Islam Under Scrutiny by Ex-Muslims

Who is Allah?  The Male, Bachelor, King & Deity having Daughters and Dwellings

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A brief history of Allah

When we study Allah seriously, the important feature to learn is that Allah has quite a fascinating history. In ancient Arabia, during biblical time, many millenniums before Muhammad was born, Allah was worshipped by the desert Bedouins of Arabia. The ancient Arabs associated Allah with the moon which shone clearly in the night sky of the vast and wild desert for most of the year. The reason why Allah was treated as a moon god is not difficult to understand. The Bedouin Arabs had a nomadic life. Living in a harsh, barren, desert-land, devoid of any perennial river for irrigation and incapable of sustaining an agricultural society, the Bedouin Arabs belonged to a pastoral society. They were half-starved anarchic tribes (Rodinson, 2002, p. 17). Their meagre livelihood grossly depended on grazing and tending cattle, conducting frequent raids and plunder on other tribes or on the passing caravans. Rodinson writes that the unruly Arabs vendetta is the pillar of Bedouin society (Rodinson, 2002, p. 14). The Bedouins during those days also had a life of unceasing cycles of plunder and revenge. Day-time travel was nearly impossible due to the unbearable heat of the sun. Most journeys were undertaken at night, on moonlight and beneath a sky bedecked with glittering stars. They marvelled at the exquisitely beautiful night sky with the moon at its centre of beauty. To them the emergence of the graceful moon was the appearance of the king of the night sky. That is why those indigent Bedouin Arabs were so intimately connected with the moon and its phases. Their lives were literally governed by the moon.

 
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To them, the moon was their life-sustainer. They based their primitive calendar on the movement of the moon; their religious and communal ceremonies were all arranged according to the moon's position and phases. No wonder, that those desert Arabs considered moon as their highest deity-Allah Taalaa-the supreme God. Professor of Arab History, the late, Phillip K. Hitti, writes that the moon-worshipping is principally a pastoral society and the sun-worshiping is chiefly an agricultural society (Hitti, 2002, p. 97). To the Arab Bedouin folks, moon was an absolute holy entity to be worshipped and revered with utmost zeal. After Muhammad forced, at the point of sword, Islam on these desert Arab indigents, these neo-Muslim Bedouins still continued with the practice of their age-old belief that their life was regulated by the moon.

Even today, we find that this obsession with the Arab Bedouin moon is strongly prevalent in Islam. Islam is intimately connected with the moon. All its rituals are based on the sighting of the moon or on the moon calendar. No matter how much Islam advocates that it shuns idolatry or Paganism, it has not shed off its past connection with Paganism and idolatry. The truth is: Islam is still symbolised with the moon, especially the crescent shape. Look at the spires of any mosques; you are bound to witness a dazzling crescent moon, sometimes along with a star as well. Later, I shall provide the historical reason why the star is also a symbol of Islam. To explicate further, look at the symbol of Red Cross in Islamic Paradises. It is, of course, a crescent-the symbol of Islam, which was the ubiquitous emblem of the moon god of the Arab Pagans. Even the flags of many Islamic countries show either the crescent moon and star together, or the crescent moon alone. Have a look at the national flags of a few Islamic states, such as: Algeria, Pakistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan (shows the full moon), Malaysia, Mauritania, Brunei, Turkey-etc. As for idolatry and stone-worshipping, please remember that the holiest object in Islam is the stone of Ka'ba. This stone (or stones-presumably three broken pieces of rocks, as reported by many historians) was also the stone of worship by the Pagan Arabs. Even Muhammad kissed hugged it in his chest it with deep reverence, Caliph Umar did the same and the Muslims are supposed to do this at least once in their life times.

We will now briefly review the history of Allah (see the stone-carved Pagan Allah here).

Historians believe that that the Arabian Allah originated in Syria. The Aramaeans inhabited Syria around 1300 BC. These Syrians used to worship passionately a few deities, the principal among them were the storm-god Hadad; the sky-god Alaha and the goddess Athargatis. The Syrians probably got Allah (in some form of image) from the Sumer in the ancient city of Babylon. According to many historians, Alaha is the Syrian name of Allah (Walker, 2004, p. 20). To them, Allah was a male God, the supreme God, who had three daughters, Allat, Uzza and Manat. The Nabateans, the first-born son of Ismail around Sinai Peninsula, were the first to bring Allah to Arabia from Syria (Walker, 2004, p. 22) The Nabateans probably worshipped Allah in other names as well, such as: Elh and Alh (ibid). Besides Allah, the Nabateans also brought from Syria Hubal, a huge male idol. This Hubal was later placed in the precinct of Ka'ba. Hubal was the greatest of all idols in and around Ka'ba. The massive statue of Hubal was made of red agnate in the form of a man with right hand broken off. The Quraysh received Hubal in this form from Khuzaymah ibn Mudrikah, a Meccan who brought it from Syria. Later, the Quraysh made for it a hand of gold. Hubal stood in front of Ka'ba. The Pagan Quraysh considered Ka'ba for Hubal only (Rodinson, 2002, p. 54). They used divination arrows to determine the legitimacy of a newly born child (Al-Kalbi, 1952, p. 23). Many historians believe that Hubal was the physical representation of Allah at Ka'ba. In his youth Muhammad helped with the ritualistic preparations being ardently made for the ceremonial installation of Hubal in Ka'ba (Walker, 2004, p. 42). Muhammad's biographer, Martin Lings, a Catholic convert to Islam, agrees that Hubal was from Syria (Lings, 1983, p. 5, 11). Arab Historians believe that the mighty Hubal was actually an ancient variation of Allah (Walker, 2004, p. 31). The word (Hubal) is derived from the Semitic word Hu, which means 'He' or 'He is' with the suffix El, which, of course, is another name for Allah. The deified name of Hubal was ceremoniously invoked by the Quraysh during war cry (ibid). Gradually, the concept of Allah, the God spread all around Arabia. An inscription found in south Arabia bears the name of Allah. Allah is Hallah in the Safa inscription. This was five centuries before Islam. The Arabs used to invoke Allah during times of special peril. This all-powerful Allah gradually became the supreme tribal deity of the Quraysh. Even the holy Qur'an confirms this in verses 6:109,6:136, 10:22, 31:22,and 31:29 (Hitti, 2002, pp. 100-101). Other names by which Allah was known are: the Babylonian and Assyrian Ilu, the Canaanite El, the Hebrew Elohim and Ilah of central Arabia (Walker, 2004, p. 420).

Another name of Allah was Wadd-the moon god which stood at the head of the Minaean Pantheon. Allat, Uzza and Manat were the three daughters of Allah for this Wadd (Hitti, 2002, pp. 97-98).

An additional version of Allah came from Hadramawt in south Arabia. There, Allah was known as Sin, the moon god. A famous south Arabian ancient city was Saba, where the queen of Saba or queen Bilqis ruled. The Sabaeans also worshipped Allah. People there called Allah as Almaqah (Hitti, 2002, p. 60). In the Qur'an we find the reference of queen of Saba in sura 27 (sura an-Naml), where this ancient biblical city is called Sheba and the queen Bilqis is referred simply as queen Sheba. Sabaean religion was based on planetary astral system in which the cult of the moon was prevalent. Invariably, the Sabaeans worshipped Allah as a moon God. However, unlike the Pagan Arabs, they had no clear picture of their Allah and thought Him to be a shapeless, male deity of supreme power. On this deity, Benjamin walker writes:

         A shadowy ineffable deity, Allah was not represented by any image, nor did he enjoy popular cult adoration, as did the lesser gods and goddesses. To distinguish him from the other gods, he was given the title of Allah Taala, 'God Most High' (Walker, 2004, p. 42).

