Allah Akbar, or Are You Entertained?

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  1. Asaf Khan says:

    Who Was Ibn Ishaq?
    His full name is Muhammad b Ishaq b Yasar, born in Madina about 85AH/ 702CE and died in Baghdad 151AH. Ibn Ishaq was the earliest (but one of the worse) biographers of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Ibn Ishaq was born in Madina (The city of the Prophet) approximately 85 years after Hijra, which is approximately 704 CE. He is thus considered one of the Tabi‘in and he is reported to have met Anas ibn Malik. He worked in Madina until the Abbasids replaced the Umayyads in the caliphate (750 C.E.). After that he is reported at various places in Iraq and Iran and he died in Bagdad in 768 C.E.
    He was the first author to write Sirat Rassoul Allah/ Biography of Muhammad (peace be upon him). His grandfather, Yassar was a Christian captured by Khalid b al Walid in Aynul Tamar in 12AH who became a slave to Qays b Makhrama b. al Muttalib b. Abdu Manaf who was manumeted after he accepted Islam. His father Ishaq and uncle Musa were well known traditionists which eventually led to Ibn Ishaq as a writer and author. [1]
    It is unclear that Ibn Ishaq must have devoted himself to study and research the apostolic tradition by attending lectures in Egypt and then returning to Madina to collate and arrange all the materials that he had accumulated.
    Ibn Ishaq’s biography of Muhammad the Sira was based – besides others – on many of the reports about Prophet Muhammad from books written by several different authors called al Maghazi which described the stories of the wars that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) fought.
    The original book has not been found but its contents were traced through other contemporaneous authors who copied his book such as Ibn Hisham.Early Muslim historical writing was primarily concerned with the biography of Muhammad (Sirat Rasul Allah) and the first wars of Islam (Al-Maghazi). Muhammad Ibn Ishaq related the first known biography (Sira). This work no longer exists in its original form, but has been preserved in at least two recensions, one of these recensions being authored by Ibn Hisham (with many revisions), as well as by Al Bakka’i, al Tabari, Yunus b. Bukayr, al Athir, Al Qarawayoun (in Fez, Morocco) manuscript, etc.; thus Ibn Hisham’s work represents one of the earliest (but not entirely reliable) authorities on the life of Muhammad. [2]
    The Arabic text was published at Gottingen in three volumes by F. Wustenfeld, 1858-60, and a German translation by G. Weil, The Historian of the Caliphate, appeared at Stuttgart in 1864. It is this latter work which is perhaps better known in the West, and is now more conveniently read in the English translation of the late Alfred Guilaume.
    Alfred Guillaume’s English translation is probably the best attempt at the reconstruction of Ibn Ishaq’s work. This was produced largely by translating what Ibn Hisham reports from Ibn Ishaq, adding quotations from the latter that are included by al-Tabari (mainly the material that Ibn Hisham omitted) and placing Ibn Hisham’s comments on Ibn Ishaq’s work at the end of the translation in a section called “Ibn Hisham’s Notes” [3] The page numbers suggest that Ibn Hisham’s comments constitute about 15% of his recessions of Ibn Ishaq’s work.
    Ibn Hisham’s (833 C.E.) work contains information concerning the creation of the world, Biblical/Isreali Prophets, and the advent of Islam. The actions and deeds of Muhammad were noted, and his battles described in great detail. Ibn Hisham’s Sirat Muhammad rasul Allah is considered by Dunlop as one of the best existing authorities on the life of Muhammad.
    We do not know if Ibn Ishaq ever wrote a “book” in the ordinary sense of books. What has come down to us seems to be from the notes taken by his pupils. The standard source is now the “Sirat al-Nabi” (“Life of the Prophet”) of Abd al-Malik ibn Hisha (died 830, 835 or perhaps much later) which is a systematic presentation of Ibn Ishaq’s material with a commentary by Ibn Hisham.
    This should be supplemented by the extracts in al-Tabari and other authors. For example, the story about the allegic Verses was not reported by Ibn Hisham. But it was repeated by al-Tabari and others. Ibn Hisham makes no secret – in the Introduction to his book – of the fact that he omitted some of the material Ibn Ishaq included that reflected negatively upon Muhammad’s character.
