TED Conversations

Amr Salah

This conversation is closed.

Aren't Christianity, Judaism and Islam basically the same? How much archaeological evidence is there of similar teachings in the past?

Among countless arguments that keep recurring almost on a daily basis, specially in the middle-east, many are centered around the constant conflict between the Abrahamic religions. I found it strange that whole centuries were not enough for humans to reach some conclusions, perhaps because we are all, to some extent, biased. People simply ignored, and in some cases resented, what they didn't konw. The media played a significant role in further increasing the gap using inflaming language, fabricated and biased news while ignoring or hiding historic and concrete facts altogether.

Apparently, Jews denied Christians and Muslims, Christians denied Muslims and Jews, and Muslims denied Christians and Jews. Nowadays, many people are conditioned to take sides without even thinking. One puzzling point is that some people turned other religions to a forbidden knowledge instead of encouraging people to know. Thus, they seem to prefer keeping people ignorant rather than letting them form an opinion on their own.

I don't know if someone has contributed to any sort of worldwide work that deals with the basic similarities between the Abrahamic religions, specially the beliefs. Thus, I invite everyone who is willing to share what they know about: the similarities between the Abrahamic religions, the archaeological evidence regarding them and what you think whether any human, organization or government nowadays has any right to turn any of the Abrahamic religions to a forbidden knowledge.


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb
    Sep 14 2012: What started out a a genuine question about religion has evolved into a sermon on the mount by Amr Salah. It's becoming very preachy and disrespectful of the Rules pertaining to zealotry and proselytizing, in my opinion.

    I'll let TED decide.
    • thumb
      Sep 14 2012: Thanks for the warning.
      My opinions and comments represented my side only. It was never my intention to disrespect any rule or any person. I thought my opinion, whether it was right or wrong, can add to the discussion.
      All the comments and opinions are respected and appreciated (while considering my request earlier of using "respectful language when arguing about God, angels, prophets, or Books." - which is a fair request, I think).
      If I did or said something wrong, or disrespectful, please warn me about it.
      • thumb
        Sep 14 2012: When a someone in the USA quotes the bible repeatedly to answer a question instead of speaking from their mind, not God's ,we call it preaching. In a country where the religion is intertwined with the government so there is no distinction between the Laws of man and the Laws of God, this could be problem for those people when dealing with Westerner's.

        In the USA, we have an understanding that religion and government are to remain separate. This allows for people to have their own private religions practices and government is applied to all of the people without regard to their religion. The USA is a country of many religions, not just one.

        In the USA and most other Western countries, we never say it is against the law of god to do this or that. People make the laws, not God. Our fellow citizens in the USA. who practice the religion of Islam understand this. Their religion is not the dominate religion. No Religion in the USA is a dominate religion.

        This could be a problem for people who live in Muslim countries where their religion is their Law. It may be the one thing that separates us from them (you) forever. We will never change and we do expect every country in the world that seeks democracy to understand that controlling religious thought in their country is imperative for civilized rule.

        We see in the Muslim countries that are protesting today, burning our flag and killing our diplomats and creating mayhem in their countries that they are very far behind the Western world in creating a sense of harmony within their own country and the world. It could be that they are incapable of merging with the rest of the world in a global community because when someone who is nuknowledgeable about their religion makes a certain remark about one of their prophets, they could be jailed or killed.

        We find such behavior heinous and uncivilized. No religion in our country acts that way and we have a large Islamic population in the USA.
        • thumb
          Sep 14 2012: Honestly, I used quotes from a translation of Qur'an because I wanted to make less mistakes. I thought it was better than using my words, specially that my English is not good.
          I guessed this was what annoyed you but I wasn't sure.
          I'll make sure I won't overdo it. Thank you again for the warning.

          I'll reply briefly to the points you've mentioned
          1. Those who made the film hate the middle-east and want it to be engulfed in chaos.

          2. Anger in the Middle-East (and Africa) towards the American Imperialism has very good reasons and very deep roots.

          3. "We find such behavior heinous and uncivilized."
          I'm not going to reply to this.

          I don't blame American citizens for the mistakes of their leaders, generals and politicians.
          All human lives are equal. I still hope for justice and peace. I still think dialogues between different civilizations and cultures should continue. I believe people should have all access to the truth and that knowledge should be available to everyone.
          What I know is very little and there is very little that I could do.
        • thumb
          Sep 15 2012: Anyway, this discussion would end soon. I don't think I'll have the strength to start or participate in any discussion for a long while.
      • thumb
        Sep 15 2012: I just got caught in some protests in Sydney about the film.

        Some had signs saying behead those who insult the Prophet.

        I support freedom of religion up to the point it harms other people.

        I also don't think it wise to be stupidly provocative. However, why should people who do not believe in yur religion be punished for breaking one of your religions taboos?

        You mention US imperialism. The native Americans copped worse than the middle East. Also Islamic forces in the past conquered other's lands. Also I guess the coptics in Egypt have had a hard time too.

        By reacting to this video Muslims are doing exactly what the filmer wanted.
        • thumb
          Sep 15 2012: Worse Obey,it could've been reworked by a bunch of bored kids.
        • thumb
          Sep 15 2012: Hi Obey No1kinobe,
          I heard Christian Egyptians saying those who insulted the prophet must be beheaded. They understand that those who made the film hate Egypt and Egyptians. They know that those who made the film want evil to Egypt and to the middle-east. They know the film makers wanted to spread hatred and chaos.

          "By reacting to this video Muslims are doing exactly what the filmer wanted."
          Not reacting is just as bad if not worse.
          It should have been peaceful protests, but I guess some think this would not be enough. They have good reasons to think so. Also, some people (from all sides) probably desire this to escalate, not necessarily with good intentions.

          And yes, people here pay the worst price for the conspiracies made "there". I read a text before by an American encouraging selling weapons to the middle-east so that people would be killed and thus the world will be "less populated".
      • thumb
        Sep 15 2012: You've done great so far Amr.

        You're English is better than mine.
        • thumb
          Sep 15 2012: Thank you, Ken.
          I don't think my English is good. You are already good and you can easily get better if you made it a primary goal to achieve.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.