En lidt nørdet debat fra ABN den 30. april 2012:
Did Muhammad Exist? Robert Spencer & David Wood vs. Anjem Choudary & Omar Bakri
Did Muhammad exist? Robert Spencer’s new book claims that he didn’t. Can Muslims defend the existence of their prophet? In this debate, Spencer teams up with David Wood against Anjem Choudary and Sheikh Omar Bakri to see whether Muslims can offer historical evidence for one of their most fundamental beliefs.
Man kan læse et lille uddrag af Spencers bog i Crisis Magazine:
Spencer har genbrugt en stor del af uddraget i en artikel, som kan læses her hos Atlas Shrugs. Og flere artikler af Spencer:
By Robert Spencer – April 23, 2012
Why would it matter if Muhammad never existed? Certainly the accepted story of Islam’s origins is taken for granted as historically accurate; while many don’t accept Muhammad’s claim to have been a prophet, few doubt that there was a man named Muhammad who in the early seventh century began to claim that he was receiving messages from Allah through the angel Gabriel. Many who hear about my new book Did Muhammad Exist? An Inquiry Into Islam’s Obscure Origins ask why it would matter whether or not Muhammad existed — after all, a billion Muslims believe he did, and they are not going to stop doing so because of some historical investigations. Yet the numerous indications that the standard account of Muhammad’s life is more legend than fact actually have considerable implications for the contemporary political scene.
These are just a few of the weaknesses in the traditional account of Muhammad’s life and the early days of Islam:
- No record of Muhammad’s reported death in 632 appears until more than a century after that date.
- The early accounts written by the people the Arabs conquered never mention Islam, Muhammad, or the Qur’an. They call the conquerors “Ishmaelites,” “Saracens,” “Muhajirun,” and “Hagarians,” but never “Muslims.”
- The Arab conquerors, in their coins and inscriptions, don’t mention Islam or the Qur’an for the first six decades of their conquests. Mentions of “Muhammad” are non-specific and on at least two occasions are accompanied by a cross. The word can be used not only as a proper name, but also as an honorific.
- The Qur’an, even by the canonical Muslim account, was not distributed in its present form until the 650s. Casting into serious doubt that standard account is the fact that neither the Arabians nor the Christians and Jews in the region mention its existence until the early eighth century.
- We don’t begin to hear about Muhammad, the prophet of Islam, and about Islam itself until the 690s, during the reign of the caliph Abd al-Malik. Coins and inscriptions reflecting Islamic beliefs begin to appear at this time also.
- In the middle of the eighth century, the Abbasid dynasty supplanted the Umayyad line of Abd al-Malik. In the Abbasid period, biographical material about Muhammad began to proliferate. The first complete biography of the prophet of Islam finally appeared during this era-at least 125 years after the traditional date of his death.
Mere HER i The American Thinker.
Muhammad: The Man Who Wasn’t There
By Robert Spencer – April 23, 2012
When I mention the title of my new book Did Muhammad Exist? An Inquiry Into Islam’s Obscure Origins, many are startled, as they had no idea that there was any question that such a larger-than-life character might be legendary rather than historical. But in reality, no one who interacted with those who conquered the Middle East in the middle of the seventh century ever seems to have gotten the impression that a prophet named Muhammad, whose followers burst from Arabia bearing a new holy book and a new creed, was behind the conquests.
This may seem to be an odd claim. After all, there are the well-known accounts of the Muslim conquest of Jerusalem. Those depict the caliph Umar meeting Sophronius and treating him respectfully, even magnanimously declining to pray in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre so that his followers will not be able to seize the church and convert it into a mosque. Umar and Sophronius conclude a pact that forbids Christians from building new churches, carrying arms, or riding on horses, and that requires them to pay a poll tax, jizya, to the Muslims; but Christians are generally allowed to practice their religion and live in relative peace. This is the foundation of the Islamic legal superstructure of dhimmitude, which denies equality of rights to non-Muslims in the Islamic state and is oppressive in numerous ways by modern standards, but which in the seventh century was comparatively tolerant.
