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A secular world view

 
hannahtoo
 
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hannahtoo
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08 April 2018 16:18
 

Celal:
Why could secularism not blossom in Muslim Cultures, as you say “in spite of it”?  After all, we have stipulated that humanity is the common link and you will find good in all cultures.

Maybe it hasn’t gotten around to happening yet.  Maybe Muslim culture is behind Christian culture in that respect.  Weren’t many Muslim countries on their way toward secularism until the recent resurgence of fundamentalism? 

Probably one of the biggest secular cultures is China.  Before becoming Communist, there were several religions, including Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism.  Communism, of course, is secular without the same concepts of human rights that accompany it in Europe and the US.  So secularism and human rights are not necessarily linked.  Originally the OP was more about a scientific practical view, versus a religious or spiritual outlook on life.  Somehow all this morphed into a discussion of human rights.

 

 
Celal
 
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Celal
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10 April 2018 19:11
 
hannahtoo - 08 April 2018 04:18 PM

Celal:
Why could secularism not blossom in Muslim Cultures, as you say “in spite of it”?  After all, we have stipulated that humanity is the common link and you will find good in all cultures.

Maybe it hasn’t gotten around to happening yet.  Maybe Muslim culture is behind Christian culture in that respect.  Weren’t many Muslim countries on their way toward secularism until the recent resurgence of fundamentalism? 

Probably one of the biggest secular cultures is China.  Before becoming Communist, there were several religions, including Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism.  Communism, of course, is secular without the same concepts of human rights that accompany it in Europe and the US.  So secularism and human rights are not necessarily linked.  Originally the OP was more about a scientific practical view, versus a religious or spiritual outlook on life.  Somehow all this morphed into a discussion of human rights.

 

Ref bold ... what can I say?  You have either no clue what secularism is or what Islam is about or both.  But this is typical of the left! You aren’t alone.

Hannah - that statement makes absolutely no sense what so ever. It hurt my eyes to read it.  That explains the total disconnect in this thread.

 
hannahtoo
 
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hannahtoo
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11 April 2018 07:52
 
Celal - 10 April 2018 07:11 PM
hannahtoo - 08 April 2018 04:18 PM

Celal:
Why could secularism not blossom in Muslim Cultures, as you say “in spite of it”?  After all, we have stipulated that humanity is the common link and you will find good in all cultures.

Maybe it hasn’t gotten around to happening yet.  Maybe Muslim culture is behind Christian culture in that respect.  Weren’t many Muslim countries on their way toward secularism until the recent resurgence of fundamentalism? 

Probably one of the biggest secular cultures is China.  Before becoming Communist, there were several religions, including Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism.  Communism, of course, is secular without the same concepts of human rights that accompany it in Europe and the US.  So secularism and human rights are not necessarily linked.  Originally the OP was more about a scientific practical view, versus a religious or spiritual outlook on life.  Somehow all this morphed into a discussion of human rights.

 

Ref bold ... what can I say?  You have either no clue what secularism is or what Islam is about or both.  But this is typical of the left! You aren’t alone.

Hannah - that statement makes absolutely no sense what so ever. It hurt my eyes to read it.  That explains the total disconnect in this thread.

I admit my knowledge of Muslim history is spotty.  I was thinking how in certain predominantly Muslim countries, the citizens have taken on many aspects of Western culture.  For example, women do not need to be veiled, and men choose whether or not to have beards.  But yes, you know much more about the history.

I did find an interesting interview with a liberal Muslim author in Vox.  He is critical of Islam, but sympathetic to the idea of cultural Muslims.  He describes his background this way:

I grew up in a moderate to liberal Muslim family in three Muslim-majority countries that were culturally very different. I developed certain perspectives about the religion and the Muslim experience that most others didn’t have. I’m not just talking about Islam itself, but also the Muslim experience, which is more personal and more to do with identity rather than ideology or belief.

 
icehorse
 
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icehorse
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11 April 2018 08:06
 
hannahtoo - 11 April 2018 07:52 AM
Celal - 10 April 2018 07:11 PM
hannahtoo - 08 April 2018 04:18 PM

Celal:
Why could secularism not blossom in Muslim Cultures, as you say “in spite of it”?  After all, we have stipulated that humanity is the common link and you will find good in all cultures.

Maybe it hasn’t gotten around to happening yet.  Maybe Muslim culture is behind Christian culture in that respect.  Weren’t many Muslim countries on their way toward secularism until the recent resurgence of fundamentalism? 

Probably one of the biggest secular cultures is China.  Before becoming Communist, there were several religions, including Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism.  Communism, of course, is secular without the same concepts of human rights that accompany it in Europe and the US.  So secularism and human rights are not necessarily linked.  Originally the OP was more about a scientific practical view, versus a religious or spiritual outlook on life.  Somehow all this morphed into a discussion of human rights.

