The House of David

"dawnbreak in the west"

Monday, May 30, 2016

A universe without sura 29

In Barbados summer of 2009 I picked up Brad Thor's The Last Patriot, and that December recommended it as "important". The title plays the American protagonist against "the last prophet".

All fiction takes place in an alternate universe. In The Last Patriot's universe, God had revealed a peaceful sura to the Prophet, after "Gabriel" had revealed the warlike suras. Thus the putative sura of this book had abrogated the warlike suras. But the Arab warlords after their Prophet's death (as Paul Casanova suspected) suppressed this sura and suppressed all hadiths mentioning it. But as you know and as I know (which btw makes my task possible) nothing gets suppressed without hints to the coverup.

Thor wants Muhammad to be a man of peace and perhaps even to be a small-p prophet of sorts, like Catherine of Siena. Yep, Thor is one of those conservatives. Thor's problem (as noted December 2009) is that early-Islamic scholarship keeps putting swords in the Muslims' hands. But maybe Qur'anic scholarship might remove the sword from the Prophet's hand...?

Contrafactuals on history should be as close to reality as possible. On that principle, Thor should have known that the Qur'an's canon is very much an open question in scholarship; flags were thrown against suras 2, 24, 33, and 48 some years before Thor started this book of his. A "last sura" would, necessarily, precede several works already in the canon. How would we argue for this new sura's authenticity, without cleaning up the canon we already have, first? Take sura 9. This quotes sura 19; which (I think) puts it after the Dome of the Rock as well (680s AD). Any sura that claimed to abrogate sura 9, must postdate and make reference to this. Since sura 9 is a fraud, any sura postdating it would have to be a fraud too.

Sura 29 would be another one of those works dependent on sura 19 (actually on sura 21, which depends on sura 19). In 2010 when I finally posted "Against Jihad" I suspected sura 29 lived beyond sura 57 as well; in fact, rejecting that sura, thus anti-jihadic. Immediately I drew a parallel with The Last Patriot's anti-jihadic "lost" sura. I was going to draw up a post at that time, but I didn't want to do this lightly - I still figured TLP's heart was in the right place. Now I find that sura 29 postdates sura 16, and in the meantime I have acquired a disillusion with Thor's principles. So let's do this:

In The Last Patriot's dimension one of these anti-sura-9 suras was in antiquity recognised as the (very) postMuhammadan text it is, so never entered the canon. (Let us pretend that this is not sura 29 itself but something like it.) Upon the book's conclusion, that sura is discovered, say, with scraps of sura 28 immediately before it. The inevitable sequel of The Last Patriot is where the Muslims prove this pseudosura as fraudulent, to which the Orientalists must agree. This puts disgrace against the moderates ... like Brad Thor.

posted by Zimri on 08:59 | link | 0 comments

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