Can freedom and Islam coexist?

That’s a question all Americans should consider. What is your opinion?

Published in: on December 30, 2007 at 6:23 pm  Comments (14)  

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  1. Do you even know islam, to even talk about it?You only see what you want to see. And what you see is all the stuff that the media has badmouthed about islam. Islam is like any other religion, which only want its followers to do good. Im islam and im not badmouthing other religions. Don’t hate the religion, hate the person.When a christian person bombs something, no one hypes about it. but if a muslim bomv something than he is the baddest person on earth. For example,when sum1 kills sum1 we love, then we will kill them back. You guys kill islam people, then obviously, sum1 will seek revenge. Its the same for you. Don’t look at what their religion is, look at the person.Jack the Ripper, those kids that shoot at schools, serial killers, rapist. But you only want to wrong those suicide bombers. they are wrong, but your american army goes to their country and kill their follow men, women and children. of course they would react. they are not a piece of wood that you foreigners can kill whenever you like.

  2. I think anyone can co-exist if they learn to live and let live and obey common laws. Granted, I don’t know much about the Islam religion other than you believe in GOD and that should be all that matters. I can get along with you a lot easier than an atheist who does not believe in GOD and has no commandments to live by.

    As for the media, everyone knows the media only tells the negative news and very little of the positive news.

    Blur, you say we bomb Islam people? Who bombed over 2000 innocent American people in the twin towers on 9/11? That was committed by Islamic terroist. So, how can you say you only go after the person who killed another person?

    I’m not trying to start a fight with you. I just want you to realize what you are saying is highly prejudiced and unfair. If we are to live side by side, we have to be fair and honest with one another. The United States opened their borders to let foreigners in. Two of the pilots who bombed the towers were trained right here in America. It is very difficult for us to trust another Islamic person now. I hope you can understand that after what your people did. So, for you to come on this forum and try to blame us for anything, is pretty hard to take. Yet, I am still willing to accept you in this country. I am willing to learn more from you about your religion, but please do not criticize us for what happens in a war. We want our soldiers out of Irag more than you do! We want them home safe with their families and not in a casket! We never wanted this war in the first place, but when more than 2000 innocent people are killed for no reason, then war is what you get and more innocent people will die.

    Feel free to explain more about the Islam religion if you like, but let’s not have any more comments about who does what in a war. That is a whole different topic and it does not apply to religion!

  3. I think the question itself, “Can freedom and Islam coexist?”, is inheritantly flawed. I’m sure there are hundreds of thousands of Islamic followers around the world, if not millions, that live in freedom everyday.

    I’m not a student of Islam by any menas, but I wouldn’t think that there is anything in Islamic doctrine that forbids freedom.

    My personal opinion is that the Islamic faith has unfairly been made the centerpiece of our current international conflict by both sides. If both sides would admit that this is not a holy war, but simply a territorial and economical war, then maybe everyone wouldn’t be so stand offish towards the Islamic faith.

    I’m not Islamic, but I believe there are many many good, honest, hard working, faithful Islamic followers out there that are just as deeply devoted to peace and good will towards men as I am.

    I think the world needs more education before we can even discuss any problems that may or may not be associated with Islam.

  4. Just as with religions that are familiar to Americans, there are factions of that religion that take a hard line. We have the ‘Legalistic Baptist’ right here in Vicksburg who believe it is their job to judge everyone else and exclude them from their church and preach hatred from the pulpit. We have the right wing Christians who blew up the abortion centers. In the same fashion Islam has their right wingers, they are the ones causing the trouble. I said that to offer balance, having said that let me say this. Blur, after that attacks on the Twin Towers and the barbaric behavior of the Middle Eastern Islamic countries you have a hard sale to convince Americans that Islam is a religion of peace.

    People will listen with interest to your point of view. 10,000 people will turn against you every time a women is beaten for showing her hair. You will have to explain to me how you can love someone whilst you beat them. Never added up for me and it is barbaric behavior designed to keep your women down. Shame on you and your religion.

  5. This question is too generic to be answered thoughtfully. If I understand correctly the intent, it should read, “Can those who follow a strict literal interpretation of sharia law coexist with those who live under Western-style democracy?” The question is really about religion and the law or, more specifically, religion AS the law. There are some factions of Islam whose interpretation of Islamic religious law supercedes the laws of man or government. This is in direct opposition to Western democracy that promises freedom of religion and due process. Other interpretations of the Qur’an, however, do not oppose a democratic way of life, as demonstrated in the number of Muslims happily living in democratic countries. In this way, Islam suffers many of the same pitfalls as Christianity (and other religions) regarding the interpretation of its religious text. If we condem the actions of religious extremists, however, we should be aware of the thin line we are walking in this country regarding religion and government. Among voters and politicians, there are some for whom issues of religion and/or morality outweigh pressing issues of domestic government and foreign policy. This growing sentiment and political trend poses a threat to the efficacy of our government and could set a precedent to be exploited by future extremists within our own democracy. Furthermore, before we cast stones, let us not be so quick to forget the Crusades, witch hunts, and other tortures and executions committed in the name of God and Christianity. Let us learn from the past (and the present) and keep religion out of government.

  6. Wow, Catherine, you really know religions, and how to express an opinion about them. The one thing that continues to bother me is the section of the Koran that requires Muslims to kill anyone who cannot be persuaded to become a Muslim. If all Muslims take the Koran at its literal word, how can non-Muslims accept them into their society?

