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Author Topic: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?  (Read 12859 times)

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Offline consortium11

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #300 on: October 13, 2014, 07:51:19 PM »
I'm going to suggest anyone who sincerely asks this thread's title of themselves and the world around them watch the Farscape Season 4 Episode 17 "Constellation of Doubt"

In it, Utu Noranti Pralatong discusses religion and killing.

She asks a boy "What constitutes a good religion" and the first words out of his mouth are that we shouldn't kill and should do unto others. Her response? "Hypocrite!" Because all religions condemn killing outright, and then make allowances that suit their needs. It's okay to kill Infidels. Or witches. Or homosexuals. Just make sure you know who you're stoning to death.

There's a similar quote from a fantasy/alt-history book I've read (where one of the major plot points is the rise of psuedo-Christianity in a psuedo-Rome).

Right now they say all killing is wrong. But in six months someone will say that surely it's right and reasonable to kill someone who is trying to kill you? And six months later someone will say that surely it is right and reasonable to kill someone who attempts to rape you? And a year later someone will say surely it is right to kill someone while they are trying to attack (even if not necessarily kill) you? And a year later surely it is just and right to kill those who try to pervert this religions' teachings and thus threaten your soul etc etc.

Offline Ephiral

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Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #301 on: October 13, 2014, 08:00:38 PM »
That's... kinda the point I was trying to make earlier in the thread. True pacifism is still a radical position among real actual people. Yet somehow, it's Muslims that get singled out as ultraviolent, even as the bombs fall.

Offline White Wolf

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #302 on: October 21, 2014, 07:45:41 PM »
That's... kinda the point I was trying to make earlier in the thread. True pacifism is still a radical position among real actual people. Yet somehow, it's Muslims that get singled out as ultraviolent, even as the bombs fall.

This is only indicative of the times we live in. In the Roman times, it was the Barbarians who were the violent savages trying to hurt the peace-loving Romans. In Alexander's time, it was the Persians. Here in Ireland it was the Protestants who were to blame for the bombs going off; whereas up the road, the Protestants were blaming us for the exact same thing.

Unless you're a Klingon (and if you are I mean no offence), your society generally isn't going to admit that it is warmongering - but human societies ARE. That's just the way it is. And they need a scapegoat; a "warmongering, barbaric" scapegoat to justify the need to go over there and kill them. "Because they're trying to kill US." We live in an age where Islam is that scapegoat - again. It was, after all, also the West's scapegoat during the Middle Ages (and to underscore my point, it was the CHRISTIANS doing the invading of the Middle East then, unprovoked, as now). That's not to say violent interpretations of Islam don't exist - ISIS is a very real and very scary threat (but even then it's muddied by the complex factors of US foreign policy and the arming of Syrian rebels against Assad, blah blah blah, so it's unfair to simply blame ISIS' existence on Islam itself - it is, rather, a far more complex issue than just black-and-white religion), but all the Muslims I know and interact with on a daily basis are repulsed by ISIS' actions. The fiercest fighters trying to turn back the tide of ISIS are Kurds - themselves, Muslims.

But by that same token there are violent interpretations of Christianity - look at the Crusades or, as I mentioned above, the sectarian killings that took place here in Ireland - and Judaism (those Israeli gangs rioting and burning homes and stuff a few months back, when the most recent Gaza conflict was breaking out). Even Buddhism has violent followers in South-East Asia.

Everybody has extremists; I think the reason we single out Islam for extremism however is our cultural conditioning bred into us to not question our leaders' overseas interventionism. It's the same thing that's happened all throughout history, and it's naive - I think - to just assume that we've all evolved beyond such petty triviality nowadays.

Offline Vekseid

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #303 on: October 22, 2014, 01:12:27 AM »
It was, after all, also the West's scapegoat during the Middle Ages (and to underscore my point, it was the CHRISTIANS doing the invading of the Middle East then, unprovoked, as now).

This statement is so blatantly false I'm tempted to make a topic on this and sticky it.

Do you think the Byzantine Empire just up and gave the Levant, Egypt, Syria, Africa and Anatolia to the Muslims?

Was the reconquest of Sicily evil? Spain?

The fight against the Golden Horde?

Christianity has a lot of atrocities to its name. The crusades against Islamists are not generally among them.

Offline consortium11

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #304 on: October 22, 2014, 07:30:54 AM »
It was, after all, also the West's scapegoat during the Middle Ages (and to underscore my point, it was the CHRISTIANS doing the invading of the Middle East then, unprovoked, as now).

The "Middle Ages" are generally seen as starting the 5th century, with the early Middle Age starting with the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in about 476.

In 711 the Islamic invasion of what was then Hispania began and by 719 most of the Iberian Peninsula was under Muslim rule. In 721 and 731 further Islamic invasions of what is now France were beaten back. Between the 830's and 900's there were repeated attempted invasions of Southern Italy with the most successful leading to the conquest of Sicily.

