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January 2nd, 2011
10:27 PM ET

Opinion: How Christians, Muslims can find peace

Editor's note: Paul Moses, professor of journalism at Brooklyn College and the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, is the author of "The Saint and the Sultan: The Crusades, Islam and Francis of Assisi's Mission of Peace" (Doubleday, 2009).

Speaking hours after a terrorist attack killed 21 people in a Coptic church in Alexandria, Egypt, Pope Benedict XVI announced that he would hold an interreligious meeting in October in Assisi, Italy, to discuss with other religious leaders how religion can promote world peace.

It would mark the 25th anniversary of the World Day of Prayer for Peace that Pope John Paul II held there on October 26, 1986. The choice of Assisi, a town in Central Italy, as the venue is certainly not for its access to an airport: It is chosen as the home town of St. Francis, the beloved Christian saint whose generosity of spirit and constant striving for peace are exemplified in a remarkably amicable encounter he had with Egypt's Sultan Malik al-Kamil in the midst of the Fifth Crusade in 1219.

Read the full opinion piece on how Christians and Muslims can find peace

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Interfaith issues • Islam • Opinion

soundoff (53 Responses)
  1. Muneef

    Peace efforts need more than one or two or even three faiths or beliefs;

    If we take in to our in take that Religions are as Keys to it's followers for their faiths and beliefs ! 
    At the moment those Keys being in loose condition are in fear of each other and very hard working against each other towards shares on lands rather than nations of those lands who were left in poverty or under force convert for food or prosperity or for further suffering as s minorty among majority.

    Faith and Politics are one no matter how secular the country looks,there are still some plans that are built and made on the grounds of Survival or Prosperity of Faiths,Races both as over other Faiths,Races whether Nationally or Internationally ,Such kind of those are found in every Land,Race,Faith & Nation. They are found to be a very Rich & Powerful Groups and Mother of Groups that control lives of Millions...
     
    Now Finding Peace means that we should think on how to get those Master Keys or Super Master Keys of Super Powerful Groups that are to be gathered all in one Ring lock that works to getting them to work towards One Purpose only and that is on how to make Human Life better Globally and that by investing in them  human populations worldwide not minding their Race or Faith or Political interests such will work towards Building Bridges between all Nations holding and calling one Message of Love and Sharing in some form of Brotherhood that works towards a Greener Planet Earth!?
    That is rather better than using those Powers and Wealths to Revolt them Nations against each other Intentionally or Unintentionally !? We Human Nations on Earth are as One Human Body which if any Part of it Suffers of some thing the Whole Body will Suffer a High Fever and Long Sleepless Nights that causes Delusional Fears !?
     

    January 4, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
    • Muneef

      Now there is Pa-nic between those Master Keys by which all Nations suffer no Peace and grows more fears and negativities against each other Nationally and Internationally and who ever works toward raising our alerts of Fears then He or They must be Feeding on those Fears as Vampires feed on Fresh Human Bl-o-od !? 
      They those V-am-pir-es had made their nations become more like Z-om-bies than as Civilized humans "Brain-less" Con-suming non Productive "Hun-gry, An-gry, ones. World has became more of Bob Marly's song  "It is a R-at Race...
       

      January 4, 2011 at 7:32 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Muneef,

      I was about to not come back here to this comment page but I wondered what you might be saying….
      I have to agree with you that we must all share our bounty that comes from God and we should want tthe best of everything for our neighbor out of Love.

      When I was a potter I used to share all my ideas and would explain the method used to get the results to anyone who asked. Others would ask, ‘Why do you tell your secrets? Now they will copy you.’ I would say, I am happy to share my knowledge if it can help another achieve an end goal that helps him prosper. God did not give the knowledge to me to have it go to the grave with me!

      God bless you now and we will meet on another comment page, I am sure….

      January 5, 2011 at 9:10 pm |
    • Muneef

      CatolicMom.

      We were told that who has a knowldge that is good for mankind to learn of and decided not teach it or share it but to store it with out sharing, then when this person dies, the knowledge he had stored with out sharing becomes a source of torment for that person at grave and on judgment day...

      January 6, 2011 at 11:41 am |
    • Muneef

      CatolicMom.

      While those who shared their knowldge it became to them as charity and it does save them a lot of torment in life and after life.

      January 6, 2011 at 11:47 am |
  2. NM

    http://www.islamicsolutions.com/first-commandment-quote-of-the-day-248/

    January 4, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
  3. John Huss

    Before Christians criticize Muslims and their violence, they had better recall what Christianity was like during the Middle Ages. A minimum of five Catholic Popes and probably more, forced the civil authorities to burn heretics at the stake, under threat of excommunication. Don't believe this? Sorry, but this sad fact comes from the Catholic Encyclopedia. Let us not forget that the Church also authorized the torture of heretics for about 600 years. How do we acheive peace between Muslims and Christians? I fear that will not happen until there is peace between Israel and the Palestinians. It seems like Christians get indirectly blamed for the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, because the U.S. is a majority Christian nation and is viewed as Israel's chief supporter.

    January 4, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • Reality

      The Twenty (or so) Worst Things People Have Done to Each Other:

      Rank Death Toll Cause Century Religions/groups involved

      1 63 million Second World War 20C (Christians et al and Communists vs. Christians et al, Nazi-Pagan and "Shintoists")
      2 40 million Mao Zedong (mostly famine) 20C (Communism)
      40 million Genghis Khan 13C (Shamanism or Tengriism)
      4 27 million British India (mostly famine) 19C (Anglican)
      5 25 million Fall of the Ming Dynasty 17C (Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Chinese folk religion)
      6 20 million Taiping Rebellion 19C ( Confucianism, Buddhism and Chinese folk religion vs. a form of Christianity)
      20 million Joseph Stalin 20C (Communism vs. Christianity et al)
      8 19 million Mideast Slave Trade 7C-19C (Islam)
      9 17 million Timur Lenk 14C-15C
      10 16 million Atlantic Slave Trade 15C-19C (Christianity)
      11 15 million First World War 20C (Christians vs. Christians)
      15 million Conquest of the Americas 15C-19C (Christians vs pagans)
      13 13 million Muslim Conquest of India 11C-18C
      14 10 million An Lushan Revolt 8C
      10 million Xin Dynasty 1C
      16 9 million Russian Civil War 20C (Christians vs Communists)
      17 8 million Fall of Rome 5C (Pagans vs Pagans)
      8 million Congo Free State 19C-20C
      19 7½ million Thirty Years War 17C (Christians vs Christians)
      7½ million Fall of the Yuan Dynasty 14C

      http://users.erols.com/mwhite28/warstat0.htm

      January 4, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  4. Muneef

    Al-Baqara sura 02:
    In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
    So when ye have accomplished your holy rites, celebrate the praises of Allah, as ye used to celebrate the praises of your fathers;―yea, with far more heart and soul. There are men who say: "Our Lord! Give us (Thy bounties) in this world!" but they will have no portion in the hereafter. (200) And there are men who say: "Our Lord! Give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter and save us from the torment of the fire!" (201) To these will be allotted―what they have earned, and Allah is quick in account. (202).

