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General Chat Thread, Islam and depictions of Muhammad in General; ...
  1. #1

    localzuk's Avatar
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    Islam and depictions of Muhammad

    I'm a little confused about this. Why do so many Muslims get upset about non-Muslims depicting Muhammad?

    I understand Islam has some teachings about not depicting Muhammad amongst their believers, due to it potentially being idolatry and therefore committing 'širk'. But, those teachings don't apply to non-believers.

    Also, the rather other the top behaviour of some seems to indicate that the very reason for the teachings originally are being ignored and Muhammad has been idolised by those who are so angry whenever he is depicted in some way or other.

    So, am I being too logical about this? Or are these people simply whipped into a fervour because they suffer from 'group think' or do they really think they're doing the right thing by their angry responses to cartoons etc...?

  2. #2
    zag
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    This topic could get messy!

    I believe it is quite serious to depict pictures of the prophet to a Muslims person, certainly even some of my moderate muslim friends get very animated about it.

    But then again history tells us that lots of people use scripture to justify extreme acts. It gives them an excuse to do things that otherwise would not be tollerated. All religions have done this in the past.

    What I don't get is the assumption that an American film maker or Danish comic book writer is = to the whole American country or entire Danish State. Its stupidity in the extreme to assume one voice speaks for us all.
    Last edited by zag; 19th September 2012 at 12:27 PM.

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    Given that ultimately you are asking a question of people who believe in something without requiring the benefit of any objective evidence, I'd say you probably are being a bit too logical about it. "just because" might sum it up.

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    Theblacksheep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    Also, the rather other the top behaviour of some seems to indicate that the very reason for the teachings originally are being ignored and Muhammad has been idolised by those who are so angry whenever he is depicted in some way or other.
    I feel some stuff is just blamed on this video anyway. There's significant violence regardless of videos posted up in July and its a great excuse rather than real reasons.

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    LosOjos's Avatar
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    Logic and religion do not mix.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    I suppose one thing to remember is that in a lot of Middle Eastern countries, the way the society is structured is very different to the west. Still a lot of 'tribal' behaviour, and a large number of Imams within those areas are basically 'the shoutiest man in the village' rather than someone who has studied the religion to become the Imam.

    Basically, some of the behaviour is 500 years out of date, but at the same time they have access to modern technology and sources of media.

    Our society 500 years ago likely wouldn't have taken kindly to, say, a depiction of Jesus like those in South Park, but there wasn't a way for it to be widely seen or objected to at that time.

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    zag
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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    Basically, some of the behaviour is 500 years out of date, but at the same time they have access to modern technology and sources of media.

    Our society 500 years ago likely wouldn't have taken kindly to, say, a depiction of Jesus like those in South Park, but there wasn't a way for it to be widely seen or objected to at that time.
    That's a very good point to be fair.

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    As a man that studied 3 monotheistic religions in depth as part of my a-level and a chunk of a degree in "divinity", I can hopefully explain this too you.

    Islam, as well as Christianity, and Judaism, specifically state about worshipping false idols. Whilst some take that to mean "other" gods or prophets, some take it to mean depictions of their own god and prophets. In Islam, they believe that Muhammad, Jesus (Isa), Abraham (Ibrahim), Isaac (Ishak), Moses (Musa), Aaron (Harun), Joseph (Yusef), as well as others, and NONE of these are permitted to be depicted within Islam, as the depiction itself is deemed false, and as such is a false idol.

    Islam does not permit people to go mental at other religious buildings (such as churches, synagogues etc) as they acknowledge that they are effectively worshipping the same god, albeit through a "primitive" religion which allows the depiction of Jesus/Abraham/Moses/Joseph.

    The reason for the "Bloated" reaction can best be summed up by a dear friend of mine who was a former university lecturer of mine (Dr Fiaz Hussain), "Why do people think certain individuals like Osama Bin Laden, Muqtada Al Sadr, and Abu Hamza are the views of all Muslims. The majority of the west views these people as the voice of Islam and treats most Muslims as such, the result you get is the hate from the Muslims who believe they are not like that. You can turn an everyday moderate person into a hate warmongering fool by tarring him with the same brush as extremists and treating his as an extremist."

    He is right, most of the responses gained are because the "West" (by that I mean the leaders of the illegal wars and those that tagged along) pretty much damned all Muslim states with the exception of "Friendly" states (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman etc) and the violence is a backlash.

    One man does not represent a countries views, but by the same token, one man does not represent a religions views.

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  11. #9

    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    As a man that studied 3 monotheistic religions in depth as part of my a-level and a chunk of a degree in "divinity", I can hopefully explain this too you.

    Islam, as well as Christianity, and Judaism, specifically state about worshipping false idols. Whilst some take that to mean "other" gods or prophets, some take it to mean depictions of their own god and prophets. In Islam, they believe that Muhammad, Jesus (Isa), Abraham (Ibrahim), Isaac (Ishak), Moses (Musa), Aaron (Harun), Joseph (Yusef), as well as others, and NONE of these are permitted to be depicted within Islam, as the depiction itself is deemed false, and as such is a false idol.

