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Signor
06-13-2015, 10:03 AM
Some Right-Wing Europeans Say Islam Hasn't Contributed to Western Culture. Here's Why They're Wrong.


One of the right-wing tropes about Islam in Europe, which is making alarming inroads into the mainstream, is that it represents a "culture of backwardness, of retardedness, of barbarism" and has made no contribution to Western civilization. Islam provides an easy target considering that some 3,000 or more Europeans are estimated to have left for the Middle East in order to fight alongside the Islamic State. The savage beheadings and disgusting treatment of women and minorities confirm in the minds of many that Islam is incompatible with Western civilization. This has become a widely known, and even unthinkingly accepted, proposition. But is it correct?

Let us look at European history for answers. At least 10 things will surprise you:

1. Contrary to common belief, Muslims did not first arrive in Europe with the intention of conquering it.

Intricate tile and mosaics decorates a room in the Nasrid Palaces at the Alhambra in Granada, Spain. Sean Gallup/Getty Images.

A small military contingent landed on the southern coast of Spain in 711 in response to the pleadings of the Jewish community, which faced harsh persecution under the Visigoth rulers. The arrival of the Muslims and their victory prevented what New York University Professor David Levering Lewis terms "the final solution." Christian leaders like Count Julian, whose daughter had been dishonored at court, had also been requesting Muslim intervention. It is precisely this reason, the support of large sections of local society, that allowed the Muslims to so easily establish their domination over Al-Andalus.

2. By describing Muslims as "backward", "retarded" and "barbaric," it is suggested that they are not capable of balancing their religion with rational thought. Yet Muslims had already attained a balance between the two positions centuries before other European societies.

Monument of Averroës, Manolo Blanco/Flickr.

The debate between faith and reason that had been agitating Muslim philosophers and had begun since the birth of Islam and its first encounters with Greek philosophy found one of its most sophisticated votaries in Ibn Rushd, or Averroës, in 12th century Andalusia. Averroës' translations and commentaries on Aristotle and Plato so influenced scholars like Thomas Aquinas that he and others across Europe, assuming his name needed no elaboration, referred to Ibn Rushd simply as "The Commentator."

3. The first man ever to fly was the scholar Ibn Firnas near Cordoba in the 9th century.

The Ibn Firnas bridge, Landahlauts/Flickr.

An inventor, engineer and poet, he is credited for designing a water-clock, manufacturing colorless glass and making magnifying corrective lenses or "reading stones." One of the main bridges of Cordoba -- constructed in the form of gigantic wings -- is named in honor of his flight, as is an airport in Baghdad and a crater on the moon.

4. Cordoba, in Andalusia, was the most populous and glittering city of Europe in the 10th century.

Circa 1955: In the old Moorish quarter of Cordoba the cathedral is visible at the end of a cobbled street. Three Lions/Getty Images.

Its streets were lit and there were baths, gardens and libraries everywhere. The main library was estimated to have 400,000 books when the largest library in Europe, in Switzerland, had 800 volumes. Visitors came from all over the continent to marvel at Andalusian civilization, and a nun in Saxony called Hroswitha described it as ''the ornament of the world.''

5. Islam is frequently accused of being intolerant and rejecting harmony with other cultures and religions. Yet Muslim Spain or Andalusian civilization offers one of the most shining examples of harmony, peace and prosperity between different religions in the history of Europe.

People pray during an interreligious prayer outside the great mosque in Cordoba. JOSE LUIS ROCA/AFP/Getty Images.

At one point the capacity of people of different faiths to live and work together in Andalusia was illustrated by its ruler Abd Al-Rahman III in the 10th century. His chief minister was Jewish and his ambassador to the Holy Roman Emperor Otto I was the Catholic Bishop Racemundo. The Spanish term La Convivencia or Coexistence describes that time in Al-Andalus. Harmony at the political level engendered creativity and prosperity. Others saw it differently. Muslim tribes fresh from the deserts and mountains of North Africa looked on Andalusian society as decadent and corrupt. They destroyed Madina-at-Zahra, the beautiful royal town built in the hills near Cordoba considered the gem of Andalusian architecture. Scholars like the great Rabbi Maimonides and Averroës were forced into exile from their beloved Cordoba.

6. Two of the greatest novels of Western literature directly or indirectly bear the mark of Islamic culture. "Don Quixote" and "Robinson Crusoe" were selected by experts and critics as the number one and three respectively on the Guardian's list of "The 100 Greatest Novels of All Time."

