Friday, October 21, 2016

Solomon’s Mosque is in our hands

Islam Has Never Denied the Jewish Connection to Jerusalem.


On the contrary, anywhere you look in early Islamic literature, if it discusses the city at all you’ll find its Jewish connection.

Salman Masalha ||

Solomon’s Mosque is in our hands


Religion, every religion, is the No. 1 enemy of nationalism. But under conditions of tension, such as tribal warfare, these polar opposites combine into a toxic soup that consumes all common sense.

Since the Six-Day War of 1967, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been on a path that is a dark tunnel linking these two poles. The poisonous blend of religion and nationalism not only drives mad all the inhabitants of the land, Jews and Muslims alike; even worse, the prolonged conflict over the protected land also drives them to change their religions.

When both sides put Jerusalem above their greatest joy, with their own hands they sever the nationalist branch they purport to nurture and to exalt. This Jerusalem, to which everyone’s eyes are turned, has no connection to the monotheism whose name they purport to carry.

And so, with the deepening of the occupation and the conflict has come the dissolution of the abstract, monotheistic God. Bit by bit, God is fragmented into rocks and stones. In so doing, they turn the city into a symbol of idolatry.

Everyone knows about the religious ruling — signed by over 100 rabbis and above all by Israel’s Ashkenazi and Sephardi chief rabbis, who represent Orthodox Judaism — that prohibits Jews from being on the Temple Mount, for reasons having to do with ritual purity and impurity. But nationalism, or to use its Israeli name, religious Zionism, has come out against that ruling. This teaches us that the conflict drives nationalists out of both their minds and their religion.

The deepening occupation and the ongoing conflict are also driving the other side out of their minds and their religion. I’ve discussed this at length in articles I have published in Arabic. Islam has never denied the Jewish connection to Jerusalem. On the contrary, anywhere you look in early Islamic literature, if it discusses the city at all you’ll find its Jewish connection.

There is a plethora of examples. For instance, it’s no accident that the ancient name of Surah al-Isra, the chapter of the Koran that discusses the Prophet Mohammed’s legendary journey from Mecca to Jerusalem and his ascension to heaven, was Surah Bani Israil, that is, the Surah of the Children of Israel.

There is a debate within Islam over the direction in which Muslims originally prayed. Some claim that Muslims prayed toward Mecca from the start, while others claim that they initially prayed toward Jerusalem. Ancient and canonical Muslim traditions cite Mohammed referring to Jerusalem as Qibla al-Yahud, meaning the Kaaba of the Jews. (The Kaaba in Mecca is Islam’s holiest site.) The reference is to the rock on which the Dome of the Rock was built in the seventh century.

Muslim commentators also discuss Al-Aqsa Mosque, which appears in the Koran as Suleiman’s Mosque or Suleiman’s Temple — in other words, Solomon’s Temple. Such commentaries even cite a tradition, or hadith, attributed to Mohammed, who said of the First Temple: “Solomon son of David raised [it] with gold and silver, with rubies and emeralds.” The tradition also says that this temple was destroyed twice, but all its looted contents are destined to return to it when the Mahdi comes, the Messiah who will restore our ancient glory.

Islamic literature places a special emphasis on the “rock” over which the golden dome was built in the seventh century. The famous 14th-century Muslim religious authority Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah — a student of Ibn Taymiyyah, whose works are foundational to the Muslim Brotherhood — sums up the importance of this “rock” as follows: “The most sublime element of this rock is that it is the Qibla of the Jews, and the rock’s status in space is like that of the Sabbath in time.” In other word, the sanctity of this rock in Jerusalem is like the sanctity of the Sabbath day.

Because this site, with all its Jewish baggage, also became holy to Islam early on, and because for many generations, Muslims could say, “The whole mosque is in our hands,” the situation today is very complicated.

