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Definition vs Practice

Reader comment on item: Islamists, Get Out
in response to reader comment: Taqiyya is a deception modailty used by Shiites and Sunnis?

Submitted by Prashant (United States), Jan 28, 2012 at 18:38

Dear Dr Pipes:

Justin Case substantially narrowed the definition of Taqiyya to make it look good. He defined it as "hiding one's faith if threatened with bodily harm or death". What could be wrong in Taqiyya if it is defined in this narrow form? When bodily harm or death is feared (aka self-defense), even killing is allowed let alone hiding the faith.

So under its narrowest definition Taqiyya is not only not bad but also it may be admirable (just like the word Jihad). But if hypocrisy and dishonesty to advance your faith is the issue (whether we call it Taqiyya or some thing else) plenty of it can be seen in the behavior of Islamists living in the western and other democracies. Here are some examples:

1) Islamists leave no opportunity to present themselves as messengers of peace, freedom, and democracy when living in the west. But these issues lose all their values when they need to be applied in the Islamic societies. I call this behavior Taqiyya as well.

2) Exploiting democratic freedoms to demand more for themselves: Demanding special privileges at public places, running Islamic schools on public money and misrepresenting them as secular schools, demanding separate and special times for prayers while calling all other religions infidel or sinful.

3) Keeping quiet when Muslims are prepetrators of injustice but over-enthusiastic assertion of one's own rights (Copts in Egypt vs. Muslims in Israel).

So Qaqiyya, like Jihad, is pretty harmless when defined. But it may be pretty dangerous when practised.


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