‘NZ a model of religious tolerance’

Helen Clark, back in New Zealand opening the new Religious Diversity Centre, said that New Zealand provided a model of religious tolerance for the rest of the world.

NZ Herald: Helen Clark: ‘NZ a model of religious tolerance for the rest of the world’

“Our world badly needs such models. On so many days now when I see the news headlines I often think how fortunate we are,” she said in Wellington.

“To see societies ripped apart by violent extremists with the extremists claiming so often to act in the name of the faith and yet prepared to violate every single principle of those faiths.”

“The world badly needs voices of reason and tolerance and those who will work to build dialogue and respect across faiths and beliefs. I do believe that New Zealand can show the way.”

While tolerance in a country with a strong Christian influence should be a given Clark supports a strong stand and military means in the Middle East.

Speaking to the Herald later she said the whole purpose of terrorist attacks was to make people feel insecure “so in general my response would be ‘don’t let it stop people doing what they would normally do'”.

“Of course, I was horrified at what happened at Brussels airport. I was through it with my husband as recently as December … ”

“What I would ask is that as well as the security response which is important, there is also a focus back on what is driving this, what is the lack of opportunity, the perceived sense of injustice, the ignorance which underlies the formation of the criminal elements which make up these groups.”

She was not questioning the military response to Isis (Islamic State), however.

“I think IS will only be taken out of Syria and Iraq through military means.”

That would not mean the ended of Isis.

“As we saw when al Qaeda was driven out of Afghanistan, it didn’t stop al Qaeda. It morphed into cells around the world. I think we are in for the long haul on this. But there are a broad range of responses that are needed to deal with it.”

A forceful response is sometimes necessary but tolerance and better communication are essential if we want a better world.

And not just religious tolerance – a modern world should be tolerant of both religious and non-religious views.

Leave a comment

108 Comments

  1. Kitty Catkin

     /  30th March 2016

    In my lifetime (and I expect that of everyone here) two men, behind closed doors, doing consensual sexual acts, were committing a crime. Now any two adults who aren’t, of course, incestuously connected, can marry, regardless of their plumbing. Let’s hope that religions follow this lead.

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  30th March 2016

      In my lifetime. Oh, to be able to edit.

      [Fixed. PG]

      Reply
    • Oliver

       /  30th March 2016

      Capitalism is the most popular religion in NZ. Their churches are the malls.

      Reply
      • Pantsdownbrown

         /  30th March 2016

        Their churches are the malls”

        I thought that was beach houses?

        Reply
      • Clemgeopin

         /  30th March 2016

        Their teachings are uncontrolled competitive greed.

        They have just a few cut-throat commandments. I leave it to your imagination to Post here what you think those may be based on your wisdom and observation.

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  30th March 2016

          As JK observed, NZ is a socialist country. The first socialist commandment is “Give me your money”.

          Reply
          • Clemgeopin

             /  30th March 2016

            If you really think that is what democratic socialism means, that is a bit dumb.

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  30th March 2016

              Oh,no. It is exactly accurate. Tax and spend is merely the party afterwards.

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  30th March 2016

          The first law of capitalism is this: “You can have anything you want so long as you give enough other people what they want.”

          Teach your children this and throw away your socialist manifesto.

          Reply
          • Clemgeopin

             /  30th March 2016

            You ignore the fact that the wealth is sucked out of society, the land and the people through the effort of the people and the workers in the first place.

            ““You can have anything you want so long as you give enough other people what they want.”

            Jeez! And you say Socialism is evil! I hope you aren’t pretending to be a Christian.

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  31st March 2016

              You are doomed, Clemgeopin. Your life will be a long chapter of envious, bitter misery since you are enslaved to stupid ideas along with your uptickers. You have my sympathy for your disastrous education.

          • The votes on your comments Alan suggest you are detached from reality, much like the main themes of many religions………..

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  1st April 2016

              No, I am detached from the loony Left Shane. Fortunately. You were will note that none of them are able to articulate any kind of counter argument, including you. Pitiful.

      • Iceberg

         /  30th March 2016

        Long may that be the case. When you grow up and maybe, you know, join the army, you’ll realise it’s the only religion worth fighting for. Because capitalism is strongly correlated with freedom.

        Reply
        • Clemgeopin

           /  30th March 2016

          “When you grow up and maybe, you know, join the army, you’ll realise it’s the only religion worth fighting for. Because capitalism is strongly correlated with freedom.”

          I wonder how many of the children of the capitalists, the millionaires, the billionaires and wealthy join the armed forces to defend that then.

          Reply
      • Clemgeopin

         /  30th March 2016

        “Capitalism is the most popular religion in NZ”

        Not just in NZ. All over most of the stupid world.

        The Uncontrolled so called ‘free market’ capitalism where the Corporates, Banks, the finance cabals and the Super wealthy suck out almost all the wealth of this polluting planet in a steady upward direction towards themselves, with the help of the vast number of consumers and the effort of the workers who are virtually in technical bondage and don’t even realise it are given some sustainable disproportional scraps by the system.

        There needs to be careful controls and better management of capitalism to make the world a better and fairer place.

        Capitalism take so much from so many for the disproportionate welfare of so few at the top.

        The survival of the fittest, the crookedest, the most cunning, the most ruthless and the wealthiest, is the law of the inhuman uncivilised jungle and the dark ages.

        There aught to be a better way with better values.

        Reply
        • Iceberg

           /  30th March 2016

          …we should all farm Unicorns right?

          Have you not figured out the connect between capitalism, democracy, freedom and the massive reduction in global poverty, pollution and disease?

          Reply
          • Clemgeopin

             /  30th March 2016

            “Have you not figured out the connect between capitalism, democracy, freedom and the massive reduction in global poverty, pollution and disease?”

            That is not due to the effort of ONLY the capitalists. It is due to the COMBINED effort of the governments, the scientists, the manufacturers, the entrepreneurs, the ordinary people and the courageous workers.

            As for democracy and freedom, historically it was ALWAYS fought for, struggled on and won by the ordinary people and the workers at tremendius cost to themselves and their families while the capitalists, the aristocrats and the wealthy and the ruling classes ruthlessly opposed and fought against any such civilised or fairer changes.

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  30th March 2016

              Not much democracy in China – or in any country that had Democratic in its name. But you are perverting the definition of capitalism which is merely the private ownership of property of all kinds and the freedom to use it and buy and sell in free markets.

            • Clemgeopin

               /  31st March 2016

              China is not a democratic socialist country. It has the two of the most horrible and evil systems combined into one : Communism and Capitalism.

