Is Islam compatible with Western concepts of freedom?

Discussion in 'Politics and Society' started by Tao_Equus, Aug 21, 2008.

  1. Tao_Equus

    Tao_Equus Interfaith Forums

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    Dutch politician Geert Wilders recent film attacking Islam as a supremacist ideology incompatible with Western freedom resulted in accusations of xenophobia and racism. However the Dutch courts ruled that he was neither racist, xenophobic nor trying to incite religious hatred. In a recent "Hardtalk" interview with the BBC he again reiterated that there is no racism in him but that he stands up against the myth that Islam is a religion of tolerance and peace. Given the history of Muslim expansion it is difficult to argue against such a view. And careful reading of Islamic texts confirms his every warning.

    As a result of Wilders outspoken stance against Islam the Jordanian courts issued a warrant for his arrest and extradition for slandering Islam. Jordan is not a democracy. Wilders never set foot there, committed no crime within its sovereign territory and was cleared by the Dutch investigation of putting forward anything but a valid argument against allowing Islamic influence continue to grow in Europe. That a country that has no democracy has the bare faced cheek to issue an arrest warrant for a European politician for stating a legitimate case against Islam in his own country is, I argue, an attack on all Western peoples and the freedoms and values we enjoy. My position is that as a result of this edict by the Jordanians they should face the severest sanctions available to the European Union and all western Democracies. Yet it is not even reported in the news.

    Wilders himself in his Hardtalk interview openly calls the Dutch prime minister a coward. My take is there is way way way to much placatory talk amongst western politicians and misguided Christian leaders when it comes to Islam. Islam hates democracy. It does not believe in individual freedom of thought, or of religion, or of politics. As such it is a threat to the way of life we value. Is it not time for our leaders to take a proactive stance against Islamic states that insult our freedoms and to tell Muslims living amongst us that if they cannot respect the freedoms we choose then they are not welcome here?


    tao
     
  2. dauer

    dauer Active Member

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    There are Muslims who want peace and support free thinking as well as democracy. Unfortunately institutional islam in the middle east and some other parts of the world is largely of a different orientation based on what I have seen. The difficult thing to me is, in some ways, strongly attacking something like that will only give it reason to strengthen. In other ways, a more passive approach comes with its own problems.

    But this is really a problem that transcends Islam. The debate in the Southern US over evolution and creationism in schools seems to me like another example of that. I think it's fundamentalism in general that's the problem. For the most part Christianity has grown beyond those extremes as have many of the world's other religions. But Islam hasn't.

    -- Dauer
     
  3. Eclectic Mystic

    Eclectic Mystic Member

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    Are your concepts of freedom compatible with Islam?
     
  4. GlorytoGod

    GlorytoGod There is a River

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    The apostasy laws alone mean that there is no freedom in Islam IMO.
     
  5. path_of_one

    path_of_one Embracing the Mystery

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    I agree- the problem is fundamentalism and an attempt to control others' beliefs and personal lives (i.e., their actions beyond what is necessary for ensuring no harm comes to others).

    Christianity has grown beyond this in a way (we aren't burning people anymore, yay!) but it is clear that in the US, there is still a strong drive among the religious right for a theocracy, which is no more democratic or "American" than the Islamic theocracies of the Middle East. When you have fundamentalist religion dictating to people who they can marry, content of secular public schools, and so forth... it's kind of clear that you aren't after "freedom" but rather social control.
     
  6. seattlegal

    seattlegal Mercuræn Buddhist

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    Freedom = self control, imo.
     
  7. Tao_Equus

    Tao_Equus Interfaith Forums

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    Let me put it this way. In the central pillar of Islam, the Koran, I am called a vile loathsome creature, lower than a beast. Muslims are instructed that my property is theirs, that they have the right to take it by deception or by force. I myself, because I speak against Islam, am to be killed. Other non Muslims are to be enslaved and to pay tithes to earn the right to life.