In return it wasn't until 1096 that the official "first crusade" sent Western Christians to war in the Middle East and the other two wars against Muslims (the Reconquista and the reclamation of Sicily) were both attempts to regain land conquered by Muslims in the recent past.

That's not to touch on Islamic invasions of areas we wouldn't call the "West"; the Byzantium Empire faced pretty much constant invasion and conquest from Islamic forces between the 7th and 11th centuries including Constantinople itself being besieged twice in the 7th and 8th centuries. Let's also remember that the First Crusade was called after a plea for help from the Byzantine Emperor to repel Islamic invaders, even if the crusaders continued on having beaten back the Turks. One could also look to Timur and his conquests in Armenia and Georgia.

One certainly also shouldn't forget the Ottomon invasions of Europe towards the end of the Middle Ages. They finally conquered Byzantine Empire and took Constantinople, shortly after they conquered the whole of Greece, crushed what we now regard as the Second Bulgarian Empire, conquered Serbia, eventually conquered Albania, conquered Bosnia, conquered much of Croatia and Hungary, repeatedly invaded and conquered many of the Venetian territories, conquered much of what was then Wallachia, invaded Moldova, conquered Rhodes, invaded Cyrpus and invaded Malta... although I note some of these fall outside what is considered the Middle Ages.

Offline White Wolf

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #305 on: October 22, 2014, 06:12:30 PM »
*Eastern Roman Empire. "Byzantium" is an anachronism that makes my skin crawl.

But Jesus fucking Christ, you're both absolutely right - the Arab Conquests immediately following Mohammed's death drove the Eastern Empire back to western Anatolia, and then continued to slowly chip away at them while the Berbers were racing north through Spain. I wasn't even thinking about the wider context in relation to my comment about the First Crusade - I was more wrapped up in the idea of the propaganda of it all.

I'm sorry, I completely misstepped and wasn't paying attention to my own words xD My fault :P

EDIT: Just a thought though about what Vekseid said; of course the Crusades were atrocities. Killing, butchering and cannibalizing women and children are atrocities irrespective of any wider context. And I don't think the word "Islamist" truly applies to the Middle Ages since all the world was in the grip of religious fundamentalism and, at the time, Islam was leaps and bounds ahead of the West in terms of science and progressivism.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2014, 06:19:39 PM by LittleWhiteWolfy »

Offline alextaylor

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #306 on: October 24, 2014, 01:59:01 PM »
It's funny that examples like the Crusades keep popping up whenever people talk about violent religions and the evils of religion!

Most of the atrocities that happened were caused by Christians/Muslims. Not Christianity/Islam. There's little demanding cannibalism or whatever. Even if it's in a book, rarely is it used to make decisions. All those verses are there to justify actions that have already been decided in advance. It's the nature of people, no matter what religion they claim to hold. People of another religion are always more convenient targets to conquer.

Offline Ephiral

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Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #307 on: October 24, 2014, 02:28:12 PM »
It's funny that examples like the Crusades keep popping up whenever people talk about violent religions and the evils of religion!

Most of the atrocities that happened were caused by Christians/Muslims. Not Christianity/Islam. There's little demanding cannibalism or whatever. Even if it's in a book, rarely is it used to make decisions. All those verses are there to justify actions that have already been decided in advance. It's the nature of people, no matter what religion they claim to hold. People of another religion are always more convenient targets to conquer.

Except the ritual cannibalism practiced to this day by one side of the conflicts?

Offline Vekseid

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #308 on: October 25, 2014, 05:04:34 PM »
*Eastern Roman Empire. "Byzantium" is an anachronism that makes my skin crawl.

Except it isn't. They were derisively called the Empire of the Greeks by the west. It's called the Byzantine Empire because the city of Byzantium was the original name for what became their capital (Constantinople, now Istanbul, cue song). You could say 'Byzantine Empire' during any part of that era and a knowledgeable enough scholar may be amused or offended, depending.

Offline White Wolf

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #309 on: October 25, 2014, 07:54:32 PM »
Except it isn't. They were derisively called the Empire of the Greeks by the west. It's called the Byzantine Empire because the city of Byzantium was the original name for what became their capital (Constantinople, now Istanbul, cue song). You could say 'Byzantine Empire' during any part of that era and a knowledgeable enough scholar may be amused or offended, depending.

