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Message Icon Topic: Are These Acts of Idolatry? Post Reply Post New Topic
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Reepicheep
 
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Quote Reepicheep Replybullet Posted: 01 July 2014 at 4:17pm
ISIS (now known simply as IS) has apparently vowed to destroy the Kaaba. A short excerpt from the article follows the link:

IS vows to destroy the Kaaba

Militants of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant have threatened that that they will “ruin” the Kaaba after capturing Saudi Arabia because “people worship a stone instead of Allah.”

The terror group indicated that they would go to Saudi Arabia’s Arur region via the Anbar deserts and take the control of Kaba to demolish the holy place. ISIL member Abu Turab Al Mugaddasi wrote on microblogging site Twitter that they would destroy the Kaaba in Mecca and kill those pilgrims who worship a stone. “If Allah wills, we will kill those who worship stones in Mecca and destroy the Kaaba. People go to Mecca to touch the stones, not for Allah,” he wrote.
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Quote islamispeace Replybullet Posted: 02 July 2014 at 3:31pm
Originally posted by Ron Webb

They do?  Go to Google Images and search for "Hindus praying".  You'll see a fair number of idols, but in most pictures there are none.


LOL The fact still remains that Hindus do pray to idols.  Do you seriously think that a few pictures on Google somehow prove your point that Hindus don't need idols to pray?  Many of the pictures I saw were outdoors, in the Ganges river for example, and only showed certain people with their hands in a prayer gesture.  Ironically, there were even some outdoor pictures showing hundreds of Hindus gathered around gigantic statues.  Show me a Hindu temple that has no idols and you will have proven your point. 

Originally posted by Ron Webb

Yes, they would be wrong, just as you would be wrong to infer idol worship merely from the pictures.  That's my point.


Except that we know for a fact that Hindus pray to idols of their gods and that some Christians pray to statues of saints or Jesus (peace be upon him).  So, as I said before, those pictures are just a visual confirmation of what we already know.  In contrast, we know for a fact that Muslims do not pray to the black stone.  So your "point" is pointless.

Originally posted by Ron Webb

Well, we just established that a Muslim bowing to a black stone is not evidence of idol worship.


Since when do Muslims bow to the black stone? Shocked  What on earth are you talking about? 

Moreover, you have yet to refute my point that we know for a fact that Hindus literally pray to their idols and that some Christians literally pray to their statues.  So, the pictures simply confirm what we already know.

Originally posted by Ron Webb

But you just agreed that Christians can pray without statues.  Are you still insisting that they worship idols?  Why?


Um, because when they kneel in front of a statue and offer prayers to it, that is idol worship!  Of course Christians can pray without their statues (but who would they be praying to?), but how does that change the fact that some actually pray to statues?  LOL

Originally posted by Ron Webb

One can only have respect for a person, not for an inanimate object.  But let me repeat: I am not saying that Musims worship the stone.  I am simply saying that the question is more complicated than merely showing pictures of worshippers bowing or prostrating before an object.
 

Oh I am sorry.  I didn't realize that you were an authority in declaring that people can "only have respect for a person, not for an inanimate object"!

So do you think that people cannot show respect for things like their country's flag?  When Americans treat "Old Glory" with respect, are you going to tell them that they can't do that, because according to you, "one can only have respect for a person..."?  Come on, you're making me laugh too much! 

Originally posted by Ron Webb

The Christian view is that it's still a sin even if we can't help it.  ("All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.")  Anyway, I don't care about that.  What I'm saying is that no modern religion, properly understood, believes that man-made objects of wood or stone or paint can have magical, god-like powers.  At best that is a simplified view and represents a naive understanding of the religion's true teaching.


Tell that to the millions of people who believe that their idols have actual powers.  Tell that to the people who make offerings to their idols.  Tell that to the people who believed that their idols were alive and capable of drinking milk (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qiyTogk9kp4). 

Originally posted by Ron Webb

And all religions, as far as I am aware, have some sort of physical object as the focus for their worship.  Whether you call it an idol or not depends on your definition, but merely pointing to such an object does not prove idol worship.


Well then, you are not well aware.  Jews and Muslims do not have a physical object that serves as the "focus for their worship".  I would say most Christians are like that as well, except for those who do pray to statues (as in the pictures above).  Muslims pray in the direction of the Kaaba, but it is not the "focus" of our prayers.  Jews who pray at the Western Wall are praying in the direction of the Temple, but it is not the "focus" of their prayers.  In contrast, idols are literally the "focus" of the Hindu practitioner.  A statue of Mary or a saint is literally the "focus" of a Christian practitioner.  In these cases, the person is literally praying to the statue.

