The award inscription read: "Islamic Society of North America presents Rev. Dr. Shanta Premawardhana, a fellow activist for peace, justice and reconciliation, a 'Christian believer' as described in Qur'an (3:113) in recognition of his tireless contribution to advancing inter-religious dialogue and partnership, with our prayers for a continued demonstration of energy, understanding and commitment."
--from this article
Here is Qur'an 3:113: "Not all of them are alike: Of the People of the Book are a portion that stand (For the right): They rehearse the Signs of Allah all night long, and they prostrate themselves in adoration."
The Signs of Allah. That's ayat in Arabic. It refers to the verses -- ayat -- of the Qur'an. Ibn Kathir says in explaining this verse that "there are believers and also criminals among the People of the Book," and that the believers among them "implement the Book of Allah, adhere to His Law and follow His Prophet Muhammad." In other words, they become Muslims. The Rev. Dr. Premawardhana must be so proud. -- Robert Spencer
Oh, he's doing even more than "rehearsing [reading over and over] the ayat" and "prostrating himself in adoration." He's keenly interested in preventing Infidels in this country from reading anything, finding out anything, that might conceivably open their eyes to the texts and tenets of Islam. Why, he has even been warning publicly against people reading a book, written by the University of London professor, and well-known historian of the Middle East, Ephraim Karsh, about "Islamic Imperialism."
Here is a news item about the censorious, and censor-loving, outwardly all sweet-reason and interfaith piety, inwardly a menace to free thought and free speech and people learning about, and then coming to their senses about, Islam, NCC Associate General Secretary for Interfaith Relations Shanta Premawardhana. For he knows. And presumably those who back him know. Islam is good, fundamentally good. Those who, such as Wafa Sultan, or Ayaan Hirsi Ali, or Ibn Warraq, who were born into Islam but do not agree, have written terrible things, according to Shanta Premawardhana, and of course those terrible things must be suppressed, must not be read, for if read they might lead to certain thoughts, and further investigation, and a further "misunderstanding" of Islam which, god knows, is becoming far too "misunderstood" what with the bombs and attacks and manifestos everywhere, what with the revelations at the Holy Land Foundation trial, what with "The Dhimmi" and "Islam and Dhimmitude" and "The Truth About Muhammad" and "The Legacy of Jihad" and Antoine Fattal and Joseph Schacht and C. Snouck Hurgronje and Henri Lammens and K. S. Lal and W. H. S. Gairdner, and St. Clair Tisdall and Samuel Zwemer. And would the last three, all Christian clergymen, be admitted into today's WCC? Would their books be allowed to be published if Shanta Premawardhana, and all the little shanta premawardhans, had their sweetly sinister, terminally naive, or worse, way?
Come to think of it, has Shanta Premawardhana read any of the works of the great Western scholars (or Hindu ones, for that matter) of Islam? He hasn't? Has he read, has he allowed himself to read, and to ponder, Ayaan Hirsi Ali's "Infidel" or Ibn Warraq's "Why I Am Not a Muslim" or Anwar Shaikh's "Islam the Arab National Religion" or Ali Dashti's "Twenty-Three Years"? Has he permitted himself the mental freedom to read Wafa Sultan's articles, and will he read her forthcoming book, or will he move heaven and earth, in the World Council of Churches (where there is a lot less heaven, and a lot more earth), to make sure that his charges, spiritual and temporal, those whom he would wish to guide, never read, never hear about, those and many other books, for fear that they, like the book by Ephraim Karsh he warns darkly against, might learn something about Islam that they would not un-learn, and that worries him?
Why has Shanta Premawardhana become such a Defender of the Faith -- that faith being Islam? Does he have a vested mental interest in believing that All Religions Want the Same Thing and There Can Be No Exceptions To This Rule, lest his little mental and emotional apple-cart be overturned? And we couldn't have that. That would never do.
Quran is not only for Muslims. Quran is for all. So inspire people to <a href="http://dkir.com/">learn the Quran</a>.