...but that was a derisive term not indicative of the reality, which was that the Emperors in Constantinople had an unbroken continuity stretching back to Augustus. Several Popes, recognising this, sided with the Eastern Empire in attempts to restore Imperial rule in Italy - off the top of my head, Adrian IV was noteworthy for doing so. The main issue with Translatio Imperii in this period was the existence of the Holy Roman Empire - for the West to remain independent of the machinations of Constantinople it had to act in all affairs as if the lineage of Charlemagne was the restored Roman Empire in the West (even if, ironically, the Papacy spent most of its history fighting off Holy Roman Imperial hands from actually controlling Rome itself). "Byzantine" was a term not applied to the Eastern Empire during its lifespan; Westerners just as readily called the area it controlled "Romania," alluding to its true nature. It annoys me, because it serves to only confuse the reality that the Roman Empire existed for far longer than is commonly identified in Western history - and I think that little historical fact is pretty cool, haha.

EDIT: I certainly didn't mean to come across as belligerent, if that was how you interpreted it. I'm simply picking at a pet peeve that, as you say, has really nothing to it other than a personal preference in terms.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2014, 08:06:56 PM by LittleWhiteWolfy »

Offline Cassandra LeMay

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #310 on: October 26, 2014, 02:08:26 AM »
Unless you're a Klingon (and if you are I mean no offence), your society generally isn't going to admit that it is warmongering - but human societies ARE.
(Emphasis added)

Your statement can neither be verified or falsified unless you define what you mean by "human societies". Are you talking about religion, nation states, nationalities, all of the above, something else? It's very easy to ascribe certain trends or developments to a certain "society", but it can be a very vague term that might deserve some explanation.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2014, 02:11:07 AM by Cassandra LeMay »

Offline White Wolf

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #311 on: October 26, 2014, 05:20:22 AM »
Every religion, nation  or culture in human history has known war. That's the trend I was drawing upon.

Offline Ephiral

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Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #312 on: October 26, 2014, 05:24:02 AM »
Technology implies belligerence?

Offline Vekseid

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #313 on: October 28, 2014, 08:17:42 PM »
Every religion, nation  or culture in human history has known war. That's the trend I was drawing upon.

This is a meaningless statement. Everyone has known war does not mean they were all warmongering. Jainism and Taoism come to mind. There was also a particularly suicidal branch of Christianity for a short time.

Offline Oniya

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Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #314 on: October 28, 2014, 08:19:32 PM »
Perhaps the pertinent similarity is the 'human' aspect.

Offline Vekseid

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #315 on: October 28, 2014, 08:31:09 PM »
Perhaps the pertinent similarity is the 'human' aspect.

It is not human nature to harm others. Quite the opposite.

It takes fear, ignorance, desperation or illness for a human to harm another. This is why we can have civilization in the first place.

Offline White Wolf

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #316 on: October 29, 2014, 07:15:50 PM »
It takes fear, ignorance, desperation or illness for a human to harm another. This is why we can have civilization in the first place.

...but civilisations are nearly always built on the carcasses of the ones they overthrew to be birthed into existence. The earliest Homo Sapien skeletons have been found with speartips in their ribcages; history itself is little more than a cyclical record of brutal violence, eventually replacing one military power with another.

I find it a really hard argument to swallow to suggest that violence is not a trait innate to our species. Even the apex of this historical period's civilization - the United States - is associated domestically and internationally as, primarily, a military power. Its polar opposites on the geopolitical scale - let's dumb it down and just say North Korea or ISIS - both fashion themselves on their ability to wage war (for the former that ability is propagandized; for the latter, well...).

Keeping with the present; the US has slipped behind many of the BRICS powers in multiple key areas of development - prime topical example being the failed NASA supply launch this week, promptly followed up by a Russian shuttle launch that went without a hitch. America is still able to maintain its global dominance however through its breath-taking and unprecedented military might - a state of affairs that dates back from today to the rise of Sumer as the Cradle of Civilization in ancient Mesopotamia. Human history is written by the most powerful military nation; pacifists either die or are ignored.

In purely argumentative terms; have you ever killed a person yourself? I assume you haven't - in which case, can you really state unequivocally that you couldn't do it without being "scared, ignorant, desperate or ill?" That seems like a leap - and an illogical one at that, given the crushing weight of 6000 years of our species' recorded history on this planet.

Online Vergil Tanner

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #317 on: October 30, 2014, 04:09:48 AM »
I have to agree Vekseid in that violence isn't in human nature, it's in some human nature - generalisations about humanity as a whole are unwise, in my experience - but it is an unfortunate reality that as long as there are humans, there will be human/human violence simply because it's inherent to every species that you will inevitably get intra-species violence.

However, that isn't why I'm posting; I've seen a couple of things while lurking that I have to comment on.

