Tuesday, October 17, 2017 Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 licence.

Cat Stevens


Also known by his stage names Cat Stevens and Yusuf, is an English musician, singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, educator, philanthropist and prominent convert to Islam.
Cat Stevens
I'm very sad that this seems to be the No. 1 question people want to discuss. I had nothing to do with the issue other than what the media created. I was innocently drawn into the whole controversy. So, after many years, I'm glad at least now that I have been given the opportunity to explain to the public and fans my side of the story in my own words. At a lecture, back in 1989, I was asked a question about blasphemy according to Islamic Law, I simply repeated the legal view according to my limited knowledge of the Scriptural texts, based directly on historical commentaries of the Qur'an. The next day the newspaper headlines read, "Cat Says, Kill Rushdie." I was abhorred, but what could I do? I was a new Muslim. If you ask a Bible student to quote the legal punishment of a person who commits blasphemy in the Bible, he would be dishonest if he didn't mention Leviticus 24:16.
Stevens quotes
Now I've been crying lately,
Thinking about the world as it is.
Why must we go on hating?
Why can't we live in bliss?
Stevens
Life is a journey, you know; and a lot of journeys, you go out, you come back.




Stevens Cat quotes
I said, ‘Put back your heart, and sing, sing
While you know you’re still living.’
Sing, sing, sing, while you know there’s still –
New Music, new Music, new Music
Sweet Music can lighten us
Can brighten the world – can save us
Stevens Cat
Underneath her kiss I was so unguarded
Every bottle’s empty now and all those dreams are gone
Ah, but the song carries on … so holy
Cat Stevens quotes
So on and on I go, the seconds tick the time out
There’s so much left to know, and I’m on the road to find out.
Cat Stevens
Rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author Salman Rushdie, I would have hoped that it'd be the real thing.
Stevens Cat quotes
In 1989, during the heat and height of the Satanic Verses controversy, I was silly enough to accept appearing on a program called Hypotheticals which posed imaginary scenarios by a well-versed (what if…?) barrister, Geoffrey Robertson QC. I foolishly made light of certain provocative questions. When asked what I’d do if Salman Rushdie entered a restaurant in which I was eating, I said, “I would probably call up Ayatollah Khomeini”; and, rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author, I jokingly said I would have preferred that it'd be the “real thing”.
Criticize me for my bad taste, in hindsight, I agree. But these comments were part of a well-known British national trait; a touch of dry humor on my part. Just watch British comedy programs like "Have I Got News For You" or “Extras”, they are full of occasionally grotesque and sardonic jokes if you want them! ... Certainly I regret giving those sorts of responses now. However, it must be noted that the final edit of the program was made to look extremely serious; hardly any laughs were left in and much common sense was savagely cut out. Most of the Muslim participants in the program wrote in and complained about the narrow and selective use of their comments, surreptitiously selected out of the 3-hour long recording of the debate. But the edit was not in our hands. Balanced arguments were cut out and the most sensational quotes, preserved.
Stevens
It’s always been the same, same old story.
From the moment I could talk I was ordered to listen
Now there’s a way and I know that I have to go — away
Stevens Cat
Where’s it leading to, freedom at what cost?
People needing more and more and it’s all getting lost
Cat Stevens
It seems to be the easiest thing in the world these days to make scurrilous accusations against Muslims, and in my case it directly impacts on my relief work and damages my reputation as an artist. The harm done is often difficult to repair.




Cat Stevens quotes
Will you make us laugh, will you make us cry?
Will you tell us when to live; will you tell us when to die?
I know we've come a long way,
We're changing day to day,
But tell me, where do the children play?
Cat Stevens
I wish to express my heartfelt horror at the indiscriminate terrorist attacks committed against innocent people of the United States yesterday. While it is still not clear who carried out the attacks, it must be stated that no right thinking follower of Islam could possibly condone such an action: the Qur'an equates the murder of one innocent person with the murder of the whole of humanity. We pray for the families of all those who lost their lives in this unthinkable act of violence as well as all those injured; I hope to reflect the feelings of all Muslims and people around the world whose sympathies go out to the victims at this sorrowful moment.
Stevens quotes
Geoffrey Robertson: You don't think that this man deserves to die?
Yusuf Islam: Who, Salman Rushdie?
Robertson: Yes.
Islam: Yes, yes.
Robertson: And do you have a duty to be his executioner?
Islam: Uh, no, not necessarily, unless we were in an Islamic state and I was ordered by a judge or by the authority to carry out such an act — perhaps, yes.
Stevens Cat
The last place I wanted to return to was the music business. But it's the people and the cause that matter and right now there's an important need, which is bridge-building. I wanted to support the cause of humanity, because that's what I always sang about.
Music can be healing, and with my history and my knowledge of both sides of what looks like a gigantic divide in the world, I feel I can point a way forward to our common humanity again. It's a big step for me but it's a natural step. I don't feel at all irked by the responsibility — I feel inspired.
Stevens Cat quotes
Yes, Martha Stewart is going to jail and Cat Stevens is being deported. Man, I feel so much safer now.
Cat Stevens
I was a sitting target, in a way, for anybody who wanted to make some kind of headline. ... I certainly never supported the Fatwa, but when I was asked about ... the actual principle of blasphemy and capital punishment, well, like the Bible, I said, "You know, yeah, it's there, it's in the Koran." And I couldn't deny that.
Cat Stevens quotes
I wanted a break. I had been on the road more or less since I was 18, you know? And I hadn't known any other life, other than, you know, hotel rooms and concerts and records and studios and press conferences. ... and to me, here was a chance to jump off that kind of wagon and see life for real. You know, actually my last album was called Back to Earth. So that was the meaning of it. I wanted to join the human race again. I didn't want to be a star. I didn't want to continue with that thing, because so much illusion and non-reality is connected to it. I wanted to be real. And so I — I kind of — I found an opportunity. And the actual point about music was — the imam who I met and who I first embraced Islam with in London's Central Mosque, he actually told me to continue making records.
Cat Stevens
A lot of people would have loved me to keep singing ... You come to a point where you have sung, more or less ... your whole repertoire and you want to get down to the job of living. You know, up until that point, I hadn't had a life. I'd been searching, been on the road.
Stevens Cat
I love my dog as much as I love you
But you may fade, my dog will always come through.


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