Discovering the “Demons” of Islam: A Crash Course in Understanding the Djinn, From Multiple Perspectives.

First Posted: May 27, 2013 by LVCIFER (sharing his work) https://diabolicalconfusions.wordpress.com/2013/05/27/discovering-the-demons-of-islam-a-crash-course-in-understanding-the-djinn-from-multiple-perspectives/

Within my own research into the world of the paranormal, I began to start digging into anything I could to find out details in regards to malevolent hauntings and/or certain spirits. And at first, myself being Roman Catholic, obviously began to look inwards to my own religion for answers, but unfortunately, the topic of demonology pre-dates even my religion. So, my answer, it seemed, was to begin digging into other faith systems. I began to start studying the Hebrew religion of Judaism, and as you could imagine, that took up quite a lot of my time. Then, however, I came across something that made me take a step back, and reassess some patterns of thoughts that I had been forming.

This article is going to be a special one, because it is going to contain contributions from people who are more familiar with certain matters of faith than I am. They are not authors for the site, but simply people, both of which who choose to remain anonymous, who either have insight or personal experience in regards to this topic.

We are going to go in-depth the “demons” of the Islamic faith, the Djinn.

Now, I myself will openly admit that I am not particularly familiar with the Muslim religion, however, in the past few months, I have become increasingly interested in it from an academic point of view. You should also know that while this article is being published to coincide with the new year of 2013, I have been specifically researching this topic wince the year 2010, digging into forums, and weeding out people who I believed to be telling mistruths, etc., This article will be a collaboration between myself, sharing what I have learned, one other woman who has given her insight to this field from the point of view of a devout and faithful muslim, and a man, who, due to circumstances early on in his life with the Djinn, witnessed an honest-to-goodness exorcism of the Djinn, performed in Jordan. Both of these people have chosen to use the media of simple text to express themselves and offer their inputs, but this comes as the result of many phone interviews, facetime video calls, e-Mails and text messages, to make sure that during the fabrication of this article, I got every detail correct. In regards to their input, nothing has been changed, and every detail I included was given to me by these people. I have not changed a single thing, nor have I “beefed it up” to make it more entertaining or “commercialized”. When you read their contributions, it is 100% exactly how they intended for you to understand it.

With that being said, let me start off by explaining my understanding of the Djinn. I am going to be explaining this from the point of view of a Westerner, who is of Roman Catholic faith, and my views may not reflect those of Muslims or Hebrews. However, being that I have my hands into so many aspects of multiple religions, I personally feel that I have made some connections which others may argue and contest. Note that nothing I say should be taken as hard, concrete proof or evidence. I will state a great many facts, and then offer my insight to this, so please be warned.

For an extended view into what these entities are, you can watch videos by one of the authors who wrote a book or two on the topic, a Ms. Rosemary Ellen Guiley. Here are the links:

WHAT EXACTLY ARE THE DJINN?

From my understanding, the Djinn are sentient beings created by God/Allah. They were the masters of the Earth before mankind was, and it was taken away from them because God/Allah was displeased with how they were utilizing it. They do not remain on the same plane of existence as we are, and I will not even begin to try to tackle why that is. I do not pretend to know the answers to that, and anyone who does should be treated with skepticism.

The Djinn were beings, who were created from smokeless flame, and as such, are alleged to be extremely hot tempered. They are impulsive, intense, and very focused on their task at hand. At one point, they were the preferred species of God/Allah. As explained below by “Hana”, they were a vast and expansive race of beings. They engaged in much of the same function that we do: they had a purpose (“job”), they had families, they had communities and clans, and they had rulers (“kings”). One of these Djinn, named Iblis, forms a direct parallel to the Judeo-Christian Character of Haylel (הילל), otherwise known as Lucifer, or the Greek Phosphoros. The one main difference is that he was never an Angel. He was however, the most powerful of all of the Djinn, and he was even granted access to walk amongst Heaven “with the angels”, and he was also the only Djinn allowed to do this.

When God/Allah created man, Adam, he commanded all his angels and all of the Djinn to bow and kneel before this creation, and to love him. And at first, all did – except for Iblis, much like the story of Lucifer.

It is We who created you and gave you shape; then We bade the angels prostrate to Adam, and they prostrate; not so Iblis;

He refused to be of those who prostrate.

(Allah) said: “What prevented thee from prostrating when I commanded thee?”

(Iblis) said: “I am better than he: Thou didst create me from fire, and him from clay.”

(Allah) said: “Get thee down from this: it is not for thee to be arrogant here: get out, for thou art of the meanest (of creatures).

Be thou among those who have respite.”

(Iblis) said: “Because thou hast thrown me out of the way, lo! I will lie in wait for them on thy straight way: Then I will assault them from before them and behind them, from their right and their left. Nor wilt thou find, in most of them, gratitude (for thy mercies).”

(Allah) said: “Get out from this, degraced and expelled. If any of them follow thee, Hell will I fill with you all.”

So as you can see, Iblis, once again prideful and arrogant, rebelled against the desires of God/Allah, and was forever cast out of Heaven, but also given the opportunity to terrorize mankind as a test to see who was loyal to the holy ways of the Lord, and who would stray.

Now, on top of that, there are other correlations between the demonic, as well as the Djinn, and Angels. While in my opinion, encountering ANY angel would be a terrifying experience due to their dual-existence being some of the holiest of creatures but always having one wing dipped in blood to enforce the wrath and vengeance of God/Allah as well, I could imagine that encountering one of these Djinn, being bitter envious of mankind in general would be quite a horrifying experience.

There are different “classes” of the Djinn, with each one having unique identifying traits. Some of the notes I have taken would explain these, so I’ll just simply dive into it and explain what those classes are: to “simplify” the information, I will not be referring to them in their native language, I will be using the “western” definitions here.

WHERE DOES “AZAZEL” COME INTO THIS?

There have been numerous claims that the fallen angel Azazel (עזאזל) was actually the name of Iblis before he was distorted and cast from heaven. As a matter of fact, the book The Vengeful Djinn, by Rosemary Ellen Guiley and Philip Imbrogno, ISBN 978-0-7387-2171-2, pages 17 & 18 address this issue. Let me first say though, that I have heard this numerous times before this book published it, however, I will quote them, as they did a rather decent job of explaining this.

In some early Islamic accounts, Iblis was once a powerful angel named Azazel. The name “Azazel” means “God strengthens” and this angel may have originally been a Semitic god of shepherd’s flocks who became demonized as Abrahamic religions flourished. Azazel is associated with the ritual of scapegoating as an expiation of sin, as described in Leviticus 16. In verse nine, God tells Moses that his brother Aaron shall take two goats and sacrifice them: one is to the Lord for sin and the second is for AzazeI, to be presented live for atonement, and then sent into the wilderness supposedly to the demon. This reference to the wilderness has led to beliefs that Azazel was a demon of the desert. Coincidentally, the desert is also considered to be Iblis’ home when Allah permits him to enter our world.

In the apocryphal story The Apocalypse of Abraham, Azazel is mentioned as the angel of disgrace, lies, evil, wrath, and trials. He is the lord of hell, confined to earth by God because he became enamored with it. In Judaic lore, AzazeI figures prominently in folk tales, along with another fallen angel, Samyaza (sometimes spelled Shemihazah or Shemhazai). Azazel refuses to bow to Adam when presented to God and the heavenly hierarchies. Islamic lore also tells of Azazel refusing to bow to Adam, and God casting him out of heaven and changing him into Iblis as a result. Although the angelic origin of Iblis contradicts Islamic beliefs, it is still considered by some scholars as a possible origin for this rebellious spirit.

According to Islamic belief, the evil that exists everywhere is due to corrupt humans and djinn who have turned their backs on Allah. Demons, fairies, ghosts, demonic possession, and even sightings of extraterrestrial aliens are believed to be the work of djinn, or in some cases, spiritually corrupt humans who have joined Iblis. If we take into account the reality of the existence of djinn, we can understand the paranormal’s great diversity. Rarely do djinn present their true identity to us. Instead, they enjoy taking on many disguises. Many djinn merely play a harmless game with us for their amusement, but some have a more deadly agenda.

Stories about the djinn reveal a long history of perceived injustices and indignities from their perspective, creating valid reasons (in their minds) for many of them to plot against humanity. Believing themselves to be wronged by God in favor of human beings, some djinn have carried a deep grudge for millennia. Add to that the abuses they believe they’ve suffered at the hands of one of the few men to ever have dictatorial control over them – King Solomon. In order for us to understand the djinn and their feelings about humans, we must study both their past and present interactions with our race.

Further than that, not that this is any type of authority, you can also view the entry on Wikipedia for Azazel, where even in there, it states basically the same information as above, under the “Azazel in Islam” section. You can view that informationhere.

THE DIFFERENT CLASSES / VARIANTS OF THE DJINN

THE GREEN DJINN

The classes of the djinn or divided amongst many, the first and weakest being that of the green djinn. They are the youngest of them all, and are not actually green, that is just how they’re classified in levels of rank and power. They can do many things such as manipulate the physical universe, but they are all different. It would be the equivalent of the youngest, and the most naïve. They can be playful, vengeful, sometimes kind, and most of the time cruel. As with people, they have different areas of expertise and talent. Some are better at different areas of skill such as the sciences, math engineering, art and other things.

It is been said that the green djinn only enter our world because they are curious about us. It is like a temporary vacation, from their world. One of the more common Islamic beliefs is that they live in holes.

One of the worst things that a person can do is to somehow find a way to offend this hole. That means any littering, disturbance, urination, or any other type of offensive activity that involves this hole could eventually wind up leaving a person to severe emotional, spiritual, and physical woes at the hands of the djinn. It is also said that these holes, which these djinn live in, eventually lead into an entire subterranean network otherwise known as the djinn world. Others believe something similar, such as these holes are simply entrances to portals which will lead us into the world of the djinn. As stated in The Vengeful Djinn, by Rosemary Ellen Guiley and Philip Imbrogno, ISBN 978-0-7387-2171-2, it is believed that just to enter into one of these portals will bring you into a different plane of existence. A different dimension in which the djinn are allegedly the masters in control.

Throughout history, these entities have taken on many different shapes and forms. Some of those shapes all depended on what type of mood this entity was in at the time that it chose to materialize. The shapes include: dogs, elves, a fairie, and even in some instances, they were known to take on the shape and form of an angelic entity.

THE BLUE DJINN

Then, there is the next class up ladder, the blue djinn. They are also called the marid, but despite their jump in class, there are not very many of them. Surprisingly, they are considered by many to be the most powerful of all of the djinn. They are known for being extremely reclusive, and if given the choice, they would rarely if ever interact with the human race. It is said in is Islamic believes and folklore, that the blue djinn, As heinous as they are, are responsible for saving the entire race of the djinn in a battle between all of them and the red djinn. For those of you who do not know, the red djinn are a different class of entity, and we will talk about them soon. Just for inclusion in this section of the article, the red djinn are worshipers of the Islamic equivalent to the Roman Catholic devil, Iblis.

In terms of strength and power, it is said that the blue djinn are the oldest and most powerful of them all, with their strength lying on a scale just that below the strength and power of an angelic being.

It is also said that the blue djinn were involved in a war. A war against heaven. According to the Islamic religion, when Allah ordered them to leave the physical world because they had to submit it to Adam, the blue djinn resisted and put up arms. They decided that they were going to literally launch a war against the Angels, and fight for their right to stay within this physical world. In the end, it is said that this war lasted a millennium, and the Angels eventually overtook the blue djinn. Not all of them agreed to go quietly, however, and many of the blue djinn chose to stay in our world, with their clans.

