27 October, 2020

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Islamic Culture And The Challenge Of Buddhist Fundamentalism

By Liyanage Amarakeerthi

Dr. Liyanage Amarakeerthi

When I heard about the Boston explosions I had many hopes. First, I hoped that my teacher, who is at Harvard, was safe. Second, I hoped no one was killed. Third, I hoped there was no any Muslim connection to the explosion. Finally, I hoped Boston, one of my favourite American cities, liberal, leftwing, cosmopolitan and intellectually bent, was not disrupted by any fundamentalist attacks, internal or external.

I found out soon enough that my teacher was safe. Sadly, some people died, including an eight-year old boy- someone from my son’s generation. America has its own fundamentalists. When it goes to war, America (Washington) itself is fundamentalist. International terrorism is a real problem and all fundamentalists are party to that terrorism. America’s not-so-democratic acts in the past also keep following like the cart behind the oxen as it has in a Dhammapada verse. In Sri Lanka too we have to be mindful of our collective Karma.

My third hope was much more Sri Lankan than personal. In Sri Lanka, Bodu Bala Sena (‘the army of Buddhist power’) – the newest and crudest version of Sinhala nationalism– is up against Sri Lankan Muslims, claiming that they are invading the social, cultural, economic spheres, pushing aside the Sinhala majority. I do not know the factual position. But the rhetoric seems to suggest something much more dangerous than the facts (even if they are correct) ever could. Some of the BBS (or of the populace attracted to the organization) accusations are really absurd: some Muslim-owned clothing store (a chain of shops in fact) is selling an incredible female underwear that makes Sinhala women barren. The argument is that this shop chain is part of a Muslim conspiracy to reduce the Sinhala population in the country.

World Literature: A Reader (Routledge, 2013) Editors: Prof. Cesar Domingues et al

One of my friends from Scotland wanted to buy that particular underwear so that he can control the population growth in his country. But, according to the BBS, that underwear only upsets the workings of the relevant organs of Sinhala-Buddhist women! So, he did not buy it. Apart from these absurd claims, there is a real lack of understanding between the two communities for which the civil society of both communities is responsible. It is the lack of understanding that gives rise to these absurd urban myths, which are more political than factual. America too had them: McCarthyism was a result of that and McCarthyism is not totally gone.

I do not know what kinds of myths Muslim fundamentalists in Sri Lanka are propagating against Sinhala people. There must be some equally funny ones. Fundamentalisms are fun if no one believes them; but many do. Sinhala people certainly do: look at Facebook.

Anyway, I hoped that there was nothing Muslim about the Boston bombing because the Sinhala racist BBS who would have benefited by it. (The BBS leaders were to visit the US when the explosion occurred. There is an argument that the US is happy for the BBS because they are against Muslims: I hope the argument is wrong.) They would have claimed that their fight against Sri Lankan Muslims was right and based on facts. Yes. Islamic fundamentalism is much more global than Sinhala fundamentalism and we all have to be aware of that fact while being cognizant that US imperialism actually helps Islamic fundamentalism. Islamic civilization, however, is not all about fundamentalisms or parochialisms. It has a great history of mutual understanding and sharing. Amartaya Sen’s Argumentative Indian (2005) describes some aspects of it. According to Sen, there were some Muslim kings and queens who encouraged democratic debate and participated in them. They saw themselves as Indians not as Arabs.

Scholarly work

There are a significant number of scholarly works highlighting Islamic contributions to human civilization. The Ornament of the World, by Professor Maria Rosa Menocal shows how Christian, Jewish and Muslim communities contributed to the creation of European culture in medieval Spain. Living in Spain when writing this essay, I can see even today hues and flavours of Islam and Arabic culture in an ancient city like Santiago de Compostela, even though the beautiful city is markedly Catholic.

Many Indian scholarly works on Urdu and Hindi literature show how Islamic culture contributed to the making of modern literary cultures in South Asia. The new literary genres brought to South Asia by Islamic scholars and writers made our literary culture even richer. Ghazal would be a famous example. Professor Shamur Rahman Faruqui’s excellent book Early Urdu Literary Culture and History is one of those books I studied with one of the great teachers of mine: Professor Muhammad Umar Memon. When reading Faruqui’s book I always wondered why Sri Lankan Muslim scholars could not engage in such studies. I am still to see a systematic study of Sri Lankan Muslim literature. There may be things in Tamil, I am sure. But our Muslim scholars must present such studies in a way that deepens our inter-ethnic understanding. One aim of their scholarship must be to develop a dialogue with the Sinhala community. To say that is not a pro-majority argument but a cosmopolitan one.

Only my friend, a brilliant poet and scholar, Professor M. A. Nuhman, has made such an attempt worth noting. His recent interview with the Sinhala daily Janarala was a window to the heart of a moderate and liberal Muslim intellectual. We need more like him. (There are some books by Nilar N. Casim, but they are more journalistic than scholarly).

Creating new knowledge

Three days after the Boston bombs, Professor Cesar Dominquez, a rising star in the field of Comparative Literature in Europe, showed me his copy of a brand new book that Routledge has published this year: World Literature: A Reader. It is edited by Theo D’haen, Mada Rosendhal Thomson and Dominguez himself. This collection of essays is sure to enrich our knowledge of the globally-rooted human activity called ‘literary writing.’ But the first essay of the book immediately captured my attention. I borrowed the book right away because there was something in it I want to share with Sri Lankan readers as soon as possible in this age of Bodu Bala Sena.

The essay is an excerpt from a book written by a Spanish Jesuit scholar named Juan Andres and published between 1782 and 1799. Its translator, Cesar Dominguez and the editors, widen our knowledge on the concept of world literature by presenting it as the first chapter of the book. The origin of the concept of “world literature” in the West is often attributed to Goethe. This piece shows that the concept has somewhat older antecedents in Europe. Juan Andres has undertaken to write a multi-volume literary history in Italian under the title of On the Origin, Progress and the Present State of All Literature covering Persian, Indian, Chinese and Arabic literatures, in addition literature in European languages. During the author’s lifetime alone, the book has gone into many editions.

The book is significant in more than one way. One of the features I like to highlight in this short essay is Juan Andres’ unfailing acknowledgement of the contribution of non-European people to the making of world literature. He points out that modern European literature is indebted to Arabic literature, for the latter has enriched the former by “re-establishing the belles lettres” or artistic writing.

“The Arabs”, continues Andres, “with their translations and studies, partly increased Greek science and, via Spain, introduced the natural sciences into Europe. They also, by cultivating all the branches of the belles lettres, gave rise to both a new kind of poetry in our regions and improved our culture and our vernacular languages. Literature was, therefore, reborn in Europe.”

Observe the Jesuit-priest author’s generous words in appreciating Arabic (Islamic) contribution to modern world literature. He also praises Indian and Chinese literature in words that were difficult to find in those early days of “Orientalism”.

Understanding ourselves anew

We in Sri Lanka must understand anew our shared humanity and culture rather than falling into the traps of cultural purisms. In this, the Buddhist fundamentalism of Bodu Bala Sena is not going to help us, and, in fact, they are there to destroy our collective memory of commonality. The ideological fathers of this group are still to say a word about their uncultured progeny. Having heard savagely racist speeches the leaders of BBS made in Kandy it is a euphemism to call them ‘uncultured.’ The response to this group from moderate Muslims is far from appealing and convincing. I did not see any Muslim intellectuals saying anything, in Sinhala or English, asking both Sinhala and Muslim communities to understand their shared history and culture that go back many centuries.

Sinhala community has to realize that our Sinhalaness is a product of many cultural sharings and borrowings. If we were to give away supposedly Muslim elements in our food, so-called Sinhala cuisine will be devoid of some its great flavours and some subtle taste buds in our ‘Sinhala’ tongues will be dried up like fish without water.

People like Samuel Huntington have set up a trap for us in South Asia. Huntington was an ideologue of the American right and of American imperialism and his Clash of Civilizations is a programmatic text for American imperialism. The way he describes the world in it is too simple, flat and one-dimensional. Just remember the way he casts the world under monolithic identities. For example, India for him, for example, is Hindu. He ignores the fact that so-called Hindu India is a fine mixture of many cultures, differences and languages. For Huntington, Sri Lanka is just Buddhist: no wonder some Buddhist nationalists are big fans of this American rightwing ideologue.

Groups like BBS are too dangerous to ignore but too parochial to take seriously. While watching what they are doing, it is better for us all communities to understand our shared history, shared everyday life. The week Bodu Bala Sena came to Kandy I started my lectures on Comparative Literature at Peradeniya, and my first reading assignment was three stories by Sri Lankan Muslim writers from the collection Asalawesi Api, edited by Professors Carmen Wickramagamage and M. A. Nuhman. In those stories, the feelings of attachment to certain villages, soil, farmland and so on in those Muslim villagers were very similar to ours. Those students who read them rejoiced in the discovery of commonness found in them.

