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Curious- does this forum still ban for islamophobia, xenophobia, etc?


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Blah blah blah. Show me one Muslim who thinks that it's ok to marry 9 year old girls because Muhammad did. Unless you can prove that Muslims are actually trying to imitate the "vile" aspects of Muhammad's character, your argument is worthless  been so stupidly divided amongst themselves. Hitler benefitted from a ridiculous amount of luck - no wonder he ended up thinking he was God

You are showing weakness, Edric.  In fact, that is the strongest point of all, and the only point that you have to respond with "blah blah blah".  I certainly hope such a response would not be offered in any kind of live debate.  If you had any idea how utterly revered Mohammad is, in both his moral character, his authority on morality, his authority on spirituality, and his example upon which Muslims should imitate, you would not be responding with "blah blah blah".  Mohammad killed people in the name of Allah.  Are you therefore surprised that murder is an acceptable method of dealing with infidels?  Are you surprised that nearly every Arab country has blaspheme laws that include the death penalty for people who insult Islam?  Where do you think such laws come from?  The example of Mohammad himself.  Christians have killed in the name of Jesus, but, unfortunately for them, they cannot cite an example where Jesus did such a thing.  Mohammad, on the other hand, did kill.  Muslims who kill infidels can and do have a historical link to Mohammad's life upon which they can draw confidence that they are being good, obedient Muslims.  That historical fact is why Islam will be forever rooted in bloodshed, and it cannot be seperated. 

You spoke of Jesus' celibacy as a moral example.  It is.  And Jesus also blessed marriages, so Christianity has within it, both celibacy and marriage as blessed and acceptable moral paths.  And indeed, to this day all priests in the Catholic church take oaths of celibacy.  Where do you think the custom of celibacy for priests comes from?  Exactly.  Thanks for making my point, Edric.  Interesting how, when a religious founder practices a moral path how so many follwers do the same!

So yes, while not all Christians are celibate, celibacy itself is not shunned within Christianity since Jesus practiced it.  Jesus both practiced celibacy and blessed marriage.  Therefore, both are practiced and accepted.  Mohammad both practiced violence and murder, and blessed being at "peace".  So, of course, both are practiced and accepted. Do Muslims marry preteen girls in the middle east?  YEs.  Do Muslims have multiple wives?  Yes.  Do Muslims kill in the name of Allah like Mohammad did?  Yes, yes, of course they do!  Not all of them of course.  But Islam itself does allow for killing infidels, in fact it goes so far as to describe the appropriate methods of killing them.  This doesn't mean ALL muslims kill people, duh!  (just like not ALL Christians are celibate)....BUT it does demonstrate that the Moral Authority of Mohammad in regards to women and violence.

Mohammad, the ultimate role model for Muslims...murdered people to spread the faith.  Has any other founder of religion in history killed as many people as Mohammad?  I don't recall Siddarta Guatama killing anyone, for example.

Edric, do you need proof that violence is practiced in the name of Allah today, in the 21st century by Muslims both outside Islamic countries and within them, including their own goverments? Are you under the belief that you can walk into an Islamic country under Sharia law and say "Muhammad is a false prophet" and have no fear of imprisonment or execution?

The fruit of Islam, and what it spawns in a government.....is all too apparant.  40 lashes for naming teddy bears Mohammad?  Stoning women?  Putting atheists on trial for the death penalty for questioning Mohammad the wrong way?  Self-detonation?  Hijacking?  Where does this violent nature come from?  Do you have another source?  I believe it comes from Mohammad himself.  If I'm right, then you will never be able to seperate violence from Islam unless you can seperate Mohammad from Islam.

"blah blah blah" simply demonstrates your inability to accept this pivotal and critical distinction between Mohammad and his followers accepting violence as an acceptable means to propogate their faith.

Since you summarily blew off the most critical of all my points with "blah blah blah", I need not respond to anything else you said.

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Welcome back 'worm, I missed your points of view around here, except the ill-educated ones regarding anything this side of the pond.

