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August 26th, 2010
02:53 PM ET

soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. (B)iraq Hussein Osama

    basically the US Army is full of recruits from the lower economic strata of America. Poor latinos, blacks and mostly white trash. people with no future. whose equivalent in the muslim world would be the recruiting ground for suicide bombers. these lower classes of recruits are looking to get skills training and college education and other benefits by joining the Army. they are not there because they love America or want to die for freedom. if that is what they were there for, they would fight for food and lodging, not pay.

    there are lots of muslim immigrants in this social strata as well, so it is not hard to find many muslims in the army. unfortunately, the us army for all its good qualities is fighting a war of oppression and terrrorizing in the middle east where it is trying to gain control of the oil production. so eventually these muslims recruits end up facing a situation where they have to do the dirty work of the capitalists instead of fighting for your country and its lofty values. and that is when their islamic identity faces a conflict.

    August 28, 2010 at 4:54 pm |
  2. Robert, Soldier OIF and OIF

    My Letter to, Abdo.
    Naser Abdo, You are a Coward and a liar and should be charged accordingly. First, you state in your C.O. request that you supposedly realized you made a mistake while at basic last year, so then why did you not ask to get out then instead of waiting till you found out you were about to deploy! Second, I have stood side by side with Muslims in both Iraq and Afghanistan, Yes; they were TRUE Muslims who wanted to be freed of the oppression and violent acts upon the people of their own faith by such radical groups as the Taliban who do not follow the True Muslim faith. I have made many Muslim friends and I have seen firsthand people willing to have their head or ears cut off just so there kids can learn to read, and learn to read the Quran. If you were a True Muslim you would man up and go over there and help the Muslims in the Middle East who are being enslaved by people who claim to be of their own belief. But in truth are only out to benefit them. I am sad to think of my Muslim friend who died in my arms. I am disgusted to think you claim to be half the person he was. People like you are why what cause such separation between ALL religions, which just results in more hatred and fighting. For your information, I am not Muslim but, however Muslims, Christians, and Jews alike we are of Abrahamic belief and worship the same God. All followers of God should not push their beliefs on one another and should be of a peaceful nature. The oppression we fight is unfortunately not even from non-believers it is from radical interpretations of ALL OUR faiths to the extent that it has come to this, war on terrorism is war on ignorance. You are ignorant, disgraceful, void of honor, integrity, and should not even consider yourself a man. OH, By the way I notice on your blue cord, IF YOUR SO PEACEFUL THEN WHY DID YOU SIGN UP TO BE "INFANTRY", and not a medic or chaplains assistant??????

    August 28, 2010 at 4:01 pm |
    • Kate

      @Robert

      Well said.

      Keep safe

      August 28, 2010 at 4:03 pm |
  3. just for my muslim friends

    So many of you think this guy is right in thinking he doesn't need to go to war because he refuse to kill his fellow muslim brothers.

    While others think he needs to do what he said he would do when he inlisted and that was to fight our enemy any were he is sent.

    I say lets meet at a half way point. Lets send him to Iraq with out a rifle and in an American uniform and see if his brothers their feel the same way about him.

    August 27, 2010 at 12:42 pm |
    • the end of times end in war

      YOU GOT THAT RIGHT (just for my muslim friends). THAT WAS A CLASSIC!!!!!!!....LOL

      August 27, 2010 at 10:47 pm |
  4. aqtrughful

    Uniform Code of Military Justice - Time to marshal the court!!!

    August 27, 2010 at 12:01 pm |
  5. Erin

    He volunteered for the military during time of war, with every presumption that he could be sent to Iraq.
    Now that has come to pass and he refuses deployment?
    Court martial this fool and send him to Leavenworth to cool his heels for the rest of his enlistment, then dishonorably discharge him. See how simple it is?

    August 27, 2010 at 11:45 am |
  6. Mike

    That was a waste of time. The report does not cover the aspect of what he did receive from the military, housing? free education? Is he willing to give it all back for not living up to his contract.