Earle Havens, acting keeper of Rare Books and Manuscripts of Boston Public Library, holds an 1824 children's chapbook of "Robinson Crusoe." AP Photo/Chitose Suzuki.

In the first, Cervantes began his novel by disclosing, with tongue in cheek, that it was a manuscript written by an Arab called Cide Hamete Benengeli or Sir Hamid Aubergine. The theme and structure of the 12th century novel "Hayy ibn Yaqdhan" (English translations were published from a Latin version in 1686 and the original Arabic in 1708) by the Andalusian philosopher Ibn Tufail about a man stranded on an desert island with a companion, no female company and engaged in raising philosophical questions about the nature of society, foreshadowed Daniel Defoe's "Robinson Crusoe" (first published in 1719). In fact, the influence of "Hayy ibn Yaqdhan" on Europe was so great it "could be considered one of the most important books that heralded the Scientific Revolution."

7. Two of the most celebrated European rulers, Roger II, the king of Sicily, and Frederick II, the holy Roman emperor, were so influenced by Islamic culture that they spoke Arabic, had Muslim bodyguards and inscriptions in Arabic were written on their royal ceremonial mantle, which was worn by the holy Roman emperors at their coronations until the late 18th century.

Circa 1230, Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II (1194 - 1250) of Germany. Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images.

Roger used Islamic designs and calligraphy to decorate his greatest project, the Palatine chapel in Palermo, which can be seen today. Frederick II admired Averroës so much that he sent translations of Averroës' work to European universities so that they could be studied and taught. Frederick II illustrated how a spectacular geopolitical victory can be gained without warfare and bloodshed when he was handed over Jerusalem peacefully during the Sixth Crusade by the sultan of Egypt due to the mutual respect they had for one another. In the case of Roger and Frederick, we see the Andalusian La Convivencia in reverse: Christian rulers accepting and appreciating their Jewish and Muslim subjects.

8. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, considered the greatest of poets in the German language, wrote a powerful poem dedicated to the prophet of Islam.

The memorial of revered German poets Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and Friedrich Schiller, right, is seen in Weimar. AP Photo/Jens Meyer.

He made the enigmatic comment that expressed his admiration for Islam: "In Islam, we all live and die."

9. Napoleon in Egypt wore Arab dress, emphasized his respect for Islam and declared that he and the French were Muslim.

An 1879 portrait of Queen Victoria. AP Photo.

Queen Victoria called her personal assistant, Muhamma Abdul Karim, an Indian Muslim, her munshi, a term meaning teacher. Abdul Karim was so close to her that the relationship roused the envy of the royal household. The last German emperor, Kaiser Wilhelm II, prided himself on the title "Hajji," and declared he would be the protector of the world's Muslims against European imperialism.

10. More European women than men are converting to Islam in spite of the widespread antagonism to the religion.

German teacher Doris Graber converted to Islam. MICHAEL LATZ/AFP/Getty Images.

Despite the perceived mistreatment of women in Muslim communities and the rising tide of aggressive secularism, they are finding solace and peace in Islam.

Today, too, Muslims are also making an impact -- and it is not all about the violence of the Islamic State and the thousands who have left to join them. Thirteen Muslim members of parliament have been elected in the recent elections in the U.K. Eight of them are women. Muslims are currently serving as government ministers in the U.K.

There has been a captain with a Muslim background of the English cricket team, and there are many Muslims in the top European football clubs and on European national teams. Malala Yousafzai, who is originally from Pakistan, won the Nobel Peace Prize and now lives in the U.K. She is an internationally known activist for female education, now challenging Boko Haram for its attitude towards girls and pleading with the United Nations for more support for women.

In the discussions of Islam that focus on acts of Muslim violence, such as those associated with the Islamic State, and provide fuel against Muslim immigrants from Africa and Asia, it is often overlooked that there are millions of indigenous Europeans such as Bosniaks, Albanians and Pomaks who are also Muslims. These indigenous Muslims form the majority population in Albania, Kosovo and Bosnia-Herzegovina. Europe, therefore, has its own native population, which happens to be Muslim. These Balkan Muslims, like other Europeans, are committed to democracy, prosperity, education and the ability to live with people of different cultures and religions.

