I believe in one God, and no more; and I hope for happiness beyond this life. I believe the equality of man, and I believe that religious duties consist in doing justice, loving mercy, and endeavoring to make our fellow-creatures happy. Thomas Paine
Deism Versus Islam: An Overview
by Lewis Loflin
English and American Deism, Unitarian Christianity, and Socinian Christianity emerged as heretics of the Protestant Reformation. All applied various degree of reason to the Bible producing faiths that combined reason with a Jesus centered ethical outlook. All rejected the Trinity, Original Sin, the Elect, Nicene Creed, predestination, and other church dogma. Like the Anabaptists they all advocated separation of religion and state which is well within Christian traditions. All advocated religious tolerance.
Rational Islam and rational Judaism when embracing reason and religious tolerance are in many ways similar to Deism. The various Unitarian and Deist groups because they reject the Trinity are sometimes accused of being Muslims (Turks) or Jews. While there is an indirect Muslim influence, we reject many of the cultural aspects of Islam in regards to religious freedom, separation of religion and state, and placing blind revelation over reason. It's time to end the confusion on these related, but different groups. There is no theological reason why any of these groups would be enemies. Mix in other elements, it's often religion that is used to cover-up unrelated political conflicts.
Deism is not this disinterested creator that made the world and went away that Voltaire invented. I define true Deism as the use of reason over revelation. While Deism evolved from Christianity in opposition to its violence and intolerance, it never sought to destroy it or any other faith. Once exported to France and stripped of its theistic roots would become violent atheism. Deism is not a church or religion and has no clergy or organization, but often a submerged component of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. That's why this website doesn't seek converts or recommends any "church."
The fact is as a classical Deist I agree 100% with the core beliefs of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity:
1. belief in the existence of a single supreme God
No Christian, Jew, or Muslim could deny these beliefs. This is pure monotheism and the individual has a direct relation to Allah and we answer to God in this life and the afterlife. That direct relationship transcends religious institutions that claim to represent Allah, but are often power hungry men and their collective cultural political baggage. This is as Thomas Jefferson referred to "the deism of the Jews..." This is God the Father of Christianity and Judaism, Allah in Islam. (Yes they are all the same.)
I will not use this constant salutation (PBUH) for Mohammad. I'll also use Allah the Arabic word for God in some places. (This will upset a lot of Christians.) It should be remembered that by tradition Jews and Arabs are both the children of Abraham. Arabs trace their line through Ishmael, the son of Hagar. See Genesis 16:1, 21:14, etc.
There is nothing new at all in Islam clearly being borrowed from the Christians and Jews that once inhabited most of the Arabian peninsula and later exterminated. (Medina at the time was over half Jewish where Mohammed lived for eight years.) Whoever a man named Mohammed (570-632 A. D.) was, he never wrote the Koran. It was written down decades after his death at a time when his followers were already killing each other for control and the faith was splitting into its two major sects, Sunni and Shi'a. The Koran has differing and conflicting translations.
Even more of a concern are the Hadiths, a collection of fables on the alleged deeds and life of Mohammed written down two centuries later. The Hadiths depict Mohammed as a thief, bandit, murderer, and rapist. The Hadiths are often used as an excuse for Muslim persecution and domination of non-Muslims. The two largest denominations of Islam, Shi'ism and Sunnism, have different sets of Hadith collections.
The Koran was likely codified in its final form along with the Hadiths about 200 years after Mohammed's death. This was done under the Abbasid dynasty (750-1258) to unify its vast Arab Empire. There's no evidence in his lifetime he even existed, the first mention of Mohammed in Arabic was material dated 60 years later. Mecca was mentioned only once in the Koran, Jerusalem not at all.
"Fight those who believe not in God nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by God and His Apostle, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book (i.e., Jews and Christians), until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. (Koran, 9:28-29)"
This process of religious/cultural genocide continues today in countries such as Egypt and Lebanon with the only large number of surviving Christians left in the Arab world. Their one million Jews were driven out after 1948 and they and their children make up the majority of the Jews in Israel. Thus captive non-Muslims live under what is called dhimmitude. The Jizyah is also known as the poll-tax.
