Als de islam instort...

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Lodewijk Nasser
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Als de islam instort...

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Van alles wat ik de afgelopen jaren over de islam heb gelezen, is dit - tot nog toe- het meest overtuigende artikel. Een must voor de intellectuelen onder ons. Het is geschreven door één van mijn favoriete auteurs Theodore Dalrymple.

Dit essay werd zelfs door de New York Times uitgeroepen het beste krantenartikel uit 2004. Een Nederlandse vertaling is opgenomen in zijn laatste boek: 'Beschaving of wat ervan over is'.





When Islam Breaks Down
Theodore Dalrymple




My first contact with Islam was in Afghanistan. I had been through Iran overland to get there, but it was in the days of the Shah’s White Revolution, which had given rights to women and had secularized society (with the aid of a little detention, without trial, and torture). In my naive, historicist way, I assumed that secularization was an irreversible process, like the breaking of eggs: that once people had seen the glory of life without compulsory obeisance to the men of God, they would never turn back to them as the sole guides to their lives and politics.

Afghanistan was different, quite clearly a pre-modern society. The vast, barren landscapes in the crystalline air were impossibly romantic, and the people (that is to say the men, for women were not much in evidence) had a wild dignity and nobility. Their mien was aristocratic. Even their hospitality was fierce. They carried more weapons in daily life than the average British commando in wartime. You knew that they would defend you to the death, if necessary—or cut your throat like a chicken’s, if necessary. Honor among them was all.

On the whole I was favorably impressed. I thought that they were freer than we. I thought nothing of such matters as the clash of civilizations, and experienced no desire, and felt no duty, to redeem them from their way of life in the name of any of my own civilization’s ideals. Impressed by the aesthetics of Afghanistan and unaware of any fundamental opposition or tension between the modern and the pre-modern, I saw no reason why the West and Afghanistan should not rub along pretty well together, each in its own little world, provided only that each respected the other.

I was with a group of students, and our appearance in the middle of a country then seldom visited was almost a national event. At any rate, we put on extracts of Romeo and Juliet in the desert, in which I had a small part, and the crown prince of Afghanistan (then still a kingdom) attended. He arrived in Afghanistan’s one modern appurtenance: a silver convertible Mercedes sports car—I was much impressed by that. Little did I think then that lines from the play—those of Juliet’s plea to her mother to abrogate an unwanted marriage to Paris, arranged and forced on her by her father, Capulet—would so uncannily capture the predicament of some of my Muslim patients in Britain more than a third of a century after my visit to Afghanistan, and four centuries after they were written:

Is there no pity sitting in the clouds
That sees into the bottom of my grief?
O sweet my mother, cast me not away!
Delay this marriage for a month, a week,
Or if you do not, make the bridal bed
In that dim monument where Tybalt lies.
How often have I been consulted by young Muslim women patients, driven to despair by enforced marriages to close relatives (usually first cousins) back “home” in India and Pakistan, who have made such an unavailing appeal to their mothers, followed by an attempt at suicide!

Capulet’s attitude to his refractory daughter is precisely that of my Muslim patients’ fathers:

Look to’t, think on’t, I do not use to jest.
Thursday is near, lay hand on heart, advise:
And you be mine, I’ll give you to my friend;
And you be not, hang, beg, starve, die in the streets,
For by my soul, I’ll ne’er acknowledge thee,
Nor what is mine shall ever do thee good.
In fact the situation of Muslim girls in my city is even worse than Juliet’s. Every Muslim girl in my city has heard of the killing of such as she back in Pakistan, on refusal to marry her first cousin, betrothed to her by her father, all unknown to her, in the earliest years of her childhood. The girl is killed because she has impugned family honor by breaking her father’s word, and any halfhearted official inquiry into the death by the Pakistani authorities is easily and cheaply bought off. And even if she is not killed, she is expelled from the household—O sweet my mother, cast me not away!—and regarded by her “community” as virtually a prostitute, fair game for any man who wants her.

This pattern of betrothal causes suffering as intense as any I know of. It has terrible consequences. One father prevented his daughter, highly intelligent and ambitious to be a journalist, from attending school, precisely to ensure her lack of Westernization and economic independence. He then took her, aged 16, to Pakistan for the traditional forced marriage (silence, or a lack of open objection, amounts to consent in these circumstances, according to Islamic law) to a first cousin whom she disliked from the first and who forced his attentions on her. Granted a visa to come to Britain, as if the marriage were a bona fide one—the British authorities having turned a cowardly blind eye to the real nature of such marriages in order to avoid the charge of racial discrimination—he was violent toward her.

She had two children in quick succession, both of whom were so severely handicapped that they would be bedridden for the rest of their short lives and would require nursing 24 hours a day. (For fear of giving offense, the press almost never alludes to the extremely high rate of genetic illnesses among the offspring of consanguineous marriages.) Her husband, deciding that the blame for the illnesses was entirely hers, and not wishing to devote himself to looking after such useless creatures, left her, divorcing her after Islamic custom. Her family ostracized her, having concluded that a woman whose husband had left her must have been to blame and was the next thing to a whore. She threw herself off a cliff, but was saved by a ledge.

I’ve heard a hundred variations of her emblematic story. Here, for once, are instances of unadulterated female victimhood, yet the silence of the feminists is deafening. Where two pieties—feminism and multiculturalism—come into conflict, the only way of preserving both is an indecent silence.