    An-Nahl sura 16:
    For We assuredly sent amongst every People a messenger, (with the Command) "Serve Allah, and eschew Evil": of the people were some whom Allah guided, and some on whom Error became inevitably (established). So travel through the earth, and see what was the end of those who denied (the Truth). (36) If thou art anxious for their guidance, yet Allah guideth not such as He leaves to stray, and there is none to help them. (37) They swear their strongest oaths by Allah, that Allah will not raise up those who die: Nay but it is a promise (binding) on Him in truth: but most among mankind realise it not. (38) (They must be raised up), in order that He may manifest to them the Truth of that wherein they differ, and that the rejecters of Truth may realize that they had indeed (surrendered to) Falsehood. (39) For to anything which We have willed, We but say the Word, "Be" and it is. (40) To those who leave their homes in the cause of Allah, after suffering oppression― We will assuredly give a goodly home in this world: but truly the reward of the Hereafter will be greater if they only realize (this)! (41) (They are) those who persevere in patience, and put their trust on their Lord. (42).

    January 4, 2011 at 2:10 pm |
  5. Muneef

    For Quran research and English reading find this tool just received link of;

    http://tanzil.info/

    January 4, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
  6. peace prevail

    Discard all forms of religions shall do it, but infact I believe the problem is not religions, the muslims simply want the western forces to leave their land and not interfere and bully them into submission, and as the westerners want all the oil they simp[ly wont leave or stop bullying, which is why the religious clerics are using religion to defend the country, the middle east has started sending migrants to the west, and the next time the west destroys any middle eastern country, the muslims from the west shall simply attack the country they are living in with suicide bombers, and bomb plots and so on.

    Every year it gets worse, things are certainly not going to improve, and it is this that shall lead to the next world war.

    January 4, 2011 at 11:28 am |
  7. Lee Oates

    Maybe if the western world would begin to treat Muslims with respect, rather than a source of plunder and land grabs, peace could be attained. The constant contempt and hate expressed towards 1.2 billion Muslims by so called "Christians" because of the behaviour of a handful of Terrorist from Saudi Arabia who were funded by our "allies" and trained by our own CIA, does not contribute to any hope of peace.

    You can't treat 1.2 billion people with contempt and expect them to treat you with respect. We are in their lands, killing their people in very large numbers. We invaded them, they did not invade us. We slam their religion constantly, devaluing their culture, and in general, treat them badly.

    The question we have to start asking is....who is the real Terrorist? I know that this upsets some, but the reality is that we are repeating Vietnam, and the people are fighting for the right to have their society, culture, and religion. We did the same thing to the American Indian for the same reasons, i.e., to grab their land and resources and destroy their culture and religion.

    Like Vietnam, the World's citizens have to rally to stop this senseless killing by openly protesting it. These two wars are doing nothing except demonstrating to the world that we are willing to kill in an attempt to control the world. Aggression breeds resistance, and eventually we will be isolated and outgunned, and we will considered to be the bad guys.

    January 4, 2011 at 1:30 am |
    • Muneef

      My whole respects to the sensible Americans. It is good to see some are still thinking and brave enough to speak the truth of things.
      Rather than letting their hatred speaks as in the non Reality we been facing for some time now.

      January 4, 2011 at 2:49 am |
    • Reality

      Our War on Terror and Aggression:

      An update (or how we are spending or how we have spent the USA taxpayers’ money to eliminate global terror and aggression)

      The terror and aggression via a Partial and Recent Body Count

      1a) 179 killed in Mumbai/Bombay, 290 injured

      1b) Assassination of Benazir Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh

      2) 9/11, 3000 mostly US citizens, 1000’s injured

      3) The 24/7 Sunni-Shiite centuries-old blood feud currently being carried out in Iraq, US Troops killed in action, 3,481 and 924 died in non-combat98,691 – 107,707
      Iraqi civilians killed as of 11/9/2010, http://www.iraqbodycount.org/ and
      defenselink.mil/news/casualty.pdf

      4) Kenya- In Nairobi, about 212 people were killed and an estimated 4000 injured; in Dar es Salaam, the attack killed at least 11 and wounded 85.[2]

      5) Bali-in 2002-killing 202 people, 164 of whom were foreign nationals, and 38 Indonesian citizens. A further 209 people were injured.

      6) Bali in 2005- Twenty people were killed, and 129 people were injured by three bombers who killed themselves in the attacks.

      7) Spain in 2004- killing 191 people and wounding 2,050.

      8. UK in 2005- The bombings killed 52 commuters and the four radical Islamic suicide bombers, injured 700.

      9) The execution of an eloping couple in Afghanistan on 04/15/2009 by the Taliban.

      10) – Afghanistan: US troops 1,116 killed in action, 902 killed in non-combat situations as of 08/10/2010. Over 40,000 Afghan civilians killed due to the dark-age, koranic-driven Taliban acts of horror

      11) The killing of 13 citizen soldiers at Ft. Hood by a follower of the koran.

      12) 38 Russian citizens killed on March 29, 2010 by Muslim women suicide bombers.

      13) The May 28, 2010 attack on a Islamic religious minority in Pakistan, which have left 98 dead,

      14) Lockerbie is known internationally as the site where, on 21 December 1988, the wreckage of Pan Am Flight 103 crashed as a result of a terrorist bomb. In the United Kingdom the event is referred to as the Lockerbie disaster, the Lockerbie bombing, or simply Lockerbie. Eleven townspeople were killed in Sherwood Crescent, where the plane's wings and fuel tanks plummeted in a fiery explosion, destroying several houses and leaving a huge crater, with debris causing damage to a number of buildings nearby. The 270 fatalities (259 on the plane, 11 in Lockerbie) were citizens of 21 nations.

      15) Followed by the daily suicide and/or roadside and/or mosque bombings every day in the terror world of Islam.

      16) Bombs sent from Yemen by followers of the koran which fortunately were discovered before the bombs were detonated.

      17) The killing of 58 Christians in a Catholic church in one of the latest acts of horror and terror in Iraq.

      Continued below:
      Other elements of our War on Terror and Aggression:

      -Operation Iraqi Freedom- The 24/7 Sunni-Shiite centuries-old blood feud currently being carried out in Iraq, US Troops killed in action, 3,481 and 924 died in non-combat, 97,172 – 106,047 Iraqi civilians killed as of 8/10/2010 mostly due the Shiite and Sunni suicide bombers.

      – Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan: US troops 1,116 killed in action, 902 killed in non-combat situations as of 08/10/2010. Over 40,000 Afghan civilians killed due to the dark-age, koranic-driven Taliban acts of horror,

      – Sa-dd-am, his sons and major he-nchmen have been deleted. Sa-dd-am's bravado about WMD was one of his major mistakes. Kuwait was saved.