Deism takes a very dim view of holy books and this is the reason why. No originals, questionable authorship, and a fixation on the various Founders and the political agendas of the men operating organized religion. Worse they become an excuse for robbing individuals of their God-given freedoms and act as a blueprint for tyranny.
The rest of this section will look at how Islam and Deism differ. This Deism is from the American view of the Founding Fathers, which overlapped Christian Unitarianism, not atheistic French Deism. As for word "Qur'an" I'll use Koran and for passage quotes. I'll use the MSA-USC Qur'an Database. This includes three translations side by side. I have my own copy of the Koran as well to compare to.
A seemingly enlightened Muslim website is www.submission.org. That website is based on the work of Dr. Rashad Khalifa a brilliant chemist whom claimed through the use of computers the number 19 proves the Koran is true, and claims a "messenger" status for himself. (I reject both of these claims.) He also claims the Hadiths and Sunnas are false, and all prayer is to Allah alone. He never uses the word "Allah" but God and refers to "submitters" not Islam. His beliefs are not considered valid by Muslims in general and that got him killed. He committed heresy, a death penalty under all branches of Islam. He was murdered for heresy, which is legal under Islamic Law (Sharia).
The problem for Islam is Sharia or Islamic Law is taken mainly from these external works written in some cases 200 years after the death of Mohammad. They are not even revelation, but more akin to legends and folk stories, but under unelected Islamic jurists and clerics they dictate meaning and the individual doesn't.
Here is an important place Deism and Islam differ. Because we allow the individual to make their own interpretations of whatever holy book or other material. A Muslim visitor called Khalifa an "ahmedi". This also can refer to Muslim sect in Pakistan to quote a news article:
Pakistan is a predominantly Muslim country. People in Pakistan follow different versions of Islam. The majority of the people follow the Brelvi, Deoband, or Shiite versions of Islam. There are big differences among the ideologies of these sects. The three major sects have turned against a fourth, the Ahmedi sect. They think that Amedis are deviants. They say they do not accept Mohammad as the last prophet...
I asked my Muslim visitor, "But who are you to claim they are not Muslim?" As he explained:
Yes! you are very right Islam does not allow anyone to declare a person as a non-Muslim or Kafir. But you see Ahmedis are the only ones declared non-Muslims by Muslim States "By LAW". Then why they did this?
In other words it's goof to murder them. This view is no different than what Christians and Jews believe, but mostly no longer enforce because most Western nations are secular. For a Deist this will present several issues. We have no prophets so we don't have that fight.
This has led to the fragmentation and decline of Christianity in particular in Europe. Science has thrown doubt on many claims in the Bible in particular in relation to miracles and general decline in gross superstition. Muslims are not stupid and observed how corrupt much of the West has become under these atheistic influences and want no part of it.
As a young Muslim confided in me that he loved Islam, but is dumbfounded by the wealth and prosperity in the West while much of the Muslim world lies in poverty. Let's remember it wasn't Islam that murdered 100-200 million people in the 20th century by secular philosophy. Instead of calling them "Almedi" we called them "enemies of the people." The Deism of France led directly to the Communists and Nazis. Who are we to call Muslims barbaric?
Can Islam have a Reformation?
One desire of many in the West is to reduce Islam to a benign form of Deism along the model of France, or override it with secularism. The Protestant Reformation started under Martin Luther led to disasters such as the 30 Years War that killed millions and devastated Europe. Worse for Christianity in general it weakened the entire institution. Anyone that attempts to reform Islam usually ends up dead or in hiding.
I'm against the kind of secularization that is practiced in the West being used in Islamic countries. The result is they often adopt violent secular philosophies such as fascism and communism. Baathism and Arab Nazism/Nationalism are two of the worst examples. This was tried in Turkey under Ataturk and it seems to have failed. I'm very fond of the Turks myself and didn't want to see this happen. Now they are electing Islamists. The other result is what happened in Turkey. Reform is not about just secularizing, but living in a balance between God and reason.
Deist View of God and limitations
Of utmost importance in Deism is free will. Man has the ability to chose good from evil, something Christians deny and some Jews and Muslims agree with. Deism rejects the Christian/Jewish idea of a personal god that constantly meddles in every affair and has everything planned in advance. (prophecy)
While Unitarians derive belief in God from the Bible, they reconcile this with science. A Deist bases belief in God on science, or how complex, etc. nature is. (Also note that traditional Deism and Unitarianism have no clear dividing line.) This is what Christians often call "Creation science."
