In recent months, cliched calls for reform of Islam, a 1,400-year-old faith, have intensified. “We need a Muslim reformation,” announced Newsweek. “Islam needs reformation from within,” said the Huffington Post. Following January’s massacre in Paris, the Financial Times nodded to those in the west who believe the secular Egyptian president, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, “could emerge as the Martin Luther of the Muslim world”. (That might be difficult, given Sisi, in the words of Human Rights Watch, approved “premeditated lethal attacks” on largely unarmed protesters which could amount to “crimes against humanity”.)
…. With apologies to Luther, if anyone wants to do the same to the religion of Islam today, it is Isis leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who claims to rape and pillage in the name of a “purer form” of Islam – and who isn’t, incidentally, a fan of the Jews either. Those who cry so simplistically, and not a little inanely, for an Islamic reformation, should be careful what they wish for. [Mehdi Hasan, 1821 comments]
[TOP RATED COMMENT 826 votes] This is a defective argument. And deflective by seeking to compare a reformation hundreds of years earlier. It is a dishonest attempt to deflect the discussion.
Islam as it stands has too many ethical standpoints which are contrary to fundamental beliefs of equality which are held dear to people living in the west who do not want their daughters to have to wear bags.
It has no place – as indeed does any conservative religious zealotry – in the West of 2015.
If you as an Islam follower see it as a pure experience which has no prospect to become more tolerant. To reform. Then perhaps you might like to return to the grimy primitive dustbowl from which such beliefs seem still to flourish. They have no place here.
[2ND 686] “A dust bowl from which your ideal utopia the ‘west’ has invaded, meddled with and bombed for decades. Places like the Middle East and Africa wouldn’t be dustbowl’s if the the west stopped effectively stealing resources and pouring debt on such countries via institutions like the world bank and IMF.
Maybe the west needs to have a conscience look at itself, a place in which institutional racism is still rife. Reparations for colonisation would be a start…..”
Ah yes, it’s all the West’s fault. Thank you for stepping up to the plate and offering this increasingly hollow-sounding argument – someone had to do it.
[3RD 413] No mention in the article that Hirsi Ali has been forced to live under 24/7 protection after being threatened by members of the religion of peace.
I like Islam the way it is, with its childish belief in Adam and Eve, Noah and the Flood, the prophet’s little flying horse and all those angels that refuse to enter a house “wherin there lieth a dog (Hadith 2987).”
The Muslim belief in every single writen word reminds me a lot of the Jehovas Witnesses, though the latter are more palatable because they are pacifists.
Peace to us all.
[4TH 288] OK, so Islam doesn’t need a reformation. Jolly good, well done.
It clearly needs an Enlightenment though.
[5TH 220] What a silly article. When people say that Islam needs a reformation they mean that it needs to accommodate scientific rationalism and logic. That process was not accomplished by Luther and Luther is not a model in terms of his doctrinal beliefs.
Over 500 years, Christianity has reconciled itself to changes in society and successfully disassociated itself from most, if not all, medieval attitudes and prejudices. It has made peace with secular states and non believers or unbelievers.
Islam has done none of these things: its religious leaders by and large refuse to engage in any constructive dialogue with other religions or with democratic societies. [Guardian Cif] Read more