    August 27, 2010 at 11:31 am |
  7. Jack

    Yawn. Hundreds of soldiers enlist and are discharged within the first year. Not everyone is compatible with military service. So what? Who cares? Let him go and be done with it.

    August 27, 2010 at 10:14 am |
  8. patrick A.

    America is killing Muslims. agree with him,don,t go kill your fellow Muslims.

    August 27, 2010 at 9:34 am |
  9. JJ

    Sounds like he realized joining the military was a mistake and he is trying to weasel out of it the best way he can.

    August 27, 2010 at 3:58 am |
  10. Muslimah

    Prophet Mohammed (pbuh) ordered Muslims living in non-Muslim majority countries to defend their resident country in times of warfare or attack. He did place a caveat on their service–they are not to fight against their fellow Muslims. While any sane Muslim acknowleges that Al Qaida and their fellow terrorists are not true Muslims, there is still the possibility of inadvertenly harming Muslims during operations in Muslim majority countries like Iraq and Afganistan. US Muslims considering military service need to seriously ponder these things before joining. Any Muslim who joins the military has an obligation to fulfill their service duties and do their level best to avoid causing harm to Muslims and everyone other than terrorists.

    August 27, 2010 at 3:47 am |
    • USMC4Ever

      I'm sure we'll all sleep better knowing that.

      August 27, 2010 at 4:51 am |
    • amuslim

      Umm... There is no enjoinder against harming other muslims (keeping in mind warfare is supposed to be restricted to combatants) in defensive warfare. There may be a case in proxy and stabilization warfare as well, but it requires a far better legal team than me to figure that one out.

      August 27, 2010 at 10:42 am |
  11. Lee Ermey

    Feed him to the Marines!

    August 27, 2010 at 1:52 am |
    • Adrienne

      They would eat him alive! He should have never joined the military.

      August 27, 2010 at 10:46 am |
  12. Adam Enoch

    The guy looks like Barack O. LOL...

    August 26, 2010 at 6:51 pm |
    • Selfish Gene

      You look like the mail man.

      August 27, 2010 at 9:47 am |
  13. AmericanPatriot

    The Quran counsels the use of deceit when dealing with non-Muslims. Mohammad instructed one of his followers to lie if he had to (in order to assassinate one of Mohammad's enemies). This set a precedent, and the principle was clear: If it helps Islam, it's okay to deceive non-Muslims. Read more about this principle here: Lying (Taqiyya and Kitman).

    This instruction in the Quran has served Islamic goals very well through history. And it serves those goals today. On the DVD, Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West, you can watch real-life examples of Islamic leaders saying one thing in English for the Western press, and saying something entirely different to their own followers in Arabic a few days later.

    Deceiving the enemy is always useful in war, and throughout history generals have used it. Islamic teachings consider Islam to be in a permanent state of war with the non-Islamic world until the whole world follows Shari'a law (read more about that here). All non-Muslims living in non-Islamic states are "enemies." So deceiving Westerners is totally acceptable because deceiving an enemy in a state of war is totally acceptable. It is encouraged if it can forward the goals of the spread of Islam.

    And so we have the strange phenomenon covered by Steven Emerson in Terrorists Among Us, where organizations in America were ostensibly raising money for orphans, but really giving the money to terrorists. They deceived good-hearted Western non-Muslims into giving money to organizations that were actively killing Western non-Muslims.

    As it says in the Quran, "War is deceit." This idea gives Islam a tremendous advantage over idea-collections that encourage indiscriminate truthfulness.

    August 26, 2010 at 6:36 pm |
    • (B)iraq Hussein Osama

      In allowing deceit in the times of war, the Quran is being very practical and pragmatic. War is hell, and you do whatever it takes to get out of hell with the least damage to yourself.

      However, the idea of deceiving outside of situations of war is anti-islamic. If you want people to follow your religion, you are not going to win them over by lying and cheating to them. even a dumb donkey can tell you that. although a redneck may not have figured this out. Converts are won by showing off your best virtues. And speaking the truth and dealing honestly are among the core values of Islam.

