Passionate call for standing up against all extremisms & bigotries for humanity sake.
Combining blind faith & blind conformity with ignorance is a toxic cocktail leading to violence in a world where the natural law of justice & respect are not adhered to by the powerful few.
Gift for the inquisitive mind!
What needs to be done to deal with religious extremism?
Read the book Encounter in Nineveh, a route to personal enlightenment for interesting analysis.
For economists, politicians and activists who care about world peace.
Below are some quotes from chapter 8 which deal with inter faiths dialogue and the spread of violence by some extremists
The book is a collection of philosophical essays addressing many urgent issues facing mankind today ranging from (1) the need to formulate a “General Theory of Physics” where gravity and quantum physics are brought together to (2) “Reconciling Creationism with Evolution” through the concept of seeds of life containing the science and technology manual planted on the Y-Chromosome to guide evolution in accordance to the great designer plan. (3) The book spells out a 100 years road map to rid humanity of the evil within to allow the human brain to specialize in the futuristic society where the wellbeing of humanity becomes the guiding principle for all individuals activities.
Quotes from chapter 8 on the danger of blind faith combined with ignorance: the dialogue is between Mac, a comatose man and the three prophets of the Abrahamic faith plus others.
Mohammed continued “I tell you Mac, ignoring Ijtihad (upgrading once faith) is the same as ignoring the faith itself. When many Muslim scholars were buried in ignorance, abandoned philosophy and sciences, a long period of darkness appeared, in all the areas governing Muslim life. While the rest of the world raced away in broadmindedness and creativity, many Muslims buried themselves in rigidity and irrational conformity to traditions incompatible with 21st century requirements. Over time, a huge gap developed between those who adhered to ancient tribal heritage and the West, who kept the scientific wheel of knowledge moving at an ever-faster pace. Today, some Muslims attach more importance on trying to imitate how I looked and dressed instead of adhering to the love and tolerance I was showing to those who disagreed with me. Such individuals find it easier to imitate than to be inquisitive and learned men.
Mohammed looked at Darwin and recognised the stark consequences that could result from putting human talent in deep freeze in the name of adherence to religious teaching. He continued, ‘How could so many Muslims have gone astray from seeking peace, wisdom, and compassion? Islam’s original message has called humanity away from the worship of the ego. Every individual bears the duties and responsibilities to serve others. True Muslims should be ambassadors to their faith. They should not shame it with labels of ignorance and violence. True Muslims should rise above their prejudices and selfishness. They should act for true peace on Earth, even if that takes centuries. Peaceful resistance and power of the argument is greater than the might of the fists and the sound of guns. History favours persistent rational thinkers who can touch the hearts of others in humility and the power of their argument. I am innocent of all the acts of terror committed in my name. All Muslims need a strong foundation based on love for genuine awakening.’
We all realized the strong passion Mohammed was expressing and continued, ‘Muslims should master how to communicate with each other, no matter which sect they belong to. They should endorse fully interfaith dialogue at individual and group levels. For such dialogue to be effective, they need to:
a) Reach beyond suspicion and fear of each other by sharing stories and experiences. Gain a true understanding of the core teachings of the various faiths and traditions. Understand how some of the verses and callings of each-other’s Holy Books are consistent with the core teachings and how some verses are not consistent and must not be allowed to hinder co existence.
b) All parties must be willing to enter into a more difficult conversation like the injustices committed in the name of the “Promised Land”.’
c) Interfaith Dialogue should address the issues of religious exclusivity and inequality between man and women. This need not be the case if we accept the principle of rational openness and apply the principle of “live and let live”. It is written in the Quran, “you have your traditions, and I have mine”. This means that all should deal with each other with civility and respect.
d) One should keep in mind that relationships are healed by willingness to identify the differences and face them head on. Moses and Jesus have already dealt with some of what has been regarded as absolute truth within each religion.
Mohammed looked at all those present and said, ‘Islam is a religion of peace and moderation, of family values and virtues. I am deeply saddened by the few who are making the devil within them preach extremism. This is the ultimate “Kiffer” (blasphemy). Unfortunately, due to their ignorance, they know not what they are doing. They should repent or they will be condemned to eternal rejection. Man’s unforgivable sin is to believe blindly in all what he is being told without exercising his better judgment to do “Good Deeds and Reject Evil Ones” as God has commanded.’
I looked at Mohammed and asked, ‘Why is the same religion practiced differently according to the tradition of the people?’
Mohammed gave a brief response, ‘Faith is a combination of tradition and moral codes. With time, they cannot differentiate between the two and the tradition becomes part of the religion. This in turn could subject society to backwardness, ignorance, and rigidities in the name of religion.’
Then Mohammed smiled at Jesus and said, ‘God will not abandon his children. God will finally fulfill his promise to free the poor and the weak from the bondage of the “Selfish Elites”. He will free the ruled from the wicked rulers. He will free the virtuous from the grips of the irrational teachers of the Faith. Every child’s inalienable right to education, equal opportunity, and true freedom will be achieved through continuous vigilance.’
Then he looked at me as if he was reminding me of what I need to do and said, ‘I call on all decent top executives in major businesses to seek deeper sense of meaning of life. It’s not just about the money. It’s about doing the right thing, having a profound impact on the local community, and improving the lives of many others.
It is about giving back and sharing. In their career as top executives or business owners, they accumulated valuable knowledge and experience. Now they have the opportunity to guide other business leaders who can learn from their life’s successes and failures. The appreciation and satisfaction they will receive are real and deeply profound.
To finally conclude: Mohammed stood up and recited,
‘O Man wake up and see
A just World Order is awaiting thee
Don’t be selfish, don’t be greedy,
Think of the sick, help the needy
Your essence is not in luxury or in brand
Don’t be fooled, it is all in the mind
Forget the sword, forget the bomb,
Don’t be misguided, don’t seek a fight
In tolerance and wisdom, go deep,
Through virtues, reach your height
Use your talent, enjoy the sun
It is Ok to play; it is OK to have fun
Throughout the whole encounter, I never saw anyone with such strong passion and seriousness, as I saw in Mohammed, as he conveyed the depth of issues facing the Muslim world in the 21st century.
He then whispered in my ears, ‘Revenge Cannot Contain the Wicked Deceitful, only Commitment to Love Can. Essence of Man is Not How Loud He Shouts But How He Gets His Message to Penetrate the Hearts of Man. Deliberate Ignorance and Conscious Stupidity are What Empowers the Enemies of Humanity.’
Quotes from the future revelations section at the end of the book:
2) Abraham also made 3 predictions:
a) There will be destructive sectarian and religious wars in the troubled Middle East manipulated by the powerful few. This will be followed by a real awakening in the Muslim world through the adoption of rational thinking compatible with a new approach to their core faith.
b) A strong world peace movement led by the youth and the liberal clergy will take hold and become an effective force for good within a few generations.
c) The Universal Moral Codes will be discussed extensively, updated continuously, and used as the foundation for most laws and other human activities.
8) The 3 predictions of Mohammed:
a) Islamic teachers will adopt philosophy and rationalism to guide them to evolve their faith into moderation, silence the wicked among their lot, and actively endorse religious dialogue.
b) After destructive wars, the two main branches of Islam will tolerate each other and will embrace each-other’s traditions.
c) Muslims will participate effectively in the Just World Order and will embrace creativity.
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