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MACJR

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Reply with quote  #46 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kirock

Now this one is more of a question for Salma rather than a comment on her statement. I haven't studied the Koran enough to know the answer myself, I have muddled my way through two different translations, but not indepth. I do know that Jesus is in the Koran, and I'm thinking that he was held as a prophet, was he? And if he was, is he included in the no-imaging rule?

 

Salma’s reply

 

 

Hi Michael,

How are you?  Hope all is fine your end.  Why did you change your email? i didnt memorize this one yet

for the question asked [above], all prophets are not supposed to be pictured. Since in Islam, Jesus is a propher, then he can not be drawn.  The reason as I mentioned earlier is simple.  As time goes by, people tend to turn the object of respect to an object of worship.

Jesus and his Mother Mary are mentioned numerously in Quran.  Virgin Mary is said to be God's favourite woman amongst all women on earth who ever lived or will ever live.  She is the purest as the Quran mentions.  She has a complete chapter in quran under her name "Marium" or Mary.  Jesus also is mentioned numerous times with his story.  According to Quran, Jesus is a very special prophet as he is the word of God (not the son of God though) and that Jesus according to us was no crucified or tortured. In fact, God elevated his soul up in heaven and he is still alive until now.  We believe that the man who was crucified was the traitor of jesus and God made people think he is Jesus.  So for us, Jesus is a prophet, a human being and not God. 

Sounds a bit like the Da Vinci Code?  Well, in our religion, there is no mention of any marriage of Jesus or any children. So besides the human versus devinity aspect, i think we have similar beliefs on Jesus (he made ill people recover and dead people alive).

Hope that answered your question.

 

Love,

Salma


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ManInBlack

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Reply with quote  #47 
Well, you spend a few days away...

As you all might guess, I have quite a bit to respond to here, and I'd like to put it all together in one post, so that will happen tomorrow.

Salma's anger is palpable, and mine is not. I only reduce humans to things when I am preparing to kill them, and I haven't fired a shot in anger in almost five years




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Kirock

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Reply with quote  #48 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Salma through MacJr

For the question asked [above], all prophets are not supposed to be pictured. Since in Islam, Jesus is a propher, then he can not be drawn.  The reason as I mentioned earlier is simple.  As time goes by, people tend to turn the object of respect to an object of worship.

Ok, that's what I thought I remembered, that Jesus was counted as a prophet in Islam. But Jesus has been depicted in pictures and statues for years with no major demonstrations. Is Mohamed a prophet of higher esteem than the prophet Jesus?

Quote:
Jesus and his Mother Mary are mentioned numerously in Quran.  Virgin Mary is said to be God's favourite woman amongst all women on earth who ever lived or will ever live.  She is the purest as the Quran mentions.  She has a complete chapter in quran under her name "Marium" or Mary.  Jesus also is mentioned numerous times with his story.  According to Quran, Jesus is a very special prophet as he is the word of God (not the son of God though) and that Jesus according to us was no crucified or tortured. In fact, God elevated his soul up in heaven and he is still alive until now.  We believe that the man who was crucified was the traitor of jesus and God made people think he is Jesus.  So for us, Jesus is a prophet, a human being and not God.

 

I do know of at least one verse in the Koran that says Jesus is not the Son of God, it is 41:171 Women. "The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was no more than God’s apostle and His Word which He cast to Mary: a spirit from Him." That's not so different from what we believe, that Jesus was a man, the Son of God, and carried the spirit of God. Jesus is the mediator between us and God, we are to worship God, not Jesus the mediator.

 

Quote:
Sounds a bit like the Da Vinci Code?  Well, in our religion, there is no mention of any marriage of Jesus or any children. So besides the human versus devinity aspect, i think we have similar beliefs on Jesus (he made ill people recover and dead people alive).

