Agron Belica: Spiritual Beast

ace3Born in 1974 of Albanian descent, Agron Belica is a student of comparative religion. He developed a particular interest in the prophet Yahya (John the Baptist) and in 2008, he published his Ihya al-Nabi Yahya, from which the present, more comprehensive study of Yahya has evolved. Belica’s work on some key words in the Quran has been referenced in Dr. Laleh Bakhtiar’s The Concordance of the Sublime Quran, a supplemental study resulting from her translation of the Quran, The Sublime Quran, the first such translation by an American Muslim woman. His research paper on the meaning of those key words has also been cited in The Bible by Wikimedia Foundation.

Agron Belica with Dr. Jay R, CrookHis work motivated Dr. Jay R. Crook to write the essay Rethinking John the Baptist, included in this volume. Belica has also developed a considerable reputation as a socio-political hip-hop artist. He has already contributed a number of thought-provoking songs to the genre. His Newsic Revolution album featured the noted musician and author Gilad Atzmon. Belica’s songs about human rights have been played on six continents. One of those songs, Leave Those Babies Alone, was featured at the 2013, and 2014 San Francisco Pride Parade, helping to rock 1.2 million people. His eldest son, Jamal Belica, has founded the Aldin Entertainment Music Group.

Tim King and Agron Belica New Jersey

Mr. Belica has reflected an unparalleled inner commitment towards becoming a more spiritually-evolved and God-devoted person, and towards unraveling the truths and myths behind the Islamic, Judaic and Christian theologies. This substantial piece of scholarship is the result of the years of devotion to which Mr. Belica has dedicated himself, towards understanding, questioning, and seeking new perspectives on the religious traditions and issues of our times. —Roger H. Sigal, Trial Attorney – Tucson, Arizona

Author Agron Belica

I opened The Passion of the Baptist, Not the Christ cautiously, expecting the polemics of yet another anti-Christian diatribe, but was surprised to find instead a reasoned academic examination of some aspects of early Christian history as preserved in the New Testament, the writings of Josephus, and elsewhere that cause me to reconsider the role of John the Baptist in the drama of Jesus the Messiah. Islamic sources are also explored. One may not agree with all of the book’s conclusions, but enough information is presented in the text and footnotes of this remarkable study to cause one to pause and rethink our assumptions about the importance of this relatively neglected prophet in the history of monotheism. An interesting read! R.B., Ph.D.

If all of Agron Belica’s research and the conclusions he draws from it prove to be valid, then the traditional view of John the Baptist/Yahya, both scholarly and conventional, Jewish, Christian and Muslim, will be subjected to a tidal wave of revision and reconsideration. This will also affect most extant translations of the Quran into English, with the exception of The Sublime Quran by Dr. Laleh Bakhtiar which incorporates all of his results that relate to Quranic verses. Additionally, the great collections of medieval Islamic commentaries, both Sunni and Shia, which often repeat such colorful Biblical stories as the beheading of John the Baptist, will have to be viewed more critically. Such revisionism is sure to meet with a strong opposition. — Award winning journalist Tim King GlobalNewsCentre.com

Agron Belica with Professor Mahmoud Ayoub

Dr. Mahmoud Ayoub professor of Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim Relations Hartford Seminary, Hartford CT: (This book) by Agron Belica is an engaging analysis of the life and mission of the two kindred religious personages, John the Baptist (Yahya) and Jesus (`Isa). Even though the central argument of the book, namely that the man who was hung on the cross was John and not Jesus, may be academically open to question as it rests on circumstantial evidence, the book will add much to the discussion of an epoch-making event that has shaped world history. The book is informative and entertaining. It is certainly worth reading.

Dr. Harte Weiner
Lead Editor, Ph.D., Stanford University: Agron Belica is a first generation American of Albanian descent. He is devoted to a few things. One is his family, another is his religion, and yet a third is intellectual and spiritual religious inquiry. His book is a tribute to this devotion and inquiry. It is a brilliant and original look at the Gospels and the Quran, as well as the earlier Mosaic texts. In this book, the self-taught Belica, with no formal education, points out linguistic and spiritual parallels between generations of key characters in three religious histories. A devout and inquiring Muslim, using the close reading of the Quran as his guide, Belica, is able to look back at the central story of the crucifixion through a new lens, the Muslim lens, using key passages from a number of religious scriptures to build a fascinating new argument. His thoughts, insights and interpretations are remarkable, profound, and leave the reader in awe.

