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Showing posts from April, 2013

Muslims need a new road map

Dry academic debates hold as much charm for me as they do for most readers. But when Dr Tariq Ramadan speaks, you cannot help but pay attention. One of the sharpest minds of our times, he is recognised as an authority on contemporary Muslim societies and challenges facing them. What distinguishes Ramadan, currently teaching at Oxford University, from other Islamic scholars is the fact that he grew up in the west.
His family was forced into exile after his grandfather and Muslim Brotherhood founder Hasan Al Banna was assassinated. Ramadan was born in Switzerland. Growing up in the west and receiving the best of western and Islamic education has endowed Ramadan with a rare understanding of both worlds. He used it effectively in the chaotic post 9/11 times to help bridge the gulf between Islam and the west. More often than not, fellow believers have been his audience. Holding a mirror to his own, he has repeatedly urged introspection, moderation and openness.
In a recent article, Ramadan…

Terrorism and the other Religions : Non Muslims : Juan Cole

Contrary to what is alleged by bigots, Muslims are not more violent than people of other religions. Murder rates in most of the Muslim world are very low compared to the United States.
As for political violence, people of Christian heritage in the twentieth century polished off tens of millions of people in the two world wars and colonial repression. This massive carnage did not occur because European Christians are worse than or different from other human beings, but because they were the first to industrialize war and pursue a national model. Sometimes it is argued that they did not act in the name of religion but of nationalism. But, really, how naive. Religion and nationalism are closely intertwined. The British monarch is the head of the Church of England, and that still meant something in the first half of the twentieth century, at least. The Swedish church is a national church. Spain? Was it really unconnected to Catholicism? Did the Church and Francisco Franco’s feelings towar…

Buddhist Extremism: Is ethnic unrest brewing in southeast Asia?

As Buddhist-Muslim tensions increase in the region, we examine the causes and the consequences of the conflict.

Ethnic unrest in Myanmar has cast a wider spotlight on Buddhist-Muslim tensions in southeast Asia. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, the president of Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim nation, is warning of a wider fallout, which could fuel growing inter-faith unrest across the region. Security forces in Myanmar have been accused of a vicious campaign of ethnic cleansing against minority Muslims. But a report by Human Rights Watch has also raised concern about who was at the heart of much of the violence, and in many cases, it says Buddhist monks were either involved or even leading attacks against Muslim communities. The idea that Buddhist monks could lead attacks on another group of people for religious reasons seems quite shocking … Sam Zarifi , Asia Pacific Director at the International Commission of Jurists an international human rights group. Yudhoyono is sounding…

Zionism's Colonial Roots

OVER THE last months before his much-lamented death in August 2010, Tony Judt talked at length with Timothy Snyder, his friend and fellow historian. Their conversations, published after Judt died asThinking the Twentieth Century, were about “the politics of ideas,” the subject of the book on which Judt had embarked afterPostwar, his splendid history of Europe since V-E Day, but which he knew he would not live to write. Some of these political ideas had affected him personally, in particular Zionism. As a schoolboy in London and a Cambridge undergraduate, Judt had been not only a committed supporter but also an energetic activist in Dror, a small socialist-Zionist group. He spent summers working on a kibbutz and in 1967 flew to Israel in the hour of peril as the Six-Day War began. The story of Judt’s disenchantment with Israel and Zionism is well known, culminating in a 2003 essay in the New York Review of Booksin which he concluded that Zionism, as a version of late nineteenth-century …

Why God sent Prophets & Scripture? Quran 57:25

"We sent our messengers supported by clear proofs, and we sent down to them the scripture and the law, that the people mayuphold justice. And we sent down the iron, wherein there is strength, and many benefits for the people. All this in order for GOD to distinguish those who would support Him and His messengers, on faith. GOD is Powerful, Almighty".[Quran;57:25] لَقَدْ أَرْسَلْنَا رُسُلَنَا بِالْبَيِّنَاتِ وَأَنزَلْنَا مَعَهُمُ الْكِتَابَ وَالْمِيزَانَ لِيَقُومَ النَّاسُ بِالْقِسْطِ ۖ وَأَنزَلْنَا الْحَدِيدَ فِيهِ بَأْسٌ شَدِيدٌ وَمَنَافِعُ لِلنَّاسِ وَلِيَعْلَمَ اللَّـهُ مَن يَنصُرُهُ وَرُسُلَهُ بِالْغَيْبِ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّـهَ قَوِيٌّ عَزِيزٌ 
In this brief sentence (verse) the whole essence of the mission of the Prophets bas been compressed, which one should clearly understand. It says that all the Messengers who came to the world from Allah, brought three things,keep reading>>>>
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10 Essential points about the Boston Marathon bombers, Islam, and America

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the second suspect in the horrific Boston Marathon explosions has been apprehended.    Presumably, we can take a break from round-the-clock coverage of the chase that has consumed the nation.    Less than 24 hours ago, no one had heard of the Tsarnaev brothers.    That’s almost literally true:  even their uncle had not heard from them in years.    Now they are macabre celebrities whose every online trace is being analyzed for any clue as to what might have led them to commit such atrocities.    The breathless analysis of the 24-hour news media continues to offer theories and half-baked motivations even when the basic facts have not been yet gathered. Here are ten basic points that we would all do well to keep in mind as we try to make sense of a world that seems to be in need of sanity and compassion. 1)    Those who know the suspects best say that this had nothing to do with being Chechen, or with Islam. Ruslan Tsarni, the suspects’ uncles, went to meet the nationa…