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Islam for non-Muslims
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Anatolian
 
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bullet Topic: Interested in answers...
    Posted: 17 September 2007 at 2:17pm
I have a couple of questions I need answered from an Islamic view.

1) How is the Assyrian heretical monk Bahira portrayed in Islam? How
influencial was he with Muhammed?

2) Why is it that when Muhammed received his first vision from, according
to him, the angel Gabriel, that he was shaken in fear and ran to the arms
of Fatima? Why was fear his reaction to this visit if his vision was truly
"celestial and heavenly"?

3) Why is it that whenever Christians are using the Bible to debate
Muslims, Muslims always renounce it stating that the Bible was forged. If
so do Muslims have the right interpretations of the Bible? Is there an
existing "original" copy of the true Bible or is this a teaching thought by
Sheikhs without any proofs to end any form of debate?

Thanks
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Mauri
 
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bullet Posted: 17 September 2007 at 5:02pm
I am not a Muslim, but would like to share my thoughts on a couple of your questions, if you don't mind.

2) Why is it that when Muhammed received his first vision from, according
to him, the angel Gabriel, that he was shaken in fear and ran to the arms
of Fatima? Why was fear his reaction to this visit if his vision was truly
"celestial and heavenly"?

Fear is the first reaction to a spiritual experience. We fear the unknown.  Notice how many times in the Bible an angel appeared and first said, "Fear not". 

Fear is an attention-getter.  Once God has our attention, He can teach us of spiritual things.  Hence, the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. 


3) Why is it that whenever Christians are using the Bible to debate Muslims, Muslims always renounce it stating that the Bible was forged.
 Personally, I think it is because too many Christians use the Bible to debate Muslims when they don't have a very good understanding of the Bible, themselves.  And, Muslims tend to have even less of an understanding of the Bible.  The irony is, imo, that if either of them had a good grasp of their holy book, they would see that they complement each other rather than contradict each other.

 If so do Muslims have the right interpretations of the Bible?
No.  Neither do most Christians. 
The evidence can be seen in the hateful nature of Christians, whose religion is love, and the antagonistic nature of Muslims, whose religion is peace.  But, that is part of the process.  We have to hate someone before we can learn to love anyone.

Is there an

existing "original" copy of the true Bible or is this a teaching thought by
Sheikhs without any proofs to end any form of debate?

No.   No original manuscripts of any book of the Bible have survived. 


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Anatolian
 
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bullet Posted: 17 September 2007 at 11:47pm
Muhammed's reaction was not the same as those who claim visions of
The Virgin Mary or of Jesus Christ Himself. When Muhammed comes back
from his first encounter with this "angelic being" he runs out to Khadija
(forgive my previous post where I said Fatima instead, who happens to be
his daughter), he discribes his experiance for the first time and states
that it was violent. Here is a translation by Sahih Bukhari:

"In the first encounter, Aisha related that when Muhammad did not recite,
Gabriel caught him (forcefully) and pressed him so hard that he could not
bear it any more, and this was repeated three times. Gabriel left
Muhammad terribly shaken. Muhammad feared that something might
have happened to him, returned and asked Khadija to cover him until his
fear was gone. Muhammad thought that the spirit was a jinn. He even
contemplated commiting suicide by throwing himself down a mountain."

Now I've read many stories of heavenly visions and none that I can
remember reading about involved the Holy Vision to grab an individual
and hurt him physically. Muhammed himself states that this might be a
Jinn or another Arabic form of the word is Shaytan (Devil, Satan, etc...)
One is to ponder about the relationship and the verses that were given to
him from such a violent being.

Fear is a natural reaction to such a shock I don't believe God or his
Messangers use it necessarily to grab one's attention. A hevenly Being in
front of you should catch you off guard to matter what and grab your full
attention. Once an apparition was revealed to an individual lucky enough
to be chosen by God, that individual senses a state of peace an harmony.
He doesn't contemplate suicide!
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rami
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bullet Posted: 18 September 2007 at 6:49am
Bi ismillahi rahmani raheem

What you quoted is not sahih bukhari but someone wrong summation [by implication] of what a number of hadith have said.

The Angel Hugged him 3 times he did not hurt him physically, can you prove any injury?

He first thought it was a jin later he didnt with further contact and experience, are you trying to invalidate those accounts by his first impression alone?

Dont pretend to compare what normal people see with what is revealed to any prophet, the prophet himself felt fear Allah did not cause him to fear it was his own natural reaction to something foreign and uncommon at those times. At this point in time information about such thing is widespread and common, consider the fact they had to consult a person from a different faith than the arabs to understand what was happening to him.

Angels come to men in Awe inspiring forms to make men understand and perceive the seriousness of the matter, this hug was to awaken him inside to the reality of prophet hood, the prophet  [sallah llahu alaihi wa sallam] needed this considering his reaction to revelation which was suacidal and not a result of this first encounter as your Quote wrongfully claims.


