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talib84  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote talib84 Replybullet Posted: 13 March 2007 at 5:53am
Originally posted by Lenny

Hi Karim.


Maybe I should address this to you for your comment. One of my contention against Islam is the so-called imperfection of its teaching vis-ŗ-vis God who is Omnipotent.


One of the issues Iíve brought up is about wine and sex in heaven. This have been brushed off by Muslims here as minor issue and nitpicking with words. Many of them do not understand why I dwelt on issue like this which they had explained many times. Well, for starter, at least we have established that wine and sex are available in heaven and sex especially as rewards for martyrs (remember regarding the 72 virgins?).


This mean that after we die and dwell in heaven, we still retain our human features Ė hunger, thirst, sexual desire, desire for comfort and companionship, etc and etc, just like when we are still alive on earth. Only in heaven, all the best in life are available for free. So whatever is oneís desire, one can have it in heaven, though who get what may differ. For example, those who died as martyrs for Allah would be rewarded with the 72 hooris, so I think others may not get this privilege.


If we retain our human features in heaven, then will we get old and expire at some point in time too?


My objection obviously is on the inadequacy of this concept. One reason is that heaven is already found on earth by those filthy rich who can afford the mentioned luxuries. So you see any divine justice here is not really exclusive. It can be achieved on earth albeit short lived.


The other reason is those in heaven will be preoccupied with enjoying and spoiling themselves with all the luxuries. To me this is very humanistic and nothing special at all. I have likened it with the analogy of a carrot dangling at the end of the line.


So what happens to the greatest purpose of Islam, like worshipping the one God? Is this stopped, now that we are enjoying our rewards? Or if not, is it eating and enjoying and worshipping as usual, like any ordinary life of a good Muslim? Actually good Muslim does not focus very much on his biological pleasure, donít you think? Then if this is the case, it is obviously not much different as on earth.


I would want the majesty of heaven as nothing we can hope to imagine, where we will no longer having biological desire but in a state of ultimate contentment with the greatest pleasure being in Godís presence. Is not the desire of every creature of God is to return to the presence of his Creator and basks in an activity that the Creator wants most from his creations Ė worshipping him? Is not worshipping God the greatest activity in order to show our love for Him? Only if we come to a state of emptying ourselves of the last bastions of our biological needs and desires, then only we can devote ourselves completely to worshipping the one God. In my mind, in my search for a perfect religion, I would envision something of this nature.


Got to go now.


Regards.




Hi Lenny

You made your point much clearer now. In heaven, every desire there will always be fulfilled, therefore we won't be in "need" but we'll enjoy having desires that are continuously met, like on earth except perfect. You say that people can have the things in heaven on earth, not really. For instance, if one hoori of paradise spit on the earth, the whole world would be filled with her scent. This is how beautiful and perfect these women are. Not to mention, we don't have any of the human flaws that we have on earth (women won't have menstruals, they won't need to use the bathroom, etc.) So these kind of things you can't find in any woman on earth. But the main point is that these are just the IMAGINEABLE rewards that we will get in heaven -- just a taste of what really lies in store for the believers. The Koran says that heaven has things we never would have imagined, pleasures beyond pleasures, of every sort. However, according to the Messenger, peace be upon him, the greatest reward will be to see the Face of Allah Most Merciful. Nothing in heaven or on earth will top that, but the disbelievers will be deprived of that.

As for heaven being a place of personal enjoyment...well it is, but worshiping Allah will be the basis of the believers' entire existence. We believe that nature itself is constantly worshiping Allah by just existing, because it does not have the power to rebel against the laws that God set out for it. In the same way, we will be perfect creatures in the hereafter, and every act, every step, every breath (if we even breathe then), every movement, with every moment that passes will be in worship to God. You can look at this personal enjoyment issue in another way: all non-humans (animals, plants, stars, rocks, birds, etc.) are constantly living in submission to God. Their entire existence is based on worshiping Him (albeit, in different ways that we worship). For instance, rabbits from their birth till the grave are in constant worship to God. If God were to reward a rabbit, undoubtedly He'd give it as many carrots as it wants, as many mates as it wants, all the fields to run through, etc. In the same way, although we are a more intelligent and complex species, we still have simple desires like the rabbit. We want delicious food, beautiful mates, a beautiful home, etc...these are our natural desires that God had placed in us, they're not man-made desires. So when God rewards those of us who deserve it, why not grant them a life in which they got everything they ever desired except on a much more intense and perfect level? I guess my personal view is to look at it like life without the need for survival or any other negative aspects of life.