Mere HER hos Atlas Shrugs.
An Interview with Robert Spencer
Author of 12 books, including the recently released Did Muhammad Exist? An Inquiry Into Islam’s Obscure Origins.
April 26, 2012 – by Barry Rubin
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch, a program of the David Horowitz Freedom Center, and the author of twelve books, including two New York Times bestsellers, The Truth About Muhammad and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) (both Regnery). His latest book is Did Muhammad Exist? An Inquiry Into Islam’s Obscure Origins (ISI). He is interviewed by Barry Rubin, PJ Media’s Middle East editor.
Rubin: What is the basic aim of the Jihad Watch site and of your books?
Spencer: The aim of all my work is to alert the public in the United States and around the world about the nature and magnitude of the jihad threat, with particular attention to the aspect of the threat that has been most obfuscated and obscured: its motives, goals, and root causes, as explained by the jihadis themselves. At Jihad Watch I post on a daily basis news stories showing jihad activity, both violent and stealthy, in the U.S. and worldwide. In my books I explore aspects of the issue in detail, most notably the chief motivating factors named by jihadis themselves: the Qur’an and the example of Muhammad, the prophet of Islam.
Robert Spencer Asks: Did Muhammad Exist?
by Bruce Thornton on Apr 23rd, 2012
One of the jihadists’ most potent psychological weapons is the double standard Muslims have imposed on the West. Temples and churches are destroyed and vandalized, Christians murdered and driven from the lands of Christianity’s birth, anti-Semitic lunacy propagated by high-ranking Muslim clerics, and Christian territory like northern Cyprus ethnically cleansed and occupied by Muslims. Yet the West ignores these depredations all the while it agonizes over trivial “insults” to Islam and Mohammed, and decries the thought-crime of “Islamophobia” whenever even factual statements are made about Islamic history and theology. This groveling behavior confirms the traditional Islamic chauvinism that sees Muslims as the “best of nations” destined by Allah to rule the world through violent jihad.
Even in the rarefied world of academic scholarship, this fear of offense has protected Islam from the sort of critical scrutiny every other world religion has undergone for centuries. Some modern scholars who do exercise their intellectual freedom and investigate these issues, like Christoph Luxenberg or Ibn Warraq, must work incognito to avoid the wrath of the adherents of the “Religion of Peace.” Now Robert Spencer, the fearless director of Jihad Watch and author of several books telling the truths about Islam obscured by a frightened academy and media, in his new book Did Muhammad Exist? challenges this conspiracy of fear and silence by surveying the scholarship and historical evidence for the life and deeds of Islam’s founder.
Book Review: Did Muhammad Exist?, by Robert Spencer
April 23, 2012 – by Zombie
Scholars have for centuries been pursuing clues to “the historical Jesus” — evidence that the religious figure now known as Jesus Christ actually once existed as a real person. There have been hundreds, if not thousands, of popular books, documentaries, television programs, magazine articles, research papers, films and more on the search for the “real” Jesus. While this investigation into the ultimate origins of Christianity may have once long ago been controversial, it is by now quite commonplace and accepted as a standard part of religious studies, even when the researchers conclude (as they often do) that the evidence for the historicity of Jesus is skimpy at best.
But no similar investigations have ever been conducted on the historicity of Muhammad (a.k.a. Mohammed, depending on the Arabic transliteration). Why not?
Most people assume that no one bothers to investigate whether or not Muhammad was a real person for the same reason that no one bothers to investigate the reality of other religious founders such as Joseph Smith or Martin Luther or Anton LaVey — because the evidence for their existence is overwhelming, well-documented and unquestioned. Regardless of whether or not Muhammad’s teachings were moral or useful, everyone, even the most hardened infidels, of course accepts that he must have existed. Right?
Mere HER hos PJ Media.