Nature as I use it is the material world. The planets, solar system, chemistry, biology, etc. Much of it human science still doesn't understand even today. Nature through natural processes can not build a supercomputer, but man can. There is no scientific proof nature (or natural processes alone) can create life from dead matter any more than it can create a supercomputer, Mac truck, or a transistor radio.
Deism has one bad failure in that reason by itself doesn't create morality. Many come to Deism to attack other religions, claiming getting rid of revealed religion will make the world a wonderful place. Need I remind them of the secular horrors of secular fascism and communism? Why the French Revolution based largely on atheism and reason alone produced beheadings and terror, and why the American Revolution based on reason and God succeeded? (Reason in this context overlaps with classical Christian humanism.) It's only reasonable we look back into history and tradition and accept the good and discard the bad and obsolete.
Deists don't see God as the often vindictive and cruel tribal god of early Judaism or Islam. The universe operates as God designed it. Evolution works as God designed to work, with limited intervention from God. (Some Deists dispute this, we are allowed to disagree.) Deists see no conflict between God and science.
Deist/Unitarian origins in Islam, Judaism
Deism in various forms certainly existed in Hellenistic Judaism prior to the 1st Century. These diaspora Jews exposed to Greek philosophy tried to reconcile God with reason and science. They became less ritualistic, gained converts, God became more universal. One side effect was Gnosticism, mysticism and asceticism. (Christianity, etc.) For more on this see Adolf von Harnack and Philo of Alexandria Islam went in similar directions once it militarily conquered vast Christian regions.
Learning under the Abbasid dynasty (750-1258) A number of medieval thinkers and scientists living under Islamic rule played a role in transmitting Greek, Hindu, and other pre-Islamic knowledge to the Christian West. They contributed to making Aristotle known in Christian Europe.
Medicine was an area of science that advanced particularly during the Abbasids' reign. During the ninth century, Baghdad contained over 800 doctors, and great discoveries in the understanding of anatomy and diseases were made. The clinical distinction between measles and smallpox was discovered during this time. The great philosopher Ibn Sina (known to the West as Avicenna) produced treatises and works that summarized the vast amount of knowledge that scientists had accumulated, and is often known as the father of modern medicine. The work of him and many others directly influenced the research of European scientists during the Renaissance and even later.
Three speculative thinkers, Al-Kindi (801-873), Al-Farabi (870-950), Avicenna (980-1037) Ibn Sina in Arabic combined Aristotelianism and Neoplatonism with other ideas introduced through Islam. To quote Islam's Lost Heritage by Jahed Ahmed, (Note that I edited this.)
One of the prime reasons attributed to Muslims' intellectual enrichment during middle ages is the substantial impact of Greek rationalistic Philosophy on Muslim intellectuals. During seventh and eighth centuries, Islamic empire was expanded from Spain to Persia, and Muslims gained access to works of such great Greek thinkers as Plato, Aristotle, Democritus, Pythagoras, Archimedes and Hippocrates.
As a result of the influence of Greek philosophy, the vast majority of the Muslim intellectuals of the Middle Ages preferred reason over faith as a guiding philosophy. Such groups of rationalistic Muslim thinkers of the time were known as Mutazilites. In an article titled "Muslims and the West After September 11 published in Washington Post, Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy has the following to say about those Mutazilites:
"Science flourished in the Golden Age of Islam because there was within Islam a strong rationalist tradition, carried on by a group of Muslim thinkers known as the Mutazilites. This tradition stressed human free will, strongly opposing the predestination who taught that everything was foreordained and that humans have no option but to surrender everything to Allah.
It's interesting to note the Mutazilites were attacked by the left (atheists, agnostics, etc.) and the right (religious fundamentalists and traditionalists). I'm often attacked by both sides myself on this issue. There's also some debate as to exactly what the Mutazilites actually believed.
Destruction of Baghdad ended most Muslim science and reason
Many historical accounts detailed the cruelties of the Mongol conquerors. The Grand Library of Baghdad, containing countless precious historical documents and books on subjects ranging from medicine to astronomy, was destroyed. Survivors said that the waters of the Tigris ran black with ink from the enormous quantities of books flung into the river. Citizens attempted to flee, but were intercepted by Mongol soldiers who killed with abandon. Martin Sicker writes that close to 90,000 people may have died (Sicker 2000, p. 111). Other estimates go much higher. Wassaf claims the loss of life was several hundred thousand.
