Wednesday, July 19, 2017


By: Kassim Ahmad
29th July, 2016

   I am writing this article to clarify my position once and for all on Prophet Muhammad. My detractors accuse me of belittling him. I never did. In fact, I was like them before, repeating parrot-like, their mantra on him (“May God bless him and may peace be on him”) which I inherited from my ancestors. However, I felt uneasy, though amazed and perplexed, at Muhammad’superelevated position.
   Truth to tell, I began to study the Quran from the age of seventeen. Every year I would repeat it, comparing one translation with another till I was 54 in 1986. By that time I have studied it for 36 years!
   In the meanwhile, I studied Arabic as a subsidiary subject at the University, and continued to study it later. By then I had collected most of the Malay and English translations. I now have in my library 13 translations, including what  consider to be the best English translation by Dr. Rashad Khalifa.
   Yesterday was a hectic yet productive day for me. In the morning I visited the Grand Old Man of Malaysia (GOMM) at his office in Putrajaya. Sadly, I found him not to be his old confident self any more. Last year, in the evening, as I walked beside him to go home, he said that he was like my older brother. In 2014 when I first appeared as an accused at the Syari’ah Court in Putrajaya, he attended the court, to the obvious surprise of everyone, including the judge.
   To continue my story, I walked away a little disappointed. Not only age has taken toll on him, but Malaysia’s conservative Shafi’e religious school of thought has distanced himself from the young exuberant forward-looking Malaysians. Although I am nearing 83 and not physically young, I am as young in spirit as ever. God be thanked!   
    I raced to Setia Alam in Shah Alam in order to be in time for my last appointment at 5.00 p.m.  Luckily, the persons I was to meet were also late. A few minute later they turned up. We had a productive conversation for almost three hours. My new acquaintance, Abdul Karim Abdullah, is a lecturer in one of our institutes of advanced learning. To my great joy, we shared the same thoughts on all topics.   
   Muhammad is the last prophet of God, ending a series of prophets beginning with Prophet  Adam, through prophets Abraham, Moses and Jesus, teaching  the same religion of monotheism to their national communities. The only difference is that Prophet Muhammad was sent to the whole world and delivered the divinely-protected Quran . Hence he is “a mercy to the world.”
   Muhammad was an Arab.  He had the qualities to be the receptacle of a new revelation in Arabic, the language that God chose to reveal the Quran in.
  This is my position vis-à-vis Prophet Muhammad. My rejection of the second syahadah is based on the Quran where it is rejected in Surah 63,verse 1.   
   You see I love God The Truth, and I obey Him. What wrong did I do for the human religious authorities to accuse of belittling Islam? 

KASSIM AHMAD is a Malaysian author. His website is            

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