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June 11th, 2010
03:59 AM ET

My Take: New portrait of Muslim America shows community on edge

Editor's Note: Frankie Martin is Ibn Khaldun Chair Research Fellow at American University's School of International Service and is a contributor to the new book Journey into America: The Challenge of Islam.

By Frankie Martin, Special to CNN

As I got off the plane in St. Louis in September 2008, I didn’t realize I was beginning a journey that would change my life.

On that day, I–along with several researchers working with Professor Akbar Ahmed, American University’s Chair of Islamic Studies–began a grueling project aimed at studying America’s Muslim population and its relationship to American identity. Now, nearly two years, 75 cities and 100 mosques later, Journey into America: The Challenge of Islam, will be published by the Brookings Institution Press this month.

In addition to providing unprecedented insight into America’s Muslim community, it also led me to look at my own country, the United States, in a different way.

I had taken Professor Ahmed’s class on improving relations between Islam and the West as an underclassman shortly after the US invaded Iraq in 2003 and had traveled across the Muslim world with him for the book Journey into Islam: The Crisis of Globalization, listening to Muslim voices in countries including Jordan, Pakistan, and India.

On that trip, during which Muslims in eight countries cited “American negative perceptions of Islam” as the greatest threat to the Muslim world, I was ready for anything and eager to learn. After all, I had spent the second half of my life living and traveling widely around the world, from Kenya to China, and studying foreign lands in my international relations courses.

America was a different matter. This, I thought, was a country that I knew. Yet although I lived in the Baltimore suburbs until I was a teenager and went to college in Washington, DC, like many Americans I was familiar with only a few states, and had never experienced entire regions like the South.

Assisting a world-renowned anthropologist on a De Tocqueville-esque quest would change this. Like that earlier foreign traveler, Professor Ahmed saw his endeavor as a tribute to a nation that had welcomed him so warmly in crafting a study which would examine both the strengths of America and the parts that could be strengthened.

Within a few hours on our first day—which took us to Somali refugees in a St. Louis housing project—I realized I was experiencing something unique. Though I’m a Christian, I was seeing the country through Muslim eyes, including those of my professor.

But this was only part of the story. In order to see how Muslims were fitting into America—and what it meant to fit in—we would need to talk to Americans from all backgrounds and religions. Assisting us would be data from the roughly two thousand surveys we distributed in the field as well as countless conversations on our travels.

Over the next long months, we saw the ravages of inner city Detroit and the mansions of Palm Beach, Florida; the serene, impoverished Hopi Indian reservation in Arizona and a Silicon Valley “hackers conference” with scientists talking of settlements on the Moon and Mars. We spoke at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York, spent an afternoon with Mennonites in Texas, were welcomed by the Mormon leadership in Salt Lake City, and visited coal miners in the West Virginia wilderness.

The diversity of people and beliefs was striking and inspiring. And, for the first time, I saw the fall colors in New England, the Grand Canyon, and a Hawaiian sunset.

We found the Muslim community to be hospitable and patriotic, as they often said that America was the best place to be a Muslim because of religious freedom. But the community is on edge, divided and facing a leadership crisis—contributing to the “homegrown terrorist” phenomenon—and reeling from post-9/11 hatred and prejudice.

I was shocked to see the challenges American Muslims are facing, from kids beaten up and called terrorists at school to people incarcerated without charge and subjected to inhuman treatment and mosques being firebombed. A Muslim community that feels accepted as true Americans and is encouraged to enter the mainstream will be the best defense against homegrown terrorism.

Witnessing the challenges facing the Muslim community led me to ask a question I never had before: what does it mean to be American? Although we met Americans who had a different idea of the country (one official at a Church of Christ chapter in Austin named “pluralism” as the greatest threat to America and the Founding Fathers as the source of this threat) for me, the team, and my professor, being American means embracing the ideals of the Founding Fathers, which include pluralism, rule of law, and civil liberties.

Today, feelings against Islam are running high, with a prominent radio host recently expressing his hope that the proposed New York mosque near Ground Zero would be blown up. Every week seems to bring a new controversy, from the high emotions of the mosque debate to last month’s discussion about the current Miss USA, a Lebanese immigrant, who was slammed as a Hezbollah agent because her surname was said to be shared by people linked to the organization.

