The Melungeons – Muslims in America Before Columbus ?

Shaykh Gibril Fouad Haddad

In the 15th century, Christian Europeans began making oceanic voyages of discovery without oared galleries, but what is remarkable is that they ever started at all, and the startling suddenness and rapidity in unifying the new lands that were allegedly discovered, particularly after the Black Death, in which up to a third of the European population had died. Very quickly, these voyages led to the outright economic, political and religious domination of the globe, under the control of Christians. [Pg.175, 41]. This domination lies at the heart of the problem facing Muslims today.

Why were Europeans the only ones to discover and conquer the world, notwithstanding the Church had lied to them, that the earth was flat and if anyone sailed too far, they would fall into Hell ? They were not only inward-looking, illiterate and misguided but oppressed by their clerics by being victims themselves to Inquisitions, Witch-hunts and charges of heresies. How is it possible for a society with such characteristics to even dream about discovering, AND conquering the World ? Yet the masses today are taught, misled to believe and accept without thinking, reflecting, pondering how 15th century people with the above mentioned characteristics were the ones to have discovered the New World. It is impossible and so difficult to believe. It is like saying that the blind man was the one who saw the murder and not the man who can actually see.

The fact is, the very institution that misguided its followers, also sent them (Columbus and Vasco Da Gama) on another Crusade – a NAVAL Crusade, but under the guise of explorers, traders, colonialists and imperialists.

Following the destruction of Baghdad in 1258 by Christian-backed Mongols, the remaining intellectual Islamic states were in Africa. Africa was home to several Islamic universities, namely Fez, Timbuktu, Jenne and Al-Azhar, with many Faculties including Law, Medicine, Grammar, Building, Crafts, Manufacturing and Geography, and they attracted scholars from all over the Muslim world [pg. 134, 17]. Even though, two-thirds of the world’s supply of gold came from West Africa during the Middle Ages, more profit was made from the sale of books [Pg. 73, 24]. Arabic was not only the language of religion and learning, but it was also the language of trade and commerce [pg.220, 40].

On his way to Mecca in the 1320s, Mansa Musa of Mali stated that his brother, Abu Bukhari, had sent two expeditions, one of four hundred ships and the other of two thousand, across the Atlantic Ocean [Pg. 205, 7]. This is not surprising because Islam is a universal religion that recognises no borders or natural boundaries because Allah (swt) is the Lord of the East and the West [Quran 73:9]. Furthermore, the Last Prophet (saw) had come for the whole of mankind, the Last Message had been delivered and Islam had been completed [5:4]. Muslims were inclined to do: trade, Dawah to the whole of mankind, Jihad, defend borders; expand the Islamic State, migrate (the Islamic calendar reminds Muslims of Hijra), etc.

In addition, Muslims were sailors, geographers, astronomers, scientists. Muslims travelled using the stars and the winds as the following ayats from the Holy Quran reveal:

6:97. It is He Who maketh the stars (as beacons) for you that ye may guide yourselves with their help through the dark spaces of land and sea. We detail Our Signs for people who know.

10:22. He it is Who enabled you to traverse through land and sea; so that ye even board ships they sail with them with a favourable wind…

30: 46. Among His Signs is this that He sends the Winds as heralds of Glad Tidings giving you a taste of His (Grace and) Mercy that the ships may sail by His Command and that ye may seek of His Bounty in order that ye may be grateful.

In addition, Ancient Egyptians knew the world was round and one of the first countries that the Arabs brought the Last Message to, was Egypt in 641/2 AD. One of the first Islamic universities was built in Egypt, namely Al-Azhar.

It is also alleged that Muslims studied Greek works inlcuding Ptolemy. His astronomy was translated into Arabic, Almagest, from Al Majisti, `the greatest compilation’ which contained place names by latitude and longitude and a method of projecting spherical surfaces on flat maps, and his `Geography’ was translated into Arabic early in the ninth century [pg.20,55]. Ptolemy regards the earth as a sphere but underestimates it circumference. So Muslims would have known from Greek sources about a round world [pg. 153, 55]. Furthermore, in part 3 of the Weekend Section of Financial Times November 16 / November 17 1996, it is stated that when the English were still trying to fend off Viking raiders [793 AD], the earth’s circumference was being calculated to an accuracy of within 70 miles by Al-Biruni, a scientist in the Punjab. So the Muslims had already ascertained that the earth was round 700 years before Columbus set sail.

Unlike Christians then, Muslims faced few obstacles to trade and spreading Islam throughout the world. When the Church discovered that Muslims from West Africa were actually doing so, they launched the Naval Crusade and the brutal slavery of West Africans.

In his diaries, Christopher Columbus states that he found a dark skinned people trading with the Indians in the Caribbean islands who Columbus infers were people from the coast of Guinea (West Africa). Columbus was informed by some men, when he stopped at one of the Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa, that Negroes had been known to set out into the Atlantic from the Guineas coast in canoes loaded with merchandise and steering towards the West. Columbus was further informed by the Indians of Hispaniola when he arrived in the West Indies that they had been able to obtain gold from black men who had come from across the sea from the south and south east. Some historians have stated that Pedro Nino, one of the pilots of the command ship of Columbus was an African. [2 & 3]. SEE pages 6-8 of this article about Muslims in pre-Columbus America.

