Comments in this book numbered by 3 numbers (included 00 or 0) a few places followed by one small letter = clear cases. Comments numbered by 00 or 0 followed by 1, 2 or 3 letters (big or small) = likely cases.
Talking about culture on often thinks about arts included architecture, about literature, about ways of learning and thinking, about freedom for thinking and speaking, and about ways of life.
In the old Arabia there was nothing really worth to be called culture, with one exception: Literature. Very little of it was written, but there was a rich tradition for telling stories, histories and tales, and also for poetry.
But for that there was little of art, little or nothing worth calling architecture, little knowledge, little if any original thinking able to bring humanity forward, even little real religious interest and thinking. And the daily life in such a primitive tribe and warrior country? - a hard strife for the daily life and for survival - which is often said to be local culture, because we have no other word for it.
This coloured the conquests - and the destruction and the havoc wrought by the primitive and fanatic warriors that suddenly pored out from Medina and then from Arabia. They were bent on gold and riches and slaves and power - and tax. Other kinds of values they simply had no possibility to understand - and destruction was free and to the honour of Allah. The results were human and cultural disasters the like of which the now Muslim area as far as India have never seen neither before nor after, with the possible exceptions of Timur Lenk and his Mongols, and later the Turks when they came from the north-east. The fabled and infamous Christian crusaders at their worst, may have been as bad, but after all just in a small area and a limited time - facts Arabs and other Muslims “forget” when they complain about that time.
But over some generations the lands were rebuilt, and the now rich from plunder and suppression Arabs had their children study - even non-religious topics. And over enough time the situation changed.
We got Muslim/Arab architecture - originally inspired by a mixture of Byzantine, other Christian and Persian architecture. Painting was a respected art - both locally inspired and Byzantine and Persian inspired. Sharia (Muslim law) found its form in the 8. century AD - also that clearly inspired from Roman/Byzantine (now Istanbul), Jewish, and Persian laws, in addition to old Arab laws and the Quran.
And they came across the ancient science and philosophy from Greece and Persia and India - the first via the then East Roman or Byzantine Empire and the last via Persia. But not until around 820 AD - some 200 years after Muhammad, and under the not very religious Abbasid (named after the first of their caliphs, Abu Muslim) caliphs - there was much new translation from Greek and Persian. And only then starts the Muslim slow climb towards their golden age - and mind you: It was only some sort of intellectual golden age - and partly in spite of and in opposition to Islam, not because of Islam. The fabled political golden age when people and religions existed peacefully and friendly side by side? - it simply never really existed. Muslims always had the upper heavy hand - they just did not use it too heavily at all times.
Over the years Muslim philosophers learnt what the old Greek and Persian masters could teach them - and some went on into the unknown. There are names like Al-Kindi, Al-Sarakhsi, Al-Farabi, Ibn Sina (known in Europe as Avicenna) - and the famous and infamous Al-Ghazali, "rhe greatest Muslim after Muhammad". Philosophy of different kinds, astronomy, mathematics, geometry, medicine, etc.
But many soon ran into problems with the religion: Many “new ideas” conflicted with Islam. Islam split knowledge in two: "Islamic" sciences that could help Islam or help understanding Islam, and “foreign” sciences that meant little or nothing for the religion - these were reckoned to be of little or negative value. The first ones were subjects like religion, language (Arabic) and related subjects, law, history after Muhammad started his teachings, geography, astronomy (to find the right dates for religious celebrations, etc.), rhetoric, and (Muslim) literature. The “foreign” - and thus unnecessary or even negative - sciences included the Greek and Persian/Indian sciences like physics, metaphysics, philosophy, all branches of mathematics and geometry, natural sciences, alchemy, medicine (!!!), and music.
When the Quran talked about acquiring knowledge, Islam understood acquiring "Islamic" knowledge, not “foreign” knowledge, and the negative value of “foreign” knowledge became more and more strongly stressed as time went by. This resulted in opposition against, and even imprisonment and worse of men doing such sciences (al-Sarakhsi f. ex. was executed for his science, and he was not the only one).
