About Daniel Shayesteh

Dr Daniel was born into a Muslim family in Northern Iran. He became a radical Muslim leader and teacher of Islam in the militant Free Islamic Revolutionary Movement, closely supporting Ayatollah Khomeini. However, after falling out of favor with Khomeini’s political group, he escaped to Turkey where there began an amazing journey to faith in Jesus Christ.

Daniel's mission is to help others understand and lovingly respond to those who do not know Christ. He is also deeply concerned for the future of Western societies, their loss of confidence in Judeo-Christian values, and their persistent naivete about the implications of the world-wide Islamic revival.

Islamic Divisions and Endless Wars

Among Muslims, Islam is the cause of every religious division and thereby the cause of every political chaos that bursts into coercion and violent war. This is because the oppositions (opposing sects or factions within Islam) of rulers do not have the right to express themselves. They therefore have no choice but to group themselves, establish their own political religious group, and fight for dominance since dominance is the only way to obtain your right. This is the cycle of life that continues in Islam. Pagans of ancient Saudi Arabia did not allow Muhammad to practice his religion in Mecca. He fled to Medina and established his religious army and then invaded and changed the religion of Mecca so that he could be heard and oppositions be silenced. This has always been the principle in Saudi Arabian leadership style, which means bloodshed if oppositions stand to practice their beliefs with full rights. Oppositions have a secondary right.  Minority Sunnis are secondary for dominant Shias, and in the same way minority Shias are secondary in Sunni dominant countries. Minority Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists and others are always ranked secondary by either Islamic group.

This is what many people in the West, especially politicians, do not understand as the real reason behind violence in the Middle East. They often rationalize it with the western inclinations or ideological motives and therefore expose our societies to Islamic ferocity anytime they decide to support an Islamic group against the other.

No political or social order in any Islamic country is determined without the leadership values of Muhammad, the prophet of Islam. His values are the major running forces in every affair of life in Islamic countries. The Quran says that Muhammad is the only role model that humanity must follow:
Obey Allah and the messenger . . . . that you may receive mercy. (Quran 24:54, 56)
He who obeys the Apostle, obeys Allah . . . (Quran 4.80)
. . . for he [Muhammad] commands them what is just and forbids them what is evil; he allows them as lawful what is good and prohibits them from what is bad . . . (Quran 7.157)
It is not for a believer, man or woman, when a matter has been decided by Allah and his apostle to have any option about their decision: If any one disobeys Allah and his apostle, he is indeed on a clearly wrong path. (Quran 33:36)
It is astonishing to compare the model of Muhammad with the model of Jesus Christ. Muhammad did not claim to be God; he was just a man with limitations but imposed himself on people unlimitedly. Jesus called himself God but washed the feet of his disciples (John 13:4-5) and said that he came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many. (Matthew 20:28) This is the leadership model of Jesus Christ contrary to the leadership model of Muhammad. The Gospel of Jesus teaches people to follow his example and love their enemies:
You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matthew 5:43-48)
The western culture is highly influenced by the values of Christ who teaches us to treat people equally and even respect the rights of our enemies. This is a condition in Christ for becoming free. We will not be able to truly have freedom if we limit freedom to ourselves only. Our freedom depends on the level of freedom we wish for others. If we exclude others from having freedom it means that we have closed the door of reconciliation to people, and are therefore ourselves obstacles. It is vital for us to pave the ground for the freedom of others if we want to prove that we are free and freedom lovers.

Unlike the culture of Christ, the prerequisite to becoming a leader in Muhammad’s culture is that you have to slaughter many people:
No prophet has been enabled to take captives until he had made great slaughter in the earth.  You desire the passing fruitions of this world, but Allah desires the next life for you. And Allah is Mighty, Wise. (Quran 8:67)
This is in sharp contrast to what the Gospel of Christ teaches. That is why sects in Islam cannot attain power unless they make great slaughters. Such a tyrannical attitude is strange to the western culture. It is for this reason that millions of Muslims became tired of discriminations and bloodsheds in their own countries and have been fleeing from their own motherlands to the West in the last and present centuries. They have found out that western countries tolerate a variety of beliefs and provide equal opportunity for people of all races, nationalities and beliefs.

