Sunday, August 8, 2010

Did he really deserve to be jailed?

[Posted by blog co-author]
Jailed for religious insult: 'Wounded feelings' of Muslims
by Khushwant Singh on The Straits Times, Singapore.
IN THE first case of its kind, air-con repairman Andrew Kiong Kheng Kiat, 44, was jailed two weeks on Friday for wounding the religious feeling of a couple.
A district court heard that on the evening of Feb 2 last year, housewife Halinah Barudin, 38, found a card on the windscreen of her car. Written on it, were questions that cast aspersions on Prophet Muhammad.
Upset, she and her husband Mohamad Dahar Dollah, an air steward, approached the management of the condominium to view the footage of the closed-circuit television cameras in the basement car park.
It showed Kiong putting the card on the couple's car at about 5.30pm on that day.
Mr Mohamad Dahar, 40, then went to the police and Kiong was tracked down and questioned.
He admitted to printing 16 such cards and had placed eight on cars that he believed were owned by Muslims.
He was unable to specify the exact locations. He had thrown away the remaining eight cards after the authorities caught up with him.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Adrian Loo said that while previous offenders had been charged with promoting ill-will and hostility between the different races under the Sedition Act, the offence of wounding the religious feelings of another person was equally serious, as both offences carry the maximum punishment of a fine and a three-year jail term.
Kiong, who was expressionless during the hearing, looked resigned as he was led away in handcuffs.
This news which was released yesterday is not clear on the entirety. The questions on the card were never published anywhere online, nor printed on the news. There was no analytical debate on whether or not the questions were merely a genuine inquiry into the actions of the Prophet, whom Muslims consider the best role model. If it was a genuine inquiry, the government ought to consult the inquirer on how he arrived at the questions, and attempt to provide satisfactory answers (failing which, it will be obvious that the subject being inquired on has faults that makes it worthy of those questions). Only if the questions were really meant to insult (by secular standards, not by Muslim standards), then the insulter must be punished.

It must be noted that Muslims consider that one can be a Muslim only by emulating the Prophet and his every action, regardless of how wrong the action may be to the human conscience. Non-muslims studying Islam and and its tenets in detail would question some of the actions of Muhammad, especially those actions from his later life. However, with secular governments like Singapore attempting to protect religion from free inquiry by outlawing it as "sedition" or "hurting religious feelings," Non-muslims are discouraged from asking their questions and prevented from enjoying free exchange and conversation with Muslims. They are forced to veil a mask of anonymity when expressing their doubts and questions (which failed for Andrew). Even a simple question asked by a Non-muslim inquiring the morality, legality or relevance of an action of Prophet Muhammad will be labelled as "sedition" by Muslims.

News sources need to do more justice by publishing complete news and including all details. The questions on the card must have been published or at least provided online, so that readers can judge for themselves whether these questions were a genuine inquiry about Muhammad and Islam, or merely meant to insult. This would not only ensure that justice is served more justly (by prompting public outcry on a mistaken conviction), but also encourage more Non-muslims to study and understand Islam without a religious bias. In today's world, a majority of Non-muslims are under the wrong impressions about Islam. Either they believe that Islam is similar to Judaism and the more well-known Christianity, or they believe that Islam is evil, due to the recent terrorist events. The correct opinion needs to be formed by a Non-muslim only by studying Islam itself, and not by judging from recent developments, promotion of religion by religious institutions, or hearsay.

The fact that the cards contained questions gives me the idea that they are more likely to be genuine inquiry, which is wrongly accused as being insulting and "hurting" to Muslims. This is because Muslims regard such reverence to the Prophet that his actions become unquestionable, and any question, genuine or otherwise, is considered an "insult".

Friday, August 6, 2010

Paul the Predicting Octopus?

[Posted by blog co-author]

With the recent World Cup, there had been a lot of hype going on about the divine precognitive powers of the seafood prophet - Paul the Octopus.

It is highly unlikely that this octopus can understand anything about the World Cup, soccer, countries or even the biology behind mussels. So how is it that Paul predicted 4 out of 6 matches correctly in Euro 2008, and a bewildering 8 out of 8 matches in the World Cup 2010? Surely there must be a supernatural force guiding the tentacles of Paul to reach out for the correct flag. Never mind the two times this force tricked his Cephalopod intelligence.

Lets see if we can find other possible explanations without involving the supernatural.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Stoning of Soraya M.

Have you watched the movie The Stoning of Soraya M.? The depth of the story and the detail of it can make anyone cry. And I did. I started crying right before her stoning (knowing well it was coming) till after the movie ended.

As I watched her stoning, I couldn't help but think of my fate if my husband hadn't saved me. When they gave Soraya's father the stones to take the first hit, I couldn't help but think that it was my father, standing there, accusing me and throwing the first hit while I'm tied, buried half deep in the ground. The pain was not from the blows, but from heartache. Soraya's heart died when they made her own sons hit her! I cried watching how the children were made to participate. How the village leaders said that with each stone, the honor of the family and of the village is restored.

