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Posts Tagged ‘“On poetry in Jahilyya”

Why Islam clerics engage in falsehoods? On miracles stories, the Coran, Prophet, language…?

Why Islam imams, clerics, sheikhs, Wali Fakih, Mufti…disseminate falsehoods based on stories (hadith, of what Muhammad said or did or discussed or behaved…) and engage in the culture of ignorance, and insist on substituting the reflective mind to miraculous events related to the education of the Prophet, the state of the Arabs before the advent of Islam, how the Coran was written, the Arabic language…?

This post targets Islam political exigencies in disseminating religious falsehoods, but most of the processes are valid to other religions, and particularly to Christianity and Judaism, and every sects branching off.

The stories in the “hadith” were specifically meant to empowering and consolidating the rule of the standing caliphs, monarchs, emirs…Unfortunately, the debates and extremist positions are specifically extracted from what was reported in the Hadith, and almost never from the verses of the main book of the Coran.

After Muhammad died, scores of tribes defected from the community of believers in Medina and dissented. The first Caliph Abu Bakr waged relentless battles and used all kinds of means for two years to bring these tribes back into Islam.  The most potent mean was to disseminate the belief that everything that was done or written emanated from the “Only God”.  Just after Muhammad died, Abu Bakr’s daughter Aicha (the most beloved wife of the prophet and the most versed in Islamic laws) asked her father to deliver this critical statement: “Muhammad was human and he died, but God Almighty is eternal…”

Here are a sample of falsehoods, and the list can run for several pages:

The Prophet Muhammad was very literate and could speak and write in more than one language and was exposed to many cultures and the various religious sects (Christian, Jewish, and mostly Christian-Jewish sects banned by the Empire of Byzantium and labelled heretics) that were prevalent in the Arabic Peninsula, Syria, and Iraq.  Why Islam would like the Moslems to believe that Muhammad was totally illiterate?  Is illiteracy one of the good miracles that Arabs should expect in their lives and see as good omen to the appearance of their Prophet?

Islam mainstream was made to believe that the culture of the Arabs in the Arabic Peninsula was totally of an ignorant tribal society (Jahiliyya) and didn’t learn to read or write…Fact is, even the poorest people in Mecca could read and write and the their poorer captives in the battle of Badr were to teach the Moslems in Medina, because they could not afford to pay for their release.

Before Islam, there were over 100 tribes who were Christians or Jewish or basically “heretic” Christian-Jewish sects.   The best epic poems, at least 8 of them, were written in gold ink on the curtains of the Kaaba, and many of these poems surpassed the epic poems of Greeks and Romans.  One of the greatest poet was Omro2 al Kaiss who was a Christian…

Writing on papers and papyrus was widespread in the Arabic Peninsula, and the Arabic language was already an established dialect of Aramaic, spoken in Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine.  What is actually meant by Ummi (Ignorant) is not being illiterate, but lacking a unified written Holy Book among the polytheist tribes to refer to it for moral conduct…

For example, in 1926, the late Egyptian author Tah Hussein published “On poetry in Jahilyya” (the pre-Islamic period in the Arabic Peninsula.)

“On poetry in Jahilyya” Hussein claimed that his critique is Cartesian; which means a rational method requiring the author to “forget” or set aside all that he knew on a subject matter and then, starts with a clean sheet re-studying the topic from a rational and scientific perspective. (Obviously, the sentence “forgetting what we knew” cannot be feasible; saying that an author has to do his best to starting with a neutral position might seem more accurate, but it is not:  How can you get interested in a topic if you are essentially neutral about it?)

In one of the chapters of this monumental manuscript, Hussein proposed several views.

First, Hussein claimed that Abraham is a fictional character (but he failed to back up this contention) in his drive to discrediting many religions meddling in literature, which obscured and prevented serious investigations for the development of the Arabic language and literature: religions asserted facts that are principally myths in nature.

For example, Islam (submission to Allah), by claiming Abraham as the founder of Jewish and Islam religions, was a mythical story adopted by the Prophet Muhammad to uniting Jewish and Christian sects into one comprehensive and common denominator system of belief.

