Sunday, 15 November 2015

Denying The Premise


People are getting on their high horses about Muslims in the wake of the Paris atrocities and tarring all Muslims with the same brush.

Let's get it straight - ISIS is comprised almost exclusively of those who have embraced a fundamentalist mindset. Not all Muslims, in fact not even a large minority are of a fundamentalist mindset. Those fleeing Muslim countries are escaping the very people who are committing the same atrocities within their own countries. Yes, when people start to migrate, for whatever reason, there will be fifth columnists within their ranks. That's a problem, but not a reason to shut the door on genuine refugees. It's a failure of the sorting procedure. Whether genuine refugees should be allowed to stay permanently is another question.

You simply can't argue with a fundamentalist, whether that's a Muslim fundamentalist, Jewsish or a Christian one from a religious perspective (they are all hateful bigots). They know their religious texts better than you and can point to every word that supports their argument - you just have to listen to Anjem Choudury to understand that; his arguments are a tour de force of infallible logic.

The classic trap is to start the argument on the believer's terms by saying; "OK, so if we accept this is the word of God...," which is the absolute 'argument from authority', and then proceed to point out where the antagonist's arguments fall down from within that predetermined perspective - that of the believer and his or her texts. That sets you on a path that's a hiding to nothing, as for every word you point out as advocating love and peace, they will point to ten that point in the opposite direction. Religious texts in the Abrahamic tradition are littered with atrocities performed by early adherents, as the religions were forged in wars against the unbelievers and spread by war.

However, for the fundamentalist's argument to hold any validity you must first accept the premise - that of their religious text being the immutable word of God, rather than the confused, subconscious ramblings of some self-righteous, self-appointed prophet with a Messiah complex. Deny that premise and the whole edifice crumbles. Ergo, you cannot argue with a fundamentalist at all if you are a believer - you're simply setting yourself up by walking into a trap. Moderate Islam, like moderate Christianity, while practiced by the vast majority, is a wishy-washy, de facto heresy, and that's what arms the fundamentalist.


6 comments:

  1. Having lived and worked throughout the Middle East (and especially in the conflict zones) for the last 15 years, I can concur that the vast majority are as peace loving as all other peoples, and they are angry that their religion has been hijacked by the radical minority. These radicals twist the Koran and it`s teachings to suit their own agenda.

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    1. Vaughan - the sad thing is that the radicals aren't twisting anything. Their justification lies within the Koran in black and white, and in the actions of the Prophet. They can point to the validation, chapter and verse, as they invariably do.

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    2. The fact is that both sides can and do cherry-pick, both being equally valid. That's the problem with ascribing religious texts to being the word of God - they ain't, else they wouldn't be so muddle-headed and contradictory.

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  2. The fault with religionists of whatever ideology is that they have irrational beliefs.
    The idea of God is false, there is no such item, never has been and never will be.

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    1. Allegedly... Got more time for Buddhists, but even they are attracting fanatics.

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    2. Allegedly... Got more time for Buddhists, but even they are attracting fanatics.

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