I know you aimed this question at Karim, but I was urgent to answer it lol. Inshallah the brother will come and answer it as well. Hope I helped :).

AH
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karim06518  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote karim06518 Replybullet Posted: 13 March 2007 at 8:18pm
Originally posted by Lenny

I would want the majesty of heaven as nothing we can hope to imagine, where we will no longer having biological desire but in a state of ultimate contentment with the greatest pleasure being in Godís presence. Is not the desire of every creature of God is to return to the presence of his Creator and basks in an activity that the Creator wants most from his creations Ė worshipping him? Is not worshipping God the greatest activity in order to show our love for Him? Only if we come to a state of emptying ourselves of the last bastions of our biological needs and desires, then only we can devote ourselves completely to worshipping the one God. In my mind, in my search for a perfect religion, I would envision something of this nature.
 

Lenny,

  Iím sorry Iím not able to respond quicker but Iíve been very busy with work and other things lately. Your paragraph highlighted above was amazing to me. You actually gave a very good explanation of the concept of heaven! Thatís basically how I understand it according to Islam. Talib responded to you before I had a chance and the basic core of his response is correct also. He basically said that heaven is actually something that is beyond our greatest imagination. Our greatest reward there will be to see the Face of Allah. In other words, to dwell in the presence of His Glory and Majesty. Worshipping Allah will be the basis of a believerís entire existence there.

 

Now you raised strong objections to the concept of there being wine and sex in heaven, which is understandable. But I think that a lot of the confusion comes from trying to interpret certain verses literally. You may be referring to the following verses:

 

(47:15) A parable of the Garden which the dutiful are promised: Therein are rivers of water not altering for the worse, and rivers of milk whereof the taste changes not, and rivers of wine delicious to the drinkers, and rivers of honey clarified, and for them therein are all the fruits and protection from their Lord. (Are these) like those who abide in the Fire and who are made to drink boiling water, so it rends their bowels asunder?

 

(52:17-20) The dutiful will be surely in Gardens and bliss,

Rejoicing because of what their Lord has given them; and their Lord saved them from the chastisement of the burning Fire.

Eat and drink with pleasure for what you did,

Reclining on thrones set in lines, and We shall join them to pure, beautiful ones (hooris).

 

Before I address the issue of wine and sex in heaven, I would like to give the following verse from the Holy Qurían, which is key to understanding the previous two verses that I have written:

 

(32:17) So no soul knows what refreshment of the eyes is hidden for them: a reward for what they did.

 

The verse above is an indication that the blessings of heaven in words, concepts, and expressions that we are familiar with in everyday life are metaphorical. In reality, there are no words that can adequately describe to us the nature of those blessings. Therefore, you need to keep that in mind whenever trying to interpret verses in the Qurían that describe heaven (and hell). Now verse 47:15 is clearly stated to be a parable. A parable is a statement that conveys a meaning indirectly by the use of comparison or analogy. So you can clearly see that this verse is not to be interpreted literally. In regards to verses 52:17-20, all of the descriptions given are to show the perfect life of those who enter heaven with the further mentioning of the company of men and women in that state. Sexually minded people have a tendency to place sexual connotations with the verses in question, which is not the original intent. There are other verses in the Qurían that mention hooris and there are two main reasons why women are mentioned. The first is to show that both men and women will have equal access to paradise. The second reason is that hooris is used as a description of one of the blessings of heaven. The reason why it is described in words that apply to women is because the particular blessing referred to here have a special reference to the purity and beauty of character. And women are usually associated in terms of purity and beauty.

