Friday, October 05, 2007

The Dream of Moderate Islam

A reader mentions the debate surrounding Ayaan’s Reason interview. The question is whether there is or can be a moderate Islam. In the debate between Daniel Pipes and Lawrence Auster, I’ve taken Auster’s side that Islam can’t be moderate. I’ve discussed it further here and suggested that Muslims can moderate by becoming secular. In the recent Reason interview Ayaan is clear:

Reason: So when even a hard-line critic of Islam such as Daniel Pipes says, "Radical Islam is the problem, but moderate Islam is the solution," he's wrong?

Hirsi Ali: He's wrong. Sorry about that.

Spencer believes (as does Pipes) that a moderate Islam can be invented to which Hugh Fitzgerald says: “Vaste programme, monsieur.” Squaring the circle is more than ambitious, it’s impossible. Auster believes that Ayaan has changed. I believe she’s just clarifying her evolving thoughts by following their logical implications. In either case, she has arrived.

Update: The full Ayaan Hirsi Ali interview.

18 Comments:

Blogger Mr. Beamish the Kakistocrat said...

"Peace be upon the one who follows the right path! I call you to Islam. Accept my call, and you shall be unharmed. I am God's Messenger to mankind, and the word shall be carried out upon the miscreants. If, therefore, you recognize Islam, I shall bestow power upon you. But if you refuse to accept Islam, your power shall vanish, my horses shall camp on the expanse of your territory and my prophecy shall prevail in your kingdom."

-Prophet Muhammad's moderate death threat to the Julanda brothers of the Omani

10/6/07, 3:00 AM  
Blogger Ronbo said...

Excellent article, Jason!

REprinted HERE

We should take some comfort in the fact that over 80% of Muslims either don't take their religion seriously, or are MINOS (Muslims In Name Only)...because the real true JIHADISTS Muslims are running around lose about the world trying to kill anyone who disagrees with their DEVOUT worship of Allah.

"ALLAH CRAPBAR" say I!

Cheers, Ronbo

10/6/07, 5:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jason writes "The question is whether there is or can be a moderate Islam." This is ordinarily answered in the negative, on the basis of its behavior. I submit that a "moderate Islam" is a contradiction in terms, because its very nature is that of absolute submission. The only way to ensure such submission is by the sword, for reasoning, even if it concluded that we should submit to Allah, leaves that decision to the individual.

It is not happenstance that Islam behaves destructively, for its essence is the subordination of the higher man to barbarism. Were one to seek truth, justice, moderation, etc., why would he need Islam? That would be looking for love in all the wrong places.

Weingarten

10/6/07, 9:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Spencer believes (as does Pipes) that a moderate Islam can be invented

I know that Pipes believes this, however I'm confused with regards to Spencer's position - what is it in this article that suggests he believes in the possibility of a moderate version of Islam?

An off-topic question: Does Weingarten have his own blog?

10/6/07, 10:14 AM  
Blogger Mark said...

There is no such thing as moderate Islam. Islam is, by definition, immoderate.

There may be many 'Muslims' who are moderate; but they are Muslims only in name, only by accident of birth if you will.

But a true Muslim would not recognize these people as true Muslims.

True Muslims are people who follow the teachings of prophet Muhammad very closely. To follow his teachings makes one, by definition, immoderate.

How, for example, can one be exhorted to slay the unbelievers and then use the term 'moderate' for such people?

I subscribe to the view that Islam cannot be reformed. There is but one true Islam. Any 'good' Muslim will tell you that. (Sunnis and Shiahs have differing definitions, of course.) So how presumptious is it for a Western kafir to suggest that a Muslim's religion can be reformed?

Islam, to make it acceptable to the West, would have to be transformed, not reformed. And that is not just a tall order - it's impossible!

Islam, as we all know here on this forum, is a 'religion' like no other. The Qur'an is said to be the literal 'word of Allah'. Therefore, to change even one syllable of the Qur'an is to commit heresy.

So how can anyone envision a time when such changes will be able to be made? Islam has never been reformed. Islam is not being reformed. And Islam will never be reformed. Period!

Any reformation of Islam will render the religion null and void. Islam is what it has been, is, and what it is going to be.

I do so wish that the media people and our disgracefully ignorant or lying politicians would get with the story before it is too late to save Western civilization. These people are a greater danger to the survival of the West than the Muslims themselves! They are living in Pollyannaland, and in so doing are endagering our liberty.

10/6/07, 1:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kudos to Mark, for writing:

"There is no such thing as moderate Islam. Islam is, by definition, immoderate.
To follow [Muhammad's] teachings makes one, by definition, immoderate.
Islam ... is a 'religion' like no other...Islam will never be reformed. Period!
...the media people and our disgracefully ignorant or lying politicians are a greater danger to the survival of the West than the Muslims themselves!"