Besides Allah and other Gods, the Nabateans also worshipped two other gods (probably lesser to Allah), namely; ar-Rahman and ar-Rahim. Both ar-Rahman and ar-Rahim were devoutly worshipped together in conjunction with honor and prestige. The Qur'an, surprisingly, retains the names of these two Pagan deities, though claiming that these two names belong to Allah. The very first sura of the Qur'an (sura Fatiha) mentions these two names, just during the beginning. Furthermore, sura 19 (sura Maryam) is dominated by the names of these two deities.

According to Professor Hitti, the Pagan Nabateans of north Arabia first introduced ar-Rahman and ar-Rahim probably from southern Syria. Later these two names of Pagan gods found their place in the pantheons of South Arabian temples (Hitti, 2002, p. 105). Muhammad's competitor, Maslama (or Musaylima) preached in the name of ar-Rahman, the south Arabian Allah (Rodinson, 2002, p. 67, 119). This could probably be the reason why Muhammad, later abandoned ar-Rahman and adopted the Allah of the Meccan Pagans as his only God.

According to Arab historians, Petra (north Arabia, close to Syria, the home of the Nabateans), had a kind of Ka'ba with Dushara (Dusares), worshipped under the form of a black rectangular stone, at the head of the pantheon (Hitti, 2002, p. 72).

This very short history of Allah is not complete without Jehovah (Yahwa), the Allah of Moses (read the description of Jehovah depicted in a German coin). Islam claims Moses worshipped the same Allah as the Muslims. If the Qur'an is true then simple logic says: Jehovah = Allah.
As per historical records, Jehovah was a desert Allah, simple and austere. His abode was a tent (Hitti, 2002, p. 40). Although the Jews admit that Jehovah is their Lord, the Hebrew Allah, they avoid every mention of it. Jehovah also means: "The great and terrible", and that is the reason why the Jews refrain from mentioning the name Jehovah (Hughes, 1994, p. 226). Instead, Rabb-Lord, stands in the relative position of the Jehovah (Ibid, p. 141). So, as far as the Qur'an goes, if Jehovah is Allah then He must be the terrible Allah of the Jews.

As for the Jewish Rabb, Muhammad had his version too: his Allah is also known as ar-Rab-the Lord, the Sustainer, the Supreme: 'Allah is my Lord and your Lord (3:51)'; 'Our Lord (Rabb) is the Lord (Rabb) of the heavens and the earth (18:14); occupies the place of Hebrew Jehovah (Hughes, 1994, p. 531).

The Bedouin Arabs' primary concern was with the moon Allah, their supreme deity and His daughters, Allat, Uzza and Manat. As explicated before, the moon is the central religious theme in a pastoral society. The illiterate, half-starved and ill-informed Bedouin Arabs associated the moon with strength, vitality, force, power and everything to do with masculinity. As such, the moon (and Allah) was really a male God; there should be very little doubt on this (you will read more on this later). So, how about the sun? Had the sun any position as god in the Pagan society? The answer is yes. The Bedouins also worshipped a sun god. Its name was Baal. Curiously, the Syrians and the Phoenicians also worshipped Baal-Lord, an idol. It is believed that Baal was worshipped in the days of Prophet Elisha (Hughes, 1004, p. 35). The Egyptians adopted Baal as their Lord (or sun Allah). Baal (see Baal here) was represented as a man with pointed beard and with horned helmet. He was a god of war, sky, storm, fertility and good harvest. In Qur'an we find the mention of Baal when Prophet Elias admonished his people for worshipping Baal (the sun Allah), instead of the moon Allah, the best of creators (37:125). A contradictory version of the sun god is that the sun was a goddess, called Shams (Rodinson, 2002, p. 23). Oddly, there is a sura in the Qur'an (sura 91, a Meccan sura) whose title is Shams or the Sun. Muhammad clearly preferred Shams to Baal, the Egyptian sun god. Not surprisingly though, there is also a sura in the Qur'an titled Qamar or the moon (sura 54, a Meccan sura).

Why Muhammad had a profound dislike for the sun Allah, Baal? The answer is quite simple. The sun is the principal source of an agricultural society. Therefore, it is natural that an agricultural society will adopt the sun Allah, Baal as its principal deity. That was why, Egypt, an agrarian society adopted Baal. Muhammad, who belonged to a pastoral society, was not interested in agriculture (more on this later)-so, why should he bother about Baal? Thus, Baal, the sun Allah was not that popular in Muhammad's Arabia.

Clearly, the Meccan Pagans were very familiar with their moon Allah (read more on this below). They were so used to their moon Allah that they practiced to divide their offerings of crops to Allah and other idols, like: Ammanas in the Khaulan country (6.136) (ibn Ishaq, 2001, p. 37). It was a customary religious system for the Pagan Arabs that they had practiced for generations. Then Muhammad started preaching, exhorting the Meccan Quraysh to worship Allah only (kind of only Allah's monotheism). Muhammad had now his own version of Allah, which the Pagan Arabs found very confusing and distressing. He started admonishing them for sharing their crop with other deities besides Allah, Muhammad's variety of Allah, to be specific. But the Meccan Quraysh were tolerant. They let Muhammad preach whatever he wished. The trouble came when Muhammad wanted to hit the Quraysh's principal source of revenue, the pilgrimage and the tourism which were closely connected with the visit of their pantheon of many gods and goddesses. The Meccan Pagans even had the images of Abraham, Jesus and Mary-just to attract Christian and Jewish tourists. During Muhammad's time, according to Phillip Hitti, the eminent Arab historian, Mecca had a colony of Abyssinian Christians (Hitti, 2002, p. 106).

Thus Mecca pilgrimage-tourism was a great source of income (Ibid, p. 64). In the beginning, the Meccan Pagans did not want to disrupt severely their flourishing tourism's attractiveness by creating anarchy with Muhammad's followers. Despite Muhammad's harangues and tirades they left him alone. Even the eminent historian al-Tabari admits that Muhammad had very little sufferings from the Meccan Pagans. According to Tabari, Muhammad's followers were largely young men, some of whom were sons and younger brothers of the leading merchants. Muhammad had very little suffering in the hands of the Quraysh, apart from little annoyance. Abu Talib's (Muhammad's uncle) protection had saved Muhammad from personal harassment (Tabari, 1988, p. 6.43).

The main reason for the opposition of Muhammad was the requirement of generosity which would diminish the profit of the greedy Meccan merchants. These merchants also felt that Muhammad was probably threatening their political control of the Meccan affairs. The Quraysh were not particularly hostile to Muhammad until he mentioned their idols. In particular, the rejection of Allat, one of the daughters of Allah, affected the business of Taif merchants (Ibid, pp. 6.42, 43).


The daughters of Allah

We read that the moon Allah was a male deity. Did this Allah have a wife or a female partner?

