I didn’t know Islam was inspired by ancient Hinduism, until I read a forwarded message on one of my WhatsApp group. Hinduism, we love to contest, is a way of life than a set religion.
I am not much of a religious person, but I was intrigued by the message which showed how Hinduism was a predecessor of Islam. Certainly both the religions have parallel ways of worshiping, but to tell one precedes the other just because it existed earlier can be seen as a blasphemy.
Nowadays, anyone can spread any lie on the internet, provided they have some good imaginary skills. The following piece is an example of such fanciful thinking of some prolific writer. I haven’t verified any matter of the text. May be my readers can throw some light on the validity of the comparisons…
Hazrat Mohammad, the founder of Islam, borrowed the word ‘Eid’ from Hinduism to celebrate the completion of Haj at the Shiva temple of Kaaba. The Islamic word Eid signifies festive days after completion of worship, is a Sanskrit word.
Hindus practice night-long worship of moon Goddess Durga (Allah), known as Jagratta. Hazrat Mohammad did not want his followers to lose out on that count and thus included three Jagrattas in Islam, Shab-e-Qadar, Shab-e-Barat and Shab-e-Meraj when Islamic salats are worth a lot more than average salat. Like Hindus, Muslims circumambulate the Kabaa seven times. Muslims, like Hindus, wear white clothes on their pilgrimage.
After completing Haj, the pilgrimage, Muslims tonsure their heads, just as Hindus do after completing a tirath yatra. Hazrat Mohammad adopted the Hindu concept of washing all the sins by taking up Haj. Just like it has been the ritual in Hinduism, to collect holy water or Ganga Jal and carry it home, followers of Islam too collect the holy Zamzam water from Mecca and take it home as blessing.
The word Allah was adapted from moon worship. Moon worship has been practiced in Arabia since 2000 BC. The crescent moon is the most common symbol of this pagan moon worship as far back as 2000 BC. In Mecca, there was a moon god named Hubal who was Lord of the Kabaa.
Islam not only incorporated Hindu rituals and concepts, but also added Ahura Mazda, the God of Zoroastrians, whose religious tenets were also incorporated into Islam.
Kaaba, considered to be the holiest place of Islam, is actually the temple of Hindu moon God Lord Shiva’s temple. Like Hindus worship Lord Shiva by touching and praying to a black stone, the Shiva Lingam, the Muslims too kiss the holy shrine of Islam. Touching and kissing this stone, known as Sunnah, is considered as paying obeisance to Allah.
May be it’s a good thing that after all, both the religions have so much in common, unlike the common perception that we are poles apart when it comes to our practices.