      – Iran is being been contained. (beside containing the Sunni-Shiite civil war in Baghdad, that is the main reason we are in Iraq. And yes, essential oil continues to flow from the region.)

      – Libya has become almost civil. Recently Libya agreed to pay $1.5 billion to the victims of their terrorist activities. Apparently this new reality from an Islamic country has upset OBL and his “cra-zies” as they have thre-atened Libya. OBL sure is a di-sgrace to the world especially the Moslem world!!! Or is he???

      – North Korea is still u-ncivil but is contained.

      – Northern Ireland is finally at peace.

      – The Jews and Palestinians are being separated by walls. Hopefully the walls will follow the 1948 UN accords. Unfortunately the Annapolis Peace Conference was not successful. And unfortunately the recent events in Gaza has put this situation back to “squ-are one”. And this significant stupidity is driven by the mythical foundations of both religions!!!

      – Bin La-d-en has been cornered under a rock in Western Pakistan since 9/11.

      – Fa-na–tical Islam has basically been contained to the Middle East but a wall between India and Pakistan would be a plus for world peace. Ditto for a wall between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

      – Timothy McVeigh was exe-cuted. Terry Nichols will follow soon.

      – Eric Ru-dolph is spending three life terms in pri-son with no par-ole.

      – Jim Jones, David Koresh, Kaczynski, the "nuns" from Rwanda, and the KKK were all dealt with and either eliminated themselves or are being punished.

      – Islamic Sudan, Dar-fur and So-malia are still terror hot spots.

      – The terror and tor-ture of Muslims in Bosnia, Kosovo and Kuwait were ended by the proper application of the military forces of the USA and her freedom-loving friends. Ra-dovan Karadzic was finally captured on 7/23/08 and is charged with genocide, crimes against humanity and violations of the law of war – charges related to the 1992-1995 civil war that followed Bosnia-Herzegovina's secession from Yugoslavia.

      – And of course the bloody terror brought about by the Ja-panese, Na-zis and Co-mmunists was with great difficulty eliminated by the good guys.

      January 4, 2011 at 8:12 am |
    • Muneef

      Ya-Seen Sura 36: 
      In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
       Sin. (1) By the wise Qur'an, (2) Lo! thou art of those sent (3) On a straight path, (4) A revelation of the Mighty, the Merciful, (5) That thou mayst warn a folk whose fathers were not warned, so they are heedless. (6) Already hath the word proved true of most of them, for they believe not. (7) Lo! We have put on their necks carcans reaching unto the chins, so that they are made stiff-necked. (8) And We have set a bar before them and a bar behind them, and (thus) have covered them so that they see not. (9) Whether thou warn them or thou warn them not, it is alike for them, for they believe not. (10) Thou warnest only him who followeth the Reminder and feareth the Beneficent in secret. To him bear tidings of forgiveness and a rich reward. (11) Lo! We it is Who bring the dead to life. We record that which they send before (them), and their footprints. And all things We have kept in a clear Register. (12).

      January 4, 2011 at 8:52 am |
    • Muneef

      Being a One Eye-d you are not taking the body co-unts of V-ie-tna-mis nor the Ja-pan-ies of H-ir-osh-ima and N-ag-asa-ki?? Where your k-illing went on for gen-era-tions ahead was and is with Ja-p-ani-es....!?

      January 5, 2011 at 4:50 am |
    • Muneef

      Lee Oates.

      Surely if those immigrants had peaceful and productive countries they would have not immigrated to your country..but only because their countries are messed up by your politics supporting corrupted régimes and worthless rulers against the will of the majority of population! Then you should not be surprised when the youth of those populations start immigrating towards your countries...!! Can see and hear so many die on the way towards your sea shores and boarders..!!

      But now those are already there at yours maybe if you prepare them right as to education and training for finally deputing them to return to their own countries with the needful backup and authority they will be useful tools for the advancement and prosperity of their nations then you will have no one wanting to immigrate leaving behind their own families and friends...in addition to that you will see those who immigrated towards your country start moving back to their own countries and this is the only solution to resolve the issue of illegal immigration and to find peace...otherwise if things go on as it is today surely slowly slowly you will find that your own countries become inherited by piling up immigrants who might get starved due negligence turn on against the Host country...that has contributed in the destructions of their countries but not towards and advancements or developments of their countries and nations to find peace and make a living..!?

      January 5, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
  8. Muneef

    Al-E-Imran Sura 03
    In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
    Say: O People of the Scripture! Come to an agreement between us and you: that we shall worship none but Allah, and that we shall ascribe no partner unto Him, and that none of us shall take others for lords beside Allah. And if they turn away, then say: Bear witness that we are they who have surrendered (unto Him). (64).

    January 3, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
  9. HotAirAce

    I wonder if pope-a-dope will be opening this meeting to the public. I wonder if he will invite an atheist.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      E-mail just sent to pope-a-dope at benedictxvi@vatican.va:

      "Good Day!

      CNN is reporting that you will be hosting “interreligious meetings” later this year in Assisi, Italy.

      Will these meetings be open to the public? As you may know, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf will soon be on “a nationwide (USA) speaking tour next month to promote the project and encourage interfaith dialogue,” and at least one member of your faith chastised the Imam (in a public online forum) for not holding open meetings. I trust that you will be operating in a more transparent manner.

      Also, will you be inviting any non-believers (atheists) to your meeting? I think having representatives of all persuasions would be beneficial.

      Finally, has “The Church” completed its investigations into child abuse by priests, and turned over all evidence and probable abusers to the appropriate civic authorities? I believe that doing so is the only way you will cleanse your organization of the shame of past behaviour."

      January 3, 2011 at 11:13 pm |
  10. Muneef

    Reality & Atheists. 
    Can say that I believe in every thing that you disbelief of when it comes to the Creator and the Creation of universe, life and guidance, God has given me hearing,seeing,thinking and heart feelings to see and experience signs and small miracles to have faith in him and continue with good deeds I was told of in his Holy Book although am not perfect at that but nothing to lose but contrary to that there are more to gain in life and life after...
    For those disbelievers they lose their senses by being locked and blocked from such experiences... It is all about souls as verses speak for them selves;

    Al-Fajr sura 89:
    In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
    (To the righteous soul will be said:) "O (thou) soul, in (complete) rest and satisfaction! (27) "Come back thou to thy Lord well pleased (thyself), and well-pleasing unto Him! (28) "Enter thou, then among my Devotees! (29) "Yea, enter thou my Heaven"! (30).

    Yusuf sura 12:
    "Nor do I absolve my own self (of blame): the (human soul) certainly prone to evil, unless my Lord do bestow His Mercy: but surely my Lord is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful." (53).

