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Why Muhammad Was So Successful?

by Alamgir Hossain

30 May, 2004

Our self-proclaimed atheist friend Kamil Arif, ever since making his introduction to MM, has been finding it hard to agree with many authors' assertion that Muhammad was quite a cruel man. Despite calling himself an atheist, he is overwhelmed and astonished (more than a true believer?) by the enormous success of Muhammad & his religion and he is trying hard to find ways to strike out the name of Muhammad from the critiques' book of cruelty to his book of humanity. He didn't stop short of calling the critiques of Prophet Muhammad and Islam as half-educated and/or ignorant and accused them of deliberately distorting & misinterpreting Koranic verses. Mr. Ali Sina, a devout cyber critique of Muhammad & Islam, in his reply to Mr. Arif's complain pleaded with him to show where he (Ali) had misinterpreted or distorted facts about Islam or verses from Koran. Mr. Arif, greatly hailed to be highly educated by another self-proclaimed e-atheist soul-buddy Tanveer Akram, remained totally silent instead of being responsible by upholding his charges against Ali Sina and other critiques of Muhammad & Islam.

Mr. Arif should be aware that Muhammad had himself participated in 78 wars and only two of them were instigated by his opponents, which is known by every Islamic historian. An effort to give a humane color to such a war-monger is just a futile exercise on part of an educated person. About Muhammad's stunning success, history is not devoid of such great successes in many areas. We know as per Torah & Bible, Moses was an extremely successful preacher but his actions, as recorded in those Holy Books, would qualify to be nothing less than bestial cruelty. I am just citing a couple of verses from Bible (Old Testament) here to give an idea of what kind of cruel demon Moses & his GOD was:

Moses' Mass Murder

"Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD. Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves." (Numbers 31:16-18)

Comment: Moses commands the murder of approximately 100,000 young males and, roughly, 68,000 helpless women.

Slaughter of Innocents

"And we took all his cities at that time, and utterly destroyed the men, and the women, and the little ones, of every city, we left none to remain." (Deuteronomy 2:34)

"And we utterly destroyed them, as we did unto Sihon king of Hesbon, utterly destroying the men, women, and children, of every city. But all the cattle, and the spoil of the cities we took for a prey to ourselves." (Deuteronomy 3:6-7).

One may talk about interpretation, context or whatsoever, but nothing can stop an average human being of today from calling Moses and his GOD cruel demons, for they didn't even mind to destroy innocent children, suckling babies and even cattle with maniac vengeance. By the same standard, you cannot just remove Muhammad's name from the BOOK of CRUELTY for the many wars he waged resulting in death of great number of people, often in the most inhumane manner.

Let us talk about Genghis Khan (1162-1227) who was a stunningly successful conqueror and political leader in history. He also came from the most humble background like Muhammad but he was able to create one of the largest empires ever created by a single person's effort and his posteriors lead that campaign to create the largest empire the world ever had witnessed. And why not talk about most stunning and improbable "success story" of our civilized world itself. Hitler came from a very humble background and was a normal soldier in German army in WW-I. He was from Austria but in such a short time, he became the uncontested leader of Germany (a different country) and brought such a great part of the world under his domain. Mind the fact that alongside the trump card of German nationalism, religion and GOD was his equally successful weapon. It is said that, if not for GOD, Hitler could probably never be able to bring the German people on his side. He virtually claimed himself a soldier of GOD and his leading lieutenants also called him chosen by GOD. I am citing a couple of statements of Hitler and his henchmen to reflect this fact:

* Hitler wrote: "I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord.." As a boy, Hitler attended to the Catholic Church and experienced the anti-Semitic attitude of his culture. In his book, Mein Kampf, Hitler reveals himself as a fanatical believer in God and country.

* God gave the savior to the German people. We have faith, deep and unshakeable faith; that he [Hitler] was sent to us by God to save Germany.

-Hermann Gring (Hitler's Elite, Shocking Profiles of the Reich's Most Notorious Henchmen," Berkley Books, 1990).

