Dear brothers and sisters.
The writer of this piece of no significance is apologetic, confused, and contradictory. I will quote one paragraph and see the BIG contradiction, here we go.
He writes, "Notice that the Qur'an never says that God told Abraham to kill (sacrifice) his son. Though subtle, this is very important. For the moral lesson is very different from that which appears in the Bible. Here, it teaches us that Abraham had a dream in which he saw himself slaughtering his son. Abraham believed the dream and thought that the dream was from God, but the Qur'an never says that the dream was from God. However, in Abraham and Isma'il's willingness to make the ultimate sacrifice -- Abraham of his son, Isma'il of his own life -- they are able to transcend notions of self and false attachment to the material realm, thus removing a veil between themselves and Allah, enabling Allah's mercy to descend upon them as the Spirit of Truth and illuminate them with divine wisdom (thus preventing a miscarriage of justice and once and for all correcting the false notion of vicarious atonement of sin)."
He starts correctly by stating that the Quran never told Abraham to kill (sacrifice) his son. Just few words later he writes "Abraham and Isma'il's willingness to make the ultimate sacrifice -- Abraham of his son, Isma'il of his own life".
It is a shame to read such a confusion. Even the educated, liberal, and anti traditionalists can not get away with the doctrine implanted within. I am afraid to say that even the most brilliant minds at the forum have missed the point, the REAL MOMENTOUS Sacrifice of Ishmael.
It was very interesting for me to read the Torah forums about the so called sacrifice of Issac. Most of the Rabbis and scholars are of the opinion that there was no call to kill the lad. One of the Jewish person writes that Abraham is being asked for the second sacrifice of the life of his pure son after sacrificing his first son to wilderness. This was the most interesting paragraph. Just Google search "Sacrifice of Issac" you may find it interesting. Sacrifice of Issac is almost as pivotal to the Jewish religious doctrine as the Sacrifice of the last Lamb is to the Christian doctrine.
It was common practice to sacrifice children at the altars of the deities and some parents used to give away their own children for the worldly and eternal paradise. Giving up life for the belief is no big deal and can not be called the Ultimate or Momentous sacrifice. The hell bound terrorist do it all the time. The Tamils did it for the national & ethnic reasons. Kamikazes did it. The parents give the approval in many such instances.
I have come to the conclusion of the Momentous (not Ultimate) Sacrifice of Ishmael. It has nothing to do with chopping off the head, or even sending him away to the discomfort of the Makkah Valley. Anyone interested in this serious discussion??????