Ghetto mentality! But why?? Turkish Leaders call for conversion of Istanbul landmark. The 'Mecca' of the Eastern Orthodox Church. How would Muslims feel if someone does that to them?
Hagia Sophia Mosque? “We currently stand next to the Hagia Sophia Mosque,” Turkey’s deputy prime minister, Bulent Arinc, remarked last month during a dedication of a museum of Caucasus carpets and rugs in the Hagia Sophia complex. “We are looking at a sad Hagia Sophia but hopefully we will see it smiling again soon.” Hagia Sophia, in Turkish Ayasofya, in Latin Sancta Sophia, also called Church of the Holy Wisdom or Church of the Divine Wisdom , cathedral built at Constantinople (now Istanbul, Turkey) in the 6th century (532–537) under the direction of the Byzantine emperor Justinian I. By general consensus, it is the most important Byzantine structure and one of the world’s great monuments.** It is the 'Mecca' of the Eastern Orthodox Church for nearly one thousand years, this is the building that witnessed the excommunication of Patriarch Michael I Cerularius on the part of Pope Leo IX in 1054, an act which is commonly considered the start of the Great Schism, it is an Integral part of Eastern Orthodox Church history.
Arinc, also a senior Cabinet minister from the ruling Islamic-rooted Justice and Development Party, mentioned two recent conversions of smaller Byzantine-era museums — in Trabzon in the northeast and Iznik near Istanbul — that have become working mosques.*** Callous treatment of the world heritage depicts the hideous and 'the ghetto mentality of certain sections of Muslim intelligentsia. ' (this Prof Irfan Habib’s remark on AMU minority character has caused a major stir in India) It was Bamiyan, then talks of destroying Sphinx when one Mullah demanded that after Brotherhood assuming power in Egypt, and now Hagia Sophia built by Constantine I in 325 on the foundations of a pagan temple.
Turkish Prime Minster should keep in mind the actions of Umar bin Khattab, after the conquest of Jerusalem in 638 CE, After the Siege of Jerusalem in 637 by the Rashidun army under the command of Abu Ubaidah ibn al-Jarrah, Patriarch Sophronius refused to surrender except to the Caliph Omar (579-644) himself. Omar travelled to Jerusalem and accepted the surrender. He then visited the Church of the Holy Sepulchre; Sophronius the Patriarch of Jerusalem was showing Umar the Church of the Holy Sepulchre; during which the time for prayer occurred. The Patriarch offered a place for him to pray in the church but Umar refused, explaining to the Patriarch, “Had I prayed inside the church, the Muslims coming after me would take possession of it, saying that I had prayed in it.” Tradition has it that he picked up a stone, threw it outside and prayed at the spot it landed. The present Mosque of Umar (or Masjid-e-Umar) was built over this place by Salahuddin Ayyubi’s son Afdhal Ali in 1193 CE. The Mosque of Omar ) in Jerusalem is located opposite the southern courtyard of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the Muristan. Don't do this to the Mecca of others, have some ounce of respect and decorum. ****
In 1453, Constantinople was conquered by the Ottoman Turks under Sultan Mehmed II, Christian cathedral made a strong impression on the new Ottoman rulers and he decided to convert it into a mosque who ordered this main church of the Orthodox Christianity converted into a mosque. The Hagia Sophia served as inspiration for many other Ottoman mosques, such as the Blue Mosque, the Şehzade Mosque, the Süleymaniye Mosque, the Rüstem Pasha Mosque and the Kılıç Ali Paşa Mosque. The bells, altar, iconostasis, and sacrificial vessels and other relics were removed and the mosaics depicting Jesus, his Mother Mary, Christian saints and angels were also removed or plastered over. Islamic features – such as the mihrab, minbar, and four minarets – were added. It remained a mosque until 1931 when it was closed to the public for four years. It was re-opened in 1935 as a museum by the Republic of Turkey. Ottomans/ now most of Islam got the idea of crescent on their flag from the flag that was furling on Hagia Sophia. Quraysh flag had no crescent.
The above story about Umar is part of the covenant. 'Pact of Umar' also 'Covenant of Umar' is a well-known treaty between the Muslims and Christians of Jerusalem that later gained a reference in the Islamic jurisprudence. The pact is traditionally attributed to the second Caliph Umar ibn Khattab.( Thomas & Roggema 2009, p. 360. )
This promised was based on 628 C.E. when Prophet granted a Charter of Privileges to the monks of St. Catherine Monastery in Mt. Sinai. It consisted of several clauses covering all aspects of human rights including such topics as the protection of Christians, freedom of worship and movement, freedom to appoint their own judges and to own and maintain their property, Honestly in 1453, when Constantinople was conquered by the Ottoman Turks under Sultan Mehmed II, and the Christian cathedral made a strong impression on the new Ottoman rulers his decision to convert it into a mosque was a clear violation of the 'Charter of Privileges' that the 628 C.E. when Prophet granted to the monks of St. Catherine Monastery in Mt. Sinai.
