“The best Mother’s day present I got this year was the death as a shahid [martyr] of Abbas” as quoted in the official Palestinian Authority daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, on March 21, 2001 (cited Pipes, 2001)
Can you imagine your mother saying something like that? I hope not. This quote is not rare amongst women in Islamic Societies. All over the Muslim world, Moms pray for the deaths of their children. Just before Mothers’ day Sujit Das takes a look at Mothers in the Islamofacist world and how they “love” their kids by praying that they die, if you call that love:
SILENT GRIEF OF THE WORSHIPPERS OF DEATH
by Sujit DasWhenever I feel lonely, I sit in silence and look back nostalgically on my golden childhood days. During those days, there was hardly any fun available for children – no television, no computer games, no Harry Potter. But we had something really valuable that today’s children of nuclear families rarely have. We had loving grandparents almost in every home who used to tell us bedtime stories. One such story that I heard from my grandmother, is still vivid in my mind. There was a handsome young man in a village who was always happy. But one day his mood changed. He looked sad all the time. His mother noticed the change in her son. ‘Son’, she said. ‘Why are you sad’? The son explained what bothered him. He had fallen in love with a beautiful woman in the next village and wanted to marry her. But, this woman was as beautiful as she was wicked. She would only marry a man who would bring her a human heart, still fresh and warm, as a gift. The son looked at his mother and said, “Mother, I will kill myself if I do not marry her…” The mother knew straight away what must be done. She loved her son as much a mother ever loved a son. She went to her kitchen, took a knife and advised her son to cut her heart out. The stupid son, blind in love for the cruel woman, did not give a single thought, cut his mother’s heart, wrapped it in a thick cloth to present it to his beloved. The son was in a hurry and ran towards the door as fast as possible. Just then he tripped and fell and the heart fell out of his hands. And the young man cried out aloud, “Ah! I’m hurt! My knee!” And the mother’s heart cried out aloud, “My son! Are you all right”? This tale has a deep impression on me. It carries the message that parental love towards their children is unconditional. It’s a natural pattern of behavior. Therefore, the parents love their children even when they least deserve to be loved. It’s Divine, as a Jewish proverb goes like this, “God could not be everywhere and therefore He made mothers.” Children are God’s heritage. The greatest trust that a couple can receive from God is to be blessed with a new life so frail, so dependent and so sweet. Parents have a sacred obligation to the God to rear their children in love and righteousness and hence should make its care a top priority. But strange enough, we get a complete different picture when we look at those Muslim families, where parents celebrate publicly if their child had successfully killed himself in a suicide mission along with many other innocent victims. Often this celebration is like a wedding ceremony, where hundreds of friends and neighbors flock to the home and parents of the deceased child distribute sweets with broad smile on their faces. The neighbors and friends congratulate the joyful parents on the death of their child. Parents and siblings often speak of their pride and honored by the society. There are several reported incidents, available from reliable sources and published on newspapers with photographs, hence Muslims cannot deny them. One such abnormal Muslim mother of a suicide bomber reported to have said, “The best Mother’s day present I got this year was the death as a shahid [martyr] of Abbas” as quoted in the official Palestinian Authority daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, on March 21, 2001 (cited Pipes, 2001). Zahra Maladan, an educated woman who edits a women’s magazine in Lebanon, was quoted in the New York Times giving the following warning to her son, “if you’re not going to follow the steps of the Islamic resistance martyrs, then I don’t want you.” (cited Dershowitz, 2008). Mabrook Idris, the mother of the first female Palestinian suicide bomber, proudly declared, “I am proud that my daughter died for Palestine, proud that she gave her life for us all. Thank God. Thank God.” (Richardson, 2006; p. 163) After a 22 year old suicide bomber killed 21 Israelis at a Tel Aviv discotheque, his father announced: “I am very happy and proud of what my son did and, frankly, am a bit jealous… I wish I had done it myself.” (Pipes, 2001). Another Tel Aviv suicide bomber’s father was proud about his son, “He has become a hero! Tell me, what more