This question will infuriate many diehard believers of Islam. But historical evidences, especially epigraphical proof is too compelling to reject. From the cuneiform writings of the Sumerian (of Babylon), it stands out that Allah did have a consort (a wife, perhaps) and her name was Lilith. The conjecture is that Allat was the product of union of Allah and Lilith. Allat resembled Lilith, her mother, who is depicted in the Sumerian epigraphs with two huge breasts and a gigantic vulva. Phillip Hitti, in his authoritative book, History of the Arabs shows the image of Allat in a bronze coin of the Nabateans (Hitti, 2002, p. 86). This image of Allat has the striking resemblance of the goddess Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of learning. It is also possible that the other two daughters of Allah; namely; Uzza and Manat were from Lilith, or possibly from other concubines of Allah. These goddesses are referred to in the Qur'an as the daughters (Satanic verses, 53:19-20) of Allah. When Muhammad was utterly disappointed with the meager success of his mission, he sought reconciliation with the Pagan Quraysh. He extolled these three daughters of Allah and wanted their exalted blessing. However, Muhammad was quick to recognize his folly and claimed that all Prophets, at times, were inspired by the Satan. Then he cancelled those verses from the Qur'an. Those verses were 15:19-23. Let us read the verses, as they are currently in the Qur'an:

         015.019
YUSUFALI: And the earth We have spread out (like a carpet); set thereon mountains firm and immovable; and produced therein all kinds of things in due balance.
015.020
YUSUFALI: And We have provided therein means of subsistence,- for you and for those for whose sustenance ye are not responsible.
015.021
YUSUFALI: And there is not a thing but its (sources and) treasures (inexhaustible) are with Us; but We only send down thereof in due and ascertainable measures.
015.022
YUSUFALI: And We send the fecundating winds, then cause the rain to descend from the sky, therewith providing you with water (in abundance), though ye are not the guardians of its stores.
015.023
YUSUFALI: And verily, it is We Who give life, and Who give death: it is We Who remain inheritors (after all else passes away).

We might wonder: these verses have nothing to do with Allat, Uzza or Manat. How could they be called satanic verses? The answer to this enigma is that these are the latest verses which Muhammad had implanted in the Qur'an after Allah rebuked him for being under the influence of Satan. Muhammad duly complied with Allah's instruction. He replaced the original verses with these new verses. So what were the original verses?-we might be curious to know.

According to William Montgomery Watt, one of the most distinguished writers of Muhammad's biography and Islamic history, the original verses of 15:19-23 ran thus (Watt, 1999, p.21; also see ibn Ishaq, 2001, pp. 165-166):

Have you considered Allat and al-'Uzza
And Manat, the third, the other?
Those are the swans exalted;
Their intercession is expected;
Their likes are not neglected.

Hisham al-Kalbi, the author, of Kitab al-Asnam (The Book of Idols), writes about these three daughters of Allah:

Allat: She stood in al-Taif. She was more recent than Manah. She was a cubic rock. 'Attab ibn Malik of the Thaqif was her keeper. They built an edifice over her. The Quraysh and all Arabs used to worship her and name their children after her. She stood on the left side of the present mosque at Taif. Verse 53:19 mentions her. Mughirah ibn Shu'bab destroyed her and burnt her temple to the ground.

Ibn-Hajar, swearing by Allah said, "By Allat and 'Uzza and those who in them believe, and by Allah verily He is greater than both" (ibn al-Kalbi, 1952, p. 15).

Uzza: Uzza is more recent than Allat or Manah. The Arabs named their children after her.
Zilim ibn As'ad introduced al-Uzza. She was situated in a valley in Nakhlat called Hurad-to the right of the road from Mecca to al-Iraq, above Dhat-Irq. Zilim built a house over her calling it Buss. People received divine messages there. Children were named-Abd-al-Uzza. She was the greatest among the Quraysh. They used to seek her favors through sacrifice. Muhammad had offered a sacrifice, a white sheep to al-Uzza. The Quraysh circumambulated Ka'ba saying:

By Allat and al-Uzza,
And Manah, the third idol besides
Verily they are the most exalted females
Whose intercession is sought.

These verses were abrogated and replaced by verses 53:19-20 and 17:75-76.
Allat, al-Uzza and Manah were called the daughters of Allah.

Al-Uzza had a place of sacrifice called al-Ghabghab. Arabs used to sacrifice cattle there. After sacrifice they used to divide the meat among those present at the ceremony. The Quraysh venerated her above all other idols (ibn al-Kalbi, 1952, p. 17).

Having watched a Television documentary on the ruins of Arabia Petra, situated at north-western Saudi Arabia, it is my conjecture that the Meccan goddess Uzza probably resembled Kali, the Hindu goddess of destruction.

Manah (alternative spelling of Manat): It was the most ancient idol. The Arabs named their children after it. She was at Qudayd, between Medina and Mecca. They used to sacrifice before her-particularly Aws and Khazraj as well as the inhabitants of Medina and Mecca. At the end of pilgrimage, when about to return home, people would set out to the place of Manah, shave their heads and stay there for a while. The pilgrimage was not complete until they visited Manah.
Manah is mentioned in 53:20. She was the goddess of the Hudhayl and the Khuza'ah. Ali demolished her, took all her treasures and took them to Muhammad-two swords-presented to Manah by al-Harith ibn Abi-Shamir al-Ghaassan, the king of Ghassan. These swords were called Mikhdam and Rasub. Muhammad gave these two swords to Ali. Dhu-al-Faqr was one of these swords. It was the sword of Ali. However, another version of this destruction story says that Ali found these two swords in the temple of al-Fals, the idol of Tayyi (ibn al-Kalbi, 1952, pp. 13-14).
Here are a few more comments on the three daughters of Allah: Allat, Uzza and Manat.
Allat was the goddess of war, Uzza, the goddess of sacrifice and Manat, the goddess of destiny or fate (Walker, 2004, p. 45).
Allat was connected with the moon, Uzza with the planet Venus and Manat with the star Sirius (Ibid, p. 46).
The above information will clarify why Islam's symbol is the crescent and a star. Clearly, Paganism in Islam is still inherent, if we have to interpret these symbols: Crescent-for Allah and the star (Venus)-for His daughter Uzza.The third daughter of Allah, Manat is represented by the star Sirius. Even the Qur'an says that Allah is the Lord of the Alpha Sirius. Here is the Qur'anic verse on the star Alpha Sirius (Manat). Needless to say, the Islamist scholars have a different version of interpretation of these symbolism of Islam (Islam is supposed to be devoid of any symbolism, whatsoever)-the star for five prayers, crescent, beginning of the new moon-signifying the growth of Islam. I am yet to read any verses in the Qur'an and any ahadith which support this interpretation of the crescent and the star.
Let us read what the Qur'an says.

         God is the Lord of the galaxies (Alpha Sirius, the brightest star visible from earth)-53:49
YUSUFALI: That He is the Lord of Sirius (the Mighty Star);
PICKTHAL: And that He it is Who is the Lord of Sirius;
SHAKIR: And that He is the Lord of the Sirius; [Q 053.049]

In a foot note on this verse, Abdullah Yusuf Ali writes:

The tenth aphorism refers to a mighty phenomenon of nature, the magnificent star Sirius, which is such a prominent object in the skies, in the early part of the solar year, say from January to April. It is the brightest star in the firmament and its bluish light causes wonder and terror in Pagan minds. The Pagan Arabs worshipped it as a divinity. But God is the Lord, Creator and Cherisher, of the most magnificent part of creation, and worship is due Him alone (Ali, 1983, p. 1450, foot note 5119).

The learned Abdullah Yususf Ali probably wanted to avoid the embarrassing truth. Nowhere in the Arab history tell us that the Meccans were scared of the appearance of the star Sirius. They always thought of Sirius as a goddess, just as they thought of the moon as the god Allah. It was Muhammad who wanted to twist their long-held belief.

In this verse, Allah clearly says that He is the Lord of Sirius, which, according to the Sumerian epigraph, is none but Manat, one of the daughters of Allah.
The goddesses of the 'satanic' verses were located at Taif, Nakhla and at al-Mushallal, very close to Mecca (Tabari, 1988, p. 6.42).

