Me, Speechless?

First and foremost, I would like to both thank my new readers and welcome them with open arms.

Second of all, to Passing By and Faisal… I really don’t know what to say. I would love to get into a theological debate and tell you exactly why I believe that Islam isn’t a religion of peace, but I fear that this will neither convince you nor get me off the hook for seeming like a horrible person for saying what I said, and believing what I do.

Furthermore, I have a feeling that Faisal, at least, is pro-Copt as a function of his youth and agnosticism. Assuming I’m right to think that the anti-Other sentiment is more commonly found in older folks who inherited their beliefs from the previous generation, without having questioned it.

I don’t understand, however, how my dear Faisal can be offended by things seeming anti-Islamic when he himself wouldn’t consider himself Islamic? I guess just for the sake of free speech and freedom of religion?

To my other friend Passing By (and I’m so glad you did!) I wonder if your interpretation of Islam is the one agreed upon by imams and other religious clergy? See, your devotion to it, and the fact that you seem so positively influenced might make someone like me interested in converting, since you are much kinder (seemingly πŸ™‚ and more tolerant (again, seemingly) than so many Christians I’ve met, particularly from the Copts. (I think this may have to do with Egyptians in general being “mot3ebeen 3ala 7ello,” but maybe this is just me.)

I just don’t think that your version of Islam is the Islam that is 100% agreed upon by the clergy.

If it were a question of “do the PEOPLE agree?”, then I could certainly understand the discrepancy–after all, don’t Christians not only disagree about the Scriptures, but also what constitutes the scriptures?

(For examples, Protestant Evangelicals look to the Bible alone, whereas the Orthodox look at the traditions of the church, from whence they get the Liturgy and the saints and such things like that. I myself am Non-denominational, having been caught in the crossfire for so long..)

My dear friends, I am so sad for the miscommunication between “you guys” and “us,” and the fact that there even is a divide that keeps us from being in the same category.

Thank you for following this debate, and I hope that, as we continue it, we will grow closer to truth and to each other, rather than being driven further apart.

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2 Responses to “Me, Speechless?”

  1. Faisal Says:

    I sincerely like the fact that your response was calm (hadee keda, men ghair narvaza).

    As for the pro-copt thing and myself, I would say that’s true. The fact that I am young and an agnostic, I’m sure, make a big difference. Also, I was not raised in Egypt but in a place where there were so many people from different nationalities and religions and denominations that you couldn’t even begin to count.

    My best friend there was a Shiia Muslim. I only found that out after 8 years of knowing him… (meaning that it really made no difference what his denomination, or religion for that matter, was). Furthermore, there is a high secular tradition (in my nuclear family at least) with a strong distate of Islamic Fundamentalism (because of all the 1990s killings and bombings) so I grew up this way.

    Also, let me just say that I am offended by things anti-islamic just the same as I have been offended by things anti-christian in general. As a matter of fact, when I was still an undergraduate, a large portion of the more religious muslims in university were not very amicable (in varying degrees) because of the way I used to counter-argue most arguments that were meant to either insult or demean christians.

    I didn’t do this because of hate of islam, or love of christianity for that matter, (ana 7a2ee2ee mesh far2a ma3aya). I did it because the things that were said didn’t make sense.

    Thing about Free Speech, to me, is this: You can do whatever you want with only your conscience to guide you. If your conscience is clear, alrighty then. Understandably, this doesn’t mean everyone will support or agree with your opinion, but Free Speech is ABSOLUTE.

    Same goes for Freedom of Religion.

    Finally (yeah, sorry for the length of this thing), I wish to mention two things:

    1. I would be foolish to claim that my Islamic up-bringing would not make me more biased (or more likely to feel the urge to defend my official faith) towards Islam when it comes to discussions and arguments… though, er, “supernatural being” knows I try!

    2. I think that if you do “good things” (you figure out what they are) and don’t do “bad things” (you figure them out too) then you will, if such a place exists and I’m not going to think about it, go to a “good place”. If it turns out that the whole thing was a hoax, then at least you did good things in “life” on Earth.

