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Source: (consider it) Thread: There's no shirking this.
Martin60
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# 368

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Is there a way ahead for Christianity (orthodox, Trinitarian) and Islam together?

Particularly, to the by far modal Muslim by far, as we are post-mortem unforgivable blasphemers?

We are Belial to their Christ.

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Love wins

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romanesque
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Those groups lived pluralistically in the middle east for hundreds of years in relative peace, alongside Jews. If the question is whether they can share more than monotheism - not without unshipping almost everything with which they identify. Accepting difference and accommodating it are different things, and not essential to peace.
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Dafyd
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William Dalyrymple talks about the way in which followers of the three major monotheistic religions and indeed of minor religions in the Middle East used to freely attend each other's shrines to honour and pray for each other's saints.
It may be in From the Holy Mountain, although much of that is depressingly about the ways in which the modern regimes were trying to erase the history of coexistence. (And that was back in the twentieth century.)

Really the only way to find out whether Muslims can ever find Christian theology acceptable is to find some Muslims and have a long-running and friendly conversation about it in which you try to persuade them that their objections are based on misunderstandings.

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we remain, thanks to original sin, much in love with talking about, rather than with, one another. Rowan Williams

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Late Quartet

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There's a place I go to, very occasionally, and would like to go there again sometime, though the place I'd like to go to isn't as simple as the following three.

1) there's Rumi's field, which I'd suggest does not require us to abandon doctrine. 2) Neither does the universal prayer for peace or 3) the parliament of World Religions require an abandonment of trinitarianism.

The place for me is a mosque sat on the very top of Jabal Haroun (or Aaron's Mount), some think of it as the site of Aaron's tomb. This mountain was revered by the Edomite and Nabateans and continues to be respected by the Abrahamic faiths.

In the visitors book, you will see Jewish, Muslim and Christian visitors who have signed there among many others willing to ascend the mountain that the Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him) went to on his journey from Mecca to Al Quds—Jerusalem.

This place is typically guarded, at a distance, by one soldier and is incredibly peaceful. The soldier, in my memory, sits by the former Christian monastery, about 400 feet lower down the mountain, which has been excavated extensively over the last 30 years.

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Late Quartet is cycling closer to Route 6 than Route 66 these days.

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Baptist Trainfan
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There is the age of "Conviviencia" in early medieval Cordoba, Spain - although there have ben suggestions that this was not as utopian as is sometimes claimed. Certainly this museum (which we found very moving when we visited) paints a pretty positive picture.

Of course, later on the Catholics plonked a cathedral bang in the middle of the glorious mosque ... and there have recently been heated debates over the mosque's ownership and Muslims' right to pray in it.

[ 06. June 2017, 09:59: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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Golden Key
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# 1468

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Maybe we can just focus on treating everyone well, and working on our own individual growth/salvation. ISTM to me most religions have some version of those practices--not just the "peoples of the Book" ones.

Even some Satanists:"Satanists Offer Help And Compassion To Muslims Fearing Backlash" (Patheos).

[ 06. June 2017, 10:46: Message edited by: Golden Key ]

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Martin60
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quote:
Originally posted by romanesque:
Those groups lived pluralistically in the middle east for hundreds of years in relative peace, alongside Jews. If the question is whether they can share more than monotheism - not without unshipping almost everything with which they identify. Accepting difference and accommodating it are different things, and not essential to peace.

I agree there is no way that the two great religions can possibly compromise on what defines them as top down ontological doctrines of God. Islam starts with Tawhid - oneness (of God) - in the Shahada - the testimony (of faith). Creedal Christianity, necessarily more complex, is of the Trinity. Both are damnationist of the other, though Christianity not so creedally since Pseudo-Athanasius, although many in my large, regionally representative, charismatic evangelical Anglican congregation believe as one brother said 'All Muslims go to hell.'.

So, as our modal co-religionists cheerfully damn each other, are desperate to save each other, Muslims more so as we allow it, how do we engage in neighbourly, communal discourse (my street is a third Muslim) with that homicidal two headed elephant in the room?

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Love wins

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Dafyd
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
Islam starts with Tawhid - oneness (of God) - in the Shahada - the testimony (of faith). Creedal Christianity, necessarily more complex, is of the Trinity.

Christianity believes I think that nothing in the Trinity compromises the essential oneness of God in any sense that Muslims or Jews ought to care about.
The oneness of God is one of the constraints upon any doctrine of the Trinity.

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we remain, thanks to original sin, much in love with talking about, rather than with, one another. Rowan Williams

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romanesque
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:

So, as our modal co-religionists cheerfully damn each other, are desperate to save each other, Muslims more so as we allow it, how do we engage in neighbourly, communal discourse (my street is a third Muslim) with that homicidal two headed elephant in the room?

