Saturday, January 5, 2008

With or Without Religion

Civilizations Clash, With or Without Religion

Moderator Mike Ghouse: Indeed, the extremists have always manufactured an enemy who would become a threat to their people. The latest creation is Islam. Every idiot who can write can cash in on Islam bashing, there are plenty of them out there. I guess, as long as there are suckers to fund them, they will keep manufacturing.

What would the world be like without Islam? No clash of civilizations? No 9/11? No holy wars?

Actually, all of these events would likely have occurred, says Graham Fuller, a professor of history at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia, and a former forecaster for the Central Intelligence Agency. Take away Islam, and the world would still be left with the main forces that drive today's conflicts, including colonialism, cross-national ideologies, ethnic conflicts and terrorism, Mr. Fuller says.

Mr. Fuller ponders a litany of history's major battles to drive home his message that while Islam might be a convenient culprit, global strife, past and present, can't be blamed on any one religion. Europeans would still have wanted the spoils of the Middle East and launched the Crusades, he says, albeit under a different banner. The West still would have tried to get control of oil-rich areas. The French would still have gone into Algeria for its farm lands. The creation of Israel still would have displaced Palestinians, no matter what their religion.

The inhabitants of the Middle East wouldn't be more comfortable with these events if they belonged to Eastern Orthodox Christianity, the Middle East's predominant religion when Muhammad arrived. In fact, a religious fissure between Western Europe and the Middle East would probably still exist, says Mr. Fuller, noting that Eastern Orthodox Christianity has an anti-Western narrative of its own dating to the sack of Constantinople in 1204.

True, without Islam, the people of the Middle East would lack a powerful, crossborder unifying force that sometimes is co-opted by a small number of people inclined toward violence. But the Middle East would have access to similar forces, such as Marxism or ethnic nationalism, that have served that purpose in other parts of the world. In 2006, the crime-data clearing house Europol said, only one of the 498 terrorist acts in the European Union was Islamist. The rest were largely committed by separatist and left-wing groups.

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Voice of Moderate Muslims

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Moderate Islam Speaker

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quraan burning

Planned Muslim Response to Qur'an Burning by Pastor Jones on September 11 in Mulberry, Florida

August 19, 2013| Dallas, Texas

Mike Ghouse
Text/Talk: (214) 325-1916

Mirza A Beg
(205) 454-8797


We as Muslims plan to respond to pastor Terry Jones' planned burning of 3000 copies of Quran on September 11, 2013 in positive terms.

Our response - we will reclaim the standard of behavior practiced by the Prophet concerning “scurrilous and hostile criticism of the Qur’an” (Muhammad Asad Translation Note 31, verse 41:34). It was "To overcome evil with good is good, and to resist evil by evil is evil." It is also strongly enjoined in the Qur’an in the same verse 41:34, “Good and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with what is better; then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend.”

God willing Muslims will follow the divine guidance and pray for the restoration of Goodwill, and on that day many Muslim organizations will go on a “blood drive” to save lives and serve humanity with kindness.

We invite fellow Americans of all faiths, races, and ethnicities to join us to rededicate the pledge, “One nation under God”, and to build a cohesive America where no American has to live in apprehension, discomfort or fear of fellow Americans. This event is a substitute for our 10th Annual Unity Day Celebration ( held in Dallas, but now it will be at Mulberry, Florida.

Unwittingly Pastor Jones has done us a favor by invigorating us by his decision to burn nearly 3000 copies Quran on September 11, 2013. Obviously he is not satisfied by the notoriety he garnered by burning one Qur'an last year.

As Muslims and citizens we honor the free speech guaranteed in our constitution. We have no intentions to criticize, condemn or oppose Pastor Terry Jones' freedom of expression. Instead, we will be donating blood and praying for goodness to permeate in our society.

We plan to follow Jesus Christ (pbuh), a revered prophet in Islam as well as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) – that of mitigating the conflicts and nurturing good will for the common good of the society.

We hope, this event and the message will remind Muslims elsewhere in the world as well, that violence is not the way. Muslims, who react violently to senseless provocation, should realize that, violence causes more violence, and besmirches the name of the religion that we hold so dear. We believe that Prophet Muhammad was a mercy to the mankind, and we ought to practice what we believe and preach. We must not insult Islam by the negative reactions of a few.

We can only hope it will bring about a change in the attitude of the followers of Pastor Jones, and in the behavior of those Muslims who reacted violently the last time Pastor sought notoriety – We hope this small step towards a bridge to peaceful coexistence would propel us towards building a cohesive society.

Like most Americans a majority of Muslims quietly go about their own business, but it is time to speak up and take positive action instead of negative reaction. May this message of peace and goodwill reverberate and reach many shores.

Lastly, we appreciate the Citizens of Mulberry, Florida, Honorable Mayor George Hatch, City Commissioners, police and Fire Chiefs for handing this situation very well. This will add a ‘feather of peace’ in the City’s reputation. We hope Mulberry will be a catalyst in showing the way in handling conflict with dignity and peace.

We thank the Media for giving value to the work towards peace rather than conflict.


Thank you.


The people in Dallas are making an effort to understand and clean their own hearts first, when we are free from bias, it would be easy to share that with others. Islam teaches us in so many ways to "respect the otherness of others" and it is time we find simple practical ways of doing it.