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From Elsewhere: Was the Islamic prophet Mohammed a paedophile? An investigation by a Christian writer

October 30, 2013

On the evidence given here by the Christian site Answering Muslims, it certainly looks like it.  The author of the piece has examined carefully Islamic texts to show that Mohammed’s wife Aisha was not a young teenager, or a fifteen year old or a grown woman but was instead a nine year old girl at the time she was raped by Mohammed. This piece also blows apart any of the Islamic attempts to re-write history in order to show Mohammed in a much better light.  Unfortunately it is very difficult to show a mentally ill paedophile rapist murderer and slaver in a good light no matter how much Islamic apologists try to do so.

“For the Western mind, one of the most disturbing facts about Islam is that its founder had a sexual relationship with a nine-year-old girl. Muhammad’s marriage to Aisha has even led some critics to refer to him as a “pedophile.” This is, of course, extremely upsetting to Muslims, who view their prophet as the ideal servant of God and as the greatest example of what a man should strive to be (see Qur’an 33:21). Nevertheless, Muhammad’s relationship with a young girl presents a problem for Muslims, especially for those who want to share their faith with others.

Some Muslims are so embarrassed by their prophet’s marriage to a prepubescent girl that they are attempting to rewrite history, claiming that, contrary to all available sources, Aisha must have been much older than history demands. Other Muslims appeal to moral relativism, suggesting that, while sex with young girls may be wrong today, it wasn’t wrong in seventh-century Arabia. Still other Muslims try to offer morally sufficient reasons for their prophet to marry Aisha (i.e., some good state of affairs that could only be attained through Muhammad’s relationship with Aisha). 

Since pedophilia is one of the most serious charges that can be leveled against a person, the term “pedophile” should not be used lightly. With that said, let us carefully examine Muhammad’s relationship with Aisha, recalling the Western principle that a man is innocent until proven guilty. 

FIRST MUSLIM DEFENSE: Aisha was older than nine when Muhammad first had sex with her. 

Faced with the arguments of Western critics, Muslim apologists sometimes creatively piece together information from various accounts in an attempt to deny that Aisha was as young as critics often claim. Maulana Muhammad Ali writes: 

The popular misconception as to Aishah’s age may be removed here. . . . Isabah, speaking of the Holy Prophet’s daughter Fatimah, says that she was about five years older than Aishah. It is a well-established fact that Fatimah was born when the Ka’bah was being rebuilt, i.e., five years before the Call. Aishah was therefore born in the year of the Call or a little before it, and she could not have been less than ten years at the time of her marriage with the Holy Prophet in the tenth year of the Call. . . . And as the period between her marriage and its consummation was not less than five years, because the consummation took place in the second year of the Flight, it follows that she could not have been less than fifteen at that time. The popular account that she was six years at marriage and nine years at the time of consummation is decidedly not correct because it supposes the period between the marriage and its consummation to be only three years, and this is historically wrong. (Ali, pp. 183-184)

RESPONSE: The historical evidence for Muhammad’s marriage to Aisha when she was still a child is too strong to be ignored. 

Notice that Ali hasn’t offered a single quotation from any Muslim source claiming that Aisha was a teenager when Muhammad first had sex with her. Why not? Because there are no such sources. The problem with Ali’s selective and carefully edited defense (other than the complete lack of references) is that it ignores the numerous accounts we possess which record Aisha’s age when her marriage was consummated. Many of these accounts are from Aisha herself. Indeed, the evidence for Muhammad’s marriage to the young Aisha is as strong as the evidence for just about any other fact in Islam. We have copious traditions from Islam’s most trusted historical sources reporting Muhammad’s marriage proposal when Aisha was six or seven years old, as well as his consummation of that marriage when she was nine: “

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