Arabian Culture Part 2
Channel: Bilal Philips
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You know, they do not want to go to the expenses of bringing special shipments of forks for the Christian employees. That's their choice.
Yeah, that's it.
Okay, now, some of you will hear or have heard the term, our Shiite Muslim and Sunni Muslim. Okay. The Shiites, usually referring to the people of Iran, and to some degree to the people of Iraq. And the point is that
there is, according to the Orthodox view of Islam, just one Islam, there's no Shiite and Sunni Sunni actually means orthodox. And when you're referring to Shiite Muslims, their beliefs
concerning God, and man and the relationship actually are outside of the bounds of Orthodox Islam. It's like, for example, the Mormons in comparison to the rest of Christianity.
Mormons are not considered to be Christian, by the Christian world, Mormons, Jehovah's Witness, you know, and other groups are considered sex, you know, sex which I've broken off from mainstream Christianity. Similarly, the Shiites of Iran are considered as a threat which is broken off from mainstream Islam. And the difference in the views fundamentally is in the concept of God,
in that the Shiites, believe in certain individuals, who were descendants of Prophet Mohammed, some of his grandchildren's great, you know, great grandchildren,
a group of them
who they call the Imam,
They believe that these imams
are omniscient, that they have knowledge of all things, past, present and future. Whereas, orthodox Islam holds that God is only with God, God alone knows the past, present and future. They hold that these imams for example, were infallible totally, from birth to death, both of infallibility according to orthodox Islam belongs only to God, even prophets,
committed errors. But infallibility in the total sense, belongs only to God. So that and he wants it to a number of other principles, which exists within that concept is the god concept of God and man within Shai ism, it teaches a different view than that of Orthodox Islam. So it represents a deviation, it doesn't mean that every single Shiite is, has deviated because as individuals, you may speak to them and then in opposes us, but this is the official view. So
looking at the system of Shia Islam, from an official point of view, they have deviated.
This is part of the claim that of the descendants of the Prophet Muhammad, you know, the right to rule and to lead the Muslim nation
became the sole rights of these selected descendants. Because if you say they're infallible, there are millions, and they have power over the atoms of the universe, you know, ultimate power over the atoms of the universe, then surely, these are the people who should be living you. But the majority of Muslims didn't recognize that. So they would not accept them as having the civil rights to meet.
So, on one hand, this division began as a political difference, and it evolved into a religious and ideological difference.
If I'm Islamic teachings concerning resurrection, when a person dies, the body is recreated and the spirits
Join that body. So after judgment,
the body and the spirit will go either to heaven or to hell.
Yeah, to be a new body.
Nobody has entered paradise at this point in time. I mean, at the time of
judgment, you know, Paradise is not I mean, it's not in terms of, of space, where we can say like, you know, the Earth is overpopulated. So we're worried about the population of paradise. No, I mean, in that state, and that's after resurrection and judgment, that state is a state which is not bounded by, you know, our dimensions in the sense that we know for
the point is that I just described in the crime, when a person dies, is judged, if he's judged of those to go to Paradise, then in Paradise, that individual has whatever he wishes,
you know, if there are no limitations,
and as God has created the universe, and we are unable to determine whether the universe and
all of the people, so the time of the disruption of the world, and resurrection, I'm sure would not be sufficient to fill this universe. So we have no problem of, you know, spaces like you know, you have some people believe in 144,000 goes to heaven. After that the doors closed, right? You didn't make it right now, if it's not a point of view, there is no set number, you know, we're going to paradise, then this is as God wills.
Give her another chance, another game come back.
Can you raise your right hand?
A pure Muslim country encourages other faiths to flourish.
according to Islamic law, with the exception of Saudi Arabia,
other countries where Muslim rule exists.
Christians may build their churches, you know, Jews may build their synagogues and worship freely, you know, they are not prohibited from doing so. And historically speaking, as I mentioned before, in Muslim Spain, Christianity, Judaism flourished, actually, the period in Spain was considered the golden age of Jewish
religion and printing in North Africa, in in Yemen. So, but in Saudi Arabia, an exception has been made by the prophet himself, that this area because it contains the two sanctuaries,
the immediate outer area would be an area in which
Christians and Jews would not be allowed to set up institution not that they could not be there. They could be there, practice the religion privately in the privacy of your home or whatever. But to set up institutions, it would not be allowed, specifically for this area.
telling me that when it comes to religion, other countries?
Well, it's not a question that a Muslim is one who simply knows the Choose between right and wrong.
