Watchwoman: My husband started reading a book and he began to share with me the profound ideas in this book and now we are reading it together because what he told me so intrigued and engrossed me. Today, I scanned into my computer an entire chapter of that book so we could keep it for future reference and to be able to word search it. I am going to be sharing with you some of what I’ve scanned and transformed into text for your benefit and in the hopes that you will either buy the book and/or request it from your library. I have kept the original spaces for the pages so you’ll notice that a page number will appear in the middle of the text (in bold) and even in the middle of a paragraph and a sentence. I scanned this into my computer so I can search the text and find the spot in the book (for my convenience) and not for the showing off of a neat page for the reader. For this, I apologize. The text is relevant to today, all of us in America, to the Jews here and in Israel, to the Muslims in all of the Arab lands, to Europe and foreign lands, to the Christian Church of all the believers in the One Holy and True God of the Holy Bible and most of all, I believe each one reading this will find it intensely relevant to their situation, their family and their faith today, right where each of you sit! May the One, True Triune God of Love, Creator of the Universe and all things in it, open your eyes and hearts to receive His Love for you, through the wooing of the Holy Spirit, in the Name of Jesus Christ. May you be blessed and may this lead you into truth to encounter in a personal and real way all the Love God has for you. Amen and Amen. ▬ Donna Calvin
[King James Version – Romans 5:8] But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
HOW CIVILIZATIONS DIE
(And Why Islam is Dying Too)
By David P. Goldman
Online Columnist “Spengler”
Chapter 10, Pages 137-155
You’ve heart about the Death of the West. But the Muslim world is on the brink of an even greater collapse.
Will we go down in the implosion?
ISLAM: THE ARABS AS CHOSEN PEOPLE
Starting on Page 137
In 2008 a Muslim theologian at Germany’s University of Munster scandalized his co-religionists by asserting that the Prophet Mohammed was a figment of myth rather than an historical personality. Sven Muhammed Kalisch was a convert to Islam who held one of the most important positions in Islamic studies — the first German university chair for teaching Muslim religious instructors in German public schools. His paper, “Islamic Theology without the Historical Mohammed;” 1 was the first work by a Muslim academic to dispute the Prophet’s existence. Professor Kalisch since has apostatized and repudiated the Muslim faith, but the damage was done. As he told a German newspaper, “It might be that the Koran was truly inspired by God, a great narration from God, but it was not dictated word for word from Allah to the Prophet.”
In Kalisch’s account, the invention of the historical Mohammed transformed the Christian message into a declaration that the Arabs were God’s
chosen people. The Koran accomplishes this theological feat, Kalisch argues by casting Mohammed as an Arab prophet who embodies the characteristics of Moses as well as Jesus.
“We hardly have original Islamic sources from the first two centuries of Islam,” Kalisch observes. And even when a source appears to come from this period, caution is required. The mere assertion that a source stems from the first or second century of the Islamic calendar means nothing. And even when a source actually was written in the first or second century, the question always remains of later manipulation. We do not tread on firm ground in the sources until the third Islamic century [the ninth century C.E.].” This substantial lag between the time Mohammed is supposed to have lived and the first historical evidence of the religion he is purported to have founded ‘is extremely suspicious, Kalisch observes. How can a world religion have erupted in a virtual literary vacuum? He quotes Patricia Crone and Martin Hinds: “It is a striking fact that such documentary evidence as survives from the Sufnayid period makes no mention of [Mohammed] the messenger of god at all. The papyri do not refer to him. The Arabic inscriptions of the Arab-Sasanian coins only invoke Allah, not his rasul [messenger]; and the Arab-Byzantine bronze coins on which Muhammad appears as rasul Allah, previously dated to the Sufyanid period, have now been placed in that of the Marwanids. Even the two surviving pre-Marwanid tombstones fail to mention the rasul.” 2
The trouble with the Muslim version of the religion’s early history lies not in the absence of evidence, but rather in an abundance, including a large number of coins and inscriptions on monuments during its first two centuries that fail to refer to the Prophet Mohammed. “Coins and inscriptions are incompatible with the Islamic writing of history,” Kalisch concludes, citing the monograph Crossroads to Islam, by Yehuda Nevo and Judith Koren. 3 The oldest inscription with the formulation “Mohammed Messenger of Allah” is found in the sixty-sixth year of Islamic reckoning. But there also exist coins found in Palestine, probably minted in Amman, on which the word “Muhammed” is found in Arabic script on one side and a
picture of a man holding a cross on the other. Kalisch cites this and a dozen other examples of evidence that contradicts official Muslim history. Citing Nevo and Koren among other sources, Kalisch also argues that the Islamic conquest as reported in much later Islamic sources never happened —instead, there was a gradual migration into depopulated Byzantine lands by the Arab auxiliaries of the Eastern Empire.