 

It does sound a bit like the Da Vinci Code? I'm surprised to hear Salma say that, it seems she does have a bit of a sense of humor. And she is right, there is no direct mention of Jesus being married, in the Koran or the Bible. There is, however, plenty of circumstancial evidence in the stories about Jesus to suggest that he was living the normal married life of a Jewish man of the time. This evidence is especially strong if you adhere to the belief that Jesus was sent to Earth to experience a real human life in order to truly understand mankind, and thus be a better mediator between God and man. 

cybnetic

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Reply with quote  #49 
Sounds like everyone is heading in the right direction. Keep digging

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ManInBlack

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Reply with quote  #50 
I would like to start by sincerely thanking MACJR, and also Salma, for sharing their views. My response is generally directed at Salma, but I take none of this as personal. She is a product of her culture no less than I am a product of mine. I will therefore ignore her first reply, which was clearly written in anger.

The issue of my original post was physical violence in reaction to the written insult. Salma does not deny, in fact takes "pride" in this situation, when she defends the violence by saying

I think Muslims should be proud of being in the lead with regards to sending a strong message against those who dare to insult figures of holiness.


I have sent a few "strong messages" in my time. We used different euphemisms in those days. As I have aged, I find that euphemisms are just another way of avoiding the truth. We can all disagree as to the meaning of the truth, but as long as we play with the language, we can't discuss the truth. So let's start here with some straight exchanges.

In any translation the Quran instructs to kill non believers (infidels).

That is not to say that Christians have not followed the same path. Joshua 8:24 is but one example of God commanding the destruction of entire cities by his followers.

In Christianity, however, with the Messiah comes another message. We are to leave judgment to God. My personal theory is that God was disappointed in the quality of man's judgment. In Matthew 10:14 Jesus instructs all evangelists through his disciples,
If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake the dust off your feet when you leave that home or town. I tell you the truth, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town.

The important difference is this. The story in the Christian Bible is of the history of the world, from it's creation to it's end. It has many authors, and they do not always completely agree. By using such a literary device, and in fact in direct instruction of Matthew 18:16 the concept of peer review and balancing different ideas is promoted over individual interpretation. Mohamed came along 500 years later and from all I've read was an incredibly impartial and balanced man, sought by Gentile and Jew to settle disputes. I cannot say who's idea it was to accept his interpretation of God's intentions as eternal and unchanging.

It is far from me to know the intentions of the Prophet, but I do not believe that he sought the worship of others. I believe that to the contrary, he and his words became the object of worship and as Salma eloquently pointed out,
Also, in some other incidents (mentioned in history), people have turned to worship the object that personifies the creator/prophet/good man instead of the person/God.

In fact I agree wholeheartedly with Salma's interpretation of why depictions of Holy figures should be avoided. For clarity, Salma, your statement
our faith is only second to Protestantism which has abolished any imaging and only uses a blank cross symbolic of Jesus Christ
Is misinformed. Protestants do not forbid the representation of Jesus, they just don't depict him on the cross. We believe that he was resurrected and rose to Heaven in physical form, so he is not on the cross in most of our images. And while I have no choice but to agree that
an 'original depiction' of anything (as it is a human habit) tends to change or 'evolve' causing the image, therefore after many generations of artists to completely alter how the original figure once looked like.
having visited Christians of other races who possess depictions of Jesus as belonging to their race (let's face it, it is highly unlikely that this man from Nazareth had blue eyes and light skin). It is not important what Jesus looked like. His image is meant to depict Love. A reminder that he tended towards being a gentle man of peace.

I appreciate your statement
The abstract idea of a holy figure exerts respect for the holy figure in the hearts of those who hold the figure respectful. Muslims love their Prophet and respect their Prophet. They do not depict the man.
but in doing so do you not relieve the Prophet of his humanity?


Now to Salma's actual response to the actual issue.

The editorial cartoon depicted Mohamed with his turban wrapped around 'a bomb', why? Mohamed neither symbolize suicide bombers nor has suicide bombing ever been what he stood for.