Good question! I should have less in common with Hindus than Muslims theologically, yet I share a social, political and moral outlook, and even a sense of humour with Indian friends in a way I have yet to find with followers of Islam. Perhaps the Abrahamic religions are sufficiently close to foreground their differences, in the same way the left and right of the Labour party loath each other far more than they dislike Tories? Maybe some religions can accommodate institutional Christianity better than others?
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Martin60
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quote:
Originally posted by Dafyd:

...
Really the only way to find out whether Muslims can ever find Christian theology acceptable is to find some Muslims and have a long-running and friendly conversation about it in which you try to persuade them that their objections are based on misunderstandings.

Aye, the Middle East is a lost cause for such intercourse, apart from Egypt with its 10% Christians, which nonetheless has no postmodern discourse with Islam.

Might I ask where the misunderstanding is in the Noble Qur'an? Apart from in tritheism and Mariolatry?

People of the Book, do not go to excess in your religion, and do not say anything about God except the truth: the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, was nothing more than a messenger of God, His word, directed to Mary, a spirit from Him. So believe in God and His messengers and do not speak of a 'Trinity'—stop, that is better for you—God is only one God, He is far above having a son, everything in the heavens and earth belongs to Him and He is the best one to trust.

— Qur'an, sura 4 (An-Nisa), ayat 171

Those who say, "God is the Messiah, son of Mary," have defied God. The Messiah himself said; "Children of Israel, worship God, my Lord and your Lord." If anyone associates others with God, God will forbid him from the Garden, and Hell will be his home. No one will help such evildoers. Those people who say that God is the third of three are defying [the truth]: there is only One God. If they persist in what they are saying, a painful punishment will afflict those of them who persist. Why do they not turn to God and ask his forgiveness, when God is most forgiving, most merciful? The Messiah, son of Mary, was only a messenger; other messengers had come and gone before him; his mother was a virtuous woman; both ate food. See how clear We make these signs for them; see how deluded they are.

— Qur'an, sura 5 (Al-Ma'ida), ayat 72-75

And when Allah will say, "O Jesus, Son of Mary, did you say to the people, 'Take me and my mother as deities besides Allah ?'" He will say, "Exalted are You! It was not for me to say that to which I have no right. If I had said it, You would have known it. You know what is within myself, and I do not know what is within Yourself. Indeed, it is You who is Knower of the unseen.

— Qur'an, sura 5 (Al-Ma'ida), ayat 116

Furthermore, verses 19:88-93, 23:91, and 112:1-4 are relevant to the doctrine of "Trinity":

They say: "(Allah) Most Gracious has begotten a son!" Indeed ye have put forth a thing most monstrous! At it the skies are ready to burst, the earth to split asunder, and the mountains to fall down in utter ruin, that they should invoke a son for (Allah) Most Gracious. For it is not consonant with the majesty of (Allah) Most Gracious that He should beget a son. Not one of the beings in the heavens and the earth but must come to (Allah) Most Gracious as a servant.

— Qur'an, sura 19 (Maryam (sura)), ayat 88-93

No son did Allah beget, nor is there any god along with Him: (if there were many gods), behold, each god would have taken away what he had created, and some would have lorded it over others! Glory to Allah! (He is free) from the (sort of) things they attribute to Him!

— Qur'an, sura 23 (Al-Mumenoon), ayat 91

Say: He is Allah, the One and Only; Allah, the Eternal, Absolute; He begetteth not, nor is He begotten; And there is none like unto Him.

— Qur'an, sura 112 (Al-Ikhlas), ayat 1-4

And as the Noble Qur'an is infallible, how can it be evaluated for misunderstanding?

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Love wins

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Martin60
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quote:
Originally posted by Dafyd:
quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
Islam starts with Tawhid - oneness (of God) - in the Shahada - the testimony (of faith). Creedal Christianity, necessarily more complex, is of the Trinity.

Christianity believes I think that nothing in the Trinity compromises the essential oneness of God in any sense that Muslims or Jews ought to care about.
The oneness of God is one of the constraints upon any doctrine of the Trinity.

Absolutely, but if we were to say the first sentence of the Shahada, 'There is no god but God.' with its implicit utter monotheism, as in the Shema, Islam would say we can go no further. In Islam God is 'simple': one person, one substance. Our declaring Him as one substance is not sufficient when we go on to declare Him in three persons. That is implicit shirk in itself surely? Let alone the great shirk of the Incarnation.

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Love wins

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mark_in_manchester

not waving, but...
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quote:
Might I ask where the misunderstanding is in the Noble Qur'an?
Well, apart from those you mention, how about the inclusion of material rejected by Christians from the 'infancy gospel of Thomas' (clay birds, child killing and all that), the belief that Jesus was substituted before the Crucifixion and so did not die on the cross, therefore the rejection of the resurrection and a belief in a kind of assumption.