The other important center of Islamic learning was Spain and we should note the great Jewish sage Maimonides who wrote mainly in Arabic. His Guide to the Perplexed touched on Deism and he would well know the works of earlier Muslim philosophers. His works were burned by the Rabbis and the works of many great Islamic thinkers were often declared heresy.
All of these ideas would have been passed to Michael Servetus, a doctor. The early Unitarians and Deists certainly were exposed to "Arab" ideas that forced them to confront Christian dogma. Unitarians, Anabaptists, and Deists alike faced death at the hands of violent Christians across Europe, Catholic and Protestant alike.
From the Michael Servetus Institute (http://www.miguelservet.org/servetus/trial.htm),
Michael Servetus...shook the underpinnings of the Christian faith of his time with his antitrinitarian and Anabaptist doctrines." He was murdered for his opposition to the Nicaean interpretation of the doctrine of the Trinity and his rejection to infants' baptism.
Here is the links between Deism and Unitarianism, Judaism, and Islam. Servetus is a hero and martyr to reason and freedom.
Reason Versus Revelation
Koran 17:36; "You shall not accept any information, unless you verify it for yourself. I have given you the hearing, the eyesight, and the brain, and you are responsible for using them." (Translation from submission.org.)
Koran 17:36 And do not uphold what you have no knowledge of. For the hearing, eyesight, and mind, all these you are responsible for. (free-minds.org)
YUSUFALI: And pursue not that of which thou hast no knowledge; for every act of hearing, or of seeing or of (feeling in) the heart will be enquired into (on the Day of Reckoning).
The above illustrates the typical problem with a holy books even within the religion itself. Translation as well as interpretation depend on the outlook of the person reading it. The first seems most reasonable to me. Mohammad himself clearly claimed the Christians and Jews "corrupted" the word of Allah. He said look at the evidence for yourself.
John Locke whom some claim was a Deist, others Unitarian, saw no problem between reason and faith as he sought to promote religious tolerance. In his Letter on Tolerance, he makes a distinction between what can be known and what must be taken on faith. In his view neither knowledge nor faith demand the use of force against persons who differ on these matters. Where reason can supply an answer to a question, there are rational methods to resolve a dispute, thus no need to quarrel. Where faith alone is the way to answer it, no methods of reason can be persuasive. Hence there is no justification for using force.
Mohammad certainly promoted the use of reason to those he sought as followers, as long as they agreed with him, otherwise you die. Jesus seemed to say the same thing in Matthew 7:7, "Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you..." (also Luke 11:9) We have the right to seek the truth and that can only be done by questioning that which the religion business establishment opposes. They have placed themselves between Allah and man, they are idolatry in themselves. Koran 13.29: "(As for) those who believe (in God) and do good, a good final state shall be theirs and a goodly return."
Deism/Unitarianism arose in opposition to the massive killing and terrorism between Christians. We focus on what we have in common, let the individual decide the details. It's the moral character of the believer that counts, not scriptural correctness. This problem goes on today as Sunni and Shiite murder each other in Iraq, and Saudi Wahhabism murders any non-Wahhabi Muslims.
Islam a "deistic" religion?
I have read several scholars that refer to Islam as "deistic." In the Koran Mohammad is human, performs no magic tricks or miracles. Throughout many sections Mohammad refers to the natural world as a symbol of God's greatness and power. There are similar passages in the Bible, but not as many times as Mohammad refers to "Creation." (Note this is not scientific as we know it.) See the following and be your own judge. Koran 2:164,
YUSUFALI: Behold! in the creation of the heavens and the earth; in the alternation of the night and the day; in the sailing of the ships through the ocean for the profit of mankind; in the rain which Allah sends down from the skies, and the life which He gives therewith to an earth that is dead; in the beasts of all kinds that He scatters through the earth; in the change of the winds, and the clouds which they Trail like their slaves between the sky and the earth;- (Here) indeed are Signs for a people that are wise.
