'Islamophobes' are constantly being upbraided by very-clever-people, that Islam is the exact mirror image of Christianity. All that one finds in the Bible and the Torah, one can find in the Koran. This lie is pervasive and perverted. Take Sura 58 for instance. The title, 'The Woman who pleads' can mean a lot of different things. Pleading for what? Redemption? Insight? Love? Equality? You can certainly find that and more in the New Testament. But not in the Koran and not in this Sura. The subject of this chapter is not pleading for a higher purpose, intelligence or tolerance. It is a pleading not to be divorced.
As with all of the Koran, this Sura is badly written and in many places just plain weird. There are 22 verses and some 110 plus lines. The beginning is truly strange. The pleading of women means the desire not to be divorced. Why? In pre-Mohammed Arabia, divorced women were deemed to be a social burden. They were shamed, shunned and tarnished. It was much better and in society's pecuniary interest, to have men looking after female counterparts – even if they were married to 2 or more.
Mohammed, through his creation 'Allah', or the male-moon idol of Mecca, informs his followers in verses 1-3 of the 'rules' around getting a divorce. Bizarrely, in verse 1 we find out that a man cannot ask for a divorce under a false premise and more specifically in naming his wife as his mother! Was incest so common in Arabia before Mohammed that a man could plausibly deny his marriage and claim that he had married his mother ?!
“If any men among you divorce their wives by Zihar (calling them mothers), they cannot be their mothers: none can be their mothers except those who gave them birth.”
Thanks for the update Mohammed. Was pre-Mohammed Arabia that barbaric that men were either marrying older next of kin; or using any excuse possible to ease the path to a divorce? This is a very strange 'law' indeed. Don't marry your mother. Gee, thanks for the enlightenment.
As usual with the Koran only a few verses address the subject matter of the Sura – in this case the first 3. The other 19 go on to other more important points. First we must obey the Messenger the great Mohammed:
“Those who resist Allah and His Messenger will be humbled to dust, as were those before them: for We have already sent down Clear Signs.”
This is repeated in verses 20-22 just in case the reader missed it the first time. Obey Mohammed. Don't rationalize. Don't inquire. Just obey and be quiet. Nice theology.
The second main tenet is that the unknowable thing Allah, is omniscient and must be appeased by complete submission. He, it, that, or she will determine your fate. This is called pre-destination and it negates rationalism:
Verse 9 “...O you who believe! fear Allah, to whom you shall be brought back.”
When Allah brings you back you will be 'judged'. If he decides your conduct is sufficiently Islamic you might be rewarded. Or maybe not. But for infidels and non-Muslims there is absolutely no hope:
Verse 8 - “And they hold secret counsels among themselves for iniquity and hostility, and disobedience to the Messenger....Enough for them is Hell: in it they will burn, and evil is that destination!”
This hate is repeated in verses 17 and 18, just in case the reader forgot the central theme of Jew and Christian destruction, in the intervening ½ page.
The only possibly 'religious' utterance in this Sura, and one which is indeed unique in the whole Koran because it might be interpreted as a call to charity out of faith, can be found in verse 12. In this passage the reader is admonished that, “– before consulting the 'Messenger' you should give something to charity. Verse 13 advocates the practice of regular charity. This is promising. The only problem is that charity including 'Zakat' or the Muslim obligation to help the poor, is applied, and can only be applicable for Muslims. Kufars are excluded.
In any event any pretensions at being 'nice' are canceled out by the last line in verse 22, which swaggers the Sura to a close in typical intolerant Koranic fashion: “Truly it is the Party of Allah that will achieve Felicity.”
Submission or Islam, is thus the only felicitous and chosen program by 'God', or more accurately the Meccan moon deity. This denial of the rights of others, and the lack of a Golden rule which is nowhere to be found in the Koran [if you disagree prove it]; mark out Islam as just another strutting poli-cracy, desiring to impose itself on others.
[Note: This sura is taken from 'The Holy Quran', translated by Abdullah Yusuf Ali, reprinted in 1995, Goodword Books. Regarded as one of the best translations from Arabic to English of the Koran.]