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In the Name of God بسم الله

Sheikh Hamza Sodagar on Homosexuality

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Guest silasun

In true Sheikh Farrokh Sekaleshfar fashion, the nutjobs of the press have decided to try and ruin another Shia cleric's reputation by using totally decontextualised parts of a speech he gave. He has made it as a top article on the Independent today.

It should be emphasised that this, again, is not a witch-hunt from the EDL or neo-Nazis. The articles quite Peter Tatchell, a well known sodomy rights activist and ultra-liberal. Unfortunately we don't realise how much hate towards Islam is coming from both the right wing press and those publications which claim a tolerant view of Muslims (such as the Independent).

Sheikh Sodagar, is a very humble and down to Earth person. A very kind guy who takes time out to personally explain even the most simple of concepts. It seems that the media is following all Shia scholars so that whenever they make a point about this grave sin, they can take decontextualised parts of it and use it to deny us from benefitting from another capable and sincere Islamic scholar.

The Majalis have involved speeches by people from different walks of life in the Shia community including Sayed Ayatollah Kashmiri (the representative of Ayatollah Sistani) and somebody presenting about Al-Ayn Social Care Foundation (a charity involved with Marjaiyyah of Najaf). The Majalis are available to watch live by following instructions on the AIM Islam facebook page.

Here is a statement from AhlulBayt Islamic Mission (AIM Islam):

Statement clarifying position on allegations against Shaykh Hamza Sodagar

AIM News 2 days ago 6,531 Views

 
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The AhlulBayt Islamic Mission (AIM) issues this statement to clarify its position on the baseless allegations made against Shaykh Hamza Sodagar by far-right media outlets.

AIM prides itself for being active in campaigning against extremism, sectarianism, intolerance and racism both locally and globally. We have been consistent in our efforts to spread justice, peace, and tolerance; and to promote social harmony as contained in our rich and abundant Islamic heritage. Since its inception, our organisation has been steadfast in promoting this message because these values are enshrined in the Islamic teachings that we uphold.

The unfortunate rise of right-wing extremism has resulted in a malicious campaign to misconstrue the positions of Islam and dehumanise Muslims.

We are saddened that the UK media is able to publish materials that clearly follow a right-wing extremist agenda of spreading hatred and Islamophobia.

Shaykh Hamza Sodagar is a reputable religious scholar who has studied the sciences of the religion and is considered an expert in theology, history and jurisprudence. He has a lengthy record in serving the Muslim community around the world.

In remarks made in 2010, as part of a series of lectures delivered on mercy, love and hatred in Islam through a commentary of a supplication from the Islamic tradition, Shaykh Hamza explained the position of Islam on homosexuality, and that it is not compatible with Islam. This is a clear and undeniable position that is upheld by Islam as found in Islamic scripture and tradition. In this regard, it must be understood, as was mentioned in the very same lecture series, that Islamic penal code cannot be administered outside the framework of law-enforcement and legal process within a legitimate government.

De-contextualised excerpts of this series, were used by right-wing media to suggest that Shaykh Hamza was calling for ‘the beheading and burning of homosexuals’. This is untrue and a mischievous and malicious accusation to make.

To suggest that Shaykh Hamza is calling for the beheading and burning of homosexuals is laughable and absurd.

According to our understanding, it is precisely this irresponsible behavior that incites hatred and fuels racism and discrimination; and to this we shall not remain silent. We believe such entities intentionally seek to fuel divisions, stifle alternate voices and defame personalities that seek to make a positive contribution to society.

5th October 2016

AhlulBayt Islamic Mission (AIM)

http://www.aimislam.com/statement-clarifying-position-on-allegations-against-shaykh-hamza-sodagar/

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@alidu78 Your post "quoting words" from the Sheikh were removed from this topic. Please bring a video or a document that has the exact words that you claim that he spoke.

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1 hour ago, hameedeh said:

@alidu78 Your post "quoting words" from the Sheikh were removed from this topic. Please bring a video or a document that has the exact words that you claim that he spoke.

I dont understand why you said that when its approximately what the website of aim said about the shayk .

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Is it possible to find the complète vidéo where he said that ?

I mean the complète vidéo for see what he said exactly before and after this déclaration quoted.

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9 hours ago, alidu78 said:

I dont understand why you said that when its approximately what the website of aim said about the shayk .

AIM website did not say what you claim. You can paraphrase what someone said if you know what he said. You cannot "quote words" that haven't been said. 

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23 minutes ago, Abu Hadi said:

I am asking Brothers and sisters to please comment on any media source that copies these slanderous allegations against our ulema. We need to learn how to fight back against this spreading of hatred and Islamophobia. 

