Deep into Druze faith

Xynus87

Xynus87

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From our personal experiences with them and what is already known.

I don't agree with stance that they are an off-shoot of Shiism. The founders may have been Shia Ismails, but it's a completely different religion. It's known they started as unitarians trying to unite Sunnis, Shia's and Christians and it failed to spread in Egypt but it quickly spread throughout Mount Lebanon. I also suspect the original converts in Mount Lebanon may have been Christians. There's even several genetic studies that say Druzes are genetically very close to Christians since they lack Arabian input, unlike most Muslims. So there's that also.
With all respect, your opinion is quite false. Druze began as offshoot of Ismaili Shiite Muslims, and of the Ismailis living in modern-day Lebanon there were the ones who accepted the Druze da'wah with the influx of families and missionaries from northern Syria, and there were ones who remained Ismailis and changed to Twelver Shia Islam and a very small minority that remained in Jabal Mohsen. There might have been Christians who accepted the da'wah for sure, but for the people who accepted the Druze da'wah it required you to be familiar with Ismaili Shiism and the Platonic influence that is still present till this day in Ismaili theology. Which is odd that you say it's closer to Christianity, even if a certain sect is an off-shoot. Samaritans are an off-shoot of Judaism you could say, yet they're closer to Judaism than Christianity or Islam.
 
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  • Ice Tea

    Ice Tea

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    With all respect, your opinion is quite false. Druze began as offshoot of Ismaili Shiite Muslims, and of the Ismailis living in modern-day Lebanon there were the ones who accepted the Druze da'wah with the influx of families and missionaries from northern Syria, and there were ones who remained Ismailis and changed to Twelver Shia Islam and a very small minority that remained in Jabal Mohsen. There might have been Christians who accepted the da'wah for sure, but for the people who accepted the Druze da'wah it required you to be familiar with Ismaili Shiism and the Platonic influence that is still present till this day in Ismaili theology. Which is odd that you say it's closer to Christianity, even if a certain sect is an off-shoot. Samaritans are an off-shoot of Judaism you could say, yet they're closer to Judaism than Christianity or Islam.

    Then why do you see Druze wearing Cross necklaces and no Druze wearing Ya Hussein bandanas? Why do Druze celebrate Christmas and Easter, but not Ashura? Why do Druze parents give their children Old Testament and Christian and Saint names like Daniel, David, Rita, Charbel, Christina etc but not Muslim/Shia names like Hussein, Ali, Mohammed etc? Why do you often see Druze visiting Christian monasteries and praying in our Churches, but they don't visit Mosques and go to Mecca? Why some Druze parents even have their children baptized?

    If anything they are a Christian offshoot. They are more Christian than Jehovah's witnesses and Mormons for sure.
     
    Xynus87

    Xynus87

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    Then why do you see Druze wearing Cross necklaces and no Druze wearing Ya Hussein bandanas? Why do Druze celebrate Christmas and Easter, but not Ashura? Why do Druze parents give their children Old Testament and Christian and Saint names like Daniel, David, Rita, Charbel, Christina etc but not Muslim/Shia names like Hussein, Ali, Mohammed etc? Why do you often see Druze visiting Christian monasteries and praying in our Churches, but they don't visit Mosques and go to Mecca? Why some Druze parents even have their children baptized?

    If anything they are a Christian offshoot. They are more Christian than Jehovah's witnesses and Mormons for sure.
    Because Druze believe in a concept Shias call Taqiyya, which is found in all Shia sects. The Taqiyya of the Druze is basically just following whatever religions dominant in the place you live, you see Druze serving in the IDF and synagogues under the Zionist rule. You see Druze labeled as Muslims in Syria. The Druze in Lebanon prefer being their own community and you can ask most of them for this.
    I don't see how the pictures you posted prove your point, there's the "pseudoscholar" Hajj Hassan who's a Twelver and got famous because he had the picture of Saint Charbel in his home. You have to acknowledge that Muslims believe in the OT characters, meaning the Prophets of the OT are also venerated among mainstream Muslims. Daniel, David etc. Are all Prophet who are venerated among Muslims. I know Twelvers who are named Daniel. Also, your claim that they don't name Muhammad/Ali is quite false, I know tens of Druze who are named as such. On the contrary to Druze naming Charbel, which comes as a surprise and it's clear in the first post above.