 

So, as you can see, the verses referring to heaven in no way indicate that we will retain any of our human features or attributes such as hunger, thirst, sexual desire, desire for comfort and companionship, etc. as if we were still alive on earth.

 

Wassalam,

Karim 

4:82 "Will they not ponder over the Qur'an? Had it been from any other than Allah, they would have found many discrepancies therein."
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Lenny  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Lenny Replybullet Posted: 14 March 2007 at 12:19pm

Hi Waheed,

Thanks for the reply and am sorry for the late respond. I got caught up in the other threads. I do not have the luxury of time, and my time on the net is even more limited. It's either this thread or that, and that be all for the day.

I will not comment further on the Coptic thing anymore. I only wanted to show you that there are other side to the rosy picture that you described about them in Eygpt. And this comes from one of them. I haven't been to Egypt myself and so I cannot verify the situation. So you are in a better position to make that comment, and I believe it's an honest comment from you.

In the end most probably my idea of Islam being a poltical ideology would be mainly because governments do hide behind religion to achieve their political ends. Unless you or someone else say that the purported current Islamic governments are perfect, I would see Islam does have some influence on how those countries are being governed and not all are right, especially for non-Muslims there.

 

You say:

God "tests" us in the sense that he puts hardships and other issues before us to give us training, an education to allow us to function in our future roles, be it as societies or as individuals!

What is the use of this if He already knows the outcome? Why not just give the person the wisdom required for the purpose you mentioned? It's difficult for me to agree to this 'limited choice' for reasons mentioned previously. Yes, I understand your explanation, but this concept just not make enough sense for a God who is omnipotent.

 


FYI I appreciate you calling me "professional". I am not, however, all that. I have simply been asked by my Local Muslim community to lead the Prayers sometime, that's it. There is no priesthood in Islam.
Well, I know that you'll out-talked and out-wit me, and I'm not a match for you in all this discussion. But I want to tell you I do enjoy your explanations. I'm tempted to provoke you further to get more information, but I'm afraid your Muslim colleagues here might not be able to take it. Too bad because I know I could get more out of you.
 
 

I also appreciate Karim's very kind comments. I hope you{Lenny} take heed of his comments.
Yes, his posts are great. A bit heavy that requires higher concentration, but they are great.
 
 

Well, it's late and I'm sleepy, so good night..
Regards,
Waheed

Take care then.

Regards.

 

 


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Lenny  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Lenny Replybullet Posted: 14 March 2007 at 12:21pm

Hi Talib.

Thanks for the respond, man. Yes, it was addressed to Karim because I had just posted a reply right before it, but anybody can respond to it.

Well, it was not explained like that to me before, and like I said, all my comments are based on Muslims explanation themselves. Yes, that would be something I expect heaven to be. It is too good to be true. Is it really in the Quran? Any supporting verses?

And what a houri you have and don't tell this to the ladies here!  (I'm just joking).

Regards.

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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Lenny Replybullet Posted: 14 March 2007 at 12:24pm

Hi Karim.

My mind had just gone into a blank mode in trying to understand those Quranic verses. So you can imagine what the real book can do to me!   I guess this answer my question for Talib demanding some Quranic verses.

Let me try. Verse 47:15 does not look like a parable for it describes the heavenly beauties and they're such beautiful scenes. I have no problem if it's the real heaven. Is there any reference to it that it's a parable only?

52:17-20 seems to support 47:15. So the latter is not reasonably a parable. It's more reasonable to take it literally.

After reading your explanation, (well thanks for it), I want to ask you this. According to Islam, are all non-believers then go to hell and have no chance whatsoever of going to heaven?

Thanks.

It's late now, I've to go.
 
Regards.
 
