for us, a temple, at least as good as Akshardham should exist there to offer our respect to the birth-land of Rama and this need not be built in place of the mosque.
    The legend of Ayodhya is ours, but it appears that only Thais care ( http://www.amazing-thailand.com/Ayuthaya.html ). A great civilisation is not something that destroys, it creates monuments that last for centuries. The destruction of the mosque was an action of pure vandalism and as we found, it was well calculated to allow another group of highly corrupt people to assume power. If a community can not assert it’s existence by building a monument of respect without walking on the rights of some other people, then this community should not exist at all.

  • 41. Kaffir said:

    =>
    “And yes, I happen to have a problem with all such stories! I find every single religious story equally unbelievable.”
    =>

    So don’t believe them!! Is there anyone forcing you to believe these stories? Is someone out to kill you because you don’t believe these stories? But what I find amazing is that you are displaying anti-Hinduism in your comments by being inimical to those who may believe these stories. Or you think that everyone who believes such stories is unable to make the distinction between literalism and symbolism.

    BTW, there are many (ex)Muslims who have left their religion, so it’s not as if people are unable to reflect on their beliefs and make changes (just like you did). Give them some credit – you’re not the only know-all smartypants out there, though I’ve come across similar attitude among Randroids, who read a book or two and think that they are omniscient and know best (which is fine – believe all you want to believe) and start dissing others’ beliefs (which is not fine) which do not cause them (Randroids) any harm.

    Gosh, I hate newly-minted Randroids and their stupid, immature attitude as it makes them act just like monotheists. But that’s OK – like Neo, they have just swallowed the red pill, so it does have some side-effects and reactions, which, with time, hopefully will pass.

  • 42. Ashish Deodhar said:

    @Sid, am sorry I didn’t really get the point you are trying to make. I see that your first couple of points seem to suggest that we can not take these books as historical facts. Your 4th point poses two arguments in favour of and against “RSS as radical organisation” claim and the 5th point is in support of a Ram temple at Ayodhya without removing the Mosque. But I can’t logically connect these points together. Sorry I am not criticizing you (I am sure I haven’t been able to grasp it) but please could you give me a brief synopsis of your overall argument?

    @Kaffir – I gather you either aren’t a big fan of Ayn Rand or aren’t a big fan of reading books (or both)! But please don’t make an assumption that I’ve read only a book or two (as a voracious reader, I find that insulting!) and that Ayn Rand has somehow influenced my critical thinking! (btw, Ayn Rand didn’t has as much problem with religion as she had with altruism!) So yes, reading books is a good thing and it has shaped my personality to a certain extent (I am hugely influenced by Paulo Coelho!).

    To answer your first point, yes I think people who believe in such stories are delusional. You couldn’t really believe in a creature with an elephant’s head and a human body or in a person who could turn water into wine! But I agree with you that no one should have a problem if someone has imaginary friends. I don’t oppose that.

    On to your second point – again a big assumption that I claim to be the only rational person. I’ve come across many who managed to question the unquestionable, who managed to think critically. So yes, I am not the only “smartypants” and I am glad about that!

    Again, can’t help but say this to conclude – please don’t jump to conclusions about people you don’t know. If I ever get a chance, I would love to invite you to see my personal books collection. I am very proud of it!

  • 43. Sid said:

    Ashish,
    As I stated, I divided your post in two distinct arguments laid my counter arguments. If you see my arguments in this light, you may be able to connect these dots. It is not possible to arrange those counter points in sequence.

    I fail to see how my point 1 & 2 are hard to understand (symbolism, multiple facets of Dharma etc). It is written in plain English.
    I did not say that RSS is radical, I said there are radicals but some of them harm the Dharma more than heal the damages.
    I am in support of any temple as long as it does not stand in the middle of the road. But temples should be treated as they should be – monuments of respect to the Alimghty, not forest of mushrooms designed to wash sins away (my Dharma is not a toilet paper that washes sin).

