by A. Human Being (October 2016)
Muhammad’s encounter in the Cave of Hira is exceptional in Islam, because it is in this experience that Muhammad first received revelation from Allah, through the intermediary of the Archangel Gabriel. This encounter, therefore, is understood as the pivotal human event of Allah communicating the Islamic message to all mankind through the agency of Muhammad. more>>>
QUOTE: “Read in the name of your Lord Who created man from a clot of blood. Read because your Lord is the most Bountiful, who taught the use of the pen, and taught man what he did not know.”
On the run. Don't have sources handy. This; the cave episode puts in mind the narrative of the Watchers of 1 Enoch, especially ch. 6-11: an expansion of (if not a rummaging through the same source) Gen. 6:1-4. The career of the angels Shemihazah & Asael.
Of course, as many have identified, with Persian influences; with one significant caution, for the Enochian literature stays clear of that one overriding Persian marker - Dualism.
Angels *erred* not only in having sexual relations with the 'daughters of men' but also in teaching the arts of herbs, incantations, and such: delivering the tools of rebellion to mankind. The angels sinned for becoming boundary-crosses and line-erasers.
Direct sourcing is not the issue; no need for it. In fact, the Enochian literature (let alone the much dualistic writings of the Qumran sect) was historically shelved: except as rescued - reinvented - as Christian apocalypse. But the (myth) worldview the Enochians represented (let alone their adversaries) became well-entrenched in the cultural ether: overarching, oddly connecting much.
For instance, the misreading of 1 Enoch (along with Jubilees, Apoc. of Abraham, 4 Ezra, 2 Baruch - and their offspring) fed into the raft of Christian/Jewish *heresies* - reinventing, reformulating - which drifted into Arabia and points East.
The East, that is Persia with its habit - perfected long before Alexander - snatching every ideological and religious iota arriving westward, making much use of what it absorbed (for there's nothing a strict Dualism can't slot and assign).
The point being: there is precious little originality in the origins of Islam. For Muhammad (such as he was/is) rose (suanttered into caves) from a very potent confluence of religious and cultural streams. Shemihazah & Asael were squatting as they did of old - waiting for him in the cavernous darkness.
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