I've read this a few times, but, have never found anything extensive on the subject. The internet seems to be clogged with Christians trying to use this info. to distance themselves from Muslims & Muslims denying it. This is actually an old idea, so what is the evidence if any?
I know this is an old post, but I only just joined the site and there are so many great topics lingering.
In case, like me, someone comes looking...
From my research, people maybe able to pull this kind of story out of Islam because there is some thing to it. But it is no different than how the first organized christians overlaid their own practices, beliefs, holidays on prior pagan ones. The transition is made easier and more controllable to not force people to completely break from what they are used to. This happened all over, including Islam.
In Mecca, the previous pagan religion of the area was the worship of the 3 gharaniq, three goddesses, the crane, eagle, crow (maiden, mother, crone - Named "Al-lat, Manat, Al-uzza"). They worshipped at the same black-cubed shrine (kabaa). I only discovered this after I began researching some of the sites destroyed by dayesh (ISIS).
There is something to be said about moon worship and goddess worship.
In addition, just a thought....I do know that unlike the western idea of a feminine moon, often in the myths of the middle east, persia, and general aryan background, the sun is female and the moon is male. (khanom khorshid, Sol and Mani etc.). My point is, it could be part of that transition to a more masculine deity.
However, Allah is meant to be genderless.
Further, it is interesting to note that the Islamic calendar is a moon based calendar (and only used religiously, not culturally).
Thank you for the input. It's always been an interesting topic, which I'm yet to fully understand how and why the gendering between sun and moon is chosen to be associated across different cultures/paths.
I, for one, never understood why in English, they refer to ships, cities, even countries by "she" rather than "it".
Because women are seen as objects. So men extend the she pronoun to other objects.
No, it's very likely. Women were lumped in with all the other things men owned up until the last century or so, so it's common usage in the English language. It's rare that men call things they own 'he' and it's certainly not common usage.
"One prosaic explanation is that the gender of the Latin word for “ship” — Navis — is feminine. But people generally agree on the more romantic notion of the ‘ship as a she’ phenomenon: that it stems from the tradition of boat-owners, typically and historically male, naming their vessels after significant women in their lives — wives, sweethearts, mothers. Similarly, and more broadly, ships were once dedicated to goddesses, and later also to mortal women of national or historic significance, thereby bestowing a benevolent feminine spirit on the vessels that would carry seafarers across treacherous oceans. Figureheads on the prows of ships were often depictions of such female namesakes, denoting the name of the ship for a largely illiterate maritime population."
Which is odd because another old maritime tradition was that it was bad luck to have women on board ships.
Even to this day there is a notion of it being romantic to christen a ship after a love interest. That could also be a contributing factor.
The East is often different.
Amaterasu is the Shinto goddess of the Sun. Her brother, Tsuki-Yomi is the Shinto god of the moon.
I think the only recurring standard is that they are nearly always opposite genders. If the sun is male, the moon is female; if the sun is female, the moon is male. Which is which depends on the free association of the observer.
The concept,of moon worship as a part of pre-Islamic religion gains some support from the Sabean inscriptions however there the (Masculine) moon is called sin with neo babylonian Accadiabn orthography. The concept of Allah as a moon God is an outmoded concept of late nineteenth scholarly theory.
The real explanation for the moon rhythms in Islam is that they are a carry over of certain Hannifi meditation practices. There is an interesting Sufi correlation between the 99 names and the 99 lunations in an eight year cycle of lunar earth and Venus cycles.
The gender of the sun and moon varies with the gender and sexual orientation of the practitioner of a series of nearly universal atunement exercises in ancient and some contemporary traditionalist religious circles. It is possible with this knowledge to work out different religous practices at different cultural and linguistic phases.