could a father ask?” (Pipes, 2001). In January, 2006, terrorist group Hamas announced that, for Palestinian parliamentary elections, one of its candidates was Umm Nidal. The only claim to fame of Umm Nidal was that she proudly sent three of her sons to die for Allah in terrorist attacks against Israeli targets. Umm Nidal is reported (cited Spencer, 2005, p. 102) to have said, “Because I love my son, I encouraged him to die a martyr’s death for the sake of Allah …. jihad is a religious obligation incumbent upon us, and we must carry it out.” And elsewhere, “I prayed from the depths of my heart that Allah would cause the success of his operation… I encouraged all my sons to die a martyr’s death, and I wish this even for myself”. When the operation was over, the media broadcast the news and Umm Nidal was informed of her son’s death, she began to cry. Tears of joy rolled down from her eyes on her son’s death. (MEMRI, 2002) Ikrima Sabri, the PA’s ranking religious leader, said, “The younger the martyr, the greater and the more I respect him,” while praising mothers who “willingly sacrifice their offspring for the sake of freedom.” (Pipes, 2001) In one Islamic school, the words to a children’s song go, “How pleasant is the smell of martyrs, how pleasant is the smell of land, the land enriched by the blood, the blood pouring out of a fresh body.” (Pipes, 2001). A twelve year old Palestinian child, Abu Ali wished, “I hope to be a Martyr…I hope when I get 14 or 15 to explode myself.” His mother Om Muhammad gives him training with a toy suicide bomber costume and is proud of her son, “I encourage him, and he should do this”. (Jeff, 2004) And lastly, no wonder, Present Bush is shocked, “I just cannot understand this”. (Pipes, 2001) But Mr. Bush, you are not thunderstruck alone. Apparent denial of the primal human urge to protect one’s young just gives a shock to the civilized people, because it’s just unbelievable for them and it upsets their logical way of thinking. It is beyond the capacity of any sane man to understand. Many people regard it as reprehensible to even think about it, because we are used to see a different kind of parenthood and a civilized society consists of highly protective child-centered households. Is it possible that the powerful beliefs and practices, sanctioned by the norms of Islam can cause such a brainwashing, so that even the parents rejoice at the death of their children, celebrate and dance in joy on the premature graves of their own children? Is it really possible that a certain section of human race, who calls themselves Muslims, has lowered themselves to the lowermost level of lowest grade animals to satisfy their God? Muslims call themselves slaves of Allah, but again, how much loyalty Allah demands? What all the Godly qualities Allah possesses? We all know that wildlife is slowly decreasing in the jungles but should we start believing that it is rapidly increasing amongst Muslim families? The relationship between mother and child is of a special category and sacred. The child is a part of its mother’s physical being before birth and continues to be dependent upon her (or a substitute) for a considerable period subsequently. Undoubtedly, the development of artificial feeding has modified this close dependence, but experience in rearing motherless infants has shown that the deprivation of close continuous contact with a mother figure in early infancy produces adverse result. The mother figure can be any suitable person, and experiments with monkeys have shown that for them even a small length of wire or a piece of cloth can serve as ‘mothers’ in some senses. (Seals, 1968; p. 302, 303). The relationship between a father and his daughter is also sacred because this is the only relationship, where there is complete lack of acrimony and conflict (Jayaram & Saberwal, 1996, p. 38). The death celebration of the young martyrs by their parents will even shock the animal world, leave aside humans. With some exceptions e.g pigs often eat their own offspring (Hitchens, 2007. p. 38, Wikipedia, 2008a) and also female wolf spiders that often consume their young (Anon, 2007); cannibalistic infanticide of newborn offspring, by a mother animal is rare. The animals in general, love and protect their young like humans. In birds and lower mammals (for example, rats), mothers and offspring are bound together by mechanisms which appear to be largely biological and ‘instinctive’. For animals these actions are performed in a highly standardized and stereotyped way. But, for higher mammals and humans such material behavior is no longer entirely biological and automatic but dependent on complex learning process and hence cultural; as Hurd (1986, p. 202) has observed, there is a wide variety of ways of treating children, ranging from neglect and selective