              Better examples of democratic socialistic nations would be say the governments of the Nordic countries or countries like Singapore.

  2. Clemgeopin

     /  30th March 2016

    Regarding IS and the recent terror acts:

    ‘~The scariest thing about Brussels is our reaction to it~’

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/mar/24/scariest-brussels-reactoin-paranoid-politicians-isis-atrocity-belgium
    ————

    I think President Obama understands this very well. Much better than the three Republican nominees and many talking blog/media heads.

    The way Obama carried on with his foreign trip was the correct response in my opinion. What do you think? He was severely criticised for it.

    Reply
  3. Missy

     /  31st March 2016

    “A forceful response is sometimes necessary but tolerance and better communication are essential if we want a better world.”

    Tolerance and communication only work if both sides are willing to be tolerant and communicate.

    “And not just religious tolerance – a modern world should be tolerant of both religious and non-religious views.”

    An ideal, if naïve, hope.

    How do you reconcile the idea of religious tolerance when so many are intolerant?

    I keep seeing media, bloggers, celebrities, activists, politicians talking about religious tolerance, but when you look deeper into their meaning, what they are really saying is that we, as white, western, and Christian, should be tolerant of, and make allowances for, those of the Muslim faith who preach intolerance, and don’t adhere to the same values we do. Two things that have come out of this is:
    1. When something happens like Brussels, there is some ‘victim blaming’ and the west are blamed for alienating the communities, or their politics, or actions in the Middle East, or inaction in the Middle East. This is something I have seen, not only in some media, but also on some blogs – even in NZ.
    2. When there are increases in sexual assaults, or harassment, by Muslim men against Western women, then authorities in our usually liberal democracies are put in a position where they have to conform to their values through segregation of men and women.

    Talking about religious tolerance is a nice idea, but the reality is, it is an impossible dream.

    Reply
    • Brown

       /  31st March 2016

      Well said Missy. My experience is that the new style of atheists and liberals like Dawkins, gays, transgendered and feminists are, perhaps apart from Muslims, the least tolerant people of all. You have to like their lifestyles and world view or face abuse.

      If you really want to aplogise for everything you never did feel free but I think western civilisation had lots going for it. Its a pity so many want to throw it away.

      Clark is saying whatever it takes to get her the top UN job. She has been anti military for ever and is happy to let others take a fall for her. She is no leader and should be ignored by intelligent people.

      Reply
      • Missy

         /  31st March 2016

        Brown, you make a good point about the new style of atheists and liberals as well – though to be honest I see that as more of a political intolerance to religious intolerance, but it does have similarities with the cult behaviour of some religions. I guess I am talking about Muslims more, as having just moved to the UK a couple of months ago I am seeing it so much more here than ever in NZ, and of course in China the media is very censored, so you don’t really see anything that the Government doesn’t want you to, and everyone conforms.

        I agree with your point on Western civilisation, I believe there is a lot going for it, but I think many of those who wish to throw it away only wish to, because they can because of the Western values, many would not survive if they had to live in the styles of Government or societies they espouse – it is truly a case of believing the grass is greener.

        Reply
        • Brown

           /  31st March 2016

          See Missy – reality. Your first hand experience and the statement of facts following said experience is offensive and gets down ticks. Facts are of no importance.

          I lived in the UK from 79 – 81 and know its changed. My friends from the UK say its awful there now – unrecognisable as English in some areas.

          Reply
          • Missy

             /  1st April 2016

            Indeed, there are many that are so unwilling to face up to the reality of the world not even first hand experiences and facts will sway their view of the world – in a sense another version of intolerance in society, they are just intolerant of views that go against their idealistic view. I am not surprised at downticks, I don’t think NZers are fully aware of the dangers that lurk in the world, the bubble that many live in insulates them against the evil that lurks.

            I was first in the UK in the 1990’s as a tourist, I have been back several times as a tourist since then, and I have many friends that live here, this is my first time of living here though, but all indications – both from my observances, and talking to friends and locals – it is completely different, there are a number of reasons, some is down to the gentrification of some areas, especially in the East of London, but most put it down to immigration and an increase in not only EU immigration, but also refugees and asylum seekers from the Middle East and North Africa, and the influx of the very wealthy from Europe and Arabia. In saying that, I still love London, I just need to be more careful and circumspect when in some areas.

            Reply
        • @ Missy & Brown – “Tolerance and communication only work if both sides are willing to be tolerant and communicate.”

          I partially agree. I am not trying to contradict you 100%, although I sincerely doubt you will perceive or understand this. I’m not saying there aren’t extremists who it is impossible to talk to. Of course there are. There always have been. Immediately post-WW2 the most active ‘extremists’ and terrorists for a time in the M.E. were the Zionist Israelis. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_David_Hotel_bombing

          The Rolleston/Bryce government of New Zealand in 1881 were intolerant and not very willing to communicate with Maori at Parihaka (on anything other than Pakeha terms). Nor were India’s British colonial rulers in the late 1940s tolerant of or willing to communicate with the Independence movement.

          This did not prevent Te Whiti and Tohu or Mahatma Ghandi from trying. Even trying and failing is better than not trying at all when it comes to this political-religious-ethnic-racial-colonial-imperialist-migration-terrorism stuff. Not to have tried is the worst thing possible IMHO.

          http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/1600-armed-police-and-volunteers-attack-pacifist-settlement-at-parihaka

          I see no reason why ‘attempted mediation’ can’t run concurrently with “a forceful response”. This is the usual formula of war and armed conflict. I guess it will remain so until we find a better way, if we ever do …

          ‘Its a pity so many want to throw it away.” and “those who wish to throw it away only wish to, because they can, because of the Western values”

          Once again, no doubt there are people who want to throw it [all] away. I can’t imagine why? Or “throw it away” in your terms, which may not be theirs or mine?

          Have you ever considered the possibility that many of those you attribute this motive to actually, in reality, in their own hearts and minds – emotellects – only want to improve it? Yes, there are people such as myself who believe it can be improved. Since “capitalism” as we know it is already regulated, I believe it can be improved by being regulated slightly or somewhat differently. This is not the same thing as wanting to throw it away, not at all.

          @ PDB – Neville Chamberlain can only be villified with the benefit of hindsight. Your argument is plain crap, sorry. Feel free to villify all the nations of the world who competed at the 1936 Olympics as well, including guess who?

          The history of the human race I belong to is a constant striving for impossible dreams. Evidence your own Christianity Brown?

          Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  31st March 2016

      Meanwhile here in Auckland:

      http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11614190

      Ten guesses as to the ethnicity of these homegrown racist thugs?