Edited by rami
Rasul Allah (sallah llahu alaihi wa sallam) said: "Whoever knows himself, knows his Lord" and whoever knows his Lord has been given His gnosis and nearness.
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seekshidayath
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bullet Posted: 18 September 2007 at 6:14pm

 This is the hadith quoted :

 Narrated 'Aisha: (the mother of the faithful believers) The commencement of the Divine Inspiration to Allah's Apostle was in the form of good dreams which came true like bright day light, and then the love of seclusion was bestowed upon him. He used to go in seclusion in the cave of Hira where he used to worship (Allah alone) continuously for many days before his desire to see his family. He used to take with him the journey food for the stay and then come back to (his wife) Khadija to take his food like-wise again till suddenly the Truth descended upon him while he was in the cave of Hira. The angel came to him and asked him to read. The Prophet replied, "I do not know how to read. The Prophet added, "The angel caught me (forcefully) and pressed me so hard that I could not bear it any more. He then released me and again asked me to read and I replied, 'I do not know how to read.' Thereupon he caught me again and pressed me a second time till I could not bear it any more. He then released me and again asked me to read but again I replied, 'I do not know how to read (or what shall I read)?' Thereupon he caught me for the third time and pressed me, and then released me and said, 'Read in the name of your Lord, who has created (all that exists) has created man from a clot. Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous." (96.1, 96.2, 96.3) Then Allah's Apostle returned with the Inspiration and with his heart beating severely. Then he went to Khadija bint Khuwailid and said, "Cover me! Cover me!" They covered him till his fear was over and after that he told her everything that had happened and said, "I fear that something may happen to me." Khadija replied, "Never! By Allah, Allah will never disgrace you. You keep good relations with your Kith and kin, help the poor and the destitute, serve your guests generously and assist the deserving calamity-afflicted ones." Khadija then accompanied him to her cousin Waraqa bin Naufal bin Asad bin 'Abdul 'Uzza, who, during the PreIslamic Period became a Christian and used to write the writing with Hebrew letters. He would write from the Gospel in Hebrew as much as Allah wished him to write. He was an old man and had lost his eyesight. Khadija said to Waraqa, "Listen to the story of your nephew, O my cousin!" Waraqa asked, "O my nephew! What have you seen?" Allah's Apostle described whatever he had seen. Waraqa said, "This is the same one who keeps the secrets (angel Gabriel) whom Allah had sent to Moses. I wish I were young and could live up to the time when your people would turn you out." Allah's Apostle asked, "Will they drive me out?" Waraqa replied in the affirmative and said, "Anyone (man) who came with something similar to what you have brought was treated with hostility; and if I should remain alive till the day when you will be turned out then I would support you strongly." But after a few days Waraqa died and the Divine Inspiration was also paused for a while. Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah Al-Ansari while talking about the period of pause in revelation reporting the speech of the Prophet "While I was walking, all of a sudden I heard a voice from the sky. I looked up and saw the same angel who had visited me at the cave of Hira' sitting on a chair between the sky and the earth. I got afraid of him and came back home and said, 'Wrap me (in blankets).' And then Allah revealed the following Holy Verses (of Quran): 'O you (i.e. Muhammad)! wrapped up in garments!' Arise and warn (the people against Allah's Punishment),... up to 'and desert the idols.' (74.1-5) After this the revelation started coming strongly, frequently and regularly."  (Book #1, Hadith #3) - Sahih Bukhari.

As mauri and Bro, Rami said , Fear is the natural reaction for something uncommon. It was the first revelation as u know. I totally agree with Bro. Rami that it was to awaken in him the prophethood. There was no injury.

Coming to the point of contemplating suicide - Let me clear that it was not due to fear but, when the Divine inspiration paused for a while and the Prophet [pbuh] became so sad, that he intended several times to throw himself from the tops of high mountains, and every time he went up the top of a mountain in order to throw
himself down, Gabriel would appear before him and say: "O Muhammad! You are indeed All? ’s Messenger in truth," whereupon his heart would become quiet and he would calm down and return home. Whenever the period of the coming of the Revelation used to become long, he would do as before, but Gabriel would appear again before him and say to him what he had said before. [Bukhari 2/340]

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “All the descendants of Adam are sinners, and the best of sinners are those who repent."
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seekshidayath
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bullet Posted: 18 September 2007 at 6:20pm

Regarding Bahira monk :

