Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Spengler asks, and answers, why Muslims can't take a joke

By Aussiegirl

With this article Spengler goes to the heart of the matter, explaining why these cartoons have aroused so much vehemence in the Muslim world.

Asia Times Online :: Middle East News, Iraq, Iran current affairs

Muslims rage at affronts to their faith because the modern world puts their faith at risk, precisely as modern Islamists contend. [3] That is not a Muslim problem as such, for all faith is challenged as traditional society gives ground to globalization. But Muslim countries, whose traditional life shows a literacy rate of only 60%, face a century of religious deracination. Christianity and Judaism barely have adapted to the modern world; the Islamists believe with good reason that Islam cannot co-exist with modernism and propose to shut it out altogether.

[...]The theological problem I have discussed in other locations, most recently in reporting the pope's seminar at Castelgandolfo. Christianity and Judaism have adapted to doubt, the bacillus of modern thought, by inviting doubt to serve as the handmaiden of faith. No better formulation of this can be found than in Benedict XVI's classic Introduction to Christianity. The object of revelation, the believer, becomes a participant in revelation, in dialogue with the Revealer. This great innovation has not prevented the death of traditional, autonomic Christian belief, but it has left an enduring core of Christian faith in the West well inoculated against skepticism. As the pope explained, the eternal, unchanging character of the Koran that the Archangel Gabriel dictated verbatim to Mohammed admits of no doubt. Muslim belief is not dialogue, but submission. It is as defenseless before the bacillus of skepticism as the American aboriginals were before the smallpox virus.

That is why Muslims cannot respond to Western jibes at the person of their Prophet except as they did to the Jyllens-Posten cartoons. I do not sympathize with scoffers but, like Benedict, I see doubt as an adversary to be won over, rather than as an enemy to be extirpated. I would not have drawn nor published these cartoons, but when the lines are drawn, I stand with Western freedom against traditional authority. I write these lines over a Carlsberg and shall drink no other lager until the boycott of Danish product ends.


At 2:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe Ann Landers once gave this piece of advice:

"Avoid zealots. They are generally humourless."

That about says it, eh?


Post a Comment

<< Home