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Mohammed emoticon


This is my entry to “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day”. It is scarcely original, and the less original the better, I guess.

I take no pleasure from violating other people’s taboos. It is not polite and I wish to be polite. In ordinary circumstances if I want to do something that will annoy others I am willing to put up with moderate inconvenience in order to do it out of their sight. These are not ordinary circumstances. People are being threatened, harassed and sometimes murdered by fanatical Muslims for exercising free speech. The media and academia, fearless defenders of free speech so long as there was nothing to fear, have by and large caved in. So maybe it is time for ordinary people to step up. Lots of them. Spread the risk.

Incidentally, it was good of the Pakistani authorities to help so much with the publicity.

38 comments to Mohammed emoticon

  • Aoun, Rafqa

    Elegant. And funny 😀

  • Yes, very nicely put. I agree both about manners and about how this is a time when that doesn’t apply.

    And a great graphic too.

  • Hats off (although maybe not towels…)

  • Well, mine’s up on Cats.

    I actually feel scared. It’s kind of eerie.

  • Anne Lee

    Speaking of censorship…

    I just went to the BBC article that was linked to this post.

    As of 5/20, 12:00PM Eastern Standard Time, all of the reader comments that have been posted by the BBC in reaction to the article were of “Asian” origin. And the viewpoints and opinions were all suspiciously one-sided. I’ll let you guess which side…

  • Hmmm

    If all images of Mohammed are truly blasphemous and therefore taboo, and taboo under the severest of threats; then mere writing of the name “Mohammed” itself is assuredly blasphemous.

    “Mohammed” the name(in all its forms) is the most numerous image/graphic of Mohammed that exists.

    Anyone who writes “Mohammed” is drawing an image both in reality and in imagination.

    If the image of Mohammed is truly blasphemy then Islam should remove this blasphemous graphic from all visual references immediately.

  • Person of Choler

    You forgot to say “Peace be upon him and the white camel he rode in on.”

  • No no no, you got it all wrong: it’s pox be upon him, and the white camel he did unmentionable things to.

  • I have a friend named Mohammed. This is not unusual, as apparently, Mohammed is the most popular first name for boys, worldwide.

    On his staff profile page (we work at the same company), he has a nice head-and-shoulders might-just-pass-for-passport photo of himself, sporting a big and clearly happy grin.

    I drew a quick sketch of it.

    If some wider reactions are to be considered, all I’ll say, in the words of Matthias, son of Deuteronomy of Gath, is “That piece of halibut was good enough for Jehovah”…

  • RAB

    I have often (well not that often, I have a life) wondered why big Mo is forbidden to be depicted.
    Christ is depicted, Buddha is depicted, the pantheon of Hindu Gods and Goddess’s are depicted, but not big Mo.

    I have come to the conclusion that if we dont know what he looks like, he cant be picked out in an Identity Parade by abused 9 year olds…

    Ian B, that was a blindingly good sketch. Have no fear, you can always hide out at my house. I have said before, I live on a hill, with almost 360 degrees of fire…

  • RAB, you sure you want Ian and me in the same house within hearing distance?

  • Bod

    Yeah, I’ll admit, I don’t really understand why the image of Mohammed is verboten, yet the writing of the name is not. He’s only a prophet after all.

    I was born CofE and consequently I have no religious beliefs to speak of, but at least Judaism has some consistency. Don’t spell “G_d” – there’s nothing ineffable to draw a picture of – keep his inspired words in a box in the temple, wrapped in Badger pelts or whatever. And of course, day-to-day blasphemy.

    But as someone in the bloggything wrote today – if Mohammed’s (pbuhatghrio) holiness precludes iconography, why not representation of his name? In traditional Islam, it’s my understanding that the myriad metaphors of Allah’s names are used as decoration in mosques.

    I know I’m beating a dhimmi to death here, but the contradictions of Islam seem to put Christianity’s relatively minor contradictions into stark relief.

  • RAB

    No Probs my sweet! It’s a big house.
    If I can handle my ex business partner, who came for a weekend, and stayed a fortnight, banging on about his great uncle being “The Man Who Never Was” and who was definately not a drunken TB riddled Welsh bum, but a secret agent, I can handle anything!
    Besides, I have a lot of Hawkwind bootlegs that he’d love to get his hands on. Slip the old headphones on him, and you’d hardly know he was there!

    He’ll be out all night hunting down Puritans too, so we can get to know each other even better my dearest 😉

  • Bod, I doubt it is written anywhere that images of the prophet are verboten – except that all images of any living things are verboten. So the inconsistency is not in Islam itself, but rather may be rooted in its practitioners’ ignorance of their own religious doctrine. I could be wrong though, it is just a guess.

  • “The Man Who Never Was”? What was was, was was.

    Send me some pointers to these Hawkwind guys some time, see if Ian’s taste in music is as good as his puritan-hunting skills.

  • Tedd

    Yeah, I’ll admit, I don’t really understand why the image of Mohammed is verboten, yet the writing of the name is not. He’s only a prophet after all.

    First, it’s only forbidden by selected sects that follow certain Islamic texts in addition to the Qur’an. (It is not forbidden by the Qur’an itself.)

    The reason some sects forbid depictions of Mohamed is that they are attempting to prevent him from becoming a god in the minds of believers, the way Christ did among Christians. In other words, they see it as a kind of idolatry. Muslims think the Christ-as-God thing is wrong, and they don’t want to make the same mistake with Mohamed.