    Is that compatible with your concept of freedom?


    tao
     
  8. Netti-Netti

    Netti-Netti New Member

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    In what Muslim countries is required payment of tithes operative policy?
     
  9. Dogbrain

    Dogbrain New Member

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    Inasmuch as I know, the Jizya is no longer collected by any official government. However, there have been reports of local attempts to impose a Jizya in the Palestinian Authority regions, but that's about it.
     
  10. farhan

    farhan Active Member

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    What gave you the idea that the megalomaniac western rampage/stampede (called civilization) deserves to be the final judgement on the legitimacy of any civilization? There are civilizations on the planet that are millenniums old.The western rampage is nothing more than a teenager going through his hormone fluctuations. A fool who thinks that whole world is idiot because they don’t act "cool" like him. A snob who rather than thinking about his own freckled face, is pushing other to grow freckles on theirs.

    Western styled democracy is not an argument. It's not even the absolutely best political system. It’s a political ideology that is better than the Christian monarchies of medieval Europe, & that’s pretty much it. Just because you worship it, & you think its cool (like any teenager worshiping his boob-jobed idol), doesn’t mean the whole world should do it too. Even in ancient Greece there were "wise people" who would lean towards a philosopher-king rather than a bunch of power hungry people marketing themselves as "the right of demos".

    The west should grow up, & if they can't stay in their pants, atleast try to stay within their political territories. Also they shouldnt try to impose their decadent/libertine values upon the rest of the world. There are other mindsets in this world who consider their values timeless, which don’t change according to the "market requirements". And they want to keep it that way. If Europeans don’t like muslim influence, they should cut off all ties with them. But they need cheap labor & resources from their colonies, to feed their extravagant hedonism, so they can't do it.

    Why Saudia & Jordan is ruled by Shahs, the answer lies in Turkish & Algerian history. Any "people's representative" government in any of these countries would be a havoc for western interests. Iranian democracy nationalised oil in the 50s, Americans killed it & imposed their tyrant poodle shah upon Iranian people.

    As far as Wilder's movie is concerned, it was stupid. Perhaps he should make a similar movie about his beloved Israelis. Freedom … afterall …. should be blind.


    There are 1400 year old Hermeneutical traditions, whose sole aim is to ensure that Quran is interpreted according to its spatio-temporal context. You, the people who indoctrinate your mind, or other groups in the freedom gang aren't eligible to interpret it. You can ofcourse do it in the rampant west, start a mob with your fear-mongering tactics, win the elections, or make people watch your channel with your cutting edge analysis; but that doesn’t make it Islamic.
     
  11. Tao_Equus

    Tao_Equus Interfaith Forums

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  12. farhan

    farhan Active Member

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    My spiritual home got Saudised because it was required to be that way, for the benifit of Britishers. Similarly "happening in Saudia" doesnt make any theory/practice Islamic. Saudia has a hereditary monarchy, which is "not" an Islamic practice.

    Hey.. nobody is draging you. All I am asking is not to discard your cultural junk in my home.

    In no way do I or Islam call for the intellectual/aesthetic stagnation of a community. But there is a difference between loving beauty & making it a commodity. Similarly there is a difference between dynamism & "wasting all life to fill a capitalist's belly".

    It shows that your knowledge comes solely from glory seeking dilettantes. Anybody from the newborn baby to 98 year old granny can have opinions. But there is a thing called expert opinion. The dilettantes you glorify dont even come near that rank. There is a saying in Urdu, "one eyed man is the king among blind people".

    Billions preach/practice Islam everywhere in the world. Its a part of culture from Morroco to Indonesia. Part of music, architecture, art, philosophy.... a part of language. Doesnt seem like a closed society with hidden agendas. I know you have been told by people that they are fugitives from the ranks of the muslim illuminati. Dont forget to believe them.
     
  13. 17th Angel

    17th Angel לבעוט את התחת ולקחת שמות

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    To title something "expert" is just an opinion in it's self... :D
     
  14. Tao_Equus

    Tao_Equus Interfaith Forums

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    Muhammad himself instructed his succession as a dynastic hegemony and that is no different from monarchy. Family empires are common throughout the races and cultures.