As the debate around Islam continues to create controversy, anger and even violence, the "surprises" presented here may help to put the nature of Islamic civilization in its proper context. These are facts that would benefit not only non-Muslims but also Muslims. The critics of Islam, as much as those who advocate violence on its behalf -- groups like Islamic State, for example -- need to appreciate the cultural and intellectual sophistication of Muslim civilization when it was widely acknowledged as the most advanced in Europe. The destruction by the Islamic State of the ancient history of the Middle East, such as at Nimrud, and attacks on minorities are emblematic of their character. It is also an explicit rejection of the rich Muslim civilization that gloried in cultural, intellectual and philosophic sophistication. Muslims had achieved that reputation for a period of time because society offered its individuals, regardless of religion or race, the possibility of pursuing knowledge and working together to produce peace and prosperity.

I am not advocating a return to the past for a moment. I am merely suggesting that there are lessons in history for us, if only we are prepared to think about and learn from them.

Akbar Ahmed is the Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Studies at American University, in Washington D.C. He is working on the film and book project called "Journey into Europe: Islam, Immigration and Empire."

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Aaqib
06-13-2015, 08:07 PM
This really was interesting to read
it also made my heart warm, shukran
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Abz2000
06-14-2015, 04:58 AM
One of the right-wing tropes about Islam in Europe, which is making alarming inroads into the mainstream, is that it represents a "culture of backwardness, of retardedness, of barbarism" and has made no contribution to Western civilization.
Assalamu'alaikum wr wb,
The accusation itself is full of arrogance and self-conceit - as if something called "the west" sit's on a throne and demands to know why God's humble and meager presentation shouldn't be rejected by the board members (na'udhubillahi min dhaalik) - or are impatient that their toleration and patience with God is reaching it's limit and that they are re-considering the terms of His employment contract with "the west" (astaghfirullah). Or like summin out of dragon's den where all the tycoons put the husltler under pressure to prove himself.

Appears geared towards portraying infidelity as superior to and above faith, Allah's enjoined way of life as inferior, alien, lacking, and needy of approval, and making believers apprehensive and eager to please people.
Allah has no need to appease us but instead shows us mercy by guiding us to live as respectable human beings despite our exasperating and wrath deserving backslidings.

To promote the way of life which is true in order to save oneself and another person from hellfire is one thing, but such arrogant and conceited accusations only deserve a nonchalant middle finger with a fake smile.
God's word aint no cheap hustle - we're lucky He hasn't already cut our lives short -and after it's too late to repent - shown us what Islam has contributed to the planet.
Most of the above is regarding intelligent scientific discoveries by Muslims who have contributed to the planet. -one can easily attribute it to the individual regardless of mode of living.
Master of the two easts, and master of the two wests.
Then which is it, of the favours of your Master will you deny?

IS MAN, then, not aware that it is We who create him out of a [mere] drop of sperm - whereupon, lo! he shows himself endowed with the power to think and to argue?
Lol it's almost like when the media were asking if the british monarchy is a positive contribution or a drain.

When making a presentation of the deen of Allah, i believe it is much nearer to accuracy when we say: let's see how Allah has been merciful to all of us in that He has sent us the guidance.
The whole premise of "islam in contrast with west" is false and intentionally divisive to begin with.
It's not a question of burger king or mcdonalds, it's a question of fake beef and real beef, no point creating false divides based on blind loyalty, it's usually the donkey meat selling crook who does that.


The brother from washington who wrote the article seems to keep fidgeting and apologizing, i'm not advocating self conceit, self exaltion or arrogance, but am stating that Allah has the right to be exalted and that we have a duty to exalt Him.


Yusuf Ali: They impress on thee as a favour that they have embraced Islam. Say, "Count not your Islam as a favour upon me: Nay, Allah has conferred a favour upon you that He has guided you to the faith, if ye be true and sincere.

Shakir: They think that they lay you under an obligation by becoming Muslims. Say: Lay me not under obligation by your Islam: rather Allah lays you under an obligation by guiding you to the faith if you are truthful.
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czgibson
06-27-2015, 12:14 AM
Greetings,

It continues to amaze me that people can be impressed by lists like this. Take a look at what a slender list of accomplishments that actually is.

None of them are particularly surprising to even a moderately educated person. That is, out of the ones that make sense.

Contrary to common belief, Muslims did not first arrive in Europe with the intention of conquering it
That's your starting point?

Are there any contemporary sources, Islamic or otherwise, that you think establish this as a fact?