infanticide in some societies, to the highly protective, child-centered households of modern western societies. In short, although there is a physical dependence between a mother and her offspring, material behavior is largely learnt from the customs, values and beliefs of the society; as these differ, so do the relations between mother and child. Our experience shows; the customs, beliefs and ethical values of the Muslim society are, to a vast extent, different from that of a non-Muslim society. But Hurd’s sociological theory does not explain everything in details, and hence it is intended to look at Durkhem’s famous work on social integration for further understanding. We are social animals and hence, without ‘social integration’ (the nature of social links which attach individuals to social groups outside themselves), we cannot survive. As per Durkheim (1897; p.209), the three groups that have the qualities of social integration are the family group, the religious group, and the political or national group. Out of the above three groups, family is the basic unit of society and the most important primary group to mankind (Jayaram & Saberwal, 1996, p. 29). It is also the strongest one amongst all the above three groups. Though the word ‘family’ has its origin in a Latin word which could be roughly equated a ‘domestic group’, but for sociological purposes, family and domestic groups are sharply distinguished. A domestic group may be made of individuals between no kinship ties exist, but in a family the members are either related by biological or legal kinship or lawful sexual intercourse. (Seals, 1968. p. 302). In a family, each member is expected to play a certain role which might change according to age. Here each member has some expectations from other members and from the family as a whole. Also the family itself has some expectations from each member. When everyone is playing their roles and all these expectations are fulfilled to a reasonable extent, the members are happy and this is what we call a happy family. As Feldman & Scherz (1967, p. 67) concluded, “The healthy family carries out explicit and implicit roles, appropriately according to age, competence and needs during all the different stages of family life”. The members of a happy family hardly look for solace elsewhere and hence it is very rare that they would be a part of an orthodox religious group. There is hardly any religious fanaticism amongst those who lead happy family life. To continue with the above quotation about an unhappy family, “The disturbed family experiences serious difficulty in the management of roles” Now, if we look at the Muslim families, we will find that, throughout the history of Islam, Muslim families are often unhealthy and unhappy due to several reasons. As Tolstoy (cited Anderson & Carter, 1984. p. 137) observed, “All happy families resemble each other, each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way”. There is lack of education, poor work ethics, polygamy, concubinage, lack of finance, mindless superstitious beliefs, domestic violence, large families, slavery of women folks, monotonous daily rituals etc, make those families backward, unproductive and unhealthy. As per one prepublication overview (cited Allen & Thomas, 2000. p. 409) from World Bank report, “Poor countries — and poor people — differ from rich ones not only because they have less capital, but they have less knowledge”. This is the biggest problem the Muslims are facing today. Since the structure of a Muslim family varies from place to place; the sources, the nature and the consequences of conflict within it are obviously varied. As a family is the basic unit of society, hence conflict within the family has far reaching consequences for the wider social fabric. A Muslim family is dominated by male authority which is prescribed and supported by Sha’ria law. It really developed a device where a family is under the private ownership of property of a male member. Even a modern individual Muslim family is founded on the open or concealed domestic slavery of the wife. An educated Muslim wife is nothing but a ‘darling little slave’ and the married status permits the man to benefit from the fruits of woman’s work. In addition to the above, often coercion is used as an instrument of resolution of differences. Domestic violence, either psychological or physical, remains a method of resolving husband-wife differences (Jayaram & Saberwal, 1996, p. 101). In a Muslim family, domestic violence is always directed against women. Sadly, not only by the husband (as prescribed in Qur’an 4:34), but by the son also. Quotes (cited Allen and Thomas, 2000. p. 69) from poor backward married women in Bangladesh. “A good wife is one who makes sure her husband has enough to eat” “If a woman eats before her