1) The USA is the apex of current civilisation:
HAHAHA no. Economically speaking, America is the most powerful (but China is quickly catching up), and technologically, that crown goes to Japan. Socially? Socially, the USA is WAAAAAY behind a lot of the other countries with their shambles of a healthcare system, their archaic and unfair employment laws, their continued attempts to push creationism into schools, their heavy business-focus at the expense of the consumer and their reluctant addition of homosexual marriage to the legal side of the equation. There's still quite a lot of racism and sexism - from and directed at all sides of that particular dice (I say dice because there aren't just two sexualities or race), and the education system - particularly higher education - is woefully inadequate compared to some other countries (there's a reason a lot of USA postgrads go and study in England or The Netherlands, for example). Is America good and getting better? For the most part, yes. But the apex of current civilisation? Yeah, I have to disagree. There is no "Apex" when looked at as a whole, and even if there was, it wouldn't be America. There are a lot of countries that are, socially speaking, doing a hell of a lot better than America, even if you look at quality of living or capita per head.

2) Byzantine Empire Vs Eastern Roman Empire: You're both right. The Eastern Romans never viewed themselves as "Byzantines;" they always identified themselves as Romans, right up to their collapse. However, Byzantine is still correct since it is the term that modern scholars use to differentiate between the Classical Roman Empire (roughly 1/200 BCE - 3-500 CE (there's some debate as to where to draw the line; do we look at when Theodosius divided the empire, or when Justinian died, since he was the last Emperor to try and reunite the Old Empire?)) and the Medieval Roman Empire (whenever you want to start the period - the 15th century when it fell to the Ottomons). So whilst the Byzantine Empire isn't the term they would have used, it is an acceptable term to use and most modern scholars use "Byzantine" to make the distinction, since the empire in 700 CE was markedly different socially, politically and economically speaking than the Empire in 200CE. Just thought I would toss that out there, since I'm currently in my third year of Classical and Medieval History at university. :-)


3) I could kill somebody if I had to. Killing somebody isn't inherently wrong, it just depends on the circumstance. But Vekseid is correct in that the fact that we are capable of NOT committing mass acts of violence is true, but we have to commit violence occasionally to keep ourselves stable or the people who DO happily use violence would topple those that didn't. It's a sad fact of life that even if we dislike violence, we must stoop to it to keep ourselves safe sometimes. But that's getting rather off topic, methinks; whether or not humans are predisposed to violence has nothing to do with the original question, since a "Religion of Peace" would seek to curb those aggressive instincts, and Islam....doesn't. It just gives groups you can be violent towards. Same as Christianity, really.

Offline Kythia

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Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #318 on: October 30, 2014, 04:49:14 AM »
since a "Religion of Peace" would seek to curb those aggressive instincts

This is a really interesting point.  I haven't decided yet whether I agree or not, but its a useful way of looking at it.

From the top of my head, and neither arguing for nor against, just "around"

1) That relies on one specific definition of peace.  Why does a religion of peace curb aggressive instincts rather than, say, develop a warrior culture and kill all of its opponents to achieve "peace through lack of enemies".  Granted, that sounds more like a DnD religion than anything that could exist in the real world, but the fact remains that yours isn't the only definition of peace.

2) Most Western religions believe in man as a direct product of God.  Unless we allow an imperfect God, those aggressive urges are there "deliberately".  Why would a religion seek to minimise them?  To phrase it another way, why do religions seek to minimise them.  Or at least condemn them.  Once again we find ourselves at "Why does sin exist", the question that won't die.

3) Does a religion have to be 100% peaceful to be a "religion of peace"?  The US is a capitalist society despite not everything being 100% capitalist, Bangladesh is a poor nation despite not everyone being poor.

4) Is Islam purportedly a religion of peace or the religion of peace.  I've seen it both ways but it makes a massive difference.

5) Not in the bit I quoted, but "it just gives groups you can be violent to" strikes me as a mighty weird way to look at things.  Are you genuinely claiming that a purpose of Islam is to create non-Muslims?  That's...that really couldn't be less true - do you think one of the purposes of the police is to create criminals?  If not that, though, how does Islam give those groups? 

6) It is, obviously, a minority of Muslims involved in systematic violence.  Does the fact that that majority can exist within the umbrella of Islam mean that Islam itself can't be peaceful?  Is this a failure of Islam to curb those aggresive instincts in that group as it has for all other Muslims? 

I dunno.  I get that it was a glib throwaway comment, but (remark about "give a group to be violent to" aside) I think there might be something interesting and relevant there.

Online DarkAngel111

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #319 on: October 30, 2014, 05:17:00 AM »
Actually you have justified the point we have been making by saying Humans are not Violent some are doesn't mean that humans by nature are violent.

The Same thing is what we have been saying for Muslims. Because if a few thousand people are killing they do not represent the religion Just as few Criminals or Warlords, don't represent All of humanity.

