Discussion:
Mecca and Aljazeera English
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Yusuf B Gursey
2015-09-18 16:57:35 UTC
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Aljazeera English (the main newscasts are broadcast in Aljazeera America as=
well) in its reports of about the coming Hajj season keeps repeating "Mecc=
a, the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad". I'm not going into the veracity=
of this, at present that is the best information available, but this is no=
t supposed to be what the main point of the Hajj is about. Aljazeera staff =
certainly knows better. Any thoughts?

Perhaps because involoving Abraham in Arabia would be met with contreversy =
among an English speaking, non-Muslim audience?
Catherine Jefferson
2015-09-18 17:29:50 UTC
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Post by Yusuf B Gursey
Aljazeera English (the main newscasts are broadcast in Aljazeera America as=
well) in its reports of about the coming Hajj season keeps repeating "Mecc=
a, the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad". I'm not going into the veracity=
of this, at present that is the best information available, but this is no=
t supposed to be what the main point of the Hajj is about. Aljazeera staff =
certainly knows better. Any thoughts?
I would not assume that Al Jazeera staff necessarily know better. They
have non-Muslim American and European reporters as well as reporters
from the Middle East. I grant that their reporters *should* be familiar
with the basic tenets of Islam, just as reporters for CNN or the New
York Times should be familiar with the basic tenets of Christianity.
However, "should" plus $2.50 will get you a cup of coffee at Starbucks.
<wry grin>

More to the point, Al Jazeera appears to me to be a mostly-secular news
source, although not a western news source. I read it mostly because of
the second part -- it's an excellent counterbalance to CNN and the BBC.
Most secular news sources do a singularly poor job of covering
religious issues, though.
Post by Yusuf B Gursey
Perhaps because involoving Abraham in Arabia would be met with contreversy =
among an English speaking, non-Muslim audience?
OK, I missed something. You were talking about the Prophet Muhammed,
and then all of the sudden switched to the Prophet Abraham. Both the
Bible and the Quran state that Abraham was born in "Ur of the Chaldees",
although which city this was or where it was located remains in dispute.
I've never heard any dispute that Muhammed was born in Mecca, and was a
member of the Banu Hashim tribe.

Obviously you see a connection. So how about sketching in a few of the
intermediate steps for us? ;)
--
Catherine Jefferson <***@ergosphere.net>
Blog/Personal: http://www.ergosphere.net
Yusuf B Gursey
2015-09-18 17:48:46 UTC
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On Friday, September 18, 2015 at 7:30:04 PM UTC+3, Catherine Jefferson wrot=
Post by Catherine Jefferson
Aljazeera English (the main newscasts are broadcast in Aljazeera Americ=
a as=3D
Post by Catherine Jefferson
well) in its reports of about the coming Hajj season keeps repeating "=
Mecc=3D
Post by Catherine Jefferson
a, the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad". I'm not going into the vera=
city=3D
Post by Catherine Jefferson
of this, at present that is the best information available, but this i=
s no=3D
Post by Catherine Jefferson
t supposed to be what the main point of the Hajj is about. Aljazeera st=
aff =3D
Post by Catherine Jefferson
certainly knows better. Any thoughts?
=20
I would not assume that Al Jazeera staff necessarily know better. They
have non-Muslim American and European reporters as well as reporters
from the Middle East. I grant that their reporters *should* be familiar
with the basic tenets of Islam, just as reporters for CNN or the New
York Times should be familiar with the basic tenets of Christianity.
However, "should" plus $2.50 will get you a cup of coffee at Starbucks.
<wry grin>
=20
More to the point, Al Jazeera appears to me to be a mostly-secular news
source, although not a western news source. I read it mostly because of
the second part -- it's an excellent counterbalance to CNN and the BBC.
Most secular news sources do a singularly poor job of covering
religious issues, though.
=20
Their reporters in Mecca are Muslim. The channel certianly recieves supervi=
sion from Qatar when reporting about events in the Arab World (it's no long=
er the objective source of information it used to be). It even has favorabl=
e but quality reporting about Islam in its various programs.
Post by Catherine Jefferson
Perhaps because involoving Abraham in Arabia would be met with contreve=
rsy =3D
Post by Catherine Jefferson
among an English speaking, non-Muslim audience?=20
=20
OK, I missed something. You were talking about the Prophet Muhammed,
and then all of the sudden switched to the Prophet Abraham. Both the
Bible and the Quran state that Abraham was born in "Ur of the Chaldees",
although which city this was or where it was located remains in dispute.
I've never heard any dispute that Muhammed was born in Mecca, and was a
member of the Banu Hashim tribe.
Well, I was trying to pre-empt any quibbles with ultra-revisionist historia=
ns or posters or even the late Patricia Crone's tehory about an original NE=
Arabian setting. I was dealing with such matters in another forum.
Post by Catherine Jefferson
=20
Obviously you see a connection. So how about sketching in a few of the
intermediate steps for us? ;)
=20
Well, Muslim tradition holds that Abraham followed Ishmael into Arabia, the=
angel Gabriel taught the rites of piligrimage to him on Mt. Arafat and he =
then built the Ka`bah.
Post by Catherine Jefferson
=20
--=20
Blog/Personal: http://www.ergosphere.net
Yusuf B Gursey
2015-09-20 02:58:23 UTC
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On Friday, September 18, 2015 at 7:00:04 PM UTC+3, Yusuf B Gursey wrote:

Here are someother faux pas concerning Islam:

The 1971 film "The Horsemen". Omar Sharif plays a buzkashi (a traditional g=
ame) player in Afghanistan. The improbable plot goes like this Omar Sharif =
loses and breaks his leg in a tournament. He refuses treatment, instead wra=
ps his leg in pages of the Qur'an. "The Holy Words of Muhammad" His home is=
the Balkh region (appropriate for a well known buzkashi player), once one =
of the most advanced centers of medicine. The insult to where Ibn Sina / Av=
iccena's father came from aside, "Words of Muhammad"?! Every Muslim knows i=
t is the "Word of God," Muhammad only His Messenger. "Words of Muhammad" ar=
e hadith collections. Omar Sharif was a Catholic (born Michael Shalhoub, no=
relation to Tony Shalhoub "Monk") who converted to Islam in order to marry=
his co-star in Egypt, a Muslim actress with whom he fell in love. Surely i=
n his instructions, among the first things, he must have learned no to say =
this and informed the scriptwriters.

Another is Antonio Banderas in the "13th Warrior". He plays Ibn Fadlan. In =
the plot (book & movie) he does not reach Bulghar (in present Tataristan Re=
public, Russian Federation; the real Ibn Fadlan did) but gets caught up wit=
h some Northmen (Rus). In the book and movie an interpretation of Beowulf f=
ollows. The book and movie reproduce quite accurately Ibn Fadlan's descript=
ion of the goings on in the Rus camp, of which there is an authentic accoun=
t. In the movie Ibn Fadlan performs a salat in front of the Northmen. But h=
e starts out with "Our Father". Every Muslim knows that "Our Father" is Ada=
m, not God, in Islam as "God did not beget nor was begotten" (and this is u=
sually recited in the salat). Well, no Muslims in the film (except a cameo =
by Omar Sharif), but bad advice. Incidentally, Ibn Fadlan is portrayed as r=
eadily accquiring the languages he encounters, historians deduce he relied =
on interpreters.=20
=20
Aljazeera English (the main newscasts are broadcast in Aljazeera America =
as=3D
well) in its reports of about the coming Hajj season keeps repeating "Me=
cc=3D
a, the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad". I'm not going into the veraci=
ty=3D
of this, at present that is the best information available, but this is =
no=3D
t supposed to be what the main point of the Hajj is about. Aljazeera staf=
f =3D
certainly knows better. Any thoughts?
=20
Perhaps because involoving Abraham in Arabia would be met with contrevers=
y =3D
among an English speaking, non-Muslim audience?
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