On van Gogh

“Muslims aren’t violent, and I’m going to kill you to prove it.” I’m sure that was the thought going through the mind of the Muslim who killed Theo van Gogh. To me, if that had happened in the US, it would prove that Muslims are assimilating successfully; after all, don’t pro-lifers kill to save life? [That last comment was sarcastic for the trolls who just don’t get it.]

thabet has a great run down of the story. martijn has some follow-up on the movie.

However, this incident happened in the Netherlands. During Ramadan. Now the Muslim community in the Netherlands has to pay the price, and the Muslim community around the world is once painted as religious fanatics. And once more God looks down at us and weeps. I have to say, I do get angry when people denigrate Islam, both Muslims and non-Muslims. I get angry about Muslims portray their own faith, because it sounds like they speak from ignorance, not conviction. I get angry when non-Muslims are willing to judge a religion without knowing anything about it. However, I believe in JS Mill’s marketplace of ideas. Violence doesn’t solve a thing in the debate of religions. I’m particularly convinced that belief in an omnipotent God means that God will take care of Its Ownself, regardless of what we do down here.

According to marijn’s post, it seems that the movie was clear that domestic violence is a cultural phenomenon, not a religious one. So ignorance of the other continues to hurt the Muslim community.

Even if all the trees of the world were pens

And all the oceans ink

With many more oceans to fill them

Even then the kalim of God could not be written

For God is all-knowing and all-wise.


[see previous post for more about this verse.]

On this Eid day, let us remember that as believing Muslims, one of the definitions of faith is that we can’t know all that God does, so let us avoid speaking or acting in Its name.

3 thoughts on “On van Gogh

  1. Having lived half my life in Europe and half in the U.S. I would consider any asserion that Moslems in most European countries are more assimilated than in the US.
    For example, for a given amount of years in the US vs in Europe Moslems are more lily to be US citizens. I lived in Germany for four years. Most German born Moslems did not have citizenship.
    In France the school system is a perfect example. the dominant relion is christianity. Wxpressions of religious identity in headdress are not the same as “religious teaching” in schools, it is an individual right. Yet it is forbidden. this is not “multiculturalism” it is patenty assimilationist. Public funds DO pay for private religious schools in France, the proportion of state funds to Christian schools per pupil is an order of magnitude higher than for Moslem schools!
    The nukmber of incidents of violence against Moslems in Eurupe is also much higher
    today not only is the state opposed to any individual expression of

  2. asSalaam ‘aleykum
    tragic, ugly, and brutal – on all sides, immigrants (Somali and Moroccan muslims adjusting to Europe after leaving their failures and country’s troubles behind them to meet a different series of troubles): Ayaan Hirsi Ali and the besotted fanatics who veer towards vehement Wahabism/Qutbism because it tells them that the West is in worse shape than they (and the muslim world) are in…
    Theo Van Gogh, who was an idiot for free speech and a martyr for his right to hate people who hated him back…
    and Islam, which has our Creators’ name (Allah can defend Himself) and our Beloved Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) …
    victims of hatred.

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