“To be sure,” Kalisch continues, “various explanations are possible for the lack of mention of the Prophet in the early period, and it is. no proof for the non-existence of an historical Mohammed. But it is most astonishing, and begs the question [sic] of the significance of Mohammed for the original Muslim congregation in the case that he did exist.” The numismatic and archeological evidence against the received version of Islamic history confirms the source-critical case that the Koran is based on earlier Christian sources and was originally written at least partly in Syriac-Aramaic, not Arabic. This compelling case has been assembled by scholars who swam against the current of Islamic studies — for example Patricia Crone, Martin Hinds, Karl-Heinz Ohlig, and John Wansbrough. Kalisch, though, was the first Muslim scholar to argue against the authenticity of the Koran.
If the Mohammed story was invented, then by whom was it invented, and to what end? The answer, Kalisch explains, is that the new Arab empire wanted to conflate the figures of Moses and Jesus into an Arab prophet.
Neither the Jews nor the Christians as people of God, but the Arabs, instead, would become the Chosen People under Islam. “No prophet is mentioned in the Koran as often as Moses, and Muslim tradition always emphasized the great similarly between Moses and Mohammed,” Kalisch writes. “The central event in the life of Moses, though, is the Exodus of the oppressed Children of Israel out of Egypt, and the central event in the life of Mohammed is the Exodus of his oppressed congregation out of Mecca to Medina…. The suspicion is great that the Hegira appears only for this reason in the story of the Prophet, because his image should emulate the image of Moses:’ Furthermore,
the image of Jesus is also seen as a new Moses. The connection of Mohammed to the figure of Jesus is presented in Islamic tradition through his daughter Fatima, who is identified with Maria…. The Line Fatima-Maria- Isis is well known to research. With the takeover of Mecca, Mohammed at least returns to his point of origin. Thus we have a circular structure typical of myth, in which beginning and end are identical. This Gnostic circular structure represents the concept that the soul returns to its origin. It is separated from its origin, and must return to it for the sake of its salvation…. In the Islamic Gnosis, Mohammed appears along with [his family members] Ali, Fatima, Hasan and Hussein as cosmic forces… the Gnostic Abu Mansur al Igli claimed that God first created Jesus, and then Ali. Here apparently we still have the Cosmic Christ. If a Christian Gnosis gave birth to Islam, then the Cosmic Christ underwent a name change to Mohammed in the Arab world, and this Cosmic Mohammed was presented as a new edition of the Myth of Moses and Joshua (= Jesus) as an Arab prophet. 4
The Theology of Submission versus the Theology of Love
We cannot understand societies driven by a religious impulse without considering their religion as such. In this regard theology is the elder sister of political philosophy. But theology is helpless if it offers nothing better than a catalogue of ritual and belief. Theology must instead look at ritual and belief through the eyes of the committed believer. Our knowledge of the Transcendent is existential, not objective. There is never a “reasonable” ground for martyrdom, let alone suicide (except perhaps at the point of capture by the Gestapo). Yet Christians and Jews have offered their lives rather than apostatize. To make sense of what a religion teaches and what
Page 141 – Continued tomorrow: February 14, 2012
Part 1 – How Civilizations Die – Posted February 13, 2012 – pps 137-140
Part 2 – How Civilizations Die – Posted February 14, 2012 – pps 141-143
Part 3 – How Civilizations Die – Posted February 15, 2012 – pps 143-146
Part 4 – How Civilizations Die – Posted February 16, 2012 – pps 147-150
Part 5 – How Civilizations Die – Posted February 17, 2012 – pps 151-154
Part 6 – How Civilizations Die – Posted February 18, 2012 – pps 154-155