Everything you thought you knew about Islam is about to change
Did Muhammad exist?
It is a question that few have thought—or dared—to ask. Virtually everyone, Muslim and non-Muslim alike, takes for granted that the prophet of Islam lived and led in seventh-century Arabia.
But this widely accepted story begins to crumble on close examination, as Robert Spencer shows in his eye-opening new book.
In his blockbuster best-seller The Truth about Muhammad, Spencer revealed the shocking contents of the earliest Islamic biographical material about the prophet of Islam. Now, in Did Muhammad Exist?, he uncovers that material’s surprisingly shaky historical foundations. Spencer meticulously examines historical records, archaeological findings, and pioneering new scholarship to reconstruct what we can know about Muhammad, the Qur’an, and the early days of Islam. The evidence he presents challenges the most fundamental assumptions about Islam’s origins.
Did Muhammad Exist? reveals:
- How the earliest biographical material about Muhammad dates from at least 125 years after his reported death
- How six decades passed before the Arabian conquerors—or the people they conquered—even mentioned Muhammad, the Qur’an, or Islam
- The startling evidence that the Qur’an was constructed from existing materials—including pre-Islamic Christian texts
- How even Muslim scholars acknowledge that countless reports of Muhammad’s deeds were fabricated
- Why a famous mosque inscription may refer not to Muhammad but, astonishingly, to Jesus
- How the oldest records referring to a man named Muhammad bear little resemblance to the now-standard Islamic account of the life of the prophet
- The many indications that Arabian leaders fashioned Islam for political reasons
Far from an anti-Islamic polemic, Did Muhammad Exist? is a sober but unflinching look at the origins of one of the world’s major religions. While Judaism and Christianity have been subjected to searching historical criticism for more than two centuries, Islam has never received the same treatment on any significant scale.
The real story of Muhammad and early Islam has long remained in the shadows. Robert Spencer brings it into the light at long last.
|What They're Saying...||
“A well-written, sober, and clear account . . . The revisionist account is no idle academic exercise but, as when Judaism and Christianity encountered the Higher Criticism 150 years ago, a deep, unsettling challenge to faith. . . . May the revolution begin.” —National Review Online
“Without indulging in polemics or pushing a partisan political agenda, the author simply investigates the question of whether we can really trust the traditional Islamic accounts for the life of Muhammad and the supposed early days of Islam. . . . For too long, the topic of Islamic historiography has been confined to highly specialized academia, with the growing problem of Islamist intimidation. Thus, an accessible primer on the subject as we have here is most welcome. In addition, the project of translating this book into Arabic is to be commended. In the years to come, it would be good to see Spencer’s book prescribed as introductory reading for courses on Islam in schools and universities.” —American Spectator
“Careful, detailed, well-reasoned survey and analysis . . . [A] brave book.” —FrontPage Magazine
“[Spencer] has engaged in concerted detective work of a scholarly nature. His book is no polemic. It is a serious quest for facts. The ones wrapped up in the Muslim canon are, alas, elusive. . . . Well-written and moves right along.” —Washington Times
“In an impeccably researched book, Spencer shows that all our Arabic sources for the life of Muhammad are very late, tendentious, and unsupported by any archaeological or epigraphic evidence, while the non-Islamic sources are scant and ambiguous. Thanks to this book, skepticism regarding what we can know about Muhammad must now and forever be taken seriously.” —Ibn Warraq, editor of What the Koran Really Says
“This will send shockwaves through Islamic communities.” —The Blaze
“A surprising and eye-opening new book . . . Quite a convincing job.” —PJ Media
“Robert Spencer has displayed brilliant scholarship and fierce courage in his previous books. In this one he perseveres and confronts with deep erudition the most topical problem of our century.” —Bat Ye’or, author of The Decline of Eastern Christianity under Islam
“A super detective service for the West . . . Spencer leaves few rocks unturned in his search for the truth about Islam and Muhammad.”
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