As time goes on, the blue djinn sit and wait, quiet, and calculating, and as they get stronger, their only purpose it is believed is so that they can use that strength and engage in a second war with the Angels so that they can fight to regain and retain their ability to live in our world.

THE RED DJINN

The red entities seemingly have only one reason to exist: to bring forth the destruction and the downfall of humankind. In Islamic folklore and belief, these entities would be the closest thing to the Roman Catholic and Judeo-Christian demons. They have abandoned all previous ties to their leaders, their families, their clans, and their God, in order to follow Iblis. They are most commonly described as being either the voice of reason, or the voice of destruction. As a matter of fact, a very common depiction of this particular breed of entity, is the popular notion of having one demon sit on your shoulder, and one angel sit on your other shoulder, and throughout your life, at every action, one or the other of them will whisper in your ear and sway you to make a decision of either good, or bad.

It is also believed that these entities, being the closest to the demonic, throughout history have been confused with such. The issue is, they are known for appearing in the form of reptilian-like creatures, and because they have no allegiances to anyone or anything other than that of pure evil, they are also allegedly responsible for many things such as possession, physical illness and some severe/intense hauntings.

THE BLACK DJINN

Not much is known about these reclusive entities, but in one mention, it has been said that they are the leaders and the rulers of the blue djinn. They are also known to rule over other large clans and it may in fact be possible that they are kings or in the least, a ruling class of entity over others. As I said, not much is known about this particular entity. It may be so simple that there is only one black djinn, and that he is the ruler of them all. This is not as far-fetched as you would think. However, not much is known so it cannot be proven one way or the other.

There is one very, very famous legend, known as the Testament of Solomon. In this testament, at the side of King Solomon, there was a black djinn. King Solomon had complete control over this entity, and whenever a green or a blue djinn defied their orders, it was the black djinn’s responsibility to punish these entities. In any event, regardless of who or where these legends came from, you can view the Testament of King Solomon here.

The other thing that is note worthy, is that at the current time, with what little is known about these particular entities, it seems that no matter what their status is, they are very important amongst the food chain in the djinn world. They are in positions of power, and it is power that has been gained by the rule of an iron fist. This is not something that they are elected to, this is something that they seem to have deserved, possibly by birthright, possibly by the natural selection. Unfortunately, we just don’t know.

THE YELLOW DJINN

There are different types of classes as we mentioned above and as you can tell from the writing of this article, not much is known about very many of them, but the least known of all of them is the yellow class of djinn. Quite honestly, there is nothing that I can tell you about them. The issue is, is that they are reclusive not only from humankind, but from their own kind as well. They seem to be the hermits and the recluses of their species.

THE BEHAVIOR OF THE DJINN

Apparently, they are very sensitive entities. They take offense very, very easily. They are known for being vindictive, and if the situation arises, they will try to get revenge against anyone who engages in any activity against them regardless of what the or original intent was. For example, if a human being has the audacity to try to exorcise these entities from a person that they have possessed, these entities will literally take offense and even though the exorcism may be successful if the conditions are right, just like in Roman Catholic and Judeo-Christian faiths, they may leave temporarily, but come back with a much greater tenacity and a larger force. In Roman Catholic and Judeo-Christian belief, it is said that when a demon is exercised, if the demoniac does not do something to change their life and live for the better, then that demon will return and it will be seven times as strong as it was, and it will bring seven times as many demons with it then were originally present. This is interesting to me, because it shows such a mirror in the three different faiths. So I guess we could chalk this up to being one of the many similarities that the djinn share with the classical definition of a demon.

Another similarity that I have noticed, between these djinn and the Roman Catholic/Judeo-Christian demons is that while neither one of them can actually perform genuine miracles, what they can do is perform the illusion of a miracle. Meaning, that they can make everything seem as realistic as possible, and they can confuse everyone into believing that they had just genuinely witnessed a miracle, but in fact in the end it was all just an illusion designed to get them closer to their goal, whatever that may have been. Another famous example of what the Roman Catholic/Judeo-Christian demons are guilty of, in this regard, is sickness and disease. What they are known for doing, is they will intentionally get a person sick and cause all types of physical ailments, and then when the person is at their spiritual and mental breaking point, this demon will suddenly appear as their miraculous savior, and agree to make them “better“, in exchange for something. Usually, a grant of permission of some kind. Sometimes, it will even be so bold as to promise the person perfect health, until the day they die, in exchange for “a piece of their soul“, their entire soul, or just a declaration stating that they turn away from or abandoned God. So in essence, the game is very simple: they create the problem, and then show up to fix it. Once they do take away what they had given in the first place, they wind up looking like the good guy and someone that you can trust, and in the end you wind up getting screwed. This is Manipulation 101. And they are masters of it.

It is said that these entities can influence a person’s thoughts, and dreams simply by whispering into its ear. It has also been said that they can even aggressively enforce suggestions that eventually become actions from this person that they are oppressing. Well they cannot actively engage with the physical world, they have been known to do small and minor yet distracting things that could affect a person, especially during a critical moment. For example, a man can be cleaning a firearm in his home, and when he puts it back together, a very loud crash could be heard in his house that startles him, accidentally forcing his finger to pull on the trigger which would eventually cause his death and look like a suicide. They can also lightly influence the environment causing you extreme stress and lack of sleep. What do I mean? Imagine going to bed, getting under the covers, and preparing to fall asleep. Now just as you are about to fall asleep, imagine that you hear a noise in or outside your bedroom. Imagine a phantom footstep that walks across your door’s threshold, or someone clearing their throat in the corner of your bedroom where you know there is no person there. Imagine hearing a whisper, or a whistle sound from within the room that you are currently in. Your eyes show you that there is no one there, your nerves start to wind up, setting you on edge. Your sixth sense kicks in, and all you can do is sit there panicking, and getting ready to run like hell. Now, imagine this every single day, for months at a time. It would be safe to assume that you would be constantly tired due to your lack of peaceful sleep at night. This would drain you, and force you eventually to both your mental and physical breaking point. For whatever reason, this is exactly what their endgame is.

Also noteworthy, the symbol of an evil djinn is a camel. They appear in many dreams.

NOW, MORE ON THIS “POSSESSION” BUSINESS…..

As stated at the beginning of this article, the djinn have been known to take possession of a person. The exact reasons for why they do this or how they are allowed to do this are currently unknown, but the fact remains that many times, this does in fact happen, and it crosses over throughout multiple religions. What do I mean by this? Many times, the activities of a djinn in your home will be naively classified as having a “poltergeist” when it is not the case. The same goes for possession. Many times, people not of the Muslim faith will be undergoing the entire ordeal of possession, and often times, once it escalates to the point where the Roman-Catholic church is involved, they will send out an exorcist to conduct the rituals, but upon completing multiple exorcisms, there will be no effect. Usually after much investigation, and much time being expended, the Priest-Exorcist will conclude that the possessing entity is not one of the Roman-Catholic faith, and but either of the Hebraic faith or of the Muslim faith, and at that time, the Priest-Exorcist has to contact and involve the clergy of those respective faiths. It is not uncommon for Priest-Exorcists to work with an Imam or a Rabbi to evict the possessing entity from it’s victim.

One of the most interesting things about the possession involving these entities is the fact that they claim to enter the body, and then travel through the person while being in the blood. This is, of course, after a period of what the Roman Catholics/Judeo Christians described as “diabolical oppression“. Just like possession in other religions, these entities are responsible for causing all types of physical ailments, such as problems speaking, problems hearing, problem seeing, and other events such as the inability to stand up straight, or chronic pains. Anyone who is familiar with the topic of possession in any of the previous religions I had mentioned will know that one of the set signs are of such possession is the nonsensical and maniacal activity that happens from a person who can no longer control themselves. They will appear to be genuinely insane, such as tearing their clothes off, or laughing hysterically. There are reports of the possessed being known to dance wildly, and engage in extreme sexual promiscuity. These entities can also be responsible for uncontrollable fits, loss of control of bodily functions, spasms, paralysis temporary or permanent, and many other physical ailments as well. Other forms of emotional assault, much like the Roman Catholic/Judeo-Christian demon, involves a severe depression of the person which can cause long-term depression, and consistent thoughts of suicide. Another issue, is that these entities can also enforce their own will upon a person they are possessing, which could result in acts of violence and or homicide. In time, this form of inflicted insanity can be used as their weapon, and as stated above, can push a person towards all sorts of crime and dangerous activity.

In the event that you were ever possessed by a djinn, the first thing that you would have to do is to try to figure out which religion this entity believes in. Much like people, they have a complex belief system. They are not bound to one particular religion, as they have been granted free will. Just like people, they can believe in many different forms of religion or belief. So, for example, if this entity believes in the religion of Islam, obtaining the help of a Priest–Exorcist will be useless to you, because this entity does not believe in the God that this agent is trying to force it out in the name of. The same goes with the Jewish religion. If this entity believes in the Jewish religion, that Priest or Imam would not be able to expel this particular entity from a person, because that would not be appealing to the faith of the actual entity. Once you obtain an idea of what faith this entity believes in, then you would have to get a type of religious clergy from that particular religion to take care of this problem. And, as with most cases, that cannot be guaranteed to be successful, but your chances would greatly increase.

A QUESTIONABLE GENESIS?

Now, scholars have argued over the fact of whether or not the Prophet Muhammad was visited by an Angel, or a Djinn at first. This is in reference to the event that awakened him to begin acknowledging the visions that he was experiencing, and writing them into what eventually became the holy Quran. The Prophet Muhammad was known for going off into caves and meditating, and engaging in trances. Djinn are known cave-dwellers, and many of the Muslim religion believe that caves house portals into the realm that the djinn reside in. The story is as follows:

In the year 610, while in the cave one night during Ramadan, Muhammad was visited by a “creature” who ordered him in an authoritative, almost threatening voice, “READ!“. Muhammad replied to the creature, “I do not know how to read.”

The creature grabbed him with such a great force that he almost suffocated. It released him, and repeated the same command three times. On the third time, the creature gave him what later became the opening lines of sura 95:

Recite in the name of thy Lord who created,

Who created man of blood coagulated.

Read! Thy Lord is most beneficent,

Who taught by the pen,

Thought that which they knew not to men.

Now, even further, this “entity” followed the Prophet around for some time after this event, and this is the rest of that story:

Tradition holds that after issuing its commands, the creature disappeared. Muhammad went to sleep and awakened in the morning to hear words that seemed to be written on his heart: “O Muhammad, you are the Apostle of God and I am Jibril.”

According to the Al-Sira Al-Nabawiyya, a biography of the Prophet by Ibn Kathir, written in the fourteenth century, Muhammad ran from the cave, all the way back to Mecca, trembling with fear. He ran into his house and found his wife and implored her, “Cover me, cover me.” His wife asked him what was the matter. He told her of the creature he encountered in the cave and said he had to leave because he feared for his life. It is not clear at this point whether Muhammad thought the creature was a djinni or angel, but it was obvious he was very afraid of the creature that had accosted him.

From historical accounts of djinn and demons, we know they often make people do things they don’t want to by threatening them or using physical force. In Biblical accounts of angel encounters, people often feared the angels because they usually appeared when God was unhappy with a person; the angel was sent to chastise or punish. In the Arabic world, however, djinn would have been even more feared than a powerful angel.

