Author’s Note: There are several comments at the bottom of this article from Muslims in Amsterdam. They dismiss the documented facts and fault me for not providing any Islamic sources. You’ll notice that they do not provide any evidence of their own; their objective is to discredit with unfounded phrases like: “lies, Christian propaganda, completely unbelievable, nonsense, ignorant, and ludicrous.” Let the facts speak for themselves. I continue to edit the text and insert credible Islamic sources for almost all of the significant points. This blog entry continues to be the most popular, with over 70 visitors each week, so my intent is to improve the quality of the information and help my readers understand the fundamental disconnect when applying Islamic doctrines. I will continue to research the matter and add further sources. If any readers can help by providing credible sources, please post comments.
I took a class recently that discussed the threat of Islam and evangelism of Muslims. We were honored to have a number of notable guest speakers:
Rachid is Moroccan by birth. He became a Christian at the age of sixteen. His father is the Imam of a mosque in Casablanca and Rachid’s conversion was an affront to the family, who disowned him. For years he has been involved in outreach to Muslims and has seen notable success that brought him to the attention of the Moroccan police. He eventually sought asylum in America because of the certainty of assassination in the Muslim world.
In recent years, Rachid created a series of documentaries to provoke thought in those who might seek to escape Islam’s oppression and find refuge in Jesus Christ.
On February 15, 2007, the “Daring Questions” program began. Incredibly, it is already being viewed by an estimated 100 million Muslims throughout the Middle East each week. Rachid has had dozens of guests, all Muslim converts to Christianity. He takes live calls and often prays with his callers on the program. They often break down in sobs as they accept the grace of our Lord. This is a powerful ministry and is having a profound impact in the Muslim world.
The program is aired completely in Arabic. They are receiving 1,000 calls each week and have 500 emails daily. The Arabic website generates so much traffic that four Internet Service Providers (ISP) have asked them to take their business elsewhere due to the heavy traffic.
Here is an example of a Muslim woman who called the show and gave her life to Christ:
During our class, Rachid aired a video clip that showed agitated Muslim women reacting to a recent fatwa, which is a religious opinion that is often adopted into the Islamic legal system since there is no distinction between religion, government and culture in the Islamic worldview.
Rachid mentioned that this topic has created a stir within the Muslim community and his ministry has been able to exploit the opportunity with great results. Muslims are abandoning Islam due to it. Here’s the background:
In The Y Factor, I noted that traditional Islamic countries forbid women to leave their homes unless they are accompanied by a male relative. In recent years, many Islamic countries have begun requiring full-body covering called the hijab or burqua so as to not present a temptation to men by the display of their “hidden ornaments.”
In Egypt, women are increasingly working outside their homes in secular businesses. This presents a problem since Islamic law notes that women commit the grave sin of khuwla when they are alone in a room with a man who is not their relative.
This conundrum has now been addressed by the emminent Dr. Izzat Attya, who is the head of the Department of Hadith at Al-Azhar, the most influential Islamic University in the world, the same one at which Dr. Mark Gabriel was a professor.
Before continuing, I should explain the importance of the Hadith. They are a collection of stories about, and sayings by, Muhammad that were written by his wives, relatives and close associates within several years of his death. The stories were intensively investigated and corroborated by early Islamic scholars and are held in high regard. They are often consulted to settle disputes when cultural interpretation is needed and the Qur’an is either silent on the matter, or its language is so tortured as to be indecipherable. So Dr. Attya is the head of the department that specializes in the proper understanding and application of the sayings of Muhammad. When he speaks, people pay attention.
Here’s the crux of the story: For the first time, an Islamic scholar has issued a fatwa on the proper decorum of women in the workplace. Dr. Attya announced that working women can solve the khuwla problem with a tradition that dates back to Muhammad. Women should breast-feed their male colleagues. This makes them ‘as sons,’ which satisfies the patch-quilt regulations of Islam. The footnote below gives the historical precedent laid down by Muhammad himself.
Needless to say, this has stirred controversy in the Islamic world and Rachid’s ministry has been responding to it. The new ruling brings into sharp relief the subservient role of women in Islamic culture. It appears that many are seriously questioning their faith as opposed to submitting to this degradation.