 


Edited by Lenny - 14 March 2007 at 12:25pm
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote waheed1 Replybullet Posted: 14 March 2007 at 10:26pm
Originally posted by Lenny

Hi Waheed,

Thanks for the reply and am sorry for the late respond. I got caught up in the other threads. I do not have the luxury of time, and my time on the net is even more limited. It's either this thread or that, and that be all for the day.

I will not comment further on the Coptic thing anymore. I only wanted to show you that there are other side to the rosy picture that you described about them in Eygpt. And this comes from one of them. I haven't been to Egypt myself and so I cannot verify the situation. So you are in a better position to make that comment, and I believe it's an honest comment from you.

In the end most probably my idea of Islam being a poltical ideology would be mainly because governments do hide behind religion to achieve their political ends. Unless you or someone else say that the purported current Islamic governments are perfect, I would see Islam does have some influence on how those countries are being governed and not all are right, especially for non-Muslims there.

 

You say:

God "tests" us in the sense that he puts hardships and other issues before us to give us training, an education to allow us to function in our future roles, be it as societies or as individuals!

What is the use of this if He already knows the outcome? Why not just give the person the wisdom required for the purpose you mentioned? It's difficult for me to agree to this 'limited choice' for reasons mentioned previously. Yes, I understand your explanation, but this concept just not make enough sense for a God who is omnipotent.

 


FYI I appreciate you calling me "professional". I am not, however, all that. I have simply been asked by my Local Muslim community to lead the Prayers sometime, that's it. There is no priesthood in Islam.
Well, I know that you'll out-talked and out-wit me, and I'm not a match for you in all this discussion. But I want to tell you I do enjoy your explanations. I'm tempted to provoke you further to get more information, but I'm afraid your Muslim colleagues here might not be able to take it. Too bad because I know I could get more out of you.
 
 

I also appreciate Karim's very kind comments. I hope you{Lenny} take heed of his comments.
Yes, his posts are great. A bit heavy that requires higher concentration, but they are great.
 
 

Well, it's late and I'm sleepy, so good night..
Regards,
Waheed

Take care then.

Regards.

Your question about why God does not just give the person the required wisdom is a Philosophical one, which has been the subject of debate by Both Muslim and Non-Muslims for countless ages. I cannot claim to know all the answers, and maybe what I[or someone else] tell you may or may not be accurate. I cannot interpret God's will or God's wisdom.

Let's look at the Quranic story of Adam and Eve. It says, in much the same way the OT discusses, that they had disobeyed God. However, it also says that God taught him{Adam} words of repentance. Moreover, it also says that God placed Man to operate in this world with the job of what we call in Arabic "Khalifah".

We have to go through some toils and struggles, commit sins and mistakes, in order to learn from them and to act better next time, so we may perform better on the job.

The question about God's omnipotence and knowing the future is also interesting, and again I can only give the opinion I have now. It may change as I study, I don't know.

In any case, the whole concept of time is, I think, not all that applicable when it comes to God! I can recall a verse in the Quran which says that A thousand years is like a day in your Lord's reckoning.{ I hope I quoted it right}

Any case,
The concept is that God is all knowing, all aware.

well, I gotta go..I will post more details later

take care
Waheed

 

 


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mai moslemah  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote mai moslemah Replybullet Posted: 14 March 2007 at 10:33pm
Originally posted by Lenny

Originally posted by mai moslemah

 
 
Honesly..when you first came here i thought that u are one of the nicest Christians here but now I see you as a person who have read alot of misconception about Islam then came here to prove that this misconception is true = Islam is wrong = Christianity is right
 
Just my 2 cent
 
 
 
 
I know. Exactly my contention. I am nicest as long as I ask question and agree with you. Once I contradict and disagree, I become not nice. I already said this in my previous post. Thanks for confirming it.
 
 
 
 
I didnt meant that ...I didnt saw u agreeing before with us but u were nice when u were disagree ... now it seem like u are showing us your real face...this is not the one who first came here
sorry to say that
But don`t you see?that i am truely free? this piece of scarf on me;i wear so proudly to preserve my dignity,modesty & integrity....why can`t i just be me??? "i am the one who is free!!!!

