Date: Wed, 26 Jul 1995 16:09:28 -0400

From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" ccoolidg[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]MOOSE.UVM.EDU

Subject: Re: A History of God

On Wed, 26 Jul 1995, Timothy C. Frazer wrote:

I just finished Karen ARmstrong's book. While I found her bias against

Western Christianity a little heavy handed, I found the book interesting.

Especially her contention that Islam in its original Koranic form wa

smore tolerant of other religions and even of women than the current

version which she claims was hijacked by macho Arab imperialists. Any

comments? Please address me directly, if possible.

Tim Frazer\

Western Illinois University.

As a student of comparitive religion in my spare time, I remember reading

somewhere that Islam wasn't even meant to be a religion; unlike Jesus, Moham-

med was not supposed to be God made flesh. Just a prophet passing on God's

word. Which got him banned from his home city of Mecca, because he was prea-

ching that all religions are true under the One God; as long as you believe

in One God, you are practicing true religion. He saw his mission as uniting

all monotheists, without necessarily creating a new religion. He reportedly

asked Jews and Christians to join him in what he saw as a common cause rather

than a religion; in fact he is reputed to have no interest in getting anyone

to change their religion, as long as they already followed the One God. For

some reason the Jews and Christians never took him up on it. I think Moham-

med, wherever he is, is horrified at what Islam and Christianity alike have

become. I don't think this is what he had in mind. He'd probably convert to

Judaism if he returned. I think you'll find this article in a recent issue

of Time or Newsweek, I forget which.