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Islam v Judaism

 
lynmc
 
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lynmc
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31 August 2017 12:45
 

Sam Harris is forever claiming that Islam, particularly the tracts where warriors are commanded to cut off the heads of their enemies, can easily be interpreted as inciting violence - he also has claimed that the directive to cut off infidel’s heads anywhere, any time is the correct interpretation, that it means Muslims are encouraged to commit aggressive wars of conquest against non-Muslims.

On the other hand, he dismisses as “fringe” interpretations of Judaism that, for example, say it’s OK to commit rape during war or kill babies who might grow up to grow up to be enemies of Israel.  There are relatively large numbers of Jews who lay claim to specific property or territory on the basis that “God gave it to the Jews,” and are perfectly willing to murder or mass murder Israel’s indigenous people (Palestinian Arabs) simply because they aren’t Jews and happen to live on or own land these Jews claim.  Furthermore, Israel supports and protects them.  Furthermore, the Israeli army has itself often participated in mass murders of non-Jews in the process of aggressive wars of conquest - and there’s plenty of biblical verbiage encouraging such conquest and slaughter such as what Israel has carried out.

I’m curious why Sam Harris never seems to point out that the murderous interpretation of Judaism is the correct one, or disparage Judaism because it encourages violence?  It seems to me that he has a bigoted image of Muslims vs Jews, that doesn’t allow him to notice Israel’s or Jewish mass murders without excusing them.

 
Can of Tuna
 
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Can of Tuna
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01 September 2017 14:09
 

He covers it partly in Letters To A christian Nation. I’m not sure if I can successfully embed tweets so here goes:

edit: that dint work.
https://twitter.com/samharrisorg/status/627140550651609089

 

[ Edited: 01 September 2017 14:11 by Can of Tuna]
 
lynmc
 
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lynmc
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02 September 2017 08:48
 
Can of Tuna - 01 September 2017 02:09 PM

He covers it partly in Letters To A christian Nation. I’m not sure if I can successfully embed tweets so here goes:

edit: that dint work.
https://twitter.com/samharrisorg/status/627140550651609089

 

It’s a start, I suppose.  I find it a bit lame, my reasons below:

1. I’ve never found where he states something like “Honesty: the Jewish world’s scarcest resource,” basically, accusing all Jews of being dishonest - because their interpretation of the religious texts differs from those of the ones I described in the initial links.  If he did, I’d call him antisemitic.

2. It’s not just gays the Jewish fundamentalists think should be killed, it’s Palestinians and Arabs too.  When they arbitrarily kill Muslims, Sam says nothing or claims it was self-defense.  Basically, these fundamentalists advocate for genocide - finding plenty of support in the religious texts, which anyone else who is interested in finding can also find (mostly, other than religious Jews, antisemites are the ones who do this kind of digging through the Talmud).  Worse, the fundamentalist Jews get all kinds of support from the Israeli government which is also involved in mass murders and arbitrary killings of Palestinians (and Lebanese and other Arab people), mass expulsions and confiscation of land and property of Palestinians for the exclusive use and benefit of Jews.  Any statements Sam Harris has made about this has been to make excuses.

Anyway, I think Harris has this big blind spot.

 

 
Can of Tuna
 
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Can of Tuna
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03 September 2017 02:47
 
lynmc - 02 September 2017 08:48 AM
Can of Tuna - 01 September 2017 02:09 PM

He covers it partly in Letters To A christian Nation. I’m not sure if I can successfully embed tweets so here goes:

edit: that dint work.
https://twitter.com/samharrisorg/status/627140550651609089

 

It’s a start, I suppose.  I find it a bit lame, my reasons below:

1. I’ve never found where he states something like “Honesty: the Jewish world’s scarcest resource,” basically, accusing all Jews of being dishonest - because their interpretation of the religious texts differs from those of the ones I described in the initial links.  If he did, I’d call him antisemitic.

2. It’s not just gays the Jewish fundamentalists think should be killed, it’s Palestinians and Arabs too.  When they arbitrarily kill Muslims, Sam says nothing or claims it was self-defense.  Basically, these fundamentalists advocate for genocide - finding plenty of support in the religious texts, which anyone else who is interested in finding can also find (mostly, other than religious Jews, antisemites are the ones who do this kind of digging through the Talmud).  Worse, the fundamentalist Jews get all kinds of support from the Israeli government which is also involved in mass murders and arbitrary killings of Palestinians (and Lebanese and other Arab people), mass expulsions and confiscation of land and property of Palestinians for the exclusive use and benefit of Jews.  Any statements Sam Harris has made about this has been to make excuses.

Anyway, I think Harris has this big blind spot.

 

1. Sam has said on more than one occasions that the Old Testament is the worst of the (holy)  books. But the difference is that there are no Sanehedrin, and in general jews are more secular, the orthodox jews are a minority unlike in Islam, where the majority seems to hold views that are problematic. When polling is done in the muslim world, the answers to questions like “should blasphemers be punished, the results are 50-60% in favor. Its never 5-10%.

