It would be facile, even exculpatory, to call the problem of the Islamic State 'a problem with Islam.' The religion allows many interpretations, and Islamic State supporters are morally on the hook for the one they choose. And yet simply denouncing the Islamic State as un-Islamic can be counterproductive, especially if those who hear the message have read the holy texts and seen the endorsement of many of the caliphate's practices written plainly within them.
When anyone studies a little or pays a little attention to the rules of Islamic government, Islamic politics, Islamic society and Islamic economy he will realize that Islam is a very political religion. Anyone who will say that religion is separate from politics is a fool; he does not know Islam or politics.
One thing that I feel very, very strongly is that we talk about Islamic countries, Islamic people, Islamic leaders, as either moderates or extremists. It's almost like there are only two categories of Muslims. And actually, that doesn't show respect. It shows lack of understanding of the diversity of Muslim thought.
The decadence which did occur in the Islamic world belongs to a much later period of Islamic history than is usually claimed. This fact would be fully substantiated if the integral history of Islamic science and civilization were to be written one day. Unfortunately to this day such a detailed history does not exist and moreover much of the scholarly work that has been done in this field has been carried out by Western scholars who have been naturally primarily interested in those aspects of the Islamic sciences that have influenced the West. It remains the task of Muslims scholars and scientists to look upon the whole of this scientific tradition from the point of view of Islam and the inner dynamics of Islamic history itself.
Seyyed Hossein Nasr
From my earliest works written in the 1950s and 1960s, I have claimed that there is such a thing as Islamic science with a twelve-hundred-year tradition of its own and that this science is Islamic not only because it was cultivated by Muslims, but because it is based on a worldview and a cosmology rooted in the Islamic revelation.
Seyyed Hossein Nasr
Qatar does not have much history, it's a new emirate. So I couldn't draw on the history of the country; its history is really just being a desert. But I thought, the one thing I must learn about for this project is the Islamic faith. So I read about Islam and Islamic architecture, and the more I studied the more I realized where the best Islamic buildings were.
I. M. Pei
At the beginning, I thought the best Islamic work was in Spain - the mosque in Cordoba, the Alhambra in Granada. But as I learned more, my ideas shifted. I traveled to Egypt, and to the Middle East many times.I found the most wonderful examples of Islamic work in Cairo, it turns out. I'd visited mosques there before, but I didn't see them with the same eye as I did this time. They truly said something to me about Islamic architecture.
I. M. Pei
Think about that: at a time when it was inconceivable to have a woman rabbi or a woman scholar of Christian theology or canon law, the Islamic civilization boasted hundreds of women who were authorities in Islamic law and Islamic theology and that taught some of the most famous male jurists and left behind a remarkable corpus of writings.
Khaled Abou El Fadl
Al-Qa'idah was set up to wage a jihad against infidelity, particularly to encounter the onslaught of the infidel countries against the Islamic states. Jihad is the sixth undeclared element of Islam. The first five being the basic holy words of Islam, prayers, fast, pilgrimage to Mecca, and giving alms Every anti-Islamic person is afraid of it. Al-Qa'idah wants to keep this element alive and active and make it part of the daily life of the Muslims. It wants to give it the status of worship. We are not against any Islamic country nor we consider a war against an Islamic country as jihad.
Osama bin Laden
In Germany representatives of the Islamic communities try to hijack children who are born here, along with the entire Islamic community, to prevent them from being influenced by the society which has taken them in. Children born here are like blank sheets on which you can write European or Islamic texts. Muslim representatives want to raise their children as if they don't even live in Europe.
I often ask myself, 'Why is it that most of the lies come out of Islamic countries, and why is it that most of the social corruptions are in the Middle East and in these Islamic countries?' The answer is, when you control something, when you suppress something, people try to do it another way.
Partners from the Islamic world are of particular importance. Indeed, they have huge incentives to be involved, as the ongoing struggles are generally not clashes between civilizations. Rather, what we are seeing is more accurately a clash within a civilization: that of the Islamic world.
