My knowledge of Islam is very little, and so I’m delving into some study and books to gain a bit of a broader understanding. I post this here because there is one provocation that seems to bother me consistently (sentiments very strong in Wilders’ talk). I hear frequently that while some violence is done by other religious groups, it is done in spite of or in contradiction to the religion of the adherent (e.g. Crusades and Christianity). However, when violence is done by a Muslim, it is because of and in obedience to their teachings, their holy book, and their prophet (e.g. comics in Denmark). In other words, the core essences of the religion are essentially violent, and deceptive.
But then I’ll read and hear from Muslims and other critics of Islam that,
Many non-Muslims have no idea that Muslims worship the same God as Christians and Jews, and that Islam preaches compassion, charity, humility, and the brotherhood of man. And the similarities don’t end there. (from Amazon.com’s editorial reviews for Islam for Dummies)
One example that comes to mind are the atrocities of the Temple Mount digging (BAR, WorldNetDaily, JPost.com, BiblePlaces.com). I feel that this is an example of outrageous and appalling deception by Muslims. (The “bulge” in the Southern Wall is due to the digging in the Al-Aqsa Mosque). But my question is still this, “Are these actions (and others) in accordance with the fundamental teachings of Isalam, or are they on the fringes of or in contradiction to the teachings?”
Arabs, at least, can trace their lineage to Abraham (through Ishmael), and there is clearly a relationship between Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. But getting at the truth of this whole matter leaves me feeling lost in cryptic rhetoric or outright deceived.
So, I’ve got a lot of confusion, questions, and a burning desire to really know, and understand, the truth. I guess it’s time to go read some Bernard Lewis.