Oh, and I'm surprised no-one has mentioned this, but emprworm, do you know who the Lord's Resistance Army are?

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Therefore, I classify "animals" as those who teach violence in the name of Allah, and those who carry it out.   The rest of the Muslim world to me is simply deceived, they are certainly not subhuman).

Good enough for me. But I do know Muslims who condemn the violent acts committed by Islamic fundamentalists. However, don't expect this condemning to occur on a nationwide scale - religion has a big role to play in politics when it comes to Muslim nations. I faintly remember reading about extremists criticising moderate Muslims. Heck, religious text can mean many things and beliefs can differ among people as well. That's exactly why Christianity features numerous denominations.

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I knew it was inevitable that when I criticized Islam, someone would invariably bring up Christianity.

I'm not posting in this thread to talk about Christianity or defend it, etc. 

I don't like Islam.  I see the religion as birthed in violence, and that violence is inexorably tied to it.  I believe Islam is inherently, and at its core, a violent, oppressive religion.

I belive that you can no more remove the inherent violence from Islam than you could remove Mohammad.  For as long as the violent man named Mohammad is the central figure of Islam, the religion itself will be tied to worldwide acts of violence and oppressive governments. 

There are dozens of Islamic governments, all of them oppressive, and nearly all of them will sentence you to death for speaking out against Islam.  This is the 21st century folks, and its time this 8th century religion grew up and stopped stoning women, and executing people that protest Mohammadism.

People in this forum can go ahead and defend Islam, thats fine.  I will fight against it.  It is my pesonal Jihad.

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Emprworm, I'm glad to see you've retreated a touch on the blanket condemnation, and I'm glad you're taken up my invitation to engage in some (slightly) more coherent discussion. Seriously, it *is* appreciated.

To answer the question in the topic, yes, forum policy remains unchanged, and yes, I and the other mods will continue to warn, remove and ban anyone posting material in blatant contravention of the rules. Yes, Gob remains the ultimate arbiter of what he is willing to permit on his website, and yes, you remain free to put whatever you like on your website so long as it's not illegal where you are.

While your posts do remind me with a nasty sinking feeling of the local fash, so long as it abides by the rules, it stays. But given you know the rules well enough, tapdancing on the line between heated debate with racist overtones and outright trolling is perhaps a little ill-advised on a forum where other people have been banned for much less.

That is all.

As to the debate at hand.

"I mean I actually had the idea for Qur'anic toilet paper."

Amazing! What does your hairstylist say about that? I'm intrigued.

"Are you under the belief that you can walk into an Islamic country under Sharia law and say "Muhammad is a false prophet" and have no fear of imprisonment or execution?"

I am. There are a great many Jews living in Iran, and they are a recognised miiority with a guaranteed member of parliament, along with two Christian demonimations and the Zoroastrians. That isn't to say they don't suffer systematic discrimination from the theocracy in other ways, mind, but Iran simply isn't a totalitarian state.

"Because Christianity evolved into a civil institution.  There are no longer any countries on earth with imposed Christianity, or people living under Christian dictators that demand obedience to the Pope."

Why did it take so long to "evolve" that way, though? And what about the centuries in which it wasn't so evolved? By your logic, then back in the day you should have been saying exactly the same thing about Christianity being "at its core, an oppressive and violent religion". My response would have been along the lines of "Nay, friend, there is hope, for the hireling priests and ephemeral kings that vex thee shall in time lose their power when the people recognise that the light cometh not from these false powers, but from within, and that they have common cause against the violence directed upon them. Now I must go: the sheriffs make havoc upon my goods also, and intend to place me in a gaol as I did not pay Clerks wages for turning the hour-glass, and saying Amen, and such like services."

In other words, at most your reasoning can say that Islam hasn't *yet* evolved into a "civil institution", and you certainly can't rule out that it's on its way to becoming "civil". (Quite what your definition of civil might be is another question!) Moreover, your analysis must vary from place to place. Islam as an institution in Saudi Arabia is very much different from Islam as an institution in Iran and Islam as an institution in Turkey and Islam as an institution in Cambridgeshire.