      Reply
      • Nelly Smickers

         /  31st March 2016

        Well I gave ya’ an uptick Al – looks like at least 5 of the bro’s read this blog as well 😎

        Reply
      • @ Alan – Care to quote any reference in the article as to who the assailants were? I cannot for the life of me see any? How about you just put us out of our misery and state which “ethnicity” you think “these homegrown racist thugs” are? Forget the innuendo, just say it.

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  31st March 2016

          They’ll be Maori or PI won’t they, PZ? But it is indelicate to say so.

          Reply
          • Some people say, “51% of THISnTHAT racial group are failing in the school system.”

            Others say, “The school system is failing 51% of THISnTHAT racial group” …

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  31st March 2016

              Can I say their subculture is failing this racial subgroup? It’s a tough ask to have schools fix that.

            • Interesting stats on crime at StatsNZ. I can’t work out how to look at all the ethnicities at the same time. Need to create new axis, a crime category/ethnic group graph to do this ….

              http://nzdotstat.stats.govt.nz/wbos/Index.aspx?DataSetCode=TABLECODE7412

              Anyhow, it will no doubt reinforce prejudices, although it says nothing about WHY, the question we’d be asking if we were even half as intelligent as we proclaim ourselves to be …

            • @ Alan – “Can I say their subculture is failing this racial subgroup?”

              Certainly, provided I can say, if 51% of the prison population is Maori, this is as much (or more) an indictment on the system which put them there as it is on Maori people.

              “School” was just an analogy …

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  31st March 2016

              You will have to define “system” if you want to blame it.

            • Pantsdownbrown

               /  31st March 2016

              It’s like being an alcoholic – you need to own up to having a problem before you can solve it.

            • You haven’t defined “subculture” or racial subgroup? Do you really think each of Polynesian and Maori are all members of singular ‘subcultures’?
              They’re not, any more than ‘Pakeha’ are. We use generalisations.

              If you read pages 31 – 38 of the Matike Mai Aotearoa Report you’ll see where I’m coming from to some extent (NB) Here’s the website, the Report is the first underlined heading –
              http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/iwi.htm

              If you are capable of entertaining the idea that tikanga and mana, in combination with whenua, constitute a different form of law, governance and ‘constitutionality’ – “concept and site of power” – from the ‘Western’, but not necessarily better or worse, existing in different contexts, then by “system” Alan I mean the whole damned shibang …

              The whole damned shibang has (by degrees) failed a whole section of our society, our community, our nation, my neighbours, colleagues, friends and acquaintances. I think this failure is well reflected in our crime and punishment statistics.

              If everything is defined only in ‘our’ terms – Western Christian Secular Imperialist Monarchist Parliamentary Democracy – then “failure” and “success” are ours to define, delegate and impose as we wish upon people to whom these same things might look like oppression or scapegoating or ‘set up for failure’ or dispossession or whatever … They might simply look “alien”? I don’t actually know. I want to hear about it from them though.

              It’s very evident from the Report that their individual, whanau, hapu and iwi perceptions are a) pretty consistent, and b) probably not what “we” want them to be.

              Raved again …

            • Nicely put Pantsdownbrown – “you need to own up to having a problem before you can solve it.” YOU GOT IT IN ONE!

              Our prevailing Western society needs to own up to having a problem, a big problem in relation to indigenous peoples (and perhaps minorities too?).

              AS WELL AS people taking personal, group and sub-culture responsibility of course.

              The question is; does everyone need to do this only on ‘our’ terms?

              Cannabis law reform is the perfect example. It is going to make 50 years of ‘war on drugs’ look like a shameful parody and waste. I hope I live to see the day when 160 years of ‘Western only law’ looks just the same.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  31st March 2016

              @PZ, I said subgroup and subculture precisely because I know it is a minority of both races that suffer from it. It is illiteracy, violence, substance and sexual abuse mixed in with racism, grievance and disrespect for people and property. In short, prison fodder.

              It’s not much for “the system” to work with.

            • Pete Kane

               /  1st April 2016

              “It’s a tough ask to have schools fix that.”
              Well if we are going to progress this (important) discussion, I hope we can all at least agree on the above.
              I, like all, don’t know for an absolute fact if Alan is correct in his prediction. But I do know, to put it crudely (and regrettably) who the odds favour. And I think we all do, if we are honest.

            • @ Pete Kane – So, firstly, I was drawing an analogy – a comparison – using the commonly cited “school system” dichotomy: Is it the person who’s failed the system or the system that’s failed the person? Never my intention to suggest school fix it all. I didn’t present it in the absolute finest of detail or clarity and so the discussion has gone into a ‘siding’ about “school fixing it”. An unfortunate turn of events.

              “Who the odds favour”, you say and, “if we are honest”.
              End of the story? Leave it at that? Send the guy to prison? New hardened criminal emerges in 4 years or whatever? End of …

              That’s one scumbag dealt with …

              His victims have no chance of being compensated. He has no chance of making amends other than ‘serving time’. He’s no better off. Society’s no better off and arguably worse off by one more scumbag becoming a hardened criminal in 4 or however many years …

              Great outcome. We gotta be proud of a system like that, right? If just this “criminal justice” part of our system alone was a business with such bad outcomes we’d have changed it long ago or it would have outright failed. Might be time to apply some corporate strategy to the thing? By which I don’t mean Cerco-style corporatism, I mean success-style corporatism rather than failure-style institutionalism …

              I don’t think it’s either/or, the individual OR society, I think its “and” both. So for me if we are going to progress this important discussion we need to go way beyond simply agreeing the odds favour the offender being Maori or Polynesian. (I think the actual odds are less than 50% but disproportionate to their ‘ethnic’ segments of the population?)

              I want us as a society to ask WHY? IN ADDITION TO him taking personal responsibility for himself and his actions or not – and if not WHY NOT? – what other factors are involved here? Once they are identified, what can be done about them at the societal level? (IN ADDITION TO the personal level. [I’m so tired of assuming I will be misinterpreted but it just happens over and over and over and over again here. I must be talking about it being “society’s fault entirely” right?]) …

              There might even be something that can be done at school? (Not to say the full responsibility or ANYTHING LIKE IT should reside there). A comparison here might be: Drownings are on the increase. School swimming pools are closing. People aren’t learning to swim like they used to at school. School could take a more active part in swimming lessons and in prevention of drowning.

              Might this in any way relate to ethics which could be taught at school? IN ADDITION TO … at home … of course … family … all that … yes.