In this environment, I was inspired during countless hours of research into American history to see how clear the Founding Fathers were on the subject of Islam in America. Thomas Jefferson learned Arabic using his Quran and hosted the first presidential iftaar during Ramadan, John Adams named Prophet Muhammad as one of the world’s “sober inquirers after truth” alongside Socrates and Confucius, and Benjamin Franklin, who cited the Prophet as a model of compassion, wrote of his hope that the head cleric of Istanbul would preach Islam to Americans from a Philadelphia pulpit, so passionate was his belief in religious freedom.

Today, America faces a crisis of identity. One focal point at the core of the debate is Islam, which some Americans see as a monolithic threat seeking the takeover of the country. They are fearful and suspicious of the Muslims in their midst. For many of these citizens, being a good American—and, for some, a good Christian—means opposing and fighting Islam.

My journey has led me to conclude the opposite. Being a good American means welcoming Muslims as the Founding Fathers did and following their guidelines on matters of law and security as laid out in the Constitution. As for Christianity, the attitude of the Founding Fathers was shaped by Christian thinkers like John Locke, who declared that the true Christian’s duty was to “practice charity, meekness, and good-will in general towards all mankind, even to those that are not Christians.”

Giving us hope for the future was data from our surveys, which showed that over ninety percent of Americans would vote for a Muslim for public office, and the similarly high percentage of people who are open to Muslims living in and being a part of this nation.

Some, however, inserted “if” clauses, indicating they believed Muslims could be American only if they followed narrowly defined rules, such as ceasing to identify as “Muslim” in favor of an exclusive “American” identity. The Founding Fathers set no such qualifications for “Americanness.”

Discovering America over the past few years has made me appreciate the inclusive vision of the Founding Fathers. Having traveled abroad, I know that their ideals also inspire people around the world, especially in Muslim countries. I can now say I am American with an awareness and pride I never had before.

With all of the challenges facing the country, perhaps the most important thing we can do as Americans is to consider who we really are. For me, being American means assuming and implementing the Founding Fathers’ vision of tolerance and religious freedom. The rediscovery of that vision has reaffirmed my belief in the promise of America.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Frankie Martin.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Islam

soundoff (826 Responses)
  1. HeReigns

    I have met good and kind people of the Muslim faith in America as well. However, something that doesn't sit right with me is the practice of Taqiyya by Shia Muslims (which is the majority sect) Taqiyya "refers to a dispensation allowing believers to conceal their faith when under threat, persecution or compulsion.[3]" more info at Wikipedia.org

    As proof of this, he quotes Muhammad's close companion, Abu Darda, who said, "Let us smile to the face of some people [non-Muslims] while our hearts curse them"

    As long as this is something that is part of Islamic cannon, Americans will tend to keep Muslims at arms length. Even the nice ones....and that's sad.

    June 13, 2010 at 4:15 pm |
    • HeReigns

      Shia is second largest sect.... whoops.

      June 13, 2010 at 4:24 pm |
  2. Dante

    Name one group that is more consistently despised wherever they invade....er,......go, than Muslims.
    .....Thank You. That's what I thougt.

    June 13, 2010 at 4:08 pm |
    • Towering_Pine

      Dante-

      You’re asking a question & assuming that whoever reads it knows the answer because they would agree w/ your thoughts. I'm sorry, but no one here can read your thoughts.

      Who do you* think is the most "consistently despised" group?

      June 13, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
    • mattmchugh

      "Name one group that is more consistently despised wherever they invade..."

      Many people around the world would say "Americans." You don't have to agree with the opinion to recognize it is, indeed, widely held and, therefore, a problem.

      June 13, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
    • Total non sense

      hey mattmchugh, most place in the word that hate america are Islamic countries, and yet muslims are INVADING the USA every day (imigration). But since Muslims are the proven enemies of humanity, who can take them seriously?