Muhammad had twelve wives. One of the most controversial marriages occurred when he married Zaynab bint Jahsh, the ex-wife of his adopted son, Zayd ibn Muhammad. Some accounts indicate that Muhammad ordered Zayd to divorce her so that Muhammad could add her to his harem. Regardless of that issue, the real controversy was Muhammad’s incestuous relationship with Zaynab due to her position as a former daughter-in-law. Islamic law considered her Mahram (literaly, an ‘unmarriageable’ person). Muhammad rarely allowed his own rules to stand in the way of his voracious appetite, so he revealed a new Qur’anic verse that provided the solution: Allah does not condone adoption. This solved the problem presented by Zaynab being Mahram. I defer to an Islamic source to satisfy my Muslim critics. But notice the thinly-disguised attempt to put Muhammad and Zaynab in the best possible light:
Source: Islamonline.net casts Muhammad as selflessly married Zaynab for the benefit of all Muslims: “Islam prohibits a man marrying the divorcee of his son. However, in Islam, a man can marry the divorcee of the man he raised, who is not his son by blood; this is declared explicitly in the Qur’an. People would have felt uncomfortable in practicing this new permission, if Allah had not selected the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) to demonstrate its acceptability; it’d be a very heavy duty before people, even for the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him)… Zayd eventually divorced Zaynab, and neither one of them knew what Allah Almighty had inspired His Prophet to do. After the waiting period (`Iddah) of Zaynab was over, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was told to marry her. He sent Zayd himself to ask Zaynab to marry him. Zaynab said that she would not take such a step without a revelation from Allah Almighty. When she went to the Mosque the verses that commanded the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) to marry her were revealed, and she married the Prophet.”
As you might expect, the dominoes began to fall soon after Muhammad abolished adoption. A beleaguered couple – Abu Huthayfa and his wife Sahla – approached Muhammad with a problem. Their son (formerly known as adopted) was often in their house alone with his former mother. What to do? In a decision worthy of Solomon himself, Muhammad pronounced that she should breast-feed her former son, after which she could keep him as a son in her house and not be in violation of khuwla. She complained that he, “…is a man and has a beard!” Muhammad smiled at her and replied, “I know that.”
I have been accused of making this up. Here is the link to an Islamic site that recounts this encounter in eight different ahaditha (individual stories from the Hadith) from A’isha, Muhammad’s child bride (she was nine years old when their marriage was consummated). This ahaditha is contained within the Book of Marriage, which is highly regarded by Muslims worldwide. These are the very ahaditha that Dr. Attya consulted in the development of his fatwa.
The practice of breastfeeding to circumvent khuwla restrictions became institutionalized in Islam when A’isha had political aspirations following Muhammad’s death. She needed flexibility to machinate the power base – consisting of men – that would launch an Islamic empire. Meeting alone with unrelated men could only be sanctioned via the breast-feeding loophole. However, A’isha considered herself too delicate for breast-feeding bearded men, so her solution was to brow-beat her nieces and other female family members to breast-feed those men that A’isha wished to meet with. Problem solved.
A follow-up question for Dr. Attya: Is it considered sexual-harassment if an employer imposes this regulation on non-compliant Muslim workers?
Truth is stranger than fiction in the world of Islam.
Addendum: I recently followed up on this story. It seems the newspaper Al-Watani Al-Yawm interviewed Dr. Atiyya and published his fatwa. Another nod to the esteem in which he is held. Then the Muslim faithful realized how ridiculous the story made their culture look to Westerners. The protests mounted and the Egyptian Information Minister ordered the destruction of the Al-Watani Al-Yawm issue that carried the story of the fatwa.
Dr. Attya was dismissed from his post at the university. It was considered unseemly that an authority on Muslim culture would air Islam’s dirty laundry before the world. Although Dr. Attya retracted his fatwa and publically apologized, he stands by his interpretation of the Qur’an and Hadith.
Now the venerated ahaditha itself is being discredited by Muslim ‘scholars’ and the newspaper’s editors have backpeddled, indicating that they didn’t run the story due to its newsworthy nature, but instead to assist in the debate about the applicability of the fatwa.
Welcome to the wacky world of Islam. It seems my critic’s accusations: “lies, propaganda, completely unbelievable, nonsense, ignorant, and ludicrous” are in fact an apt description of Islam.
