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In 1840 Alexis deTocqueville agreed with your premise

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Submitted by rICH (United States), Dec 19, 2006 at 11:47

On page 322 of Andre Jardin's Biography of Alexis de Tocqueville, published in 1984 by Farrar, Strauss Giroux, Tocqueville wrote (sorry if I did not quote the source properly) in 1840:

"I studied the Koran a great deal, mainly because of our position vis-a-vis the Muslim populations of Algeria and throughout the Near East. I must tell you that I came away from the study with the conviction that by and large there have been few religions in the world as deadly to men as that of Mohammed. As far as I can see it is the principal cause of the decadence so visible today in the Muslim world, and, though it is less absurd than the polytheism of old, its social and political tendencies are in my opinion infinitely more to be feared, and I therefore regard it as a form of decadence rather than a form of progress in relation to paganism itself."

Preceding this quote, the author states that "...Tocqueville was interested above all in studying the moral influence that a religion exercised on a society. The Christian spirit of American society made democracy possible there, while the Muslim morality that so profoundly impregnated minds and manners crushed man with its materialism and fatalism."

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