Neither Islam (bad) nor Christianity (good) have materially changed

I have a piece coming up on Quadrant Online about hate speech, free speech and Islam (now up). Henry Ergas covered a similar theme in Friday’s Australian newspaper under the heading of “Hate Speech underlines how Islam has changed.” Surprise-surprise, his is more erudite. On the other hand, mine is understandable by the common man and woman. I avoid references to long dead historians, theologians and philosophers. They can be useful of course. But sometimes it’s a case of choose your ancient to get the story you want. (See below for my double standards – in part to make the point.)

Islam hasn’t changed. It has been spread by the sword and by the threat of death for apostacy. Time and place produce variations in the way Islam applies to daily life but the words and injunctions of Allah and his messenger Mohammed have never changed. And disconcertingly Ergas seems to have a bob each way. I was left not knowing whether he believes Islam has changed or it hasn’t. Anyway, it hasn’t. Take that to the bank.

Robert Spencer in The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam quotes Greek monk Saint Gregory Palamas (1296-1359):

These infamous people, hated by God, boast of having got the better of the Romans by their love of God…They live by the bow, the sword, and debauchery, finding pleasure in taking slaves, devoting themselves to murder, pillage, spoil…and not only do they commit these crime, but even – what an aberration – they believe that God approves of them.

So exactly how has a more benign Islam of the past now changed for the worse?

Then we have the canard that while Christianity has been changed for the better  – according to Ergas stemming from “Clement (circa 156-215)  and Origen (circa 185-254)”  – Islam hasn’t had a similar kindly metamorphosis. In fact neither Christianity nor Islam has changed. As I said , time and place have changed the way they have applied to daily life but that is a matter of superficialities.

It’s interesting that Ergas gives the example of the veiling of women in Islam and Christianity  to illustrate the way one sticks to its script (he notes the flogging of Roya Heshmati in Iran for defying veiling laws) while the other has modernised, as it were. Unfortunately, he misinterprets the Bible in making his case. 1 Corinthians 11:3-16, which he references, does not say that women must be veiled in public. It says that they should cover their heads in church.  It also says that men must not cover their heads in church or have long hair. There you go.

Mind you, women do now go to church without hats without admonishment; so I suppose that’s a change, I say grudgingly. For the worse in my view. Women look fetching and stylish in hats. And, of course, you still find them worn in black churches in Africa and America and more universally in some Christian denominations. Seldom these days in Sydney do I see a man or hatless woman in their Sunday best in church. Another sign of societal decline.

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January 13, 2024 11:50 pm

“eldom these days in Sydney do I see a man or hatless woman in their Sunday best in church”

You might want to improve your sentence construction.

Bruce of Newcastle
Bruce of Newcastle
January 14, 2024 6:54 am

All you need to do is look at the nations of the world. The ones which are successful usually are based on Christianity, Catholic or Protestant or Orthodox.

By contrast very few Muslim nations are successful, and those that are typically have oil and gas that they can extract and sell. Indeed the more observant a Muslim nation is the worse off they tend to be – and many of those are military dictatorships.

There always are some exceptions to both of course, although some of those like Japan and India have received and retained Christian-derived institutions or ethos through historical periods of external control.

And again as Western nations dispense with Christianity we’re increasingly seeing decline and senescence. There seems to be a common thread going on here.

January 14, 2024 6:59 am

Leaving aside your views on “societal decline” re a dress code for church Peter, you hit the mark with islam.
Islam has not changed and the few who are muslim “in name only” are regarded as apostates or ostracised by their families or worse, and so usually keep their mouths shut.
Whilst many would not personally commit the atrocities we see, when push comes to shove they often refuse to help police track down these muslim bombers and other perpetrators. They close ranks whether through fear or sympathy.
Of the huge world islamic population there are many hundreds of thousands who are prepared to be martyred and commit barbaric deeds against non believers, as decreed in the koran.
The West continues to ignore these facts at their peril.

Elizabeth (Lizzie) Beare
Elizabeth (Lizzie) Beare
January 14, 2024 8:31 am

I think Peter is right on dress codes and societal decline. Back in my yoof, the Dark Ages of course, it was considered proper to show respect for the place where the nation put on its best front, i.e. the city. One ‘dressed’ to ‘go to town’. Also, for Church.