  7. Muslims are permitted by the Koran to be at peace with infidels (Christians, Jews and all pagan polytheists) only when they are in an inferior or minority position within a society. However, they are commanded by the Koran not to be at peace with non-muslims if they are in a superior or majority position. The same principle applies to any and all agreements made between Muslims and infidels. This is in keeping the Muslim view of the world as being divided between the house of war (dar-al-harb) and the house of peace (dar-al-Islam). The sublime goal of all good Muslims is to make all the world, dar-al-Islam.

    While is it is true that other faiths including Christianity have exclusionary references to protect the body of the church from the profane and unbelieving; the Koran actually advocates violence against those who are not part of their community. The Holy Scriptures have no such commands against those who do not accept Christianity. You will not find a reference where Jesus Christ told his disciples to physically harm anyone who did not believe in him. God calls people at different times and it has not been given to us to know the moment of their regeneration.

    The Crusades were a response to the Muslim seizure of the Holy Land in the 7th century. They were not predicated on a sound biblical theology. They were initiated by a church leader not by a biblical mandate. The Inquisition and the witch hunts were again less a product of a sound biblical orthodoxy, and more misapplication of the Scriptures. The same cannot be said for the Koranic references. Please read them and see for yourself. The Bible, like the Koran, should be read in context. When that is done, one may make a fair appraisal of them.

    Ultimately, Malcolm, if our laws are violated then action can be taken, but only against the perpetrators and not in a blanket fashion. The First Amendment protects us all much as the other amendments in the Bill of Rights. If we start to hedge on one, it won’t be long before they are all abrogated in the name of “homeland security”.

  8. Not all Muslims interpret the Qur’an in the same way, just as not all Christians interpret the Bible in the same way. The difference is, according to some Christian extremists, if you don’t agree with their beliefs, you go to hell. If you don’t share the beliefs of some Muslim extremists, then you stand in opposition of their way of life and you must convert or die. Obviously, the latter is not a recipe for long-term, global peace and harmony. My point, however, is that we need to also recognize the similarities in the two doctrines. Although they each yield different consequences, they share the same spirit of superiority and self-righteousness that emboldens human beings to justify violence and hatred against one another. We must all ask ourselves whether we want our enemies (differences) to define who we are, or whether our humanity (similarities) will shine through in dark times.

  9. Thanks for the clarification, Rev. Dabney and Catherine. One of my greatest fears was touched on by Rev. Dabney’s last paragraph – that our own government will see the threat of Islam or Islamic terrorists as an opportunity to further limit our freedom. Similar instances have occurred in other countries, and it can happen here. We must elect leaders who are strict constitutionalists, who place the value of freedom above all else.

  10. Blur, where are you? There have been many responses to your message and we have heard nothing more from you? Please explain how the Islam religion justifies the beating of women if they show their hair or if it actually advocates violence if they are in a superior or majority position. I don’t understand this in any religion.

  11. I watch a National Geographic Special on Muslims. I’m not a religious scholor but I did learn that in the Koran there several degrees of Jihad. Correct me if I’m wrong here. But at the time the documentry some Muslim Scholors pointed out that Bin Laden violated some rules of his relegion by abusing the jihad.

  12. There are two concepts of jihad or “holy war” within Islam. The first is the “greater jihad” and deals with the day-to-day struggles of an individual in following the tenets of that faith. The second is the “lesser jihad” which involves actual violence against infidels and the expansion of Islam throughout the world.

    While some indeed say that OBL (UBL) has violated the provisions of jihad by making war on “innocents” others disagree. They (along with Ben Laden) believe that America has invaded Muslim lands and sought to destroy the lives of Muslim people which in turn opens the door to attacks and reprisals by the jihadists.

    Jihad is sometimes called “the sixth pillar of Islam” as the Koran calls for the faithful to expand the territories of Islam by all means including the use of force.

    While moderate Muslims have voiced concern over the their more fundamentalist brethren, they are powerless to act effectively within the larger community of Islam. As Robert Spencer observed, “…the average Muslim can easily find enough verses in the Qur’an…[instructing] him to kill unbelievers, and conclude that Khomeini, bin Laden and the like are the true Muslims…Liberal Muslims have not established a viable alternative interpretation of the relevant verses in the Qur’an.” (Islam Unveiled, p. 37).

    And that is the key to this matter. Without an accepted moderate reinterpretation of the Koran, the current threat from jihadists will continue.

  13. Betty, shame on you. Your assumption that athiests do not have commandments to live by – well, quite frankly – angers me.

    I count myself as an athiest – although I’m agnostic, most poeple believe that an agnostic doesn’t know what they believe – which is false. I take the true ideology of agnosticism; I don’t believe we can prove one way or another.

    Regardless, I’m not hear to discuss that. A recent survey (I’ll have to dig for the citation) showed that atheists are the most hated/mistrusted group in the U.S – below Muslims, homosexuals, and all other groups.

    Sadly, I’m one of the more moral people I know. I have a wife and have never divorced, I have two beautiful children, I do not cuss, drink, smoke, steal, or engage in acts of hate or harassment.

    Cast the first stone indeed. Tell me, what is the divorce rate in this country? What is the divorce rate among those who call themselves Christians?

    How many Christians have actually read the very document on which they base their beliefs? I have – four times actually (different translations) including the Koran, as well as the Apocrypha and the Non-canonical gospels (“Gnostic gospels”).

    And I know more Christians who are people I would not trust if my life depended on it than athiests.

  14. Here’s a London website that explains Islam…

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