    An-Naziat sura 79:
    Therefore when there comes the great, overwhelming (Event) (34) The Day when Man shall remember (all) that he strove for (35) And Half-Fire shall be placed in full view for (all) to see― (36) Then, for such as had tran-sgres-sed all bounds, (37) And had preferred the life of this world, (38) The Abode will be Hell-Fire; (39) And for such as had entertained the fear of standing before their Lord's (tribunal) and had restrained (their) soul from lower Desires, (40) Their Abode will be the Garden. (41).

    Al-Anaam sura 06:
    Yet they make the Jinns equals with Allah, though Allah did create the Jinns; and they falsely, having no knowledge attribute to Him sons and daughters. Praise and glory be to Him! (for He is) above what they attribute to Him!. (100) To Him is due the primal origin of the heavens and the earth: how can He have a son when He hath no consort? He created all things and He hath full knowledge of all things. (101) That is Allah, your Lord! There is no god but He, the Creator of all things: then worship ye Him: and He hath power to dispose of all affairs. (102) No vision can grasp Him, but His grasp is over all vision: He is above all comprehension yet is acquainted with all things. (103) "Now have come to you from your Lord, proofs (to open your eyes): if any will see, it, will be for (the good of) his own soul; if any will be blind it will be to his own (harm): I am not (here) to watch over your doings." (104).

    January 3, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • Reality

      Looks like the full course again is necessary to cure Muneef's Three B Syndrome:

      The Five Steps To Deprogram 1400 Years of Islamic Myths:

      ( –The Steps take less than two minutes to finish- simply amazing, two minutes to bring peace and rationality to over one billion lost souls- Priceless!!!)

      Are you ready?

      Using "The 77 Branches of Islamic "faith" a collection compiled by Imam Bayhaqi as a starting point. In it, he explains the essential virtues that reflect true "faith" (iman) through related Qur’anic verses and Prophetic sayings." i.e. a nice summary of the Koran and Islamic beliefs.

      "1. Belief in Allah"

      aka as God, Yahweh, Zeus, Jehovah, Mother Nature, etc. should be added to your cleansing neurons.

      "2. To believe that everything other than Allah was non-existent. Thereafter, Allah Most High created these things and subsequently they came into existence."

      Evolution and the Big Bang or the "Gi-b G-nab" (when the universe starts to recycle) are more plausible and the "akas" for Allah should be included if you continue to be a "crea-tionist".

      "3. To believe in the existence of angels."

      A major item for neuron cleansing. Angels/de-vils are the mythical creations of ancient civilizations, e.g. Hitt-ites, to explain/define natural events, contacts with their gods, big birds, sudden winds, protectors during the dark nights, etc. No "pretty/ug-ly wingy thingies" ever visited or talked to Mohammed, Jesus, Mary or Joseph or Joe Smith. Today we would classify angels as f–airies and "tin–ker be-lls". Modern de-vils are classified as the de-mons of the de-mented.

      "4. To believe that all the heavenly books that were sent to the different prophets are true. However, apart from the Quran, all other books are not valid anymore."

      Another major item to delete. There are no books written in the spirit state of Heaven (if there is one) just as there are no angels to write/publish/distribute them. The Koran, OT, NT etc. are simply books written by humans for humans.

      Prophets were invented by ancient scribes typically to keep the un-educated masses in line. Today we call them for-tune tellers.

      Prophecies are also invali-dated by the natural/God/Allah gifts of Free Will and Future.

      "5. To believe that all the prophets are true. However, we are commanded to follow the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) alone."

      Mohammed spent thirty days "fasting" (the Ramadan legend) in a hot cave before his first contact with Allah aka God etc. via a "pretty wingy thingy". Common sense demands a neuron deletion of #5. #5 is also the major source of Islamic vi-olence i.e. turning Mohammed's "fast, hunger-driven" hallu-cinations into horrible reality for unbelievers.

      Walk these Five Steps and we guarantee a complete recovery from your Islamic ways!!!!

      January 3, 2011 at 4:59 pm |
  11. ArbuthnotLG

    Empty words. Now, some reality : The United States has committed itself to importing 330 Somali islamists into the country every month to alleviate the sufferings in war-torn Somali. If immigration of this kind must be actively pursued, wouldn’t it be better to follow an open policy of allowing not-yet-murdered Christians in Muslim countries around the world to emigrate to the United States and other western countries. On the other hand Muslims who obviously hate the west and all things western so passionately should be actively encouraged to go back to Muslim-dominated countries where they can practice their faith in deep purity free from corrosive Western cultures and freedoms. With this, a lot of senseless murders of Christians will cease and lost freedoms and lost rights to privacy can again be restored in western societies.
    People who cannot live together should be helped to live apart. Whether it is in Ivory Coast, Sudan, Nigeria, Yougoslavia/Serbia/Bosnia/Kosovo, Indonesia/East Timor, Egypt or Israel. Imagine if divorce were impossible and couples who have come to hopelessly distrust and hate each other were forced to live together. Almost certainly, the result will be harm.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
    • Muneef

      ArbuthnotLG.

      Well as heard in the news that those arriving to the west are being well trained on sophisticated equipment's and combat training and then sent back to Somalia to fight as opposition to prolong suffering for the area and others sent to lead pirate operations in the area and that is all done to give an excuse for the western Navy to be present in the area as well as to cause the raise of the insurance premium against the ships passing the area raising therefore the costs of commodities as well as an opportunity for private security companies to flourish guarding the passing ships? Such actions meant to cause the raise of commodity prices and starve the area in to more re-bel-lion and co-nf-licts in area..!

      January 4, 2011 at 12:07 pm |
    • Muneef

      ArbuthnotLG.

      Same story when trained the Q-aida and Tali-ban to fight the so-vi-et troops who were considered non religious or infidels at that time and it was the pr-opa-ganda that was used to recruit islamic worriers from all over the Islamic world until they were driven out of afghani lands and until there was no use from them the plot was made to eliminate their presence and to pave the way for a new invasion by the west for those areas with out any fight but seems it did not work out as was hoped for and that's why their troops are deep down in the .... !?

      January 4, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
    • Muneef

      ArbuthnotLG.

      That is one of the reasons why west decided to take in to becoming religious rather than secular since only with that the tension might be reduced and not be considered as infidels attacking Islamic lands but as people of the scriptures! But wondering if that would work out they decided to push on churches to spread and depute pastors to travel to those countries for preaching and converting masses to bring those countries in to division among them selves for easier penetration in the name of saving Christian believers or generate hate and fights among them as with the operation that Egypt recently had and accused Muslims for it just to bring Egypt in to division for in the end to call for separation of the country in to more than one as one Islamic and one Christian just as being planed for Sudan North and South!? Then the final touch would be arming those creating more conflicts between both sectors to have them fight each other to extinction or falling a part in preparation for total invasion towards the new systems of globalization or New World Order!? History repeats it self...
      See examples such as the separation of India in to India and Pakistan but left them Kashmir to fight over and remain alert against each other all those years, then another example is the Koreas South and North, then the case of Cyprus for Turkey and Greece, planting of Israel among the Arabs to control,exhaust them,consume their wealth and drain their resources?
      There might be more examples that I am not aware of right now but it is there in history books for whom wants to read...

