Islam Under Scrutiny by Ex-Muslims

The Laughing Buddha

Dear Buddha:

Are you both angry and mad with us? Are you laughing at us now that we are about to lose our pants and shirts and possibly our skins and lives too? Remember, a few months ago, whenever we passed by your tallest figure in the world, we used to laugh at you. Do you know why we used to do that, Buddha? We used to laugh at your humble statue simply because we knew that your days were numbered. We created the only perfect Islamic society in the world. We followed every word in the Qur’an and translated them to reality. We followed every sentence from the ahadith and implemented them to each and every person in our dearest Emirat of the Mumeneen. No Islamic Mullah could challenge us that we did anything unIslamic. Even the other Islamic paradises like Pakistan, Iran, Sudan could not match our Islamic zeal. They were really jealous of us that we had the guts to implement the Qur’an and Hadith to the letter while they dared not. The world was astonished at our audacity and defiant attitude. Nevertheless, we did give a damn to the world. We only followed Allah's decrees and His best creation, the prophet Mohammed’s practices. One of the practices of this best creation of Allah was that he personally destroyed all the 360 idols in the holiest place on earth, which is Kaaba in Mecca. Therefore, when we looked around, we found your statue was the tallest standing statue of yours' in the world. There are other great statues of yours; like the sleeping Buddha, the sitting Buddha, the meditating Buddha, the reclining Buddha scattered in many parts of the world. However, we had your tallest standing Buddha in our Afghanistan. We decided to tarnish your face, dismantle your figure and even demolish you. We thought that by doing this obligatory duty of ours' (that is to destroy each and every idol of yours in Afghanistan), Allah will be extremely pleased with us and will surely save us from the natural calamity like the three years of continuous draught. The whole of humanity cried when we killed your stone-carved body. However, we did not care. We were extremely joyous after annihilating you and we proclaimed to the world that no Buddha statute should be alive in Afghanistan. That was the decree by our most exulted Ameer-ul Mumeneen, the grand Mullah Omar. The entire followers of yours' from Japan to Burma and Thailand begged us not to destroy your statue. They even proposed that they would take your body out of Afghanistan. But we disagreed. Our Ameer-ul-Mumeneen decreed that you must face Islamic justice. Therefore, we simply ignored them and went ahead with your execution plan. It was one of our greatest achievements, that is, slaying hard granite built body of yours. We are sure you did feel a lot of pain when we broken asunder your body into small pieces by powerful explosives. But that is the way most Islamic punishments are meted out. The Islamic punishments are meant to inflict the severest pain before death. We never allow peaceful and painless execution as the infidels do. Our values are different and we look to our ‘Prophet of Peace’ for inspiration.

So, why are we turning to you and writing to you now after all these months? Well, Buddha, you know that we had a supreme guest with us by the name of Osama bin Laden. In fact, he is actually the father-in-law of our Ameer-ul-Mumeneen and vice versa. He and our Ameer follow our prophet to the letter even on marriage matters. For example, he (our prophet) married the 6-year-old Ayesah, the daughter of his best friend Abu Bakr and thus our prophet became the father-in-law of his best friend. The prophet then married the young daughter, Hafsa, of his another great comrade, Umar who also married the four-year-old half sister of Ayesha (the posthumous daughter of Abu Bakr). Thus, they all became father-in-laws to each other. Seems very weird, isn't it? However, this is not weird at all. In Islam, everything and anything is possible. After all, Islam has the solution for all worldly and post-worldly problems.

Osama thought that he was very smart. Therefore, he sent suicide squad to America and there they killed around 4000 people there. This led America to declare a war on us. We took the challenge rather blithely. We were sure of our victory. Osama was absolutely certain that the whole Ummah will be on our side and they will surely take up arms when the infidels attack us. We sent urgent i-mails (Islamic mails) to Allah to tell us what to do. In the meantime, we wanted all Muslims of the world to unite under the flag of Osama's Al-Qaeda. However, to our utter surprise we found that an insignificant number of the Islamic Ummah had responded to our clarion call. Only a few thousand Pakistani Mujaheeds joined us to slay the infidels. Nevertheless, we never lost our hope in the eventual victory of ours through the help of Allah.

Dear Buddha, we are so ashamed now to tell you this. You may not believe it. We waited and waited for the reply to our i-mails to Allah. By the way, let us tell you that our i-mails to Allah is sent through Islamic high technology like Islamic telepathy as we have banned the infidel's Internet communication technology in Afghanistan. We really did not need Internet communication when our Ameer-ul-Mumeenieen has regular divine messages from various sources through Islamic dreams and inspirations. Why should we use modern technologies when we are truly guided by Allah? Why should we use satellite and wireless communication of the infidels when we have the super fast Islamic communication media like Zainamaj (prayer rug), Tasbeeh (prayer beads), and the incredibly sensitive Islamic antenna (turban), which we forced every Afghani to wear. This we had to do because we must let every Afghani receive your message through this type of dish antenna. See how clever we folks are! We can beat any infidel's technology hands down. No joke! However, when the infidels attacked us through heavy bombing, this mode of communication with Allah broke down completely. We do not know how or why this happened. We thought that Allah would repair the communication system and restore his channel of information flow. Alas! That did not happen either. We do not know why suddenly Allah has decided to abandon us in this mid ocean, figuratively speaking of course. When we thought on this matter, we quickly realised that it must be you who had convinced Allah to abandon us. O, Buddha! It is just unbearable! We were certain that you must be in hell, that you have no access to our prophet and to Allah. Please tell us if Allah has changed his mind on you or not due to our unkindness to you. Is Rasul -E-Karim with you? We are very eager to know.

