Brainstorm of an Ishmaelite

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All peoples philosophize to greater or lesser degrees; those who don’t either look to others knowingly to philosophize for them, or unwittingly imbibe the philosophies of others.”–Abdurrahman Mihirig

Disclaimer

This website includes discussions about law and other subjects. What I write about these subjects may not be entirely accurate or up to date. What I write about law isn’t and shouldn’t be taken as legal advice. Only a lawyer you hire to give you legal advice can do so. My writings express my thoughts about the law and other subjects. Not all of these thoughts are fully developed. Many ideas on this website are being developed, which is the point of this website. See the copyright policy for this website.

This website is self-sponsored and non-profit. I’m the only person behind it. I build and operate it and write and illustrate its content on my own time, at my own cost and risk.

Many of my posts and essays concern Sharia. Although my tribe inherits the Qur’an, I don’t pretend to be an Imam, nor do I believe ajam who pretend to be Imams, whom Alids regard as usurpers and traitors. Ajam aren’t Imams in the Abrahamic tradition (vv. 4:54, 2:124 & Riyad as-Salihin 1:346; v. 3:33 & Numbers 16). Ajam who pretend to be Imams are enemies of Abraham.

As an Alid lawyer and academic, I’m exceptionally qualified to express a critical opinion on Sharia. However, only the Prophet’s successor–the caliph; who is the chief of Alids–and judges he appoints can rule according to Sharia. To do so, he must factor the consensus (ijma’) of the Council (nadwa) which is comprised of the chiefs and sages of Quraysh. Any other opinions or rulings have nothing to do with Islam, Sharia or Quraysh.

I don’t do this work for money or favour, nor do I believe anyone who does such work for these reasons. Money talks and “you cannot serve both God and money” (Matthew 6:24). As the Qur’an repeatedly emphasizes:

I don’t ask for a reward. My reward is with the Lord of Worlds. (v. 26:164)

Follow those who don’t ask for a reward and are guided. (v. 36:21) 

I don’t ask for a reward, and I’m not a pretender. (v. 38:86)

I do this work because my only legacy is my scripture and family–the Qur’an and Quraysh–whom I wish to serve. Alids in particular have a duty to acquire and disseminate knowledge of Sharia, as a service to God, themselves and the nations (al-Maqasid al-Hasana 579, Mark 10:43-44, Bukhari 61:11 & 92:9). Abrahamic people must bless the nations to be blessed (Genesis 12:3 & v. 21:107). My ancestors made many sacrifices so I could live and carry on their legacy. I choose to do so not because I’m good, but because they are and it’s my duty to serve them. See my essay: Why I Write.

Principles and Methodology

The Qur’an commands believers to “command good (lit. what is known) and forbid evil” (v. 3:110) and to argue with others in the best way possible (v. 16:125).

1. To command what is known is to command truth and knowledge (v. 46:4) without speculation (v. 53:28). 

2. To argue in the best way possible is to argue in a rational, calm and respectful way (v. 31:18-19).

In short, the purpose of speaking or writing is to get at and disseminate truth. The aim is to correct and receive correction, not to win or persuade. I don’t believe in debating because it’s an unscientific method that produces falsehood and wastes time. I prefer to read and write (v. 96:1-4) because writing imposes a discipline of logic and accuracy. It’s clear or can be clarified. It can also be corrected. 

The Qur’an, in particular, consists of two types of verses, which are ‘univocal’ and ‘equivocal’ (v. 3:7). Univocal verses are called ‘decisive’ (muhkamat) whereas equivocal verses are called ‘parabolic’ (mutashabihat). The Muhkam portion of the Qur’an refers to Mufassal, which are the last 20 chapters that plainly describe good and evil and the final judgment (Bukhari 66:59 & an-Nasa’i 11:131). The Fatiha (ch. 1) in particular summarizes all of scripture (Bukhari 65:226 & Malik 3:186). The correct interpretation of the Qur’an, at any rate, is never a matter of speculation or opinion (v. 10:36 & Abu Dawud 26:12). It’s always exceedingly obvious and indubitable, like the full moon on a clear night. This is as true of Qur’anic truth as scientific truth, since the truth is the same. 