      January 4, 2011 at 12:53 pm |
  12. Muneef

    Al-Hujraat sura 49:
    In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
    The Believers are but a single Brotherhood: So make peace and reconciliation between your two (contending) brothers: And fear Allah that ye may receive Mercy. (10) O ye who believe! let not some men among you laugh at others: it may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): nor let some women laugh at others: it may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): nor de-fame nor be sa-rca-stic to each other, nor call each other by (offensive) nicknames: Ill-seeming is a name connoting wi-cke-dness, (to be used of one) after he has believed: And those who do not de-si-st are (Indeed) doing wrong. (11) O ye who believe! avoid su-spi-cion as much (as possible): for su-spi-cion in some cases is a sin: and spy not on each other, nor speak ill of each other behind their backs. Would any of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? Nay, ye would ab-hor it...but fear Allah: for Allah is Oft-Returning, Most Merciful. (12) O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may de-spi-se each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things). (13).

    January 3, 2011 at 1:29 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Muneef,

      O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may de-spi-se each other).

      Who is the ‘We’ in the above sentence? Is it as in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit?

      Thank you!

      January 3, 2011 at 1:50 pm |
    • Muneef

      CatolicMom.
      Hi. This is the second time you ask this since sept last year..where have explained that it could be that he is referring to him self in a Royal way being the King of Kings...and it could mean Him and his Holy comanded Armies of Spirits and Angels.!

      January 3, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Muneef,

      I am sorry if I asked again but do not recall reading an answer before this. That does not mean that you didn’t answer me but that I did not see your comment. Sorry.

      January 3, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
    • Muneef

      CatholicMom
      Sorry did not mean to sound as you might expect as I am happy you have asked again will try to quote verses of the Quran and if you read in time you will know what indifference's we have after all my God is your God and God of all creations and these words are his words and not mine or any mortal creature..
      You wanted to know the meaning of using "We" and I said being the King of all Kings uses the Royal word of we.. And could mean him and his Ranks of Armies from heavens are the Spirits and the Angels, while on earth he has among Jinn and mankind armies of believers.
      Now about the Holy Quran God says the following verses which it might explain about you asking if "We"meant the father,the son,the holy spirit?
          
      Al-Maeda sura 05:
      In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
      O People of the Scripture! Now hath Our messenger come unto you, expounding unto you much of that which ye used to hide in the Scripture, and forgiving much. Now hath come unto you light from Allah and plain Scripture, (15) Whereby Allah guideth him who seeketh His good pleasure unto paths of peace. He bringeth them out of darkness unto light by His decree, and guideth them unto a straight path. (16) They indeed have disbelieved who say: Lo! Allah is the Messiah, son of Mary. Say: Who then can do aught against Allah, if He had willed to destroy the Messiah son of Mary, and his mother and everyone on earth? Allah's is the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them. He createth what He will. And Allah is Able to do all things. (17) The Jews and Christians say: We are sons of Allah and His loved ones. Say: Why then doth He chastise you for your sins? Nay, ye are but mortals of His creating. He forgiveth whom He will, and chastiseth whom He will. Allah's is the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them, and unto Him is the journeying. (18) O People of the Scripture! Now hath Our messenger come unto you to make things plain unto you after an interval (of cessation) of the messengers, lest ye should say: There came not unto us a messenger of cheer nor any warner. Now hath a messenger of cheer and a warner come unto you. Allah is Able to do all things. (19).

      January 3, 2011 at 7:05 pm |
    • Muneef

      CatholicMom.

      These following verses are about the Armies he has under his lead;

      An-Naba sura 78:
      In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
      (From) the Lord of the heavens and the earth, and all between― (Allah) Most Gracious:― none shall have power to argue with Him. (37) The Day that the Spirit and the angels will stand forth in ranks, none shall speak except any who is permitted by (Allah) Most Gracious, and he will say what is right. (38) That Day will be the sure Reality: therefore, whoso will, let him take a (straight) Return to his Lord! (39).

      Al-Fajr sura89:
      Nay! when the earth is pounded to powder, (21) And thy Lord cometh, and His angels rank upon rank, (22).

      Al-Tawba sura 09:
      But Allah did pour His calm on the Messenger and on the Believers and sent down forces which ye saw not: He punished the Unbelievers: thus doth He reward those without Faith. (26).

      Al-Ahzab sura 33:
      O ye who believe! Remember Allah's favour unto you when there came against you hosts, and We sent against them a great wind and hosts ye could not see. And Allah is ever Seer of what ye do. (9).

      Al-Fath sura 48:
      It is He who sent down Tranquillity into the hearts of the Believers, that they may add Faith to their Faith― for to Allah belong the Forces of the heavens and the earth; and Allah is full of Knowledge and Wisdom;― (4).

      Al-Fath sura 48:
      For to Allah belong the Forces of the heavens and the earth; and Allah is Exalted in Power, Full of Wisdom. (7) We have truly sent thee as a witness, as a bringer of Glad Tidings, and as a Warner: (8).

      January 3, 2011 at 7:09 pm |
    • RUReal

      Muneef, it seems that you holy writings teach that Allah will support the righteous in battle and punish unbelievers on Earth. "But Allah did pour His calm on the Messenger and on the Believers and sent down forces which ye saw not: He punished the Unbelievers: thus doth He reward those without Faith." This would make me wonder why Islamic nations have lost so many wars against the Christians and Jews in the last 500 years. Is he punising the Muslim people for their unfaithfulness? Rewarding the Christians and Jews for their faithfulness? Just wondering.

      January 4, 2011 at 11:11 am |
  13. CatholicMom

    "The Saint and the Sultan: The Crusades, Islam and Francis of Assisi's Mission of Peace" sounds like a good book to read in 2011!

    I am happy Pope Benedict XVI has arranged for religious leaders to meet together this year. October seems far off but the way time flies it will be here before you know it! Hopefully all leaders will be able to fit it into their calendars….one reason to set the date in October instead of sooner, I would guess. Maybe all will have time to read the book by then also!

    God bless all world religious [and non-religious] leaders with hearts set on world peace.

    January 3, 2011 at 9:48 am |
  14. Apostle Eric vonAnderseck

    Outside of the covenant of Jesus Christ all religions agree on the struggle of controlling the moral-code in the nature of man and so a common ground for a form of “salvation” is seen. But though all people may agree with this approach to salvation, God is the One who determines Salvation. After all He shed His blood to provide a pattern in His covenant for faith to be expressed and the moral-code to be crucified. http://apostlestoday.net/

    January 3, 2011 at 6:07 am |
    • Reality

      The Apostles' Creed 2010: (updated based on the studies of historians and theologians during the past 200 years)

      I might believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
      and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
      human-created state of bliss called heaven.