Allat, identified by Herodotus with Aphrodite Urania, was the chief female deity. That is, Allat was the Arabic version of the Greek goddess Aphrodite Urania (Hitti, 2002, p. 72).
Al-Uzza was a Greek Aphrodite (Ibid, .p. 79).

Al-Uzza was the counterpart of the Greek goddess Aphrodite. A son of al-Harith was offered as a sacrifice to al-Uzza. Ten years later, al-Harith took his revenge and slew his Lakhmid enemy in a battle in the district of Qinnasrin. This battle is known as the "Day of Halimah" of Arabic tradition. Halimah was the daughter of al-Harith, who, before the battle, perfumed with her own hands the hundred Ghassanid champions ready for death and clad them in shrouds of white linen in addition to coats of mail (suicide squad?) (Ibid). Note: the italicized words are mine.

Al-Lat was in Taif. Muhammad offered a sacrifice to al-Uzza. Al-Uzza, the mightiest was Venus, the morning star. Her sanctuary consisted of three trees. Human sacrifice characterized her cult. Al-Rahman (the compassionate), RHM occurs as the name of a deity in pre-Islamic Sabaean inscription. Shirk-south Arabia inscription, worship of one Supreme Being with who other minor deities were associated (Ibid, p. 99).

Manah was the goddess of fate. She was in a sanctuary of black stone in Qusayd on the road between Mecca and Yathrib. Still today the Arabs believe in the power of her. Hubal was the chief deity of Ka'ba in human form. Hubal was imported from Mesopotamia (Ibid, p. 100).

Did Allah have a son? Of course, the Christians do believe this. We are fully aware of the Islam's unshakable stand that Allah never had a son. How far this is true? Let us read the following verses from the Qur'an.

Mary guarded her chastity (sexual organ); Allah breathed into her His spirit (Ruh) and thus Allah made her and her son (Jesus is Allah's spirit?) a sign for all people...21:91.

Mary was the daughter of Imran; she guarded her chastity (sexual organ) and was a virgin before she became pregnant through Allah; Allah breathed His spirit into Mary's body...66:12.

Those verses refer to the birth of Jesus by a Virgin Mary. A representative of Allah, in the shape of a man (Archangel, possibly, Gabriel), met Mary when she was living alone in a temple. This representative of Allah told Mary that he had with him the Ruh or the 'spirit' (in simple language this could mean the Seed of Allah) to impregnate her with. Then this man (Archangel Gabriel) blew through the upper garment of Mary to let this Seed of Allah (Ruh) travel all the way to her uterus and caused her the pregnancy.

We will surely find this interpretation impossible to believe.

Let us read what the most celebrated scholar of the Qur'an, ibn Kathir says on this type of induced pregnancy (artificial insemination?).

On the interpretation of verse 21:91, ibn Kathir writes:

`Isa and Maryam the True Believer
Here Allah mentions the story of Maryam and her son `Isa, just after mentioning Zakariyya and his son Yahya, may peace be upon them all. He mentions the story of Zakariyya first, followed by the story of Maryam because the one is connected to the other. The former is the story of a child being born to an old man of advanced years, from an old woman who had been barren and had never given birth when she was younger. Then Allah mentions the story of Maryam which is even more wondrous, for in this case a child was born from a female without (the involvement of) a male. These stories also appear in Surah Al `Imran and in Surah Maryam. Here Allah mentions the story of Zakariyya and follows it with the story of Maryam, where He says:

[وَالَّتِى أَحْصَنَتْ فَرْجَهَا]

                     (And she who guarded her chastity,) means, Maryam (peace be upon her). This is like the Ayah in Surah At-Tahrim:

[وَمَرْيَمَ ابْنَةَ عِمْرَانَ الَّتِى أَحْصَنَتْ فَرْجَهَا فَنَفَخْنَا فِيهِ مِن رُّوحِنَا]

                     (And Maryam, the daughter of `Imran who guarded her chastity. And We breathed into it [her garment] through Our Ruh) [66:12].

[وَجَعَلْنَـهَا وَابْنَهَآ ءَايَةً لِّلْعَـلَمِينَ]

                     (and We made her and her son a sign for the nations. ) means, evidence that Allah is able to do all things and that He creates whatever He wills; verily, His command, when He intends a thing, is only that He says to it, "Be'' -- and it is! This is like the Ayah:

[وَلِنَجْعَلَهُ ءَايَةً لِّلْنَّاسِ]

                     (And (We wish) to appoint him as a sign to mankind) [19:21]

[إِنَّ هَـذِهِ أُمَّتُكُمْ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً وَأَنَاْ رَبُّكُمْ فَاعْبُدُونِ - وَتَقَطَّعُواْ أَمْرَهُمْ بَيْنَهُمْ كُلٌّ إِلَيْنَا رَجِعُونَ - فَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِنَ الصَّـلِحَـتِ وَهُوَ مُؤْمِنٌ فَلاَ كُفْرَانَ لِسَعْيِهِ وَإِنَّا لَهُ كَـتِبُونَ

The above interpretation means that the angel (Gabriel) implanted the seed (Ruh) of Allah inside the womb of Mary. It might seem incredible but let us read ibn Kathir 's interpretation of verse 66:12.

                     (And Maryam, the daughter of `Imran who guarded her chastity (private part).) meaning, who protected and purified her honor, by being chaste and free of immorality,

[فَنَفَخْنَا فِيهِ مِن رُّوحِنَا]

                     (And We breathed into it (private part) through Our Ruh,) meaning, through the angel Jibril. Allah sent the angel Jibril to Maryam, and he came to her in the shape of a man in every respect. Allah commanded him to blow into a gap of her garment and that breath went into her womb through her private part; this is how `Isa was conceived. This is why Allah said here,

[فَنَفَخْنَا فِيهِ مِن رُّوحِنَا وَصَدَّقَتْ بِكَلِمَـتِ رَبَّهَا وَكُتُبِهِ]

                     (And We breathed into it through Our Ruh, and she testified to the truth of her Lords Kalimat, and His Kutub,) meaning His decree and His legislation.

[وَكَانَتْ مِنَ الْقَـنِتِينَ]

Even ibn Kathir admits that Jesus carried Allah's seed (sperm or Ruh?). So why Islam must reject the Christians' assertion that Jesus was, after all, the son of Allah (or God)? Seems the Christians are correct in asserting Jesus is the son of Allah.
Here ends the brief history of Allah. In a later part, you will learn more about Allah's abilities with obstetrics and gynecology.
 

Allah frequently changes His residence
From the very short history of Allah narrated above, we can draw the following conclusions about different versions of Allah. Here is a short list of Allahs' (plural!) and their probable places of residences.

The Sumerian Allah: (Sumer, Babylon; and then Mecca).
The Alaha Allah: (Syria, then Mecca).
The Elh Allah: (Syria, then Mecca).
The Ilah Allah: (Syria, then Mecca).
The moon Allah: (south Arabia, then Mecca).
The sun Allah (Baal): (Egypt, then probably Mecca).
The Hubal Allah: (Syria, then Ka'ba, Mecca).
The Jehovah Allah: (probably, Palestine, then Mecca).
Elohim Allah: (central Arabia, then Mecca).
Ila Allah : (central Arabia, then Mecca).
The ar-Rahman Allah: (north Arabia, south Arabia, then Mecca).
The ar-Rahim Allah: (Yemen, then Mecca).
Sin Allah: (Hadramawt, then Mecca).
Hallah Allah: (Syria, then Mecca).
Ilu Allah: (Babylon, Syria and then Mecca).
El Allah: (Palestine, then Mecca).
Wadd Allah: (Minaean, then Mecca).
Almaqah Allah: (City of Saba, then Mecca).
Allah Taa'la, the most high Allah: (Ka'ba, Mecca).