Originally posted by Ron Webb

The point is that actions have consequences, while thoughts alone do not.
 

That is true, but the point remains that possible consequences do not always serve as effective deterrents against certain behavior.  That is especially true when you have things that can allow you sidestep the possible consequences, as in the case of condoms or other forms of contraception with regard to adultery or fornication.

Originally posted by Ron Webb

The web site I referenced is the official site of the Sanskrit Religions Institute.  I don't know much more about it, but it's clearly more than one man's personal web site.


And that somehow makes it more credible than the website I referenced? 

Originally posted by Ron Webb

As far as I know they can.  Have you any evidence to the contrary?


You didn't answer my question.  If these people can pray without an idol, then why do they make offerings to it and literally pray to it?  Can you show me an example of a Hindu temple that has no idol?   

Originally posted by Ron Webb

Short answer: it's impossible to know from the pictures alone.

 
This would be true IF we had no prior knowledge about these religions.  But since we DO know for a fact that Hindus pray to idols and that some Christians pray to their statues, the answer is that the above pictures are examples of idolatry.  Of course, even without idols, praying to any other than God is a sin from the Islamic point of view, but that is another issue.




Edited by islamispeace - 02 July 2014 at 3:38pm
Say: "Truly, my prayer and my service of sacrifice, my life and my death, are (all) for Allah, the Cherisher of the Worlds. (Surat al-Anaam: 162)

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Caringheart
 
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Quote Caringheart Replybullet Posted: 02 July 2014 at 4:53pm
You know, it struck me today, as I was watching the news regarding elections in Afghanistan....

Don't people make idols of leaders in some parts of the world.... the middle east... Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, and others... N. Korea, China... possibly Ukraine and Russia... Malaysia, Indonesia... maybe UAE and Qatar as well?

I so often see huge posters of political leaders... whole walls painted with images of leaders...

Isn't this making idols of men?

You don't see this in western nations.


Edited by Caringheart - 02 July 2014 at 4:56pm
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Ron Webb
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Quote Ron Webb Replybullet Posted: 03 July 2014 at 9:35am
Originally posted by islamispeace

Originally posted by Ron Webb

Yes, they would be wrong, just as you would be wrong to infer idol worship merely from the pictures.  That's my point.

Except that we know for a fact that Hindus pray to idols of their gods and that some Christians pray to statues of saints or Jesus (peace be upon him).  So, as I said before, those pictures are just a visual confirmation of what we already know.  In contrast, we know for a fact that Muslims do not pray to the black stone.  So your "point" is pointless.

You started this discuss‭ion by asking us to "look at the pictures below and determine if the act shown constitutes the act of idolatry."   Okay, have a look at this picture:



Can you determine from the picture alone whether the act shown constitutes idolatry?  Why would you draw such a conclusion from those other pictures, but not from this one?

Moreover, you have yet to refute my point that we know for a fact that Hindus literally pray to their idols and that some Christians literally pray to their statues.  So, the pictures simply confirm what we already know.

Some Hindus, with a lesser understanding of their religion, do literally pray to their idols.  This error is not regarded as serious because according to Hinduism, divinity (i.e. Brahman) is literally present in all things, so they are not that far wrong; and because as explained previously all worship is idol worship, so the error is inevitable.

Not a single Christian literally prays to a statue.  They pray to God.   The statue is just a representation of God, not the actual God.

So do you think that people cannot show respect for things like their country's flag?  When Americans treat "Old Glory" with respect, are you going to tell them that they can't do that, because according to you, "one can only have respect for a person..."?  Come on, you're making me laugh too much!

They are showing respect for the ideals that the flag represents, and for the people who cherish those ideals.  The flag itself is just a piece of cloth.  Everyone knows that.

Well then, you are not well aware.  Jews and Muslims do not have a physical object that serves as the "focus for their worship".

For Jews, it was originally the Ark of the Covenant, the "Holy of Holies" containing the stone tablets of the Ten Commandments.  That Ark as since been lost, but each synagogue has its own "ark" which contains a copy of the Torah.
For Muslims, it is the Kaaba, which contains the Black Stone.

I would say most Christians are like that as well, except for those who do pray to statues (as in the pictures above).  Muslims pray in the direction of the Kaaba, but it is not the "focus" of our prayers.  Jews who pray at the Western Wall are praying in the direction of the Temple, but it is not the "focus" of their prayers.

