The University Talk that Cost Ali Wheatley His Career
by A. Human Being (February 2016)
September 13, 2013: Arkham, Massachusetts, USA
If Western scholars must bury the fact that Muhammad was a mass-murderer, then something is deeply wrong with their thinking in following their convictions. If we were talking about Hitler or Stalin it would be a no-brainer. But perhaps because people confuse Muhammad’s ideology with a religion of peace, or perhaps because of fear born from more than 1,300 years of jihadist assassinations, many people in the West (indeed, the whole world) now suffer from historical amnesia of the barbarism that characterized Muhammad’s life from the beginning of the Brotherhood’s calendar.
Before that time, Muhammad ibn Abdallah ibn Abd al-Muttalib was the potentially lunatic second husband of Khadija, a wealthy widow who had married Muhammad out of her expedient need for a man-of-the-house to maintain her late husband’s trading business.
Muhammad, however, was a reclusive man who would disappear to an isolated desert cave from which he returned one day shaken and traumatized from a physical attack. In this suicidal state, he began hearing disconcerting voices in his head. In his day, as in ours, this meant that he was the traumatized victim of male rape or that he was possessed or crazy, less likely, that he was a poet of cultural importance, and even less likely still, that he was communicating with a benign spiritual messenger . . . that so chose to radically assault him.
Khadija was a woman with a business to run and a reputation to keep, so she asked her cousin Waraka, who had the rare luck of being a literate Nestorian priest, to publicly address Muhammad’s mental well being.
Late sixth century Arabia was a land where family and tribal loyalties were values esteemed above all others. And this is Khadija . . . Waraka’s recently widowed cousin, that’s asking Waraka for a favor.
Her livelihood, her survival maybe, rests on his answer.
Imagine for a moment that this was your cousin, and what you say today . . . about the mental health of her new husband . . . will completely affect — positively or negatively — the rest of her life. And it will deeply affect — positively or negatively — your relations with her for the rest of your life. In fact, all family relations and family honor, henceforth, rest on what you say when this troubled man who hears voices is brought to you.
For your cousin . . . for family fortune, family honor . . . for truth, how do you answer her question with all the eyes of the local community looking at you in this . . . your most vulnerable hour? You, Waraka, how do you answer? And why do you make this your answer?
Waraka was a Nestorian Christian priest, who had on previous occasions taught Muhammad Jewish and Christian stories. So he makes the claim that Muhammad is being visited by the Angel Gabriel — not too high, not too low: an intermediary — and this answer should please everyone.
Honor still exists for the family and Waraka can go back to his own concerns! He probably had a glass of wine and deep comfortable sleep that night. And thus, he leaves our story forever.
Now Khadija’s is a family of merchants, traders, and deal-makers. How can this potential liability be turned into an advantage?
This question defines Muhammad’s early prophetic career in Mecca. For, it is with Muhammad’s wife Khadija, Muhammad’s adopted son Zayd, and Muhammad’s 12-year-old cousin Ali . . . that the Brotherhood begins as merely a family cult.
Eventually however, it’s when the wealthy merchant Abu Bakr sees benefit in the Brotherhood, that a larger financial base and greater strategic invention add an altogether new type of daring to what were, until then, Muhammad’s merely sideshow cataleptic outbursts. With their meal ticket, Abu Bakr, they decide to take Muhammad center stage.
Yet, the community at large remains unconvinced, and so many early verses of the Quran are despondent proclamations that Muhammad is not possessed! That’s the theme, in fact, of sura 68, The Pen. Similarly, suras 52 and 53, The Mount and The Star protest claims that Muhammad is either misled by an evil spirit or falsifying ‘revelation’ to suit his ambition. These suras don’t offer reasoned arguments. They just say that those that submit to Muhammad’s claims are granted rewards in Paradise and those that don’t are punished in Hell. That’s the standard trope of the Quran, in fact, recycling that most thoughtless pleasure/pain contrast. ‘We deserve pleasure. Others deserve pain.’ It’s not a deep book.
What message does this trope serve?
Muhammad’s megalomania, pure and simple. “There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is His Prophet,” is the first line of the Quran. This book, which is composed from Muhammad’s words, by the way, uses phrases such as ‘Allah and His Prophet’ or ‘Allah and His Messenger’ hundreds of times! And through this linguistic trick, Muhammad quite purposefully grafts himself to what he believes to be the monotheistic God of Arabian Christians and Jews. However, because he only has an uneducated man’s secondhand understanding of the Nestorian stories, the monotheists of cosmopolitan Mecca eat him for lunch in debates.