Yet again, I heard there were so many university students at the BBS rally, cheering the racist speeches. It is very easy to instigate communal feelings and it does not take a whole lot of learning to do so. To understand how communities collectively create cultures and civilizations, one needs some effort and learning.

We can either take up that challenge or sadly observe a country that has a great cosmopolitan history and culture disintegrate into fragments from which we will never find our cultural or human wholeness and wholesomeness.

When I end this essay, I wish I could sit with the Jesuit priest Juan Andres to have a cup of tea (or coffee if he prefers,) who wanted to write a literary history in which he was to pay tribute to every human community that contributed to making of notion of literature: one of the greatest human creations. I will never have that sense of belonging to the likes of the BBS leaders, in spite of my Buddhist upbringing, even if tea or coffee is replaced with a bottle of arrack! Arrack is one of those Sri Lankan cultural products, Cumaratunga Munidasa, a great defender of arrack industry in the country, would have agreed, which is too good to share with racists!

*Writer is a senior lecturer at department of Sinhala, University of Peradeniya, and visiting scholar at university of Santiago, Spain

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    As a whole the article is fine and well-documented with his argument. However, taking one side of the issue is not the correct approach. Finally, I feel the author has undergone a considerable chronic problem because of certain Buddhists which has lead him to hate his born-culture and praise all others. Say Amen to to this so-called anti-sinhala author.

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    Leave out the adjective ‘fundamentalist’ for the time being, let me call Muslim a Muslim. I shall explain who is ‘fundamentalist’ of Muslims later. Everyday we hear Muslims exploding bombs everywhere. In fact, studies say four out of five bomb explosions in the world are the works of Muslims. So, when I heard the Boston bomb blast, I immediately knew it’s a Muslim bomb. Yet this writer talks about his hope of no Muslim connection to Boston bomb blast when he first heard of it. As for me, it is rather strange for a non-Muslim to hope the job is not done by a Muslim.

    Writer is right though; America has its own fundamentalists. He sees the root cause for it is the ‘not-so-democratic acts’ of Americans. I don’t know whether (Washington) itself has become fundamentalist but I know Americans are hypocrites and neo-colonialists. Like the yesteryear colonialists they use Muslims against Muslim to rob their wealth – oil. So international terrorism is not a problem for them; it’s the business of Americans and their allies. One only has to study their latest line of killing machine paraphernalia to understand it.

    I cannot imagine how this writer can be so naive. During the month of March 2013, there had been 189 Jihad attacks by Muslims in 21 countries. Result: 988 deaths and 2093 injured. Amazingly most of these attacks are not against infidels but Muslim against Muslim. For example, on 29th April 2013 there were four explosions in Iraq and Pakistan where there is no on going war. In Diwaniyah, Iraq, a suspected car bomb by Al Qaeda exploded in front of a restaurant and nine Shities died and many others injured. In Amarah, Iraq, eighteen Shities standing in a market are ripped to pieces by Sunni bombers. In Peshawar, Pakistan, A suicide bomber on motorcycle rams into a bus, killing at least eight passengers. We cannot imagine which Muslim killing which in the war torn Syria.

    So, being an academic, I expected this writer to explore why Muslims plant so many bombs to kill infidels as well as their own kind rather than hoping “there was no any Muslim connection to the explosion (Boston bomb).” If only this writer read the Sunnah and the Koran fully he will understand that there is no universal love but jihad in the Koran.

    Muslims are told there are no Gods but Allah; And Allah is the creator of everything we perceive; And Muhammad is the last prophet of Allah; And Koran has nothing but the word of Allah. It is obvious a good Muslim cannot accept some words of the omnipotent creator and reject his some other words. Every word in the Koran has to be accepted.

    Now, every good Muslim read the Koran five times a day. Needless to say that anyone who reads anything five times a day for years would believe it as true. Now, Oxford dictionary describes fundamentalism as; ‘the belief in old and traditional forms of religion, or the belief that what is written in a holy book, such as the Koran, Christian Bible, is completely true.’ That means every Muslim who believe Allah, his Prophet and his Koran is a fundamentalists. It is obvious that every good Muslim is a fundamentalist.

    This writer says, “it (Islam) has a great history of mutual understanding and sharing.” That is absolutely true for Muslims. Koran 49:10 says, The Believers are but a single Brotherhood. Those who reject the word of Allah are described in the Koran as unbelievers and infidels. In fact, Koran devotes 61% of its space to infidels. So what is important is not “Islamic contributions to human civilization” as this writer try to impress upon us but what Allah tells its followers in Koran very clearly to do to unbelievers. Koran 7:176-9 dehumanizes non-Muslims as vile Animals. 4:101 says, unbelievers are unto you open enemies. Koran 8:38-9 says; Non-Muslims are to be fought until religion is only for Allah. Likewise, there are as many as 109 verses in the Koran that call Muslims to fight war with non-believers for the sake of Islamic rule and to recruit new followers. No Muslim can avoid “fight in the cause of God” for Koran 3:167 say those Muslims who avoid such fight were hypocrites.

    When men of God with beards interpret such verses for ignorant of Koran, Sunnah, Hadith and etc come the problems. Ahamadiyya, Sufi, Shia, Sunni and sectarians like Wahhabi give different emphasis to different verses in the Koran and interpret it to pave way for their followers to God’s heaven. Clerics of each one of those sects emphasise selected verses of the Koran to prove their chosen point of view. Invariably, in their effort to prove their loyalty to Allah, each one of them ends up accusing the other as an unbeliever and attacks the other.

    We have heard of ‘greeze yakas’, so leave all that birth control underwear and such dim-witted hearsay stories you hear aside; let me point out the genuine concerns and complaints by BBS. Did Muslims of Sri Lanka use Halaal badge, gonibilla Niquab etc all this time? If not, why do Muslims have it now? Did Allah tell them to have it of late? Why do they have more than 46 mosques in a one sq mile area in Katthankudy. It is hard to see how eastern Muslims could afford to pay for the construction of all the new mosques, so it would seem possible that Middle Eastern money is coming in, as some claim. That is what the US Embassy Colombo informed Washington. And why do Muslims not follow other races but breed like rabbits?

    Is it not a part of their game plan to overwhelm Sri Lanka. Muslims have done this game in Bangladesh few centuries back and they are doing it now in Myanmar. Is pointing out Muslim sting operation by the BBS crime?

    Whether Nuhman does it or Janarala does it, we have no objection for “systematic study of Sri Lankan Muslim literature.” What we say is it must cover all sides including the Koran and Muhammad. And a critical analysis of destruction to Buddhist literature by Muslim expansion at least the Nalanda University must be included as well.
    Leela

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      Leela,

      You yourself point out that most of these ‘Jihad’ attacks are Muslim on Muslim (eg. Irag- Shia vs Sunni etc). The remainder to a large part is civil conflict like in Syria or genuine struggles against oppression/invasion like in Israel or Afghanistan. My point is nothing over here spells – expansionism!

      The BBS monks are nothing but frothing liars. There are no 40 mosques in Kattankudy (I would know because I have been there and have relatives there). Further it is a lie about Muslims having 5 children and likely to overtake the sinhalese population. Any fool can analyse the demographic trends over the last 30 years and tell you that even in the next 5000 years Muslims will not even reach 15% of the population (if you want I can show you the figures).

      Further you have taken misleading and inaccurate stats about the quran which are published in zionist websites on the web (you are no expert on the quran). If so reveal your true identity and I’ll invite you for a debate with someone who does know the quran. Hence, let’s not talk about things we don’t understand.

      If what I say about the BBS monks are not true (about them being liars and imposters), can you explain why the Mahanayakas and several other learned monks have either distanced them selves or condemened the BBS?

      Cheers

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        Ahmed,
        Now I believe BBS has done great service to SL by showing their ignorance in public and this has become real eye opener to lot of people.
        Muslims brothers and sisters should now realize that there are lot of Sinhalese people who care about them and can think outside of traditional thinking of my religion/ my tribe are the best and others are inferior.
        Please spread this type of articles and intelligent comments of readers (not Leela’s) within your community in a language most of your people comfortable with,
        you can make a difference..
        Anura

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          Please write instead of posting links – CT

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        Mr ahmad,
        Nowhere have I claimed to be an expert of the Koran. As I see it, it’s a simple book with not much logic. Even if one makes up some logic in it, there is certainly no moral judgement in it. Most of the Koran is about Allah, its last prophet and unbelievers. True, I read it from my Buddhist cultural stand point. But why do I need help from Allah or men with Allah fearing mindset to understand a simple book. If I could read engineering at a University and write a thesis thereafter, there is no reason why I cannot read a simple book and comprehend its contents, aims and goals. In the paragraph 5 and 6 of my comment above, I wrote briefly about my understanding of it. Debate with your someone with my present disabilities is a problem. If you like, without blaming Zionists however, you can take up the challenge by Ali Sina on this subject of debate and even win $50,000 from him.
        Anyway, it is obvious that Koran is also a jumble for it is not in order of Muhammad’s actions otherwise, the message is very clear. There is no universal love in it but jihad all the way. What more proof than the teaching of that blind Muslim cleric in US jail Omar Abdel-Rahman. True Muslims cannot hide their true Islamic values. So much so, the Muslim Taliban rulers of Afghanistan told the entire world that retaining Buddhist religious idols in an Islamic country is against the holy Koran, long before blasting off the Barmian Buddha statue with dynamite.

