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Need religious pluralism

Reader comment on item: In Mideast, Bet on a Strong Horse
in response to reader comment: New Age Islam

Submitted by Rita Datta (India), Jan 26, 2011 at 00:26

What venom, Surinder97. Perhaps you were a victim of the Partition, I don't know. But before lashing out at Muslims, please reflect on the viciousness of the caste system in Hindu society that treated human beings worse than animals. What is more, the concept of rebirth LEGITIMISED the practice and ruled out revolt by blaming the low castes themselves for their status! And please don't say the caste system isn't sanctioned by Hinduism because a late hymn in the Rig Veda does exactly that.

I've just discovered New Age Islam and feel it is trying to do something extremely important. The kind of intolerance shown by the jihadists was actually thought ideal behaviour in Christianity, too, at one time. Remember, the punishment for heresy used to be burning at the stake. Many Protestants faced such an end in Catholic countries. Don't forget their intolerance towards the Jews. But then, the Jews also divided the world into two categories: Jews and Gentiles. Unfortunately, despite the atrocities they suffered at the hands of the Christians, especially in Germany, their treatment of Arabs in Israel is that of Nazis towards them. Just read the Jewish author, Susan Nathan's Other Side of Israel to verify what I'm saying.

As a Bengali Hindu who's mixed with Bengali Muslims closely I can't help but despair at Surinder's remarks. And, having been a teacher, I had the chance to interact with numerous Muslim girls who'll make a great difference to the community as mothers and professionals, I promise. As an Indian I feel proud of our plural cultural in which pre-Aryan tribal, Hindu, Jain, Buddhist, Islamic and Christian influences have mingled richly. That's what makes India unique. Islam is going through a great churning from which it will, I'm sure, emerge stronger. And that strength will increase the tolerance of the community, too.

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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