Something to renew faith

It’s been an interesting weekend, following an exhausting week on many fronts.

Here’s a story from Egypt that brings a smile to my face, and goes far toward reminding us that humanity really is worth saving.

Remember this story next time a wingnut tries to tell you there is no such thing as moderate Muslims.

Egypt’s majority Muslim population stuck to its word Thursday night. What had been a promise of solidarity to the weary Coptic community, was honoured, when thousands of Muslims showed up at Coptic Christmas eve mass services in churches around the country and at candle light vigils held outside.

From the well-known to the unknown, Muslims had offered their bodies as “human shields” for last night’s mass, making a pledge to collectively fight the threat of Islamic militants and towards an Egypt free from sectarian strife.

“We either live together, or we die together,” was the sloganeering genius of Mohamed El-Sawy, a Muslim arts tycoon whose cultural centre distributed flyers at churches in Cairo Thursday night, and who has been credited with first floating the “human shield” idea.

Among those shields were movie stars Adel Imam and Yousra, popular Muslim televangelist and preacher Amr Khaled, the two sons of President Hosni Mubarak, and thousands of citizens who have said they consider the attack one on Egypt as a whole.

“This is not about us and them,” said Dalia Mustafa, a student who attended mass at Virgin Mary Church on Maraashly Street. “We are one. This was an attack on Egypt as a whole, and I am standing with the Copts because the only way things will change in this country is if we come together.”




Muslim seminary in India issues edict opposing terrorism

More common sense comments from moderate Muslims. Not that the right wing would have you know such a thing exists.

Senior clerics from the 150-year-old Muslim seminary Darul Uloom Deoband, which is said to have inspired the Taliban, have issued an edict saying they wished to wipe out terrorism.

The Indpendent reports: “The Deoband institute was established in the aftermath of the 1857 uprising against British rule, an uprising that was brutally suppressed by the imperial forces. Highly influential, it controls thousands of smaller seminaries and madrassas around the world, from Britain to Afghanistan.

“Of Britain’s 1,400 mosques, about 600 are run by Deobandi-affiliated clerics. Seventeen of the UK’s 26 Islamic seminaries follow Deobandi teachings, which produce about 80 per cent of all domestically trained Muslim clerics.

“Analysts say the move to speak out against terrorism would be welcomed by the overwhelming majority of India’s 140 million Muslim population, many of whom believe the image of their religion has been tarnished by the actions of a small number of people.”

Hat tip:  TMV

Leasing God for mammon

Great piece at Positive Liberty:

The more things change, the more they stay the same. The political sermons of the American Founding collected by Ellis Sandoz are fascinating and enlightening to read, and many of them contain great ideas. They support the notion of political liberty. I likewise support political liberty. Yet, let’s not get too caught up in nostalgia. They also reveal that pastors back then have done exactly what the religious right AND religious left do today: whore the Christian religion for political purposes.