If one follows Hitler's life closely, it becomes very obvious that Hitler had an agenda in his mind and he pursued that goal with single-minded tenacity and undying perseverance and exploited the sentiment of nationalism/patriotism and GOD - the two lethal human instincts which have been the greatest cause of human catastrophe. Most interestingly, if one analyzes the events around Hitler & Muhammad, there is a stunning similarity. Muhammad also used GOD first as his agenda which was subsequently added with patriotic/nationalistic fervor and he pursued these agenda with similar tenacity and perseverance and with ruthlessness as and when became necessary. During Muhammad's heart-out struggle of first ten years, he was only able to get ~100 converts in Mecca but he still didn't give up and in just a few more years of perseverance mixed with some crooked but intelligent ploys, he became an unstoppable conqueror of our world. He signed strategic peace treaties with the Jews after arriving in Medina which was very critical in his success. Hitler did sign similar treaty with the Communist Russia in the run-up to the WW-II which was also very critical in his success. And both Muhammad & Hitler threw those treaties away and put the swords at their partners of peace as soon as they became strong but Hitler probably miscalculated it a bit too much. The important thing to consider here is that despite Hitler's claim that he was doing the work of his GOD & despite his followers' unfailing belief that Hitler was GOD's chosen man for the fight of Germany (modeled after Moses' fight for Israel, the promised land) & despite his unparallel success in conquering a great part of the world, Hitler is still known to be a cruel beast of modern time. Similarly neither Muhammad nor Moses (of course, if Moses ever existed) could be rescued from the BOOK of most cruel men of human history.

Mr. Arif has mentioned that some 2,500 people claim prophethood across America every year as per Ali Sina. Then he inquires: why others don't become so successful like Muhammad. This statistic is a bit doubtful. In Bangladesh & India, I hardly see anybody claiming prophethood these days. How is it possible that so many people in America would claim prophethood? Still, it is true that many people throughout history have claimed prophethood but not many have become so successful. Islam says there came 124,000 Prophets and we know only 3-4 Prophets, namely Abraham, Dawood (King David), Moses & Muhammad (even Jesus was not so successful in his lifetime) had had good successes whilst others might have been such utter failures that we even don't know who they were. I believe Prophet Muhammad even didn't know those names. If these men were chosen by Allah, then all of them should have been reasonably successful in achieving Allah's goal. Allah couldn't be an idiot that he will choose someone who wouldn't be able to serve any of his purposes. Allah is Almighty and he should been able make his chosen man successful. This once again shows, "how impotent Allah is?"

It makes more sense that all those 124,000 so-called Prophets as per Islam claimed Prophethood on their own and there was no GOD behind them and those who persevered harder, those who were more intelligent to exploit the situation and sentiment of the people effectively and those who didn't mind to be ruthless and cunning became more successful. This paradigm has absolute similarities with many events that took place in the history of our world. Many people want to be a leader, not everybody becomes successful. Saddam had shown every intention to be a Hitler if not for the limited resources and much more powerful world keeping a watchful eye on him. There were many rulers/conquerors in the history of humankind who wanted to rule the world but only a few, namely Genghis Khan, Alexander the Great, Hitler, Augustus Caesars and Constantine the Great were most successful.

Finally to add a word of simple reasoning, the atrocious activities associated with the most successful Prophets, namely Dawood, Moses & Muhammad, doesn't in any way support the idea that a companionate GOD will send his chosen men to cause so much blood-bath and suffering of his own loving creation. An all-powerful GOD can change the mind of his creation on his own. A father will try to discipline his strayed children on his own. And even if he asks another child to discipline the strayed one, no sane father would approve the killing of the strayed one by the other under whatsoever circumstances. Of course, such incidences may take place in our society but those fathers are not considered to be sane.

To correct your point while responding to Peter, you claimed there are 1.6 billion Muslims on earth today and you used it as an index of Muhammad success as well. This figure is not correct, it should be 1.2 - 1.3 billion - this is an effort to inflate the figure which fanatic/fervent Islamists frequently do deliberately. Recent Mahathir's OIC speech puts the figure at 1.3, which is likely to be a bit inflated and can no way be deflated. It should also be noted that Muslims' breeding rate is much faster if compared with that of Christians. Hence, this big number of Muslims has hardly to do anything with the beauty of Islam if you may have contemplated something like that in your mind. If Muslim birth-rate was similar to that of Christian all along, Muslim population of today will be much less than a billion today. And another thing should be noted that higher birth-rate has nothing to do with Muslims' any special capacity to produce more children (by God's special blessings) but instead, Christians just take fewer children so that they can assure GOOD CARE and a BRIGHT FUTURE for their offspring which Muslims never cares. Greater poverty, illiteracy, juvenile crimes etc. amongst Muslims, even in the Western world, is a clear testament of that. Many Islamists & Islamic apologists never fail to take pride in asserting, 'Islam is the fastest growing religion.' This is definitely true but this fast-growing is not at all because of conversions from other faiths because of Islam's beauty (of course, there are conversions but that is a minor factor) but instead because of recklessly high rate of breeding amongst Muslims. It is more appropriate to say, "Muslims are the fastest breeding people."

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