Thursday, September 23, 2004
Tomorrow's Iron Age
Marvin, over at Little Red Blog, has a really interesting piece called, Faith Before Truth.
He shrewdly observes,
In teaching Islam, the Imam, Sheikh, or others who take the mantle of leadership provide the believer not with a moral foundation for decision making and actions, instead they offer a guidance through the actions and words of the Prophet Muhammad, and the words of the Quran. No guiding principles are offered to believers with which they are able, if not required, to study, contemplate and determine appropriate actions on their part. Curiosity is not a character trait of the adherent who follows the teachings of the modern imamate. Instead, he believes what he is told to believe, no questions asked. This destruction of an innate characteristic of man, to question and seek truth for himself, leaves him incredibly susceptible to the lies, falsehood and propaganda of those who lead him.
Marvin clearly was able contain the wispy ideology of radical Islam in a see thru bottle.
In in a rather extraordinary way, Islam has managed to distinguish itself from the other Abrahamic religions. Islam has become a religion of dogma only. The religious leadership attempt to out do each other in an attempt to prove their piety. devotion to their religion is the only measure of loyalty. As Marvin writes,
"The results are evident throughout the Muslim world. A dearth of education beyond the fundamentals of Islam, no tolerance for opinion or individuality, and no incentive to neither seek nor achieve any success other than the highest honor of their brethren and their God; martyrdom."
Jews and Christians have made the study of theology an integral part of their faith. Centuries of study and debate, question and reason have defined those religions and has resulted in faith less of dogma than of reason. Jewish and Christian theologians understood that faith predicated on reason, rather than compulsion is a stronger faith. To be sure, there are very orthodox adherents of Judaism and Christianity, but even their orthodoxy is different. With few exceptions, those believers view their relationship with God as personal and intimate.
Islam was once the same way. There is no question that Islam's Golden Age was distinguished. That is well known and has been written about countless times.
Now however, Islamists view their orthodoxy as licence to impose whatever they believe, on as many people as they can. There is no free will and no free exchange of ideas.
No different than the Godless religions of Lenin, Stalin, Hitler and Mao, the Islamists believe thay can instill their will on the world. Rather than call their agenda for what it is-- an attempt to control and exploit at will, the Islamists have wrapped themselves in religion. What is really a facist agenda, is now identified as a religious rennaisance.
Arab Muslims mistake this religious revival as an escape from the tyranny they have lived under. It is God's will, they say, that through this revival, they will be restored to their rightful place.
Even the most cursory examination belies that. Under Islamist rule, Arabs will be denigrated even further, forced to live in medieval conditions. They are under the illusion that with 'victory' will come another Golden Age.
Nothing is further from the truth, of course. Islam, as I said, has become not a religion of debate and discussion, nor is it becoming one. There is no groundswell demanding education and there is no movement towards participation in an increasingly global community. In the shrinking world of galloping technology and information available at the speed of light, radical Islam can never tolerate openess. It's only hope for long term survival is repression and regression. The much hoped and prayed for new Golden Age, will in reality, be another Iron Age, imprisoning Muslims behind the bars and shackles of ignorance and indiffrence. Terror has become an acceptable form of political expression and deceit is regarded as a neccesity that has no consequence.
These are the foundation of ideas that most Muslims believe will support their future ideals and dignity.
The immutable truths of real freedoms are being questioned and redefined, in an attempt to distract Arabs from looking at themselves and the reality they have created for themselves.
Sad, isn't it?