Tuesday, June 3, 2008

When Religion Makes the Rules Update

This post about the tragic murder of 17-year-old Rand Abdel-Qader now has a tragic update.

Rand's mother, Leila Hussein, has been shot and killed by unknown murderers as she walked with two women to get a taxi and leave Iraq.

The linked article quotes police as saying that this murder is not linked to Leila's former husband or her sons because they were out of town. Mmmm hmmm.

One of the two women accompanying Leila to her escape route says:
I could hear people talking on the corridors and the only thing that they had to say was that Leila was wrong for defending her daughter's mistakes and that her death was God's punishment.

I cry to think how close Leila was to her escape. I cry to think how hard it must have been to live, having seen her daughter beaten to death by her husband. I cry to think how many people accept that what has happened to Rand and Leila is a good thing.

But then I get angry. Since I first read Rand's story in The Guardian, there has been a storm of blog posts, a couple of references on various forums, some repeats of the original article on non-U.S. news sites, but NOTHING in the news most Americans watch or read.

Is this what American soldiers are in Iraq to defend? Are these the people Americans have chosen to fill the power vacuum left by Saddam Hussein?

Perhaps when our troops are finally brought out of Iraq, we should bring the women with us.


Nowruz said...

sorry for being frankness.
you speak about human rights , but what you khnow about God's rights on us ? what do you think should we do to be a good server to our God?

Maleficent said...

Hello nowruz,

Thank you for your comment.

If you glance around my blog, you may notice that I have nothing to say about any god's rights "on us," nor about what we should do to serve any god.

A god who instructs, encourages, or allows its devotees to act in the manner of Rand Abdel-Qader's father or to act in the manner of any other perpetrator of any so-called honor killing is not worthy of worship.

That said, I personally do not worship or serve any gods.

Nowruz said...

Dear maleficent,
At first I should apology you that I hadn’t read your blog completely and then comment, because I didn't much time.
In any country or any religion there are some traditions or rules that violating them equals the worst penalties.
But murdering is not the penalty of love and I condemn murdering men or women that deserve not murder.
The rights of Men and women are identical. I cannot claim that they had a good manner and cannot claim that they did wrong because I don’t know their traditions and their rules.
But another thing that I would like to mention is that if someone had a wrong manner
We will not be allowed to infer that their religion has problems and is unrespectable.
You said: A god who instructs, encourages, or allows its devotees to act in the manner is not worthy to worship. But I have a question: from where you inferred that God encourages or instructs or allows these kinds of manners?

Maleficent said...

Thank you again, nowruz, for your comment.

First off, let me just make it quite clear that I do not subscribe to cultural relativity - the idea that one cannot judge individuals within their culture for behaviors that are a part of that culture. Therefore, your statement that you "cannot claim that they did wrong because I don’t know their traditions and their rule" puts you and I on different planets in regard to moral and ethical standards. I give not a single shit about their traditions and their rule.

Now, on to your specific question:
"from where you inferred that God encourages or instructs or allows these kinds of manners?" I have no idea if you worship and/or serve any gods, so I cannot make any statement in regard to whichever god(s), if any, you, nowruz specifically, worship and/or serve.

HOWEVER, the rules of the god worshipped and/or served by the murderer of Rand Abdel-Qader are made evident by this statement by a Basra police sergeant:
"Not much can be done when we have an honour killing case. You are in a Muslim society and women should live under religious laws."
In addition, an article in The Guardian that you can find here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/may/11/iraq.humanrights ,has these lovely words from Rand's father:
"Death was the least she deserved. I don't regret it. I had the support of all my friends who are fathers, like me, and know what she did was unacceptable to any Muslim that honours his religion."
It is apparent by these statements that the god worshipped and served by Mr. Abdel-Qader instructs, encourages, and allows its devotees to brutally kill their own children or any other women who go against their god's laws. I have not "inferred" this. I have directly quoted individuals who worship/serve this god.

There are many religions and many gods. It seems that every street corner in the world has its own god. There are approximately 33,000 sects, each with its own definition of god, in Christianity alone. Mr. Abdel-Qader's god is unworthy of worship. The god whose laws are followed in Basra is unworthy of worship.

Similarly, a god who demands its worshippers pray over a sick child instead of taking the child to hospital, resulting in the death of that child is also unworthy of worship. I have written about just such a case involving a Christian couple whose daughter slowly suffered and died of preventable diabetes in a previous post. There is a sect of Christianity called the Jehovah's Witnesses, who refuse blood transfusions. When they refuse transfusions for their children, who have no say in the matter, and who then DIE, I declare their god unworthy of worship. I am an equal opportunity declarer of unworthiness in the god department.

