An Introduction to Islam for Jews by Reuven Firestone PhD

By Reuven Firestone PhD

Muslim-Jewish kinfolk within the usa, Israel, and Europe are tenuous. Jews and Muslims fight to appreciate each other and comprehend little approximately each one other's traditions and ideology. Firestone explains the notable similarities and profound variations among Judaism and Islam, the complicated background of Jihad, the criminal and non secular positions of Jews on this planet of Islam, how quite a few expressions of Islam (Sunni, Shi`a, Sufi, Salafi, etc.) regard Jews, the variety of Muslim perspectives approximately Israel, and masses extra. He addresses those concerns and others with candor and integrity, and he writes with language, symbols, and concepts that make feel to Jews. Exploring those topics in state-of-the-art vexed political weather is a fragile venture. Firestone attracts at the examine and writings of generations of Muslim, Jewish, and different students, in addition to his personal substantial services during this box. The book's tone is neither disparaging, apologetic, nor triumphal. Firestone presents many unique resources in translation, in addition to an appendix of extra key assets in context. most significantly, this e-book is readable and reasoned, providing to readers for the 1st time the complexity of Islam and its courting towards Jews and Judaism.

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The history of the world in the great Muslim compendia contains many of the stories found in the Bible, including Creation, the stories of Adam and Eve, the expulsion from the Garden, Cain and Abel, many of the biblical genealogies, the story of Noah and the Flood, and other narratives that take place in ancient Persia and Arabia. Many of the stories are recognizable from parallels in other literatures, but they are unique in their Islamic narrations, and the core of many are found in the Qur’an.

For your Lord is most generous, 4 Who teaches by the pen, 5 teaches humanity what it knows not.  2 These lines appear in a rhymed prose style known as saj`, a form not unlike some pre-Islamic oral poetry recited by individuals who were thought to have been possessed by demons. The demons endowed them with hidden knowledge and enabled them to recite complex Arabic forms. The context for this revelation is not found in the Qur’an itself, but is provided by interpretations. According to one, Muhammad thought that he had become possessed by such a demon and said, “None of God’s creatures was more hateful to me than an [ecstatic] poet or man possessed .

2 After these revelations there was silence for a while, and Muhammad began to doubt himself and his worthiness to receive divine revelation. Finally, a third revelation came that not only reassured him but gave him his first instructions: By the early morning light And by the night when it is still 3 Your Lord has not left you nor does He hate you. 4 What follows will be better for you than what has already been. 5 Your Lord will surely give to you and you will be content. 6 Did He not find you an orphan and shelter you?

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