I cried as much, scarring my heart deeper, watching Soraya's slow death. Every part of my body, every piece of my mind felt like it was me being stoned. It reminded myself what was fated for me if I ever return to my parents' home, if I ever start communicating with them.

I love my parents wholeheartedly. In my eyes, their doings have become the doings of love for me. This movie reminded me of the truth. When Soraya's father stated that she's not her daughter and he's no longer her father; telling everyone to finish it and screaming to kill his own flesh and blood, I realized. Where was love? Where was the thought of 'flesh and blood'? There's only the thought of 'honor' and 'love for Islam!' Nothing will compare to religion; nothing.

Soraya's death: stoned and her bloody body eaten away by dogs. A honorable mother who strived to protect her children, she was - till death. But a fool she was too. The same fool, I am. When Soraya's aunt came running to let her know that the men are plotting something against her, and to advise her that she should stop working, she denied and refused to hear it, neglecting the fore-warning. There's no difference between me and her. Despite everything I went through, pain, sorrow and agony, I still miss, wish and yearn for my parents, innocently failing to realize that this feeling can cause only one thing - my death.

If not for my husband, I might have gone back to my grave. Even if they keep me alive, I'm sure it will be triple the agony I already went through. Physically my parents may not have tortured me, but mentally they did. It is only because of Singapore's law that I was safe from physical harm - this I was made clear by my own mother, a woman herself.

So what else am I expecting for? What else am I waiting for? Why does my heart despite seeing all the agony in detail, the proof that is thrown before me, still yearn for them, for their love, for their affection? It's only because of the way they brought me and the way I spent years thinking too positively about them that the negative truth is not digesting within me. And the only reason for all this is that I love them and am grateful for everything they did, and that I know they loved me. But they love their religion more than anything else in the world, including their only heir, their very own flesh and blood.

This is my story, and Soraya's. I can only ask one question: How many more people must suffer and die to bring the truth of Islam to you?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Different Perspectives of Dream Interpretation

Recently I had a close friend tell me about what she dreamt about me. As you can guess, this friend of mine is a Muslim and we were friends since I was started studying in my ‘madrasah’ (Islamic school).

Things of course changed between us after she was clear that I had left Islam, but nevertheless she was still friendly towards me. However, I maintained a distance between us, only allowing contact through the internet.

Anyway, she dreamt that I died. Actually, I was already aware that when she told me she had a horrible dream, it should be of my death.

As expected, it was definitely horrible, as well as unbelievable.

She dreamt that after I die, I took a sudden change into the figure of a dog. Of course, this is physically impossible to happen. I don’t think even magic can turn me into such creatures. Of course, unless you believe in Harry Potter.

Anyway, what she told me was that, my dog turned dead body was brought forward to my parents' home and my husband (yea, we got married!) was there as well.

While the ‘imam’ (Muslim priest) was praying upon me and some people were wrapping my body with kafan (white burial shroud), I suddenly started to writhe, and then I turned to the side and started wailing like a baby. Everyone around me went into an utter shock and were frightened. (Too much horror movie I presume. Did anyone think that maybe I went into a coma?)

I told my friend that I knew why I wailed. I told her sarcastically that I wailed because I would never ever wish to be buried as a Muslim, and then I laughed about it. (I know, it’s so cool, like a slap across her face.) Of course, she went, ‘nonsense!’.

Monday, March 15, 2010

My parents caused my depression

It is hard for me to walk through my life, now that I am free to do what I want. I’m happy, yes. I am extremely happy to be free but deep inside of me, I’m still caged. Caged from the pain I was force to go through and from the wounds that never heal inside of me. Pain from the blows of others and pain because of the blows I gave others.

I am a very simple girl that wishes everyone to be happy. Maybe inside of me I think that making others happy gives me a reason to be happy as well. It is true. I do feel a little happy for that but people don’t remember me for the times I make them smile, they remember me for the times I must have hurt them unintentionally or the times I made mistakes in my life.

Sometimes people expect me to be more than what I can and it pressurizes me.

My cousins and my aunts, people that I had once been close with, these people truly never cared about my happiness. Because the moment I make one mistake, they torment me. First they would scream hurtful things at me, then second they would make sure my parents know about it. The worst part is when my parents actually do listen to them and put me in a position to feel sorry for myself, even if it wasn’t my fault.

Everything I do when I was young, always get me wrong. I wanted to help someone but in the end I will end up being blamed for hurting or causing trouble. It has always been that way for me. Till I started thinking that it is 100% sure that every year I will definitely have a huge problem stick to me. Like for instance I’ve been imprisoned in my parents' house because they think I was wrong. Something like this always happens [when I live with my parents], at least once a year.