I reckon that there's something else at work, though. Religious violence derives not from theological content, but from the material conditions in which the religion operates. That is to say, a highly entrenched power structure will use all means at its disposal to perpetuate itself and install itself into a cultural hegemony, and religion happens to be a damn good one. Thus, it commits violence in the name of religion. These power structures obviously include states, such as Pharaonic Egypt, the European monarchies, the Caliphates, the House of Saud, and, to a lesser degree, more 'liberal' institutions in the west. But there are also smaller power structures, some of which part of the religions themselves (Scientology is a good example, but again, you get similar instances of corruption throughout Christianity, Islam, and many other religions), and some of which are more idiosyncratic (patriarchally-linked institutions especially).

There also seems to be something missing in terms of the Jesus/Mohammed comparison, and that is that Jesus is supposed to be the son of God, whereas Mohammed is simply supposed to be a prophet, albeit the most important one. The use of Jesus as an example, and, for that matter, Mary (more in the Catholic Church, mind), is a major theme of modern christianity. In Islam, Mohammed is important because of the message: he's like a prophet or a Pope. Or Paul. Now, some of the later regimes have also tried to claim legitimacy through historical continuity, via the caliphate, Peter, etc. But it's a little bit disingenuous to claim the nutjobs are representative of the One True Islam if you're not yourself a follower. And I simply don't see why the concept of a "moral authority" in the sense in which you're giving it can be usefully applied. In Islam, authority is derived from God via the scriptures, and declarations of moral authority are occasionally given by senior clerics who publish their interpretations - and there is often disagreement. The weight that should be given to the different types of scripture, specifically the records of the early Islamic movement versus *just* the Qur'an, supposedly the direct word of God, are also a major bone of contention.

Additionally, there's the whole Old Testament issue... sure, Jesus is a pretty good role model, and an excellent marketing tool. But delve any distance into the 'first half' and you find that "Obey the scripture" is a moral minefield with some very dubious role models. Moreover, if you're going to play the implied teachings game, you've got to go the whole hog and accept that the Bible hasn't become *less* open to interpretation since whenever the last speight of Christianity-Empr-disapproves-of was wielding the stick.

Finally (though this is by no means an exhaustive list of the issues I'd like to deal with): you say Islam is inherently evil and violent. OK, but what's your solution? Banning muslims from migrating to the west clearly doesn't deal with anything, it pushes your average muslim into the hands of the fundamentalists and the racists.

"People in this forum can go ahead and defend Islam, thats fine.  I will fight against it.  It is my pesonal Jihad."

Irony aside, I'm not about to defend Islam. The criticism you level against it is just attacking the wrong thing for the wrong reasons. The Iranian, Saudi, Iraqi, Afghan governments aren't oppressive because they're muslim, they're oppressive because they can get away with it.

"Blah blah blah."

Edric, Empr's right: that attitude is highly unproductive. You really can do better.

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"blah blah blah"

Yea, I can do better.  And as you can see, over the last 5 years I have matured.  I don't respond to people's points with "blah blah blah" and I hope that today, in 2008, we wont do that here since most of the same people are still here.

Except I am concerned about the recent deletion of a thread regarding gender identity, a valid topic on this forum....still waiting for a response from Gob about that.  Otherwise, I plan on being here a while again, unless gender identity is a forbidden topic, in which case I will be forced to take my leave again. 

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"Because Christianity evolved into a civil institution.  There are no longer any countries on earth with imposed Christianity, or people living under Christian dictators that demand obedience to the Pope."

Why did it take so long to "evolve" that way, though? And what about the centuries in which it wasn't so evolved? By your logic, then back in the day you should have been saying exactly the same thing about Christianity being "at its core, an oppressive and violent religion".

Well thats quite simple.  Because Jesus, the founder of Christianity was a non violent man who never comitted a single act of violence.  Every Christian that practices violence does so without any ability whatsoever to justify it according to the ultimate role model of all Christians:  the life of Jesus.

i will agree that there was a time in this world where christianity was dominated by violence and oppression, but it was never the core of christianity.  the central core of christianity is christ.  it always was.

