UI – Part 275 – People are Different
The Muslims I Know
Recently I received a recording of the story of a Jewish Comedian helping a Muslim Researcher. It is an Only in America Story, but there may be others like it and not just in America. The Researcher, female, straight, and Muslim, gave many statistics when speaking about positive developments in the Middle East as to freedoms, human rights and democracy. It was dry, serious and humorless. The Comedian had been on stage prior, the same audience, and was well received with much laughter. The Comedian was female, lesbian, and Jewish. Afterwards, the Muslim reached out to the Jew impressed with how well her audience responded. She asked how she could improve her presentations, introducing humor; admitting how difficult it was. The Jew helped and succeeded. The audiences now found a Hijab wearing female presenting facts but with a positive view of their speaker as a Muslim, not as an Islamist fundamentalist terrorist. An itroductory comment regarding safety concerns when Muslims are present, “If I were to be one to invade to cause harm would I be wearing this Hijab?” (Hear More)
People are Different
This is what friends share. Even friends not of like mind. People can be different. They can have different feelings and different beliefs. You can attempt to convince me you are right, and visa versa. Or simply not make any such attempt, just express yourself. Be who you are. My sword is my pen, yet I am not trying to extirpate anyone. I am seeking answers to questions, raising concerns, expressing doubts, and open to responses.
The Muslim majority may be objective in their thinking, open minded and tolerant. There is so much uncertainty as to this statement, but most people consider first the good in people, and need to be awakened, often rudely, to the evil. The world wants the majority of Muslims to be comfortable in pluralistic societies and tolerant of opposing views, particularly views on religion and/or ideology. Many, given the intolerant and evil acts of Islamists, assume the more fundamentalist Islamists are of a minority. Yet hidden behind a veil they have exposed all Muslims to being profiled as potential defilers of life, liberty and limb. I pray there are more open-minded, neighbor loving and accepting Muslims than not, and as the case of the Jew and Muslim at the start of this Blog – not Only in America.
My Blogs question Islam. I do so seeing it as an Ideology that has compromised a love for the Creator. There are Muslims who love God; they call their god Allah, but, in my view, it is not the same Allah as the Islamists. Having been referred to as Islamophobic I cannot deny the fact I have found fault with much of the Scripture of Islam. But I am not Muslim-ophobic. There are wonderful, honorable and good people that are Muslim – they love God. But can God be a deceiver? Can God err in the Word he inspired? Would a loving God force conversion or seek a voluntary love and following? They need to demonstrate their independence. They need to be able to think for themselves. They need to be able to hear other points of view, have doubts and seek answers to what they do not understand. And just a possibility, but their God may be the Biblical God.
May my apology be heard by the people that are Muslims that love and exercise their independence without fear and believe in freedom. There is no rational consideration that being Islamophobic, in the form of asking questions which may raise doubts or seek answers as to the intentions, the history and the ideology of Islam, should warrant guilt. But if an apology makes Muslims more secure, then I apologize, but I will not stop trying to learn, understand and seek truthful responses. People question issues and beliefs of all sorts, all the time. It is normal. May it be heard by those who believe in equality of men and women, human rights, who care for the sick and the poor and who do not see themselves as Superior to others, but humble as the Lord.
There may be a need also for moderate Muslims to openly support the separation of church (mosque) and State (politics) and thus be released from the ties of control of political authorities (theocratic) over their lives. Political Islam is the greatest obstacle to peaceful co-existence.
Being Objective in Choice of Path
The melting pot of the world may have but one pathway to the eternal kingdom for those who believe. But that does not say you cannot listen to or live with one who has an alternative view. Your closest friends may be of like mind. However, do not be exclusive. That is impossible where freedom lives. What is necessary is that hearts, minds and souls of mankind, as a whole, avail themselves to the teachings and scripture of others, thus allowing God’s gift of intellect and freedom, as cream, to rise to the surface of the milk of human kind.
If there were but one scripture to choose what would it be? Let that float to the surface of open-minded people.
Oppression occurs where there are those whose want for power and control suppresses those considered lesser. The oppressed live in fear and despondency uncertain as to their fate each and every day. Dissent, even worthy dissent, is not welcomed if it diminishes or threatens authority. There is no love in such an equation, but as to believing, know that God is Love. The Supreme Being finds obedience from those whose hearts, minds and souls willingly open themselves to grace and the love poured out daily. No coercion. The Supreme Being provided through the Word a timeless opportunity to have a relationship with the incomprehensible. Loving your neighbor is Godly. Freedom is also.
The Act and the Actor
God loves not the act, but the actor. The act if sinful can be stopped when God’s love is understood and God’s gift of eternal salvation is accepted. A sinful nature is realized, repented to, and done no more, out of honor and respect for the sacrifice of Jesus for your sins and mine. That does not mean we do not falter. Do your best to live as Christ. Perfection is not the objective, but a most worthy effort is. Follow Christ and never carry a sword. Follow Muhammad and the sword will always be with you.
Freedom to Believe
Jesus gave us the freedom to believe. Believe in Him with all your heart, soul and mind, as I do, and your opportunity for eternal life is assured – if you truly believe and act accordingly. Sin may not be erased, but your effort to be good, do good and live as Christ lives will be reflected in your daily activities. Your choice. So I believe. If I am wrong, what have I given up?
Be neighborly. Help each other. As with the Jew and the Muslim in this story together they made each other better.
Grace and Peace,