Saturday, July 25, 2009

Some day but not very soon

I want to thank author Stephen Schwartz for showing me the other side of the coin. Most of us look at the conflicting images of Islam we see in the media or of the person down the block. We do like
Abdul when he is the smiling gas station owner, valued doctor or coworker. The lives of Americans are connected in a way that makes hatred of anyone for anything other than criminality Unamerican.

Of course in the media we get the loudest shrillest voices. So we are likely to see the terrorist or a waffling sort from a group like CAIR.

At some point in the future there is going to be an internal dialogue within Islam. Terrorism just doesn't accomplish anything and harms the lives of Muslims more than its enemies.


The_Editrix said...

"At some point in the future there is going to be an internal dialogue within Islam."

Beak you obvously haven't got A CLUE about what you are talking. I never believed in the reformative powers within Islam (if I ever gave it a thought at all), but I seriously thought, judging from all the nice, productive, middle class, 100% assimilated Turks I used to encounter in everyday life, that it is possible to leave Islam behind. Well, two years (summer 2004 to summer 2006) in one of the lesser neighbourhoods in our biggest industrial area have taught me better. You are indulging wishful thinking, Beak! I can only guess that your American population density is simply not overpowering enough to make you feel the consequences of Muslim presence, neither is the percentage of Muslims in relation to your population.

Islam is not (repeat: NOT!) a religion, but a cruel, totalitarian political world view. Name THREE, still practising, Muslims whom you think fit to trigger off such a dialogue. That said, name one. Do you really think a culture, in possession of the larger part of the global oil riches for the larger part of the last 100 years, yet still stuck in the most repulsive medieval traditions, a culture that has, if anything, shown a decisively even more backward inclination for the last decades, will ALLOW such a dialogue? There will NEVER be any dialogue within Islam, save for whether beheading or stoning is the more appropriate punishment for adultery. Do you really think that a culture that hangs little girls and has them raped before the execution so that they won't go to paradise, will EVER have something like AN EFFING DIALOGUE?

Are you trying to suck up to the Duck? Are you trying at any cost to say something different from what Yeagley says in hope for a dialogue with him? That is about as promising as hoping for an inter-Muslim dialogue. Sorry, but I can't find any other reason behind such a statement.

beakerkin said...


Author Stephen Schwartz head of the CIP is a man who takes his faith seriously and sees a different sort of the religion. He is a Sufi and envisions a more cosmopolitan and less confrontational form of the religion.

Oddly many of the Turks you meet in Germany may be Alevis. This is a different subgroup that some believe to be the Anatolian version
of the Alawites or a fusion of a preIslamic Cult of Angels.

Schwartz does place his life in danger trying to offer an alternative to the radical Wahhabi or Salafist versions.

In NYC Islam in different communities worship at different facilities. There are African, Albanain, Guyanese and other types of Mosques. One saw almost no radicalism in the Albanian community until recently. The Guyanese community was even less radical than the Albanian community. That why there was a great shock when a local West Indian was involved in a plot to blow up JFK airport.

The cultural expectations in the USA are different from Europe.

beakerkin said...


At a certain point the futility and harm that terror does to Islam itself may cause a debate between men like Schwartz and the CAIR types.

The_Editrix said...

"The cultural expectations in the USA are different from Europe."

I am not sure what you mean. If it is that America expects a certain degree of assimilation and well-behaving whereas Europe doesn't, then yes, you're right.

beakerkin said...


This may sound funny but in a country where we are not homogeneous the expectations of all immigrants is higher. The Muslim is the person next door or the man in the next cube. There are fewer safety nets and if anyone wants to sit idle all day it is harder to do so legally.

The_Editrix said...

Beak, I think I know where you're coming from. You are a deep-down decent and kind guy yourself and can't stand the thought of human evil and that men might NOT be convinced by reason and a greater good. That is nice and remarkable for a man of your profession.

