Monday, February 05, 2007

Understanding Islam

andthe Muslim Mind
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When America invaded Afghanistan and subsequently, Iraq, we were told that the problem with these countries was the absence of democracy. The lack of democracy alone, so the justification went, was why these states are rogue states, harbour terrorism and threaten the peace and security of the world. Because the problem was deemed clearcut, the solution must be equally so: remove the dictators, establish democracy, and the problem will simply resolve itself.This in fact was the idea advocated by Natan Sharansky, a Soviet dissident turned Israeli cabinet minister. In his book The Case for Democracy, Sharansky makes a distinction between "free" societies and "fear" societies, and criticized those who argue that democracy is culturally contingent and therefore unsuited to Muslim society: “the democracy that hates you,” he wrote, “is a better friend than the tyrant that loves you.”The American administration, after 9/11, appears to have taken Sharansky's judgment to heart. The Taliban in Afghanistan were decisively removed and Saddam Hussein's tyranny in Iraq was crushed. Free elections in both countries were held. Later, in Palestine, a free election was held as well.Yet, despite the facade of fair elections in these countries, true democracy remains but an illusion.In Afghanistan, girls cannot go to school, or their teachers face death threats for attempting to teach them. In July 2006, Mark Hume, a Canadian carpenter in Afghanistan, was shot dead. His crime? He had helped build a school in a remote part of Hindu Kush. In post-Taliban Afghanistan, still freedom of conscience remains nonexistent. For anyone who elects to leave Islam, it could mean forfeiting life itself. At present, Iraq is in a virtual state of civil war. In Palestine democracy produced the election of Hamas, a terrorist organization, which won in a landslide, after free elections were called. Despite these outward changes, of having elections and regime changes, in none of these countries can it be said that real democracy exists.Was Sharansky wrong? In theory, no! There is nothing wrong with the concept of democracy. Democracy is better than dictatorship. One profound truth is the fact that no two democracies have gone to war against each other since the early Greek states. It seems that for war to happen, at least one side must be dictatorial.So, why has real democracy in these countries not worked? The answer can be summarized in one word: ISLAM. Islam is the reason no true and long lasting democracy can be established or has taken root in any Islamic country. Islam is also the reason why these countries have remained poor, underdeveloped and backward.The reality is that democracy cannot be imposed from above. To construct a democracy, you must first provide the right foundation. The prerequisite of democracy is freedom.In Islamic countries, people do not have an understanding of freedom. They confuse freedom with anarchy. They fear freedom. Freedom, as defined in the context of democracy, means freedom of thought, freedom of expression and freedom of action, as long as your freedom does not limit the freedom of others. This understanding is as frightening to Muslims as it is alien, because such freedom is not rooted in Islam and cannot be a part of Islamic society.It is not their own, personal freedom that is frightening to them. Muslims living in non-Muslim nations, know how to take full advantage of their freedom in their host, democratic countries to promote their faith. They often demand even greater freedom, insisting upon freedoms not accorded even to the native, non-Muslim citizens.What they most fear is the fact that within democracies, those perceived to be their natural opponents - the infidels, or non-Muslims - are likewise free and granted equal opportunity. For Muslims, who seek to establish their dominance over all others through coercion, having instead to compete on a level playing field with people of other beliefs, sets up a challenging and frightening prospect. Allowing equal advantage to those who otherwise exist in natural opposition to Islam, and according them the ability to promote their ideas, or worse, permitting them to influence those Muslims who might be “lured away” to new ways of thinking outside of Islam, is intolerable to Muslim sensitivity. They regard such freedom as a direct threat to Islam.Muslims cannot tolerate views resistant or in opposition to their own. This became clear to the non-Muslim world with the recent cartoon row that through the encouragement of mullahs, managed to become a full conflagration. Almost overnight, millions of Muslims worldwide rioted in Islamic as well as Western countries. They burned embassies, desecrated and destroyed churches, killed innocent people, all because a Danish newspaper published a few cartoons depicting their prophet