    As for the Druze praying in the church, I don't see how does that proves your point, again. Jews out of all people are allowed to pray at Mosques only if there's no synagogue. Does that mean they become Muslims? No.
    To me it looks like you're just ignoring the history behind the Druze sect and their beliefs which come from Ismailism. They are off-shoots of Ismailis and not Ismailis, they are a separate community and even faith. The Ismailis of Lebanon either became Druze or joined Twelver Shiism especially the ones at Keserwan and the Bekaa (who fled Tripoli and the coast in 1109) who were a diverse bunch of Twelvers, Nusayris and Ismailis. I mean, you can believe whatever you believe but don't talk out of prejudice and whatever reasons you're aiming at.
     
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    Xynus87

    Xynus87

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    Because Druze believe in a concept Shias call Taqiyya, which is found in all Shia sects. The Taqiyya of the Druze is basically just following whatever religions dominant in the place you live, you see Druze serving in the IDF and synagogues under the Zionist rule. You see Druze labeled as Muslims in Syria. The Druze in Lebanon prefer being their own community and you can ask most of them for this.
    I don't see how the pictures you posted proves your point, there's the "pseudoscholar" Hajj Hassan who's a Twelver and got famous because he had the picture of Saint Charbel in his home. You have to acknowledge that Muslims believe in the OT characters, meaning the Prophets of the OT are also venerated among mainstream Muslims. Daniel, David etc. Are all Prophet who are venerated among Muslims. I know Twelvers who are named Daniel. Also, your claim that they don't name Muhammad/Ali is quite false, I know tens of Druze who are named as such. On the contrary to Druze naming Charbel, which comes as a surprise and it's clear in the first post above.

    As for the Druze praying in the church, I don't see how does that prove your point, again. Jews out of all people are allowed to pray at Mosques only if there's no synagogue. Does that mean they become Muslims? No.
    To me it looks like you're just ignoring the history behind the Druze sect and their beliefs which come from Ismailism. They are off-shoots of Ismailis and not Ismailis, they are a separate community and even faith. The Ismailis of Lebanon either became Druze or joined Twelver Shiism especially the ones at Keserwan and the Bekaa (who fled Tripoli and the coast in 1109) who were a diverse bunch of Twelvers, Nusayris and Ismailis. I mean, you can believe whatever you believe but don't talk out of prejudice and whatever reasons you're aiming at for.
    Corrected some mistakes .... My bad
     
    𓍝𓂀𓄃𓇼

    𓍝𓂀𓄃𓇼

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    Well, when Druze do use Mohammad or Ali, it's not named after the Prophet or the Imam.
    Mohammad was the name of one of the Five bounds in Al Hakem's time and considered an old Arabic name. While Ali's name is also almost nonexistent among Druze. It's found in some Sunni strands like the Joumblatts, but not in traditional Druze families such as Abu Chakra.
     
    Xynus87

    Xynus87

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    Well, when Druze do use Mohammad or Ali, it's not named after the Prophet or the Imam.
    Mohammad was the name of one of the Five bounds in Al Hakem's time and considered an old Arabic name. While Ali's name is also almost nonexistent among Druze. It's found in some Sunni strands like the Joumblatts, but not in traditional Druze families such as Abu Chakra.
    Ultimately the name goes to the Prophet, and the same for the name Ali. It's important to recognize the Ismaili roots. I know lots of Druze named Ali as well, even Mahdi. But I think the fact that lots of aspects of the Druze faith are syncretic and closed even for a select few, is significant here.
     
    𓍝𓂀𓄃𓇼

    𓍝𓂀𓄃𓇼

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    Ultimately the name goes to the Prophet, and the same for the name Ali. It's important to recognize the Ismaili roots. I know lots of Druze named Ali as well, even Mahdi. But I think the fact that lots of aspects of the Druze faith are syncretic and closed even for a select few, is significant here.
    I'm sorry but I doubt there's "lots of Druze you know" that are called Ali.
    I know around 10,000 Druze in my area and not one is named Ali or Mahdi.