        Now, getting back to the Koran again; I see, all Koran experts are like Dr. Zakir Naik are good memorisers. I must say, I have never been very good at that. So, I spend at least few hours every week watching Naik’s ‘Peace’ TV programs to refresh my memory. He impressively mesmerizes his congregation by repeating carefully selected verses of the Koran in Arabic as well as in English. He deliberately covers up the nasty verses that call Muslims for jihad. That’s good and we must appreciate it for we expect, at least that way, Sri Lanka Muslims would mellow their Koran written hard stand against non believers like Jews and Christians have done. But the problem is the Wahhabis that were trained in Mecca. We have seen what Wahhabis done to that Sufi named Abdullah or ‘Rah’ and his ‘All Ceylon Thareekathul Mufliheen’ and his followers who chose to follow traditional Islam in Sri Lanka. Wahhabis in ACJU did everything to stop his preaching. They had issued a fatwa against ‘Rah’ in 1990. Then they ransacked his mosques all over the country and burned many houses belong to his followers. Wahhabi thugs even removed his dead body from his grave when he died and buried in his mosque in Kathankudy.

        In short Wahhabis in Sri Lanka have overrun traditional Muslim values in Sri Lanka and taken over the entire Muslim operation here. Halaal badge and gonibillas are clear manifestations of it. It is to discuss ‘no limit’ and such matters that BBS chief secretary has challenged you guys for and open debate at their Kandy rally. ahamd our monks are used to this kind of debates and harangue. Remember, they have taken part in such arguments in the latter part of the 19th century against then anti-Buddhist troublemakers. Ask that someone to take up that challenge if you can ahamd.
        Leela

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          Those who have studied mathematics/computer science at a high level will know that human language is flawed. One of the major flaws is a lack of precision, which leads to the possibility of multiple meanings. Indeed, this is the kind of business that Muslim scholars are engaged in today – they are trying to make the Quran look more sophisticated than it actually is, by claiming a monopoly over its interpretation, and also finding ways to make it look as if the Quran does not conflict with mainstream scientific beliefs. One should never forget that the Quran is based on the thoughts of an illiterate man and the information he gathered from Jews and Christians while he was a caravan driver. There is very little that is original in the Quran.

          Now, as I said, Muslim scholars are engaged in the business of spicing up the Quran, in particular by claiming there is no conflict with modern science. To give one example, take the shape of the earth. Nowhere does Quran say the Earth is shaped like a sphere. Yet modern Muslim scholars are hell-bent on proving otherwise.

          I’ll start with quoting the verse, which claims earth to be egg shaped in Qur’an. See Qur’an Ch 79, Verse 30, which reads:-

          Transliteration

          Wal-arda baAAda thalikadahaha

          Sahih International

          And after that He spread the earth.

          I don’t know why Sahih International translates the word ‘Dahaha’ as Spread out here. They must have misunderstood the word, so we can rely on other Muslim Translators of Qur’an. Almost all other translation by Islamic scholars are as follows:

          Muhsin Khan

          And after that He spread the earth;

          Pickthall

          And after that He spread the earth,

          Yusuf Ali

          And the earth, moreover, hath He extended (to a wide expanse);

          Shakir

          And the earth, He expanded it after that.

          Dr. Ghali

          And the earth, after that He flattened it (for life).

          This is really amazing, why not a single Scholar translates the word as Egg Shaped or Spherical etc. But yes, we do have scholars like Dr. Zakir Naik, and Bassam Zawadi do translates the word ‘Dahaha’ as egg shaped.

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            @Lester in his maniacal hatred to the Prophet of Islam and the Noble Quran states Those who have studied mathematics/computer science at a high level will know that human language is flawed. One of the major flaws is a lack of precision, which leads to the possibility of multiple meanings. Indeed, this is the kind of business that Muslim scholars are engaged in today – they are trying to make the Quran look more sophisticated than it actually is, by claiming a monopoly over its interpretation, and also finding ways to make it look as if the Quran does not conflict with mainstream scientific beliefs
            In reply let me quote what 3 eminent NON-MUSLIM Scientists had to say on this topic.

            1. Dr.E.Marshall Johnson – Professor Emeritus of Anatomy and Development Biology at Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.USA. In the 7th Medical Conference in Dammam, Prof Johnson said in the presentation of his paper:

            “Summary: The Quran describes not only the development of external form, but emphasizes also the internal stages, the stages inside the embryo, of its creation and development, emphasizing major events recognized by contemporary science.”
            As a scientist, I can only deal with things which I can specifically see. I can understand embryology and developmental biology. I can understand the words that are translated to me from the Quran. As I gave the example before, if I were to transpose myself into that era, knowing what I knew today and describing things, I could not describe the things which were described. I see no evidence for the fact to refute the concept that this individual, Muhammad, had to be developing this information from some place. So I see nothing here in conflict with the concept that divine intervention was involved in what he was able to write.”

            2. Dr. William W. Hay is a well-known marine scientist. He is Professor of Geological Sciences at the University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, USA. He was formerly the Dean of the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science at the University of Miami, Miami, Florida, USA. After a discussion about what the Qurans mention of recently discovered facts on seas, he says

            “I find it very interesting that this sort of information is in the ancient scriptures of the Holy Quran, and I have no way of knowing where they would come from, but I think it is extremely interesting that they are there and that this work is going on to discover it, the meaning of some of the passages.” And when he was asked about the source of the Quran, he replied: “Well, I would think it must be the divine being.”

            3. Dr. Yoshihide Kozai is Professor Emeritus at Tokyo University, Hongo, Tokyo, Japan, and was the Director of the National Astronomical Observatory, Mitaka, Tokyo, Japan, and he says:

            “I am very much impressed by finding true astronomical facts in [the] Quran, and for us the modern astronomers have been studying very small pieces of the universe. We’ve concentrated our efforts for understanding of [a] very small part. Because by using telescopes, we can see only very few parts [of] the sky without thinking [about the] whole universe. So, by reading [the] Quran and by answering to the questions, I think I can find my future way for investigation of the universe.”

            It looks like there is no end to the hogwash this psychopath @ Lester is spewing out. If any book fourteen centuries old is to be explained one has to be truly out of ones mind to state that one who has a maniacal hatred to it can explain it better the a scholar of its native tongue. Before we go into the etymology of the word DAHAHA, we note that @Lester was confounded with the use of “carpet spread out or rolled out”. Now if the Earth was FLAT in shape then the words unrolled, spread out, extended will have no meaning. But if the Earth had curvature then to “spread out” “unroll” etc has some meaning. I have attempted to instill this into Lesters hard head but to no avail. Really none is so blind as those who refuse to see! The etymology of the word DAHAHA is given below for those who have an open mind and wish to learn.

            The “dahu” in the Arabic Language means to extend and even out. It is said: “daha” the thing; “yad’hu dahwan”. These terms can mean he either evened out and extended it or he threw it and rolled it. It is also said: “the rain daha the stones from the face of the earth,” which means it rolled it and washed it away. It is also said: “The horse passed by yad’hu dahwan,” which means he is beating his foot on the ground and yad’hu its sand. Also, the ostrich’s mad’hi means its laying of its eggs, and “ad’hiha” is the nest where its chicks are born.

            So as we clearly see, all of the above Arabic words that are derived from “daha” mean:
            1- To extend.
            2- To roll.
            3- To even out.
            4- Causing to become egg-shaped or creating, making or producing eggs (see the ostrich’s mad’hi example above).

            The meanings all derive from the root word in arabic, there is nothing wrong with applying all the meanings especially amazing in this situation seeing as they are all true. Arabic is a rich language and words usually have more then one meaning

            The Arabic word dahaha in the Verse 79:30 above does have multiple meanings and uses. One of them was when one refers to an ostrich egg. Another was when referring to making something extended, spread out, stretched and/or expanded. This is an example of how Allah Almighty uses scientific notions in the Noble Quran when He talked about how He created certain things. He gave words that had multiple meanings and interpretations to them to make the Noble Quran truly be for all times and all places, and show it has deeper meanings. The meanings unravel more and more as scientific discoveries increase

            The shape of the earth being similar to an oblate spheroid [ Also according to Wikipedia: “The Earth’s shape is very close to an oblate spheroid—a rounded shape with a bulge around the equator—although the precise shape (the geoid) varies from this by up to 100 metres (327 ft).”

