What's the Straight Dope on Radical Islam?

oops. posted to wrong thread. Nevermind :slight_smile:

I edited Captain Amazing’s last post to fix some screwed up italics tags.

True, but in a most cases, they were careful to pretend that what they were doing wasn’t ijtihad. So, you have somebody like Yusuf al-Nabhani, the famous Palestinian scholar, attacking al-Wahhab by accusing him of ijtihad, and the Wahabi Mahmud Shukri al-Alusi defending him, by saying:

I was reading my previous link a little more carefully and found this:

That’s probably what was bugging your Indian Muslim co-worker about your freebie Saudi Qur’an: it’s almost certainly the 1920’s al-Azhar edition, while he adheres to an Indian Muslim tradition using an older variant form.

Not that Indian Qur’an variants are somehow objectively more “authentic” than the al-Azhar edition, which itself is based on a lot of careful scholarship about Qur’anic textual traditions, but your co-worker’s Indian Qur’anic version apparently seems more authentic to him.

Would it be safe to say that Muslim’s agree that all are free to listen to or follow any teacher he wishes … and even free to disregard whatever his favorite leader says?

By “free” I don’t just mean having free will, but that it is an accepted whatever.

As a Westerner it is hard for me to wrap my head around someone as prominent as the Ayatollah Khomeini saying “go kill Rushdie” and it not be representative of the faith itself.

Uh, Captain provided links on that, Shia and Sunnis seem to be quite different in approach.

Is this an answerable question? Certainly seems pretty true for many. They lack the concept of Priests like say Catholics or Anglicanism.

You did read the profile above? Reflected his leadership and the particular religious hierarchy he led, but how does one guy represent “the faith” itself?

If an American fundamentalist Christian that’s well known, I suppose Pat Robertson, says cretinous things about gays, does that reflect “the faith itself”?

Ah, I see. It’s sort of like a Protestant insisting that the Bible used by Catholics is not the real Bible. Thank you so very much! I wish we had an applause smiley!

Many would say that it does.

For right or wrong. many fundamentalist Christians would probably be happy to associate themselves with those things that are said.

… and I hope that many regular people can see the difference between saying cretinous things and violent acts like beheadings of civilians, cowardly attacks on public buildings, suicide murders, murders of Catholic priests (recently in Turkey I believe), burnings of Christian churches, the continued persecution of Coptic Christians in Egypt, the imposition of Sharia law on non-Muslims, the rapes of Scandinavian girls and women , the murder of film directors in Holland, and the rioting and looting in Paris France

So yes, you’re looking to justify your opinion ex-logic.

Indeed, I can also see the difference between attributing said acts to actual actors, versus engaging in ignorant bigotry against an entire race or religion, by attributing the acts of a specific group, e.g. Al Qaeda, to the religion or an ethnicity as such.

As such, your laundry list of “Muslim” crimes (you’re evidently not straight forward enough to say what has become abundantly evident what you really beleive regardless of corrections above) reads pretty much like the typical bigot’s laundry list:

There’s not punch point in running through this, as you’ve strung together every crime or event that you seem to have heard of, associated with Muslims in some fashion. I would just note that the riots in France - Paris mostly - occurred while I was based there for work.

I can tell you the following:
(i) A good portion of the rioters were** Black Africans** in the same ghettoes as the Muslim immigrants from North Africa - non-Muslim black Africans, although I saw in the American press such detail got left out;
(ii) the riots were rather motivated by economic deprivation, like similar riots in UK and I believe the US, by ethnic/racial minorities facing labour market discrimination, which is documented in France as widespread.
(iii) the riots had fuck all to do with “radical Islam” - they were touched off by the police provoking the death of a young street kid (who was doubtless doing your typical ghetto teenager petty vandalism and crime as the police claimed).

Rather highlights the quality of your information and thinking.

Never mind these kinds of laundry lists are pure bollocks. A Muslim could come right back and point to murders of Muslim women in Spain and Germany in the past year -by Christian men if one wanted to spin it that way - apparently as ethnic-religious bigot hate crimes against women wearing the hidjab.

I am certain your equivalent in the Muslim world is promoting these things as evidence of the innate Christian hatred of Muslims, etc. Based on equally biased and selective collections of “facts.” You deserve each other.

“Oops, I fatwahed. Ain’t I a stinker?”

“Ooh, you wascawy wahhabi, you!”

There are some very worrying statements on that website. Particularly those relating to Jews, sex, science and women’s right to work.

Where does sufism fit into the Sunni/Shia picture?

Deobandis are the most conservative of the Indiopak muslims. Sufis is a style, like Charismatic, so you got Sunni and Shia sufi as I understand it.

As wmfellows notes and the Captain explained above, one would expect worrying statements from Deobandis. Theologically they’re kissing cousins to the Wahhabis of Arabia, if nonetheless distinct. The Taliban of Afghanistan are primarily Deobandi in orientation.

Sufism is Islamic mysticism, the search for a personal, spiritual connection to God - a somewhat later development in Islam speculatively somewhat influenced by contact with Hindu mysticism. It is considered heretical by the Wahhabi in particular, but is otherwise very widespread in all corners of the Muslim world. One is generally simultaneously Shi’a or Sunni and a Sufi, which are divided into different schools of thought called orders or brotherhoods.

Sufis are not necessarily intrinsically liberal or conservative. However in Sufism one can find some the most liberal strains in Islam, including the more pacifist expressions such as that of Amadou Bamba, founder of the Mouride Sufi order in Senegal. In the former Soviet republics of central Asia an attempt was being made ( not sure if it continues ) to promote the native Naqshbandi order as a sort of inoculation against Wahhabism ( the Naqshbandiyya seem to regard the Wahhabis as their theological archenemies ). In Lebanon the al-Ahbash order has been notably anti-Salafist. And of course one of history’s great ecumenical poets Rumi was a Sufi and the origin of the modern Mevlevi order, the famous Whirling Dervishes of Turkey.

That said, Sufis can be just as conservative and retrograde as anyone. The Deobandi founder of the Taliban, Mullah Omar, was also purportedly a Naqshbandi Sufi.

Movement, sorry - Al-Ahbash is more a pan-Sufi organization. Though given its charismatic founder, it may eventually become a distinct order unto itself.

Ayatollah Khomeini was also heavily influenced by Sufism, and was quite possibly Sufi himself.

Thanks all for the information.