      I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
      preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
      named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
      girl named Mary.

      Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
      the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

      He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
      a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of
      Jerusalem.

      Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
      many semi-fiction writers. A bodily resurrection and
      ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
      Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
      grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
      and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
      called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

      Amen

      January 3, 2011 at 8:05 am |
    • RUReal

      Reality, you must be very insecure and desperate for others to see just how smart you are, that you troll around insulting any who don't follow your belief system. You are very fortunate that you live in a modern Christian nation, so that you can practice you mental m@sterbation all day long without fear of reprisal. I hope that your faith in your own superiority fills the empty hole in your psyche that other less special/intelligent people fill with faith.

      January 3, 2011 at 9:18 am |
    • jeff

      @RUReal, we should all reply to Reality as @Narcissus, a modern-day version who has fallen in love with his own reflection in the blogs.

      January 3, 2011 at 9:42 am |
    • HotAirAce

      @RUReal

      I assume the "Christian nation" you are referring to is the USA. As has been demonstrated so many ties, the USA IS *not* a Christian nation.

      January 3, 2011 at 10:04 am |
    • RUReal

      Sorry Ace. I will be more exacting. Would a nation with a majority population identifying themselves as Christian. (76-82% in the US)

      January 3, 2011 at 10:51 am |
    • Reality

      Saving Christians from the Resurrection Con using basic common sense i.e. heaven (if it exists) is a spirit state, no bodies or bones possible.

      More analyses:

      From that famous passage: In 1 Corinthians 15 St. Paul reasoned, "If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith."

      Even now Catholic/Christian professors of theology are questioning the bodily resurrection of the simple, preacher man aka Jesus.

      To wit;

      From a major Catholic university's theology grad school white-board notes:

      "Heaven is a Spirit state or spiritual reality of union with God in love, without earthly – earth bound distractions.
      Jesus and Mary's bodies are therefore not in Heaven.

      Most believe that it to mean that the personal spiritual self that survives death is in continuity with the self we were while living on earth as an embodied person.

      Again, the physical Resurrection (meaning a resuscitated corpse returning to life), Ascension (of Jesus' crucified corpse), and Assumption (Mary's corpse) into heaven did not take place.

      The Ascension symbolizes the end of Jesus' earthly ministry and the beginning of the Church.

      Only Luke's Gospel records it. The Assumption ties Jesus' mission to Pentecost and missionary activity of Jesus' followers The Assumption has multiple layers of symbolism, some are related to Mary's special role as "Christ bearer" (theotokos). It does not seem fitting that Mary, the body of Jesus' Virgin-Mother (another biblically based symbol found in Luke 1) would be derived by worms upon her death. Mary's assumption also shows God's positive regard, not only for Christ's male body, but also for female bodies." "

      "In three controversial Wednesday Audiences, Pope John Paul II pointed out that the essential characteristic of heaven, hell or purgatory is that they are states of being of a spirit (angel/demon) or human soul, rather than places, as commonly perceived and represented in human language. This language of place is, according to the Pope, inadequate to describe the realities involved, since it is tied to the temporal order in which this world and we exist. In this he is applying the philosophical categories used by the Church in her theology and saying what St. Thomas Aquinas said long before him."

      http://eternal-word.com/library/PAPALDOC/JP2HEAVN.HTM

      The Vatican quickly embellished this story with a lot CYAP.

      Of course, we all know that angels are really mythical "pretty wingie talking thingies".

      With respect to rising from the dead, we also have this account:

      An added note: As per R.B. Stewart in his introduction to the recent book, The Resurrection of Jesus, Crossan and Wright in Dialogue, ( Professors Crossan and Wright are On Faith panelists).

      "Reimarus (1774-1778) posits that Jesus became sidetracked by embracing a political position, sought to force God's hand and that he died alone deserted by his disciples. What began as a call for repentance ended up as a misguided attempt to usher in the earthly political kingdom of God. After Jesus' failure and death, his disciples stole his body and declared his resurrection in order to maintain their financial security and ensure themselves some standing."

      So where are the bones? As per Professor Crossan's analyses in his many books, the body of Jesus would have ended up in the mass graves of the crucified, eaten by wild dogs, with lime in a shallow grave, or under a pile of stones.

      January 3, 2011 at 11:46 am |
    • Peace2All

      @RUReal

      You Said: "Reality, you must be very insecure and desperate for others to see just how smart you are, that you troll around insulting any who don't follow your belief system."

      When you used the word 'must' as opposed to asking a question or stating something prefaced with... 'in my opinion'... you, by using 'must' are claiming something that you do not absolutely know as a fact, but is *opinion.* You 'may' be right or not, but you are making *assumptions* as to @Reality's intentions and mental/emotional states of mind.

      You Said to @Reality: "You are very fortunate that you live in a modern Christian nation, so that you can practice you mental m@sterbation all day long without fear of reprisal."

      Hmmm.... I was wondering... is it so much about the 'Christian nation' that allows anyone to speak their mind, or is it more about, our 1st Ammendment rights to be able to express ourselves... yes...? Hence, part of the reason of the concept of the 'separation of church and the government... or church and the secular,' so, no religion including Christianity can stomp on the rights of people to express themselves fully and in their own way... whether you agree, disagree or don't have an opinion one way or another on others view and comments... yes...?

      Peace...

      January 3, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
    • RUReal

      Peace, honestly, in referencing "Christian" as a descriptor of nations, I was not accurate enough. I agree. I should have been more accurate. I suppose that Reality is lucky to live in a nation whose cultural heritage, moral and legal systems are based upon the Western Christian tradition as has developed over the last 500 years or so.
      In nearly every nation whose cultural heritage, moral and legal systems developed from this western, Christian tradition, he is free to insult people of faith as much as he wishes. And I thank God for this. I also thank our secular founders.
      I would include some mainly atheist nations of western Europe in the list of nations coming from this tradition. While many nations in Europe are non-religious, their basis for right and wrong is based upon a very Christian world view. One in which caste sytems, infanticide, honor killings etc. are not acceptable, and indevidual freedoms are upheld. And in any of these nations, Reality would be free to say what he wishes. I would challenge you to name a nation from a Western, Christian tradition where he would be imprisoned or worse for his comments.
      I now challenge you to name a country from the Islamic tradition where he could insult Islam without fear of reprisal from either government or non-government forces.

      January 3, 2011 at 5:55 pm |
    • Peace2All

      @RUReal

      *My point, again, as I understand it in terms of our 1st amendment, and freedom of speech, was to (build in) a 'wall' of separation of church and government... (because) of 'Christianity,' since you are talking about our country, so as not to have -anyone's freedom of speech and their civil liberties trampled on.

      If the christian right were to take power, they would most likely attempt to assert their beliefs into laws, schools, sciences, etc... Which is by the way, happening to a certain extent anyway in our country as we speak. Whether it is changing text books to teach religion as a 'science,' making laws that prohibit stem-cell research which would without question help those in need, to stopping of any kind of gay rights, trying to put religion(christianity) into schools, a woman's right to choose, etc, etc...

