Are you looking for my non-technical blog?

This is now my technical-only blog, my non-technical blog is here.

16 September 2006

A Speech, An Apology, and What Else!?

Pope Benedict XVI Islam controversy began when Pope Benedict XVI of the Roman Catholic Church gave a lecture on 12 September 2006 at his alma mater, the University of Regensburg in Germany. The lecture was entitled, "Faith, Reason and the University – Memories and Reflections".
The speech was about Holy War, and how true faith isn't supposed to be spread by force. As part of his explication of this distinction, Benedict referred to the specific aspect of Islam that Manuel II considered irrational, namely the practice of forced conversion. Specifically, the Pope quoted Manuel II Palaiologos as saying: "Show me just what Muhammad (Peace be Upon Him and His Family) brought that was new and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached."
First of all, I belive that cursing, and attacking a couple of churches here and there is not an appropriate response at all. I think using *reason*, and documented response that proves our point of view is the best thing that we shall do now.
I don't think an apology from the Pope is needed because what he said has hurted our feelings, we all know that he has different beliefs than ours and he has the right to criticise ours. However an apology is needed here becuse of his ignorance of Islam. He quoted Manuel II Palaiologos saying that Islam didn't bring anything new but evil and inhuman values. If he is speaking about those general values such as honesty, truth, charity, care for others, etc. then he may be right. But no other religion on earth has invented such values too. Even those man-made religions have the same values, they are there since forever. On the other hand, we may find topics such as the Unity of God, Self Descipline, Relation between humans and God, etc. those topics were covered by Islam in more details than any other religion. We may also find rules concernign Marriage, Zakah (Giving mone to the poor), and many other rules that affect our everyday life, that many other religions don't have. Now, let me ask what are those evil values that he thinks that Islam has brought. I think he need to differentiate between Islam as a religion, and Muslims deeds. Even those deeds are differs from one location to another, and from one age to the previous one. I guess reading a book or two about Islam are not going to hurt, and even if he doesn't have enough money to buy them, there are public libraries out there as well as the Internet. Actually, I have the feeling that the Popes view for Islam, is formed from the TV Shows and the media.
One more thing, about the Islam being spread by the sword. I don't think those thousands who are converted to Islam from all over the world now a days took such decision because of a sword or even a nuclear bomb. After giving the speech, and seeing the Muslim world reaction towards it, especially the quoted part in it, he said that it's not his own words, but he was just using Manuel II Palaiologos ones. Come on, it's obvious from reading the speech that he used his words just beacuse he believe in them, he also used them in order to make a point. And I think he doesn't need me to tell him that there is a huge difference between saying something said by someone else is order to reply on it, and saying it because you just agree with it.
Now, with respect to the apology, as I said before, we don't want him to apologize just because what he said has hurted our feelings, we are not asking him to be a hypocrite, and say stuff he doesn't belive in just to please us. We just want him to read more about Islam, and to apologize for his ignorance of Islam, if he finds himslef really ignorant of it.
Finally, I am sick of that attitude, when people say something, and after seeing your reaction they apologize even when they are not convinced with it. And after a while they repeat the same thing again and again. What's the point of this Yo-yo attitude!?

Related Posts:
On Pope Benedicts' XVI speach
As a Christian, I also need Pope Benedict to Apologize and Explain
Oh Lord! Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood
Another Danish Cartoons-style crisis

Tags: , , , ,