Muhammad was able to see the creature from any angle he looked, implying it was multidimensional in nature. However, there is no record of an exact description of the entity. Muhammad was skeptical of the creatures true identity. He saw it on several occasions after the first encounter, but no one else could see it. The creature followed him from the cave and often appeared in his home.

Muhammad’s wife, Khadija, wanted to discover the true identity of the creature and so told her husband to inform her when the entity was present. When the creature finally appeared, she asked Muhammad to sit on her left thigh and asked him, “Can you still see the creature?”

He replied that he did. She then threw off her veil and asked Muhammad to sit on her right thigh. Khadija then asked him, “Can you still see the creature?” He replied, “No, it is gone.” Khadija then told Muhammad, “Be firm, by the name of Allah, he is an angel and not a demon.”

Islamic scholars interpret the test above as meaning that an angel would not stay to look at the uncovered part of a female body, but a demon would. Also, the creature was visible only when he sat on her left thigh and not her right. The pre-Islamic people believed that the proper sequence of things was from right to left. If the creature was also visible on the right, this meant to them that it would have been moving from left to right and against the balanced movement of the universe and against the will of Allah. Only evil djinn can do this – angels can’t. This test convinced Khadija that the creature was an angel, and not just any angel, but the Archangel Jibril. Muhammad still remained skeptical.

The Angel “Jibril” is also known in Judeo-Christian religion as “Gabriel”. And in this situation, since even the Muslim religion/community has decided that this creature was not a djinn or demon, it is to be taken as fact (for the intents and purposes of this story) that in this one case, an Angel did indeed appear in the form of a demon, or a djinn. Muhammad’s validity was questioned by his own people ferociously after this encounter, because they believed that this creature was indeed a djinn, and not an Angel, and accused him of retroactively fitting this part of his story to be told as if it were an Angel, to “clear the air“, I guess.

An interesting note though, is that many of the people in the day of Muhammad believed that he was in fact djinn-possessed due to his hobby of traveling to caves and meditating in an area that was known to house the djinn.

BUT WAIT, THEY CAN SHAPE SHIFT?!?

Yes. You read that correctly. They can change forms, and manipulate their appearance, just like demons can, in order to accommodate their purposes. One of the most identifying traits of the Djinn is the fact that ultimately, they are extremely insidious, and mischievous. They have been referred to throughout history as being “tricksters”, and they “get off” on completely confusing the minds of mankind. Many, many cultures throughout history have their own version of the “trickster”, but as time will attest, this is an instantly identifying feature that should begin to raise red flags if you begin to experience these types of things.

This is also one of the reasons that Muslims caution their children not to throw water, rocks, sticks, or other projectiles at black dogs or cats, because those are some of the preferred forms of the transforming djinn. They are also known famously for taking on the forms of birds, goats, mice, and even humans, depending on their agenda. Extremely interesting to note, the djinn cannot take the form of the Prophet Muhammad, but they can take the form of other prophets, especially in dreams.

Most of the time, however, the particular class of djinn that takes on a habit of using shapeshifting are the young, “green” djinn. Make no mistake though, when I refer to them as young, I mean that they are the youngest of the djinn, but they can still be hundreds and in some cases thousands of years old, and even though they are the “weakest” of the djinn, they are stronger than any human, and should be treated with caution. And some of the things that these types of djinn enjoy doing are haunting people who they feel deserve it for whatever reason. They will appear as apparitions in the middle of the night, if the opportunity arises, they will distort your vision, affect your reality, they will terrorize you through mirrors or other reflective surfaces, they will take on the form of animals to scare the hell out of you, they will appear as shadow figures, and so on. They will engage in such activities as banging on the walls, giving the appearance of a disembodied voice, whisperings, having particular items move from one place to another unexplainably, etc. They will also appear as creatures which are grotesque and intimidating in order to scare the living hell out of you. A rather common belief is that the djinn have seen how people react to hauntings, so they mimic the activities to further conceal their identities, and enforcing their existence of being “the hidden ones”.

THE CONNECTION BETWEEN THE DJINN, ANGELS, AND DEMONS

In the book The Vengeful Djinn, by Rosemary Ellen Guiley and Philip Imbrogno, ISBN 978-0-7387-2171-2, they offer a rather interesting take on the connection between the djinn and other paranormal entities. While this book is not widely accepted by Muslims, the connections that they offer are interesting to say the least. The chart that they offer can be found on pages 122 and 123, and has been re-created below:

DJINN ANGELS DEMONS
Have gender Have no gender Shape shift their gender
Live for thousands of years, eventually die into oblivion Live until the end of the universe Live longer than humans, eventually die and wither to their primordial state
Had original ties to angels Closest beings to God Had original ties to angels
Outcasts from God’s favor Enjoy God’s favor Outcasts from God’s favor
Inhabit dirty, polluted places Inhabit heavenly realms Inhabit dirty, polluted places
Eat and drink Do not eat or drink Eat and drink
Organized in families and clans Organized in hierarchies of powers and duties Organized like the military
Have sex with each other Do not have sex with each other Have sex with each other
Have sex with humans; can impregnate Some have sex with humans; can impregnate Have sex with humans; can impregnate
Shape shift to any form Shape shift to any form Shape shift to any form
Usually invisible unless they choose to be seen Usually invisible unless they are directed to be seen Usually invisible unless they are directed to be seen
Follow their own wills; some of the will of Iblis; converted follow the will of Allah Follow the will of God Follow the will of Satan
Duty is to self and own agendas; some to Iblis; some to Allah Duty is to glorify God Duty is to Satan to subvert humans
Do not speak directly to God Speak directly to God Do not speak directly to God
Deceitful, Trickster nature Messengers of God Deceitful, Trickster nature
Opportunistic interference in human affairs No intervention without direction from God Opportunistic interference in human affairs
Cause illness, bad luck, misfortune Provide support and help Cause illness, bad luck, misfortune
Possess humans and animals Do not cause possession Possess humans and animals
Can enter dreams Can enter dreams Can enter dreams
Knowledge of present and past but not future Knowledge of past, present, and future Knowledge of past, present, and future

So, as you can see, the similarities are striking and sometimes shocking. While there are more similarities and differences, the above chart provides a great “quick reference” visual to help you out in the event of a quick, basic question.

While there are many other connections that people have suggested or proposed, such as the connection to the djinn and extraterrestrials, ultraterrestrials, and other entities, I will not be including those due to the official content of this blog being almost exclusively dealing with matters of religious faith. And now, with that being said, that is the basic, Westerndescription of the Djinn. Now, I will include the beliefs of the Muslims directly from one of their faithful, a woman who only wants to be referenced as “Hana”. The below is in her own words, with no changes to her original contributions except to otherwise format it to “flow” with the rest of the article.

A WORD FROM THE FAITHFUL

The Mischievous Djinn: A Muslim View of the Paranormal

In recent years, thanks largely impart to the work of “PRS” (the Paranormal Research Society) and the show ‘Paranormal State’ on the A&E television network, there has been a growing discussion of spirituality and the paranormal. People are now asking questions about the origins of the experiences they have had, and the things they are seeing. After all of the “debunking” is done and evidence has been collected, sometimes you are still left with something that cannot be explained with known science. In those cases, we are left to wonder: is it the spirit of a dead loved one, a demon, a nature spirit (“elemental spirit”), or something else? How do you live with it, get rid of it, or understand it? The answers almost always return to the person’s religious beliefs. Each of us will carry our own answers to those questions based on what we believe in. What one person will accept as a deceased loved one coming by to say “hi” is viewed as a dark and evil entity trying to trick mankind. The reality though is that we may never know the complete answers. But, that does not stop us from seeking that knowledge.

I find it fascinating to learn from other people’s view points and sources of information. It is a comparative religions study; a mix of attempting to break modern misconceptions, going back to scriptural texts, exploring deep rooted mythologies, and opening new doorways of understanding; all to try to answer the questions which still elude concrete answers. To offer one more view point, one more color palette in the mosaic of religious understandings, I am sharing the teachings of my own faith: Islam.

As Islam is an Abrahamic religion (monotheistic religion that worships the universal God of Abraham), there are many similarities with Judaism and Christianity. Yet, for all that is so similar, there are always details that are very different. One of the most obvious areas of similarity and difference is right at the beginning of the story… the creation of intelligent life.

The Three Intelligent Beings

The Quran (the Muslim book of Scriptures) tells us that God (Allah) created three beings of great intelligence: Angels, Djinn and Humankind.

The Angels are described as beings made from pure light, most likely the first of God’s creations. In the Quran, Angels are said to be completely obedient to God as they have no free will. Thus, Angels are assigned all sorts of tasks according to the will of God.

Djinn, however, are described as creatures made of smokeless fire. These are the first of God’s intelligent beings to be given the gift of free will. Like Angels, the Djinn exist on a separate plane of existence from Humankind. They can see and interact with us, but we cannot see them in their natural state.

Humankind was the third of God’s intelligent creations. It is described that God made Adam from the mud of the earth and also bestowed him with the gift of free will.

Iblis and the Resentment of Humanity

When God created Adam, God commanded all of the Angels to bow down to Adam and all did except for Iblis. This part gets a little confusing for many. This basic statement is given twice in the Quran (Quran 2:34 and Quran 18:50). In both, Iblis is listed as being with the Angels during this event. In the first passage (Quran 2:34), Iblis is said to be proud of being among the disbelievers who have disobeyed God. In the second of the two (Quran 18:50), Iblis is said to be (or become, depending on the translation) a Djinn. Most scholars accept Iblis as being a Djinn as he obviously, from both passages, had free will and was thus able to choose to disobey the commands of God.

Because of this disobedience, Iblis is sent away from God and cursed to Hell for eternity. He begs God for a respite to his punishment and is granted the time to wait until Judgment Day. During his time on Earth waiting for his final judgment, Iblis is granted permission to test Humankind to sin.

Basically, this is an Islamic version of the Judeo-Christian story of the Fallen Angel (Lucifer), but in this version the culprit is Djinn rather than Angel. Because so many people correlate the story of the Fallen Angel with Lucifer, Lucifer is a common translation for Iblis. However, the Biblical scriptures do not assign any name for the Fallen Angel, so there is some debate. I have recently read from several sources that Samael, Azazel, and other names have also been connected to the Fallen Angel story. As I am not a scholar, so, I will not attempt to argue one way or the other. These are just the facts.

But, from this beginning, Iblis holds anger toward God and Humanity, in much the same way that a middle child will show resentment toward their parents and new baby sibling. But, the anger grows even more so for Iblis as he is punished for his disobedience. And like the story of the Fallen Angels in the Bible, many chose to follow Iblis in this show of anger and new purpose to tempt Humankind to sin.

In this rebellion against God’s command, Iblis then earns the title of Shaytan (Satan). In Arabic, Shaytan means “mischievous, insolent or rebellious one”. It is a title given to all who rebel against God. Thus, all of the Djinn that follow Iblis are also called ‘Shaytans’. Though the word is actually a direct version of the English word Satan, in context it is much more similar in use to the word Devil, with Iblis being THE Devil, and his minions are little, lesser devils. And it is here, knowing the Devil and his minions, that we then venture into the world of paranormal experiences.

Djinn, Demons and the Paranormal

Remember here that Djinn are beings with free will. Not all Djinn follow the leadership or desires of Iblis. There are Djinn that are said to be Muslim, Christian, Jewish, or other religions. Some are nice toward Humankind while other are ambivalent or mischievous. But, many have chosen to follow Iblis and show malice and/or malevolency toward Humans. But, what does any of this mean for the paranormal?