I will try to post a complete list of sources where this topic is mentioned so brothers and sisters can post comments. 

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/islamic-hate-preacher-who-called-8992831

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/hamza-sodagar-us-muslim-preacher-who-advocated-beheading-of-gay-men-allowed-to-lecture-in-the-uk-a7348886.html

Here is my comments I published in the "Independent" article

Your publication is spreading hatred and Islamophobia by publishing baseless accusations against a prominent and distinguished scholar.

His comments were said in the context of questions asked regarding Islamic law, carried out in a muslim country, under and Islamic Government,  and under very specific conditions which do not apply in 99.99999% of cases. 

You are now leading your readers to believe that he is publishing a 'how to' article about how to deal with homosexuals and comparing him to the ISIS lunatics. What a shame and journalism at it's worst. You should be ashamed of yourselves. 

Unfortunately dear brother I think its useless. For western people sodomy is not à problem and just a "sexual liberty". Even if you say that they will insult islam and muslims because we consider homosexual relations as a crime .

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Unfortunately dear brother I think its useless. For western people sodomy is not à problem and just a "sexual liberty". Even if you say that they will insult islam and muslims because we consider homosexual relations as a crime .

The accusations of the gay activist toward the sheikh are pointless because he took them out of context. But media do not care about such a thing.

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If we just give up and walk off the battlefield, we are making it worse for ourselves. Allah(s.w.a) gave us a tongue, fingers to type, a mind to think, and at least we can use that to counter the negativity and hate that is being spread by these 'so called' news outlets. 

And if we don't defend our own ulema against slander, in a way that we are able, we have failed in our duty of Amr wa Nahiya...

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1 hour ago, Dhulfikar said:

The accusations of the gay activist toward the sheikh are pointless because he took them out of context. But media do not care about such a thing.

Maybe but even if we consider that, they will never like our position toward homosexuality.

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Sorry, couldn't find that clip. I'll keep looking. 

You got the point exactly. THE US / UK Govt / Mainstream Media (which is one entity actually) is trying to find a way to keep our scholars out, or if they can't keep them out physically, then to discredit them so thoroughly that no one will want to attend their lectures. Since they can't find real things to discredit them about, they are making up stories. We need to challenge these made up stories. 

We need to be like Imam Hussain(a.s). Before he went to Karbala, he didn't care about how big an army Yazid(la) had, he cared about what was right and true (Haqq), and he stood on the side of Haqq. That is the point. As in Karbala, there is a huge Govt / Media apparatus that is actively working against Islam and the message of Imam Hussain(a.s). Their main target at this moment is our ulema, and more specifically our ulema who are knowledgeable, just (adl), and who are fluent in the English language, since these have the greatest potential to challenge their hegemony in the ideological struggle going on in the West. We need to realize this and challenge it wherever and whenever we can. The main point of Ashura is not to cry, the main point is to work. The crying only serves as a motivation for us to work. 

 

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34 minutes ago, Dhulfikar said:

So? The point is not about our position on toward sodomy. The point is the unjustified way these people are banning our scholars.

For them sodomy is ok, according to islam sodomy could be punish by deaht Under an islamic state, its true and they will never accept that so...

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36 minutes ago, Dhulfikar said:

Brother, that is not the point of this discussion.

It is because even if the shayk didnt say that we must kill all homosexuals everywhere and everytime he said what could happen to them Under an islamic state. And even with this point of view they will hate that.

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2 minutes ago, King said:

You have got to be a total moron to say something like that even in context since others will always be able to take it out of context and make it look much worse.  Also it doesn't help that he is smiling his way through it all.  If this is an older video then I am surprised no one tried to take advantage of this before.

 

I think you are right, it was totally not a good idea to say that in public.

Nowadays you say anything in front of a camera and everybody could post that on internet wich is accessible for all people in the world.

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There are groups in the West who are desperately trying to paint all our ulema with the same brush as Choudry or those other ISIS wackos. And from reading the comments, at least on the Independent article, it seems they are succeeding, mostly. 

The difference is before these were only the extreme right who were trying to do this. It seems this is going more mainstream now. 

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26 minutes ago, Abu Hadi said:

There are groups in the West who are desperately trying to paint all our ulema with the same brush as Choudry or those other ISIS wackos. And from reading the comments, at least on the Independent article, it seems they are succeeding, mostly. 

The difference is before these were only the extreme right who were trying to do this. It seems this is going more mainstream now. 

Of course they are succeeding, it is incredibly easy to take what he said and equate him with the likes of Chaudhry, this is why sensible scholars need to be extremely careful when discussing such topics.  It is all well and good to stand defiantly against the moderates and talk about what islam actually says, but then you have to consider the implications.  Another problem is that some of these speakers just give way too many talks, they are speaking constantly, the more you speak the more likely you are to say something ridiculously stupid.

