Robert Spencer: Answering an Islamic apologist (Part V)

Continuing my responses to the disingenuous Islamic apologetics of Ahmadiyya leader Rizwan Khan in reply to Hugh Fitzgerald.

24. According to Islamic law, what must a Muslim husband do to be divorced from his wife?
The Quran says, “Such divorce may be pronounced twice; then, either retain them in a becoming manner or send them away with kindness.” (2:230) A husband must divorce his wife multiple times, with a required period of time in between each divorce where reconciliation is encouraged. “And when you divorce your wives and they approach the end of their appointed period, then either retain them in a becoming manner; or send them away in a becoming manner; but retain them not wrongfully so that you may transgress. And whoso does that, surely wrongs his own soul. And do not make a jest of the commandments of Allah” (2:232)
A woman can seek divorce from her husband for any reason. Sahih Bukhari narrates: “The wife of Thabit bin Qais bin Shammas came to the Prophet (ﷺ) and said, “O Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ)! I do not blame Thabit for any defects in his character or his religion, but I am afraid that I (being a Muslim) may become unthankful for Allah’s Blessings.” On that, Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said (to her), ‘Will you return his garden to him?” She said, “Yes.” So she returned his garden to him and the Prophet (ﷺ) told him to divorce her.” (https://sunnah.com/bukhari/68/25) The wife did not have any objection to her husband, but Prophet Muhammad (sa) established her right to be granted divorce.
Although divorce is a right, using this right carelessly is discouraged for both men and women. Ibn Majah narrates, “The Messenger of Allah said: “The most hated of permissible things to Allah is divorce.”” (https://sunnah.com/urn/1320970)

Khan leaves out the fact that all a man need do in order to divorce his wife is say to her, “Taaleq,” that is “(You are) divorced.” If he says it once or twice, he can take her back simply if he decides to do so. But if he says it three times, he cannot take her back until she marries another man, consummates that marriage, and is divorced in turn by her new husband.

This is all based on the Qur’an: “Divorce is twice. Then, either keep her in an acceptable manner or release her with good treatment….And if he has divorced her for the third time, then she is not lawful to him afterward until she marries a husband other than him. And if the latter husband divorces her, there is no blame upon the woman and her former husband for returning to each other if they think that they can keep the limits of Allah. These are the limits of Allah, which He makes clear to a people who know.” (2:229-230)

Khan says, “A woman can seek divorce from her husband for any reason.” That is a very sly way of stating the inequality here: a husband can divorce his wife with a word, and need have no reason at all; a wife must present her reason for divorcing before a Sharia court, which must deem it acceptable before she can be granted a divorce. A hadith has Muhammad saying: “If a women asks her husband for a divorce, for no reason, then the smell of paradise is forbidden for her” (Tirmidhi 1187). There is no comparable hadith for a husband who asks his wife for a divorce.

25. Why is the testimony of a Muslim woman worth only half that of a Muslim man?
This guidance is given only in context of testimony in financial matters (2:283). Islam places the primary responsibility of caring for the children and home on women. In a society where women are generally homemakers and men are breadwinners, the responsibility of giving testimony on financial matters is placed primarily on breadwinners.
For all other situations, the testimony of women and men is the same. For example, Sahih Bukhari narrates how the Prophet Muhammad (sa) decided a case based solely on the testimony of one woman (https://sunnah.com/bukhari/52/24). In fact, the books of Ahadith are filled with narrations attributed to the Prophet Muhammad (sa) from Aisha, the testimony of one woman. Countless other narrations throughout the books of Ahadith, that make up the basis of Islamic law, are transmitted to us through the individual testimony of one woman.

The claim that a woman’s testimony is worth only half that of a man solely in financial matters, in which the responsibility rests primarily with the breadwinners, is as fanciful as it is false. In fact, a hadith depicts Muhammad himself declaring that women were deficient in intelligence and invoking the devaluing of women’s testimony as evidence: “Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri: Once Allah’s Apostle went out to the Musalla (to offer the prayer) o ‘Id-al-Adha or Al-Fitr prayer. Then he passed by the women and said, ‘O women! Give alms, as I have seen that the majority of the dwellers of Hell-fire were you (women).’ They asked, ‘Why is it so, O Allah’s Apostle ?’ He replied, ‘You curse frequently and are ungrateful to your husbands. I have not seen anyone more deficient in intelligence and religion than you. A cautious sensible man could be led astray by some of you.’ The women asked, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! What is deficient in our intelligence and religion?’ He said, ‘Is not the evidence of two women equal to the witness of one man?’ They replied in the affirmative. He said, ‘This is the deficiency in her intelligence. Isn’t it true that a woman can neither pray nor fast during her menses?’ The women replied in the affirmative. He said, ‘This is the deficiency in her religion.’” (Bukhari 1:6:301) Muhammad didn’t say anything about this deficiency in intelligence being restricted to financial matters.