So Muhammad made the claim then, as the Brotherhood still makes the claim now, that the Jewish and Christian texts have been corrupted and that you have to go to Muhammad and his words as the source of uncorrupted truth. And this retreat into megalomania continues as Muhammad’s chronic defense in moments of stress. All of life’s difficulties, he tells his followers, stem from humanity’s disobedience in not submitting to this uncultured and illiterate man’s megalomania. To the cultured and cosmopolitan Meccans, this was the absurd ravings of a madman and they repeatedly told him as much.
This is what happens when the Brotherhood engages in fair debate. It loses.
So how do Muhammad’s followers feel when the master to whom they have submitted is called a possessed lunatic who doesn’t know the scriptures? Mad maybe? Mad enough to kill? In 615 AD, five years after Muhammad first confesses to hearing voices, and two years after he begins preaching publicly in Mecca, his follower Sa‘d bin Abu Waqqas attacks a polytheist with the jawbone of a camel and sheds the first blood in the name of the Brotherhood.
Now Muhammad’s ideology, from its inception, is proselytizing. In other words, this totalitarian ideology feeds on converts. And so, as violence in the faith of Muhammad’s God began in Mecca, Muhammad’s ambassador, Mus‘ab ibn Umair, traveled to Medina in the hope of making converts there. Mus‘ab achieves great success with conversions in Medina, but not with families of farmers or craftspeople. Mus‘ab’s success . . . is in converting caravan raiding bandits!
The Brotherhood’s calendar, and thus jihadist cosmology itself, begins with Muhammad’s move to Medina as a demagogue for murderous bandits. And for the first time in his prophetic career, Muhammad has a real powerbase: first in Medina, as a bandit leader, next as a local warlord, and finally as the totalitarian usurper of Arabia.
Muhammad’s career as a bandit leader is extremely thought provoking from its inception . . . in that he specifically targets Quraysh caravans! In these raids — many of which he personally leads — it is his routine policy . . . to murder many of the men and enslave the women and children. And for people of normal conscience, it is inconceivable to imagine this type of behavior from a man regarded as an exemplar of moral virtue.
We need to appreciate the significance of this in the full weight of its cultural context. Remember that Muhammad himself is of the Quraysh tribe. And in a society that values family and tribal allegiance above all else . . . Muhammad’s mass-murder, mass-enslavement, and mass-rape — women were taken as chattel — is nearly unimaginable in its cultural context! In a world where tribal identity and allegiance were paramount, a man afflicted by voices had massacred . . . and begun a career of massacring . . . his own tribe!
The moral cosmos of the Quraysh in cosmopolitan Mecca had never, and could never, have imagined that this type of traitorous betrayal and unconscionable mass-murder, enslavement, and rape of a man’s own community was even conceivable! The moral universe of their minds was simply paralyzed by this complete ethical abandonment on a hitherto unimaginable scale. And perhaps today, we are still reeling in an echo of the Quraysh’s own moral terror.
Now even bandits have moral codes! It’s true. The bandit tribes whom Muhammad conscripted in Medina, lived by a moral code that prohibited such things as: violence in the holy month of Rajab; the killing of women and children; and living amongst people in constant deception as a means to facilitate assassinations. Ironic as it may seem, to these bandit tribes whose livelihood consisted of routine robbery, murder, enslavement, and rape . . . these offenses were understood to be inexcusable transgressions. And yet, in his first raid, the Al-Abwa Raid, Muhammad champions the murder of women and children at night for the sake of plunder, while after the Nakhla Raid, Muhammad approves of mass-murder in the month of Rajab, again, for the sake of stolen wealth. And in the assassination of Ka‘b bin Al-Ashraf after the battle of Badr, Muhammad preached that deceit is necessary for facilitating desirable murders.
Jihadist expediency, therefore, supersedes all moral values . . . even the moral values of the most egregious mass-murdering bandits!
The ten years from 622 AD, marking the beginning of jihadist cosmology, to Muhammad’s death in 632 AD — when Muhammad lived as a bandit leader, warlord, and finally the totalitarian usurper of Arabia — are of the most terrifying historical relevance . . . for they mark a society’s implementation of one man’s psychopathic vision of a cosmos completely abandoned of all conscience.
Indeed, Muhammad’s social engineering as a bandit leader and warlord built a psychopathic community whose purposeful abandonment of all moral values toward those outside the community is the behavioral prescription at the center of this society’s cosmos.
Finally, a point we should all remember is that this history of violence is born from the Brotherhood’s inability to be coherent in debate. And I think we should pause at this reflection . . . and offer a minute of silence in remembering those who lost their lives for attempting to engage this incoherent ideology in a cultural dialogue.
* * *
This moment of silence was filled, however, by someone in the back of the audience: “May the work of Ali Wheatley perish! May he himself perish! Nothing shall his wealth and position avail him. He shall be burnt in a flaming fire, and his wife shall have a rope around her neck!”
The above short story is a chapter from the forthcoming novel War Verses: A Jihadist Fairytale by A. Human Being.
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