Discover more from Patrick Abbott, Author Substack
Aliens and Religion, Part 4 - Islam
Risen Update, Very Short Fiction, Indie Book Promotion, and An Odd Pilgrimage is Coming
Join Intelligence Officer Brendan Sean Murphy as he voyages into space in a struggle for peace and his own sanity. My first novel Fallen is available for $0.99 on Amazon Kindle and Google Play. Other platforms are coming, just slow processing my uploads.
Religion and Aliens
Fallen and Risen Spoiler Free!
This post continues a series of objective, non-judgement views of various religions’ views on the potential of extraterrestrial life. See the previous posts on Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and Protestantism and Other Christian Faiths for more.
Islam - Mostly Open to Muslim Alien Life Because the Quran Tells Them So*
Jinn and Why They Matter
The Islamic faith envisions a rich cosmos. Not only are there people and angels/demons, but there are also jinn, sometimes spelled djinn or genies. Depending on who you ask, the jinn are invisible or hardly perceptible mortal creatures made out of air and smokeless fire. They can shapeshift to appear as animals or people, have souls that God will judge, and can interact with humans. However, jinn typically tend to want to remain amongst their own tribes. Yet, sometimes, encounters do happen, ranging from curiosity to violence. I'll share some jinn stories I encountered during my first deployment to Afghanistan in another newsletter.
When Mohammad preached the Islamic faith to the jinn, some jinn were already Muslim while others rejected God's ways. This religious tidbit is a crucial thing to note: Everything Islamic is Muslim, but not all Muslims are/were Islamic. Adam, Moses, and Jesus are all considered "Muslim" in Islam because they submitted to God's will. Today's Muslims believe the Islam that Mohammad preached was the uncorrupted faith that had been compromised in Christianity and Judaism. While Islam requires things like hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca) and five times daily prayer, it was previously possible to be a good Muslim without doing these things as Mohammad had not yet set the Islamic rules.
The Quran Speaks of Other Worlds and Possibly Other Life
Muslims open to alien life will cite various Quranic passages that present a rich cosmos. [Commentary and explanations provided by others)
All praise is due to Allah, Lord of all the worlds (1:2)
Allah is He Who created seven Firmaments and of the earth a similar number. (65:12)
And among His Ayat (proofs, evidences, lessons, signs, etc.) is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and whatever moving (living) creatures He has dispersed in them both. And He is All-Potent over their assembling (i.e. resurrecting them on the Day of Resurrection after their death, and dispersion of their bodies) whenever He will. (42:29)
Whatever beings there are in the heavens and the earth do prostrate themselves to Allah (Acknowledging subjection),- with good-will or in spite of themselves: so do their shadows in the morning and evenings. [13:15]
Some Islamic scholars have stated these passages and others demonstrate that God's domain includes multiple planets with Earth-like conditions and life that worships God. This is not some fringe view but one many theologians have supported. Islamic theologian and scientist Fahir al-Din al-Razi (1149-1209), who helped pioneer inductive logic while also advocating in support of heliocentrism, stated it was "not impossible that in the heavens there are species of animals that move just like humans walk on the earth." While Allamah Tabatabai, considered one of the most prominent thinkers in modern Shia Islam, stated the "apparent meaning of this verse [42:29] is that there are living creatures in the heavens similar to those on earth." Abdullah Yusuf Ali, maker of possibly the most widespread English translation, said, "It is reasonable to suppose that life in some form or another is scattered through some of the millions of heavenly bodies scattered through space."
Some scholars state these passages mean creatures of the air and angelic beings. While Arabic word usage is complex, "moving creatures" implies flesh-and-blood and not spirit, while the term heavens can mean atmosphere but, in most cases, means everything above the ground, including outer space.
Alien Life as a Dogma of Faith
Shia Islam teaches that the Imams, successors to Mohammad, were infallible. The sixth Shia Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq stated, "Maybe you see that God created only this single world and that God did not create humans besides you. Well I swear by God that God created thousands and thousands of other worlds and thousands and thousands of humankind."
