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The Islamist Memeplex

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So how can Islam’s initial accelerated period growth during its first 1400 years be explained?

Dawkins coined the term meme from the Greek word mimema ("something imitated"). It describes the way in which cultural traits and patterns evolve, spread and become the norm. As in the animal kingdom, only the most suited to flourish will survive.

A meme is anything that can be copied from one mind to another. A catchy tune is a meme. The recipe for your mum’s casserole as it passed through the generations is a meme. Even the word "meme" is a meme, which has just made a copy of itself in your mind. A combination of memes is known as a memeplex, a self-ratifying complex more stable than single memes on their own.

nephila-komaci-spider-matingDo memes make people happier? Or more successful in life? Or have healthier children? No. Just because a memeplex is successful, it doesn't necessarily mean it serves our best interests.

Dawkins likened memes to genes.

A black widow spider eats her mate after sex. Kamikaze bees inject a suicidal sting into predators of the communal hive.

As shown above, the female Nephila Komaci spider snaps off the male's penis inside her so as to plug in his semen and permanently ensure he never procreates with another female again!

As you can see, a successful gene doesn't necessarily benefit the organism or its hosts. The genes making up a deadly virus may kill millions of people and cause untold misery, but when it comes to the numbers game, the virus is still an undoubted success.

A memeplex can also use human lives in the service of its propagation, cold and indifferent to our existential plight. Religions are also a collection of beliefs passed from one person to another and come under the same umbrella as a memeplex. They were originally compiled in tablet form or consolidated as Holy Scriptures, and now with modern printing presses can be reproduced in their millions.

The earlier religious memeplexes had a "live and let live" attitude, and never encouraged its followers to convert others. But then a rival with an added incentive arrived; spreading the memeplex allowed its followers to earn bonus spiritual merit. They were saving souls and after a lifetime of sin, heaven had suddenly become a realisable goal. In other words, they had just won the Divine Lottery.

So after a thousand years, which of these two religious variants would be likely to have more copies in the minds of people?


If we were going to deliberately design a combination of beliefs with the purpose of making ones that could dominate, then we would be hard-pressed to do better than the evangelical Abrahamic faiths. And the proof is in the figures. In just 2000 years, Christianity and Islam have amassed 3.5 billion followers (over 50% of the world’s population). That is faster than any other memeplexes in history.


Judaism’s initial growth was helped by the claim that the Jews were the chosen people and a superior race, and Islam repeated this jingoistic claim by saying:

Tabari IX:69 "Arabs are the most noble people in lineage, the most prominent, and the best in deeds. We were the first to respond to the call of the Prophet. We are Allah's helpers and the viziers of His Messenger. We fight people until they believe in Allah. He who believes in Allah and His Messenger has protected his life and possessions from us. As for one who disbelieves, we will fight him forever in Allah's Cause. Killing him is a small matter to us."

In many ways it is very similar to the way the British Empire, or even the American capitalist ideological expansionist drives were powered. These primary drivers for the Crusades were furthermore encouraged by the global dominance ethos of their respective scriptures.   In other words Islam was largely an Arabic imperialist mission, in much the same way as the Crusades were a Christian one.

Yet it’s not just about growth. A powerful memeplex must also suppress thought-competition from other competing memeplexes.

During the Dark Ages, Christian leaders successfully suppressed modernity and science to preserve the status quo. Reformation of the Church, and the Enlightenment which followed as a result, catalysed a period of rapid change and advancement in Western Europe and North America, and church attendance has dropped dramatically ever since.

