I just want to reaffirm the values that Culture for All stands for, because I think that it does sometimes get muddied. (Maybe in part because I write so passionately and often in a stream of consciousness.)
This blog stands most of all for the notion that we are all living in one world and all deserve a place on this place called Earth. Be you Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, or Buddhist, you ALL deserve to share this planet. As such, we stands firmly against those who wish genocide upon any other group.
Thus, this blog stands against the Kahane Jews, Woodsboro Baptist Christians (and people of their ilk), Fundamentalist Muslims and their supporters, and right wing Hindus who wish to kill all Muslims.
In examining each of the genocidal sects of the major religions, it is quite clear that only the Muslim world has such strong support and funding for genocide. Every other genocidal group is marginalized and despised by the wider religious communities. It is clear that Muslims are being brainwashed to support genocide, one only needs to look at the textbooks and media in Muslim schools and Saudi funded madrassas around the world to confirm this problem.
That does not mean every Muslim is bad or Islam is somehow rotten to the core. I believe that in many ways these Muslims who are being brainwashed across the world are in fact victims of child abuse and oppressive regimes. It is a tragedy to teach children to hate, wish death, and not value life.
I also do not believe that Islam is peaceful to the core, as I explained earlier. I do not believe that ANY religion is inherently peaceful, least of all the "Big Three" monotheistic faiths. Islam has a bloody history, but so does Christianity, and bibical Judaism. That said, I do believe that Islam can be peaceful, and I know there are peaceful Muslims out there. I want it to be clear that I believe a peaceful Islam requires a radical reinterpretation of the Quran, as there are very clearly non-peaceful verses spread all over the Quran. A whole new set of hadiths is likely necessary. But this is not impossible, and in fact Christianity had a reformation that radically transformed the Christian faith. I fail to see why a reformation is impossible for Muslims. In fact, Reza Aslan believes that a reformation is going on as we speak, in his book No God But God. I recently purchased this book, and I will give my review of it after I read it.
So, in short, as an atheist, I think that the religious tenets of all religions are wrong, however, there is something to be learned from the history and culture of all religions.
I welcome all people of all faiths to post on this blog, bearing in mind that this blog is fervantly anti-genocide, and hence fervantly pro-Israel and anti-Islamofascist, Christofascist, etc. Furthermore, while this blog stands for cultural pluralism and acceptance, it does not accept those who support terrorism or genocide. Anyone who believes we should accept intolerent ideologies stands wholly against TRUE acceptance and the core values this blog espouses.
The big question whose answer remains shrouded in a mystery is how to combat such religious fascism without sacrificing core values of freedom, pluralism, and democracy. Is it possible to win the war against those who wish to destroy us without destroying a part of ourselves in the process?
I say that it is possible to win the war without destroying ourselves. It takes encouring thinking. I believe that those who think and reason will be able to change the course of the world. If nothing else, just think of the story of Scheherezade.
- Written by Red Tulips
Update by Steven on 02 June 2008: This article is approximately 20 months old and reflects the views of the author at the time of writing.