Certainly such experiences have moderated the historicism I took to Afghanistan—the naive belief that monotheistic religions have but a single, “natural,” path of evolution, which they all eventually follow. By the time Christianity was Islam’s present age, I might once have thought, it had still undergone no Reformation, the absence of which is sometimes offered as an explanation for Islam’s intolerance and rigidity. Give it time, I would have said, and it will evolve, as Christianity has, to a private confession that acknowledges the legal supremacy of the secular state—at which point Islam will become one creed among many.

That Shakespeare’s words express the despair that oppressed Muslim girls feel in a British city in the twenty-first century with much greater force, short of poisoning themselves, than that with which they can themselves express it, that Shakespeare evokes so vividly their fathers’ sentiments as well (though condemning rather than endorsing them), suggests—does it not?—that such oppressive treatment of women is not historically unique to Islam, and that it is a stage that Muslims will leave behind. Islam will even outgrow its religious intolerance, as Christian Europe did so long ago, after centuries in which the Thirty Years’ War, for example, resulted in the death of a third of Germany’s population, or when Philip II of Spain averred, “I would rather sacrifice the lives of a hundred thousand people than cease my persecution of heretics.”

My historicist optimism has waned. After all, I soon enough learned that the Shah’s revolution from above was reversible—at least in the short term, that is to say the term in which we all live, and certainly long enough to ruin the only lives that contemporary Iranians have. Moreover, even if there were no relevant differences between Christianity and Islam as doctrines and civilizations in their ability to accommodate modernity, a vital difference in the historical situations of the two religions also tempers my historicist optimism. Devout Muslims can see (as Luther, Calvin, and others could not) the long-term consequences of the Reformation and its consequent secularism: a marginalization of the Word of God, except as an increasingly distant cultural echo—as the “melancholy, long, withdrawing roar” of the once full “Sea of faith,” in Matthew Arnold’s precisely diagnostic words.

And there is enough truth in the devout Muslim’s criticism of the less attractive aspects of Western secular culture to lend plausibility to his call for a return to purity as the answer to the Muslim world’s woes. He sees in the West’s freedom nothing but promiscuity and license, which is certainly there; but he does not see in freedom, especially freedom of inquiry, a spiritual virtue as well as an ultimate source of strength. This narrow, beleaguered consciousness no doubt accounts for the strand of reactionary revolt in contemporary Islam. The devout Muslim fears, and not without good reason, that to give an inch is sooner or later to concede the whole territory.

This fear must be all the more acute among the large and growing Muslim population in cities like mine. Except for a small, highly educated middle class, who live de facto as if Islam were a private religious confession like any other in the West, the Muslims congregate in neighborhoods that they have made their own, where the life of the Punjab continues amid the architecture of the Industrial Revolution. The halal butcher’s corner shop rubs shoulders with the terra-cotta municipal library, built by the Victorian city fathers to improve the cultural level of a largely vanished industrial working class.

The Muslim immigrants to these areas were not seeking a new way of life when they arrived; they expected to continue their old lives, but more prosperously. They neither anticipated, nor wanted, the inevitable cultural tensions of translocation, and they certainly never suspected that in the long run they could not maintain their culture and their religion intact. The older generation is only now realizing that even outward conformity to traditional codes of dress and behavior by the young is no longer a guarantee of inner acceptance (a perception that makes their vigilantism all the more pronounced and desperate). Recently I stood at the taxi stand outside my hospital, beside two young women in full black costume, with only a slit for the eyes. One said to the other, “Give us a light for a fag, love; I’m gasping.” Release the social pressure on the girls, and they would abandon their costume in an instant.

Anyone who lives in a city like mine and interests himself in the fate of the world cannot help wondering whether, deeper than this immediate cultural desperation, there is anything intrinsic to Islam—beyond the devout Muslim’s instinctive understanding that secularization, once it starts, is like an unstoppable chain reaction—that renders it unable to adapt itself comfortably to the modern world. Is there an essential element that condemns the Dar al-Islam to permanent backwardness with regard to the Dar al-Harb, a backwardness that is felt as a deep humiliation, and is exemplified, though not proved, by the fact that the whole of the Arab world, minus its oil, matters less to the rest of the world economically than the Nokia telephone company of Finland?

I think the answer is yes, and that the problem begins with Islam’s failure to make a distinction between church and state. Unlike Christianity, which had to spend its first centuries developing institutions clandestinely and so from the outset clearly had to separate church from state, Islam was from its inception both church and state, one and indivisible, with no possible distinction between temporal and religious authority. Muhammad’s power was seamlessly spiritual and secular (although the latter grew ultimately out of the former), and he bequeathed this model to his followers. Since he was, by Islamic definition, the last prophet of God upon earth, his was a political model whose perfection could not be challenged or questioned without the total abandonment of the pretensions of the entire religion.

