Saturday, February 7, 2015
Whap! Thank you, sir. May I have another? Whap! Thank you....
I had an interesting exchange in my previous post with It's.a.crazy.world regarding my feelings for / perceptions of Islam, and I mentioned the peaceful nature of Buddhists and Hindu's in passing. This in turn reminded me of a conversation I had with an Indian friend recently.
He was telling me about his native country (he is an IT professional here in the US now and his wife is a doctor), and he enlightened me considerably. He told me that there are as many Muslims living in predominantly Hindu India as there are in the next door Muslim country of Pakistan. I had thought that when the British vacated control of the Indian subcontinent in 1947 the Muslims and Hindu were seriously segregated.
The Hindu are a very benign, inclusive people. When their country was founded their revered leader Mahatma Gandhi pointed out the colors of their flag (saffron...orange to us...representing their Hindu citizens, white their Christian citizens, and green their Muslim citizens) was meant to show respect for all.
Here's the tie-in with my post of yesterday: My Indian friend explained that in recent years with the rise of militant Islam terrorism has become a terrible problem in India. India claims, and they have proof, that Pakistan is turning a blind eye to the extremists living there and fomenting trouble inside India. The goal seems to be to cause a backlash against the Muslims living in India, sparking a religious war the ruthless extreme Muslims feel they can win. The last thing they want is "peaceful co-existence".
Why are there so many disaffected Muslims around the world? What is it about Islam that makes it so easy for extremists to subvert? (At least "subverted" is what moderate Muslims say has happened to their religion.) Where did they learn to be so ruthlessly cruel? Are such atrocities really called for in the Quran?
There are entire sects (Wahhabis, for example) who are devoted to this unbending, my-way-or-the-highway, take-no-prisoner, version of Islam. Rule, or exception? Every religion has their nut cases, but do millions of Muslim militants still qualify as "exceptions"? There's a big gray area there.
Honest question: How many "other cheeks" should we in the West turn when extreme Islam comes after us? How much should we accept before we become a doormat?
Please don't be shy. Thoughtful comments would be appreciated.