Now THAT’S what I’m talking about! Huffington Post reports on a growing movement among American Muslims to break free of the cultural dead weight of the past:
Today, as America’s Muslim leaders debate controversial topics like political radicalism inside mosques and states’ attempts to ban Shariah law, this growing network of alternative mosques and Islamic groups is quietly forging a new spiritual movement.
They’re taking bold steps, reinterpreting Islamic norms and re-examining taboos. While far from accepted by mainstream clerics, these worshippers feel that the future of the religion lies not solely with tradition but with them. Women are leading congregations in prayer, gay imams are performing Islamic marriages, and men and women are praying side by side.
Islam is a religion of peace or violence, depending on how you choose to practice it. So is Christianity. An argument can be made that Islam is more militant yada yada yada but it all still comes down to how it is interpreted by its adherents. So-called “Chrisitans” who quail at the thought of the dreaded Sharia Law seem to forget that other so-called “Christians” devised some of the most brutal tortures known to man in the name of Jesus. The Inquistion was perfectly in line with the Bible, if you choose to interpret it that way. The culture dictates the faith. It’s not easy to separate the two and, as I’ve said before, I was guilty of this particular thought process myself.
It’s nice to see I was not mistaken in dropping that blindfold from my eyes.
My only concern is that this will invite a violent backlash from the Fundies who will not tolerate Islam being brought out of the Dark Ages. If we’re all very, very lucky, such a reaction will only serve to legitimize the movement and attract more Muslims to reject the culture of death that is currently guiding far too many of them.