Is Islam a myth?

Discussion in 'Ancient History and Mythology' started by muhammad_isa, Jan 27, 2021.

  1. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls

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    Yes, it is. It's also true .. it is relatively recent history. :)

    Muhammad, peace be with him, was born in 570 AD in the Arabian city of Macca.
    When he was 40 (610), Muhammad reported being visited by Gabriel in a cave {hira) and received his first revelation from God. In 613, Muhammad started preaching these revelations publicly, proclaiming that "God is One", and that he was a prophet and messenger of God.

    @juantoo3 does not believe it, it seems..
     
  2. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Search, be your own guru.

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    Don't know about the Gabriel bit, but yes he claimed one God and his being the messenger of the God. Similar to claims by Zoroaster, Moses, Jesus (son), Joseph Smith (Later Day Saint), Bahaollah (Manifestation), Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (Mahdi). These being the major one's who succeeded to various extents. There are thousands who made such claims and perished. This is the normal Abrahamic religion template. In time there will be more, not withstanding claims of Mohammad that he is the last.
     
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  3. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic) Admin Moderator

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    I don't think Muhammad's existence as a historical figure is much disputed. There are always people who will doubt even the existence of any events prior to last Thursday, but in general, I think his biographical data and his impact on world history are acccepted.

    Whether to accept his message, well, that is a matter of faith.
     
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  4. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls

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    Not another one!

    "A matter of faith" .. perhaps you mean a matter of choice?
    Of course we can choose what we wish. I can vote for "the raving loonies" party in a general election .. not my scene.

    I think that God expects us to choose what we consider to be the truth.
    There has to be a better reason than "I don't like what Muhammad's Quran says", so reject it for what I do like.
     
  5. Thomas

    Thomas Moderator Moderator

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    As I understand it, his existence is accepted, based on contemporaneous or near-contemporaneous records, but attempts to distinguish between the historical elements and the mythology of the man have not been very successful. I think the historicity, rather than the existence, is debated.

    On the one hand, Muslim academic sources claim that everything he did and said was recorded, but then as they would not know of deeds or words not recorded, this is a statement of faith, not fact. Other academic sources claim that we do not have even a scrap of information of real use in constructing the human history of Muhammad, beyond the bare fact that he once existed".

    The Qur'an gives little personal information and its historicity is debated. Prophetic biography, known as sīra and hadith, date from the third and fourth centuries of the Muslim era (c. 800−1000AD). They provide a great deal of information, but the reliability is very much debated. Considering 20 years is 'questionable' when critiquing Christianity, 300-400 years later speaks for itself in Islam.

    Generally, one can accept the traditional biography of the Prophet if one suspends all credibility; on the other hand, apply the same critical tools applied to early Christian or Jewish texts and its simply not possible to affirm any biography at all – one simply cannot recover a scrap of information of real use in constructing the human history of Muhammad, beyond the bare fact that he once existed.

    Michael Cook, scholar of Islamic history, notes that comparing Ibn Ishaq with the later commentator Al-Waqid – who based his writing on Ibn Ishaq but added much colourful but fictional detail – reveals how oral history can be contaminated by the fiction of storytellers (qussa). "We have seen what half a century of story-telling could achieve between Ibn Ishaq and al-Waqidi," because of written materials to make comparisons, "What the same processes may have brought about in the century before Ibn Ishaq is something we can only guess at."
     
  6. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls

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    What's that supposed to mean?
    I assume you've read it. I also assume that if it agreed with your creed you'd be more likely to "like it" :)

    Funny that. The same critics that you presumably follow, are very quick to criticise his military expeditions.
     
  7. Thomas

    Thomas Moderator Moderator

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    Sorry, I mean to tag that post with --wiki --

    It's Wikipedia summation of the situation. If there's a critique of his military expeditions, that's probably all part and parcel of the general critique of a supposed historicity.
     
  8. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic) Admin Moderator

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    For me, it was like this: Why do I want to believe? What is the source of this desire? And so on, following it all the way, not stopping at my likes or dislikes, or my parents' approval, or my friends' or family's, not being satisfied with what I learned at school or what a spiritual teacher told me, or the scriptures: this was between me and my urge to believe in something, anything - why? What is it that drives me to believe? And I did not know where it would take me, or I might have stopped early on. I did not choose, except that I would not be satisfied with anything but the truth.

    I suspect it is similar with you, and all sincere persons on this forum: we all have tested our faiths and convictions to the limit, removing untruth, excuses, wishful thinking, in our spiritual effort, in our striving.
     
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  9. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

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    First, this was a cordial invitation for all participants to be polite. I haven't even looked at the other posts yet, but I ask EVERYONE in this thread to be respectful even in disagreement.