Columbus and other early European’s arrivals in the Americas came back with quite a bit of evidence, that black peoples from Africa had already reached these shores. Various writers have pointed, from time to time, over many years, to the likely West African origins of black explorers, notable of that tribe of Almamys, who were said to have settled in Honduras.

_______________________________________________________________ Many people are under the impression that the root cause of colonialism was economics. Nothing further could be from the truth. This view is not altogether surprising because most educational-oriented history books have been written to be more than open and forthcoming in highlighting the evils of slavery, racism, economic exploitation, etc of the colonial powers but this has been done to conceal the truth. The truth is that colonialism was yet another crusade against Islam.

Prior to modern secularism, religion played a very dominant role in all societies and civilisations, for example the Egyptians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Europeans, Indians, etc (and right up to the present day, although the masses do not realise it). Indeed, the concept of secularism is approximately 200 hundred years old. Thus, all historical events should be interpreted using a religious reference frame, and not the secular, economic or political reference frame because secularism as a concept and a way of life did not exist when the voyages of discovery were taking place. Using the correct reference frame, that is, the religious one, a totally different picture emerges as to what the voyages of discovery, slavery and colonialism were all about.

This article is the real story of Columbus as found in non-muslim history books, if one cares to read them with a fine toothcomb using the religious (Islamic) reference frame. By critically analysing their so called scholarly writings, for they are some of the most rewarding sources for history, because in shrewdly attempting to remove, hide or riddicule the role of Muslims in world history, they often reveal the very opposite of what was intended. These history books are fruitful sources of unconscious evidence – supplying the very evidence they thought to suppress or recording facts the significance of which they were totally ignorant. Even Shaitan cannot write a book completely devoid of truth. [Pg.32-33, 40]. ______________________________________________________________________

In 1457, the Council of Cardinals met in Holland where they sanctioned, as a righteous and progressive idea, the enslavement of Africans for the purpose of their conversion to Christianity and exploitation in the labour market as chattel property. This devilish scheme speedily gained the sanctimonious blessing of the Pharaoh (Pope) and became a standard policy of the Catholic Church, and later of the Protestant churches. [3].

A bull of Pharaoh Nicholas 5th instructed his followers to `attack, subject, and reduce to perpetual slavery the Saracens, Pagans and other enemies of Christ, southward from Cape Bojador and including all the coast of Guinea’ [pg. 31, 56].

Initially, two nations actively took up the bidding of the Church:

1. SPAIN. Christopher Columbus sailed to the West in 1492.

2. PORTUGAL – Vasco da Gama sailed to the East in 1497.

SPAIN

Spain, or Al-Andalus* as the Muslims had called it, had been under the rule of Muslims of African descent – the Berbers and Moors since 711 when an African general, formerly a slave called Tariq ibn Zaid went to Spain. Gibraltar is named after him – Jebel al-Tarik – mountain of Tariq, because he landed on the island and burnt his ships to inspire his men – that there was no turning back.

*When Muslims came to Spain, its natives were called Vandals. So the Muslims called the land Anadalus – the Arabisation of the word Vandalusia.

In 1469, Ferdinand of Aragaon married Isabella of Castile, thereby uniting these two warring Christian kingdoms. This union subsequently sounded the deathknell for the Muslims in Spain who had already lost territory in quick succession such as Cordoba (1236), Valencia (1238), Seville (1248), Lisbon, Malaga, Toledo, etc through internal feuding amongst themselves.

The Roman Catholic Church having launched Inquisitions in France, Italy in the 13th century which wiped out Unitarian Christians, extended it to Spain in 1481 to kill or forcibly convert heathens or heretics, namely Unitarian Christians and Muslims.

Isabella proved herself to be one of the greatest quartermaster generals of all time in supplying the Christian armies to drive the Muslims out. She was responsible for inflicting more torture and burning at the stake of mostly innocent people than any other monarch; for it was under her that the Inquisition was established and carried out its terrible work with her fervid blessing [pg.78, -1]. In the Inquisition, millions of Muslims were inhumanely treated, enslaved, tortured, burned, persecuted, forcibly baptised; and had property confiscated.

1492 marked a new age for Europe – after nearly 800 hundred years the Roman Catholic Church was well on its way in reuniting the whole of Spain into Christendom. On 2nd January, 1492, the last Muslim foothold in Spain, Granada was overrun by Christian armies.

Thus ended the power, wealth and elegance of Al-Andalus. In fact Al-Andalus was part of a wider Islamic world. Not only did Al-Andalus embrace more in the peninsula than is covered by the modern word `Anualusia’, but it was part of an Islamic `West’ which at its height embraced much of North Africa and Sicily, too. It was also part of an even larger economic sphere. After the Abbasid revolution of 750, the Islamic world was a single commercial entity, a free trade area with all that implied for goods and travellers, stretching as far as Persia in the East. Many of its inhabitants were Arabised and spoke Arabic, with ethnic groups within it were effectively equal : only faith divided men legally. Al-Andalus was a world of ideas – a civilisation in fact. [Pg.138, 41].