Over the last few decades, Saudi Arabia has been spending a large portion of its petrodollars building mosques around the world. Yet ironically according to Sharia law, no non-Muslim religious structures are allowed to be built inside its own lands. It takes years of red tape for existing churches in other Arab Nations such as Egypt to be even allowed to be repaired. This puts the houses of worship of any competing memeplex in a state of permanent decline. For over 700 years, the great Nalanda university in India was a center of learning for a wide range of subjects, including philosophy, science, mathematics. Nalanda was one of the world's first residential universities, i.e. it had dormitories for students, before the Turks invaded & quashed it. In 2001 the destruction of Afghanistan's ancient heritage, the Bamiyan Buddhas, led to global condemnation of the Taliban regime. And we still find that despite Indonesia being one of the more inclusivist Muslim states that Christian minorities are required to wear the hijab in some state-sponsored schools.

My Own Experience

I had a fairly typical moderate Islamic upbringing. From the age of 5, I was made to attend mosques for Friday prayer and shortly after began to rote learn parts of the Quran. As a young boy my parents would always encourage me to keep Muslim friends. I prayed 5 times a day and fasted regularly, as part of the ‘Farz/Fardh’, or obligations, set upon every believer.

It was during my teenager years when doubts began to materialise and I began to feel uncomfortable with certain aspects of Islam, such as its laws on inter-marriage and apostasy. If a woman wants to marry a non-Muslim then she has to convert him to Islam first.  When it comes to apostasy, not only is it illegal in Islamic states to leave Islam, but that it is also punishable by execution and enforced by the government’s very own thought police. As an ex-Muslim myself, please do not take this as me signing my own death warrant!

I was taught that if society were inhabited by correctly practising Muslims then we would soon discover celestial order and harmony throughout. The world belonged to Allah, it was our duty to return it to its rightful owner.

But a successful memeplex well-drilled into the minds of fundamentalists can take such literalism to a whole new level.  We find that this desire for utopia, along with the promise of eternal heaven, can somehow paradoxically justify the ultimate Jihadic fantasy of attaining world peace through suicide bombings.

Yet I never judge believers too harshly.

Good Muslims all over the world have resisted the autocratic and restrictive version of this memeplex, which in turn goes a long way to explain the stark knee-jerk reaction from the fundamentalists.

"Muslims are the first victims of Islam," wrote E. Renan. "Many times I have observed in my travels in the Orient that fanaticism comes from a small number of dangerous men who maintain the others in the practice of religion by terror."

Whatever fanaticism there is, it comes from a small group of influential men who control these weak disillusioned minds. They frogmarch them out of the mainstream with a more reactionary and almost hooliganised identity we see out on the protest marches today.

Hopefully it will stop there, before it lands in more troubled waters tomorrow.


Saif Rahman is a Strategic Consultant, CMHA founder (Cultural Muslim & Humanist Association) & Author of The Islamist Delusion.

Comments (45)Add Comment
what memeplex leads to
written by Infidel and More Proud , January 02, 2013
Muslims such as abc constantly sing hosana in favour of upcoming muslim caliphate.

Too much indoctrination and imam fed environment fed cool-aid results in seeing dystopia as utopia.

All muslim societies i.e. KSA dystopic.
Infidel and more proud
written by abc , January 02, 2013
A caliphate/Islamic state can only be established by the will of the people.
It cannot be established any other way, period.
Re: above
written by Gnostic , January 02, 2013
Can you provide any evidence? The taliban created their Afghan Emirate which was even recognized by some other islamic countries and they were only beaten by foreign powers.

And what do you call an islamic state? Most muslim countries have the word islam in their constitution even without democratic legitimiation.

And what did happen in Egypt? The islamists mobilized some 20% of the population to vote for their new islamic constitution, many of them illiterates.

Is this what you mean?
To the point
written by Kaser , January 02, 2013
Religions are like defective genes, they are passed from parents to their children, with the children unable to do anything about it.
These religious memeplex are completely, pathetically linked to young children being brainwashed by their parents.
Repeat for generation after generation, and you have today's world.

But it's slowing. Look as how many people abandon religions in the west (sadly, to be replaced by Islamism in many places... for now).
Atheism is growing, and will continue to grow through education and science.
I'm looking forward to the day no more religions interfere with our daily lives.
And as for a global Califate/Islamic state (a social catastrophe) can it really be the will of the people abc?
Is it the will of women to be relegated to second-class status? Would any sane, educated woman voluntarily adopt the hijab/burqa and shout to the world "I am worth half a man?" ?? Is it the will of apostates to be branded for death? Islam has so far failed to convince the bulk of the world population, will your Islamic Califate require the sword to be implemented? Certainly looks like it in Mali, Nigeria, ect... Are Christians converted by force happier in Islam?

No... An Islamic Califate is the will of Islamic extremists. Their hitlerian desire to control more and more people. To spread the word of the non-existant god "Allah" and the light (read darkness) of Islam, for their own purposes. Because abc, I assume the more converts one can claim, the better your chances of attaining paradise, no? The more blood shed in the name of Allah, the better, because it brings the world closer to the ISlamic PAradise we all really need?

Abc, your adopting Islam, and defending it, is akin to defending Boko Haram, the Taliban, Ansar Dine, Al-Shabaab and other Islamic, righteous "soliders of Allah". You are very intelligent, you should look somewhere else for your spiritual reference, since you need one.

Oh wait... You're a Muslim now, so like the Cosa Nostra, you cannot leave as you will be branded an Apostate and marked for death.
Sorry, I forgot about that last detail... Islam is a one-way street !

Defintion of caliphate , over to you abc
written by Infidel and More proud , January 02, 2013
1. abc please define you version of caliphate ?
2. What is the difference between a muslim democracy and caliphate?

can it exist without Quran, Sunna, Hadith and Sharia.

You will find a big void. Nada , zilch, nothing vacuum for it cannot be without the above mentioned ge(r)ms.....
written by Gnostic , January 03, 2013
I do not know any word from the quran that the caliphate is the preferred islamic political system. But there is much criticism from philosophers like Ibn Khaldun that the caliphate is not much different from a monarchy and that there is no guarantee that the caliph will be a wise man.

Of course there are also islamic republics but are they superior in any regard? Are they wealthier or is there less criminality or less corruption? I would say the opposite is true.

What about the Islamic Republic of Iran which is not being established by its people but by faked elections?

Did the islamic revolution in Iran improve anything for the people?

Any a***ole can claim to be a honest muslim who only wants to rule in the name of Allah! But only some muslims are stupid enough to believe this s**t!
Infidel and more proud/ kaser
written by abc , January 03, 2013
Very good question, what is a caliphate?
There is a a load of literature on that subject. Many scholars have sat and tried to figure that. From one side you could say a Qutubist view or a more rational view as per An Nabhani. It really depends on how you view history.
Another great question, the difference between a Islamic democracy and Islamic caliphate. Well, if you take the ancient Greek view of if demus cratos. Power to the people for the people by the people. I don't think many countries can be truly labelled as democratic. The biggest and most obvious difference between Islamic democracy and a caliphate is the issue of sovereignty. In an Islamic democracy like any democracy, the power is given to the people and hence sovereignty must also be given to change law to fit the population. For example if the people vote and say " covetting thy neighbours wife is a acceptable" then by the very nature of that democracy it can be made the law of the land.
In a caliphate that can never happen as sovereignty is given to Allah(swt) the law giver.
To answer your third question Islamic democracy like any democracy can survive without, however the caliphate cannot even exist without.
Infidel and more proud
written by abc , January 03, 2013
Before you ask, I do think Egypt is trying towards an Islamic democracy. It's taking it's first few steps. You have to remember its at least a hundred years behind in that delicate thinking. No democracy ever flourished in its first few years. You have to stick at it and tweak it when it's needed. Until you get a system that's representative of the population and the people are content with it.

written by Kaser , January 03, 2013
I can summarize the caliphate a bit simpler abc. Caliphate = Empire.

About Egypt. What about those that do not want an "Islamic" democracy, but a "secular" democracy?

