Friday, March 13, 2009

17 ’Adhar 5769: Genealogy Day/National Open An Umbrella Indoors Day

Greetings.

Worthy causes of the day: “Stop subsidies for Big Oil”, “Keep Humanitarian Aid in Sudan”, “Protect Marine Mammals - Say No to Arctic Ocean Drilling!”

Relevant to Divine Misconceptions:
  1. “Malaysia Christians battle with Muslims over Allah”: This pointless battle over terminology, now with the (probably baseless) accusation that Christians in Malaysia call God “Allah” in order to convert Muslims. Which considering this childish attack by Muslims on freedom of religion might not be a bad thing.
  2. More freedom of religion problems: “Saudi Arabia’s Shia Stand Up”, “Swat Valley: Sharia implemented on 16 March”, “Somalia OKs Islam as basis of law for country”
  3. “Saudi Academy in Va. revises Islamic history books”: Thus is it written:
    An Islamic school in northern Virginia with close ties to the Saudi government has revised its religious textbooks in an effort to end years of criticism that the school fosters hatred and intolerance.

    While the Islamic Saudi Academy deleted some of the most contentious passages from the texts, copies provided to The Associated Press show that enough sensitive material remains to fuel critics who claim the books show intolerance toward those who do not follow strict interpretations of Islam.
    Further down there is a truly bizarre claim:
    Some sensitive sections survived the revisions, though. One of the few references to Christians and Jews, or "People of the Book," disparages scholars in those faiths for rejecting the truth of Islam.

    "Scholars of the People of the Book know that Islam is the true path because they find it in their books," an 11th-grade textbook reads. "But they shy away out of ignorance and stubbornness. And God knows their deeds and will judge them."
    This claim is nonsense. If Jewish and Christian scholars know that Islam is the true religion, then they cannot be ignorant; failure to adopt Islam in such a case would be intellectual stupidity. Furthermore, the very premise that the books of Judaism and Christianity proclaim that Islam is the true religion is itself wrong. I have never seen anything remotely suggesting the truth of Islam in any of the Jewish religious literature of any period nor in the New Testament; if any pro-Islamic material is in there, it is tucked away in some little-viewed spot. I could say more as to why Jews do not consider Muḥammad a prophet, but unfortunately I have limited time today and do not have the proper references at hand.
  4. “'Sex-y' sermons cause stir in rural Alabama”: Yes, this is unconventional. However, given current publicly attested attitudes on sex which are different from the mores of the past and that historically religion has had a lot to say on the subject, why should anyone be surprised that sexuality should become the subject of sermons?
  5. “Muslim community rallies behind Sudbury man charged by the FBI”: So... this guy has supported Islamic terrorism in the past, and the Muslim community is shocked that the FBI, whose job it is to fight against terrorists (among other things), should be interested in him. Exactly why should I be surprised?
Today’s news and commentary:Since tomorrow is Pi Day, today’s weird thing is the weird song “Pi”:

Enjoy, share the weirdness, and Shabbath shalom.

Aaron
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