    The part of Ibn Hisham’s work due to Ibn Ishaq is now usually called the”Sirat Rasul Allah” (“Life of Allah’s Messenger”). Ibn Ishaq’s work originally consisted of three almost equal parts. The first was a history of the world up until the beginning of Muhammad’s ministry. The second was an account of Muhammad’s work in Mecca and the third was an account of his work in Madina and his death.
    The first part, the Mubtada’ (Mabda’), one has to go to the Tafsir and History, which is actually based upon the Hebrew Bible, from Genesis (In the Beginning/ Mubtada’), the beginning of Creation story. Unfortunately, Ibn Hisham was not interested in these stories and jumped directly to the story of Abraham, who is the ancestor of Muhammad (p) and the Arab race. Much of this part it is lost. What remains is based on Arabic traditions and the Jewish scriptures. Al Azraqi for example, quotes some passages from the missing section in his Akhbar Mecca.
    The second part, which is often called al-Mab’ath, begins with the birth of Muhammad and ends when the first fighting from his base in Madina takes place. It is a collection of prophetic hadiths, especially about the events behind the revelation of one or another verse in the Quran (the division between Meccan and Madinan suras), lists of significant persons (for example, the earliest Muslims) and poetry. Ibn Ishaq does not attempt a chronology, but he does arrange his material in a logical sequence.
    The third part consists of a careful month-based chronology (which falls apart at the end) and the campaigns Maghazi (Ibn Ishaq counts 27, but he stretches the meaning of campaign) made by Muhammad from his base of operations in Madina are carefully embedded in this chronology. But before this campaign literature there is a copy of the document called the Constitution of Madina and an extensive section of Tafsir and Hadiths. Tafsir also occurs several times embedded in the campaign literature. The campaign literature itself includes extensive poetry and lists of persons involved as well as description of battles or why no battle took place.
    The Tafsir is among the earliest in Islam and the American Quran scholar John Wansbrough classifies it as Haggadic in his most primitive subset of the Tafsir. That is, it is primarily devoted to passing on a narrative.The campaign literature is followed by an appendix describing campaigns made by other Muslims under Muhammad’s directions and a relatively brief account of his death and succession by Abu Bakr.
    There are about 600 Hadiths in Ibn Ishaq’s book “Sirat Rasullah” and most of them have what appears to be questionable (at best) isnads (chains of transmissions) . But the later hadith collectors (Bukhari, Muslim, etc)
    rarely used any material from the Sira (because of the lack of quality and authentic isnads). It is important to note that Muslims follow the Quran and the Hadith 100% only. Not the Sira. There are almost as many poems as hadiths in Ibn Ishaq, but later commentaries tend to view them as worthless because they feel so many of them were forged (by Muslims). Alfred Guillaumme, translated it in English in his own monumental work “The Life of Muhammad”.
    Who were the other Earlier Sources of Islam?
    During the early days of Islam, there were numberous books written about Islam and Prophet Muhammad. These books were the Sirat (Biography) and the Maghazi ( the battles). These books are completely different than the hadith books– as in they are not as reliable as the hadith. The Sirat and the Maghazi weren’t carefully written or compiled. Many unreliable accounts and fictional narratvies crept into them. Anyways below is a list of the earliest compliers and biographers of the Prophet and the Maghazi.
    Aban b. `Uthman al-Bajkali
    (640-718 C.E.), son of the caliph who wrote a book on maghazi which has not survived, nor has it been cited by Ibn Ishaq or al-Waqidi.
    `Urwa b. al-Zubayr b. al-Awwam
    (643-712 C.E.) the cousin of the Prophet and referred to the founder of Islamic history. There is doubt that he authored anything, but there are many traditiions that have been handed down in his name.
    Shurabil b. sa`d
    (740 C.E.), who wrote a maghazi, but this book was considered unreliable and thus seldom used by later historians.
    Wahb b. Munabbih
    (654-728 C.E.), who wrote the Kitab al-Mubtada, which inspired many Muslim versions of the lives of the prophets. However, much was attributed to him for which he was not responsible, and the earliest fragment is 228/842, and several early writers did not use him.