Yes, they are all praying in the same direction.  That is what "focus" means.  That is what I meant when I originally used the word.  No, it is not the object of worship, though it may appear that way to a superficial observer.

  In contrast, idols are literally the "focus" of the Hindu practitioner.  A statue of Mary or a saint is literally the "focus" of a Christian practitioner.  In these cases, the person is literally praying to the statue.

No, not the statue, but at what it represents.  If I gaze admiringly at a picture of my wife, does that mean I am in love with a picture?

I'll agree with you that the Catholic habit of praying to saints and to the Virgin Mary is tantamount to polytheism (not idolatry), however.  I've never understood how they can claim to be monotheists.

Originally posted by Ron Webb

The web site I referenced is the official site of the Sanskrit Religions Institute.  I don't know much more about it, but it's clearly more than one man's personal web site.

And that somehow makes it more credible than the website I referenced?

Yes.

You didn't answer my question.  If these people can pray without an idol, then why do they make offerings to it and literally pray to it?

Because they want to.  Why do they have to pray the way you want them to?
Addeenul ‘Aql – Religion is intellect.
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Caringheart
 
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Quote Caringheart Replybullet Posted: 04 July 2014 at 9:43am
Don't people make an 'idol' of Muhammad when they get so offended whenever anyone has a question about him, and about the things that are written of him?  Shouldn't people be able to discuss this historical figure and the writings about him?

I just read someone's comment that said they love the prophet more than their own family, their own children. 
Isn't this 'making an idol' of him? 
Does Muhammad deserve the same worship as allah?

asalaam.
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NABA
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Quote NABA Replybullet Posted: 05 July 2014 at 2:12am
Assalamalecum,if we love Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) it is only because of Allah we r loving him which is the first reason because Allah says in ch 21 v 107 of Quran that Allah had send Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) as a mercy for mankind, second reason is this that prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was extremely peaceful and loving man.he used to stand and pray at night to the extent that his legs swell and he pray for forgiveness and guidance for all of us, so y we won't love him??? Moreover Allah in ch 60 v 3 says that no relatives will b of use on hereafter, in ch 19 v 95 Allah says that everyone will b alone when his account will be taken.
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Quote Abu Loren Replybullet Posted: 05 July 2014 at 3:06am
Originally posted by Reepicheep

ISIS (now known simply as IS) has apparently vowed to destroy the Kaaba. A short excerpt from the article follows the link:

IS vows to destroy the Kaaba

Militants of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant have threatened that that they will “ruin” the Kaaba after capturing Saudi Arabia because “people worship a stone instead of Allah.”

The terror group indicated that they would go to Saudi Arabia’s Arur region via the Anbar deserts and take the control of Kaba to demolish the holy place. ISIL member Abu Turab Al Mugaddasi wrote on microblogging site Twitter that they would destroy the Kaaba in Mecca and kill those pilgrims who worship a stone. “If Allah wills, we will kill those who worship stones in Mecca and destroy the Kaaba. People go to Mecca to touch the stones, not for Allah,” he wrote.
This situation reminds me of the Dajjal or anit-christ. The Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) has prophecied the the Dajjal will come from a place between Syria and Iraq and that he will cause chaos on the earth and he will try to attack Mecca and Median but would not be able to as these cities will be defended by an army of angels.
 
If he's a young man with curley hair and one eye then he's definately the Dajjal.
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Quote islamispeace Replybullet Posted: 05 July 2014 at 11:10am
Originally posted by Ron Webb

You started this discuss‭ion by asking us to "look at the pictures below and determine if the act shown constitutes the act of idolatry."   Okay, have a look at this picture:



Can you determine from the picture alone whether the act shown constitutes idolatry?  Why would you draw such a conclusion from those other pictures, but not from this one?


Ugh, still not getting it?  As I stated before, and am now repeating for like the 5th time, we already know for a FACT that Hindus pray to idols of their gods and some Christians pray to statues of their saints!  Did you get that?  The pictures I showed were a visual confirmation of what we already know.  Get it?

With this in mind, anyone who knows even the basic facts about Islam (which I admit most westerners may not know - but then again, they don't know many simple facts: LOL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0RH0cYs4lw), would know that Muslims pray in the direction of the Kaaba but do not pray to it.  They would also know that the Black Stone serves as a marker and not an object of worship.

Originally posted by Ron Webb

Some Hindus, with a lesser understanding of their religion, do literally pray to their idols.  This error is not regarded as serious because according to Hinduism, divinity (i.e. Brahman) is literally present in all things, so they are not that far wrong; and because as explained previously all worship is idol worship, so the error is inevitable.


Some Hindus?!  Wow Ron, can you really be that disingenuous?  The vast majority of Hindus pray to their idols and even make offerings to them!

Originally posted by Ron Webb

Not a single Christian literally prays to a statue.  They pray to God.   The statue is just a representation of God, not the actual God.
   

Clap With this statement, you have shown how ignorant you really are, even though you pretend like you are knowledgeable.

First of all, Catholics do pray to statues of the Virgin Mary and even to saints.  They pray to them to ask for intercession.  Catholics even pray to angels like Michael to protect them (http://www.catholic.org/prayers/prayer.php?p=1389). 

Second, no Christian (Catholic or otherwise) believes that a statue can be a "representation of God".  They believe God is formless and thus cannot be represented by physical form, though it is still common to see paintings of God in churches (the Sistine Chapel is an example).  Now of course, they do worship Jesus as God, and statues of Jesus are common in churches, but they do not believe that God "the Father" has a form.  You will not find any statue of the "Father" in any church.  Such an idea would be blasphemous to Christians.  Then again, historically speaking, drawing images of the "Father" has been common in Christianity, though I am not sure if Christians actually pray to these images.       

Originally posted by Ron Webb

They are showing respect for the ideals that the flag represents, and for the people who cherish those ideals.  The flag itself is just a piece of cloth.  Everyone knows that.


LOL My goodness, you must be joking!  Your entire post has so far been highly disingenuous! 

Even if the flag merely represents certain "ideals", people still do respect the flag, do they not?  If someone were to disrespect the flag, people would get upset, would they not?  So they are literally showing respect to that "piece of cloth" and not merely to the "ideals" it allegedly represents. 

Originally posted by Ron Webb

For Jews, it was originally the Ark of the Covenant, the "Holy of Holies" containing the stone tablets of the Ten Commandments.  That Ark as since been lost, but each synagogue has its own "ark" which contains a copy of the Torah.
For Muslims, it is the Kaaba, which contains the Black Stone.
  

Your ignorance is appalling.  First of all, the Kaaba does not "contain the Black Stone".  The stone is actually on the outside of the Kaaba and serves as a marker for Tawaf.  Second, the Kaaba is not the focal point of Muslim prayer.  Muslims pray in the direction of the Kaaba but not to it.  We don't even look at the Kaaba or in its direction during prayer.  When we pray, we actually look at the ground.  In contrast, Hindus and some Christians literally pray to their statues, and Hindus even make offerings to them.  Muslims do not make offerings to the Kaaba. 

Originally posted by Ron Webb

Yes, they are all praying in the same direction.  That is what "focus" means.  That is what I meant when I originally used the word.  No, it is not the object of worship, though it may appear that way to a superficial observer.


You should have said "ignorant superficial observer".  In contrast, we know for a fact that Hindus and Christians do pray to statues.  So, any "superficial observer" would be correct to think that the statues are literal "objects of worship", although Catholics would deny that they "worship" the statues.  Catholics would argue that even though they pray to statues of Mary or the saints, they are not worshiping them as deities.  But, from an Islamic point of view, offering prayers (even if it is to request intercession with God) to any other than God is an act of worship. 

Originally posted by Ron Webb

No, not the statue, but at what it represents.  If I gaze admiringly at a picture of my wife, does that mean I am in love with a picture?
 

What if you offered flowers to the picture or burned incense around it?  Shocked

Originally posted by Ron Webb

I'll agree with you that the Catholic habit of praying to saints and to the Virgin Mary is tantamount to polytheism (not idolatry), however.  I've never understood how they can claim to be monotheists.
 

They would argue that they do not worship the saints or Mary, but as I said, praying to anyone other than God would be an act of worship, and hence would be tantamount to polytheism.  But it would be idolatry if the prayer was made in front of a statue.  If they just simply made the prayer without the aid of a statue, that would not be idolatry but it would be polytheism.

Originally posted by Ron Webb

Because they want to.  Why do they have to pray the way you want them to?
 

LOL You are missing the point.  They can do whatever they want.  I would never force them to do what I want.  That is not the issue.  The issue is that if your contention, that people can pray without idols, is true, then why do people literally pray to idols and make offerings to them?  They obviously don't agree with your views!


Edited by islamispeace - 05 July 2014 at 2:08pm
Say: "Truly, my prayer and my service of sacrifice, my life and my death, are (all) for Allah, the Cherisher of the Worlds. (Surat al-Anaam: 162)

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