Thursday, December 15, 2011

Why do Christians accuse Muhammad of pedophilia but not St. Joseph?

Why do Christians accuse Muhammad of pedophilia but not St. Joseph?

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Behold the double standard that some Christians apply to Islam! They accuse Prophet Muhammad صلي الله عليه وسلم of pedophilia (lust for children) because of his marriage to Aisha, yet their own literature records that Joseph married Mary when he was ninety and she was twelve.  The Catholic Encyclopedia states:
A year after his wife’s death, as the priests announced through Judea that they wished to find in the tribe of Juda a respectable man to espouse Mary, then twelve to fourteen years of age. Joseph, who was at the time ninety years old, went up to Jerusalem among the candidates…
Thus, you see them mocking and scoffing at the Messenger of Allah صلي الله عليه وسلم while they ignore the same behavior narrated concerning the husband of the Virgin Mary عليها السلام!
The accusation that Prophet Muhammad engaged in pedophilia has no basis in fact, as his marriage to Aisha was officially consummated after she completed puberty. In fact, some have characterized this charge as an example of “anthropological illiteracy.” Colin Turner of the University of Durham Middle East Studies department writes:
A marriage between an older man and a young girl was customary among the Bedouins, as it still is in many societies across the world today. It was not unheard of in Muhammad’s time for boys and girls to be promised to each other in marriage almost as soon as they were born, particularly if the union was of direct political significance to the families concerned. However, such marriages were almost certainly not consummated until both parties had entered adulthood, which Arabs in the 7th century tended to reach at an earlier age than Westerners today. It is highly unlikely that Muhammad would not have taken Aisha into his bed until she was at least in her early teens, which was wholly in keeping with the customs of the day, and in context not in the least improper.
[Turner, C. (2006). Islam: the basics (pp. 34-35). London: Routledge]
So why do some Christians charge the Prophet with sexual crimes when the anthropological evidence proves them untrue? The charge is not intended to enlighten but to intimidate, to put psychological pressure upon Muslims to be ashamed of their religion. However, when armed with the facts, the Muslims have nothing to fear from these ignorant people. As Allah Almighty said:
لَتُبْلَوُنَّ فِي أَمْوَالِكُمْ وَأَنفُسِكُمْ وَلَتَسْمَعُنَّ مِنَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ وَمِنَ الَّذِينَ أَشْرَكُوا أَذًى كَثِيرًا وَإِن تَصْبِرُوا وَتَتَّقُوا فَإِنَّ ذَٰلِكَ مِنْ عَزْمِ الْأُمُورِ
You will surely be tested in your possessions and in yourselves. And you will surely hear from those who were given the Scripture before you and from those who associate others with Allah much abuse. But if you are patient and fear Allah – indeed, that is of the matters [worthy] of determination.
[Surah Ali Imran 3:186]
Muslims ought to be patient and forbearing in the face of such false criticism, and to return these evil slanderous charges with knowledge and beautiful preaching. As Allah Almighty said:
وَلَا تُجَادِلُوا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ إِلَّا بِالَّتِي هِيَ أَحْسَنُ إِلَّا الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا مِنْهُمْ وَقُولُوا آمَنَّا بِالَّذِي أُنزِلَ إِلَيْنَا وَأُنزِلَ إِلَيْكُمْ وَإِلَٰهُنَا وَإِلَٰهُكُمْ وَاحِدٌ وَنَحْنُ لَهُ مُسْلِمُونَ
And do not argue with the People of the Scripture except in a way that is best, except for those who commit injustice among them, and say, “We believe in that which has been revealed to us and revealed to you. And our God and your God is one; and we are Muslims [in submission] to Him.”
[Surah Al-Ankabut 29:46]
We Ask Allah the Exalted to guide the people to the truth.

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