    (734-823 C.E.) worte over twenty works of an historical nature, but only the Kitab al-Maghazi has survived as an independent work. His reputation is mared by the fact that he relied upon story tellers; viz., those who embellished the stories of others. Al-Waqidi did such embellish, such as by adding dates and other details onto the account of Ibn Ishaq
    Ibn Sa’d
    (784-845 C.E.) He was a Sunni Muslim scholar of Islam and an Iraqi biographer, received his training in the tradition from Al-Waqidi and other teachers.
    (923 C.E.) was a polymath who wrote on many subjects (including a commentary on the Quran) but is perhaps most famous for his history of the world, which extends to July 915.
    Ali bin Muhammad al Madaini
    (840 C.E.) – Imporant for the Arab conquests of Persia.
    The Differences between Sirah and Hadith
    Several critics of Islam say that Ibn Ishaq’s “Sirat Rasulallah” – “Life of the Prophet of Allah” is considered the most authentic biography of Prophet Muhammad.
    This is certainly false. While it is true that Sirat Rasulallah is the oldest and earliest biography of the Prophet– no Muslim accpets Ibn Ishaq to be 100% true, inspired, a sunnah book or reliable. Most of the material of the Sira as we’ll see has been rejected by hadith collectors such as Bukhari, etc.
    What several critics of Islam and Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) fail to realize is that there is a huge difference between Sirah (Biography of the Prophet) and Hadith (the sayings and actions of Prophet Muhammad). The Seerah is a collection of narrations about the people and events surrounding the Prophet (SAW) arranged in a chronological order. The amount of rigor put into authenticating and analyzing the chains and narrators [4] of an incident or event that is found in the Seerah is far lower than when a narration is used in the Sunnah or Hadith. Only the top of the top narrations, namely Sahih [5] or Hasan [6] are used in the books of Hadith and Sunnah. As for Seerah this is not the case, the narrations used include all the authentic and acceptable ones, along with ones with weaknesses. The reason for including these weaker narrations is in order to fill in gapes or holes in the story. Muslims accept the hadith 100%. Muslims however don’t accept the Sirah 100%— rather Muslim scholars question 70% of the material found in the works of Al-Waqidi, Ibn Sa’d, Ibn Ishaq, etc. These were more or less historians– they were not hadith collectors. Ibn Ishaq, Al-Waqidi, Ibn Sa’d and Al-Tabri all operated outside of f all the sciences of Islam and isnaad (Arabic for chain of transmitters). Ibn Is’haaq’s specialty was seerah therefore he was abandoned by the scholars of hadeeth (such as Bukhari and Muslim) when it came to narrating hadeeth and a reason for this might be because he might include those weaker narrations while he narrated the hadeeth.
    Why Ibn Ishaq can’t be trusted/The Problems with Ibn Ishaq
    “The Life of Muhammad” by Ibn Ishaq has been quoted by many critics of Islam. They get excited when Ibn Ishaq paints a bad picture of Prophet Muhammad and use it in their writings to attack Islam. Although Ibn Ishaq was the earliest of the traditionists to write a biography of the events that pertained to the time of Muhammad (p) there are several severe problems with his writings. As Bassam Zawadi says” just because something is early doesn’t mean it is true”. He has a good point. Not everyone back then was reliable and honest. Ibn Ishaq was known to be careless in him collecting stories about the Prophet, etc.
    That his Isnads (chains of transmissions) were defective, ie not ‘iron’ tight by naming all the reporters, which is important because this determines whether the transmitter of the story is trustworthy or not. Ibn Ishaq was not an eye witness to any of the events of Prophet Muhammad’s life. Ibn Ishaq was writing about 150 years after the Prophet’s death so this is very important. In Islamic sciences in order for a report of the Prophet (peace be on him) to be true is if the isnad is solid or not.
    He used reports of traditions gathered from Jewish sources. Jews made up a lot of false stories/legends of Prophet Muhammad (just like the early Christians living outside of Palestine made up a lot of myths and legends of Jesus and put them in the Gospels). Making up stories and legends about the Prophet are unnacceptable in the eyes of many Islamic scholars.