      It is... going on now. So, not everyone, even in our country, always feels this sense of 'safety' you speak of when expressing their thoughts against Christianity.

      Sure, it may be better than a lot or most countries, but our 1st amendment rights and the separation of church and the secular is to protect everyone from the beliefs of the religious, while also allowing the religious to practice your religion, whatever it may be... not limited to Christianity.

      Peace...

      January 4, 2011 at 2:57 am |
    • Nonimus

      @RUReal,
      "In nearly every nation whose cultural heritage, moral and legal systems developed from this western, Christian tradition, he is free to insult people of faith as much as he wishes."
      "I would challenge you to name a nation from a Western, Christian tradition where he would be imprisoned or worse for his comments."

      Finland – On 30 May 2008, Tampere District Court sentenced Seppo Lehto to two years and four months in prison for offences which involve hate speech and blasphemy.

      Germany – In 2006, Manfred van H. (also known as "Mahavo") was prosecuted for blasphemy.

      (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blasphemy_law)

      Also, Many states in the US and many nations in Europe still have blasphamy laws on the books, although seldom enforced. The Christian tradition has not been kind to those who disagree with it's doctrine. Just ask Galileo or Torquemada.

      January 4, 2011 at 9:46 am |
    • RUReal

      Amusingly, Seppo Lehto while going far beond saying mean things, was convicted of hate speach against...wait for it...Muslims.

      January 4, 2011 at 10:54 am |
    • RUReal

      Oh, wait..Manfred von H. Mahavo. Convicted of making toilet paper with "Quran Holy Quran" on it. Offensive to who???? Mulsims, I might think.

      January 4, 2011 at 10:59 am |
    • Peace2All

      @RUReal

      You Said: "Reality, you must be very insecure and desperate for others to see just how smart you are, that you troll around insulting any who don't follow your belief system."

      When you used the word 'must' as opposed to asking a question or stating something prefaced with... 'in my opinion'... you, by using 'must' are claiming something that you do not absolutely know as a fact, but is *opinion.* You 'may' be right or not, but you are making *assumptions* as to @Reality's intentions and mental/emotional states of mind.

      -You never answered this. Should I assume that I was correct in my assertions...?
      ---
      In relationship to your other post in response to mine:

      *My point, again, as I understand it in terms of our 1st amendment, and freedom of speech, was to (build in) a 'wall' of separation of church and government... (because) of 'Christianity,' since you are talking about our country, so as not to have -anyone's freedom of speech and their civil liberties trampled on.

      If the christian right were to take power, they would most likely attempt to assert their beliefs into laws, schools, sciences, etc... Which is by the way, happening to a certain extent anyway in our country as we speak. Whether it is changing text books to teach religion as a 'science,' making laws that prohibit stem-cell research which would without question help those in need, to stopping of any kind of gay rights, trying to put religion(christianity) into schools, a woman's right to choose, etc, etc...

      It is... going on now. So, not everyone, even in our country, always feels this sense of 'safety' you speak of when expressing their thoughts against Christianity.

      Sure, it may be better than a lot or most countries, but our 1st amendment rights and the separation of church and the secular is to protect everyone from the beliefs of the religious, while also allowing the religious to practice your religion, whatever it may be... not limited to Christianity.

      Peace...

      January 4, 2011 at 2:02 pm |
  15. doctore0

    Magic books say: Kill those who don't have the same magic book;

    No peace is possible in religion

    January 3, 2011 at 4:13 am |
  16. RightTurnClyde

    In something of an oblique way this article alludes to the 5th Crusade and the Sultan Malik s well as St. Francis Assisi and we must bear in mind (in all of this violent conflict) that the Mediterranean is actually the junction of three continents (Africa, Asia, Europe) and that powerful empires have been bumping into one another since the beginning of recorded history (Babylon, Egypt, Persian, Assyria, Alexander, Rome, Carthage, the Moors, Christian Crusaders, El Cid (!!), Lawrence< Ottoman, Genghis, Tamerlane, the Cossacks, Bulgars, Huns, German panzer and American armies. It is a place where conflict abides. Why would the conflict or powers cease in the 2nd millennium? What has changed? And the final battle is scheduled to take place there as well. So it never hurts to talk (give peace a chance) but don't make book it .. and whatever we do .. don't let Jimmy Carter screw it up any more than he already has...

    January 3, 2011 at 3:00 am |
  17. Reality

    Second, how Muslims can find peace:

    The Five Steps To Deprogram 1400 Years of Islamic Myths:

    ( –The Steps take less than two minutes to finish- simply amazing, two minutes to bring peace and rationality to over one billion lost souls- Priceless!!!)

    Are you ready?

    Using "The 77 Branches of Islamic "faith" a collection compiled by Imam Bayhaqi as a starting point. In it, he explains the essential virtues that reflect true "faith" (iman) through related Qur’anic verses and Prophetic sayings." i.e. a nice summary of the Koran and Islamic beliefs.

    "1. Belief in Allah"

    aka as God, Yahweh, Zeus, Jehovah, Mother Nature, etc. should be added to your cleansing neurons.

    "2. To believe that everything other than Allah was non-existent. Thereafter, Allah Most High created these things and subsequently they came into existence."

    Evolution and the Big Bang or the "Gi-b G-nab" (when the universe starts to recycle) are more plausible and the "akas" for Allah should be included if you continue to be a "crea-tionist".

    "3. To believe in the existence of angels."

    A major item for neuron cleansing. Angels/de-vils are the mythical creations of ancient civilizations, e.g. Hitt-ites, to explain/define natural events, contacts with their gods, big birds, sudden winds, protectors during the dark nights, etc. No "pretty/ug-ly wingy thingies" ever visited or talked to Mohammed, Jesus, Mary or Joseph or Joe Smith. Today we would classify angels as f–airies and "tin–ker be-lls". Modern de-vils are classified as the de-mons of the de-mented.

    "4. To believe that all the heavenly books that were sent to the different prophets are true. However, apart from the Quran, all other books are not valid anymore."

    Another major item to delete. There are no books written in the spirit state of Heaven (if there is one) just as there are no angels to write/publish/distribute them. The Koran, OT, NT etc. are simply books written by humans for humans.

    Prophets were invented by ancient scribes typically to keep the un-educated masses in line. Today we call them for-tune tellers.

    Prophecies are also invali-dated by the natural/God/Allah gifts of Free Will and Future.

    "5. To believe that all the prophets are true. However, we are commanded to follow the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) alone."

    Mohammed spent thirty days "fasting" (the Ramadan legend) in a hot cave before his first contact with Allah aka God etc. via a "pretty wingy thingy". Common sense demands a neuron deletion of #5. #5 is also the major source of Islamic vi-olence i.e. turning Mohammed's "fast, hunger-driven" hallu-cinations into horrible reality for unbelievers.