Perhaps Mr. Abdel-Qader's god or the Christian couple's god is different from the "God" of which you speak. I have no way of knowing. Perhaps you could answer my questions: Do the rules of your god require that women such as Rand Abdel-Qader and Leila Hussein be murdered? How do you define your god?

Maleficent said...

I just want to put this out there for fun:

A god worthy of worship would DO AWAY with pain and suffering, rather than causing it for any reason. Several of the more popular gods today not only do not prevent pain and suffering, but encourage it. Plus, these gods generally don't even do their own smiting. They get their devotees all worked up to do the smiting for them. Bad form!

A god worthy of worship would not be such a giant baby as to require its devotees to constantly beg it for forgiveness, for favors, for respite from pain and suffering. It would not require its devotees to be constantly thanking it.

Like a good parent, a worthy god would provide and protect ALWAYS and without expectation of reward, just because its the right thing to do for your children.

Nowruz said...


1-Again I mention that if someone had a wrong manner, I couldn’t say that his religion allows him to behavior so. Sometime God commands something but worshipers do wrong. But in my religion, as I will document it, murdering is forbidden.
2-my God never beg, but commands and require nothing instead as I document bellow.
3-in my religion helping people is the best way of serving and don’t demand his worshippers pray over a sick child instead of taking the child
To hospital. But he commands to help a sick and do anything necessary for him. So if you don’t take him to hospital and stay and pray ,my God says he will died.

4- I choose some verses from the Holy Book of my God, that introduces himself for his worshipers :

اللّهُ لاَ إِلهَ إِلَّا هُوَ الحَيُّ الْقَيُّومُ
Allah! There is no God save Him, the Alive, the Eternal.
نَزَّلَ عَلَيْکَ الْکِتَابَ بِالْحَقِّ مُصَدِّقاً لِمَا بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ وَأَنْزَلَ التَّوْرَاةَ وَالْإِنجِيلَ
He hath revealed unto thee (Muhammad) the Scripture with truth, confirming that which was (revealed) before it, even as He revealed the Torah and the Gospel
إِنَّ اللّهَ لاَ يَخْفَي‏ عَلَيْهِ شَيْ‏ءٌ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَلاَ فِي السَّماءِ
Lo! nothing in the earth or in the heavens is hidden from Allah.
هُوَ الَّذِي يُصَوِّرُکُمْ فِي الْأَرْحَامِ کَيْفَ يَشَاءُ لاَ إِلهَ إِلَّا هُوَ الْعَزِيزُ الْحَکِيمُ
He it is who fashioneth you in the wombs as pleaseth Him. There is no God save Him, the Almighty, the Wise.
وَلِلّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَإِلَي اللّهِ تُرْجَعُ الْأُمُورُ
Unto Allah belongeth whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth; and unto Allah all things are returned.
وَمَا يَفْعَلُوا مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَلَن يُکْفَرُوهُ وَاللّهُ عَلِيمٌ بِالمُتَّقِينَ
And whatever good they do, they will not be denied the meed thereof. Allah is Aware of those who ward off (evil).

هُوَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ لَکُم مَا فِي الْأَرْضِ جَمِيعاً ثُمَّ اسْتَوَي‏ إِلَي السَّماءِ فَسَوَّاهُنَّ سَبْعَ سَمَاوَاتٍ وَهُوَ بِکُلِّ شَيْ‏ءٍ عَلِيمٌ
He it is Who created for you all that is in the earth. Then turned He to the heaven, and fashioned it as seven heavens. And He is Knower of all things
اللّهُ لاَ إِلهَ إِلَّا هُوَ لَيَجْمَعَنَّکُمْ إِلَي‏ يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ لاَ رَيْبَ فِيهِ وَمَنْ أَصْدَقُ مِنَ اللّهِ حَدِيثاً
Allah! There is no God save Him. He gathereth you all unto a Day of Resurrection whereof there is no doubt. Who is more true in statement than Allah?

وَإِلهُکُمْ إِلهٌ وَاحِدٌ لاَ إِلهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ الرَّحْمنُ الرَّحِيمُ
Your God is One God; there is no God save Him, the Beneficent, the Merciful.
: إِنَّ فِي خَلْقِ السَّماواتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَاخْتِلاَفِ اللَّيلِ وَالنَّهَارِ وَالْفُلْکِ الَّتِي تَجْرِي فِي الْبَحْرِ بِمَا يَنْفَعُ النَّاسَ وَمَا أَنْزَلَ اللّهُ مِنَ السَّماءِ مِن مَاءٍ فَأَحْيَا بِهِ الْأَرْضَ بَعْدَ مَوْتِهَا وَبَثَّ فِيهَا مِن کُلِّ دَابَّةٍ وَتَصْرِيفِ الرِّيَاحِ وَالسَّحَابِ الْمُسَخَّرِ بَيْنَ السَّماءِ وَالْأَرْضِ لَآيَاتٍ لِقَوْمٍ يَعْقِلُونَ
Lo! in the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the difference of night and day, and the ships which run upon the sea with that which is of use to men, and the water which Allah sendeth down from the sky, thereby reviving the earth after its death, and dispersing all kinds of beasts therein, and (in) the ordinance of the winds, and the clouds obedient between heaven and earth: are signs (of Allah's sovereignty) for people who have sense.