            Eggs can be described as prolate spheroids, ovate spehroids or oblate spheroids. The fact is the word used in the Quran has particular root link to an ostrich egg

            We are specifically observing an Ostrich egg which does resemble an Oblate Spheroid and NOT Prolate Spheroid. More over technical labeling is irrelevant since these are invented modern names that we ascribe to the earth. How would it make sense for God to describe the earth as an ‘Oblate spheroid’ 1400 years ago? Even if God were to describe the Earth as simply ’round’ it would be incorrect. Describing the Earth as resembling an ostrich egg is very significant and precise as it was not only unique at the time but is still accurate and visually relevant.
            @Lester states This is really amazing, why not a single Scholar translates the word as Egg Shaped or Spherical etc.
            This is the Miracle of the Quran! To be able to translate the meanings you need to have knowledge of past History and the future and an open mind to grasp and imbibe this knowledge. Sadly @Lester lacks this. So barking at the moon will simply not do.

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              Quoting the opinions of famous people as the evidence of the truth of a religion is a logical fallacy.

              Form:

              Authority A believes that P is true.
              Therefore, P is true.

              Poor Jamal is also displaying his ignorance about the Quran. Here is the correct meaning of the word “daha”:

              COMMENT:

              Udhi’ya or Udhu’wa, are two names for the egg of the ostrich. The verb Da’ha (Ydahoo: present tense) is not derived from Udhi’ya or Udhu’wa, because names are derived from the “verb of origin” (fi’l al masdar), and the verb of origin is not derived from a name. The verb of origin is “dahawa” from which the verb “da’ha” and “yadhoo” are derived, and so is the name of the noun denoting the egg. The verb “da’aha” does not mean “kaw’wara” (made round) or made something in the shape of an egg, whether it is an ostrich egg or a chicken’s egg. As a matter of fact, the verb “da’ha” means the complete opposite to the concept of the roundness. Here is what “Al-munjid fil’lugha wal’alam” has to say:

              “da’ha da’hwan … God `da’ha’ earth that is `basataha’.”
              And that is exactly what Al-Jalalayn has said.
              “da’ha idhiwa’an: `inbisatan’.” (that is: flattening)
              “al-udh’y, al-idhi’y, al-udhu’wa, al-udhi’ya: The egg of the ostrich in the sand.”

              We must pay attention to what Al-Munjid is saying here: “The egg of the ostrich ‘in the sand’” and the following is the reason for this expression:

              When the female ostrich fears a danger threatening her egg, she immediately digs into the sand to hide the egg, then “tadhoo” (flattens) the earth above it, so that it would not be seen by the vultures of the air who are always in search of such a delicacy for their next meal. Therefore, the word “al-udhu’wa” is used as a name of the ostrich egg since it is something (with the sand) flattened (over it). That is where the name came from. The Arabic dictionary never states that the verb “da’ha” means “made round” or “made in the shape of the egg of an ostrich”.

              Other verses in the Qur’an stated that earth is flat using other words. All of these words are interpreted as “flat” and none of them has been interpreted as round.

              We read in Sura 96:6 (Ash’shams): “Wal’ardu wa ma ta’haha”.
              The word “Tahaha” is interpreted in Tafsir Al-Jalalayn as “He made it flat”. In Munjid Al-lugha Wal’alam, the word “Taha” is also interpreted as “to flatten or to stretch”. Then, the noun “At’taha” is interpreted as “a flat part of the earth”. Then, Al-Munjid gives a sentence as an example to confirm the meaning of “taha” as “to make a certain thing flat”.

              In Sura 15:19 (Al-Hajar), we read: “wal’arda madadnaha wa’alkayna feeha rawasi”.
              The word “madadnaha” is from the verb “madda”, which is a very simple and easy word to understand. Not even a little Arabic child would use this word to describe the shape of a watermelon or a ball. It is the most simple way to describe something flat.

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              Once again a great display of KOHODA YANNE MALLE POL. To quote Lester:

              The word “Tahaha” is interpreted in Tafsir Al-Jalalayn as “He made it flat”. In Munjid Al-lugha Wal’alam, the word “Taha” is also interpreted as “to flatten or to stretch”. Then, the noun “At’taha” is interpreted as “a flat part of the earth”. Then, Al-Munjid gives a sentence as an example to confirm the meaning of “taha” as “to make a certain thing flat”.

              The main point is to make something flat, to unroll it , to unfurl it the object cannot initially be flat. Consider a sphere of a certain radius which will generate a prominent curved surface. Now keep increasing its radius then as the radius tends to infinity ( a lcomparatively large figure) then the surface will Flatten, or unroll. That is the clear meaning of making it flat. Whatever twist @Lester tries to give it is unacceptable, dishonest and wrong!
              Quoting the opinions of famous people as the evidence of the truth of a religion is a logical fallacy. Of course Lester is at unease when scholastic luminaries denigrate his theory of the Quran. Hence his newly invented logic.

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              Here are two prominent Islamic scholars who say the Earth is flat:

              Sheik Abdul-Aziz Ibn Baaz, the supreme religious authority of Saudi Arabia, believes the earth is flat, and so does Muslim Researcher on Astronomy Fadhel Al-Sa’d, who declared in a televised debate aired on Iraqi Al-Fayhaa TV (October 31, 2007) that the Earth is flat as evidenced by Qur’anic verses and that the sun is much smaller than the Earth and revolves around it.

              In 1993, the Muslim world was stunned by the alleged edict by then supreme religious authority of the Islamic University of Medina, in Saudi Arabia. On page 23 of his infamous book, “Evidence that the Earth is Standing Still”, Shaykh ‘Abdul-’Azeez ibn ‘Abdullaah ibn Baaz declared, “The earth is flat, and anyone who disputes this claim is an atheist who deserves to be punished.” Thereafter, Sheikh ‘Abdul-’Aziz ibn ‘Abdullah ibn Baaz had received pressure from his contemporaries and eventually was persuaded by his close collegues to edit his book. The first edition of “Evidence that the Earth is Standing Still” has been discarded and the subsequent editions revised.

              Clearly, Quran says the Earth is flat.

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              What an IDIOT- AN ABSOLUTE IDIOT!! @Lester says a leading Scholar believed and stated the Earth was Flat and he concludes that hence Clearly, Quran says the Earth is flat.! 2 (actually 1 as @Lester himself admits Bin Baaz recanted) hence 1 unknown scholar against a myriad! Even the very fact that Bin Baaz corrected himself Ipso facto acknowledges the earth is NOT FLAT . Verily as they say in Latin Quem deus vult perdere, dementat prius – Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad Good luck to that tumor of yours!

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              Even if the Quran said Earth was round, Quran is still wrong. The Earth is not round, it is in the shape of a sphere. How could an illiterate man who spent his time chopping off the heads of infidels and smoking hookah in caves know the difference between a circle and a sphere? :) This also proves there were no revelations from “Allah”; why would “Allah” give wrong information?

              Of course, the Quran does not state the Earth was round, it clearly says the Earth was flat. As WikiIslam points out, As devout Muslims, they have good reason to conclude the Earth is flat; the Qur’anic verses 15:19, 20:53, 43:10, 50:7, 51:48, 71:19, 78:6, 79:30, 88:20 and 91:6 all clearly state this and not a single verse in the Qur’an hint to a spherical earth.

              The Greeks invented geometry. They concieved of the sphere in ingenious ways. It is silly to think an illiterate man sitting in a cave in Arabia could achieve the same result.

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              Why should we believe WikiIslam who was warded in the same mental asylum as you were.
              You sayHow could an illiterate man who …..know the difference between a circle and a sphere? for what purpose Lester? Each time you come out with another theory, you get caught with your pants down and get defeated, then you try a different strategy also to get defeated: like the dog that lolls its tongue whether you chase it or not.

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              @Jamal:

              I have proved you are wrong using two different ways. If the Quran says Earth is flat, it is wrong. If the Quran says Earth is round, it is still wrong. There is no ambiguity here; Quran is clearly wrong in regards to the shape of the Earth.

              Now answer my other question: how can an illiterate man know the difference between a circle and a sphere?

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              What a compounded IDIOT Lester exposes to be!.
              To quote :

              If the Quran says Earth is flat, it is wrong. If the Quran says Earth is round, it is still wrong.


              You see 1400 years ago the common people did not not know about the oblate spheroid. This word was coined in recent times. The Quran uses the word DAHAHA which has many meanings. One of which is the Ostrich’s egg which is closest in shape to the oblate spheroid. So whilst the translators used other meanings to the word like ‘SPREAD OUT’ ‘ROLLED OUT’ etc they did not use the meaning that refers to the Ostrich Egg! Today it is relevant since we know that the earth is in fact like the oblate spheroid. So it is apt to use this meaning. Hence “He made it like an Ostrich Egg (in shape) is an accepted meaning. You can say what you want Lester but you cannot erase this FACT!!!!!!

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              Jamal has been brainwashed by Muslims like Zubair Malik, who are busy trying to spice up the Quran to make it look more “scientific.”

              The Quran uses the word DAHAHA which has many meanings. One of which is the Ostrich’s egg which is closest in shape to the oblate spheroid.

              Dahaha means the place in the sand where the ostrich lays its eggs, and not the eggs themselves.