      June 14, 2010 at 10:51 am |
  3. Total non sense

    What a load of B@ll. i did not know., until i read this article, i did noy know how stupid christian can be!!!!. There is not such thing as a american muslim. Muslims are the proven enemy of humanity. mosquees in America is to be considered a INVASION and a act of WAR from Islam. The only and sole purpose of islam (and EVERY SINGLE muslim) is taking over the world (not just america). and they will do anything to acheive that goal, including destroying everything in their path (planes, building, innocents etc...). until the world realize that it must be stop at all cost. We face nuclear war as soon as Iran got a nuke.

    June 13, 2010 at 1:30 pm |
  4. Way2ShowAmerica'sIgnorance

    lol....................... You guys are just constantly embarrassing your own country on a global level... Keep on

    June 13, 2010 at 12:22 pm |
    • John

      Your tag line should be Way2keepyourheadinthesand. You probably would have said we just need to be understanding about Hitler!

      June 13, 2010 at 1:01 pm |
    • Towering_Pine

      haha – I chuckled when I read your comment. You’re basically saying that when people get on a forum to discuss their opinions – however off topic they may be @ times – is nothing but embarrassment to our nation. Haha – you must be from an area where they don't have the same freedoms that we do here – Freedom of Speech.

      There's nothing wrong w/ expressing your opinion. Just like John said – go stick your head in the sand bud.

      June 13, 2010 at 1:29 pm |
  5. sanethinker

    The problem is not much with religion but the political aspect to it. One of the precondition for democracy is secular thoughts. These morons does not learn how ti live in civilized world, they mix religion whenever they have political issues. Within believers it might be ok (provided they are 100% in that country with all subscribing to same faith/sect) but certainly not with so many different sect with themselves and minorities who differ in their faith.They effectively muted using force all minorities who wanted to lead decent life, threw some of sect to minority (Ahmedis in Pakistan, Bahai in Iran etc).

    June 13, 2010 at 12:09 pm |
  6. cardog

    I attend mass every sunday in order to cleanse my soul and my mind. While I do practice the catholic faith, I am not one of the above bible thumpers that believes my religion is better then someone elses religion. Seems to me that a lot of people making comments on this story are trying to convince others that the way to go is through Jesus Christ and the New Testament as opposed to Muhammed and the Koran. What our faith is and to what extent it serves our mental well-being is really not hte issue.
    At some point and time through-out history, all religions have been taken over and control by men, not God. Man is probably the most destructive creature ever created. Man wrote the bible and the Koran, Man made the rules, Man tries to control his women, Man covets others land. This is where we historically have the problems. Wars are fought over land and the aquisition of wealth and women. Fighting those wars Man attempts to ensure his God is on his side. Does not matter that his God is the same God as the other guys?? This is the crazy part, that I simply do not get.
    Right now, in our present history, Islam has been taken over by Men who wants to control the world. The people who practice Islam to them are simply pawns to be used in their interest, not for the betterment of the religion itself.
    As I said earlier, I am a practicing catholic and try as I may, I still have anger and mis-trust in my heart for Muslims/Arabs not because of their religion but because of their action in the name of their religion.

    June 13, 2010 at 11:56 am |
    • Ben Cooper

      Amazing statement to make as a practiciing Catholic. Gee...I guess you missed the passage in the one of the gospels in which Jesus is quoted as saying there will be many false prophets to follow Him. In other words, there is no justification for anyone else after Christ. So Mohammed was a fraud...some snake oil salesman that showed up six hundred years after Jesus and said he was the top dog...and to klll, not to love. I mean, what a LAUGHABLE position it was to which he appointed himself - especially considering that everything in the Koran was stolen from the bible and the New Testament.

      June 13, 2010 at 12:47 pm |
    • ana44

      Thank you for your lucid comments; very well put. Part of the reason Muslims think Christians are pagans is because they think we believe Jesus is God or above God. Perhaps as a Catholic you can shed some light on its current position.
      And Ben, bless your heart, this is the most succinct and cogent statement you've made so far on what is indeed an important point. Thank you for working on it. One thing: as Theresa tried to tell you earlier, the Christian bible includes the NT; what you keep refering to as the 'bible' is the Old Testament. Just to clarify.