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1. The death penalty for sodomy requires four witnesses to SEE the act of penetration. Islam clearly has a stand to take against public lewdness- and I do not think there is anywhere in the world where this action takes place in such a disgusting public manner.

Islam has made the sin very difficult to prove- God wants his servants to repent to him and make amends for their wrong actions.

Practically speaking, it is almost impossible to implement this even in a state which is governed by the Shariah. But when the line is crossed and public chastity is attacked by public sodomy, Islam has to take a stand. I do not believe that a non-Muslim would find this to be a "backard law" if they truly understand under which circumstances the Shariah punishment can be implemented.

2. There are Muslims who suffer from unwanted attraction, as there are Muslims who suffer from paedophilic tendencies and other desires calling them to sin. This doesn't mean they are bad people- we love them (and we love and care even about the person who is committing sodomy, although we detest the sin). It should be known that we stand firmly with them and want to offer a compassionate hand to help them combat desires attracting them to sin (as we do with Muslims fearing addiction to pornography and other sins).

3. We all have an obligation to stand up and defend our religious scholars. It is of paramount importance that we all sit down together and discuss ways to combat these lies spread against them. God has promised us that unless we practice enjoining the good and forbidding the wrong, the corrupt ones will take power over us. We should be very careful about fulfilling our duties- the punishment for oppression of another person - Muslim or not- (let alone a Shia scholar who has helped guide so many younger Shias, myself included) is unimaginable. It is related in a hadith that one of the companions of RasoolAllah who stood firmly with him in the spread of Islam. When he died, there was expectation of his place in heaven. RasoolAllah said he is undergoing punishment of the grave due to the thulm he had executed on those he had wilayah over.

Silence is a form of oppression. Allah hates those who remain silent, and he guarentees that none of their prayers, charity or goodness to others will be accepted.

Edited by silasun
Added 4 witnesses.
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2 hours ago, alidu78 said:

It is because even if the shayk didnt say that we must kill all homosexuals everywhere and everytime he said what could happen to them Under an islamic state. And even with this point of view they will hate that.

It seems that the sheik can't say anything about the issue if someone ask about, other group get too emotionally disturbed. For sake of freedom of speech, does the sheikh goes against it?

Quote

That was a moronic thing to say even in context since others will always be able to take it out of context and make it look much worse.  Also it doesn't help that he is smiling his way through it all.  If this is an older video then I am surprised no one tried to take advantage of this before. He will probably need to release a statement to clear it all up.

Yes, because in this society people have always something to take out of context and make it look much worse. But is it fair to call to ban the person?

Edited by Dhulfikar
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In iran or saudi arabia are there many People executed because of sodomy ?

I remember seen à website claiming than 6000 people in iran were exécuted for sodomy but this number looks to be ridiculous and false .

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3 hours ago, Dhulfikar said:

But is it fair to call to ban the person?

No, and I don't think he would be banned in a country like US where there are less restrictions on free speech.  I wouldn't know much about England though.  Saying these things in public in such a manner just hurts regular shias out there, I don't understand why this is so hard to comprehend for some.

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6 hours ago, Haydar Husayn said:

This has nothing to do with 'our' scholars. These pro-gay activists, and their cheerleaders in the media, couldn't care less about which sect or religion a particular scholar belongs to. What they want is to silence all opposition to this lifestyle. The problem we have is that when Christian were being silenced, nobody cared. When the Sunnis were silenced, nobody cared. And now when it happens to a Shia speaker, we are supposed to believe that it has something to do with the West fearing the power of our scholars?

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/7668448/Christian-preacher-arrested-for-saying-homosexuality-is-a-sin.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/universityeducation/10435865/Universities-cancel-Muslim-clerics-tour-over-his-anti-gay-views.html

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2318169/Muslim-Cambridge-University-theology-lecturer-Tim-Winter-says-gay-ultimate-inversion.html

 

Anyone who was paying attention to the political and social climate over the past few years would have know that it is very dangerous to say on camera certain things that go against homosexuality. To be talking about death penalties in detail, while smiling no less, is beyond stupid. To those complaining that he was taken out of context, you need to realise that it is irrelevant. You would get the same amount of abuse just for suggesting such things should be done even in theory. Maybe Shias, including their speakers and scholars, need to be a little bit less insular, and start paying attention to what is going on in the world. If a Christian can be arrested and charged for reading the Bible in 2010, then you know this is an area where you need to tread very carefully in 2016.