    I do not support in any shape or form either the wholesale rape of the world, by the west, for natural resources to sustain our profligate consumption nor the de facto occupation of foreign lands to these ends. But I do defend the right of any person to wear what clothes they want, read what books they want, say what they want and think what they want. Just because Islam has spread like a cancer across the world does not make it good. Just because the majority of the population is too uneducated/indoctrinated or too fearful to criticise it or to stand against it does not make it good.

    Islam spreads by fear and intimidation. 1 million dead in Darfur alone in the past decade. Millions of people across the world displaced and/or living in fear of fundamentalist terror techniques. Every single day somewhere in the world another indiscriminate bombing - killing, maiming and bringing misery to countless families. And look deeper, it is not a 'minority' of zealots carrying out such attacks. In poll after poll they are supported by the majority of Muslims and it is this support that allows these atrocities to continue. In Iraq and elsewhere they use their women and the mentally deficient, strap bombs to them and send them into markets full of innocent women and children. All in the name of Allah. The Jihadi suicide bombers deaths are proclaimed on the Orwellian loudspeakers of Mosques across the Muslim world not as crazy murderers but as glorious heroes gone to the great orgy in the sky. Muslim racism against non believers such as myself is no less extreme than that of the KKK and you think I should accept that? No friggen way.

    Hey and surprise surprise at your disdain for those that turned their back on the philosophy of hate that is Islam. People even less worthy of their blood than myself in the preaching of your fatuous corrupt leaders and preachers. You reveal exactly why the west should not tolerate Islam in its midst for one day longer.



    tao
     
  15. GlorytoGod

    GlorytoGod There is a River

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    nice post Tao
     
  16. farhan

    farhan Active Member

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    Where?


    So do you defend the right of people if they want an Islamic govt? Or should "we" attack the bastards ?

    "like a cancer", "uneducated/indocterinated" , "fearful".... like a cancer is your subjective opinion, cant comment on that. Uneducated/indoctrinated/fearful, with bigest military might killing milions, I dont see the west as fearful. With biggest universities, they arnt uneducated either. Indoctrinated...maybe.


    This is a basless assumption. Some might have accepted Islam for this reason. But take a look at the history of Islam. Turks, mongols, indo-malays, south-indians, sub-saharan africans, afros, latinos, whites....where do you see intimidation. There are around tens of thousands of Brits, French, Germans, & Russians who have accepted Islam with in the past decade.
    Darfur has nothing to do with Islam.

    And where were these fundamentalist terrorists before the Americans started their Global (military) hegemony? (Economic/political hegemony had been goingon for 50 years, but who cares)

    Majority of muslims say what ? blow up people on the street ? where exactly was this poll done ? They do support the fight against American occupation, & there is nothing wrong with that.

    Who told you Allah even allows women in the battle field?

    Other than in relation with Palestine (& may be Iraq & Afghanistan, the occupied territories) where exactly have you seen it?

    Try to come with some proper theological evidence for that claim.


    Hey..its a good source of money, they should do it. I dont have any disdain for them, just that they arnt experts on the topic that makes them famous.

    Apostacy issues are debatable.

    Ofcourse. Find a group of people who arnt willing to surrender, label them as a "threat", create a mass paranoia, kill them, rejoice at the destruction of evil. If there were no assumed enemies, "the west" would die of depression.
     
  17. Netti-Netti

    Netti-Netti New Member

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    Let's see. First you badmouth Islam by misrepresenting the jizya tax. Totally unphased by a factual correction on that subject, you move on to the next pronouncement. Now you presume to offer an explanation for all kinds of behavior that involves all of 6 words !!

    The glib absurdity just rolls of your tongue. The statements you make have adequate syntax, the words seem to fit together reasonably well, and the spelling is ok. But it's all nonsense that explains nothing. Moreover, it's all vague generalities because it never includes a single example, let alone multiple examples that could justify a generalization.