Online Vergil Tanner

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #320 on: October 30, 2014, 06:41:43 AM »
1) That relies on one specific definition of peace.  Why does a religion of peace curb aggressive instincts rather than, say, develop a warrior culture and kill all of its opponents to achieve "peace through lack of enemies".  Granted, that sounds more like a DnD religion than anything that could exist in the real world, but the fact remains that yours isn't the only definition of peace.

Peace: A state or period in which there is no war
Whilst I agree that peace CAN be achieved through killing everybody who disagrees with you, I highly doubt that that was the intent of the question, or the meaning of the phrase, haha. I mean, can you really call a religion "peaceful" if it seeks to murder everybody who refuses to agree with them? Because what if they fail? Then they've just got one great whopping war on their hands, and they have failed to bring about peace. I don't have my own specific definition of peace; I use the actual definition. Words have meanings, and as soon as we start throwing them about as if they could mean other conceptual things, that's when words start to lose their impact as a whole. I grant you that "peace" needs better definition, but in my mind, something that seeks to gain peace through visiting violence upon others is not an ideology of peace. Within the Quran specifically, there are justifications for attacking other people. If it was a religion of peace, it would say something more like "Leave people alone unless they attack you first." But it doesn't say that; it actively condones killing the infidels.

2) Most Western religions believe in man as a direct product of God.  Unless we allow an imperfect God, those aggressive urges are there "deliberately".  Why would a religion seek to minimise them?  To phrase it another way, why do religions seek to minimise them.  Or at least condemn them.  Once again we find ourselves at "Why does sin exist", the question that won't die.

The Abrahamic religions by and large don't teach that violence was a intention of God/s; Adam and Eve ate the apple against God's wishes, and then Cain murdered Abel against Gods wishes, etc etc etc. The easy answer to your question is that very few religions (western, at least) were written in one sitting by the same author, so there are a lot of plotholes and contradictions within these texts. The cynical answer is that the Abrahamic religions in particular (Christianity, Judaism and Islam) seek to make their followers feel guilty about their impulses in order to exploit that guilt. To offer an analogy, religions like Islam and Christianity tell you that they've poisoned you, and then offer you what they claim is the cure. To answer your second question, "why does Sin exist," I will go on record and say that I don't think it does - the idea of "Original Sin" is utterly abhorrent and immoral to my mind - but it exists within religion to give them a way of manipulating their followers. Might not have been the original intention, but it's how it's used far, far too often. When people deconvert from religions, the fear of hell stays far, far longer than the disappointment of "losing" heaven.

3) Does a religion have to be 100% peaceful to be a "religion of peace"?  The US is a capitalist society despite not everything being 100% capitalist, Bangladesh is a poor nation despite not everyone being poor.

This is true, but when one of the central tenants is "You believe in this god or you die," it can hardly be called a peaceful religion. To flip the table, not all Romans were warmongering Imperialists; many of the peasants couldn't give a fig leaf over what was happening in Gaul, they had fields to till. And yet we still say that the Roman Empire was imperialistic because it took part in imperialistic actions more often than not. Similarly, Islam preaches war and intolerance more often than it preaches the opposite. It preaches peace within Islam, but only so that they can better wage war on the non-believers.

4) Is Islam purportedly a religion of peace or the religion of peace.  I've seen it both ways but it makes a massive difference.

I would say neither. And the second option - the - suggests unflinching determination to convert everybody. It makes it sound like it's the only way, which automatically puts them at odds with everybody who disagrees with them...which therefore makes it less peaceful. A peaceful religion would seek to increase tolerance and understanding between different groups, not exacerbate those differences to the point of open conflict.

5) Not in the bit I quoted, but "it just gives groups you can be violent to" strikes me as a mighty weird way to look at things.  Are you genuinely claiming that a purpose of Islam is to create non-Muslims?  That's...that really couldn't be less true - do you think one of the purposes of the police is to create criminals?  If not that, though, how does Islam give those groups? 

No, that is nowhere near what I was implying. The first recourse is to attempt conversion. But the Quran - like the bible - actively says that if they don't convert or try to convince you that this religion is wrong, you are to execute them. The hardline Muslims in Afghanistan? They are following the Qoran to the letter. First: Convert. If that doesn't succeed? Kill. That doesn't sound like a just, fair, peaceful ideology to me. "Murder everybody who disagrees with me" is not tolerant in the least. There are two purposes of Islam: Create new Muslims, and kill the ones who refuse to become Muslims because they're evil. Rather than "Create non muslims," one of the purposes is to "KILL non-Muslims that refuse to convert."

6) It is, obviously, a minority of Muslims involved in systematic violence.  Does the fact that that majority can exist within the umbrella of Islam mean that Islam itself can't be peaceful?  Is this a failure of Islam to curb those aggresive instincts in that group as it has for all other Muslims?

