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  • With most Muslims there can be no such thing as a true religious ‘dialog’

    Posted by Ralf Goergens on October 30th, 2005 (All posts by )

    Link via LGF:

    Prince Charles is currently trying to ‘plead the cause of Islam’ in America”>.

    I’m pretty sure that he has no idea what he is talking about:

    WASHINGTON, June 18 (UPI) — A leader of the small worldwide Muslim reform movement warned the West Tuesday against wishful thinking as the U.S. government promotes an intensive dialogue with Islam.
    “The dialogue is not proceeding well because of the two-facedness of most Muslim interlocutors on the one hand and the gullibility of well-meaning Western idealists on the other,” said Bassam Tibi, in an interview with United Press International.

    “First, both sides should acknowledge candidly that although they might use identical terms these mean different things to each of them. The word ‘peace,’ for example, implies to a Muslim the extension of the Dar al-Islam — or ‘House of Islam’ — to the entire world,” explained Tibi, who is also a research scholar at Harvard University.

    “This is completely different from the Enlightenment concept of eternal peace that dominates Western thought, a concept developed by (18th-century philosopher) Immanuel Kant.”

    In other words, not the crusades, much less more recent events, but rather the Battle of Poitiers is the true source of Islamist resentment and aggression. They won’t want to stop until whole world follows their interpretation of Islam:

    “Similarly, when Muslims and the Western heirs of the Enlightenment speak of tolerance they have different things in mind. In Islamic terminology, this term implies abiding non-Islamic monotheists, such as Christians, Jews and Zoroastrians, as second-class believers. They are ‘dhimmi,’ a protected but politically immature minority.”

    According to Tibi, the quest of converting the entire world to Islam is an immutable fixture of the Muslim worldview. Only if this task is accomplished — if the world has become a “Dar al-Islam” — will it also be a “Dar a-Salam,” or a house of peace.


    Even seemingly moderate Muslims might have ulterior motives, if they don’t even take the concept of Muslim dominance so much for granted, that they’ll do things like this altogether guilelessly:

    In an article in the prestigious Hamburg weekly, Die Zeit, Tibi, gave anecdotal evidence of how daunting a task this dialogue with Islam can be.
    The bishop of Hildesheim in Germany paid an imam a courtesy visit in his mosque. The imam handed the Catholic prelate a Koran, which he joyfully accepted. But when the bishop tried to present the imam with a Bible, the Muslim cleric just stared at him in horror and refused to even touch Christianity’s holy book.

    “The bishop was irritated because he perceived this behavior as a gross discourtesy,” wrote Tibi, “but the imam had only acted according to his faith. For if an imam gives a bishop a Koran, he considers this a Da’Wa, or call to Islam.”
    This, explained Tibi, must be borne in mind when one engages in a dialogue with Muslim scholars, for it corresponds to a verse in the Koran: “And say … to those who are unlearned: ‘Do ye submit yourselves?’”

    Another example is the so-called ‘Camel fatwa’ by a Muslim group in the German state of Hesse, which says that a Muslim girl can’t participate in a school trip that goes to further away from the school than a camel can traverse during a day’s and a night’s travel, about 50 miles.

    The parents of a Muslim girl actually managed to persuade a judge that the fatwa is valid, so that the girl was exempt from taking the trip along with her class.

    The more successful Muslims are with their demands, the further they’ll go; the quite moderate Central Council of German Muslims just now demanded an official apology by the Catholic Church for the crusades, comparable to the church’s mea culpa for centuries of ant-Semitism

    I can’t imagine that Benedict XVI woiuld go along with this, for the crusades were indeed defensive wars, and he knows that ver well. The same can’t be said for the German Protestant Church; in their regular meetings with Muslim clergy they abjectly beg forgiveness for the crusades.

    As Bassam Tibi is saying, as long as Muslims, moderate or not, don’t own up to this attitude, and finally acknowledge that Islam doesn’t have any claim, moral, theological or otherwise, on global dominance, there can be no true peace or dialog between Muslims and the rest of the world. At the same time everybody else has to be well-prepared when meeting with Muslims in any capacity.

     

    10 Responses to “With most Muslims there can be no such thing as a true religious ‘dialog’”

    1. Sandy P Says:

      I thought I recently read 1 of the hadiths said that when man landed on the moon islam would be no more.

      The poster wrote they’re 36 years past their expiration date.

    2. Enoch Says:

      I wouldn’t waste my precious time trying to establish a dialogue with these oafs. Convert to Islam? Indeed not!!!

    3. Ralf Goergens Says:

      I thought I recently read 1 of the hadiths said that when man landed on the moon islam would be no more.

      The poster wrote they’re 36 years past their expiration date.