There's also a line relevant to jihad along the lines of 'killing as it says to kill in the torah and in the gospel' which I can't dig up at the moment, which is likely to cause Christians outside of Westborough Baptists to raise their eyebrows.

About 1/3 of my electoral ward are Muslims. We are about to be mutually tested as regards to true tolerance - as in, 'how to live alongside those we do not and cannot agree with', as opposed to the more popular version of 'how to live alongside those we all pretend think the same as us really, and who we will brand 'intolerant' as soon as it looks like any real differences might need to be acknowledged and accommodated'.

If we don't manage it, we will be in Belfast (or perhaps Beirut) for ever and ever amen. How much do we want to prove Enoch wrong?

[ 06. June 2017, 12:57: Message edited by: mark_in_manchester ]

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"We are punished by our sins, not for them" - Elbert Hubbard
(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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Freddy
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quote:
Originally posted by Dafyd:
William Dalyrymple talks about the way in which followers of the three major monotheistic religions and indeed of minor religions in the Middle East used to freely attend each other's shrines to honour and pray for each other's saints.

I think that this illustrates the way that we have misconstrued the issue. These religions have, can, and do coexist peacefully in many places.

The issue, in my view, is that the Islamic world as a whole is seriously threatened by Western attitudes and values, not to mention the more tangible economic and military threat.

We in the West perceive the issue as being that, here we are minding our own business, and all these Muslims are hating us for no good reason.

But we are not minding our own business.

Whether we realize it or not, we aggressively market every aspect of our way of life and belief systems worldwide, intruding on every corner of people's lives. As if the military conquests and colonialism of the past were not enough, we are in their faces twenty-four hours a day, on CNN, on social media, at the cinema, in the marketplaces.

As tolerant as we are of differences in religion and secularism within our own culture, our influence is rabidly intolerant of a culturally enforced, pervasively believed and obeyed, Islam in other countries. Everything about our influence is a wedge that separates young Muslims from their culture and beliefs.

Why would sincere Muslims not feel threatened. They actually are threatened.

In the West we are accustomed to a secular state within which various religions coexist, all within the same culture. But this is not the norm worldwide. The Islamic world easily conflates the Western world with the Christian world. It's not so much that they hate Christianity per se, but that they feel threatened by the West, and so Christianity is the enemy.

My own view is that there is nothing they can really do about this. Western values and institutions are so pervasive, and so bound up with unstoppable technological and economic forces, that Islam cannot exist for long in its current form.

I'm not saying that it will go away. It exists perfectly well as a religion alongside other religions worldwide. I'm sure that it will continue to do so.

What will not continue, though, is the all-pervasive Islamism that has long ruled so many nations in the Middle East. We don't seem to grasp the extent to which the West is a threat to that culture, and how that threat grows daily with every IPhone sold and Starbucks built.

I see the anger as a reaction to all of this. Certainly Islam has seen Christianity and infidels in general as an enemy from the beginning, with numerous wars and battles fought. But the current battle is different, because now it is a battle for things that reach into every home and every life.

It's a battle that they can't win. The violence that we observe and experience is not aggression. It is the last desperate actions of a doomed way of life. The irony is that is senselessly and tragically carried out against a people that has no understanding of the reason why.

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"Consequently nothing is of greater importance to a person than knowing what the truth is." Swedenborg

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anteater

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Martin:
quote:
Particularly, to the by far modal Muslim by far, as we are post-mortem unforgivable blasphemers?
Is this what you intended to right? I can't parse it. What's with the modal stuff?

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Martin60
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It's the commonest value, a measure of central tendency, like an average. Scratch any true Muslim and they MUST believe it.

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Love wins

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Dafyd
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
It's the commonest value, a measure of central tendency, like an average. Scratch any true Muslim and they MUST believe it.

May I suggest that outsiders to any given religion or other philosophical system should never opine about what any true member MUST believe.

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we remain, thanks to original sin, much in love with talking about, rather than with, one another. Rowan Williams

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Dafyd
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
Might I ask where the misunderstanding is in the Noble Qur'an? Apart from in tritheism and Mariolatry?

Are you saying tritheism and Mariolatry aren't misunderstandings? Or not important?

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we remain, thanks to original sin, much in love with talking about, rather than with, one another. Rowan Williams

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leo
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quote:
Originally posted by mark_in_manchester:
There's also a line relevant to jihad along the lines of 'killing as it says to kill in the torah and in the gospel' which I can't dig up at the moment, which is likely to cause Christians outside of Westborough Baptists to raise their eyebrows

This sounds decidedly dodgy to me and you'd be better of to dig out this reference - though I don't think it exists.

