A problem with Islam

Recently I experienced the internet accusation that Islamic State is not Islamic. Terms like “fake” or “phony” Muslims are used by non Daesh Muslims to distance themselves as far away as possible from the ideology that is the Islamic State, Boko Haram, Al Shabaab, etc., all Jihadist Islam.

That is perfectly understandable considering Daesh and their allies’ actions have been unmistakably aligned with the worst movements humanity has ever devised. Beheadings, murder, rape, extermination of any in their realm who do not accept their narrow religious view, is completely abhorrent.  I don’t blame Muslims not directly in those movements to want to separate themselves as far away as possible from them. Why would clear thinking people want to identify with that?

But, Of course, Islamic State and all other forms of Jihad are Islamic. Of course, they are part and parcel to what Islam is, and of course, it is only through Islam that it can be controlled.

Muslims who call it “fake” are perpetuating the problem because they are not considering the implications of radical Islam and how far it can go. It is indicative of a portion of humanity which is going through a dark age, and will not come out of it until it deals with its own problems.

One of those problems is Jihadist Islam. Muslims should take a page out of Europe  which also had to struggle coming out of a murderous fog at another stage in history.

It is not a coincidence that the Christian world began to rise out of its dark age less than a hundred years after Sal a’din defeated the West in Jerusalem in 1187 ending a 200 year Christian reign on the “Holy land.” That defeat in Jerusalem, led to a series of steps beginning with slowly ending the dark ages and leading to a renaissance in art, literature, architecture, humanist thought etc., which in turn led to political  enlightenment, and brought us modern democracy. The signing of the Magna Carta, 1215,  England’s bloodless revolution in 1688, the American revolution in 1776,  the European Revolution of 1848, on and on right through to 2015 which has given more freedom to more people ever in the history of mankind.

In other words, we can trace who we are today to that one event in 1187 when a Muslim army defeated the Crusaders  and brought to an end another senseless bloody chapter in human history.

Islam must go through the same set of changes. In order to do that, the first order of business is to realize that Jihadist activity is more than anything else a Muslim problem and must have a Muslim solution. That is no less a requirement than for the Crusaders to be sent back to Europe grateful for their lives because of the compassion of their Kurdish conqueror, after holding Jerusalem for almost two centuries.

Of course, a Muslim renaissance and later enlightenment will not look like it did in the west. Different culture, different changes need to be made. It must have some kind of reform to Sharia law attached to it. A relaxing of some of those archaic statutes attached to Women, homosexuals  and slavery.

It must abolish in reality and spirit the Dhimmi structure for Jews, Christians and other peoples who live in the world of Islam. They must be considered equal partners in building your society. The test of liberty and tolerance will be how these other groups are treated and accepted.

Ending this problem requires all Muslims to accept their role in ending this scourge on the world. It is interesting to note that calling a form of Islam “phony” you do not believe in is not knew. Shias have been calling Sunni Islam “fake” for fourteen centuries and vice versa. Islam needs to look inward as to why it’s folding over into a bloody, inhumane, frankly scary phenomenon that is affecting all of us in the world community.

And, time is running out—fast. With each generation of Muslims more and more are turning to the Jihadist philosophy and want nothing more than to turn to that dark nature. The percentage of jihadist supporting Muslims, grows exponentially with every generation.  Within a few generations jihad mentality well be in the majority and it will be too late to turn it around.

And, then it will be up to the west, and they won’t go quietly.

To continue to deny the Sunni and Shia desire to destroy the west is foolhardy and will further perpetuate the problem sinking Islam deeper and deeper into an abyss, pulling the rest of us along with it.

With the massacre of innocent people on a daily basis, the complete subjugation of women, executing homosexuals, and not protecting the weak in their societies, Muslims need to swallow hard and take themselves out of the darkness and into a world of light and human acceptability.

There will be those Muslims out there that will reject what I say because I am from the west, and a Jew yet, which doesn’t help my credibility as a teacher for what Islam needs to survive. Muslims reading this will think I have no right to judge their religion. After all I’m just some stupid American carpenter somewhere in North America. I should stick to my woodworking.  On some level I can accept that criticism.

My only answer to that is, this is exactly the reason why Islam remains  1000 years behind the west in intellectual and spiritual development. It’s time you listened to someone else.

Start with me and see where it goes.

The photo at top courtesy of www.thegospelcoalition.org

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