The prompt: in relation to anti-Semitism, a statement suggesting Muslims, in general, know little about Islam, and anti-Semitic sentiment in Islam relates directly to the conflict in the middle east.
Religious identification serves as a powerful discriminator and tool for the purposes of leadership in the medieval world, and for some portion of the “Ummah”, small or large, the bond of Muslim identification against the Jew serves to sustain anti-Semitic thought wherever that may be promoted to serve the interests of leaders or spoilers for power.
While the notion that in some general way Muslims know nothing about Islam would seem to confront multiple cultural histories of written clerical thought largely expounding on Qur’an, Hadith, and Sunnah, much of which may indeed have been self-serving — or serving the subscriptions of noted institutions or scholars. In the medieval world, much of power would be suspended between the church (mosque, or temple), then seats of education, and political authority whose legitimacy rested on convincing clerical validation (predicated on beliefs installed).
The “Educated Modern” has a much widened field of view as regards phenomenology associated with psychology, religion, and spirituality. We’re aware of the world’s approximately 7,000 living languages and associated ethnolinguistic cultures; we’re aware of the histories of religions “across the campus”; perhaps most importantly, we’re aware of our own foibles. 🙂 The modern may face some puzzles as regards the perpetuation of the medieval suite of opposed and similar philosophies, but first on the agenda should be the question of how to bring forward those living in the medieval world.
One may practically skip church with that kind of Sunday morning sermonette.
However,the world’s educated and dedicated or leisured may support their “team”, the same have also access to a sophisticated awareness of their rivals plus awareness and knowledge sufficient to sink everyone’s ship: the good must ask wherever there is conflict what the fighting is about.
BackChannels simple answer to that question: power.
And there follows a question: medieval or modern?
“Medieval v Modern” has been chatted up quite on this blog, so I’ll spare ye another ramble.
The prompt involved a legalistic reinterpretation about respect for Islam (should be equal to that given Christianity and Judaism) that I penned — the addition is italicized: “Jews, Christians, Muslims should accept the validity of each other’s legal interest in their chosen faith.”
I would accept the validity of the interest in religion, not the laws, policies, or practices promoted in the interest of its related fascism.
Even Pakistan has differentiated itself from Islam in its “realpolitik” law.
As regards reform — i.e., an end to Islamic supremacism, supersession, bigotry regarding others, barbaric advisement — YES!
However, note the paths and leaders, including this conversation’s original poster:
Intellectualized Islam — e.g., Qanta Ahmed and others who bring a modern sensibility to Qur’anic ambiguity and move away from the supremacist mark, much preferring “no compulsion”.
Heretical Islam — e.g., M. Zuhdi Jasser and others in the Islamic Reform Movement who prefer contemplation and worship to “political Islam” and related militancy.
Renewal Through Reinterpreting Translation (goodbye Pickthall) and narrowed focus on the Qur’an — the claimed “word of God” — so as to diminish the merely mortal factor in the receiving of the Qur’an.
If any should think up other Islamic Reform options, let me know.
There is a greater and more challenging anachronism in the persistence of medieval worldviews about God and about power in a modern day that requires for greater wealth and security and the wider distribution of both plus justice a greater cooperation and integrity in global social relationships.