Well, let’s look at their role in the religious mythology of Islam as well as their capabilities.

Djinn are said to fall into five (5) main categories: dwellers, souls, devils, evil spirits, or strong spirits (rough translations of the actual categories). The “dwellers” (also called haunters) are those that choose to live with or around Humans, and these are the weakest. Think of these ones as the basic ghost hauntings. The “souls” are the ones that specifically attach themselves to children. I understand these to be more of the “imaginary friend” types. The “evil spirits” are stronger than the typical “devils” and just as malicious in intent. The strongest are the “strong spirits” (Ifrits), and these are possibly the most famous for being written in the “Jinni of the Lamp” stories from the Arabian Nights. They are strong, ill-tempered and rather slow in intelligence.

The “devils” are a bit more interesting. As we commonly hear from some Christian groups, many believe that there are no human spirits wandering the earth, but rather they are all Demons or Angels and nothing in between. From there, you have some people who have expressed a view that Demons are the Fallen Angels that chose to follow the “Fallen Angel” that was caste out of heaven. Others say that Demons are creatures created by Satan to do his bidding. I certainly will not argue either way on that one either. But, in both cases, Demons are viewed as evil beings doing the bidding of Satan and working to tempt Humankind into sin. In this way, the “devils” (Shaytans) of the Djinn are holding the same role as Demons.

Now, as I mentioned before, Djinn are beings that God created of smokeless fire. They exist on a separate plane of existence from us so that they can see and interact with our world, but we cannot see them unless they choose to show themselves. The very name “Djinn” basically translates to “those who are hidden or concealed from sight”. They quite literally can live in our homes, our places of work or anywhere else and we would not know unless they choose to make themselves known. Because they are naturally not very fond of Humanity, they tend to prefer to live in places with less Human traffic, such as forests, cemeteries, warehouses, abandoned buildings, attics, closets, and even restrooms.

Djinn are reported to be able to move objects in our world without us seeing them, as they are exceptionally strong, can live for hundreds, sometimes even thousands of years, can learn several languages, are incredibly fast, capable of speaking to us or making noises that we cannot see where they originate, able to show themselves to us as they choose (changing shapes to look like animals, deformed beings, or even like Humans depending on their goals), with some that are able to fly, able to invade a Human’s mind and affect their dreams, or speak to them personally, even affecting a person’s health.

Right here, you can see why this can be interesting in the field of paranormal research. These beings are connected to reports of object levitation, phantom noises, disembodied voices, strength, speaking in tongues, looking like deformed creatures or dead Aunt Betty, and possession… and they tend to live in cemeteries, attics, and other creepy abandoned places. So yeah, this seems to sum up a large percentage of paranormal reports.

Impact?

Should we fear Djinn? Well, honestly, it seems that those Djinn who are ambivalent about Humankind are simply not as likely to interact with us. So, those that do interact are mostly going to be those of strong feelings one way or the other. And as even the nice ones can get pissy if they feel insulted or if they fall in love with a human (yes, there are reports), then I would say you just don’t want to interact with them. Better to be safe than sorry.

Can Djinn control us? No. Djinn have been permitted by God to interact with us and to tempt us. They cannot force anyone to do something they don’t want to do. But they can, however, much like the demons of the Judeo-Christian world, take possession of our bodies.

Can Djinn be controlled? Yes. The Quran tells stories of King Solomon controlling the Djinn and forcing them to work for him. They helped him court the Queen of Sheba, build palaces and more. There are many other reports of controlling Djinn, but it is mostly seen as witchcraft and thus shunned by most Muslim communities. However, there is still the common use of Quranic verses being carved or painted on walls, amulets, blue clothing, and other things being used to try to keep Djinn away. That in itself is an attempted form of control.

Once again, you can read the ‘Testament of Solomon’ in it’s entirety HERE.

Can we exorcize Djinn? Yes. As with many religions where possessions are reported, there are Islamic exorcisms. However, it is interesting to remind everyone here that Djinn can be of any religion. Some possessions can occur where the Djinn doing the possessing is not of the same faith as the person they possess. This can complicate things when the exorcist tries to remove them in the name of X, Y, or Z faith and the Djinn does not acknowledge their authority, based on the faith of the individual Djinn conflicting with that of the holy person conducting the exorcism. This is, however, very rare. Most possessions tend to be by Djinn who are serving Iblis. They do not follow a monotheistic religion as they have rebelled against God. In those cases, it is the power of God himself that casts them out. Remember, they most likely believe in God, as they are choosing to defy him. So, a Priest, a Rabbi, or an Imam could all effectively exorcize the Djinn through strong faith and the will of God.

There are a lot of other interesting facts and folklore stories of Djinn to talk about. But, I hope this helps everyone to understand just what Djinn are and how they relate to the paranormal. If you would like to learn more about Iblis or Djinn, I would suggest some of the sources listed below at the end of the article:

SO, YOU’VE BEEN POSSESSED BY A DJINN….

We touched upon this a little bit higher on in this article, but we didn’t go into too much detail about this, because what it all boils down to is the fact that there is not an incredible amount of information that is offered to people outside of the Islamic faith. For thousands of years, the Djinn have been successful in staying hidden from the prying eyes of mankind, and it is this exact reason why most people – those who have not come into contact with them – only pass on verbal stories of them, oral tradition, folklore and superstition. I personally know that I have not given all of the details I couldhave given, because ultimately, I feel that it would be straying off the topics and by delivering more statements and facts, they would only raise more and more questions, much like in the topic of demonology, and this article would be written with no end in sight, as it would be constantly updated indefinitely. So in regards to Djinn possession and exorcism, I decided that instead of writing about suppositions and guesswork, I would attempt to get the story straight from the horse’s mouth. I have conducted interviews with a few people, and listened to their stories. There is one interview that will be posted here, as an update to this article in the near future, but let me tell you, “chilling” is the proper word to use for this descriptive encounter.

Even further than that, there are quite a few YouTube videos depicting what is allegedly an authentic Islamic exorcism of the Djinn. While I cannot verify the authenticity of said videos, I can state that just as with Catholic and Hebrew exorcisms, information such as this is extremely hard to come by, if not completely impossible. Video of such an event – authentic video – is a rarity that you should be considered lucky to come by. Here are a quick few that you can take a look at:

CONCLUSION

After everything is said and done, as with most things involving faith, no one can tell you what to believe. These entities are manipulative, vindictive, playful, mischievous, envious, vengeful, irrational, violent, and most importantly, powerful. There are very specific ways on how to remove one of them from your home, life, or body, but in each one of those situations, it is extremely plausible that on their way out, they will do something to severely damage you, as a last act of defiance. These are not entities to be played with, and I certainly do not recommend summoning them to do your bidding, as things almost always turn out badly. There are literally so many things that I opted not to include in this article, as I stated above, because it can all be found out via your own research. Such things could potentially be dangerous to the reader who becomes excited at the things the djinn can do for the amateur conjurer. I did not go into the magic they possess, or how they can affect someones lives if you can “properly control them”, as King Solomon did. These are things that I have left out with good reason, and I hope that you, reader, can understand that.

There is no denying that these entities seem to have an uncanny similarity to the demons of other religions. They share too many of the same traits to be ignored, or to be simply discarded. While the fact remains that the djinn are not the same entities as demons, their trickster nature allows them to portray themselves as demons by simply mimicking them perfectly. Since the Djinn were never angels, they could never properly be referred to as demons. Many people will generally refer to them as “demons” to avoid taking the time to properly explain what and who they are. Unfortunately, I myself have been in this exact situation, where I had to dumb myself down, and simplify the terminology so that people could understand better, but I hated referring to the djinn as a demon. This is my response to that, because from this point on, whenever I am asked what the djinn are, I can refer them to this article. And now, so can you. Once again, I truly hoped that you enjoyed learning about this elusive and intense collection of entities that have been around much longer than we have. And also, please take the time, if you are genuinely interested in the topic, to read some of the books and resources listed below. They are literally chock full of knowledge and information.

FURTHER READING:

‘We will free India of Muslims and Christians by 2021’: DJS leader vows to continue ‘ghar wapsi’ plans and restore ‘Hindu glory’

Even as Opposition parties up the ante over alleged incidents of religious reconversion, the Dharm Jagran Samiti has declared that it will ensure India becomes a Hindu Rashtra by 2021.

Licence to stay

Speaking in Agra on Thursday, a Dharm Jagran Samiti (DJS) functionary said Muslims and Christians will have to convert to Hinduism if they want to stay in this country.

The DJS has been at the forefront of the reconversion – or ‘ghar wapsi’ – programmes in recent times in which some Muslims have been reportedly ‘reconverted’ to Hinduism.

Conversion has become a major political hot potato with a few Hindu organisations holding ‘ghar wapsi’ ceremonies—the photo shows one such exercise in Agra—to ‘reconvert’ Muslims

Conversion has become a major political hot potato with a few Hindu organisations holding ‘ghar wapsi’ ceremonies—the photo shows one such exercise in Agra—to ‘reconvert’ Muslims

However, their action drew widespread condemnation, leading to the arrest of one activist.

“Our target is to make India a Hindu Rashtra by 2021. The Muslims and Christians don’t have any right to stay here.

“So they would either be converted to Hinduism or forced to run away from here,” Uttar Pradesh DJS head Rajeshwar Singh said.

He was reacting to the arrest of Nand Kishore Valmiki, a DJS activist.

Valmiki was arrested on Tuesday for his alleged involvement in forcefully converting over 100 Muslims to Hinduism in Agra.

Singh said although he has temporarily suspended his ‘ghar wapsi’ programme in Aligarh and some other districts of the state that were supposed to be held on December 25, it would be restarted soon.

The DJS leader claimed that those who have been opposing ‘ghar wapsi’ were fearful of Muslims.

But, he would set India free from this fear, he added.

“I belong to the Solanki sub-caste within the Rajput caste. The Thakurs (Rajputs) respect me. I am their leader and they follow my orders.

“The Muslims had converted Rajputs to Islam by force. But the Rajputs are rising again.

“I will ensure that India is freed of Muslims and Christians by December 31, 2021,” Singh said.

In Etah, Singh reiterated his stand, saying he wouldn’t let Muslims and Christians convert the Hindus.

“We will not let them hunt the Hindus,” he said.

“The enemies have tried many a time in the past to finish Hinduism. But every time, Ram, Krishna and Chanakya came forward to finish them and restore the glory of Hinduism.

“I am also doing the same.”

Explaining the DJS’ plans, Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) secretary general Champat Rai told Mail Today: “We are of the view that there are a handful of Muslims in India.

“Others within the Muslim community are actually Hindus. Their ancestors were converted to Islam forcefully.

“Even writer Taslima Nasrin has said that her ancestors were Hindus. The Batts, who are Muslims in Jammu and Kashmir, are actually Bhatts, the Hindus.”

Rai claimed ‘ghar wapsi’ has been an ongoing VHP campaign for the last 60 years.

A resolution in this regard was passed during the 1966 Maha Kumbh in Allahabad, he said.

“We have re-inducted over six lakh people into Hinduism since 1966.

“Mahatma Gandhi, Savarkar and Swami Dayanand Saraswati had expressed their concern over religious conversion.

Uttar Pradesh DJS head Rajeshwar Singh claimed that those who have been opposing ‘ghar wapsi’ were fearful of Muslims 

Uttar Pradesh DJS head Rajeshwar Singh claimed that those who have been opposing ‘ghar wapsi’ were fearful of Muslims

“They believed it was poisoning the society. Bringing them back to their original religion means correcting the wrong.

