Monday, September 18, 2006

Christianity and RADICAL Islam

Although the topic of Christianity and Islam has been a hot topic for the past five years, recently it has been further escalated by the media frenzy over Pope Benedict XVI's talk given Regensburg, on September 12th. I also was able to watch "Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West," an eye opening film which I am looking into. It's hard to watch a film about propaganda and not vaguely feel like you might be getting propaganda yourself. However, since so much of it is actual footage from Arab TV, like Al-Jazeera and Iranian TV, there is much of it that is "coming straight from the horse's mouth."

Also, today, I have just seen that "Citing the words of the Prophet Muhammad, Muslim religious leaders in the Gaza Strip on Sunday warned Pope Benedict XVI that he must "accept" Islam if he wanted to live in peace."

Whenever I read about radical Islam, I often get the feeling we are using the same words, but these words have vastly different meanings. For us in the West, "peace" means living together without major conflict and being able to respect one another's beliefs. Yet from much of what I have heard quoted from Muslim leaders, they seem to define "peace" as "not being killed." As in, "we are a peaceful religion as long as you submit to Islam." And by their thinking, not submitting to Islam makes YOU the instigator, not Islam.
"Freedom" is another word. Radical Islam will say they encourage freedom, and everyone will be free ... but only when everyone submits to Islam.

This is something that should concern, not only Christians and Jews, but seculars as well. In Radical Islamic thinking, there is no separation of Church and State. Our post-modern mentality seems to think that if you aren't religious you are therefore "neutral." This doesn't work when dealing with Islam. Even if you don't believe in anything, you still have no rights under Islam. Only those who are Islamic will have rights. In their eyes, you either submit to Allah, or you don't. If you don't, at best you have no rights, at worse you die.

I found a very good book is "Inside Islam: A Guide for Catholics, 100 Questions and Answers."
This is written by a former Muslim who converted to Catholicsm and by an expert on Middle Eastern affairs. It has a forward by Fr. Mitch Pacwa, S.J. so you can tell it understands Islam, and is is orthodox regarding Catholicism. It is very easy to read and extremely interesting.

Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West
1 hour 20 minutes, does have a few graphic scenes.
I'll let you form your own opinions on it.

UPDATE: Google has apparently pulled the movie from their site therefore the link no longer works. The movie is still available at but it is split up into 8 parts. You can do a search on youtube for it.

Well, enough for now, maybe more thoughts later.


Father Stephanos, O.S.B. said...

Despite being an atheist, the writer of the following has done a superb job of distilling the sense of the Pope's Regensburg lecture.

Roman Sacristan said...

Forgive me for not reading the article until now. However, this is an excellent article.
Thanks for sharing it.