 26. In what ways does Islam tend to favor Arabs over non-Arabs?
The Quran teaches that true honor comes from one’s righteousness, not one’s tribe: “O mankind, We have created you from a male and a female; and We have made you into tribes and sub-tribes that you may recognize one another. Verily, the most honourable among you, in the sight of Allah, is he who is the most righteous among you. Surely, Allah is All-knowing, All-Aware.” (49:14)
 Khan again dodges the question. In reality, a Muslim must pray in Arabic and read the Qur’an in Arabic. The caliph must be a member of the Quraysh, the Arab tribe of Mecca to which Muhammad belonged.

27. How did Islam spread all the way from the Hejaz to the Iberian peninsula?
The Iberian Peninsula was ruled by Muslims for 8 centuries and it still remained majority non-Muslim throughout that time because of the religious freedom that was generally preserved. Religious freedom promptly disappeared when Christian rule began again with the end of Muslim rule in the Iberian Peninsula.
As for exceptional cases where individuals went against the human rights established the Quran, those individuals are responsible for justifying their own actions.

The question was, “How did Islam spread all the way from the Hejaz to the Iberian peninsula?,” not whether religious freedom was generally preserved in lands conquered by Muslims. Islam spread this way: these lands were conquered by the Arab armies. They reduced the native populations to dhimmi status, making them pay the jizya as per Qur’an 9:29 and submit to various humiliating and discriminatory regulations in accord with that verse’s command that the Muslims make the People of the Book “feel themselves subdued” and pay the jizya “with willing submission.” One could easily get free of these onerous regulations and be a free citizen, simply by converting to Islam. That’s how Islam spread all the way from the Hejaz to the Iberian peninsula.

28. Why did Muslims blow up the Bamiyan Buddhas?
Ask those individuals. They are responsible for justifying their own actions. Islam is a religion. Religion is what is written in its scripture, which in Islam is the Quran and the authentic Ahadith that do not contradict the Quran.
As for the Bible, it teaches: “You shall utterly destroy all the places where the nations which you shall dispossess served their gods, on the high mountains and on the hills and under every green tree. And you shall destroy their altars, break their sacred pillars, and burn their wooden images with fire; you shall cut down the carved images of their gods and destroy their names from that place.” (Deuteronomy 12:2-3)

Khan doesn’t mention the hadith in which Muhammad is depicted as saying: “Do not leave any image without defacing it or any built-up grave without leveling it” (Muslim 969). That’s a fairly straightforward command, and makes it clear why the Bamiyan Buddhas were destroyed. The Bible verse is, once again, an irrelevant exercise in tu-quoque, as Jews and Christians do not think this verse to be literally applicable today.

29. Why did Muslims threaten to blow up a church in Bologna with a fresco depicting Muhammad?
Ask those individuals. They are responsible for justifying their own actions. Islam is a religion. Religion is what is written in its scripture, which in Islam is the Quran and the authentic Ahadith that do not contradict the Quran.
As for the Bible, it teaches: “You shall utterly destroy all the places where the nations which you shall dispossess served their gods, on the high mountains and on the hills and under every green tree. And you shall destroy their altars, break their sacred pillars, and burn their wooden images with fire; you shall cut down the carved images of their gods and destroy their names from that place.” (Deuteronomy 12:2-3)

Khan here repeats his answer to #29, and my reply to his answer to #29 suffices here as well.

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COMMENTS

  1. Shan Lim says

    February 14, 2017 at 7:29 pm

    In Deuteronomy 12:2-3 God’s command to the Israelites to purge the land of idols and pagan altars applied ONLY to the land of Canaan which God promised to Abraham. It would serve as a Holy Land for God’s Holy People.

    Unlike islam, God did not command the Israelites to conquer all nations through violence and to destroy all their pagan idols and temples. The Israelites were to be only in God’s given Holy Land to be Priest to the nations and a light to the world.

    Big, big difference, Rizwan Khan.