  • 44. Mahendra Mathur said:

    Ashish, stories are not delusional; they are mataphoric and they help many in finding fulfillment. But I do notice that while you were vocal in implied criticism of Ganesha and Christ but you were afraid of putting Mohammed’s ride to Heaven in the same category!

    Amazingly, it is only Hinduism which passes the test of even your controversial heroine, Ayn Rand. It is only Hinduism which encourages individuals to find their own contentment by following yoga, work for the good of the world and use reasoning to acquire knowledge. On the other hand Christianity and Islam are based on faith and feelings as source of knowledge which Ayn Rand rejects completely.

    You may be proud of your personal book collection but storage of medicines does not make one a Doctor. You have to study them analytically in the light of recorded History to arrive at conclusions which will help you in leading a right life. May I suggest you add to your collection – or borrow from a library, as I do – Story of Civilization by Will Durant, Perennial Philosophy by Aldous Huxley and The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell. You will then be ready to imbibe the philosophy of Shankara from his Vivekchudamani.

  • 45. Ashish Deodhar said:

    @ Mahendra, if you scroll up a bit and find one of my comments posted earlier in the day, I have used the same “Mohammed on flying horse” example to suggest how unbelievable it is! I didn’t feel the need to repeat it again in my following comment, hence no mention! But before anyone else pounces on me for excluding any other religion, let me clarify that I have the same opinion about Judaism, Buddhism, Presbyterian, Mormonism, Scientology and the likes.

    Okay granted that the idea of god makes some people feel good but so does the idea of santa to children. But then children grow up! Because it makes people feel good doesn’t make it any truer!

    Btw, I have no idea why people on this forum have decided that Ayn Rand is my heroine. I think that she’s a good writer but calling her my heroine is stretching it a bit too far. And that too without my consent! Very amusing indeed!!

    So you think that reading certain books will help me lead a “right life”. And I assume, please correct me if I am wrong, it’s the “right life” because you live that life! Guess what, that’s exactly what Muslims, Christians and Buddhists have said to me already! Doesn’t help you look much different after all, does it? :)

    Will ignore the comment on how I haven’t learnt much from my book collection. I don’t think it deserves a reply.

  • 46. B Shantanu (author) said:

    Ashish, Mahendra, Indian, Sid, Kaffir: Thanks for sharing your thoughts and a great discussion…I am unable to respond…flat out on some pressing work assignment and travelling for the next few days…but will try and pick up the threads once I am back in early July.

    Thanks again to all..Pl continue the discussion.

  • 47. Moderator said:

    *** COMMENT by Sanjeev Sabhlok ***

    Can I also draw your attention to: http://sabhlokcity.com/2010/07/islamic-economics-finds-that-adam-smith-was-right/ and http://sabhlokcity.com/2010/07/the-economic-foundations-of-religion/?

    We are misguided if we think of Islam as a homogeneous block. It is a house divided, like any other community, deluded oftentimes by the same statism and socialism (and fascism!) that has deluded other regions/religions. Thus, the fundamental problem in Islam is socialism! (or its variants), not Islam. We should promote those streams of Islam that demand freedom. There is plenty of that to go around, if only we look!

  • 48. B Shantanu (author) said:

    Dear All: A generic (i.e. non-specific) discussion on Islam, Hindutva etc is more properly carried over on this thread..
    I am therefore copy-pasting the last few comments from the “Hindutva Terror” post here.

    Pl continue the discussion below. Thank you for maintaing the integrity of the threads and keeping the comment(s) relevant to the posts.

    ***
    KSV SUBRAMANIAN said:

    AHEAD OF OTHERS IN CONVERTING NON-MUSLIMS: CLAIMS PFI. Read the full article:

    http://expressbuzz.com/states/kerala/ahead-of-others-in-converting-non-muslims-pfi/193729.html
    29 July 2010
    ***

    Kamaraj said:

    In my quest for searching the ‘right’ religion,I failed miserably as there is no such religion in this world!
    It is all about the blame game and finding fault in others.