    Of course, the irony here is that Muslims getting upset with non-Muslims for depicting Mohamed in an unflattering way are flirting awfully close with idolizing him, themselves.

  • Alasdair

    Now *that* is a worthy challenge …

    Just as there is ASCII art, I wonder if someone who can write Arabic script could take the Suras of the Q’ran and create a fully-readable Q’ran verse imagery that just happens, from a distance, to look like The Prophet might have looked ?

  • Natalie, that emoticon is brilliant and funny. The radical Islamists wouldn’t know how to take that? Is that a symbol or is it an image? You might cause the bastards heads to explode.

  • RAB

    Of course, the irony here is that Muslims getting upset with non-Muslims for depicting Mohamed in an unflattering way are flirting awfully close with idolizing him, themselves.

    Really? no foolin! Well who’d a thought it!!

    CCIZ has had a death threat. I think it is a wind up, but I’m just about to fisk it anyway.

  • Badge of honor Cats. Oh, and my ignorance of history is revealed in public yet again. Oh well, live and learn.

  • Alisa:

    I can also thoroughly recommend the movie.

  • Bod

    Alasdair, on reflection, you’d have to wonder, wouldn’t you?

    If the text of the Quran is literally holy, and you did render a picture of Mo in calligraphic script, what should the faithful do?

    Destroy it and you’re destroying the word of Allah, let it stand and you have a wicked, blasphemous piece of idolatory.

  • Verity

    Alisa is correct. Images of the big Mo are not forbidden, except by primitive, superstitious tribes like the Saudis and Pakis.

    I haven’t been to Iran, but friends who have lived there, an advanced society until fairly recently, say that images of Mohammad are perfectly normal and freely available. You can buy them at market stalls even, and people put them up in their houses.

    These Saudis don’t have enough to occupy their time. I would have thought that crashing Cadillacs in the desert (hard enough to do, let’s face it) and then leaving them would have been entertaining enough for their tiny brains, but apparently not.

    There is nothing in islam that forbids people depicting mo’.

  • Verity

    Then, of course, the follow-up question for 5 points: why would anyone want to depict mohammad?

    He sounds icky.

    Seriously, he married a little girl of six … Is this the kind of person you would want as a neighbour? He saw her on a swing and ordered her to his house and her mother hurried her there so fast the little girl was out of breath, so I guess a big noise in the neighbourhood … he invented the “four wives” rule … men should “plough your wives as the camel ploughs the desert” (a real poet) … to produce ever more warriors for allah.

  • J.M. Heinrichs

    Mohammed throughout history, some of the Images.


  • Thanks Ted, I’ll look it up.

  • Big fat hairy bollocks to Mohammed.

    There, I said it.


  • BFFB

    I wanted to draw one but I don’t know what Mohammed Day looks like.

  • It looks like Mohammad, BFFB.

  • Kristopher

    You forgot to say “Peace be upon him and the white camel he rode in on.”

    Posted by Person of Choler

    PBUH should be reserved for true prophets of God ….

    Like John Moses Browning ( PBUH ).

  • Pakistan’s a bit late. Youtube’s been banned here in Turkey for years.

  • Not, I hasten to add, because of anything anti-Islamic.

  • Cameron

    I thought you hated the BBC? Let’s not allow that to interfere with a good prejudicial rant!

    17034 murders in the us in 2006. Likely the majority of those by Christians or atheists. more than all the jews killed by hamas. More than all the peacekeepers killed in Iraq. Probably equal to all the muslims killed by other muslims in recent years, for their own longstanding reasons.

    maybe this drawing suits you more.

    <:-(8 i'll let you decipher it.

  • i’ll let you decipher it

    Why bother?

  • No Cameron, you need to decipher it for me as I cannot see what disliking the BBC or the murder rate in the USA has to do with defending freedom of expression from intolerant muslims across the globe.

    Oh, and as I know Natalie, I assure you she looks nothing like that.

  • Paul Marks

    Quite correct Natalie.

    Although I am too ignorant to understand what your drawing means.

    Mohammed was a murderer, a rapist (including of children) and an enslaver. It is quite true that every religion (and athiest group) includes evil people – but few major religions were actually founded by evil people (and Mohammed clearly was a evil man).

    I found the comment from the “Muslim growing up in America” interesting (follow the link to the BBC site). Hopefully, it was a fake comment (the rant about “petty freedom of speech issues” sounded a bit fake), but if real – well this is yet another Muslim terrorist growing up in the United States.

    And it is “Muslim terrorist” not “terrorist who happens to be a Muslim” – as the Muslim was basing his opinion (his opinion that it was O.K. to use threats and voilence to silence foes of Islam – even in a nonMuslim country) on his interpretation of Islam.

    And unlike Blair and Bush (with their fluffy interpretation of Islam – which led directly to their wars, as they believe the majority of “good true Muslims” were being opressed by a handful of false people who “distorted the noble religion of Islam”) I think the commentor’s interpretation of Islam is CORRECT.

    In short following the logical interpretation of the life of Mohammed and the basic texts of Islam would lead someone to evil – thus making the basic idea of the Iraq and Afghan war (that Islam is fluffy – and the good vast majority of Muslims should be liberated from a tiny minority who have twisted the religion) FALSE.

    Both sides in the debate on the Iraq and Afghan wars had it as there common ground that Islam is good – if Islam is evil (basically evil – with evil basic texts and an evil Founder) then the whole debate is fundementally different.

    For example, the “rescue mission” in Afganistan is expossed as folly.