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FACING GOD- What it tells us about Islam.

by Danusha V. Goska

“….Of the five world religions, Islam is the most emphatically opposed to solitary withdrawal for spiritual purposes. Islam is the most insistent on man’s relationship with God being carried out in public, in a large group of others all behaving in exactly the same way, using highly choreographed scripts and rituals that do not allow for spontaneity or individuality. As Al- Islam.org puts it, “Islam has vehemently denounced” monasticism. A “well-known tradition” in Islam states, “There is no monasticism in Islam.” “Man is an entity that has been created for a life within a society, and his material and spiritual development can only be achieved within a social life.” Mohammed, in one hadith, declares that the only “monasticism” available to Muslims is “jihad.”

A Muslim might live his entire religious life as a cog in the midst of others, whose every prayer is a rigidly systematized routine, commanding rote physical movements and rote words performed in public and monitored for conformity. Muslims and even non-Muslims can be whipped or jailed for possessing alcohol, revealing too much flesh, or being raped, which is a crime, because it involves sex outside of marriage. Christians who eat during Ramadan have had their lips burned by the authorities. Even prayer within a Muslim’s own room is publicly commanded by a muezzin. A Muslim woman once told me that when her daughter was ill, she recited Koranic verses. This woman did not speak a word of Arabic; she recited sounds from memory. She voiced no spontaneous words about her dying daughter to God. The idea of God as a father who was interested in what she had to say was scandalous to her.

A Muslim friend expressed to me her inner turmoil about wearing fingernail polish. Water must touch fingernails before Allah will hear Muslims’ prayers. A Polish chemist, Wojciech Inglot, invented porous nail polish. Allah is satisfied, as is my friend. An online Muslim prayer guide stipulates that during prayer, “Your left leg should be bent. Outside of left femur should also be on the floor and your inside of your left tibia and foot should be protruding underneath the front of your right tibia. Also the right foot can be placed upright with the toes pointing towards the qiblah or it can be placed on the ground.” Of course a Muslim woman cannot pray when menstruating. If a woman, a dog, or a donkey passes before a Muslim man as he prays, his prayer is annulled. Canonical Islamic guides to prayer, such as Reliance of the Traveler, go on for over a hundred pages detailing Islamic criteria for prayer.

Mohammed, the founder of Islam, was allowed spiritual retreat. Mohammed founded Islam after retreating, alone, to a cave, and speaking with an angel. For all other Muslims, relating to God must be public, monitored, collective, and rote.

The Pact of Umar is a seventh-century Islamic document that outlines how Muslims can continue to ensure Christians’ “humiliation, degradation and disgrace.” The Pact lists many requirements: Christians can’t show crosses in public; they can’t ride on saddles or wear belts; they can’t refer to Jesus as the son of God; they must house and feed Muslims; they must surrender any seat they occupy to a Muslim on demand. The first item in the Pact of Umar is very telling. Christians, to be allowed to live, must agree never to build monasteries or convents, or even a single room for a monk or a nun.

Islam did whatever it could to silence, for Muslims and for Christians living under Muslim control, the “still, small voice.”

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Here’s Everything You Need to Know about Islamic Hate for the Christian Cross

by Raymond Ibrahim

abstract_cross_6-11-15-1

Last May in Italy, a Muslim boy of African origin beat a 12-year-old girl during school because she was wearing a crucifix around her neck.  The African schoolboy, who had only started to attend the school approximately three weeks earlier, began to bully the Christian girl — “insulting her and picking on her in other ways all because she was wearing the crucifix” — before he finally “punched the girl violently in the back.”

What is it about the Christian cross that makes some Muslims react this way?

The fact is, Islamic hostility to the cross is an unwavering fact of life — one that crosses continents and centuries; one that is very much indicative of Islam’s innate hostility to Christianity.

Doctrine and History

Because the Christian cross is the quintessential symbol of Christianity — for all denominations, including most forms of otherwise iconoclastic Protestantism — it has been a despised symbol in Islam.

According to the Conditions of Omar — a medieval text which lays out the many humiliating stipulations conquered Christians must embrace to preserve their lives and which Islamic history attributes to the second “righteous caliph,” Omar al-Khattab — Christians are “not to display a cross [on churches]… and “not to produce a cross or [Christian] book in the markets of the Muslims.”

The reason for this animosity is that the cross symbolizes the fundamental disagreement between Christians and Muslims.

According to Dr. Sidney Griffith, author of The Church in the Shadow of the Mosque, “The cross and the icons publicly declared those very points of Christian faith which the Koran, in the Muslim view, explicitly denied: that Christ was the Son of God and that he died on the cross.”  Thus “the Christian practice of venerating the cross and the icons of Christ and the saints often aroused the disdain of Muslims,” so that there was an ongoing “campaign to erase the public symbols of Christianity, especially the previously ubiquitous sign of the cross.”

