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Talk:Islam

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This Islam related article has been awarded BRONZE status for quality. It's getting there, but could be better with improvement. See RationalWiki:Article rating for more information.

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I'd like to add changes to the article..[edit]

Peace, I think I've left enough critisism in my edits.

Surely a rational wiki should include them.— Unsigned, by: 81.105.193.224 / talk / contribs 01:12, 19 September 2015

In my opinion, this article takes the Post Modernist "Liberal" approach of Muslims as the "De Facto" Rational one.[edit]

The article has a tone that Islam is "whatever" Muslims want it to be. This is somewhat true, but somewhat not. The flexibility in it's interpretation, when it necessarily contradictions what the text states, can not be held as "Legitimate", and therefore one must scrutinize and question the claims of Muslim apologists [like Manji] themselves who say "Islam is compatible with evolution and homosexuality", instead of simply letting the readers to believe that "it is".
Also, I found that a lack of citation to Islamic sources is made when one view is forwarded. I am critical of Islam, and see no merit in "merely informing" people about "what it means" [That Wikiperdia can do], unless it critically examines the "Truth, Morality, and Practical Implications" of what it teaches.
Others who see some additions I made to the article as "too critical" should contradict it within the article itself, citing Islamic sources where contradictory positions are legitimized, instead of simply arguing that some "Liberal Muslims" [Who basically claim words have no meaning, and it is all what you think it is] said so, hence it must be true.
I believe this is the problem with regressive Left. — Unsigned, by: Hobospaien / talk / contribs