But his model left Islam with two intractable problems. One was political. Muhammad unfortunately bequeathed no institutional arrangements by which his successors in the role of omnicompetent ruler could be chosen (and, of course, a schism occurred immediately after the Prophet’s death, with some—today’s Sunnites—following his father-in-law, and some—today’s Shi’ites—his son-in-law). Compounding this difficulty, the legitimacy of temporal power could always be challenged by those who, citing Muhammad’s spiritual role, claimed greater religious purity or authority; the fanatic in Islam is always at a moral advantage vis-à-vis the moderate. Moreover, Islam—in which the mosque is a meetinghouse, not an institutional church—has no established, anointed ecclesiastical hierarchy to decide such claims authoritatively. With political power constantly liable to challenge from the pious, or the allegedly pious, tyranny becomes the only guarantor of stability, and assassination the only means of reform. Hence the Saudi time bomb: sooner or later, religious revolt will depose a dynasty founded upon its supposed piety but long since corrupted by the ways of the world.

The second problem is intellectual. In the West, the Renaissance, the Reformation, and the Enlightenment, acting upon the space that had always existed, at least potentially, in Christianity between church and state, liberated individual men to think for themselves, and thus set in motion an unprecedented and still unstoppable material advancement. Islam, with no separate, secular sphere where inquiry could flourish free from the claims of religion, if only for technical purposes, was hopelessly left behind: as, several centuries later, it still is.

The indivisibility of any aspect of life from any other in Islam is a source of strength, but also of fragility and weakness, for individuals as well as for polities. Where all conduct, all custom, has a religious sanction and justification, any change is a threat to the whole system of belief. Certainty that their way of life is the right one thus coexists with fear that the whole edifice—intellectual and political—will come tumbling down if it is tampered with in any way. Intransigence is a defense against doubt and makes living on terms of true equality with others who do not share the creed impossible.

Not coincidentally, the punishment for apostasy in Islam is death: apostates are regarded as far worse than infidels, and punished far more rigorously. In every Islamic society, and indeed among Britain’s Muslim immigrants, there are people who take this idea quite literally, as their rage against Salman Rushdie testified.

The Islamic doctrine of apostasy is hardly favorable to free inquiry or frank discussion, to say the least, and surely it explains why no Muslim, or former Muslim, in an Islamic society would dare to suggest that the Qu’ran was not divinely dictated through the mouth of the Prophet but rather was a compilation of a charismatic man’s words made many years after his death, and incorporating, with no very great originality, Judaic, Christian, and Zoroastrian elements. In my experience, devout Muslims expect and demand a freedom to criticize, often with perspicacity, the doctrines and customs of others, while demanding an exaggerated degree of respect and freedom from criticism for their own doctrines and customs. I recall, for example, staying with a Pakistani Muslim in East Africa, a very decent and devout man, who nevertheless spent several evenings with me deriding the absurdities of Christianity: the paradoxes of the Trinity, the impossibility of Resurrection, and so forth. Though no Christian myself, had I replied in kind, alluding to the pagan absurdities of the pilgrimage to Mecca, or to the gross, ignorant, and primitive superstitions of the Prophet with regard to jinn, I doubt that our friendship would have lasted long.

The unassailable status of the Qu’ran in Islamic education, thought, and society is ultimately Islam’s greatest disadvantage in the modern world. Such unassailability does not debar a society from great artistic achievement or charms of its own: great and marvelous civilizations have flourished without the slightest intellectual freedom. I myself prefer a souk to a supermarket any day, as a more human, if less economically efficient, institution. But until Muslims (or former Muslims, as they would then be) are free in their own countries to denounce the Qu’ran as an inferior hodgepodge of contradictory injunctions, without intellectual unity (whether it is so or not)—until they are free to say with Carlyle that the Qu’ran is “a wearisome confused jumble” with “endless iterations, longwindedness, entanglement”—until they are free to remake and modernize the Qu’ran by creative interpretation, they will have to reconcile themselves to being, if not helots, at least in the rearguard of humanity, as far as power and technical advance are concerned.

A piece of pulp fiction by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, first published in 1898, when followers of the charismatic fundamentalist leader Muhammad al-Mahdi tried to establish a theocracy in Sudan by revolting against Anglo-Egyptian control, makes precisely this point and captures the contradiction at the heart of contemporary Islam. Called The Tragedy of the Korosko, the book is the story of a small tourist party to Upper Egypt, who are kidnapped and held to ransom by some Mahdists, and then rescued by the Egyptian Camel Corps. (I hesitate, as a Francophile, to point out to American readers that there is a French character in the book, who, until he is himself captured by the Mahdists, believes that they are but a figment of the British imagination, to give perfidious Albion a pretext to interfere in Sudanese affairs.) A mullah among the Mahdists who capture the tourists attempts to convert the Europeans and Americans to Islam, deriding as unimportant and insignificant their technically superior civilization: “ ‘As to the [scientific] learning of which you speak . . . ’ said the Moolah . . . ‘I have myself studied at the University of Al Azhar at Cairo, and I know that to which you allude. But the learning of the faithful is not as the learning of the unbeliever, and it is not fitting that we pry too deeply into the ways of Allah. Some stars have tails . . . and some have not; but what does it profit us to know which are which? For God made them all, and they are very safe in His hands. Therefore . . . be not puffed up by the foolish learning of the West, and understand that there is only one wisdom, which consists in following the will of Allah as His chosen prophet has laid it down for us in this book.’ ”

This is by no means a despicable argument. One of the reasons that we can appreciate the art and literature of the past, and sometimes of the very distant past, is that the fundamental conditions of human existence remain the same, however much we advance in the technical sense: I have myself argued in these pages that human self-understanding, except in purely technical matters, reached its apogee with Shakespeare. In a sense, the mullah is right.