The Islamic revolution in Iran is a positive development. At the same time, the Islamic revolution of Afghanistan, sprung exclusively from spiritual roots, dealt a heavy blow to the communist regime in the former Soviet Union. In face of that revolution, the red Soviet empire had to concede that it is incapable, in spite of its military superiority, to defeat the Mujaheddin, whose main weapons were their right and their spiritual strength. Another quite new situation appeared as a consequence of the Islamic revolution in Iran, that destroyed the Zionist rule in that country and shook its foundations in that part of the world. Khomeini's letter to Gorbachev, in which he was inviting the latter to convert to Islam, had great symbolic power! What is new again is the movement of Islamic rebirth and the continuous decay of the strength of the colonial government bodies directed from afar by Israel in many Islamic countries." "The Islamic system has remained stable in Iran even after the death of Khomeini and the change in the person of the leader and of the leadership group the only one to remain stable in the entire Islamic world. On the contrary, the demise of the Shah meant at the same time the collapse of his regime, his artificial form of government, and his army. All that went to the dust-bin of history. The same fate awaits the other regimes that prevail in the muslim world. Israel knows that very well. She tries desperately to cause the wheel of history to stand still. However, any strike against Iran or against the growing Islamic movements, will cause the anger of the muslim masses to grow, and the fire of the Islamic revolution to ignite. Nobody will be able to suppress that revolution.
Otto Ernst Remer
The proportion of women attracted to the Islamic State is likely to be less than that in other militant organisations, such as the Tamil Tigers, the PKK, and the IRA. Undoubtedly, their roles within the Islamic State are much more confined by the rigid gender divisions under their ultraconservative rulings.
My idea is that the Koran is a kind of cocktail of texts that were not all understood even at the time of Muhammad. Many of them may even be a hundred years older than Islam itself. Even within Islamic traditions there is a huge body of contradictory information, including a significant Christian substrate; one can derive a whole Islamic anti-history from them if one wants.
Gerd R. Puin
I have nothing but scorn for the notion of an Islamic bomb. There is no such thing as an Islamic bomb or a Christian bomb. Any such weapon is a means of terrorizing humanity, and we are against the manufacture and acquisition of nuclear weapons. This is in line with our definition of-and opposition to-terrorism.
The entire Islamic world condemned Iran. Nowadays, because of the unwarranted invasion of Iraq by Bush and Blair, which was a completely unjust adventure based on misleading statements, and the lack of any effort to resolve the Palestinian issue, there is massive Islamic condemnation of the United States.
When it comes to the common rights and needs of men and women, there is no clash of civilizations. The requirements of freedom apply fully to Africa and Latin America and the entire Islamic world. The peoples of the Islamic nations want and deserve the same freedoms and opportunities as people in every nation. And their governments should listen to their hopes.
George W. Bush
Our dear Imam said that the occupying regime [Israel] must be wiped off the map.... We cannot compromise over the issue of Palestine.... I have no doubt that the new wave that has started in Palestine, and we witness it in the Islamic world too, will eliminate this disgraceful stain from the Islamic world.
We must not be afraid to define our enemy. It is Islamic extremist terrorism. I did not say all of Islam. I said Islamic extremist terrorism. Failing to identify them properly maligns decent Muslims around the world. It also sets up a fear of being politically incorrect that can have serious consequences. And it has.
When I first raised the issue of the so-called Islamic State at the Munich Security Conference in February, speaking about its economy, its flexibility and pathology, people thought I was trying to scare them. But now we have experienced just that. If al-Qaida was version 2.0 of terror, then the Islamic State is version 5.0.
"The true Islamic concept of peace goes something like this: "Peace comes through submission to Muhammad and his concept of Allah" (i.e. Islam). As such the Islamic concept of peace, meaning making the whole world Muslim, is actually a mandate for war. It was inevitable and unavoidable that the conflict would eventually reach our borders, and so it has."
