The Family Of Imran

Islam seems to me to be a very oppresive religion. Allah doesn't seem to be very loving and rather than forgiving he is only ever merciful.

[3.28] Let not the believers take the unbelievers for friends rather than believers; and whoever does this, he shall have nothing of (the guardianship of) Allah, but you should guard yourselves against them, guarding carefully; and Allah makes you cautious of (retribution from) Himself; and to Allah is the eventual coming.
[3.29] Say: Whether you hide what is in your hearts or manifest it, Allah knows it, and He knows whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth, and Allah has power over all things.

Allah is a metaphor surely, he is not a god like the christians percieve and is more like the Yoga Atman. The juvenescence of the muslim religion is very aparent in the test, so many of the situations described are more like life today than any other religion I have read, they seem more akin to this world not of one gone by.

[3.102] O you who believe! be careful of (your duty to) Allah with the care which is due to Him, and do not die unless you are Muslims.
[3.103] And hold fast by the covenant of Allah all together and be not disunited, and remember the favor of Allah on you when you were enemies, then He united your hearts so by His favor you became brethren; and you were on the brink of a pit of fire, then He saved you from it, thus does Allah make clear to you His communications that you may follow the right way.
[3.104] And from among you there should be a party who invite to good and enjoin what is right and forbid the wrong, and these it is that shall be successful.
[3.105] And be not like those who became divided and disagreed after clear arguments had come to them, and these it is that shall have a grievous chastisement.

Wow this is like some subtle brain washing going on, the Book is now not inviting you to make up your own mind but is beating you into submission with the word of Allah before even telling you what he has even done. Subtle is actually too generous a word as reading this it feels like relentlous psychological conditioning.

[3.118] O you who believe! do not take for intimate friends from among others than your own people; they do not fall short of inflicting loss upon you; they love what distresses you; vehement hatred has already appeared from out of their mouths, and what their breasts conceal is greater still; indeed, We have made the communications clear to you, if you will understand.
[3.119] Lo! you are they who will love them while they do not love you, and you believe in the Book (in) the whole of it; and when they meet you they say: We believe, and when they are alone, they bite the ends of their fingers in rage against you. Say: Die in your rage; surely Allah knows what is in the breasts.
[3.120] If good befalls you, it grieves them, and if an evil afflicts you, they rejoice at it; and if you are patient and guard yourselves, their scheme will not injure you in any way; surely Allah comprehends what they do.
[3.121] And when you did go forth early in the morning from your family to lodge the believers in encampments for war and Allah is Hearing, Knowing.

Wow in no other religion is this sentiment put across so forcefully, this is a young angry mans religion, no wonder women are kept so far from it.

[3.136] (As for) these-- their reward is forgiveness from their Lord, and gardens beneath which rivers flow, to abide in them, and excellent is the reward of the laborers.

Why is this so material, other religions make the same promise but place it after death, with islam it is a promise for this life it seems. If this is a metaphor it's a poor one that keeps popping up as bait.

[3.145] And a soul will not die but with the permission of Allah the term is fixed; and whoever desires the reward of this world, I shall give him of it, and whoever desires the reward of the hereafter I shall give him of it, and I will reward the grateful.

So the afterlife is also used.

[3.157] And if you are slain in the way of Allah or you die, certainly forgiveness from Allah and mercy is better than what they amass.
[3.158] And if indeed you die or you are slain, certainly to Allah shall you be gathered together.
[3.159] Thus it is due to mercy from Allah that you deal with them gently, and had you been rough, hard hearted, they would certainly have dispersed from around you; pardon them therefore and ask pardon for them, and take counsel with them in the affair; so when you have decided, then place your trust in Allah; surely Allah loves those who trust.

Again this is more militant than any other religion, I understand the importance of facing death and living with it as an advisor, but this is somethign else.

[3.172] (As for) those who responded (at Ohud) to the call of Allah and the Apostle after the wound had befallen them, those among them who do good (to others) and guard (against evil)shall have a great reward.

I'm beginning to find statements like this at odds with the book as a whole, doing good is becomming blurred with killing in the name of allah

[3.179] On no account will Allah leave the believers in the condition which you are in until He separates the evil from the good; nor is Allah going to make you acquainted with the unseen, but Allah chooses of His apostles whom He pleases; therefore believe in Allah and His apostles; and if you believe and guard (against evil), then you shall have a great reward.
[3.180] And let not those deem, who are niggardly in giving away that which Allah has granted them out of His grace, that it is good for them; nay, it is worse for them; they shall have that whereof they were niggardly made to cleave to their necks on the resurrection day; and Allah's is the heritage of the heavens and the earth; and Allah is aware of what you do.
[3.181] Allah has certainly heard the saying of those who said: Surely Allah is poor and we are rich. I will record what they say, and their killing the prophets unjustly, and I will say: Taste the chastisement of burning.
[3.182] This is for what your own hands have sent before and because Allah is not in the least unjust to the servants.
[3.183] (Those are they) who said: Surely Allah has enjoined us that we should not believe in any apostle until he brings us an offering which the fire consumes. Say: Indeed, there came to you apostles before me with clear arguments and with that which you demand; why then did you kill them if you are truthful?

I'm confused by this idea that a new apostle can be part of the Muslim religion, I think I remember the christian bible stating that no one can ever add to or alter it's message. Islam it seems expects and welcomes new apostles and new views.

[3.190] Most surely in the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day there are signs for men who understand.
[3.191] Those who remember Allah standing and sitting and lying on their sides and reflect on the creation of the heavens and the earth: Our Lord! Thou hast not created this in vain! Glory be to Thee; save us then from the chastisement of the fire:

I like this.

The Quran


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