 

Ref bold ... what can I say?  You have either no clue what secularism is or what Islam is about or both.  But this is typical of the left! You aren’t alone.

Hannah - that statement makes absolutely no sense what so ever. It hurt my eyes to read it.  That explains the total disconnect in this thread.

I admit my knowledge of Muslim history is spotty.  I was thinking how in certain predominantly Muslim countries, the citizens have taken on many aspects of Western culture.  For example, women do not need to be veiled, and men choose whether or not to have beards.  But yes, you know much more about the history.

I did find an interesting interview with a liberal Muslim author in Vox.  He is critical of Islam, but sympathetic to the idea of cultural Muslims.  He describes his background this way:

I grew up in a moderate to liberal Muslim family in three Muslim-majority countries that were culturally very different. I developed certain perspectives about the religion and the Muslim experience that most others didn’t have. I’m not just talking about Islam itself, but also the Muslim experience, which is more personal and more to do with identity rather than ideology or belief.

Thanks for the link - I’ll look at it later.

But to me the question is: How tiny a slice of a religion’s core ideas can you adhere to and still call yourself a member of that religion?

When we start talking about secular Islam, it strikes me that we’re really straining the definition of Islam past it’s breaking point. I don’t buy all of the apologists’ arguments that “it’s not monolithic”. There is an irreducible core set of ideas associated with any religion.

 
 
Jefe
 
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Jefe
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11 April 2018 09:18
 
icehorse - 11 April 2018 08:06 AM
hannahtoo - 11 April 2018 07:52 AM
Celal - 10 April 2018 07:11 PM
hannahtoo - 08 April 2018 04:18 PM

Celal:
Why could secularism not blossom in Muslim Cultures, as you say “in spite of it”?  After all, we have stipulated that humanity is the common link and you will find good in all cultures.

Maybe it hasn’t gotten around to happening yet.  Maybe Muslim culture is behind Christian culture in that respect.  Weren’t many Muslim countries on their way toward secularism until the recent resurgence of fundamentalism? 

Probably one of the biggest secular cultures is China.  Before becoming Communist, there were several religions, including Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism.  Communism, of course, is secular without the same concepts of human rights that accompany it in Europe and the US.  So secularism and human rights are not necessarily linked.  Originally the OP was more about a scientific practical view, versus a religious or spiritual outlook on life.  Somehow all this morphed into a discussion of human rights.

 

Ref bold ... what can I say?  You have either no clue what secularism is or what Islam is about or both.  But this is typical of the left! You aren’t alone.

Hannah - that statement makes absolutely no sense what so ever. It hurt my eyes to read it.  That explains the total disconnect in this thread.

I admit my knowledge of Muslim history is spotty.  I was thinking how in certain predominantly Muslim countries, the citizens have taken on many aspects of Western culture.  For example, women do not need to be veiled, and men choose whether or not to have beards.  But yes, you know much more about the history.

I did find an interesting interview with a liberal Muslim author in Vox.  He is critical of Islam, but sympathetic to the idea of cultural Muslims.  He describes his background this way:

I grew up in a moderate to liberal Muslim family in three Muslim-majority countries that were culturally very different. I developed certain perspectives about the religion and the Muslim experience that most others didn’t have. I’m not just talking about Islam itself, but also the Muslim experience, which is more personal and more to do with identity rather than ideology or belief.

Thanks for the link - I’ll look at it later.

But to me the question is: How tiny a slice of a religion’s core ideas can you adhere to and still call yourself a member of that religion?

When we start talking about secular Islam, it strikes me that we’re really straining the definition of Islam past it’s breaking point. I don’t buy all of the apologists’ arguments that “it’s not monolithic”. There is an irreducible core set of ideas associated with any religion.

Look at Iran in the 70’s, before the Ayatollah.

 
 
Celal
 
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Celal
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11 April 2018 09:46
 
icehorse - 11 April 2018 08:06 AM
hannahtoo - 11 April 2018 07:52 AM
Celal - 10 April 2018 07:11 PM
hannahtoo - 08 April 2018 04:18 PM

Celal:
Why could secularism not blossom in Muslim Cultures, as you say “in spite of it”?  After all, we have stipulated that humanity is the common link and you will find good in all cultures.

Maybe it hasn’t gotten around to happening yet.  Maybe Muslim culture is behind Christian culture in that respect.  Weren’t many Muslim countries on their way toward secularism until the recent resurgence of fundamentalism? 

Probably one of the biggest secular cultures is China.  Before becoming Communist, there were several religions, including Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism.  Communism, of course, is secular without the same concepts of human rights that accompany it in Europe and the US.  So secularism and human rights are not necessarily linked.  Originally the OP was more about a scientific practical view, versus a religious or spiritual outlook on life.  Somehow all this morphed into a discussion of human rights.