              This word is also mentioned in Sura A’Naziat:

              79:30 And the earth, moreover, hath He extended (to a wide expanse);

              In this case, “Dahaha” means that “Allah” extended the earth and leveled it to become more suitable for man’s life……

              If you level a 3D object, then it becomes flat. The surface of a sphere is 2-dimensional by definition. But, if “Allah” made the Earth as a sphere, there is no need to “level it”, since the surface is already levelled.

              Again, more nonsense from the Quran!

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            LESTER !!!!!!!!!

            sphere
            /sfi(ə)r/
            Noun

            A round solid figure, or its surface, with every point on its surface equidistant from its center.
            An object having this shape; a ball or globe.

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        Ahmed @,

        Nila´s views are far from average. So better not to mislead you by her abusive thoughts. She or he is reported to be BBS supporter, MR supporter regardless of being whatever the issue it is. She is not someone that would ever grasp the need of the hour.

        It is revealed that BBS and the like minded segments are funded by western funding bodies. Besides, BBS is not in compliance with non violence and general buddhistic views. Most among the buddhists are totally against BBS. Some in the regime seem to be knowing the facts, while the others stay silent for this and other issues further as if they are not aware of the danger. Rulers play their tactics not addressing even GRAVE issues promptly because of their power greedyness. If NFF, Muslim parties would break away from the ruling coalition, they the rulers will have to go home.

        See many ofthe comments to this and other threads clearly point out that the larger majority of lankens ARE against BBS or any form of bigotted groups.

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          Sorry, Typo it should LEELA `s

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          You are insane if you think writers and commentators here (CT) represent a typical cross section of the Sri Lankan society. I bet all this lot have voted SF at the last presidential election; some hoping to throw out Rajapakses; others to upset the prevailing peace that Rajapakses brought about; and yet others to divide the country. But we villages stopped them. And we’ll do it again.
          Leela

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            Leela or Mr Rubert Vanderkoon alias Dr. Ruwan Ferdinadez (Fernandez, Fernando, Ruwan) alias Eliyazer Andey alias X, XX so on, Can you for heaven’s sake please stop your baila jargon about a subject you know nothing of, except that by hearted few lines to spread hatred from The Holy Book and return those funds that you have cheated from the poor kandy people?
            You are a BBS mouthpiece working secretly for Gota and MR. We have no problem whatsoever you lick their boots or anything you wish. But do not instigate violence by spreading wrong information. Like Chicken Buriyani swallowing GnanaStan you are also misleading the public big time with your tiny brain. The problem is our Sinhala fools believe in anything and everything that been uttered by monks, so you morons capitalize on it. It will not that far as you anticipate. We will not allow you to get carried away with that anymore, mind you and we can reveal more about you too. So better shut will you Mr. Leela.

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              rooster,
              It seems you don’t like the bitter truth I am writing. Sorry, I don’t buy your heresay or threats. I have never taken tinpots like you seriously.
              Leela

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              These people cannot handle the truth about Quran and their Prophet.

              Look at how they threatened one of my acquaintances with death: http://lefroy.wordpress.com/

              Of course there are other examples: Salman Rushdie, Danish cartoonist, Geert Wilders, etc.

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            You and the lobster are eating a ship load of shit for nothing. You or a Jew or any other has no right to interpret Quran to satisfy their own ill feelings!

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      @ Leela has been consistently spewing his venomous vitriol against the Muslims. In his insidious attacks he portrays him self as a scholar of the Qur’an and that he has the capacity to quote anywhere from this book and other Islamic literature. His primary motive is to discredit this Holy Book, venerated by over a Billion adherents and prove to the world that the Muslims are a set of fools blindly following it. Some examples of his insidious conclusions to fool the readership are given below:

      In fact, studies say four out of five bomb explosions in the world are the works of Muslims. During the month of March 2013, there had been 189 Jihad attacks by Muslims in 21 countries. Result: 988 deaths and 2093 injured. If only this writer read the Sunnah and the Koran fully he will understand that there is no universal love but jihad in the Koran. In fact, Koran devotes 61% of its space to infidels.

      Where are his references and proof to support his statements, nay, his very credibility?
      Those who reject the word of Allah are described in the Koran as unbelievers and infidels.
      Leela along with his cohorts in this forum, seem to be upset with the words “UNBELIEVERS”,”INFIDELS” . But an unbeliever is one who does not believe in another’s religion/God. An infidel is one who does not believe in the religion of the majority. There is nothing to get annoyed about that.

      what is important is not “Islamic contributions to human civilization” as this writer try to impress upon us but what Allah tells its followers in Koran very clearly to do to unbelievers.

      Now let us examine this unbeliever’s translation of some of the verses he quoted.
      Koran 7:176-9 dehumanizes non-Muslims as vile Animals
      Actually this Verse was revealed about the story of Bal’am son of Ba’ura who lived in the time of Moses (Musa). Here is the explanation of the meaning by Ibn Katheer, one the foremost exegetes, who was an Arab philologist, etymologist and historian. An unbeatable combination when compared to an Internet copyist!
      Muhammad bin Ishaq bin Yasar narrated from Salim, from Abu An-Nadr that;
      when Musa entered the land of Bani Canaan in the area of Ash-Sham (Greater Syria), the people of Bal`am came to him, saying, “This is Musa, son of Imran with the Children of Israel. He wants to drive us out from our land, kill us and replace us with the Children of Israel. We are your people and have no other dwelling area. You are a person whose supplication is acceptable (to Allah), so go out and supplicate to Allah against them.”
      He said, “Woe to you! Here is Allah’s Prophet (Musa) with whom the angels and believers are! How can I supplicate against them when I know from Allah what I know!”
      They said, “We have no other dwelling area.”
      So they kept luring and begging him until he was tempted by the trial and went on his donkey towards Mount Husban, which was behind the Israelite military barracks. When he proceeded on the Mount for a while, the donkey sat down and refused to proceed. He got off the donkey and struck it until it stood up again and he rode it. The donkey did the same after a little while, and he struck it again until it stood up… So he proceeded and tried to supplicate against Musa and his people. However, Allah made his tongue mention his people with evil and the Children of Israel with good instead of his people, who protested, “O Bal`am! What are you doing You are supplicating for them and against us!”
      He said, “It is against my will. This is a matter that Allah has decided.”
      He then said to them, as his tongue was made to loll out of his mouth, “Now I have lost this life and the Hereafter.”
      the meaning here is a parable of this man — and his like — concerning their misguidance, persisting the wrong path and not being able to benefit from faith or comprehend what they are being called to. So his example is that of a dog which pants(lolls) whether it was driven away or left alone. The person described here does not benefit from the advice or the call to faith, just as if the advice and call never occurred.

      Without providing this information Leela concludes that this verse dehumanizes non-Muslims as vile Animals
      Is this not an example of an insidious attempt to discredit the Quran and thereby the Muslims by this bigotted wicked Islamaphobe?
      Lets take another example:

      4:101 says, unbelievers are unto you open enemies

      Actually he should have quoted the full verse with the following verse but his agenda is to mislead and hence stops at. 4:101
      4:101 And when you travel in the land, there is no sin on you if you shorten the Salah if you fear that the disbelievers may put you in trial, verily, the disbelievers are ever unto you open enemies.
      4:102 states When you (O Messenger Muhammad) are among them, and lead them in Salah, let one party of them stand up (in prayer) with you, taking their arms with them; when they finish their prostrations, let them take their positions in the rear and let the other party come up which have not yet prayed, and let them pray with you, taking all the precautions and bearing arms.
      This verse was during warfare and cautioning the Muslims to be on their guard. So at prayer time they were allowed to shorten their prayers and pray batch wise otherwise the enemy,i.e the disbelievers, would take advantage. What a spin this bigotted Leela gives for a particular incident to globalise its application.

      There is absolutely no point in examining the other references, as all are not his original study but copied from Islamaphobic websites.

      Leela says

      We have heard of ‘greeze yakas’, so leave all that birth control underwear and such dim-witted hearsay stories you hear aside; let me point out the genuine concerns and complaints by BBS

      How can we leave these out when this was and still is the modus operandi of the BBS to disseminate fear and falsehood to the illiterate masses in their planned program. Only difference with Leela is that he is spreading falsehood by misquoting the Quran so that the Buddhist intelligentsia, who do not bother to do their homework to verify Leela’s fraudulence will get hooked in it. I can vouch for this happening right now in SL. I have close Buddhist friends asking me if the Qur’an states that the Earth is Flat in shape, since this was told to them by someone to whom they showed some respect! Sounded like the other Islamaphobe Lester, Leela’s twin at it again!
      Finally some aspects of Leela’s unrelenting attack on the Muslims need a little investigation. Many readers think he is a woman but other people feel that he is Leelananda who was associated with Lee & Potter, a notorious company that played out a lot of investors in a Housing Scam in Kandy. He seems to be protected by the powers that be, being immune to prosecution. Hence his unwavering support for the present regime. He is privy to a lot of intelligence reports especially of the Eastern Muslims because he quotes tainted facts and figures usually emanating from government sources. I wonder if most of whom lost their investments were Muslims, who gave him Hell before he vanished to Old Blighty is the reason for his abhorrence.

