Posted by: Mark | January 15, 2014

The Koran is not what either side claims it to be

I’ll admit that I have 28 suras out of 114 to go before I finish reading the Koran but so far it looks like most of the claims about it are wrong.

Defenders say the Koran only contains happy peaceful verses like a collection of Peanuts cartoons at Charles Schultz’s sappiest.

Critics claim it’s nothing but warlike rants on non-believers. A statistic that gets thrown around a lot is: “About 61% of the contents of the Koran are found to speak ill of unbelievers or call for their violent conquest.”

That bait-and-switch trick should have been a give-away that the quote is based on bad faith. “61% of the time, John Doe either spent the night watching television or fired atomic bombs into major metropolitan areas.”

Of the 86 sura I’ve read so far, the verses are very repetitive but mainly boil down to “Believers good.” The translation would make a huge difference in the message but it’s not as extreme as either side makes it out to be.

One thought that gets repeated often (in this case Al-Ankabut 29:61) is “If you asked them[unbelievers], ‘Who created the heavens and earth and subjected the sun and the moon?’ they would surely say, ‘ Allah .’ Then how are they deluded?”

Maybe that was true at the time of writing but I doubt if I ask Richard Dawkins “who created the sun?” that he’ll respond with a supernatural being of any sort.

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