So, it is vital for the western countries to understand the motivations behind the clashes in the Islamic countries, especially the ones among fundamental Islamic groups of Sunnis and Shias.  They both have their reasons from the Quran. It will therefore be unwise if we stand behind one sect against another sect or sects. Every group that comes to power will follow similar principles which were around for 1400 years since the rise of Islam and are tyrannical in nature. Even the group we decide to support will blame us later for being aliens or infidels if we ask them to tolerate others. It will accuse us of preventing them to establish an Islamic government based on Islamic principles, a.k.a. Sharia. This is what American and western armies experienced in Iraq and Afghanistan and lost many soldiers by the attacks of those who were once supported.

Every sect in Islam holds the view that the beliefs in other sects are not from Allah, their followers are infidels, and must be fought against according to the Quran until there is no disbelief in the world. Such intolerance has even been creating factions in a single sect, bitter rivalry, and bloodshed. A very good example of this is the hostility between the Palestinian groups of Hamas and Fatah, who are both Sunnis and enemies of Israel, but hate each other. Hamas has slaughtered many of Fatah’s followers viciously and has Quranic reasons for its ferocious acts. All Muslim leaders, when they speak against other sects, use Quranic references to legitimize their discrimination or war against them. Committed Sunnis and Shias have been killing each other in Iraq and Syria with the same logic. They have no record of honoring each other or living in peace with one another in the entire history of Islam. The political philosophy of each sect stems from the Quran which says that the party of Allah must triumph over others. (Quran 5:56) What is the distinguishing factor in being the party of Allah but not others? It is the power of force that pulls the most dreadful group to the top or keeps it fighting to the end until it dominates and proves that it is the only party of Allah. So, war and intolerance are the pathways to the establishment of Islamic rule, no matter which Islamic sect is involved.

Let us pray that the people and leaders in the West would understand the nature of clashes in the Middle East properly and find out that the only solution for any crisis is Jesus Christ. Otherwise, every other initiative will fuel the war among Muslims. Let us also pray that our Prince of Peace, Jesus, continues to reveal himself to many Muslims and bring down the wall of hostility among them:
For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility. (Ephesians 2:14). 

Political Maturity Is Diminishing in the West

One of the distinguishing marks of the third millennia AD in the West, right from its beginning, is the obvious war of many politicians against Christianity, either because of ideology or of political correctness. Some of these politicians call themselves Christians and even go further by calling themselves conservatives, but no doubt that their superficial link to Christianity has been for the destruction of Christianity. Their relativistic approach to life is a clear indication of their hostility to the absolute truth of Christ. Though they were born into a Christian environment, they remained oblivious about the truth of faith in Christ and are now caught in the cloves of relativism.

There are some politicians who love to care for their country but become nervous when their enemies raise their voices and receive the favor of leftists. Rather than being courageous and fighting for the rights of their nation they slyly hand over control to their enemies and abandon their own people who put their trust in them. Sadly, this has become the trend of some politicians because of the dominance of political correctness.

Our contemporaries are quick to learn the methods of destruction, rather than methods of building and preserving. This is because they have lost the appetite to search, evaluate and make the right decision. They have left the field open for the opportunist leaders and politicians who take advantage of people’s unwillingness, unawareness and blind obedience. Many politicians find it too costly to wake their people up for a conscious decision-making which is the only way to have a healthy and free society. In a free society, leaders will not be able to put their own personal feelings and interests at the center of their leadership but rather the self-sacrifice that protects the interest of their communities.

Awareness indeed is a bridge to freedom. This is what Christ taught:
And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. (John 8:32 MKJV).
The opposite is true too; the lack of knowledge strips people of the truth and enslaves them to every kind of untruth that leads to all sorts of bondage. It is such a bondage that has subjugated the minds of many of our politicians and leaders to accept what should be unacceptable.

Almost all kings and rulers in history did not know or were not concerned with human rights. The common practice among them was, more or less, dictatorship, which put their and their immediate families’ desires at the center of everything. Internationally also, they were always searching for opportunities to expand their kingdom in order to attain more tax payers, therefore guaranteeing a lengthy kingdom for their family line. They deprived or destroyed any group of people whom they felt threatened by or disliked. None of these kings and rulers desired to be economically dependent on their enemies or to unite with the worst enemies of their nations and cultures. Despite their dictatorship, they were able to understand that the enemy was always the enemy until it changed and integrated.

Many of our so-called civilized contemporary politicians, who have sworn to protect the rights and interests of their people everywhere, do not understand that their job is to guard their nations against their enemies’ threats.

America, who is indebted to Christianity for its freedom, borrowed money from one of its worst enemies, China, which has chosen communism to fight American freedom. Now, America owes trillions of dollars to China and not only is it unable to pay it back but the interest rate is escalating the full debt to economic enslavement. Some communist leaders said in the past that they won’t be able to fight the West via bullets but via their schemes. This is one of those schemes that is being progressively implemented.