    Walk these Five Steps and we guarantee a complete recovery from your Islamic ways!!!!

    January 2, 2011 at 11:45 pm |
    • Muneef

      Al-Mulk
      In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
      Blessed be He in Whose hands is Dominion: and He over all things Hath Power― (1) He Who created Death and Life, that He may try which of you is best in deed: and He is the Exalted in Might, Oft-Forgiving― (2) He Who created the seven heavens one above another; no want of proportion wilt thou see in the Creation of (Allah) Most Gracious. so turn thy vision again: Seest thou any flaw? (3) Again turn thy vision a second time; (thy) vision will come back to thee dull and discomfited, in a state worn out. (4) And We have, (from of old), adorned the lowest heaven with Lamps, and We have made such (Lamps) (as) missiles to drive away the Evil Ones, and have prepared for them the Penalty of the Blazing Fire. (5) For those who reject their Lord (and Cherisher) is the Penalty of Hell: and evil is (such) destination. (6) When they are cast therein, they will hear the (terrible) drawing in of its breath even as it blazes forth. (7) Almost bursting with fury: every time a Group is cast therein its Keepers will ask "Did no Warner come to you?" (8) They will say: "Yes indeed: a Warner did come to us, but we rejected him and said `Allah never sent down any (Message): ye are in nothing but an egregious delusion!' " (9) They will further say: "Had we but listened or used our intelligence we should not (now) be among the Companions of the Blazing Fire!" (10) They will then confess their sins: but far will be (Forgiveness) from the Companions of the Blazing Fire! (11) As for those who fear their Lord unseen for them is Forgiveness and a great Reward. (12) And whether ye hide your word or publish it, He certainly has (full) knowledge, of the secrets of (all) hearts. (13) Should He not know― He that created? And He is the One that understands the finest mysteries (and) is well-acquainted (with them). (14) It is He Who has made the earth manageable for you, so traverse ye through its tracts and enjoy of the Sustenance which He furnishes: but unto Him is the Resurrection. (15) Do ye feel secure that He Who is in heaven will not cause you to be swallowed up by the earth when it shakes (as in an earthquake)? (16) Or do ye feel secure that He Who is in Heaven will not send against you a violent tornado (with showers of stones), so that ye shall know how (terrible) was My warning? (17) But indeed men before them rejected (My warning): then how (terrible) was My rejection (of them)? (18) Do they not observe the birds above them, spreading their wings and folding them in? None can uphold them except (Allah) Most Gracious: truly it is He that watches over all things. (19) Nay, who is there that can help you, (even as) an army, besides (Allah) Most Merciful? In nothing but delusion are the Unbelievers. (20) Or who is there that can provide you with Sustenance if He were to withhold His provision? Nay, they obstinately persist in insolent impiety and flight (from the Truth). (21) Is then one who walks headlong, with his face grovelling, better guided― or one who walks evenly on a Straight Way? (22) Say: "It is He Who has created you (and made you grow) and made for you the faculties of hearing, seeing, and understanding: little thanks it is ye give." (23) Say: "It is He Who has multiplied you through the earth, and to Him shall ye be gathered together." (24) They ask: When will this promise be (fulfilled)? If ye are telling the truth. (25) Say: "As to the knowledge of the time, it is with Allah alone: I am (sent) only to warn plainly in public." (26) At length, when they see it close at hand, grieved will be the faces of the Unbelievers, and it will be said (to them): "This is (the promise fulfilled) which ye were calling for!" (27) Say: "See ye?― If Allah were to destroy me, and those with me, or if He bestows His Mercy on us― yet who can deliver the Unbelievers from a grievous Penalty?" (28) Say: "He is (Allah) Most Gracious: we have believed in Him, and on Him have we put our trust: so soon will ye know which (of us) it is that is in manifest error." (29) Say: "See ye?― If your stream be some morning lost (in the underground earth), who then can supply you with clear-flowing water?" (30).

      January 3, 2011 at 12:35 pm |
  18. Reality

    "How Christians, Muslims can find peace"

    First, how the Christians can find peace:

    From that famous passage: In 1 Corinthians 15 St. Paul reasoned, "If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith."

    Even now Catholic/Christian professors of theology are questioning the bodily resurrection of the simple, preacher man aka Jesus.

    To wit;

    From a major Catholic university's theology grad school white-board notes:

    "Heaven is a Spirit state or spiritual reality of union with God in love, without earthly – earth bound distractions.
    Jesus and Mary's bodies are therefore not in Heaven.

    Most believe that it to mean that the personal spiritual self that survives death is in continuity with the self we were while living on earth as an embodied person.

    Again, the physical Resurrection (meaning a resuscitated corpse returning to life), Ascension (of Jesus' crucified corpse), and Assumption (Mary's corpse) into heaven did not take place.

    The Ascension symbolizes the end of Jesus' earthly ministry and the beginning of the Church.

    Only Luke's Gospel records it. The Assumption ties Jesus' mission to Pentecost and missionary activity of Jesus' followers The Assumption has multiple layers of symbolism, some are related to Mary's special role as "Christ bearer" (theotokos). It does not seem fitting that Mary, the body of Jesus' Virgin-Mother (another biblically based symbol found in Luke 1) would be derived by worms upon her death. Mary's assumption also shows God's positive regard, not only for Christ's male body, but also for female bodies." "

    "In three controversial Wednesday Audiences, Pope John Paul II pointed out that the essential characteristic of heaven, hell or purgatory is that they are states of being of a spirit (angel/demon) or human soul, rather than places, as commonly perceived and represented in human language. This language of place is, according to the Pope, inadequate to describe the realities involved, since it is tied to the temporal order in which this world and we exist. In this he is applying the philosophical categories used by the Church in her theology and saying what St. Thomas Aquinas said long before him."

    http://eternal-word.com/library/PAPALDOC/JP2HEAVN.HTM

    The Vatican quickly embellished this story with a lot CYAP.

    Of course, we all know that angels are really mythical "pretty wingie talking thingies".

    With respect to rising from the dead, we also have this account:

    An added note: As per R.B. Stewart in his introduction to the recent book, The Resurrection of Jesus, Crossan and Wright in Dialogue, ( Professors Crossan and Wright are On Faith panelists).

    "Reimarus (1774-1778) posits that Jesus became sidetracked by embracing a political position, sought to force God's hand and that he died alone deserted by his disciples. What began as a call for repentance ended up as a misguided attempt to usher in the earthly political kingdom of God. After Jesus' failure and death, his disciples stole his body and declared his resurrection in order to maintain their financial security and ensure themselves some standing."

    So where are the bones? As per Professor Crossan's analyses in his many books, the body of Jesus would have ended up in the mass graves of the crucified, eaten by wild dogs, with lime in a shallow grave, or under a pile of stones.

    January 2, 2011 at 11:43 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.