5-And now I choose some verses about the rights of women and children mentioned in His Book:

وَإِنْ عَزَمُوا الطَّلاقَ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ
And if they decide upon divorce (let them remember that) Allah is Nearer, Knower.
الطَّلاَقُ مَرَّتَانِ فَإِمْسَاکٌ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ تَسْرِيحٌ بِإِحْسَانٍ وَلاَ يَحِلُّ لَکُمْ أَن تَأْخُدُوا مِمَّا آتَيْتُمُوهُنَّ شَيْئاً إِلَّا أَن يَخَافَا أَلَّا يُقِيَما حُدُودَ اللّهِ فَإِنْ خِفْتُمْ أَلَّا يُقِيَما حُدُودَ اللّهِ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَا فِيَما افْتَدَتْ بِهِ تِلْکَ حُدُودُ اللّهِ فَلاَ تَعْتَدُوهَا وَمَن يَتَعَدَّ حُدُودَ اللّهِ فَأُولئِکَ هُمُ الظَّالِمُون
Divorce must be pronounced twice and then (a woman) must be retained in honor or released in kindness. And it is not lawful for you that ye take from women aught of that which ye have given them; except (in the case) when both fear that they may not be able to keep within the limits (imposed by) Allah. And if ye fear that they may not be able to keep the limits of Allah, in that case it is no sin for either of them if the woman ransom herself. These are the limits (imposed by) Allah. Transgress them not. For whoso transgresseth Allah's limits: such are wrongdoers.
فَإِن طَلَّقَهَا فَلاَ تَحِلُّ لَهُ مِن بَعْدُ حَتَّي‏ تَنکِحَ زَوْجاً غَيْرَهُ فَإِن طَلَّقَهَا فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَا أَنْ يَتَرَاجَعَا إِنْ ظَنَّا أَن يُقِيَما حُدُودَ اللّهِ وَتِلْکَ حُدُودُ اللّهِ يُبَيِّنُهَا لِقَوْمٍ يَعْلَمُونَ
And if he hath divorced her (the third time), then she is not lawful unto him thereafter until she hath wedded another husband. Then if he (the other husband) divorce her it is no sin for both of them that they come together again if they consider that they are able to observe the limits of Allah. These are the limits of Allah. He manifesteth them for people who have knowledge.
وَإِذَا طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَاءَ فَبَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَأَمْسِکُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ سَرِّحُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ وَلاَ تُمْسِکُوهُنَّ ضِرَاراً لِتَعْتَدُوا وَمَن يَفْعَلْ ذلِکَ فَقَدْ ظَلَمَ نَفْسَهُ وَلاَ تَتَّخِذُوا آيَاتِ اللّهِ هُزُواً وَاذْکُرُوا نِعْمَتَ اللّهِ عَلَيْکُمْ وَمَا أَنْزَلَ عَلَيْکُم مِنَ الْکِتَابِ وَالْحِکْمَةِ يَعِظُکُم بِهِ وَاتَّقُوا اللّهَ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللّهَ بِکُلِّ شَيْ‏ءٍ عَلِيمٌ