2. As Sam has stated, every time an Israeli soldier kills a Palestinian, Israel is one step closer to becoming an international Paraiyar. Israel bends over backwards in order to limit sivilian casualties. Thats difficult when you have Hamas that deliberately hides among civilians after they have carried out attacks. See the difference? I would like for you to present proof that the Israelis commit “mass killings”. The illegal settlements are indeed illegal, and that should and must be criticized. But the Israeli Knesset has 17 Palestinians members, so its not that black and white when you look at it objectively.

The reason why Sam is more critical of the Palestinians is simply because they are ruled by a terrorist organization, who sabotage the peace process.

 
lynmc
 
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lynmc
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03 September 2017 20:00
 
Can of Tuna - 03 September 2017 02:47 AM
lynmc - 02 September 2017 08:48 AM
Can of Tuna - 01 September 2017 02:09 PM

He covers it partly in Letters To A christian Nation. I’m not sure if I can successfully embed tweets so here goes:

edit: that dint work.
https://twitter.com/samharrisorg/status/627140550651609089

 

It’s a start, I suppose.  I find it a bit lame, my reasons below:

1. I’ve never found where he states something like “Honesty: the Jewish world’s scarcest resource,” basically, accusing all Jews of being dishonest - because their interpretation of the religious texts differs from those of the ones I described in the initial links.  If he did, I’d call him antisemitic.

2. It’s not just gays the Jewish fundamentalists think should be killed, it’s Palestinians and Arabs too.  When they arbitrarily kill Muslims, Sam says nothing or claims it was self-defense.  Basically, these fundamentalists advocate for genocide - finding plenty of support in the religious texts, which anyone else who is interested in finding can also find (mostly, other than religious Jews, antisemites are the ones who do this kind of digging through the Talmud).  Worse, the fundamentalist Jews get all kinds of support from the Israeli government which is also involved in mass murders and arbitrary killings of Palestinians (and Lebanese and other Arab people), mass expulsions and confiscation of land and property of Palestinians for the exclusive use and benefit of Jews.  Any statements Sam Harris has made about this has been to make excuses.

Anyway, I think Harris has this big blind spot.

 

1. Sam has said on more than one occasions that the Old Testament is the worst of the (holy)  books. But the difference is that there are no Sanehedrin, and in general jews are more secular, the orthodox jews are a minority unlike in Islam, where the majority seems to hold views that are problematic. When polling is done in the muslim world, the answers to questions like “should blasphemers be punished, the results are 50-60% in favor. Its never 5-10%.

2. As Sam has stated, every time an Israeli soldier kills a Palestinian, Israel is one step closer to becoming an international Paraiyar. Israel bends over backwards in order to limit sivilian casualties. Thats difficult when you have Hamas that deliberately hides among civilians after they have carried out attacks. See the difference? I would like for you to present proof that the Israelis commit “mass killings”. The illegal settlements are indeed illegal, and that should and must be criticized. But the Israeli Knesset has 17 Palestinians members, so its not that black and white when you look at it objectively.

The reason why Sam is more critical of the Palestinians is simply because they are ruled by a terrorist organization, who sabotage the peace process.

There is plenty of proof Israel has committed mass killings, both from victims who escaped and Israeli military archives.  It isn’t hard to find, unless you are deliberately blind.

It doesn’t actually matter how much restraint Israel shows when they make war on people in order to take their land and property and deny the indigenous people of the land they’ve already taken rights to live in their land, own property or the the right to life.  But, perhaps you don’t think Palestinians are the indigenous people of what’s now Israel and Palestine?

All you can do about this is say, “criticize the settlements”?  Your assertions are standard Zionist b.s., which explains your deliberate blindness.  Whether or not orthodox Jews are a minority, Zionist and their drive to ethnically cleanse Palestine of Palestinians (leaving maybe a minority that they can point to for propaganda purposes) aren’t.

 

 
2Q17
 
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2Q17
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03 September 2017 20:11
 

He seemingly doesn’t criticize Judaism as much because he isn’t perfect, but it seems he’s tried to correct for that by being an advocate for the criticism of all religion much more than he’s been silent or even supportive of negatives in Judaism. Do you agree?

 
lynmc
 
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lynmc
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03 September 2017 20:35
 

Antisemites go searching through religious texts looking for proof that Jews are deceptive or dishonest, as well as spreading the fear that Jews are taking over the world.  It’s their hallmark.

Islamophobes go searching though religious texts looking for proof that Muslims are deceptive or dishonest, as well as spreading fear that Muslims are taking over the world.  It’s their hallmark. 

 
lynmc
 
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lynmc
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03 September 2017 20:46
 
2Q17 - 03 September 2017 08:11 PM

He seemingly doesn’t criticize Judaism as much because he isn’t perfect, but it seems he’s tried to correct for that by being an advocate for the criticism of all religion much more than he’s been silent or even supportive of negatives in Judaism. Do you agree?