The definite end for “foreign” sciences, included philosophy - the science of thinking new thoughts - came with a book against philosophy and science in 1095 AD: "The Incoherence of the Philosophers", by al-Ghazali. After 1095 THERE HAS NOT COME ONE SINGLE NEW THOUGHT OR IDEA THAT COULD HELP OR BRING FORWARD HUMANITY FROM ALL THE MUSLIM COUNTRIES (EXCEPT OF IN THE FAR WEST WHERE THINKING LASTED FOR ABOUT ANOTHER 100 YEARS) - NOT ONE SINGLE IDEA OR NEW THOUGHT FOR SOME 900 YEARS!!! There have been a few small exceptions the last some 100 years, but mostly they have been chocked by the religion.
In the far west as mentioned the possibility of thinking - not freedom of thinking, but at least the possibility - lasted about a century longer, with men like Ibn Bajja (Avempace in Europe), Ibn Tufayl, and Ibn Rushd (Averroes in Europe). Then it was the end there, too.
Let us quote Ibn Tufayl: “Religious truths are for the not-thinking masses, who should limit their activities to obeying the religious commandments and follow the traditions”. The “not-thinking masses” - lead by the learned Muslims - won. Around 1200 AD thinking came to an end also in Spain. Arbitrarily one can say the end came with the death of Ibn Rushd in 1198 AD. To quote “Why I am not a Muslim” by Ibn Warraq: “The thought of knowledge for the sake of knowledge was without meaning in Muslim connections”.
And finally to quote Renan (scientist studying Islam and Muslims) (translated to English): “To give Islam the honour for Averroes and so many other excellent thinkers, WHO LIVED HALF THEIR LIVES IN PRISON, IN HIDING, IN DISHONOUR, WHO GOT THEIR BOOKS BURNT AND NEARLY EXTINGUISHED BY THE THEOLOGICAL ESTABLISHMENTS, IS LIKE GIVING THE INQUISITION THE HONOUR FOR GALILEO’S DISCOVERIES AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF WHOLE SCIENCES THEY WERE UNABLE TO STOP“.
HOW MANY NEW THOUGHTS OR IDEAS WITH ANY MEANING FOR HUMANITY HAVE COME FROM F. EX. ALGERIA, EGYPT, SYRIA OR PERSIA AFTER THE YEAR 1100 AD? OR FROM ARABIA? Exactly zero. (But the word “assassin” and many conspiracy theories came from there).
With a few sporadic and partly suppressed exceptions the last 100 years ALL THE MUSLIM COUNTRIES HAVE BEEN BRAIN DEAD FOR SOME 900 YEARS - TOTALLY SUPPRESSED BY ISLAM.
This to the extent that even new ideas of practical things are difficult - the state of California register more new patents a year, than all the Islamic world put together.
Muslims simply are trained to follow the leaders and the age-old ideas and authorities, not to think critically or think themselves.
And what for? In the book “The Message of the Quran”, certified by Al-Azhar Al-Sharif Islamic Research Academy in Cairo (one of the 2-3 top universities in the Muslim world on such subjects) in a letter dated 27. Dec. 1998, it is admitted rather reluctantly that there are no proofs for Allah, and that it is not possible to prove him. An additonal point here is that if there are no proof for Allah and impossible to prove him, automatically there also is no proof for, and impossible to prove Muhammad's claimed connection to Allah. If there is no Allah and/or no connection between Muhammad and a god, what then is Islam?
So much for the Golden Age of science under Islam - it existed after a fashion and for some time, and it rescued much of the old Greek knowledge and many of the old Greek ideas (though it is fotgotten that much old knowledgs also came to the west via the East Roman Empire -Constantinopel/Bysantz), but to a large extent in spite of Islam, and to a large degree suppressed by Islam, not because of Islam.
And what about the fabled Golden Age of humanism co-habitation of people and religions? It is just that - a fable. See next chapter.
