Death to those that translate the Quran (without including the original Arabic)

Legal opinion on apostasy by a Fatwa committee...
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So, another news story that clearly shows the kinds of things that happen when Shariah law is implemented. First the news story, then a few specific quotes from the Hadith that these aspects of Shariah law are based on.

2 Afghans face death over translation of Quran

By HEIDI VOGT  (Associated Press)

"In all the mosques in Afghanistan, all the mullahs said, 'Zalmai is an infidel. He should be killed,'" Zalmai recounted as he sat outside the chief judge's chambers waiting for a recent hearing.


There is no law in Afghanistan prohibiting the translation of the Quran. But Zalmai is accused of violating Islamic Shariah law by modifying the Quran. The courts in Afghanistan, an Islamic state, are empowered to apply Shariah law when there are no applicable existing statutes.


The prosecutor wants the death penalty for Zalmai and the cleric, who have now spent more than a year in prison.

... In January 2008, a court sentenced a journalism student to death for blasphemy for asking questions about women's rights under Islam. An appeals court reduced the sentence to 20 years in prison. ... In 2006, an Afghan man was sentenced to death for converting to Christianity. He was later ruled insane and was given asylum in Italy. Islamic leaders and the parliament accused President Hamid Karzai of being a puppet for the West for letting him live.

Islamic leaders and parliament are right to accuse President Karzai of being a puppet of the West for letting a Muslim apostate live.  The leaders and parliament are basing the punishment directly from Sharia law. This is not some mob that got upset and happened to kill a person. This is the ruling that courts and Islamic leaders come to and publicly announce after some thought.

I am annoyed that these stories tend to mention that Islamic leaders press for the death of apostates, etc., based on Sharia law, and yet, they do not cite WHY these leaders think that death is appropriate. I go into some detail in my essay, Apostasy in Islam.  Until I looked into it myself, I sort of imagined that these death penalty type sentences were just the expression of extreme annoyance and that there is no way that Islam actually teaches these things at its core.

Turns out that is not the case: I will post some of the relevant verses here.

First, a brief background: Hadiths are oral traditions about prophet Muhammad. The most trusted Sunni collection of Hadiths was collected by Muhammad al-Bukhari (810 - 870 CE) is called Sahih al-Bukhari (which means “authentic al-Bukhari”).

The following quotes from the Hadith come from the USC Compendium of Muslim Texts and I’ve linked each one to the source material.

Direct quotes from the Sahih al-Bukhari:

Hadiths about apostates…

Volume 4, Book 52, Number 260:
Narrated Ikrima:
Ali burnt some people and this news reached Ibn ‘Abbas, who said, "Had I been in his place I would not have burnt them, as the Prophet said, ‘Don’t punish (anybody) with Allah’s Punishment.’ No doubt, I would have killed them, for the Prophet said, ‘If somebody (a Muslim) discards his religion, kill him.’ "

Volume 9, Book 84, Number 57:
Narrated ‘Ikrima:
Some Zanadiqa (atheists) were brought to ‘Ali and he burnt them. The news of this event, reached Ibn ‘Abbas who said, "If I had been in his place, I would not have burnt them, as Allah’s Apostle forbade it, saying, ‘Do not punish anybody with Allah’s punishment (fire).’ I would have killed them according to the statement of Allah’s Apostle, ‘Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him.’"

Volume 9, Book 83, Number 17:
Narrated ‘Abdullah:
Allah’s Apostle said, "The blood of a Muslim who confesses that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that I am His Apostle, cannot be shed except in three cases: In Qisas for murder, a married person who commits illegal sexual intercourse and the one who reverts from Islam (apostate) and leaves the Muslims."

What happens when people believe that these texts are divinely inspired and should dictate how every aspect of their lives should be lead? Well, the cited news story (and the other incidents that it mentions) are some very obvious examples.

Just another example of Why it Matters What People Believe.

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