    • maghan says

      February 15, 2017 at 2:39 am

      That Khan just shamefully shows himself off as a depraved, conquest victim of Arab military and cultural imperialism. A consummate ape of his master’s imperial culture. Maybe Aristotle is correct when he wrote that some humans are “natural slaves”.

  2. marina says

    February 14, 2017 at 8:29 pm

    When Muslims find themselves in a tight corner they would say “but the biblealso says this and the bible says that ” . Whatever the bible says doesn’t justify whatever the Koran says. This is a typical apologist’s answer to a tough question

    • maghan says

      February 15, 2017 at 2:34 am

      The dumb Muslims forget that the OT is ancient Jewish folklore and the NT is for Christians. The OT is just Prologue for Christians. The authentic stuff begins the NT.

  3. Joe McDonald says

    February 14, 2017 at 11:19 pm

    What a bunch of inane nonsense!!
    Now I know why vapid & vacuous PC shariaDiahrea apologists like merkel, hilary, trudolt, et al suck up to these jihadi kooks.
    The incoherent, illogical queeran psychobabble dovetails perfectly with the senseless, substanceless rhetoric that left wing willy wankers constantly vomit, excrete, and discharge from every orifice!
    It makes you wonder what kind of drugs, affliction (syphillis? toxiplasma? brain worms?) or cranial injury the “prophet” was suffering from, and of course how any sentient hominid could be so lacking in cognition that they wouldn’t summarily dismiss all his crap.

  4. Joe McDonald says

    February 15, 2017 at 12:55 am

    Oh, and I’d like to see these subhuman scum try to make me “feel subdued”…
    their “tax” will be paid with lead, and they’ll get a taste of why we don’t speak German & Japanese in the Americas.
    My parents, and all my aunts & uncles, had a lot to do with that!

  5. Mark Spahn (West Seneca, NY) says

    February 15, 2017 at 2:03 am

    In the answer to question #26, “The caliph must be a member of the Quraysh, the Arab tribe of Mecca to which Muhammad belonged.”

    Does Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi claim to be a member of this tribe? Is he?

  6. FYI says

    February 15, 2017 at 7:28 am

    “A muslim must pray in Arabic and read the quran in Arabic”.

    Ah yes!It’s the linguistically challenged allah as opposed to the multilingual genius of Almighty God.

    If you spoke to allah in Japanese,Hindi or Sanskrit,allah wouldn’t understand you.It would go right over his head and he would need it to be translated into Arabic.Almighty God of the Biblical revelation on the other hand understands all languages perfectly.No translation is ever necessary.The idea that a revelation of God is limited to a particular language is really,really idiotic.As if God has a preference for one language over another.

    That always makes me laugh……allah the great arab in the sky who only communicates in Arabic.

    You do not even need words to pray to the True God.
    You can read about God in your own Language.
    You can find a Bible in any language.
    You do not have to wear religious garments and bow towards the east five times a day- as God is everywhere.
    You are required to follow His commandments(revealed to the Jews and Christians)the importance of which allah somehow seems to have missed completely:perhaps allah couldn’t read Hebrew….

  7. RAB says

    February 15, 2017 at 9:36 am

    Why would anyone who knows anything about Islam take the word of an Ahmadiyya “Muslim” for anything about Islam? Shouldn’t it be sufficient to point out that these Islamic apologists recognize a prophet after Muhammad, which makes them heretics and therefore apostates from core Islam. Sure, the Ahmadiyya can claim to be peaceful but it doesn’t take a profound religious scholar to figure out that Islam means ” submission” to the will of Allah and that the “peace” comes afterwards. Just more taqiyya from the Ahmadiyyas.

  8. Angemon says

    February 15, 2017 at 2:10 pm

    The Iberian Peninsula was ruled by Muslims for 8 centuries and it still remained majority non-Muslim throughout that time because of the religious freedom that was generally preserved. Religious freedom promptly disappeared when Christian rule began again with the end of Muslim rule in the Iberian Peninsula.

    Lol! What a bunch of malarkey. It remained a majority non-muslim because a) Non-muslims were a majority when they were invaded by muslims and b) those non-muslims got their act together and promptly started to fight back. Paganism in the Iberian Peninsula survived Roman paganism and Christianity but ended with the islamic invasion. A similar event took place a few decades ago with the Indonesian invasion of East Timor – pagans and animists were forced to convert to a monotheist religion recognized by the Indonesian government.

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