“To whom is he speaking so harshly?” asked Muhammad.
Jibrel replied, “To Allah.”
“How can Moses so rudely admonish God?” asked Muhammad, incredulous.
And Jibrel said, “Almighty God is used to the brusque manner of Moses. —
Sayyid Al-Maliki, The Resplendent Lights of the Night-Journey and Ascension of the Best of Creation
This made me giggle. Don’t worry, O Prophet — Allah is well accustomed to the Jewish propensity to argue with the Divine.
There’s a post going around that rightfully brings up how unfair it is that when a Muslim is charged with a crime it is Islam, not the individual, that goes on trial. But it emphasizes that by asserting that when a “Jew kills someone” (and there a religious Jew with peyos and a kippa and the white shirt - black pants uniform is drawn shooting a fallen child with a rifle) “religion is not mentioned.”
The image itself I take issue with and how it’s another example of portraying Jews as child killers, though I have no doubt the intent was to hi-light how Israeli soldiers have killed Palestinian children without Judaism as a religion being vilified in the West.
But it’s also incorrect. When a Jew does something wrong, kills someone, or commits a crime, it is near always mentioned. Jews around the world live terrified, waiting for the day some Jew does something wrong and we’re all blamed and condemned. When I hear about something horrible happening, whether it be a killing, a political scandal, embezzlement, or just someone making a stupid comment, I close my eyes and think, please don’t let it have been a Jew, please don’t let it have been a Jew, please don’t let it have been a Jew, because I know that if it was, we’re all in trouble.
Just recently, Jews in Denmark were told to hide their Jewishness if they wanted to avoid being targeted by people who have been blaming and attacking them for Israel’s crimes.
I respect the OP’s message about how Muslims and Islam are treated unfairly. But that message could have been gotten across without dismissing what Jews face too in the West. Really, the message would have been more accurate if only that picture had been captioned, “but when a Christian kills someone, religion isn’t mentioned.”
Because the vast majority of people in the West are Christian, but when someone is murdered, I don’t hear about the “Christian” perpetrator.
British Muslims Save Jewish Synagogue
BRADFORD – Extending their hands to their Jewish neighbors to save their worship place, Muslims in the northern British city of Bradford are rallying efforts to raise funds for preserving the last remaining synagogue in the city.
“In Bradford we are working hard to bring people of different faiths together, and to support one another as good neighbors,” Zulfi Karim, secretary of Bradford Council for Mosques, told Telegraph & Argus.
The umbrella group said it would raise funds for local authorities to help renovate the Bradford Reform Synagogue, the last remaining Jewish worship place in the city.
“We are delighted by the way people have rallied to save the Bradford Synagogue, which is not only a work of art in itself, but represents so much in the way of Bradford’s heritage, faith and culture,” said Karim.
Built in 1880, the Jewish synagogue stands as an example of Moorish Victorian Architecture.
The synagogue is still used for Shabbat and major festivals although the community is small and has been in decline for years.
The Muslim help has won praise from Jewish leaders in Bradford.
“The contribution of immigrants to this region has been outstanding, and the current wave has followed in that tradition of mutual help, communal involvement and harmony,” said Rudi Leavor, chair of the Bradford Synagogue.
“We are all working together to save the synagogue with the help of the local authority.”
Britain is home to a sizable Muslim minority of nearly 2.5 million.
The majority of the multi-ethnic minority has Indian, Bengali and Pakistani backgrounds.
Just a friendly clarification for those who do not know
Allah, the god of Islam, is NOT the same as Yahweh, the God of Judaism and Christianity. I hear a lot of people saying they share the same God, and they do NOT. there are several fundamental differences between the two. The god of Islam calls for works for salvation, and Islam believes that Christ was NOT the Son of God and is actually lesser than Muhammad. Judaism and Christianity share the same God, but have different beliefs about the Messiah. Christians believe Christ is the Messiah and fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy, giving us a salvation we cannot earn by a gift of grace. Jews believe that the Messiah is yet to come but will in the future.