Doesn't matter. We're not talking about whether Muslims are peaceful, we're talking about Islam itself, absent its followers. What does Islam actually teach? The fact that there are Muslims that do good are more a testament to the fact that there are good people that are Muslims, rather than the wholesomeness of the Muslim Faith itself. The followers are largely irrelevant to the discussion; as I say, the question isn't "Are Muslims Peaceful," it's "Is Islam a peaceful religion?" And the only way we can judge that is by looking at what it actually says rather than how people justify it...and when you look at what it teaches, you cannot come to the conclusion that it's a nice, tolerant, peaceful and progressive religion. It's misogynistic, racist, xenophobic, intolerant and violent. That is what the Qoran teaches in regards to the "Non Believers," and that is how it should be judged.

I want to make clear here: I'm not having a go at Muslims. I'm having a go at Islam. I can dislike an ideology and not mind the practitioners, much like I don't really rate Christianity either, but don't really have anything against most Christians. Just thought I would clarify, haha.

The Same thing is what we have been saying for Muslims. Because if a few thousand people are killing they do not represent the religion Just as few Criminals or Warlords, don't represent All of humanity.

I agree, but as I mentioned above, what the followers do is largely irrelevant to the intent and teachings of the ideology itself. I will happily admit that it's only the minority of Muslims killing people, but that minority is right about what the Qoran teaches. And I would say that this argument of "Well, that's only the minority" enables that minority. Because the more the moderates defend their religion and say "Oh no, it doesn't REALLY say that," the more it acts as a shield for the religion to continue spreading and radicalisation to continue happening. I'm not saying get rid of religion - that would be stupid and oppressive - but I am saying that we should recognise that the Abrahamic religions, at least, are not nice, fluffy, tolerant things that should be held up as paragons of virtue and morality. Because regardless of how modern apologists twist the words to try and make it seem that way, they are archaic, regressive, oppressive teachings that we would largely be better off without. *shrug*


But back to the topic at hand:

The fact that Muslims do good does not mean that Islam is good. The Qoran, when read in isolation and discounting the hoops that people try and jump through to make it seem nice, is a very brutal and bloody book.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2014, 06:44:39 AM by Vergil Tanner »

Online DarkAngel111

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #321 on: October 30, 2014, 06:58:52 AM »

I agree, but as I mentioned above, what the followers do is largely irrelevant to the intent and teachings of the ideology itself. I will happily admit that it's only the minority of Muslims killing people, but that minority is right about what the Qoran teaches. And I would say that this argument of "Well, that's only the minority" enables that minority. Because the more the moderates defend their religion and say "Oh no, it doesn't REALLY say that," the more it acts as a shield for the religion to continue spreading and radicalisation to continue happening. I'm not saying get rid of religion - that would be stupid and oppressive - but I am saying that we should recognise that the Abrahamic religions, at least, are not nice, fluffy, tolerant things that should be held up as paragons of virtue and morality. Because regardless of how modern apologists twist the words to try and make it seem that way, they are archaic, regressive, oppressive teachings that we would largely be better off without. *shrug*


But back to the topic at hand:

The fact that Muslims do good does not mean that Islam is good. The Qoran, when read in isolation and discounting the hoops that people try and jump through to make it seem nice, is a very brutal and bloody book.

IF we are to take that what muslims do good does not reflect their religion then how can you say what they do Bad reflects religion?.

Because when Majority is doing good they too are in line with the teachings of the Qoran, would that not make it Largely a religion of Peace?.


Also when you say muslims defend their religions they do so with qoutes. and References. Which are always in Context.
Most of the violence that has been put in the name of qoran has either been qouted out of context or made up.

You need to realize that Native arabic Speakers realize that some parts of the qoran are Qouting what happened back in the day, and some parts are qouting what a muslim should do.


I personally take offense when anyone says that world would be better off without a religion, either it be Islam or Christianity or any other religion. That is not for you to say, and those are opinions one should keep to themselves and not flaunt in a public Forum.

Online Vergil Tanner

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #322 on: October 30, 2014, 07:17:34 AM »
IF we are to take that what muslims do good does not reflect their religion then how can you say what they do Bad reflects religion?.

Because if their religion specifically tells them to do the bad, but does not mention the good, we can safely say that their religion is not informing their good actions. Just like if a Christian supported Gay Marriage; their religion specifically says that homosexuality is evil, so they obviously can't be getting their pro-homosexual attitude from the bible. From what they've been told about the bible? Yes, possibly. But the bible itself? No.

Because when Majority is doing good they too are in line with the teachings of the Qoran, would that not make it Largely a religion of Peace?.

Except they're not. Most of the good that Muslims do is because they're good people, and their religion didn't make them that way. Go and actually read the Qoran; on pretty much every page, it is encouraging intolerance in one way or another. If a religion preaches intolerance, violence and war, then it is NOT a religion of peace regardless of how much you twist the words to try and fit modern standards. As I say; the Quran does not preach tolerance and peace. Quite the opposite. What people are told about the Quran is nowhere near the truth. It is just as violent and immoral as the bible.