Clarity and lack of confusion defines Arabs (v. 41:3) who are clear about their race, ancestry, land, language and law (vv. 2:125-129, 22:78, 4:54 & ch. 106; Bukhari 15:32, 61:16, 61:43, Ibn Majah 36:54, 23:2823Abu Dawud 38:7, 20:106, 15:6, al-Adab al-Mufrad 24:15Muslim 43:203, 33:6, Riyad as-Salihin 1:346Genesis 17:20). Arabs identify as people of sound observation (v. 67:3-4) reflection (v. 6:50) consultation (v. 42:38) and deference to legitimate authority (v. 4:59). Hence, blogging is an excellent way to focus, explore and develop my thoughts. As I mention in my bio, my blogs only represent my own thoughts at the time I post. I can change my mind, and prefer correction to compliments.

Rules of Engagement

The people I’ll engage in a discussion combine the following attributes:

1. Education or knowledge: An educated or knowledgeable person will tend to respect logic and facts if they’re sincere. People who don’t respect logic or facts are a waste of time. I won’t engage with someone who wants to criticize my thoughts who didn’t bother to read them as I bothered to write them.

2. Sincerity: The sign of sincerity is respect for logic, facts and living things.

I’ll always start by asking a person I might engage what is their standard of proof. If their standard is unscientific and they’re unyielding, I won’t engage. In the words of the Prophet:

Whoever seeks knowledge to argue with fools, show off to scholars or attract people’s attention will go to hell. (Ibn Majah 1:262)

People I Don’t Engage

Like all Alids, I don’t engage with women or ajam on topics of Sharia, which isn’t their law to define. Whether or not they acknowledge Alids’ authority with regard to Sharia, Alids don’t acknowledge theirs and will even fight them if they try to dictate their law to them. The Prophet says he fought the Umayyads concerning the revelation of the Qur’an, and Eli will fight them (a fortiori women and ajam) concerning its interpretation (Tirmidhi 47:3673Bukhari 96:39 & Riyad as-Salihin 1:3). See Taha Husayn, al-Fitnah al-Kubra, 6th ed. (Egypt: Dar al-Ma‘arif, 1969) vol. 2 at 77.

Ajam who are interested in Sharia can question Alids about it or learn it from them. Otherwise, there’s no discussion or argument to be had. Alids aren’t interested in arguing about Sharia, especially with women or ajam. If they don’t want to obey Alids, they can make up their own law (v. 2:23) or act in their own name or their ancestors’ (v. 5:104). They should be responsible for their own beliefs and actions.

The Prophet’s pulpit was never meant for women, Muladis, bastards, immoral people or ajam (vv. 68:10-14, Abu Dawud 31:38, Ibn Majah 5:1134 & 1:58). It wasn’t even meant for Umayyads, let alone other Arabs (Tirmidhi 47:3673 & 33:70). Rather, it was meant for the Prophet’s caliph (lit. successor) who is his rightful heir. 

The law of inheritance is objective. The Qur’an and Torah are very clear as to who inherit them and have the authority to interpret them (vv. 4:54, 22:78, Deuteronomy 10:9, Tirmidhi 49:4095, Bukhari 55:3 & Riyad as-Salihin 1:346). They mention specifically the tribes to which these people belong (ch. 106, vv. 3:106-107 & 57:26) even the colour of their skin (v. 40:53, Bukhari 60:35 & Muslim 43:139) and the shape of their body (v. 2:146, ash-Shama’il al-Muhammadiyah 1:7, Abu Dawud 38:7 & Bukhari 62:79). See my essays: The Qur’an: The Book, House and Army of Eli and Non-White ‘Arabs’ are Bastards, Muladis or Heretics.

Scripture, which is rooted in Abraham’s covenant (ch. 106, vv. 2:124, 3:84, 4:54, 57:26 & 22:78) is clearly meant for the best interest of Abraham’s family (Ahl al-Bayt). See my post: Who Are Ahl al-Bayt? Abraham had no daughters. Only his sons, who keep his covenant, inherit it (v. 2:124 & Genesis 17). The scriptures tell the stories of the other nations (ajam) in the four cardinal directions who were enemies of Abraham; namely, Nimrod (south) Pharaoh (west) Haman (east) and Gog and Magog (north). For Pharaoh’s descendants to interpret the Qur’an or pretend to inherit it is ridiculous. For them to pretend to be Abraham, after trying to genocide him, is even more ridiculous.

Ajam and women are free to do as they please. Their legacy of idolatry and adultery is well known. They can sacrifice themselves and their food to idols and cheat on each other if they wish. Unless they have a covenant with the sons of Abraham, they have nothing to do with them. What they do with their people in their land in their name is their problem. However, if they try to invade or usurp the sons of Abraham, then they’re his enemies. For instance, ‘Muslims’ who don’t recognize and obey the Prophet’s family (Quraysh) and successors (Alids) are their enemies, just as Britons who don’t recognize the Queen’s family and successors are traitors.

The relationship of Arabs (Ishmaelites) to Arabia, Arabic and the Qur’an is like the the relationship of the French to French, France and the French Civil Code. Arabs shouldn’t be confused with anyone who speaks Arabic or lives in Arabia, just as the French shouldn’t be confused with anyone who lives in France or speaks French.

A Muslim inherits the covenant as a mawla or mawali. Traitors to their mawla betray Abraham and their people and can’t ultimately prosper. See my essays: Basic Rights and Obligations of Mawla and Mawali, The Critical Relationship Between Mawla and Mawali and Who’s Your Mawla? The All-Purpose Question in Sharia.

Insults and Response

An insult:

1. Attacks a person directly or indirectly: Is intended to harm a person.

2. Is arbitrary or disproportionate: It does so for no reason, without provocation or parity.

3. Is intentional: If the speaker says it wasn’t intentional, they should apologize and not repeat it. Otherwise, it’s fair to assume it was intentional.

4. Is false: Is factually untrue or a misrepresentation.

Insults mark the end of reason and the beginning of force. My rule is “Tit for tat.” I’m polite to people by default, but if they’re rude to me I’ll be rude to them and cut them off. As a practitioner of martial arts (judo and boxing) I also adhere to the formula “Walk, talk, fight.” This means:

1. Walk away from a belligerent. Don’t engage it. I write on my own webpages and don’t force anyone to read what I write.

2. Talk to the belligerent by answering its insult then cutting it off.

3. Fight the belligerent if it persists by filing a complaint or contacting police to restrain it.

Inspiration of the Title

The title of this website owes its inspiration to a number of scriptural passages. Hagar means ‘reward’ in Hebrew and Arabic. Her children are called Children of the Rain (bani ma’ as-sama’) (Muslim 43:203). This is because Abraham was doubly rewarded with Ishmael and Isaac, concerning whom he says:

“Praise God who has given me Ishmael and Isaac in my old age. Truly my Lord answers prayer!” (v. 14:39)

This connects to the following parable:

The parable of those who spend their wealth to please God and immortalize their souls is like a lofty garden on which heavy rain falls, doubling its yield. Heavy rain or a light shower. (v. 2:265)

Rain symbolizes life, resurrection and blessing. However, it also symbolizes a trial or punishment:

And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain.” (1 Kings 18:41)

The Sign of the Rainbow

The rainbow is a sign of God’s covenant with Noah (‘rest’) which is a primordial covenant like God’s covenant with Adam (‘earth’ or ‘man’). God created Adam in its image and let him eat freely in the garden. His only command was not to eat from one tree, the vine, which symbolizes intoxication (v. 7:171). However, as the angels anticipated, the children of Adam lost their senses, disobeyed and spread corruption and bloodshed (v. 2:30) which led to a new covenant:

Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind. (Genesis 9:6)

Whereas the covenant of Adam (the ‘garden covenant’) precedes bloodshed, the covenant of Noah (the ‘blood covenant’) follows it. Under the former covenant, man couldn’t eat flesh or shed blood (Genesis 1:29 & v. 2:30). Under the latter, man could eat flesh under the law of sacrifice, and shed blood under the law of talion, to protect the sanctity of life (v. 2:179 & Genesis 9:3-4). The sign of Noah’s covenant is the rainbow. Spying a rainbow means God didn’t destroy people with water but revitalized them with it (al-Adab al-Mufrad 33:12 & Genesis 9:12-15). However, people continued to disobey the commandments after Noah, which multiplied as a result. When people obey the commandments, the garden is restored and they all reduce to one: don’t lose your senses.

The Balance of Nations

Arabs preserve the language, lineage and law of Noah (cp., e.g., Sanhedrin 74b & Abu Dawud 40:3). Muslims are children of Noah, who are witnesses to Noah, as people continue to deny his message (Bukhari 96:77). The sons of Noah–Shem, Ham and Japheth–represent the three climes–temperate, hot and cold–and the three races–white, black and red. As long as nations obey the laws of Noah and respect the balance of the climes, we’ll live to see another rainbow instead of another climate disaster. Noah’s isn’t a story of the past but the present, as the Age of Noah persists. See my post: The Creation of Adam and the Age of Man.

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