husband, she shortens his life” “When I can, I give my husband and sons more. Men don’t understand if food runs short, so I wait till they have eaten. ” “If there is less, I eat less. You have to feed the men more or they beat you. Even my son beats me if there is not enough food.” Any sane person will die in shame, but for Muslims, it makes no difference. In civilized societies, the available food, if insufficient, is evenly consumed by all family members together, because the age-old truth is, ‘The family that eats together, stays together’; but unfortunately our Muslim brothers will never understand this. Not only in Bangladesh, but in other poor Islamic countries, the situation is almost same if not worse. The mother, as Gandhi (cited Khoshoo, 1995, p. 25) had viewed, “she creates, cares, shares and does not destroy”, definitely deserves a better respect. But amongst Muslims, the man takes the lion’s share of the diet rejecting his wife and mother even gets bashed up by her son over some food. Islam is a shame on humanity. The family as a system of roles is an important theme in the literature of family analysis. As Goode (1964, p. 1) wrote, “In all known societies, almost everyone lives his life enmeshed in a network of family rights and obligations called role relations. A person is made aware of his role relations through a long period of socialization during his childhood, a process in which he learns how others in his family expect him to behave, and in which he himself comes to feel this is both the right and desirable way to act ”. In a Muslim family, the male child grows up seeing his mother regularly being beaten up by his father. He simply continues the tradition by believing that this what ‘others in his family expect him to behave’. And the tradition of woman slavery carried on unabated. A report (cited Goodwin, 1994; p. 44) concerning the status of women in Pakistan concluded, “The average women is born into near slavery, leads a life of drudgery, and dies invariably in oblivion.” Child abuse by their parents is also sanctioned in Islam. As per Sunan Abu Dawud Book 2, Number 0495, The Apostle of Allah (PBUH) said: Command your children to pray when they become seven years old, and beat them for it (prayer) when they become ten years old; and arrange their beds (to sleep) separately. The sacred relationships between mother / son and brother / sister often get a new definition in Islam. During 11th century, the Ismailis (a radical sect of Islam) used to live without law, as Lewis (1967, p. 2) wrote, “[the Ismailis] make use of all women [for sex] without distinction including their mothers and sisters”. Sexual relationships with own mother and sister is just unthinkable to a right-minded person, but there is enough proof that at least one sect of Islam, the Ismailis had practiced this regularly sometime in the recorded history of Islam. It is also recorded in history, that those Ismailis were actually fundamentalist Muslims, who most probably, were more loyal to Allah than any other Muslims throughout the Islamic history. On top of this there are honor killings which are intended to purify the family from its shame. Hence, brothers kill sisters, cousins kill cousins, fathers kill daughters, mother kills sons, and even sons kill mothers. Now, in this situation, many people are over-absorbed into the web of religious society, which is the second strongest group for social integration. Here the social life is completely focused on the ethics of religious group, the individual ego is overwhelmed by the religious ego and own individual expression may not be permitted. People live in such a close proximity of one another that their social customs and beliefs tend to be unified. When there is an over indulgence in religious beliefs (of any religion), the individual either becomes a Saint or a Satan. It depends on the teachings of the religious group and to what extent an individual is indoctrinated. Our experience shows, a Christian or Buddhist or Hindu, with deep and sincere religious devotion; can become one Mother Teresa, Dalai Lama or Gandhi. But in cult scenes and in Islam, we get leaders like, Jim Jones, David Koresh, Joseph Kony, Ayatollah Khomeini, Osama Bin Laden, Ahmadinejad, Mullah Omar etc. We cannot say Dalai Lama, Mother Teresa or Gandhi is more religious and more sincere than Osama Bin Laden, Ahmadinejad or Mullah Omar. The argument is about something else – what are the teachings (and demands) of that religious group? In former case, no matter how much religious indoctrination is there, the individuals are capable of free thinking and reasoning. For them, the art of reasoning becomes the first importance over all religious expectations. But in the later case; the individual has very little independence from group life. Here, individual