Jesus is christianity, and at its core, it was never violent.  people used the non-violent life of Jesus to pursue power and committed violent acts....yet such acts could never be justified by the life of Christ, for no such act was ever modeled or encouraged by him.

not the case with Mohammad, who not only killed, but dictated the means of killing and how to kill them.

christians who kill do so without any example whatsoever of their ultimate role model (jesus)

Mohammadans, on the other hand, will always have the ability to justify acts of violence according to the ultimate role model of all Muslims:  the life of Mohammad.

because Jesus was utterly non-violent, it was inevitable that Christianity would evolve as a core non-violent institution.

it cannot be said of Islam, there will always be a violent core.  and indeed, look at any islamic, sharia law ruled country.  even in Iran...to blaspheme MOhammad is sentenceable by death. I'm sorry, Nema, but if you blasphemed mohammad in Iran, you would find yourself rapidly and violently punished.  thats Islam, in all its glory.

i think Van Gogh would agree with me wholeheartedly...if he was still alive

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Except I am concerned about the recent deletion of a thread regarding gender identity, a valid topic on this forum....still waiting for a response from Gob about that.  Otherwise, I plan on being here a while again, unless gender identity is a forbidden topic, in which case I will be forced to take my leave again. 

It was moved to the general board

http://forum.dune2k.com/index.php?topic=20886.0

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Well thats quite simple.  Because Jesus, the founder of Christianity was a non violent man who never comitted a single act of violence.  Every Christian that practices violence does so without any ability whatsoever to justify it according to the ultimate role model of all Christians:  the life of Jesus.

i will agree that there was a time in this world where christianity was dominated by violence and oppression, but it was never the core of christianity.  the central core of christianity is christ.  it always was.

Jesus is christianity, and at its core, it was never violent.  people used the non-violent life of Jesus to pursue power and committed violent acts....yet such acts could never be justified by the life of Christ, for no such act was ever modeled or encouraged by him.

not the case with Mohammad, who not only killed, but dictated the means of killing and how to kill them.

christians who kill do so without any example whatsoever of their ultimate role model (jesus)

Mohammadans, on the other hand, will always have the ability to justify acts of violence according to the ultimate role model of all Muslims:  the life of Mohammad.

because Jesus was utterly non-violent, it was inevitable that Christianity would evolve as a core non-violent institution.

it cannot be said of Islam, there will always be a violent core.  and indeed, look at any islamic, sharia law ruled country.  even in Iran...to blaspheme MOhammad is sentenceable by death. I'm sorry, Nema, but if you blasphemed mohammad in Iran, you would find yourself rapidly and violently punished.  thats Islam, in all its glory.

i think Van Gogh would agree with me wholeheartedly...if he was still alive

There is no proof that Muhammad killed someone. Really, even if we used intrareligious traditions, we have notions about

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emprworm, I'm quite curious about something: Assuming that you are completely correct that Islam is a violent religion, would you consider moderate Muslims (in this case, those who do not advocate violence against non-believers, people who speak against Islam, people who draw cartoons against Islams, you get the idea) to be deviating from Islam and therefore, not true followers of Islam?

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Well thats quite simple.  Because Jesus, the founder of Christianity was a non violent man who never comitted a single act of violence.  Every Christian that practices violence does so without any ability whatsoever to justify it according to the ultimate role model of all Christians:  the life of Jesus.

That's not true at all.

The Lord's Resistance Army (LRA), formed in 1987, is a rebel self-proclaimed Christian guerrilla army operating mainly in northern Uganda and parts of Sudan. The group is engaged in an armed rebellion against the Ugandan government in what is now one of Africa's longest-running conflicts. It is led by Joseph Kony, who proclaims himself the "spokesperson" of God and a spirit medium, primarily of the Christian Holy Spirit which the Acholi believe can represent itself in many manifestations. The group claims to be establishing a theocratic state based on the Ten Commandments and Acholi tradition. The LRA is accused of widespread human rights violations, including murder, abduction, mutilation, sexual enslavement of women and children, and forcing children to participate in hostilities.
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emprworm, I'm quite curious about something: Assuming that you are completely correct that Islam is a violent religion, would you consider moderate Muslims (in this case, those who do not advocate violence against non-believers, people who speak against Islam, people who draw cartoons against Islams, you get the idea) to be deviating from Islam and therefore, not true followers of Islam?