      June 13, 2010 at 5:07 pm |
  7. sanethinker

    Islam is a liability to humanity, unless and until they purge people who believe in their conspiracy theory. Civilized world have to give ultimatum of correcting the mindset of these mentally ill patience across the green crescent before we can deal with them. When are we going to realize even after loosing trillions and soldiers for this silly cause for no fault of us???
    They have repeatedly failed to contain and manage their politics/religion and accused us of interference and occupation. There are hardly any Islamic country left which is secular.

    June 13, 2010 at 11:49 am |
  8. 1mile50

    Pragmatically, there is absolutely no logic to allowing such a high volume influx of immigrants from areas of the world where so many despise us and downright mortally hate us. There is going to be at least 1 bad apple in every bushel.
    What is to be gained? The answer: Our possible downfall.

    June 13, 2010 at 11:48 am |
  9. Richard

    A "Raghead" is still a "Raghead!"

    June 13, 2010 at 11:37 am |
  10. cardog

    To Darin... So if I understand you correctly, our President, Vice President and the evil Israel planned the whole 9/11 incident by convincing the men (All Muslims & fanatics) to hi-jack the aircraft, kill the crews and fly them into the world Trade Center, the Pentagon and an Pennsylvania field??? Am I getting this right? Because if that is what you are trying to get those of us who just read this nonsense to believe, then all the more reason for us to be vigilant due to idiots like you.
    I'm sorry that people like you can get on here and write complete lies and/or distortions although I truly think you fully believe in your own screwed up mind that this is what happened.

    June 13, 2010 at 11:25 am |
    • darin

      if you can explain to me how osama bin laden or al-quaeda or mohammed otta or whatever CIA asset boogey man you wanna come up with – explain to me how they demolished WTC7 then I'll believe you

      June 13, 2010 at 11:56 am |
    • sanethinker

      So the civilized world not only gets slap and has to prove who slapped and weather he was Madrasa trained yada yada yada...

      Why we have to get slapped in first place and spend our tax money for all these insane people with crazy theory.

      June 13, 2010 at 12:19 pm |
  11. cardog

    I realize that the subject is Muslims in America, but I want to comment on another story being reported on another news blog about Pakistan. It's being reported by NBC that Pakistan is cooperating with and assisting the Taliban in both Pakistan itself and Afghanistan.
    While this has yet to be confirmed, it will not be a surprise to me once the truth is known. I have said on earlier stories that to trust an Arab and/or Muslim in that part of the world is like giving someone who is a thief, the keys to your house.
    When are we going to learn? When are we going to understand that the world hates our guts, including a lot of our so-called allies
    We need to get our troops out of both Iraq and Afghanistan NOW. Bring these troops home and place them on our entire border with Mexico. We supply all these countries with aid and while it is accepted, they in turn thumb their noses at us and make deals behind our backs. Pakistan is and always has been a deceitful ally. Knowing their back-stabbing ways, an attempt to hide this truth will be strong, but I'm one American who is now fed up with world events and trying to be the good guy around the globe. No one cares about anything we do but the offer of our money. WE need this money at home....

    June 13, 2010 at 11:12 am |
    • sanethinker

      That is the open fact, Pakistan Army, ISI and people made Taliban as revenue for ailing economy. With not much of industry not many educated people that is their main pastime. Many are making a career out of it.Once promoted as strategic to control Afghan has become a noose around their neck, it is certainly a strategic pit where they have to eventually surrender. People are so blinded they believe only mullah and their Urdu (Arab, Persian mix, usually called language of mawalis) press.

      June 13, 2010 at 12:16 pm |
  12. darin

    9/11 was a false-flag operation, perpetrated by the US and Israeli secret services (CIA and Mossad) with the full knowledge of the highest levels of government (Bush, Cheney, Rice, Netanyahu, etc.) to demonize, dehumanize, and vilify Islamic peoples, to take out an enemy of Israel and to pave the way for invasion – so that America/UK could steal the oil from the middle east.

    This is known throughout the world. It's only in America that such fundamental ignorance and vicious racism prevail.

    It's time to stop equating Islam with terrorism, and realize who the real terrorists are in this world – the US and Israel.

    When you look at the death and destruction that's been falling down on Islamic peoples – in Iraq, Afghanistan, in Palestine, and through sanctions in Iran, etc – one realizes that Islamic peoples are far more victims of terrorism than perpetrators.