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        Adding a second part to my answer to Leela,

        Did Muslims of Sri Lanka use Halaal badge, gonibilla Niquab etc all this time? If not, why do Muslims have it now? Did Allah tell them to have it of late? Why do they have more than 46 mosques in a one sq mile area in Katthankudy. It is hard to see how eastern Muslims could afford to pay for the construction of all the new mosques, so it would seem possible that Middle Eastern money is coming in, as some claim. That is what the US Embassy Colombo informed Washington. And why do Muslims not follow other races but breed like rabbits?

        Firstly, the Halaal question was blown out of proportion. What does Halaal mean? It simply means permissible. It should have meant to certify that the product does not contain one of only four prohibited items, two of which are universally prohibited. viz carrion and blood. This could have been easily solved in a civilized way by discussion.
        The hijab which Leela churlishly refers to as “gonibilla Niqab” is edicted by religion. It is wrong to say that this is a new trend. Our mothers wore it in a different way. An overcoat with a cap or hood, some covered themselves with expensive lace material and the poor wore a sarong type outfit to hide their embellishments. The present day trend is to wear the abaya for the same purpose. What irritates the bigoted chauvinists is that the abaya comes from the Arab Middle East, An enemy of Israel, the country whose proxies are Leela, Lester and the BBS.
        As for the 46 Mosques referred to I do not think @Leela went counting them. These are figures given by the intelligence bureau.In any case there are road side ‘Musssallahs’ which are not proper mosques but affords people, especially travelers to say their prayers at the stipulated times, then structures housing shrines of “saints” also having a place to pray. Another is the Dharma pasala or maderasas which teach little children to recite the Quran. Here too there will be a little space for prayers. So to tot up all these and declare them fully fledged mosques is a bizarre way parent Leela’s case!
        About the Muslim breeding habits, Leela simply ignores the dept of Census & Statistics bulletins! During the last 30 years their was an efflux of Tamils from the Country! many Sinhalese and Tamils perished in the war. Many were also killed in the last stages genocide or not. The result will therefore be a swelling of the Muslim population. Instead of shouting hoarse about it why not give a boost to the Sinhalese Buddhists to procreate more with incentives. Perhaps power cuts at night might keep couples in bed longer!!

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        Jamal@,

        Leela is just one of the brainwashed ones /fradulent businessman/woman in his or her late 60ties who may have done some reading about Islam, but nothing beyond that. What surprises me is why seniors like her/him behaves in this way.

        Good buddhists in general are taught to respect other religions, this you may have seen – BBS or any other segments are groups of pseudo monks that have records to prove their identities.

        For such a long time, we have been reading what Leela (she /he )just put to this and other forums, but most of the time, she seems to be forgetting to add references.

        I wish Leela would grasph all these in foreseeable future, then only she would ever be able to live her life as buddha has taught to us. But I doubt Leela or her ilk woudl ever make it.

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      Your message deciphered but zeroed in your arguments to be Racist. You are really a fool of a distorting scholar.

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      Leela, Like you, many in the world have been swept into the grips of Islamaphobia, thanks equally to politicians, especially in the west, and to mass media. If you want to find out the whys to that statement, do an internet search and you will find the answers.

      On a conventional note, to understand the torment of the inhabitants of the Middle East, you should first try to see their point of view. The true picture can only emerge through dispassionate but mindful learning, and for that, you must put your hatred away first. This is what the good doctor has done through his very balanced and mindful inquiry. I am proud and thankful that there are people like him around.

      You claim to be a Buddhist, but how authentic a Buddhist are you to even rationalise the behaviour of the Burmese monks who are hanging little children by their necks in the name of the Noble one. Is this what the Buddha taught, and by screaming at the other, and propagating communal hatred as a Buddhist, do you not bring great disrepute to the very basic tenets of Buddhism, make a mockery of the dhamma and turn those who might have been helped by it against it.

      In’t Buddhism all about non-attachment. If we continue to carry the cultural baggage of the world around with us, counting every brick and stone we have lost like mindless fools, we will be drowned in hatred because all over the world there is much suffering. The Buddha teaches us that samsara is full of suffering and that the only way to peace is mindfulness of one’s own actions, speech and mind. At this stage of your life, look at the dhamma again and again, and I pray that you have some realisations of the truths that it contains.

      I am for peace not only for Buddhists but for everyone and every creature, because this life’s muslim could easily be next life’s buddhist, and vice versa. Whether people of other faiths believe it or not is their business, but for the Buddhist, it’s something to bear in mind. It would also be good to leave behind a peaceful world for the younger generation. Our generation and the generations that preceded it have turned much of it into a polluted, angry hell for most.

      Another thing: religious scriptures – of any tradition – are not read literally or academically using mental functions. They are to be read with the heart.

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        Netizen,
        I have no Islamaphobia or any phobia for that matter. I have commented my understanding of the message in the Koran. I invite you to read all 56 volumes of Tripitaka and come up with your understanding of its message. Buddha also preached his Dhamma to confused or troubled people at his time. I suppose not just Muhammad, all religious founders can lay a similar claim.

        Referring to your philosophical touch of cultural baggage, non-attachment etc and etc, I have to say, we Buddhists have learned a lot from our past experience.

        Have you heard of Nalanda University? Situated east of Patna in Bihar, India, it is believed to be the world’s first University and the largest Buddhist one at that. ‘Compassion and love’ have flourished for seven centuries for all races and religions from around 500 AD. In its peak, it had accommodated over 10,000 students and 2,000 teachers from Korea, Japan, China, Tibet, Indonesia, Persia and Turkey in its heyday.

        Subjects covered included science, astronomy, medicine and chiefly metaphysics and philosophy. Nagarjuna, a Mahayana philosopher; Dharmapala- the Brahmin scholar, taught there; Hieun-Tsang, famous Chinese traveller and scholar stayed there. The university library had been the most renowned repository of Buddhist knowledge anywhere and its collection was said to comprise hundreds of thousands of volumes.

        Do you know what had happened to all that treasure? A Muslim man named Bakhtiar Khilji, a military General of Qutb-ud-din Aybak a Turkic king who ruled part of India from Delhi ransacked Nalanda and set fire to it in 1193. The university is said have burned for months. Monks fled and Buddhism started to vanish from India.

        Why do a military General want to desecrate and burn a peaceful and a serene monastery? To answer that question we have to understand the religion of the General and his gang who burned it; Islam. And that is what I have been trying to do for a long time.

        If only monks at Nalanda or at least a section of them knew what Muslims are like and readied people to confront the vandals, they would have saved all that treasure for future generations. But as usual monks were too engrossed with ‘compassion, love, and concern’, the tenets of Buddhism. Monks there never knew that a nasty religion named Islam has come up to destroy them and all other religions. Is that the ignorance you guys want our monks to be in today? This is the truth you guys don’t like me to write.

        Whether we like it or not, we are living in a world of Abrahamic religions and their jihads and not in a world of Buddhist tenets ‘compassion, love, and concern.’ We have to save our heritage first.
        Leela

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      Leela

      There is a limit to your idiocy. Kanthankudy has more than 30,000 people within the sq Km. Muslims congregate to pray. They must have places of worship.

      The bigger question is this; “Why does it bother you?”, and “why do you hate people who go to a mosque and pray?”. Why is it that it is OK for Buddhists statues at every nook and cranny and not ok for Muslims to have their own Mosques to pray? Do Muslims, Christians and Hindus go around the country counting the number of Statues? What makes you think that having more mosques is fundamentalism and while having pansalas is not?

      This view point, that of hating for no particular reason, is what defines you, and separates you from normal human beings.

      We cannot hate you for what you are, we can only pray that the god you worship will enlighten you, and help you see your fellow human beings with compassion,

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    Superb article! We need more men of this caliber and intellectual capacity Sri Lanka.

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      Well done,now people like Ayman and Safa will say these are misinterpretation of Koran.Leela has given the pages from where the particular quotation are taken from Koran.Islam wants every one to embrace its thinking and this has already led the whole non Muslim world rise against the Islam.Islam has become problem for the whole world.

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        At One Time Christianity was trouble for the whole world with their crusades and conquering of Asia, America and Africa then converting people to Christianity or Roast them on fire as infidels.

        Then came Hitler , a big problem for the world, Some say he was Christian and some say he was Buddhist.

        So you can see no single person or a group holds monopoly on being problem for the world

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        Leela is like the devil quoting the scriptures. Nothing to comment. How can the founder of Lee Potter quote the scrptures after playing out so many people. Like Macho Gnanasara quoting the Quran? Quran in one hand Bothale in the other.

