Islam : A religion of peace?


When it comes to IslamI have my own idea about it.  What little I really understand about it


Islam (Photo credit: rogiro)


comes from a combination of information from a “Religions of the World” class I had at Manatee Junior College and what I was briefed on while in the service, and, finally, what I have read about it over the years.


None of this really makes me an expert but, like every other A hole out there, I have an opinion.  That said, I am going to tell you what my opinion is.  I am not going to expound on and authoritative lecture but, I will give you my perception of Islam.


From my understanding the Qur’an is based on a number of books from what we call the Bible.  So the religion should be similar to ours?  I would think so but, then I remember that we also have a large number of religions based on the same book.  The Talmud, the Jewish Bible, has some of the same books but not all of them.  Then we have a number of denominations such as the Catholics, the Protestant, Presbyterian, Lutheran,  the Jehovah Witnesses(JWs), the Latter Day Saints, and others.


The differences seem to come from the various interpretations of the text and what it means.  Some of these groups still have a prohibition about PORK.  Some of them will tell you that evil people go to Hell when they die, and at least one says there is NO HELL and then when we die we will lay,unknowing and unaware, in the ground until the day of resurrections come.


I do not know who is right.  All I know is that 1. religion is a personal thing and 2 the United States, and I am an American, has freedom of religion so, there is a certain amount of understanding, and tolerance, that should be extended to other religions.


We are supposed to respect other people’s religions.  In the past, while the western nations were maturing, this has not always been true.  As the organized religions expanded through Europe they often would declare that NON Christian religions were Satan worshipers.


In one 200 year period there were a number of Crusades into the Middle East that attempted to gain control of the Holy Land from the Muslims, who at one time had spread as far west as North Africa and Spain.


So what does this have to do with Islam and tolerance?  Well, you can’t have much tolerance of other religions when you refer to practitioners of other religions as “infidels”, and command your followers to kill them.  That seems rather straightforward.


Another thing that seems rather straightforward, at least to me, is the Islamic call to kill people who make fun of them, or write books, think Salman Rushdie and the Satanic Verses.  Then again there is that recently done movie : Innocence of Mohammed.  It is a poorly done movie that is poorly dubbed, in an effort to keep the actors from understanding what the aim of the movies really was.  Why else would he change it from Desert Warrior, as well as the setting?


So the question about Islam is this : Is it really a peaceful and tolerant religion, or are the so called radicals really the mainstream? 


I understand that there are fruitcakes in any group, such as the Pastor in Florida who burned copies of the Qur’an.  Maybe it is just a book to him and maybe he would not get excited if someone were to burn HIS Bible.  Then again, when the shoe is on the other foot, it doesn’t make blisters on yours.


You can TALK about other religions all you want but, the real proof is in what you DO.  Threatening people with death because they don’t agree with you is considered, by civilized countries, to be bad form.  That could be a cultural thing that they might grow out of once there is a respect for human life, and it is hard to see a respect for human life from people who strap on bombs and target  women and children.   






By Joseph Bowen

Ex SSgt in Air Force Security Police... I had 10 years of active duty and inactive reserve. I have a total of 20 years, includes Air Force SP, security experience. I also worked 8 years and 4 months in the Garden Center of the Sarasota Cattleman Walmart. I also took the CCNA class at Sarasota Vo-Tech, when it was still called that. I am now, since 2010 a caregiver for my Mother. While I am now a registered Republican I am more likely to vote for whichever person I believe will do a better job.. In the last presidential elections I voted Libertarian, as I the two main choices seemed to be between lying crook, or an uncouth babler who could not be trusted.


  1. even i as muslim fail to understand why muslims around the world turned those peaceful protests into violent ones.
    as i muslim i understand freedom of speech and religion.
    but then as a muslim i fail to understand how its OK for united states to bomb women and children via drones and justify it in the name of peace.
    how is the world fixated at the violent protests by muslims worldwide but not protesting about the innocent murders by drone attacks?!


    1. even i as muslim fail to understand why muslims around the world turned those peaceful protests into violent ones
      This is really simple. The people who were conducting the peaceful protest were trying to get their Voices heard, and that is GOOD. The people who turned those protest violent show contempt for those protesters, and their voice.

      The United States, or its Allies, does not target women and children. Yes, they do get killed. You can not justify killing women and children. it just doesn’t work. As far as the drone strikes are concerned, I would rather they could be more precise. While I would like to have more “boots on the ground” it is not always possible. While the drones extend the reach of out military, without having to risk anymore “boot on the ground” it is still a form of bombing, and that means it will also kill people near the target. No matter who much technology goes into these weapons there is still a blast radius. It is not like a single bullet that can be aimed at a specific target and would only endanger people behind the target. The other problem I see with the drones is that you have some kid, probably located in Texas or somewhere, who is controlling the drone not be seeing what he think he is seeing. There is a video of a helicopter pilot who shot up some terrorist armed with RPGs. When other people dragged the man into an escape vehicle he shot that up as well. It turns out that those RPGs were cameras and he was part of a news crew. One of the dead, in the Van, was a child. The dead child was not targeted, they did not even know he was there. The gunner in the helicopter thought he was shooting at armed insurgents. The term that is applied here, more often than we would like, is “collateral damage”, and wile it really does not excuse the boys death it does underscore the fact that in war not everything can be controlled, and there is a difference between this boys death, and the death of children who have been targeted by the insurgents as a means of spreading the terror. Maybe the insurgents would like to make sure they are not in a populated area when they attack.


  2. You left out the Druids! Unforgivable! But that’s okay, because the poor buggers didn’t write — as far as we know. Assembling large boulders into a sort of ring seems to have occupied most of their time, and when one considers the sheer size and weight, one can see how there would be time for little else… Hence, they did not have time to fight, or do much of anything else. But I digress. For all we know they invented “Rock, Paper, Scissors” as a way of choosing what to do. Although they didn’t have paper or scissors. Can you see where I’m going with this? If you can, please e-mail me. I need all the help I can get on this one! [ For edification see an episode of The Big Bang Theory loosely referred to as “Rock, paper, scissors, Lizard, Spock”, wherein the brilliant but somewhat mentally unhinged Dr. Sheldon Cooper attempts to unsnare the pitfalls of Rock-Paper-Scissors by just adding to the confusion of choice. Much like religion.] I’m sure the Supreme Being (see the movie: “Time Bandits”) is having a goodly chuckle over our sort of Tower-of-Babel similarity regarding religion. In his books of the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams points out that there is a planet where sandwich making is the supreme art, and if something goes awry they say: “FOR BOB’s SAKE!” (BOB being the one whose name gets taken in vain…) They also have a lounge wherein The King is in attendance every night. And you know the King is there, because there is a great honking PINK CADILLAC parked outside… And yes, their favorite food is “perfectly normal beast”. Ah, for simpler times. And tolerance of all things. And ttherein lies a problem: with this great technology the tolerances are TOO SMALL! Much like you have already pointed out, we seem to agree that there is but one god. We borrow from one another that which suits our needs at the moment. And since that moment passed quite a loing time ago (as things have a habit of doing) it is up to the present “us” to carry on the long standing tradition of — “If you don’t like what your neighbor has to say, whack him on the head!” Which is the origin of “Whack A Mole”. But that’s another story…


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