This is the crux of the problem, Salma. Without intending insult, I cannot speak to the imagination of the typical Muslim. The editorial cartoon depicted Islam, using the figure of Mohamed. No rational westerner thought that Mohamed was the one with the bomb, to the contrary, it is the dissonance between the accepted teachings of peace and the actions of Muslims that was being editorialized. One cartoon portrayed tears in Mohamed's eyes as he witnessed the destruction caused by his followers.

That bomb wrapped in the turban was simply an insult to prophet Mohamed.

Indeed. The editorial point is that suicide bombings are an insult to Mohamed.


What would happen to somebody if he or she hurled a string of insults at Pope John Paul the Second while the man was giving his last speech just a day or two before his soul passed to heaven? The massive catholic audience may as well have ripped the attacker to pieces .. why? Because the Pope is a figure of holiness (human or no human).


Rather than speculating, let's check a fact. 13 May 1981 was the date of an attempted assassination of the Pope. No one was ripped to pieces, his attacker was tried by the courts, and eventually pardoned, 19 years into his life sentence.

I believe that the angry crowds (who burnt cars and wrecked buildings) were heard both loud and clear, otherwise how else would you make a person or organization think 100 times before insulting Prophet Mohamed! How many times would a person think before they insult a public figure beloved by people (even if the person weren't holy)?

You seem to have forgotten about your brothers and sisters who died in the riots. Yes, we heard. But the message that we heard was not "respect Muslim beliefs", it was "fear the angry mob". As I said in my original post, I see no insult to Mohamed because Mohamed was not being depicted, Islam was. Do I think that Islam was insulted? Certainly. Just as I think Islam is insulted by every act of violence perpetrated by it's followers.

Muslims are not crazy. They are simply extremely angry.

Yes I know. I also know that "Muslims are angry" has been a truth for many years. Long before Bush, long before the Iranians took hostages,
as far as I can tell long before either of us were born.

To be honest, I have heard of the solution, and I believe you have as well. One of us must be destroyed. I'm holding on to hope that we can find another solution, because I have seen the beauty of your land and your people. I would hate to lose either. Neither of us grow by eliminating the other.

Not to tell anyone what to do, but the violence must end. To that end, those who perpetrate violence will be seen as evil. I accept that you find the cartoons insulting, but they were not violent, they burned no buildings and killed no people. The riots did. Insult me all day long Salma, I can listen and respond, and maybe someday we can understand each other a little better.

Peace,
Blake





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waltcesca

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Reply with quote  #51 

    Blake, personally, I found your clarification and response to Selma to be very moving and 'eye-opening'. I admit, I have a copy of the Koran yet, as in the case of the King James version of the Bible, it was a very hard read. I think that is mainly due to my impatience to try to see beyond the way it was written (the way of the sentence structures, how the paragraphs are written, etc.) Of course, I still try to read it to see if I understand any of it a little better as time goes on however, I really think the only way for me to understand it is to actually go to a Mosque.

    Of course, that leads to the chance of being photographed as being a member and to be quite honest, there are too many things in my own past and in my home that I really prefer remain as 'secret' as possible.

    I do agree, however, all the Islamic rioting really taught me was that rioters are a very bad animal. I lived through the Rodney King Trial riots, and while that injustice did make me upset, even to the point where I saw 'red', I NEVER considered burning anything (except my cigarette) NOR stealing (I think they called it 'looting'). It did, however, make me get more interested in the inner workings of the workings of the American in-justice system and how I might keep myself from getting picked up in the midst of it (note, to date, I have NO criminal record, not a small feat living in Los Angeles as I did AND being Black). No, I understand the years of anger that many Muslims feel toward the West and especially America, BUT, whatever America has done to the Muslim world in the past and/or the present PALES in my opinion, to what America has done and is still doing to it's Black citizens.

     Again, not to minimize how Selma is feeling, it is HER feelings and therefore are important, I just cannot see ANY excuse for the deaths by ANY wars, be it an American led war OR a Jihad. In my opinion, once ANY side refuses to talk about real ways to get along (and that does NOT mean eradicating either side), then we, as a people, have truly slipped backwards and forgotten the faces of our Fathers!