So it makes me think I’m doing something wrong, and yet I know I didn’t really do anything wrong except trying to be me. I can never be me; that’s what everything seems to conclude to.

My parents don’t bother about all the things I am going through. My mother, I always wished to hug her and cry on her shoulders and tell her my problems, but unfortunately I couldn’t. For one, she will definitely take me to be making some sort of mistake, and another she will actually scold me or punish me, which in result makes me wish I didn’t tell her anything at all.

I don’t know if I have ever talked to her about stuff before. I might have. But I don’t remember what happened. And in any case, I always refrain from talking to my parents regarding any personal problems I’m going through.

It’s hard to explain my childhood pain I went through. Most of them I forgot really but yet I feel the pain of it. The pain that it had caused me throughout my life. I don’t know why I feel the pain eventhough I don’t remember things. Maybe I have come to accept the fact that perhaps it’s better to let the images go so that it might be less painful? I don’t know. But it didn’t become any less painful… It hurts a lot.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

They're always right. We're always wrong.

[Posted by blog co-author]

Can you imagine the irony in this?! The following news is from a Primary School in London. That's right, a primary school. And instead of questioning how children can have such hatred against Christians and Jews at such young age, they blame the teacher who is trying to find justice. What is happening to the world? Are everyone else bowing down to the muslims and licking their feet? What a shame!

Christian teacher 'forced out' after complaining Muslim pupils praised 9/11 hijackers 'as heroes'
By Lucy Ballinger
Last updated at 6:06 PM on 08th February 2010

A Christian teacher told today how he lost his job after complaining that Muslim pupils as young as eight hailed the September 11 hijackers as 'heroes'.

Nicholas Kafouris said he was forced from his £30,000-a-year post because he would not tolerate the 'racist' and 'anti-Semitic' behaviour of children.

He said the predominantly Muslim youngsters openly praised Islamic extremists in class, and hailed the terrorists of the 2001 atrocities as 'martyrs'.

Mr Kafouris, 40, told how one pupil said to him, ‘Don’t touch me, you’re a Christian’, when the teacher accidentally brushed against him with his arm.

Others said, ‘We want to be Islamic bombers when we grow up', and 'the Christians and Jews are our enemies, you too because you're a Christian', he added.

Mr Kafouris, who had taught at Bigland Green Primary School, in Tower Hamlets, East London, for 12 years, said there was a change in attitude of pupils at the school - where the majority of pupils are Muslim - after the World Trade Center attacks.

According to the most recent Ofsted report 'almost all' the 465 pupils at the school are from ethnic minorities and a vast proportion do not have English as their first language.

Mr Kafouris, a Greek Cypriot, said pupils told him, 'We hate the Christians' and, 'We hate the Jews', despite his attempts to stop them.

The teacher is now suing his former school, the headteacher, and the assistant head for racial discrimination after they failed to take action about the comments made by pupils to him.

He had filled out a 'Racist Incident Reporting Sheet' but claimed the headteacher Jill Hankey dismissed his concerns.

In a statement submitted to the Central London Employment Tribunal he said: 'Miss Hankey proceeded to excuse and justify the pupil's behaviour, conduct and remarks to me as if I had no right to be offended by the child's remarks and conduct.

Amongst Miss Hankey's justifications for the child's remarks, she said: 'If the child was older, say 15, I might take it more seriously, he's only nine, he's only doing it to wind you up.'

He added: 'I felt the head's behaviour and conduct towards me amounted to direct religious discrimination against me which I considered most offensive.

‘I was intimidated in the way she spoke to me which indicated, “Don't come back with such issues again”.'

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Joke of the day

Eating with right hand:

It seems quite right that the Muslims claim that one should only eat using their right hand and never their left hand, as their left is supposedly used to clean us up after doing our business in the bathroom. At the same time Muslims claim that everything given to them by their 'Allah' is good and thus they should not claim it otherwise but yet still they prejudice their own hands negatively wrapping on the illusion regarding which hand is to be used to eat. The most ironic thing, they actually claim that  it is the 'Jinns' attitude to eat using its left hand.

Pitying Someone:

Do you know that a Muslim should not pity another person, be they believer or not? Muslims claim that pitying another's pain would result it upon them as they claim that one who is in pain deserves it cause it is their punishment from 'Allah' upon them for whatever sin they must have done. Thus pitying them will cast 'Allah's' wrath upon you. Oh and you may ask, what about the innocent children who suffer? Well these children actually suffer upon their parents sin. So Merciful He is indeed! How well Muhammad has done to kill human emotions of pity upon mankind. How pitiful they are indeed.