    Ibn Ishaq was (for lack of better term) a “suck up” to the Jews of Arabia. He said several complimentary reports of the Jews of Arabia, despite the fact that the Jews of Arabia were constatnly fighting with the Arabs and were charging interest when loaning money. The Jews of Madinah were constatly plotting againist the Prophet Muhammad. They were always trying to undermine his authority. In fact they sided with the Makkans in order to assinate the Prophet.
    Most important of all, his report about Laylat al Qadr (the first revelation), contradicts all the hadith versions. The hadith collectors Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, etc were more careful in collecting their hadith (their chains of transmission).
    There are several stories in Ibn Ishaq which are never found in the hadith. The reason why is because several hadith collectors such as Bukhari– did not trust Ibn Ishaq.
    Ibn Ishaq as an author was in fact subjected to devastating attacks by scholars, contemporary or later, on two particular accounts. One was his uncritical inclusion in his Sira of so much spurious or forged poetry [7] ;the other his unquestioning acceptance of just such a story as that of the slaughter of Banu Qurayza [8]. It gets worse for Ibn Ishaq though. First let’s talk about what Imam Malk thought of Ibn Ishaq.
    Who Was Imam Malik? What Did Imam Malik have to Say about Ibn Ishaq?
    Malik bin Anas Bin Malik bin Abu Amir Al-Asbahi (715-801 C.E.) or Imam Malik– lived cloest in the time to the life of Prophet Muhammad of all the collectors of the hadith (Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, etc). He was born more than 80 years after the death of the Prophet.
    Imam Malik was a complier of a respected hadith collection, called Muwatta. Imam Malik was a hadith scholar. Imam Malik called Ibn Ishaq a liar and an imposter for writing false stories about Prophet Muhammad. Imam Malik has said that Ibn Ishaq “reports traditions on the authority of the Jews”.
    Ibn Ishaq was condemned by some of our major Islamic scholars.
    Shaykh ibn Taymiyyah said:
    “Allah has provided evidence (i.e. Isnad) establishing the authenticity or lack thereof of the narrations that are necessary in matters of the religion. It is well known that most of what was reported in aspects of Tafsir (commentaries on the Qur’an) is similar to narrations reporting Maghazi (or Seerah) and battles, promoting Imam Ahmad to state that three matters do not have Isnad: Tafsir, Mala’him (i.e. great battles), and Maghazi. This is because most of their narrations are of the Maraseel (plural for Mursal) type, such as narrations reported by Urwah Ibn az-Zubair, ash-Sha’bi, az-Zuhri, Musa Ibn Uqbah and Ibn Ishaq
    .” [10]
    Imam Malik was not the only contemporary of Ibn Ishaq’s to have problems with him. Despite writing the earliest biography of Prophet Muhammad, Scholars such as al-Nisa’I and Yahya b. Kattan did not view Ibn Ishaq as a reliable or authoritative source of Hadith. [11] Though some thought his use of collective isnad (chains of tranmissions) problematized his Hadith, several people went so far as to call Ibn Ishaq a liar on matters of Hadith.
    Others claim Ibn Ishaq included verses in his Sira that he knew were not authentic.
    The Original Form of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah is Lost
    As I have already said, the Sirat written by Ibn Ishaq only exists in a later revised and shortened version by Ibn Hisham, who died in 834 C.E, 60 years after Ibn Ishaq– and in fragments quoted by other Muslim writers including another historian, Muhammad Ibn Jarir Al-Tabari (839-923 C.E.).