When ye have divorced women, and they have reached their term, then retain them in kindness or release them in kindness. Retain them not to their hurt so that ye transgress (the limits). He who doeth that hath wronged his soul. Make not the revelations of Allah a laughing stock (by your behavior), but remember Allah's grace upon you and that which He hath revealed unto you of the Scripture and of wisdom, whereby He doth exhort you. Observe your duty to Allah and know that Allah is Aware of all things.
وَإِذَا طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَاءَ فَبَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَلاَ تَعْضُلُوهُنَّ أَن يَنکِحْنَ أَزْوَاجَهُنَّ إِذَا تَرَاضَوْا بَيْنَهُمْ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ ذلِکَ يُوعَظُ بِهِ مَنْ کَانَ مِنکُمْ يُؤْمِنُ بِاللّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ ذلِکُمْ أَزْکَي‏ لَکُمْ وَأَطْهَرُ وَاللّهُ يَعْلَمُ وَأَنْتُمْ لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ
And when ye have divorced women and they reach their term, place not difficulties in the way of their marrying their husbands if it is agreed between them in kindness. This is an admonition for him among you who believeth in Allah and the Last Day. That is more virtuous for you, and cleaner. Allah knoweth: ye know not.
وَالْوَالِدَاتُ يُرْضِعْنَ أَوْلاَدَهُنَّ حَوْلَيْنِ کَامِلَيْنِ لِمَنْ أَرَادَ أَن يُتِمَّ الرَّضَاعَةَ وَعَلَي الْمَوْلُودِ لَهُ رِزْقُهُنَّ وَکِسْوَتُهُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ لاَ تُکَلَّفُ نَفْسٌ إِلَّا وُسْعَهَا لاَ تُضَارَّ وَالِدَةٌ بِوَلَدِهَا وَلاَ مَوْلُودٌ لَهُ بِوَلَدِهِ وَعَلَي الْوَارِثِ مِثْلُ ذلِکَ فَإِنْ أَرَادَا فِصَالاً عَن تَرَاضٍ مِنْهُمَا وَتَشَاوُرٍ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَا وَإِنْ أَرَدْتُّمْ أَن تَسْتَرْضِعُوا أَوْلاَدَکُمْ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْکُمْ إِذَا سَلَّمْتُمْ مَا آتَيْتُمْ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَاتَّقُوا اللّهَ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللّهَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ
Mothers shall suckle their children for two whole years; (that is) for those who wish to complete the suckling. The duty of feeding and clothing nursing mothers in a seemly manner is upon the father of the child. No one should be charged beyond his capacity. A mother should not be made to suffer because of her child, nor should he to whom the child is born (be made to suffer) because of his child. And on the (father's) heir is incumbent the like of that (which was incumbent on the father). If they desire to wean the child by mutual consent and (after) consultation, it is no sin for them; and if ye wish to give your children out to nurse, it is no sin for you, provided that ye pay what is due from you in kindness. Observe your duty to Allah, and know that Allah is Seer of what ye do.
وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنکُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجاً يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنْفُسِهِنَّ أَرْبَعَةَ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْراً فَإِذَا بَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْکُمْ فِيَما فَعَلْنَ فِي أَنْفُسِهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَاللّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ
Such of you as die and leave behind them wives, they (the wives) shall wait, keeping themselves apart, four months and ten days. And when they reach the term (prescribed for them) then there is no sin for you in aught that they may do with themselves in decency. Allah is Informed of what ye do.
وَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْکُمْ فِيَما عَرَّضْتُمْ بِهِ مِنْ خِطْبَةِ النِّسَاءِ أَوْ أَکْنَنْتُمْ فِي أَنْفُسِکُمْ عَلِمَ اللّهُ أَنَّکُمْ سَتَذْکُرُونَهُنَّ وَلکِن لاَ تُوَاعِدُوهُنَّ سِرًّا إِلَّا أَن تَقُولُوا قَوْلاً مَعْرُوفاً وَلاَ تَعْزِمُوا عُقْدَةَ النِّکَاحِ حَتَّي‏ يَبْلُغَ الْکِتَابُ أَجَلَهُ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللّهَ يَعْلَمُ مَا فِي أَنْفُسِکُمْ فَاحْذَرُوهُ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللّهَ غَفُورٌ حَلِيمٌ
There is no sin for you in that which ye proclaim or hide in your minds concerning your troth with women. Allah knoweth that ye will remember them. But plight not your troth with women except by uttering a recognized form of words. And do not consummate the marriage until (the term) prescribed is run. Know that Allah knoweth what is in your minds, so beware of Him; and know that Allah is Forgiving, Clement.
لاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْکُمْ إِن طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَاءَ مَا لَمْ تَمَسُّوهُنَّ أَوْ تَفْرِضُوا لَهُنَّ فَرِيضَةً وَمَتِّعُوهُنَّ عَلَي الْمُوسِعِ قَدَرُهُ وَعَلَي الْمُقْتِرِ قَدَرُهُ مَتَاعَاً بِالْمَعْرُوفِ حَقّاً عَلَي الْمُحْسِنِينَ
It is no sin for you if ye divorce women while yet ye have not touched them, nor appointed unto them a portion. Provide for them, the rich according to his means, and the straitened according to his means, a fair provision. (This is) a bounden duty for those who do good.
وَإِن طَلَّقْتُمُوهُنَّ مِن قَبْلِ أَن تَمَسُّوهُنَّ وَقَدْ فَرَضْتُمْ لَهُنَّ فَرِيضَةً فَنِصْفُ مَا فَرَضْتُمْ إِلاَّ أَن يَعْفُونَ أَوْ يَعْفُوَا الَّذِي بِيَدِهِ عُقْدَةُ النِّکَاحِ وَأَن تَعْفُوا أَقْرَبُ لِلْتَّقْوَي‏ وَلاَ تَنْسَوُا الْفَضْلَ بَيْنَکُمْ إِنَّ اللّهَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ
If ye divorce them before ye have touched them and ye have appointed unto them a portion, then (pay the) half of that which ye appointed, unless they (the women) agree to forgo it, or he agreeth to forgo it in whose hand is the marriage tie. To forgo is nearer to piety; And forget not kindness among yourselves. Allah is Seer of what ye do.
وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنکُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجاً وَصِيَّةً لاَِزْوَاجِهِمْ مَتَاعاً إِلَي الْحَوْلِ غَيْرَ إِخْرَاجٍ فَإِنْ خَرَجْنَ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْکُمْ فِي مَا فَعَلْنَ فِي أَنْفُسِهِنَّ مِنْ مَعْرُوفٍ وَاللّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَکِيمٌ
(In the case of) those of you who are about to die and leave behind them wives, they should bequeath unto their wives a provision for the year without turning them out, but if they go out (of their own accord) there is no sin for you in that which they do of themselves within their rights. Allah is Mighty, Wise.
وَلِلْمُطَلَّقَاتِ مَتَاعٌ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ حَقّاً عَلَي الْمُتَّقِينَ
For divorced women a provision in kindness: a duty for those who ward off (evil).