“It is the appropriate time now to take it up on a bigger scale,” he added.

A Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) leader told Mail Today that they have formed committees in every district of the state for this purpose.

“We have included some Arya Samaj priests in the team because they issue a certificate to a converted person.

“This is a major document to prove that the converted person agrees to it,” he said.

‘Independent’

When asked about the posture of the Modi Government on this issue, he said: “We never ask Modi or any other BJP leader before chalking out our strategy.

“We only expect them to speak for or against us to clarify their stand. But Modi is the Prime Minister.

“So his silence means his approval. It is the right time for us to fulfil our agenda.”

UP minister Azam Khan said: “RSS is behaving like the Taliban. They don’t want the Constitution of India.

“They have their own agenda of finishing humanism.”

Meanwhile, reacting sharply to the DJS statement, Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh said: “DJS is a wing of RSS, which had supported Modi and the BJP during the Lok Sabha elections.

“They are now drifting away from the agenda of the NDA.”

He dared the Modi Government to either accept the activities of DJS or “show some guts” and disband it.

Modi stands firm despite challenges from Rajya Sabha 

By Amit Agnihotri

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has rejected the Opposition’s demand that he reply to the ongoing debate in the Rajya Sabha on alleged forced conversions.

His decision emboldened the ruling dispensation to blame the Opposition’s “arrogance of numbers” for the ongoing logjam in the Upper House that threatens to derail the Government’s economic reform agenda.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley pointed to the “smooth functioning” of the Lok Sabha, saying the Rajya Sabha hold-up points to “arrogance of numbers, not the arrogance of the Government”.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is said to be upset with the Opposition after he made a statement on the Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti controversy, but the logjam in the Rajya Sabha continued despite his address to the House

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is said to be upset with the Opposition after he made a statement on the Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti controversy, but the logjam in the Rajya Sabha continued despite his address to the House

The Opposition hit back, saying the Government’s “tyranny of majority” had ensured that the Lower House functioned smoothly despite nine parties “fighting tooth and nail on the issue of conversions”.

While the Government has a brute majority in the Lower House, the Opposition has an upper hand in the Rajya Sabha.

Prime Minister Modi is said to have asked the Government to remain firm in the face of the Opposition’s attack on conversion, and suggested explaining its position directly to the people.

Nine opposition parties have kept the Government on its toes by not letting the Rajya Sabha function for the past four days, seeking the PM’s statement on the controversial issue of conversions, wherein Muslims have been “reconverted” to Hinduism by way of “ghar wapsi” ceremonies.

FM Arun Jaitley said Congress in the Rajya Sabha were suffering from the 'arrogance of numbers' 

FM Arun Jaitley said Congress in the Rajya Sabha were suffering from the ‘arrogance of numbers’

The PM came to the Upper House on Thursday as it was the designated day he was supposed to answer questions related to ministries under him, but there was no word from him on the Opposition’s demand.

Sources said the PM had made a statement in both houses of Parliament earlier in the session, ticking off his junior colleague Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti for her controversial remarks, but that had not led to smooth functioning of the House.

The “betrayal” by the Opposition, sources said, was playing on the PM’s mind and is what drove him to ask his team to remain firm.

“The PM has confidence in his ministers. If he feels the need to intervene on any issue, he will, but not under the Opposition’s threat,” a Union minister said.

The Government sources, however, acknowledged that given the deadlock, the Winter Session, which ends December 23, might end without key reform Bills related to insurance and coal sectors passing muster.

The Government’s strategy now is to break the united Opposition camp to make the most of the three working days left in the session.

They hope that the move could help it pass at least the insurance Bill which aims to increase the FDI cap to 49 per cent.

Dr. Zaghloul El-Naggar

http://www.elnaggarzr.com/en/main.php?id=96&Shift=1

What if Rajiv Gandhi hadn’t unlocked the Babri Masjid in 1986?

This article first appeared in the online version of the newsmagazine
‘Outlook India’ (issue dt. 23 August 2004) at the URL
http://outlookindia.com/full.asp?fodname=20040823&fname=UCol+Koenraad&sid=1

In 1985, Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi gave in to Muslim pressure in the Shah Bano affair. Overruling a secular court�s decision that the repudiated wife Shah Bano was entitled to alimony from her ex-husband, he enacted a law abolishing the alimony provision in conformity with the Shari�a. Since India, unlike secular states, already had religion-based Civil Codes, this concession merely brought the minor matter of alimony under the purview of the prevailing arrangement. More importantly, it prevented riots.

Only months later, Gandhi restored the balance by giving the Hindus something as well: he ordered the locks on the Ram Janmabhoomi Babri Masjid in Ayodhya removed. Until then, a priest had been permitted to perform puja once a year for the idols installed there in 1949. Now, all Hindus were given access to what they consider as the birthplace of Rama, the prince posthumously deified as an incarnation of Vishnu.

Fundamentally, this decision didn�t alter the Ayodhya equation. Architecturally, the building was and remained a mosque, while functionally, it had been and continued to be a Hindu temple. That is why in my opinion, not taking this decision wouldn�t have changed the Ayodhya developments except in their timing. The different players, their strategies and goals, and their resolve to pursue these, all remained the same. The Babri Masjid Action Committee and the Vishva Hindu Parishad would have gone about their �business� just the same.

However, the VHP would have been forced to continue pushing the rather petty demand for removing the locks, rather than move on to the more ambitious and more mobilizing next step of planning the construction of a new temple. Most probably, the BJP would likewise have reaped smaller dividends from such a campaign. In 1989, it might not have jumped as high as 86 seats. Conversely, Congress might not have lost the North-Indian Muslim vote to the Janata Dal. In 1989, it could have remained just strong enough to cobble together a coalition rather than leave the initiative to the unwholesome and unstable Janata-BJP-Communist combine. So, at the level of party politics, Rajiv Gandhi�s decision may have made a big difference. Continue reading “What if Rajiv Gandhi hadn’t unlocked the Babri Masjid in 1986?”

Traditionalist ulema lead educational revolution in Kerala

Written by Yoginder Sikand · December 13, 2007 · 452 views

December 13, 2007

Kerala’s Muslims are unique among their co-religionists in India in fashioning a system of education that enables their children to attend both religious as well as regular schools at the same time. Muslims account for around a fourth of Kerala’s population, and the state’s Muslims, known as Mapillas, are among the most literate of the various Muslim communities in the country. Madrasas and schools run by literally hundreds of Muslim religious organizations in the state have made this possible. A recent study by Zubair Hudawi, himself a madrasa graduate from Kerala and presently a doctoral candidate at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, titled ‘Development and Modernisation of Religious Education in Kerala: The Role of the Samastha Kerala Jameyyat ul-Ulama’, discusses this contribution in great detail.

The Samastha Kerala Jameyyat ul-Ulama (SKJU) represents a traditionalist theological position, quite opposed to Islamic modernists on numerous points. Yet, as Hudawi argues, it has not hesitated from championing modern education. Hudawi, who spent several years studying at the Dar ul-Huda Islamic Academy, the SKJU’s leading centre for higher Islamic education, seeks to explain this enigma through an in-depth analysis of the organisation’s evolution and development, arguing against the notion that the traditionalist ulema are necessarily and wholly opposed to ‘modernity’. He argues that the SKJU is an excellent example of a traditionalist Muslim religious organization that, rather than opposing ‘modernity’ outright, actually facilitates it, albeit selectively. Thus, today, he writes, the SKJU runs not just several thousand madrasas but also numerous English- and Malayalam-medium schools, and scores of women’s and technical colleges. Continue reading “Traditionalist ulema lead educational revolution in Kerala”

Pagans as Patriots: Freedom vs. Prejudice

The U.S. Air Force recently released new data indicating that Pagans (sometimes called Wiccans) have nearly 1,000 registered members, more than Muslims or Jews. Of course they should have their own chaplain in the military since there are Pagan adherents serving their country. Pagans are as entitled to having their religious needs met as are Southern Baptists. Religious freedom is religious freedom is religious freedom. That cannot be said too frequently today.

Paganism is very poorly understood. It is sometimes called “the Old Religion” as it claims to be a revival of indigenous religious traditions violently suppressed by Christianity as it spread throughout Europe. Contemporary Pagans or Wiccans celebrate diversity and put a high premium on personal responsibility and not doing harm. Feminists such as Feminists have been prominent in contemporary Wicca or Paganism and emphasize the repressed Goddess traditions and the spirituality of women as expressed in witchcraft.

Paganism has an important role to play in American religious culture as it explicitly regards women as capable of embodying the sacred. It has been my personal experience that conservative Christianity in particular regards all women, regardless of their faith, as vaguely Pagan. Christian conservatives do not value women’s religious leadership as highly as that of males. Women are called the “weaker vessel” and considered less capable of embodying the sacred. This is why women are not ordained by Catholics and conservative Protestants. Women are deemed incapable of “imagining Christ” despite the fact that Genesis 1:27 clearly states that both female and male are created in the image of God. Continue reading “Pagans as Patriots: Freedom vs. Prejudice”

The advice concerning Shirk, Parents and false witness

Shirk, Parents and false witness


Among the major sins is disobedience to parents. Narrated by Abu Bakra (ra) Allah’s messenger (saw) said: “Shall I inform you of the greatest sins and in another variation he repeated this three times. We the companions said, “Certainly, O messenger of Allah! He (saw) said: “Associating anyone with Allah, disobedience to parents”. The prophet sat up straight after he had reclined and added, “And I warn you against false utterance and false witness, “And I warn you against false utterance and false witness”. The messenger of Allah (saw) kept saying that warning until we thought that he would not stop”.
Bukhari&Muslim

The messenger of Allah (saw) always repeated his sentences three times to make an emphasis. Shirk (associating partners with Allah) will not be forgiven.(if one dies without asking for forgiveness. And the one who is disobedient to his parents will definitely spend some time in the hellfire however this action will not take you out of the fold of Islam. Grandparents are also included however parents have more right. Before a man accuses someone else of an action he must be a 100% sure and anything less is unacceptable.

Explained by Abu abdillah Yunus Ibn Mahmoud

IN DEFIANCE OF THE QUR’AN AND The SUNNAH

IN DEFIANCE OF THE QUR’AN AND SUNNAH

The following are excerpts and quotations from well-known Sufi works presented along with corresponding beliefs from outside the fold of Islam. Relevant texts from the Qur’ân and the Sunnah are also quoted for the sake of comparison, so that Muslims may judge for themselves whether Sufi beliefs are Islamic or not. Each quotation is footnoted with the reference from which it is taken.