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          Safa,
          Truth hurts, eh. But you cannot cow me for I am not a defeatist. So, I don’t buy your heresay. I have never taken podians like you seriously.
          Leela

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            Leela,

            You are a cardboard Lion, hiding behind your computer to spew venom at Muslims who are minding their own business. We have shown restraint and will continue to conduct ourselves with dignity.

            It is the Buddhists who are indicted for being a brutal and racist people, hauled up at every international forum.

            What you are hoping is that your vitriol will spark a clash somewhere and then you can claim that Muslims everywhere are the same.

            My hope is that we will never get into the rut people like you have got yourselves into to be defined as racists

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    Well written, I hope our political leaders read this.

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    The real problem is that Muslims, when they are a minority, do not try to assimilate into the dominant society. England, Norway, USA, Canada, Switzerland, India, Sri Lanka, France, Germany, Australia… the examples are endless.

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      What is your definition of assimilation? Is it saying goodbye to all your beliefs, your traditions, your heritage and assimilating the lifestyle of the host nation, their habits like alcoholism, sexism and accepting atheism?

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        Jamal

        This man is a complete retard and has no place in society. He vents his anger on CT.

        Ignore him. Nothing good comes out of his heart

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      In the world where Gays are comming out of the closet and becoming visibly- different!

      In the world where gothics and others of similar kind sport extensive tatoos, partly shaved heads, multiple body and facial piercing are hailed as cultural leaders

      In a world where some people choose to wear very little compared to their own parents and we call it moving with the times

      In a world where a muslim of indian origin in a former apartheid country is allowed not to wear the label of the shirt sponsor of his national cricket team due to his religious beliefs

      In a world where a Sikh who is a 1% minority in his country can become head of state (without removing his turban to assimilate)

      In a world where a black man with a Muslim middle name can become the worlds most powerful man as head of the largest empire of our age which is White and Christian

      …. in this world…..in this day and age…. it is not assimilation, but acceptance that can lead us to progress.

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        In the world where gays are hung in public (Saudi Arabia/Iran)

        In the world where the House of Saud uses oil money from American kufirs to engage in alcohol-fueled sexual orgies with imported Western women, while outside their lavish palaces, the religious police harass women who show an ankle in public

        In a world where the Taliban forbid women from going to school or having a job

        In a world where people have their heads, arms, and feet chopped off in public

        In a world where a woman needs four male witnesses to prove she was raped

        In a world where 19 wealthy men hijack a plane and crash it into a building, because they believe 72 virgins are waiting for them in “Paradise”

        In a world where 1 billion people believe an illiterate, violent man who married a 9 year old girl had revelations from a non-existent creature named “God”

        Is it logical to conclude that whose who belong to the above world are capable of any meaningful assimilation?

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      What rubbish, when I was studying for my grade 8 in a missionary school, in our class there were only three Muslim boys, and they scored the highest marks for the subject Sinhala. The principle has to show it as fine example in the school assembly as an eye opener for all Sinhalese children to open their eyes and to study harder their own mother tongue, Isn’t this assimilation not enough or do you expect Muslims to drink a bottle of Kasippu every night to prove we are more Sri Lankans than others.

      I wonder if you are actually living in Sri Lanka

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        If you want to assimilate, start by allowing your women to dress as they wish.

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          @Lester,
          It is not bad to show your kindness and compassion towards your Muslim brothers women. But most religious leaders told us that we have to be kind to ourselves and our families first. You are sending your wives, sisters and daughters as unskilled domestic workers to foreign countries which are 4000-5000km far and leave your children alone without the care of the womon at home….
          First try to be passionate towards your family, your women and your children… then you can extend it to your Muslim brothers family.
          Anura

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            @Anura:

            Post here with your true Islamic name, if you are not a coward. I have already proved elsewhere on this website that the vast majority of housemaids in the Middle East are Muslim females.

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          LESTER,

          OUR WOMEN ARE DRESSING AS THEY WISH NOT AS YOU WOULD WANT THEM.
          YOU FELLOWS ARE UNABLE TO GET YOUR WOMEN TO DRESS AS YOU WOULD WISH,
          SO THEY GO SEMI NUDE AND WE READ OF MOLESTATION AND RAPE ON A DAILY BASIS.

          WHY ARE YOU BOTHERED ABOUT WHAT ISLAM IS, WHAT THE QURAN SAYS ETC
          UNLESS YOUR ARE THE “CURSED JEW”

          LESTERS’PROBLEM EARTH ROUND OR FLAT

          Response: According to the people knowledge (scholars of Islaam) the earth is round, for indeed Ibn Hazm and a group of other scholars mentioned that there is a consensus (unanimous agreement, Ijmaa’) among the people of knowledge that it is round. This means that all of it is connected together thus making the form of the entire planet like a ball. However, Allaah has spread out surface for us and He has placed firm mountains upon it and placed the animals and the seas upon it as a mercy for us. For this reason, Allaah said:

          {And (do they not look) at the Earth, how it was made FLAT (Sutihat)}, [Soorah al-Ghaashiyyah, Aayah 20]

          Therefore, it (the Earth) has been made flat for us in regards to its surface, so that people can live on it and so that people can be comfortable upon it. The fact that it is round does not prevent that its surface has been made flat. This is because something that is round and very large, if it is made flat (its surface), then its surface will become very vast or broad (i.e. having a flat appearance). Yes.

          NOW LESTER I WOULD LIKE YOU TO STAND ON A FOOTBALL. TRY IT.
          FOR YOUR SAFETY PUT A NOOSE ROUND YOUR NECK,BEFORE YOU ATTEMPT.
          THAT WILL ENSURE YOU EITHER WILL HANG OR “CRASH LAND ON YOUR TWO BALLS”
          YOU ARE NOT SUFFERING FROM ISLAMAPHOBIA . IT IS HYDROPHOBIA.

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            The Earth is not round, it is spherical. There is a big difference between that which is round and that which is spherical. Apparently, Almighty Allah could only think in two-dimensions, and his followers are no better. :)

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              So you stood on the ball and came crash landing on your ….you know what didn’t you?

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              IN BILLIARDS,YOU HAVE TO HIT THE BALL WITH THE “CUE”

              LESTER I PRESUME YOU HAVE A CUE AND THE BALLS

              YOU ARE NOT USING THE CUE. YOU ARE TRYING TO DO WITH THE BALLS
              WHAT YOU HAVE TO DO WITH THE CUE!!!!!!!!111111

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    During the time of Ronald Reagan+ Margaret Thatchar “islamic Fudamentalism” was used to fight Communist Soviet Union by USA/UK. Bilions of dollars spent in arms and training “jihadists”. Pakistan is still an “ally” of USA/UK.

    During the “Cold War” Americans and their allies supported the “Islamic Fundamentaism” to fight Soviet Union. Pakistan is the “Nerve Centre” of Islamic fundamntalism.

    Now no more USSR but the Islamic Fundamntalism is enshrined everywhere because of Americans. America’s Human Rights and Democracy are for their local consumtion and US foreign policy never support the same.”American Interest” supercede all UN conventions.

    Islam teaches “jihad” against the un-believers ( Kaffirs). That is why Muslim countries dont get involved in any “Human Rights” issues. In S/Arabia “other religions” have no place. Even “others” cannot have a picture of Buddha or Jesus or Pillaiyar. If any one have any pictures, they will be punished with 100-200 lashes.

    I think BBS too follow the same principles of Muslims. Did any (Srilankan)Muslim ever condemn when the Sri lankan maids were returned with “nails”? Ifnot, why?

    Islamic Law is not an International Law.

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      Of course muslims condemn what happens to our maids. Even the ACJU condemend the Rizana matter, and several Muslims in civil society and politics got invloved right through out.

      Is Saudi really the only example for you? They are not meant to be the flag bearers for Muslims, so you don’t need to make them the example. Show me the Saudis abolising the monarchy and instiling a more democratic process in line with accendency of the Kalifas (Islamic head of state) after the death of the Prophet and I’ll start to evaluate if Saudi is an islamically aligned country. “There is no comuplsion in religion” – Quote Quran

      Islam does not preach “Jihad against Fafirs”. It only gives us glad tidings in case we are forced to struggle/fight.

      There have been thousands of wars in History (WWII, Hiroshima-Nagasaki, the crusades etc etc). Just because Muslims have a word for war, we are not the champions – look back in History you fill find others to take the cup.

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      Eventhough, the Panchamukhi a 14th Century God have no wards in the Tamilnadu State, DMK profiles him best at bay.

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      Can you provide any links of Muslims who questioned or condemned S/Arabia?

      S/Arabs are the “Brahmins” of the Muslims. I never hear any condemnations of the Saudis by other Muslims.

      Tell whether you like Sri Lanka over S/Arabia?

      You argue that “others” commit war, so the Muslims too! Is that the reason Muslims try to blowup people everywhere?

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        Are you living in another world man? Latheef Farouk and many Muslims in this forum have written against S.Arabia, some with a lot of distortion too.

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    Excellent words and a beautiful mind. Thank you, Dr Amarakeerthi, and thank you, CT for publishing this fine article. There’s hope for Sri Lanka, with people like you around.

