Monday, July 12, 2010

A Word on Islam...


 We've been able to discuss a variety of complex and controversial issues on this blog open-mindedly and curteously. The majority fo comments I recieve only further add to the discussion in a meaningful way. However,an anonymous comment left on one of my older posts has made me realize it's time to have that talk on Islam. I'm not Muslim. Although I am knowledgeable on Islam, I don't claim to be an Islamic scholar or well-versed in the Qur'an or the Hadith. However, even someone with  just a superficial recognition of Islam as a monotheistic faith should know that Arab ≠ Muslim ≠ Egyptian. I find it necessary to state the obvious because some may come to the conclusion that Islam is to blame for all the various shortcomings that have crippled Egypt. Personally, I find Islam alone as culpable for the issues that plague Egypt as Catholicism is to blame for drug war-torn Mexico (aren't they devout Catholics?!) and I hope my readers will also look for a deeper understanding of Egypt .

In conversations with older Egyptians, they sight many factors that have led to what Egypt has become today: the millions in aid the U.S. spends annually to bolster the corrupt and repressive regime, the high unemployment rate amongst single young men, and yes, the radicalized Islam being spread by Saudi Arabia. They all say that it didn't used to be like this, 70, 50, even 40 years ago. Amongst other things, these factors have create deep rooted societal issues that the Egyptian people will need to address head on one day. However, focusing on Islam alone as the culprit for issues here or in the broader Middle East is a short-sighted and simplistic tactic to avoid discussing the complexity of issues that one will always encounter when a society struggles to embrace modernity yet still remain true to its own cultural norms. 

Whether discussing Christian America's high divorce rate or Muslim Afghanistan becoming a haven for terrorists, religion plays an ever-evolving role in every society but it should never become a scapegoat for the moral decay of its followers  Lackluster believers and the strong arming of religious interpretation by corrupt leaders happens in every faith. One doesn't have to look far to see how Christianity has been used to justify some of the worst crimes in humanity or how fanatical Orthodox Jewish settlers have promoted occupation and violence in the name of Judaism. Thus, regardless of what your religious background, let he without sin throw the first stone.

For more information on Islam, please read Suhaib's comment and check out his website

p.s.- Congratulations to Spain on winning their first World Cup (Ada an Ieisha want me to be nicer to you, so there).

1 comment:

Aryan Gallery said...

you are probably the most sane, unbias, intellectual person i have ever come across (well not phsyically, but im talking about your blog).
i like the fact that you take into consideration everyones viewpoints in an argument and that you have very good judgement.


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