The intolerance of faith – Lars Hedegaard assassination attempt

Lars Hedegaard

Lars Hedegaard. Photograph: Henning Bagger/EPA.

This is what the Religious conservatives of Islam (not only Islam however) fear. A 70 year old man exercising his freedom of Speech to criticise their opinons but then they also fear young girls like Malala Yousuf that just want an education. In both very different instances a gun shot is what it comes down to. The Religion of peace? Not so much when left in the hands of fanatics with whom bigotry and totalitarianism are core values.

A word in balance must be said here though, it is not helpful to essentialise all Muslims as being of the same intolerant creed. Some are moderate believers taking only the good from their faith and using it to bind community.  The moderates would say that Islamists performing these disgusting acts are not representative of the Islamic faith that they are the wrong “type” of Muslim. This begs the question, who speaks for Islam and what is the right kind of Muslim? This begs the question, who speaks for Islam and what is the right kind of Muslim? Sadly there is no Papacy to hold to account in Islam, there are fragmented religious ideological schools of thought, and the belief in the apparently immutable words of an opportunistic, illiterate, probably plagiaristic nomad that can be scrutinised. How then can this be held under the magnifying glass when it seems to be by definition insulting or blasphemy to merely question it, and produces a violent reaction when criticism is attempted? Such apologism and denunciation of a “type” of Muslim by the community is not helpful, and the maintenance of that version of the faith which is in reality used as the justification for such repungnant acts is not either. I am afraid that until the Muslim world sorts out the wrong “type” of Muslims interpretting  the Quran in the “wrong” way (is it not a sin to try and interpret the incontrovertible word of God anyway?) within their own cultural civil war, this excuse cannot be claimed effectively. It seems to me that the good of faith can be preserved through engaging in a frank discussion as to its place in the modern world, however, the faithful must be willing to let go of the more problematic aspects such as the supernatural claim to legislate in their interests: Ridiculous truth claims to reality, anti-women, anti-gay, death penalty  for apostasy, convert of kill bits. Relinquishing all the dangerous, unequal, and totalitarian aspects would leave us with only the good that we have decided upon by social consensus. Will this ever happen?

Danish Critic of Islam attacked by gun man – The Guardian

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About glencarrigan

Glen Carrigan is a Neuropsychology Postgraduate Researcher and Senior Research Assistant in Clinical Practice at The University of Central Lancashire. Glen is a public speaker, humanist, science presenter, ex-soldier, and social and political activist with an interest in all things related to equality, science, education, and politics.

Posted on February 13, 2013, in Humanism and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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