              Another thing I think is that any strategy to change this disasterous [Victorian] dynamic of crime and punishment must be long term, aimed at taking one or two generations? How are we going to agree on such action – whatever it may be – when policies and implementations in our society are tied to 3 year election cycles (FFS) and the inevitable “minimum spend”?

              I don’t know the answers. I’d love to have a discussion about it, but what I expect on here, frankly, is I’ll get misinterpreted, transumed to be nothing more than a Leftie socialist with worthless utopian ideas, that my ulterior motive is to take other peoples’ money off them, and I’ll get shot down accordingly … a few neat two line putdowns … nothing much that I think of as real discussion will take place … Not where people work towards “progressing” an important issue … nothing like that …

              I guess if people just want the system to tick over as it is, “do the crime, do the time”, so be it.

              Over to Pantsdown and Alan …

            • Robby

               /  2nd April 2016

              They’re asleep probably PZ. Well put BTW, a few folks around here say you are a tad ‘verbose’. If they read everything, well they might just realise there is ‘method in your madness’…. 😉

            • Cheers Robby, thank you. I had to strike while the iron was hot, leastwise for myself anyhow. Bit of a lottery as to whether they read it.
              Doesn’t really matter in some ways …

              A ‘tad’ verbose? I pride myself on being chronically verbose mate!
              Great playlist tonight BTW. Awesome Kiwi music.

              What are you doing up? Don’t answer that coz I’m shutting down now.
              Goodnight.

            • Pete Kane

               /  2nd April 2016

              Not at all (and good morning) PZ. This is kind of the terminology I was alluding to.

              Click to access text-davison.pdf

            • Pete Kane

               /  2nd April 2016

              Clarify – I meant no need at all for an apology.

          • Robby

             /  2nd April 2016

            Goodnight my friend..

            Reply
            • Pete Kane

               /  2nd April 2016

              “End of the story? Leave it at that? Send the guy to prison? New hardened criminal emerges in 4 years or whatever? End of …”

              That’s not fair – and has never been my view.
              I could have gone on to say (as I often have) that much of the cause of this situation lies firmly at the door of the free market policies, often advocated on this site, our society (more than just our country) has pursued over recent decades. (Actually we once called it the “New Right” – but their ascendency has managed to take that term out of common discourse. An ideology/philosophy I am now into my sixth decade of opposing).

              I would though add though, that the issues of violence and ethnicity in this country are long standing and complex. And unfashionable as it may be, require solutions considerably more ‘sophisticated’ than our criminal justice system. Enjoy your rest PZ and Robby.

            • @ Pete Kane – I didn’t think you held those “end of story” views, hence all the question marks. Conscious its not just a conversation between you and me, I was asking generally too. Putting one ‘side’ so as to counter it myself. To the extent I “transumed”, which I do (possibly frequently) like anyone else, I apologize.

              I don’t distinctly remember the ‘New Right’ label but I too have been resisting for 30+ years in various ways. I believe somewhere along the line we will somehow need to look at the matrix of complex overlapping systems which make up our society. Unravel it a bit. Look at how they inter-relate and might be changed. People are doing this all around the world, evidence the new drug regime in Portugal.

              I just now heard an interview on RNZ with Karyn McCluskey about the Violence Reduction Unit in Scotland – links below – although it was clearly about more than just gangs. Gordon Peacock actually asked her, “Has this led to the closure of any prisons?” I don’t think it has (yet) but for that to be a legit question speaks volumes. One word I heard several times was the word “alcohol” …

              http://www.theguardian.com/society/2011/dec/19/karyn-mccluskey-glasgow-gangs

              http://www.actiononviolence.org.uk/

              The relationship of not just violence but ‘crime and ethnicity’ might be partly addressed during the Constitution discussions we will inevitably have, or in addressing issues raised therein. Reading the Matike Mai Aotearoa Report has been a bit of an eye opener for me in this regard. The relationship to ‘crime’ may not seem direct at first, but this may also be partly a Western pre-disposition to deal with things in segments or categories, rather than wholistically, to compartmentalize.

              http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/iwi.htm

              Can we keep discussing it? I think –
              1) Prevention beats the hell out of punishment [or non-cure]. If we start looking at punishment like “sending the patient to an infected hospital”?
              2) Making amends and restitution beats the hell out of just ‘serving time’. Yes, its utopian. The perpetrator (and society in a way too) acknowledges the victim and the former recompenses them. The perp acknowledges their own problem and does something about it, in detention or under monitoring or whatever. Many people will eventually overcome their own resistance to ‘psychology’ and benefit from it if only they get access to it.
              3) Drug and alcohol law reform. It will be another sad ‘negligence’ on our part if we leave alcohol out of the harmful drugs discussion and evaluation and law reform. For instance, are alcohol related health issues and social problems having proportionate money spent on them to drug ones? If we’re going to treat drugs as a health issue, same with liquor.
              4) Nothing stops a bullet or a beating or a theft like “not only having a job but having a sense of belonging, identity, usefulness and value”

              Back to you … and yous …

            • @ Pete Kane – Thanks for the Victoria Uni link. I’ll have to download it at the other place I have an internet connection with more data.

              Incidently, I understood what you meant by “not at all” straight off.

              This stream of replies is getting really long and out-of-sync. I won’t be online much this weekend but I’ll look forward to any other comments you have to make, perhaps as a whole new comment way down below?

              My overall ‘generalist’ feeling is: This thing, our system, is broken and/or copiously outdated in many ways. We need to fix it or at least try. If we only fix it for ‘the majority’ or the dominant culture we will simply perpetuate the 170 years of damage-control living that is our immediate past history … (that happens to include a whole bunch of wonderful things as well) …

              Gotta face facts I guess … I am a utopian …

              The his/herstory of the human race I belong to is one of striving for impossible dreams …

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  1st April 2016

          Here we are for you, PZ. No surprise of course:

          A teenager allegedly responsible for four attacks on Asian students will be behind bars until next week.

          The arrest comes after police released details of a spate of violent attacks which left several young people bloodied and bruised.

          Papakura resident Brandon Pora, 18, appeared in Auckland District Court this afternoon facing three charges of aggravated robbery and one of assault with intent to rob.

          Reply
          • Your prejudices are all justified then Alan.

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  1st April 2016

              They are accurate evidence-based expectations, not prejudices, PZ. It is actually your prejudice that is evidenced by your calling me prejudiced.

          • Nelly Smickers

             /  1st April 2016

            Goodness Al, I wonder if he’s a nefhew or something of Teina? 😦

            Reply
  4. Gezza

     /  31st March 2016

    Religious intolerance seems to be increasing around the world.

    Christian extremist attacks by anti-balaka militias and mobs in Central African Republic (nearly all mosques destroyed, muslim population displaced internally and into Cameroon), Christian extremist attacks in a few provinces in India, in Lebanon, in Uganda (Lord’s Resistance Army: its a mixed up combined African spiritualist vicious cult really), and in the US, mainly anti-abortionists. The catholics and protestants have stopped killing each other in Northern Ireland, though that was arguably a political war broken down on religious lines.

    Best known other examples lately are probably Bhuddist extremist attacks on muslims in Myanmar. Hindu extremist attacks on muslims and christians in India.

    And then there all the Islamic extremist attacks on all sorts of people in Afghanistan, Algeria, Argentina, Bangladesh, Belgium, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Canada, Chad, Chechnya, China, Cameroon, Croatia, Denmark, Egypt, France, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Israel, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Mali, Netherlands, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Russia, Somalia, Spain, Syria, Sweden, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, and Yemen.

    Reply
    • And then there all the Islamic extremist attacks

      Islam forbids targeting the innocent.

      ‘You had to attack civilians, the people, women, children, innocent people, unknown people far removed from any political game. The reason was quite simple. They were supposed to force these people, the Italian public to turn to the State to ask for greater security.’

      Sibel Edmonds has exposed an international development of the original Gladio program referred to as “Operation Gladio B”, which can be understood as a response to the subsidence of the Soviet threat after the end of the cold war. As a way of kickstarting the “war on terror”, instead of nationalist extremists in European countries, radical Muslims are armed, trained and assisted to carry out terrorist attacks while law enforcement is prevented from intervening.

      https://wikispooks.com/wiki/Operation_Gladio

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  31st March 2016

        Islam forbids targeting the innocent.

        And yet extremist Imams have no difficulty persuading Islamic fundamentalists to kill innocents through persuasion via their interpretations of Hadith + Quran. Essentially they teach that those who are not muslims are enemies of Islam so deserve death, those who criticise Islam (or “insult” Islam or the prophet) are attacking Islam, so deserve to die, and those muslims who do not embrace their particular brand of Islam, mostly these seem to be Wahhabis/Salafis), are apostates who also deserve to die.

        Then there are the beliefs that the Quran + Hadith + figh justify killing adulterers, homosexuals, those who do fight against muslims, and that Christians and Jews in muslim-dominated societies must accept Islamic rule, accept subjugation, and pay the jizya, The problem with Islam is that it is so easy to sell these medieval barabaric concepts, even in modern times. Much more so than it is to sell these sorts of beliefs to modern-day Christians.

        The numbers of people who believe Islam justifies killing are sufficient in most societies with large Islamic communities to make other muslims fearful about speaking out against them.

        Reply
      • Iceberg

         /  31st March 2016

        That sounds awesome! Is Matt Damon in that one?

        Reply
        • No. Try Fethulah Gülen.

          “Under the guise of schools [Madrasas] in Central Asia & Caucasus his network is involved in training terrorists [from Chechens to other Islamic Jihadis in the area]. The bureau had him under investigations since 1998. However, they were prevented from pursuing the cases [despite all evidence collected] due to direct pressure from the CIA/State Deptment. How do I know? Some of the case files were under the division where I worked [counterintelligence]. Other investigations were being conducted under the FBI’s crime & terrorism division.” ~ Sibel Edmonds

          Gülen-inspired schools are the largest charter network in the U.S. and receive approximately $150 million a year in taxpayer money.

          Link

          Reply
          • Iceberg

             /  31st March 2016

            Great plot. I think only Bruce Willis would be up for that! Die Hard 5?

            Reply
          • Missy

             /  1st April 2016

            PartisanZ, I would love it if your view of the world was the one we lived in, but it isn’t. My examples are of Muslims, because that is my experience, so those are the intolerant part of society I will stick to in my discussions – mostly because I don’t feel I know enough about intolerance in other religions, or belief systems to comment – except maybe the lefties in politics, but they are yet to blow up 20 or 30 people in one go.

            Many of those (being Muslims in the UK) that I ‘attribute this motive to actually’ really do have this motive. I will say this, until you have walked down a street in East London as a woman in the middle of the day dressed conservatively and listened to what the Muslim men – of all ages – say to you, you cannot even begin to understand the intolerance towards the West and the values held here that they practice. They in no way share the same idea of equality, or respect, that we in the West have, and these are the so called ‘moderate muslims’, add into that mix the radical muslims who hide their woman away, practice sharia law, sell their young daughters into marriage (some as young as 9 or 10), then you have a problem. These people do not accept our values and do not want to, so no I do not believe that many of them ‘in reality, in their own hearts and minds – emotellects – only want to improve it?’.

            I am not trying to second guess your identity, but to be honest your response to this sounds like you are a male (no, I don’t want any denial or confirmation – I am stating how I perceive you, so if I am wrong, I apologise), the experiences of women in areas that are heavily populated by Muslim males are something that no man can ever understand, mostly because Muslim males will behave differently when a man is with a woman than how they behave when a woman is on her own. NZ – at present – is very fortunate, the type of behaviour that I am subjected to on an almost daily basis here is a rarity there. I truly believe that those who believe that all we need is to talk to these people and it will all work out are those that have not had any experiences in areas of high Muslim populations. Now, I am not saying all are like that, and one on one many are very congenial, but there is still a very high proportion of Muslims that truly are intolerant of the West and its values, and this is very evident in London.

            The ‘throw it away’ comment may have been a bit of hyperbole on my part, but there is a high proportion of our society who are willing to sacrifice many of our Western values in order to accommodate those that do not believe in the same principles and values, this is what I mean, the more that are in conflict with our way of life that are let into our countries the more our values are eroded and theirs are accommodated, I see it everyday. Already we have cities and countries in Europe moving towards Islamic values of segregation, and away from more Western values of integration, as a direct result of the increasing number of Muslims that are being let into their countries. Since when was segregation something we in the West valued? More value is being placed on the sensibilities of Muslims around the depiction of Islam in media than is being placed on Christians around the depiction of Jesus, modern Western countries were founded on the principles of Christianity, yet the media, and some bloggers, remain happy to denigrate and mock Christian festivals, and Jesus, but show respect to Islam values around the depiction of Mohammad. These may seem like little things to many, but as they add up what they become is an erosion of the values and lifestyle of the Western culture in favour of a culture that holds no value for freedom of speech, women, girls, or those that are different. It is this that I see as ‘throwing away’ the values of the West. Until people start to stand up for those values our ancestors fought for this will continue, and before long we will be living in a society we do not recognise – it may not be in 10 years, or 20, but it will eventually happen.

