Friday, January 09, 2015

Fullbore Friday

You may have missed one of the most import speeches given in the Arab world in a long time.

From Jonah Goldberg;
The slaughter in Paris Wednesday shocks the conscience but hardly shocks the intellect. In other words, no one is surprised that Muslim extremists are capable of doing this sort of thing. And nearly everyone expected in the early moments of this story that the culprits would be revealed to be Islamic extremists.

It is a sad commentary that the more shocking and, arguably more significant, event came a week earlier in Cairo. Egyptian President (and strongman) Abdel Fattah al-Sisi delivered a possibly epochal speech at Al-Azhar University on New Year's Day. More than a thousand years old, Al-Azhar is considered by many to be the epicenter of scholarly Islam.

Addressing the assemblage of imams in the room, al-Sisi called for a "religious revolution" in which Muslim clerics take the lead in rethinking the direction Islam has taken recently.
Raymond Ibrahim provides and excerpt;
I am referring here to the religious clerics. We have to think hard about what we are facing—and I have, in fact, addressed this topic a couple of times before. It’s inconceivable that the thinking that we hold most sacred should cause the entire umma [Islamic world] to be a source of anxiety, danger, killing and destruction for the rest of the world. Impossible!

That thinking—I am not saying “religion” but “thinking”—that corpus of texts and ideas that we have sacralized over the centuries, to the point that departing from them has become almost impossible, is antagonizing the entire world. It’s antagonizing the entire world!

Is it possible that 1.6 billion people [Muslims] should want to kill the rest of the world’s inhabitants—that is 7 billion—so that they themselves may live? Impossible!

I am saying these words here at Al Azhar, before this assembly of scholars and ulema—Allah Almighty be witness to your truth on Judgment Day concerning that which I’m talking about now.

All this that I am telling you, you cannot feel it if you remain trapped within this mindset. You need to step outside of yourselves to be able to observe it and reflect on it from a more enlightened perspective.

I say and repeat again that we are in need of a religious revolution. You, imams, are responsible before Allah. The entire world, I say it again, the entire world is waiting for your next move… because this umma is being torn, it is being destroyed, it is being lost—and it is being lost by our own hands.
President al-Sisi, Fullbore.

Islam must be fixed from within. We should all pray for al-Sisi and other modernizers like him.

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