Monday, March 11, 2013

In the Name of Allah

I notice that moderate Muslims often try to distance themselves from their extremist brethren when the news reports portray brutal and uncivilized behaviour. Yet moderate Muslims of good faith must sometimes wonder themselves about their religion. After all, what other religion of modern times inspires the kind of havoc and destruction in the world that Islam does?

Again, moderate Muslims may say that terrorist and mob violence is not inspired by Islam but by thugs and criminals. So I ask another question: If such is the case—that terrorists and mobs are not inspired by Islam—why is it that regardless of whether it is good or bad behaviour by Muslims, it is all done In the Name of Allah? What other group of thugs and criminals on the world stage so consistently commit their atrocities in the name of their god, screaming and shouting to their god while they blow up themselves or behead their fellow human beings?

Could it be that Islam is more than a religion? Could it be that it is a totalitarian ideology? It is Muslims who will eventually have to put that question to rest. Western civilization has held for centuries that, regarding Islam, 

“no stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science, the science against which it (Islam) had vainly struggled, the civilisation of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilisation of ancient Rome."

[Source: Winston S. Churchill, The River War, First edition, Vol. II (London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1899), pp. 248-250.]

If we are to think differently about Muslims in general, the “religion” of Islam must come into the 21st century. Are Muslims up to that challenge...or should I call it a battle? So far they are not winning, in my opinion.

No comments: