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Locked: The Muslim world must confront the underlying problems in Islamic theology

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May 17, 2005
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The Muslim world must confront the underlying problems in Islamic theology

In April of this year, Mashal Khan, a 23-year-old journalism student from Abdul Wali Khan University — a university in Pakistan, the country of my birth — was accused of blasphemy by a mob of students, dragged out of his dorm room, stripped naked, beaten, and shot dead. Khan self-identified as a “humanist” and had portraits of Karl Marx and Che Guevera hanging in his room. He’d also advocated for Islamic reform. A video of the incident showed the perpetrators crying “Allahu Akbar!” as they beat Khan’s lifeless body with terrifying zeal. The perpetrators of this violence were not members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS). They were university students.
The Muslim world has tended to treat ISIS as an anomaly, to assert that ISIS is not Islam. This response is intellectually lazy. Muslim-majority countries must confront the underlying problems within aspects of Islamic theology
ISIS did not usher in a new concept. The concept of an Islamic State is old — centuries old, in fact. ISIS’s goal has been simple: to unite the Muslim world under the black banner of the Khilafah (or Caliphate), and to establish their set of divine laws (Sharia) on Earth.
It is not enough for people of Muslim background — myself included — to simply reject ISIS as a “non-Muslim” organization. We have a responsibility to own up to the ideological problems present in our midst. The problem has never been just ISIS, al-Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood or Boko Haram. The problem is the tree that brings forth these fruits. This is the tree of Islamic fundamentalism and the ethnocentric and religious supremacist way of thinking that it demands from its adherents.
http://nationalpost.com/opinion/the-mus ... c-theology
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Deal Guru
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We know it's true, they know it's true, but this thread is going to get locked and discussion about this won't be allowed because a bunch of Muslims who don't fully follow their religion are going to get upset that we're talking about the Muslims who do.

The simple fact of the matter is that the three Abrahamic religions are bloody, barbaric, and direct their followers to commit all the horrors of the past that the world has tried to put behind itself. Two of those religions have reformed and no longer follow the directives that command them to enslave, torture, rape, and murder all outsiders, but one hasn't and will brutally murder you for even discussing reformation.

It's not 'racist' or whatever to discuss old testament vs new testament Christianity, or orthodox vs reform Judaism, or medieval and renaissance history, but it's apparently very upsetting to discuss the one western religion that hasn't reformed and still follows the rules it followed before the crusades.
Could HAVE, not could OF. What does 'could of' even mean?
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These are important issues that need to be discussed within the Muslim community. The fact of the matter, however, is that progressive Muslims are often in great danger by making their opinions public in Muslim-majority countries. No faith should be above criticism or debate, but it seems that Western countries are also forgoing this principle by the excuse of political correctness and diversity.
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What about Christian Ideology? Why are Christian countries in the Arab world? What are they doing?
A life spent making mistakes is not only more memorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.
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Piro21 wrote:
Nov 6th, 2017 2:44 pm
We know it's true, they know it's true, but this thread is going to get locked and discussion about this won't be allowed because a bunch of Muslims who don't fully follow their religion are going to get upset that we're talking about the Muslims who do.

The simple fact of the matter is that the three Abrahamic religions are bloody, barbaric, and direct their followers to commit all the horrors of the past that the world has tried to put behind itself. Two of those religions have reformed and no longer follow the directives that command them to enslave, torture, rape, and murder all outsiders, but one hasn't and will brutally murder you for even discussing reformation.

It's not 'racist' or whatever to discuss old testament vs new testament Christianity, or orthodox vs reform Judaism, or medieval and renaissance history, but it's apparently very upsetting to discuss the one western religion that hasn't reformed and still follows the rules it followed before the crusades.
+1

Change has to come from within. The way Christian and Judaism changed was by societies letting them be, which had the effect we see now.

I find it paradoxical that we get all these news focusing on the evils of Muslims, which in turn is making the western population increasingly xenophobic against the Muslims and then society wonders why Muslim communities refuse to change their ways.

For example, there was a news story from Quebec about a Muslim man beating his daughter because she would not wear her hijab. If this is the typical scenario we see in some Muslim families, our society should let them be, and not even report it. The resentment and dislike of the Muslim members subjected to this treatment would pave the way for future Muslim generations refusing to follow old customs. But by the media constantly bombarding us with anti-Muslim stories, they reinforce hatred, which in turn reinforces compliance with the old customs.
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May 9, 2006
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crazy that people talk about killing others for speaking their mind, this is happening very often these days everywhere including India. They are treating an actor for stating facts.
https://timesofislamabad.com/hindu-extr ... 017/11/05/
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Violence committed with firearms has dropped consistently over the last 2-3 decades, by over 67% since 1993. Looks like they've been confronting it, despite the increasing hysteria for fewer crimes. If only leftists were so vigilant to help Islam confront their problems with violence, terrorism, antisemitism, etc.

Anyways, to the OP.. Christians used to be like Islam. It's clearly not the religion itself. I can find countless verses in the Old and New Testament of the Christian Bibles and Torah that justify violence.

Pressure needs to be put on Islamic people to adapt. Attacking merely the religion itself only gives them ammo and given the extremely subjective nature of religion, psychologically only aids them in justifying their behavior. When Christianity was forced to adapt people weren't telling Christians their religion was the problem but their respect for the values of others' freedoms. I think a similar approach is needed here.
Last edited by titaniumtux on Nov 6th, 2017 4:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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djjungly wrote:
Nov 6th, 2017 3:51 pm
crazy that people talk about killing others for speaking their mind, this is happening very often these days everywhere including India. They are treating an actor for stating facts.
https://timesofislamabad.com/hindu-extr ... 017/11/05/
Hmm... The times of Islamabad? You don't think that publication has a bias?
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AndySixx wrote:
Nov 6th, 2017 4:00 pm
Violence committed with firearms has dropped consistently over the last 2-3 decades, by over 67% since 1993. Looks like they've been confronting it, despite the increasing hysteria for fewer crimes. If only leftists were so vigilant to help Islam confront their problems with violence, terrorism, antisemitism, etc.

Anyways, to the OP.. Christians used to be like Islam. It's clearly not the religion itself. I can find countless verses in the Old and New Testament of the Christian Bibles and Torah that justify violence.

Pressure needs to be put on Islamic people to adapt. Attacking merely the religion itself only gives them ammo and given the extremely subjective nature of religion, psychologically only aids them in justifying their behavior. When Christianity was forced to adapt people weren't telling Christians their religion was the problem but their respect for the values of others' freedoms. I think a similar approach is needed here.
How about some sanctions against Saudi Arabia? Why are we sanctioning Iran, when Saudi is much worse in many ways? Saudi is at the root of the fundamental re-interpretation of Islam that has taken hold in the 20th century.

Plus Pakistan should be solidly admonished for playing both sides if the game, in their eternal one upsmanship with India.


SOme good reads on the subject:

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/alastair ... 17157.html

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/alastair ... 48744.html


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/03 ... to-be-the/
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mr_raider wrote:
Nov 6th, 2017 6:42 pm
How about some sanctions against Saudi Arabia? Why are we sanctioning Iran, when Saudi is much worse in many ways? Saudi is at the root of the fundamental re-interpretation of Islam that has taken hold in the 20th century.

Plus Pakistan should be solidly admonished for playing both sides if the game, in their eternal one upsmanship with India.


SOme good reads on the subject:

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/alastair ... 17157.html

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/alastair ... 48744.html


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/03 ... to-be-the/
Funny that Islam is so easy to be "re-interpreted" that even the Saudis could do it. Is the book not clear? Why would it say to kill homosexuals if it's trying to say not to kill homosexuals? Isn't this a problem that a perfect god could have foreseen? Can you (or anyone) demonstrate that you have the correct interpretation and that the Saudi/Wahhabi have the wrong interpretation?

This is the problem with religions that originate in supposed revelation (basically all of them.) When two people disagree on interpretation, all they can do is argue. They can't follow a scientific method, where competing hypotheses make different predictions. Then experiments or observation verifies or refutes the predictions, therefore the hypotheses are strengthened or rejected. Any unfalsifiable claim (which includes all of religion's central claims) has zero explanatory power.