But with Islam it won't take you anywhere. Andrew Bostom, maybe the only serious writer about Islam who does NOT buy the Islam vs. Islamism myth, writes about Schwartz here and here. I am not a scholar of Islam, you are neither, so all we can do is to BELIEVE those with more in-depth knowledge based on our everyday experiences. And I believe Bostom, not Schwartz, because from what I have seen and from what I am experiencing, all waffling about a "peaceful" Islam is just that: waffling.

Never underestimate the power of taqquia. I would like to be a fly on the wall during that future conversation between CAIR and Schwartz.

Look WITHOUT BIAS at Islam, who Mohammed was, what he did, look at Islam's violent history, look at today's events outside Schwartz' pet peeve Wahabism, look at "Palestine", Darfur, Bezlan, the Balkan or India. How somebody who got, like Schwartz, exposed to Islam in the Balkans can become a convert is beyond me. But then, maybe not. Strangely, there is no information whether he converted from Christianity or Judaism (at least no information quickly to find). However, a lot of Western men (not necessarily converts) with a fascination for the "Orient" share a mutual interest. Case in point: the wonderful and wonderfully learned and inspired German orientalist Hellmut Ritter (1892 - 1971). Sorry, there is no sufficient English information online. It is fair to assume that Ritter chose to live most of his adult life in Turkey not so much because he was opposed to the Nazis (he was), but because it allowed him to indulge his penchant for underage boys.

In contrast to the Judeo-Christian West, where marriage has been an expression of for God’s love since the Biblical Song of Songs, homosexual pederasty was normative for the Sufi philosopher-poets of Islam’s ... harrummph ... "golden age".

[To be continued!]

The_Editrix said...

I haven't read it myself in the original for want of literacy (who has?), but scholars I trust say that Classic Persian and Arab literature is full of celebrating homosexuality, specifically of the pederastic sort. "Islam could not extirpate a pederastic culture including virtually all the leading poets of the high Middle Ages except by suppressing the Sufi cults. There were a number of reasons that both the Sunni and Shia mainstream persecuted Sufism, but a prominent one was the cited practice called “contemplation of the beardless” in which the dervish sought communion with the eternal by immersing himself in the beauty of adolescent boys."
Yes, puke! And:
"Goethe’s creepily convincing portrait of a pederastic devil in Faust (1832) drew on the poet’s earlier study of Persian love poetry of the High Middle Ages, where “as a rule, the beloved is not a woman, but a young man”, according to the leading Persian historian Ehsan Yar-Shater." Here! All Germans with a certain education know that but hardly any (including myself) have ever connected the dots.

Sufism is considered in Western pop culture as a nicer kind of Islam. It isn't. It is the only case in which a mainstream current of a major world religion preached pederasty as a path to spiritual enlightenment. Full stop.

That said, whether Schwartz rejected by his conversion the ancient Jewish Song of Songs and marriage as an expression of God’s love, or additionally the existence as a Christian who was made by his redeemer one directly from the line of Abraham, I don't know, but a conversion like that oughn't to be taken lightly by neither, Christians or Jews.

In plain English: I would trust a convert to Islam even less than I'd trust any Muslim anyway, and specifically if he has converted to a faction of Islam that condones homosexual pederasty even more than the rest of this cult does anyway.

beakerkin said...

Actually I did have a series of posts with Schwartz on the Armenian genocide. The young Turks were a secularist group that abused Muslim
hatred of Armenians for populist reasons.

This is not to say the history of Ottomans and Armenians is rosy by any means. On the last one secularists did play a key role in the Armenian genocide.

In a movement as large and historically long as Sufism there are going to be odd quotes and historical mistakes.

Schwartz does project the image of Islam as we would love to see it.
He is a man of letters and art who appreciates the Western traditions and is a patriot. He is a refreshing change from the CAIR clowns even if he is not perfect.

He is a man of brilliance with an acerbic wit. The only hostility he is likely to impart is after a bad book review and it is with very witty repartee.

There is another corrosive element in the mix. This is the first time large numbers of Muslims have been exposed to corrosive European values. A lost generation of secularist nihlists could be lurking around the corner in the Muslim community.