I find it striking that Mark (as well as Jason) is able to say more in one letter, than our pundits, intelligentsia, and politicians are able to notice, despite tons of verbiage.


As an aside, I have no blog,

Weingarten

10/6/07, 2:34 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

Thanks, Anonymous. Much appreciated.

10/7/07, 1:43 AM  
Blogger Jason_Pappas said...

“… what is it in this article that suggests he [Spencer] believes in the possibility of a moderate version of Islam?”

Spencer says: “Daniel Pipes's formulation is valid only when it is understood that the moderate Islam that is the solution has to be invented -- it is not a traditional form of Islam.”

Mark Alexander and Allan Weingarten explain it well. Islam can’t be moderate.

If it is moderate it is no longer Islam; if it is Islam it is not moderate. Islam is what it is. I alluded to the contradiction when I said “Squaring the circle is more than ambitious, it’s impossible.” It violates the law of identity.

10/7/07, 1:35 PM  
Blogger Mr. Beamish the Kakistocrat said...

The call to have Muslims moderate Islam is essentially a call to pacify a martial philosophy. Islamic ideology is wedded to the concept of war for material gain.

Why create wealth when you can just steal it? If you sucessfully kill someone and take his gold and his women, obviously Allah has blessed you.

If you die trying to kill someone to take their gold and their women, well, at least you'll go to heaven.

10/8/07, 2:51 AM  
Blogger Always On Watch said...

And Ayaan Hirsi Ali has been left out to dry. Protection for her has been denied or withdrawn.

I'm worried about her safety.

As I see it, the only way to reform Islam is to excise significant portions of the Koran and the Haditha. If that step were taken, the result wouldn't be Islam anymore. Furthermore, any such miracle as the reform of Islam would take years, if not centuries--as did the Reformation and Counter Reformation, both of which involved a lot of bloodshed.

PS: Kudos to Mark for that outstanding comment.

10/8/07, 8:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Beamish makes a fine case for Islam: "Why create wealth when you can just steal it? If you successfully kill someone and take his gold and his women, obviously Allah has blessed you."

However, as a kakistocrat, he has left out its greatest virtue, namely guaranteeing that the worst men govern. If one leader is less destructive than another, his days are numbered.

Weingarten

10/8/07, 11:10 AM  
Blogger Mark said...

Thank you, Always. Your praise is always high in my eyes.

I'm sorry for my spelling errors, though. Those words should have read, 'endangering' and 'presumptuous.' I know that you know it; but I want you to know that I know it, too! :-)

What I don't know is the meaning of 'kakistocrat.' Can someone please explain?

10/8/07, 12:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mark, a 'kakistocracy' is a government by the worst men in the state. We may note that in a civilized society, rewards flow to those who contribute, while in a barbaric society, rewards go to those who destroy.

I am not clear as to how to characterize America in this regard. However, the public selects leaders on the basis of the benfits they promise to provide. That is a formula for leading to a kakistocracy (e.g., Hitler, Stalin).

Weingarten

10/8/07, 2:22 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

Weingarten:

Thank you for the explanation. Perhaps I should have known this; but on this side of the Pond, I have never heard this expression used. Thanks again.

10/8/07, 5:28 PM  
Blogger Mr. Beamish the Kakistocrat said...

Weingarten,

A kakistocrat is whatever my neutron bomb says it is, alright pal?

;-P

10/9/07, 6:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beamish:

I bow to your superior wisdom,

Weingarten

10/9/07, 9:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SPINNING WORDS

So those that call themselves
Christians, leave on the shelves
Their Gospels, rather turning
From Christ with vengeance burning
Fiercely in every breast,
Of his words making jest:
They worship God in
The same way as bin Laden.

Osama bin, you know he been
Articulate committing sin,
While Christians dumbly slap their shin
While shedding Christ from out his skin.

Christians they call themselves,
And prance around like elves,
But acting Christ´s embalmist
Resemble the Islamist,
Their vengeance taking not
As God´s--his words forgot--
But worship God in
The same way as bin Laden.

Osama bin, his beard is thin
Or fuller, so repeats the din,
The echoes dancing on a pin,
But no one heeds what his words spin.

10/12/07, 11:57 AM  
Blogger Justin Halter said...

I agree with you. Based on the choices inherent in the Koran itself,there is no such thing as moderate Islam. There may be moderate Muslims who don't take the Koran seriously, but they are condemned by the Koran itself as hypocrites bound for Hell.

10/13/07, 2:14 AM  

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