Social and theological issues within scripture abound, and the injunctive voice tends only to underscore them.
I have seen some awful wrap-ups on Islam, am familiar with what the “islamophobes” access — e.g., Answering Muslims / Acts 17 Apologetics — and from the hardcore of the angered, have gotten the the ghosts left in direct memory from such far flung places as Congo, which has been riven with related religious warfare (x tribal competition for valuable mining resources).
While the news gathers, distributes, and promotes sensational events, the “Great Conversation”, echo of another age, that has ensued has to go somewhere, and unreasoning defense doesn’t do that — but chatter toward the moderate, peaceful, and reasoning trumps violence any day.
Where we have good relationships, decency, at least, in Christian-Jewish-Muslim discourse, I don’t believe it’s because of scripture or related spiritual guidance: it’s because of us, the speaking, and time. Our medieval world, the same that Putin, Assad, Khamenei, and Baghdadi have struggled to sustain, needs to be “back there” somewhere in the cabinet of things we used to do or recall in history as having gone through.
This is history in the making.
IF the Islamists are heretics, shouldn’t they be treated as such? If they are those who have exceeded limits (not much question about that) or who could not restrain themselves, should they not be addressed that way?
My “sword blade” on all of this has been a very light political psychology taking note of the nature of dictatorship and related malignant narcissism. The outlook doesn’t tie to any one political or religious body or system of thought but rather wants a look at certain leaders, their systems, and their followers.
*** (From another part of the same conversation) —
The Muslim Brotherhood, the modern intellectual mothership, believes the activities of any number of related organizations grounded in Islamic theology. However, the same may not see itself as irretrievably chained to medievalism in its realpolitik, i.e., it really wants to rule and believes it should (as in Egypt, so briefly). The Islamic flavor, at least, if not character, of Islam’s troubled JiSadists can neither be blinked nor masked away, but it may be approached with a wider lens on the scope of its own history (and favored legends, like the Banu Qurayza, like Saffiya).
Some leaders would rather be feared than liked.
Most people would rather be liked than feared.
Despite ourselves — and our various legacies in holy marching orders — we’re likely to tend (and “trend”) toward peace without mind-dulling, soul-numbing subjugation and subjection. Dictatorships are becoming just oh so yesterday.
However, as in chemistry, change needs heat — extra activity — and the Ummah is getting that with every acid drop of terror spilled into the global body politic in its name.
First: defensiveness and denial, behaviors in keeping with narcissistic maintenance (whatever it is, it’s never ourselves — while “ourselves” are always a part of our problems).
Second: as with New Age Islam, rejection of a too familiar path and engagement in introspection and long conversations, and probably the long walks too that help with new writing.
Third: a glimpse of the future, that end of the tunnel sunny day, or so it may look on the way to it, never mind that it might prove another wilderness: at least it will be a different one.
Fourth: change — when you have something to go to and it looks good — one goes.
BackChannels may turn out “ChriJewsLim”, which would be fine, for what goes on living and doing so well, poor or rich, wealthy in friends or in solitude, is fine.
Out of Many, One — and Earth, while it may contain many worlds, is most certainly singular.
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