      If I have further ruffled anyone's feathers, well, I apologize, but that is how I feel.

 

Peace to all of you, Walter


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ManInBlack

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Reply with quote  #52 
Okay, now it's MACJR's turn


Quote:
Originally Posted by MACJR

I too have studied with the Jehovah’s Witnesses. They are a friendly and well meaning bunch. I agree with many of their interpretations of the bible, but as with all religions I have studied so far, there are some points of contention, so I cannot call myself a Jehovah’s Witness even though I do respect them and their religion.

It is true that they do not allow religious symbols, and as for the cross, they do not believe that Jesus was crucified on a cross; they believe he was nailed to a tree. To me, it matters not how Jesus died, it was that Jesus died for a cause that he believed in strongly.



The source of this belief is the apostle Paul, who in several verses makes the tree reference. His outrage was such that I can hear him shouting when I read it.


Jesus' exact manner of execution fails to hold any importance to me either, it's just another example of how a minor detail can divide people who have lost sight of the point.


The New World Translation is a document of the Jehovah"s Witnesses. The roots of this church are more political than religious and within the translation Jesus is not portrayed as a part of God but as his prophet.


Quote:
Originally Posted by MACJR


It seems to me that many people seem to worship Jesus, Mary, or whatever saint is their favorite, more than God. This seems so wrong to me.



It seems misguided at the very least.


My wife's aunt "sponsors" a visit by the Virgin Mary every year.


This means that she gives money to the church and the statue of Mary from the church spends a week in her house.


This is what Salma was talking about when she said that people begin worshiping objects as opposed to what they represent. The Catholic church is so rife with Idol worship that I've heard of people who believe that if you bury the statue of a particular saint in your backyard your house will sell quickly. The idea sings of paganism to me.


Quote:
Originally Posted by MACJR


Sadly, Islam drifted away from knowledge as a cornerstone to their religion and war and internal conflict become their way of life. I feel it would be great if Islam once again returned to its roots of valuing knowledge more than the practice of warring over their beliefs.

It would also be great if the Christians did the same.




Hear hear!

The minister that I most admire from my youth was a scholar. He would compare various translations seeking truth. His greatest gift to me was to tell me to go out and get polar opposites' opinions on a subject in my search for understanding.

Unfortunately today too many people of all denominations find one morsel of truth and look no further. This applies not only in the spiritual sphere, but all branches of knowledge


Quote:
Originally Posted by MACJR

Timothy McVey and Ted Kaczynski do not represent every person in the western culture but if we do only judge a culture by its extremists then we would all be considered terrorists too. So, why are we, as a country, judging the entire Islamic community for the actions of their extremists when we would not think it fair if they judge us for our extremists?



My apologies for mixing posts in the same reply.

When Timothy and Ted carried out their terrorists acts they were condemned by all of western culture. No one could think they represented all westerners.

When Muslims riot and proclaim Jihad they are celebrated and praised by other Muslims. There may be one or two brave clerics willing to denounce terrorists, but they are rare. It is easy to see that while all Muslims may not strap a bomb to themselves, the overwhelming majority approve of those who do.

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Reply with quote  #53 

Speaking of Jehovah's Witnesses, My uncle USED to be a member years ago. He told me (after he left that church) that in the 70s they were an 'end of the world' cult! The members were required to give all of their worldly possessions to the leader so that he could keep them safe for the after life, but, when the date came and went, many people were very upset at how easily they had been duped. And today, members are NOT allowed to speak of ANY of the churches history, to do so could get that member excommunicated! In fact, they are covering so well, I saw something on-line in an archive about that history, but now I cannot find it. Interesting.


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Reply with quote  #54 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ManInBlack


Jesus' exact manner of execution fails to hold any importance to me either, it's just another example of how a minor detail can divide people who have lost sight of the point.





