Understanding Shari’a Before It Is Too Late (2) – Shari’a’s Wide Net of Criminality

In the previous article I introduced this series on shari’a by pointing out that it is supposed to be a universal code for all Muslims under all circumstances. It should, therefore, be understood that shari’a was designed to control every aspect of the lives of society and individuals. 

It is for this reason that certain actions which in many parts of the world would be legally neutral are depicted as firmly on the wrong side of shari’a. The following are, for example, regarded as serious crimes under shari’a: 

  • Apostasy (i.e. leaving the Islamic religion). In some jurisdictions where shari’a is consistently applied, apostates can expect the death penalty. (Based on Sahih Bukhari 4:52:260 and similar hadiths)
  • Free Speech. Blasphemy is regarded as a very serious crime under shari’a. Criticism of the prophet is regarded as especially serious. In line with Muhammad’s treatment of his critics most shari’a codes demand the death penalty for blasphemy. (Based on Muhammad’s treatment of critics like the poetess Asma bint Marwan) 
  • Adultery. The traditional shari’a punishment for adultery is stoning, this despite the fact that this punishment is mandated by the hadith collections and not the Qur’an. (See, for example, Sahih Bukhari 8:82:817)
  • Consumption of Alcohol and Games of Chance. Shari’a law in this area is based on Qur’an 5:90: “O you who believe! Strong drink and games of chance and idols and divine arrows are only an infamy of Satan’s handiwork. Leave it aside that you may succeed.” First offenses are generally punished with a whipping with more serious consequences for repeat offenses.
  • Homosexuality. Shari’a codes differ on the severity of punishment for acts of homosexuality but not on whether homosexuals should be punished. On the latter, they are in complete agreement. Many shari’a codes demand the death penalty for homosexuality. (Qur’an 4:16 and 7:80)

Many other examples could be supplied of actions that would normally not attract the attention of most legal systems but are crimes under shari’a. 

It should be emphasized that these ‘crimes’ are still aggressively prosecuted in the Islamic world. Because of this many examples of people losing their lives because of apostasy, blasphemy, adultery and homosexuality in the 21st century Islamic world can be cited.

In the next article I will turn my attention to the fact that many actions that are regarded as criminal in the west are deemed acceptable under shari’a.

For much more on Islam and its truth-claims, please see my book ‘Questioning Islam – Tough Questions and Honest Answers on the Muslim Religion’


Understanding Shari’a Before It Is Too Late (1)

Shari’a (or ‘Islamic Law’) seems to be constantly in the news at the moment. Financial institutions are falling over themselves to offer ‘Shari’a Compliant’ banking, shari’a tribunals operate openly many western jurisdictions and there are persistent calls from Muslim groups for elements of shari’a to be recognised in non-Muslim societies. 

It is, in light of this, not at all far-fetched to suggest that attempts to impose shari’a represents one of the ultimate frontlines when it comes to Islamic encroachment in the free world. We should, therefore, urgently come to terms with the basics of shari’a and take efforts to stop its inexorable march. It is for this reason that I’ve decided to do a little series of articles on shari’a. Please read these articles carefully and pass it own to anyone who may perhaps benefit from this information. 

The first thing to note is that shari’a is much more than a legal code. It seeks to govern every aspect of the life of the Muslim (and in fact of the whole world) as it is presented as the perfect Law of Allah. It is obligatory for Muslims to follow shari’a in all of its ordinances. Allah, in fact, declares those who decline to operate according to his law as stepping outside of the fold of Islam: “If any do fail to judge by (the light of) what Allah hath revealed, they are (no better than) Unbelievers” (Qur’an 5:44-45

This means that for the devout Muslim any legal system that does not have shari’a at its core will be totally unacceptable. The Qur’an says as much: “Judge thou between them by what Allah hath revealed, and follow not their vain desires, but beware of them lest they beguile thee from any of that (teaching) which Allah hath sent down to thee.” (Qur’an 5:49-50) This point is further reinforced in the following hadith where it is stated categorically that a Muslim is absolutely forbidden from obeying laws and decrees that are not in line with shari’a: “Narrated ‘Abdullah: The Prophet said, “A Muslim has to listen to and obey (the order of his ruler) whether he likes it or not, as long as his orders involve not one in disobedience (to Allah), but if an act of disobedience (to Allah) is imposed one should not listen to it or obey it.“ (Sahih Bukhari 9:89:258) 

The unassailable position that shari’a is supposed to hold in the minds of Muslims is, to say the least, highly problematic. This is because shari’a is significantly at odds with modern sensibilities, human rights and all non-Islamic legal codes. Adherence to shari’a is, therefore, bound to place a Muslim community where it is widely followed on a collision course with the non-Muslims around them. 