By describing Muslims as "backward", "retarded" and "barbaric," it is suggested that they are not capable of balancing their religion with rational thought. Yet Muslims had already attained a balance between the two positions centuries before other European societies.
What about the Greeks?

Also, why do you think it is a good idea to try to discredit the accusation of backwardness by citing historical accomplishments?

The first man ever to fly was the scholar Ibn Firnas near Cordoba in the 9th century.
Brilliant. The man is a hero. What does this have to do with "Islam's Contribution to Western Culture"? Surely that's his contribution to world culture?

Cordoba, in Andalusia, was the most populous and glittering city of Europe in the 10th century.
Yes, with non-Muslims living as second-class citizens.

Why is this supposed to be a surprise to anyone?

We know that Islamic civilisation was at the forefront of human culture in between say, the Greeks, the Romans and the Renaissance. All of these cultures have made their contributions. I think the criticism that is being referred to in the title of this piece asks the question about what Islamic culture has contributed in more recent times.

Islam is frequently accused of being intolerant and rejecting harmony with other cultures and religions. Yet Muslim Spain or Andalusian civilization offers one of the most shining examples of harmony, peace and prosperity between different religions in the history of Europe.
So one possible counter-example disposes of mountains of evidence that Islam is by far the most intolerant of the world's major religions.

Two of the greatest novels of Western literature directly or indirectly bear the mark of Islamic culture. "Don Quixote" and "Robinson Crusoe" were selected by experts and critics as the number one and three respectively on the Guardian's list of "The 100 Greatest Novels of All Time."
This is utterly bizarre. Why is this supposed to represent an achievement by Islam?

More European women than men are converting to Islam in spite of the widespread antagonism to the religion.
This is a classic non sequitur. "More European women than men are converting to Islam" could be true if there had been three converts or three million. That has nothing whatsoever to do with the level of antagonism to the religion.

The simple existence of a list like this indicates that there is a real problem in Islamic culture right now. I don't know how you good Muslim people are going to make things better for yourselves and everyone else, but one way might be to start being able to look at a list like that and realise that it's time to stop falling for this kind of lazy propaganda and passing it round. You're better than this.

Peace
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Muhammad
06-27-2015, 12:50 AM
Greetings czgibson,

It is Ramadhan and I have no interest in getting into a debate. However, I'm not sure why such lists seem to irk you so much. I had trouble seeing more to your points than mere nitpicking and searching for flaws. As an example, your last point about the 'non sequitur' is not true. Right at the beginning, the article states, '[the]... disgusting treatment of women and minorities confirm in the minds of many that Islam is incompatible with Western civilization. This has become a widely known, and even unthinkingly accepted, proposition. But is it correct?' It then goes on to mention in refutation of this that more women are actually turning to Islam than men.

The underlying point here is one's perspective. People can see the list as an invitation to learn more. After all, the introduction makes clear that it is merely examples being presented. It is not meant to be a dissertation providing detailed analysis. Others like yourself can choose to only see (or find) negativity. In that case, it is time to re-evaluate your purpose for doing so.
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Scimitar
06-27-2015, 04:14 AM


enjoy :)

Scimi
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Signor
06-27-2015, 05:09 AM
Overcoming Historical Amnesia: Muslim Contributions to Civilization

By Craig Considine

In his recent article, Sam Harris, a popular critic of Islam, referred to Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani education activist, as "the best thing to come out of the Muslim world in 1,000 years." Hidden in this comment is the idea that Malala's fellow Muslims are backward and that her religion, Islam, is not conducive to change or progress.

Conversely to the beliefs of Harris and others like him, Muslims have actually made enormous contributions to civilization, perhaps due to the heavy emphasis that Islam places on knowledge. People who forget or blatantly ignore major trends or events in world history can be said to suffer from "historical amnesia." Though this mindset cannot be cured in one short blog post, I hope to dispel some of the stereotypes and misperceptions exacerbated by Harris and other anti-Islam activists by highlighting the contributions that Muslims have made to civilization over the years.

Contributions to education
Malala's quest for universal education follows in Muslims' long and proud history in the field of education. Two Muslim women, Fatima and Miriam al-Firhi, created the world's first university, Al-Qarawiyyin in Fez, Morocco, in 859 AD. For several years, students were schooled here in a plethora of secular and religious subjects. At the end of their education, teachers evaluated students and awarded degrees based on satisfactory performances. The concept of awarding degrees would spread from Fez to Andalucía, Spain, and later to the Universities of Bologna in Italy and Oxford in England, among other places of learning.