A framing question: do you think liberal Christians are also postmodernist? FuzzyCatPotato of the Booming Cats (talk/stalk) 12:37, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Yes.. reason being, I "do" think words have meaning. [Otherwise this conversation would be impossible] — Unsigned, by: Hobospaien / talk / contribs
First, sign your comments.
Second, "truth, morality, and practical implications" of any religion depend entirely on interpretation of the religion, whether one is literal or allegorical in that interpretation, the particular tradition of the denomination of the religion, and whether that tradition of the denomination has a mystical or doctrinal bent to it. Islam is actually no more different than my native Catholicism in the amount of interpretation, orthodoxy, heterodoxy, apostasy, heresy, and mysticism that has developed from it.
As for these conditions being postmodernist, that's absurd. It's like saying that the Catholic Church has been postmodernist for two thousand years and shows a complete misunderstanding of what postmodernism is, as well as confusing it with advanced theological thinking. Postmodernism has, and I quote, "a general distrust of grand theories and ideologies as well as a problematical relationship with any notion of “art.”" That has nothing to do with theological interpretations on what is and is not literal or allegorical, orthodox and heterodox, and so on.
And frankly, this applies to any religion. --Castaigne2 (talk) 15:06, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
With Post Modernism, I am sure you "understood" what I meant [Since I stated exactly in what reference I said it - "Anything can mean anything"]. Thanks for the lesson anyways.
"religion depend entirely on interpretation of the religion, "whether one is literal or allegorical in that interpretation", "
This is exactly my point.
You are basically saying "It is all up to the interpret - er". Text has "no role" in the whole process, as text in itself is meaningless. And there is no "right or wrong" interpretation - all interpretations are equally right or wrong. If religion is "entirely based on interpretation", you can shuffle any religious book with each other, and it should not be a problem. Also, again, what does this argument exactly mean? Everything is based "entirely" on interpretation. How does that help "anyone" to separate right interpretation from wrong? - HoboSapien
"While encompassing a broad range of ideas and projects, postmodernism is typically defined by an attitude of skepticism or distrust toward grand narratives, ideologies, and various tenets of Enlightenment rationality, including the existence of objective reality and absolute truth, as well as notions of rationality, human nature, and progress" - Wiki. So yes, it is Post Modernist revisionism to claim there is no one objective meaning to text. It is mere revisionism. Also, Sunnis and Shia are about 97% Muslims. All of them "agree" in literal interpretation of Islam. If not complete post modernism, we can easily say that mainstream Muslims are inconsistent and simply cherry pick to revise religion to suit modern morality. Again, this is no reason to take the post modernist "belief" [text means whatever you want] as de - facto truth. Heck, even Wikipedia is more critical of Islam than "RationalWiki". - HoboSapien
Re: WP: They barely touch it in the main article -- and the Criticism of Islam and of Christianity articles are similarly long.
Re: "Literal is correct": This is difficult. Does one define religion as "followers of some sacred traditions or texts", and judge how religious they are on how well they follow said tradition/texts, or define religion as "what nominal followers of some sacred traditions or texts currently do", and judge how religious they are on how well they follow current traditions? The former doesn't interact well with reality -- since 99.9% of almost any religion's followers won't follow its every tenet, and maybe 50% won't even follow most of its tenets. And while the former makes it easier to gauge how "religious" someone is, that measurement is not nearly so useful as the latter -- because what people do surely outweighs what they say? The FCP Foundation (talk/stalk) 16:26, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
You are basically saying "It is all up to the interpret - er". Text has "no role" in the whole process, as text in itself is meaningless.- Hobosapien
No, the text is not meaningless and I did not say that. It's clear that you don't understand what "allegory", "parable", "symbolism", and "metaphor" are in literature. Yes, religious texts are a type of literature. Yes, these things did exist prior to the advent of post-modernism in the late 20th century.
And there is no "right or wrong" interpretation - all interpretations are equally right or wrong.- Hobosapien
Considering that there is no absolute right and wrong and that right/wrong are a function of subjective personal perception, that's a fair statement. It's why a Southern Baptist will say that dancing is wrong in accordance to the Bible and a Catholic will say that dancing is right in accordanc to the Bible.
If religion is "entirely based on interpretation", you can shuffle any religious book with each other, and it should not be a problem.- Hobosapien
Some people have done it. It's usually how new religions and denominations get created.
How does that help "anyone" to separate right interpretation from wrong?- Hobosapien
You're making a false assumption that there is One True Way to interpret things. That's the creation of a false dilemma.
So yes, it is Post Modernist revisionism to claim there is no one objective meaning to text. It is mere revisionism.- Hobosapien
No, it's no different from the way biblical literalism is treated. Christianity has never been able to determine the One True Objective Meaning of the Bible either; the Koran and its adjuncts are no different in this respect.
Also, Sunnis and Shia are about 97% Muslims.- Hobosapien
...Sunnis and Shiites are 100% Muslim. Those are two Muslim denominations, the equivalent of Roman Catholics and Orthodox Catholics.
All of them "agree" in literal interpretation of Islam.- Hobosapien