    My religion now is ‘no-religion’ and I am an atheist who wouldn’t want to argue,debate or fight for the cause..supporting ‘atheiesm’. I am fine this way.

    Unfortunately,I am finding that your site and the gang thats behind this ’satyameva jayate’ instigates psychological violence in people and hatred towards other religions.

    May be you like the words fascist,fanatic,hypocrite etc!

    Let us focus our minds towards constructive things and focus towards topics that would help India grow as I am an Indian living in India and I don’t have a clue if you are living elsewhere and making money there! End of the day..the ordinary man in the street wants a good living and we’ll work towards that ! can we call it socialism..in true sense!!
    Stay Positive-is my ideology and I would stay that way!
    Thanks and I would never visit again! ‘poiymayum vaimaiyidatha purai theerntha nanmai payakkumenin’ :) chillax!
    Satyameva jayate!

    ***
    JC Moola said:

    In West Bengal, a state with significant Muslim population,the Muslims are forcing burka in college. This and other events like Reservation of muslims under OBC category by Salman Khursheed, Sachar Committee are similar to the British Raj policies wrt to Muslim League and Congress. Congress as one gentleman from Baba Ramdev says is Brown British Christian Government.

    Shame on us who tolerate the coward muslims act of insulting bharteeyas when in numerical strength and sure of their chance to carry out evil schemes. Shame on the community which fosters raising of terrorists and jehadis Shame on sickulars. Shame on liberals. Shame on Communists.

    ***
    Pl note that I am travelling with limited internet connectivity for the next few days and may be delayed in moderating and/or responding to comments. Thank you for your patience, understanding and support.

  • 49. Bhagwad Jal Park said:

    I agree with KSV Subramanian when he says that religion should be taken out of state policy. Our Constitution is overwhelmingly based on human rights which are applicable to all people – such as freedom of expression etc.

    I don’t support government action favoring any religion be it Hinduism, or Islam. For that reason I’m against the banning of cow slaughter because there’s nothing special about cows compared to another form of life. Every animal feels that it’s life is the most important thing in the world.

    If the government were to ban all animal slaughter I would support it enthusiastically.

    At the same time, it’s very important that the government should let people do what they want. For this reason, I’m against the ban on the burqua in France which is only thinly concealed racism…

  • 51. GyanP said:

    @Bhagwad Jal Park

    You say-
    “there’s nothing special about cows compared to another form of life”

    In fact there is some thing special about the cow.

    1)We consider it sacred. This in itself should be a sufficient reason. In Australia killing dog meat is banned to respect the religious sensibilities of Christians. What it is such a big deal here?

    2)For an un-biased and scientific study – “The Sacred Cow” by Robin Winter – on why Cow is indeed sacred for India, read the following -

    http://www.archaeologyonline.net/artifacts/sacred-cow.html

    Just a small quote from the above giving the scientific validation of just one aspect of the sacredness of cow-

    “The Vedas explain that dung from cows is different from all other forms of excrement. Indian culture insists that if one comes in contact with the stool of any other animal, they must immediately take a bath. Even after passing stool oneself, bathing is necessary. But the cow’s dung, far from being contaminating, instead possesses antiseptic qualities. This has been verified by modern science. Not only is it free from bacteria, but it also does a good job of killing them. Believe it or not, it is every bit as good an antiseptic as Lysol or Mr. Clean. ”

    Cow is not like any another animal. It is special!

  • 52. Rohit said:

    I have stayed in Mud Hut coated with Cow Dung and it has excellent properties to retain the right temperature in all seasons and is free from flies and mosquitoes.

  • 53. Kaffir said:

    =>
    BJP wrote:
    For this reason, I’m against the ban on the burqua in France which is only thinly concealed racism…
    =>

    BJP, by the same logic, are you against the law that forces women to wear burqa – whether one likes it or not, whether one is Muslim or not – in certain Islamic countries? Or does your “human-ness”/we-are-humans-first not extend to these Islamic countries and the humans living there, and is limited only to democracies?

