When good is bad and bad is good

It is not that Islam is violent or that Islam teaches violence. It is that all religions are violent and all religions teach violence. The only difference is, Muslims are good Muslims and they follow their religious teachings whereas those of other religions are bad Jews, Christians, etc., in that they do not follow what their religion teaches them.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

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Subversives should not be allowed to voice out ideas, says Syed Ali,” screamed the headlines of this Bernama news items yesterday.

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 30 (Bernama) — Subversives and radicals should not be given opportunities to voice out their ideas and views because they pose a threat to the country's peace and stability, said Cheras Umno chief, Senator Datuk Syed Ali Alhabshee.

"We want the government to take stern action, if there is a need to use the ISA (Internal Security Act), then so be it," he told Bernama.

He was commenting on the remarks by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in Keningau, Sabah, yesterday that the government would take stern action against any group bent on creating chaos in the country to gain power.

Earlier, Syed Ali had presented clothes and schooling materials to 50 orphans from Al-Qadim Organisation donated by the Jalan Peel Umno branch and local people's associations.

That was what Bernama reported Syed Ali Alhabshee as saying. In case many of you don't know, 'Syed' means his forefathers (not 'four fathers') came from the land of the Prophet Muhammad. 'Alhabshee', in turn, means his ancestors originally came from Ethiopia. This probably happened in the days when Islam was expanding and the Muslim army was conquering the areas surrounding the Arabian Peninsular. Those who resisted the Muslim army and lost the war would either be killed or captured and taken as slaves (while the beautiful women would become your plaything). So Syed Ali's ancestors were probably Ethiopian prisoners brought back to the Arabian Peninsular as slaves to look after the camels and clean out their shit every morning until the day either they or the camels died.

But Malays, being the simple-minded people that they are and a race that is always awed by anything and everything that allegedly comes from the land of the Prophet, would certainly treat what this descendant of a slave from Ethiopia has to say with great importance (hell, they even made him a Senator). After all, he does carry a 'Syed' in front of his name and all those with a 'Syed' or 'Sharifah' in front of their names are 'special' people because they are supposed to be descendants of the Prophet (or at least descendants of those who cleaned the shit from the Prophet's camels).

Yes, I remember 20 or 30 years ago when parents would offer their anak dara (virgin daughters) to a 'Tok Syed' for the night so that their daughter can 'terima berkat' (receive blessings). This would involve the 'Tok Syed' impregnating the virgin daughter who would then be blessed with the sperm of a descendant of the Prophet. Hey, this is true, no bullshit, and I almost changed my name from 'Raja' to 'Syed' but then I did not see many beauties on offer so it would have been a total waste of time as far as I was concerned (I suppose 'Tok Syeds' are not too fussy and have set lower standards for themselves).

But that is really not what I want to talk about today. What I want to talk about is the recent tragic assassination of Benazir Bhutto. I was shocked when I first received that SMS informing me about the assassination. I just couldn't understand why they would want to do something like that. My immediate and unthinking response was I hope it was not a Muslim who did this. On second thoughts, maybe it is better after all if a Muslim did carry out the assassination because if a Hindu had done it I just can't imagine the ethnic cleansing that would follow. As it is, the India-Pakistan conflict has already claimed more than one million lives.

Actually, calling it an Indian-Pakistani conflict is not quite right. It was actually a Hindu-Muslim conflict that resulted in India being partitioned into separate regions for Hindus and Muslims to keep them from each other's throats. The conflict of course continued even after the partitioning of India and it thereafter became known as the India-Pakistan conflict when it should really have been called the Hindu-Islam conflict.

Anyway, the brouhaha of the Benazir assassination made us forget the first anniversary of Saddam Hussein's hanging on 30 December last year. I was also very upset when I saw the manner in how they killed Saddam. I of course do not condone what Saddam did but if you have to kill a man as punishment for his crimes then the condemned person should at least be allowed to die with dignity. A man should not huff and puff his last breathe at the end of a swinging rope to the sounds of taunting and cursing. You are sending him to his Maker. Is it so wrong to allow him to leave this world in peace and with his dignity intact?

The last 50 years or so have seen the most violent side of Islam. Actually this has not been happening over only the last 50 years. It is just that with radio and television, and now the internet, the world has better access to information — so it is more visible now than it was in, say, the 1800s and the period before that. Today it is in real-time so you get to see it as it happens. But the violence has always been there from the period soon after the Prophet's death. It is just that we did not see it from the comfort of our living rooms. Many of the Muslim leaders down to the Caliphs of the Medina period suffered violent deaths, as did the children and grandchildren of the Prophet. Yes, that's right, even the immediate family and descendants of the Prophet were not spared this violence.

Are Muslims violent by nature? Is this in their genes? Or is Islam a violent religion and that is why the followers and believers of Islam are so violent?

No, it is not that Muslims are violent by nature. Many are actually very nice people (me included — unless you say something stupid, then I whack you to kingdom come). And it is also not Islam that is at fault. Sure, I know what the Islam-phobics are now going to say. Islam is a violent religion. Islam teaches violence. The Quran teaches Muslims to become violent. And so on and so forth.