Spanish Muslims of Andalucía were especially strong advocates of education and helped to dispel the gloom that had enveloped Europe during the Dark Ages. Between the 8th and 15th centuries, Andalucía was perhaps the world's epicenter for education and knowledge. Spanish universities such as those in Cordoba, Granada, and Seville, had Christian and Jewish students who learned science from Muslims. Women were also encouraged to study in Muslim Spain. This educational environment that stressed tolerance would not reach the "Western world" until the 19th and 20th centuries.

Contributions to philosophy
One of the greatest Muslim contributions to civilization began in the 8th century when Muslim scholars inherited volumes of Greek philosophy. The wisdom in ancient Greece texts, which had been lost to Europeans, was translated from Latin to Arabic by Muslim scholars, thus creating one of the greatest transmissions of knowledge in world history. Muslims scholars would eventually bring the ideas of great ancient Greek minds such as Socrates, Aristotle and Plato into Europe, where their philosophy was translated into other European languages. This is why Muslims are the main threshold behind the European Renaissance and the Enlightenment, two movements that resurrected Greek philosophy and gave new life into a European continent that was bogged down with religious dogma and bloody internal conflicts.

Many Muslim scholars made acquiring knowledge their life goal. Perhaps the most notable of these scholars is Al-Ghazali, a Sufi Muslim who in the 11th and 12th centuries revolutionized early Islamic philosophy by helping develop Neoplatonism, which is often described as the "mystical" or "religious" interpretation of Greek philosophy. At the time of Al-Ghazali's writing, Muslim philosophers had read about the ideas of ancient Greece, but these ideas were generally perceived to be in conflict with Islamic teachings. Al-Ghazali helped synthesize these elements by adopting the techniques of Aristotelian logic and the Neoplatonic ways to diminish the negative influences of excessive Islamic rationalism.

Ibn Khaldun is another one of the most important Muslim thinkers in history. Recognized as one of the greatest historians ever and the founder of sociological sciences in the 14th and 15th centuries, Khaldun created one of the earliest nonreligious philosophies in history in his work, the Muqaddimah. He also paved the way for our expectations of modern-day Presidents and Prime Ministers by creating a framework for evaluating "good rulers," stating "the sovereign exists for the good of the people... The necessity of a Ruler arises from the fact that human beings have to live together and unless there is some one to maintain order, society would break to pieces."

Contributions to health care
Medicine is another crucial contribution to civilization made by Muslims in addition to education and the university system. In 872 in Cairo, Egypt, the Ahmad ibn Tulun hospital was created and equipped with an elaborate institution and a range of functions. Like other Islamic hospitals that soon followed, Tulun was a secular institution open to men and women, adults and children, the rich and poor, as well as Muslims and non-Muslims. Tulun is also the earliest hospital to give care to the mentally ill.

One hundred years after the founding of Tulun, a surgeon named Al-Zahrawi, often called the "father of surgery," wrote an illustrated encyclopedia that would ultimately be used as a guide to European surgeons for the next five hundred years. Al-Zarawhi's surgical instruments, such as scalpels, bone saws, and forceps are still used by modern surgeons. Al-Zahrawi is also reportedly the first surgeon to perform a caesarean operation.

Another significant Muslim discovery came in the 13th century, when the Muslim medic Ibn Nafis described the pulmonary circulation almost three hundred years before William Harvey, the English physician who is believed by many Westerners to have "discovered" it. The technique of inoculation, or the introduction of an antigenic substance or vaccine into the body to induce immunity to a disease, is also said to have been designed by Muslims in Turkey and brought to Europe by the wife of England's Turkish ambassador in 1724.

Protecting and cleansing the body has always been a priority for Muslims. Perhaps then it is no surprised that Muslim scientists combined vegetable oils with sodium hydroxide and aromatics such as thyme oil to create a recipe for soap, which is still used today. Shampoo was also introduced to England on the Brighton seafront in 1759 at Mahomed's Indian Vapour Baths.

Contributions to science
There is also little doubt that the development of astronomy owes a great deal to the work of Muslim astronomers. As far back as the early 9th century, the Caliph Al-Ma'mum founded an astronomical observatory in Shammasiya in Baghdad and Qasiyun in Damascus. Five hundred years later, in 1420, Prince Ulugh Bey built a massive observatory in Samarqand, which was then followed in 1577 by another observatory built by Sultan Murad III in Istanbul.

