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  #101  
Old 12-02-2005, 09:52 AM
MMMMMM MMMMMM is offline
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Default Re: Where You Were, I Was

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"the reason Islamic societies have through many centuries tended towards totalitarian rule, and today so clearly do"

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There are no Muslim states today that could remotely be characterised as totalitarian. The only ones in recent history that arguably could have were Iraq (which was a secular, non-Islamic state), and Taliban Afghanistan.

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Nicky, I think you're picking bones over the exact definition of totalitarian. Call it "totalitarian-like", if you prefer. By the way, I'm curious: how do you NOT consider Saudi Arabia totalitarian? I think the only way to do that is to take an incredibly narrow view of the term: in Saudi Arabia, there is absolute rule, thought control, forced prayer 5 times a day, draconian laws and punishments, religious police roaming the streets...to me, that's "totalitarian." If it somehow misses your precise definition of the term, I suppose that's because I can't find a more apt word. Can you?
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  #102  
Old 12-02-2005, 09:56 AM
MMMMMM MMMMMM is offline
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Default Re: The Crusades

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I'll come back to your Quranic excerpts tonight or tomorrow; but let me quickly say firstly that context matters


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Always trying to find a way out of the plain meaning of the words aren't you? And like MMMMMM posted above and I commented on, the standard is not how you interpret it, but how Moslems do and act on it.


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The thing is, most Muslims are moderate enough to not really follow the Koran in its entirety (thankfully). However, the religious authorities of Islam generally take views that we would call "extreme." That's because the Koran itself contains prescriptions for thought and action which we would call "extreme."
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  #103  
Old 12-02-2005, 09:59 AM
BluffTHIS! BluffTHIS! is offline
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Default Re: Where You Were, I Was

nicky is a master of denying the facts so that one doesn't have to face the implications of same and act on them. Same type of reasoning that led to the appeasement of Hitler by euro leaders prior to WWII which allowed him to become a critical threat.
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  #104  
Old 12-02-2005, 10:05 AM
MMMMMM MMMMMM is offline
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Default Re: Where You Were, I Was

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"THEY believe man's only rightful freedom is to worship Allah and to behave as prescribed in the Koran."

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There's a bit of a contradiction there because the Qur'an gives people the freedom to worship other Gods, as has nearly ever Muslim-ruled state.


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That's a given or allowed freedom under Islamic law (with attached conditions and restrictions), but it's not considered really rightful, in their view. They believe that all infidels, including Jews and Christians, have turned away from Allah and are therefore doing wrong, and will pay a supreme penalty for their willful departure from Allah's will.

It is also questionable whether the restricted "freedom" you speak of applies to those such as Hindus who are not "people of the Book."
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  #105  
Old 12-02-2005, 10:12 AM
MMMMMM MMMMMM is offline
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Default Re: The Crusades

I've read much of it, Nicky, though that was long ago; lately I've been reading the Sura which is probably most warlike (Sura 9).

Why don't you and I both read the rest of it, and return to this aspect of the discussion in a few months, with fresh and fuller perspectives?
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  #106  
Old 12-02-2005, 10:22 AM
MMMMMM MMMMMM is offline
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Default Re: The Crusades

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"Maybe there is a great deal of debate about those things amongst ignorant Westerners, but not amongst imams and mullahs."


[/ QUOTE ] Who exactly you mean by "imams and mullahs" I'm not quite sure (Imams in Sunni Islam are simply prayer leaders), but I can categorically assure you that there is an enormous amount of debate on these topics amongst contemporary Muslim scholars.


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Islamic religious leaders. Pure scholars (as in Western universities, who are not Muslim themselves, and are not involved in the leading of prayers and so forth, do not count. I'm talking of people who have lived and breathed Islam all their lives, and who now teach it and lead prayers. Of course there are far fewer Westerners so heavily immersed in either Christianity or Islam).

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"In Islamic ideology there is no distinction between the sacred and the secular. Hence there is no distinction between secular government and religious rule--it is all the same, and it is all to follow the will of God. Therefore government under Islam has an absolute or totalitarian aspect that cannot ever be truly shaken loose."