You are actually only partly correct. It is not that Islam is violent or that Islam teaches violence. It is that all religions are violent and all religions teach violence. The only difference is, Muslims are good Muslims and they follow their religious teachings whereas those of other religions are bad Jews, Christians, etc., in that they do not follow what their religion teaches them.

The problem, in a nutshell, is that Muslims are good Muslims whereas Jews and Christians are bad Jews and Christians. Now, if the Jews and Christians are good Jews and Christians, then they will be just like Muslims because Judaism and Christianity, just like Islam, all teach the same thing. But while Muslims follow to the letter, and to the spirit, what they are taught, the Jews and Christians are deviants who do not comply to what their religion teaches them. In short, Muslims are bad because they are good whereas Jews and Christians are good because they are bad. Confused? You should be!

Okay, let us look at what Prophet Muhammad and the Quran say. Muhammad said he did not introduce a new religion. The Quran confirms this and talks about the religion of Abraham, the same religion for the followers of Moses and Jesus. Now see what Mathew says:

"I come not to abolish the Law and the Prophets but to fulfill them. Till heaven and earth pass away, not one jot or tittle shall pass from the law, till all be fulfilled" (Matthew 5.17,18)

Mathew, just like the Quran, confirms that the teachings and laws of the Prophets before that are to be upheld. None have been abolished or abrogated. Okay, what about the punishment of stoning to death for adulteresses and apostates? This is the so-called barbaric 'Taliban' laws of the Muslims, so say the Islam-phobics. Actually it is not. It is a Jewish-Christian law that Islam 'borrowed'. Remember, Islam is not a new religion but the religion of Abraham, which is also the religion of Moses and Jesus. See what Deuteronomy, chapter 13, has to say about apostasy.

13:6 If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers;

13:7 Namely, of the gods of the people which are round about you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth;

13:8 Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him; neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither shalt thou conceal him:

13:9 But thou shalt surely kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people.

13:10 And thou shalt stone him with stones, that he die; because he hath sought to thrust thee away from the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

That's right, apostates must be killed, and you must strike the first blow. Then the entire community is to join in and keep stoning the apostate until he or she stops breathing. That is what Moses and Jesus taught us if you go by the correct teachings of Judaism and Christianity. And Judaism, Christianity and Islam are not new religions but the religion of Abraham. And while Muslims are good Muslims, Jews and Christians are bad Jews and Christians. That is the real problem here.

Okay, Muslims go to war and those 'enemies of God' can be killed or, if they admit defeat and surrender, can be captured and taken as slaves. The women of those killed can also be captured even if they did not carry arms. And if the women are beautiful then it is lawful for you to keep them as your concubines and you can have sex with them. Of course, this was practiced many generations ago during the time of the Islamic conquest and is not quite the practice today. But what many do not know is that this is not an Islamic thing but is what the religions before Islam stipulated and this has never been abrogated from the Holy Books of the Jews, Christians or Muslims. In other words, it is still lawful to this very day if you want to do it.

This is what Deuteronomy, chapter 21, has to say:

21:10 When thou goest forth to war against thine enemies, and the LORD thy God hath delivered them into thine hands, and thou hast taken them captive,

21:11 And seest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hast a desire unto her, that thou wouldest have her to thy wife;

21:12 Then thou shalt bring her home to thine house, and she shall shave her head, and pare her nails;

21:13 And she shall put the raiment of her captivity from off her, and shall remain in thine house, and bewail her father and her mother a full month: and after that thou shalt go in unto her, and be her husband, and she shall be thy wife.

21:14 And it shall be, if thou have no delight in her, then thou shalt let her go whither she will; but thou shalt not sell her at all for money, thou shalt not make merchandise of her, because thou hast humbled her.

Another controversy is with regards to the cutting off the hands of thieves. Islam has been whacked as being very barbaric when some Muslim countries implement this law. Is that so? Well, see how the religions before Islam punished wayward sons:

21:18 If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, and that, when they have chastened him, will not hearken unto them:

21:19 Then shall his father and his mother lay hold on him, and bring him out unto the elders of his city, and unto the gate of his place;

21:20 And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard.

21:21 And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die: so shalt thou put evil away from among you; and all Israel shall hear, and fear.

21:22 And if a man have committed a sin worthy of death, and he be to be put to death, and thou hang him on a tree:

21:23 His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day; (for he that is hanged is accursed of God;) that thy land be not defiled, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.

No, Islam is not violent. All religions are violent. The problem is, only Muslims still follow what the Holy Books stipulate. People of the other religions deviate from their religious teachings and refuse to follow what their religions stipulate. This makes them bad people. People who have no respect for their own religion and refuse to follow their religion's teachings are bad people, they can't be good people.

The only crime that Muslims have committed is that they are good Muslims. Just because Jews and Christians refuse to follow what their religion teaches them does not make them good people. They are bad Jews and Christians. If they can't even follow their own religion's teachings how can they be good? How can we trust anyone who does not respect their own religion? And, worse of all, they accuse Muslims of being bad people because, according to them, the Quran is bad and it teaches Muslims to be bad. But the Quran is only a continuation of Abraham's teachings which is the same teachings for the Jews and Christians. Unfortunately, because the west controls the media, they make it appear like good Muslims are bad for following their religion's teachings whereas bad Jews and Christians are good for not following their religion's teachings.

Confused? You should be!