has no private life that is immune from collective surveillance and they are available to social claims upon their allegiance. The individual existence, by itself, has very little meaning; because the reasoning faculty which is inbuilt in an individual is skillfully destroyed by the religious society, so much so that the very word ‘logic’ appears ‘illogical’ to them. This is what we call ‘fanaticism’, As Churchill (cited Copi & Cohen, 1994. p.200) concluded, “A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and would not change the subject”. Collective supervision and strict surveillance extend throughout this society, leading to similarity in beliefs and social observance. For this reason; life under a cult and under Islam cannot make progress and hence stagnated. As Pilon (cited Copi & Cohen, 1994. p. v) wrote, “Civilized life depends upon the success of reason in social intercourse, the prevalence of logic over violence in interpersonal conflict”. Islam like other cults builds up an “exit cost” of leaving the group. In fact, this is one of the greatest defining features of a cult. The harder it is to leave, the more dangerous the cult. In Islam, the punishment for apostasy is death. This is how the individualism under Islam is under-developed. The individual is deprived of his natural liberty, which as per Gandhi (cited Khoshoo, 1995, p. 51) is “the starvation of soul”. At certain moment, the religious society often demands a testimony or witness to that faith. In Islam, this is ‘martyrdom’, which is thus an evidence of his loyalty to Islamic faith and his readiness to suffer and die for it (Lewis, 2003; p. 33). Durkheim (1897; p. 219) observed, “[At this time] the weight of the society is brought to bear on the individual to destroy themselves” and the individual mentally prepares himself for the obligation of his faith, ie, Jihad – the Holy war, to kill and die for Allah. As Ayatollah Khomeini said (cited Dershowitz, 2008) in a speech: “It is the zenith of honor for a man, a young person, boy or girl, to be prepared to sacrifice his life in order to serve the interests of his nation and his religion.” When these duties are carried out, society confers a social honor upon them that is thought to extend to the afterlife. A sacrifice for Islam is pretty different from a patriotic sacrifice or a social sacrifice. As Dawkins (2006, p. 306) had viewed; in the later two cases, the ‘rational calculation’ is not silenced as in the former case. A sacrifice for Allah is nothing but a mindless violence. But the irony of the situation is that, it never comes to the mind of the individual that the cleric himself does not practice what he preaches. This is the height of mind-control capability of Islam. The leaders or the planners of a suicide attack never offer their own children as martyr. When a suggestion was made to one such planner, the planner, Sheikh Yassin replied smartly by saying, “We do not choose the martyrs to die. Allah chooses them” (Richardson, 2006; p. 158). In excessive fanaticism, the individual sacrifices his life for he actually felt the ‘joy of sacrifice’ (Morrison, 1995; p. 179). To act in this way, the individual literally must have no meaningful family life of his or her own (at least, s/he should believe so or s/he should be convinced so by the cleric), since only after death does the individual believe that his or her true being has been realized. In further extreme cases of fanaticism, this ‘joy of sacrifice’ extends to the parents as well. The worshippers of death happily teach their children to idealize death and to view it as a positive. In many cases, the children are told that death is not end at all, but rather the beginning of a new life. And after a successful suicide mission, the parents rejoice at the death of their children and celebrate the death. They also expect to be praised by the neighbors, friends and relatives on their child’s premature death. This is how Islam wants to give a new meaning to the parental love. The true unconditional parental love, which is a natural pattern of behavior, is suppressed by Islam. This is another proof that Islam is a cult, not a religion. But a doubt again rose in our minds. If parental love is divine, how it can be suppressed by a cult which glorifies hate? There is obviously a struggle between the two and the Divine law must win. Yes, ultimately the Divine Law indeed wins. The Muslim mother, like any other mother, carries her child for the nine months while the child grows inside her. She is also a mother and a human like a western mother, who undoubtedly loves her son. The Muslim parents have ambitions for their children which are different from those in the West. These parents want the child to become a suicide bomber, because it is a demand from Islam. Islam had