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"Allah" in the pre-islamic Arabia

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  • "Allah" in the pre-islamic Arabia

    Most of the Arabs had complied with the call of Ishmael and professed the religion of his father Abraham. They had worshipped Allah, professed His Oneness and followed His religion a long time until they forgot part of what they had been reminded of.

    However, they still maintained such fundamental beliefs such as monotheism as well as various other aspects of Abraham’s religion, until the time when a chief of Khuza‘a, namely ‘Amr bin Luhai, who was renowned for righteousness, charity, reverence and care for religion, and was granted unreserved love and obedience by his tribesmen, came back from a trip to Syria where he saw people worship idols, a phenomenon he approved of and believed it to be righteous since Syria was the locus of Messengers and Scriptures, he brought with him an idol (Hubal) which he placed in the middle of Al-Kaabah and summoned people to worship it.

    Readily enough, paganism spread all over Makkah and, thence, to Arabia, people of Makkah being custodians of not only the Sacred House but the whole Haram as well. A great many idols, bearing different names, were introduced into the area.

    The Arabs believed that such idols, or heathen gods, would bring them nearer to Allah, lead them to Him, and mediate with Him for their sake, to which effect, the Qur’an goes:

    “We worship them only that they may bring us near to Allah.” [39:3], and

    “And they worship besides Allah things that hurt them not, nor profit them, and they say: These are our intercessors with Allah.” [10:18]

    The polytheists, who faked Abrahamism, were so far detached from its precepts, and totally oblivious of its immanent good manners. They plunged into disobedience and ungodliness, and developed certain peculiar religious superstitions that managed to leave a serious impact on the religious and socio-political life in the whole of Arabia.
    Religions of the Arabs

    The polytheists who associated partners with Allah in worship admitted that He is the Sole Creator of the heavens, earth, sun, moon, day, and night, and that He is the Sole Sustainer of all Creation, Who grants all beings provisions, and Who has predetermined their destinies and decreed that they should be granted dissimilar amounts of provision in this worldly life, making some rich and some poor. They, just like Christ-worshippers, claimed that these idols are "the only way" to God/Allah.

    It's important to add that Allah was worshipped by the pagan Arabs, Jews and Christians too. They even admitted that Allah is the Only true God in their own scriptures.

  • #2
    Actually, they don't "admit" that Allah created everything, they claim it as fact, just as all other religions do as well., and have since religion came to be. That's one of the major fallacies of religions.
    Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?

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    • #3
      What was Muhammad's religion before he made up Islam?
      We hunt the hunters

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      • #4
        Jews and Christians would not be Jews or Christians if they worshiped a false deity.
        Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

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        • #5
          Prophet Muhammad in his youth shunned superstitious practices but took an active part in constructive and useful dealings.

          He kept himself aloof from drinking wine, eating meat slaughtered on stone altars, or attending idolatrous festivals. He held the idols in extreme aversion and most abhorrence. He could never tolerate someone swearing by Al-Lat and Al-‘Uzza. Allâh’s providence, no doubts, detached him from all abominable or evil practices.

          " He proved himself to be the ideal of manhood, and to possess a spotless character. He was the most obliging to his compatriots, the most honest in his talk and the mildest in temper. He was the most gentle-hearted, chaste, hospitable and always impressed people by his piety-inspiring countenance. He was the most truthful and the best to keep covenant. His fellow-citizens, by common consent, gave him the title of Al-‘Ameen (trustworthy). The Mother of believers, Khadijah (May Allah be pleased with her) once said: He unites uterine relations, he helps the poor and the needy, he entertains the guests and endures hardships in the path of truthfulness."
          https://www.muhammad.net/index.php/b...or-prophethood

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          • #6
            Originally posted by wolfhnd View Post
            What was Muhammad's religion before he made up Islam?
            either Mennonite or Mormon or- Methodist

            Ahhh- Manichean Christianity...

            the Koran draws on Jewish thought, and a 'different' Christian message from the orthodox.

            Last edited by marktwain; 05 Mar 19, 14:37.
            The trout who swims against the current gets the most oxygen..

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            • #7
              Millat Ibrahim is perhaps the form of monotheism that precedes Judaism but as far as I can tell there is no historical evidence that Abraham existed but is more likely a compilation of myths. That these myths were not written down until around 500 BC and became part of the Hebrew bible is testament to their persistence but little else even if they have some relationship events that took place 1500 years earlier. Monotheism itself is not particularly unique to the Abrahamic tradition. Akhenaten tried to introduce a type of monotheism in Egypt around the year 1340 BC by eliminating the worship of gods other than Aten. It is likely that monotheism resulted not so much from a revelation as a result to consolidate political authority and eliminate social stresses caused by having multiple cults in the same political system. Additionally monotheism does not really represent an advancement in philosophical development but a side product of increasing political sophistication.