Hussein might not have known then that:

1. Muhammad’s father was a convert to one of the “heretic” Christian-Jewish sects in Mecca (“heretic” was a label extended by the orthodox Byzantium Church, and the Patriarch of this sect was a close relative to Muhammad;

2. Muhammad joined his Patriarch uncle once a year, and for an entire month of fasting, prayer, and meditation;

3. Muhammad was versed and immersed in the belief system and the stories of his uncle’s sect.  The bible of this sect was the “Hebrew Testament” and the verses of the Coran during Muhammad stay in Mecca were transliteration of this bible into the Arabic dialect of the main and most powerful tribe of Quraich.

Second, Hussein proposed that the Prophet Muhammad read his verses in seven Arabic dialects corresponding to the main Arabic tribes in the Arabic Peninsula. (The Coran was finally codified during the third Caliph Othman bin Affan and written into the Quraichi tribe dialect.)

Third, Hussein claimed that it is not true that Islam was the first monolithic religion that the Arabic Peninsula experienced.

Fourth, Hussein denounced the zeal of claiming that the genealogy of the Prophet (the successive clans and tribes) must be the best among the tribes.

There are more propositions which incited the ire of the clerics in Al Azhar who took Hussein to court.  Hussein didn’t hesitate to cancelling this “controversial” chapter from his next versions titled “On Jahilkiyya literature”.  Actually, the press coverage of the proceedings had disseminated the views of Hussein extensively among the intelligentsia in Egypt and the Arab World.

What was striking in these court proceedings is that the prosecutor basically defended the book in a 40-page investigation; the investigation was balanced and rational and Hussein’s book was not condemned.  That was Egypt between the two world wars; a period of enlightenment that the Lebanese immigrants participated mightily in promoting freedom of speech and opinions in dailies and magazines.

It is well-known that the close scripts to the Prophet had their own version of the Coran and that the third caliph ordered all the other versions to be destroyed, as the Christian Church did by adopting only four version of the New Testament…

Muhammad used to revisit the Surats at every Ramadan period and reorder the verses in each Surat. Abu Bakr assembled the Coran assisted by Aicha, the second caliph Omar reassemble the Coran…Where are all those original and genuine versions of the Coran? Aicha had written thousand of verses on goat thin skins in order to last forever, where are there?

Many of Islam clerics earned high scientific diplomas, but they seem to project to mainstream Moslems that their only scholarly study is the Coran and the Hadith, which are all that Moslem need to know and study…

Mainstream Islam falsehoods are political in nature. Why clerics engage in falsehoods on miracles stories, the Coran, Prophet, language…?

Again, the stories in the “hadith” were specifically meant to empowering and consolidating the rule of caliphs, monarchs, emors…This is true in electing the president of the USA (follow the religious overtone of the US presidential campaign…)

Note 1:  Tah Hussein was blind by birth and is dubbed “Dean of Arab literature”. He continued his education in France and received a doctoral on his thesis related to Ibn Khaldoun (Ibn Khaldoun lived in the 15th century Tunisia and is known as the founder of sociology or ethnography). Hussein divorced his Egyptian wife and married a French woman Suzanne.

What if a sticky myth can’t be disproved? Who is Tah Hussein?

I lean for the notion that a myth has factual features, though the story becomes fundamentally a myth by successive alterations.  So what?  Most novels are claimed to be fictions, though there is no doubt authors are describing their own feelings and positions in many sections of the novel.

For example, there is this story of Abraham and his sons Ismael and Jacob and his many wives, legitimate or not.  Obviously, there is no way to disprove this story (this story should not be a big deal: it must have been a common story among families and societies, related to customs and traditions at the time and in the region…)  

For example, all the monotheist, which I prefer to label mono-idolatery, religions (Jewish, Islam, and Christian) claim Abraham for father figure, and they discriminate their religions based on Abraham’s descendents.  In fact, if these religions didn’t disseminate the Abraham story as true, who would care if it was a factual story or one of the famous mythical fictions?

The process of disproving a myth, or its inherent value and the futile labor in investing time in non-documented research, is not the theme of this article. 

My question is: “If you know that there is no adequate means to tackle disproving a myth connected to religious beliefs then, is it worth antagonizing religious people just by stating that (their convictions are based on myths) and not having the moral courage to specializing in all the aspects of the myth?”

Some people would say: “If this myth is wrecking havoc to the unity of society (meaning  of disturbing conformity) then, is it your moral obligation to say that a myth is a myth until proven otherwise?”

Some people would say: “If the impacts of this myth is redundant on society then, it is a crime to approaching and taking out the skeletal of this myth and making it an issue that harms peaceful coexistence and encourages extremist, racist, and obscurantist elements around the myth.”