I prayed for the first time in a very long time today. I explained to God that unless he wanted the Marxist-Islamic alliance and the certain Islamic takeover of Europe to completely annihilate European Christendom within the next hundred years he must ensure that the warriors fighting for the preservation of European Christendom prevail.
Anders Behring Breivik
Muslims consider the honor of the Prophet Muhammad to be dearer to them than that of their parents or even themselves. To defend it is considered to be an obligation upon them. The strict punishment if found guilty of this crime under sharia (Islamic law) is capital punishment implementable by an Islamic State. This is because the Messenger Muhammad said, 'Whoever insults a Prophet, kill him.'
Because Muhammad is considered Allah's final prophet and the Quran the eternal, unalterable words of Allah himself, there is also no evolving morality that permits the modification or integration of Islamic morality with that from other sources. The entire Islamic moral universe devolves solely from the life and teachings of Muhammad.
Muslims in the West and those in other intellectually free societies will be in a position to contribute to Islamic thought more so than those who are based in repressive environments where censorship and restriction on freedom still dominate thinking. The future development of Islamic thought may depend to a certain extent on the degree of intellectual freedom in Muslim societies.
From it genesis twelve hundred years ago to today, Islamic philosophy (al-hikmah; al-falsafah) has been one of the major intellectual traditions within the Islamic world, and it has influenced and been influenced by many other intellectual perspectives, including Scholastic theology (kalam) and doctrinal Sufism (al-ma'rifah or al-tasawwuf al-'ilmi) and theoretical gnosis ('irfan-i nazari).
Seyyed Hossein Nasr
It is convenient for Hillary Clinton and Tony Blair to say the rise of the Islamic State has nothing to do with the Iraq War because that takes the culpability off their shoulders. The Islamic State is a product of the Iraq War. It took about a 100 years to build the Iraqi state, and the Americans and the British destroyed it in an afternoon.
Both Yassi and I know that we have been losing our faith. We have been questioning it with every move. During the Shah's time, it was different. I felt I was in the minority and I had to guard my faith against all odds. Now that my religion is in power, I feel more helpless than ever before, and more alienated.' She wrote about how ever since she could remember, she had been told that life in the land of infidels was pure hell. She had been promised that all would be different under a just Islamic rule. Islamic rule! It was a pageant of hypocrisy and shame.
The history of Israel-Palestine conflict cannot be understood without its underlying emotional meanders. The emotional frameworks of the loss of Palestine for the Arab-Islamic world touched deep scars that go back to the Crusades, symbolizing a proof of Arab-Islamic decay, political impotence, and perceived (British/French) betrayal and antagonism.
On Tuesday, the so-called Islamic State released a slickly produced video showing a Jordanian pilot being burned alive in a steel cage. On Wednesday, the United Nations issued a report detailing various 'mass executions of boys, as well as reports of beheadings, crucifixions of children, and burying children alive' at the hands of the Islamic State.
What's more, sharia finance is another tool of Islamic separatism; instead of assimilating into American society, Muslims are demanding, and receiving, parallel financial institutions that reinforce the idea that they are unique, not subject to the laws and norms to which the rest of us are subject-a privileged class. At the same time, sharia finance initiatives are giving Islamic interests increased control over Western economic life.
The significance of the vast Islamic scientific tradition for Muslims and especially for young Muslims today is not only that it gives them a sense of pride in their own civilization because of the prestige that science fhas in the present day world. It is furthermore a testament to the way Islam was able to cultivate various sciences extensively without becoming alienated from the Islamic world view and without creating a science whose application would destroy the world of nature and the harmony that must exist between man and the natural environment.