We might be amazed at so many different versions of Allah. But hold on. Does not the Qur'an say that Allah has many names? If fact, the Islamic scholars insist that Allah has ninety-nine names (including Allah, this makes it a century, to be precise). Although we do not find any verses in the Qur'an which specifically spells out this number (ninety-nine), we should not be surprised at so many names (in reality, different versions) of Allah. The only problem is: if we read the Qur'an carefully, cover to cover, several times, we might find many more names of Allah than the ninety-nine as claimed by the Islamist scholars. We should not be amazed if we note that there are around three hundred (yes, three hundred) descriptions of Allah-to be exact.

What should be most startling is that all those Allahs (plural!) lived at different locations but only within the boundaries of Arabia, Syria, Palestine, Mesopotamia, Babylonia and Iraq. Why should Allah choose only these places (Arab lands, to say it bluntly) to live when the entire universe is His? This question is not hard to answer when we figure out the depth of geographical knowledge of those ancient Arabs, Sumerians and Babylonians. The fascinating point is: having lived in those territories for many millenniums, Allah suddenly changed His mind with the birth of Muhammad, the Prophet of Islam. Islam claims that Allah made Ka'ba 2 000 years before He created Adam (Ghazali, 1993, p. 1.190). There is evidence to suggest that Allah did, at least for a while, live in Mecca. An inscription found during the digging of Ka'ba foundation by Muhammad's grandfather Abdal Muttalib read, "I am Allah, the Lord of Bakka-" ( ibn Ishaq, 2001, p. 85).

Having travelled through all those desert lands, finally, when Allah learned about the birth of Muhammad, He determined to settle permanently in Mecca, at Ka'ba, to be specific. This should not surprise anyone. Because the other name of Ka'ba is Bait Allah (Allah's residence).
Therefore, it will be quite correct to say that Allah does have a permanent physical abode (at least a temporary one) on earth, and it is Ka'ba. Every year millions of Muslims travel to Ka'ba just for this reason-to meet Allah in person, in the Ka'ba stone.

Here are a few verses from the Qur'an which confirm that Allah decided finally to permanently settle in Mecca when Muhammad was in Mecca.

During Muhammad's time in Mecca, Allah lived in Mecca; He was the Lord of Mecca; Muhammad is commanded to serve the Lord of the city (of Mecca) and to be of those who submit to Islam-27:91.

The Quraysh should adore Allah for giving them the security and importance of Ka'ba (i.e., K'aba is the abode of Allah)...106:1-3.

Ka'ba is the house of Allah; visit Allah there at any time-pilgrimage or not...2:158.

Readers should understand that here we are talking of Muhammad's Allah. The Pagans of Arabia, for a long time before Muhammad started his preaching, knew that Allah, along with His consorts, daughters and companions lived in Mecca. What they could not accept was Muhammad's complete rejection of the associates of Allah, the numerous idols which the Pagans believed interceded with Allah. Thus, they betook Muhammad's Allah as a new brand of God which they rejected out of hand.

Allah lived in a cave during Moses' time

So, where precisely Allah lived before He sent Muhammad to Mecca? Since Arabia in particular and the Middle East in general, are mountainous, we should not be surprised that Allah loves mountains, especially the mountains of Arabia and its neighbouring areas. No wonder, we find many verses in the Qur'an which say that Muhammad's Allah indeed lived in caves, before Muhammad was born. Here are a few verses from the Qur'an.

When Moses was close to the fire, a voice praised Allah and those surrounding the fire-27:8.

Muhammad was not present when Allah gave the command to Moses on the western side of the Mountain-28:44.

Allah is a country-destroyer; He loves to dwell in cities

Allah always has a great fascination for large cities like Mecca. He cares very little about rural or suburban areas. Nowhere in the Qur'an do we find examples that He ever cared for the rural folks. This is understandable when we realise that Allah does actually reside in a metropolitan city such as Mecca. This is the birth-place of Muhammad, Allah's greatest friend and compatriot. Naturally, Allah would never like to depart from this location. Allah's interest in huge cities never ends. Some times He likes to destroy and redeem big cities. Here are some sample verses from the Qur'an which tell us that Allah sends messengers and warners only to cities.

Allah will not destroy a population until an apostle is sent to a major city (Allah sends His messenger only to a major town) as a warner-28:59.

Allah sent an Arabic Qur'an to Muhammad to warn the people in the neighbourhood of the city of Mecca (Islam is only for the Meccans, the city dwellers)...42:7.

Even today, Allah's deep interest in gigantic cities lives on. That is why he sends His soldiers to destroy mega cities like New York, London, Madrid, Istanbul, Delhi, Baransi, Dhaka, Cairo-and so on to redeem their inhabitants from their calumnies and to fully Islamise these cities.

Allah has competitors-other creators compete with Him

Islam preaches that Allah is the only owner of the universe; He has no want (31:26), no penury and no competitors. Incredibly though, we read in the Qur'an that Allah does have competitors. In verse 23:14 Allah says that He is one of the best of creators. Allah used this verse to convince the Pagan Arabs that there could be no comparisons between Allah and other creators. Let us read the verse:

YUSUFALI: Then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood; then of that clot We made a (foetus) lump; then we made out of that lump bones and clothed the bones with flesh; then we developed out of it another creature. So blessed be Allah, the best to create!
PICKTHAL: Then fashioned We the drop a clot, then fashioned We the clot a little lump, then fashioned We the little lump bones, then clothed the bones with flesh, and then produced it as another creation. So blessed be Allah, the Best of creators!
SHAKIR: Then We made the seed a clot, then We made the clot a lump of flesh, then We made (in) the lump of flesh bones, then We clothed the bones with flesh, then We caused it to grow into another creation, so blessed be Allah, the best of the creators. [023.014]

I included three translations for the readers to judge that these three translations indicate the same meaning; that is, Allah does compete with His competitors.

Here is another verse to confirm that we get the correct meaning. In this verse Allah admonished the Baal worshippers. This is simply because Baal, the sun Allah of the Egyptians competed with the moon Allah of Arabia.

YUSUFALI: "Will ye call upon Baal and forsake the Best of Creators,-
PICKTHAL: Will ye cry unto Baal and forsake the Best of creators,
SHAKIR: What! do you call upon Ba'l and forsake the best of the creators, [037.125]

Allah is a King

Muhammad always hated kings and rulers. When the Pagans told Muhammad that his Allah is not as powerful as Tubba, the title of the Himyarite king (Hitti, 2002, p. 60) Muhammad was furious. He asserted that his Allah was far more powerful and mightier than the Tubba of the Himyarite , the south Arabian king. His argument was that His Allah was not only the King of kings, but that Allah was the King of the entire universe. He said Allah is the Lord of the Kingdom, Malikul-Mulk (Hughes, 1994, p. 312).

Allah confirmed Muhammad's declaration in verse 67:1.

YUSUFALI: Blessed be He in Whose hands is Dominion; and He over all things hath Power;- [067.001]

Allah is a Bachelor

The brief history of Allah demonstrated with ample epigraphic evidences that Allah had consort/s and children. This was the version of moon Allah that the Bedouin Arabs believed firmly. But Muhammad wanted to stand out from the crowd Pagans. So he claimed that Allah never had any wives or children. In essence, his claim meant that Allah is a perpetual bachelor.

Let us read verse 2:116.