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talib84  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote talib84 Replybullet Posted: 15 March 2007 at 4:58pm
Originally posted by Lenny

Hi Karim.


My mind had just gone into a blank mode in trying to understand those Quranic verses. So you can imagine what the real book can do to me! †I guess this answer my question for Talib demanding some Quranic verses.


Let me try. Verse 47:15 does not look like a parable for it describes the heavenly beauties and they're such beautiful scenes. I have no problem if it's the real heaven. Is there any reference to it that it's a parable only?


52:17-20 seems to support 47:15. So the latter is not reasonably a parable. It's more reasonable to take it literally.


After reading your explanation, (well thanks for it), I want to ask you this. According to Islam, are all non-believers then go to hell and have no chance whatsoever of going to heaven?


Thanks.


It's late now, I've to go.


Regards.





Hey Lenny,

I understand that Karim got those verses for you that you had asked for :). You asked if the scenes described in the Quran are literal. Honestly, as far as I understand, those particular scenese are not said to be symbolic, however, when we read another passage of the Koran, we learn that there will be rewards in Paradise that no eye has ever seen (or mind has ever perceived, I cannot remember the exact wording). I'm not quite sure where that passage is, but inshallah I will searh for it tonight so that I can quote it for you. The meaning of the passage is self-explanatory, i.e. there will be in Heaven everything pleasurable and what is beyond the imagination; we would never know how lovely these things are unless we get them in Heaven.

Then you also asked about all non-believers going to hell without any chance whatsoever of going to Heaven. That's a question that I was recently discussing with my fiancee. You see, Islam was always existant even before Mohamad (saws). The people that faithfully followed the prophets that came before Mohamad (saws) will inshallah (God-willing) go to Heaven. But I believe your question is meant for the times after Mohamad (saws). According to Islam, the only way to get into Heaven is through Islam (submission) to the One God. Submission to anything/anyone else, or disobedience will not be rewarded by God, therefore those that practice such will be locked out of Heaven. If someone was unaware of Islam and its teachings, then there will be mercy shown to that one. According to a sheikh (Islamic scholar) whose lecture I watched on video, the one who has no knowledge of Islam will be brought back to life on Judgment Day, and a prophet will be sent to him/her, and from there it will be known if the person would have submitted to God had he learned about Islam on earth. However, even though the sheikh said this, I never found this from any other source (I never read this in a hadith, it's not in the Koran, etc.). If it is correct, then it would explain a lot. However, as far as I do know, yes, the disbelievers will go to hell and never leave.

I hope that helped you out :)

Bye Lenny
"To be sure, Jesus will come and will restore all things. But I tell you, Jesus has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished."
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote baal Replybullet Posted: 15 March 2007 at 5:09pm
I didnt meant that ...I didnt saw u agreeing before with us but u were nice when u were disagree ... now it seem like u are showing us your real face...this is not the one who first came here
sorry to say that>>>>quote by:-mai............................mAYBE HE HAS CHANGED HIS OPINIONS ON ,WHAT HE THOUGHT iSLAM TO BE??Im only saying this as hes an OZZIE too!!LOL
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Lenny Replybullet Posted: 16 March 2007 at 1:06pm
Originally posted by mai moslemah

Originally posted by Lenny

Originally posted by mai moslemah

 
 
Honesly..when you first came here i thought that u are one of the nicest Christians here but now I see you as a person who have read alot of misconception about Islam then came here to prove that this misconception is true = Islam is wrong = Christianity is right
 
Just my 2 cent
 
 
 
 
I know. Exactly my contention. I am nicest as long as I ask question and agree with you. Once I contradict and disagree, I become not nice. I already said this in my previous post. Thanks for confirming it.
 
