A Saudi cleric made the news two weeks or so ago by issuing a fatwah against the building of a snowman, as Northern Saudi Arabia had been hit with a very rare snowstorm, and children and their parents were building snowmen like they see in innocuous books and cartoons.
Perhaps the reason that Islam forbids the depiction of the Prophet Mohammed is because, unknown to anyone but the most erudite of Muslim scholars, and a secret passed down from father to son for fifteen centures, the Prophet Mohammed was actually a snowman himself!
That would explain a lot of things, yes it would.
With the exception of a very few, the objection to the depiction of Mohammed was to his gratuitous depiction in obscene and offensive contexts. In the cold light of day, and having had our sanctimonious protestations in defence of "free speech", we need to reflect on the fact that the right not to be murdered, assaulted, or threatened because of what we say or write, is a separate issue from the appropriateness of gratuitous, insulting, and offensive (and juvenile) comment on another man or woman's religion. It has been portrayed in some quarters in this country that Charlie Hebdo publishing such material in its "commemorative" edition, and the reprinting of these cartoons by certain US publications, was a courageous stand in favour of free speech. Hasn't anyone noticed that publishing obsessive, fact-lite, hate-filled, drek about Moslems has become quite an industry in certain sections of our media, and it takes no courage at all to print this sort of material in the present political environment. If the US media wants to do something really courageous, what about a photo-feature on the effects of white-phosphorous and fletching-munitions on the kids of Gaza?
The hard truth is that all Muslims by definition (in their profession of the shahada) submit to the value system of a sadistic psychopath, Muhammed.
As recorded by Muslims in their own Islamic texts and traditions, Muhammed was the 'Al-insan Al-kamil', the perfect man, a 'beautiful pattern of conduct', 'praiseworthy' and to be emulated by all Muslims.
Yet, the Islamic texts record Muhammed as a mass murderer, a human slaver, a looting stealing thief, a serial rapist and sex slaver, a child rapist, a perfidious liar, a savage torturer, a heartless mutilator, a supremacist bigot, an abusive misogynist, a sadistic amputator, a genocidist and an unrepentant self proclaimed terrorist.
By any objective standard, Muhammed was one of the most vile examples of a man in the pantheon of human history, a sort of Meccan Charles Manson, an Arabian Adolph Hitler, only more successful in his evil than either of those modern monsters.
Like Manson, Muhammed should have been incarcerated, not venerated. And like Hitler, Muhammed should be reviled, not revered. Yet it is this psychopath who informs the consciousness of the entire ISLAMIC world.
The global conflict we are in is nothing less than an Islamic World War, raging on every continent against every non-Islamic peoples: Islam against the Hindus, Buddhists, Catholics, Jews, Chaldeans, Copts, Sikhs, Protestants, Baha'i, atheists, pagans, animists. It is a kinetic war, a violent war, a war of subjugation, not a struggle of moral suasion. It is a war to impose the 'values' of Islam's perfect criminal upon humanity.
Bottom line: Are we 'infidels' going to let human consciousness be subjugated to the values of a psychopath, Muhammed?
That it what this conflict ultimately boils down to. Think about it.
Do we know if Charles Albert Lopez posed Mohammed with his left hand on his holy book in error or by design?
“These artists were rendering the image of the prophet in a spirit of respect,” said Michele H. Bogart, a professor of art history at Stony Brook University..
Stop squirming. You or the artist mean no offence!
They who chastise you are the real villains!
You do anything less, and you become a capitulating worm!
Very interesting and provocative study of Islam. As always, it is a minuscule bunch of radicals, using and unproved fact as a tool for control of the people
thank you ibn warraq for your courage and insight into a relgion that enslaves its followers by denying them the right to leave islam.
This essay should have included a reference to iconoclasm, the 8th-century Byzantine Christian anti-image movement that overlaps with the early centuries of Islam. My understanding is that the iconoclast/iconodule controversy helps account for the paucity of 3-D religious Byzantine art. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iconoclasm for some basics
U people are still in dark, Prophet Mohammad(P.B.U.H) was messenger of Almighty God, he wanna save whole mankind from hell.
Re: Mr. Sayles statement: "They have elastic standards for themselves, but extremely rigid for all others."
I think it much more accurate to state:
"He has elastic standards for himself, but extremely rigid for all others."
The Morlocks are conquering the Eloi. H.G. Wells predicted as much over a century ago.
A wonderful historical review that reveals the tragic irony of our liberal West's bankruptcy in moral courage as we endeavour to promote 'freedom'— a freedom that eludes many under the yoke of bigoted clerics. Additionally, it is the impoverished intellectual and artistic wasteland of Islam's 1,000 year prohibition on intellectual freedom, the suppression of ijtihad (the mental correlate of physical struggle—jihad) that has resulted in the religious intolerance of the Taliban and other extremists.
It seems to me that today's Muslims use this issue solely to intimidate - successfully in light of the craven cowardice of those in the traditional media.
Photography is also a form of man-made image making. But the Muslims have embraced photography like everyone else. Is that not so?
I still cannot believe that Yale University Press, as described in this article, should have failed to present the caricatures that are the object of this scholarly book published by the YUP. "Lux et Veritas", 'Light and Truth' is the University's official motto... What a shame!!!
A Muslim on the staff of the Stockton, CA Public Libraries got rid of Christian art books by selling them through the Friends of the Stockton Public Library outlet store.Books in excellent condition were sold at bargain prices; one-tenth of the going used book rates.
With these mostly-Catholic art and architecture books gone, the next to go were Fine Arts and figure art that were deemed offensive to Muslim sensibilities. They have elastic standards for themselves, but extremely ridgid for all others.
An aggressive, dangerous political ideology masquerading as a religion. It's all about power.