    Islam does not permit people to go mental at other religious buildings (such as churches, synagogues etc) as they acknowledge that they are effectively worshipping the same god, albeit through a "primitive" religion which allows the depiction of Jesus/Abraham/Moses/Joseph.
    That seems a little oversimplified. Islam does not state in the Qu'ran, that Muhammad should not be depicted. It is an additional teaching, which some 'sects' (if that's the right word) follow and some don't.

    The reason for the "Bloated" reaction can best be summed up by a dear friend of mine who was a former university lecturer of mine (Dr Fiaz Hussain), "Why do people think certain individuals like Osama Bin Laden, Muqtada Al Sadr, and Abu Hamza are the views of all Muslims. The majority of the west views these people as the voice of Islam and treats most Muslims as such, the result you get is the hate from the Muslims who believe they are not like that. You can turn an everyday moderate person into a hate warmongering fool by tarring him with the same brush as extremists and treating his as an extremist."

    He is right, most of the responses gained are because the "West" (by that I mean the leaders of the illegal wars and those that tagged along) pretty much damned all Muslim states with the exception of "Friendly" states (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman etc) and the violence is a backlash.

    One man does not represent a countries views, but by the same token, one man does not represent a religions views.
    That doesn't really cover it for me. The issue I have is that by violently protesting against the depiction of Muhammad, they are actually idolising him - the very thing that is not allowed.

    You're not wrong about the tarring though. There has been far too much of this throughout the west, but at the same time, violent uprisings and the like are serving to reinforce this incorrect view.

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    I really cant see why Youtube hasnt deleted the offending video. I know you have freedom of speech but people are being killed over this and surely that is more important.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JJonas View Post
    I really cant see why Youtube hasnt deleted the offending video. I know you have freedom of speech but people are being killed over this and surely that is more important.
    As sad as the deaths from the lunatics are, censoring the rest of the free world due to their frankly ridiculous views and demands is wrong.

    Youtube are right here, they should not be removing it. What next, every time some nutter demands something be censored, everyone should bow to their demands because of it?

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    That seems a little oversimplified. Islam does not state in the Qu'ran, that Muhammad should not be depicted. It is an additional teaching, which some 'sects' (if that's the right word) follow and some don't. That doesn't really cover it for me. The issue I have is that by violently protesting against the depiction of Muhammad, they are actually idolising him - the very thing that is not allowed.
    This is from an accepted translation of the Quran.

    al-Hajj 22:30

    That (shall be so); and whoever respects the sacred ordinances of Allah, it is better for him with his Lord; and the cattle are made lawful for you, except that which is recited to you, therefore avoid the uncleanness of the idols and avoid false words
    Surat 'Ali `Imran 3:79

    "Never would a human being whom God blessed with the scripture and prophethood say to the people, "Idolize me beside God." Instead, (he would say), "Devote yourselves absolutely to your Lord alone," according to the scripture you preach and the teachings you learn.

    Nor would he command you to idolize the angels and the prophets as lords. Would he exhort you to disbelieve after becoming submitters"?
    Should I pull out more?

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    This is from an accepted translation of the Quran.

    al-Hajj 22:30

    Surat 'Ali `Imran 3:79

    Should I pull out more?
    Neither of those quotes state that depictions of Muhammad are disallowed, merely that idolatry is wrong, which is already agreed to be širk, the one unforgivable sin.

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    Fair enough, but the Quran also emphasises that Gods messengers are not infallible. They are apt to make mistakes just like anyone else. Many examples are given in the Quran for specific mistakes committed by various messengers and prophets. It should be noted that Muhammad is reprimanded in the Quran six times for mistakes he committed. Mistakes for other messengers include Moses killing an innocent man, Jonah abandoning God's mission half way through its completion, Solomon forgetting his prayer, Joseph (when he was in prison) putting his trust and fate in the ruler's hand when he should have remembered that God is the Only One to decide his fate.

    The principal reason Muslims are told of these mistakes in the Quran is to establish the fact that God's messengers are human beings like all of us and that they should not be idolised.

    Does that better explain it for you?

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    Fair enough, but the Quran also emphasises that Gods messengers are not infallible. They are apt to make mistakes just like anyone else. Many examples are given in the Quran for specific mistakes committed by various messengers and prophets. It should be noted that Muhammad is reprimanded in the Quran six times for mistakes he committed. Mistakes for other messengers include Moses killing an innocent man, Jonah abandoning God's mission half way through its completion, Solomon forgetting his prayer, Joseph (when he was in prison) putting his trust and fate in the ruler's hand when he should have remembered that God is the Only One to decide his fate.

    The principal reason Muslims are told of these mistakes in the Quran is to establish the fact that God's messengers are human beings like all of us and that they should not be idolised.

    Does that better explain it for you?
    No, as it doesn't cover the key part of what I'm saying! ie. The angry people getting upset about Muhammad being drawn by non-Muslims. Whether or not those prophets are fallible or not doesn't really relate...

    My point is that by getting so upset about it, they are in fact breaking the rule not to idolise prophets...

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