Belica notices that a son is born to the prophet Zachariah at about the same time as a son is born to Mary. He systemat-ically and spell-bindingly leads us through the parallels between these two prophets, the second of whom we have come to know as Jesus. Both are raised in secrecy, and bring prophesy and healing. Both are spared somehow the decree of Herod at birth, only to befall religious ostracism and apparent physical mutilation beheading/crucifixion at the time of apparent earthly death.

Belica takes us through the similarities in these prophet’s lives, their coming into the lives of their parents, as the sons had done, in response to prayer, or in the unlikely moment, for Mary, of her chastity. The coming together of Zachariah and Mary is cemented with the former shielding Mary from harm as her foster-father. Belica brings us back further in scriptural history to draw other such parallels when it comes to prophets, and he draws upon the Arabic roots of the names of these figures, from Adam to Zachariah’s son, to convince the reader of his novel contribution to scriptural reading. But I’m not going to give that away! For that, you must read the book yourself!

This book is slim, but both erudite and yet easy to follow, in its step by step progression through the many scriptures, seemingly so familiar is Agron Belica with every passage, the apt ones come easily to mind for him, and strike an immediate cord in us, no matter how familiar or unfamiliar we are with the text and story. And yet, this book is no recipe for persuasion. It is much more sophisticated than that. Written in a devout and true Muslim spirit, it is also—as mentioned at the beginning of this review—an inquiry and a wholly new contribution to that body of sculptural scholarship.

Agron Belica advances a theory which sheds an entirely novel light on the views that are commonplace today, and, through an examination of linguistics, passages, intent, and meaning, causes us to re-examine, in an exciting, clue-ridden way, what we have assumed to be true about the three major religions for centuries, concentrating on his own Muslim faith.

Agron Belica Dr. Jay R, Crook Franklin, MADr. Jay R. Crook
Author of The Bible: An Islamic Perspective: Agron Belica’s controversial book, vigorously challenges the conventional view of John the Baptist as little more than the baptizer of Jesus and the herald of his messiahship. The result of years of study, it expounds his revolutionary theories about the life, work, and significance of the neglected prophet.

The John/Yahya that Belica’s work brings forth from the shadows of history is a major prophet in his own right, with an independent stature and mission. The book is a thought-provoking and fascinating re-examination of the prophet’s place in history.

Dr. Laleh Bakhtiar Resident Scholar Kazi Publications and first American woman to translate the Qur’an(See The Sublime Quran and The Concordance of The Sublime Quran):

There are two methods of gaining knowledge in the great religious traditions of the world in general, and Islam, in particular. One method is knowledge that is imitated (taqlid) or transmitted by hearsay from generation to generation like the sciences of language, history and law. With this method, a person never asks “Why?” but accepts what is taught by an authority. In the Islamic tradition this leads to ijtihad, ijtihad specifically referring to developing expertise in jurisprudence (fiqh) to the level of being able to use independent judgment in understanding Islamic law (Shariah). Such a person is known as a mujtahid. Whoever is not a mujtahid, whoever has not reached that level, must “imitate” or “follow” a person who has, whether that person is dead (Sunni Muslims) or alive (Shia Muslims).

The second method of gaining knowledge is what is of most interest to us in this book review, that of tahqiq or intellectual knowledge where one may have a teacher for guidance but it is knowledge that cannot be passed from one generation to another. Each person has to discover it for himself or herself by “polishing the heart.” by becoming a person who sees with the eye of Oneness or tawhid, a person who deeply senses his responsibility to God, His creation and His humanity.

The person who gains knowledge with this method is called “a seeker of truth” (muhaqqiq).  Intellectual knowledge (tahqiq) builds on transmitted knowledge but goes deeper. Transmitted knowledge includes memorizers of the Quran and the Hadith but only with intellectual knowledge can one understand what God and the Prophet are saying. Those who lack this intellectual endeavor have, one might say, not sought the means to see with the eye of “Oneness.”

