Category: unbelief


The Tower of Babel

After the Deluge, Noah’s descendants settled in the lowlands of Sinear, not far from the Euphrates. The spoke a common language and formed a single community. Genesis 11 tells their story: ‘And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.’ In addition, the tower had to serve as a landmark to keep people together, despite the fact that God had commanded Noah and his sons to ‘replenish’ the earth (Genesis 9:1). Also, the tower could be used as a safe haven in case of a new flood.The Tower of Babel

God looked down upon these industrious souls, and judged that in their ambition they were trying to equal him. So he decided to punish them with the Confusion of Tongues. Since people could no longer understand each other, they were scattered over the earth at last. The site of the event would from that day on be known as Babel, apparently meaning ‘confusion’. Continue reading

Advertisements

Apocrypha

The origin of the word apocryphon is Greek, meaning “closed” or “hidden”. This refers to the books being kept away from common souls. St. Jerome (Hieronymus, ca. 342-420) used the word to indicate the books that were not part of the Jewish Bible, the Tanakh, but were included in the Greek Septuagint Bible. Today the word usually refers to a series of mostly pre-Christian religious books not part of the official, canonical Bible.

Most of the apocryphal books in the King James Version are part of the Old Testament in the Catholic Bible. Catholics refer to these books as deuterocanonical: they are part of the Bible (i.e. canonical), but became so only after the first list had been determined (hence deutero). The deuterocanonical books of the Old Testament are: Tobit, Judith, Wisdom of Solomon, Sirach, Baruch, 1 en 2 Maccabees and the Additions to Daniel and Esther. Some books in the New Testament are also considered deuterocanonical: Hebrews, 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, James, Jude and Revelation. Protestants, however, regard these books as fully canonical. Continue reading

The word “Muslim” means one who submits to the will of God, regardless of their race, nationality or ethnic background. Becoming a Muslim is a simple and easy process that requires no pre-requisites. One may convert alone in privacy, or he/she may do so in the presence of others.

If anyone has a real desire to be a Muslim and has full conviction and strong belief that Islam is the true religion of God, then, all one needs to do is pronounce the “Shahada”, the testimony of faith, without further delay. The “Shahada” is the first and most important of the five pillars of Islam.

With the pronunciation of this testimony, or “Shahada”, with sincere belief and conviction, one enters the fold of Islam.

Upon entering the fold of Islam purely for the Pleasure of God, all of one’s previous sins are forgiven, and one starts a new life of piety and righteousness. The Prophet said to a person who had placed the condition upon the Prophet in accepting Islam that God would forgive his sins:

“Do you not know that accepting Islam destroys all sins which come before it?” (Saheeh Muslim)

When one accepts Islam, they in essence repent from the ways and beliefs of their previous life. One need not be overburdened by sins committed before their acceptance, but if the sin involved usurping a right of another human, such as stealing, then they should strive their utmost to return what was wrongly taken. The person’s record is clean, and it is as if he was just born from his mother’s womb. One should try as much as possible to keep his records clean and strive to do as many good deeds as possible.

The Holy Quran and Hadeeth both stress the importance of following Islam. God states:

“The only religion in the sight of God is Islam.“ (Quran 3:19)

In another verse of the Holy Quran, God states:

“If anyone desires a religion other than Islam, never will it be accepted of him; and in the Hereafter, he will be in the ranks of those who have lost (their selves in the Hellfire).” (Quran 3:85)

In another saying, Muhammad, the Prophet of God, said:

“Whoever testifies that there in none worthy of being worshipped but God, Who has no partner, and that Muhammad is His slave and Prophet, and that Jesus is the Slave of God, His Prophet, and His word[1] which He bestowed in Mary and a spirit created from Him; and that Paradise (Heaven) is true, and that the Hellfire is true, God will eventually admit him into Paradise, according to his deeds.” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari) Continue reading

I was in Chittagong this past week, went to attend a Gaye Holud (adorning with turmeric) ceremony of my catholic Christian friend- Petros Mendes. It has been quite a while that I had been out of the city. This event came at a great time as I badly needed time out from the mundane events of my extraordinarily stressful life.

           My stress is not with infinite workloads but with people! I sometimes feel that people I love or who I’m close to have this uncanny knack of making my life miserable. While I was in Chitts, Petros’ brother Stan was telling me not to cut my nails at night or throw away my fallen hair, just anywhere. I was puzzled by an educated man telling me this. I’ve heard such tales before from uneducated Maids at our house since I was a child. I could surely not expect Stan, of all people to be parting with Superstitious advice. I enquired for his reasoning of his tale. To my dismay he told me that most Chittagonians believe in Black Magic and that it was a way of life for them. As a matter of fact, Black Magic seems to be used frequently among the ignorant people of Bangladesh, mostly in the rural areas. Ppl use this to get back at their enemies, to cause harm to the one they envy, to enslave ppl, or to marry the man/woman that one desires, a form of enslavement.

        Black Magic is forbidden in Islam, which is mentioned in the Holy Qur’an. If anyone practices the art of Magic, which is always Black, one will become an unbeliever-Kufr. He/she will incur the curse of Allah.

 They followed what the evil ones gave out (falsely) against the power of Solomon; the blasphemers were not Solomon but the evil ones teaching men magic and such things as came down at Babylon to the angels Harut and Marut.  But neither of these taught anyone (such things) without saying: “We are only for trial, so do not blaspheme.” They learned from them the means to sow discord between man and wife. But they could not thus harm anyone except by Allah’s permission.  And they learned what harmed them not what profited them.  And they knew that the buyers of (magic) would have no share in the happiness of the Hereafter.  And vile was the price for which they did sell their souls if they but knew!

                 If they had kept their faith and guarded themselves from evil far better had been the reward from their Lord if they but knew!” (Verses 102 & 103-Surah Baqarah; Al Qur’an) Continue reading

Examples are shown to me… and examples are many…sometimes i’m made to be an example of what one should not be… talk is cheap.. actions are what really counts in life..one such example was a visitor we had.. in a house he resided here, an abode of a fellow brother of ours. the place is more like a guest house…no a.. a lair!… with a rooftopp for smoking pot and gazing at the stars, engaging in idle talk and a place to waste time & get wasted..and peeping at the neighbours that just moved in was a usual past time.

I’ll call him ‘the token white guy’. He came among us at an integral time in the history of filthy political upheaval, weddings & the chills of the minute south-asian winter season..with unbelief & criticism in his mind…always looking for a jolly good story to tell from all the travels that he has made..his cultural origins & percpective a far cry from what we, the so-called third worlders know as life to be.. he brought along with him the concept of secular thought & governance, which i vehemently oppose! i might add..he was a white man & we third worlders love to lick white ass!.. but he got very little of his hindside licked on the fourth trip that he made to Sultry Dhaka!

Continue reading