YUSUFALI: They say: "Allah hath begotten a son" :Glory be to Him.-Nay, to Him belongs all that is in the heavens and on earth: everything renders worship to Him. [002.116]

Dr Muhammad Taqiuddin al-Hilai and Dr Muhammad Muhsin Khan, the translators of The Noble Qur'an comment on this verse by quoting this hadith from Sahih Bukhari.

Volume 6, Book 60, Number 9: Narrated Ibn Abbas:
The Prophet said, "Allah said, 'The son of Adam tells a lie against me though he has no right to do so, and he abuses Me though he has no right to do so. As for his telling a lie against Me, it is that he claims that I cannot recreate him as I created him before; and as for his abusing Me, it is his statement that I have offspring. No! Glorified be Me! I am far from taking a wife or offspring.' "

This hadith confirms Muhammad's claim that Allah is a Bachelor, void of wives, concubines or

children.

Here are a few more verses from the Qur'an which tell us that Muhammad's Allah prefers to remain wifeless and childless.

Allah neither has a son nor a daughter; He has no preference for daughter-37:153-154.
If Allah had a son, Muhammad would still be the first to believe in Him and refute the claim that Allah has a son...43:81.
It is not true that humans have sons and Allah has only daughters...53:21.

Allah bestowed children to Satan but not to Himself

Though Muhammad's Allah prefers to remain a Bachelor, He has no qualm to bestow his implacable foe, Satan, with children-plenty of them. Here is a verse from the Qur'an in which Allah confirms his bequeath of children to Satan.

Do not follow the progeny (Satan has children or offspring) of Satan...18:50.

Allah does not have the personality of a weak female, He is a male.

Even when Allah is a Bachelor He still prefers male children-if He would ever like to have them. Allah considers females to be weak and, therefore would not like to be associated with anything resembling a female character. Here is verse 43:18 in which Allah tells us that He would never like to have daughters.

The weak personality of females cannot be associated with Allah; Allah does not like daughters...43:18.

Allah has His signs (insignia) on earth: they are Safwa and Marwa

Here are a few ahadith which say that Allah does have symbols (just like the Pagan idols).

The early Muslims were reluctant to run between Safwa and Marwa like the Pagans did; but Allah decreed that Safwa and Marwa were two sacred places (2:158)-(Sahih Bukhari, 2.26.706,710).

Muhammad wanted to continue with the Pagan tradition, so Allah revealed (2:158) that Safa and Marwa were two symbols of Allah. So it is all right to ambulate (Tawaf) between them- (Sahih Bukhari, 6.60.22).

When the Ghassan asked Muhammad about circumambulation between Safa and Marwa Allah revealed, "Verily al-Safa' and al-Marwa are among the Signs of Allah"- (Sahih Muslim, 7.2927, 2928).

Not only that Safwa and Marwa, the two mountains in Mecca are two physical symbols of Allah, the moon and the sun are also Allah's symbols. The Pagans had been correct al along, Muhammad confirmed. Let us read this hadith.

The Sun and the Moon are the two signs of Allah; they do not prostrate because of someone's death- (Sahih Bukhari, 4.54.424, 426).

Circumambulation, running between Safwa and Marwa, and casting stones at the pillars are for the remembrance of Allah- (Sunaan Abu Dawud 2.10.1883).

The online version of Sunaan Abu Dawud does not contain this hadith. So I shall quote this hadith from the print version of Sunaan Abu Dawud.

Sunaan Abu Dawud, vol.ii, Book 7, hadith number 1883:
'Aishah reported the Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) as saying: Going round the House of (the Ka'ba), running between al-safa' and lapidation of the pillars are meant for the remembrance of Allah.

Allah will give tongue and eyes to Ka'ba

The Islamists will find it extremely tough to digest what is written in the above caption. But a careful study of the most authentic sources of Islam reveal a great secret-Islam is deeply mired in idolatry. As written before, no matter how much Muhammad had tried, he could not, shake out his Pagan origin. He believed in the stones having life, in the speaking powers of inanimate objects and in the ability of some rocks (i.e. the rocks of Ka'ba) to become alive, with hands and eyes.

The most eminent Islamic scholar, Imam Ghazali (many Muslims consider his writings as next to the Qur'an and ahadith) wrote that the Blackstone (of Ka'ba) is a jewel from Paradise. It will be raised on the resurrection day. It will have two eyes and one tongue with which it will speak. It will bear witness for everyone who kissed it and testified its truth (Ghazali, 1993, p. 1.190).

A hadith in Ibn Majah confirms Ghazali's claims.

Here is the hadith.
Ka'ba will have Allah's eyes ..(ibn Majah, 4.2944).

Please note that Sunaan ibn Majah is not available online. I am quoting from the print version of this hadith book.

Sunaan ibn Majah,Vol.IV,Hadith number 2944:
Sa'd b. Jubair (Allah be pleased with him) is reported to have said, "I heard Ibn 'Abbas (Allah be pleased with him) saying that Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings Allah be upon him) said, "This Stone must come on the Day of Resurrection and it will have two eyes to see with and a tongue to talk with bearing witness for him who caressed it with Truth (Islam)."

Not only that Muhammad was a believer in the supernatural power of restoring the power of life to Ka'ba stones, he also declared that touching Ka'ba stones is akin to touching the Hands of Allah. And to confirm that what he said was an absolute truth, he kissed the stones of Ka'ba.

Here are two ahadith from Sunaan ibn Majah.
Please note that this hadith is quite lengthy. I shall quote only the relevant section. Interested readers are requested to read the full hadith from the reference/bibliography.

Touching Ka'ba is touching hands of Allah (Ibn Majah, 4.2957).

Sunaan Ibn Majah, Vol IV, Hadith number 2957:
This is a hadith narrated by Ibn Hisham
-When we reached Rukn Aswad (the Black Stone) he said, "O Abu Muhammad, "What (command) has reached you regarding this (sic)
Black Stones?" Ata' said: Abu Huraira (Allah be pleased with him) related to me that he heard Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) saying, "He who touches it in fact touches the Hand of the Merciful (Allah)."-

Here is another hadith from Ibn Majah.

Muhammad caressed and hugged the Ka'ba stone- (Ibn Majah, 4.2962).

Sunaan Ibn Majah, Vol IV, Hadith number 2962:
'Umar b. Shu'aib (Allah be pleased with him) reported his father to have said on his grandfather's authority, "I performed tawaf alongwith (sic) 'Abdullah b. 'Amir (Allah be pleased with him): As we concluded our seven circuits (around the Ka'ba), we offered two rak'ats (prayer) at the back of Ka'ba. I said, "Do we not seek refuge from Allah against the Hell-Fire?" He replied, "I seek refuge from Allah against the Fire." He (the narrator) said, "Then he went and caressed the Black Stone. Then he stood between the Black Stone and the Gate and pressed his bosom, his hands and his cheek against it. He then said, "I saw Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) doing that."

Similar ahadith are found in Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim. Readers are requested to consult online version the following ahadith.

Umar kissed the Ka'ba stone because Muhammad did it likewise... (Sahih Bukhari, 2.26.667, 675, 679, 680).
Muhammad kissed the corner of the black stone in Ka'ba... (Sahih Bukhari, 2.26.673).

Muhammad kissed the black stone in Mecca; background to 2:199---'then hasten on from where the people hasten----'- (Sahih Muslim, 7.2806, 2807).

Muhammad touched the corner of Ka'ba and then kissed his hand- (Sahih Muslim, 7.2910).

Umar kissed the black stone of Ka'ba because Muhammad did so- (Sahih Muslim, 7.2912, 2913, 2914, 2915).

