You’ve probably heard the basics: Muhammad married Aisha when she was six and consummated the marriage when she was nine and he was 53. No way around it, that behavior is gut-wrenchingly wrong. Any place, any time in history: Sex with a pre-pubescent girl is wrong.
If you agree with the age numbers, I assume you agree with the judgment.
Here’s the question: If the prophet of Islam did something as horrendous as that and the 1.8 billion followers of Islam don’t excoriate him, are they not likewise guilty?
And following: If they are guilty of pedophilia, should non-Muslims take against them whatever action is necessary to either change their minds or remove them from society?
Or, is the equation not as black and white as we’d like? Is there nuance?
Turns out not all Muslims agree on Aisha’s age. One Muslim scholar friend responded to my inquiry, saying, “She was 19. I thought this issue was settled by now.” (Honestly, I haven’t been able to discover what percentage of Muslims agree with that and a Christian friend warned me about spreading Islamic propaganda by sharing that idea.)
The complement of Muslims who do agree with the traditional age markers of six and nine must either think pedophilia is ok, have reasoned out a way to deal with it or just ignore the issue. (They wouldn’t be the first religious people to do something like that!)
What about you and me? Would we be more relieved or grumpy should sound research and consensus take the “Scarlet P” off Muhammad’s robe?
If you agree most Muslims today are not “pro-pedo,” (as I suspect you do) what do you say to Christian friends who disagree?
How do our hearts and minds on this issue contribute to the growth of God’s kingdom among Muslims?
Expect re-wording and retracting next week! I’m less expert and more fraidy-cat in this discussion, but my soul resonates with my former organization’s motto: With love and respect inviting all Muslims to follow Jesus.