Muhammad.Before any serious attempt to bring democracy to the Islamic countries can begin, we must first lay the foundation of democracy. For Islamic societies to be able to make this transition, they would have to become tolerant and learn to respect people with differing views, while their governments would have to ensure that all freedoms are safeguarded for all citizens, regardless of their faith or gender.Democracy is a mighty edifice. It cannot be built on moving sand. True democracy does not mean dictatorship by the majority. Democracies are constructed to protect the rights of the minority. This very concept, so fundamental to democracy, is so alien to Islam. Islam both regards and insists on treating members of the minority, non-Muslim citizens, strictly as second-class citizens. Under Islamic law, non-Muslim citizens must agree to pay the “jizya”, a penalty tax, and as the Qur’an emphasizes, they must feel themselves subdued and made subservient to the ruling Muslim majority.What does it take to build the foundation of democracy in Islamic countries? How can we as non-Muslims convince Muslims to be tolerant of views contrary to their own religious beliefs and learn to respect the rights of all people to dissent, even the right to leave Islam, the right to believe in other faiths, or not to believe at all?Islam does not permit Muslims to leave Islam. Similarly, it does not allow people of other faiths to exercise their own religions freely, let alone be allowed to preach them. Islam does not recognize equal human rights for those who are not Muslims, nor does it recognize the equality of women. Islam does not allow freedom of thought or speech. It is for these reasons that democracies in Islamic countries don't work. As long as these countries remain Islamic in nature, there cannot be any true democracy. As long as they remain undemocratic, and in allegiance to Islam, they will stay a danger to themselves as well as to the world.The number of Muslims living in the West is increasing, not only from immigration, but also because Muslim families are reproducing at a much higher rate, nearly three times faster than Westerners. While an Italian woman, on average, gives birth to 1.2 children, a Muslim woman is more likely to have four or five children. The same disparity in population growth rate exists throughout Europe. You need a ratio of 2.1 children per woman just to maintain the existing level of the population at replacement rate. At the current rate, in just a matter of a few decades, Muslims will become a major political and cultural force, and could reach a majority in many European countries.Fundamentally, Muslims will never assimilate, just as they cannot accept, nor can they live by the tenets of what is and must constitute a true, living democracy. For to do so would mean relinquishing their faith in order to compromise for something abhorrent, nor allowed under Islam, which is the full acceptance of equality between Muslim and non-Muslim, alike. Given that, the historical and demographic pattern that has persisted for centuries dictates the following. Once the Muslim population becomes a majority or even a near-majority within any nation, they no longer will have to accept nor seek compromise, in upholding human rights of non-Muslims or in maintaining equality with the non-Muslim population. At that point, once they have achieved political dominance and secured power, they can be expected to move quickly to terminate all freedoms. Non-Muslim citizens living in their own native countries would be relegated to second-class citizens, or worse, become persecuted in the way Hindus are presently persecuted in those countries that were once their traditional homelands, such as Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh, just as Zoroastrians, Jews, Christians and Baha'is are persecuted and brutally mistreated in Iran today.The Western world is currently in a dilemma. Whatever options may still remain open, are rapidly dwindling, as time is no longer on our side. With every passing minute, as each new baby is born to a Muslim family in the West, the threat of Islam grows, while the hope for democracy and freedom becomes a fading prospect. With the birth of each new Muslim child in the West, the pace of that threat is increasing, exponentially. This threat is more serious than the threat of terrorism.It is not just non-Muslims who are trapped. Muslims also have no options. They are prisoners too. They cannot have peace or tolerate others simply because this would be against their faith. They have to fight us, force us to convert, subdue and humiliate us, or kill us, if they want to be believers. We are all hostages of Islam. All these wars, all these pains and sufferings, these senseless killings, are the result of the belief in Islam. Mankind has been taken hostage by the ghost of one man – a narcissist, a sick needy man of the seventh century Arabia who lived to destroy the world