15. The spirituality of Europe

15.3 Islam

During the Neolithic infancy of humanity, in the absence of domestic animals, the choice between a nomad and a sedentary life was neither evident nor imperative. The distinction between a nomadic life and sedentariness was blurred and tribes adopted one or the other of these modes of living according to circumstances. Some people opted very early for a sedentary life (Magdalenians, Greeks, Natouflians, Etruscans, Chinese, Japanese, Inca, Mayas and Aztecs, the Neanderthalers of the French Dordogne, the Algonquin and Apache tribes of North America) because of opportunity, abundance of food reserves, climate, while others practiced culture and stock raising in a loose manner, looking for more fertile lands when the plowed fields had lost fecundity (some Amazonians, the Germanic tribes). As a rule, the demographic weakness of the people living on the periphery, their poverty and intellectual limitations made them vulnerable and in quest for the protection of established sedentary civilizations, rich in people and tools, instruments and means.

With the advent of goats and sheep, camels and dromedaries, donkeys and horses, script and the development of efficacious weapons readily accessible to primitive tribes (this occurred also with Amerindians in the 17th and 18th century in North America), with an increase in population numbers, the choice between a sedentary life based on production and thrift and a nomad life based on commerce and appropriation of goods became possible. Islam is the answer, on the spiritual level, of the Nomad to the Sedentary. Islam is the nomad offshoot of Judaism, as Christianity is its sedentary child. The sole report of violence committed by Christ is the expulsion of the merchants from the temple (Marc. 11:15+; Mt. 21:12+; Luc. 19: 45+). A carpenter, dedicated to the construction of perennial houses, violently opposes the nomad exploitation of religious credulity.

15.3.1 The genesis of aggressiveness among primates and man

Twenty-five million years ago, an aggressiveness gene of impulsive and even violent conduct appeared in an ape and this gene is present now in chimpanzees, gorillas and humans. This gene is located on the male chromosome where it encodes for the enzyme monoamine oxidase, whose duty it is to destroy neurotransmitters active in the brain, as dopamine and serotonine. This gene may be present in many exemplars. In humans, the absence of the gene induces an extremely violent behavior. The men bearing only one exemplar of the gene produce little monoamine oxidase and are more violent, aggressive and impulsive than those who possess three to five copies (already mentioned in book II, 9.2 Sexual Relations) .

The gene is not uniformly spread among a population of apes or men of the Old World and is present in a variable manner among the members of a community. Obviously, an aggressive and risk-prone conduct limited to a few male members of a community may sometimes be beneficial to the group but an extension of the aggressiveness to all its members is not necessarily useful. On the other hand, a hyper aggressive male has little chances to reach the reproductive age to pass his alleles to his offspring. In primitive martial communities composed of few members as the pre-Muslim Arab clans (Gen. 21:21) or the Jewish tribes descending from the twelve sons of Jacob (Ex. 1:1-8) or else the Moabites and Ammonites (Gen. 19:31-38), the gene of aggressiveness may however have, through a genetic process called genetic drift that is well documented (chapter 4), very rapidly extended to all the male members of the community. The violent conduct induced by this gene is amplified with alcohol, which may explain why Jews and Arabs prohibit its consumption.

The hyperactive male members of a community enter regularly in ferocious competition between themselves for access to a privileged social and reproductive position when they are integrated into the whole group, and adopt an aggressive mentality when the males are among themselves. This despicable behavior is repeatedly described in the Old Testament, is also observed in armies and in the gangs of our suburbs, and is profoundly rooted in the phylogeny of the primates because observed among chimpanzees. In sufficient numbers, the male chimpanzees form a coherent and united group, ready to attack defenseless neighbors provided these are inferior in strength.

15.3.2 Birth and expansion of Islam

Between the 3rd and 6th century, the Byzantines opposed Persia for the control of the maritime and terrestrial routes of silk, held by Arabs and Turks, and incorporated elements of these two tribes in their armies. These tribes received through this channel military training, gold, camels, dromedaries and horses as well as ships for the transport of the goods of the Orient.