The Ottomans had particularly well-organized astronomical institutions such as the post of chief-astronomer and time-keeping houses. Taqi al-Din, a 16th century Ottoman astronomer, created astronomical tables and observational instruments that helped measure the coordinates of stars and the distances between them.

Muslims have also made contributions in the field of chemistry by inventing many of the basic processes and apparatuses used by modern-day chemists. Working in the 8th and 9th centuries in Andalucía, Jabir Ibn Hayyan, the founder of modern chemistry, transformed alchemy into chemistry through distillation, or separating liquids through differences in their boiling points. In addition to developing the processes of crystallization, evaporation, and filtration, he also discovered sulphuric and nitric acid. The historian Erick John Holmyard stated that Hayyan's work is as important, if not more, than that of Robert Boyle and Antoine Lavoisier, two European chemists who are frequently attributed to creating modern chemistry.

Indeed our very modern and globalized world today would not be able to move so quickly if it were not for the genius of Ibn Firnas, a Muslim engineer of Andalucía who in the 9th century constructed a flying machine, thus becoming the world's first aviator. In 852 he jumped from the minaret of the Grand Mosque in Cordoba, Spain, using a loose cloak stiffened with wooden struts. Although he hoped to glide like an eagle, Ibn Firnas did not, though he is credited for creating the first parachute.

Muslims have also influenced the study of physics, a closely linked field to flying and aviation. Mohammad Abdus Salam, a Pakistani theoretical physicist, shared a 1979 Nobel Prize for his contribution to the field of theoretical physics, specifically in unifying electromagnetic and weak forces.

I have only scratched the surface of the contributions made by Muslims to the development of civilization. Children around the world should be taught about these contributions to dispel the misperception that Muslims are backward and stagnant. Muslims worldwide must also invest more in education, medicine, and other sciences in order to continue their tradition of being pioneers for knowledge.

About Author:Dr. Craig Considine is a Catholic American of Irish and Italian descent. As a sociologist, he focuses on Christian-Muslim relations, interfaith studies, identity, race and ethnicity, as well as comparative research and ethnography. He holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from Trinity College Dublin, an MS.c. Lond. In International Relations from Royal Holloway, University of London, and a B.A. in International Relations from American University, Washington DC.Since his undergraduate years, Craig has served in many different academic capacities. He was recently a Graduate Teaching Assistant for the Department of Sociology at Trinity College Dublin where he was a finalist for the Provost Teaching Award in 2011. In addition to his teaching duties, Considine was Editor of the Trinity College Dublin Journal of Postgraduate Research: Ireland’s Research on the Global Stage, Vol. 11 in 2012 and held the role of Postgraduate Representative on behalf of doctoral and masters students in the Department of Sociology at Trinity College Dublin.

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Karl
06-28-2015, 12:37 AM
True, Islam hasn't contributed to Western Culture, neither has Christianity, heathenry, pagan or Judaism. People have. I suppose the biggest influx of Muslim goodies would be at the time of the Crusades. All knowledge was quickly absorbed and taken back to Europe by the Western invading barbarians, even castles were built to the superior Muslim designs in England and other European places. These so called "right wing" ignorant cretins are just the pot calling the kettle black. A true right wing person would have these morons shot for such impudence, if he could. And I bet those "right wing Europeans" are just trouble making crypto- Jews.
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Vlad
06-28-2015, 01:02 AM
The western culture that destroyed the culture and religion of every single civilization? S***s who adopted the communist manifesto i.e., "survival of the fittest"? Sub-continent civilization was one of the richest till the time of British rule, from intentionally engineered Bengal Famine where people resorted to cannbalism to 50% subjugation tax in the form of Lagan.

Who would in their right mind make any sort of contribution to this culture? Unless, ofcourse, your intention is to conquer it.
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Vlad
06-28-2015, 01:09 AM
Originally Posted by czgibson
Yes, with non-Muslims living as second-class citizens.
Such a blabbermouth. Our second-class citizens(Dhimmis) enjoyed more rights and freedom compared to what your farangi forefathers offered to my people. Bring a case where a dhimmi pregnant woman was humiliated and denied entry to hospital or where a dhimmi was forced to sell his daughters to muslim conquerers due to famine.
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Zafran
06-28-2015, 03:44 AM
So one possible counter-example disposes of mountains of evidence that Islam is by far the most intolerant of the world's major religions.
Really? for being so educated you really think there is just one example? This is really odd you have a problem with the article showing Muslim achievements - but if you were going to show Islam as the a violent religion you were probably thinking of Muslims doing crazy acts past or present?