But if we made a fetish of Shakespeare (much richer and more profound than the Qu’ran, in my view), if we made him the sole object of our study and the sole guide of our lives, we would soon enough fall into backwardness and stagnation. And the problem is that so many Muslims want both stagnation and power: they want a return to the perfection of the seventh century and to dominate the twenty-first, as they believe is the birthright of their doctrine, the last testament of God to man. If they were content to exist in a seventh-century backwater, secure in a quietist philosophy, there would be no problem for them or us; their problem, and ours, is that they want the power that free inquiry confers, without either the free inquiry or the philosophy and institutions that guarantee that free inquiry. They are faced with a dilemma: either they abandon their cherished religion, or they remain forever in the rear of human technical advance. Neither alternative is very appealing; and the tension between their desire for power and success in the modern world on the one hand, and their desire not to abandon their religion on the other, is resolvable for some only by exploding themselves as bombs.

People grow angry when faced with an intractable dilemma; they lash out. Whenever I have described in print the cruelties my young Muslim patients endure, I receive angry replies: I am either denounced outright as a liar, or the writer acknowledges that such cruelties take place but are attributable to a local culture, in this case Punjabi, not to Islam, and that I am ignorant not to know it.

But Punjabi Sikhs also arrange marriages: they do not, however, force consanguineous marriages of the kind that take place from Madras to Morocco. Moreover—and not, I believe, coincidentally—Sikh immigrants from the Punjab, of no higher original social status than their Muslim confrères from the same provinces, integrate far better into the local society once they have immigrated. Precisely because their religion is a more modest one, with fewer universalist pretensions, they find the duality of their new identity more easily navigable. On the 50th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s reign, for example, the Sikh temples were festooned with perfectly genuine protestations of congratulations and loyalty. No such protestations on the part of Muslims would be thinkable.

But the anger of Muslims, their demand that their sensibilities should be accorded a more than normal respect, is a sign not of the strength but of the weakness—or rather, the brittleness—of Islam in the modern world, the desperation its adherents feel that it could so easily fall to pieces. The control that Islam has over its populations in an era of globalization reminds me of the hold that the Ceausescus appeared to have over the Rumanians: an absolute hold, until Ceausescu appeared one day on the balcony and was jeered by the crowd that had lost its fear. The game was over, as far as Ceausescu was concerned, even if there had been no preexisting conspiracy to oust him.

One sign of the increasing weakness of Islam’s hold over its nominal adherents in Britain—of which militancy is itself but another sign—is the throng of young Muslim men in prison. They will soon overtake the young men of Jamaican origin in their numbers and in the extent of their criminality. By contrast, young Sikhs and Hindus are almost completely absent from prison, so racism is not the explanation for such Muslim overrepresentation.

Confounding expectations, these prisoners display no interest in Islam whatsoever; they are entirely secularized. True, they still adhere to Muslim marriage customs, but only for the obvious personal advantage of having a domestic slave at home. Many of them also dot the city with their concubines—sluttish white working-class girls or exploitable young Muslims who have fled forced marriages and do not know that their young men are married. This is not religion, but having one’s cake and eating it.

The young Muslim men in prison do not pray; they do not demand halal meat. They do not read the Qu’ran. They do not ask to see the visiting imam. They wear no visible signs of piety: their main badge of allegiance is a gold front tooth, which proclaims them members of the city’s criminal subculture—a badge (of honor, they think) that they share with young Jamaicans, though their relations with the Jamaicans are otherwise fraught with hostility. The young Muslim men want wives at home to cook and clean for them, concubines elsewhere, and drugs and rock ‘n’ roll. As for Muslim proselytism in the prison—and Muslim literature has been insinuated into nooks and crannies there far more thoroughly than any Christian literature—it is directed mainly at the Jamaican prisoners. It answers their need for an excuse to go straight, while not at the same time surrendering to the morality of a society they believe has wronged them deeply. Indeed, conversion to Islam is their revenge upon that society, for they sense that their newfound religion is fundamentally opposed to it. By conversion, therefore, they kill two birds with one stone.

But Islam has no improving or inhibiting effect upon the behavior of my city’s young Muslim men, who, in astonishing numbers, have taken to heroin, a habit almost unknown among their Sikh and Hindu contemporaries. The young Muslims not only take heroin but deal in it, and have adopted all the criminality attendant on the trade.

What I think these young Muslim prisoners demonstrate is that the rigidity of the traditional code by which their parents live, with its universalist pretensions and emphasis on outward conformity to them, is all or nothing; when it dissolves, it dissolves completely and leaves nothing in its place. The young Muslims then have little defense against the egotistical licentiousness they see about them and that they all too understandably take to be the summum bonum of Western life.

Observing this, of course, there are among Muslim youth a tiny minority who reject this absorption into the white lumpenproletariat and turn militant or fundamentalist. It is their perhaps natural, or at least understandable, reaction to the failure of our society, kowtowing to absurd and dishonest multiculturalist pieties, to induct them into the best of Western culture: into that spirit of free inquiry and personal freedom that has so transformed the life chances of every person in the world, whether he knows it or not.