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My reviews at http://layreadersbookreviews.wordpress.com

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mark_in_manchester

not waving, but...
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Here you go:

quote:
The Quranic verse used by Zarein Ahmedzay (an Afghanistan-born New York City cab driver who traveled to Waziristan for terrorist training and discussed possible suicide bombing target locations in crowded parts of Manhattan) in support of his actions was 9:111 (Surah At-Tawba):[250]

Verily, Allah has purchased of the believers their lives and their wealth for the price of Paradise, to fight in the way of Allah, to kill and be killed. It is a promise binding on the truth in the Torah, the Gospel and the Qur'an.[251]

The ref numbers come from a lengthy wiki article on suicide attacks here. The section on Islam is balanced and includes a number of verses used by scholars to oppose the idea that such attacks are permitted in Islam, too - but this thread asked a question about what in the Quran was contradictory to Christian teaching, and this quote sprang to mind.

On re-reading it, I'm struck that the passage also contradicts justification by grace, suggesting that paradise is obtained by obedience to God in what sounds like a more commercial transaction. One might start an interfaith conversation around 'the pearl of great price' and 'no-one can serve two masters', and 'be killed' sits fine alongside our call to follow Christ. 'Kill' - no, you can't find that in the gospels.

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"We are punished by our sins, not for them" - Elbert Hubbard
(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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Martin60
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quote:
Originally posted by Dafyd:
quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
It's the commonest value, a measure of central tendency, like an average. Scratch any true Muslim and they MUST believe it.

May I suggest that outsiders to any given religion or other philosophical system should never opine about what any true member MUST believe.
My MUST is formal. Beliefs are two a penny after all. I wonder if we could quantify a damnationism index for the texts and beliefs. I doubt there's much difference between conservative Protestants and Muslims.

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Love wins

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hatless

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What do you think 'purchased of' means? Purchased for or from is easy, but of? And what is a promise? The purchase? Paradise? Killing and being killed?

Is this an instruction or a description? That is, is it telling us to kill and he killed, or is it, perhaps sadly, saying that this is how it goes, we kill and are killed?

I'm suspicious of any translation that includes the word verily. This is not recent. What would scholars today make of this? There is always wriggle room.

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Martin60
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# 368

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quote:
Originally posted by Dafyd:
quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
Might I ask where the misunderstanding is in the Noble Qur'an? Apart from in tritheism and Mariolatry?

Are you saying tritheism and Mariolatry aren't misunderstandings? Or not important?
I thought I was saying that they are, as imputed in the Noble Qur'an. But yes, they are not important as the Trinity is shirk whether it is or not and the Incarnation is period.

Even so, as the Noble Qur'an is infallible then Christianity is tritheistic and Mary is a Person of the Trinity.

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Love wins

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ThunderBunk

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# 15579

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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
quote:
Originally posted by Dafyd:
quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
Might I ask where the misunderstanding is in the Noble Qur'an? Apart from in tritheism and Mariolatry?

Are you saying tritheism and Mariolatry aren't misunderstandings? Or not important?
I thought I was saying that they are, as imputed in the Noble Qur'an. But yes, they are not important as the Trinity is shirk whether it is or not and the Incarnation is period.

Even so, as the Noble Qur'an is infallible then Christianity is tritheistic and Mary is a Person of the Trinity.

Martin, I'm sorry, but you have defeated even my sophisticated interpretative machinery, and the ox-like version I keep in reserve.

Are you saying that, in order to share a planet with Muslims without violence we have to take on the whole of the interpretative framework set out in the Qu'ran, which is of course, among other things, the source and justification of its own infallibility?

This is not a sacrifice which I feel should ever be asked of, or made by, a Christian. We have our own unique epistemology in the form of our attitude to incarnation, which is transformed by our faith that God has shared it.

The work of integration, of mutual reception and common interpretation, needs to celebrate and integrate the understandings etc. of both sides. It's not a matter of either side abandoning theirs for the sake of the other's.

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Currently mostly furious, and occasionally foolish. Normal service may resume eventually. Or it may not. And remember children, "feiern ist wichtig".

Foolish, potentially deranged witterings

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mark_in_manchester

not waving, but...
# 15978

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quote:
What do you think 'purchased of' means?
OK, we are going to attempt 'Al-Qmessage' based on an English paraphrase which, despite being rendered in KJV-ese, is not in Arabic and therefore doesn't count as God's word.

Nonetheless, it seems to me to say something like

'It's true, the life and wealth of believers belongs to God; they must also kill others and be killed, as God directs. The price God paid the believers for these obligations is that of a place in paradise. This contract follows true terms laid out in the Torah, Gospels and Quran'.