And most people see that - so people who grow up without coercion and indoctrination will rarely join an organized religion in adulthood. In free, educated countries, people are leaving religion in droves, it's only making gains due to demographics and missionary work amongst the least educated.
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Maybe the billions and billions followers of the Abrahamic religions can explain this.

I have a mental illness if I can hear God's voice.
I have a mental illness if I believe in another person's ability to hear God's voice.
But, I am normal if I believe in ancient books that recorded instances of people hearing God's voice?
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dec12 wrote:
Nov 7th, 2017 7:04 am
Maybe the billions and billions followers of the Abrahamic religions can explain this.

I have a mental illness if I can hear God's voice.
I have a mental illness if I believe in another person's ability to hear God's voice.
But, I am normal if I believe in ancient books that recorded instances of people hearing God's voice?
It's mental illness if you hear voices claiming to be G-d and ordering you to randomly harm others.

There is no mental illness if you hear G-d's voice, and so do the rest of people in your near vicinity and the voice tells you to do something non-violent to help you with a specific & non-random event (i.e. as long as Moses held his hands up, Israelites won the battle, OR Moses parting the sea, which was witnessed by many people). Also, when you (repeatedly) raise people from the dead (which dead had been confirmed by the local rabbis), turn water into wine, feed thousands with five loaves of bread and two fish (again witnessed by many people), you can't blame people for starting to believe.
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i6s1 wrote:
Nov 7th, 2017 1:25 am
Funny that Islam is so easy to be "re-interpreted" that even the Saudis could do it. Is the book not clear? Why would it say to kill homosexuals if it's trying to say not to kill homosexuals? Isn't this a problem that a perfect god could have foreseen? Can you (or anyone) demonstrate that you have the correct interpretation and that the Saudi/Wahhabi have the wrong interpretation?
Anyone and their grand mother can reinterpret Islam, since their is no central authority. The Protestants have the same issue where denominations pop up like mushrooms.

There were several large "schools" of Islamic thought, through out history. All were developed hundreds of years after the death of the prophet and each school was colored by the issues of the time and place. The salafis felt that other schools like the hanafis and Sufis were polluted and persianized/turkicized. The return to purity that characterizes Salafi/wahabbi thought is heavily intertwined with the rise of Arab nationalism and the decline of the ottoman empire. In some ways salafism is the revolt of Arabs who felt their religion was appropriated and modified by Turks, persians and Indians.
This is the problem with religions that originate in supposed revelation (basically all of them.) When two people disagree on interpretation, all they can do is argue.
Pretty much.

The trend in Islam, until the 20th century, was to adapt religious dictate to local culture and society, and transform slowly over time. That's why Bengali Muslim women could get away
with wearing sarees that show midriffs, or Indonesians could integrate pre Islamic spiritual
worship into their society. This was halted and reversed forcibly in many cases, in an attempt to seek purity. I have a picture of my mom's graduating university class in 1966 and if you compared it to a present day class in the same university, you would not recognize the women. There were no hijabs or burkas then.

They can't follow a scientific method, where competing hypotheses make different predictions. Then experiments or observation verifies or refutes the predictions, therefore the hypotheses are strengthened or rejected. Any unfalsifiable claim (which includes all of religion's central claims) has zero explanatory power.


Religion is not a science. You may plead for atheism, but your plea will fall on deaf ears. Most people, even mildly religious ones, of any faith, are not interested in logical scrutiny of belief.
And most people see that - so people who grow up without coercion and indoctrination will rarely join an organized religion in adulthood. In free, educated countries, people are leaving religion in droves, it's only making gains due to demographics and missionary work amongst the least educated.
That is incorrect. Faith based organizations and communities exist in developed countries and have not gone away. If anything it's stronger than ever in the US. If religion was on the decline there would have been a hell of a lot less people in that Texas church on Sunday, and no kids. The only difference is that people have chosen to ignore or reinterpret scripture as they see fit for their daily lives. In other words they hold on to the touchy feely love thy neighbour stuff, but have given up the stone the adulteress parts.
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So far the discussion is civil, and devoid of open mud slinging.
Last edited by titaniumtux on Nov 7th, 2017 8:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
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