It was a sign of respect, and incidentally, of self-respect. Well noted, Peter.

It was learned behaviour of course, and if it wasn’t taught at home and you wanted to ‘get on in life’ (another assumption about societal possibilities for anyone who tried), then you took notice and cues from those who displayed their respect and achievements in their clothing.

Costume and its signalling codes through the ages is a study in itself.

Mao suits was one attempt to deny the individualism of what we wear and make it comply to the surveilance State.

Elizabeth (Lizzie) Beare
Elizabeth (Lizzie) Beare
January 14, 2024 8:38 am

The West continues to ignore these facts at their peril.

We do. De-fanging Islam by slow accretative changes looks like the only way forward though. What else to do, apart from deportation, which won’t happen? We should encourage the milder forms of it where it exists in the West, and get the Holy Books and Islamic culture reinterpeted into personal spiritual aspirations rather than political domination. Use our own legal system to crack down hard on Islamic fundamentalists. Britain is at least trying to do that. We aren’t, yet. Reforming our woke police would be a start too.

January 14, 2024 8:41 am

In Fourteen Hundred and Ninety Two.
Columbus sailed the Ocean Blue?


What was a young, adventurous spaghetti-bender doing traveling to Spain to beg for ships and crews to find a new way to the “Indies” and other parts of the mysterious east,?

Because the “traditional” land routes and coast-hopping were infested with head-lopping sand-pirates.

Even at this date, the southern half of Spain was under Moorish / islamic control, so there was some “urgency” to find an alternative to the pillage of their trade caravans. Ditto neighbouring Portugal.

The Spanish Inquisition? One major “motivator was the “sniffing out of those who had “submitted ” to the Moon god and gone with the flow of the head-loppers. Note that the French were also dealing with similar “issues” that lasted until the battle of Tours, or thereabouts.

As for the old chestnut about proving that the world was “round”; that bit of knowledge was millennia-old, and by the 15th century, the astronomers and mathematicians were having pretty good stabs at calculating the size with some precision.

And, NO, islam did NOT invent “Algebra” the swiped it from India, like a LOT of their “inventions”. “Al Gebra” was just their name for it..

The ruthless destruction of actual history by islam continues unabated. In recent rears the once spectacular ruins of Palmyra, in Syria, have been systematically destroyed; reduced of unrecognizable rubble, by the terminal degenerates of ISIS. ANYTHING “pre-Mo” has to go. Maybe the “civilized” world will wake up when these vermin have a crack at Petra or the Pyramids.

Or, more likely, it will be swept under a very large Persian Rug.

Bruce of Newcastle
Bruce of Newcastle
January 14, 2024 9:57 am

Build a wall around the place. Let no one out unless they apostatize.

67% of Arab world: October 7 was ‘legitimate resistance’ against Israel (13 Jan)

A new opinion poll, carried out by the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies, was published on January 10. The poll, which collected data from 8,000 Arab respondents from 16 countries, aimed to determine how Arab populations perceived the Israel-Hamas war.

Amongst one of the many findings of the survey, it was noted that 67% of respondents perceived Hamas’s October 7 attack, categorized by the survey as “the military operation carried out by Hamas,” as “a legitimate resistance operation.” The survey results clarified that 19% answered that the attack was legitimate but “flawed,” 3% said it was legitimate but “involved heinous or criminal acts” and only 5% called the attack “illegitimate.”

Well that underlines Israel’s strategy. There’s no possible compromise with people like this.

January 14, 2024 9:57 am

1 Corinthians 11:3-16, which he references, does not say that women must be veiled in public. It says that they should cover their heads in church. It also says that men must not cover their heads in church or have long hair. There you go.

The teaching behind the text is respect for God’s created order – male and female.

In the worshipping assembly, women should look like women and men like men. How that is enacted will vary from time to time and culture to culture.

In simple terms relevant to today’s culture, no gender bending.

January 14, 2024 11:11 am
Mak Siccar
Mak Siccar
January 14, 2024 11:48 am

Snap, areff.

January 14, 2024 6:19 pm

islam is the greatest retrograde force in human history, worse than nazism and communism combined.

Humanity simply cannot continue to indulge it any longer.

January 16, 2024 4:11 pm

Fussing over fashion trends detracts from the main points.

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