Islam in the modern world is weak and brittle, not strong: that accounts for its so frequent shrillness. The Shah will, sooner or later, triumph over the Ayatollah in Iran, because human nature decrees it, though meanwhile millions of lives will have been ruined and impoverished. The Iranian refugees who have flooded into the West are fleeing Islam, not seeking to extend its dominion, as I know from speaking to many in my city. To be sure, fundamentalist Islam will be very dangerous for some time to come, and all of us, after all, live only in the short term; but ultimately the fate of the Church of England awaits it. Its melancholy, withdrawing roar may well (unlike that of the Church of England) be not just long but bloody, but withdraw it will. The fanatics and the bombers do not represent a resurgence of unreformed, fundamentalist Islam, but its death rattle.
DeSuper
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Lid geworden op: ma jun 26, 2006 7:29 pm

Bericht door DeSuper »

Zeer goed en diepgaand artikel, hoewel ik te weinig weet om echt kritisch te kunnen lezen. Mijn 'leesboek' engels is goed, maar ik moest hier wel even inkomen. Maar ja.. Ik ben dan ook geen intelectueel..

Hey lodewijk.. Heb jij dat boek: 'Beschaving of wat ervan over is' toevallig? Zin om een stukkie over te typen? Ik weet dat er mensen op het forum zijn die minder goed Engels kunnen lezen, zeker dit artikel.
The fanatics and the bombers do not represent a resurgence of unreformed, fundamentalist Islam, but its death rattle.
Dat denk ik ook. Jammer dat ze zoveel mensen en mij mee de shit in trekken.
FFD olé
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Lodewijk Nasser
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DeSuper schreef:Zeer goed en diepgaand artikel, hoewel ik te weinig weet om echt kritisch te kunnen lezen. Mijn 'leesboek' engels is goed, maar ik moest hier wel even inkomen. Maar ja.. Ik ben dan ook geen intelectueel..

Hey lodewijk.. Heb jij dat boek: 'Beschaving of wat ervan over is' toevallig? Zin om een stukkie over te typen? Ik weet dat er mensen op het forum zijn die minder goed Engels kunnen lezen, zeker dit artikel.
The fanatics and the bombers do not represent a resurgence of unreformed, fundamentalist Islam, but its death rattle.
Dat denk ik ook. Jammer dat ze zoveel mensen en mij mee de shit in trekken.
Beste DeSuper,

Allereerst mijn waardering dat je het gelezen hebt. Niet velen hebben het aangedurfd.


Ook mijn Engels is niet goed. Het is geen zeker geen makkelijk artikel; velen zullen zich ontmoedigd zien het te lezen. Maar met een online-woordenboek kom je ook ver.

Zelf beschik ik over de Nederlandse vertaling; wellicht dat ik de komende tijd er een beknopte samenvatting van geef. Hier behandel ik een klein aspect welke korte metten maakt met het denken dat racisme een verklaring is voor de achterstelling van moslims in het Westen.



De onzinnigheid van het racisme-standpunt:


Darymple toont aan dat de Islam nog weinig grip heeft op moslims in Engeland. Als voorbeeld wijst hij op de oververtegenwoordiging van Moslims in de misdaadstatistieken. Velen zullen zeggen: "Ja, wacht eens even, dat komt door discriminatie, armoede, taalachterstand" etc. Maar Sikhs en Hindoes uit dezelfde regio (Punjab), beschikken over dezelfde startpositie, maar zijn juist amper vertegenwoordigd in de misdaadstatistieken. Ook zijn zij veel beter geintregreerd. Dat komt wellicht omdat het minder universele pretenties dan de islam heeft, welke het makkelijker maakt een duale identiteit vast te houden.

(..) But Punjabi Sikhs also arrange marriages: they do not, however, force consanguineous marriages of the kind that take place from Madras to Morocco. Moreover—and not, I believe, coincidentally—Sikh immigrants from the Punjab, of no higher original social status than their Muslim confrères from the same provinces, integrate far better into the local society once they have immigrated. Precisely because their religion is a more modest one, with fewer universalist pretensions, they find the duality of their new identity more easily navigable. On the 50th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s reign, for example, the Sikh temples were festooned with perfectly genuine protestations of congratulations and loyalty. No such protestations on the part of Muslims would be thinkable.

(..) One sign of the increasing weakness of Islam’s hold over its nominal adherents in Britain—of which militancy is itself but another sign—is the throng of young Muslim men in prison. They will soon overtake the young men of Jamaican origin in their numbers and in the extent of their criminality. By contrast, young Sikhs and Hindus are almost completely absent from prison, so racism is not the explanation for such Muslim overrepresentation.
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Lodewijk Nasser
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In my experience, devout Muslims expect and demand a freedom to criticize, often with perspicacity, the doctrines and customs of others, while demanding an exaggerated degree of respect and freedom from criticism for their own doctrines and customs.