Although the 'kill' bit is what jumped out at me as an obvious error (the error being that it does not appear in the Gospel - let's leave aside whether killing is a good idea or not for now), the 'price' idea doesn't follow terms laid out in the Gospel either, where salvation is an undeserved gift, whatever atonement model one prefers.

This isn't to say 'yah boo' to Muslims. It is to give another example of a Quranic idea about the Gospels which Christians do not actually believe. As Martin60 points out, that's as big a problem for Quranic literalists as biblical interpretation can be for their con-evo counterparts.

[ 06. June 2017, 20:18: Message edited by: mark_in_manchester ]

--------------------
"We are punished by our sins, not for them" - Elbert Hubbard
(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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Aijalon
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Martin, love the question, it is on my mind because my neighbor is a Muslim. I ask him what sect of Islam, Sunni? Shia? He says neither - JUST Islam.

We talk rarely but enjoy each other when we do. I eat his beef, readily. He will not eat mine.

I try to get my local organic cattle farmer to agree to raise sheep and let Muslims buy from him and perform the Halal procedure... I say it would be a great thing for building trust and being a loving Christian witness.... My Christian farmer finds the idea repulsive, even demonic... as he's basically Islamophobic. Such is the Midwest USA con-evo.....


I don't see a very easy way for the Christian faith to come together with Islam because Islam seens the idea of God incarnate as repugnant to its core. It is not dignified or appropriate for God to become man.

Of course that is the express reason Jesus incarnated in the Christian view - to lower himself to our level.

In the end, what it is that unites the two groups though, will be the notion of monotheism itself, the very thought of a single creator God. I have found that in reformulating my theism as a Modalist I see the Muslim perspective and can much more easily bond with them, it's rather liberating, but the opportunity is not quite there yet.

I would go so far as to say that if throwing politics aside (not easy) a Muslim has more in common with the Christian than the Jew in terms of faith. I have even proposed that the two prophets of Revelation 11 are monotheistic Christianity and Islam, though I'm not ready to stand on that squarely.

[ 06. June 2017, 20:31: Message edited by: Aijalon ]

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Freddy
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quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
Are you saying that, in order to share a planet with Muslims without violence we have to take on the whole of the interpretative framework set out in the Qu'ran, which is of course, among other things, the source and justification of its own infallibility?

I agree that this is impossible. If the infallibility angle is central then it represents an insuperable obstacle.
quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
The work of integration, of mutual reception and common interpretation, needs to celebrate and integrate the understandings etc. of both sides. It's not a matter of either side abandoning theirs for the sake of the other's.

I think the issue is that Islam is often understood to make demands on believers that are not possible outside of an Islamic state.

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hatless

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quote:
Originally posted by mark_in_manchester:
quote:
What do you think 'purchased of' means?
OK, we are going to attempt 'Al-Qmessage' based on an English paraphrase which, despite being rendered in KJV-ese, is not in Arabic and therefore doesn't count as God's word.

Nonetheless, it seems to me to say something like

'It's true, the life and wealth of believers belongs to God; they must also kill others and be killed, as God directs. The price God paid the believers for these obligations is that of a place in paradise. This contract follows true terms laid out in the Torah, Gospels and Quran'.

Although the 'kill' bit is what jumped out at me as an obvious error (the error being that it does not appear in the Gospel - let's leave aside whether killing is a good idea or not for now), the 'price' idea doesn't follow terms laid out in the Gospel either, where salvation is an undeserved gift, whatever atonement model one prefers.

This isn't to say 'yah boo' to Muslims. It is to give another example of a Quranic idea about the Gospels which Christians do not actually believe. As Martin60 points out, that's as big a problem for Quranic literalists as biblical interpretation can be for their con-evo counterparts.

Your reading may be right, I was just sharing my lack of confidence in interpreting the Qur'an. I have no feel for the genre, and the English translations look dodgy to me.

Short extracts are dangerous. Luke 22:36 says if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one. (It would be a very, very fancy cloak that would be worth as much as a sword.)

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mark_in_manchester

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That's a pertinent passage that hadn't occurred to me - thanks.

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Martin60
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@ThunderBunk, fret not, I'm only suggesting that we realise that we are dealing with ordinary, decent people who, like many non-liberal Protestants for a start, are inextricably caught up in the inimical plain meaning of scripture and who cannot be challenged in that. Not that you'd get any change out of a non-liberal Protestant, but as long as you're not an abortion provider in the Bible Belt, they're not likely to put their redemptive violence in to practice.