No, that's not true at all. In fact, that's really friggin' false. There are numerous verses in the Koran which show that strict literalism is contrary to Islamic understanding and scholarship. That caused the theology and law to be developed in the Hadith, and there are just about as many different denominations and schools of thought in Islam as there are in Christianity from that derivation.
Do you apply the same arguments that you're using with Islam to Christianity, Judaism, and Hinduism, all of which have the exact same issue in regards to interpretation? And if you do, I'm curious about which Christian denomination/sect you believe to be the One True Interpetation. --Castaigne2 (talk) 17:58, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
"No, the text is not meaningless and I did not say that" - Then it is not "only up to the interpreter" to decide what it means. Some credit goes to the text as well.
"It's clear that you don't understand what "allegory", "parable", "symbolism", and "metaphor" are in literature.". Yeah, right. These books make simultaneous claims on absolute truth, absolute morality, absolute ordination. For instance, it is not a matter of "speculation" in any of these books if "God exists and created the universe". It is "Absolutely true" claim. That is not possible if "they can mean whatever". There can be parts which are "open to interpretations" or "poetic", and parts which are not. Koran 3:7 points it out "clearly" - “It is He Who has sent down to you (Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) the Book (this Qur’aan). In it are Verses that are entirely clear, they are the foundations of the Book [and those are the Verses of Al-Ahkaam (commandments), Al-Faraa’id (obligatory duties) and Al-Hudood (laws for the punishment of thieves, adulterers)]; and others not entirely clear. So as for those in whose hearts there is a deviation (from the truth) they follow that which is not entirely clear thereof, seeking Al-Fitnah (polytheism and trials), and seeking for its hidden meanings, but none knows its hidden meanings save Allaah. And those who are firmly grounded in knowledge say: “We believe in it; the whole of it (clear and unclear Verses) are from our Lord.” And none receive admonition except men of understanding” [Aal ‘Imraan 3:7]
"You're making a false assumption that there is One True Way to interpret things." - Urgh. No, there can be many ways. But not "all" interpretations can be "right", when the "thing" in question makes objective claims. Koran says it is the final book on absolute truth, and CLEARLY dictates that sects are illegitimate. Hadith CLEARLY says only 1 sect will go to heaven and all others to hell. It is not a pluralistic text. Pluralism among Muslims is a theological error, and not a feature.
"Some people have done it." Some people shuffled Bible and Koran with Harry Potter? Do that in "reality", then I would believe you.
"Sunnis and Shiites are 100% Muslim" - Urgh, no. Quranist are neither Sunnis or Shia. In any case, Sunnis and Shia, none of them "believe" that Koran can "mean anything". They are literalists - and hence have Hadiths and Tafsirs and Sirah to decide what a verse "actually means" when there is confusion.
"There are numerous verses in the Koran which show that strict literalism is contrary to Islamic understanding and scholarship." And there is 3:7 which :::::clear states that verses which are "clear" are not, say, unclear. All the "unclear verses" are not a reason to claim that verses that are clear are also unclear, or poetic, or non literal.
"Do you apply the same arguments that you're using with Islam to Christianity, Judaism, and Hinduism, all of which have the exact same issue in regards to interpretation? And if you do, I'm curious about which Christian denomination/sect you believe to be the One True Interpetation. " Of course I do. I am not a christian. I am an atheist. Have read Koran, Hadiths, Sirah and Tafseers. Have argued with popular obfuscators like Kafhif Chaudry and his ilk on public internet forums and showed them that they are distorting. I am very well aware of how distortion is done by apologists. Heck, even Wikipedia is more critical of Koran than this raitonalwiki article. I think you take me for some right wing religious nut who holds double standards on Islam, while defending his own religion with "open to interpretation" postmodernism - HoboSapien
Let's not drag it. You are claiming it is a priori that religious books have no objective meaning. I say otherwise, as it is only a post modernist revisionism which is used to claim so. Historically, in Islam, Shia - Sunni rift was not because "What does it mean?" [They both have Hadiths to determine it], but simply because Koran and Muhammad, neither, have / gave instructions on how the Caliph would be appointed. This is not the same as "Well, no one could tell what Koran really means. In any case, 97% of Muslims who identify themselves as Shia and Sunni clearly have determined structure of interpretation - their Hadiths and Tafsirs. So neither any of the Shias or Sunnis claim that "all" Koran is "whatever you want it to mean". So for "practical purposes", one can claim that <90% of Muslims claim to be Shia - Sunni, but simply "leave out" the methodology of Shia - Sunni hermeneutics for modern moral convenience. Quran without Hadiths has no chronology and context, does not have instructions on how to pray, and does not even have the "five pillars" included. Without hadith support and constraint, Islam would be impossible to recognize. So what I am saying is this - as long as Muslims are "conveniently" applying inconsistent methodology, this can not be attributed to "allegory", "parable", "symbolism", and "metaphor".
Show me why this accusation of inconsistent methodology as per convenience is wrong. - HoboSapien
Although I admire your efforts, the article is already consumed by the alt-left, saying that only Islamic scholars can interpret Islam, and having a reverential treatment of Islam that is not found in any articles about any other religion. Its clear that those with knowledge and rationality are tip toeing on egg shells.