It is true that he should avoided these kind of topics, specially in these countries that don't tolerate anyone who speak bad (in their sense) about homosexuality. But the way these people seeking an ban because someone says something that irritate them is not fair, yes he should get at least warnings.

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1 hour ago, Dhulfikar said:

It is true that he should avoided these kind of topics, specially in these countries that don't tolerate anyone who speak bad (in their sense) about homosexuality. But the way these people seeking an ban because someone says something that irritate them is not fair, yes he should get at least warnings.

I agree that he shouldn't be banned, because he didn't actually call for the killing of homosexuals, but Western culture stopped caring about factual accuracy a while ago. It's all about emotions now, and because of that he will almost certainly be banned from the UK.

Sadly, unlike on ShiaChat, I don't think the British government give warnings before issuing bans. It's a shame, but this is why people need to be a lot more careful about what they allow to be filmed. If you speak about Islamic issues, it's likely that sooner or later you will say something that can be taken out of context by someone with an agenda. In this case however, the whole thing was completely unavoidable, as he should never have been speaking about this stuff in a public lecture at all. He could have spoken about homosexuality without talking about the punishments for it.

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@Haydar Husayn

The problem is this:

There is an obligation on scholars to mention the fact that homosexuality is punishable by death in Islam. Every scholar needs to be sure that the audience are not following a "colonialised" religion.

It doesn't matter if they are imprisoned, deported or even killed for stating Islamic facts. We should all be prepared to get killed for defending the true Islamic ideology.

Perhaps the Sheikh could have worded it better. He is still right to mention the punishment for this sin in Islam, however, and allow it to reach the ears of Shias.

Right now there is a current on the "speaker circuit" (I haven't seen it on a massive scale, AH, but it is amongst the politically backward Shia organisations) of promoting a West-friendly Islam. There are some speakers who go out and speak about how proud they are of the "live and let live" principle in the UK and then ascend minbars during Muharram. When you have Sadiq Khan opening centres, Mehdi Hasan and Soroush on pulpits... you know there is a problem.

We need to be clear where we stand, but as you suggested, we need to be wise about it.

Edited by silasun
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12 minutes ago, silasun said:

@Haydar Husayn

The problem is this:

There is an obligation on scholars to mention the fact that homosexuality is punishable by death in Islam. Every scholar needs to be sure that the audience are not following a "colonialised" religion.

It doesn't matter if they are imprisoned, deported or even killed for stating Islamic facts. We should all be prepared to get killed for defending the true Islamic ideology.

Perhaps the Sheikh could have worded it better. He is still right to mention the punishment for this sin in Islam, however, and allow it to reach the ears of Shias.

Right now there is a current on the "speaker circuit" (I haven't seen it on a massive scale, AH, but it is amongst the politically backward Shia organisations) of promoting a West-friendly Islam. There are some speakers who go out and speak about how proud they are of the "live and let live" principle in the UK and then ascend minbars during Muharram. When you have Sadiq Khan opening centres, Mehdi Hasan and Soroush on pulpits... you know there is a problem.

We need to be clear where we stand, but as you suggested, we need to be wise about it.

It's perhaps an obligation to mention that homosexual acts are a major sin. There is no real need to mention that it is punishable by death when speaking to a Western audience since it has no real relevance to them, since it could never be applied. Even among many Shias, it's a very theoretical punishment, since they would say that it can't be done without the presence of an Imam. If a speaker does want to speak about such things, then it's very simple: do it behind close doors. When certain speakers want to speak about Aisha and Hafsa supposedly poisoning the Prophet (s), then they don't allow themselves to be filmed, and the same policy should be enforced when it comes to these types of issues. Let's also not forget about the principle of taqiyyah, which potentially may need to be employed as the West becomes more and more extreme in it's rejection of traditional Christian morality. 

And yes, I share your concern about speakers who are willing to sell out their religion, but I think that is a separate issue to this one.

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The Sheikh is discussing Islamic legal theory. To have 4 witnesses seeing the act itself is a stretch. On top of that in an Islamic country where the penal code is implemented.

Edited by silasun
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8 minutes ago, silasun said:

 

I don't think the theory presented in this video is correct, since several other Muslim speakers have been criticised for similar things, and Christians have also been persecuted for simply quoting the Bible against homosexuality. Christians in Northern Ireland have even been charged for refusing to bake a pro-'gay marriage' cake for homosexuals, when so-called 'gay marriage' wasn't even legal in Northern Ireland.

I know it would be very ego-boosting to think that the West see Shia scholars as a threat who need to be silenced, but the reality is that the West is simply on a pro-homosexual crusade (Obama kept mentioning it on his trip to Africa for example), and the press love to sensationalise anything to do with Muslims and violence.

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