      August 26, 2010 at 6:44 pm |
    • Kate

      If you're going to splattercast across all threads, try and pick ones where you're at least remotely on topic – especially when you're cut and pasting from some website like this?

      Just sayin'

      August 26, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
    • AGA

      @ American
      how should we take u seriously when you don't even give us the reference chapter or verse of the Quran?

      September 2, 2010 at 2:31 am |
  14. Saladin

    While I appreciate his reluctance, the fact is he joined the military...during a time of war (however war is being defined). Soldiers execute policy, they don't get to question it or make it. Unfortunately, he has to go. The alternatives involve bad conduct discharges and/or prison. An oath was sworn, this is the price of swearing it.

    August 26, 2010 at 5:31 pm |
  15. John Leger

    Tell me something, this Soldier refuses deployment. Why did he join the Army in the first place and as a Infantry man, combat arms. The United States has not gone back to the draft, its all Volunteer. This individual knew when he joined what was expected of him, so why is it that after he has gone through all the training and he wants out. He is an American isn't he, Oh! yeah thats right people like him want to be American, but don't want to do anything to earn the title.

    August 26, 2010 at 5:15 pm |
  16. Kate

    This one is a tricky one to look at.

    The military isn't a place for people who are sensitive and thin skinned. Racial and gender/5ex slurs and remarks are commonplace. Whilst they might not be acceptable in the civilian world, they're a part of military life – and before anyone says that the 21st century is no place for such things even in the military, let me remind you that the military by default is *not* a place of sweetness and light.

    We kill people for a living when the need is there. That's about *the* most "insensitive" thing you can do in the world, and that's what *you* pay us to do. Deal with the culture surrounding it.

    For this guy, there's an automatic conflict – Muslims killing Muslims is a big nono – even though there are Muslims doing just that under vague pretenses and spurious justifications, that's on *them* to have to answer for when the time comes. He's looking at it from his perspective.

    There are fatwas giving guidance about that situation, for Muslims in the service to file for CO status to avoid being put in that position but still be able to serve their country.

    There are also fatwas that remind Muslims that those doing the killing are harming innocents, another big nono, and that Muslims have a duty to protect those innocents, which justifies Muslims being more active in the military.

    But at the end of the day his decision is a matter of conscience.

    Which is what I have an issue with. He *knew* going in that he'd be deployed. He waited until now to file for CO status *and* wants a discharge. Which raises the question: Why did he sign up to begin with?

    It may be that after Ft Hood, things got out of hand with others. It might just be that he came to an understanding of his conscience, we don't know.

    But if he wants to serve he shouldn't be filing for discharge, just CO status. Wanting out makes me think this is less an issue of CO, and much more an issue of why he no longer feel that his duty to his country is enough to stay in.

    At the end of the day he's the only one who can decide. I might disagree with how he's doing it, but I'm not him.

    August 26, 2010 at 4:41 pm |
  17. Kate

    This one is a tricky one to look at.

    The military isn't a place for people who are sensitive and thin skinned. Racial and sexual slurs and remarks are commonplace. Whilst they might not be acceptable in the civilian world, they're a part of military life – and before anyone says that the 21st century is no place for such things even in the military, let me remind you that the military by default is *not* a place of sweetness and light.

    We kill people for a living when the need is there. That's about *the* most "insentitive" thing you can do in the world, and that's what *you* pay us to do. Deal with the culture surrounding it.

    For this guy, there's an automatic conflict – Muslims killing Muslims is a big nono – even though there are Muslims doing just that under vague pretenses and spurious justifications, that's on *them* to have to answer for when the time comes. He's looking at it from his perspective.

    There are fatwas giving guidance about that situation, for Muslims in the service to file for CO status to avoid being put in that position but still be able to serve their country.

    There are also fatwas that remind Muslims that those doing the killing are harming innocents, another big nono, and that Muslims have a duty to protect those innocents, which justifies Muslims being more active in the military.

    But at the end of the day his decision is a matter of conscience.

    Which is what I have an issue with. He *knew* going in that he'd be deployed. He waited until now to file for CO status *and* wants a discharge. Which raises the question: Why did he sign up to begin with?