Bathing Naked:

One should bath with themselves covered up (private parts only) or the satan will caress their private parts and awaken stronger sexual desires within them. As desires are equal to evil. Ironically, within the hadith there is a part regarding Moses and his people bathing naked:
Volume 1, Book 5, Number 277:
Narrated Abu Huraira: 
The Prophet said, 'The (people of) Bani Israel used to take bath naked (all together) looking at each other. The Prophet Moses used to take a bath alone. They said, 'By Allah! Nothing prevents Moses from taking a bath with us except that he has a scrotal hernia.' So once Moses went out to take a bath and put his clothes over a stone and then that stone ran away with his clothes. Moses followed that stone saying, "My clothes, O stone! My clothes, O stone! till the people of Bani Israel saw him and said, 'By Allah, Moses has got no defect in his body. Moses took his clothes and began to beat the stone." Abu Huraira added, "By Allah! There are still six or seven marks present on the stone from that excessive beating."
Do not eat Halal food prepared by Chinese:

I don't know about other Muslims, but this is what my parents have been taught by their leader. This is some of the most ridiculous things they have been practicing. Chinese people are seen as unclean, as they eat pork and drink alcohol, and they have not clean their hands or legs in a proper way after touching 'haram' (unclean) things. Chinese are believed to be as you all know, they are unbelievers so which means, considered animals to their eyes, so of course a human can't eat what an animal cook, right? Unfortunately, they are blind. The believers have always been the animals. Haha!

Brazil Chicken or Village Chicken:

Another ridiculous thing taught by parents' leader. Somehow, some way, their leader got the idea that the non-believers are injecting pig fat into these fluttering creatures to make them grow fat and big so they have more flesh. God knows, if such things even exist, but well, village chickens are usually fresh and I don't know once again, where the leader get the idea that Brazil chicken is clean. Also, they forbid these, because the chickens were not slaughtered in any Islamic way, as in screaming 'Allahu Akhbar' before slitting its throat. Usually chickens go through machines, where they inject these chickens to make them barely conscious, or so they say. Whatever the reason is, I still question why only chicken, since all our other meat also goes through that process.

Coca Cola:

Also the same ridiculous crap from my parents' group somehow getting information that the company is actually donating some of their profit to some wine company. I still wonder, why would some wine company need donation when they might be making more money than some pathetic gassy can drink.

There's also something that Muslims found out about the way Coca Cola was written that when turned inverted, whichever way, it seems to sort of form an arabic sentence that says 'Laa Muhammad Laa Makkah', which means No Muhammad  No Mecca.  Here's the image:
Seems like the Coca Cola company got it right.

Jinn and Magic of Islam:

Alright, this is sort of an issue. Jinns are considered evil beings that are known as helpers of Satan, the acursed one. Muslim considered, all idols as Jinns taking form within the statue to be God. Since Jinns are made from fire, and goes against Allah, following a Jinn way is like following its way straight to HellFire. Ironically, they claimed that Jinns are also used to help heal people. Used to help solve magical problems. Like for example, if one is needed to become a spiritual healer, they have to have a Jinn as their Guardian. Doesn't mean they worship them, but it means they used or force such Jinn to do their biddings. Yet at the same time, they also become reliable upon that Jinn, as their healing powers come from it.

So if Allah, is that great, why does he not help these people to heal with the help of his power, instead using the power of their enemy. I mean doesn't this prove something is wrong with their Allah? Maybe he is just powerless, which I'm sure he is.


Reason for baby crying at birth:

I'm not sure how many Muslims believe this,but this was what had been taught to me by my parents. As ridiculous as it is, I thought it was actually true, until I grew up and learn about science. Well my mother says that an infant in a mother's womb, is as innocent and as knowledgable. When the baby arrives, it lets out a scream and starts crying because it is crying to Allah as to why he/she was born into the world where sinners exist. Quite interesing and extremely funny to know this theory as anyone with common sense will know that a child coming out from the warmth heat of her/his mother's womb cries at the first hit of cold air. Muslims are great inventors of stories.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

My parents' hatred stems from Islam

13 January 2010

Every day I keep hoping to see loving parents. Ones who love their daughter and want her to be happy. Every day that's what I wished for. But like a lightning bolt, it struck me so hard that just like all Muslims out there, my parents are the same. I'm nothing but a burden [to them]. Countless times they made me feel that way, throughout my life. Funny, but true. I've always thought they'd be better without me, because that's how they made me see it. They have never portrayed it by words, but as it is said, action speaks louder that words.

Every time I make a mistake, my parents would be sure to remind me again and again what I did in my past, even if it's something I wish to forget. They made me feel like I've done so much to have hurt them and that is why several times in a row I've been in and out of depression. I've come to the part where I even hate myself. My thoughts were, I'm not a perfect daughter, I do not deserve to be their daughter, and I always hurt them. But as I grew up and as I mixed around, I finally realised something. I realised that I've grown up in a negative way all my life. The mistakes I did was not really mistakes. They were actually stepping stones for me to learn from. Unfortunately, it only hurt me more than teach me anything.