I'm not saying that it is simply that I'm saying Of course, Islam teaches what is right and what is wrong, and encourages the people to choose between rights and wrongs. However, when you're talking about the issue of a sanctuary,
it talks about the issue of a sanctuary. This is something different, because this was something instituted by the prophet himself. It's not something was the people of Saudi Arabia have made made a decision to do this is something which was which is which was instructed by the processes to consult and this was to preserve the health to preserve the pure
nature of the main two sanctuaries of the Muslim world. This is the public, not that
knowledge of Christianity is itself primitive, you can go to any of the universities here. I mean, their Bibles are not in circulation on the market, you can go to any of the institutions here, universities, or Bibles are available. So it is not like a prohibited book to the point where nobody can ever see it. Okay.
By law, by white, male
in all kinds of materials,
even though it's my personal religion is my personal mail. Open
items are open and comfortable, other places, it will be confiscated. And I will
have my desire to leave
even though I remember getting
Before let me respond to this point. Okay. One
Christians who are coming into the country according to law,
each individual is allowed to bring in a Bible with them as an individual.
This is according to the law.
Can I answer?
Yes, I'm saying that there will be and there can be a discrepancy between the individual practice of the people at the customs in the airport, and what the actual last day, what I'm telling you is what the actual lab face and I know, personally, I know, Christians who have brought in Bibles themselves. So I know according to the law, not just because they managed to sneak it in, but according to the law itself, legally speaking, there is an allowance on the books, Okay, wait a minute, before we get too far with that, right.
The point is that the discrepancy between you know, individual practices of individuals and what is actually on the log book, that is something I mean, I cannot address that, you know, that is a problem which needs to be worked out, are people who are coming in who belong to companies, where the companies know what their rights are, and make that insistence when it comes to skated that it can be returned or whatever, if they want to pursue it, it did, but it's something according to the law, that permission is there. Now in terms of the sending in of religious materials into the country, if a person
has this material sending and being sent in, there are no guarantees, that this may not be a part of a missionary activity. And this is what personally is prohibited here. It is prohibited for wanting to be involved in missionary activity in the sense of, you know, distributing literature, etc. Or setting up institutions etc, which are Christian or Jewish or other institutions, but you practicing personally yourself. You reading the Bible, praying in your home when etc. This is your individual right? And and that is where that is where the country has drawn the line.
together in other words, they come together they join they share
my experience personally with God, when I
Well, as I said, you know you as a personal individual, you
See that as a personal restriction, but the laws are there trying to govern the overall situation. And for you, for example, to get together with another friend of yours or another two friends of yours, you know, in your room and, and worship God together, or you know, and share your experiences, this is not prohibited in this country. You know, and I mean, the bottom line is, the bottom line is that, as an individual, nobody is forced to give up their religion, or to stop the practice of their religion, there may be some restrictions in terms of what you are free to do back in your own country, and what you're not free to do here. But this is something when we join
organizations, when we become a part of, of institutions, there are certain restrictions that are put on us. And we accept those restrictions, those who have come over here to work, you know, ahead of time, that these are some of the restrictions, if you don't wish to be under a circumstance with these restrictions, happens, your choice. I mean, that's the bottom line.
The practice of individuals leaving the country,
you know, which contravenes Islamic law, that is the choice of individuals defeat the law, the law itself cannot make a person pious,
that is, their relationship with God, the sincerity of their relationship will determine the level of their piety. So it doesn't mean that because the law in this country is such that you cannot
purchase alcohol openly, though, you may be able to go into some people's homes, and there are some people here, or producing it themselves, or bringing it in one way or another. Is it easier if you search hard enough to make money? You know, so it's not to say that it doesn't exist in the society as a whole. But the general situation is that it's not readily available in the society. This is for the protection and, and help of the people in general, versus people who choose to comply with the law when they're here, out of force, because of fear of the law. But when they find themselves in another circumstance where they're free to do as they please they do so, this is the nature of human
beings. I mean, all you have to do I know myself, you look at the incidents, which happened in, in in Los Angeles, when the police, initially after the Rodney King, issue, the ruling
when the city went haywire, and the police didn't act immediately, and people realized that the police were not acting.
Everybody joined in.
Same thing in New York City when I was in New York City was back in early 80s. When the power grid went down for two days, there were no lie. Everybody went wild. And we're busted. And you know, I mean, people are even driving down with their Mercedes. They were hitting the first stores and the jewelry stores that the poor people were hitting the regular grocery stores gathering food, but everybody went haywire. Why were they doing that before? Because the force of the law for fear of being caught, keeps them in line, keep them in check.
It's not everybody who did it. Not everybody did because other people, there are people who didn't take part because they knew what's wrong. No matter what the law sees, or it doesn't see you it's wrong.