Here's what we muslims take it. When the Messenger of All? [pbuh] was twelve years old, he went with his uncle Abu Talib on a business journey to Syria. When they reached Busra (which was apart of Syria, in the vicinity of Howran under the Roman domain) they met a monk
called Bahira (his real name was Georges), who showed great kindness, and entertained them lavishly. He had never been in the habit of receiving or entertaining them before. He readily enough recognized the Prophet [pbuh] and said while taking his hand: "This is the master of all humans. All? will send him with a Message which will be a mercy to all beings." Abu Talib asked: "How do you know that?" He replied: "When you appeared from the direction of ‘Aqabah, all stones and trees prostrated themselves, which they never do except for a Prophet. I can recognize him also by the seal of Prophethood which is below his shoulder, like an apple. We have got to learn this from our books." He also asked Abu Talib to send the boy back to Makkah and not to take him to Syria for fear of the Jews. Abu Talib obeyed and sent him back to Makkah with some of his men servants. [Ibn Hisham 1/180-183; Za'd Al-Ma'ad 1/17]



Edited by seekshidayath
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “All the descendants of Adam are sinners, and the best of sinners are those who repent."
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seekshidayath
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bullet Posted: 18 September 2007 at 7:06pm

We renounce stating the Bible if forged since Allah swt says that in Holy Quran.
Here are few verses
"14. And from those who call themselves Christians, We took their covenant, but they have abandoned a good part of the Message that was sent to them. So We planted amongst them enmity and hatred till the Day of Resurrection; and Allah will inform them of what they used to do.
15. O People of the Scripture! Now has come to you Our Messenger explaining to you much of that which you used to hide from the Scripture and passing over much. Indeed, there has come to you from Allah a light and a plain Book" Of the fifth chapter in the Holy Qur'an.

'And that which they used to invent regarding their religion has deceived them"

When Isa {Jesus} was rised in heavens {as we believe}, some of them went to the extreme over `Isa, believing that he was the son of Allah. Some of them said that `Isa was Allah Himself, while others said that he was one of a Trinity. Allah mentioned these false creeds in the Qur'an and refuted them. The Christians remained like this until the third century CE, when a Greek king called, Constantine, became a Christian for the purpose of destroying Christianity. Constantine was either a philosopher, or he was just plain ignorant. Constantine changed the religion of `Isa by adding to it and deleting from it. He established the rituals of Christianity and the so-called Great Trust, which is in fact the Great Treachery. He also allowed them to eat the meat of swine, changed the direction of the prayer that `Isa established to the east, built churches for `Isa, and added ten days to the fast as compensation for a sin that he committed, as claimed. So the religion of `Isa became the religion of Constantine, who built more then twelve thousand churches, temples and monasteries for the Christians as well as the city that bears his name, Constantinople (Istanbul). Throughout this time, the Christians had the upper hand and dominated the Jews. Allah aided them against the Jews because they used to be closer to the truth than the Jews, even though both groups were and still are disbelievers, may Allah's curse descend on them. YOu can very well see the corruption.

We do believe that Bible was a revealed book since there's a  verse in the holy Qura'an which says : ". And argue not with the People of the Scripture, except with that which is better -- except with such of them as do wrong; and say (to them): "We believe in that which has been revealed to us and revealed to you; our God and your God is One, and to Him we have submitted.''

46. And in their footsteps, We sent `Isa, son of Maryam, confirming the Tawrah that had come before him, and We gave him the Injil, in which was guidance and light and confirmation of the Tawrah that had come before it, a guidance and an admonition for those who have Taqwa.) (47. Let the people of the Injil judge by what Allah has revealed therein. And whosoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed, such are the rebellious.

48. And We have sent down to you the Book (this Qur'an) in truth, confirming the Scripture that came before it and Muhayminan over it (old Scriptures). So judge between them by what Allah has revealed, and follow not their vain desires, diverging away from the truth that has come to you. To each among you, We have prescribed a law and a clear way. If Allah willed, He would have made you one nation, but that (He) may test you in what He has given you; so compete in good deeds. The return of you (all) is to Allah; then He will inform you about that in which you used to differ."

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “All the descendants of Adam are sinners, and the best of sinners are those who repent."
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bullet Posted: 21 September 2007 at 10:27am
I will go into detail for your responses, which by the way thank you for
the time and effort in your messages. As my time is quite limited at the
moment I will just reply with a few remarks.

From what I clearly understood and the points that I noticed that were
made concerning the Bible being a fake is the fact that the first 300 years
of Christianity were basically "Islam" but once Emperor Constantine took
power he remade it into what it is today. The only differences that you
claim between us and you is the fact that we are allowed to eat swine...
Does that call for another prophet to be sent down from the heavens? No.
Our differences are much more doctotrine based. It's almost entirely
different then the older Judeo-Christian traditions, which one evolved of
the other.

Another thing that stood out was your point on prayers facing the East.
Our prayers face above us, the heavens not a certain location on Earth.
God did not create one part of the Earth holier then the other.

Once again I will go into detail if time allows it.

Thanks
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