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contortions are more likely

Reader comment on item: Q&A: Remaking a Religion
in response to reader comment: Unicorn or Old Goat?

Submitted by Erich W (United States), Dec 31, 2010 at 22:56

I would say that even weird contortions of the mind, in which Mohammed and Allah are entirely re-defined in spite of all textual evidence to the contrary, in order to make life more livable for Muslim and non-Muslim alike, are more likely than the vanishing of Islam (or of the Arabic language)...however so beneficial such a vanishing act might be. Wishing it, even warring for it, will not make it so. People don't change religious identity symbols easily, but their thinking about those symbols changes profoundly over time, depending on their pressing interests. The logic of words (such as what Islam "means") falters under the logic of human life. I suppose there will always be those who hold resolutely consistent and murderous precepts out of a perverse commitment to the old logic of Islamic Jihad. In time, perhaps this position can be made to appear to all, as silly as it is. Meanwhile we have around 1.5 billion Muslims to live with, in a fast globalizing world. How do we live with them? That is the question. Selling them on good music is actually not a bad idea, to start with, though our tastes differ.

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