to satiate his intense crave for love, recognition and power.The British ethologist and science writer Richard Dawkins wrote: “The likelihood is that, in 100,000 years time, we shall either have reverted to wild barbarism, or else civilisation will have advanced beyond all recognition – into colonies in outer space, for instance.”Where we are heading as a civilization will be forever determined by what happens in this century. If mankind is destined to revert to wild barbarism, it won't take us 100,000 years to come to that. If humanity falls to Islam, and all our freedoms are lost, mankind’s reversion to barbarism, would perhaps occur within a mere100 years. Under present trends, at some point during this century, the entire world could become Islamic, beginning first with Europe. From there, in a matter of a few centuries, after the world has already succumbed, civilization would not only fall, but would face its ultimate demise, in total cultural annihilation. This is the same fate that has befallen to all previous Islam-subdued civilizations. They were subdued, and then forced into cultural extinction. This obliteration was so complete that virtually little is left to memory. If Islam is not stopped now, what we know today, as culture will vanish. It will be called taghoot (ungodly) and jaheliyah (ignorance) and will be destroyed. Little trace of what is today known as civilization will be left, just as little of the ancient civilizations of Persia and Egypt are left.Presenting such a terrible, dark picture should not be dismissed as hyperbole, or as some wild, farfetched scenario. If appropriate action is not taken soon to stop, and turn around this inexorable tide of events, such a dark scenario is all but certain to unfold. Presently, humanity, under the nations' governments, and through the influence and power of its cultural and political leaders, is, however blindly, being led down a course that can only lead to its defeat. So locked in to this direction are we that, within a few short decades, the course of history could be pushed past the point of no return. If you are not already scared, then now might be a good time to start.In this book I have tried to shed light on one of the most complex and explosive dilemmas humanity has ever faced. I try to do so in a way that would allow free societies to both contain and eventually harness the threat.In order to protect ourselves, we must first know our enemy. It is only by knowing our enemy, by knowing what they think and believe, by understanding what motivates them, and by knowing what their goals are, that we can then construct a roadmap from which to counteract their movements. What is ultimately at stake is our survival. Compared to the scale of threat Islam poses, Nazism and communism were a picnic, a brief historical period, a brief interlude, while Islam, by virtue of its alleged divine authority, has the potential to degrade the course of history forever.So what is it that makes Islam (and Muslims) so different? Why do Muslims hate and distrust us? Why do they regard us as their enemy? Are these just grievances? What do they want? Is Islamic terrorism an aberration? Is there a peaceful and moderate Islam that needs to be rescued? Can moderate Islam overcome extremist Islam? Has the West been in any way responsible for how Muslims feel or have reacted? Is poverty, lack of education, lack of opportunities and widespread dictatorship within the Muslim world the cause of Islamic revolts worldwide, or are these symptoms of a bigger, more fundamental problem? Will this nightmare end any time soon? Is this actually the beginning of a World War dwarfing all others? And if so, how can we fight it, and what will be the consequences if we are to lose?As widespread as Islamic terrorism is, it still does not represent our gravest threat. Our ultimate challenge is the Islamic demographic explosion, which threatens to overrun the already dwindling populations in many civilized countries, particularly in the West. Even if we were to overcome the war on terror and achieve some kind of military victory, by somehow subduing terrorism, we would still most certainly lose the “population war.”The problem is not “Islamic extremism,” which is a misnomer because it is redundancy. The problem is Islam, itself. Many modern writers have condemned Islamic “extremism”, but have carefully avoided invoking the perception of being seen even slightly critical of Islam, the religion. So they claim that the terrorists have hijacked Islam and misinterpreted its “peaceful” message. This book refutes this contention, as it endeavors to show that the root cause of Islamic violence is the violence and hatred stated and defined in the Qur’an, the Hadith (traditions) and the Sunnah (the examples set by Muhammad), i.e. the Islamic scriptures.Islam, whether Sunni or Shi'a, or in any of its multifarious interpretations, at its core is unflinchingly