An English translation of that document is presented here:
This is a message from Muhammad ibn Abdullah, as a covenant to those who adopt Christianity, near and far, we are with them.
Verily I, the servants, the helpers, and my followers defend them, because
Christians are my citizens; and by Allah! I hold out against anything that displeases them.
No compulsion is to be on them.
Neither are their judges to be removed from their jobs nor their monks from their monasteries.
No one is to destroy a house of their religion, to damage it, or to carry anything from it to the Muslims' houses.
Should anyone take any of these, he would spoil God's covenant and disobey His Prophet. Verily, they are my allies and have my secure charter against all that they hate.
The original church on the site of the Hagia Sophia is said to have been built by Constantine I in 325 on the foundations of a pagan temple. It was rebuilt after a fire in 404 (upon the second banishment of St. John Chrysostom, then patriarch of Constantinople) and enlarged by the Roman emperor Constans I. The restored building was rededicated in 415 by Theodosius II. The church was burned again in the Nika insurrection of January 532, a circumstance that gave Justinian I an opportunity to envision a splendid replacement.After the Turkish conquest of Constantinople in 1453, Mehmed II had it repurposed as a mosque, with the addition of minarets (on the exterior, towers used for the summons to prayer), a great chandelier, a mihrab (niche indicating the direction of Mecca), a minbar (pulpit), and disks bearing Islamic calligraphy. Kemal Atatürk secularized the building in 1934, and in 1935 it was made into a museum. Art historians consider the building’s beautiful mosaics to be the main source of knowledge about the state of mosaic art in the time shortly after the end of the Iconoclastic Controversy in the 8th and 9th centuries.**
The speech was just the latest call for the building to be converted into a mosque after a sermon in October by the imam of the neighboring Sultan Ahmet mosque. He told worshippers a conversion must take place, echoing a campaign launched by the far-right National Turkish Student Association. Reaction from the Greek Foreign Ministry to the Arinc speech was swift, calling the speech “an insult to the religious sensibilities of millions of Christians and actions that are anachron istic and incomprehensible from a state that declares it wants to participate as a full member in the European Union.” Some critics say the spate of conversions of Byzantine-era Christian houses of worship from museums to mosques reflects the government’s payback against Turkey’s former secular military elite, which has historically jailed leaders of religious parties and staged coups against elected governments.
“It is mostly a challenge to the secular rulers of Turkish republic,” said Engin Akyurek, a professor of Byzantine art at Istanbul University.
**Hagia Sophia in BRITANNICA
****Islam on line
Faithful Muslims Must Destroy The Pyramids and The Sphinx : ‘Destroy the idols,’ Egyptian jihadist calls for removal of Sphinx, Pyramids. Yesterday it was the Bamiyan, today the Sphinx, Pyramids! Arabic media lately had reported words of Saudi Sheikh Ali bin Said al-Rabi‘i for the demolition of Egypt’s Great Pyramids. Now Murgan Salem al-Gohary, have joined the chorus, he is an Islamist leader twice-sentenced under former President Hosni Mubarak for advocating violence, he called on Muslims to remove such “idols.”
The clarion call of hardened clergy is the ''symbols of paganism need to be destroyed Mursi should accomplish what the Sahabi Amr bin al-As could not.” A reference to the Prophet Muhammad’s companion, Amr bin al-As who invaded and conquered Egypt in 641.
In December 639 'Amr ibn al-'As left for Egypt with a force of 4,000 troops. Most of the soldiers belonged to the Arab tribes, although Al-Kindi mentions that one third of the soldiers belonged to the Arab tribe of Ghafik. The Arab soldiers were also joined by some Byzantine and Persian converts to Islam. However, 'Umar, the Muslim caliph, reconsidered his orders to Amr, thinking it foolhardy to expect to conquer such a large country as Egypt with a mere 4,000 soldiers. Accordingly, he wrote a letter to 'Amr commanding him to come back. He added a postscript, however:
“"If you receive this letter when you have already crossed into Egypt, then you may proceed. Allah will help you and I will also send such reinforcements as may be needed."
Many Egyptian antiquities were shattered as relics of infidelity. The great Library of Alexandria itself deemed a repository of pagan knowledge contradicting the Koran was destroyed under bin al-As’s reign and in compliance with Caliph Omar’s command. (It is suggested that the Caliph has been quoted as saying of the Library's holdings, "they will either contradict the Koran, in which case they are heresy, or they will agree with it, so they are superfluous.")