    Sorry for a long entry which probably didn’t add much in terms of substance.

  2. Same Passing By! Says:

    Firstly, I would like to thank you for your compliment and I hope vide our conversation to reach to this shining point of open-minded non-prejudiced debate.

    Secondly, I would like hereinafter to comment on some points -which I believe- are major subject of controversy at any Muslim/Christian dialogue.

    The Major issue which I would like to start my commentary with is what u said in your first Para that your belief – which is also, lots belief – that “Islam is not a religion of Peace”. As usual (repetition here doesn’t refer to u in particular) a very blunt absolute statement or better to say a verdict!

    Please tell me, if someone gives u a book and u only read 2 pages from this book, or u only went through some pages and grabbed some sentences or some words from this book, then this one asked u; what’s your opinion about this book? What u will answer? A just answer would be; let me complete it first then give u an opinion, tayeb what if u cant understand some meanings in this book, simply u would go and look it up or ask someone who is trustee to explain this meaning. What if u been told that someone read this book and killed a guy! Alas, I have to see then where in this book this killer been told to kill! Can I say upon the action of the killer that “this book is an invitation to kill?”

    Nonetheless, majority of critics of Islam are doing the same as above; either to take the opinions of others (others are mostly biased ones) then repeat it, or to read some words then air it, or to give a verdict on a case without reading all the files of case i.e. Muslim killed Coptic then the Muslim Book asked him to do so! Is this a fair judgment on a whole doctrine?

    Let me say it loud: There is a significant difference between the essence of a doctrine and the followers deeds of this doctrine, in simple words; One of the Islam essences is “you will not be a real believer (mo2men) unless u wish and love for your brother same u wish and love for yourself”, this is a doctrine, however where are the actionees of this doctrine (even between Muslims)!?

    Maybe u will read this for first time but do u know that one of the essences of Islam too is 7adees for prophet Muhammad (PUH) that ” the one who hurts zemmi (One of Ahl Al Ketab; Christian or Jewish) will be hurting me – refers to himself (PUH)”, upon this 7adees the one who hurts an innocent (I mean by innocent here a one who wasn’t beginner of a harm) Coptic citizen is not a real follower of Islam cus a real follower of Islam is the one who first understand the meaning (not by himself but through trusty Islamic scientist) of the context then apply it.

    Here is the core of the problem; the understanding of the context and the one who is interpreting this context, Muslims nowadays have a major defect of the real scientist who explain and translate along with the proper interpretation.

    Accordingly, if the issue will go by each individual Muslim understanding the complication occurs cus the diversity of mobs understanding is incredibly entailing vast spectrum.

    Not only some Muslims do this but also what the majority of Copts (including u with your absolute statements which u have used in your previous post) are doing the same, take some words from the text and close eyes about the context

    You mentioned in your post this statement which is directly involved in this issue “I just don’t think that your version of Islam is the Islam that is 100% agreed upon by the clergy”

    Look, there is nothing called “version of Islam” it is one Islam one Book One God, but there are one point six billion followers, again, will u verdict the Islam by each single deed of the 1.6 billion follower?

    Moreover, Nothing is called “Clergy” in Islam, Islam is a direct relation between the human and his creator with no mediator in the middle, we have no priests in Islam, we have no confession to intermediate joint; if u want to talk to Allah directly talk to Allah, a very simple relation, however, and as I stated earlier there are scientists of Islam who went through the words and the origins of the words and the history of the words then do the interpretation upon.

    Regrettably, the situation of Muslims nowadays all over the world suffer from is: ” Muslims without Islam” situation, only when it comes to the moment that Muslims are the True Islamist, only at this time u will reconsider the (seemingly) expression u used to describe a Muslim attitude of kindness and tolerance cus u will know then it is a deep from heart kindness and tolerance between two God Hand-made human beings and only for the sake of Allah πŸ™‚

    Again, thank you for allowing me the space.

    Regards,

    Fundamental Islamist

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