            Great, you believe in attempted mediation, that is a fine idea, and with some it may work, it did for a time in Palestine, and it has (to a degree) worked in Northern Ireland, but to be honest I don’t see it as something that will work with the Muslim communities that are established, and establishing, in the UK and Europe – maybe one or two may go for it, but overall until the leaders of the communities stop preaching hate, encouraging radicalisation, and celebrating terrorist attacks (as many have over the last week) then it will never work, but you are welcome to try.

            Reply
            • Klik Bate

               /  1st April 2016

              It’s always great to get the perspective from someone at the coalface Missy. A friend of mine is currently living in London, and maintains that Britain is now home to more than 3 million Mooslims, with more than half of them born outside the UK. He was saying that soaring immigration and sky high birth rates have seen the number double in the last decade. Apparently some parts of London are now almost fifty percent Islamic and he believes that if this trend continues these areas will become majority Mooslim in the next five years!

              SHARIAH – the future for the UK ?

            • Until people start to stand up for those values our ancestors fought for this will continue, and before long we will be living in a society we do not recognise – it may not be in 10 years, or 20, but it will eventually happen.

              Those values in the form of English common law were expressed in writing in the dooms (judgments) of King Alfred the Great, which began with a Saxon version of the ten commandments. The Quran endorses the Torah of Judaism and there is much common ground between the two religions.

              I agree that there is a lot of misogyny in Islam culture, Mulsim men would do well to honour the Quran when it calls for kindness to be shown to women.

            • Nelly Smickers

               /  1st April 2016

              And in case anyone is REALLY interested, here IS the Koranic view of women, as well as a few videos expressing the ‘Muslim Authorities’ attitude towards them……..enjoy 😈

              http://freethoughtnation.com/what-does-the-koran-say-about-women/

            • @ Missy – for the sake of me not feeling misinterpreted, I wasn’t challenging your personal experience as a woman in London, and would not do so, nor was I defending terrorists or blaming victims, only remarking on your “impossible dream” comment about religious tolerance.

              Similarly, my remarks about people who want to “throw it away” only concerned “athiests and liberals” or Lefties, since both your’s and Brown’s comments related to them, not Muslims or terrorists (as far as I can tell). Both of you broadened the discussion beyond Islam and UK or European ‘troubles’ which is quite appropriate for the title of this topic, “NZ a model of religious tolerance”.

              I spent nearly a paragraph predicating my comment and, by-the-bye, predicting your response, and I feel mostly vindicated in that, vis –

              “I partially agree. I am not trying to contradict you 100%, although I sincerely doubt you will perceive or understand this. I’m not saying there aren’t extremists who it is impossible to talk to. Of course there are. There always have been.” – me ^^^^^^ up there

              I shouldn’t have put “100%” in. I felt it at the time but couldn’t find another way to express it, although “partially” is pretty clear …

              @ Missy – ” Since when was segregation something we in the West valued?”

              How about until the 1960s in America? Until the 1990s in South Africa? IMHO, de-facto segregation still operates to some degree in many so-called ‘post-colonial’ Western nations, including New Zealand.

              Personally I think this tendency for like populations to aglomerate is a normal human tendency, certainly evidenced by “tribal” affiliations of both the racial/ethnic type – e.g. iwi and hapu or ‘Polynesian’ – and indeed the class, income and wealth type, hence “richer or poorer” and “better or worse” suburbs or ‘working-class-ethnicity’ neighbourhoods? This needs to somehow be accommodated into multicultural societies rather than resisted IMO (and no, I’m not advocating Sharia Law by saying that)

              @ Missy – “Until people start to stand up for those values our ancestors fought for …”

              Yes, agreed, perhaps especially “at home” in England, and one must also – and by also I mean “in addition to” not instead of – remember that our ancestors fought to conquer and/or colonise many of these peoples’ countries and subjugate them and their ways-of-life to Western law and often to Christian values. New Zealand is such a country.

              Given what you say though, and if yours is a commonly held opinion in the UK, I wonder why this level of immigration continues to be government policy? Do you perceive a widespread movement away from it?

              It kind of surprizes me that ‘working class’ Brits aren’t up in arms about their neighbourhoods being taken over like this?

              Apologies, I don’t follow British politics enough to know and I don’t have time to search. I’ve gone outside of your discussion parameters again so I’m not really expecting a reply.

              As per PP on OF, enjoy London and be safe …

  5. The Quran & The Torah of Judaism have similar attitudes towards women:

    “and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee”

    Genesis 3:16

    Reply
    • Nelly Smickers

       /  1st April 2016

      I guess the equivalent passage then would be: Q 2:223 (….but with bells on!)

      Reply
      • @ Nelly – Assuming your freethoughtnation.com excerpts are correct, they support my belief that all Church religious doctrines are fundamentally inimical to life, aside from being ancient and completely outdated. Barely a word of the above corresponds to what is nowadays considered “life affirming”. Christianity and especially fundamental Christianity is little better.

        This is not to say that true religious or spiritual experience isn’t life enhancing and affirming, indeed it may well be the very reason for life itself, but such religious experience tends to be very personal and individual – even if shared with others – and impossible to put into words, let alone tenets and ‘laws’ applicable to other people or all of humanity …

        Aside perhaps from one or two very basic principles, which correspond to secular ethics anyhow, like “do unto others …”?

        Reply
      • Menstruation: Q2:222 -> Leviticus 15:19-30
        Authority Q2:223 -> Genesis 3:16

        Half value:

        And bring to witness two witnesses from among your men. And if there are not two men [available], then a man and two women from those whom you accept as witnesses – so that if one of the women errs, then the other can remind her.
        Quran, Surah 2:282

        One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.
        Deuteronomy 19:15

        Multiple wives: permitted in Judaism and Islam.
        May own female slaves (concubines): permitted in Judaism and Islam.

        Your source is incorrect, Muslims are permitted to marry non-Muslims. Q2:221 refers to mush’rikatin (polytheistic women). Also your source is incorrect about about not being seen, the Quran refers to modesty, i.e. to hide adornment from eligible males.