    The only Alis I know are from Sunni strands, E.g Sheikh Ali Joumblatt.
     
    Xynus87

    Xynus87

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    Well I do not appreciate the fact that you took whatever I was saying as a lie. I don't see what "sunni strands" is supposed to imply considering the Joumblatts were a leading Druze family historically, regardless of their integration some 500 years ago or so. Does that make them less Druze? I'm sure most of the Druze would disagree with you here. That's not a proper way of arguing, and that is not supposed to imply anything significant anyway to what we're dealing with because the other points stand by themselves and are enough to support my argumentation, which is historically accurate.
     
    𓍝𓂀𓄃𓇼

    𓍝𓂀𓄃𓇼

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    Well I do not appreciate the fact that you took whatever I was saying as a lie. I don't see what "sunni strands" is supposed to imply considering the Joumblatts were a leading Druze family historically, regardless of their integration some 500 years ago or so. Does that make them less Druze? I'm sure most of the Druze would disagree with you here. That's not a proper way of arguing, and that is not supposed to imply anything significant anyway to what we're dealing with because the other points stand by themselves and are enough to support my argumentation, which is historically accurate.
    Well, my bad. I'll respond to your initial argument point by point.
     
    JeanH

    JeanH

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    quick question does anyone have the kitab l 7ikma? does it even exist ? if it does exist how come no one has it except the druze
     
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    𓍝𓂀𓄃𓇼

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    Because Druze believe in a concept Shias call Taqiyya, which is found in all Shia sects
    That's false on two levels. What you describe later is "Istitar" and not Taqiyah. And Taqiyah is found in almost all creeds from Buddhism to Islam. E.g When Mohammad pretended that you can receive "grace" from the Three Pagan Goddesses in the infamous "satanic verses". It's not limited to Shiah sects and it doesn't make Druze a Shiah sect if they have it. Unless you consider Mohammadans, secret Buddhist societies, Freemasons, Rosicrucians to be Shiah sects.

    The Taqiyya of the Druze is basically just following whatever religions dominant in the place you live, you see Druze serving in the IDF and synagogues under the Zionist rule. You see Druze labeled as Muslims in Syria. The Druze in Lebanon prefer being their own community and you can ask most of them for this.
    That's also false on two levels. The Israeli Druze are not following Judaism. Their religious practice is identical to those in Lebanon and Syria. And what you're describing is Istitar and dissimulation and not Taqiyyah. But since Christianity is not in power in the Levant, so that point is moot to begin with. Druze would have no reason to pretend to be Christian in Israel and Syria.


    I don't see how the pictures you posted prove your point, there's the "pseudoscholar" Hajj Hassan who's a Twelver and got famous because he had the picture of Saint Charbel in his home. You have to acknowledge that Muslims believe in the OT characters, meaning the Prophets of the OT are also venerated among mainstream Muslims. Daniel, David etc. Are all Prophet who are venerated among Muslims. I know Twelvers who are named Daniel. Also, your claim that they don't name Muhammad/Ali is quite false, I know tens of Druze who are named as such. On the contrary to Druze naming Charbel, which comes as a surprise and it's clear in the first post above.
    There's a whole dimension to this you're not seeing. Druze solely accept Christian figures as their boundaries and masters, that's not existent in any faith. Master Baaha even claims "Christian Saints were the first to know God". The adoption of Christian figures has a "Gnostic Chrisitan" layer to and is not at meeting points with Islam. Islam doesn't give any importance to Matthew, for instance. It doesn't believe Jesus is the Universal Mind. It doesn't believe Christian saints were the first to know God.

