Tag Archives | Islam

Real Life Submission: French Jews Exodus To Israel

Reading the just-published English edition of Michel Houellebecq’s novel Submission over the last week has been quite surreal given the real-life events in Paris. (For those unfamiliar with the book, literary gadfly Houellebecq envisions a scenario where France becomes an Islamic nation upon the victorious national election of the Muslim Brotherhood in 2022.)

One of the effects of the changeover from a secular to an Islamic state is the exodus of Jews from France to Israel. Recent events have accelerated the process greatly, reports the Observer:

Birthright Israel, the charity founded in 1999 to bring young Jews on trips to Israel, has witnessed an unprecedented increase in participation among French citizens over the past two years.

The Observer has learned that 2500 French Jews will have visited Israel as part of the program this year—more than double the 1100 who went last year and a stunning 2400% increase over the 98 who visited as program participants in 2013.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

A warmer embrace of Muslims could stop homegrown terrorism

Sarah Lyons-Padilla, Stanford University and Michele Gelfand, University of Maryland

The discovery that several of the Paris attackers were European nationals has fueled concern about Muslim immigrants becoming radicalized in the West.

Some politicians have expressed views that the best way to avoid homegrown terrorists is to shut the door.

The refugee migration debate turned even more contentious after authorities found a Syrian passport at the scene of the attack. Poland is now turning back refugees, more than half of American governors have vowed to refuse Middle Easterners seeking a new beginning, and US House Speaker Ryan has asked for a “pause” on the federal Syrian refugee program.

Fearful reactions to terrorist violence are nothing new. Incidents of extremist activity are often followed by anti-Islam protests or hate crimes. Reports of ISIS luring Western Muslims abroad are followed by a tightening of homeland security policy. Just after the attacks in Paris, presidential hopeful Donald Trump said that he would be willing to close mosques in the US.… Read the rest

Continue Reading

New FBI Program Trains Teachers, Students to Snoop On Muslims

"Teachers in classrooms should not become an extension of law enforcement," said Arjun S. Sethi, an adjunct professor of law at the Georgetown University Law Center. (Photo: Cumminsr/Wikimedia/cc)

“Teachers in classrooms should not become an extension of law enforcement,” said Arjun S. Sethi, an adjunct professor of law at the Georgetown University Law Center. (Photo: Cumminsr/Wikimedia/cc)

This article originally appeared on Common Dreams. See more of Sarah Lazare’s posts here.

Rights groups are charging that a new FBI program to counter “extremism,” expected to be unveiled shortly, employs games and online tools that encourage teachers and students to snoop on—and discriminate against—Muslims, in violation of their most fundamental civil liberties.

Entitled ‘Don’t Be a Puppet,’ the program “leads the viewer through a series of games and tips intended to teach how to identify someone who may be falling prey to radical extremists,” New York Times journalist Laurie Goodstein reported on Monday. “With each successful answer, scissors cut a puppet’s string, until the puppet is free.”

Muslim, Arab, civil rights, and community groups invited by the FBI to “review” the program on October 16 told reporters that Don’t Be a Puppet unfairly targets Muslims.… Read the rest

Continue Reading

Green Islam: Muslims Speak Out on Climate Change

Peter Sinclair writes at Climate Denial Crock of the Week:

Following the declaration by Pope Francis in June, leaders in the Islamic world have now issued a warning on climate change to the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims.

In May, I interviewed Imam Achmat Sallie, an important leader in the burgeoning movement of “Green Islam”.  Imam Sallie is founder of the Islamic Studies program at Mercy College of the University of Detroit.

Read more here.

Read the rest

Continue Reading

The Dangers of Religious Primitivism

King Salman of Saudi Arabia and his entourage arrive to greet President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Jan. 27, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

King Salman of Saudi Arabia and his entourage arrive to greet President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Jan. 27, 2015.
(Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Lawrence Davidson writes at Consortiumnews:

Prior to the Eighteenth Century – that is prior to the Enlightenment – if you had asked a literate Westerner when he or she thought the most ideal of human societies did or would exist, most of them would have located that society in the past.

The religious majority might have placed it in the biblical age of Solomon or the early Christian communities of the First Century after Christ. Both would have been considered divinely inspired times.

Now, come forward a hundred years, say to the beginning of the Nineteenth Century, and ask the same question. You would notice that the answer was beginning to change.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Occultists, Freemasons, And The Secret History of Radical Islam


Aleister Crowley in a Turban.

In 1910, the English occultist, Freemason, and poet, Aleister Crowley, published a strange and now little-known work called The Scented Garden of Abdullah: The Satirist of Shiraz under the name Abdullah el Haji. In the work, which imitated Sufi poetry, Crowley claims to have been accepted into “the joyous company of the Sufis,” but that he cannot openly discuss Islamic mysticism, “if only because I am a Freemason.”

In other words, the English occultist was suggesting that Sufism and Freemasonry were in some way connected, whether philosophically or through historical ties. He, however, was not the only one to think this. The explorer Sir Richard Francis Burton – whose translation of Eastern texts influenced Western spirituality – believed that Sufism was “The Eastern parent of Free-Masonry.” And, later, modern Sufi and author Idries Shah would make much the same claim.

It is now well known that Freemasonry – a fraternity founded in London in 1717, but with roots going back to medieval Britain – had a significant influence on occultism and alternative spirituality in the West.… Read the rest

Continue Reading

Florida’s Bathroom Law

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mike LaBossiere via Talking Philosophy:

Being from Maine, I got accustomed to being asked about the cold, lobsters, moose and Stephen King. Living in Florida, I have become accustomed to being asked about why my adopted state is so insane. Most recently, I was asked about the bathroom bill making its way through the House.

The bathroom bill, officially known as HB 583, proposes that it should be a second-degree misdemeanor to “knowingly and willfully” enter a public facility restricted to members “of the other biological sex.” The bill proposes a maximum penalty of 60 days in jail and a $500 fine.

Some opponents of the bill contend that it is aimed at discriminating against transgender people. Some part of Florida have laws permitting people to use public facilities based on the gender they identify with rather than their biological sex.

Obviously enough, proponents of the bill are not claiming that they are motivated by a dislike of transgender people.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

How Long is History According to Islam?

Alan Cleaver (CC BY 2.0)

Alan Cleaver (CC BY 2.0)

Kenitra – My previous article ‘The First People’ hints at the idea that history of mankind is longer than what people generally assume. Some readers and friends have pointed out that history cannot be more than 6,000 years old. This view is inconsistent with the NASA estimation for the astronomical cycle of the vernal equinox precession that lasts 25,800 years and which had been observed in the remote past. This conservative viewpoint of history, which some people cling to, stems from the influence of the Judeo-Christian calendar as well as the lack of historical records beyond 6,000 B.C. Islam however is silent about the length of history or at least indirect.

This article is an attempt to demonstrate how vast history is and to determine a conservative estimation of its length according to Islam. Before we proceed to that, we need to take a look at what the Judeo-Christian tradition view on history’s span.… Read the rest

Continue Reading