The Sufis claim: “The ways unto God are as numerous as the number of creatures in the world”. Ibn Mas’ood, may Allah be pleased with him, said: “The Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.s) made a straight line on the ground with his hand, then he said, ‘This is the straight way of Allah.’ Then he made (short) line on each side of the straight line; then he said, ‘These (short) lines, each one has a Shaytaan inviting people to it.’ Then he recited the verse: meaning, ‘And this is My path straight. So follow it, and do not follow (other) ways, lest they lead you away from My path.’ Continue reading “IN DEFIANCE OF THE QUR’AN AND The SUNNAH”

AL- Kaba’ir Major Sins in Islam

AL- Kaba’ir Major Sins

1. Associating partners with Allaah (Shirk)

Great Shirk: worshipping beings other than Allaah (proof all over Qur’ân)

Small Shirk: Riya

The Prophet (saw), “Should I not inform you of that which I fear for you even more than the dangers of dajjaal? It is the hidden shirk: A person stands to pray and he beautifies his prayer because he sees the people looking at him”. (Sahih; Sunan ibn Majah)

2. Committing murder: (Furqan; 68)

3. Performing Sorcery (2: 102)

4. Not performing the Prayers (Maryam: 59)

5. With holding the Zakah (Charity) (3: 180)

6. Breaking the fast of Ramadhan or not fasting in that month without a valid excuse.

Prophet (saw) said, “Islaam is built upon five pillars: testifying that there is no true god except Allah and that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah, performing the prayers, paying the Zakah, making the pilgrimage to the house, and fasting the month of Ramadhan(Sahih al-Jami # 2837)

7. Not performing the pilgrimage when one has the ability to do so (above hadith)

8. Disobeying one’s parents (al-Isra: 23)

9. Cutting off the ties of relationships (Muhammad: 22)

10. Committing adultery or fornication (al-Isra: 30)

11. Committing sodomy Continue reading “AL- Kaba’ir Major Sins in Islam”

Reclaiming Rights of the people of South Thailand

 

 

 

 

Updates from Southern Thailand is a monthly newsletter produced by the Reclaiming Rights program of Nonviolence International Southeast Asia (NISEA). The newsletter Charged! intends to inform the international community about current news on the conflict and human rights situation in the three southern-most provinces of Thailand – Yala, Narathiwat and Pattani.
Background

 

The origins of the current violence in Southern Thailand lie in historical grievances stemming from discrimination against the ethnic Malay Muslim population and attempts at forced assimilation by successive ethnic Thai Buddhist governments in
Bangkok for almost a century. The Sultanate of Patani which includes present-day Patani, Narathiwat, Yala and parts of Songkhla province was annexed by the Royal Thai government in the early 20th century. Since the annexation, armed groups calling for independence have operated in the region. Their activities have ebbed and flowed over the last 100 years, but with the turn of the 21st century they increased dramatically.
Continue reading “Reclaiming Rights of the people of South Thailand”

Hindutva & Ayodhya

Babri Masjid It is twelve years since the Hindutva fanatics demolished the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya. Perhaps no other day in independent India’s history signifies and symbolizes the communal polarization, mutual hatred, and a contempt for rule of law, so blatant in our society today, as that black Sunday in December 92. We saw Golwalkar in action, “teaching” Indian Muslims how they should lead their lives in India as “second rate” citizens — citizens without any rights. Though I had known it very well that these fanatics could stoop to any low to gain political mileage, I hadn’t thought till that day, in fact till the All India Radio confirmed the demolition in its evening news, that the struture would actually be grounded. I had the rather simplistic impression that the “karsevaks” would enter the disputed site, with the help of the friendly police, and might even damage the masjid a little bit, but wouldn’t dare to do the total demolition. As a not so politically conscious teenager, this perhaps was understandable. Unfortunately the then prime minister Narasimha Rao, it appears now, was just as naive, willing to trust an Advani and a Kalyan Singh on their word that the Masjid wouldn’t be demolished. In the days followed, people were behaving in pretty strange — or was that more natural then? — ways. I could see many friends of mine from the Muslim community keeping a distance from me and other non-Muslims. The behaviour of several of my Hindu friends was even more strange. Many were ecstatic about the destruction that took place in Ayodhya — several ordinary Hindu teenagers parrotted local RSS hooligans, for a short period though. When our college reopened after a fortnight of bandhs, hartals, strikes, and a general everything-isn’t-alright atmosphere, my closest friend confessed to me that though he couldn’t justify Gandhi’s assassination — many on the “secular” side were talking a lot about the parallels between the Masjid demolition and Gandhi’s assassination — he sympathized with Godse’s position. As one can see, talking in extremes was the norm. This was the period when I started taking a keener interest in political matters. Though never very active in day-to-day activism, I decided to pay more attention to what such local activists say. I found that those who actually work with people and their problems weren’t floundering at difficult times, unlike some of the bookish liberal intellectuals. In societal matters, words of those who are willing to make sacrifices, started appealing to me more, than the dull rigour of “academic” logic. Back to Babri Masjid, for a “secularist”, today it is politically correct to say that the issue should be settled in court. On the whole, our judiciary is exemplary, and I believe this issue can be settled in court. But I think a truly secular government should be willing to undo the wrong, and the right thing to do is to rebuild the masjid there. If I advocate anything less than this, I can’t but feel that I’m indirectly siding with the demolishers.

Black day of so called Indian Secularism

(Babri Masjid and associated complex were totally destroyed on December 6, 1992.)

“Every civil building connected with Mahommedan tradition should be levelled to the ground without regard to antiquarian veneration or artistic predilection.” British Prime Minister Palmerston’s Letter No. 9 dated 9 October 1857, to Lord Canning, Viceroy of India, Canning Papers.

“>

‘One group of karsevaks blocked all entry points into Ayodhya to keep out central security forces, while another began to loot and burn Muslim homes’

Did the leaders know beforehand what was going to happen that afternoon? There can be no final answer to that question. Perhaps some did, others did not. Certainly one answer seems to emerge from our narrative, another from the likes of editor Chandan Mitra. Not that the leadership of the parivar comes off any better from Mitra’s graphic description of their behaviour during that crucial period when the attack on the mosque was mounted — the giggling political sanyasins, Uma Bharati and Ritambhara; Joshi overcome by the size of the mammoth crowd; Singhal, convinced that the karseva would go along expected lines and giving precise orders, to a crowd that could not care less, about how to wipe and clean the site of the projected temple; the moment of reckoning when the crowd goes berserk on seeing two karsevaks on the top of the domes of the mosque while the high command sat, ‘tense’, ‘sombre-faced’, ‘hopelessly sullen’, with faces like ‘grim death’; the lament of Rajendra Singh, the de facto supremo of the RSS, ‘the ministry is gone’; and finally the pathetic and belated attempts to calm down the crowd by the leaders taking turn in appealing to the karsevaks, while others like Acharya Dharmendra tried to interest an uninterested crowd in a bhajan. Continue reading “Black day of so called Indian Secularism”

NAMES of PROPHETS’ APPEAR IN THE EBLA TABLETS,

Dating back to around 2500 BC, the Ebla tablets provide very important information regarding the history of religions. The most important feature of the Ebla tablets, discovered by archaeologists in 1975 and which have been the subject of much research and debate ever since, is that they contain the names of three prophets referred to in holy scriptures.

The discovery after thousands of years of the Ebla tablets and the information they contain is extremely important from the point of view of clarifying the geographical location of societies revealed in the Qur’an.

Around 2500 BC, Ebla was a kingdom covering an area that included the Syrian capital Damascus and south-east Turkey. This kingdom reached a cultural and economic peak but later, as happened to a great many civilizations, it disappeared from the stage of history. It was apparent from the records that were kept that the Kingdom of Ebla was a major cultural and commercial center of the time. (1) The people of Ebla possessed a civilization that established state archives, built libraries and recorded commercial contracts in written form. They even had their own language, known as Eblaite. Continue reading “NAMES of PROPHETS’ APPEAR IN THE EBLA TABLETS,”

PAGANISM-Druids:-Functions and Powers

1. Druids: their Functions and Powers

Druidism

No trustworthy information regarding the religion of the pagan Irish comes to us from outside : whatever knowledge of it we possess is derived exclusively from the native literature. There were many gods, but no supreme god, like Zeus or Jupiter among the Greeks and Romans. There was little of prayer, and no settled general form of worship. There were no temples: but there were altars of some kind erected to idols or to the gods of the elements (the sun, fire, water, &c.), which must have been in the open air. The religion of the pagan Irish is commonly designated as Druidism: and in the oldest Irish traditions the druids figure conspicuously.

All the early colonists had their druids, who are mentioned as holding high rank among kings and chiefs. There were druids also in Gaul and Britain; but the Gaels of Ireland and Scotland were separated and isolated for many centuries from the Celtic races of Gaul; and thus their religious system, like their language, naturally diverged, so that the druidism of Ireland, as pictured forth in the native record differed in many respects from that of Gaul.

In pagan times the druids were the exclusive possessors of whatever learning was then known. They combined in themselves all the learned professions: they were not only druids, but judges prophets, historians, poets, and even physicians, There were druids in every part of Ireland, but, as we might expect, Tara, the residence of the over-kings of Ireland, was, as we are told in the Life of St. Patrick, “the chief seat of the idolatry and druidism of Erin.” The druids had the reputation of being great magicians; and in this character they figure more frequently and conspicuously than in any other. In some of the old historical romances we find the issues of battles sometimes determined not so much by the valour of the combatants as by the magical powers of the druids attached to the armies. Continue reading “PAGANISM-Druids:-Functions and Powers”

The Thinning Veil- Samhain

The Thinning Veil by Copperlion

To the ancient Celts, the year had two “hinges”. These were Beltaine (the first of May) and Samhain, (the first of November), which is also the traditional Celtic New Year. And these two days were the most magical, and often frightening times of the whole year.

The Celtic people were in superstitious awe of times and places “in between”. Holy sites were any border places – the shore between land and water (seas, lakes, and rivers), bridges, boundaries between territories (especially when marked by bodies of water), crossroads, thresholds, etc. Holy times were also border times – twilight and dawn marking the transitions of night and day; Beltaine and Samhain marking the transitions of summer and winter. Read your myths and fairytales – many of the stories occur in such places, and at such times.

At Samhain (which corresponds to modern Halloween), time lost all meaning and the past, present, and future were one. The dead, and the denizens of the Other World, walked among the living. It was a time of fairies, ghosts, demons, and witches. Winter itself was the Season of Ghosts, and Samhain is the night of their release from the Underworld. Many people lit bonfires to keep the evil spirits at bay. Often a torch was lit and carried around the boundaries of the home and farm, to protect the property and residents against the spirits throughout the winter.

Many Irish and Scottish Celts appeased their dead with a traditional Dumb Supper. On Samhain Eve, supper was served in absolute silence, and one place was set at the head of the table “for the ancestors”. This place was served food and drink without looking directly at the seat, for to see the dead would bring misfortune. Afterwards, the untouched plate and cup were taken outside “for the pookas”, and left in the woods. In other traditions, this is the night to remember, honor, and toast our beloved departed, for the veil between the living and the dead is thin, and communication is possible on Samhain Eve
Continue reading “The Thinning Veil- Samhain”

BELIEFS of Druidism

BELIEFS

One of the most striking characteristics of Druidism is the degree to which it is free of dogma and any fixed set of beliefs or practices. In this way it manages to offer a spiritual path, and a way of being in the world that avoids many of the problems of intolerance and sectarianism that the established religions have encountered.

There is no ‘sacred text’ or the equivalent of a bible in Druidism and there is no universally agreed set of beliefs amongst Druids. Despite this, there are a number of ideas and beliefs that most Druids hold in common, and that help to define the nature of Druidism today:

 
Theology

Since Druidry is a spiritual path – a religion to some, a way of life to others – Druids share a belief in the fundamentally spiritual nature of life. Some will favour a particular way of understanding the source of this spiritual nature, and may feel themselves to be animists, pantheists, polytheists, monotheists or duotheists. Others will avoid choosing any one conception of Deity, believing that by its very nature this is unknowable by the mind.

Monotheistic druids believe there is one Deity: either a Goddess or God, or a Being who is better named Spirit or Great Spirit, to remove misleading associations to gender. But other druids are duotheists, believing that Deity exists as a pair of forces or beings, which they often characterise as the God and Goddess.