Hij slaat hier precies de spijker op de kop.
Tussen droom en daad staan wetten in de weg en praktische bezwaren.
Willem Elsschot (1882-1960)
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Lodewijk Nasser
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Maar als we van Shakespeare een fetisj zouden maken (volgens mij is hij veel rijker en diepzinniger dan de koran), als hij het enige onderwerp van studie zou worden en de enige leidraad in ons leven, zouden we snel gaan achterlopen en zelfs stil blijven staan.
Tussen droom en daad staan wetten in de weg en praktische bezwaren.
Willem Elsschot (1882-1960)
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Kafir
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Lid geworden op: wo okt 29, 2003 11:19 pm
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DeSuper schreef:Zeer goed en diepgaand artikel, hoewel ik te weinig weet om echt kritisch te kunnen lezen. Mijn 'leesboek' engels is goed, maar ik moest hier wel even inkomen. Maar ja.. Ik ben dan ook geen intelectueel..
Ik vertaal wel eens wat dingen uit het Engels, en ik kan de praktijkwoordenboeken van Van Dale van harte aanbevelen. Een prachtig extra is de CD rom die erbij zit, en je kunt het pakket steeds verder uitbreiden, waardoor je zo met één knopje van Engels-nederlands, naar Nederlands-Engels kunt switchen, of naar andere talen.

Vriendelijke groet..
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Lodewijk Nasser
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Mag ik opnieuw aandacht vragen voor dit briljante artikel?

Hoe meer ik ben gaan lezen en discussieren met moslims, des te meer ik Theodore Dalrymple gelijk moet geven.
Tussen droom en daad staan wetten in de weg en praktische bezwaren.
Willem Elsschot (1882-1960)
BFA
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Lid geworden op: vr sep 29, 2006 5:18 pm

Bericht door BFA »

In my naive, historicist way,
Afghanistan was different, quite clearly a pre-modern society.
On the whole I was favorably impressed. I thought that they were freer than we.
Impressed by the aesthetics of Afghanistan and unaware of any fundamental opposition or tension between the modern and the pre-modern, I saw no reason why the West and Afghanistan should not rub along pretty well together,
Hij gaat volledig met de exotische dromen op zoek naar de 'edele wilde'. Overeenkomstig met de hippie ideen van toen. Gebaseerd op het 'théatre de la cruauté' en het DADAisme. Exotisme gebruiken om door de vreemde niet-alledaagse verxchijning vormen de geest ontsnapping uit het dagelijkse leven te bieden.
Op dat ogenblik ziet hij nog niet verder dan wat in zijn eigen hoofd afspeelt.
By the time Christianity was Islam’s present age,
De edele wilde. De trip die zovelen maakten. Iran, Afghanistan, Indie en terug. Een roes van bedwelming door vreemde gebruiken, vormen kleuren en drugs.
Give it time, I would have said, and it will evolve, as Christianity has, to a private confession that acknowledges the legal supremacy of the secular state—at which point Islam will become one creed among many.
Dit standpunt hebben de apologeten van Islam nog steeds.
but he does not see in freedom, especially freedom of inquiry,
DIt is onmogelijk in Islam. AL onze vrijheden komen voort uit de studie van de natuurlijke wereld en verschijnselen. Christendom gaat hand in hand met die studie. De studie van de natuurlijjke verschijnselen laat de mens toe het wezen en de uiteindelijke bedoeling van God beter te leren kennen. Geestelijk is het Christendom er enkel rijker door geworden. Het heeft het moeilijk gehad met menselijke ijdelheden te laten varen die floreerden op zijn wereldlijke macht. Is dit traag overkomen.
The devout Muslim fears, and not without good reason, that to give an inch is sooner or later to concede the whole territory.
Islam is de afwijzing van de studie der natuurlijke verschijnselen. Dus ook op onze seculiere staatsysteem en mensenrechten die er hun basis in vinden. Het zijn twee waarheden die botsen. Of het ene is waar, of het andere. Beiden kan niet. Elk stukje onwaarheid of inbreuk tegen mensenrechten in Islam toegeven, brengt twijfel over het hele systeem.
Die twijfel knaagt dan als een rat aan zijn fundamenten, zoals deze dijken doorboort.
the Muslims congregate in neighborhoods that they have made their own,
Zij hebben weinig keus volgens Islam. De imams zijn ongeletterd . Eén booek of geen boek maken daarin weinig verschil uit. Hier, als zij opgaan in onze maatschappij, wordt direkt hun prestige en menselijke ijdelheden aangetast. Hun volgelingen zijn ook meestal ongeletterd uit het platteland. De imam zijn prestige blijft bestaan uit het niet laten evolueren en integreren van deze bevolking. Blijft voor deze laatsten niet anders over dan het wanhopig vasthouden aan hun vroegere, maar in deze maatschappij, opfrauduleuze waarden gebaseerde identiteit.
Release the social pressure on the girls, and they would abandon their costume in an instant.
Daar Islam in al zijn vormen als onverenigbaar en vijandig tegen onze maatschappij is. Als strijdig met de grondwet kan verbieden. Zou dit verbod een zegen zijn voor het grootste deel van de hier levende Moslims.
Islam was from its inception both church and state, one and indivisible, with no possible distinction between temporal and religious authority.
Christendom heeft nooit de eis naar politieke macht gedaan. OK er zijn excessen. Niet zoals in Islam. Het rechtssysteem van het Romeins Imperium is nooit zwaar aangetast geweest.
Islam heeft van in het begin geen rechtssysteem gehad. Enkel willekeur, gerechtvaardigd door een willekeurige God. Daar dit een andere waarheid was, dan die van het Romeins recht, is dit vernietigd. Zonder rechtsstaat kan er geen economie, wetenschap, kultuur ontwikkelen.
Wij hebben dit rechtssysteem makkelijker weten te behouden, door de veel hardere militaire dwang op aanname ervan dan in het MO. Het MO was eerder veroverd en Romeins Kolonialisme, waarbij de plaatselijke rechtssystemen niet vervangen werden. Romeins en plaatselijk recht bestonden naast elkaar.
in Christianity between church and state, liberated individual men to think for themselves
Veel filosofen zijn onderwezen in kloosters. Zijn pas later, als hun onderzoek van de natuurlijke wereld op Kerkvorsten hun ijdelheden trapte, bescherming moeten gaan zoeken bij liberale koningen en gildes.
Islam, with no separate, secular sphere where inquiry could flourish free from the claims of religion,
Dit onderzoek was tegen het wezen van God.
Certainty that their way of life is the right one thus coexists with fear that the whole edifice—intellectual and political—will come tumbling down if it is tampered with in any way.
Kunnen geen twee waarheden naast elkaar bestaan. ALs het een juist is, is het ander fout en dient verworpen. En omgekeerd.
Not coincidentally, the punishment for apostasy in Islam is death: apostates are regarded as far worse than infidels
Probleem van de twee waarheden. Ongelovigen bestaan niet naast, maar onder Muslims.
In my experience, devout Muslims expect and demand a freedom to criticize, often with perspicacity, the doctrines and customs of others, while demanding an exaggerated degree of respect and freedom from criticism for their own doctrines and customs.
Dit is het probleem van de twee waarheden. Het is enkel de leugen van anderen die je mag in vraag stellen. Niet de zogezegde waarheid van Islam. Aangezien Islam de enige waarheid is, is deze verheven boven alles.
Therefore . . . be not puffed up by the foolish learning of the West, and understand that there is only one wisdom, which consists in following the will of Allah as His chosen prophet has laid it down for us in this book.’ ”
Deze zin vraagt voor de hele ontmanteling van ons rechtssysteem en maatschappijstruktuur, omdat deze ongoddelijk zijn.
But the anger of Muslims, their demand that their sensibilities should be accorded a more than normal respect, is a sign not of the strength but of the weakness—or rather, the brittleness—of Islam in the modern world, the desperation its adherents feel that it could so easily fall to pieces. The control that Islam has over its populations in an era of globalization reminds me of the hold that the Ceausescus appeared to have over the Rumanians: an absolute hold, until Ceausescu appeared one day on the balcony and was jeered by the crowd that had lost its fear. The game was over, as far as Ceausescu was concerned, even if there had been no preexisting conspiracy to oust him.
Ik dnek dat hij gelijk heeft. Hoeveel doeden en atrociteiten gaat ie religie ons nog brengen voor het zover is, dat ze massal afgewezen wordt.
It answers their need for an excuse to go straight, while not at the same time surrendering to the morality of a society they believe has wronged them deeply. Indeed, conversion to Islam is their revenge upon that society, for they sense that their newfound religion is fundamentally opposed to it. By conversion, therefore, they kill two birds with one stone.
Is het voor ongeveer dezelfde reden , dat de zelfschaamte westerlingen doet bekeren?
The Shah will, sooner or later, triumph over the Ayatollah in Iran, because human nature decrees it,
Menselijke natuur is een deel van de natuurlje wereld. Iets dat deze natuurlijke wereld verwerpt, kan enkel een doodscultus vormen. Buiten tirannij en repressie kan een doodscultus niets nalaten. Wanneer de gedwongen volgelingen de vergelijking met anderen kunnen maken sterft deze doodscultus af.


