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Literal interpretations

Reader comment on item: Talking Freely about the Enemy
in response to reader comment: Why Geert Wilders is Right and Dr. Pipes Wrong on Islam

Submitted by Mycos (Canada), Mar 12, 2009 at 23:38

... I must say somethng about the position adopted by Wilders, Singha et al.

Why do they keep insisting that all Musims must be fundamentalist and must read the Quran literally? When the Torah and Christian Bible are read literally they are both capable of justifying grievous violations of human devency, indeed passages in the Book Of Numbers can be said to encourage forced slavery and pedophilia.

But the vast majority of Christians no longer read them that way, that is except for some crackpot denominations in the US and Israel who read these texts in a way that is at odds with the vast majority of others of their faith. And those denominations all denounce other Christians and Jews who don't read it that way as not being true Christians or Jews as well....exactly the way Wilders insists Musims must read their text or not be true Muslims.

Either Wilders is extremely racist in supposing that Muslims MUST interpret the Quran litterally because they don't have the intellect to do otherwise, or Wilders is himself lacking the intellect to undersatand that most Muslims DO NOT read it literally and yet are still considered good Muslims by the majority...which is all that really matters. Sure. The orthodox among them will insists that a literal interpretation is the only way it can be read and to do otherwise is apostasy, but like the majority of Jews or the majority of Christians who shake their head at the Rev. Phelps and the venomous snake-handlers, they all know that such an interpretation is incompatible with reality.

So why do they insist that only Muslims do not have the liberty of interpreting the Quran any way they want? Why does Wilders interperet it literally when most Muslims themselves do not? Why the double standard? Is it because they are Arab, Indian, or Asiatic for the most part? And saying that the Quran forbids reading it any other way, means that he accepts that only the Quran means what it says when it makes such a statement while giving the Holy Bible short shrift when it says things like "Only through me shall you find the Kingdom of God" or "I am the way, the truth, and the light". Not being familiar with Judiasm, I'm sure that somewhere in the Torah there is a passage that proclaims that only through studying Judaic texts can one find G-d, as well.

Indeed, it appears there's two kinds of Muslim extremists in the world. Those that read the Quran literally, and those who insist that everyone else must do so, even tho they themselves aren't even Muslim! I suggest it is not a coincidence that both kinds insist on literal interpretations.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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