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    Leela has obviously done her research. However, it is necessary to point out that it is completely wrong to simply quote verses from a book such as the Qur’an without taking into consideration the context in which it applies or applied to. The verses quoted in fact talk about a time in which the Muslims themselves were being persecuted and these verses deal with instructions given to the prophet at that time and more specifically, at the time of battle.
    why else would the Qur’an state that killing an innocent human being is like killing the whole of mankind? And that saving a human life is like saving the whole of mankind?

    if that were the case, then even most other scriptures also talk about killing so called “infidels” like in the bible and Jewish scriptures.

    jihad does NOT mean holy war or hatred against non Muslims. Jihad means to strive and struggle in the path of God to attain goodness. What good can come from blowing up innocent people??? It’s obvious that people who do such things are not real Muslims. Simple as that…

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    Oh and another thing, Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world…. So according to leela and the rest, this is due to bombs flying off all over the place? Kinda like a “if u can’t beat em, join em” sort of thing eh? Nonsense. Utter nonsense. The facts speak for itself ladies and gentlemen.simple as that.

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      Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world because Muslims, as a demographic, have large families, compared to other groups. So the source of this “growth” is not from outside Islam, but within. In other words, it is not the case that people are converting to Islam from religions other than Islam.

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        If what you say makes you happy then you can consume your hogwash.! Recent notable converts that will shake your knees are Cheryl Blaire’s Sister, Yvonne Ridley, Arnoud Van Doorn( your friend Gert Wilders confidante) , Professor Jeffry Lang ( mathematics Univ. of Kansas) etc etc etc

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        LESTER,

        The Fastest Growing Religion In America Is Islam
        By Michael, on May 3rd, 2012

        Do you know what the fastest growing religion in America is? It isn’t Christianity. According to the latest U.S. Religion Census that was just released on May 1, 2012, the fastest growing religion in America is Islam. The data for the census was compiled by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies, and the results were released by the Association of Religion Data Archives. From the year 2000 to the year 2010, the census found that the number of Muslims living inside the United States increased by about 1 million to 2.6 million – a stunning increase of 66.7 percent. That is an astounding rate of growth. Meanwhile, most Christian denominations had rates of growth that were far below the overall rate of population growth in the United States, and some Christian denominations actually lost members. Sadly, when Barack Obama once said that “we are no longer a Christian nation” he wasn’t too far off the mark. Christianity is rapidly losing influence and other religions such as Islam are rapidly gaining members and building new places of worship. As other major religions such as Islam continue to grow in the United States, it is .

        LESTER PROVED WRONG AGAIN. JUST GIVE UP MAN.

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          Where are these (white) Westerners who convert to Islam? I travel all around the world and never meet them. They must be another figment of the Islamic imagination, just like the destruction of Israel (which will never happen).

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            you do not meet them because you are always in the mental asylum you built for yourself. Your brain is slowly eroding and it wont be long before its Kaputs! Have a good mental work out day!

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    Great Article. A great answer to both Sinhala racists like Padmasiri and Muslim fundamentalists. People like Padmisiri, with their lack of self-criticism, are the real enemies of Sinhala people.
    Amila

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    Great piece of writing. I think Leela has misunderstood what Amarakeerthi is trying to say. He has explained why he didn’t hope a Muslim connection with Boston bomb blast in terms of Sri Lankan context.
    “I hoped that there was nothing Muslim about the Boston bombing because the Sinhala racist BBS who would have benefited by it”.
    Also he has not forgotten the Islamic fundamentalism and US relationship with it.
    “Islamic fundamentalism is much more global than Sinhala fundamentalism and we all have to be aware of that fact while being cognizant that US imperialism actually helps Islamic fundamentalism.”
    In Sri Lankan context, SInhala-Buddhist fundamentalism is dominant compare to Islamic or any other fundamentalism..

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      Upul,
      Boston bombing was never even mentioned at BBS orators in their rallies let alone being used as an impetus. As Padmasiri says at the very start, Amarakeerthi has his own truck with his own kind, I suppose. Though I have mentioned it, its really a non issue when think of the greater issues we are facing as a nation.

      Please read what I wrote about Nalanda University and think of what had happened to Buddhism in India aftermath of the blaze set by Muslim military man, if you wish to analyse reasons for my concern here of organised Muslims activity or plots.
      Leela

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        What happened at Nalanda had nothing to do with Islam. It is a tragedy of course and all right minded Muslims will condemn it, because Islam does not sanction such atrocities. The Muslims also suffered during the Spanish Inquisition and the Crusades. During the Crusades a christian writes states that the Christian soldiers had to wade in ankle deep amounts of blood – Old men, women and children were slaughtered. One cannot blame Christianity for this horrendous crime. Hitler, whose ideologues are Leela and Lester, killed 6 million Jews. You cannot blame Christianity for it. To build such venom against the Muslims now is surely churlish behavior. Grow up Leela and try to do some good by returning the deposits of those whom you took for a ride with the Lee & Potter Scam.

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        Leela

        “Boston bombing was never even mentioned at BBS orators” Gnanasara an orator? My foot! :)

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    For some, this is a great article. For me it is, simply the views of a man who is theoretical but not practical.

    In my view, just people explaining the values of a theoretical society and the public. There are and there were few who values equlity and justice. Jesus preached humanitarianism and Lord Buddha was the greatest NON-VIOLENT – humanitarian ever lived on earth.

    Because of Buddha’s non-violence and Equality, Buddhism vanished in Greater – India and Afghanistan etc.

    Christianity and Islam are encroaching political – religions.

    Sri Lanka, needs political Buddhism, If Buddhism is to survive in Sri Lanka.

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    @ Mr. Leela, You dont have to buy my book nor will I sell it to you. But the fact remain that you have cheated some people with your so called housing project? Can you deny it? this is not hearsay man, I am talking with evidents.
    Do keep supporting your ugly BBSatan.Lets see how far you fellas can go. I assure you that we will break the satanic drunkards group into pieces.

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    Sorry Lester but I was indeed talking about converts and not internal growth in numbers. If u look at the stats, after 9/11 happened, the USA experienced the largest number of converts to Islam in the last decade than it has during the last century combined. I feel this is due to the fact that people wanted to know the truth about Islam contradictory to what you see in the media.

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      From where have you got your stats? I live in a Western country and have never met a Western convert to Islam. However, what I have seen in is an increase in hijabis, but of course these people already come from Islamic nations.

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        Lester,
        Have you head about infamous David Hicks (white Aussie)who converted to Islam and fought with Taliban, Lot of people have have seen him on TV too. You can meet him if you come to Adelaide, Australia.

        I believe there are many(how many?) white Aussies converted to Islam. I hardly heard anybody converted to Sinhalese-Buddhism in Australia, but lot of interest and perhaps conversions to North Thailand and Tibetan Buddhism here…. But we have 10 times more Sinhalese-Buddhist temples in Australia compared all others…
        Anura

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        A retaired Jounior School teacher’s knowledge in North America will be limited only up to the level of Junior School.

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        WHICH WESTERN COUNTRY TO GIVE YOU MORE INFO’

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        In the U.S. government, there are two elected Muslims in Congress, both of them African-American converts: Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn. and Rep. Andre Carson, D-Ind..

        There has apparently never been any other Muslims serving in high political office in the U.S. While there are a number of Arab-Americans who have risen to prominent political positions (Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., and former Senator Majority Leader George Mitchell, for example), they were all Christians.

        Pew Research predicts that the Muslim population in the United States will more than double to 6 million by 2030, partly due to the high birth rates among Islamic peoples. By that time, they will represent 1.7 percent of the total population, equal in number to American Jews.

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        DO YOU KNOW TONY BLAIR’S SISTER IN LAW A JOURNALIST REVERTED TO ISLAM..? EVER HEARD OF YVONNE RIDLEY, The journalist who went to AFGHANISTAN WHO REVERTED TO ISLAM? here’s a site for you to know how many in USA revert to Islam on a daily basis, check on the ticker at the left just below teh SITE LOGIN… good luck, do some research… and you may ask all your questions ..

        http://www.islamicity.com

        and another 2 site where you may research and seek answers…
        http://www.themodernreligion.net
        http://www.islamonline.net/English

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          @ Lester…

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    People started looking at Muslims in a different way after RIZANA was beheaded. This is the root cause of all anti-muslim activities.

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      RIZANA WAS A MUSLIM,SHE IS ALLEGED TO HAVE A KILLED A CHILD AND UNDER SHARIAH LAW EXECUTED.

      “People started looking at Muslims in a different way after RIZANA was beheaded. This is the root cause of all anti-muslim activities.”

      ABSOLUTE STUPID COMMENT BY “READER”

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    terrorism is the militarized response to social, economical, political injustice. as long as izrael- palastenian issue remains unsolved so called islamic terrorism will go on and on. solution should be based on ground reality existing today rather than the olden religious texts believed in by the both parties in confrontation.

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    Plzz give me meaning of name rizana

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