Exotisme. Baseert zich enkel op de uiterlijke verschijning. Multiculturalisme impliceert dit exotisme. Dat wij als maatschappij door onze houding tegenover mensenrechten tot multiculturalisme komen, is op zich niet slecht. Gaat het over Hindus, Buddhisten, Tao, veel animistische geloven, beroepen deze zich allemaal op de studie van de natuurlijke wereld. Geschapen door oorzaak en gevolg. Het in deze natuurljke wereld naast elkaar bestaan van verschillende levenswijzen. Daar de bovengenoemde zienswijzen van de wereld op hetzelfde gebaseerd zijn. enkel anders geevolueerd in tijd en plaats, is communicatie en samenleving mogelijk.
Islam is een uitondering. Door teveel aan exotisme zien de meeste multiculs het verschil niet.
De onverdraagzaaamheid van Islam tegenover alles wat anders is, zou juist de multiculs de ogen moeten openen.

Op zich is het ook niet slecht dat er een kleine graad exotisme in de uitwisseling zit.
Islam valt hier
Het is een parasitaire soort die leeft op de intelligentie van anderen en deze dan tegen hun gebruikt;
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Fleur
Berichten: 154
Lid geworden op: vr nov 17, 2006 5:47 pm

Bericht door Fleur »

Ook mijn Engels is niet geweldig, ik ben wel heel benieuwd naar een vertaling. Zegt deze schrijver nu dat de fundamentalistische Islam met zijn geweld en ellende juist de ondergang van de Islam zal betekenen op den duur? Tenminste dat begreep ik eruit.
BFA
Berichten: 11592
Lid geworden op: vr sep 29, 2006 5:18 pm

Bericht door BFA »

