Violence In Islam (Or: ‘Chuck Connors and ISIS, The Cult of Doom’)

Teddy_Bear_Samurai_by_da_G3

                                                                          Teddy Bear Samurai by Da G3

The Internet has liberalised knowledge. But it has also liberalised stupidity.

My beloved Heuristically Algorithmic teddy, ‘Kuma’, has recently discovered the internet. I let her surf it because she is bored at home while I go out and fight evil as my alter ego ‘Gonzaburo, The Unseen Hand of Justice’. Sadly, she has come across a lot of inaccurate information about her favourite topic – theology. And more specifically, Islam.

Last week, Chuck Connors prevented Kuma from leaving Islam due to doubts she had acquired from visiting sites claiming to find scientific errors in the Quran. Unfortunately, Connors did such a good job that in her new found zeal for her religion, Kuma has been visiting dodgy Salafi and ‘Islamist’ websites and has become interested in joining violent Jihadis such as ‘ISIS’.

I had to call in Connors, who recently offered £10,000 to anyone who could prove that the Quran was ‘violent’ (as well as challenging ISIS recruits to a fist-fight to underline the condemnation of what he considers to be a heretical or extra-Islamic movement i.e violent Salafism:https://asharisassemble.com/2014/10/31/muslim-polymath-chuck-connors-challenges-isis-to-fistfight-at-inter-faith-event-and-then-offers-5000-to-anyone-who-can-prove-the-quran-is-violent/) to try and de-radicalise my poor teddy, before I have to report her to the authorities.

I am happy to report that he once again succeeded in talking her off of a cliff and prevented her becoming a ‘jihadi bride’.

And please Kuma don’t be so gullible – you don’t see ‘Hello Kitty’ doing dumb shit like this!

Mahmut ‘Chuck’ Connors was sent to a traditional Islamic Madrasah at the age of ten. He memorised the whole Quran, studied classical Arabic, Tafseer (exegesis of the Quran), Shatibiyyah (different types of recitation), Fiqh (jurisprudence), Hadith, Mantiq (logic) and Kalaam (Islamic philosophy and creed) for the next decade.

In a complete change of tac, he then gained BSc’s in both Molecular Biology and Mathematics and Astrophysics as well as an MSc in Theoretical Physics from Kings College London.

He is currently researching Black Hole thermodynamics for his PhD.

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12 thoughts on “Violence In Islam (Or: ‘Chuck Connors and ISIS, The Cult of Doom’)

  1. The offer is a bit odd to me, as in the end is it not subjective? People who want a bad religion can make a bad religion even out of the purist principals. I mean, Hitler used a relativity peaceful teachings of Christianity to back his dreams of violence did that.

    What I would love to see, is how people become Salafi, or ‘Islamist’ from normal Islam (the majority Islam), as I never understood how people can go off and easily allow their belief system to change is such a radical way.

    “I am happy to report that he once again succeeded in talking her off of a cliff and prevented her becoming a ‘jihadi bride’.”

    I luled more that I should have, thank you for that.

    • ”What I would love to see, is how people become Salafi, or ‘Islamist’ from normal Islam (the majority Islam), as I never understood how people can go off and easily allow their belief system to change is such a radical way.”

      This is an excellent question, and one which no one is willing to tackle honestly. Something worth thinking about is that some forms of ‘normal’ Islam are more prone to Salafism. And if we don’t know our religion or the message of the Quran then no change is ‘radical’ is it, since a fool is easily mislead. To be honest, aren’t Imam Bukhari and Ahmad rather Salafi in many of their fatwas (for example: no retaliation [apart from a small fine] for the killing of non-Muslims, as transmitted in Sahih Bukhari)? And is this the first time Sufis have been getting killed and takfired? Haven’t Ibn Taymiyyah and Co. been doing that for centuries? And who decided that narrations from Khawarij (who openly INSISTED that the women and children of ‘heretical’ Muslims must be killed along with them) were to be accepted but that the more philosophically inclined Mu’tazzila and Hanafis were SO bad that they should be rejected out of hand?

      I recently received a review copy of an excellent new book which DOES tackle these issues (and is the only one to do so apart from Lang’s ‘Losing My Religion’ – it might be of use:http://www.avicennaacademy.com/mustalah-book/

      • “And if we don’t know our religion or the message of the Quran then no change is ‘radical’ is it, since a fool is easily mislead.”

