Christmas: Facts and Realities
By: Seyyed Ali Shahbaz
On the 1st of Rabi al-Awwal, we marked the 1436th anniversary of the auspicious migration (Hijrah) of the Almighty’s Last and Greatest Messenger, Prophet Muhammad (SAWA), from Mecca to Medina, with prayers and supplications.
Irrespective of why the 2nd caliph (the man in power) chose to retain the pagan Arab custom of starting the new lunar hijri year on the 1st of Muharram instead of the actual date that was proposed by Imam Ali (AS) – the person who had slept on that crucial night on the Prophet’s bed so as to allow the latter to migrate safely and undetected from the prying eyes of the murderous Meccans hovering around the Abode of Divine Revelation to burst inside on the break of dawn for "the kill” – today we travel back two millennium years to probe whether Prophet Jesus (AS) was really born on December 25 as people have come to believe.
We do not intend to spoil the holiday mood in the West, where Christmas is a time for indulging in all sorts of frivolities, and even depraved parties that are totally alien to the piety and asceticism of the Virgin-born Messiah.
A glance at the Gospels in circulation among the Christians reveals only scanty information of the birth of the Messiah and that too unsatisfactory, while nothing is mentioned about December, let alone its 25th day, since the plain truth is that the Israelites amongst whom he was born followed the lunar calendar, and not the solar calendar of their hated Roman overlords.
It was only in 336 AD, more than three centuries after the end of the mission of Jesus (AS) and imposition of the Pauline Creed on the Gentiles of Europe – not the monotheistic message of the Messiah who never claimed to be a godson – that the pagan Roman festival of the sun god on December 25 was declared as Christmas.
Still Christmas, despite its borrowings from the various heathen communities of Europe that include mistletoe twigs, the decorated tree, Santa Claus and the "Christmas Ham” (Jesus and the Israelites considered pork religiously unclean), did not gain currency until another millennium and several centuries.
Whether the reveling masses like it or not, these are the undeniable facts that most devout Christians admit, as is the case with knowledgeable Muslims, whatever their denomination, who do not consider the First of Muharram as the actual date of Prophet Muhammad’s (SAWA) migration from Mecca to Medina.
This means we have to refer to the right sources for the correct information about any Prophet, rather than assuming that since the overwhelming majority subscribes to such view, one should blindly accept the errors of history.
Thus, it is the holy Qur’an and Prophet Muhammad (SAWA), as the emissaries of God that provide us authentic information about Jesus and other prophets of the past, in the same way as we learn about the pristine practice and behaviour of the Prophet of Islam from his Blessed Ahl al-Bayt, whose first and foremost figure is his dear cousin, ward, son-in-law and divinely-decreed vicegerent Imam Ali (AS) – and not the Pauls or Judas Iscariots of Arabia who usurped the caliphate.
"Indeed the case of Jesus with God is like the case of Adam: He created him from dust then said to him, "Be”, and he was. This is the truth from your Lord, so do not be among the doubters." (Holy Qur’an 5:59-60)
"Thus she (Mary) conceived him and withdrew with him to a distant place. The birth pangs brought her to the trunk of a date palm. She said: I wish I had died before and become a forgotten thing beyond recall. Thereupon he (the angel) called from below her (saying) do not grieve! Your Lord has made a spring to flow at your feet. Shake the trunk of the palm tree, freshly picked dates will drop upon you. Eat, drink and be comforted. Then if you see any human, say, indeed I have vowed a fast to the All-Beneficent, so I will not speak to any human today. Then carrying him she brought him to her people..." (Holy Qur’an 19:22-27)
In the light of this ayah and the valuable hadith literature, he was said to be born in Iraq, which is a distant land from Palestine, and where we find in the al-Buratha Mosque near Baghdad a sanctified stone on which it is said Jesus was born. The place is surrounded by date palms, and there is a spring in it. We also read in Islamic texts that it was on the 6th of Muharram that Jesus was born. And the most important point is that Jesus, whose alleged crucifixion God Almighty refutes in the Holy Qur'an, gave the tidings of the coming of the Last and Greatest Messenger after him – a hint that also remains in the Gospel of St. John despite the interpolation wrought over the centuries.
In Surah Saff ayah 6, God quotes Jesus as saying: "O Children of Israel! Indeed I am the Prophet of Allah to you, to confirm what is before me of the Torah, and to give the tidings of the Prophet to come after me, whose name is Ahmad.”
Sadly, the Israelites distorted facts and to this day the accursed Zionists continue to slander the Virgin Mary (SA) and Prophet Jesus (AS). It is an irony that the Christian West has turned a blind eye to the archenemies of their fundamental beliefs and adopted a hostile posture towards Islam and Muslims.
Unless the West opens up its eyes to facts and realities, and so do the Muslims that have deviated from the path of the Prophet’s Ahl al-Bayt, the Zionists will continue to make use of devilish elements amongst the Christians as well as the heretics amongst the Muslims to disturb the peace of the world through Takfiri terrorist outfits.
"And among the people is he who sells his soul seeking the pleasure of Allah, and Allah is most kind to [His] servants. (Holy Qur’an 2:207)
As all denominations of Islam agree the above ayah was revealed by God in praise of Imam Ali (AS) for his risking of life on the Night of Hijrah in order to ensure eternity for Islam and the missions of the past prophets, in order to foil the terrorist plot of the progenitors of today’s Salafis.
Are there more reliable sources to inform us about missions and goals of the missions of Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) and Jesus than the Ahl al-Bayt?