    As for the Druze praying in the church, I don't see how does that proves your point, again. Jews out of all people are allowed to pray at Mosques only if there's no synagogue. Does that mean they become Muslims? No.
    To me it looks like you're just ignoring the history behind the Druze sect and their beliefs which come from Ismailism. They are off-shoots of Ismailis and not Ismailis, they are a separate community and even faith. The Ismailis of Lebanon either became Druze or joined Twelver Shiism especially the ones at Keserwan and the Bekaa (who fled Tripoli and the coast in 1109) who were a diverse bunch of Twelvers, Nusayris and Ismailis. I mean, you can believe whatever you believe but don't talk out of prejudice and whatever reasons you're aiming at.
    That's false history.
    There's no evidence that Lebanese Druze were Ismealis before conversion. If so, produce one Ismeali mosque in old Lebanon?
    Moreover, the Leb proto-Druze were basically known as the "Army that fought the Fatimids". And they captured Ad-Darazi and converted him to THEIR faith. So their Old Faith had already been established.

    The actual history produced in the quote below...

    ad-darazi.PNG

    Now Druze certainly have roots in Ismealism and what you said is not entirely wrong. But their tree is not entirely rooted in Ismealism but in an older Lebanese religion. And it was hybridized with newer ideas that historic age when Druze had power through Cairo.
     
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    𓍝𓂀𓄃𓇼

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    quick question does anyone have the kitab l 7ikma? does it even exist ? if it does exist how come no one has it except the druze
    It's found online. The version that was produced by a Leb Maronite in the 80s with his commentary.
    But I was able to validate that the letters are authentic in comparison to handwritten older books, except for the first four (which that version realizes are added fakes by the Tanoukhs).
     
    JeanH

    JeanH

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    It's found online. The version that was produced by a Leb Maronite in the 80s with his commentary.
    But I was able to validate that the letters are authentic in comparison to handwritten older books, except for the first four (which that version realizes are added fakes by the Tanoukhs).
    thanks brother, but with all due respect i view druze as more of a cult than a religion, simply from the fact that you cannot convert to druze
     
    JeanH

    JeanH

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    I'm sorry but I doubt there's "lots of Druze you know" that are called Ali.
    I know around 10,000 Druze in my area and not one is named Ali or Mahdi.

    The only Alis I know are from Sunni strands, E.g Sheikh Ali Joumblatt.
    man in terms of druze standards you know very few druze heheeh :p
     
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    𓍝𓂀𓄃𓇼

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    thanks brother, but with all due respect i view druze as more of a cult than a religion, simply from the fact that you cannot convert to druze
    Well, all religions were considered "cults" when they were smaller.
    I don't look negatively at "mystery cults". There's a lot to learn from them as they're essentially study groups.
     
    Xynus87

    Xynus87

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    You just reasserted most of what I have written above. I won't respond to everything you've said but I will try and explain some things.
    Concepts evolve to take up on new names and wider ideas. The name isn't my main concern compared to the concept, and taqiyya and istitar entail very similar ideas. The fact you understood what the concept was is sufficient. The whole argument I was making was about the origins of the Druze faith being from Ismailism and it would be historically inaccurate to claim the Druze was already founded before Ismailism, I wasn't making a case that Druze faith is actually closer to Islam because I've stressed multiple times that they are an off-shoot of Islam.
    The Druze faith itself was founded upon the claim that al-Hakim was the incarnation of God, the evolution here comes from the claim of divine appointition like the Nizaris believed, to divine incarnation that the Druze preachers confessed, especially Hamza. Similar to the way Christian believe the incarnation of God in Jesus, and it's exactly how Christianity departed from being a Jewish sect to become its own religion. This is in many ways similar to how the Nusayris (Alawites) started out as an offshoot of Twelvers. There's a pattern here and it should tell you something. The argument about veneration of saints does not stand much weight in front of the main doctrine of the Druze I stated above, the later developments are indicative of later incorporation of different concept from different faiths and it's definitely the resultant of cultural influence. This is evident in lots of examples in history, see how the Muslim philosophers in what is called the "Islamic golden age" utilized Greek philosophy and concepts. For Ismailis it's evident in the neoplatonic elements of their beliefs. The Ismailis didn't believe in the transmigration souls, but the Druze did, how? The Druze preacher Hamza carried on the belief of reincarnation from other religions, he likely withdrew the idea from a Greek or Indian source.
    Ahmadis believe in Hindu and Buddhist saints for example, that doesn't make them originally Hindus or Buddhists, and this is pretty much how your argument is built up. The incorporation of Gnostic elements doesn't make the religion itself a Gnostic one, like in the case of Alawites. We already know Gnostics lived in Roman Syria as followers of John the baptist, related to the Mandaeans still living nowadays.
     