      I’m waiting for them to go ‘Poof!’ :)

    4. Ralf Goergens Says:

      Enoch,

      you are right, there is no point in dialog with them as it is. Most Christians or agnostics who talk to them are not aware what Muslims are up to, or they would keep their distance.

    5. Ginny Says:

      Toleration & appreciation are one thing. The piggy banks & Burger King milk shake lids & camel rule are another.

      Sometimes “toleration” appears to be like riding in the old cars and my brother & I constantly complaining to our parents that “he’s moving into my space” or “he touched me, mommy, he touched me.” These are exercises in power and reacting to them as businesses have is to engage in what is likely to be an endless battles with a petulanct child, whose desire for space enlarges every day.

      Surely, real toleration and respect for beliefs occurs on a higher level than this – this makes the thousands dying over minor theological points in the early religious wars seem profound.

    6. Bruce Chang Says:

      I wonder if the good Prince would characterize the 9/11 attacks as a War on Christianity …

    7. A Scott Crawford Says:

      I disagree. There are large differences between the particulars of various muslim sects, just as there are between various Christian and Etc. sects, and there is more room for compromise and tolerance than many religious leaders of particular sects tend to claim.

      If we are to judge Islam by strict constructionism regarding the Qur’an, shouldn’t we then also judge Christianity and Judiasm in the same manner? Instead we make allowances for the distinctions of sect and practice between orthodox and liberal views and churches within Christianity, Judiasm, Buddhism, and etc. Why shouldn’t the same distinctions apply to Islam?

      To treat moderate muslim sects and mosques as uniformly one step away from zealotry is to fall into exactly the trap the radical voices within Islam desire. Doing so disenfranchises the moderate factions of Islam and fosters resentments that push moderate congregations into defensive conservativism. Distinguish between the different types and degrees of Islam first, as the entire faith shouldn’t and cannot be painted with one brush stroke.

      I sincerely fear that in a Europe that sees the current Pontif as a fire breathing radical, there is little institutional or intellectual will to see the subtle differences between muslims. But Americans should not commit the same error. As someone who lives, works, and socializes with muslims every day, it has been my experience that moderate muslims are every bit as honest and honorable as other men of sincere faith, and should be treated as such. When one focuses on the commonalities between Islam and other faiths, there are more positive similiarities to be found than one might imagine. Focus on those shared aspects of faith, and one will find no unique or unavoidable grounds for strife.

    8. Ralf Goergens Says:

      Ginny,

      what you describe in the behavior of siblings on that backseat will always occur on a larger scale in a society where rule of law is weakened, so that legal and other boundaries are no longer fixed – good fences make good neighbors, and the same goes for laws; and of course, the opposite is true.

      Absent an honest appraisal of Muslim attitudes, and the refusal by public and government to censor and/or punish Muslim transgressions due to PC attitudes, there also will be a lot of mutual irritations and conflicts. Of course, it will be rather asymmetrical. Muslims will mostly be irritated by the unbelievers’ inability to see the light, while us unbelievers will complain about Muslim arrogance and petulance (demanding privileges etc).

    9. Ralf Goergens Says:

      Bruce,

      I don’t think that Prince Charles is an apologist for Islmaist terrorism. The British ruling classes have this romantic view of Islam everr since Lawrewnce of Arabia. It’s more misguided romantisizing of Arabs than anything else, least of all symphathy for terrorists.

    10. James R. Rummel Says:

      As someone who lives, works, and socializes with muslims every day, it has been my experience that moderate muslims are every bit as honest and honorable as other men of sincere faith, and should be treated as such.

      Let us indulge in a thought experiment.

      A follower of a moderate Muslim sect visits their mosque and finds a stranger there. The imam speaks highly of him as a man of true faith. The stranger says that he just came from Iraq, and that he’s raising money in Allah’s name. No one says so directly, but it’s accepted that he is connected to the terrorists who routinely murder innocent civilians on a daily basis.

      So here’s the question: Does your moderate Muslim alert the authorities and let them investigate this guy?

      If the person being asked is honest they’d say “No”. If there was concrete proof they might, very reluctantly, drop a dime. Otherwise they’d never take the chance that they’d be found ratting out a fellow Muslim.

      I’ve devoted my entire adult life to protecting innocent people from violence. It doesn’t matter to me which sex, creed, age or color. If I can help then I help. This isn’t a view found in Islamic societies, even those considered moderate. To them there’s Muslims, and the rest of the world’s people aren’t really human beings but have the potential if only they’d convert.

      At any rate I can’t accept the claim that there’s a chance for a meeting of minds when they won’t even turn in a suspected terrorist and maybe save lives, and all because they’re afraid that they wouldn’t be able to hang with their buddies if found out.

      James