              The interesting thing is that at the same time that the Abrahamic myth seems to emerge the traditional centers of power such as Sumerian Ur seems to have collapsed. This was at least in part due to the movement of more tribal nomadic peoples. If Abraham left Ur for Mari in Syria Mari itself was soon to be destroyed by Hammurabi. Perhaps pushing the predecessors of the people who maintained some sort of Abrahamic tradition to once more become semi nomadic. The pattern continues with the myth of Moses which is likely a composition of other figures forced to become migratory do to political instability around 1300 BC. The Moses myth itself bears stark resemblance to the legend of Sargon of Akkad for whom there is historical evidence. An excerpt from the Akkad legend is as follows.

              "My mother, the high priestess, conceived; in secret she bore me
              She set me in a basket of rushes, with bitumen she sealed my lid
              She cast me into the river which rose over me."

              The similarities between Abrahamic myths and earlier myths is logical precedent to reject most claims that biblical stories are representative of separate and unprecedented social development.

              The Abrahamic myths seem to give testament to the difficulties of tribal societies co-existing within more sophisticated urban societies. In a way the tribal cultures justify the lack of integration into the more sophisticated societies by maintaining a sense of superiority based on the secondary characteristic of monotheism, which counter intuitively was probably a political manifestation of the host societies. We see the same pattern today where religion is used to resist assimilation into more sophisticated societies justified oddly enough by the host's secular religion of multiculturalism. Migration and instability are historical constants. Nomadic tribal societies have a tendency to kill the goose that laid the golden egg. While trying to take advantage of the resources that more urban societies generate that productivity can only be maintained by integration.
              We hunt the hunters

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              • #8
                ^ Some interesting items to consider. As Kramer said, it all starts with Sumer and there is another and intriguing take on this which I may present later when I have the time.

                "Allah" is just another way of saying "God" in another language, and it's a bit distressing how many wars humans have fought over how to say the name of Gawd, as if It even has a name (or a gender).

                Then again, it's quite possible all this gawd business has just been devices of population control applied to this planet;
                The Dosadi Experiment
                https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dosadi_Experiment

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by marktwain View Post

                  either Mennonite or Mormon or- Methodist
                  Considering neither of these existed until centuries after Mohammad, that is rather fascinating.

                  Originally posted by marktwain View Post
                  Ahhh- Manichean Christianity...

                  the Koran draws on Jewish thought, and a 'different' Christian message from the orthodox.
                  Also some would say it draws upon post pederastic orgasmic euphoria.

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                  • #10
                    being a travelling merchant in a largely pre literate age- having an alliterative moniker would have been advantageous....
                    His writings and recorded talks do show a certain Manichean background, as does his listing of the Sabeans as People of the Book
                    The trout who swims against the current gets the most oxygen..

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by marktwain View Post
                      being a travelling merchant in a largely pre literate age- having an alliterative moniker would have been advantageous....
                      His writings and recorded talks do show a certain Manichean background, as does his listing of the Sabeans as People of the Book
                      Certain, maybe. But I'm not sure it was significantly rooted there, it appears that Mohammad and his "Islam" went off on a 'darker side' (Sith) tangent ...
                      ...
                      Manichaeism (/ˌmænɪˈkiːɪzəm/;[1] in Modern Persian آیین مانی Āyin-e Māni; Chinese: ; pinyin: Jiào) was a major religion[2] founded by the Iranian[3] prophet Mani (in Persian: مانی‎, Syriac: ܡܐܢܝ /mɑni/, Latin: Manichaeus or Manes from Koine Greek: Μάνης; c. 216–274) in the Sasanian Empire.[4][5]

                      Manichaeism taught an elaborate dualistic cosmology describing the struggle between a good, spiritual world of light, and an evil, material world of darkness.[6] Through an ongoing process that takes place in human history, light is gradually removed from the world of matter and returned to the world of light, whence it came. Its beliefs were based on local Mesopotamian religious movements and Gnosticism.[7]

                      Manichaeism was quickly successful and spread far through the Aramaic-speaking regions.[8] It thrived between the third and seventh centuries, and at its height was one of the most widespread religions in the world. Manichaean churches and scriptures existed as far east as China and as far west as the Roman Empire.[9] It was briefly the main rival to Christianity before the spread of Islam in the competition to replace classical paganism. Manichaeism survived longer in the east than in the west, and it appears to have finally faded away after the 14th century in south China,[10] contemporary to the decline of the Church of the East in Ming China. While most of Manichaeism's original writings have been lost, numerous translations and fragmentary texts have survived.

                      An adherent of Manichaeism is called a Manichaean or Manichean, or Manichee, especially in older sources
                      ...
                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manichaeism

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                      • #12
                        Ishmael is Not the Father of the Arabs

                        The commonly held view that Ishmael was the father of the Arab nations is not supported by the Bible, nor by other historical evidence.

                        For centuries, many Muslims, Christians and Jews have taken it for granted that the Arabs descended from Abraham through Ishmael. As Gerald Hawting put it:
                        "The idea that the Arabs are the physical descendants of Abraham through Ishmael is indeed taken by many, non-Muslims as well as Muslims, as a genealogical and historical fact."