Mohammad was one of the greatest military conquerers in world history, on par with Ceasar, Kahn, and Alexander.  His armies swept accross the entire arabian penninsula. Islam was born out of spread by force.   Thats how it began.  Islam preaches peace...but remember its peace is only for the converted.  There is no peace for the infidel.  And one could easily argue that even for Muslim women, there is no peace.  Widespread oppression of women is found throughout the Arab world.

Muslims who are non-violent and who stand up and oppose Islamic violence are a new breed of Muslim.   Muslims who are non-violent, but who do not oppose violence, and who instead quietly see people like Bin Laden as a "lost sheep" are confirming the violent core of Islam.  Bin Laden is actually much more like Mohammad than the Muslim who stands up against violence.  Remember that many non-violent Muslims are also complicit against those who are violent.  They don't stand up and condemn it.  Only a very few Muslims actually stand up and condemn other Muslims.

Finally, in regards to being no proof that Mohammad killed anyone, surely you have to be kidding!  That is completely irrelevant.  Charles Manson never killed anyone, and as far as I know, Hitler never directly killed anyone either.  Mohammad killed through giving the orders, making him fully a killer and even more responsible for every death that occurred under his conquests than those who actually did it. 

Whereas Christians who kill represent an offshoot to the core of Christianity (Jesus killed no one, and condemned killing)

And Buddhists who kill represent an offshoot to the core of Buddhism (Siddhartha Guatama was non violent)

Islam is the oppositte.  Muslims who are peaceful and who stand up against the spread of Islam by force represent an offshoot to the core of Islam

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It began with a flight of Muhammad and few believers to Medina. Muhammad opposed any armed action until he was attacked by Mekkans at Badr. And he sat in a tent anyway. That his followers were violent? Ok, the same could be said of emperors Constantine and Ashoka, who did most for spread of the "peaceful" religions of Jesus and Buddha.

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I guess people never talked to Ahmadiyya Muslims.

Here is my feeling about the entire middle east.  Other than Algebra, which one could argue was not a Muslim-influenced invention (in other words, Algebra would have came out of paganism), the Middle East has given the world nothing.  Zippo.  The don't produce any manufactured goods.  They don't have universities.  They don't produce scientists...or engineers, or artists.  They don't add to technology.  The Arab world is basically good for oil, and that is not a credit to Islam.  The religion of Islam, I believe, is directly to blame for the lack of contribution the Arab world makes to this planet.

Avicenna - contributed to medicine, math, astronomy and chemistry. His works were taught in all European Universities during Renaissance.

Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor - pioneer of medical research in space

Abu Musa Jābir ibn Hayyān (Geber) - father of chemistry

Ahmed H. Zewail - Nobel Prize in Chemistry, 1999

Lotfi Asker Zadeh - Iranian computer scientist; founder of fuzzy logic and fuzzy set theory

Abū Rayḥān Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad al-Bīrūnī - father of anthropology and geology

Ibn Khaldun - father of demography and sociology

Mahbub ul Haq - developer of Human Development Index and founder of Human Development Report

Muhammad Yunus - father of microcredit and microfinancing

Abū Yūsuf Yaʻqūb ibn Isḥāq al-Kindī - pioneer of environmental science, early work in psychology and music therapy

Muhammad ibn Mūsā al-Khwārizmī - father of algebra and algorithms

Abū al-Hasan ibn ʿAlī al-Qalaṣādī - early work with symbolic algebra

Najab ud-din Muhammad - pioneer of mental disorder classification

Abdul Walid Muhammad Ibn Ahmad Ibn Rushd - early research on Parkinson disease

Abu Gaafar Amed ibn Ibrahim ibn abi Halid al-Gazzar - pioneer in dental restoration

