Gaza walled in and under siege

Gaza walled in and under siege
Largest open air prison in the world.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

So? Tear down Christian churches due to their meaninglessness, tear down minarets due to their evil?

 "Is Islam good for Europe?" from El Mundo
Did you happen to read this article from El Mundo yet?
I glanced over the article finding no new ideas until I got to the sneaky last paragraph and the following comments.
 "Many Europeans in our day look at the old Christian churches in a manner wholly devoid of faith. They perceive them as purely cultural objects, which they are as well. Now this is very hard to do with minarets, even with what remains of Muslim architecture in Spain. In minarets, old and new alike, religion reigns supreme, alone, despotic. Which is an intrinsically negative factor for present-day Europe."
I've written my essential thoughts below and wonder how my neighbors at Red Room feel about the subject.  I hope you will have time to leave a comment.

Unfortunately, I can’t agree with you.  Minarets are a lovely architectural form.  They give interest for the eye within the city landscape.  More minarets should be built not fewer, for variety and beauty of the city.

Racists will use any symbol to depict as villainous to serve their purpose, whether their accusations are reasonable or not.
The great religions of the world as we know them now will evolve into other forms in time.  But human spirituality will still look to the historical art, architecture and literature of the past.  So we need to honor the religious cultural designs in their many beautiful forms.
But we must work past the stubborn tendency for these religions to stay firmly rooted in a past that doesn’t speak to us today in any real way, not in a way that resonates with most people anyway.
Religion needs to step into the millennium just as we each are interpreting our personal spiritual being.
  ("Islam good for Europe?" found on AlejandroGlenti at


  1. From Heather, a neighbor on Red Room
    Heather Koelle says:
    Islam good for Europe?

    I think not.Nor do I think any religion that stays mired in the past and not relvant to the present day life. From what I know about Islam,it was founded by a warrier,Mohammed.although the majority of Muslims are peaceful,their radical fundammentalists give the religion a bad name,similar to the Bible thumping fundamentalsit Christians of today,emerging out of the woodwork like primordial ooze,rready to step on any new discovery,any new way of living(non violent)even some condoning killing our President!
    I am fortunate to belong to a church that is rather progressive,yet Christ is at the center.when the true message of Christ is fulfilled and the Power of Love overcomes the Love of Power the world will know peace.
    Still, regarding Islam,I do shudder at bit since 9/11.I am sorry,I cant seem to help it.And terrorism is spreading,too,fast,like a cancer,and it is getting harder and harder to combat.BAck in the time of the Moors,conquest was their goal,and it has been ever I am not saying that we are lily white,either, on that subject,but I do see a sinister creeping danger from the explodoing growth of Islam.
    But,as a Christian,I cant forget what we have done,too in the name of God..the Inquisition,for instance. Man needs to get out of God's way,and try to practice peace and empathy,and look for the similarities of us all.I am trying to do this,even with Muslims,but its hard.WE just have to keep trying.
    Fri, 12/04/2009 - 2:17pm

  2. Vicki Nikolaidis responds:

    Muhammed married an older woman! Gives some hope,eh?

    Hi Heather, Islam is a beautiful religion with strong similarities to Christianity and contains elements of the Indian religions. The figure of Jesus Christ is honored as a prophet. I admire many aspects of Islam including the ability of the religion to evolve as the worshipers evolve. The two ways I enjoy learning about Islam are making Muslim friends and watching 'Islam and Life', a program at As a Christian I find watching the program helps expand my understanding of my own faith and spirituality. Best to learn about the religion and I think you will be pleasantly surprised. I feel sad that you do not feel safe where you are living. If you are in the United States the three greatest risks though are not from Muslim fundamentalists. One could be a crazy nationalist neighbor who boobie traps his yard with bombs, then calls the police in an attempt to blow the police up. This happened to me and a big reason I wanted to leave Connecticut. Secondly, it would be dangerous to hang out with doctors who work in womens' health clinics as they are being systematically murdered. Thirdly, visiting Federal offices is dangerous because of the growth of the anti-government movement in the u.s. So the likelihood of another Oklahoma City bombing in unfortunately staring us in the face. The events of September 11, 2009 had nothing to do with the Islam religion. Wouldn't it be more reasonable to conduct a thorough investigation of all the events and bring to trial those involved? (Without torturing them before they are tried, of course.) Other countries have been successful with just this approach. The pope has had a lot of power in the Christian religion as well as many Kings, so there have been the Crusades, the Children's Crusade, the destruction necessary to make way for the Roman empire's eastern capital-Constantinople- and the list of tragedies goes on. But I'm realizing that religion is just an excuse - and it is working very well in profiting weapons manufacturers, mercenary companies, drug dealers, banks, arms dealers and the like. So I'm hoping enough people will not get roped into the false argument of religion being the root of our modern wars because . . . it is PROFITS.

  3. from Twitter
    Terrorism has nothing to do with religion.

    Religion has nothing to do with the acts of terrorism performed by hypocrites. They use religion as a facade. from Aruna on Twitter

    (Amazing view point. I agree with u absolutely and this is the darn truth.) also from Aruna on Twitter

  4. from Twitter

    Vicki, thats good!

  5. Original Newspaper Article
    Published on December 02 2009 | El Mundo

    Is Islam good for Europe?

    The Swiss referendum on minarets has re-ignited the debate about Islam in Europe. While Muslim philosopher Tariq Ramadan stresses Muslims’ cultural contributions to Europe, journalist Arcadi Espada argues that religion is not a desirable calling card in Europe.
    I understand Tariq Ramadan (more or less) when he says: “It is difficult for ordinary citizens to embrace this new Muslim presence as a positive factor.” Ramadan traces that difficulty to what he calls “so many controversial debates” with which Islam is “connected”: e.g. “violence, extremism, freedom of speech, gender discrimination, forced marriage, to name a few”.
    But Ramadan ought to allow that anything affecting freedom and life in general is no minor matter, and each of the debates he mentions affects them utterly. So it does not seem entirely insane for the European public to distrust Muslims. All these “controversial” things are done in Allah’s name, though I have no doubt some acts of kindness may be done in his name as well.
    Nevertheless, I do not believe this is the crux of the debate or the grounds for the European rejection, or even disdain, that Ramadan discusses. As a European, I would fain ask him, in all candour, why would Muslims be a positive factor. What defines a Muslim is his faith and that alone. Why then should European secularism accept as “positive” a person whose only calling card is his creed? Would we accept someone who introduces himself in public by saying, “I’m Catholic, in other words, I’m a positive factor”?
    Europeans see churches, but not mosques, as cultural
    One of the great and hard-earned tenets of Europe is that religion does not open the gates of moral heaven. Religion is but a factor, and a debatable one at that. I can accept Ramadan’s saying that the Arab presence is positive – as though he were saying the same of the Chinese presence. But I fail to see what is positive about the contribution of religiously defined conduct.
    What lies behind the Swiss rejection of minarets is, in all likelihood, the very racism and intolerance some believers and laypersons suppose. But there might also be a more subtle and elusive motive that merits consideration. Many Europeans in our day look at the old Christian churches in a manner wholly devoid of faith. They perceive them as purely cultural objects, which they are as well. Now this is very hard to do with minarets, even with what remains of Muslim architecture in Spain. In minarets, old and new alike, religion reigns supreme, alone, despotic. Which is an intrinsically negative factor for present-day Europe.


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