Questions like “why” are not the only ones that the intellect of the seeker of truth asks because the underlying distinction is to think, “to think for oneself,” and not to stop at “imitation alone.”  Not everyone has been burdened with this capacity as the Quran says in 2:286, but one person who has is Agron Belica. He is a seeker of truth, seeker of the Reality (haqq), a person who has verified knowledge, not on the basis of imitating the opinion of others, but on the basis of having realized the truth for himself as well as being one who acts in accord with haqq, all the time realizing his belief in the One God, the one creation and the one humanity.

A faith tradition may survive without a living mujtahid, but it rapidly disappears without a living muhaqqiq. Without a living seeker of truth, a seeker of reality, the faith tradition cannot remain faithful to its principles because it cannot understand those principles. A faith tradition may survive without a living mujtahid, but it rapidly disappears without a living muhaqqiq. Without a living seeker of truth, a seeker of reality, the faith tradition cannot remain faithful to its principles because it cannot understand those principles. Agron Belica’s basic premise is to follow the Quran and the New Testament which all assert that Jesus is the Messiah. However according to the Quran and the Hadith, it only appeared to the people who bore witness to the Messiah that he had been crucified.

In reality, according to the intellectual endeavor of the author, it was “he who lives” (Yahya), the Concealer of Secrets (hasura), as the Quran refers to him who was placed on the cross and lived, a view held by early Christian Gnostics as well, but later declared to be a heresy. The Concealer of Secrets concealed the secret of his identity and that of the Messiah in order to save the Messiah. The Messiah was then allowed to carry on his prophetic mission (perhaps traveling even as far as Kashmir where many believe that he is buried). At the same time that Mary retired to a sanctuary, Zechariah becoming her protector, Zechariah prayed for an heir. The son of Mary was close in age to the son of man (the Concealer of Secrets fathered by Zechariah). They may have even been cousins who resembled one another. They both began their prophetic mission around the same time yet neither revealed themselves as to who they actually were.

The author traces these and other parallels in the lives of the son of Mary and the son of man for a fascinating read. In the great tradition of seekers of truth in the past, Agron Belica brings harmony to ancient mysteries. He shows the possibility of how thing may be in the Presence of the Oneness of God and he does so through scriptures – the Quran, Hadith and the New Testament.

This is a book that should be read by everyone who wants to discern the Reality of the story of the Messiah.

The Passion of the Baptist, Not the Chrsit Prophet Yahya

The Passion of the Baptist, Not the Christ by Agron Belica Amazon

M. Dennis Paul, Ph.D.
Creator of Thought Addiction programs:

I am impressed with the amount of detail Agron, as well his editor and good friend Jay Crook, have used in composing this remarkable thesis. No easy task, Agron sets about trying to justify, clarify, and rectify, as applicable, the disparities within various retellings of the history of John the Baptist and his relationship to Jesus the Christ. It is apparent to some that political movements of the time either changed, restricted or completely eliminated various contributions to the bible. It is conceivable that all such scriptural offerings in all the various religions underwent various pressures of a similar type.

ggg

The Passion of the Baptist, Not the Christ Harvard Book Store

Agron opens several windows with which to air questions and suggestions that might lead to greater reasoning, awareness and understanding… part of a great gift we often take for granted (or, in some cases, refuse to employ). It is telling that some men will welcome a flame with which they may explore caverns of thought previously cursed by darkness while others will curse the flame and cling to the walls of darkness swearing that this is all there is… and all that should be. My brother Agron is most definitely the former.

 

Agron Belica @ Encore Music Academy and Recording Studios

Contact: AgronBelica@Gmail.com

  1. Lions of Palestine Agron Belica feat Ken O'Keefe & Gilad Atzmon 6:55
  2. Unleashed Agron Belica feat. Patrick Smyth 3:16
  3. One of these Dayz: Palestine Agron Belica 3:15
  4. L.O.C.S. feat. Ace Agron Belica 4:11
  5. Cannabis Puff Puff Puff Agron Belica 3:06
  6. Leave Those Babies Alone Agron Belica 3:38
  7. Beautiful Hope Agron Belica feat, "Professor D" )Patrick Dreier) 4:45
  8. Cost to Be the Boss Agron Belica 3:40

Leave a Reply

Web Design BangladeshBangladesh Online Market