Abu al-Qasim Khalaf ibn al-Abbas Al-Zahrawi - father of surgery

Ibn al-Haytham - early eye surgery, research in optics, pioneeer of experimental physics

Ala al-Din Abu al-Hassan Ali ibn Abi-Hazm al-Qarshi al-Dimashqi - father of circulatory physiology

Ibn Khatima - pioneer of bacteriology and microbiology

Abū Rayḥān Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad al-Bīrūnī - pioneer of experimental mechanics

Abū al-'Iz Ibn Ismā'īl ibn al-Razāz al-Jazarī -  father of robotics and modern engineering

Abdus Salam, - Nobel Prize in Physics 1977

Yeah, Muslims did not contribute anything I guess

I hope gasoline goes up, triples in prices, so that science and industry is compelled by force to invent efficient mechanisms of utilizing alternative energy.  This will cause the world's dependence on oil to plummet.  And as a result, the middle east will go bankrupt.

Don't count on it. They are spreading their wealth to develop other industries including the green industries, the financial sector is shooting through te roof in Dubai and Sauid Arabia. Sovereign wealth funds are what supporting Citi group (world's biggest financial company) and those funds originate in Middle East. In 1980s when price after 1970s dropped Middle east was up to ears in debt, they learned their lesson of relying sollely on oil.

With regards to Muhammad and his wife. There are no children of Muhammad and there are no mentions of the sexual intercourse occurring between them. He married because people insisted that he must since it was the custom of the time for a man of his age to have a wife, as his last one died.

Here is the example in modern world. Romeo and Juliet the "greatest love story of all time" is taught in whole Western world (In Canada in grade 9). Juliet is 12 turning 13 soon in the play and Romeo is well in to his 16th year. Statutory Rape and pedophilia!! eh? And we letting kids read it.

I am actually not alone in this assessment.  There are many people, well known centrists, scholars, published authors, and others who hold such a view.

Who?

And just so you know emprworm I just recently travelled to Pakistan and I met a lot of Muslims while I was there. I wouldn't call any of them animals in fact all of them were very kind and welcoming to us. And yes they knew we were Christian and from the "West".

Hospitality is very important to Muslims and is taught through the Quaran. I found back when I was door knocking that Muslims were more willing to listen to you than other Canadians who were looking for excuse to slam the door in your face. Some were asking me if I wanted to come in for tea or join them because they were eating.

Algebra was invented very close to the birth of Islam.  Interesting isn't it....how all those great inventions came from the middle east....until Islam showed up.

Development of knowledge and its preservation were considered to be very important and Islamic scholars would agree with that.

Muhammad preached to never fight an aggressive war and only the defensive wars. He himself never fought in aggressive wars, attacks were initiated against him or his allies first.

east indians in canada who become police officers get to wear turbans in uniform.  East indian students get to carry daggers in public schools...this is cultural pandering by leftist governments

Religious rights, Sikh must do that or it would be sin for them. Christians wear crosses around their neck, maybe we should forbid that, especially to all public servants since state and religion are separate. Why is it that Christmas is given the statutory holidays status, why are Christians so special that their holidays are statutory and other religions are not. Why do Catholic schools have the right o receive government funding in Canada and other religious schools do not receive it.

The "animals" are not all Muslims, but are specifically those who are leaders (such as Imams) who propogate a form of Islam that demands fatwas against cartoonists.  Additionally, the "animals" are the homicide bombers who kill for Allah, and in the name of Allah.  They are less than animals to me, because I don't want to insult the animal kingdom.

According to the Quaran suicide is illegal and considered to be one of the greatest sins.

Islam prohibits the use of force or coercion for the spread of its message. every human individual is free to believe or not to believe.

"There shall be no compulsion in religion. Surely, right has become distinct from wrong. (Quran 2:257)

Religious war is allowed to be waged against those who make war because of religion.