        Reply
        • Nelly Smickers

           /  1st April 2016

          @ Ugly T

          That is nothing more than the ‘Red Hearing’ argument that Muslims often raise. They always look to defend themselves by comparing other religions and saying they are just as bad. But in the end it does not make Islam any good. It seems that whenever you point out an evil or an error of Islam, Muslims immediately highlight the evil of other religions, instead of addressing the criticism raised against the Quran

          Christians follow New Testament. It is one of the most peaceful religions in scripture. Islam is definitely way more barbaric than any other religion. Basically Islam is a religion of ignorance, the more ignorant you are about Islam, the better it is if you’re Muslim. Because that way you can lie and tell fake facts to defend Islam without ever knowing it’s false

          Reply
          • My argument isn’t that Islam is as bad as Judaism, it is that they have a common source. The gospels of Christianity also endorse that source via Matthew 5:18 and the numerous references to the prophets.

            Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.
            Matthew 10:34

            The accusation of barbarity was most notably made by Cicero when he made the distinction between humans (as Roman citizens) and barbarians (non-Romans). Of course Rome was just as barbaric as any other culture, with its circuses, infanticide and penchant for crucifixion. The hypocrisy of Rome is also found in its state religion, which draws from a well known Pharisee.

            Is there anything in my argument that you can identify as false?

            Reply
            • Nelly Smickers

               /  1st April 2016

              As my hubby sez, “Arguing with religious people is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter how good you are at chess, the pigeon will just knock over the pieces, shit on the board, and strut around like it won anyway” 🙂

              Me, I’m off to work, handovers at 4.30….. :

          • Gezza

             /  1st April 2016

            Regardless of the origin of the word barbarian it now has other meanings in English than just that used by Greeks and Romans. Barbarity gets used in relation to Islam as a synonym for cruelty, harshness, severity, savagery, inhumanity, ruthlessness, pitilessness, brutality etc. ISIS and Taliban epitomise Islamist barabarity. So do some of the penalties under various versions of Shariah.

            Reply
        • Gezza

           /  1st April 2016

          You’re not correct about Muslims being permitted to marry non-Muslims. In practice only Muslim men can do that.

          Q4:25 tells Muslims to marry Muslims and many scholars try to discourage interfaith marriages.

          Q5:5 Allows Muslim men to marry the chaste from among the believing women (Muslims) and the chaste from among those who have been given “the Book” (Christians and Jews).

          Q2.221 forbids Muslim men to marry unbelieving women i.e. women who do not accept Allah as the one and only God (kuffar/kafir), or polytheists – worshippers of any gods other than Allah (idolators/mushrikeen).

          Virtually all Muslim scholars insist Islam forbids Muslim women to marry non-Muslim men however. They derive this prohibition from the fact the Quran specifically allows marriage to Christians and Jews only to men, so by implication women are forbidden the same as otherwise the Quran would explicitly provide for them as well.

          Some also contend Q60:10 supports this ban (Allah suddenly revealed it to Mo just in time for him to forbid two Quraysh women who had accepted Islam in Medina from being sent back to their unbeliever family in Mecca, though he was treaty-bound to do that.

          Given that Muslim men may marry up to four wives, and they must bring up all their children in Islam, It has also been a very useful strategy for propagating their religion by trying to outbreed monogamist religions and societies.

          Q24:31. requires women to much more than hide their adornments. They must lower their gaze and not display their beauty and ornaments, & must draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands, fathers, husband’s fathers, sons, husbands’ sons, brothers or brothers’ sons, sisters’ sons, or their women, or their slaves, or male servants free of physical needs, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex; and that they should not strike their feet in order to draw attention to their hidden ornaments. This gets interpreted very strictly in a great many Muslim societies.

          The “common source” simply comes from Muhammad checking out Judaism and Christianity and then designing his own “Made for Arabs” version. Mo rubbished some of Judaism’s & Christianity’s key beliefs.

          Reply
          • You’re not correct about Muslims being permitted to marry non-Muslims. In practice only Muslim men can do that.

            No, you are wrong. You have no argument to support you position that Muslim women cannot marry non Muslim men.

            Q4:25 tells Muslims to marry Muslims

            Not in general, it’s a special case. The general case is: “and lawful for you are (all women) besides those”

            23: Forbidden to you are your mothers and your daughters and your sisters and your paternal aunts and your maternal aunts and brothers’ daughters and sisters’ daughters and your mothers that have suckled you and your foster-sisters and mothers of your wives and your step-daughters who are in your guardianship, (born) of your wives to whom you have gone in, but if you have not gone in to them, there is no blame on you (in marrying them), and the wives of your sons who are of your own loins and that you should have two sisters together, except what has already passed; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

            24:And all married women except those whom your right hands possess (this is) Allah’s ordinance to you, and lawful for you are (all women) besides those, provided that you seek (them) with your property, taking (them) in marriage not committing fornication. Then as to those whom you profit by, give them their dowries as appointed; and there is no blame on you about what you mutually agree after what is appointed; surely Allah is Knowing, Wise.

            25: And whoever among you has not within his power ampleness of means to marry free believing women, then (he may marry) of those whom your right hands possess from among your believing maidens; and Allah knows best your faith: you are (sprung) the one from the other; so marry them with the permission of their masters, and give them their dowries justly, they being chaste, not fornicating, nor receiving paramours; and when they are taken in marriage, then if they are guilty of indecency, they shall suffer half the punishment which is (inflicted) upon free women. This is for him among you who fears falling into evil; and that you abstain is better for you, and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

            Reply
            • Klik Bate

               /  1st April 2016

              The Quran, unlike the Torah or the New Testament, is one book, by one man in his own lifetime. It shows itself to be nothing more than the ranting of a criminal mind, that of a self-proclaimed prophet and pedophile, a man named Muhammad.

            • Gezza

               /  1st April 2016

              I have given you the arguments that Muslims use to deny their women the right to marry non-Muslims. It’s not my argument, it’s theirs. The Quran specifically allows Muslim men to marry Christian and Jewish women but not unbelievers. It does not allow women to marry Christians and Jews because it gives them no similar explicit provision to do so. They would not be permitted to marry unbelievers and stay muslim either because Islamic societies are totally patriarchal. Their scholars have maintained that Christian and Jewish husbands could force them to give up Islam or bring up their children as non-muslims which is intolerable to Islam.

              Virtually all Muslim scholars and jurists agree that marriage of a Muslim woman to a non-Muslim man, whether he is polytheist, Christian or Jew, is prohibited in Islam.

            • I have given you the arguments that Muslims use to deny their women the right to marry non-Muslims.

              “many scholars try to discourage interfaith marriages” is pretty weak when the canonical texts of Judaism or Islam do not forbid it except in specific cases, Gezza.

            • Gezza

               /  1st April 2016

              Just something I discovered doing some reading online. Doesn’t bother me whether its true but sounds right. I’m not the one forbidding Muslim women from marrying outside their faith, it’s the Muslims themselves who do that. The other 2 Abrahamics are equally insular in their stricter forms.

