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Conversion is indeed an option

Reader comment on item: Bibliography – My Writings on Arabs Appreciating Israel
in response to reader comment: why not conversion Godfrey deBouillon

Submitted by Prashant (United States), Feb 11, 2012 at 16:41

Dear Dr Pipes:

The reader Godfrey deBouillon suggested that conversion to Judaism should be offered to pro-Israel palestinians living in Israel. To this suggestion reader Meir Samel responded by saying that conversion is not necessary because Palestinians can live in Israel as good Israeli citizens. In our modern world people must learn to coexist and prosper together. Most people belonging to non-Islamic religions have indeed learned to do so. Lot of us follow our religions and spirituality in private. We do not make every religious issue a world-wide social cause. And we bring our religious perspectives to common social problems (for example whether abortion is right or wrong is not a Catholic or Christian problem alone).

However, Islam is diffeerent. In Islam the religion is practiced on the street, there is no local issues; everything becomes a world wide problem and there is no separation of church and state. Allegiance to Islamic ummah easily crosses the national boundaries. Certain principles of Islamic doctrine clearly go against the common standards followed by most non-muslim humans (for example, non-symmetry in rules about marriage, non-symmetry in laws of inheritance for men and women, non-symmetry in laws about religious conversion, non-symmetry in the rights of minorities in Islamic and non-Islamic states). In such a prevailing situation, in my opinion, conversion is not a bad idea afterall. The non-Islamic world has falsely assumed that it is impossible to convert a Muslim out of Islam. Even if a Muslim converts to a different religion, we tend to believe that it is a false conversion (consider the case of President Obama).

So, if Islam allows muslims to live in a moderate, open minded fashion, there is nothing wrong with that. If some some Muslims believe that Islam forces them to go against their core beliefs to a level of discomfort, conversion to other religions must be considered as a viable option.

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