    It may be that after Ft Hood, things got out of hand with others. It might just be that he came to an understanding of his conscience, we don't know.

    But if he wants to serve he shouldn't be filing for discharge, just CO status. Wanting out makes me think this is less an issue of CO, and much more an issue of why he no longer feel that his duty to his country is enough to stay in.

    At the end of the day he's the only one who can decide.

    August 26, 2010 at 4:39 pm |
  18. Reality

    Give him a one-way ticket to Iraq. Then he can choose whether he wants be subject to Shiite or Sunni suicide bombers.

    Being in a care-for-my -neighbor mood, he could however take our Five Steps for Deprogramming 1400 years of Islamic Myths. See below:

    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 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.

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

    Analogous Five Step Programs For Deflawing Christianity and Judaism are available.

    August 26, 2010 at 4:27 pm |
    • amuslim

      I find it odd that you are the most ardent atheist I have ever come across on internet, and yet you are the least convincing.

      Just food for thought: A nod ilicits a nod, a smile inoculates a smile. To lead, you walk your way with joy and invite without a turn or a frown.

      August 26, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
    • Reality

      amuslim,

      How goes the Five Step Program to cure your Three B Syndrome i.e. Bred, Born and Brainwashed in some form of religion?? In your case, it is the horror religion, Islam.

      August 26, 2010 at 11:41 pm |
    • amuslim

      Not good I'm afraid... I've had my religion beaten into me by nasty Christian bigots in grade school. I'm afraid I won't let go any time in my lifetime without a huge sense capitulation to evil and an insurmountable sense of self loathing. Cheers!

      August 27, 2010 at 9:45 am |
    • amuslim

      In case you missed the forest for the trees (not possible with you right?), I am saying the best way to beat brainwashing is is to give the brainwashed person a non confrontational safe haven and then reason with them over time.

      Unless you want to break programming by reprogramming, then you break someone's will by alternating extremely harsh treatment with extremely gentle. It's how wife abusers do it. I have had to help a couple of women out of that cycle, so I know how deep irrational programming can go.

      If you believe in atheism as a rational paradigm rather than a religion, don't use such weak and antithetical emotional ploys. It will only turn away converts to your cause. Let's go over your case in a more rational manner:

      "1. Belief in Allah"

      Why was the this great unknowable being landed on your lap rather than the poor schlub who is worshipping Vishnu? Why does he have to do the legwork when you don't? How do you know you're the lucky one if you have no clue, outside of your own suppositions of that other religion, who that Being those other people are worshipping is. For that matter, how is a Great Unknowable Being functionally different from no being at all? If He can send you instructions, why doesn't he just pop a few angels up every few years just to say "Hey folks! Go on with your free will, just remember I exist!"

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

      Great, but anyway, the world is telling you a lot about how to live through rational discoverable mechanisms. If you want to hear you Great Amazing Creator of All, so much, why don't you put down the book and look around at the infinitely more massive thing He created for a few of your signs?

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

      What was the reason they are hidden from our perception again?

      "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."

      Expiration date for this one please, because current world is bringing up a lot of questions one book seems to be inadequet in addressing. We have cool multimedia capabilities now you know.

      "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."

      Why the contradiction?
      ===
      There I have done your work for you. If you think I shorted you or was making fun of you, let me know. In any event, I still believe, but rational challenge is a part of my belief. Rational challenge is the best outcome anyone who respects the rights of others aught to be interested in anyway.

      August 27, 2010 at 10:19 am |
    • Reality

      amuslim,

      Hmmm, apparently you are not a Muslim but this being an anonymous blog, one must always be aware of "straw-men".

      Just in case you are a Christian/Catholic, the First Step to Free Yourself From 2000 Years of Myths and Embellishments:

      From the Apostles Creed:

      1. "Jesus was con-ceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the vir-gin Mary",

      from Thomas Jefferson

      "And the day will come, when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the Supreme Being as His Father,in the womb of a vir-gin,
      will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter.

      - Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)
      Letter to John Adams, from Monticello, April 11, 1823.

      from Professor Bruce Chilton:

      In Rabbi Jesus: An Intimate Biography (2000), Chilton develops the idea of Jesus as a ma-mzer; someone whose irregular
      birth circumstances result in their exclusion from full participation in the life of the community.
      He argues for the natural pater-nity of Joseph and finds no need for a miraculous con-ception. In his subsequent
      reconstruction of Jesus' life, Chilton suggests that this sustained personal experience of exclusion played a
      major role in Jesus' self-identi-ty, his concept of God and his spiritual quest.

      From Professor John Dominic Crossan:

      In Historical Jesus [p. 371] Crossan treats this cluster, like – Of Davids Lineage, as an example of the inte-rplay
      of prophecy and history in the development of the Jesus traditions.

      In Birth of Christianity [pp. 26-29] Crossan uses Luke's account of Jesus' conception and birth to explore ethical
      issues concerning the public interpretation of the past. He notes the tendency of Christian scholars to disregard
      "pagan" birth legends while investing great effort in the defence of biblical birth narratives. He concludes:

      I do not accept the divine conception of either Jesus or Augustus as factual history, but I believe that God is
      incar-nate in the Jewish peasant poverty of Jesus and not in the Roman imperial power of Augustus.

      From the Jesus Seminar:

      Matthew 1:18-25- conclusions:

      Mary was the name of Jesus' mother.
      Joseph was the name of Jesus' father.

      The Seminar reported its findings on the "Birth & Infancy Stories" in The Acts of Jesus (1998) and in a thematic
      issue of Forum (NS 2,1. Spring 1999).

      The following ancient parallels to Jesus' miraculous con-ception should be noted:

      Birth of Moses (Exod 2:1-10)
      Birth of Plato (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, 3.45) [see Acts of Jesus, p. 507]
      Birth of Alexander the Great (Plutarch, Parallel Lives, 2.1-3.5) [see Acts of Jesus, p. 502f]
      Birth of Apollonius (Philostratus, Life of Apollonius, I.4) [see Acts of Jesus, p. 505]
      The commentary relevant to the con-ception of Jesus reads as follows:

      The Seminar doubted, without denying, the possibilities that Jesus was con-ceived while Mary and Joseph were betrothed
      and that she was a vir-gin at the time she conceived. The account in Matthew seems to reflect the marriage customs of
      first-century Palestine where marriage took place in two stages: first, the engagement, or betrothal, during which
      time se-xual inte-rcourse and con-ception might occur; and secondly, the marriage proper, which involved the transfer of
      the bride to her husband's home. With regard to the manner of Jesus' con-ception, the Fellows were unequivocal. With a
      virtually unanimous vote, the Fellows declared that the statement "Jesus was con-ceived by the holy spirit" is a
      theological and not a biological statement. They accordingly rejected the notion that Mary con-ceived Jesus without
      se-xual inte-rcourse with a man. That Jesus was generated by God without human male involvement goes beyond what
      historical, or scientific, reason allows. Jesus certainly made no such claim about his origin; and there exists
      no first-person testimony by Mary his mother. Furthermore, not even the theological confession of Jesus as "son
      of God" requires a vir-ginal conception: Paul, Mark, and John affirm Jesus' divine status without recourse to a
      miraculous co-nception. The confession of Jesus as "God's son," in association with Old Testament stories of God's control of the womb, may have been influential in the development of the belief that Jesus was miraculously con-ceived, in tandem with pagan stories in which one divine parent unites with a human counterpart. The New Testament birth stories appear to walk a fine line between the cra-ss pa-gan versions, such as Plato's con-ception by Apollo, and the Hebrew accounts in which an infe-rtile womb is somehow made fer-tile by divine decree, such as Sarah's con-ception of Isaac. In any case, the Fellows of the Jesus Seminar consider Jesus to have had a human father. The Fellows of the Seminar were divided on who that father was. Roughly half of the Fellows think it probable that Mary con-ceived by the agency of Joseph, in spite of the exp-licit denial in the stories themselves. The logic of the gene-alogies supports the pate-rnity of Joseph. The other half held the view that Mary con-ceived by some unnamed man through ra-pe or se-duction. The latter possibility is suggested by some evidence that the birth stories were designed to cover up some sc-andal regarding Jesus' pa-ternity. The stories themselves insist that Joseph was not the biological father of Jesus and there is the strange inclusion, in the gen-ealogy of Matthew, of the four disre-putable women: Tamar, who con-ceived twins of her father-in-law after se-ducing him (Gen 38); Ruth, the Moabite woman who claimed Boaz as her husband under dubious cir-cu-mstances (Ruth 4); Rahab, the Jericho pros-ti-tute who aided the Israelite spies when prospecting for the invasion across the Jordan (Josh 2); and Bathsheba, who was rap-ed by King David (2 Sam 11). There is also the old Greco-Roman and Jewish tradition that Jesus was the son of a Roman soldier named Pantera. [Acts of Jesus, 504-506]