Please stop saying Allah is the same as Yahweh-Elohim, the God of the Jews and Christians. Thanks :D
from your friendly theology student~
Speaking as a Jew, I can tell that G-d in Islam is the same as G-d in Judaism. It’s Christianity that involves Jesus as a part of G-d, which is not something that Jews or Muslims believe. And Muslims revere Jesus more than the Jews. They revere him as a prophet, though not a Messianic figure or a son of G-d. Jews do not.
And remember, Allah isn’t the “god of Islam.” Allah is simply the Arabic word that means G-d. Jews and Christians that speak Arabic call G-d Allah as well.
All aboard the collection bus
Today, one of my Jewish friends emailed me this chain letter:
I am truly perplexed that so many people are against a mosque being built at Ground Zero. I think it should be the goal of every American to be tolerant.
Thus, the Mosque should be allowed, in an effort to promote tolerance. That is why I also propose that two nightclubs be opened next door to the mosque, thereby promoting tolerance from within the mosque. We could call one of the clubs, “The Turban Cowboy”, which would be gay, and the other a topless bar called, “You Mecca Me Hot.” Next door
should be a butcher shop that specializes in pork, and adjacent to that an open-pit barbecue pork restaurant, called “Iraq o’ Ribs.” Across the street there could be a lingerie store called “Victoria Keeps Nothing Secret,” with sexy mannequins with short burkas in the window modeling the goods. Next door to the lingerie shop, a liquor store called “Morehammered.” All of this would encourage the Muslims to demonstrate the tolerance they demand of us, so the mosque problem would be solved.
If you agree with promoting tolerance, and you think this is a good plan, please pass it on, for the sake of tolerance.
This friend knows that I support Palestinian statehood. She knows I have read the entire Quran. She knows I run this blog. And yet she sent me this email anyway, in the apparent cynical confidence that despite my public views, as a Jew, I must secretly hate Muslims.
So I picked my jaw up off the floor, hit “reply all,” and typed this response:
Dear fellow recipients of this chain letter,
There’s a Jewish folktale that compares hateful words to feathers in a pillow—once you scatter them to the winds, there is no bringing them back. Given that the Islamic community center (which is neither a mosque, nor at Ground Zero) this chain letter alludes to opened in 2011, this chain letter has undoubtedly been making the rounds for years, and there is no possible way for me to find and address everyone who received it. I know that. But I can’t let this pass in silence, either, because silence implies agreement. Silence condones.
I don’t condone the implication that “Muslim” and “American” are mutually exclusive terms. They are not. A number of American Muslims worked at the World Trade Center prior to the attacks, and the south tower featured Islamic prayer room for their use. At least 31 American Muslims died in the attacks on 9/11, including a pregnant woman and her husband on American Flight #11 (her family was barred from traveling to her memorial service because they were Muslim and thus suspicious); an employee of the Marriott Hotel in 3 World Trade Center who died while helping to evacuate guests; a retired nurse on United Flight #175; and a 23-year-old, Pakistani-born EMT and NYPD cadet who rushed into the buildings to help the wounded (and was rewarded for his service by being investigated as a possible perpetrator until his body was found in the rubble—his medical bag still beside him). 30 American Muslim children lost one or both parents in the attacks, and many other American Muslims—particularly in Manhattan—lost friends and family in the attacks. And now some people (most of whom live nowhere near NYC and lost no one they knew personally in the 9/11 attacks) dare to claim that because the New Yorkers who would use the proposed community center are Muslim, their losses don’t count, their Americanness doesn’t count, their Manhattanness doesn’t count, because the Saudi Arabians who murdered their loved ones follow a sect of the same faith they do? That, pardon my French, is utter horseshit, and anyone peddling it should be ashamed.
I don’t condone the idea that Christians can freely preach racism, sexism, antisemitism, and heterosexism from the pulpit, but minority religions must “prove” their “tolerance” before being granted their Constitutional rights to pray in peace in their own home neighborhood. More than that, I don’t condone the idea that in order to be tolerant, you have to remain silent while other people gleefully spit on your culture and intentionally try to wound and provoke you, all while claiming that you started it by daring to try to worship your God in your neighborhood. I don’t condone the idea that private prayer and an intentional, public attempt to hurt the feelings and deride the culture of others are somehow equivalent provocations, because they are self-evidently not.