Those Islamists that seek to impose an "Islamic democracy" are saying out loud: "Those who follow Allah are friends of the Egyptian Islamic democracy" Meaning those that do not follow Allah will be branded outcasts. Second-class citizens. The "Islamic democracy" is not their friend.

It's completely unacceptable and should be placed in the same bin as a "Heterosexual democracy" or a "Right-handed democracy".
It will breed the same violence we see in ALL other "Islamic" countries.
No excuse for Egypt not getting democracy right in the first place
written by Chris , January 03, 2013
abc argues that Egypt is a hundred years behind in delicate thinking. That is a lame excuse. There are plenty of examples of SUCCESSFUL democracies, so they don't have to stumble about. The US was founded on a emphatically SECULAR government with no government involvement in religious matters. For the Egyptian government to mix religion with governance means that their experiment with democracy is doomed from the get-go. Inexcusable!
Egypt and 100 more years to get over delicacy
written by Infidel and More proud , January 03, 2013
No democracy ever flourished in its first few years. You have to stick at it and tweak it when it's needed. Until you get a system that's representative of the population and the people are content with it.

So expect to see butt kicked as before. If it takes 100 years to get it right then what good it is to change or go into regress at all.

If they are following Sharia as the constitution then 100 years more means Sharia, Quran, Hadith and Sunna have failed in last 1400 years of existence. If they have failed in getting right in last 1400 years how can u be sure it will get better after 100 years. abc you have to prove if something remained delicate in last 1400 years will not be delicate in next 100. Maybe you have crystal ball or know some black magic like Moallah!

written by abc , January 03, 2013
Sorry dir being dim but I don't understand how you come to the conclusion
Caliphate= empire.
Do you mean like a king of old who had empires for their own gain and who handed his empire down to sons etc? Or do you mean empire like us Brits had, go around the world subjugating for manpower/resources all in the name of queen and country??
written by abc , January 03, 2013
The people of Egypt have just emerged from a generation of dictatorship and all apparatus of the state working against them.
Of course they are behind in terms of the function of state now.
They are smart people and will learn fast.
Maturity takes time. Older states will always draw on history and experience.

Infidel and more proud
written by abc , January 03, 2013
Well how is this for a starting point!
50% of a 100 mil population are 25 or under. That's a massive work force with excellent capacity.
Egyptians are the most educated in the middle east and North Africa.
Ok in terms of education they are not Finland for sure.
However it's a great starting point and if harnessed could change the face of Egypt within a generation!
written by Kaser , January 03, 2013
Empire abc, because any ideology (or memplex) which spans multiple countries, has a violent mechanism for converting the masses, that has first and second class citizens is just that: en empire. In this case, the emperor would be Allah, of course.

In a planetary wide Islamic caliphate, you would have many "Islamic" democracies where only Muslims are first class citizens. Better or worse than the past empires you mention? Who knows. Better than the previous Muslim empires? Who knows.

But I'm certain it would be comparable to all previous empires regarding oppression, suffering, contempt, violence, and misery.

Very simply abc, down with all religions. Send them all backto the dark ages.
Secular democracies are the only way forward.
written by vbv , January 03, 2013
Islam is a narrow bigoted idealogy ,very partisan and calling for destruction of all ncivilisations to subserve muslims' fanatical excesses. Islam calls on its adherents to hate all nonmuslims, either forcibly convert them to the barbaric arab cult or massacre them mercilessly. All this talk of "islamic" democracy is plain bullshit to hoodwink the uninformed and gullible nonmuslims. There is no question of democracy in islam- just plain mullah-cracy and a fanatically murderous dispensation.
abc's delicate egypt
written by Infidel and More proud , January 03, 2013
"Well how is this for a starting point!
50% of a 100 mil population are 25 or under. That's a massive work force with excellent capacity."