So, you know, this is nobody's saying this is heaven.
Okay, in the case of Sudan, I mean, you're dealing with a number of political factors.
Determine what is actually going on there
is not that easy. Just like if you read the newspapers as to what is going on in Israel, you get a completely different picture than going down in Israel and seeing what's actually going on. You know, so the media, which is our reporting, for, you know, who have been involved in very heavy missionary activity in the south. And the vast majority of the people of the South are not Christians, the vast majority are animals.
But the missionary activity which has been going on they're supporting john Garang, you know, who started a secessionist movement there. It is in the interests of most people to promote the concept that it is a war against Christians. But, in fact, as far as I know, a visit to the Sudan of Sudanese there is no animosity towards Christians. But the splitting off of john Garang and the, you know, the fbla. I mean, this is a political move to where he's taking it to set up his own country. You know, it's a political move, which is, which is us the issues of Christianity in order to support and gain support for itself? This is my view. You know, I said, You asked me what is my view
is what I see is my view. I mean, I'm not saying that the removal of the shanty towns around Khartoum, the relocation of the people, that some errors may not have taken, taking place in the process. But I don't believe that this is directly is directed specifically at Christians, per se. I don't believe so.
But again, I said, that's my opinion.
basically, the Sharia principles
of what it has done, and I can understand where they are coming from.
You're having the principles of Sharia rammed down your throat,
Facts of Life, wants to real law takes place in the country,
you will live by it, or you will go to jail.
into granted things that are not equal to them.
institution of Sharia law wipes out that.
Okay, I would add that
many months ago, the Sudanese leadership stated that they were prepared, that the southern regions would not be would not come under Sharia law, Sharia law would only be applied in the majority Muslim regions.
But grind, that was not enough when they started the tables. This is one of the things which were offered as a means to stop the worrying and the fighting the upper that is one of the proposals, but cessation separation was the program of john john Brown.
Okay, I want to talk about Canada and talk about us also, you know, same same situation, right. Same situation. I mean, in North America,
a Muslim may practice some of his religion, he cannot practice all of his religion freely. Because if I, as a Canadian, or an American, decide that I want to marry for women and look after them, you know, according to Islamic law, because marriage for women doesn't mean one wife and three girlfriends. It means four wives who you have to look after equally. You have to provide homes, food, shelter, you know, money. look after the children, it's her responsibilities. If I choose to do that, I am ruled a bigger Miss. I can go to jail. But if but if we're adamant I'm just responding to the question. Okay, let me finish. Okay. But
no, no, no, no, I'm not. I'm not questioning that. I'm not questioning that. You know, I'm not questioning the rights of America or Canada to make that illegal. I'm not questioning our friend. You're just asking. He asked the question, am I free to practice my religion?
Canada and America and I'm thinking I'm not, I can practice it within the limits which are set by the laws of the country. However, if I decide to have one wife and three girlfriends,
I'm perfectly okay. Not the law does not touch me at all. I'm legally a legal entity. But once I decide to marry these people commit myself responsibility to them, it is illegal. Okay.
other than marriage, you have, for example, barrier customs.
For example, in, in the Muslim world, a person is not buried in a box. You know, you don't have to spend $2,000 to buy a mineral special going away present, right? You know, you wrapped the body in cloth, a hole is dug and is put in the ground. The law in North America says, You got to put them in a box. Okay, so I'm obliged. This is a lot. So if I, my family guys, in America, I put them in a box. I'm obliged. I'm not allowed to practice or upset. You know, and we'll go on, there are other aspects to you know, but I'm not saying I'm not complaining against it. You know, I said the same way I accepted. Hopefully, you know, you are we're here can accept that there are some some
religion of Islam, which we believe to be the final form of a message which was already brought by Jesus and Moses.
As Jesus brought certain reformation, Mohammed brought certain reformation in in deviation, believed deviation, which has taken place in Christianity.
The primary deviation was that in relationship to God and His unity,
evolved into a concept of trinitarianism. And it was not always so there was a struggle which existed in early Christianity, between arianism led by the Bishop of Alexandria areas, and rows of Rome and Greece, who had accepted and adopted a Trinitarian concept of God. So there was a struggle in early Christianity between the Unitarians and the Trinitarian. Islam, the Unitarians lost in 325, Nicene council established that the Trinity was the law. People who are Unitarians were hunted down, declared apostates, their books were burned, you know, and Trinitarian concept became widespread amongst Christians. Islam came bringing back people to the Unitarian concept of God being one not
having different aspects, but one God and the other aspects. As I stated in the Quran, that Jesus was not God.