Within years, I have been reduced to nothing and every freedom I demanded was not in my favour. It came till the point of choosing my own mate. When the word fell [on their ears], they were in full pretentious state until the right time approaches, and like I'm the animal, I was seized and held captive in the very place I called 'home'! The pain I went through, not physical but mental, was a torment. Even after I escaped it, the fear within me never recedes and those memories never subsided. Everywhere I go now, the moment I see a padlock, I shiver inside, remembering the huge padlock my father used to lock the main door's gate. I felt violated till now that I spent sleepless nights (like now, for example) crying to myself.

Is it wrong to wish for parents who love you and understand you? Islam never lets you go in peace. Never! It shook me more when my mother and uncle assaulted my fiancé and me. How can she claim she loves me? There it was, my fiancé getting beaten up and not letting me go, not even to run for help because he loves me and wants me safe [and doesn't want to lose me]! And there it was, the people claiming they love me but too blind to see the sacrifice that my fiancé is doing for me. People can say maybe perhaps my parents are afraid that my fiancé might hurt me and so they don't want me to marry him. But if he is willing to go through getting beaten for me, will he ever leave me?

If they really love me, they will want my happiness and not my pain. They have only inflicted pain in me and made it worse on the Christmas eve, 24th December 2009. I never knew they would stoop so low. Their focus was to get me! The reason was only clear. Honour of Islam! No child [born in Islam] deserve happiness if honour and Islam has to be traded. I am no longer a Muslim and that hurt them and killed them more than anything.

When I know there was no way they are going to accept my fiancé ever if he converts, I knew there was nothing else [for me] to stay for [in their house]. I was [at first] willing to sacrifice my freedom to get the man I love. But no, to them nothing was ever my choice. My mother said she'd rather kill me that let me be the way I was, which is equal to being free. No daughter would wish to hear her mother cursing her, calling her a prostitute and threatening her with death. But I'm hearing this. I'm going through all these! How hard it was for me to have to file a report against my parents, how hard it was for me to even file for a protection order. Oh God, how hard it was. Only I knew how many times I've cried (without my fiancé's knowledge).

That day I knew, there was no love towards me. In the end, Islam won my parents' hearts than their only daughter, their flesh and blood's love. No daughter would wish to run away. It's only due to their parents that they do. I wish I've had a normal life. I always did. But it is too late. I've been fed with fears. Fear of allah, fear of judgement day, fear of their leader, fear of them (my parents) till the extend when I argued with them that 'love' is the one that will make children respect parents, they [strongly] insisted that 'fear' brings respect. I should've known then. I should've realised, but I was too young to understand, even though I didn't agree with what they said.

Fear was everything to them. Fear = Islam. I am nothing but a burden and shame [to them].

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Apostasy in Islam

[Posted by blog co-author]

Qur'an (Chapter:Verse)

2:217: They ask thee concerning fighting in the Prohibited Month. Say: "Fighting therein is a grave (offence); but graver is it in the sight of Allah to prevent access to the path of Allah, to deny Him, to prevent access to the Sacred Mosque, and drive out its members." Tumult and oppression are worse than slaughter. Nor will they cease fighting you until they turn you back from your faith if they can. And if any of you Turn back from their faith and die in unbelief, their works will bear no fruit in this life and in the Hereafter; they will be companions of the Fire and will abide therein.

3:90-91: Lo! those who disbelieve after their (profession of) belief, and afterward grow violent in disbelief: their repentance will not be accepted. And such are those who are astray. Lo! those who disbelieve, and die in disbelief, the (whole) earth full of gold would not be accepted from such an one if it were offered as a ransom (for his soul). Theirs will be a painful doom and they will have no helpers.

4:89 (Translation by Yusuf Ali): They but wish that ye should reject Faith, as they do, and thus be on the same footing (as they): But take not friends from their ranks until they flee in the way of Allah (From what is forbidden). But if they turn renegades, seize them and slay them wherever ye find them; and (in any case) take no friends or helpers from their ranks;-

4:89 (Translation by Pickthal): They long that ye should disbelieve even as they disbelieve, that ye may be upon a level (with them). So choose not friends from them till they forsake their homes in the way of Allah; if they turn back (to enmity) then take them and kill them wherever ye find them, and choose no friend nor helper from among them,

4:89 (Translation by Shakir): They desire that you should disbelieve as they have disbelieved, so that you might be (all) alike; therefore take not from among them friends until they fly (their homes) in Allah's way; but if they turn back, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them, and take not from among them a friend or a helper.

5:54: O ye who believe! if any from among you turn back from his Faith, soon will Allah produce a people whom He will love as they will love Him,- lowly with the believers, mighty against the rejecters, fighting in the way of Allah, and never afraid of the reproaches of such as find fault. That is the grace of Allah, which He will bestow on whom He pleaseth. And Allah encompasseth all, and He knoweth all things.