The Arabs were first to take advantage of this solicitude by the creation of opulent cities of merchants (e.g. Petra and Mecca). There is no contradiction in the representation of the Nomad as a savage scoundrel whose sole means of subsistence and reason to live are the cynical exploitation of the industrious thrift of peasants and sedentary artisans, and an urban civilization of oasis cities provided with all the amenities demanded by a nomad elite. Even Karakorum, the Capital city of the Mongols, was a city of stones that fulfilled the needs of the administrators of the Nomad Empire.

The merchants were, in previous times as in modern times, nomads who did not gain their living by selling the goods produced by the fellow artisan members of their own tribe but transported goods from one geographic point to another. They were and are still today unproductive middlemen whose usefulness resides in the transport of goods. The risk run by the merchants were such that they transported only whatever had great value, as spices, silk, women, slaves, which made Mohamed little inclined to suppress slavery. This commerce enriched the urban centers of Arabia, that in turn favored the development of the administrative talents (mathematics, an elegant script) needed to organize the expeditions on sea and land, backed by administrative skills learned from Rome and Greece.

Trajan occupied Persia in 113 and extended the Empire to the Indus. The Jewish merchants lost therewith their profits as middlemen, and the Zealots of Jerusalem revolted. Trajan subdued the revolt and Hadrian proposed to the Jews the reconstruction of the city. This proposal was refused and followed by the revolt of 132, which was the last. The Diaspora imposed in 132 prompted the settling of Jewish merchant houses in the north of the Red Sea, near the Sinai, and south of the Red Sea, in Yemen. These merchants entered in competition with the Byzantines for the favors of the polygamous and polytheist Arabs. Since the 4th century, Judaism had increased its attractiveness to Nomad Arabs because to become Christian or Zoroastrian implied political adherence to the Emperor or Basileus, or to Sassinid Persia. This was not the case with Judaism, which represented a welcome force of political opposition.

Until the 6th century of our era, the peripheral tribes who had a vocation of sedentariness could force open the doors of sedentary lands and occupy them by the adoption of Christianism but the Nomad did not possess the material (weapons and manpower), mental (organization) and spiritual (religion) means to subjugate durably the sedentary civilizations and impose nomadism. This was true also for Attila, whom the pope convinced, with the help of Saint Peter and Saint Paul waving a sword, to leave Italy (fig. 15.12), and whom Aetius forced to leave Gaul.


Figure 15.12. The meeting of Pope Leo I and Attila. Algardi, 1646-1653.
This huge Baroque relief sculpture abandons the conventions of relief sculpture in that the ground plane advances beyond the limits of the frame: the foremost figures assume an almost three-dimensional existence and protrude from the relief surface. The turning away Attila is carried with his movement into the zone of the observer. Only the Pope and Attila are aware of the two Apostles swooping down from the skies with St Paul holding a sword. Swords should not be in the hands of Apostles but the sword is an attribute of St Paul because he was beheaded in Rome with a sword.

From the 6th century on, the domination of the Nomad, based on a powerful armament (bow and arrows with metallic points endowed with a penetration power superior to that of primitive fire arms, steel from Toledo and Damask for the making of axes, swords and shields, fast and tall horses, with saddles provided with stirrups (fig. 15.13), which ensured stability when sending off arrows or holding a lance, fast dromedaries for desert fight and frugal camels for transport, script allowing accurate instructions for campaigns) and, above all, a hegemonic and exclusive religion that prohibited conjugal and filial love incompatible with the violence proper to a fighting spirit, was indisputable and will remain so until the satisfactory development of fire arms.

Afbeelding 89

Figure 15.13. Mongol horseman. Note the small size of the horse. The Arabian horse will soon correct this weakness.