Christianity fundamentally teaches that Jesus was God. God became man, a rationale was built around this Adam, sin, Adam sin is inherited, with all the generations, so many sins so much, that is not possible for an individual to achieve salvation by himself. You know, human sacrifice is not sufficient. We need a divine sacrifice, God becomes man sacrifices himself for his own pleasure to to
give salvation to human beings. That's the rationale from the Islamic point of view. When Adam committed the error of eating from the forbidden tree he and Eve, they were taught words of forgiveness, they turned back to God and forgiveness they were forgiven, there is no inherited sin. No son carries the sin of his father or father carries the sin of the son. So let's remove this concept. So salvation now became attainable by each and every
Individual, each individual can turn to God in sincere repentance and can achieve salvation. No intermediary is no switchboard that we have to go through to get to God. So Islam came removing the intermediaries, bringing people back to a direct relationship between themselves and God, glorifying that God does not become his creation. Because when we say God becomes his creation, then the Hindu believes that that, you know, it manifests in a cow, or, or in a statue, you know, are some other pagans who believe is manifest in a tree? I mean, these are all aspects of creation. And if you can accept Him as being a man, why can't you accept Him as being a power? Or being a soldier? You know,
it's just your own tradition, which insists that no, he was a man, but he wasn't a cow with no, from Islamic tradition, no, God does not become his creation, He is the Creator. And the creation is distinctly different from him. Our relationship to him is submission and worship of him. So that is the area in terms of the relationship between God and man, which Islam came to clarify and bring back to the tradition, which was taught by Moses and the earlier prophets.
were included in that, of course, is the issue of the saints, you know, the intermediaries, which develops within early Christianity, Catholicism, which is rejected later by Protestantism, but you know, exists within at least half of the 15th of the world. Islam rejected that issue also of sainthood.
Okay, let me get somebody didn't ask the question of
covering the hair.
And he's *ing
announced a $1 million of
all the European Society
sorry for the freedom of expression and the
to sympathize with equate people
with people and we have we have to have
at the same time, many of them
have kids and now what do you make European mentality?
The new generation, each generation for
myself, you know, I cannot say I mean, that is in the hands of God. If it turns out to be well, then that was what was destined. But let me add, also, just to the same idea that you're developing, I know in Philadelphia, a Muslim woman teacher, who already starts not covering her face, I think just wearing a scarf governor here. She was told by the school board, the school administration to remove her scarf. She's not allowed to wear the scarf because this is an expression of it is propagating her religion. Okay, because Christians who wear it's a crock must put it inside the shirt, they cannot wear it out because it's propagation. Similarly, a Jew is wearing a sari, David got the word
inside. But now, a Muslim woman wearing a scarf for something compulsory in the villages. What do you wear a cross outside or inside does not make a distinction. You know, it doesn't make you less of a Christian because you weren't inside or outside. But wearing a scarf picking up a scarf is prohibited for a Muslim woman. And
not only did the school
insist on that, but the school board agreed. And Muslim women who wanted to wear scarves either had to take off the scarf to work out of necessity because they had families to feed or they had to quit the teaching profession. So I mean, this was just I'm just adding
What everybody was saying in terms of certain restrictions, which do occur in the West, you know, concerning the practice in the world, when people talk about freedom of religion, it is truly limited.
It is limited, no doubt.
supposed to come here and talk about different characteristics.
You've got down here
attitudes, your, what your attitude is
coming down to isolated,
taken, just trying to live your life out of the realm of eight original scholars and our guests here. We're not resolved
the gentlemen you
come here for specific
job repairs on the culture and the customer
limit equation. So that part's
a little bit better. We're not interested in what happens to the rest of the world, right here with us.
Sure. I mean, I just wanted to add that myself that, you know, where everybody understands, before coming in here, what the laws are, it's natural curiosity for people to try to understand why, what are the reasons behind it? So I mean, I don't find any offense, and people questioning and asking, you know, why? You know, and I don't think really, it's fair to really take any offense, in a sense, because people are just seeking to understand because the better you understand the rationale, the reasoning, the better, you can deal with it. You know, that's what it is. So anyway, I think, you know,
maybe we talk privately, okay. Because I think now, I mean, many of you are getting restless, I think the conversation has sort of reached its peak, you know, and I know you're getting hungry, and who's around the corner. So let me just close things down now thanking you, you know, for, for coming in, you know, and sharing in this discussion, I hope that it was a benefit to you all, and I hope if anything I've said, you know, was offensive to please accept my apologies that I really did not mean any offense. And similarly, anything that you said, I would not take as offensive or intended to be offensive. Thank you very much.