Article needs help[edit]

The article needs to rewritten by someone knowledgeable in Islam, especially how with regards to how issues of interpretation are settled. The reliance on ahadith, the Sunnah of the the prophet Muhammad, and scholarly consensus and tafsir is somewhat alien to Christianity and has no equivalents, especially in Protestant denominations. Islam is very academic; there are legitimate differences in opinion but the overall supported interpretations of Islam lean strongly in certain directions. With this and its implications being clarified, the article could also do with a more academic discussion of the history of Islam, especially regarding the evolution of theology and why Salafism gains traction (due to textual support). The current page was clearly written from a Western perspective. Lord Aeonian (talk) 21:07, 15 July 2016 (UTC)

the reliance on ahadith, the Sunnah of the the prophet Muhammad, and scholarly consensus and tafsir is somewhat alien to Christianity and has no equivalents, especially in Protestant denominations.- Aeonian
That's not true at all, especially in Judaism and Catholic Christianity. But it's not even true in Protestant Christianity.
Islam is very academic; there are legitimate differences in opinion but the overall supported interpretations of Islam lean strongly in certain directions.- Aeonian
And that ignores the very large mystical part of Islam, just as most people ignore mystical Christianity.
Further, when you talk of interpretations leaning strongly in certain directions, are you referring to
a) the split between Sunni, Shiite, and Kharijites (not including the Sufi orders)?
b) the three different schools of jurisprudence?
c) the eight schools of theology?
d) the thirteen later branch-offs?
especially regarding the evolution of theology and why Salafism gains traction (due to textual support- Aeonian
Which branch of Salafism? There are four. --Castaigne2 (talk) 21:18, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
I was not aware that the extra-Biblical life of Jesus was even recognized by Christians, much less relied upon to make theological decisions. Nor was I aware that the lives and actions of the Apostles were regarded as nearly infallible. This is the equivalent of the Sunnah and the hadith focus on the Sahaba. Second of all, the Sufis are considered kuffar by most Muslims, so yes I am "ignoring" that aspect of Islam, just as I am "ignoring" the Ahamdis because they are a minority and looked down upon by the vast majority.
Next, I don't even know where to began here...it seems you don't know what you're talking about. First of all, which "Kharijites" do you refer to? The historical ones? The usage of the term to describe groups like ISIS?
Now, within the two major groups - Sunni and Shia - each have their own aspects.
There are not "three schools of jurisprudence;" there are four extant Madhhabs of fiqh within Sunni Islam and two within Shia Islam.
There are not "eight schools of theolgy;" there are three extant schools in Sunni Islam, Athari, Ashari, and Maturidi; and each division of Shia (Twelver, etc) has its own. What "thirteen later branch offs" do you refer to?
Four "branches" of Salafism??? Do you know what Salafism is? The concept of Salafism is simply following the way of the Salaf; the first three generations of Muslims. It's ultraconservative and so Salafis are usually Atharis and Hanbalis, but not always; it is not a school or denomination of Islam. What I meant earlier was that Salafism does have the most textual support. If Islam is the final revelation, shouldn't a Muslim want to be as close to it as possible? Surely the Sahaba of the Prophet and the Salaf were the most enlightened; as they had just received the revelation and learned directly from the Messenger of Allah. This is the reasoning which is behind the ulama's rejection of bid'ah from the time of revelation, and even the hostility to kalaam. It is the general opinion of Islamic scholarship even before it was named as such. Lord Aeonian (talk) 22:35, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Aeonian, surely you'd be a prime candidate? Cømяade FυzzчCαтPøтαтø (talk/stalk) 23:07, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
I agree. If Aeonian is knowledegable, go forth and edit! I will not be editing this article; my confidence in what I know is nowhere near as great and Aeonian may have a more "mainstream" view. --Castaigne2 (talk) 23:32, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