Pointing out all the ways in which shari’a is incompatible with modern values and human rights will probably require a full-length book so a few very important examples will have to suffice. In general, it can be stated that shari’a: 

We will turn to each of these aspects in future articles.

For much more on Islam and its truth-claims, please see my book ‘Questioning Islam – Tough Questions and Honest Answers on the Muslim Religion’


Hijab – Are Campaigners Facing the Wrong Way?

Amid everything else that is going on in Iran at present, the country also lost its only female Olympic medallist. Kimia Alizadeh competed for her homeland in Taekwondo at the 2016 Rio Olympics where she won a bronze medal. In a statement she cited the fact that she was forced to wear a hijab as one of the reasons behind her decision to defect.

If you are familiar with the recent history of the hijab in the west that last sentence is bound to strike you as a little strange (at least if you follow the party line). From Linda Sarsour channelling her inner-Obama on Women’s March posters to Nike bringing out a ‘sports hijab’, the dominant narrative seems to be that the hijab is somehow a symbol of female liberation. Given that the most common Islamic explanation behind the need for the hijab is that it protects women through reining in male sexual desire, the defence of this garment, by those who would normally loudly denounce any focus on the effect of female clothing on men as ‘slut shaming’, is bewildering to say the least. Then again, logical consistency has never been a hallmark of wokeness.

Perhaps the strangest expression of the hijabi cheerleading that exploded in most western countries over the past decade or so is #WorldHijabDay. On the 1st of February women around the world are encouraged to don the hijab for a day. One of the stated aims of this day, which is enthusiastically promoted on college campuses, is to promote the right of women to wear the hijab. Given that this right is enshrined in all western countries already (admittedly some ban the full-face veil), and that many reports where hijabs were pulled from Muslim women have been shown to be hoaxes, one struggles to see why this issue needs to be highlighted.

I strongly suspect that the bigger issue surrounding the hijab around the world is the fact that women, and often very young girls, are forced to wear it. This has been highlighted to me on several flights out of the Middle East where ladies around me got rid of their headscarfs almost as soon as the flight was airborne. Alizadeh’s protest is but the tip of the iceberg. In fact, over recent months Iran’s prisons were filled with women who defied the regime by taking off what they regarded as a hateful symbol of their subjugation.

This brings us to some vital questions: Will those behind #WorldHijabDay issue a statement in support of Alizadeh’s right NOT to wear the hijab? Will Linda Sarsour denounce the mullahs in Iran for their oppression of women who simply want to feel the wind in their hair? In Iran an image of a young lady holding her hijab on a stick, to symbolise her utter rejection of it, went viral. Will western feminists track her down to make sure that she tells her story on every single talk show out there?

Somehow, I’m not holding my breath.

‘Nothing to do with Islam? – Investigating the West’s Most Dangerous Blind Spot’ Get your copy today!

‘War is Deceit’ – When Trust Makes Us Vulnerable

The ‘Prophet’ Muhammad famously said: “War is deceit”. Two incidents, barely a week apart, powerfully illustrated the fact that this is still seen as a cornerstone of jihadist strategic thinking.

In both cases a position of trust was used as a platform from which to unleash carnage in the name of Allah. A supposedly ‘model prisoner’ stabbed those responsible for his ‘rehabilitation’ to death on London Bridge (29 November 2019). A trainee pilot in Pensacola went on a rampage against those who were training him (6 December 2019). How could something like this happen?

Perhaps this story (found in Sahih Bukhari 52:271) from the life of Muhammad will shed some light: “The Prophet said, “Who is ready to kill Ka’b bin Ashraf (i.e. a Jew).” Muhammad bin Maslama replied, “Do you like me to kill him?” The Prophet replied in the affirmative. Muhammad bin Maslama said, “Then allow me to say what I like.” The Prophet replied, “I do (i.e. allow you).

Note carefully what happened here: One of Muhammad’s followers asks for permission to lie, and it is immediately granted to him. What happened next is described in Sahih Bukhari 53:369. Bin Maslama goes to the person marked for death by Muhammad and pretends that he is deeply disillusioned by the ‘prophet’. In this way, he gained the person’s trust and was admitted into his inner circle. After the ‘friendship’ was firmly established, Maslama asked Ka’b whether he could smell the perfume on his head, an act that could only take place between trusted friends. Trusting his ‘friend’, Ka’b allows this and is immediately grabbed and killed!

“War is deceit” indeed.

Much more, including several more examples (drawn from impeccable Islamic sources) of how deceit can be used as a weapon of war, can be found in my book ‘Nothing to do with Islam? – Investigating the West’s Most Dangerous Blind Spot’