On November 11, 1620, the Mayflower arrived on the eastern coast of North America. Historian Tom Holland’s Channel 4 film Islam: The Untold Story sparked more than 1,000 complaints when it was broadcast. - Omar El-Khairy. Western historians have always wanted the origins of Islam to be examined under a strict academic method of research.2 They have tried to do so and have arrived at conclusions not much different to what would be, or rather, is, the case in a study of many of the ancient civilisations. Which he more or less got, as Nasr told him that what he had discovered was "quite interesting, so long as you don't try to impose your view on the Muslim world", as that would be tantamount to "western imperialism". Not least the Bible; what's true, what's parable and what's just wishful thinking has all been up for grabs without any serious damage being done to Christian beliefs. 4. Islam is different from other faiths in the sense that it had such a powerful impact on society that it resulted in the formation of a major civilisation of the world.3 Here, we will deal with this particular issue by attempting to place the right peg in the right hole, in an effort to understand the history of faith and civilisation in their own respective manners. There is no emotional screw, no indignity, no suffering he won't inflict on his characters and his writing always seems to bring out the best in his actors. 14. Islam), which was still in its infancy, without any precedence and which was with no support from any major tribe or clan. JazakAllah Khairan to the author or compilers of the beautiful script “The Truth behind the untold story – Explaining the origins of Islam”. One such historical fact is the destruction of the Abyssinian invader Abraha, who invaded Makkah with the intention to conquer the Ka’aba. Holland also says that Islam, as a fully formed religion, did not emerge until many years after the death of Mohammed. It leaves historians, Muslim and Western scholarship alike, amazed and astonished at how this epic transformation of a centuries-old fragmented society could happen and that too in a matter of years.24. 16. But it is clear that Muhammad, by the end of his career, controlled a polity that had in some measure acquired the main characteristics of a state: a relatively high degree of centralisation, a concept of the primacy of law or centralised higher authority in the settlement of disputes, and institutions to perform administrative functions for the state existing independent of particular incumbents. Thomas P. Hugh, in his Dictionary of Islam, brings together some works on this topic, suggesting that “Muhammadsa is said to have been born fifty-five days after the attack of Abraha, or on the 12th day of Rabiul Awwal of the first year of the Era of Elephants, which M. Caussin de Perceval believes this to have been the 40th year of the reign of Chosroes the Great (Kasra Anushirwan) and calculates the date to have been August 20th, 570 AD.”33 Spengler calculates the birthdate to be April 12th, 571 AD. Take the Persian al-Razi who said that having a religion was “like being in a leaky tent in a rainstorm”: you may not be entirely dry but you would be soaked to the skin if you tried to find another tent. Recently, British religious historian Tom Holland presented his research on theorigins of Islam in the form of a documentary titled: Islam: The Untold Story. Hughes and Hughes, A Dictionary of Islam, 367. It was almost as if he was looking over his shoulder, half expecting a fatwa at any minute. We need more of the facts about Islam to enlighten the whole world at large. Franz Rosenthal, A History of Muslim Historiography (E. J. Brill, 1952), 309; Sir William Muir, Annals Of The Early Caliphate: From Original Sources (Smith, Elder & Co., 1883), 271. Some vitriolic, others more measured in their response, but all agree that Holland’s documentary is either wrong or ill-researched.