The essence of the reconquest of Spain was the transfer of power from Muslim to Christian rulers. To that process, there contributed greedy princes, fanatical bigots, roughneck French knights looking for fighting, Castilian squires seeking land and booty, as well as selfless heroes, saints and martyrs. [pg.144,41].

The destruction of the Islamic state in Spain was carefully planned, to ensure that Muslims from Africa were not in a position to assist their co-religionists in Spain. With two year’s preparation and a papal bull, a Crusade was launched on August 24, 1415 against Ceuta, a Muslim stronghold and trading centre on the African side opposite to Gibraltar. The Portuguese Armada, well armed, and supported by a contingent of English archers overwhelmed the Muslims. Within a day the Crusaders had taken Ceuta. Having ransacked and piled the streets with dead Muslims, the city was left profitless. [Pg.160,55].

When the most powerful state in Europe fell to Christendom, Ferdinand and Isabella appointed Columbus, a Genoese (north west Italy) (possibly a convert from Judaism to Christianity [pg. 22, 34]) seafarer `to go by way of the West to India’, and appointed him high admiral of the Ocean Sea and made him Viceroy and perpetual governor of any lands he discovered.

Eight months later, Columbus set sail in the name of the Trinity – the Father, the son from the harbour of the sleepy little town of Palos de la Frontera, Granada, Spain on the morning of August 3, 1492. He first sailed down the West coast of Africa to the Canary Islands to take on wood and water and to refit; then he sailed across the Atlantic Ocean. In the same year, on Oct. 13, 1492 he discovered the West Indies (San Salvador). [13]. 1492 is also the year in which Rodrigo Borgia – a fat an intensely ugly Spaniard became Pope Alexander 6th [Pg.A7, 5].

`Description of the world’ by Pierre d’Ailley, the reforming Cardinal of Tournia was Columbus’s favourite reading. D’Ailley introduced Columbus to Arabic sources and computations of Alfraganus, as the name of the Islamic geographer Al-Farghani. Columbus also studied the `Universal History’ by Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini, also known as Pharaoh (Pope) Pius 2nd.

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But what was the purpose of Columbus’s voyage ? The answer is incredibly easy to find. It is actually written in the prologue of Columbus’ journal. Here is an extract of the prologue:

“In Nomine Domini Nostri Jesu Christi In this year of 1492, your majesties brought to an end the war against the remaining Moorish kingdom on European soil, terminating the campaign in the great city of Granada, where on 2 January this year I witnessed your majesties’ royal standards raised by force of arms on the Alhambra, the fortress of that city, and the Moorish king emerge from the gates to kiss your majesties’ hands and those of my Lord the Prince.

In that same month, on the information which I had given your majesties about the lands of India and a ruler known as the Great Khan, of whom I told you that he, like his predecessors, had many times appealed to Rome for men learned in our Holy Faith to instruct him, an appeal to which the Holy Father had not responded, and about the many peoples who were being lost through belief in idolatries and the acceptance of religions of damnation’s, you majesties, being Catholic Christians and rulers devoted to the holy Christian faith and dedicated to its expansion and to combating the religion of Mahomet and all idolatries and heresies, decided to send me, Christopher Columbus, to those lands of India to meet their rulers and to see the towns and lands and their distribution, and all other things, and to find out in what manner they might be converted to our Holy faith; and you ordered me not to go eastward by land, as is customary, but to take my course, westward, where so far as we know, no man has travelled before today.

After expelling all the Jews from your kingdoms and territories, in the same month of January your majesties commanded me to sail to those regions of India with a suitable fleet; and for this purpose you granted me great concession and ennobled me, allowing me to call myself Don from then onwards…” [12]

Columbus also wrote that he hopes in God that he intends to find gold mines and the spices and everything in such quantity that the king and queen within three years would undertake and organise themselves to go to conquer the Holy Sepulchre, for all the wealth gained in the enterprise should be spent on the conquest of Jerusalem. [12].

The full truth about Columbus is still not yet known by the world, because for some reason the Vatican wants to keep as quiet as possible certain details about the revered seaman. Some facts have come to light though. For instance, the the trip across the ocean was kept low key by Vatican clerics because Columbus and his men caught syphilis and brought it back to Europe, infecting some prostitutes with it. [13]. No surprises there, considering that in 1488, Beatriz, Columbus’ mistress gave birth to an illegitimate son called Fernando [12].

By 1500 a number of royal marriages took place linking the Spanish monarchy and conquests with that of Hapsburg possessions in Austria, Germany and Holland. Spain became a global empire, with colonial territories in the New World, stretching from Vienna to Peru! Charles 5th, who held more than 60 royal titles declared: `in my realm the sun never sets’. The Roman Catholic Church who often arranged these royal marriages began to think a universal Christian empire had at last been achieved. [Pg. 30, 1].

 


Courtesy: Belfast Islamic Centre Home Page

Peace and Blessings upon the Prophet, his Family, and his Companions


© 2012 As-Sunnah Foundation of America

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