      From Professor Gerd Lüdemann

      Lüdemann [Jesus, 122-24] presents four (4) reasons for regarding the miraculous con-ception of Jesus as unhistorical: (1) Numerous parallels in the history of religion; (2) it represents a rare and late NT tradition; (3) Synoptic descriptions of Jesus' relations with his family are incon-sistent with such an event; and (4) scientific considerations.

      More positively, Ludemann concludes that we can extract as a historical fact behind Matt 1.18-25 the existence of a hostile rumor about the ille-gitimacy of Jesus. Lüdemann suggests that ra-pe by an unnamed man, possibly even a Roman soldier, is the most likely explanation. He notes that while such an event would have disqualified Mary from marriage to a priest, it would not have prevented from marrying and have other children.

      Lüdemann [Jesus, 261-63] discounts Luke's account as a legend deriving from Jewish Hellenistic circles that were concerned to hold together the proc-reation of the Spirit, the authentic sonship of the Messiah and the vir-ginal con-ception.

      From Notre Dame Professor John P.Meier:

      Meier [Mar-ginal Jew I,220-22] discusses the vir-ginal conception as part of his larger chapter on Jesus' origins.
      He earlier notes that both infancy narratives "seem to be largely the product of Christian reflection on the sal-vific
      meaning of Jesus Christ in the light of OT prophecies (p. 213). At the end of his examination, Meier concludes:

      The ends result of this survey must remain meager and disappointing to both defenders and opponents of the doctrine of
      the vir-ginal con-ception. Taken by itself, historical-critical research simply does not have the sources and tools
      available to reach a final decision on the historicity of the vir-ginal conception as narrated by Matthew
      and Luke. One's acceptance or rejection of the doctrine will be largely influenced by one's own philosophical and
      theological pre-su-ppositions, as well as the weight one gives to Church teaching.

      August 27, 2010 at 4:41 pm |
    • Reality

      amuslim,

      (given in parts to find what words or word framents are causing problems with this blog's prudish word filter)

      Hmmm, apparently you are not a Muslim but this being an anonymous blog, one must always be aware of "straw-men/ women".

      Just in case you are a Christian/Catholic, the First Step to Free Yourself From 2000 Years of Myths and Embellishments:

      From the Apostles Creed:

      1. "Jesus was con-ceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the vir-gin Mary",

      Ruled not to be historic or scientifically possible by the "top guns" in historic Jesus studies--–

      from Thomas Jefferson

      "And the day will come, when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the Supreme Being as His Father,in the womb of a vir-gin,
      will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter.

      – Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)
      Letter to John Adams, from Monticello, April 11, 1823.

      August 27, 2010 at 4:45 pm |
    • Reality

      Continued from above:

      from Professor Bruce Chilton:

      In Rabbi Jesus: An In-timate Biography (2000), Chilton develops the idea of Jesus as a ma-mzer; someone whose irregular
      birth circ-umstances result in their exclusion from full participation in the life of the community.
      He argues for the natural pater-nity of Joseph and finds no need for a miraculous con-ception. In his subsequent
      reconstruction of Jesus' life, Chilton suggests that this sustained personal experience of exclusion played a
      major role in Jesus' self-identi-ty, his concept of God and his spiritual quest.