9:11-12: But if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, they are your brethren in faith; and We make the communications clear for a people who know. And if they break their oaths after their agreement and (openly) revile your religion, then fight the leaders of unbelief-- surely their oaths are nothing-- so that they may desist.

9:66: Make ye no excuses: ye have rejected Faith after ye had accepted it. If We pardon some of you, We will punish others amongst you, for that they are in sin.

9:73-74: O Prophet! Strive against the disbelievers and the hypocrites! Be harsh with them. Their ultimate abode is hell, a hapless journey's end. They swear by Allah that they said nothing (wrong), yet they did say the word of disbelief, and did disbelieve after their Surrender (to Allah). And they purposed that which they could not attain, and they sought revenge only that Allah by His messenger should enrich them of His bounty. If they repent it will be better for them; and if they turn away, Allah will afflict them with a painful doom in the world and the Hereafter, and they have no protecting friend nor helper in the earth.

88:21-24: Therefore do remind, for you are only a reminder. You are not a watcher over them; But whoever turns back and disbelieves, Allah will chastise him with the greatest chastisement.

Hadith (Volume:Book:Number)

Sahih Bukhari 4:52:260: Narrated Ikrima: Ali burnt some people and this news reached Ibn 'Abbas, who said, "Had I been in his place I would not have burnt them, as the Prophet said, 'Don't punish (anybody) with Allah's Punishment.' No doubt, I would have killed them, for the Prophet said, 'If somebody (a Muslim) discards his religion, kill him.' "

Sahih Bukhari 5:59:632: Narrated Abu Burda: That the Prophet sent his (i.e. Abu Burda's) grandfather, Abu Musa and Mu'adh to Yemen and said to both of them "Facilitate things for the people (Be kind and lenient) and do not make things difficult (for people), and give them good tidings, and do not repulse them and both of you should obey each other." Abu Musa said, "O Allah's Prophet! In our land there is an alcoholic drink (prepared) from barley called Al-Mizr, and another (prepared) from honey, called Al-Bit"' The Prophet said, "All intoxicants are prohibited." Then both of them proceeded and Mu'adh asked Abu Musa, "How do you recite the Quran?" Abu Musa replied, "I recite it while I am standing, sitting or riding my riding animals, at intervals and piecemeal." Muadh said, "But I sleep and then get up. I sleep and hope for Allah's Reward for my sleep as I seek His Reward for my night prayer." Then he (i.e. Muadh) pitched a tent and they started visiting each other. Once Muadh paid a visit to Abu Musa and saw a chained man. Muadh asked, "What is this?" Abu Musa said, "(He was) a Jew who embraced Islam and has now turned apostate." Muadh said, "I will surely chop off his neck!"

Sahih Bukhari 9:83:17: Narrated 'Abdullah: Allah's Apostle said, "The blood of a Muslim who confesses that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that I am His Apostle, cannot be shed except in three cases: In Qisas for murder, a married person who commits illegal sexual intercourse and the one who reverts from Islam (apostate) and leaves the Muslims."

Sahih Bukhari 9:83:37: Narrated Abu Qilaba:

Once 'Umar bin 'Abdul 'Aziz sat on his throne in the courtyard of his house so that the people might gather before him. Then he admitted them and (when they came in), he said, "What do you think of Al-Qasama?" They said, "We say that it is lawful to depend on Al-Qasama in Qisas, as the previous Muslim Caliphs carried out Qisas depending on it." Then he said to me, "O Abu Qilaba! What do you say about it?" He let me appear before the people and I said, "O Chief of the Believers! You have the chiefs of the army staff and the nobles of the Arabs. If fifty of them testified that a married man had committed illegal sexual intercourse in Damascus but they had not seen him (doing so), would you stone him?" He said, "No." I said, "If fifty of them testified that a man had committed theft in Hums, would you cut off his hand though they did not see him?" He replied, "No." I said, "By Allah, Allah's Apostle never killed anyone except in one of the following three situations: (1) A person who killed somebody unjustly, was killed (in Qisas,) (2) a married person who committed illegal sexual intercourse and (3) a man who fought against Allah and His Apostle and deserted Islam and became an apostate." Then the people said, "Didn't Anas bin Malik narrate that Allah's Apostle cut off the hands of the thieves, branded their eyes and then, threw them in the sun?" I said, "I shall tell you the narration of Anas. Anas said: "Eight persons from the tribe of 'Ukl came to Allah's Apostle and gave the Pledge of allegiance for Islam (became Muslim). The climate of the place (Medina) did not suit them, so they became sick and complained about that to Allah's Apostle. He said (to them ), "Won't you go out with the shepherd of our camels and drink of the camels' milk and urine (as medicine)?" They said, "Yes." So they went out and drank the camels' milk and urine, and after they became healthy, they killed the shepherd of Allah's Apostle and took away all the camels. This news reached Allah's Apostle , so he sent (men) to follow their traces and they were captured and brought (to the Prophet). He then ordered to cut their hands and feet, and their eyes were branded with heated pieces of iron, and then he threw them in the sun till they died." I said, "What can be worse than what those people did? They deserted Islam, committed murder and theft."