        True, while I agree with that statement, I do believe biologically we obtain a basic moral system (conscience if you will) so how can a generally born Muslim, from a sane family turn to allow teachings of murder such as those found in ISIS. I think there is a missing factor. (I will explain what I mean further down, close to the bottom.)

        “To be honest, aren’t Imam Bukhari and Ahmad rather Salafi in many of their fatwas (for example: no retaliation [apart from a small fine] for the killing of non-Muslims, as transmitted in Sahih Bukhari)”

        As I understand, fatwas are/were scholarly opinions, and people did not deem them as unquestionable statements, even if from Sahih Bukhari. As Islam has never been a religion of following the clerics, but submission to a singular God. So it is a logical thought that a persons conscience would kick in saying murder is bad, there must be something else I do not know to this hadith, or versus.

        Perhaps it is a bad idea, but why not have precedence in approaching hadith (is there already? I know little hadith science sadly). I mean to be fair their could be context just as there is in the Qur’an, how do we differentiate between things that are global, or specific? (Another thing to note is the Qur’an is divenly protected, the hadith not so much.)

        “And is this the first time Sufis have been getting killed and takfired? Haven’t Ibn Taymiyyah and Co. been doing that for centuries?”

        No, but even before Ibn Taymiyyah, Sufists had been killed, and takfired, mainly due to the extremely unorthodox teachings before Imam al-Ghazālī, and even after Imam al-Ghazālī some were extremely unorthodox albeit they were a minority then. However the killing of Sufists for unorthodox teachings is not something I think has any proper basis in Islam. (Understand however some people will fit hadith, and Qur’anic versus into other forms though.)

        Back to what I meant a little above, I think the missing factor is how education is done nowadays for Islam. My parents sent me to an Islamic school, along side a public school while I learned about Islam in my Islamic school the stuff taught was very limited, and was formatted as in trying to sell you into Islam being the truth. (Dogmatic brainwashing, and no logical reasoning, ergo teaching children to believe by word alone, without though?) After a year my parents, decided that I would just go full on public school, and they would teach me about Islam.

        They taught me about Islam, but only Islam from their madhhab, while I did learn more things, I never truly learned about Islam as a whole, and this is what I believe to be the issue. Islamic education is extremely linear from how it was back then, back then the scholars used to not talk about how many versus they could quote word for word, but how many interpretations they knew. (Which if you think about it, it acts as a checks and balance system.) I never had an interest in my religion, and was basically a slave to words without one intelligent thought, or with an active mind until age nine. I met more people who had different views at that age, one I can remember is a Jewish boy, who used to talk about Maimonides. Which changed my though process completely. Not just reading my parent’s madhhab was enough, going about to reading other madhhabs was important to me too now, as everything now had a connection of thought, think could be traced together, and I could somewhat see the conclusion behind a statement.

        For example:
        1. Qur’an -> ISIS’ifed (Imam 1 (INSANE_FATWA) + Imam 2 (INSANE_FATWA)) = Conclusion
        2. Qur’an -> Hadith 1 + Hadith 1.4 + Imam NAME_HERE (SANE_FATWA) = Conclusion

        I would take the second example as something sane for me, as I can see the logic, while the first one I can tell is rubbish. The thing is because so many Muslims are only taught about one side of Islam, they fall victim to being easily fooled into believing things (even such things as WikiIslam), or so I believe.

        I will see if I can get my parent’s to buy that book Insha’Allah, however my library does carry Lang’s ‘Losing My Religion’ is it worth a read?

        (Re-reading this all, some things are implicit, not explicit, so if you get confused reading my rambling of a comment, just ask for a clarification.) 🙂

  2. Hi! I’m just dropping by to bring up an issue that was brought up to me from when Kuma was about to apostate.

    This isn’t from the quran but from the hadith in Bukhari’s ‘medicine’ section, where there are some medical advice the prophet muhammad has supposedly gave to people, and a lot of people follow those tips (some of which ate really archaic) to the detriment of getting actual medical help. I couldn’t really find anything on them, so it shouldn’t hurt to ask here. How do hanafi scholars take this sort of hadith? We’re they all like ‘this all definitely occurred and you should always follow!” or weak and maybe a product of his own time?