Dear Shakka Muni Gautama Buddha, it looks almost certain that we have no choice but to become martyrs or to surrender to the infidels. Our calls to Islamic Ummah fell into deaf ears. Even our Allah has abandoned us in midstream. We now have only one choice. Yes, this choice was unthinkable even a few weeks ago. Now, it looks like we must ask you for your help. Look, Gautama, please recall your ancient messages of love, Ahimasa, kindness and sympathy to all human beings. You also told the world about the law of Karma. So, please bring back those old teachings of yours to humankind, p-l-e-a-s-e!

Our beloved Gautama, once we were your diehard followers. All of Afghanistan was yours. Look up the history and we are sure you will remember our glorious past under your guidance. Suddenly, the Islamic invaders forced us to abandon you and imposed Islam on us. We are sure you know the history very well. Please Gautama, understand that our ancestors had very little choice but to accept Islam in order to save their neck. They had to do it because the Islamic invaders brainwashed us by saying that 'Paradise lies under the shades of swords'. Gautama, have you read Sahih Bukhari? The book is an absolute gem! If not, then please get a copy from Mohammad in paradise and see for yourself in book number 52-hadith numbers 73 or 210. It is the same way that Islam was established in many other parts of the world like India-Pakistan-Bangladesh etc. Therefore, you see, Islam brought paradise to these places through sword. Ditto for Afghanistan. They thought that it was a hell during your time. The Muslims had to use their swords to bring paradise in Afghanistan too. They also wanted to cut your stone curved body into pieces. But there was no dynamite or other powerful explosives during that time. Therefore, they had no choice but to mutilate your nose, ears, eyes and face and inflicted plenty of Islamic lashings, which were still visible on your person before we finally broke you down to powder. Dear Gautama, was it very painful? We are so sorry now that we gave you such pain before we finished you off. Now, please try to understand. We really do not have any grudge against you. It is just that we must carry out our divine duties. So, please forgive us for what we did. We know your law of Karma is eternal. But we never thought that this law would catch up with us so fast. Many Buddhist monks in Thailand and Japan predicted our downfall and eventual return of your smiling face in Afghanistan. But their time frame was one thousand years. They are utterly wrong! The time frame has been only a few months! How is that possible, Siddharta? How is it possible that the inviolable law of Karma has eventually reached its long arm to us? Please, please, show us some mercy. Is it possible to defer the enforcement of this law for some time? We are sure you will consider our humble appeal so that we can save our lives.

Lord Buddha, we are so fearful to call you lord, because we have been taught throughout our lives that we have only one lord and that is Allah. But now that Allah has abandoned us forever, we do not mind calling you lord just as a mark of respect to you. Are you happy now? We are atoning our sins now. Please show us some mercy. Lord Buddha, did you know that the largest site of the Buddhist civilisation is in the largest Muslim country in the world? It is at Borobudur near Yogjakarta in Indonesia. Incredible, isn’t it, Buddha? It is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Indonesia and a big source of foreign income for the impoverished Indonesians. You know very well that during your days Indonesia was a very rich and powerful country. But now it is a basket case after Islam invaded Indonesia. Isn't it very funny that whenever Islam takes over a country then that country becomes hopelessly poor within a very short period of time. Millions of tourists from all parts of the world flock to Indonesia just to see your stone-carved faces. However, tourists seldom go to visit Islamic sites. Why is it so, Buddha? Why even after you died you have become such a great immortal? Why is it that the most alive and the fastest growing Islam does not attract any tourist? Is that because of us? We had greatest success in making two words the most despised in the world. These two words are 'Islam' and 'Taliban'. This is not really our fault at all. We just followed what our faith has asked us to do. Is it fair that the whole world should bear so much disdain for us? No doubt that by slaughtering your stone-carved person we lost a good revenue from tourist who came to our forsaken land mainly to visit you. We have many other Islamic sites (like the world's largest mosque being built with the Saudi money), but alas not a trickle of tourists are interested in them. This is really very puzzling to us.

Now we have decided that we had had enough. We want to abandon our Allah. We shall rebuild your magnificent sculpted body again. However, this time we shall make it out of white marble and we shall make you the largest laughing Buddha in the world. We are sure that you will be happy with us again. So, please bestow on us your mercy and protect us from your law of Karma.

We remain, devotedly yours

The renegade Talibans


Abul Kasem pens from Sydney, Australia. His e-mail address is -