وَالَّذِينَ إِذَا فَعَلُوا فَاحِشَةً أَوْ ظَلَمُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ ذَکَرُوا اللّهَ فَاسْتَغْفَرُوا لِذُنُوبِهِمْ وَمَن يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ إِلَّا اللّهُ وَلَمْ يُصِرُّوا عَلَي‏ مَا فَعَلُوا وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُونَ
And those who, when they do an evil thing or wrong themselves, remember Allah and implore forgiveness for their sins. Who forgiveth sins save Allah only?. and will not knowingly repeat (the wrong) they did.
أُولئِکَ جَزَاؤُهُم مَغْفِرَةٌ مِن رَبِّهِمْ وَجَنَّاتٌ تَجْرِي مِن تَحْتِهَا الْأَنْهَارُ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا وَنِعْمَ أَجْرُ الْعَامِلِينَ
The reward of such will be forgiveness from their Lord, and Gardens underneath which rivers flow, wherein they will abide for ever, a bountiful reward for workers!
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لاَ يَحِلُّ لَکُمْ أَن تَرِثُوا النِّسَاءَ کَرْهاً وَلاَ تَعْضُلُوهُنَّ لِتَذْهَبُوا بِبَعْضِ مَا آتَيْتُمُوهُنَّ إِلَّا أَن يَأْتِينَ بِفَاحِشَةٍ مُبَيِّنَةٍ وَعَاشِرُوهُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ فَإِن کَرِهْتُمُوهُنَّ فَعَسَي‏ أَن تَکْرَهُوا شَيْئاً وَيَجْعَلَ اللّهُ فِيهِ خَيْراً کَثِيراً
O ye who believe! It is not lawful for you forcibly to inherit the women (of your deceased kinsmen), nor (that) ye should put constraint upon them that ye may take away a part of that which ye have given them, unless they be guilty of flagrant lewdness. But consort with them in kindness, for if ye hate them it may happen that ye hate a thing wherein Allah hath placed much good.
وَإِنْ أَرَدتُّمُ اسْتِبْدَالَ زَوْجٍ مَکَانَ زَوْجٍ وَآتَيْتُمْ إِحْدَاهُنَّ قِنطَاراً فَلاَ تَأْخُذُوا مِنْهُ شَيْئاً أَتَأْخُذُونَهُ بُهْتَاناً وَإِثْماً مُبِيناً
And if ye wish to exchange one wife for another and ye have given unto one of them a sum of money (however great), take nothing from it. Would ye take it by the way of calumny and open wrong?
وَکَيْفَ تَأْخُذُونَهُ وَقَدْ أَفْضَي‏ بَعْضُکُمْ إِلَي‏ بَعْضٍ وَأَخَذْنَ مِنکُم مِيثَاقاً غَلِيظاً
How can ye take it (back) after one of you hath gone in unto the other, and they have taken a strong pledge from you?
إِنَّ اللّهَ لاَ يَظْلِمُ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ وَإِن تَکُ حَسَنَةً يُضَاعِفْهَا وَيُؤْتِ مِن لَدُنْهُ أَجْراً عَظِيماً
Lo! Allah wrongeth not even of the weight of an ant; and if there is a good deed, He will double it and will give (the doer) from His presence an immense reward.