Incredible though it might sound, even today, the single most revered object in Islam is a piece of stone-the stone of Ka'ba. Faithful Muslims turn towards it every day-five times, to worship-in the name of Allah. This was exactly what the Pagan Arabs did-worship stones and idols.

The Pagans of Mecca knew Allah very well.

We learned before that the concept of one-moon Allah was nothing new to the Pagans of Mecca. They were absolutely familiar with this all-powerful, almighty, benevolent (at times) and utterly destructive (at times) nature of Allah. When the Islamist scholars talk about Allah, they would like to give the impression that Allah was something unique that Muhammad alone knew about. What the Pagans of Mecca did not like about Muhammad was that he imposed on the easy-going, secular-minded gullible Pagans his own idea about this powerful moon deity, Allah. With his invention of a new Allah, Muhammad tried to ridicule the Allah these Pagans knew about for millenniums. They used to name their children with Allah's name. Even Muhammad's father's name was Abd Allah. Here are a few comments from eminent scholars and from the primary sources of Islam which irrefutably prove that the Pagans were ever cognisant about Allah, that Muhammad simply confused those Meccans.

Muhammad did not invent the concept of the unity of Allah; this concept was not new-38:5.
Many Pagans had heard the story of resurrection from past tales; it was nothing new to them-23:83.
Ask the unbelievers to whom belongs the earth and they will answer it is Allah...23:84-85.
Ask the unbelievers under whose hand is the sovereignty and against whom there is no protector and they will answer it is Allah; so how could they deceive and turn away from Allah-23:88-89.
The Pagans thought that the angels were females and they (the angels) are the daughters of Allah; Allah vehemently rejects this idea-37:149-150.
The unbelievers do agree that almighty Allah created the universe-43:9.
The Pagans thought that it was ar-Rahman's (Allah) wish that they should worship the partners of ar-Rahman (Allah)-43:20.
If the unbelievers accept Allah as the creator of the universe then why should they deviate from His message?-43:87.
The Pagans in Mecca, during Muhammad's time, believed that Allah was a high
God . (29:61-65).
Other deities interceded with Allah on behalf of their worshippers (39:38).
Other deities interceded with Allah, 10:18, 36:23, 43:86 (Tabari, 1988, p. 6. xxii).

When Abd al-Muttalib and his companions found an inscription by digging in the desert they cried out, "Allah Akbar"( ibn Ishaq, 2001, p. 63).

The Quraysh used to cry, "Allah Akbar." When Abd al-Muttalib dug Zamzam he cried, "Allah Akbar" (Ibid, p. 62).

Abd al-Muttalib, Muhammad's grandfather was a very handsome man. He was also very wealthy. Abd al-Muttalib had many wives. He prayed to Allah to bless him with ten sons. His prayer was granted. He promised to sacrifice one of his sons to Allah. His youngest son was Abd Allah. Abd al-Muttalib loved Abd Allah the most (Lings, 1983, p. 12).

When the Quraysh made it difficult for Abd al-Muttalib to dig Zamzam, he vowed that if ten sons were born to him and they reached puberty, he would sacrifice one of them.

Allah fulfilled his desire of having ten sons. The lot fell on Abdallh b. Abd Muttalib. Abd Al-Muttalib asked Allah if he should sacrifice Abdullah or 100 camels instead. He cast lots and the lot fell on 100 camels (Tabari, 1988, p. 6.2).

Allah does not necessarily mean the monotheistic Allah. Abd Al-Muttalib stood beside Hubal while praying to Allah (Ibid, foot note 4).

Abd Al-Muttalib took a large knife, took Abdallah to Isaf and Nailah, the idols of the Quraysh to sacrifice him (Ibid, p. 6.4).

While the custodian was casting lot, Abd Al-Muttalib stood beside Hubal praying to Allah. The lot fell against Abdullah (Ibid).

When Abdullah was taken for sacrifice, Abd al-Muttalib stood by Hubal and prayed to Allah. During the visit to the woman sorceress, Abd al-Muttalib prayed to Allah. A spirit used to visit this woman. She used to get inspiration from this spirit (ibn Ishaq, 2001, p. 67).

When the Quraysh were carrying out the sorceress' instructions Abd al-Muttalib was praying to Allah (Ibid, p. 68).

The polytheists believed in the existence of one supreme deity- (Sahih Muslim, 7.2671).

Sahih Muslim, Book 007, Number 2671:
Ibn 'Abbas (Allah be pleased with them) reported that the polytheists also pronounced (Talbiya) as: Here I am at Thy service, there is no associate with Thee. The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: Woe be upon them, as they also said: But one associate with Thee, you possess mastery over him, but he does not possess mastery (over you). They used to say this and circumambulated the Ka'ba.

In a foot note on this hadith, the translator of Sahih Muslim, 'Abdul Hamid Siddiqi writes:

The polytheists believed in the existence of One Supreme Deity but they also believed that there were some other deities also who were to be worshipped besides them (Siddiqi, 2004, v.2, p. .704, foot note 1596).

All those references prove, without any doubt, that the Pagans of Mecca had no problem with Allah. They were very much devoted to their Allah without any trouble whatsoever. They did not do any acts for which Muhammad should despise them and declare war on them. So why was it that Muhammad had to be so vicious towards them, to force them to believe in his version Allah? The answer to this question is that Muhammad craved attention and praise. With his lowly background and nothing to offer to the Quraysh he was searching for a method-a pretext to ridicule, despise, insult and blaspheme the Meccan Pagans and their religions to grab attention. A waif, deprived of love, affection, care and protection during childhood, he simply hankered for those exceedingly powerful human emotions.

Muhammad, therefore, turned to Allah to seek His love and absolute attention. He declared himself to be the greatest friend and confidante (as if, Allah, too, hankered for his love and care) of the Allah of the Pagan Arabs, whom all the Pagans revered with utmost ardour. This was a failsafe method by which Muhammad could get what he missed out in his dejected, lonely and featureless childhood.

Sahih Bukhari provides the reason why, all on a sudden, Allah decided to hate and deplore the Pagan Meccans. It was simply because Allah was in love with Muhammad, while the Pagans did not love him. So Allah had to abandon these Bedouin folks in favour of Muhammad. Muhammad became Allah's most favourite person. Let us read this hadith.

Volume 2, Book 26, Number 725:
Narrated Muhammad bin Jubair bin Mut'im:
My father said, "(Before Islam) I was looking for my camel." The same narration is told by a different sub-narrator. Jubair bin Mut'im said, "My camel was lost and I went out in search of it on the day of 'Arafat, and I saw the Prophet standing in 'Arafat. I said to myself: By Allah he is from the Hums (literally: strictly religious, Quraish were called so, as they used to say, 'We are the people of Allah we shall not go out of the sanctuary). What has brought him here?" 

The above hadith tells us that there was absolutely no reason for Allah to be angry with the Quraysh. They were utterly devoted to Him. The trouble only started when Muhammad received his claimed special love of Allah for him. Suddenly, Allah turned his face away from the Meccan; Allah became obsessed with Muhammad, abandoning the Meccan Pagans.

Allah frequently changes His name, only Muhammad was allowed to change Allah's name.

 As told before, the ancient Arabs knew Allah as well as they knew their palms. They were consistent with the Allah they were devoted to- never changing His name or His attributes. On the contrary, after Muhammad came in the scene, he claimed that Allah has ninety-nine names (59:22-24). The Pagans of Mecca were not convinced because they never had the authority to change the name of Allah at their will. To this, Muhammad's response was that Allah authorised only him to change His name. This was because Allah had special love, adore and mercy for Muhammad.

Let us read the following hadith from the print version of Sunaan Abu Dawud.