I talked to a very nice Salafist at his stall under the Leicester clock tower on the Saturday after the Manchester martyrdom operation. He defended the rights of a raging hate filled Islamophobe the police arrested while I was there. Hopefully I can find a channel of communication through him to clarify positions and find a way forward despite them.

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Martin60
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@Aijalon, you're being a good neighbour but you are still committing greater shirk as you believe in the incarnation of the Father, unitarianism can't help you there.

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Martin60
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@Freddy. Neither can 'we'. Win.

I share a street with Muslims. Lovely people. 6 / 25 semi-detached households at least. Not monolithic at all, despite superficial traditional / conservative identifiers. Bangladeshi and Sudanese, possibly Pakistani or Indian Kashmiri. First and second generation. One, Mr. Shah, is a surgeon. They all regard me as a good neighbour and sadly damned, even the lovely Faez, grim faced in shalwar kameez who knows his place fronting the serene Gulshan, who won't go to the Salafist mosque round two corners as they are 'a bunch of fanatics'. I have. It was excellent. He inclusively, half jokingly alluded to my being a theological second class citizen in a heartbeat's danger of eternal hellfire with Abdi the Sudanese cab driver who stops his car in the street to shake me by the hand. His wife wouldn't of course. Not that I'd offer. His son does. Ali's wife Shirin, with her beautiful headdress surprisingly initiated a handshake. They're Yorkies see. As has Zubaidah two doors down. I've seen at least three of their women folk out WITHOUT head covering!

People are great. Regardless of beliefs.

[ 07. June 2017, 09:06: Message edited by: Martin60 ]

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Freddy
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
People are great. Regardless of beliefs.

That is my experience too.

The issue is really about how people behave when they perceive threats to their way of life.

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Martin60
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It's up to us to listen.

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Freddy
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
It's up to us to listen.

That is not something that we are especially good at. [Disappointed]

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Martin60
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Then there is no hope and Christianity continues to be utterly irrelevant. Blessed are the ... ? What are we?

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mark_in_manchester

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Listening - yes, but we also need to act, and act as ourselves.

I think we're in an 'interesting' (may you be saved from living in interesting times) place. We can be good at spotting dickhead behaviour in our own community - Christians, and, more widely, white Brits - and pointing it out / taking the piss / protesting / resisting.

We're not at all experienced in using these skills on the 'other'; it feels like racism. I suspect this reluctance may become a kind of racism itself if we don't get a hold of ourselves.

One of the wankers who stabbed unarmed women in the streets recently, turns up in an old C4 documentary in which he unfurls an ISIS flag in a London park and nods half-smiling through narrowed eyes at a preacher in the kind of self-conscious pretence at religious wisdom familiar to many of us who have worshipped amongst inadequate men without much going on in their lives, for whom the role offers a small chance at self-respect and public recognition.

When such a inadequate white bloke kicks the sh*t (sorry, this is not Hell) out of a black guy, we know how to stand up. Now we need to work out how to do and say the same thing when the emotional cripple is brown.

--------------------
"We are punished by our sins, not for them" - Elbert Hubbard
(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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SvitlanaV2
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
Is there a way ahead for Christianity (orthodox, Trinitarian) and Islam together?


Maybe there is, but I don't see this question as very relevant to the problem of Islamic extremism in Britain (and I'm assuming that this is what you have at the back of your mind. Apologies if not).

Firstly, I'm not convinced that the recent Islamic attacks in the UK were primarily anti-Christian. If they were, the men involved would have targeted churches and churchgoers and not girls at pop concert or young people in pubs. They focused on highly secular targets, not religious ones.*

Secondly, a lot of interfaith work AFAICS is carried out by well-meaning but ageing, middle class, Christian liberals. While I'm sure they do a lot of good, it must be difficult for them to engage with and understand the kinds of young, disaffected Muslim youth who risk being radicalised. What can they really offer?

There's interfaith work done from an evangelical perspective, and that seems very interesting. I've seen young local Muslims actually feel comfortable in a Christian evangelical environment. But these churches don't hide their evangelistic purpose, which from a non-evangelical, moderate Christian perspective isn't what interfaith work is supposed to be about. So there are ecumenical differences there.

The third problem, I think, is that outside of the USA's Religious Right, Western churches are simply quite weak entities. They have very little political power. But young radicalised Muslims are highly concerned about political issues - especially about Western involvement in the Middle East. Since most Christians have little interest in or influence on their governments' role in Middle Eastern conflicts, how can they be of 'use' to the angry young Muslims who think something ought to be done about Syria, for example?

But the sort of engagement that helps British Christians and Muslims to be good neighbours to each other is still very valuable.

*(BTW, I know the recent attack in Paris was near to Notre Dame cathedral, but the attacker's concerns seem to be primarily political, unless I'm mistaken.)