Islam’s hostility to the cross, like all of Islam’s hostilities, begins with the Muslim prophet Muhammad. He reportedly “had such a repugnance to the form of the cross that he broke everything brought into his house with its figure upon it” and once ordered someone wearing a cross to “take off that piece of idolatry.”   Moreover, Muhammad claimed that at the end times Jesus himself would make it a point to “break the cross” — an assertion the Islamic State regularly makes.

Islamic history ever since Muhammad is riddled with anecdotes of Muslims cursing and breaking crosses.  Prior to the Battle of Yarmuk in 636, which pitted the earliest invading Muslim armies against the Byzantine Empire, Khalid bin al-Walid, the savage “Sword of Allah,” told the Christians that if they wanted peace they must “break the cross” and embrace Islam, or pay jizya and live in subjugation — just as his Islamic State successors are doing today in direct emulation.  The Byzantines opted for war…..

….In light of the above, it should come as no surprise that the Islamic State — “ISIS” — also exhibits violence to the Christian cross.   In its communiques to the West, hostile reference to the cross is often made:  “We will conquer your Rome, break your crosses, and enslave your women, by the permission of Allah…. [We will cast] fear into the hearts of the cross worshippers….

After carving the heads of Coptic Christians off in Libya, the lead executioner waved his dagger at the camera and said, “Oh people, recently you have seen us on the hills of as-Sham and Dabiq’s plain [Syrian regions], chopping off the heads that have been carrying the cross for a long time.  And today, we are on the south of Rome, on the land of Islam, Libya, sending another message.”  He concluded by declaring: “We will fight you [Christians/Westerners] until Christ descends, breaks the cross and kills the pig” (all eschatological actions ascribed to the Muslim “Christ,” Isa).

Moreover, the Islamic State has committed countless atrocities against and because of the cross:  it made and disseminated a video showing its members smashing crosses in and atop churches in territories under its sway; it beheaded and stabbed a man with his own crucifix after it exposed him as a Christian; and it published pictures of its members destroying Christian crosses and tombstones in cemeteries under its jurisdiction  –  and quoted Islamic scriptures justifying its actions.

Careful readers will note the similar parallels here: destroying crosses in churches and cemeteries and even killing Christian “infidels” for wearing them, as documented above, is not limited to “ISIS” but is happening all around the Muslim world, and even in Europe.

In short, Islam’s age-old hatred for the Christian cross — and what it represents — is not a product of the Islamic State, but of Islam.

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The Islamic Genocide of Christians: Past and Present

by Raymond Ibrahim

“…There is no denying that religion — or in this context, the age-old specter of Muslim persecution of Christian minorities — was fundamental to the genocide of Armenians, Greeks, and Assyrians.  Even the most cited factor, ethnic identity conflict, while legitimate, must be understood in light of the fact that, historically, religion sometimes accounted more for a person’s identity than language or heritage — certainly it did for Muslims, in context of Loyalty and Enmity.   This is daily demonstrated throughout the Islamic world today, where Muslim governments, mobs, and jihadis persecute Christian minorities — minorities who share the same ethnicity, language, and culture as Muslims, but not religion — often in retaliation to the West (just as the Ottomans, as seen, were also “retaliating” to the Triple Entente).

Finally, to understand how the Ottoman Genocide of Christians is representative of the modern-day plight of Christians under Islam in general, the Islamic State in particular, one need only read the following words written in 1918 by President Theodore Roosevelt — but read “Armenian” as “Christian” and “Turkish” as “Islamic”:

The Armenian [Christian] massacre was the greatest crime of the war, and the failure to act against Turkey [the Islamic world] is to condone it… the failure to deal radically with the Turkish [Islamic] horror means that all talk of guaranteeing the future peace of the world is mischievous nonsense. 

Indeed, if we “fail to deal radically” with the “horror” currently being visited upon millions of Christians around the Islamic world — which in some areas has reached genocidal proportions according to the United Nations — we “condone it” and had better cease talking “mischievous nonsense” of a utopian world of peace and tolerance.

Put differently, silence is always the ally of those who would commit genocide.  In 1939, on the eve of World WWII, Hitler rationalized his genocidal plans against the Jews, when he reportedly asked: “Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?”

And who speaks today of the ongoing annihilation of Christians under Islam?”

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ISIS THREATENS ANOTHER 9/11-STYLE ATTACK ON U.S. IN NEW VIDEO

By THOMAS D. WILLIAMS, PH.D.

Marty Lederhandler/AP

In a newly released video, ISIS militants threaten “payback” for Americans across the globe and suggest they may be ready to launch another major attack on American soil. The video states:

America thinks it’s safe because of the geographical location. Thus you see it invades the Muslim lands, and it thinks that the army of the Jihad won’t reach in their lands. But the dream of the American to have safety became a mirage. Today there is no safety for any American on the globe. The mujahedeen before, although they had less resources, attacked New York and bombed the Twin Towers in September 11 attacks. That blessed incursion was a fatal blow. All praise is due to Allah, the American economy was shaken.