I was not aware that the extra-Biblical life of Jesus was even recognized by Christians, much less relied upon to make theological decisions. Nor was I aware that the lives and actions of the Apostles were regarded as nearly infallible.- Aeonian
Welcome to Catholic doctrine and theology. It's a mess.
Second of all, the Sufis are considered kuffar by most Muslims, so yes I am "ignoring" that aspect of Islam, just as I am "ignoring" the Ahamdis because they are a minority and looked down upon by the vast majority.- Aeonian
I consider that rather like saying that Mormons should be ignored because most Christian denominations don't consider them to be Christian and that the snake-handlers should be ignored because they're a minority and looked down upon by the rest. Or in short, I disagree.
First of all, which "Kharijites" do you refer to?- Aeonian
Their descendents, the Ibadi. No, not the reference granted to ISIS and others.
There are not "three schools of jurisprudence;" there are four extant Madhhabs of fiqh within Sunni Islam and two within Shia Islam.- Aeonian
All of the fiqh can be grouped into three main sections - Sunni, Shiite, and Ibadi. There are six sub-schools in the Sunni and two in Shiite. But those differences in the sub-schools are nothing different from orthodox and allowed heterodox views in the Catholic Church. There are no sub-schools in the Ibadi.
There are not "eight schools of theolgy;" there are three extant schools in Sunni Islam, Athari, Ashari, and Maturidi; and each division of Shia (Twelver, etc) has its own.- Aeonian
When I am saying schools of theology, I am referring to Ash'ari, Athari, Kalām, Bāṭeniyyah, Jahmiyyah, Maturidi, Murji'ah, Mu'tazili, and Qadariyyah. Yes, some of those are ancient and not in current vogue, but the Catharist and Bogomil schools of thought are still relevant in Christianity today.
What "thirteen later branch offs" do you refer to?- Aeonian
Fellows like Tolu-e-Islam, Zikri Mahdavis, and Moorish Science?
t's ultraconservative and so Salafis are usually Atharis and Hanbalis, but not always; it is not a school or denomination of Islam.- Aeonian
I would disagree. I would say there are four types of Salafists - generic Salafi, Ahl al-Hadith, Wahhabists, and modernist Salafists.
If Islam is the final revelation, shouldn't a Muslim want to be as close to it as possible?- Aeonian
I would imagine so - just as a Christian would want to be close to whichever particular interpretation he holds dear.
Surely the Sahaba of the Prophet and the Salaf were the most enlightened; as they had just received the revelation and learned directly from the Messenger of Allah.- Aeonian
That's what we Roman Catholics say about Jesus and the Church. Strangely, all sorts of other denominations disagree with us.
You get my meaning? --Castaigne2 (talk) 23:32, 15 July 2016 (UTC)
Alright, thank you for clarifying; it seems most of the disagreements were semantic. Regarding Mormons and such; I was referring specifically to the "mainstream" views of Islam. I'm fine with Sufis, Quranists, Ahmadis, etc being mentioned, but we must be aware of the balance fallacy here; I have seen regressive type Westerners appeal to this groups as evidence of progressive Islam without informing their audience that those groups are heavily marginalized. As for Salafis, the problems with making these distinctions is that they are arbitrarily and not really rooted in Islam; i.e. the groups themselves do not identify as such. Rather than characterizing groups per se, I would categorize ideologies, for instance, "Wahhabism is a Salafi revival movement popularized by Ibn Wahhab" rather than "Wahhabis are a branch of Salafis." The latter statement seems to imply there are defined branches and whatnot, when in reality anyone who tries to follow the way of the Sahaba and reject religious reformation could rightly be called a Salafi. There are Shia Salafis, even Sufi Salafis who hold a metaphysical view of Islam but still think everyone should behave as Muhammad & friends did. It's somewhat misleading to try to define Salafism as something specific. As with your example with the Church, that is the reasoning used used by the ulama throughout the centuries and is only now being called "Salafism." It's self-intuitive honestly; the fact of the matter is groups like ISIS (while still cherry picking) are following a more "correct" form of Islam than the a LGBT friendly pro-secularism Muslim. But I digress.
To answer you FCP, I can't because I'm lazy and busy. I still have to write the page dealing with the Qur'an's linguistic miracle... Lord Aeonian (talk) 02:22, 16 July 2016 (UTC)