 

Ref bold ... what can I say?  You have either no clue what secularism is or what Islam is about or both.  But this is typical of the left! You aren’t alone.

Hannah - that statement makes absolutely no sense what so ever. It hurt my eyes to read it.  That explains the total disconnect in this thread.

I admit my knowledge of Muslim history is spotty.  I was thinking how in certain predominantly Muslim countries, the citizens have taken on many aspects of Western culture.  For example, women do not need to be veiled, and men choose whether or not to have beards.  But yes, you know much more about the history.

I did find an interesting interview with a liberal Muslim author in Vox.  He is critical of Islam, but sympathetic to the idea of cultural Muslims.  He describes his background this way:

I grew up in a moderate to liberal Muslim family in three Muslim-majority countries that were culturally very different. I developed certain perspectives about the religion and the Muslim experience that most others didn’t have. I’m not just talking about Islam itself, but also the Muslim experience, which is more personal and more to do with identity rather than ideology or belief.

Thanks for the link - I’ll look at it later.

But to me the question is: How tiny a slice of a religion’s core ideas can you adhere to and still call yourself a member of that religion?

When we start talking about secular Islam, it strikes me that we’re really straining the definition of Islam past it’s breaking point. I don’t buy all of the apologists’ arguments that “it’s not monolithic”. There is an irreducible core set of ideas associated with any religion.

“There is an irreducible core set of ideas associated with any religion”

Well put. What is it about this simple statement that wont get through to some?  One singe idea that can not change is that “Qur’an is the word of Allah “.  This was believed 1400 years ago. And believed today. In fact being a Muslim means “Is to accept ALLAH as the only god and embrace Muhammad as his messenger”.  That is essentially what people recite to become Muslim and recite just before they die. 

This is the common link across all Muslim Countries.

Regardless of Sunni or Shia. Before and after Khomeini in Iran; Before and after Ataturk in Turkey; etc.  Mosques are not built by the devout,  Allah loving ordinary citizens in the Muslim Countries by taking up collections; They are built by the State.  Where do people think the funds come from to build Mosques in the West? US, Canada, France, Germany, etc?

[ Edited: 11 April 2018 09:49 by Celal]
 
hannahtoo
 
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hannahtoo
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11 April 2018 11:36
 

Interesting that the man interviewed in the link above also identifies reverence for the Koran as the key issue.  However, he posits that there is room for evolution on this point, that is, for more Muslims to accept that the Koran is not the literal word of Allah.  He talks about this near the end of the interview.  Obviously at least some Muslims, who enjoy the cultural celebrations, but no longer view the Koran in the traditional way, have been able to take this leap.

 
leebern
 
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leebern
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18 July 2018 10:24
 
Celal - 01 April 2018 07:25 PM
hannahtoo - 01 April 2018 05:05 PM

Where does the notion of “All men are created equal” in the declaration of independence come from?

18th-century ignorance??

grin

 
icehorse
 
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icehorse
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01 September 2018 11:07
 

refreshing the hannah’s OP:

I can’t recall a discussion using the word secular to describe oneself.  The words like atheist or agnostic describe one’s opinion of the god idea.  Secular seems more simple and perhaps less emotionally tinged.

Recently I met a couple from Israel.  They lived in Tel Aviv, and they used the word secular in referring to that city and themselves.  I understood what they meant.  The term makes sense to me.  What do others think?

Out in the world, when asked, I often refer to myself as a “secular humanist”. I think secularism is a powerful concept and one we have to defend.

[ Edited: 01 September 2018 11:17 by icehorse]
 
 
EN
 
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EN
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03 September 2018 06:04
 
icehorse - 01 September 2018 11:07 AM

refreshing the hannah’s OP:

I can’t recall a discussion using the word secular to describe oneself.  The words like atheist or agnostic describe one’s opinion of the god idea.  Secular seems more simple and perhaps less emotionally tinged.

Recently I met a couple from Israel.  They lived in Tel Aviv, and they used the word secular in referring to that city and themselves.  I understood what they meant.  The term makes sense to me.  What do others think?

Out in the world, when asked, I often refer to myself as a “secular humanist”. I think secularism is a powerful concept and one we have to defend.

Agree.  I don’t disagree with Celal and you about the “irreducible core of Islam”, but other ideas can come in and crowd other attitudes out.  Even most Christians in the USA are largely secular in their daily lives.  It can come to the point where someone has a religious view when it comes to personal faith and a secular one about everything else, even though the two may be, strictly speaking, irreconcilable.  None of us is completely consistent in our views.  We all have evolutionary vestiges.

[ Edited: 03 September 2018 06:07 by EN]
 
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