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Depends who sets the agenda

Reader comment on item: The Evil Isn't Islam

Submitted by J Joel (United States), Aug 10, 2002 at 16:40

Dear Dr Pipes,
I have been reading the responses to your article, tha vast majority of them negative, but I must say I still agree with what you have written.

Islam has taken on many forms in its history and the question as to whether Islam is peaceful or not really depends which school of thought is setting the standards and pioneering the agendas. Some forms of Islam are definitely peaceful, such as the Mutazilites, Murjites, and the overhwhelming majority of the Sufis. During the Middle Ages, the Mutazilites set the agenda for the Islamic world. Mutazilites believed that the Koran was created by God in response to historical conditions and that God's word in the Koran would be supplemented by further pronouncements. Human beings could access God's pronouncements through the Divinely given capacity of reason. Mutazilites were every bit as devout as orthodox Muslims but they shaped their Islamic tradition around reason and logic. Even the Hadiths were determined to be reliable if they made sense via reason, for Allah would not give mankind anything unreasonable. Plato, Plotinus, and especially Aristotle figured big in Mutazilite thought. The Mutazilites were supported by the government, which is why they became decadent and lost touch with the masses, leading to their fall from power. This shows you why government sponsored religion is always a bad idea. But when the Mutazilites were at the helm of the Islamic world, Islamdom was the envy of all the world, the center of learning, science, and philosophy, where religious minorities lived side by side with Muslims in peace.

Today, however, the Wahhabis are the ones setting the agenda. They believe in a literal interpretation of the Koran, in absolute obedience to the Sharia, and that only the ulama or clerics have the right to interpret. Wahhabis are very intolerant of alternative versions of Islam as well as non-Muslim faiths and they have arraigned themselves against Wester, Hindu, and other civilizations. Wahhabis and their related sects support and finance terrorism worldwide with their enormous oil reserves. They train thousands of clerics and leaders to take over Islamic institutions worldwide from within and Wahhabicize them. Thanks to the Wahhabis and related groups, the Islamic world is backward, superstitious, hateful, and intolerant.

What we must do is, adter we destroy Saddam Hussein and the mullahs in Iran, we need to go after Saudi Arabia, the world center of Wahhabism and destroy Wahhabism worldwide together with its related sects, like the Deobandis. We need to encourage and promote those Muslim leaders preaching alternative versions of Islam (Like Sheikh Hisham Kabbani of the Islamic Supreme Council of America, Imam Abdurahman Wahhid in Indonesia (though the sect he was a part of is being Wahhabicized.), and Abdul Haqq Palazzi of the Italian Muslim Society.). All forms of Islam that have peaceful and tolerant theologies, like most of the Sufi orders and any who wish to reestablish Mutazilism, should be promoted.

As for the Wahhabis and related groups, no quarter. Destroy them entirely or they will destroy us.
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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