Committed Muslims and many non-practicing Muslims believe that the West, in particular America, is their enemy. At the forefront of committed and fanatic Muslim minds it is imbedded that their war, either cultural or physical, will not end until democracy is demolished and people are yoked into Islamic Sharia. The continuous terrorist attacks in the last decades are clear evidence of committed Muslims’ commitment to jihad, the holy Islamic war, against the West.

Against this very obvious Islamists’ war, our politicians supported Mujahidin in Afghanistan, Al-Qaida in Bosnia and Libya, and now in Syria in the name of democracy. The White House even paved the way for the Muslim Brotherhood, a leading spiritual father for almost all Islamic terrorist groups in the world, to reach to presidency in Egypt. Thanks to Egyptian moderates who woke up quickly and ousted president Morsi, who was responsible for the death of a thousand Egyptians, including Christians, and for the destruction of many Christian churches and homes in the short span of his presidency. Now we understand that another one of his vicious plans was to arm the members of the Muslim Brotherhood so that they could kill the oppositions in the future and protect his presidency to implement every inch of Sharia in Egypt.

Our politicians could instead choose to stand behind democracy lovers in the M. East, who are hated by committed Muslims, and make a positive change in Islamic countries, but since many of our educational institutions hate Christian values and have made it fashionable to listen to and defend radical Muslims, it would be costly for our politicians to ignore Islamists.

For the convenience of Islamists, our politicians have also been imposing limitations on Christians in the West but opening doors for committed Muslims to important offices in in the name of democracy, which is indeed for the destruction of the democracy. Our contemporary Prime Ministers and Presidents came to power with the oath of ridding people from the existing problems caused by previous politicians, instead they have added many more problems. Now many of the Western embassies are closed in Islamic countries because of extremist Muslims who received the support of our politicians in the name of democracy.

At the heart of our politicians’ political philosophy is this problematic ideal: they think they are following the tenets of democracy by permitting radical Muslims to have the freedom to attain political power even if their aim is to yoke people to Islamic Sharia. In other words, in a democratic society the wolves need to have access to people and tear them into pieces. They do not see that a leader must be as a mother or a father to his/her nation and is responsible to try opening the eyes of the nation to terrorist ideologies that aim at nothing but destruction. They are immature and do not understand that democracy should not shelter terrorists and there cannot be a lasting unity between them and the enemies of their countries. The enemy will get rid of them in the first opportune moment.

Renowned Iranian Communists who were pro-Russian Communism, called Toudeyiha (pro-people group), joined the Ayatollah Khomeini campaign against the Shah of Iran. They advised their communist followers to do the same. After the Revolution of 1979, they continued their support of the Ayatollah even against his new revolutionary opposition groups. This was possibly a calculation according to a dialectic theory in Communism which compelled them to do so. No matter what they were thinking they did not know that Islamists’ toleration was simply a preparation for absolute dominance. In a few years’ time after the Ayatollah reached the culmination of his power, he put all of these friendly Communists in prison, except those who were able to escape, and killed some. This will happen in the West if our pro-Islamist politicians and professors do not wake up but insist on giving more rights to Islamists rather than freedom lovers.

M. Eastern political philosophy allows the sharing of power with other groups or oppositions only if the ruling leader does not have strong roots among the people. This has been the trend of leadership since the rise of Islam. Ruling leaders show themselves to be friendly toward the opposition until they establish themselves stronger than the oppositions for absolute dominance. Depending on circumstances, their plans may take a short time or it may be years but they will be patient until it is their turn. Then there will be no tolerance, only destruction and bloodshed.

The secular humanist mindset has paralyzed many of our politicians from pausing a little while to learn a good lesson from history, think big and strategic, and take steps beyond their personal feelings. This is why we see that their domestic and foreign policies so often do not reflect the reality of the life of their fellow citizens and the long standing war we are facing with Islamists. It is no wonder then that they think Israel is a threat but the Muslim Brotherhood, Libyan and Syrian Al-Qaida rebels are friends! This is why the majority of democracy lovers in Iran and Egypt have the right to blame our politicians for supporting their enemies. The West is paying a high price for the immaturity of its politicians.

Nothing but the mind of Christ can help us and our politicians to wake up to the threats of those who come to us as sheep but inwardly are wolves:
Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. You shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thorns, or figs from thistles? (Matthew 7: 15-16 MKJV).