1. They will be long dead and gone in 100 years..
2. Dont you think 100 millions is kinda overpopulated for just two major cities i.e. Alexandria and Cairo..
3. Without food and aid how long will the revolution last on empty stomachs..

abc the meme has failed to make lives better in Libya (salries 1/3 of the time of Gaddafi) and it will prove to be a arab winter again in the case of Egypt.
written by Gnostic , January 03, 2013
Kaser is right. A caliph is by and large an islamic emperor because he represents not only a nation but an entire civilisation much like a roman cesar, a russian tsar, a persian shahhansha or a chinese son of heaven by representing god or heaven on earth. The last caliphate of the Ottomans was highly imperialistic and I would never expect anything else from an islamic empire.
Hot Ice
written by Archpagan , January 03, 2013
Islamic democracy is as absurd as hot ice. First condition of democracy is the right to freedom of speech or expression of thought. But, here Islam does not allow any sort of scrutiny of Koran, Sharia or the life of Mohammad. Everybody has to blindly accept as true whatever is written in Koran or Hadith and that the Sharia Law is the best for mankind till eternity. Whereas, to rational person, Koran is nothing but an incoherent rant of a barbaric warlord committing all sorts of heinous crime with claim of divine sanction. For democracy to succeed people must have a high standard of social values and morality. But, Muslims feel it is okay to treat non-Muslims shabbily or rape their women because they are enemies of Allah, and killing apostates is their holy duty towards Allah. And who is non-Muslim or apostate? Anyone, just anyone- Ahmedias, Shias, Sufis or Sunnis. Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Saudi Arab are the perfect Islamic hell-holes on earth
written by Kaser , January 03, 2013
Spot on.
There cannot coexist "democracy" and "Islam" at the same time.
Egypt will fail, and become yet another Islamic backwards country... in time.

When will the Morsi caliph plan on destroying the pyramids and sphynx? The are obvious non-Islamic shrines, an insult to Muslims everywhere...
Egypt as caliphate @ abc
written by Infidel and MP , January 03, 2013
abc egyt is a elected govt by people.
Morsi is the calpha
word of Moallaha AKA shari is the rule of land.
Why then it will remain delicate for 100 more years ?
What is missing from equation?
How will you ensure they dont have to remain beggars in front of US and IMF for for vital forex, food and fuel?
Infidel an mp
written by abc , January 04, 2013
Read my previous post that distinguish between what Egypt is and what a caliphate would be!
You really do think that they will starve?
They have industries, natural resources, and a young educated work force!
If managed correctly they should thrive.

written by Kaser , January 04, 2013
"If managed correctly, they should thrive..."
Egyptian Muslims abc, or ALL Egytians? Will non-Muslims thrive as much as non-Muslims in your ideal "Islamic democracy"

Please answer, because whenever I see social classes, there is misery. Imagine government-sactioned social classes...
And when these social classes happen to be driven by religion, outright horrors are present (Nigeria, Mali, ect...).
it is not a Caliphate or caliph … it is Caliphah
written by Fineliving56 , January 04, 2013
Christians have the Pope to lead them and it became more symbolic then real leadership through 2 thousands years

If Muslims regained a Caliphah to lead them … world watch out … nothing good will come out of that.

Nothing except unity toward dominating the world, because that IS, their ultimate gaol … No such things as, live and let live,... harmony with other people as Christians eventually have done …

Muslims with a caliphah to head them means … more beheadings and more honer killings and more child rape disguised as islamic marriage .. and plenty of other backward existing.

Moderate Muslims can say, what they want, declaring Quran is not as inhumane as we make out to be . To be lead by a Caliphah is going to be as symbolic as to be lead by a Pope … it is no way the same ……

Look how little old Imams are doing …. issuing, backward fatwas , ie acts of violence, every chance they get, against everyone who does not agree …

the fact is reality is not what moderate wants or dream of … { reality of Islam is far more savage and cruel } …. reality of Islam * IS what matters * whether they like or not, they have to deal with it one way or another …

Adding a Caliphah to the mix of Islam … *** is like adding gasoline to put out a FIRE ***

To the Quran chanting, Madrasa goer, every day Muslim, a Caliphah means a revival of the golden age of Islam … where the golden age of Fotohat al Islamiya was implemented … with it's well known motto :

" only 3 ways to exist in an Islamic State, headed by a Calipha :

1) Either you become a Muslim ….


