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Interesting if you can drown out the sunday school drone.
on 31 July 2014
I am "Koran Curious" in the same way I'm bible curious, Hammurabi code curious, Odin, Ra and Silmarillion and Bagavad Gita curious. CJ Werleman's book is useful and informative but, to my mind, unjustifyably deferential and excuse-offering for a work (the koran) that's poorly crafted from an alleged author (Muhammed) whose footprint in history hasn't been exposed, explained or demonstrated to me yet. That is why I read these works.
CJ's opening narrative of a christian thug's demise, circa 525 CE, merits a little research to sate my curiosity. I'm interested to learn (though I'll research elsewhere to confirm) that literacy amongst Islam's leading clerics' "followers" (if you can't read it, how can you follow it?), internationally, suggests fewer muslims have read the koran than christians have read the bible. However, I have learnt by reading this book: Pegasus gets a mention, paedophilia gets an excuse and death is a valid gift for disbelief - evidnce is stronger than assertion.
If this koran (and haddiths) were the final unalterable word of a universe-creating super genius, you'd imagine that morality would be hugely advanced by it and not etched in solely prophet-contemporary terms that demands unsavoury treatment of those who disagree or simply lack a penis? You'd imagine its delivery would be easilly and reliably forwarded globally - even if that meant the invention of incorruptible blockss and indelible ink for a 7th century printing press?
I can understand and in many ways respect CJ's choice of style for this work. But the koran and Muhammed, like the bible, Popol Vuh, Gilgamesh and Beowolf merit study and report that acknowledges their source as the minds of women and men and children, not entities for which the interested organisations have no evidence or argument.
It's great that folk like CJ, Robert M Price, Ophelia Benson, John Loftus, Hector Avalos and Richard Carrier (whose research along with many others is available on kindle) and Robert Spencer are devoting energies to uncover and analyse in appropriately informed context. Only by exposing ourselves to knowledge of those religions - that claim Truth yet underuse truth in discussions of their histories and supporting evidence - can we see them achieve the societal influence that they deserve, ie: so no legal or tax exemptions, no privileged access to our hospitals, military, homes of government, education, law enforcement or child welfare. No dimunition of animal welfare so that religious tradition can be satisfied by avoidable suffering prior to death.
Yes, please have a read of "Koran Curious" and enjoy it more by not setting your expectations too high. Searching for the facts? This book will help.