I put down William Penn’s Sword


There is a famous Quaker parable which consists of an exchange between William Penn, and George Fox. Penn is regarded as the father of Democracy in the United States. Thomas Jefferson called him "the greatest law giver the world has produced." He was also a Quaker, a pacifist, and the founder of Pennsylvania in 1682. The principles of representative government, separation of church and state, and elimination of nobility in Pennsylvania were largely the inspiration for including those … [Read more...]

Talking Bitcoin at the Peace Convention

Last month I was invited to the Peace Convention hosted by the American Muslim Voice Foundation to appear on an interfaith panel on income inequality, and it has taken me about a month to collect my thoughts about what was said. I don't think about economics I those terms, primarily because actual equality in income would require incredible violence to establish and would disappear the moment someone made a purchase. None the less, I prefer not to shy away from any opportunity to discuss Bitcoin … [Read more...]

The Verse of the Sword


9:5 "Fight and slay the pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war)." Sounds scary right? It's known as "The Verse of the Sword", and admittedly many Muslims have used this verse to justify their corrupt intentions. However, it does not establish a doctrine of perpetual violent jihad against all non-Muslims for all time, as the Anti-Muslim Brain Trust would have you believe. I will show this, and then we'll discuss some … [Read more...]

Free To Dance, And Not To Dance


I was recently at an event. Not a Muslim event. It was actually more of a business networking type event. As a self employed person I found it hugely useful. The host was something of a motivational speaker, and the material was mostly about acknowledging your value so you don't sell yourself short in a negotiation or business deal. The whole thing had a kind of self-help vibe, complete with some new age style emotional coddling. There were breathing exercises, gestures of appreciation, story … [Read more...]

No Compulsion In Religion


"There shall be no compulsion in religion: For Truth has become distinct from error, and whoever rejects falsehood and believes in God has grasped the most trustworthy handhold, which never breaks. And God is Hearing and Knowing." (Quran 2:256) The placement of this verse in the Quran remarkable. It immediately follows The Verse of the Thrown, which is the most read, most widely memorized, and most prolifically displayed verse in the Quran. The Verse of the Thrown is the John 3:16 of the … [Read more...]

Fitra: Creation

In Fitra Part I we defined the Islamic concept of Original Virtue from the Arabic root fa-ta-ra. To review briefly, the word Fitra is derived from a verb which means, "to split, to cleave asunder, to knead or shape like dough." It also connotes repetition. From the Islamic paradigm we are born with Original Virtue which includes both an instinct for right action and knowledge of God in preexistence. One of the Divine attributes of God is Al Fatir, meaning "The Originator" which is derived … [Read more...]

Fitra: Original Virtue Not Original Sin

During Prophet Muhammad’s night journey and ascension the Angel Gabriel brought him a vessel of wine and a vessel of milk and he was made to choose. He chose milk, to which Gabriel said, “You have chosen Fitra.” Common definitions of Fitra include, “innate predisposition” or “primordial nature.” This event occurred during the Meccan period before any prohibition of alcohol. So, we know that part of choosing Fitra is conformity to an inclination toward right action we have … [Read more...]