What do we have as evidence from Muslims, Christians, and Jews? We have holy books. How does reason play into this? Deism/Unitarianism believes in science reconciled with a belief in God. If that holy book passes the test of reason, then we may accept those parts that past this test.
Science Versus Islam
Muslim science was borrowed at first from others. Quoting Turkish writer Turgut Özal on an official Turkish government website: The scholars of Islam* contented themselves initially with translating and interpreting the works of the Hellenistic period, hence their philosophy was at first scarcely original. Later, however, the numerous translations under taken at the beginning of the Abbasid period (ninth century) provoked an expansion of thought... Will Durant in The Age of Faith further confirms this and attributes most of this to Turks, Persians, Jews, and Christians.
* Jews and Christians translated classical knowledge to Arabic.
But to pretend Muslims only "copied" the Greeks and Hindus is false. They invented chemistry, advanced astronomy, and we owe them (in the West) our modern base-10 number system and algebra. They were centuries ahead of anyone at the time. Their vast libraries and universities were the envy of the world. The West didn't catch up to Islamic science until the 17th-18th centuries and much of that was based on works passed from great Muslim scholars or preserved by them. But Islamic science has nothing to do with Islam or the Koran, which after the 13th century has destroyed Muslim advancement. Muslim scholars even hit upon evolution.
But when Muslims began to learn of the real world and science via the Greeks, Hindus, etc. something very close to Deism began to emerge as many began to place reason over revelation. When Jewish, Christian, and Persian works became well known, serious questions on the Koran were asked. Many of the Muslim scholars of that time would qualify as Deists and those scholars also included Persians and Jews. This later died. If reason and proof conflicts with Islamic dogma, it will not be tolerated. When Islam went fundamentalist in the 12-13th centuries, Islamic science died.
That is why the Muslim world today is the most backward in the world. Even with Muslims attending Western universities, they still fall behind because Islam (or any other revealed religion) destroys the ability to think freely and innovate. The want the weapons, technology and wealth the West has, they don't want the culture that makes it possible. Freedom and reason are death to mindless fundamentalist' religion.
Muslim Spain was the most advanced and tolerant society (outside perhaps the Jewish Khazars) in the middle ages. At least for a time. In Spain Christians and Jews alike were well treated and the great Muslim leaders of that time thirsted for classical knowledge. One of the greatest writers of that time was Maimonides.
Then fundamentalism set in forcing many Jews to flee and opening the door to Christian conquest. By 1492 Muslim Spain was ended and Jews and Muslims alike faced expulsion, conversion, or death. But what Muslims threw away was captured in Spain and Sicily. Great Islamic achievements, along with Aristotle, and so much more were passed back to the West.
YUSUFALI: It is Allah Who has created the heavens and the earth, and all between them, in six Days, and is firmly established on the Throne (of Authority): ye have none, besides Him, to protect or intercede (for you): will ye not then receive admonition?
On the creation of man Koran 023:014,
YUSUFALI: Then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood; then of that clot We made a (foetus) lump; then we made out of that lump bones and clothed the bones with flesh; then we developed out of it another creature. So blessed be Allah, the best to create!
Is it clots or clay? Koran 037:011,
YUSUFALI: Just ask their opinion: are they the more difficult to create, or the (other) beings We have created? Them have We created out of a sticky clay!
How many heavens? Koran 067:003,
YUSUFALI: He Who created the seven heavens one above another: No want of proportion wilt thou see in the Creation of (Allah) Most Gracious. So turn thy vision again: seest thou any flaw?
Origin of the Koran
What about revelation? Does Allah communicate with man? Why do Deists question the Koran or Bible or do we even believe in revelation at all? To quote Thomas Paine's The Age of Reason:
Revelation when applied to religion, means something communicated immediately from God to man. No one will deny or dispute the power of the Almighty to make such a communication if he pleases...It is a contradiction in terms and ideas to call anything a revelation that comes to us at second hand, either verbally or in writing. Revelation is necessarily limited to the first communication.
Not everything he ever said or did is always ordained by God/Allah. But assuming Muslim claims of Mohammed are true, he didn't write the Koran, and worse, there is nothing new but borrowed from other religions. It was assembled later by his followers from all kinds of notes and writings scattered around his residence. The Koran is an incoherent mess. It can't be read in chapters, many statements are disjointed gibberish. This is why they refer to the Hadiths and Sunnahs for Muslim Law or Sharia.