 
 
 
I didnt meant that ...I didnt saw u agreeing before with us but u were nice when u were disagree ... now it seem like u are showing us your real face...this is not the one who first came here
sorry to say that
 
 
I tried to be nice. But did you see the part where I was accused of insulting? I am not exactly an angel and I take exception for accusation that I am not. Maybe eventually I will get banned from this forum, but I will stand my ground against unfair accusation because it's against my principle. I guess your judgment is against my defiance.  Well, I don't have anything against some of you who are real nice; it's a two ways street.
 
I came nice but responded accordingly against the treatment I get. I guess that's the real me.
 
Regards.
 
 
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Lenny Replybullet Posted: 16 March 2007 at 1:22pm
Originally posted by baal

I didnt meant that ...I didnt saw u agreeing before with us but u were nice when u were disagree ... now it seem like u are showing us your real face...this is not the one who first came here
sorry to say that>>>>quote by:-mai............................mAYBE HE HAS CHANGED HIS OPINIONS ON ,WHAT HE THOUGHT iSLAM TO BE??Im only saying this as hes an OZZIE too!!LOL
 
 
 
Hi.
 
Honestly it will take a lot more than that. I've already known something of Islam when I first came but I thought I can learn more here. I don't know - it's sort of a cultural shock. Some discussion here can be rather robust, if you know what I mean, but I'll stay a little longer to learn more about this phenomenum.
 
Regards.
 
 
 
 
 
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Sqaruesi Replybullet Posted: 16 March 2007 at 1:57pm
Originally posted by talib84

...when we read another passage of the Koran, we learn that there will be rewards in Paradise that no eye has ever seen (or mind has ever perceived, I cannot remember the exact wording). I'm not quite sure where that passage is, but inshallah I will searh for it tonight so that I can quote it for you.
 
Maybe I can help you out there:
 
"Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him." (1 Corinthians 2:9)
 
So Muhammad was (re)citing Paul, eh?  Interesting....
 
Originally posted by talib84

According to Islam, the only way to get into Heaven is through Islam (submission) to the One God. Submission to anything/anyone else, or disobedience will not be rewarded by God, therefore those that practice such will be locked out of Heaven. If someone was unaware of Islam and its teachings, then there will be mercy shown to that one.
 
My question then is, What is the point of daw'ah towards the previously unreached?  If when they hadn't heard of Islam they were on the way to receiving mercy, but after hearing of it there's a chance they'll reject it and receive the reward of that, would it not be better not to take Islam to them?
"I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive."

Jesus (John 5:43)
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Jeepbeep Replybullet Posted: 16 March 2007 at 2:13pm
Lenny, I am Jewish and being "Studying Islam" from a very critical point of view, But first I should ask you "How good is your Arabic???". I have gone through some of the basic arabic grammer and let me tell you its pretty much confusing, Great care has to be taken, specially for us Westerners who have never been to oriental envirionment.
 
One More thing is that Koran is not compiled as do our "earthly books" usually do, so when you start from Alhamdo lillah-e-Rabal Alameen, i.e. Surah Fateha, one gets to Ponder, what is being said???
 
Koran is not compiled according to the revelations, i.e. not according to the revelations received By Mohammad, most ppl criticize this action too,
but two years of continuous studies and desire to find "errors" seems fruitless. 
There is no God but God and Mohamad is the Messenger of God
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote baal Replybullet Posted: 16 March 2007 at 2:37pm
HEY LEN,i to am just about banned!Some people here are great in chat room as you can talk music motorcycles and its not so heavy like the posts with name calling and an admin with unjust scales.Some of the things Ive seen written about Jesus may seem funny to some but if the shoe was on the other foot and I call MOHUMAD any more than a ??????Id be deducted points,if not banned!!...........One point I know you know its their web site for people interested in Islam or the Quran or like me and you we want as much proof from other sources and all the scriptures should be read if not studied............Being both in Australia we post a day ahead of north America.Im up all night burning the midnight oil,again.So dont get like i do OZZIE TOSTESTERONE and get in the ring mate???HA!~~~~~~~~~~REGARDS~~~~baal
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