Almost Eight Years Following 9-11 A New Book Warns Ignorance of Islam Threatens America's Freedom

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Almost eight years following our experience of 9-11, Americans remain dramatically conflicted about the religion of Islam, practiced by 20 to 25 percent of the people of the planet. In a new book just released, Journeys into the Heart and Heartland of Islam, written by Marvin W. Heyboer, Ph.D., published by Dorrance Publishing Co., Inc., Pittsburgh, the author urges readers to answer the vital question: In the wake of terrorist attacks and threats of jihad, how do we and how should we relate to Muslims?

Almost eight years following 9-11, a new book warns ignorance of Islam threatens America's freedom.

Almost eight years following our experience of 9-11, Americans remain dramatically conflicted about the religion of Islam, practiced by 20 to 25 percent of the people of the planet. In a new book just released, Journeys into the Heart and Heartland of Islam, written by Marvin W. Heyboer, Ph.D., published by Dorrance Publishing Co., Inc., Pittsburgh, the author urges readers to answer the vital question: In the wake of terrorist attacks and threats of jihad, how do we and how should we relate to Muslims? Heyboer asserts that it is not a problem of identifying good Muslims and bad Muslims. Rather it is a matter of understanding the teachings of Islam regarding terror so that we can understand whether acts of terror are an aberration of or are consistent with the principles of Islam as taught by its prophet Mohammed.

In the end, Heyboer provides an answer to the question: Why do Muslims hate us so much? He concludes it is because the Judeo-Christian civilization refused to believe Mohammed was the fulfillment of the prophecies of Moses and Jesus. He sets forth his belief that our concern should not be about what each Muslim does or does not do but about what Islam instructs all Muslims to do. He believes that because of our ignorance of and refusal to openly discuss and critically study Islam, we are on a collision course with Islamic holy law and that America's freedom is at jeopardy. This opinion is hardly politically correct or perhaps even charitable, but the stakes are too high to ignore this well researched and thoroughly documented work.

Dr. Heyboer is an ordained minister is the Christian Reformed Church of North America with degrees from Calvin Theological Seminary and San Francisco Theological Seminary. He has dedicated his life in the defense of the poor and oppressed and is a guest speaker on this subject in the United States and at international conferences sponsored by the International Christian Union.

If one "Googles" American Christian views on Islam, a variety of links appear demonstrating a wide swath of attitudes. Thomas Kidd's book, American Christians and Islam, published by Princeton University Press, is the first entry cited. According to reviews and ad copy, this book presents a conciliatory and moderate view of Islam and chides Americans for their unwillingness to acknowledge Christianity's theological commonalities with Islam. Next there is a site that details verbal assaults against Muslims by fundamentalist Christians. That listing is followed by a YouTube video on why the daughter of a Christian minister converted to Islam. After the video we find links to research studies on Americans' views about Muslims. Immediately following 9-11, Americans with favorable views of Islam rose from 45 percent to 59 percent. Later polls showed 70 percent of Americans believe Islam is a religion of violence.

Heyboer claims that political and religious leaders of the West parrot the claims of Islam that it is a religion of peace and tolerance while offering no proof that this is so and ignoring Islam's history of violence. He is stymied at the lack of critical analysis of the fundamentals of Islam and the life of Mohammad and shocked at the silence of our media and politicians regarding acts of violence and brutality committed on an ongoing basis by Muslims against non-Muslims in many parts of the world. He is amazed that America is learning about Islam from Islam, rather than through careful study of history and primary sources offering insights and information about the religion.

Heyboer therefore sets out in his book to look at the teachings of the Koran, the life of Mohammed as reported by his earliest biographer, and current-day narratives of people living under the control of Islam with a goal to determine whether the doctrines of terror war (jihad) and terror subjugation (dhimmitude) are actually taught and practiced in Islam. His aim is to increase Americans' awareness of the true messages of Islam and to foster greater openness in our country towards public discussions of Islam. Without such discussion, Heyboer believes we will fail to protect our country's individual freedoms, assist non-Muslim victims of violence throughout the world, and awaken and emancipate Muslim peoples enslaved by the legalistic tyranny of Islam through the imposition of Islamic law - sharia.

The author sites the Koran as teaching that jihad, in addition to being a spiritual quest, is also a directive to conquer non-believers. Heyboer claims his research and reading of this holy book, containing Mohammed's teachings on the will of Allah as directly communicated to him through the angel Gabriel, has led the author to conclude that it prescribes it is the religious duty of Muslims to fight and destroy those who suppress the faith. He describes in vivid detail the life of Mohammed, from pacifier to defender to protector to antagonist to subjugator and illustrates that throughout his days he became more and more violent until its culmination in a crescendo of violence at the time of his death. He presents testimonies of non-Muslim people, Christian Copts and non-Muslim people of the Sudan and Nigeria, who live under the authority of cultural, political and religious Islam to illustrate how terrorism and coercive violence mark the behavior of Islamic regimes.

Journeys into the Heart and Heartland of Islam ($23.00, paperback, 350 pages, ISBN 978-1-4349-0188-0) is available directly from Dorrance Publishing.

For book ordering information, please contact Kathleen Haak, Merchandising Coordinator, at (800) 788-7654 or visit http://www.dorrancebookstore.com.

For review copies, please contact Jessica Cunningham-Stillwell at (412) 288-4543 or visit http://www.dorrancepressroom.com.

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Kathleen Haak

Jessica Cunningham-Stillwell
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