[ 07. June 2017, 19:59: Message edited by: SvitlanaV2 ]

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SvitlanaV2
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'Islamicist attacks' would be a better phrase. I'm certainly not trying to insinuate that the Islamic faith and extremism go hand in hand.

[ 07. June 2017, 20:04: Message edited by: SvitlanaV2 ]

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Russ
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
In Islam God is 'simple': one person, one substance. Our declaring Him as one substance is not sufficient when we go on to declare Him in three persons.

All this is just irrelevant.

No matter how central the Trinity is to your faith, you don't go around blowing up those who don't share that belief.

The creed that matters is the creed of a plural society which says "believe what you will but don't inflict it on your neighbour". That's the Prime Directive, the practical imperative that trumps any theology.

The challenge is to distinguish those Muslims (and the same applies to Christians and everyone else) who are happy to follow Islam as a private belief, a personal way of life (that involves a like-minded community) within a plural society. And deport the others back to where they or their ancestors came from.

Except of course that gradualism rules. It's not that there are a few jihadist apples in a barrel of decent Allah-fearing folk. It's that the spectrum of Islamic belief includes every shade of grey in between.

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Wish everyone well; the enemy is not people, the enemy is wrong ideas

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ExclamationMark
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The only conceivable way ahead is good listening, finding common ground where we can followed by good disagreement (if such exists), where we can't. We should love, value, reach out and support one another just as justice says we should do for all people.

That doesn't mean though that we can blend with them in our belief system nor does it mean we believe or must consider every view to be right, even if it permissible to express it.

For a Christian who affirms the historic creeds (and de facto accepts the uniqueness of the Christian understanding of God), there is no accommodation with Islam: any such approach is syncretism.

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hatless

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I'm never sure, as a Baptist, whether I affirm the creeds. They have a much lower place than for most Christians.

Do I accommodate with Judaism? We enjoy mutual respect and scriptural overlap. Is that syncretism? What would a similar relationship with Islam look like?

I don't think of my faith as a private or personal thing. The interpersonal and community expressions are as important as the solitary one. Does that mean, Russ, that I would have to be deported back home? And where would that be? I'm what is sometimes called Caucasian, so do I get to see Baku, perhaps!

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Martin60
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quote:
Originally posted by Russ:
quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
In Islam God is 'simple': one person, one substance. Our declaring Him as one substance is not sufficient when we go on to declare Him in three persons.

All this is just irrelevant.

No matter how central the Trinity is to your faith, you don't go around blowing up those who don't share that belief.

The creed that matters is the creed of a plural society which says "believe what you will but don't inflict it on your neighbour". That's the Prime Directive, the practical imperative that trumps any theology.

The challenge is to distinguish those Muslims (and the same applies to Christians and everyone else) who are happy to follow Islam as a private belief, a personal way of life (that involves a like-minded community) within a plural society. And deport the others back to where they or their ancestors came from.

Except of course that gradualism rules. It's not that there are a few jihadist apples in a barrel of decent Allah-fearing folk. It's that the spectrum of Islamic belief includes every shade of grey in between.

You completely miss the point Russ, which Exclamation Mark gets.

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Love wins

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Martin60
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quote:
Originally posted by SvitlanaV2:
quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
Is there a way ahead for Christianity (orthodox, Trinitarian) and Islam together?


Maybe there is, but I don't see this question as very relevant to the problem of Islamic extremism in Britain (and I'm assuming that this is what you have at the back of your mind. Apologies if not).

Firstly, I'm not convinced that the recent Islamic attacks in the UK were primarily anti-Christian. If they were, the men involved would have targeted churches and churchgoers and not girls at pop concert or young people in pubs. They focused on highly secular targets, not religious ones.*

Secondly, a lot of interfaith work AFAICS is carried out by well-meaning but ageing, middle class, Christian liberals. While I'm sure they do a lot of good, it must be difficult for them to engage with and understand the kinds of young, disaffected Muslim youth who risk being radicalised. What can they really offer?

There's interfaith work done from an evangelical perspective, and that seems very interesting. I've seen young local Muslims actually feel comfortable in a Christian evangelical environment. But these churches don't hide their evangelistic purpose, which from a non-evangelical, moderate Christian perspective isn't what interfaith work is supposed to be about. So there are ecumenical differences there.

The third problem, I think, is that outside of the USA's Religious Right, Western churches are simply quite weak entities. They have very little political power. But young radicalised Muslims are highly concerned about political issues - especially about Western involvement in the Middle East. Since most Christians have little interest in or influence on their governments' role in Middle Eastern conflicts, how can they be of 'use' to the angry young Muslims who think something ought to be done about Syria, for example?

But the sort of engagement that helps British Christians and Muslims to be good neighbours to each other is still very valuable.