                        Authors and teachers often treat the word Ishmael as a kind of code for Islam or Muslims. Examples of book titles which reflect this are Faisal Malick's Here Comes Ishmael, a call to Christians to reach out to Muslims, Martin Gilbert's In Ishmael's House, a history of the Jews under Islam, and Israel and Ishmael: Studies in Muslim-Jewish Relations, edited by Tudor Parfitt. In the same vein, and over a thousand years ago, John of Damascus, writing after the conquest of Syria by Muslim armies, wrote a treatise on Islam called The Heresy of the Ishmaelites.

                        ....
                        How did this all begin? According to Sir Fergus Millar, Professor Emeritus of Ancient History at Oxford University, it was Josephus, a Jewish historian writing in the first century CE, who first advanced the idea that Ishmael was the ancestor of the Arabs. In The Antiquities of the Jews Josephus stated that Ishmael was "the founder" of the Arabian nation, and Abraham was "their father". From Josephus, this assumed connection between the Arabs and Abraham, through Ishmael, passed into the historical consciousness of Christians, and then made its way into early Islam.
                        ...
                        What does the Bible say? It speaks both of Ishmaelites, the descendants of Ishmael, and of Arabs, but does not join them together. I. Ephʿal has pointed out that the references to Ishmaelites are earlier in the Bible, and the references to Arabs later. Both refer to non-sedentary, nomadic peoples, but they are separated by centuries. Ephʿal concludes that references to "Ishmaelites" cease by the mid 10th century BCE, and the references to "Arabs" only commence in the mid-8th century BCE, so "there is no historical basis to the tradition of associating Ishmaelites with the Arabs".
                        ....
                        https://www.meforum.org/57936/ishmae...eid=062f3a999b

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                        • #13
                          Ummm...before Islam, there was no "Allah" at all. Mohammed came up with him to justify his "visions" while he was all alone without any witnesses, a common factor for the creators of all religions.

                          Funny how gods don;t like witnesses to verify their existence. Just single guys wandering around lost in deserts, starving and dehydrated.

                          kind of makes you wonder...
                          Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by G David Bock View Post
                            Ishmael is Not the Father of the Arabs

                            The commonly held view that Ishmael was the father of the Arab nations is not supported by the Bible, nor by other historical evidence.

                            For centuries, many Muslims, Christians and Jews have taken it for granted that the Arabs descended from Abraham through Ishmael. As Gerald Hawting put it:
                            "The idea that the Arabs are the physical descendants of Abraham through Ishmael is indeed taken by many, non-Muslims as well as Muslims, as a genealogical and historical fact."

                            Authors and teachers often treat the word Ishmael as a kind of code for Islam or Muslims. Examples of book titles which reflect this are Faisal Malick's Here Comes Ishmael, a call to Christians to reach out to Muslims, Martin Gilbert's In Ishmael's House, a history of the Jews under Islam, and Israel and Ishmael: Studies in Muslim-Jewish Relations, edited by Tudor Parfitt. In the same vein, and over a thousand years ago, John of Damascus, writing after the conquest of Syria by Muslim armies, wrote a treatise on Islam called The Heresy of the Ishmaelites.

                            ....
                            How did this all begin? According to Sir Fergus Millar, Professor Emeritus of Ancient History at Oxford University, it was Josephus, a Jewish historian writing in the first century CE, who first advanced the idea that Ishmael was the ancestor of the Arabs. In The Antiquities of the Jews Josephus stated that Ishmael was "the founder" of the Arabian nation, and Abraham was "their father". From Josephus, this assumed connection between the Arabs and Abraham, through Ishmael, passed into the historical consciousness of Christians, and then made its way into early Islam.
                            ...
                            What does the Bible say? It speaks both of Ishmaelites, the descendants of Ishmael, and of Arabs, but does not join them together. I. Ephʿal has pointed out that the references to Ishmaelites are earlier in the Bible, and the references to Arabs later. Both refer to non-sedentary, nomadic peoples, but they are separated by centuries. Ephʿal concludes that references to "Ishmaelites" cease by the mid 10th century BCE, and the references to "Arabs" only commence in the mid-8th century BCE, so "there is no historical basis to the tradition of associating Ishmaelites with the Arabs".
                            ....
                            https://www.meforum.org/57936/ishmae...eid=062f3a999b
                            The bible is not a history encyclopedia to begin with. It's a collection of books that were canonized in 367 CE.

                            Arab kinfolks have been traditionally divided into three groups:
                            1. Perishing Arabs: The ancient Arabs, of whose history little is known, and of whom were ‘Ad, Thamûd, Tasam, Jadis, Emlaq, and others.
                            2. Pure Arabs: Who originated from the progeny of Ya‘rub bin Yashjub bin Qahtan. They were also called Qahtanian Arabs.
                            3. Arabized Arabs: Who originated from the progeny of Ishmael. They were also called ‘Adnanian Arabs.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Mountain Man View Post
                              Ummm...before Islam, there was no "Allah" at all.
                              That's why His father's name was Abdullah "عبد الله" i.e servant of Allah.
                              55f5e0e80095040c7e99ce3f52d1c3ba--prophet-muhammad-family-trees.jpg
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