"And fight in the cause of God against those who fight against you, but do not transgress. Surely, allah loves not the transgressors" (Quran 2:191)

"Permission to take up arms is given to those against whom war is made, because they have been wronged and Allha indeed has power to help them." (Quran 22:40)

The 8th century Arab culture demands Sharia law.  They are demanding it in Canada, Britain, and France.  Will you give it to them?

No if you missed in the news few years ago in Canada there was a case after which all civil law provision that allowed different religions to exercise their civil law were removed.

no one is killed in the name of Jesus.

Crusades come to mind

Oh wait Emperor Constantin ordered his troops put the sign of the cross on their shields and with mark of "Prince of Peace" they slaughtered the enemy.

Few groups that were based in Texas come to mind. Claims that they would lead the armies in the name of Jesus with their banner socked in blood.

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Ah, thank you Tatar. That was just the kind of post I was looking for since I have no knowledge of the Quran, Muhammed, or anything to do with Islam,Muslim''ity'' (:D),e.t.c.

Throughout reading all the posts in this thread I was sitting here thinking:

1: Ok, under what conditions and for what reasons did Mohammed carry out his killings? There is such a thing as morals that are situational (eg: Killing is okay in self-defense as opposed to killing is NEVER okay).

2: What does the QURAN ACTUALLY preach and state (in certain terms at least). Just because some important religious figure does A doesn't mean you can ignore the of the religion's text (or whatever). Even if Jesus killed, it is stated as a commandment in the bible that one must not kill. I guess that when the commandments and what not conflict with each other one might find the whole role model thing useful (the idea being: Jesus = perfect follower... so regardless of understanding follower being like Jesus and acting as he would might = better follower). Still, in such cases one would look at all the texts with their stories and other figures while keeping in mind the commandments. One might say that the stories contained in the bible (and probably the quran) serve a function there. Were it not for that function and the examples (almost like case studies) that these stories provide the bible might be nearly as effective if it was only a list of commandments and facts.

Of course, it is not like I can just look at the tidbits provided by Tatar and say: end of story that is all I need to know with Tatar's word being as good as anybody's and providing all sides of the story.

Still, it seems that is at least opening up an important avenue of debate to be considered here.

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A small tangent but I noticed this and had to comment on it:

I know of no one who advocates imitating Socrates.

Benjamin Frankin's 13 virtues from his autobiography:

1. Temperance: Eat not to dullness and drink not to elevation.

2. Silence: Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself. Avoid trifling conversation.

3. Order: Let all your things have their places. Let each part of your business have its time.

4. Resolution: Resolve to perform what you ought. Perform without fail what you resolve.

5. Frugality: Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself: i.e. Waste nothing.

6. Industry: Lose no time. Be always employed in something useful. Cut off all unnecessary actions.

7. Sincerity: Use no hurtful deceit. Think innocently and justly; and, if you speak, speak accordingly.

8. Justice: Wrong none, by doing injuries or omitting the benefits that are your duty.

9. Moderation: Avoid extremes. Forebear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.

10. Cleanliness: Tolerate no uncleanness in body, clothes or habitation.

11. Chastity: Rarely use venery but for health or offspring; Never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another's peace or reputation.

12. Tranquility: Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.

<b>13. Humility: Imitate Jesus and Socrates. </b>

Imitating someone doesn't mean you are unable to distiguish that person's merits from their faults.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hello Emprworm, I don't believe we've met.  Anyway....

I'm not an expert on Islam nor have I read much on it, but one thing I've noticed is that fairly often an atheist will make the comment that if a person doesn't believe in the bible in the same way as the Christian fundamentalists do (interpretations are strict and literal, no exceptions), then that person is not a true Christian.  This definition it seems to me is use to make it easier for the atheist to make his/her own point, not because they actually believe that.

I'm not saying, Emprworm, that you are doing the same, but without a non-fundamentalist Islamic person present (or another person of equal knowledge on the topic) to represent that particular viewpoint it is difficult for the debate in question to be well rounded on all sides.  It is too easy for such situations to come off as a bashing session even when the person in question probably did not intend it to be so.

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