Speaking of the manner of crucifixion, I found this on netscape this morning.
Netscape/news
They are saying that the traditional depiction may not be accurate. They don't doubt the act itself but rather the position. If it is proved that the tradition pose is wrong I figure that one of two things will occur. Either there will be a raising of voices (hopefully just voices) condemning them or the news will be buried so far down that no one will ever hear of it again.
cybnetic

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Reply with quote  #55 
I saw this also. Interesting how new things about our history keep popping up especially about religion. Maybe the religions are not what they are all cracked up to be? or maybe just yet.. things are not quite as they seem

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biosigns83642

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Reply with quote  #56 
So how about that new text that was discovered?  The one that seems to indicate that Judas' betrayal of Jesus was at Jesus' direction? 

I'm curious about how the folks who put the bible together decided which authors to include and which to exclude.  There's just no way that every text ever written about God and Jesus, and Jesus' era, was included, or the bible would beas big as a set of encyclopedias, at the least.


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waltcesca

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Reply with quote  #57 

   Well, didn't Jesus tell one of his disciples that he would deny knowing him THREE times before the rooster crowed three times that day? Whether or not Judas was told to betray Jesus doesn't really matter at this point, he was, regardless, doing what he was meant to do. Of course, I haven't read this 'new' text, but from what I DO know, God has always known what someone will (or won't) do way ahead of time. And, wasn't the whole thing that happened to Jesus foretold YEARS before his birth? Really, what's another chapter going to say that we don't already know? Judas turned Jesus in for money, Jesus himself never blamed him for his actions, he knew it was coming! He tried to get out of it, but STILL WENT THROUGH IT. Sure, Judas may or may not have been told to do so, but in the end, Judas 'could' have said 'no'. He didn't, he took the money and regretted it afterward, it still happened. Do we now say that Heinrich Himmler (Hitler's commander of the SS) should somehow have his place in history lessened because Hitler TOLD him to do all those things? No, he also could have said 'no', he didn't and the rest is history.

   Don't get me wrong, I do believe in forgiveness, I just don't believe in forgeting. When one forgets, one stays open to more of the same. So, I forgive Judas, he did what he was 'slated' to do. I even forgive everyone involved in the whole Hitler regime, I just won't forget since I still see many swastikas being spray painted on the schools around where I live (three more last week).

   Anyway, that is, of course, in MY most humble opinion!


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Kirock

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Reply with quote  #58 

Quote:
Originally Posted by biosigns83642

So how about that new text that was discovered?  The one that seems to indicate that Judas' betrayal of Jesus was at Jesus' direction? 

I don't know anything about that new text yet Bio, but there is a small section in the Gospel of Luke, about Judas, that has always stuck in my head.

 

Luke 22:1-4 reads, "Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover. *And the chief priests and scribes sought how they might kill him, for they feared the people. *Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve. *And he went his way, and communed with the chief priests and captains, how he might betray him unto them (KJV)."

 

That always made it sound to me like Judas was a true disciple up until the time "that Satan entered into him." In a sense Satan possessed him to use him as a tool to try to defeat Jesus, and to carry it one step further, Jesus allowed Satan to use Judas. Was Judas only against Jesus while under Satan's control?

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Reply with quote  #59 

You know, honestly, I never completely understood the "betrayal" part.  Yes, I know that it was Judas that pointed out who Jesus was with a kiss... but REALLY?  From the sound of everything leading up to that point, it sounds like MOST people knew who he was... there had been a PARADE for him a week earlier... people have been questioning him... he had been teaching ... why did they need ANYONE to point him out.

 

I don't know, I could *possibly* see that there is more to the story... and I don't think that it changes anything in the story or the outcome.  It is the event three days later that are the REAL story.

 


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cybnetic

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Reply with quote  #60 
anyone care to hear my version

anyone see the Judas gospel on National Geographic of late that aired last week. they are still running it if you want to see it.

quite interesting I say.....


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