Also when you say muslims defend their religions they do so with qoutes. and References. Which are always in Context.

No, they're not. In my experience Muslim apologists are exactly the same as Christian apologists; they cite a quote out of context, completely ignoring the fact that in another part of their book, it makes a qualifier that gets you out of whatever good rule was cited. They use linguistic tricks and misdirection, and either ignore or even try and justify the bad parts.

Most of the violence that has been put in the name of qoran has either been qouted out of context or made up.

Wrong. Sorry, but you're wrong. I could go through and start posting nasty, horrible quotes, but I'll post a couple of links that have a collection of them that I've managed to dig up on Google.
http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/quran/023-violence.htm
http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/quran/int/long.html
You need to actually go and read the Quran, because it's obvious that you haven't.

You need to realize that Native arabic Speakers realize that some parts of the qoran are Qouting what happened back in the day, and some parts are qouting what a muslim should do.

That's effectively the same defence as "You're quoting it out of context!" The fact is, the Quran preaches violence and intolerance, and there is no way to get around that. It's like when Christians try and excuse slavery in the bible by saying that it was a "different type" of slavery.


I personally take offense when anyone says that world would be better off without a religion, either it be Islam or Christianity or any other religion. That is not for you to say, and those are opinions one should keep to themselves and not flaunt in a public Forum.

Well, take offense. That's your prerogative, but in a public forum I am allowed to state my opinion just as much as you are whether you like it or not. As long as I am not inciting hatred or violence, I can say what I think and it is not your place to tell me that I shouldn't. And for the record, I never said that the world would be better off without religion - I specifically stated that I didn't think religion should be gotten rid of - but that we would be better off if we realised that the bible and Quran specifically are not decent, moral books. Why isn't it for me to say? It's my opinion, and I have just as much right to air it in a public forum as you have a right to say yours. I disagree with you, but I am not going to try and silence you. "I disagree with what you have to say, but will defend to the death your right to say it." A sentiment that is the foundation of our free-speech laws and, by the way, is not present in the Quran or the bible.

You have your opinion. Good for you. You can say it as much as you want. You can disagree with me as much as you want. HOWEVER, don't presume to assert that I should shut up and not voice my opinion because you personally are offended by it. Either all opinions are allowed to be voiced (unless inciting hatred, intolerance or violence), or none are. That's the deal. So please don't tell me that I'm not allowed to voice my opinion in a public space when I have every right to do so.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2014, 07:21:26 AM by Vergil Tanner »

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Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #323 on: October 30, 2014, 07:27:44 AM »
Peace: A state or period in which there is no war

Ironically, you seem to have responded to my pointing out there are other definitions by doubling down on your chosen one.

peace
piːs/Submit
noun
1.
freedom from disturbance; tranquillity.
"he just wanted to drink a few beers in peace"
synonyms:   tranquillity, calm, calmness, restfulness, peace and quiet, peacefulness, quiet, quietness, quietude, silence, soundlessness, hush, noiselessness, stillness, still; More

the state of being free from civil disorder.
"police action to restore peace"
synonyms:   law and order, lawfulness, order, peacefulness, peaceableness, harmony, harmoniousness, accord, concord, amity, amicableness, goodwill, friendship, cordiality, non-aggression, non-violence; More

a ceremonial handshake or kiss exchanged during a service in some Churches (now usually only in the Eucharist), symbolizing Christian love and unity.

etc.

Words do have meanings, yes.  That 's' at the end signifies there is more than one.  Insisting that we only use the one you want to when others are perfectly valid is troublesome.

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The Abrahamic religions by and large don't teach that violence was a intention of God/s; Adam and Eve ate the apple against God's wishes, and then Cain murdered Abel against Gods wishes, etc etc etc.

Errrrrm, this is incredibly untrue.  You even, in the same post as you made this point, talk about holy texts encouraging violence.  God intended people to commit violence.  I think you need to come at this from a radically different angle, because this one is mistaken. 

Christianity (and Judaism to a lesser extent), as the religion I know best, specifically states, inter alia:

I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

I can provide you with a lot more from Christianity, some of which are applicable to Judaism.  It's actually a really interesting topic.  PM me if you want to discuss it.  but long story short, no.  You're wrong here.


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This is true, but when one of the central tenants is "You believe in this god or you die," it can hardly be called a peaceful religion.

Well, now all your doing is insisting on your definition of peace once again.