6-Some verses About the right of orphans:

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَأْکُلُونَ أَمْوَالَ الْيَتَامَي‏ ظُلْماً إِنَّمَا يَأْکُلُونَ فِي بُطُونِهِمْ نَاراً وَسَيَصْلَوْنَ سَعِيراً
Lo! Those who devour the wealth of orphans wrongfully, they do but swallow fire into their bellies, and they will be exposed to burning flame.
7-Some verses about murdering a believer:
وَمَا کَانَ لِمُؤْمِنٍ أَن يَقْتُلَ مُؤْمِناً إِلَّا خَطَأً وَمَن قَتَلَ مُؤْمِناً خَطَأً فَتَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ مُؤْمِنَةٍ وَدِيَةٌ مُسَلَّمَةٌ إِلَي‏ أَهْلِهِ إِلَّا أَن يَصَّدَّقُوا فَإِن کَانَ مِن قَوْمٍ عَدُوٍّ لَکُمْ وَهُوَ مُؤْمِنٌ فَتَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ مُؤْمِنَةٍ وَإِن کَانَ مِن قَوْمٍ بَيْنَکُمْ وَبَيْنَهُم مِيثَاقٌ فَدِيَةٌ مُسَلَّمَةٌ إِلَي‏ أَهْلِهِ وَتَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ مُؤْمِنَةٍ فَمَن لَمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ شَهْرَيْنِ مُتَتَابِعَيْنِ تَوْبَةً مِنَ اللّهِ وَکَانَ اللّهُ عَلِيماً حَکِيماً
It is not for a believer to kill a believer unless (it be) by mistake. He who hath killed a believer by mistake must set free a believing slave, and pay the blood money to the family of the slain, unless they remit it as a charity. If he (the victim) be of a people hostile unto you, and he is a believer, then (the penance is) to set free a believing slave. And if he cometh of a folk between whom and you there is a covenant, then the blood money must be paid unto his folk and (also) a believing slave must be set free. And whoso hath not the wherewithal must fast two consecutive months. A penance from Allah. Allah is Knower, Wise.
وَمَن يَقْتُلْ مُؤْمِناً مُتَعَمِّداً فَجَزَاؤُهُ جَهَنَّمُ خَالِداً فِيهَا وَغَضِبَ اللّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَلَعَنَهُ وَأَعَدَّ لَهُ عَذَاباً عَظِيماً
Whoso slayeth a believer of set purpose, his reward is Hell for ever. Allah is wroth against him and He hath cursed him and prepared for him an awful doom.

8-Some verses about the poor and helping people:

لِلْفُقَرَاءِ الَّذِينَ أُحْصِرُوا فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ لاَ يَسْتَطِيعُونَ ضَرْباً فِي الْأَرْضِ يَحْسَبُهُمُ الْجَاهِلُ أَغْنِيَاءَ مِنَ التَّعَفُّفِ تَعْرِفُهُم بِسِيَماهُمْ لاَ يَسْأَلُونَ النَّاسَ إِلْحَافاً وَمَا تُنْفِقُوا مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ بِهِ عَلِيمٌ
(Alms are) for the poor who are straitened for the cause of Allah, who cannot travel in the land (for trade). The unthinking man accounteth them wealthy because of their restraint. Thou shalt know them by their mark: They do not beg of men with importunity. And whatsoever good thing ye spend, lo! Allah knoweth it.
الَّذِينَ يُنْفِقُونَ أَمْوَالَهُم بِاللَّيلِ وَالنَّهَارِ سِرّاً وَعَلاَنِيَةً فَلَهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ وَلاَ خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلاَ هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ
Those who spend their wealth by night and day, by stealth and openly, verily their reward is with their Lord, and there shall no fear come upon them neither shall they grieve.
الَّذِينَ يُنْفِقُونَ فِي السَّرَّاءِ وَالضَّرَّاءِ وَالْکَاظِمِينَ الْغَيْظَ وَالْعَافِينَ عَنِ النَّاسِ وَاللّهُ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ
Those who spend (of that which Allah hath given them) in ease and in adversity, those who control their wrath and are forgiving toward mankind; Allah loveth the good;

9-More verses about my God and His religion:

قَدْ خَلَتْ مِن قَبْلِکُمْ سُنَنٌ فَسِيرُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ فَانْظُرُوا کَيْفَ کَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الْمُکَذِّبِينَ
Systems have passed away before you. Do but travel in the land and see the nature of the consequence for those who did deny (the messengers).
لاَ إِکْرَاهَ فِي الدِّينِ قَد تَبَيَّنَ الرُّشْدُ مِنَ الْغَيِّ فَمَن يَکْفُرْ بِالطَّاغُوتِ وَيُؤْمِن بِاللّهِ فَقَدِ اسْتَمْسَکَ بِالْعُرْوَةِ الْوُثْقَي‏ لاَ انفِصَامَ لَهَا وَاللّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ
There is no compulsion in religion. The right direction is henceforth distinct from error. And he who rejecteth false deities and believeth in Allah hath grasped a firm hand hold which will never break. Allah is Hearer, Knower.
اللَّهُ الصَّمَدُ
Allah, the eternally Besought of all!

Maleficent said...

nowruz, my friend, you have worked hard on your response, and I will need some time to look through all your information and formulate my own response.

I will give you a teaser for now:
The god Mr. Abdel-Qader worships and serves is NOT the same god you worship and serve. Yet you both learned from the same holy book. There is no god but god - but like the Christian god, there are many, many definitions of that god. Sort of confusing, neh?

Nowruz said...

I don't think it is confusing.
Every verse that defines it shows an attribute of Him.
So He is the Alive ,the Eternal, the Beneficent, the Merciful, The Almighty, the Wise,
He revealed the Torah and the Gospel, is Aware of those who ward off (evil), Knower of all things…

Maleficent said...

My dear nowruz,

I do understand that you are defining YOUR god with the verses you've quoted.

Do you understand what I've written?

The god you worship/serve IS NOT THE SAME GOD as that worshipped/served by the individuals I've singled out for my disgust and disdain.

Yet you and those individuals use the same book to define your gods. Perhaps there is a problem with the book? I really couldn't say. The confusion is here:

ONE BOOK. MORE THAN ONE DEFINITION OF GOD. How many gods are defined in your book? How do you decide which one to worship/serve? How do you teach others who use your book which one to worship/serve?

Below is a long comment I've been working on. It is less than carefully edited, but since I'm apparently not making myself clear, I'm putting it out there anyway:

I am not literate enough in the various denominations of Islam or in the words of the Quran to determine which god is really the one to described by the prophet. If the Quran is anything like the Bible, the god of the scriptures changes capriciously throughout. Perhaps the god of the Quran is more clear? If so, why are there different definitions of it and different expectations placed on its various worshippers?

It might be a good thing for individuals such as yourself and others who worship and serve the "Beneficent and Merciful" god written of in your verses to educate those who do not, but who also claim to be following the right path, using the very same holy book you have quoted.

You can certainly understand, I'm sure, why people like me are confused and dismayed, not only with Islam, but also with Christianity and Judaism, in that a single book is used by many, many individuals and groups to define a god, supposedly THE ONLY GOD, but each definition is different and each ONLY GOD'S rules are different, plus they change from time to time. Well, based on your most recent comment, I guess you truly don’t understand. But there it is. Please explain.

While I still would not worship or serve any god, it would make my heart much lighter and would prevent much suffering and death if all people worshipped and served the god you have chosen. If there is only one god, why are there so many different versions of this god and beliefs about this god? Why was the god of the Quran and the god of the Bible, unable to make itself clear in regard to its expectations?

How does Mr. Abdel-Qader justify his actions in light of what you have said:
"But in my religion, as I will document it, murdering is forbidden."
I assume Mr. Abdel-Qader believes HIS god is the only god and I assume he has also studied the Quran and considers himself a true follower of the right path of submission.

How will he ever learn otherwise without teachers such as yourself?

Let's just say that, for my part, I will not judge a religion, but I reserve the right to judge an individual and his/her actions against my personal moral and ethical standards. Mr. Abdel-Qader, regardless of his religious beliefs, has fallen way short of acceptable behavior.

The reason many non-Muslims speak against Islam is because both YOU and Mr. Abdel-Qader claim to worship and serve the same god. If it is NOT the same god, Islam and the worshippers of YOUR god need to openly distance yourselves from Mr. Abdel-Qader and his ilk, as well as openly and publicly denounce them and work to see that they are punished for their crimes. In addition, you and other worshippers of YOUR god need to explain to those like Mr. Abdel-Qader that they are worshipping the wrong god. Show THEM the lovely verses you kindly posted in your comment. Help them understand that the verses (from the SAME book) or the rules established by their holy men (using the SAME book) that they’ve used to define THEIR god are somehow wrong.

There is an informal logical fallacy called No True Scotsman. You can go here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No_true_scotsman for specifics, but basically it fits what you have been writing and writing again, which boils down to this:
YOU: Nobody who worships/serves MY god would ever murder anyone or treat women unfairly.
THE FACTS: The individuals I wrote about in my posts murder and treat women unfairly.
YOU: Well, they're not true worshippers/servants of MY god.

The fact is, nowruz, THEY THINK THEY ARE. When will you teach them otherwise? How will you do it? Since these individuals are giving YOUR god a bad name, I would think this would be a very public top priority among those of similar mind to you. I'm not the one you need to convince. I am unashamed and unmovable in my atheism. THEY ARE THE ONES YOU NEED TO CONVINCE.

Sidenote: I don't think that making Mr. Abdel-Qader free a believing slave is an adequate punishment. He also can't pay blood money, since Leila Hussein has also been murdered and there is nobody to pay, nor is payment of blood money adequate punishment.

Nowruz said...

