A Moderate Religion?

One of the problems that tends to get overlooked with belief systems, particularly religious belief systems, is their inherent hypocrisy, which can be illustrated simply by taking given tenets of the belief system and comparing that tenet to actual statistics. I’ve seen a number of articles and statements that claim the violence we’ve seen from Islamic terrorists is not typical and certainly not representative of what the Koran says.

Such violence may in fact not represent what the Koran states, but a wide range of statistics show that such behavior is in fact typical and highly representative of the beliefs of a majority of Muslims, particularly in the Middle East.

In addition to such attacks as the 9/11 attack on the United States and the recent terrorist killings in Paris and Mali, not to mention the horrific violence perpetrated by ISIS, last year there were over five thousand so-called “honor killings” of women internationally, with over a thousand in Pakistan and another thousand in India. Even in the United States, there were at least thirty, and probably more, given that some of these killings were simply reported as “domestic violence.”

Almost one in five Muslims in Indonesia, considered a “moderate” Islamic nation and the largest predominantly Islam nation in the world with a population of 250 million people, with 87% of the people being Muslims, believes in the honor killing of women who have been raped or otherwise “dishonored” their families.

According to a BBC Poll, one in ten British Muslims support killing a family member over “dishonor,” and a Daily Mail survey reported that two-thirds of young British Muslims agree that ‘honor’ violence is acceptable.

A 2013 Pew Research poll reported that, among Muslims, stoning women for adultery is favored by 89% in Pakistan, 85% in Afghanistan, 81% in Egypt, 67% in Jordan, 58% in Iraq, 44% in Tunisia, 29% in Turkey, and 26% in Russia. Also, a 2010 Pew Research report showed that 84% of Egyptian Muslims, 86% of Jordanian Muslims, 30% of Indonesian Muslims, 76% of Pakistani Muslims, and 51% of Nigerian Muslims support the death penalty for leaving Islam.

In addition to the murder of those who are not believers in Islam in the ISIS controlled areas of Syria, the ISIS “modesty police” in Syria are now beating [and most likely doing worse to] women whose garments are too tight or who wear make-up.

This is not a “moderate” religion, nor is it one that respects women, no matter what the Koran says, and while extreme religious believers in the United States also have problems with respecting women, for the most part, they aren’t murdering them wholesale. So, while the Koran may say that men should respect women, that’s definitely one tenet that’s being ignored by the majority of Muslims… and they’re ignoring the fact that they’re ignoring it… and many appear to be proud that they are.

5 thoughts on “A Moderate Religion?”

  1. Frank says:

    I understand that polls are not an exact science, however, if the polling information you have reported is even close to being accurate…even withing the realm of representative of reality…then things have deteriorated enormously from what I was aware of.

    The only recent historical perspective, it seems to me, is Nazi Germany. This is possibly worse, since the problem is more widely spread geographically and from the numbers you offer, it appears that the “popularity” of this particular brand of hatred and bigotry is significantly greater. Interesting that both “belief systems” hate Jews.

    I wonder if there is any hope of the Muslim world rising up and cleaning up this mess themselves? If they don’t, I’m afraid we can look forward to at least one more mushroom cloud before it gets any better.

    Heinlein wrote of a world where carrying a gun was not only legal, it was a social requirement, the lack of which was an insult to others. I’ve often thought that was interesting but somewhat “over the top.” I’m not so sure anymore.

    1. RRRea says:

      Also, hating Jews is definitely the opposite of what the Koran states. It’s okay to levy a tax on the “People of the Book” (Christians and Jews) if they do not convert, but they are otherwise to be left to themselves so far as religion is concerned. Not to mention the fact that Muhammed owed his life and fortune to the large and vital Jewish population of Medina, who supported him after his exile from Mecca and were definitely a large part of what made his later return there possible. (Also a large source of early coverts to Islam as well.)

      So, just like the whole “respect women” part of the Koran, it is not honored, even in the breach. It’s just ignored under a thick layer of hate.

  2. Joe says:

    Christians weren’t that great a few centuries ago, either, despite what the Bible may or may not say.

    Tolerance, freedom of thought, and rationality are also belief systems. They are the basis of the scientific revolution and our modern Western societies.

    We in the West need to be less coy about defending and requiring our belief systems be applied in our own countries. We should also apply them when trading with others, such as ISIS, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey: perhaps countries that support slavery, stoning, mutilation for crimes, etc, should not be given any material support such as trade? Perhaps if we need the oil, we should take it, rather than salving our consciences by buying it, and assuming we have no responsibility for what the money we give is then used.

    But we should not go around doing “regime change” and imposing our beliefs on others who do not wish to accept them. It doesn’t work. Jefferson did not emerge from the ruins of Libya.

  3. Grey says:

    Sadly, just in time for this discussion we have three murdered in what is looking like a terrorist attack on a Planned Parenthood in Colorado. We’ll see how well the attacker’s coreligionists do on distancing themselves from his actions, and calling them what they are, particularly, if hypothetically speaking, there are any running for president.

  4. Tom says:

    No matter what a human ‘believes’ we have difficulty in examining our own belief(s) and balancing the facets of such beliefs. It seems that the stronger our beliefs are the less prone we are to examine our own beliefs and the more likely we are to criticize the beliefs of others (however correct that criticism may be). So how does one instill self -criticism, without inappropriate guilt, in a person? With tolerance, freedom of thought, rationality? So are these three really ‘beliefs’ or are they ‘tools’ for human cognition?

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