It should not be forgotten that existence of mystical parts in Islam does not mean all Islam is mystical, or mean that personal mysticism is incompatible with political literalism. It is a false dichotomy propagated by regressives and Taqqya experts. Moreover, Sufism is not incompatible with Islamism. Islamic mysticism was followed even by the first Caliph - Abu Bakr. Al Gazhali, the most influential Muslim after Muhammad, "proved" that Sufism and Shariaism are compatible. Hassan Al Bana, the founder of Muslims brotherhood, was a Sufi.
Koran itself has a verse on those who use it's mystical verses to claim that "all" of it is mystical. “It is He Who has sent down to you (Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) the Book (this Qur’aan). In it are Verses that are entirely clear, they are the foundations of the Book [and those are the Verses of Al-Ahkaam (commandments), Al-Faraa’id (obligatory duties) and Al-Hudood (laws for the punishment of thieves, adulterers)]; and others not entirely clear. So as for those in whose hearts there is a deviation (from the truth) they follow that which is not entirely clear thereof, seeking Al-Fitnah (polytheism and trials), and seeking for its hidden meanings, but none knows its hidden meanings save Allaah. And those who are firmly grounded in knowledge say: “We believe in it; the whole of it (clear and unclear Verses) are from our Lord.” And none receive admonition except men of understanding” - [Aal ‘Imraan 3:7] - (HoboSapien)

Has somebody been dicking around with this article?[edit]

Seriously, I think someone has been seriously dicking around with this article. It's nowhere near as good as it was when I was last active, all the snark is gone, it has numerous grammatical errors... like wtf? Formerly cohesive and salient paragraphs have been replaced with broken-up stand-alone sentences, most having little to nothing to do with the others. Seriously, guys, quit dicking around with the article. QuantumDudeI am beyond your understanding 10:33, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

User HoboSapien has added a lot of good stuff in a very poor way. Someone, perhaps me, needs to do a pass at the article and RWfy it once again, keeping the new content. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 14:19, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
I'd be willing to at least edit through the doctrinal parts of this article as well as add to them. I can't talk much about the politics, but the doctrine I know quite a bit on. For instance, I can add parts about Tawhid and Shirk (and how if you affirm Tawhid you commit Shirk) and about the early history of Islam (as well as the historicity of Muhammad), but I can't talk as much about the current state of politics because I don't know much about it. Anim (Carfa) 13:56, 30 March 2017 (UTC)
Don't shirk your duty, buddy. Jump in. nobs 01:49, 31 March 2017 (UTC)

References[edit]

Is there any way to pull back a form that wasn't completed? My internet dropped for a couple seconds right after I tried to submit the action to edit the article and the changes didn't go through (cri). I had gone through and cleaned up all the references and it looked so clean and pretty D: and now I don't want to do all that work over again Anim (Carfa) 18:11, 3 April 2017 (UTC)

Pressing "Back" and then "Resubmit data" works about half of the time... If that doesn't work, you may be screwed :C Take lesson from me... I NEVER press submit on even medium-extent changes without temporarily copying the entire article (or relevant segment) into notepad first. Reverend Black Percy (talk) 18:15, 3 April 2017 (UTC)
cri the lesson has been learned. I'll re-do it tomorrow QQ Anim (Carfa) 18:17, 3 April 2017 (UTC)
How would you like the references done?
Title of work, Publisher/Site/Author/Etc
or
Title of work, Publisher/Site/Author/Etc
Either way is fine by me (but I'd rather do it the right way the first time around) Anim (Carfa) 11:56, 4 April 2017 (UTC)