Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Islamic theology

Having had a post nominated for the latest Watcher's Council thingy, I've been reading the other nominations.

This one, from Classical Vaues, is marvellous. It shows, by quoting from various sources, the deception indulged in even by Tariq Ramadan, and helps to explain the fundamental divergence between Western thought and Islam.
Here's a nice bit:
The kinds of unlawful knowledge include philosophy and the sciences of the materialists. Why are they unlawful? Because anything that is a means to create doubts is unlawful. This was the position of the Catholic Church for a long time.

The Jews of course have had no problem with doubts. Their answer was always debate and reason. Put so well by a very modern Jewish scholar Milton Friedman "You cannot be sure you are right unless you understand the arguments against your views better than your opponents do." Jews as part of their religious training are taught to take any side of any question and argue it to the best of their ability. Which may explain why there are so many Jewish lawyers.

Read this if you want to have any chance of understanding where we are in relation to Islam.

Now go and read the Pope's Regensburg address: here's a quotation, just after the infamous one:
The decisive statement in this argument against violent conversion is this: not to act in accordance with reason is contrary to God's nature. The editor, Theodore Khoury, observes: "For the emperor, as a Byzantine shaped by Greek philosophy, this statement is self-evident. But for Muslim teaching, God is absolutely transcendent. His will is not bound up with any of our categories, even that of rationality." Here Khoury quotes a work of the noted French Islamist R. Arnaldez, who points out that Ibn Hazn went so far as to state that God is not bound even by his own word, and that nothing would oblige him to reveal the truth to us. Were it God's will, we would even have to practice idolatry.

Done that? Now go and read the history essays at wayofthewest; particularly numbers 7 (The Light of Reason), 8 (The Two Questions) and 9 (The Search For Truth).

When you've finished you'll know ten times as much about Islam and five times as much about Western civilisation as the average left-leaning intellectual.

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