Prophet of Doom      by Craig Winn

The book (link below) by the American (non-Muslim) author Craig Winn, Prophet of Doom, is his study of the person and teaching of Mohamet. The book is an all-out trenchant attack on and criticism of Mohamet, based on the author's study and personal interpretation of what he states to be the basic sources. The author, Craig Winn, is totally opposed to Islam and to the character and teaching of Mohamet and because of this his book would be understandably offensive to Muslims. The tone of his book towards Islam and his polemic is in no way that of the Catholic Church. Pope John Paul II once said that authentic Islam is worthy of respect, and Pope Benedict XVI has repeatedly spoken of the respect with which the Catholic Church regards the Koran and the religion of Islam. For instance, during his visit to Turkey November 28-30, 2006, Pope Benedict uttered these words:
     
     "Christians and Muslims, following their respective religions, point to the truth of the sacred character and dignity of the person. This is the basis of our mutual respect and esteem, this is the basis for cooperation in the service of peace between nations and peoples, the dearest wish of all believers and all people of good will.

For more than forty years, the teaching of the Second Vatican Council has inspired and guided the approach taken by the Holy See and by local Churches throughout the world to relations with the followers of other religions. Following the Biblical tradition, the Council teaches that the entire human race shares a common origin and a common destiny: God, our Creator and the goal of our earthly pilgrimage. Christians and Muslims belong to the family of those who believe in the one God and who, according to their respective traditions, trace their ancestry to Abraham (cf. Second Vatican Council, Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions "Nostra Aetate" 1, 3). This human and spiritual unity in our origins and our destiny impels us to seek a common path as we play our part in the quest for fundamental values so characteristic of the people of our time. As men and women of religion, we are challenged by the widespread longing for justice, development, solidarity, freedom, security, peace, defense of life, protection of the environment and of the resources of the earth. This is because we too, while respecting the legitimate autonomy of temporal affairs, have a specific contribution to offer in the search for proper solutions to these pressing questions.

Above all, we can offer a credible response to the question which emerges clearly from today's society, even if it is often brushed aside, the question about the meaning and purpose of life, for each individual and for humanity as a whole. We are called to work together, so as to help society to open itself to the transcendent, giving Almighty God his rightful place. The best way forward is via authentic dialogue between Christians and Muslims, based on truth and inspired by a sincere wish to know one another better, respecting differences and recognizing what we have in common. This will lead to an authentic respect for the responsible choices that each person makes, especially those pertaining to fundamental values and to personal religious convictions.

As an illustration of the fraternal respect with which Christians and Muslims can work together, I would like to quote some words addressed by Pope Gregory VII in 1076 to a Muslim prince in North Africa who had acted with great benevolence toward the Christians under his jurisdiction. Pope Gregory spoke of the particular charity that Christians and Muslims owe to one another "because we believe in one God, albeit in a different manner, and because we praise him and worship him every day as the Creator and Ruler of the world."


That is what Pope Benedict said about Islam and about its relationship with the Christianity. Though I hesitated including this on-line book on my website, I have done so not because I in any way agree with it but because it provides access to basic sources and a particular perspective and discussion of them (even though very one-sided). While I myself am very critical of the entire tone of this book, I have felt that to encounter a discussion of Islam that would be so unacceptable to Islam itself may be useful in understanding current world discourse on this topic and the attitude of many towards what is a major religion. The visitor will also be able to find out what the basic sources are, procure them, and pursue a study of them for himself. So then, Winn's book should be read by the visitor with the awareness that it is very one-sided. Inasmuch as it is highly critical of the one whom all Muslims regard as their Prophet, it should be read with care and great circumspection. That is to say, the reader ought read this on-line book very critically, attempting to evaluate the author's reasons for his position. As Pope Benedict XVI has said, the Koran is the holy book of a great religion, the religion of millions of people.

If you are interested in the history and person of Mohamet, the book by Winn will introduce you to some of the basic sources for such a study, because the author uses these sources and appeals to them. He recommends that the reader purchase the basic sources and make a personal study of them.

Click here to read the on-line book by Craig Winn, entitled Prophet of Doom