Who Insulted My Mother?
Muslims are understandably offended when people lampoon the founder of their religion. There are radical Muslims who would actually kill anyone who offends their prophet. But there are also millions of moderate Moslems who would not condone killing one who ridicules Mohammed but they still feel affronted by the actions of the scoffers.
There is no question that the feeling of these moderate Muslims is just and needs to be respected but it also needs to be put into perspective.
The argument of those who are offended by these derisive cartoons or by the desecration of the Quran, compares the situation to a parent child relationship. How would you feel if someone were to draw cartoons that insult your mother? So goes the argument.
I must admit that this argument is very persuasive. If someone were to draw my mother in an offensive way I would feel deeply hurt. But the argument is not relevant in this situation.
Let us take this same parable and make it fit this situation. If you have two people who are offending my mother. One of them draws distasteful pictures of her and burns her writings while the other one goes around killing people believing that this is what my mother wants them to do. Which of these two people will hurt me more deeply?
I wouldn’t even think about those who draw silly cartoons while people are committing murder in my mother’s name. And if the people drawing those cartoons are doing so to warn the populace of the criminal activities of those who are misusing my mother’s name, I would thank them for their work.
If you care about the honor of Islam, then protest when acts of violence are perpetrated in its name. Disrobe the clerics who preach murder and mayhem and grant them no respect. Stand with the victims of those who are harmed by the misuse of your religion wherever you find them, and you will find them in almost every corner of the globe. If you are serious about the honor of Islam then show it. By ignoring those who use the Quran to support acts of terrorism and focusing on those who draw cartoons of Mohammed you are not standing for the honor of Islam. You are bending to the intimidation of radical murderers.
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Yisroel C. Blumenthal
Muslims have given us ample evidence that they are really good at demonstrating. So I would like to know where all those supposedly hundreds of millions of moderate Muslims are and why they aren’t pouring out into the streets in protest.
I Imagine that if there were former husbands of the daughters of Lot in Sodom, they were likely moderate too. They wouldn’t take action to help the strangers, and wouldn’t leave when the warnings came. Things didn’t go well for them.
The Quran as a book, (just like any text) is open to severe abuse. There are many many good Muslims in the world, (I am friends with and know many good Muslims,) but when so many answer to terrorism with silence, this does infinite harm, first to themselves, and then to others. Any community that acts with apathy towards its radical elements is partly guilty, because they aren’t standing for the dignity of what they say they believe.
This is true of any religion.
Concerned Reader Indeed – the foremost duty of adherents to any ideological system that is supposed to bring benefit to mankind is to make sure that it does no harm. The story has it that a certain Yeshiva (rabbinical school) was challenged by the Czarist government to compromise their principles in the way they educate their students. One of the supporters of the school said that we have no choice but to accept the compromise because the school will have to close down. The dean of the school disagreed, he said that an institution that is scared to close down has no right to be open. No institution can be greater than the principles it allegedly stands for. (The school closed down.)
I am by no means an expert, but it is my opinion that the Taliban-esque Islamists are the ones who correctly understand their religion. They are the most like Saladin, who spread Islam and Sharia law at the point of a sword, and are therefore closest to Islam as it was originally founded and intended. The “moderates”, although appreciated by us Westerners, are simply an assimilated compromise when compared to original Islam and the literal meaning of the Koran. It is the so-called moderate Muslims that are explaining away the text and spiritualizing the meanings, no different than Christians who spiritualize away the wearing of teffilin as meaning “‘on your hand’ means your actions and ‘between the eyes’ means your thoughts”.
If I may be so bold, I believe “moderate Islam” is comparable to Reconstructionist or Reform Judaism. It may be more occidentalized and easier to assimilate into modern/ post modern culture, but it is not what was intended and certainly not what literal Koran teaches any more than the Torah teaches homosexual marriage ( God forbid!).
I hope I did not offend anyone. Blessings!
Good post and I cannot agree more, Islamic people who do and say nothing when they should be seen to be active in condemning those who support terrorist activities are a big part of the problem. If they were vocal enough they would win the respect of their western communities. I would bet that if it were any Christian group of people who became radicalised to the same level they would be ostracised and immediately condemned with a very loud voice by other Christians and of course the reliable atheists.
Check out Nouman Ali Khans (probably one of the internets most popular muslim preachers) video.
the exact bit starts at 5:28 into the clip, if you can’t watch the whole thing. If there were more people like him in the word.
This speaker in the video makes an amazing point. There are several verses in each Abrahamic tradition that can be held up by wicked men as a license to kill. The Tanakh contains accounts of genocidal battles against certain peoples, the NT contains vitriolic anti-Jewish rhetoric (written by some Jews in the past oddly enough,) and Islam contains its injunctions of violence. HOWEVER, in order to carry out indiscriminate violence and perpetuate hatred with these texts, you have to consciously ignore the good aspects of the books, their moral imperatives, and everything that these books say is their purpose.
As an example, Christians who talk trash about Jewish observance of the Torah have to consciously ignore, (or be ignorant of) the fact that Jesus was himself a Torah observant Jew whose ethics were at home in the Judaism of his day. The speaker made an excellent point.