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  • Muslim Jewish interaction

    by Sunny
    30th August, 2006 at 4:11 pm    

    I’m a bit snowed under with work right now so it’s difficult to write anything original; hence the regurgitation of news and blogs. Pickled Politics’ one year anniversary is coming up and I’m preparing a series of articles towards our goal - to have a more informed discourse regarding current affairs.

    Meanwhile, some interesting posts. Thabet points towards a rabbi defending shariah. He makes some good points on that article, as well as this one regarding the forced conversion of those Fox News journalists.

    From there I ended up at Tariq Nelson, who points to Kashif, who is embarassed to find that lots of previously held assumptions about passages in the Jewish Talmud turned out to be false. Dodgy Jewish articles indeed. He was inspired by Umar Lee, who was uncomfortable at an anti-Israel meeting where he argued for peace but the lefties clearly don’t want to hear it:

    I see no bright future when you have the Pro-Israel side lining up to vilify all Arabs and Muslims and cheerleading for Israel like an arrogant Yankees fan and you have the pro-Palestinian side sitting like the old hopeless Red Sox fans cheering the team on no matter what. Does anyone care about truth? Not many, from what I have seen, and most of those who do aren’t the voices you will hear the loudest (and aren’t Muslim with few exceptions).

    At least he tried. The sooner everyone realises an alliance with the racist extreme left (and extreme right) will get us all nowhere the better.

    Also worth reading on Iraq: Mash on Donald Rumsfeld’s moral confusion and the silliness of our own ministers and army generals, at Curious Hamster.

                  Post to

    Filed in: Current affairs,Religion

    9 Comments below   |  

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs

    1. Chairwoman — on 30th August, 2006 at 5:09 pm  

      Interesting post with some seriously encouraging links. It’s great to have some good news occasionally.

    2. bikhair aka taqiyyah — on 30th August, 2006 at 6:06 pm  

      Their conversions arent recognized by the Sharia anyway if they did it simply to be released. But Allah knows what is in thier hearts and for those who took them hostage, tsk tsk tsk.

    3. Roger — on 30th August, 2006 at 7:58 pm  

      Perhaps the shariah law solution would be to impose both British law and shariah law on muslims. We’d soon find out who was sincere then.

    4. bikhair aka taqiyyah — on 30th August, 2006 at 9:28 pm  


      Thats so true. If you are a Muslim talking about Sharia and you cant bother to even pray five times a day, there is something a little hypocritical about you, dangerous even. Muslims have all the Sharia they need in Britian.

      I wonder if Muslims in Britian were asked if they wanted to live under Sharia or according to Sharia. The former implies living in a land where there is a Muslim ruler implementing his obligations vis a vis the people while the latter speaks to a Muslims lifestyle.

      I do wonder.

    5. David T — on 30th August, 2006 at 11:09 pm  

      A rabbi defending sharia is precisely what I’d expect in a world in which the geopolitical conflict over the State of Israel wasn’t a more significant line of division. Likewise, I’d also expect Haredi jews, various species of low church christians, and traditionalist muslims to form an alliance against secular society in all its manifestations.

      We should be grateful, at least, that no such alliance exists. It would make life for fluffy (and disorganised) liberals even more dismal than it is already.

      Instead, we have ‘godless Communists’ lining up with religious absolutists and falangists: a friendship of convenience rather than conviction which I sincerely hope contains the seeds of its own destruction, so to speak.

      That said, the rabbi in question seems to be not a super Orthodox type, but rather a wooly liberal Reform Jew, who is making a familiar ‘wonderful-patchwork-quilt-of-rich-religious-traditions’ argument, rather than peddling a plea for religious separatism. Its the sort of thing I’m generally keen on. Although I suspect that most traditionalist jews and muslims, and many literalist christians would take issue with the notion that “All legal systems evolve”. I doubt many of them would agree that the revealed law of God evolves.

    6. Bilal Patel — on 30th August, 2006 at 11:14 pm  

      He wasn’t exactly doing what the title suggests. He said:

      “Britain is our home. Why leave it? All legal systems evolve. If sharia or halacha (Jewish law) have something to contribute to British law then let the debate begin.”

      He’s asking for an open mind and discussion. What is so strange about that?

    7. David T — on 30th August, 2006 at 11:35 pm  


      I agree - it isn’t strange. In fact, it is a truism.

      Generally, however, I’d have thought that formalising - even ‘pillarising’ - the position of communities governed by a rigid interpretation of religious law is an unhealthy thing for a pluralist society to be encouraging. Religious people often do yearn to live their lives according to theologically sanctioned values and codes. The only objections are

      - That such precepts are only reconcilable in a pluralist state if they operate at the personal level and are not sanctioned or enforced by law.

      - They should not be privileged over values which are not specifically religious.

      - They should be recognised only to the extent that they are voluntarily assumed. There is a world of difference between two individuals deciding that their commercial disputes be governed by religious commercial law on the one hand, and a law which punishes individuals who have not consented to the jurisdiction of religious courts for transgressing moral or ritual precepts. Particularly on issues of personal choice or morality, religious communities tend to be extremely culturally conservative because they are often organised on the basis of the empowerment of religious absolutists - usually old men - and are therefore inherently resistant to innovation.

      It is on the last point that the tension is greatest. Members of strong and cohesive religious communities can find themselves in the position of, effectively, being by a community which is intolerant of dissent, if they breach its religiously ordained requirements. Being expelled from a such community - which a member might otherwise value, because it constitutes a bond with his family and peers - is a terrible thing to happen to somebody. For example, jews who married non jews have found themselves expelled by their families.

      You, in particular, should have significant reasons for wanting to resist the emerging of a narrow, morally authoritarian, religious community.

    8. Roger — on 31st August, 2006 at 11:21 am  

      “If sharia or halacha (Jewish law) have something to contribute to British law then let the debate begin….What is so strange about that? ”

      Because in the eyes of evryone else any virtues that they have they have regardless of their source.

    9. bananabrain — on 31st August, 2006 at 1:07 pm  

      i think you are being a little unfair calling rabbi fox “woolly”. i don’t think what he said was woolly nor was he woolly for saying so. i thought it was rather brave. on the other hand, as a reform rabbi, adhering to traditional halakhah is not what he would advocate, so although he’s not being woolly, he is perhaps being slightly illogical, as are quite a few of the reform people i know who make a big fuss about “conforming” to the dress code in orthodox synagogues, but don’t say a word about the same thing at a mosque. then again, the “progressives” are really the only people taking interfaith dialogue seriously, unlike the “orthodox”, so frankly they’ll get a lot of latitude from me.

      i was also really, really, taken with this quote from the Qur’an:

      “O you who believe! if an evil-doer comes to you with a report, look carefully into it, lest you harm a people in ignorance, then be sorry for what you have done.” al-Qur’an 49:6

      excellent. i will be quoting this at people forthwith.



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