    The Israeli attack on the humanitarian flotilla is just the latest example of that.

    June 13, 2010 at 11:01 am |
    • believer in humanity

      Where did you get this from, madrasa text book about infidels, or was it revealed by some conspiracy theory proposed by Zaid Hamid, Hamid Mir or Hamid Gul??? The Friday sermon is full of such theories, believe them and prosper. Good for you.

      June 13, 2010 at 11:09 am |
    • stephen douglas

      Riiiiiiiight....And it is a fact that Muhammed flew to the temple mount on the back of a winged horse where he was instructed by God to build a mosque.

      You must be smoking the same stuff in your hookah as Muhammed.

      June 13, 2010 at 11:24 am |
    • Thorrsman

      Either you need to take more of the drugs those nice doctors prescribe for you or read the koran less.

      June 13, 2010 at 11:49 am |
    • Ben Cooper

      Oh, good grief. Another idiot who voted for Obama. I remember seeing Bill Clinton stump for Obama during the campaign and, while he was speaking, someone called out from the audience asking him if 9/11 was an "inside job." Clinton stopped what he was saying to address this person in order to make sure he heard him correctly. And when he was sure, he replied, "How dare you." That wasn't you, was it? I suppose you also believe that Pearl Harbor was an inside job, too, and that no one landed on the moon in 1969.

      June 13, 2010 at 12:54 pm |
  13. beliviers

    the united states killed hundreds of thousands of muslims in their "mistake" of a war. and those same people who supported that war write on this site that muslims are violent.

    maybe the mirror needs to be held up here

    June 13, 2010 at 10:56 am |
    • Ben Cooper

      What elegant arguing. You really are an idiot. You can't even spell correctly. I mean the quality of your thinking and writing is no better than fourth grade. So the U.S. has killed hundreds of thousands of Muslims? It has? Well, even if that were true (which it isn't), it wouldn't compare to the number of Muslims killed by Muslims. So what about that, genius? Islam is a cancer on this earth. It must be stamped out. Too many young and stupid Arabs believe what their primitive bearded imams tell them - to kill, kill, kill! I have seen films of these madmen saying that Islmaic armies are going to sweep throughout Europe, Russia and China before sailing west to conquer the United States and South America. MADMEN ALL. Arab Hitlers. That's Islam, pal. A criminal establishment full of black-robed thugs that would just as soon slit someone's throat and then have a meal right afterwards rather than live and let live. And all of this thanks to an hallucinogenic dirtbag named Mohammed who, if he were alive today, would have his picture in every post office in the country with words above in head in bold black ink, WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE.

      June 13, 2010 at 12:40 pm |
  14. Eric G

    *Q. How Can You Tell That Your God is Man-made?
    A. If He Hates All the Same People You Do.

    June 13, 2010 at 10:33 am |
  15. Silhouette

    Nice analysis Laura. Hope this can be edited a bit to make it complete, but you have it right almost all the way 🙂

    June 13, 2010 at 10:11 am |
    • Silhouette

      Post deleted already? Well, it had to be I guess...it was making a lot of sense.

      June 13, 2010 at 10:14 am |
  16. stephen douglas

    REALITY...I don't know what all you are saying, but I know what I have read in the Qu'ran and the Haddith, both of which every Muslim I have been in contact with swears are actual, real, un-editable teachings or words of God.

    Consequently, when I read that Muslims should "kill the pagens" "smite the unbelievers across their necks" "fight in the cause of Allah" etc., I know there are plenty of Muslims being taught to follow these words by their religious leaders.

    I know they are not reconciling these teachings with the modern world.

    I know they will kill not only unbelievers, but any fellow Muslim who accidently gets in the way, and they will simply write them off as martyrs, i.e., expendable.

    Every day, around the world, but mostly in the middle east, Muslims are killing Muslims randomly, mercilessly, in the name of Allah. Whether or not you and your friends consider them to be true Muslims does not matter. They consider themselves to be Muslims doing the good work of Allah. And they want to spread that good work.

    So, we westerners will continue to consider them to be Muslims, and personally I will do whatever I can to show people what your so called religion is really about – control through terror. Pure and simple.