violent, extremist, reactionary, intolerant, anti-Western and misogynistic.When there is conflict or a confrontation between extremist Islam and the so-called “moderate” Islam, extremism always wins out. There can be no moderation in Islam. Moderate Islam is not true Islam. That is how, as it so often occurs, moderate Muslims can, so easily and with so little aforethought, become extremists. Countries with long-held traditions of tolerance and moderation have become extremist almost overnight. It is hard to imagine that Arabs, prior to Islam, were among the most tolerant people of the world. Religious hostilities in that subcontinent were once nonexistent.Today, as we witness such widescale religious intolerance in Muslim countries like Pakistan, where it is difficult to believe that only a few centuries earlier the Pakistanis were themselves tolerant Hindus. It is also hard to imagine that the Iranians who today threaten the peace of the world, who have taken human rights abuses to its lowest rung, and whose president insists that Israel must be wiped off the map, are the very same descendants whose ancestors were the authors of the first charter of human rights recorded in history. Wherever Islam goes, tolerance is extinguished and terror sets in.It is a mistake to count Islam as a religion, to in any way grant it the same status accorded Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism or Buddhism. Wolfgang Bruno, who is currently writing a book on the ex-Muslim movement, has written: "Westerners view Islam as a religion currently beset by many problems and aggressive groups, but still one that can offer comfort and moral guidance to millions of people. That is a fundamental mistake. Islam is not an addition to the American or European diversity rainbow. In fact, it wants to scrap the diversity rainbow and replace it with an Islamic cave." I agree with Bruno. I trust by the time you finish reading this book, you'll come to see why.Islam and Islamic hegemony present us with few choices. We must either:
· accept and learn to live with Islamic terrorism and expansionism, until eventually we succumb to them.
· prepare to wage war against them and kill them, before they kill us. Or,
· repudiate and reject Islam, as it is constituted altogether.
Muslims also have few choices. They must either:
· fight against us, kill us, or subdue us. Or
· leave Islam altogether.
Asking Muslims to live in peace with others is asking them to betray their faith. Muslims are obliged to wage Jihad. This is their religious duty. As long as Muslims believe in Islam they will have to fight and promote it with violence any time they feel they have the upper hand and can win. The Earth belongs to Allah, they believe, and as his only faithful subjects, they are the rightful owners of it. It is their obligation to reclaim it and establish Allah’s rule.Though there are many Muslims who are peaceful, Islam itself is not peaceful. Therefore, it is unrealistic to expect all Muslims not to follow their religion fully, to believe in it and yet somehow not practice it.
My objective in writing this book is to show that Islam, far from being a religion of peace is a cult of war. That the reason there is no democracy in Islamic countries, and there can never be a lasting one, is because Islam is not compatible with democracy. I hope after reading this book, you too will come to the same conclusion that, as long as Islam is accepted as a religion, the Muslim world will not recover from its misery and the world will not see peace.
The problem is not because Muslims have distorted the original message of Islam, but because they have understood it clearly and have put it into practice.
Quoting from the Qur’an and the biography of Muhammad, and supporting my case with references from modern studies in psychology, I have tried to prove that the author of Islam suffered from a series of mental illnesses, and those Muslims who follow him, to the extent that they emulate him, also reflect his psychopathology. The consequence is madness in a massive scale, affecting a large portion of humanity. When a madman is on the loose, he is not only a danger to himself, but also to anyone who may come in contact with him. With more than one billion Muhammadans living on this planet, the world is in grave peril.
It is my hope that by the time you finish reading this book, you will agree with me that unless Islam is not repudiated and expunged vehemently, terrorism, which is an intrinsic part of it, will not end, and mankind will have to embrace itself for perpetual wars, more bloodshed and perhaps the Armageddon. We must either recognize Islam as the disease of mankind, and the source of all these wars, terror attacks and human miseries, or brace ourselves for what could be the destruction of mankind. My hope is for sanity to prevail and that we may gather the courage to do the right thing before it is too late.

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