In the past I've discussed Hamza Tzortzis's plagiarism of William Lane Craig and his poorly executed attempt to pretend that liberal societies facilitate rape. Perhaps it is unfair of me to focus exclusively on the Islamic Education and Research Academy's head of research.
Today instead we look at Abdur Raheem Green, head of the aforementioned iERA, perhaps most famous for his lectures on how one should best beat one's wives. I use the plural as he has two wives at time of print and sees four as the maximum. I'm reliably informed that he is the keen mind behind the 'Don't Shoot the Messenger' campaign which features a trilemma argument. In brief, it states that Mohammed was either lying, deluded or the final prophet of Allah. It then attempts to prove the first two explanations incoherent by saying his actions are neither those of a liar or a madman.
But does this sound familiar?
Those of us who have read C S Lewis's Mere Christianity (published 1952, popular with only a small number of my regular readership, I'll admit) may recall his Lord, Liar, Lunatic argument, also featuring a trilemma. In it he states that Jesus was either lying, deluded, or the risen son of God. It then attempts to prove the first two explanations incoherent by saying his actions are neither those of a liar or a madman.
Do have a read of both arguments and see if you also feel there are similarities.
CanardIs this a canard? To speak plainly but lose the pleasing alliteration, am I mistaken? The trilemma form is the same in both, as are the alternatives of lies and lunacy, though unpalatable charges are despatched using unique methods by both authors. Have I drawn too much from the similarities? If so I cast myself on the mercy of my comments section. If they read to you as entirely different arguments do let me know, though I suspect few who read both texts will consider them without familial resemblance.
CopiedThe final alternative: Is this a copied work by a Muslim apologist seeking inspiration in Christian argument? If so it is weakened considerably - we see the same form of argument used both to advance Jesus's divinity and to deny said divinity by advancing Mohammed's prophethood. At a minimum they should address where they feel Lewis has failed and frame the article as a response to his work. Either way, as I've written before, it seems unIslamic to allow Christian Theologians to influence one's Theology so.
So, what do you think? Are there other alternatives? I'm especially interested in Christian responses to iERA's use of the trilemma argument - do you feel it has obvious flaws?