    If so, why?

  • 54. Kaffir said:

    BJP, one more question.

    If France’s law is “thinly concealed racism” – even thought there were Muslim ministers who were in favor of this law, what is Shar’ia law – practiced in numerous countries – that not only makes a clear distinction between Muslims (superior) and non-Muslims (eh, don’t really care), with Muslims accorded much more rights than non-Muslims, but puts it into practice?

  • 55. Bhagwad Jal Park said:

    @GyanP

    “We consider it sacred.”

    Your love for the cow is not unselfish. You love it only for what it gives you, not for the cow itself. Replace the word “sacred” with “useful” and you have a point.

    @Kaffir

    BJP, by the same logic, are you against the law that forces women to wear burqa?

    Obviously.

    “what is Shar’ia law – practiced in numerous countries – that not only makes a clear distinction between Muslims (superior) and non-Muslims (eh, don’t really care), with Muslims accorded much more rights than non-Muslims, but puts it into practice?”

    I don’t know why you assume I approve of Sharia law. Have I said this? If so, do show me where…

  • 56. Indian said:

    @Bhagwad Jal Park

    It is because of security reasons they have ban Burqa. One can only see eyes and no part of face which hides the physical identity of the person and not an easy task to communicate.

    My views are, Cow is sacred because of humble and peaceful animal. Cow has choices to eat what he likes but will only eat veg fodder.

  • 57. Bhagwad Jal Park said:

    @Indian

    You can’t praise a cow for just following its nature. “Humble and peaceful” are human traits. A cow will eat whatever is in it’s nature to eat. It has no ethics any more than a tiger does.

  • 58. JC Moola said:

    Jal Park… Ethics of Tiger. I’m interested in ethics of a spider’s web garden. As I imagine, I am… Thanks Park! It needs to go down as dope of week… Ethics of Tiger

  • 59. GyanP said:

    @BJP

    Accepting cow as sacred is a Hindu’s way of showing its gratitude. Maybe such sentiments are above you!

    Moreover, Hindus take care of cows even when they become useless and old. And don’t eat them after making use of them. This is called sentiment. Perhaps you did not read the link I gave above. Here is a relevant portion-

    ” Perhaps the heaviest criticism of the pastoral culture of India is directed at the insistence of the farmers on protecting even sick and aged cows. Westerners find this to be the height of absurdity. At least they could be killed and eaten or sold. But no. Animal hospitals or nursing homes called goshallas, provided by government agencies or wealthy individuals in search of piety, offer shelter for old and infirm cows. This is thought to be a luxury that India cannot really afford, as these “useless” cows are seen to be but competitors for the already limited croplands and precious foodstuffs. The fact is, however, that India actually spends a great deal less on their aging cattle than Americans spend on their cats and dogs. And India’s cattle population is six times that of the American pet population.

    The Indian farmer sees his cattle like members of the family. Since the farmers depend on the cattle for their own livelihood, it makes perfect sense both economically and emotionally to see to their well-being. In between harvests, the cattle are bathed and spruced up much like the average American polishes his automobile. Twice during the year, special festivals are held in honor of the cows. These rituals are similar to the American idea of Thanksgiving. Although in principle the same, there is a basic difference in the details of how we treat the turkey and how the more “primitive” Indians treat their cows.”

    Nothing is sacred in itself. Only we human beings make it.

  • 60. Khandu Patel said:

    @BJP

    How societies care for the welfare of their animals is a measure of how advanced they are as a nation. That is purely a question of ethics because no right thinking people would want to inflict needless pain on animals. In the UK there are very heavy penalties on people who do just that from jail terms to fines.