    Ibn Hisham, the editor of Ibn Ishaq’s biography admitted to removing certain stories from Ibn Ishaq’s work
    Ibn Hisham was not a scholar of hadith. He was only a biographer and did not use the proper method of collecting Hadith and the proper way of deterimining a valid isnad. Ibn Hisham explains that in his version he omits a lot of material from Ibn Ishaq’s biography:
    “God willing I shall begin this book with Isma’il son of Ibrahim and mention those of his offspring who were the ancestors of God’s apostle one by one with what is known about them, taking no account of Isma’il’s other children, omitting some of the things which I.I. has recorded in this book in which there is no mention of the apostle and about which the Quran says nothing and which are not relevant to anything in this book or an explanation of it or evidence for it; poems which he quotes that no authority on poetry whom I have met knows of; things which it is disgraceful to discuss; matters which would distress certain people; and such reports as al-Bakka’i told me he could not accept as trustworthy – all these things I have omitted
    . But God willing I shall give a full account of everything else so far as it is known and trustworthy tradition is available. [12]
    Satanic verses are stories found in these books.
    Other Problems with Early Sources of Islam
    We have seen the unreliablity of the Sira and the Maghazi. The books of the Maghazi have not appealed to Islamic scholars as being authentic. We’ve also seen Ibn Ishaq, Al Waqidi and Ibn Sa’d have all been condemned by Islamic scholars. In fact Ibn Ishaq had been called a liar and Al Waqidi was also attacked for narrating extremely weak stories about the Prophet Muhammad. Even Al-Tabari (another early biographer of Prophet Muhammad, who was the first to mention the false story of the “Satanic” verses”) was honest enough to say in the introduction of his book:
    “Let him who examines this book of mine know that I have relied, as regards everything I mention therein which I stipulate to be described by me, solely upon what has been transmitted to me by way of reports which I cite therein and traditions which I ascribe to their narrators, to the exclusion of what may be apprehended by rational argument or deduced by the human mind, except in very few cases. This is because knowledge of the reports of men of the past and of contemporaneous views of men of the present do not reach the one who has not witnessed them nor lived in their times except through the accounts of reporters and the transmission of transmitters, to the exclusion of rational deduction and mental inference. Hence, if I mention in this book a report about some men of the past, which the reader of listener finds objectionable or worthy of censure because he can see no aspect of truth nor any factual substance therein, let him know that this is not to be attributed to us but to those who transmitted it to us and we have merely passed this on as it has been passed on to us.” [20]
    Thus, Al-Tabari faithfully displayed these accounts in the exact manner through which he received them. Can he then be held liable if any objectionable accounts should arise? To translate this into laymen’s terms, al-Tabari has simply refused accountability by avoiding the task of historical criticism. Therefore, any spurious accounts are not to be attributed to him.
    Getting back to Al Waqidi , According to Many Islamic scholars, Al-Waqidi was considered a liar and very unreliable. Below I’ll provide quotes from various Islamic authorities on this:
    Abd Allah Ibn Ali al Madini and his father said: “Al-Waqidi has 20,000 Hadith I never heard of.” And then he said: “His narration shouldn’t be used” and considered it weak.
    Yahya Ibn Muaen said: “Al-Waqidi said 20,000 false hadith about the prophet.”
    Al-Shafi’i said, “Al-Waqidi is a liar.”
    Ibn Hanbal said, “Al-Waqidi is a liar.”
    Al-Bukhari said he didn’t write a single letter by Al-Waqidi.
    (Siar Aalam al nublaa – althagbi – biography of Al-Waqidi)
    Al-Waqidi and his book have been regarded as the least trustworhty and most careless biographers of Prophet Muhammad. Ibn Khalikan says “The traditions received from Al Waqidi are considered of feeble authority and doubts have been expressed on the subject of his veracity.