    Is this your idea of entertainment? Perfecting a caricature of a neurotic European? Part of a standup comedy routine you're working on?

    Silly.
     
  18. bananabrain

    bananabrain awkward squadnik

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    would you be happier if it had something to do with arabs? i don't accept this idea that darfur has nothing to do with islam. i have been taught that islam is about creating a perfect, ideal society and that is incompatible with a lack of social justice. if people in darfur are being oppressed by their so-called islamic government that is *definitely* something that should be of concern to all muslims. what i want to know is why it isn't. why is the sudanese government not being criticised loudly and above all *islamically*?

    b'shalom

    bananabrain
     
  19. Netti-Netti

    Netti-Netti New Member

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    BB, If I may address your post....

    Might socioeconomic privations combined with ethnic and tribal conflict be key issues?

    How would one go about separating Islam from the indiginous African traditions and customs with which Islam became integrated when it was introduced in Africa?

    This argument assumes that the government's actions somehow reflect on the religion, which has not been shown to be the case. The silent premise warrants closer attention.

    The Sudanese government has been headed up by a dictator, Omar al-Bashir. According to one observer: "Mr Bashir was never animated by Islamic zeal or ideological fervour. All he wanted was to hold power. In particular, he wanted to ensure that the Nile Valley's Arab tribes, who had ruled Sudan since independence from Britain in 1956, kept their monopoly of wealth and influence."

    Sudan president Omar al-Bashir: A host to terrorists who rules Darfur with an iron fist - Telegraph

    Why would one assume a religious significance for one man's political ambitions?

    Again, the ethnic and tribal conflict may be more salient issues, especially insofar they are related to socioeconomic privations. Just because the region has a Muslim population doesn't mean that everything that transpires there can be explained in terms of Islam.

    The US has one of the highest crime rates in the world. Do we explain it as being due to the predominance of Christianity?

    Muslim countries have some of the lowest crime rates in the world. Do we explain it as being due to the predominance of Islam?
     
  20. Tao_Equus

    Tao_Equus Interfaith Forums

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    So you do not know what the 1st and 2nd fitna's were fought for?


    When a generation of children has grown up free of the indoctrination, grown up free of the fear of intimidation for holding contrary beliefs anf free of state terror against and dissenting voice, then, and only then can a people be free to choose Islam. Where has that happened?





    I suggest you begin by reading about all the bloodshed in the Koran, then progress through the first and 2nd waves of Muslim expansion. The many 100s of bloody battles, the enslavement, rape and theft of property and land. then come back to me with not a rational argument, but your next excuse. Even more people voted to make Boris johnson mayor of London, go figure.

    Muhammad's proscribed punishments of stoning and cross amputation (cutting off a hand and a foot from opposite sides), are routinely handed out by the Islamic courts in Darfur. The Nomadic Arab (muslim) militias that do the presidents 'dirty work' have murdered over a million, displaced millions more and left 100s of 1000s maimed by cruel Islamic punishments. How the hell can you say it has nothing to do with Islam?

    they were applying their stock trade, terrorising and extorting from their own population.....of course.


    I am talking about use of violence, it has majority support across the Muslim world, see table below as an example. (data from Pew research centre.)


    I refute any notion that there is an "Allah" to start with. But the warlords/spiritual leaders of many Islamic factions have no qualms. I prefer to work with what is happening, not using excuses to wriggle out of truths.


    Other than in relation with Palestine (& may be Iraq & Afghanistan, the occupied territories) where exactly have you seen it?

    I know as a Muslim the technique of repetition to enforce an idea in ones mindset is common. But I see no need to repeat what I have already done.



    Really? Never seen any make the New York Times best seller list.


    What you mean you debate whether to stone or behead?


    lol, "no surrender". Believe it or not here in Scotland that is a very familiar phrase. It is infact the motto of the loyalist bigots, the God and Queen loyalists of Protestantism in Ireland and Scotland. I know that mind set very well and I thank you for revealing yourself so openly to me.


    tao
     

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