Other blog entries you may find interesting:
The New Dark Ages: A Long Eurabian Night
Hand-Wringing Diplomacy: Mideast Peace is an Impossible Goal
Islam: What the West Needs to Know
A Woman’s Place in Islam
Islamic Law Requires Breast Feeding of Male Co-workers
What is the Qur’an? Archaeological Find Invalidates Islam’s Holy Book
Love Your Enemies and Pray For Those Who Persecute You
Madrassah Schools: Why They Pose a Threat to Western Civilization
Violence in the Bible: 1st Response to a Muslim
Validity of Scripture: 2nd Response Presents The Bible as Superior to the Qur’an
The Historic Alliance of Christianity and Science
DNA and the Flood: The Biblical Account is Written in Our Genetic Code
Jihad.com: Islamofascists Are Recruiting Via the Internet
A Brief History of Islam
Submission: The Movie That Led a Muslim to Assassinate Theo Van Gogh
Honoring America’s Fallen Warriors
Profile of A Reluctant Hero: Why Christians Should Defend Themselves
The Enlightenment of Atheism
I was so incredulous when I read this that I waited a day to comment. It occurs to me that the human mind can be extremely creative to justify whatever it chooses to.
In this case, how sadly ironic that something as intimate as breastfeeding would be the very thing that is used to prevent the perceived intimacy of sharing a room with the opposite sex.
I can’t even fathom how a female worker would submit to such a personal indignity…especially in light of how demure their culture is. It seems like the ultimate disrespect.
Of course, the real issue is what brought all of this about and the history behind it was quite an eye-opener. I can only pray that such hypocritical thinking will be exposed for what it is.
As always, Liam, thank you for helping to educate all of us, so that we can ultimately come together in the unity of Christ that He intended.
This article is full of lies and has no references to authentic islamic resources and simply is christian false propaganda
i’m adding in RSS Reader
What do you mean ?
Enjoying your blog. This is incredible!
This has no reference to any authentic book. Hence I immediately flushed it down the drain where all the other trash belongs too … 😀
It is completely unbelievable that people are able to put such ludicrous info on the web. I would hope that the people who read this here have the curiosity to at least investigate a little to see if there is even an element of truth ingrained. They will find there is not. While children who are breatfed from the same mother (including foster children) are considered mahram to each other, this is only applicable where the child is fed is aged below 2 years of age – when breast milk is considered food. Where the child is fed at an age of over 2 years (even by one day) this is not the case.
Ignorance breeds contempt. Let us try to live in peace together rather than increasing hostility by spreading such atter nonsense.
The most recent challenges to this article have come from Amsterdam, where a lot of my blog traffic is originating. Specifically, Adam and Aussie Girl note my lack of authentic sources for my information.
First, I don’t think they can possibly question whether Dr. Izzat Attya issued his fatwa requiring women to breast feed their coworkers. If you Google the topic you will find thousands of stories in the secular and Islamic press about it. As I noted in the addendum at the bottom of the article, Dr. Attya has retracted his fatwa due to the pressure being applied. In Islam, if you fight the system, you may disappear.
Here is a source that may satisfy those who are interested. It’s written by Mumin Salih, a Muslim and can be found at the Islam Watch website:
With anger and embarrassment, the majority of Muslims, however, reject the fatwa. They claim that Mohammed could have never allowed something like that. Needless to say this group of Muslims never heard of the above story before. I do not blame them, because, as a Muslim I myself heard of it only in my later years. Even then, I assumed the hadith was a weak one, which is why I never considered using it as a credible proof of the falsity of Islam.
But the hadith is a credible one, and has been reported by sahih books like Sahih Muslim, Sunan Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah. Moreover, this hadith has been thoroughly investigated by a number of highly revered Islamic scholars like Ibn Taymiyya, Ibn Hazm and Al Albani. Denying a hadith with such strength would be like denying the existence of main Islamic events like fasting and prayers.
The Islamic establishment deliberately and consistently hide the ugly face of Islam. The majority of Muslims do not know the magnitude of Mohammed’s violations of the accepted Arabic traditions and moralities. Without much qualm, Mohammed even violated his own Islamic laws to suit his own agenda. Starting from childhood, Muslims are brainwashed to see a polished side of Islam. All of Mohammed’s atrocities, invasions, assassinations and mass murders are carefully presented as justified acts of self-defence against the enemies of Allah. Some of Mohammed’s absurdities, like the hadith above, are deliberately kept in the dark out of reach of ordinary Muslims.