      From Professor John Dominic Crossan:

      In Historical Jesus [p. 371] Crossan treats this cluster, like – Of Davids Lineage, as an example of the inte-rplay
      of prophecy and history in the development of the Jesus traditions.

      In Birth of Christianity [pp. 26-29] Crossan uses Luke's account of Jesus' conception and birth to explore ethical
      issues concerning the public interpretation of the past. He notes the tendency of Christian scholars to disregard
      "pagan" birth legends while investing great effort in the defence of biblical birth narratives. He concludes:

      I do not accept the divine conception of either Jesus or Augustus as factual history, but I believe that God is
      incar-nate in the Jewish peasant poverty of Jesus and not in the Roman imperial power of Augustus.

      August 27, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
    • Reality

      continued from above:

      From the Jesus Seminar:

      Matthew 1:18-25- conclusions:

      Mary was the name of Jesus' mother.
      Joseph was the name of Jesus' father.

      The Seminar reported its findings on the Birth & Infancy Stories in The Acts of Jesus (1998) and in a thematic
      issue of Forum (NS 2,1. Spring 1999).

      The following ancient parallels to Jesus' miraculous con-ception should be noted:

      August 27, 2010 at 4:50 pm |
    • Reality

      continued from above:

      Birth of Moses (Exod 2:1-10)
      Birth of Plato (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, 3.45) [see Acts of Jesus, p. 507]
      Birth of Alexander the Great (Plutarch, Parallel Lives, 2.1-3.5) [see Acts of Jesus, p. 502f]
      Birth of Apollonius (Philostratus, Life of Apollonius, I.4) [see Acts of Jesus, p. 505]

      August 27, 2010 at 4:51 pm |
    • Reality

      continued from above:

      The commentary relevant to the con-ception of Jesus reads as follows:

      The Seminar doubted, without denying, the possibilities that Jesus was con-ceived while Mary and Joseph were betrothed
      and that she was a vir-gin at the time she con-ceived. The account in Matthew seems to reflect the marriage customs of
      first-century Palestine where marriage took place in two stages: first, the engagement, or betrothal, during which
      time se-xual inte-rcourse and con-ception might occur; and secondly, the marriage proper, which involved the transfer of
      the bride to her husband's home. With regard to the manner of Jesus' con-ception, the Fellows were unequivocal. With a
      virtually unanimous vote, the Fellows declared that the statement "Jesus was con-ceived by the holy spirit" is a
      theological and not a bio-logical statement. They accordingly rejected the notion that Mary con-ceived Jesus without
      se-xual inte-rcourse with a man. That Jesus was generated by God without human male involvement goes beyond what
      historical, or scientific, reason allows. Jesus certainly made no such claim about his origin; and there exists
      no first-person testimony by Mary his mother. Furthermore, not even the theological confession of Jesus as "son
      of God" requires a vir-ginal conception: Paul, Mark, and John affirm Jesus' divine status without recourse to a
      miraculous co-nception. The confession of Jesus as "God's son," in association with Old Testament stories of God's control of the womb, may have been influential in the development of the belief that Jesus was miraculously con-ceived, in tandem with pagan stories in which one divine parent unites with a human counterpart. The New Testament birth stories appear to walk a fine line between the cra-ss pa-gan versions, such as Plato's con-ception by Apollo, and the Hebrew accounts in which an infe-rtile womb is somehow made fer-tile by divine decree, such as Sarah's con-ception of Isaac. In any case, the Fellows of the Jesus Seminar consider Jesus to have had a human father. The Fellows of the Seminar were divided on who that father was. Roughly half of the Fellows think it probable that Mary con-ceived by the agency of Joseph, in spite of the exp-licit denial in the stories themselves. The logic of the gene-alogies supports the pate-rnity of Joseph. The other half held the view that Mary con-ceived by some unnamed man through ra-pe or se-duction. The latter possibility is suggested by some evidence that the birth stories were designed to cover up some sc-andal regarding Jesus' pa-ternity. The stories themselves insist that Joseph was not the biological father of Jesus and there is the strange inclusion, in the gen-ealogy of Matthew, of the four disre-putable women: Tamar, who con-ceived twins of her father-in-law after se-ducing him (Gen 38); Ruth, the Moabite woman who claimed Boaz as her husband under dubious cir-cu-mstances (Ruth 4); Rahab, the Jericho pros-ti-tute who aided the Israelite spies when prospecting for the invasion across the Jordan (Josh 2); and Bathsheba, who was rap-ed by King David (2 Sam 11). There is also the old Greco-Roman and Jewish tradition that Jesus was the son of a Roman soldier named Pantera. [Acts of Jesus]

