Much of the crit­i­cism of Is­lam is way off the mark

The Star Early Edition - - INSIDE - Bashir Va­nia

IN RE­SPONSE to the let­ter by Themba Dube en­ti­tled “A cer­tain re­li­gion is the prob­lem” (The Star De­cem­ber 30), it is un­for­tu­nate that Dube has cho­sen to slyly use the Syr­ian refugee cri­sis to con­demn Is­lam and Mus­lims.

Per­haps if he were a dili­gent stu­dent of his­tory he would re­alise the ab­sur­dity of at­tack­ing a re­li­gion which is ap­prox­i­mately 1 500 years old, based upon a few in­ci­dents in the cur­rent nar­ra­tive.

Noam Chom­sky, who is re­garded as the West’s most prom­i­nent in­tel­lec­tual, re­minds us of the fol­low­ing: “In 1492 Chris­tian con­querors ex­tended their bar­baric sway over the most ad­vanced and tol­er­ant civil­i­sa­tion in Europe (ie Mus­lim Spain). Jews and Mus­lims were ei­ther eth­ni­cally cleansed or forced to con­vert.” (From his book Hopes and Prospects, pub­lished in 2011).

So much for Dube’s im­plied claim of only Chris­tians “turn­ing the other cheek”.

Dube also brings up the verse from the Qur’an “Slay the idol­aters…”

May I re­mind him that there are about 6 616 verses in the Qur’an, and fewer than 16 of them deal with vi­o­lent Mus­lim self­de­fence tac­tics in a war sit­u­a­tion.

Th­ese re­mark­ably few verses are used ad nau­seam and are quoted hope­lessly out of con­text by peo­ple like Dube to ham­mer Mus­lims.

As for the charge of polygamy in Is­lam (al­low­ing a man to have up to four wives), is not some­thing any fair-minded Mus­lim is ashamed of.

Af­ter all, any Is­lamic mar­riage con­tract is en­tered into freely and will­ingly by all par­ties con­cerned. Ul­ti­mately, the Qur’anic law (with strict con­di­tions at­tached) is viewed only as an ac­com­mo­da­tion and not a rec­om­men­da­tion. Hence most Mus­lims have only one wife.

Mus­lims also re­gard the polygamy pro­vi­sion as in­fin­itely su­pe­rior to a per­son hav­ing nu­mer­ous sex­ual part­ners with­out sub­scrib­ing to the cor­re­spond­ing con­trac­tual re­spon­si­bil­i­ties and du­ties of mar­riage.

The tragedy of Aids, un­wanted chil­dren, etc merely con­firms the wis­dom of the pro­viso.

Fur­ther­more, al­low­ing polyandry (a woman hav­ing more than one hus­band), as Dube sug­gests Is­lam should do, is to go against the dic­tates of na­ture.

As Sir Arthur Co­nan Doyle (the cre­ator of the great fic­tional de­tec­tive Sher­lock Holmes) once re­marked: “If one tries to rise too much above na­ture, one will fall far below it.”

Fi­nally, let me deal with the charge of the “three recita­tions of Mus­lim di­vorce”. Dube is prob­a­bly un­aware that there is a whole chap­ter in the Qur’an ded­i­cated to the lengthy and fair process of di­vorce (for ex­am­ple chap­ter 65).

Mus­lims who use any other sys­tem of di­vorce (for ex­am­ple three sim­ple recita­tions) do so in spite of the Qur’an and not be­cause of it! I chal­lenge any­one to prove oth­er­wise. Le­na­sia

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