I tend to agree, but the criticism of all religion seems more of a dodge.  He can slide a lot of Islamophobic statements in (i.e., stating or implying that Muslims are dishonest, violent, uncivilized), then when people notice, he says, no, I’m just criticizing religion - look I’ve criticized all religions. 

And really, I think he’s largely blind to this, he’ll automatically discard any evidence that contradicts his worldview.

 
2Q17
 
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2Q17
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03 September 2017 20:53
 
lynmc - 03 September 2017 08:46 PM
2Q17 - 03 September 2017 08:11 PM

He seemingly doesn’t criticize Judaism as much because he isn’t perfect, but it seems he’s tried to correct for that by being an advocate for the criticism of all religion much more than he’s been silent or even supportive of negatives in Judaism. Do you agree?

I tend to agree, but the criticism of all religion seems more of a dodge.  He can slide a lot of Islamophobic statements in (i.e., stating or implying that Muslims are dishonest, violent, uncivilized), then when people notice, he says, no, I’m just criticizing religion - look I’ve criticized all religions. 

And really, I think he’s largely blind to this, he’ll automatically discard any evidence that contradicts his worldview.

Sam Harris is the first person to change his views and admit error when presented with sound reasonable evidence. That’s kinda his thing. I’ll concede his criticisms of Islam over any other specific religion may be louder and more frequent, but that’s justified by his belief that it is more readily the source of human suffering than the others.

 
lynmc
 
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lynmc
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04 September 2017 11:12
 
2Q17 - 03 September 2017 08:53 PM
lynmc - 03 September 2017 08:46 PM
2Q17 - 03 September 2017 08:11 PM

He seemingly doesn’t criticize Judaism as much because he isn’t perfect, but it seems he’s tried to correct for that by being an advocate for the criticism of all religion much more than he’s been silent or even supportive of negatives in Judaism. Do you agree?

I tend to agree, but the criticism of all religion seems more of a dodge.  He can slide a lot of Islamophobic statements in (i.e., stating or implying that Muslims are dishonest, violent, uncivilized), then when people notice, he says, no, I’m just criticizing religion - look I’ve criticized all religions. 

And really, I think he’s largely blind to this, he’ll automatically discard any evidence that contradicts his worldview.

Sam Harris is the first person to change his views and admit error when presented with sound reasonable evidence. That’s kinda his thing. I’ll concede his criticisms of Islam over any other specific religion may be louder and more frequent, but that’s justified by his belief that it is more readily the source of human suffering than the others.

Gotta disagree.  Where is his sound, reasonable evidence that Islam is readily the source of human suffering more than the other belief systems?

 
2Q17
 
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2Q17
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04 September 2017 12:02
 

If your only care is one religion not being criticised fairly, you’re missing the larger point of all religion having significant drawbacks necessitating criticism/abandonment, as a whole.

 
lynmc
 
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lynmc
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04 September 2017 15:32
 
2Q17 - 04 September 2017 12:02 PM

If your only care is one religion not being criticised fairly, you’re missing the larger point of all religion having significant drawbacks necessitating criticism/abandonment, as a whole.

I object to fear and hate-mongering under the guise of criticizing religion.

I doubt that abandoning religion would make any discernible difference in how people behave.

 
2Q17
 
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2Q17
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04 September 2017 15:35
 

Do you believe it is part of the solution to minimizing fear and hate mongering?

 
Kalessin
 
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Kalessin
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05 September 2017 15:45
 
lynmc - 04 September 2017 03:32 PM

I doubt that abandoning religion would make any discernible difference in how people behave.

Could you clarify -is that a statement about individuals or groups, or to everybody?  Unless it’s the latter, it’s arguably possible to assess the claim empirically.

[ Edited: 05 September 2017 16:01 by Kalessin]
 
lynmc
 
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lynmc
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05 September 2017 15:53
 
Kalessin - 05 September 2017 03:45 PM
lynmc - 04 September 2017 03:32 PM

I doubt that abandoning religion would make any discernible difference in how people behave.

Could you clarify -is that a statement about individuals or groups, or to everybody?  Unless it’s the latter, it’s arguably possibly to assess the claim empirically.

I meant violent behavior, oppression, especially by groups. Of course some things would change, like specific prayers.

 
Kalessin
 
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Kalessin
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05 September 2017 16:04
 
lynmc - 05 September 2017 03:53 PM
Kalessin - 05 September 2017 03:45 PM
lynmc - 04 September 2017 03:32 PM

I doubt that abandoning religion would make any discernible difference in how people behave.

Could you clarify -is that a statement about individuals or groups, or to everybody?  Unless it’s the latter, it’s arguably possibly to assess the claim empirically.

I meant violent behavior, oppression, especially by groups. Of course some things would change, like specific prayers.

So you would say that if a group abandons a formerly held religion there wouldn’t be a discernible difference to how they behave in terms of violence or oppression?

 
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