Mumin concludes his article with quite a few references, all of which are Arabic language websites. I have not been able to find English language translations of the authors noted in his statement. I will continue to search for confirming information and will update my blog article accordingly.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Islam, the Hadith are a compliation of writings by Muhammad’s wives, relatives and close associates who desired to preserve the sayings and practices of their prophet. They would be comparable to the Rabbinical writings of the Jews. As suggested above, these writings were culled and authenticated in the years following Muhammad’s death in order to minimize the chance that legends would abound. Whenever a question arises about the proper interpretation of the obscure language found in the Qur’an, the Hadith is consulted. This is what Dr. Ayyta used to justify his fatwa.
I agree with the sentiment expressed in the final paragraph of the quote above. The parallel doctrines of Kithman and Taqiyya are prominent in both Shia’h and Sunni Islam. The first is a form of lying that is endorsed by Surah 16:106 in the Qur’an. The second means to deliberately concela one’s beliefs, convictions, ideas and feelings. According to Abdullah Al Araby, “Muslim activists employ this tradition in their attempts to polish Islam’s image and make it more attractive to prospective converts.” I contend that the critics who have commented above are either unfamiliar with the life of Muhammad, or they are deliberately engaging in the tactics of Kithman and Taqiyya. They offer no counter argument, but attempt to dissuade others from further inquiry, lest the true face of Islam be revealed.
Aussie Girl is correct in her choice of words: completely unbelievable, nonsense, ignorance, and ludicrous. Not a bad summary of Islam.
This is incredible. Even though the professor was forced to recant publically, he still adheres to his interpretation. It says a lot about the strange thinking in Islam. They can try to sanitize it all they want. Let he who has eyes, see.
This is totally ridiculous!!! For a grown man to be sucking on a womans breast is clearly a sexual act!! – This would be sinful for any man to do other than the womans husband. I converted to Islam some years ago. No wonder Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world – Islam tells us to respect other religions, not slander them. I wish you could do the same. Your story is so false it is laughable!!
I am confused…. why people tend to find falt with others and enjoy making fun of a system ! I don’t buy your stories…. lets be practical and work on present issues.
These aren’t stories, as you indicate. They are well-documented facts – facts that are very practical for women who have suffered under the bondage of Islam and who are emboldened enough to find true freedom in the Lord Jesus Christ.
[…] Peace is an Impossible Goal Islam: What the West Needs to Know A Woman’s Place in Islam Islamic Law Requires Breast Feeding of Male Co-workers What is the Qurâ€™an? Archaeological Find Invalidates Islam’s Holy Book Love Your […]
[…] Peace is an Impossible Goal Islam: What the West Needs to Know A Woman’s Place in Islam Islamic Law Requires Breast Feeding of Male Co-workers What is the Qur’an? Archaeological Find Invalidates Islam’s Holy Book Madrassah Schools: […]
the article and source can’t be denied because the author referred to the authentic source as at http://www.searchtruth.com/searchHadith.php?keyword=suckle&book=&translator=2&search=1&search_word=&start=10&records_display=10
Just go to searchtruth dot com and write suckle in search engine for hadith sahih muslim
Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post. Thank you and please keep writing.
The more and more i read about islam, the more curious, strange and uncivilized stuff i come to hear. this tickles my curiosity further and i attempt to check out the references. much to my shock and horror, it is all from the original muslim source materials. unbelieveable. how does such a religion parade around as a religion of peace? and see the supporters commenting above… unbelievable.
I was a muslim b4 i gave my life to christ, oh! what a joy that has filled my heart since then. The problem with some of these muslem is that some of them are even ignorant of their religion, they can read quran & hadith written in arabic but they don’t understand what they are reading.People like me have the full knowledge of quran & hadith and found out that the foundation of islam is FAULTY. The 1st out of 5 pillars of islam is that we should bear witness that their is no other god but allah & that mhd is the msger of allah. we ar to believe that allah is one in fact islam is against any belief of trinity. But a lot of passages in quran when allah was talking, he always refered to himself as ‘WE’ ‘US’. Then you begin to wonder how many people constitute WE or US. My christian brotheren Please be wise ISLAM IS EVIL
I was a muslem but now i am a child of the living God. if God opens your eyes to see, you will know that the foundation of islam is FAULTY. My brethren please be wise islam & muhammed are not from the living God. ISLAM IS EVIL