Zegt deze schrijver nu dat de fundamentalistische Islam met zijn geweld en ellende juist de ondergang van de Islam zal betekenen op den duur?
Islam is één waarheid. Aangezien er geen andere waarheden kunnen bestaan, enkel leugens, is alle interpretatie van Islam fundamentalistisch.
Het contact met andere levenswijzen en hun waarheden die naast elkaar kunnen bestaan, zal de ondergang van Islam zijn.
Het is een parasitaire soort die leeft op de intelligentie van anderen en deze dan tegen hun gebruikt;
Christislove
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Lid geworden op: vr nov 17, 2006 5:31 pm
Locatie: Zuid-Nederland
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Bericht door Christislove »

Beste mede-islamkritici,

Ik heb het stuk even snel doorgelezen, maar aangezien het nogal aan de lange kant is en van een hoog nivo ga ik er vanavond eens goed voor zitten.
Ik heb wel al eens van de tekst gehoord en voor Theodore Dalrymple heb ik een grote bewondering.
Ben het ook met veel van de zaken die ik tot nu toe over hem gelezen heb hardgrondig eens.

Het stuk geeft mij hoop dat de beschaving inderdaad langzaam maar zeker aan het zegevieren is op de ''religie'' van haat, kortzichtigheid, indoctrinatie, starheid en achterlijkheid.
Ik hoop dat ik en jullie allemaal met mij nog de dag mogen meemaken dat de Kaába te Mekka een toeristische attraktie wordt, een reliek uit het verleden, en Mekka een groot openluchtmuseum.

De vrije geest, de vrije wil en de medemenselijkheid zullen overwinnen!
De islam is aan zijn laatste eeuw begonnen!

Liefs, Christislove
De mensheid zal het islamitisch fascisme overwinnen of de mensheid zal overwonnen worden door het islamitisch fascisme!
Er zijn geen andere opties!
Optie twee IS voor mij geen optie !
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Lodewijk Nasser
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Lid geworden op: ma aug 14, 2006 1:58 am
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Bericht door Lodewijk Nasser »

Als de islam instort -T.Dalrymple-
'(...)
Elk moslimmeisje in mijn stad (red. toevoeging; Birmingham-GB) heeft gehoord over het ombrengen van meisjes als zij in Pakistan, na hun weigering met hun volle neef te trouwen, met wie zij, al wisten ze van niets, vanaf hun vroegste jeugd door toedoen van hun vader verloofd zijn geweest. Zo'n meisje wordt gedood omdat zij de eer van de familie heeft geschonden door haar vaders woord te breken: een halfslachtig officieel onderzoek naar de dood door de Pakistaanse autoriteiten kan gemakkelijk en zonder dat het veel kost worden afgekocht. En zelfs als zij niet wordt doodgemaakt, wordt zij uit huis verdreven en door haar 'gemeenschap' zo ongeveer als een prostituee beschouwd, een gemakkelijke prooi voor elke man die haar wil.

Dit patroon van gearrangeerde verlovingen veroorzaakt het meest intense lijden dat ik ken. Het heeft verschrikkelijke gevolgen.
Eén vader verhinderde zijn dochter, die zeer intelligent was en heel graag journaliste wilde worden, naar school te gaan, juist om ervoor te zorgen dat ze niet verwesterde en economisch onafhankelijk werd. Toen ze zestien jaar was, nam hij haar mee naar Paksitan voor het traditionele gedwongen huwelijk (zwijgen, of althans niet te veel openlijk verzet, komt volgens de islamitische wet onder deze omstandigheden neer op instemming) met een volle neef aan wie ze altijd al een hekel had gehad en die zijn avances aan haar opdrong. Hij kreeg een visum voor Groot-Brittanië, alsof het om een rechtsgeldig huwelijk zou gaan -de Britse autoriteiten hebben uit lafheid de andere kant uitgekeken zonder acht te slaan op de ware aard van dergelijke huwelijken, om niet van rassendisriminatie beschuldigd te worden- en werd gewelddadig tegen haar.
Kort achter elkaar kreeg ze twee kinderen, beide zo zwaar gehandicapt dat ze voor de rest van hun korte levens aan bed gekluisterd zouden blijven en vierentwintig uur verpleging behoefden. (Uit angst om aanstoot te geven maakt de pers maar zelden melding van het extreem hoge percentage genetische afwijkingen onder de nakomelingen van huwelijken tussen bloedverwanten). Haar man, die vasttelde dat de schuld voor de afwijkingen geheel bij haar lag, en die zijn leven niet wilde wijden aan de verzorging van zulke waardeloze menselijke wezens, verliet haar en scheidde naar islamitisch gebruik.
Ze werd door haar familie verstoten: die was tot de slotsom gekomen dat een vrouw die door haar man was verlaten, wel schuldig moest zijn en niet veel meer was dan een hoer.
Ze sprong van een steile rots, maar werd gered door een richel.

Ik heb honderden versies van haar emblematische verhaal gehoord. Hier hebben we nu eens voorbeelden van onvervalst vrouwelijk slachtofferschap, maar de stilte van de feministen is oorverdovend. Waar twee vroomheden -feminisme en multiculturalisme- met elkaar botsen, is de enige manier om beiden te behouden een schandelijk stilzwijgen.
(...).'

Uit het boek 'Beschaving of wat er van over is' pagina 312-313 van huisarts en psychiater Theodore Dalrymple die hierin zijn persoonlijke ervaringen in de achtestandswijken van een engelse industriestad beschrijft
Tussen droom en daad staan wetten in de weg en praktische bezwaren.
Willem Elsschot (1882-1960)
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