    The following Muslim author writes:
    “As a report of history, this narration suffers from two fatally serious defects. The first is the UNIVERSALLY RECOGNISED UNTRUSTWORTHINESS OF AL-WAQIDI. Details of his unreliability as a narrator would probably fill several pages, but all of it may be suitably condensed into a statement by Imam ash-Shafi’ee, who was his contemporary, and who knew him personally. Ash-Shafi’ee has the following to say: “”In Madinah there were seven people who used to forge chains of narration. One of them was al-Waqidi.” [21]
    Even the English translator of Ibn Sa’d’s work had this to say about al-Waqidi:
    “… The chain of the narrators is not reliable because the person who narrated to Ibn Sa’d was Waqidi WHO IS NOTORIOUS AS A NARRATOR OF FABRICATED hadithes
    . The next one Ya’qub is unknown and ‘Abd Allah Ibn ‘Abd al-Rahman is not a Companion. Consequently this narration is not trustworthy. ” [22]
    G.F. Haddad seeking to deny the historicity of the Satanic Verses where he calls into question al-Waqidi’s reliability. Here is what Haddad says about al-Waqidi:
    [(*) Muhammad ibn `Umar al-Waqidi (d. 207), Ahmad ibn Hanbal said about Al-Waqidi is that “He is A LIAR.” Al-Bukhari and Abu Hatim al-Razi said: “DISCARDED.” Ibn `Adi said: “His narrations ARE NOT RETAINED, AND THEIR BANE COMES FROM HIM.” Ibn al-Madini said: “HE FORGES HADITHS.” Al-Dhahabi said: “CONSENSUS HAS SETTLED OVER HIS DEBILITY.” [23]
    What Non Muslim Scholars say about the early Sources
    Muslim Scholars (Both Classical and Present) aren’t the only ones that attack early Souces of Islam such as Ibn Ishaq, Al-Waqidi, Al-Tabari, etc. Even Non Muslim Scholars reject the Early Biography material of the Prophet. Here Micheal Cook gives us his reasons for rejecting the earlier material:
    “False ascription was rife among the 8th century scholars and that in any case Ibn Ishaq and contemporaries were drawing on oral traditions. Neither of these propositions is as arbitory as it sounds. We have reason to believe that numerous traditions on questions of dogma and law were provided with spurious chians of authorities by those who put them into circulation and the same time we have much evidence of controversy in the eigth century as to whether it was permissiable to reduce oral traidtion to writing. The implications of this view for reliablity of our sources are clearly rather negative. If we cannot trust the chains of authorities we can no longer claim to know that we have before us the seperate transmitted accounts of independent witnesses; an if knowledable of the life of Muhammad was transmitted orally for a century before it was reduced to writing, then the chances are that the material will have undergone considerable alteration in the process”
    [24] Even the famous Polemist and Hatemonger, Robert Spencer admits in his book: The Truth about Muhammad , that “However, Ibn Ishaq’s life of Muhammad is so unashamedly hagiographical that its accuracy is questionable.”
    [25] Yet in the 400 footnotes of Robert’s book, 120 of them are referenced to Ibn Ishaq! This is one the reasons why I can’t take Christian critics aganist Islam seriously— they pick and choose what they want to believe from the sources for Islam.
    So we can see that these various Ibn Ishaq’s stories are worthless. Same with many of the stories found in Al Waqidi and some of the stories found in Ibn Sa’d (although Ibn Sad was much better). No Islamic Scholar accepts Ibn Ishaq to be 100% true.
    Notes and Bibliography
    [1] Guillaume, Alfred: The Life of Muhammad: A Translation of Ishaq’s sirat Rasul Allah (London, 1955) pgs 8-15
    [2] Donner, Fred — Narratives of Islamic Origins, The Darwin Press, 1998 pg. 132
    [3] Ibid pg. 691-798.
    [4] Chain (Arabic is isnad) and Narrators (Arabic is rijaal) – use dint he Sciences of the authentication or rejection of hadith.
    [5] Sahih – a hadeeth that is authentic based on its chain of narrators. Accpeted as a source of Shareeah in Islam.
    [6] Hassan means a good hadith. One that is judged by competent Hadith, one that is judged by competent Hadith scholars to be reliable, but not of the same, highest level of authenticity as the Sahih Hadith.
    [7] On this see W. Arafat, “Early critics of the poetry of the Sira”, BSOAS, XXI, 3, 1958, 453-63.
    [8] We’ll discuss this incident later.
    [9] Kadhdhab and Dajjal min al-dajajila. Uyun al-athar, I, 16-7. In his valuable introduction Ibn Sayyid al-Nas provides a wide-ranging survey of the controversial views on Ibn Ishaq. In his full introduction to the Gottingen edition of the Sira, Wustenfeld in turn draws extensively on Ibn Sayyid al-Nas.