Sunaan Abu Dawud, Vol. I. Hadith number 1472:
Ubayy b. Ka'b reported: The Prophet (may peace be upon him) said: Ubayy, I was asked to recite the Qur'an. I was asked: In one mode or two modes? The angel that accompanied me said: Say in two modes. I said: In two modes. I was again asked: In two modes or three? The angel that was in my company said: Say, in three modes. So I said: In three modes. The matter reached up to seven modes. He then said: each mode is sufficiently health-giving, whether you utter "all-hearing and all-knowing" or instead "all-powerful and all-wise". This is valid until you finish the verse indicating punishment on mercy and finish the verse indicating mercy on punishment.

Here is the crux. Muhammad changed, at will, his taste even when Gabriel, Allah's postman brought from Allah instructions with stipulated specifications. Why? The answer is provided in a foot note by Professor Ahmad Hasan, the translator of Sunaan Abu Dawud. In a foot note on this hadith, he writes:

The Prophet (may peace be upon him) was allowed to make minor change in the name of Allah at the end of the verses. But ordinary persons cannot be allowed to do so ('Awn al-Ma'baf, I, 551) (Hasan, 2001, v.1. p. 387, foot note 819).

After changing at will, Allah's name, Muhammad claimed that whoever believes in their meanings and acts accordingly will enter Paradise (Sahih Bukhari, 8.75.419). Muhammad even went to the extent of claiming that just by learning those ninety-nine names of his Allah one could be in Paradise (Sahih Bukhari, 3.50.894).

Curiously, some names by which Muhammad called his Allah were actually the names of Pagan idols. Benjamin Walker writes:

Thus Wadd, a moon god was assimilated into and survived in al-Wadud, 'the Loving'; Munim, worshipped in north Arabia survives in al-Mani, 'the Withholder'; Salm, a deity of Tayma, in al-Salaam, 'the Peace'; Kaus or Kayis, regarded as the consort of Manat, is retained in al-Kawi, 'the Strong'; Aziz of north Arabia is preserved unchanged is al-Aziz, 'the Mighty'.The pre-Islamic designations of God, al-Rahman, 'the Merciful', and ar-Rahim, 'the Compassionate', remain conspicuous in Islam (Walker, 2004, p. 43).

Allah loves to be known as a deity (god or goddess).

Once we grasped what the above quote, from an eminent historian means, we should have no qualm in realising that Allah loves to be known as a deity (god or goddess). The Qur'an confirms this.

Let us read the following verses from the Qur'an

YUSUFALI: And your Allah is One Allah: There is no god but He, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. [002.163]
YUSUFALI: It is He Who is Allah in heaven and Allah on earth; and He is full of Wisdom and Knowledge. [043.084]

A hadith in Sunaan Abu Dawud talks about these verses. This hadith is not available online. I shall quote from the print version of Sunaan Abu Dawud.

Sunaan Abu Dawud, vol.1, hadith number 1491:
Asma' daughter of Yazid reported the Prophet (may peace be upon him) as saying: Allah's Greatest Name is in these two verses: "And your deity is one deity: there is no deity but He, the Compassionate and the Merciful, and the beginning of Surah Al-Imran, "A.L.M, Allah there is no deity but He, the living, the eternal."

In the beginning Muhammad was not sure of his Allah.

When we learn what Muhammad was up to with his Allah, we can derive only one conclusion: confusion and hesitancy. In the beginning, In the beginning Muhammad was not so sure who should be his Allah-ar-Rahman, ar-Rahim, Allat, Uzza, Wadd, Hubal, Aziz-or any other numerous deities that the Meccan Pagans used to worship. Besides Hubal, Allah, Allat, Uzza, Manat-each tribe in Arabia, had their own favorite idol or deity. This is confirmed from the Sirah (biography) of ibn Ishaq. As an example, he writes that Hudhayl b. Mudrika b. Ilyas b. Mudar adopted Suwa. Suwa was at Ruhat, a place near Yanbu. Kalb b. Wabra of Quba adopted Wudd in Dumat al-Jandal (ibn Ishaq, 2001, p. 36).

Even in the Qur'an we read the obsession of the Arabs with idols. Here are two verses from the Qur'an which tell us about the worshipping of various idols by the people of Noah.

Noah complained to Allah that people with money and children were the most corrupt on earth and they refused to abandon their idols Wadd, Suwa, Yaguth, Yau'q and
Nasr -71:21-23.

With so much idolatry in practice and with so many deities around, Muhammad, in the beginning of his career as a Prophet, was utterly indecisive. He tried a few other brands of Allah; was disappointed with the response from his audience and changed his mind several times. In the end, he realized that all the Pagans, despite their numerous idols, had one aspect in common: all of them were wholly devoted to their moon God, Allah, because they believed that Allah had the wherewithal to inflict punishment as well as rewards. This last reason propelled Muhammad to turn to Allah to be his succor. This worked wonderfully, since no Arab could reject their variety of Allah, even tough they were also totally confused with the new version of Allah that Muhammad was pushing to them.

Here are a few comments on the hesitancy and confusion in Muhammad about his Allah.

First we read the Qur'an:

None but Allah (Muhammad uses another name, Rahman) protects during day and at night-21:42.

Muhammad has no knowledge of Allah but he only gives warning plainly and publicly; angels only bring Allah's messages to him-38:67-70.

Muhammad believed in all scriptures but he is commanded to judge between other people's books; Muslims' Allah and the Allah of the people of the Books (the Jews and the Christians) are same...42:15.

No Book was sent to the Pagans of Arabia to testify their claims of ascribing partners to ar-Rahman-43:21.

Then we read hadith.

Muhammad considered himself to be the messenger of ar-Rahman. The Meccans did not know of any ar-Rahman other than the ar-Rahman of al-Yamamah. (ibn Sa'd, 1972, p. 1.189).

The word 'ar-Rahm (womb)' derives its name from ar-Rahman (i.e., one of the names of Allah) and Allah said- (Sahih Bukhari, 8.73.17, 18).

And, finally, comments from a few eminent writers:

Was Muhammad, a warner, an admonisher or the messenger of Allah (Tabari. 1988, p. 6. xxxix)?

The word "Allah" does not occur in the earliest passages of the Qur'an or does so only rarely. The Jews and the Christians, when speaking about Allah in Arabic, presumably used the word, "Allah" (Ibid, p. 6.33).          

Regis Blanchere did the latest attempts of the chronological order of the Qur'an in his French translation in 1949. In the first 17 suras, the word Allah occurs only three times namely: (91:130, 10 (95:8), 16 (87:7). Instead of Allah, we find "your Lord (rabbuka) in 96:13 or "we" in 94:14, The Satanic verses indicate the confusion between Allah conceived monotheistically and Allah as a "high Allah" (Ibid, p. 6.34).

Ar-Rab-the Lord, the Sustainer, the supreme. 3:44 (Allah) Allah is my Lord and your Lord. 18:14 Our Lord Rabb is the Lord (Rabb) of the heavens and the earth; occupies the place of Hebrew Jehovah (Hughes, 1994, p. 531).
 

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>>>Chapter 3 : Allah’s Likes and Dislikes



Abul Kasem is an Bengali ex-Muslim and academic. He has contributed in Leaving Islam - Apostates Speak Out and Beyond Jihad Critical Voices from Inside. He has also written extensively on Islam in various websites and is the author of four e-Books: In the Name of Allah, Root of Terrorism ala Islamic Style, Sex and Sexuality in Islam, Who Authored the Quran? and Women in Islam. Mr. Kasem leaves in Sydney, Australia. He can be contacted at [email protected].

 
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