Seyyed Hossein Nasr
If you want peace and well-being to be in place in the Middle East and you want terrorism to be uprooted, then there's no path other than the presence of the Islamic Republic of Iran, you saw that in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen that the power that was able to help the people of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen in the face of terrorist groups was the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The west is very concerned and actually afraid because the media is not informing them. There are too many moderate Muslims who are trying to whitewash the fears and concerns of the West. It's time for us to face reality - nobody is against Muslims. When I'm speaking about this situation, it's about Islamic doctrine. Islamic doctrine promotes violence and hatred against non Muslims. 60% of the Koran is dedicated to cursing and spreading hatred and violence against non-Muslims who are called 'Kaffir'.
Only one conclusion could be derived from the indifference of the United States and the West to these acts of terror and the patronage of the tyrants by these powers that America is an anti-Islamic power and it is patronizing the anti-Islamic forces. Its friendship with the Muslim countries is just a show, rather deceit. By enticing or intimidating these countries, the United States is forcing them to play a role of its choice. Put a glance all around and you will see that the slaves of the United States are either rulers or enemies of Muslims .
Osama bin Laden
The Islamic faith and ideology is at another pivotal moment in its history. Having survived for a thousand years or more after the Western Crusades it has been hauled back into the fire by some of its frustrated followers. Followers who have literally re interpreted or re translated the many open verses and chapters of the holy Qu'ran. These followers of the extreme Islamic beliefs are hankering to take our social order back and return it to the time of the prophet (mpbuh). The very turbulent dark and bloody days of religion and cults when ideologies were spread by the sword.
Cal Sarwar on facebook
It is for Muslim scholars to study the whole history of Islamic science completely and not only the chapters and periods which influenced Western science. It is also for Muslim scholars to present the tradition of Islamic science from the point of view of Islam itself and not from the point of view of the scientism, rationalism and positivism which have dominated the history of science in the West since the establishment of the discipline in the early part of the 20th century in Europe and America.
Seyyed Hossein Nasr
I am against revolution and am proud of it. Democracy cannot be created through revolutions. The most important dichotomy that I make for a society is between those who support democracy and human rights, and those who oppose it. In a totalitarian state, the state views any act of an individual to be political in nature. For example, the clothing that a person wears in a modern state is a private affair whereas in the Islamic Republic all women are forced to wear the hijab (Islamic attire). When women push their headscarf back an inch or two, this is interpreted to be a political act,
The Islamic State's ideology exerts powerful sway over a certain subset of the population. Life's hypocrisies and inconsistencies vanish in its face. Musa Cerantonio and the Salafis I met in London are unstumpable: No question I posed left them stuttering. They lectured me garrulously and, if one accepts their premises, convincingly. To call them un-Islamic appears, to me, to invite them into an argument that they would win. If they had been froth-spewing maniacs, I might be able to predict that their movement would burn out as the psychopaths detonated themselves or became drone-splats, one by one. But these men spoke with an academic precision that put me in mind of a good graduate seminar. I even enjoyed their company, and that frightened me as much as anything else.
It takes no more research than a trip to almost any public library or college to show the incredibly lopsided coverage of slavery in the United States or in the Western Hemisphere, as compared to the meager writings on even larger number of Africans enslaved in the Islamic countries of the Middle East and North Africa, not to mention the vast numbers of Europeans also enslaved in centuries past in the Islamic world and within Europe itself. At least a million Europeans were enslaved by North African pirates alone from 1500 to 1800, and some Europeans slaves were still being sold on the auction blocks in the Egypt, years after the Emancipation Proclamation freed blacks in the United States.
One of the most interesting histories of what comes of rejecting science we may see in Islam, which in the beginning received, accepted, and even developed the classical legacy. For some five or six rich centuries there is an impressive Islamic record of scientific thought, experiment, and research, particularly in medicine. But then, alas! the authority of the general community, the Sunna, the consensus-which Mohammed the Prophet had declared would always be right-cracked down. The Word of God in the Koran was the only source and vehicle of truth. Scientific thought led to 'loss of belief in the origin of the world and in the Creator.' And so it was that, just when the light of Greek learning was beginning to be carried from Islam to Europe-from circa 1100 onward-Islamic science and medicine came to a standstill and went dead...