For example, in 1926, the late Egyptian author Tah Hussein published “On poetry in Jahilyya” (the pre-Islamic period in the Arabic Peninsula.)  First, who is Tah Hussein?

Hussein was blind by birth and is dubbed “Dean of Arab literature”. He continued his education in France and received a doctoral on his thesis related to Ibn Khaldoun (Ibn Khaldoun lived in the 15th century Tunisia and is known as the founder of sociology or ethnography). Hussein divorced his Egyptian wife and married a French woman Suzanne.

“On poetry in Jahilyya” Hussein claimed that his critique is Cartesian; which means a rational method requiring the author to “forget” or set aside all that he knew on a subject matter and then, starts with a clean sheet re-studying the topic from a rational and scientific perspective. Obviously, the sentence “forgetting what we knew” cannot be feasible; saying that an author has to do his best to starting with a neutral position might seem more accurate, but it is not:  How can you get interested in a topic if you are essentially neutral about it? (see note 2)

In one of the chapters of this monumental manuscript, Hussein proposed several views.

First, Hussein claimed that Abraham is a fictional character (but he failed to back up this contention) in his drive to discrediting many religions meddling in literature, which obscured and prevented serious investigations for the development of the Arabic language and literature: religions asserted facts that are principally myths in nature.

For example, Islam (submission to Allah), by claiming Abraham as the founder of Jewish and Islam religions, was a gimmick  adopted by the Prophet Muhammad to uniting Jewish and Christian sects into one comprehensive and common denominator system of belief.

Hussein might not have known then that:

1. Muhammad’s father was a convert to one of the “heretic” Christian-Jewish sects in Mecca (“heretic” was a label extended by the orthodox Byzantium Church);

2. One of Muhammad’s uncles was the Patriarch of this sect;

3. Muhammad joined his uncle once a year, and for an entire month of fasting, prayer, and meditation;

4. Muhammad was versed and immersed in the belief system and the stories of his uncle’s sect.

Second, Hussein proposed that the Prophet Muhammad read his verses in seven Arabic dialects corresponding to the main Arabic tribes in the Arabic Peninsula. (The Coran was finally codified during the third Caliph Othman bin Affan (from Quraich tribe of Mecca) into the Quraichi tribe dialect.)

Third, Hussein claimed that it is not true that Islam was the first religion that the Arabic Peninsula experienced.

Fourth, Hussein denounced the zeal of claiming that the genealogy of the Prophet (the successive clans and tribes) must be the best among the tribes.

There are more propositions which incited the ire of the clerics in Al Azhar who took Hussein to court.  Hussein didn’t hesitate to cancelling this “controversial” chapter from his next versions titled “On Jahilkiyya literature”.  Actually, the press coverage of the proceedings had disseminated the views of Hussein extensively among the intelligentsia in Egypt and the Arab World.

What was striking in these court proceedings is that the prosecutor basically defended the book in a 40-page investigation; the investigation was balanced and rational and the book was not condemned.  That was Egypt between the two world wars; a period of enlightenment that the Lebanese immigrants participated mightily in promoting freedom of speech and opinions in dailies and magazines.

Note:  Tah Hussein published another highly controversial book “The future of Egypt’s culture”.  In this book, Hussein claimed that Egypt culture is basically a Mediterranean Sea culture and a close relative to Greece, Italy, and France, but in no way related to the cultures in Persia and India.  Hussein demonstrated that most of Greek and Roman intelligentsia studied in Egypt, before a few returned to their City-States and established their own schools.

Hussein proposed that ancient Greek and Latin be taught at Egyptian schools as was the case in Europe at the turn of the century. (I think that is the case of the culture in Palestine, Lebanon, and Syria. It was the case of coastal Turkey till the 16th century).  In the 16th and 17th century, the Ottoman Empire experienced total embargo with Europe, economically and culturally, due to its military expansions in Europe. The Ottoman Empire had to turn toward Iran and India to satisfying all its demands in all fields and sectors.  You may read my article “Lions and lionesses in the Fertile Crescent”

Note 2: The famous poet of the 8th century (Baghdad) Abu Nawas was asked by his mentor to memorize 1,000 pieces of poems.  The next season, the mentor demanded from Abu Nawas to doing his best forgetting all the poems he has memorized.  This was an exercise of renewing with your own personality and character…


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

April 2020
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