Sahih Bukhari 9:84:57: Narrated 'Ikrima: Some Zanadiqa (atheists) were brought to 'Ali and he burnt them. The news of this event, reached Ibn 'Abbas who said, "If I had been in his place, I would not have burnt them, as Allah's Apostle forbade it, saying, 'Do not punish anybody with Allah's punishment (fire).' I would have killed them according to the statement of Allah's Apostle, 'Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him.'"

Sahih Bukhari 9:84:58: Narrated Abu Burda: Abu Musa said, "I came to the Prophet along with two men (from the tribe) of Ash'ariyin, one on my right and the other on my left, while Allah's Apostle was brushing his teeth (with a Siwak), and both men asked him for some employment. The Prophet said, 'O Abu Musa (O 'Abdullah bin Qais!).' I said, 'By Him Who sent you with the Truth, these two men did not tell me what was in their hearts and I did not feel (realize) that they were seeking employment.' As if I were looking now at his Siwak being drawn to a corner under his lips, and he said, 'We never (or, we do not) appoint for our affairs anyone who seeks to be employed. But O Abu Musa! (or 'Abdullah bin Qais!) Go to Yemen.'" The Prophet then sent Mu'adh bin Jabal after him and when Mu'adh reached him, he spread out a cushion for him and requested him to get down (and sit on the cushion). Behold: There was a fettered man beside Abu Muisa. Mu'adh asked, "Who is this (man)?" Abu Muisa said, "He was a Jew and became a Muslim and then reverted back to Judaism." Then Abu Muisa requested Mu'adh to sit down but Mu'adh said, "I will not sit down till he has been killed. This is the judgment of Allah and His Apostle (for such cases) and repeated it thrice. Then Abu Musa ordered that the man be killed, and he was killed. Abu Musa added, "Then we discussed the night prayers and one of us said, 'I pray and sleep, and I hope that Allah will reward me for my sleep as well as for my prayers.'"

Sahih Bukhari 9:84:59: Narrated Abu Huraira: When the Prophet died and Abu Bakr became his successor and some of the Arabs reverted to disbelief, 'Umar said, "O Abu Bakr! How can you fight these people although Allah's Apostle said, 'I have been ordered to fight the people till they say: 'None has the right to be worshipped but Allah,' and whoever said, 'None has the right to be worshipped but Allah', Allah will save his property and his life from me, unless (he does something for which he receives legal punishment) justly, and his account will be with Allah?' "Abu Bakr said, "By Allah! I will fight whoever differentiates between prayers and Zakat as Zakat is the right to be taken from property (according to Allah's Orders). By Allah! If they refused to pay me even a kid they used to pay to Allah's Apostle, I would fight with them for withholding it." 'Umar said, "By Allah: It was nothing, but I noticed that Allah opened Abu Bakr's chest towards the decision to fight, therefore I realized that his decision was right."

Sahih Bukhari 9:84:64: Narrated 'Ali: Whenever I tell you a narration from Allah's Apostle, by Allah, I would rather fall down from the sky than ascribe a false statement to him, but if I tell you something between me and you (not a Hadith) then it was indeed a trick (i.e., I may say things just to cheat my enemy). No doubt I heard Allah's Apostle saying, "During the last days there will appear some young foolish people who will say the best words but their faith will not go beyond their throats (i.e. they will have no faith) and will go out from (leave) their religion as an arrow goes out of the game. So, where-ever you find them, kill them, for who-ever kills them shall have reward on the Day of Resurrection."

Sahih Bukhari 9:89:271: Narrated Abu Musa: A man embraced Islam and then reverted back to Judaism. Mu'adh bin Jabal came and saw the man with Abu Musa. Mu'adh asked, "What is wrong with this (man)?" Abu Musa replied, "He embraced Islam and then reverted back to Judaism." Mu'adh said, "I will not sit down unless you kill him (as it is) the verdict of Allah and His Apostle

Sahih Muslim 16:4152: 'Abdullah (b. Mas'ud) reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: It is not permissible to take the life of a Muslim who bears testimony (to the fact that there is no god but Allah, and I am the Messenger of Allah, but in one of the three cases: the married adulterer, a life for life, and the deserter of his Din (Islam), abandoning the community.

Sahih Muslim 16:4154: 'Abdullah (b. Mas'ud) reported: Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) stood up and said: By Him besides Whom there is no god but He, the blood of a Muslim who bears the testimony that there is no god but Allah, and I am His Messenger, may be lawfully shed only in case of three persons: the one who abandons Islam, and deserts the community, and the married adulterer, and life for life.