    [10] Shaykh Ibn Taymiyyah, Majmu’ Al Fataawa, Volume, 13, page 345
    [11] Jones, J.M.B. Ibn Ishak. Vol. IV, in Encyclopaedia of Islam
    , edited by Ch. Pellat, and J. SchachtV.L.M.B. Lewis. London: Luzac & Co., 1971: pages 810-811.
    [12] The Life of Muhammad, A Translation of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah, with introduction and notes by Alfred Guillaume [Karachi Oxford University Press, Karachi, Tenth Impression 1995], p. 691
    [13] Ibn ‘Adiyy, Al-Kamel, Vol. 6, p. 145
    [14] Ibn al-Gawzi, Al-‘Ilal, Vol. 1, p. 279
    [15] (Allama Shibli Nu’Mani, Sirat-Un-Nabi, volume II, p 173-174)
    [16] M. M. J. Fischer & M. Abedi, “Bombay Talkies, The Word And The World: Salman Rushdie’s Satanic Verses”, Cultural Anthropology, 1990, Washington, Volume 5, No. 2, p. 127.
    [17] T. Khalidi, Arabic Historical Thought In The Classical Period, 1994, Cambridge University Press, p. 47.
    [18] Ibid., p. 48.
    [19] “Muhammad”, Encyclopedia of Islam
    [20] Abu Ja`far Muhammad bin Jarir al-Tabari, Tarikh al-Tabari: Tarikh al-Umam wal-Muluk, 1997, Volume I, Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, Beirut (Lebanon), p. 13
    [21] Tahdhib al-Kamal vol. 26 p. 194, in a footnote
    [22] Ibn Sa’d’s Kitab Al-Tabaqat Al-Kabir, Volume I, English translation by S. Moinul Haq, M.A., PH.D assisted by H.K. Ghazanfar M.A. [Kitab Bhavan Exporters & Importers, 1784 Kalan Mahal, Daryaganj, New Delhi, 110 002 India], p. 152, fn. 2; capital and bold emphasis ours
    [23] Mizan al-I`tidal (3:662-666 #7993)
    [24] Cook, M: Muhammad
    , Oxford 1983. pg. 65
    [25] Spencer, Robert: The Truth about Muhammad
    , Regnery Publishers, 2006 pg. 25

  2. Walter Sieruk says:

    Islamic history is very interesting. Much of it helps explain the many awful terrible Islamic terrors actions of many violent jihadist Muslims in the world today. Some of which are jihad suicide/homicide attacks. Many times such murderous bombing attack are committed by a male Muslim/ jihadist who is as deluded as he was dangerous and deadly. That is he was under strong delusion, in this case strong Islamic /Koranic delusion. Nevertheless, being under delusion is no excuse for doing evil. That he was deluded so deluded that he must of thought of his murderous bombing as a “martyrdom operation.” This Muslim who was also a jihadist must have had really believed that he would obtain for himself a paradise with many virgins, houris, in it for him if he died for the cause of Islam in the jihad as a “martyr.” As the Koran teaches in, for example, in 44:54. 55:56. 78:31. That jihadist /Muslim found out the hard way that he was taught total falsehood from the Koran. For after he died in committing that jihad attack he had a very harsh reality check. For instead of finding himself in any kind of paradise, with or without virgins, he found himself tragically suffering in the fires of an awful place that the Bible call hell. As the Bible teaches that a murderer “shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” Galatians 5: 21. In addition, those Muslim clerics, such as the imams who indoctrinate this story of a doctrine from the Koran of a lustful paradises of the flesh with many virgins into the hearts and minds of others. The Bible explains and warns about such false religious teachers who ingrain such a religious /story lust filled place of the flesh in to the beliefs and thought of other. For of such false teachers the Bible in Second Peter 2:18. reads “For they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh…” Moreover, the Bible also warns against listening to and believing in unproven and invalid religious stories. No matter just how enticing those religious stories may be. As the Bible warns against giving “heed to fables…” First Timothy 1:4. As for the jihadist with his Islamic pipe-dream in the Koranic story /doctrine of a place with virgins, such a man is in great contrast to the Christian who had the reality of Second Peter 1:16. Which reads “For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ…” [K.J.V.]

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