The video shows the planes flying into the Twin Towers as well as footage of ISIS attacks throughout the Middle East.

Also included are the attack on Canada’s Parliament Hill, the testimony of French gunman Amedy Coulibably, and multiple beheadings by Islamic State Militants, along with the immolation of Jordanian pilot Muadh al-Kasasbeh.

The 11-minute video, titled “We Will Burn America,” was dated March 10 but has just now been released.

“In such a way Americans lived, and by Allah’s willing, the fear will spread among them again soon. Here it’s America now losing billions still to make sure their country is safe. But today, it’s time for payback. By the grace of Allah, today the mujahedeen are much more stronger and they have more resources. Thus, they are able to burn United States again,” the video concludes….

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Italy: Muslims Destroy and Urinate on Virgin Mary Statue

by Raymond Ibrahim

A man was kneeling in prayer before the statue of the revered Madonna, with the photograph of a loved one in hand, in the small chapel of St. Barnabas in Perugia (Italy), when he was attacked by five “immigrants.”

The first thing they did was rip the photo from his hands.

Next they unleashed their hatred against the image of the Virgin Mary. They broke the statue to pieces and then urinated on it.

Don Scarda, pastor of St. Barnabas, said the event was led by five “foreigners.”  By the time police arrived at the chapel, the unidentified attackers had already fled.

The incident has caused a stir among locals. Some have lambasted Pope Francis who is accused of appeasing immigrants—mostly Muslims—to wild extremes.   Earlier he had said that “Migrants, through their own humanity, cultural values, expand the sense of human brotherhood.”…

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Islam: Built on the Blood of (Christian Child) Martyrs

by Raymond Ibrahim

IRAQ-UNREST-CHRISTIANS

….First forced to convert and then forced to remain in Islam—both on pain of death: these are two facts of Islam, past and present; facts that, according to top ranking Islamic cleric Sheikh Qaradawi are responsible for the existence of Islam today.  Just ask  Sudan’s Meriam Ibrahim, Egypt’s Muhammad Hegazy, or Iran’s (rather America’s forsaken) Saeed Abedini.

Aside from the numerous historic accounts of Christians slaughtered for refusing Islam—whether 100,000 Georgian beheaded or burned alive, or a“mere” 813 Italians beheaded—Christians are still being forced to convert to Islam, and not just at the hands of ISIS:

•Palestine, July 2012: Christians in Gaza protested over the “kidnappings and forced conversions of some former believers to Islam.”  The ever-dwindling Christian community banged on a church bell while chanting, “With our spirit, with our blood we will sacrifice ourselves for you, Jesus.”

•Pakistan:  In 2004, a-two-year old child was raped because her Christian father “refused to convert to Islam.”  Another “devoted Christian” was butchered by Muslim men “with multiple axe blows [24 per autopsy] for refusing to convert to Islam.” In April 2014, A Muslim security guardmurdered a Christian worker who refused to convert to Islam.

•Uganda, July 2014: After a gang of Muslims brandishing machetes stormed a church during service, hacking one 18-year-old woman to death and leaving three others, including a one-year-old baby, injured, the pastor explained that the attackers belong to a local “group of Muslims” which seeks “to transform [Christian-majority] Uganda into an Islamic nation and would kill anyone who refused to convert.”

•Nigeria, May 2014: A Christian teenage girl told of how Boko Haram came to her household and slaughtered her father and brother because they refused to convert to Islam.  After abusing her, they tied her up and left her in a state of shock between the two corpses.

•Bangladesh, October 2013:  After shutting down the construction of a church, a local government official threatened Christians with eviction from their village unless they renounced their faith and embraced Islam.  Said one of the Christians: “Their threats chilled me to the bone. That is why I pretended to accept Islam, but faith in Christ is the wellspring of my life.” Another said: “The chairman is clipping the wings of our faith. I do not know how long we can grin and bear it. We want religious freedom. We want to practice our religion freely.”

•Russia, 2013: In Tatarstan, a Muslim-majority republic in Russia, seven churches were burned and “increased pressure on Christians to convert to Islam” was widespread.

•Uzbekistan, August 2012: A 26-year-old Christian woman, partially paralyzed from youth, and her elderly mother were violently attacked by invaders who ransacked their home, confiscating “icons, Bibles, religious calendars, and prayer books.” At the police department, the paralyzed woman was “offered to convert to Islam.” She refused and was accordingly fined almost two years’ worth of her wages.

Pakistan, Uganda, Russia, Nigeria, Palestine, Uzbekistan, Bangladesh: these are not “ISIS.”  Yet Christians there are experiencing the same intolerance and violence that Christians under ISIS are experiencing.

The lesson?  If all around the Muslim world Christian minorities are being forced to embrace Islam, the very least the non-Muslim world can do is embrace the fact that Islam is inherently hostile—a costly lesson that countless innocents have been paying for nearly 1,400 years.

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The World’s Most Persecuted Minority: Christians

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