    JeanH

    JeanH

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    You just reasserted most of what I have written above. I won't respond to everything you've said but I will try and explain some things.
    Concepts evolve to take up on new names and wider ideas. The name isn't my main concern compared to the concept, and taqiyya and istitar entail very similar ideas. The fact you understood what the concept was is sufficient. The whole argument I was making was about the origins of the Druze faith being from Ismailism and it would be historically inaccurate to claim the Druze was already founded before Ismailism, I wasn't making a case that Druze faith is actually closer to Islam because I've stressed multiple times that they are an off-shoot of Islam.
    The Druze faith itself was founded upon the claim that al-Hakim was the incarnation of God, the evolution here comes from the claim of divine appointition like the Nizaris believed, to divine incarnation that the Druze preachers confessed, especially Hamza. Similar to the way Christian believe the incarnation of God in Jesus, and it's exactly how Christianity departed from being a Jewish sect to become its own religion. This is in many ways similar to how the Nusayris (Alawites) started out as an offshoot of Twelvers. There's a pattern here and it should tell you something. The argument about veneration of saints does not stand much weight in front of the main doctrine of the Druze I stated above, the later developments are indicative of later incorporation of different concept from different faiths and it's definitely the resultant of cultural influence. This is evident in lots of examples in history, see how the Muslim philosophers in what is called the "Islamic golden age" utilized Greek philosophy and concepts. For Ismailis it's evident in the neoplatonic elements of their beliefs. The Ismailis didn't believe in the transmigration souls, but the Druze did, how? The Druze preacher Hamza carried on the belief of reincarnation from other religions, he likely withdrew the idea from a Greek or Indian source.
    Ahmadis believe in Hindu and Buddhist saints for example, that doesn't make them originally Hindus or Buddhists, and this is pretty much how your argument is built up. The incorporation of Gnostic elements doesn't make the religion itself a Gnostic one, like in the case of Alawites. We already know Gnostics lived in Roman Syria as followers of John the baptist, related to the Mandaeans still living nowadays.
    it would be nice to open a thread about the mandaians and the bahais, but i doubt we could get a commentator to assist us.
     
    Xynus87

    Xynus87

    New Member
    That's false history.
    There's no evidence that Lebanese Druze were Ismealis before conversion. If so, produce one Ismeali mosque in old Lebanon?
    Moreover, the Leb proto-Druze were basically known as the "Army that fought the Fatimids". And they captured Ad-Darazi and converted him to THEIR faith. So their Old Faith had already been established.

    The actual history produced in the quote below...

    ad-darazi.PNG


    Now Druze certainly have roots in Ismealism and what you said is not entirely wrong. But their tree is not entirely rooted in Ismealism but in an older Lebanese religion. And it was hybridized with newer ideas that historic age when Druze had power through Cairo.
    That's a very oversimplified historical vision. Your line is not sound at all because you can flip it and it's inaccurate. I can do the same thing and say we have no evidence of the existence of Christians in Tyre, if so "produce one church" in pre-Islamic Lebanon. In this case we don't have direct observable evidence that there were Christians ever in Tyre, which is a very silly thing, we have to rely on historical accounts and narrations in this case.

    As for the quote, I don't know who wrote this nor where is this coming from, there's no reference. I have no reason to believe this quote is purporting the actual history of the Druze and neglect other historical accounts. Some accounts specifically sayal-Hakim ordered ad-Darazi to be killed because of his divisive way of preaching the Druze faith after being appointed by al-Hakim himself, which is a fringe account and isn't taken seriously by historians since "it must have sounded in his personal life and his activities as a ruler."

    Another thing:
    The Druze historical accounts were written primarily to explain theological and religious issues rather than to record history. The Druze accounts were however written at a much later date, i.e., in the 16th and 17th centuries, such as "Majra az-Zaman" by Taqi ad-Din Zayn al-Abidin Abdul Gaffar in 16th century, and "Umdat al-Arifin" by Abdul Malik al-Ashrafani in 17th century.
     
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