Mohamed invited his fellow tribesmen to shake off the yoke of sedentary empires and establish the Faith in Abraham.

15.3.3 The Nomad Faith

Mohamed made the Faith of Abraham acceptable to Nomads with humane as well as inhumane precepts, as blind obedience to authority, egalitarian justice and social liberty of the Believer who could not, under any circumstance, be enslaved, sobriety and temperance, exaltation of virility, glorification of war and of carnal pleasures (the Houris), legal subjection of woman without however despise since she could inherit and hold goods, taxation of the rich to help the poor, principle of free enterprise, wealth acquired not by thrift but by clannishness (7:58 “those who will believe in him, who will honor and support him, will prosper“, 24:53 “and he who obeys to Allah and to his messenger will be prosperous“). He restates what asserts the Torah. Adultery was punished with 100 whippings for man and woman (24:2) but polygamy was allowed, as exemplified by Mahomet himself who possessed ten wives. He had also numerous concubines. He married Aïcha when she was six and honored her when she reached nine. This continence of three long years is commendable, any good Muslim will admit to this. This obscene sexual appetite was conforming to the depraved customs of the time and strenuously opposed by the Church, which demanded the nubility of the marrying Christian girls. All in all, Mohammedanism is not a creed with an easy moral; it is as puritan as those of Cromwell and Calvin. In integrist Islam, no sculptors, no painters, no musicians, and no beer nor wine. This is now the case in Afghanistan, in Iran where the rules are slowly mellowing, in Arabia, Pakistan, Sudan and other Islamic countries. It was also the life of the Calvinists.

The ethic of Mohamed transcended the limits of the Arab clans but remained prisoner of the group of believers he formed. Whereas Christianity is derived from Judaïsm by exploiting its most pacific aspects necessary for a harmonious, fecund and pacific sedentary life, Islam followed its teachings of exclusion, defiance and hatred for the unbeliever considered an enemy to be subdued and enslaved (e.g. Deut. 6:7 “You will devour all the populations that the Eternal, your God, will deliver to you, you will not lend them a sight of pithy and will not serve their god“).

If the believer is respected and granted all latitude to develop according to merit, which was not the case for the subjects of the sedentary neighboring empires, the infidel was vomited. Allah strikes and kills by the intermediary of the warrior (8:18 “So, you did not kill but it was Allah who killed them. And you did not strike when you did, but it was Allah who struck.“). This is also professed in the Torah. It is virtuous to lie, steal, betray, enslave enemies for the fulfillment of tasks menial (concubines, prostitutes, servants) or dangerous (the Janissaries). Mohamed served as an example of a warlord who practiced torture and murder on prisoners, and these murderous and barbaric precepts were rendered acceptable by a varnish of primitive logic and the satisfaction of the most primitive pulsations, which made the message, and still makes it, seductive. That women succumb to it is beyond understanding.

The social cohesion of the believers was maintained by diverse obligations adapted to a nomad life. The sacrifice of a mutton, symbol of a pastoral mode of living, is made during the annual feast of sharing (Aïd-el-kebir), which is marked by the simultaneous slaughtering of millions of muttons on the same day, in all of Islam, with the quartered food distributed to friends and family. Christ, for his part, choose to share bread and wine, symbols of a sedentary culture, in the presence of all the believers assembled once a week.

There is only one God and Mohamed is his Prophet. This is the essence of the creed. All the rest is detail. The Koran and the Shariat, which is a compilation of tradition, will take care of it. Submission to God, i.e. Islam, is a faith based on primitive pulsations of violence, governed by a simple easily understood logic that adopted without any retinue an unconditional monotheism stripped of restraining conjugal notions. Generous for the believers and devoid of compelling dogmas, it seduced many Christians rejected by the Orthodox Church (Arians, Monophysites, Nestorians) as well as to the disciples of Zoroaster. The heavy taxation imposed on the imperial subjects, necessary as well to maintain a plethoric and inefficient administration as to maintain the armies needed to combat the Nomads, added to the discontent. The taxation of wheeled vehicles by Byzantium led to their abandon, to the neglect of the roads and to the intense use of horses, donkeys, dromedaries and camels for transport, which came to good use to the Nomad. The refusal to engage in war and murder, shared by Christians, Hindus and Buddhists, greatly facilitated the invasion of their territories by enduring, rustic, pitiless and intellectually restricted, i.e. fanatic, horsemen who had elevated war to the rank of the highest virtue.