damaged their rational faculty and caused them to rejoice at their children’s death. Hence, it is not the parents who should be blamed, but the satanic cult, Islam, itself. There is no doubt that parental love is Godly and, there is absolutely no doubt that Muslim parents are not an exception. After all, Muslims are also Human beings and possess Human values. It is the misfortune of the civilized world that a certain section of Human race has lost their Human values that are subdued by the ‘cult mind-control’ tactics of Islam. It is the sacred duty of the civilized world to liberate the Muslims from the captivity of Islamic cult. It is absolutely unnecessary, that while looking at Muslims we should act like a ‘gutter inspector’. Gandhi and Mother Teresa never taught us this. Christ hated the sin (John 8:11, Hebrews 1:9) but loved the sinner (Luke 23:34). Saint Augustine (The City of God, Book 14, Chapter 6) wrote, “… neither hate the man because of his vice, nor love the vice because of the man, but hate the vice and love the man” The Muslim parents certainly mourn at the loss of their beloved children. But they have to do it silently, away from ‘collective surveillance’ and public eyes. The clerics always keep a vigilant eye so that the lamentations are not reported. And this is where the Divine Law wins ultimately. A true mother may be momentarily scared of Allah and hellfire, but this does not last long because the ‘mother instinct’ comes to senses very soon. As example, the mother of the first female Palestinian suicide bomber, Mabrook Idris initially declared in front of the media, “I am proud that my daughter [Wafa] died for Palestine, proud that she gave her life for us all. Thank God. Thank God”. As word of Wafa’s death and her mother’s happy expression spread through Television and newspaper, the leaders of Al-Aqsa arrived at her home in Ramallah with sweets and posters emblazoned with photographs of Wafa. Initially the atmosphere was joyous and the festival was going well – a neighbor described it as, ‘a wedding with eternity’, but shortly, however, the mother could not act anymore. The moment she regained her faculty, she broke into uncontrollable tears and confessed openly in front of the guests, “If I had known what she was going to do, I would have stopped her, I grieve for my daughter.” (Richardson, 2006; p. 163). Similarly, the father of Ayat al-Akhras, another 16 year old female suicide bomber, used almost the same words, “Had I known she was planning to do such a thing, I would have locked the door and thrown away the key.” (Richardson, 2006; p. 163). Another male member of Ayat’s family, lamented, “May God forgive her for what she has done” (Wikipedia, 2008b) The mother of another suicide bomber Ribhi Kahlout told Nasra Hassan (a researcher on suicide bomber’s mindset) that had she learned of her son’s plans, “I would have taken a cleaver, cut open my heart, and stuffed him deep inside. Then I would have sewn it up tight to keep him safe” (Richardson, 2006; p. 163). Was Gandhi wrong when he said, “There are times when you have to obey a call which is the highest of all i.e., the voice of conscious even though such obedience may cost many a bitter tears… for this obedience is the law of our being” ? (Khoshoo, 1995. p. 51). And, when such momentarily misguided Muslim parents shed few drops of genuine tears for their departed child, the Humanity triumphs over Islamic fanaticism, the Divine truth triumphs over the satanic deception and the religion of God triumphs over the cult of the Devil. At the very moment their all sins are washed away with tears. The real God of Humankind cries with those misguided Muslim parents who are innocent captives and the brainwashed victims of the Islamic cult. After all, every parent has a sacred obligation to the God to rear their children with a top priority and not to wish their death. Islam created a barrier for which, those misguided parents could not do their duties. And, this is where Islam fails miserably. Islam fails because it is abnormal and unnatural. Islam is a satanic cult in the guise of a religion. It’s a cult of death. A cult has no Divine touch. The real God has nothing to do with Allah, Qur’an or Islam; these are produced in the workshop of Devil. If our God demands bloodshed and death of our own children, then certainly we are not created by that God. Islam teaches something which is contrary to the normal and beyond the expectation of God from His creation. Islam separates the child from the parents, the brother from the sister. Islam destroys a happy family, a healthy society and ultimately a mighty nation. Islam demands blood, preaches hate. In the kingdom of God only love is real and there is no place for hate. References Books
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