    Second, my invitation had nothing to do with belief or disbelief, and EVERYTHING to do with the strong desire among Muslims of my acquaintance to analyze Christianity while adamantly refusing to do the same with their own faith. This has always struck me as curious, as if there were something to hide. I am not accusing, I certainly have no inside or special information. I have long been of the opinion that my faith is wide open to being analyzed, and I understand the "warts and all" as Thomas has said many times, and I can in the proper audience discuss those warts intelligently. I have yet to meet a Muslim willing to do the same for their own faith.

    Aside, the thought occurred to me that Islam today seems in some ways very similar to Christianity about 600 hundred years ago, when that Church held the reigns of so many governments and the people were not encouraged to "peek behind the curtain."

    I would also request to change the title of the thread, please, I know the mod staff are capable. This thread isn't an overt challenge to Islam, this is an exploration for understanding, and the current title begins with an argumentative tone.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2021
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  10. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

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    I'm still trying to absorb the little I found after some cursory reading today, it seems like the Prophet was born into great wealth in a prominent "pre-Islam" Arabic family. When he began his "ministry" (I'm sorry, I don't know what else to call it) he went from town to town, often being chased off by those unwilling to hear his message. According to the article if I read correctly, at one point some of his followers went into brief exile in Abyssinia (Ethiopia) under a Christian King, and rejoined him a few years later. At another point he and a follower were run out of town by being stoned by the children with the parents looking on. A Christian slave and his master had mercy on the two and nursed them back to health, and the slave eventually converted to Islam. Sometime shortly after that, seemingly overnight, he gained a warlord (for lack of a better word) as an adherent and convinced this man to lead his army in retaliation. His new faith never looked back from that moment.

    History of Islam - Wikipedia

    Muhammad - Wikipedia

    ibid

    SIRA:
    ibid, emphasis mine as a point of discussion

    HADITH:
    ibid, emphasis mine as a point of discussion
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2021
  11. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls

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    Oh, please. Muhammad, peace be with him, thought he was going mad intitially, but when he started preaching publicly [ an order from God via angel Gabriel ], he had no doubt that it was real. Nothing to do with warlords!
     
  12. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

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    There is sincerely no disrespect, prior to converting the warlord, well over ten years into his ministry, he and his followers had a really rough go of it - presuming the cursory history I read is anything close to accurate. I don't know that to be fact, do you have more detailed information to point to?
     
  13. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

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    History of Islam - Wikipedia
     
  14. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls

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    They certainly did have a rough time for 10 years. I presume you are referring to Umar bin Khattab. I also presume you mean "his conversion", which was not forced, incidentally.
    It is well known that their lives were in danger and they therefore emigrated to Madina.
     
  15. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

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    OK, but at no time did I imply or infer that the warlord's conversion was forced. Yes, it is noted a bit of back and forth between Mecca and Medina. It is also noted the Kaaba was initially a pagan shrine, complete with circumambulating, prior to Islam. In that instance it reflects the Catholic practice of modifying existing practice, "baptizing it" as I've read before in another context.
     
  16. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Search, be your own guru.

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    God is an unproven entity, but has always brought power and prosperity to Shamans, be it Hariram Ojha in Santhal Paraganas (a district of West Bengal, India) or the likes of Mohammad, Joseph Smith, Bahaollah, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, as well as many charlatan gurus in Hinduism, some of whom are presently in jail for murder or rape.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2021
  17. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Search, be your own guru.

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    No doubt about that. He was the leader of a group of brigands who tasted success in Medina and later in the whole of Arabia. His only condition was 20% of the spoils (money, slaves, women, livestock, whatever) for Allah. And hadith records he beheaded one who did not do that.
     
  18. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls

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    Actually, the kaaba in Macca goes back to the time of Anraham, peace be with him. He had 2 sons, Isaac & Ishmael.
    They had 2 different mothers who didn't get on, and so he took Hagar & Ishmael into the desert where he established Macca. Over the generations, his descendants lapsed into idolatry. It is no different than God sending prophets to Israel. They also lapsed and had to be reminded of God's Oneness. i.e. to preach truth
     
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  19. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Search, be your own guru.

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    Add to it, Mohammad's desire for young women. All his life he had to do with a women 25 years older to him. Then he married another old women, Sawda. That is why, his child-wife, Aisha was the light of his eyes. Between the age of 52 and 62, he married some 11 women (He had Allah's special permission). Actually hadiths say that when he heard that one of his companions was marrying an old woman, he asked him why was he doing so? Did not he like young women?
     
  20. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Save Our Souls

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    Well, some people don't like women at all ;)
     

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