Allah the Moon God – Myth or Reality?
Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem
بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ ,
An oft repeated stigma against Islam, is the understanding that Muslims worship the moon. This argument is further justified by linking the use of the crescent and star on Masjids as a sign of our pagan moon worship. Lastly, the argument is further qualified by the claim that ‘Allah’ was the name used by pagan Makkans to describe the ‘moon God’. It is unfortunate that many persons sought to answer this through complex and vast arguments, when the answer in itself is quite simple.
‘Allah’, the Name of a Pagan God?
Initiated by Dr. Robert Morey, an Islamophobic missionary, the claim that ‘Allah’ refers to a pagan God is based upon nothing more than wishful thinking. I’ll demonstrate this with the English language:
- In English, Allah is known as God.
- In English, Jesus is known as God.
God is the default English term for referring to a religious deity, it could be Shiva, Ashera, Zeus, Mithra, in English these are all considered to be ‘Gods’. Therefore the term ‘God’ is the label for a generic term to refer to a religious deity. This does not mean however, that if a Muslim calls Allah as ‘God’, that he’s referring to the ‘God’ of the Christian faith. Although the same label is used, the concepts, beliefs and ideologies about each respective deity is vast and incomparable.
Likewise, in the Arabic language, the generic term for a religious deity is ‘Al Ilah’ (literally: The God). So to the Arab Muslim, Al Ilah is ‘Allah’ and to the Arab Christian Al Ilah is, ‘Allah’. Yet the Muslim will describe his ‘Allah’ as ‘Ahad’ (one) and the Christian would describe his ‘Allah’ as ‘thalatha’ (three). Even though both Arab Christians and Arab Muslims use the same term for God, ‘Allah’, it does not mean that we worship the same concept or belief of ‘Allah’. Likewise, whether or not ‘Allah’ was used by the Pagans to refer to a moon God is irrelevant, as the Muslims and Christians both refer to God as ‘Allah’, yet neither group worships the moon.
To claim that because Muslims call God ‘Allah’, it means we worship an ancient Pagan God, is equitable to saying that because Muslims in English refer to their religious deity as ‘God’, and because Christians also in English refer to their religious deity as ‘God’, that we are both referring to the same God. It is obvious that no missionary will concede to worshipping the same God which Muslims worship, and this succinctly refutes such absurd logic.
The Use of the Crescent is akin to Worshipping It.
This argument has no basis, although a Masjid may have a crescent and star, just as how a Church has a cross, it does not mean that Muslims prostate to or worship the moon and star. Likewise, just because a Christian may have a cross on their Church or even in their Church it does not mean that the Christian worships a cross. This argument in itself is suitable for debunking this myth as it is.
We can examine one final example, Jews use the Star of David as a symbol of their religious identity, does this mean that Jews worship the stars? Of course not, it’s simply a symbol through which their faith is identified.
The Final Argument.
As opposed to examining the historical aspect of this claim, it is much easier to examine the logical aspect of it. You must understand that the claim itself is fraudulent and if we can demonstrate that the claim is fraudulent, then by default the person promoting such an argument will be stopped in their tracks. The claim is:
- ‘Allah is a Pagan Moon God’
Therefore the question to be asked is, “where does the Qur’an command us to bow to the moon or stars?“. What we mean is, if the Missionary is claiming that our religion commands us to worship a Pagan Moon God, then we’d like to see where the Qur’an or Ahadith indicate this. Offer a Qur’an to the Missionary and have them locate a verse which qualifies their argument. It is quite obvious that they will not be able to find such a verse. Thus logically, we’ll now employ the use of, “proof by contradiction“.
Proof by contradiction, works by negating your opponents claim. For example if someone says your right hand has 3 fingers and you demonstrate to them that you have 5, this means you have contradicted their claim therefore proving them wrong. Likewise, if we can show that their is a verse in the Qur’an which contradicts the claim that it is a religious duty to worship the moon, then by all means we’ve thoroughly refuted the Missionary’s claim:
And of His signs are the night and day and the sun and moon. Do not prostrate to the sun or to the moon, but prostate to Allah, who created them, if it should be Him that you worship. – Qur’an 41:37.
Therefore in order to refute the missionary claim, all you have to do is whip out this verse and then ask, “If Allah is the moon God, why does He command us not to worship the Moon?“.
Historically speaking, this claim has no basis. Logically speaking it is simple to refute. At the end of the day, all you need to remember is the reference for this verse and you’d be able to refute any missionary who tries to use this clam against you. It takes less than 1 minute to locate the verse and then read it for the missionary. Therefore I suggest that this is the most simple, yet most effective response to this specific missionary claim.
wa Allaahu Alam,
and God knows best.