NB: If you find any mistakes anywhere, please inform us. If it is a real mistake, it will be corrected.
NB, NB, NB:
1. Read first the 2 small chapters "Some Essentials for how the Quran is to be read and understood" (VII-10-1-0) and "The Quran is to be understood literally if nothing else is indicated" (VII-10-2-0).
2. http://www.1000mistakes.com is blocked by many Muslim authorities. To inform or debate with persons in such areas, cut and paste what you want from the pages and send it under titles different from http://www.1000mistakes.com.
3. http://www.1000mistakes.com is one of 9 pages which Muslim organisetions warned especially against in 2008 and 2009 - it could make especially procelytes lose their belief in Islam; correct and "down-to-the-earth" information works. In this connection it is worth noting that in the "warning" http://www.1000mistakes.com was one of 3 which neither was accused of bringing wrong facts, nor of being a hate page.
4. Comment 141 (to verse 6/149) in “The Message of the Quran” (see point 5) explains (translated from Swedish) about Allah's claimed omniscience vs. man's claimed free will:
“With other words: The real connection between Allah’s knowledge about the future (and consequently about the unavoidable in what is to happen in the future*) on one side and man’s relatively (!!*) free will on the other – two statements that seems to contradict each other – lies outside what is possible for humans to understand, but as both statement are made from Allah (in the Quran*) both must be true”. Unbelievable. Blind belief is the only correct and intelligent way of life, even in the face of the utterly impossible!!
5. And an afterthought: In the book “The Message of the Quran”, certified by Al-Azhar Al-Sharif Islamic Research Academy in Cairo (one of the 2-3 top universities in the Muslim world on such subjects) in a letter dated 27. Dec. 1998, it is admitted rather reluctantly that there are no proofs for Allah, and that it is not possible to prove him. An additonal point here is that if there is no proof for Allah and impossible to prove him, automatically there also is no proof for, and impossible to prove Muhammad's claimed connection to a god. And if there is no Allah and/or no connection between Muhammad and a god, what then is Muhammad? - and what than is Islam? - a made up, invalid religion?
6. Further: All the mistakes, contradictions, etc. in that book prove 100% that the Quran is not made by an omniscient god - no god makes such and so many mistakes, etc. If then Islam is a made up religion, what then about all the Muslims who have been prohibitted from looking for a real religion (if such one exists)? And where will they in case wake up after living and practising such an inhuman war religion like Islam is according to the Quran (and to Hadiths), if there is a second life somewhere? - Hell or Paradise?
7. NB and PS: No matter how sure you are about something, if it is not proved, it is not knowledge, only belief or strong belief, and can be wrong. Only what is proved or possible to prove is knowledge.
(As http://www.1000mistakes.com is blocked in many Muslim areas - which shows they are afraid of it and lack arguments (if they had real arguments for http://www.1000mistakes.com is wrong, blocking was unneccessary) - "cut and paste" whatever you want from it and send if you want to inform or to debate there. Remember to omit the name http://www.1000mistakes.com).
PS: If we are blocked centrally - f. ex. by spam (there is too much at times already from unfriendly sources) we will reopen with new address somewhere else, and announce the new address om f. ex. http://www.topix.com/forum/religion/islam. Also if your comments to us do not reach us, any comments posted on a thread with "1000 mistakes" in the title on that forum will be read by us - it is a big international debate page. We cannot answer on that page, though, as it is not safe enough - we have had death threaths (better to kill an opponent, than to check if a religion brainwashed into you only on the word of a man who even practised lies (f. ex. "war is deceit") and advocated breaking even your oaths if that gave a better result, is true ot made up - old beliefs are hard to question).
>Please inform all and everybody and all relevant fora - f. ex. Internet pages for debate or information - about the address http://www.1000mistakes.com. It is information that is urgently needed by many, not least by Muslims. No god made a book with so many mistakes and other wrongs - and if the Quran and Islam are made up by humans or dark forces, where are the followers of this inhumanly dark and brutal war religion heading for in a possible next life?