      From Professor Gerd Lüdemann

      Lüdemann [Jesus, 122-24] presents four (4) reasons for regarding the miraculous con-ception of Jesus as unhistorical: (1) Numerous parallels in the history of religion; (2) it represents a rare and late NT tradition; (3) Synoptic descriptions of Jesus' relations with his family are incon-sistent with such an event; and (4) scientific considerations.

      More positively, Ludemann concludes that we can extract as a historical fact behind Matt 1.18-25 the existence of a hostile rumor about the ille-gitimacy of Jesus. Lüdemann suggests that ra-pe by an unnamed man, possibly even a Roman soldier, is the most likely explanation. He notes that while such an event would have disqualified Mary from marriage to a priest, it would not have prevented from marrying and have other children.

      Lüdemann [Jesus, 261-63] discounts Luke's account as a legend deriving from Jewish Hellenistic circles that were concerned to hold together the proc-reation of the Spirit, the authentic sonship of the Messiah and the vir-ginal con-ception.

      From Notre Dame Professor John P.Meier:

      Meier [Mar-ginal Jew I,220-22] discusses the vir-ginal conception as part of his larger chapter on Jesus' origins.
      He earlier notes that both infancy narratives "seem to be largely the product of Christian reflection on the sal-vific
      meaning of Jesus Christ in the light of OT prophecies (p. 213). At the end of his examination, Meier concludes:

      The ends result of this survey must remain meager and disappointing to both defenders and opponents of the doctrine of
      the vir-ginal con-ception. Taken by itself, historical-critical research simply does not have the sources and tools
      available to reach a final decision on the historicity of the vir-ginal conception as narrated by Matthew
      and Luke. One's acceptance or rejection of the doctrine will be largely influenced by one's own philosophical and
      theological pre-su-ppositions, as well as the weight one gives to Church teaching.

      August 27, 2010 at 4:56 pm |
  19. meh

    are u serious????? why did u join if you're muslim? obviously it doesnt make sense when you're muslim you chase terrorists have to hurt people who has same religion as you. so since you can't i think its time for you to take off the uniform.
    if you want your right do your duty.. you can't keep your job without deployment . u have any idea how many times you will be deploying in 20-30 years in the army??? i say at least 4-5 times man.

    August 26, 2010 at 3:37 pm |
    • Ween M

      The US army's objective is not to "chase" Muslims or terrorists. Though terrorism is going on now, this soldier most likely realizes that these so-called "Muslim" terrorists obviously don't share the same views and beliefs as Actual Muslims. Before you insist he "take off his uniform", exapnd your knowledge and open your mind before publicly posting? Thanks.

      August 26, 2010 at 5:33 pm |
  20. wat

    I don't want to go to work today, I worship Allabudalla. Maybe I won't get in trouble since it's religious.

    August 26, 2010 at 2:59 pm |
    • T.

      I don't know about you but if my job was doing something that I felt was morally wrong, you better bet your bottoms dollar that I "wouldn't go in to work" that day either.

      However, I don't get why the hell he joined in the first place

      August 26, 2010 at 10:42 pm |
    • Selfish Gene

      Leavenworth is crowded, have fun in there sport.

      August 27, 2010 at 9:40 am |
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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.