    There are sincere, moderate, peace loving Muslims throughout the world. But they are being used by their religious leaders. I will say it over and over, they are naive, expendable pawns who have been brainwashed since childhood to believe in a man who claimed to have ridden a winged horse to the site of the temple mount where Allah told him to build a mosque. I really think he was smoking something other than tobacco in his hookah.

    The mosque at ground zero in New York is a perfect example of Islamic manipulation. The average Muslim sees it as a kind gesture, a symbol of friendship. Unfortunately, behind closed doors, the Islamic leaders have a real agenda, which is to build a shrine to the highjackers. They will try to pacify both sides by being able to look one direction and say "you see, we want only peace and we honor the victims" and then look the other direction and say "there you have a lasting memorial to the brave Muslims who sacrificed themselves for Allah". It is a sham, and moderate Muslims are being used to promote it.

    The leaders are two faced liars, and that is one of the many reasons no level headed person would support this cult. Islam should not be recognized as a legitimate religion anywhere in the world.

    June 13, 2010 at 9:59 am |
    • theresa

      Are you aware that the same kinds of commands are in the Christian Bible? We explain them away. They are familiar to us, and we can just say "oh, that's how things were back then." But reading the Koran is NOT familiar to us, and we see the brutality of the words speaking for themselves. But the same kinds of commands are in the Bible.

      June 14, 2010 at 6:59 pm |
    • Paul

      Theresa-

      Will you quit with the "yes but the Bible is violent too!" argument?! Yes, we'll all concede that there are most certainly violent passages within the Bible. The Old Testament is rife with all sorts of violent imagery. The point of the New Testament is to show that Christianity had been reformed through Jesus, and God's wrath was softened as a result. The problem is that today, in 2010, there is NO ONE blowing up schools and mosques in the name of Christianity! It isn't happening! And when some loser kills an abortion doctor, no Christians dance in the street, and hand out candy to strangers. Muslims celebrate the death of infidels every day in the world. I can't stress this enough, stop trying to project your 21st century Western ideals and values onto someone else's 7th century Eastern death cult. You want so badly to equate these two things, but they cannot be reconciled. Islam , by definition, cannot be modernized or, as in the case of Christianity, 'reformed', since it is the immutable word of allah, and any attempt to do so would by blasphemous apostasy, which is punishable by death.

      June 15, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  17. Reality

    Continued below:

    3. To believe in the existence of angels."

    A major item for neuron cleansing. Angels are the mythical creations of ancient civilizations to explain natural events, contacts with their gods, big birds, sudden winds, protectors during the dark nights, etc. No "angelic thingies" ever visited or talked to Mohammed, Jesus, Mary or Joseph or Joe Smith.

    June 13, 2010 at 9:03 am |
  18. Reality

    Continued below

    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 uneducated masses in line. Today we call them fortune tellers.

    Prophecies are also invalidated 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 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 violence i.e. turning Mohammed's "fast, hunger-driven" hallucinations into horrible reality for unbelievers.

    Accept these five "cleansers" and we guarantee a complete recovery from your Islamic ways!!!!

    June 13, 2010 at 8:56 am |
    • theresa

      Perhaps you are unaware that Jesus similarly went into the desert for 40 days, starving – and talking to the Devil.

      June 14, 2010 at 6:57 pm |
  19. Chris de B

    I'm all for religious freedom but putting up a mosque at ground zero would be like putting up an incinerator next to the Holocaust museum. Seems rather insensitive to the surviving families I mean, could we have a monument commemorating 9/11 victims adjacent to Mecca ?

    June 13, 2010 at 8:48 am |
    • sanethinker

      Totally agree with you, it will be an occasion for pilgrims to think what their coreligionist have done to humanity. Also add other monuments next to a la medals/crown/trophy in "glory of their god". Hope the crown 9/11 will not be replaced with another such mega act.

      June 13, 2010 at 9:21 am |
  20. Reality

    continued below

    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 "Gib Gnab" (when the universe starts to recycle) are more plausible and the "akas" for Allah should be included if you continue to be a "creationist".

    "

    June 13, 2010 at 8:46 am |
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About this blog

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.