The world seems on fire in violence instigated by those within the camp of radical Islam. I'd like to share an observation or two today concerning the nature of dissent when it comes with matters of the Islamic faith. I think it offers a fundamental insight into an erroneous way of thinking. Take the many instances of Islamic offense we see sparking riots and murder--from a cartoon of Muhammad to the burning of a Koran. These simple acts of disrespect spark shocking outbursts of mob violence. Besides the legitimate concern of the masses being so easily whipped into a religious frenzy by their manipulative leaders, there seems a fundamental disconnect or contradiction here with regards to Muhammad. If any single person has the potential power to so easily enrage a people or culture as to incite murder(s), what essence of real truth can truly exist within the faith? Even more important, however, if Muhammad is so easily and seriously blasphemed, to a level where its radicalized followers are compelled rise to violence to attack anyone or anything to which they are pointed, how weak a faith this would seem to be!
Where's the reason, intellectual curiosity, or respect for life? Where's the desire to build and create as opposed to destroy and kill? Where's the desire to heal as opposed to harm and injure? I have respect and admiration for those of the Islamic faith who follow a pathway of peace and justice, but...those who pursue a radical agenda certainly do a grave disservice and dishonor to their Islamic faith. If anyone in any place has the power to enrage many to such a grievous point of sin, where is the strength of faith and reason?
In Saint Augustine's City of God, he discusses how the evil persecution of the Christian faithful does not bring sin and impurity to its victims. That is, for example, if a Christian virgin were raped, that does not bring sin upon the victim of rape. This is a common sense view within the Western Tradition, and a similar logic would perhaps be put to sound use by the radicalized followers of the Islamic tradition. If one person's obscure and unsupported blasphemy against Muhammad can incite such unbridled anger and unjust response, can their faith really be in the one true God at all? How does a "nobody" with a video camera hold such a power over a people--except that that people want that power to be so?