          • Gezza

             /  1st April 2016

            Q23-25 are all about the categories of Muslim women and female slaves who Muslim men can and can not marry.

            Reply
            • So what’s your point?

            • Gezza

               /  1st April 2016

              I’m was wondering what your point was in mentioning them. It seemed like you were citing those surah as some sort of justification for your argument Muslim women can marry non-Muslim men, or maybe that Men can marry any non-Muslim women.

              (They don’t just talk about who muslim men are forbidden to marry either: They specify who they’re forbidden to bonk.)

              I don’t consider Mo was a pedophile btw. There’s not enough evidence for that, though he was pretty obviously a lecher with a huge appetite for women that he made sure the Quran sanctioned.

            • I’m was wondering what your point was in mentioning them.

              It was to rebut your assertion that “You’re not correct about Muslims being permitted to marry non-Muslims. In practice only Muslim men can do that.”

            • Gezza

               /  1st April 2016

              My contention was actually that it is not correct to say or imply ALL Muslims can marry non-Muslims. Only Muslim men are given that privilege in Islam, and only in respect of Christian and Jewish women – not other unbelievers. Thought my 2nd sentence made that clear. Q4:23-25 don’t rebut that.

            • Yes, I know that was your contention. Again “many scholars try to discourage interfaith marriages” is a pretty weak argument when the canonical texts of Judaism or Islam do not forbid it except in specific cases.

            • Gezza

               /  1st April 2016

              That is an observation only Uggers.

              It’s not the argument Muslims use to hold that Islam forbids Muslim women to marry non-Muslim men. I have explained their argument to you twice above. If you choose to hold a view opposed to the majority of Muslims you are free to do so.

              Whether they also have other arguments forbidding Muslim women marrying non-Muslims (eg based on hadith and figh) I neither know nor care. I would not marry a Muslim woman.

            • I have explained their argument to you twice above.

              Would you mind quoting it so that it’s clear?

            • Gezza

               /  1st April 2016

              Below.

  6. The Quran, unlike the Torah or the New Testament, is one book, by one man in his own lifetime. It shows itself to be nothing more than the ranting of a criminal mind, that of a self-proclaimed prophet and pedophile, a man named Muhammad.

    Slanderous and ignorant. The Torah is attributed Moses, not to multiple writers. Also, the child-bride story has been disproven by an an early biography which calculates Aisha’s age at marriage to be at least 15.

    Reply
  7. Klik Bate

     /  1st April 2016

    @ UT

    “Slanderous and ignorant” ?? LOL!!

    So you would profess to be better informed than, among many others, Saudi Cleric and Scholar Muhammad Al-‘Arifi, who while delivering marital advice on Iqra TV (Saudi Arabia), July 5, 2011, stated, “Aisha was seven years old when the Prophet Muhammad married her. But they did not have sex until she was nine….”.

    Can you provide any documentary evidence to the contrary, that Aisha was ‘at least 15’?

    And as far as the Torah is concerned, you need to bring yourself up to speed with ‘current thinking’. Scholars going back to the 2nd century found evidence that Moses did not in fact write the Torah, and subsequent scholars found even more evidence that it was written by more than one source.

    Reply
    • Can you provide any documentary evidence to the contrary, that Aisha was ‘at least 15’?

      I’m using the earliest biography argument since arguments based on the Hadith are contradictory.

      Ibn Hisham’s version of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rashul Allah, the earliest surviving biography of Muhammad, records Aisha as having converted to Islam before Umar ibn al-Khattab, during the first few years of Islam around 610 CE. In order to accept Islam she must have been walking and talking, hence at least three years of age, which would make her at least fifteen in 622 CE.

      http://www.discoveringislam.org/aisha_age.htm

      And as far as the Torah is concerned, you need to bring yourself up to speed with ‘current thinking’.

      No, I really don’t. Multiple _divine_ authors are not a problem for a sole writer, i.e. Moses.

      Reply
      • Klik Bate

         /  1st April 2016

        Fair enough UT, I noticed some comment earlier on about, ‘playing chess with pigeons…..’….

        Think I’ll just leave it at that 😀

        Reply
        • Feel free to point out where I knocked over the chess pieces, if that’s what you’re implying, KIik Bate.

          Reply
          • Klik Bate

             /  1st April 2016

            No, I certainly wasn’t implying that at all UT.

            It was more the second and third moves…..

            Reply
  8. Gezza

     /  1st April 2016

    I have explained their argument to you twice above.
    Would you mind quoting it so that it’s clear?

    Sure. Virtually all Muslim scholars insist that Islam forbids Muslim women to marry non-Muslim men. They do so primarily on the basis of these two Quranic verses.

    Q5:5 which allows Muslim men to marry the chaste from among the believing women (Muslims) and the chaste from among those who have been given “the Book” (Christian and Jewish women).

    Q2.221 whichforbids Muslim men to marry unbelieving women i.e. those who do not accept Allah as the one and only God (kuffar/kafir), or polytheists – worshippers of any gods other than Allah (idolators/mushrikeen).

    Their Quranic justification is if Muslim men needed to be given express permission in the Quran to marry a Christian or a Jewish woman, Muslim women needed to be given express permission to do likewise. As they were not given any such permission, then they must be barred from marrying a Christian, a Jew or an unbeliever.

    Reply
    • Q2.221 does not forbid Muslim men from marrying unbelieving women, only polytheists. The verse also sets the same conditions for Muslim women.

      Sahih International: And do not marry polytheistic women until they believe. And a believing slave woman is better than a polytheist, even though she might please you. And do not marry polytheistic men [to your women] until they believe. And a believing slave is better than a polytheist, even though he might please you. Those invite [you] to the Fire, but Allah invites to Paradise and to forgiveness, by His permission. And He makes clear His verses to the people that perhaps they may remember.

      The argument that Muslim women need to be given explicit permission is not from the Quran and it fails because the general rule is that all things are permitted except for that which is expressly forbidden.

      If the Quran actually taught Muslim women could only marry Muslim men, then Q2.221 should reflect that different rules apply for the sexes, but it does not do this.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  2nd April 2016

        If that’s what you want to believe that’s fine with me Uggers. 😎

        Reply
        • What I believe isn’t important. What is important are the facts and reasoning that leads to the conclusion that the Quran doesn’t, in general, forbid marriages with non-Muslims, either for men or women.

          Reply
  1. ‘NZ a model of religious tolerance’ | Mark Geoffrey Kirshner

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