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Respect for others

Reader comment on item: "A Corrective to the Pipes Worldview"?

Submitted by J Weinberg (United States), Aug 29, 2005 at 13:20

Many Muslims believe that "converting the world to one's point of view is widespread and 'a natural human desire.'" It is certainly normal to believe that one's point of view is better than others (else one would change their point of view, no?). However, it is not universal to believe that one's point of view is the only valid one. It is also not universal to believe that one is obligated to convert people to one's own world view. Finally, it is far, far from universal to believe that one should impose one's own world view on others.

The Jewish view, for instance, is that your religion is good (for you) if it brings you closer to G-d and a life of morality. An observant Jew would never seek to convert a non-Jew. Except for a few notable exceptions, a Jew would not seek to impose their religion on nonbelievers in any respect. Even in Mea Shearim, where driving through the neighborhood on Shabbat might incur wrath, no one cares if you drive somewhere else on Shabbat.

It's upsetting that Muslims have a hard time accepting as equals others who have different world views. It's doubly upsetting that they project that irritating trait onto others.

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