I don’t condone the idea that Islam is inherently evil because many Muslims in impoverished Arab countries (several of which the United States deliberately destabilized in order to “fight Communism”) are extremists and anti-American. I don’t condone it any more than I condone the idea that Christianity is inherently evil because many Christian pastors in impoverished countries in Africa instruct their followers to murder or mutilate children to drive out “witchcraft,” rape lesbians in order to “fix” them, and beat their wives in order to maintain the man’s Biblically-ordained place at the head of the household. It is true across all countries that poverty breeds religious extremism, regardless of the religion. Comparing poor Arab Muslims oppressed by dictatorships to wealthy white Christians and Jews in America can’t even be called apples to oranges—it’s apples to wheelbarrows. Furthermore, I don’t condone the idea that a bunch of non-Muslims selectively quoting the Quran out of context in order to argue that Islam is an evil religion seeking to dominate the world are more reliable experts on Islam than Muslims, any more than I condone the idea that a bunch of non-Jews selectively quoting the Talmud out of context in order to argue that Judaism is an evil religion bent on subverting world governments are more reliable experts on Judaism than Jews. I’ve heard this tune before, from the same white supremacist piano players, and it was a lousy tune the first time. Let’s not play it again, Sam.
I have spent my entire life enduring hate and ridicule for my religion. By the time I was sixteen, I’d been physically assaulted twice for being Jewish—once by a group of girls who tried to rip my Star of David necklace from my neck, once by a girl who shoved me into a wall and called me “Jew bitch.” When I was a junior camp counselor, a girl in my charge who found out I was Jewish refused to speak to me for the rest of the week because her mother wouldn’t let her talk to “bad people.” When I was a bartender (at a Jewish-run bar!), a customer who spotted my Star of David necklace made a bet with his friends that he could make me cry, then spent the evening barraging me with Holocaust jokes. I stopped wearing the necklace after that, but it didn’t stop another customer from sneering to her friend that a certain high school was “just crawling with Jews”—never suspecting that I, too, was one of the Jews who had “crawled” there. I’ve been accused of everything from the murder of Jesus to plotting to subvert the government to dying my hair blond to trick white Christians into “miscegenation”. I could go on and on, but you know what?
What I went through was nothing compared to what many Muslims—and Sikhs, and Hindus, Arab Christians, and Mizrahi Jews, and anyone else with the misfortune of being too brown to suit ignorant, racist Islamophobes—have gone through in this country since 9/11, often at the hands of the same disgusting turds who rip into Jews like me. And despite that, they have “proven their tolerance” every day by going about their business (passing by multiple lingerie stores, BBQ restaurants, and liquor stores on the way, I might add), raising their families, and generally living unremarkable, American lives. But because they’re Muslim, I’m supposed to join in and treat them the way I was treated?
I am “truly perplexed” as to why anyone would think sending me a hateful screed against another religious minority would be welcome. I am even more “truly perplexed” as to why a fellow religious minority would be the one to send it to me. People who mistreat, oppress, and shame religious minorities are scum, regardless of whether they do it to Jews or Muslims (or, frequently, both). If anyone who knows me could believe for one second that I would be that kind of scum, or that this kind of so-called “humor” would amuse me, then I screwed up badly somewhere.
Do not do onto others that which is hateful unto you. That is the whole of Torah. The rest is commentary.
I stand with American Muslims and Park 51.
Tzvia Ariella bat Dov v’Chava Tzirel
I hit send.
Some of the people on the “reply all” list were strangers, many of whom probably do hate Muslims. One was the friend who sent this to me in the first place, and who will probably have a fit when she sees my reply. Some were other close friends, whose feelings on the subject I don’t know. One was my sister. All in all, I fully expect a shitstorm from this.
And you know what?
Because this shit is NOT okay.
Wow. Thank you for posting this.