Dear maleficent
Sorry I’m late
Although your questions are very general and it demands a very long passage and sufficient time to answer, but now I tell you briefly about the history of Islam and Bible that will answer most of your questions.
1-We believe that Bible was revealed by my God As my God says in Qumran and I said you in the previous post .but the bible mentioned in Qumran is not the existing one among the Christians because some people changed some of its content to achieve their personal goals. So it has errors and isn’t reliable to follow and also it is not complete.
2- My God, ALLAH, sent Qumran to the Arabia in Hejaz through his prophet, Muhammad. And saved that people.
Some characteristics about most of Arabs before the time of appearing Muhammad, the prophet of Islam:
A: there were among them many superstitions
B: they were warlike people.
C: they differentiated between different races and people were dividend into many classes.
D: in Arabia woman was a commodity, counted in the wealth of the father, brother or son and after death, she was inherited like the other possessions and become the property of the descendents.
In this situation appeared the prophet of Islam and made from this ignorant people such a society at which all people lived many years safely and they could worship Allah truly. He prophesied 23 years and lived in Mecca and Medina.
Before his death he introduced his successor as the leader of the society and to guide people, and some month later died.
After his death some didn’t obey his commands in order to reach their goals
And took the throne. So, two groups formed. One, called Shia’a group, were the followers of the introduced leader who was the defender of Islam during that 23years and- as the other group also says –was the most knowledgeable man after the prophet of Islam. The other group, called Sunni group, were the followers of an old man.
The Sunni group believed that Qumran is enough for our guidance and Shia’a group believed since some verses of quran need to be explained so there should be experts in this regard.
As time passed the Sunni group was dividend into more groups. But the Shia’a group remained untouched because they followed their religious leaders.

With this preface I try to answer your question.
1-my God and Abdel-qader’s is the same but maybe our groups are different .but they have diverged from Islam , and this is the reason of my insistence on saying that if Abdel-qader does something wrong we cannot say that Islam has problem or the real Islam has ordered him to do so. Their group has problems not Islam.
Yes I want to defend Islam but the one that our prophet has introduced to bring forth for men and women safe society in which all worship Allah not that Islam that they believe.
2- Qumran has no problem but as I said it needs to be explained in some cases.
In Qumran there are stories about other prophets in which their actions, their ways of life are samples for us and this stories need to be explained. But those who claim they need no explanation certainly are wrong.
About the definition of God: a kind of definition is describing ,so for example, when you want to define human being ,you say he is a creature that has two legs ,two hands , he speaks , he can see by two eyes and so on.
So when there are separated definitions-as you said- about Allah, these are attributes of Allah and not different definitions about different gods.
So in Qumran is one god called ALLAH. He is the Almighty, the Merciful, the Beneficent….
He is the most forgiving, He forgives His servers that do wrong deeds unintentionally or ignorantly and then repent and decide to do not again.
3-Dear maleficent, I said: (murdering one is forbidden in my religion if he doesn’t deserve it) and the action of Mr. Abdel-qader is not justifiable in Shia’a group because she didn’t deserve.
You said: how will he never learn otherwise without teachers such as you?
Believe me I never teach people to kill others or violate the rules of Islam.
Are you sure that he belongs to Shia’a group?

Maleficent said...

Thank you, nowruz, for your comment.

In answer to your question in regard to Mr. Abdel-Qader (I have since read in various articles that his name is Mr. Ali - Abdel-Qader Ali, so I will call him by his correct name henceforth), I have no idea which group he identifies with. The articles are unclear. I would assume he is not in the same group that you identify with. I don't think I've made any reference to him in regard to his particular brand of Islam.

Believe me, nowruz, I do understand what you are saying. I do understand that each individual group within any religion knows that his or her group is the correct one with the true understanding of the true word of his or her god.

As I have written before, that is exactly where the problem lies and from where the confusion arises.

It matters not to me which brand of god you and Mr. Ali worship. I think you are both wrong. It also really doesn't matter that you think Mr. Ali and his brand have strayed from the path of Islam. I'm sure he would say the same about you and also about those loyal to some other brand of Islam. Perhaps you should start a movement - a movement to make sure everyone in the world calls YOUR brand Shia'a Islam, not just Islam by itself. You might be able to convince the world that there is some inherent value in Islam that is not stained with murder and coercion. I do suspect, though, that you've cherry-picked some nice, pretty verses that suit your conscience to show me and left out the more obviously horrible ones. Haven't checked into it too deeply, but I've seen some really insulting stuff about women and non-Muslims posted by others.

It might not work, this re-branding - look at the history of Catholicism and Protestantism among Christians. Both sides did horrible things to each other, just as Sunni and Shia'a Muslims do to each other - it just kind of ends up making both brands look bad to those looking in from the outside.

But it's worth a try. Teach the world about the differences. Publicize the differences. Try to convince those of other brands that your brand is the right one! You could save lives.