Sahih Muslim 20:4490: It has been reported on the authority of Abu Musa who said: I went to the Holy Prophet (may peace be upon him) and with me were two men from the Ash'ari tribe. One of them was on my right hand and the other on my left. Both of them made a request for a position (of authority) while the Holy Prophet (may peace be upon him) was brushing his teeth with a tooth-stick. He said (to me): Abu Musa (or 'Abdullah b. Qais), what do you say (about the request they have made)? I said: By God Who sent thee on thy mission with truth, they did not disclose to me what they had in their minds, and I did not know that they would ask for a position. The narrator says (while recalling this hadith): I visualise as if I were looking at the miswak of the Holy Prophet (may peace be upon him) between his lips. He (the Holy Prophet) said: We shall not or shall never appoint to the public offices (in our State) those who with to have them, but you may go, Abu Musa (or Abdullah b. Qais) (to take up your assignment). He sent him to Yemen as governor. then he sent Mu'adh b. jabal in his wake (to help him in the discharge of duties). When Mu'adh reached the camp of Abu Musa, the latter (received him and) said: Please get yourself down; and he spread for him a mattress, while there was a man bound hand and foot as a prisoner. Mu'adh said: Who is this? Abu Musa said: He was a Jew. He embraced Islam. Then he reverted to his false religion and became a Jew. Mu'adh said: I won't sit until he is killed according to the decree of Allah and His Apostle (may peace be upon him) (in this case). Abu Musa said: Be seated. It will be done. He said: I won't sit unless he is killed in accordance with the decree of Allah and His Apostle (may peace be upon him). He repeated these words thrice. Then Abu Musa ordered him (to be killed) and he was killed. Then the two talked of standing in prayer at night. One of them, i.e. Mu'adh, said: I sleep (for a part of the night) and stand in prayer (for a part) and I hope that I shall get the same reward for steeping as I shall get for standing (in prayer).

Note: Both sources are reputed Islamic websites.

Group of Muftis: Speaking of the authority of the punishment and its being genuine and based on the authentic sources of Islam, Sheikh `Attiyah Saqr, former Head of Al-Azhar Fatwa Committee, states:

"It is not right to deny the punishment of apostasy claiming that it has not been reported in the Qur'an, because it has been recorded in the mutawatir (Hadith which has been reported by at least four of the Companions in different times and places in a way that make a person sure that such Hadith is not fabricated) and the non-mutawatir Sunnah of the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him). Hudud (Islamic punishment specified for certain crimes) may, of course, be based on the non-mutawatir Sunnah."

Detailing the issue and showing some of the evidence for the punishment of apostasy, the prominent Muslim scholar Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, states:

"All Muslim jurists agree that the apostate is to be punished. However, they differ regarding the punishment itself. The majority of them go for killing; meaning that an apostate is to be sentenced to death.

Many authentic Hadiths have been reported in this regard. Ibn `Abbas reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, "Whoever changes his religion, you kill him." (Reported by all the group except Muslim, and at-Tabarani also reported it with a sound chain of narrators. Also recorded in Majma` Az-Zawa'id by Al-Haythamiy.)

There is also the Hadith of Ibn Mas`ud that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, "The blood of a Muslim individual who bears witness that there is no god but Allah and that I am the Messenger of Allah, is not to be shed except in three cases: in retaliation (in murder crimes), married adulterers (and adulteresses), and the one who abandons his religion and forsakes the Muslim community." (Reported by the Group)

The actual example of one of the greatest Companions, `Ali ibn Abi Talib (may Allah be pleased with him) gives credit to this also. He himself carried out the punishment on some people who had deified him. He gave them three days respite to repent and go back to their senses. When they proved adamant, he put them to fire.

Source of the Punishment for Apostasy -

Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid: This is the ruling of Allaah and His Messenger, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "Whoever changes his religion, kill him." (reported by al-Bukhaari, al-Fath, no. 3017).

(2) The one who has known the religion which Allaah revealed, entered it and practised it, then rejected it, despised it and left it, is a person who does not deserve to live on the earth of Allaah and eat from the provision of Allaah.

(3) By leaving Islaam, the apostate opens the way for everyone who wants to leave the faith, thus spreading apostasy and encouraging it.

(4) The apostate is not to be killed without warning. Even though his crime is so great, he is given a last chance, a respite of three days in which to repent. If he repents, he will be left alone; if he does not repent, then he will be killed.

(5) If the punishment for murder and espionage (also known as high treason) is death, then what should be the punishment for the one who disbelieves in the Lord of mankind and despises and rejects His religion? Is espionage or shedding blood worse than leaving the religion of the Lord of mankind and rejecting it?

(6) None of those who bleat about personal freedom and freedom of belief would put up with a neighbour’s child hitting their child or justify this as "personal freedom," so how can they justify leaving the true religion and rejecting the sharee’ah which Allaah revealed to teach mankind about His unity and bring justice and fairness to all?

Why death is the punishment for Apostasy -
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