    Idk. To me, it seels like there was an abundance of different medical practices in different cultures, and Muhammad might have engaged in them because it was helpful to the best of his knowledge, and not necessarily medical advice. The hadith where he does give advices the chains look a little iffy to me from a quick search. But this is my laybear reasoning and it’d be great if you you guys knew something about it or could recomm end a reading addressing this?

    • Many thanks!

      This is a good question – there are lots of traditions in the canonical collections that say stuff like ‘Black seed is the cure for all illnesses’ or something similar about aubergines etc. Frankly, we can see that these things are clearly not cures for ‘everything’and the hypocrisy of those who claim to believe in them because they are in the ‘Sahih’ hadith is manifest when if the kid get a brain tumour the last thing they do is take ‘Black Seed’. Saudi and the partisans of Hadith have also failed to conduct a single clinical trail to try and demonstrate the efficacy of these treatments as far as I know, which shows Evangelical Christian levels of hypocrisy.

      In the Hanafi mustalah of hadith there is no need to resort to complicated historical explanations or ‘science fiction’ type explanations like ‘aubergine IS the cure for everything but we just don’t know HOW…or YET’, which is actually insulting to the Prophet because he either 1) doesn’t know how to make himself clear or 2) hates us and does not give us the cure to cancer even though he knows it. If they reply and say 3) he wants us to work it out ourselves then what was the point of the ‘hint’ if no one could figure it out in 1400 years? Also saying the Prophet passed on the imperfect medicine of the time without the necessary caveats of saying ‘this isn’t from God it’s just what people do around these parts’ is unacceptable and we do not see the prophet acting in this way. What is possible is that IF the Prophet said these things (by no means certain) then he may have been giving us a direction to research medical remedies in. So Muslims either need to do the research or take the hadith literally and take these things for HIV or cancer or shut up.

      Hanafi Mustalah rejects all hadith that clash with ‘the senses’ – meaning empricle observation and reality and classes them as ‘mursal’ – ‘implicit disconnection’. Ditto with all of those hadith in Bukhari saying that the Sun prostrates to the arsh at night of that there is no retribution for murdering non-Muslims. All of these are rejected by Hanafis irrespective of being in Bukhari or graded as Sahih. Ditto with Ibn Mundah hadith that the Earth is on the back of a whale (Shafis and Ahle Hadith/Salafis/Hanbalis accept all of this stuff though they are sometimes ashamed to say).

      The reason is that the Quran confirms the truth of observational knowledge in numerous places (phases like do you not see…etc) and any hadith which contradicts it, whether medically or scientifically or whatever is considered ‘disconnected’ as it clashes with a stronger proof of Islam (the Quran and the senses).

      That is a short answer. However, I have just received a review copy of this magnificent work on problematic hadith that specifically addresses medically problematic hadith from a classical Hanafi perspective, along with difficult hadith and whether all hadith in Bukhari are to be accepted by Sunnis. I can honestly say that this is one of if not the best book ever published about hadith in English (if not Islam in general), so for more detail, I would advise reading it!

      http://www.avicennaacademy.com/mustalah-book/

  3. What I would love to see, is how people become Salafi, or ‘Islamist’ from normal Islam (the majority Islam), as I never understood how people can go off and easily allow their belief system to change is such a radical way.

    I think that the most important division among muslims today is between Sunnis who believe that we are in a new Jahiliyya and Sunnis who don’t. This concept is behind a lot of the fanatical and unreasonable behaviour we see today I believe. Why is it that Sunni ISIS is carrying out suicide bombings of Shia masjids in Yemen but the Zaidis aren’t (to Sunni masjids), even though they’re outnumbered and outgunned? It’s this whole narrative of decline, from a Golden Age to an Age of Corruption. If you believe that the world around you is essentially corrupt, then any violent actions you take aren’t going to seem extreme within that context. The problem is, most Sunni groups do push this “Everything used to be great, but now its terrible” trope.

    • Good point – the date of birth for Nazam is unknown as far as I can see, I now need to find his date of death but I do not have the books with me. Will take time.

      • I’d add to what I said, that the side-lining of Tassawuf and Irfan in the modern age is a large part of why this extremism has taken hold so firmly in the Sunni world. When Islam was left basically destroyed politically in the 13th century this didn’t produce a new puritanism. It produced Ibn Arabi and Rumi. Sunnis had the resources to deal with catastrophe psychologically.

  4. This might seem off topic but I have some questions regarding Islamic legal rulings, anyone know a reliable place where I can get them answered?

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