However, while book-burning was an uncomplicated action in the 7th century, destroying the mountain-like pyramids and their guardian Sphinx was not easy. Constructed between 2589 BC and 2504 BC, the Egyptian pyramids of Khufu, Khafre and Menkaure, built in that order, are a testament to ancient planning and engineering. Examination of the Sphinx's face shows that the one-metre-wide nose on the face is missing. The Arab historian al-Maqrīzī, writing in the 15th century AD, attributes the loss of the nose to iconoclasm by Muhammad Sa'im al-Dahr, a Sufi Muslim from the khanqah of Sa'id al-Su'ada. In AD 1378, upon finding the Negroid peasants making offerings to the Sphinx in the hope of increasing their harvest, Sa'im al-Dahr was so outraged that he destroyed the nose, and was hanged for vandalism. Al-Maqrīzī describes the Sphinx as the "talisman of the Nile" on which the locals believed the flood cycle depended.
Even Khomeini of Iran tried to destroy the poetry and culture of pre Islamic era. Abolqasem Ferdowsi wrote the "Shahnameh," a 1000 years ago known as "Book of Kings. It is the legendary epic encapsulating the first erratic moments of creation to the Arab conquest of the Persian Empire in the seventh century.
Ferdowsi maintained connection of essence to the bequest and heritage of pre-Islamic Iran. "Shahnameh" was composed on request of Sultan Mahmud of Ghazanavi. Abolqasem Ferdowsi was offered one dinar for every couplet. Ferdowsi presented the Sultan with almost 60,000 couplets, an embarrassed Mahmud Ghazanavi backed out of his enterprise. Ferdowsi abandoned the lessened reward, he died impoverished and embittered in Tus. Yet, his poem is now the grand epic of Persian literature . Ferdowsi's hostility toward the desert invaders ends the epic where 'Rostam' stood before the marching army and mourn:
When the pulpit's equal to the throne
And Abu Bakr's and Omar's names are known
Our long travails will be as naught, and all
The glory we have known will fade and fall.
The stars are with the Arabs, and you'll see
No crown or throne, no royal sovereignty.
Ayatollah Khomeini considered the "Shahnameh" unpleasant, even blasphemous. He rejected public readings and declared all unspiritual verse as forbidden. Ayatollah Sadegh Khalkhali in 1979 tried to bulldoze the Ferdowsi's tomb and Persepolis, he was stopped by the provisional governor.
Damn this world, damn this time, damn this fate,
That uncivilized Arabs have come to make me Muslim.
How the cultures, customs and traditions of the world civilization are destroyed as we funnily wait for some common sense to evolve. The ancient statues were between the tallest standing Buddha's in the world. They had survived the ravages of Genghis Khan, centuries of invasions and wars and the natural wear of the elements. Taliban have been considered the true descendants of all the other barbarians who destroyed what their ideologies could not accept: the Vandals and Huns stealing of the Roman Empire; Stalin's destruction of churches; Mao's Cultural Revolution; Pol Pot's razing of schools and cities; Hitler's book burnings and desecration of synagogues. The Taliban claimed that "the Buddha's violate the Islamic prohibition against sacred images and that they are false idols that must be destroyed.....the statues should be destroyed so that they are not worshipped now or in the future ...".
But the reasons of the action were politics and may be also religious. The city of Bamiyan was a base of the Taliban's opposition - Northern Alliance's "rebel" forces. The Taliban took control of Bamiyan in 1998 and, to humiliate the locals, they tried to destroy their heritage. From the lowest to the highest form of intellectual life nothing escapes the prying eyes of the mullahs; the ideological interpretations and limits that are to be imposed are fanatically exerted. Whatever brings some solace to our lives, from the dead stones of caves of Bamiyan carved into beautiful majestic Buddha's; to Sphinx, Pyramids ; to even man's great friend dog and on to intellect like Najeeb Mahfooz, all form of life are threatened.
Anything innovative, skilful or original should be smashed, if the mountains of Bamiyan would have stayed uncared it is OK, any attempt of chiselling them to an object of reverence is threat to an ideology, is loveliness and adore of life a-thesis of dogma? It looks like so. Hate begets hate, Violence begets Violence and Terrorism begets terrorism. Medievalism breeds and begets medievalism; even if the mind tries to be free from the opium induced enslavement of soul through legends and myths the fables and folklores of desert tie the person to medievalism ! The 'terrorism' to chain the masses is the worst kind of 'terrorism,' the avatars who practice it with greatest scriptural gifted immunity are bane of mankind.