Polytheistic Druids believe that many gods and goddesses exist, while animists and pantheists believe that Deity does not exist as one or more personal gods, but is instead present in all things, and is everything.

Whether they have chosen to adopt a particular viewpoint or not, the greatest characteristic of most modern-day Druids lies in their tolerance of diversity: a Druid gathering can bring together people who have widely varying views about deity, or none, and they will happily participate in ceremonies together, celebrate the seasons, and enjoy each others’ company – realising that none of us has the monopoly on truth, and that diversity is both healthy and natural.

Nature forms such an important focus of their reverence, that whatever beliefs they hold about Deity, all Druids sense Nature as divine or sacred. Every part of nature is sensed as part of the great web of life, with no one creature or aspect of it having supremacy over any other. Unlike religions that are anthropocentric, believing humanity occupies a central role in the scheme of life, this conception is systemic and holistic, and sees humankind as just one part of the wider family of life.


 
The Otherworld

Although Druids love Nature, and draw inspiration and spiritual nourishment from it, they also believe that the world we see is not the only one that exists. A cornerstone of Druid belief is in the existence of the Otherworld – a realm or realms which exist beyond the reach of the physical senses, but which are nevertheless real.

This Otherworld is seen as the place we travel to when we die. But we can also visit it during our lifetime in dreams, in meditation, under hypnosis, or in ‘journeying’, when in a shamanic trance.

Different Druids will have different views on the nature of this Otherworld, but it is a universally held belief for three reasons. Firstly, all religions or spiritualities hold the view that another reality exists beyond the physical world, rather than agreeing with Materialism, that holds that only matter exists and is real. Secondly, Celtic mythology, which inspires so much of Druidism, is replete with descriptions of this Otherworld. Thirdly, the existence of the Otherworld is implicit in ‘the greatest belief’ of the ancient Druids, since classical writers stated that the Druids believed in a process that has been described as reincarnation or metempsychosis (in which a soul lives in a succession of forms, including both human and animal). In between each life in human or animal form the soul rests in the Otherworld.
Continue reading “BELIEFS of Druidism”

Christianity and Druidry, strange bedfellows or a match made in heaven?


by David Lindholm

“In the beginning God created heaven and earth” (Genesis 1:1)

Being a Christian myself I know full well that the above quote is not one that has enjoyed any greater degree of attention during the last millennia of Christian faith. This is very unfortunate and has created a tension that has estranged most of the modern western world from a natural life and a connection to the natural world and her cycles and rhythms.

I joined OBOD in the roaring 90’s (Imagining being able to say that!) and worked my way through to the Druid grade. It was a transforming journey and the diploma (don’t know if that is an accurate term, but it will do) hangs over my desk where I work daily. Druidry changed my outlook on life drastically and fundamentally in a way that was profound. How does this connect with the title above? Well I have been close to the Christian tradition all my life. My grandfather was a priest and later converted to the Catholic Church with his wife, my dear grandmother. At their knees I heard all about the lives of saints like St. Francis, George, Dominikus and more like them. But I also heard at the age of five the tales of Arthur and his knights from my grandfather, and when the tales were told and I asked for more, he wrote more stories for me to enjoy about these immortal heroes. These were magical and held within them a Christian message, but a bit different from what I later snapped up at the services. It was a Christianity that was filled with good men and women, very few priests and even fewer churches.

These tales stayed with me and I read even more as I grew older, and I learned to read English books at the age of 13 for this very reason. I continued to go to church now and then but felt estranged; all this talk of sin, the badness of the body and the general ugliness of things material rhymed very poorly with what my grandfather had told me. Then I discovered sexuality, and we do not need to go into the general church policy on that issue.
Continue reading “Christianity and Druidry, strange bedfellows or a match made in heaven?”

Christianity and Druidry, strange bedfellows or a match made in heaven?


by David Lindholm

“In the beginning God created heaven and earth” (Genesis 1:1)

Being a Christian myself I know full well that the above quote is not one that has enjoyed any greater degree of attention during the last millennia of Christian faith. This is very unfortunate and has created a tension that has estranged most of the modern western world from a natural life and a connection to the natural world and her cycles and rhythms.

I joined OBOD in the roaring 90’s (Imagining being able to say that!) and worked my way through to the Druid grade. It was a transforming journey and the diploma (don’t know if that is an accurate term, but it will do) hangs over my desk where I work daily. Druidry changed my outlook on life drastically and fundamentally in a way that was profound. How does this connect with the title above? Well I have been close to the Christian tradition all my life. My grandfather was a priest and later converted to the Catholic Church with his wife, my dear grandmother. At their knees I heard all about the lives of saints like St. Francis, George, Dominikus and more like them. But I also heard at the age of five the tales of Arthur and his knights from my grandfather, and when the tales were told and I asked for more, he wrote more stories for me to enjoy about these immortal heroes. These were magical and held within them a Christian message, but a bit different from what I later snapped up at the services. It was a Christianity that was filled with good men and women, very few priests and even fewer churches.

These tales stayed with me and I read even more as I grew older, and I learned to read English books at the age of 13 for this very reason. I continued to go to church now and then but felt estranged; all this talk of sin, the badness of the body and the general ugliness of things material rhymed very poorly with what my grandfather had told me. Then I discovered sexuality, and we do not need to go into the general church policy on that issue.

As I grew older I ventured through all kinds of spiritual paths, never feeling at home or being able to believe in what they said. It was all a bit too glib, if you understand my meaning. So by the time I got to Druidry I felt quite disillusioned with the whole idea of spirituality, no matter what flavour, to be frank – and ordinary churchgoing was not an option. But as I worked my way through the coursework I discovered several things. The most important thing for me in retrospect was that there had existed a different Christian tradition, one that was really the Good News, rather then the depressing and life denying rigmarole that you get served on Sundays. I also learned that the nature that I love, man and woman, and the whole Universe had been and could again be viewed in a totally different light.

I read about St. Patrick, Columba, Brendan, and the unjustly wronged Pelagius, the Celtic church and its venerable age and its efforts in spreading the Good News when the world grew darker and colder. This rekindled a hope in the possibility of finding again a Christianity that was indeed Good News to all, not just to a select and isolated few. I am a trained historian and archaeologist with the Middle Ages as my specialty so I know full well that the tradition as such is dead and gone. Or is it?

I went back to the original sources in the years after I completed the coursework. I read the desert fathers, gospel of Thomas, apocrypha, Gnostic works, orthodox works, the remains of the Celtic church in the form of missals and prayers. I read and read and read. Then I went again to the most important work of all, The Gospels themselves and actually tried to read what they said, not what I have been taught that they were supposed to mean. It was a rewarding read my friends. I then turned to those writers of today that are striving to if not resurrect but bring to life a faith that does somersaults of joy for life itself. Some are of a more Celtic vein, others like Matthew Fox more modern. I read Thomas Merton and Willfred Stinnissen, good Christians all with bright ideas.

A new birth is taking place, and it must be so. The old church is dying, literally, only the old are churchgoers today and the reason is that we feel in our hearts that what is preached from the pulpit is simply not true. The tragedy is that even if we want to believe in the Good News, the very institution of the Church kills that longing in the heart oh so quickly. And it was then that I thought again about Druidry. Christianity needs to be reinterpreted in the light of existence; I mean seriously, God himself in Genesis says that creation is GOOD! That he is pleased! How can the church go against that, after all is he not the Boss? Well they can’t and neither can they twist the Good News anymore if you do not let them.

There is a very important little secret that the church does not want you to know. Jesus said “Whenever two or more of you are gathered, I will be among you” and he also said “I will be with you until the end of time”. If you read the Good News and Acts it is quite plain that God is not asking for churches, altars, robes, chandeliers, crosses in gold, and churchgoing once a week. Our Lord is a stern taskmaster he asks for nothing less than your whole life. Period. But the catch is that you must live his words everyday in your daily life, Jesus has some very severe words for the hypocrites that visit him once a week and then act like demons out of hell the rest of the week.

The truth is that if you live his words, you do not need any church at all. Whenever we gather together it should be in joy and simplicity, very much like the early Celtic church. This is where Druidry comes in. There is a great interest in the early Christianity of the British isles and it is not possible to understand it without an understanding of its pagan roots. We need to find our way back to a veneration of God in all things, Panenthesim as Matthew Fox coined it. God is in all things, but things are not God and God is more than them. Druidry stands astride both traditions, Christianity and Paganism, and if Christianity is going to flourish again it must find its way back to the simple life and we must learn to learn from each other.

For too long Christianity has persecuted those who do not agree with them – there is not much love in that. “Do unto others as you want others to do unto you” the Lord said. Well if we Christians mean what we have done, we have a very long and unpleasant reckoning to expect. It is my belief that it is both possible and necessary to come together outside of the established churches. Let them wither as they will, and let us come together, Christian and Pagan as Good Friends that hope for the same things but choose to understand them differently. It is my belief that God in his love (I say his although I believe that God is neither man or woman, or maybe both. Who knows? I sure don’t!) does not really care so much about where we choose to worship, but that we are good men and women. We must become good brothers and sisters to each other, and then we will be doing the Lord’s bidding. To do this we must turn to the Mystical, to experiencing God personally, not settling for a second-hand account once a week. I can think of no better way than to conclude with a short prayer that is one of the most beautiful ever written.

Christ ever with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me
Christ within me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me
Christ to my right side, Christ to my left side
Christ in his breadth, Christ in his length, Christ in depth
Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me
Christ in the mouth of every man who speaks to me
Christ in every eye that sees me
Christ in every ear that hears me.

David Lindholm
Stockholm, Sweden April 2005

Abortion is Murder, No ifs or buts…

In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

 

 

Abortion is Murder, No ifs or buts…

 

———–

[Editor’s Note: This is a reply to an article by Mr Edip Yuksel called “Abortion is Murder if……” in which the author expressed his opinion that abortion should be permitted in the first three months of pregnancy.] “Have you noted those who claim that they believed in what was revealed to you, and in what was revealed before you, then uphold the laws of idolatry? They were commanded to reject such laws. indeed, It is the devils wish to lead them far astray 4:60.

The abortion issue has always been a hot topic. For the last 1400 years, the majority of the Muslims were misled by their scholars into believing that abortion in the first three months of pregnancy is permissible. While disregarding the clear orders in the Quran, these Muslims built their conclusion on fabricated hadiths. Some of these hadiths claimed that the soul of the fetus does not enter the body until the fourth month of gestation and therefore killing the fetus is permissible.

It was God’s blessing that we were guided back to the Quran by the messenger of the covenant who strongly refused the fabricated hadiths and clearly indicated that the Quran certainly condemns the killing of both the born and the unborn children.

As we learned from history, after the departure of every messenger, some people will distort the message and confuse the others. Now we hear the call to go back to the laws of ignorance and allow the killing of the unborn children during the first three months of pregnancy. This call comes from those who are confused, misled, misinformed and misguided.

“Losers are those who killed their children foolishly, due to their lack of knowledge, and prohibited what God has provided for them, and followed innovations attributed to God. They have gone astray, they are not guided.” (6:140)

Abortion, what is it ?

Webster’s dictionary defines abortion as the expulsion of a non-viable fetus during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Remember that, in the abortion performed today, the abortionists induce the expulsion of a viable fetus, or in other terms kill the living fetus to bring him/her down. What is the stand of the Quran on the abortion issue ? Let us find out.