We know that Islamic civilization was at the forefront of human culture in between say, the Greeks, the Romans and the Renaissance. All of these cultures have made their contributions. I think the criticism that is being referred to in the title of this piece asks the question about what Islamic culture has contributed in more recent times.
The piece is arguing against right wing Europeans who want to portray Muslims as savages and that they are inherently retarded. So they clearly haven't contributed to the world past or present. If someone was to say the same thing about Sikhs, Hindus, Buddhists or even Africans and Chinese civilization/people - you really wouldn't be asking the same questions would you??

Brilliant. The man is a hero. What does this have to do with "Islam's Contribution to Western Culture"? Surely that's his contribution to world culture?
Yep if this was Issac newton it would be regarded as a "western civilization achievement" not Newtons but of course if it was a non European person it has to be about the individual and nothing to do with his intellectual culture.

Didn't know you were a apologist for European right wingers.
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Karl
06-29-2015, 05:41 AM
Originally Posted by Vlad
The western culture that destroyed the culture and religion of every single civilization? S***s who adopted the communist manifesto i.e., "survival of the fittest"? Sub-continent civilization was one of the richest till the time of British rule, from intentionally engineered Bengal Famine where people resorted to cannbalism to 50% subjugation tax in the form of Lagan.

Who would in their right mind make any sort of contribution to this culture? Unless, ofcourse, your intention is to conquer it.
Hey look on the bright side, the British gave you a reason to live....cricket!
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Scimitar
06-29-2015, 06:29 AM
bad joke Karl :hmm: poor taste. Sorry.

Scimi
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greenhill
06-29-2015, 02:17 PM
Islam is a way of life that is about submissiveness to Allah's laws as per given in the Quran and the hadeeth. Hence it really does not need to contribute anything at all to Western culture. But the way of life of the Muslims surely did teach a thing or two to the West. The West made their own culture of the back of what they learn from the Muslims.

It's all just a play of words to cloud the issues as far as I see it.


:peace:
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czgibson
06-29-2015, 02:29 PM
Greetings Zafran,

Originally Posted by Zafran
Really? for being so educated you really think there is just one example?
The article gave one example as if it discounted all evidence to the contrary.

This is really odd you have a problem with the article showing Muslim achievements - but if you were going to show Islam as the a violent religion you were probably thinking of Muslims doing crazy acts past or present?
I'm sorry, I don't know what that sentence means.

The piece is arguing against right wing Europeans who want to portray Muslims as savages and that they are inherently retarded. So they clearly haven't contributed to the world past or present. If someone was to say the same thing about Sikhs, Hindus, Buddhists or even Africans and Chinese civilization/people - you really wouldn't be asking the same questions would you??
Congratulations - you are on the cusp of realising something important. Have you noticed how these groups have no need to make such lists? What do you think sets Islam apart to the point where it constantly needs to be on the defensive like this?

Why do you think this forum has a busy section entitled 'Clarifications about Islam' after a supposedly perfect revelation has been delivered by Allah?

Yep if this was Issac newton it would be regarded as a "western civilization achievement" not Newtons but of course if it was a non European person it has to be about the individual and nothing to do with his intellectual culture.
If you're talking about a specific achievement by Newton, then it is his achievement alone. For example, his laws of motion are known as 'Newton's laws of motion'.

The environment that allowed him to conduct his research freely, and the enterprise of free inquiry called science are achievements of humanity, and I think it would be shortsighted to claim that such an enterprise only originates from one part of the world. However, free inquiry is much more readily available in some parts of the world than others, and areas with greater religious influence tend to allow less free research.

Didn't know you were a apologist for European right wingers.
Neither did I! I think you could only draw that conclusion if your thinking is dominated by simple binary oppositions of exactly the kind that you have been unfortunately taught by your religion. I hope that one day you will realise just how much your religion has held you and your fellow Muslims back.

Peace
Reply

introspective
06-30-2015, 06:10 PM
Originally Posted by czgibson
areas with greater religious influence tend to allow less free research
Generalizing much?

What is "free research"?
Reply

czgibson
06-30-2015, 09:10 PM
Greetings,

Originally Posted by introspective
Generalizing much?