Handicrafts and transformation of the resources of the land by disciplined human efforts had their place in the empire conquered by the Caliphs but the place was small and reserved to the most destitute social classes. Irrigation works allowed the cultivation of a variety of cereals and fruits but we find little technical progress and few factories, even if West Asia prospered during a thousand years, until the 16th century. The essential of the activity consisted in transferring goods from the producer to the consumer with as little profit as possible to either of them. Commerce is necessary and healthy when it consists in the delivery of goods at its correct price. Today, we also suffer from this intolerable distortion of exaggerate profits for middlemen, brokers, bankers, and distributors. The financial crisis and collapse of banking and industrial activities observed in 2007 and 2008 in the USA, Europe and Russia , is traced to prices imposed by unproductive cynical middlemen and incompetent gluttonous managers for services and goods incommensurate with their real value.

The enormous needs in slaves, as well females as males, could be satisfied only through razzia and war since Muslims cannot be enslaved. The Orthodox populations of Albania and Kosovo converted to Islam to thereupon furnish to the Turkish armies the Janissaries needed to combat the Orthodox. The Orthodox Chechens islamized, to thereupon plunder Russia, Ukraine and Poland at the service of the Ottomans in need of female sexual slaves from these regions (fig. 15.14).

Afbeelding 91

Figure 15.14. A customer assesses the dental quality of an humiliated Christian female slave on the Aurat Bazaar for female slaves, in Istanbul.

The Saracens of Algiers raided the coasts of France, Italy and Spain, and went as far as Iceland, to procure them. The females originating from the Kosovo, Bulgaria and Romania were most appreciated for sexual services and were in greatest demand. Today, the Muslim Kosovar mafia imports massively to Europe female prostitutes from these regions. Repeat gang rapes destroy the mental resistance of the girls. In those countries, the dictum “a renegade is worse than a Turk” is still actual, as seen by the incredible savagery and evil demonstrated by the Islamic terrorists who assaulted a school in Beslan. “Of which mothers are they born, those who could do such a thing?” asked a witness of the atrocity. In fact, they despise their own mothers and have no regard for any human or animal life. To grant independence from Serbia to the Kosovo in 2008 is a momentous sign of the stupidity that characterizes our Western elites.

It is currently becoming, and even imposed, to emphasize the contribution of Islam to scientific progress. Islam is thought to have saved the Greek and Roman heritage from oblivion, and have passed it in due time to a receptive Europe. One forgets with this false representation of historical facts that Greek Byzantium survived until the year 1453 and that the Latins occupied Byzantium during 50 years, from 1204 to 1261. The daughter of the Basileus married the Germanic emperor Otto II and Greek influence in the Germanic empire was profound, witness the Byzantine mosaics that are exposed to the public in the chapels of the Mount St Odile, in Elzas. The Islamic science, initially prosperous in some restricted sites at the periphery of the empire, was rapidly denounced as heresy by a militant Islam that held all truth revealed once and for all in the Koran. The incredibly rich library assembled by the Sassanides was thrown in the river when Persia was conquered in 637-642. This is early during the conquest and does not manifest a concern for science. If Islam has witnessed technological advances, indigenous sources rapidly dried up and the essential came from outside. The contemporary development of the non-western world seems to completely bypass Islamic countries.

This entry was posted in 15. The spirituality of Europe. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.