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This is completely wrong. There are Muslims who advocate this kind of vision but to say that it is an uncontested integral aspect of Islam is incorrect. THere is no advice in the Quran on forms of government, religious or otherwise, and the "Islam as state and religion"/din wa dawla formulation is a modern one. The early caliphs' religious roles were unclear, and very quickly the caliphs ceased to have any real political power, so it is clear that this was also not true of most of Islamic history

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If all aspects of life are to be religious and in accordance with Allah's will, how could the aspect of governance rightly be any different? The Muslims who advocate this vision are correct, and are generally the most steeped in Islamic tradition, the imams and mullahs; those who have lived and breathed Islam all their lives.
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  #107  
Old 12-02-2005, 10:26 AM
MMMMMM MMMMMM is offline
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Default Re: The Crusades



"9.123 O you who believe! fight those of the unbelievers who are near to you and let them find in you hardness"

"9.5 So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush,then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them;surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful."


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But hey if they conquer you and you convert you get to live. What a deal!

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You could also possibly escape death by promising to never do anything to offend Islam or Muslims, paying an extortionate poll tax, and accepting a legal status that is secondary to Muslims in many important aspects.
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  #108  
Old 12-02-2005, 10:29 AM
DVaut1 DVaut1 is offline
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Default Re: The Crusades

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Bluffthis, if you took some time to study Poli Sci you would find that totalitarianism is a very specific term refering to a very specific type of political state organisation, not just a word to bandied about to donate a lack of democracy or freedom.

The conditions for totalitarianism to be possible have not existed till the twentieth century.

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If there's one thing that's very clear to me in this thread (and on this forum in general), it's that it becomes exceedingly easily to know who has spent some time in college (or higher) studying social sciences, and doing actual research (even if it was as limited to something like a 15 or 20 page paper for a college class) -- research that you would be held accountable for, on some level or another -- research that would require vigorous study, and a demonstration of what's quantifiable, what isn't, and how empirical evidence can shed light on what M correctly calls a never-ending game of conjecture; and (contrast that) with people who haven't received such training, who studied other subjects during their higher education (or didn't receive a higher education at all), and rely on rather strange generalizations and incoherent premises to make arguments that even children could deconstruct -- "take a look at these verses in the Koran, they will help to explain a millenium of Muslim behavior, both in positions of state authority and within Muslim society/interactions between Muslims and non-Muslims in the world at large".

I think one explanation is clearly a lack of formal training in authentic research and academic study in the field of the social sciences, although perhaps there are others.
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  #109  
Old 12-02-2005, 10:46 AM
MMMMMM MMMMMM is offline
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Default Re: The Crusades

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If there's one thing that's very clear to me in this thread (and on this forum in general), it's that it becomes exceedingly easily to know who has spent some time in college (or higher) studying social sciences, and doing actual research (even if it was as limited to something like a 15 or 20 page paper for a college class) -- research that you would be held accountable for, on some level or another -- research that would require vigorous study, and a demonstration of what's quantifiable, what isn't, and how empirical evidence can shed light on what M correctly calls a never-ending game of conjecture; and (contrast that) with people who haven't received such training, who studied other subjects during their higher education (or didn't receive a higher education at all), and rely on rather strange generalizations and incoherent premises to make arguments that even children could deconstruct -- "take a look at these verses in the Koran, they will help to explain a millenium of Muslim behavior, both in positions of state authority and within Muslim society/interactions between Muslims and non-Muslims in the world at large".

I think one explanation is clearly a lack of formal training in authentic research and academic study in the field of the social sciences, although perhaps there are others.

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If you would just shake some of that social studies nonsense you studied in college out of your head for one moment;-) -- and read some key verses in the Koran--AND combine that with what Mohammed did in real life, you would see what is the most likely explanation.

Mohammed himself followed the prescriptions for making war on infidels, as set forth in the Koran. He authored the Koran, too (or is it true that the archangel Gabriel delivered to Mohammed in a dream God's perfect word, and he merely transcribed it without error?)

Why you, DVaut1, try to view things through the more complex lens first, is baffling to me. Have you ever heard of the principle that the simplest solution or reason is also the most likely correct?

The Koran advocates making war on infidels and subjugating them. Mohammed made aggressive war on infidels, killing and subjugating them, numerous times. His later followers through centuries made aggressive war on infidels, killing and subjugating them, numerous times. What, then, is the simplest conclusion you might draw from all of this?
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  #110  
Old 12-02-2005, 10:59 AM
superleeds superleeds is offline
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Default Re: The Crusades

All the crusades to virtually all the crusaders were about making a quick buck. The fact that the pope said they were doing good was just a bonus.
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