Quote
No, that is nowhere near what I was implying. The first recourse is to attempt conversion. But the Quran - like the bible - actively says that if they don't convert or try to convince you that this religion is wrong, you are to execute them. The hardline Muslims in Afghanistan? They are following the Qoran to the letter. First: Convert. If that doesn't succeed? Kill. That doesn't sound like a just, fair, peaceful ideology to me. "Murder everybody who disagrees with me" is not tolerant in the least. There are two purposes of Islam: Create new Muslims, and kill the ones who refuse to become Muslims because they're evil. Rather than "Create non muslims," one of the purposes is to "KILL non-Muslims that refuse to convert."

You're arguing against yourself.  You claim that "there are a lot of plotholes and contradictions within [the Qur'an]" but then go on, above, to say the Qur'an claims x,y,z.  In good faith, I'm assuming you're unaware of the various verses that preach exactly the opposite, but I suggest you dig a little.

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Doesn't matter. We're not talking about whether Muslims are peaceful, we're talking about Islam itself, absent its followers.

There is literally no such thing as Islam absent Muslims.  Islam is entirely a construct of people.  I was under the impression you thought that as well?  Apologies if I was wrong, I had it in my head you weren't religious.   

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I agree, but as I mentioned above, what the followers do is largely irrelevant to the intent and teachings of the ideology itself. I will happily admit that it's only the minority of Muslims killing people, but that minority is right about what the Qoran teaches. And I would say that this argument of "Well, that's only the minority" enables that minority. Because the more the moderates defend their religion and say "Oh no, it doesn't REALLY say that," the more it acts as a shield for the religion to continue spreading and radicalisation to continue happening. I'm not saying get rid of religion - that would be stupid and oppressive - but I am saying that we should recognise that the Abrahamic religions, at least, are not nice, fluffy, tolerant things that should be held up as paragons of virtue and morality. Because regardless of how modern apologists twist the words to try and make it seem that way, they are archaic, regressive, oppressive teachings that we would largely be better off without. *shrug*

As discussed above, you seem very unclear on whether you think holy texts, the Qur'an specifically, give multiple contradictory messages or one clear path. Are you able to expand on this a little?  Quite honestly, it looks very much like you claim "multiple contradictory" when that would make a religion look 'bad' and "single, clear" when that would.  I hope not.



In general, as I said, I haven't yet decided whether I agree with that statement (religions of peace would seek to curb aggressive urges) or not.  It feels right, but I'm not sure because niggles above.  Basically, I don't think the statement is meaningful, that there's no simple, unambiguous way of reading it that an agreement or disagreement can be hooked on to.  It's woolly beyond the point a meaning can be extracted. 

I think its the start of something, but not the end.  Phrasing along the lines of  - and I offer this as a step along the way not an endpoint - "A religion which didn't want to encourage violence would recognise and seek to negate or refocus innate aggression" though there are obviously still problems with that.

Online DarkAngel111

Re: Is Islam Really a Religion of Peace?
« Reply #324 on: October 30, 2014, 07:46:25 AM »
Haha, you cannot be more Blinded by hate for a religion if yo say that The quran does not tell muslims to do good.

I doubt that you have read the quran. Because you have to google things to find them. Let me tell you as much is internet a tool of knowledge so is it a tool for misguidance and propaganda. Next time you want to look for a verse of a quran find a site which has the FULL version of quran on it. Not just a  *Single line* stating a violent act. I have previously in this topic found more then once that people had qouted verses out of context. Sadly the Link you sent is restricted here for some reason I will have to restart my laptop to get around it but until then let me tell you a few things.


1. I have Read the Quran, I am a Muslim, I know the Quran tells us to Sacrifice our wealth to the poor, treat our servants as we would our own family. And when giving charity give what we would wear ourselves rather than something of poor quality.
It goes on to tell us to treat our parents with respect, Always take care of our neighbors, and the list goes on.
So clearly when you say Islam has not told any of its followers to do any good. you are clearly wrong. And you have no idea what quran says save for few things you have read in Anti Islamic Sites. Don't go telling me, that what they say about quran is no what it really says. I have never said that there aren't violent verses in the quran, But If you want to understand the meaning of them you need to read the chapters. The problem is Most of the people don't even know basic history of Islam. Maybe you can read a few Cambridge Approved books on Islamic history, there are over 400 pages of proof read history there. Maybe that will help you understand the religion better?.

2. You went on to say clearly I had not read the Quran. I have read the Quran. And for the last 7 years do so every year. With translation and explanation.  So I probably know more about the Quran than you do.

3rd. Just managed to open one of the links you had pasted. If you see, that they have qouted Single Verses Out of Complete Chapters. If you see the markings at the end, It seems to be skipping 2-4 verses in between, Would you like me to Find the whole context for these verses?, I won't even explain them to you, But you will realize yourself, that When you are reading quran in bits and pieces. Its considered *OUT OF CONTEXT*.

If you don't realize that, clearly there is no point arguing.