2) you stay non Muslim, but you, PAY MONEY for staying non Muslims

or …

3) We have your head on a stick .

Food subsidies to go in Egypt
written by Infidel and MP , January 04, 2013

Why the food needs to be subsidised?
Cause it is too expensive for poor.
And they need money from IMF to buy food.
Means not enough money to sustain.

Care to read the full article. It is very informative BTW
to fine
written by Infidel and MP , January 04, 2013
"child rape"
Be very scared.
Even little boys will not be safe cause muslis might just start making heaven on earth.
To abc
written by Archpagan , January 04, 2013
Caliphate or Khilaphat would be a total anachronism that will lead Muslim society back to medieval-ism of 7th Century Arab society. The concept of 'Holy Roman Empire' is long gone and it was officially dissolved by Napoleon in 1803. Mohammad imitated too many things from Judaism and Christianity. But, Muslims refuse to learn anything from the Judeo-Christian people for fear of losing their identity. Actually, Muslim society suffers from identity crisis everywhere in the world.
written by Oxi Moore , January 04, 2013
"islamic democracy" is an oxymoron, like "islamic finance" or any other modern concepts linked to isalm or islamic. With democracy, power proceeds from the desire of people for freedom, tolerance, equality, respect for the individuals to decide their own fate and rules for their own conduct. Anything to do with Islam, already comes with the Big Boss in the Sky telling you what to do and what not to do, as per Quran and Sharia. Remember the description? Islam is a complete way of living. Well, there is not room there for second-guessing or thinking for yourself, is there? In this pre-ordained, pre-cjewed vision of life, where is there any degrees of freedom left over for the individual or society?
written by Gnostic , January 04, 2013
While the egyptian economy is running out of money day by day the islamic government has nothing better to do but to play with the constitution.

Diesel costs only 15 cents or so, much less than the world market price. The same with bread, cooking gas and many other things.

Salafists are fighting against cheap loans from the World Bank for humanitarian aid because the oppose any interest.

But there is hope: This year we will probably see millions of tourists coming from oversease in order to watch the economic catastrophe, beheadings and wife beatings!
what is remedy of Islam
written by Jivan , January 04, 2013
can u suggest remedy of Islam and how to cure their fundamentalism
To abc
written by Archpagan , January 04, 2013
In sum, Islamic democracy is only an euphemism for Islamic tyranny by self-appointed guardians of Islam. The 'Islamic Republic of Iran' perfectly illustrates that point.
abc and caliphate
written by Infidel and MP , January 04, 2013
abc as you said before the foundation of caliphate is word of Allah
So lets just consider Quran for the moment.
For anything to survive and grow it should have strong foundation
So using the foundation analogy please identify your origion from this?
[ 96:1] Proclaim! (or read!) in the name of thy Lord and Cherisher, Who created-
[ 96:2] Created man, out of a (mere) clot of congealed blood:
[ 24:45] And Allah has created every animal from water: of them there are some that creep on their bellies; some that walk on two legs; and some that walk on four. Allah creates what He wills for verily Allah has power over all things.
[ 3:59] The similitude of Jesus before Allah is as that of Adam; He created him from dust, then said to him: "Be". And he was.
[ 35:11] And Allah did create you from dust; then from a sperm-drop; then He made you in pairs. And no female conceives, or lays down (her load), but with His knowledge. Nor is a man long-lived granted length of days, nor is a part cut off from his life, but is in a Decree (ordained). All this is easy to Allah.
[ 15:26] We created man from sounding clay, from mud moulded into shape;
[ 16:4] He has created man from a sperm-drop; and behold this same (man) becomes an open disputer!
[ 75:37] Was he not a drop of sperm emitted (in lowly form)?
[ 19:67] But does not man call to mind that We created him before out of nothing?
[ 86:5] Now let man but think from what he is created!
[ 86:6] He is created from a drop emitted-
[ 86:7] Proceeding from between the backbone and the ribs:
I prefer your origion to be the last one AKA born of urine or from a urinal. Allah is all knowing

Allah punishes mischief making nuisance palestinians
written by Infidel and MP , January 05, 2013
written by Fineliving56 , January 05, 2013
Allah couldn't figure out, which of them, is true, so he included them all .. hoping one of them will stick …

Turn out, Allah is not so knowing
to Fine
written by Infidel and MP , January 05, 2013
And none of them is accurate or correct.
To Gnostics
written by Archpagan , January 06, 2013
Unlike most of the Muslim countries, Egypt, Pakistan and Bangladesh have no mineral oil resources. Does Allah consider people of those countries less Islamic?
re: Archpagan
written by Gnostic , January 06, 2013
In fact muslim believers from Egypt, Pakistan and Bangla Desh hace to suffer much more than those from Kuwait, Qatar or Dubai. It should be much easier to believe in any nonsense when you are being paid very well for it.

Islam turns Muslims into parasites
written by Guy Macher , January 07, 2013
If Islam was beneficial, Muslims wouldn't have to be parasites. Take the welfare from Muslims, either foreign aid or socialistic handouts to Western interlopers and they would simply die of starvation. Only an idiot would argue against this fact.
Muzloid breaks Mohallah record
written by Infidel and MP , January 07, 2013
Allah did not save the poor lad for not learning quran
written by Infidel and MP , January 07, 2013
written by Matt , January 08, 2013
Your charts and data are plain bias. Being objective about things is much more liberating, and you don't even have to be Christian nor Muslim to be part of this world and try to leave in peace and respect your neighbour. Amen.
@ Matt
written by Archpagan , January 10, 2013
It seems you are neither Muslim nor Christian, but only an ostrich.
written by Kaser , January 11, 2013
What if your neighbor keep throwing rocks in your windows.
What if he gives you the finger and calls you his "bitch" day in and day out.
What if he suddenly slaps your daughter?

Will you still live in peace, turn the other cheek and say Amen?
some corrections are necessary
written by Yibel , January 12, 2013
The author of this article makes the claim that "earlier religious memeplexes had a
'live and let live' attitude, and never encouraged its (sic) followers to convert

This is hardly the case. The Assyrians chopped off the heads of those who did not bow down and worship their moon god, Sin. The Babylonians burned people alive for not worshipping Marduk. The Canaanites were equally brutal to those who did not follow their religious practices - which included temple prostitution, pedophilia and bestiality among other dusgusting things. The pagan Romans required that people worship the Roman emperor as a god - and burned people at the stake for noncompliance.

Another religion whose followers were actively suppressed was Manichaeism. Manichaeism promoted itself as spiritually superior to all other religions and was aggressively marketed by devoted disciples. Between the 3rd - 10th centuries CE, it was embraced by the widest collection of distinct cultures from Spain to China - making it, arguably, the first world religion. Mani, the founder of Manichaeism, was executed in 276 CE as an offender against Zoroastrianism.
Manichaeism continued
written by Yibel , January 12, 2013
Mani declared himself to be "THE SEAL OF THE PROPHETS" and the LAST in a long line of prophets beginning with Biblical Adam, Seth, Enoch, and Shem and also including Jesus, Zoroaster and Buddha. Mani also claimed to receive his "revelations" through an angelic being and to have ascended to the heavenly realm - somewhere above the canopy of the heavens - where heavenly secrets were revealed to him by a supreme being.

Shades of Muhammad!!! It's quite likely that Muhammad came into comtact with this creed during his caravan days and copied mainly from Manichaeism rather than imitating Judaism and Christianity.

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