What is "free research"?
http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2015/...le-innovation/

Peace
Reply

Karl
06-30-2015, 10:01 PM
Originally Posted by Scimitar
bad joke Karl :hmm: poor taste. Sorry.

Scimi
I suppose, but why do the South Asians love the British so much after all those massacres and oppression? They even think their fellow Asians that can't speak English are losers. Why are they such sycophants to the British as well as other Western Zionist cultural imperialist organisations such as the United Nations?
Reply

Scimitar
06-30-2015, 10:32 PM
Originally Posted by Karl
I suppose,
:)

Originally Posted by Karl
but why do the South Asians love the British so much after all those massacres and oppression?
Love? that's a strong word. I live in London, UK, amongst English people and many other kinds - it is diverse. Some of my good friends are white English people who though atheist/agnostic - respect me for my Islam and ability to connect with them - educate them on matters which otherwise would have seen them follow the MSM narratives.

I do not believe all people in a specific race are the same - there are good apples and bad apples. Generalizing a populus is unfair and racist. What you are implying is that South Asians should be feeling a racist and resentful stance towards White Brits, this is racism aand Islam does not support racism.

Originally Posted by Karl
They even think their fellow Asians that can't speak English are losers.
Indians speak better English than most Brits I know. They just have an accent. Sure, occasionally we may find the odd South Asian who struggles with English - but so what? DO White Englishmen speak Urdu in general? And if not, should we all now think they are losers because they don't?

I have yet to find a South Asian, a member of my own race group - to sponsor what you claim in real life. Anyone can talk schit on the web, under a veil of anonymity - say perhaps, a racist bigot who is White joins a forum under the guise of "South Asian Muslim" to cause friction, does that now lead us to believe

1) that all South Asians believe what you claim?
2) that all White Brits are racist?
3) none of the above?

I go for option 3.

Originally Posted by Karl
Why are they such sycophants to the British as well as other Western Zionist cultural imperialist organisations such as the United Nations?
It's pragmatism if this is the case, but it is rare for it to be so - you're generalizing and doing your own world view no justice. Seriously, you have to be rational and not judgemental because you may have witnessed a smallband of unruly South Asians make such fallacious claims. Surely you can see that, right Karl?

Scimi
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Junon
06-30-2015, 11:02 PM
Salaam

Originally Posted by Muhammad
Greetings czgibson,

It is Ramadhan and I have no interest in getting into a debate. However, I'm not sure why such lists seem to irk you so much. I had trouble seeing more to your points than mere nitpicking and searching for flaws. As an example, your last point about the 'non sequitur' is not true. Right at the beginning, the article states, '[the]... disgusting treatment of women and minorities confirm in the minds of many that Islam is incompatible with Western civilization. This has become a widely known, and even unthinkingly accepted, proposition. But is it correct?' It then goes on to mention in refutation of this that more women are actually turning to Islam than men.

The underlying point here is one's perspective. People can see the list as an invitation to learn more. After all, the introduction makes clear that it is merely examples being presented. It is not meant to be a dissertation providing detailed analysis. Others like yourself can choose to only see (or find) negativity. In that case, it is time to re-evaluate your purpose for doing so.
His entire modus operandi since he joined this forum is to appear honest and open minded, however scratch the beneath the surface and he turns out to be yet another dawkins clone, fishing for converts. Naturally he fails hence his snarky and passive aggressive attitude, which is becoming rather noticeable of late. Sad really.
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Muhammad
06-30-2015, 11:54 PM
Originally Posted by czgibson
Congratulations - you are on the cusp of realising something important. Have you noticed how these groups have no need to make such lists?
A simple google search on any of these groups will prove to the contrary.

Why do you think this forum has a busy section entitled 'Clarifications about Islam' after a supposedly perfect revelation has been delivered by Allah?
It has nothing to do with the clarity of the message. Rather it is the sad reality of ill-intentioned folk who have nothing better to do than visit Islamic forums in attempt to discredit Islam.

Neither did I! I think you could only draw that conclusion if your thinking is dominated by simple binary oppositions of exactly the kind that you have been unfortunately taught by your religion. I hope that one day you will realise just how much your religion has held you and your fellow Muslims back.
The only 'binary opposition' going on here is your persistent prejudice towards Islam, as is clear from the hate-filled comments you make on threads like this. Our religion teaches us that people like you may go on hating, but it won't diminish by an iota the truth and clarity of Islam and the success it holds for humanity in this world and the hereafter.

Any further discussion can wait until after Ramadhan.
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