    Even the UK draws a line at preserving the lives of animals. Countless dogs or put down because they have no homes. In India they wander as strays and suffer neglect and abuse. Much the same fate awaits the cow past its useful economic life for which homes are provided by animal welfare charities. Hindu religious sentiment baulks at utilizing for economic benefit as food and for the leather industries. That would make sense for a wealthy economy like the UK which does not make the same choice as India seems to make as regards their cows. When India’s people in many cases are in no better condition than the afflicted cows, this is a policy no sane Indian government should be pursuing. Obviously politics and religion has interceded to skew the argument for the policy that is now pursued.

    There is a fundamental issue at the root of the matter. The other major religions of the world make a very clear distinction between the reason with which God has endowed mankind and absented from the animal kingdom. Should Hindus in the 21st century continue to endow the cow and other animals with godly qualities and want to appear ridiculous in the eyes of the world? The highest qualities of Hinduism enjoins Hindus to be free by acknowledging the truth. Which other religion has the epitaph “God is Truth”. Ethics as regards the humane treatment of animals is truth enough for me without importing religious doctrines and sentiments into the issue when they are clearly not necessary.

  • 61. GyanP said:

    @Khandu Patel
    You say-
    There is a fundamental issue at the root of the matter. The other major religions of the world make a very clear distinction between the reason with which God has endowed mankind and absented from the animal kingdom. Should Hindus in the 21st century continue to endow the cow and other animals with godly qualities and want to appear ridiculous in the eyes of the world? The highest qualities of Hinduism enjoins Hindus to be free by acknowledging the truth. Which other religion has the epitaph “God is Truth”. Ethics as regards the humane treatment of animals is truth enough for me without importing religious doctrines and sentiments into the issue when they are clearly not necessary.

    Your above comment is not quite clear in its intent.

    Should we change our thinking so as to not look ridiculous? According to a Hindu, God is in all living things. Even in non-living things. We see God everywhere. Christianity thinks God is only in and for Humans.

    Should we make more economically sensible decisions – like killing the old cows and using it’s meat and hide? But, this is what the above cited study shows – that the way our society has been traditionally treating cows makes perfect economic sense. Only thing is we express our sensibilities in a more religious language.

    Personally, it doesn’t matter to me what other countries think about us. There are so many things in their religions that seem to be ridiculous to us!

    Excuse me if I misunderstood you!

  • 62. Indian said:

    http://ibnlive.in.com/news/indian-linked-to-alqaeda-plot-unearthed-in-canada/129611-2.html?from=tn

    An Al-Qaeda-linked terror plot was unearthed by Canadian security agencies on Wednesday, with one of the suspects reportedly hailing from India.

    Though police didn’t name the suspects, one of them is said to be 36-year-old Misbahuddin Ahmed who worked as an X-ray technologist at an Ottawa hospital. Reports quoted sources as saying that Ahmed comes from India.

  • 63. Rationalist said:

    Noah Feldman: Politics and religion are technologies
    Noah Feldman makes a searing case that both politics and religion — whatever their differences — are similar technologies, designed to efficiently connect and manage any group of people.

  • 64. Harish said:

    Regarding the following verses brought into the picture by Mohammad Ali:

    In the mean time what is your opinion on the following verses of the Holy Gita:

    �If however, you do not fight this religious war, then you will certainly incur sin, for neglecting your duties, and thus lose your reputation as a fighter�. [Bhagavad Gita 2:33]

    �Considering your specific duty as a Kshatriya, you should know that there is no better engagement for you than fighting on religious principles, so there is no need for hesitation.� [Bhagavad Gita 2:33]

    Wrong translation!

    Krishna advocates fighting for dharma, dharmic principles, and some moron translated “dharma” as “religion” and now mohammad ali is using the wrong translation to imply that the Bhagavad Gita was advocating some kind of religious war like the Quran does.

    Krishna is not asking Arjuna to wage war against Jains, Buddhists and Christians or Jews, but fight for dharma and against adharmic people.

    There is no need to bring in any kind of context here. The verse is clear by itself, asking people to fight on the basis of dharmic principles.

    Is Mohammad Ali trying to say there is no Jihad in Islam? This is a strange kind of Islam, and he must be the only person who believes in it.

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