Islam and Theocracy

The Daily Elephant believes Islam is a political idealogy (and hence open to more criticism):

Islam is not just a religion.  It is also a political movement.  Here is a statement from a popular Islamic website:

Secularism cannot be a solution for countries with a Muslim majority or even a sizeable minority, for it requires people to replace their God-given beliefs with an entirely different set of man-made beliefs. Separation of religion and state is not an option for Muslims because is requires us to abandon Allah’s decree for that of a man.

If Mosque and State cannot be separated than Islam is, by definition, a Political Entity.  It is comprised of both faith and political ideology.  While I make no arguments against Muslims believing in God, I make every protest against this belief in Theocracy.  No ideology has ever been more destructive than Theocracy.  It has never worked, and will never work.  Religion can bring people inner-peace, guidance, and self-respect.  But when it is placed in the hands of Kings or Congressmen, it turns into a weapon.

It is important to distinguish between the religion and the political movement.  You don’t have massive numbers of Muslims in this country clamoring for an Islamic state.  The rantings of some are not the beliefs of all.  By the same token, you have some Christianists calling for theocracy here at home (no mention of them in subtlepress’s post, although his view of Huckabee’s presence in the race as bogus hints at an equal approach).  They too, do not reflect the religion they base their theocratic tendencies in.  So while theocracy is undeniably destructive, and it is to be opposed with vigor, the theocratic railings of some Muslims does not a condemnation of Islam make.

I also find contention with another point subtlepress makes implicitly, namely, that religions are not open to dissection and critique.  I think they are.  Turning a critical eye on Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism is a good idea, and I believe entirely proper even without the trappings of overt political involvement.

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5 Responses

  1. Subtlepress here…

    Ah, but I do believe Religion should be open to analysis and criticism. I simply believe that in open forums Political Ideologies are less taboo. This allows us to target the problems inherent in the religion using a more focused lens.

    Funny, I’ve been criticized today for being too hard and too easy on religion…

    Regarding Huckabee and the Evangelical movement here at home, I absolutely agree with you. I am against any form of Theocracy, be it Christian or Islamic. In the end, they all come to the same thing.

  2. Erik,
    That’s a very good point. I think its also worthwhile to work at lessening that distinction, and making the open criticism of religion less a taboo.

    Glad to see we are united against theocracy!

  3. “I think its also worthwhile to work at lessening that distinction”

    Agreed. For the benefit of religious and non-religious people alike. All organizations should be open to analysis and criticism. The more radical they become, the more vital this is.

    Very good blog. It’s always good to see those with whom you do not share political affiliation sometimes do share similar views and ideas…

  4. It’s always good to see those with whom you do not share political affiliation sometimes do share similar views and ideas…

    I was thinking the same thing.

    All organizations should be open to analysis and criticism. The more radical they become, the more vital this is.

    Absolutely.

  5. Wow. You got some good conversations going here Dan 🙂 I feel like wanting to post this on my blog saying look at this: here’s some good dialogue right here! “With whom you do not share political affiliation” even…ha. Thanks for the note. I’m getting better, hoping for sooner than later, but I’ll try to rest. Hope you’re doing good! Best! -Heléne
    ps. Theocracy – thank God he came in a manger…that should tell us more than it does these days about Jesus’ view on political power in this world 🙂

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