Friday, May 05, 2006

Episcopal Spine

Cardinal Pell has broken a rule, the rule of not offending Islam. (Via Thomas)

I love the Muslim who is scolding Cardinal Pell for not buying into this "Islam = religion of peace" bull crap. First of all, he's asking the Cardinal to meet with him so that he can water down beyond recognition all of the Koranic suras having to do with violence.

Second, he's scolding Cardinal Pell for being ill-informed while at the same time invoking the legacy of Pope John Paul II. Yes, JPII was cordial towards Muslims and didn't tell it like it is about Islam as much as I would have liked him to. But calling upon him as if he would disapprove of Cardinal Pell's actions shows the real ignorance.

What will probably be brought up is the apology of Pope John Paul II at the turning of the millennium. Did I see John Paul apologize for war crimes of Crusaders? Yes. Did I see him apologize for the Crusades? No.

I think the Cardinal is very wise to talk about his experience in reading the Koran and then to follow it up with Islamic history. Don't forget what a huge teller history can be. Islamic history can perhaps tell more than the Koran itself in some places!

There are Koranic suras saying you wait in ambush for the unbelievers and slaughter them without mercy until they submit ("Islam" coming from the Arabic word "Islama" which means "to submit"). There are Koranic suras that talk about peace but which is actually the about peace that comes about from total submission (if not total conversion) on the parts of non-Muslims. But then there are Koranic suras that just teach plain peace to such an extent that it borders on religious relativism!

So what happens? I say look to Islamic history, and while you will find some benevolent Muslim sultans, you will also see the horrors which the first Muslims and their descendents did in response to Mohammad and the Koran. And I refuse to believe that for one thousand-three hundred years, the Koran was taken wretchedly out of context and these guys all had it wrong.