Quran, the first revelation:

The believers know that every word, letter, name, number and gesture in the Quran is chosen deliberately. It should not surprise us to find out that the name God chose for the first revelation of the Quran, was not Muhammed, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, The Sun, the Moon, the Iron, the winds, the stars, the night, the people, or the Jinn..etc. The name God chose for His first revelation was “The hanging embryo”, Sura 96. This hanging embryo stage starts about 6 days after the fertilization of the ovum, not after three months of pregnancy. How significant or insignificant is this choice, it is up to you to ponder. Let us keep this in mind while studying the rest of the Quran that deals with this issue.

Killing the soul or the body !!

Some argued, on no basis but fabricated hadiths, that the fetus in the first four months do not have a soul yet and therefore it is permissible to kill him/her. They do not realize that the soul has nothing to do with abortion. In abortion you are dealing with the physical body and its life, you are destroying the physical body of the fetus not the soul. We cannot kill the soul even if we try. Whether the soul entered the fetus body in the first minute of life or after four months of pregnancy is irrelevant to the abortion issue.

Killing, condemned:

Killing any person is strongly condemned in the Quran. God has made life sacred. Killing the children is specifically condemned as they are the helpless victims in every society.

“You shall not kill any (Nafs) person – for GOD has made life
sacred – except in the course of justice…….”(17:33)

“You shall not kill your children due to fear of poverty. We provide
for them, as well as for you. Killing them is a gross offense”(17:31)

“Say, “Come let me tell you what your Lord has really
prohibited for you: You shall not set up idols besides
Him. You shall honor your parents. You shall not kill
your children from fear of poverty – we provide for you
and for them. You shall not commit gross sins, obvious or
hidden. You shall not kill any (Nafs) person – GOD has made
life sacred – except in the course of justice. These are His
commandments to you, that you may understand.”
[6:151]

What does the word “Children” in the verse include ?. This word “Children” is the translation of the Arabic word “Awlad”. “Do not kill your (Awlad) children..”.

One author of an abortion article claims that, the Webster’s dictionary defines a child as “Young human being” which is true but is also half the truth. The dictionary also defines a child as ” the unborn or recently born person”. That author used this half truth to support his opinion that killing the unborn children is not covered by these verse, 17:33 and 6:151

Again the same author has been misinforming the reader by claiming that the word “Awlad (Children)” and “Walad (Child)” in Arabic are used ONLY for the born children. He concludes that the order in 71:31 and 6:151 applies only to the killing of born children.

The truth of the matter is that both the words, Children in English and Awlad in Arabic are used for both the born and unborn children in their prospective languages. The order in 17:33 and 6:151 applies to both born and unborn children.

A simple and extra effort by that author would have saved him and those who believed him the big confusion. The Arabic dictionaries describe the unborn child as “Walad in the mother’s womb”. The born child in Arabic is called “Maolood”. “Walad” in Arabic like the word child in English can be used for both the born and the unborn. Although the word “Walad” is derived from the root “Walada” (to give birth), it does not mean that “Walad” has to be born but rather related to the process of birth. The word “Walid” in Arabic is used for father, only because he was a partner in causing this birth to happen and not because he was born or gives birth. God used the word Maolood in the Quran, (31:33). Had God willed, he could have said, “Do not kill your Maoloods” (born children) to specify this category of children.

In 17:31 and 6:151, God is ordering us, not to kill the born or the unborn children.

God cares about the first three months of pregnancy:

The sincere student of the Quran will find out that God is telling us in 2:226 and 65:4 that the first three months of pregnancy are so important that a divorced woman will have to change her life plan if she found herself pregnant. The matter is no more of her own concern, but it is God’s concern. God’s concern is for the pregnancy and specifically for these first few months of pregnancy. Women who get divorced have an interim of three months before getting married again. This is done MAINLY to see if they are pregnant or not. God then orders them to forget their own wishes and plans and respect the new life created in their wombs. If the first three months of pregnancy were not important God would have told these women not to wait and to have abortion and keep their life plans as they wish. If a married woman get divorced before having a full marital relationship with her husband, she dose not have to wait for three months, 33:49. She would have no interim. Since there is no chance of her being pregnant , the matter is only of her concern.

God cares about the whole three months of early pregnancy as much as we can see from the Quran’s treatment of the divorce cases. God named his first revelation after the hanging embryo, not by accident. This hanging embryo, is a stage that starts in 6 days after the fertilization of the ovum.

The New Creature:

“Then we developed the drop into a hanging (embryo), then
developed the hanging (embryo) into a bite-size (fetus),
then created the bite-size (fetus) into bones, then
covered the bones with flesh. We thus produce (Anshaa) a new
creature. Most blessed is GOD, the best Creator.” [23:14]

In verse 23:14, God described the creation of the human being from a tiny drop until he produced a new creature. The advocates of abortion in the first three months of pregnancy, consider the way God described the production of a new creature in this verse (by using the Arabic word Anshaa`) as their proof of the time when the soul joins the body of the fetus. On this basis, they claim that it is OK to kill the fetus before that, since he/she does not have a soul. They are missing many points here. First, abortion has nothing to do with the soul as we explained before. In abortion you kill the physical body of the fetus. You do not and cannot kill the soul. Therefore the time the soul joins the physical body is not important and irrelevant, and God never elaborated on it in the Quran. Second, the word (Anshaa`), in 23:14, is used exclusively in the Quran for the production or construction of a physical being, human or non-human, e.g. the humans, the trees, the clouds, communities..etc. Please see 23:14,19,31,42; 6:141; 11:61 and 53:32. This word (Anshaa`) or its derivatives have never been used by God in the Quran to describe anything that has to do with the soul. To assure the believers, God used another word (Nafakha) repeatedly to describe the joining of the soul and the physical body. See 3:49, 5:110. 15:29, 21:91, 32:9, 39:72 and 66:12.

The use of the word (Anshaa`) to describe the new creature is referring to the physical body of the developing fetus and not to the soul. The fetus will look completely different then, compared with the way it started as a tiny drop. Check any embryology book to appreciate this vast difference.

Note also that God used the word (Anshaa`) four times in sura 23, to give the sincere believer the clue he/she needs.

Abusing the Quran and the Mathematics:

Abusing verses 31:14, 46:15 and 2:233, the author of an article about abortion claims that the last six months of pregnancy are the only important months in the life of the unborn child and therefore it should be permissible to kill the child in the first three months of pregnancy.

Let us study these two verses. Verse 46:15 tells us that the total period for both pregnancy and nursing is 30 months. We know that this is an average estimate and the verse does not define which part of these 30 month is the pregnancy and which is the nursing time. Verse 2:233 tells us that nursing the newborn can be extended as long as two years for those who want to continue nursing. It does not define nursing as obligatory 24 months. It does not say nursing for two months, three months or 20 months is not permitted. In other words the period of nursing is maximum of 24 months but can be as short as one day.

Making an equation from these numbers, the author of the abortion article claimed :

30 months ( average of pregnancy and nursing) – 24 months ( maximum of nursing) = 6 months

He concluded that only 6 months of the pregnancy period are important and they have to be the last 6 months.

Any one who does not realize that the two numbers in the above equation are variables will be easily deceived. You cannot deduct one variable from another and come up with a fixed number. To make such a serious conclusion from this false equation is a sign of misguidance.

More to our surprise, was that the author concluded that it is the last 6 months (not the first 6 months) of pregnancy that are the important ones. Without any equations or calculations, any intelligent human being can realize that children born after only 6 months of pregnancy can survive and live to be mature adults. Children born after 6 months only of pregnancy can be nursed up to 24 months to complete the 30 months if they need to. Children born after 7,8 or 9 months may need less nursing time as we all know. If we are to make any conclusion from the above numbers we should know that, God is showing us that the first and not the last six months of the pregnancy are the important months for the life of a healthy child. To have it backward is a clear sign of confusion. The above equation is wrong, misleading and inappropriate.

31:14 states, “We enjoined the human being to honor his parents. His mother bore him and the load got heavier and heavier, It takes up to two years of intensive care until weaning…”.

This expression “up to” (fee)(in Arabic) or “within” has been missed by those who do not understand Arabic. The word (fee) in Arabic can be used for place or time, if used for a place it will mean “in” and if used for time it will mean “within”.

The confirmation of this period comes from God In 2:233 when God teaches us that mothers shall nurse their Infants two full years if the father so wishes. Which also means if the father has no objection, the mother can nurse them any period of time shorter than or longer than two years.

Which, What, Who, or Whom:

A question was raised about the use of the Arabic pronoun “Ma” in the Quran to describe the unborn child. The writer tried to imply that “Ma” which is translated as “What” or “which” as used in (2:228) and (3:35) signify that an unborn child is a non-person. While this typically demonstrates to us what God means in verse 3:7, it clearly reflects how God can control the teaching of the Quran as stated in 55:1-2. The use of the pronoun “Ma” has no significance regarding whether the unborn child is a real person or a nonperson. First in (2:228), God states that He knows what He created in the womb, and this covers the whole period of pregnancy, whether the unborn child is one month or nine months old. It does not make a difference, age wise. Second in (3:35) the use of the word “Ma” again carry the same meaning as in (2:228). God clarifies this more in the next verse (3:36) when God uses the same pronoun “Ma” for the born child “God was fully aware of what she bore”. It is more interesting to see that verse (22:2) was used twice in arguing the abortion issue but the author failed twice to recognize the simple “Ma” that God used in that verse for the nursing infant. So, “Ma” has been used in the Quran for born and unborn child without discrimination. To imply that God used the word (MA) for the unborn child because of the insignificance of the fetus is naive and dangerous especially when added to the ignorance of the author with the proper Arabic language.

A question to produce confusion among the people is as innocent as the wolf denying his preying on the little lamb while his teeth are still stained with his blood.

The Misfortune:

No description of a misfortune surpasses God’s revelation In (63:1-3).

“When the hypocrites come to you they say, “We bear
witness that you are the messenger of GOD.” GOD knows
that you are His messenger, and GOD bears witness that
the hypocrites are liars.
Under the guise of their apparent faith, they repel the
people from the path of GOD. Miserable indeed is what
they do  This is because they believed, then disbelieved. Hence,
their minds are blocked; they do not understand. ”

The misfortunate person has to be the person who is following his own ego. In (45:23). God warns us:

“Have you noted the one whose god is his ego?
Consequently, GOD sends him astray, despite his
knowledge, seals his hearing and his mind, and places a
veil on his eyes. Who then can guide him, after such a
decision by GOD? Would you not take heed?” [45:23]

The Exception:

As we all know, every rule has an exception including the religious laws. After all attempts are made to save both the mother and the unborn child, and under unusual situations, abortion may be allowed to save the mother’s life. This is permitted, not only during the first three months of pregnancy, but during any time during the pregnancy. Cases of rape have no place in this discussion. Women who are victims of rape have enough time (as much as 6 days) to use available medical treatments to avoid any possible pregnancy. If the rape victim waited until she finds out that she is pregnant, it is too late and she has no excuse to kill the child created in her womb.

In Conclusion :

(1) Quran condemns the killing of born and unborn children (6:151, 17:31,6:140,60:12), i.e. abortion is murder.

(2) The messengers of God deliver the message, they do not distort it.(3:20, 5:92, 5:99….)

(3) History repeats itself. The followers of the messenger are the ones who usually distort the message. Their excuse has been, “our intentions were honorable and righteous”. (61:4)

(4) All claims of religious knowledge should be subjected to the utmost scrutiny to avoid falling in the same trap of previous generations, (17:36).

(5) Knowledgeable people recognize their mistakes (7:23). ignorant people by mistake, recognize their knowledge (7:30.19:104, 59:18).