*(BTW, I know the recent attack in Paris was near to Notre Dame cathedral, but the attacker's concerns seem to be primarily political, unless I'm mistaken.)

No SvitlanaV2, it has nothing to do with it. Apart from everything. We're not listening. We're not addressing universal social justice.

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Love wins

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Martin60
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quote:
Originally posted by mark_in_manchester:
Listening - yes, but we also need to act, and act as ourselves.

I think we're in an 'interesting' (may you be saved from living in interesting times) place. We can be good at spotting dickhead behaviour in our own community - Christians, and, more widely, white Brits - and pointing it out / taking the piss / protesting / resisting.

We're not at all experienced in using these skills on the 'other'; it feels like racism. I suspect this reluctance may become a kind of racism itself if we don't get a hold of ourselves.

One of the wankers who stabbed unarmed women in the streets recently, turns up in an old C4 documentary in which he unfurls an ISIS flag in a London park and nods half-smiling through narrowed eyes at a preacher in the kind of self-conscious pretence at religious wisdom familiar to many of us who have worshipped amongst inadequate men without much going on in their lives, for whom the role offers a small chance at self-respect and public recognition.

When such a inadequate white bloke kicks the sh*t (sorry, this is not Hell) out of a black guy, we know how to stand up. Now we need to work out how to do and say the same thing when the emotional cripple is brown.

We can't afford the luxury of outrage. We need to listen.

--------------------
Love wins

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Aijalon
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
@Aijalon, you're being a good neighbour but you are still committing greater shirk as you believe in the incarnation of the Father, unitarianism can't help you there.

I like to keep things objective as possible. The Bible is the best starting point (though perhaps not for you). Still have to ask.....

Revelation 11: do you see any clues in the vision of the end times that guides in relation to Islam? (Ch 11 or anywhere else). I would presume the answer is no.

If no, is there anything objective upon which we could base our "path forward" with Islam in a religious or cultural sense? As far as that goes, I think Islam would qualify as both a religion, and a culture, whereas Christianity no longer has a cohesive culture to call home. Muslims would say that Islam is both-in-one. Christians staunchly, perhaps even religiously, segregated the two.

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Martin60
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quote:
Originally posted by Aijalon:
quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
@Aijalon, you're being a good neighbour but you are still committing greater shirk as you believe in the incarnation of the Father, unitarianism can't help you there.

I like to keep things objective as possible.

Not in your unitarianism. There's nothing objective about concluding that from the text.

The Bible is the best starting point (though perhaps not for you).

For what?

Still have to ask.....

Revelation 11: do you see any clues in the vision of the end times that guides in relation to Islam? (Ch 11 or anywhere else).

What end? What times?

I would presume the answer is no.

Of course.

If no, is there anything objective upon which we could base our "path forward" with Islam in a religious or cultural sense? As far as that goes, I think Islam would qualify as both a religion, and a culture, whereas Christianity no longer has a cohesive culture to call home. Muslims would say that Islam is both-in-one. Christians staunchly, perhaps even religiously, segregated the two.

The culture of true religion.




[ 08. June 2017, 14:23: Message edited by: Martin60 ]

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Aijalon
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second time you've tossed out Unitarianism.

Your responses are brief, and fun to read, but sometimes so brief as to be glib.

quote:
The culture of true religion.
[Roll Eyes] which would be......?

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God gave you free will so you could give it back.

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Martin60
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The biblical one. In those exact terms.

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Love wins

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SvitlanaV2
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
We're not listening. We're not addressing universal social justice.

The mainstream congregations used to be very much into social justice. They still are, but perhaps these days they're often limited by a lack of manpower and money as to what they can actually achieve. And knowledge rather than just good intentions is surely very important.

AIUI, there is interfaith work going on in your city. A bishop based there has written an interesting book about the possibilities and challenges presented by interfaith work. Have you ever had any dealings with your local interfaith group?

On a positive note, this friendly 'interfaith' advert went viral a few years ago. From your POV the problem will be that it only represents a strong personal relationship, not some grand interfaith army battling on behalf of 'universal social justice'. But I tend to believe that these things have to start small.

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mark_in_manchester

not waving, but...
# 15978

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quote:
We can't afford the luxury of outrage.
Oh, I think we need to be alive to the necessity of outrage, when evil pops up and says hello. We might even feel a pang of hypocrisy about specks and planks if we share some culpability. Or we might just all kill each other, while reflecting that Northern Ireland or 1930s Germany turn out not to the the exceptional historical cases we've hitherto taken comfort in thinking them to be.

I'm off to read the Psalms.

--------------------
"We are punished by our sins, not for them" - Elbert Hubbard
(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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