In practice, this has made Shia open to alien life. However, the Shia website Muslim Vibe, while accepting the possibility of extraterrestrials, points out sourcing matters in determining infallibility and can be questioned. Additionally, metaphors, something like alternative universes, or things God has hidden from us, might be the focus of the Quranic verses and what Al-Sadiq was referencing instead of little green men.
Meanwhile, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Caliph Masih IV, who Ahmadiyya believe was infallible in matters of faith, stated that the Quran not only speaks of the possibility of extraterrestrial life but "categorically declares that it does exist." The official Ahmadiyya website embraces this teaching.
There are contrary opinions, though. London-based Shia Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi writes how aliens are a possibility, but since the question does not affect the daily matters of Muslims, it's a question Muslims should best ignore. The well-respected Sunni-run Islamicity provides a point-by-point takedown of the significant Quranic passages that those who believe in the possibility of aliens cite, and then goes on to state that alien life is improbable and that Muslims should focus on their faith instead of aliens.
The topic of UFOs/UAPs comes up sometimes in Islamic circles as it does elsewhere. While the standard aliens vs demons debate comes up, especially when debating so-called abduction stories, one interesting take was that of the Sunni Sufi Nurjan Mirahmadi, who believes UFO sightings are actually jinn, but non-Muslims are in ignorance and therefore mistake the jinn for UFOs and aliens.
Islamic Science Fiction
An interesting side feature of this openness and sometimes acceptance of alien life is that science fiction is a popular genre in the Muslim world. Ottoman History Podcast has a good episode that focuses on Islam and science fiction.
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The second draft, and the hardest step, is done. Operation Fill in Plot Holes So Things Make Sense has begun!
Very Short Fiction
SciFiFri Word: Grip
Zarinae studied the face of the cop, Robert Rodrigue. He was a redneck Cajun, she the scion of Ossetian royalty and wealth. She wasn't sure how they ended up on the floor of the subway with competing strong grips on the robot's remote control, but here they were.
VSS365 Word: Flame
The way her name flowed off his tongue still calmed his soul. She moved gracefully like a cat, smiled coyly, and her touch was softer than silk. It was her embrace, though, he missed the most.
She was gone now. An old flame. How he regretted leaving.
Other Independent Book Promotions
Broken Bonds by Autumn Summers - Romance Book for Sale at $3.99
When a hardened MC sergeant-at-arms finds unexpected love in the heart of danger, loyalty to the brotherhood is put to the ultimate test, in this 'dark past' MC Romance.
In the world where the roar of motorcycle engines, the brotherhood of Iron Skulls, and the scent of danger reign supreme, love is the least expected yet most coveted prize. When Crowbar, a hardened sergeant-at-arms, finds an unexpected connection in Sophia, a waitress with a dark past, their worlds collide in an explosive mix of desire and turmoil.
Sophia carries secrets that link her to the brutal world of the Bykov Bratva. As Crowbar is drawn deeper into the intoxicating allure of Sophia, he must wrestle with the escalating tensions between his loyalty to the MC and the burgeoning love for the woman whose past threatens to shatter the only life he's ever known.
In this raw and gritty love story set against the backdrop of two warring worlds, hearts and loyalties will be tested. Amid the thunderous chaos of the underworld, will love survive or will it crumble under the weight of secrets and betrayal?
Get ready for an adrenaline-fueled ride packed with raw emotions, high stakes, and unexpected twists. If you're a fan of intense, brooding heroes, resilient heroines, and love that survives against all odds, you can't miss "Broken Bonds".
Until Next Time
Thank you for reading this newsletter update. Next time, I will share with you the short story An Odd Pilgrimage. A Russian Old Believer priest is about to journey into the unknown. I’m thrilled and biting at the bit to release it.
As always, feel free to leave a comment with any questions, reviews, thoughts, whatever about Fallen, Risen, or whatever else I have discussed; I promise to reply!