So what do we do now? We could wait for the Mahdi or the Messiah. Except that in the meantime, a great deal of blood would be spilled on this altar of idol worship.
*
Haaretz, Oct. 21, 2106

***
For Hebrew, press here
Print Friendly and PDF

Share:


Facebook comments:
0 Comments:
Post a Comment

Middle East
  • The Arab world's quagmire

    Only a society that can engage in introspection and self-examination can emerge from its dark past and march confidently to a different future. Otherwise, it will continue to sink into the same marshy swamp.

    Read more

    A Feeble Middle East

    The West learned on its own flesh that this region conducts itself by other codes. Iran has continued to entrench its standing by means of its religious ideology. The toppling of Saddam Hussein shattered the illusion of the existence of a unifying “Iraqi identity” and gave an encouraging shot in the arm to Iran, which is forging ahead.

    Read more

  • The decay in the Arab world

    With great sadness, it can be said that in the absence of a sane civil alternative, the Arab world will continue along this path.

    Read more


    Neither Arab nor Spring

    The vicissitudes that have, for some reason, been collectively dubbed the "Arab Spring" are neither Arab nor Spring. One can say that they are actually living proof of the identity crisis and reverberating bankruptcy of Arab nationalism.

    Read more

  • another title

Israel - Palestine
  • Our troubles come from us

    And so we have reached a situation in which every Arab is concerned with his own problems and everyone talks about what preoccupies him personally – that is, his own troubles.

    Read more


  • Never-ending tragedy

    The Israeli right, in all its forms, wants exclusively Jewish control over all of the Land of Israel. To the Palestinians who live in this space, it promises residency – temporary, of course, on condition that they keep their heads down, accept their designated status and behave accordingly.

    Read more
  • Solomon’s Mosque

    Religion, every religion, is the No. 1 enemy of nationalism. But under conditions of tension, such as tribal warfare, these polar opposites combine into a toxic soup that consumes all common sense.

    Read more


Racism
  • They see not, nor know

    The term "neutralize" is very popular with people who have served in the security and expulsion forces. The question to be asked is, What did the poet who spoke of "neutralization" mean in this plan?

    Read more

    For Jews only

    From the moment the pundits followed in the footsteps of the politicians, both large and small, they carried this noxious melody everywhere. They were part of legitimizing the illegitimate in Israeli politics.

    Read more

  • With yearning soul

    The Zionism that aspired to establish a "Jewish home" in the Jews' "ancient homeland" did not take into consideration the fact that the land was not empty. It thus adopted the principle of population transfer, based on the same ancient biblical tradition.

    Read more

    Rabbis of the Dry Bones

    Racism surfaces when a society loses its self-confidence and turns to seeking ways to defend itself against what is different and perceived as increasingly threatening.

    Read more

  • الحلم

    حلمتُ:
    أنّي في سجن جدران بيضاء
    حيث لا يعرفني أحدٌ، وأصواتٌ
    تختفي في الرّدهات، وأضواء تستنشقُ
    جمجمتي اللّاهثة.
    ...
    تتمة الكلام


Press photo to Email

Classic

***
Jazz




Site Archive

SELECTED TOPICS

 
Essays
  • The pit and the pendulum

    In those days, we did not drink four goblets of wine, because everything that gladdens the human heart is not a part of our custom.

    Read more

  • Welcome Back to History

    Islam, like other imperialist ideologies, still needs enemies to flourish. Enemies have served Islam in the past as fuel for its wagons. Without enemies Islam declines and stagnates...

    Read more

  • another title

Poetry
  • Balkrishna Sama

    Man Is God


    He who loves flowers, has a tender heart.
    he who cannot pluck their blooms,
    has a heart that's noble.

    Read more

  • Martin Niemöller

    First They Came

    First they came for the Communists
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Communist.
    Then they came for the Socialist
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Socialist.


    Read More

  • Salman Masalha

    The Song About the Child

    Boston Gospel Choir

    Text: Salman Masalha
    Composer: Stephen Feigenbaum


    listen

TOPICS