As Will Durant explains nearly everything Mohammed claimed that was brought to him by the Angel Gabriel could be taken from Talmud Judaism, Zoroastrianism, and Christianity. There is nothing new at all. But the Prophet claimed the other scriptures had been corrupted, he as God's newest and last Messenger sent to correct it.
Ali Dashti (an Iranian rationalist) quoting his book Twenty-three Years on Mohammad and the Koran,
"contains nothing new in the sense of ideas not already expressed by others. All the moral precepts of the Koran are self-evident and generously acknowledged. The stories in it are taken in identical or slightly modified forms from the lore of the Jews and Christians, whose rabbis and monks Muhammad had met and consulted on his journeys to Syria, and from memories conserved by the descendants of the peoples of Ad and Thamud...In the field of moral teachings, however, the Koran cannot be considered miraculous...Many of the duties and rites of Islam are continuous practices which the pagan Arabs had adopted from the Jews."
Excerpts from Will Durant's The Age of Faith Pages 162-186 Pub. 1950
He was alleged to have lived in Medina with its large Jewish population for eight years and that is where he picked up so much Judaism. He later turned on and murdered them. His wife Khadija's cousin Waraqab ibn Nawfal, "who knew the Scriptures of the Hebrews and the Christians" is where he also learned much about Judaism and Christianity. But even assuming the Koran does accurately reveal what Mohammed said, there are no originals and we can't be sure even of it that.
Mohammed was accused of fraud even in his own time, but anyone that questioned him in any manner were murdered. This brings up an important point. He was indeed it seemed a good man and honest at first. He was loyal to his first wife Khadija and loved her very much. After her death he changed from a kind prophet and honest merchant to something else or so it seems. Every time he wanted a new wife, he had a convenient revelation from Allah. He broke treaties and had anyone that questioned him in any manner killed, etc.
To me these charges seem wrong. I think they were manufactured by later Muslims to justify their evil. These charges of fraud and altering texts aren't limited to the Koran, but also the Hadith and Sunna as well. Most of this history is drawn from the later writings, and I'm wary of it. I think a Muslim or even non-Muslim needs to view the Koran alone and not mix in other traditions.
But a few further words of caution on the Koran. First, it depicts the bloody civil wars of 7th century Arabia and are particular to that time. There is also proof of tampering in the Quran and questions of when it was finalized. Here is one I found: [30.2} The Romans are vanquished... The only problem with this is the Romans (Actually Byzantines) were defeated at the Battle of Yarmouk and the Muslims entered Palestine in 637-8 five years after Mohammed's death.
Death Penalty Under Islam:
Regarding prophet hood of Muhammad
The last one is the most dangerous and this is why Islam is hopelessly crippled in trying to modernize, and why it's not compatible with western culture. One doesn't get just Allah and the Koran with Islam, one gets the whole violent medieval culture and the ruling tyrants with it. This is why they murdered Dr. Rashad Khalifa. Never mind he believed in Allah, the perfection of the Koran and Muhammad, he rejected the Hadiths and Sunnas, claiming the Koran alone should be used. He dared question authority, that is what got him killed. To quote,
After prophet Muhammad's death and as the time passed, the Muslims gradually drifted away from the laws of the Quran in favor of the man made laws derived from the books of Hadiths (Sayings) and Sunna (actions) that were falsely attributed to the prophet Muhammad.
Islam today is the most violent and intolerant faith on earth and for no good reason. Muslims have lost both their greatness and reason for conspiracy theories, hysteria, and terrorism.
Today most Muslim countries produce nothing and the per capita income even of wealthy Saudi Arabia is half that of South Korea and going down. Most Muslims sit by in silence or make excuses. Religious fundamentalism has left Islam unable to modernize, innovate, or Muslims even to feed themselves. Millions of Muslims live on Western handouts while calling for the death of those that feed them. Islam needs a Muslim Thomas Paine or Thomas Jefferson. The alternative is continued war and conflict with every nation on earth and eventual extermination.
If there is anything factually incorrect on this page, e-mail me and I'll correct it. Send verifiable proof.
If using this material on another site, please provide a link back to my site.