By Yasser Latif Hamdani
My secular comrades and friends will probably disagree with me or maybe not, and it is nothing less than sacrilege for a self proclaimed secularist like myself to say so, but the core values of any civilization are drawn from the dominant religio-cultural system. There are contributory factors from other minority strains but ultimately the way society is organized is around the religio-cultural system the majority of its adherents follow. So for example, the Western civilization- as we know it today- has for evolved out of a Judaeo-Christian cultural norms and as it is secularized, it is enriched by other cultural strains but it remains manifestly a product of Judaeo-Christian evolution. It certainly has strong heritage in Hellenistic past but that itself is expressed through established Christian traditions (for example Christmas which is an adopted Hellenistic holiday), much like Islam adopted a lot of pre-Islamic Arabian heritage as its own. Continue reading
Filed under Islam, Islamism
Uri Avnery writing for Outlook India
© 2009 Menassat
According to a Chinese saying, if someone in the street tells you that you are drunk, you can laugh. If a second person tells you that you are drunk, start to think about it. If a third one tells you the same, go home and sleep it off.
Our political and military leadership has already encountered the third, fourth and fifth person. All of them say that they must investigate what happened in the “Molten Lead” operation. Continue reading
By Drake Bennett in the Boston Globe
Three weeks ago, with much fanfare, a team of scientists unveiled the fossil skeleton of Ardi, a 4-foot-tall female primate who lived and died 4.4 million years ago in what is now Ethiopia. According to her discoverers, Ardi – short for Ardipithecus ramidus, her species – is our oldest known ancestor. She predated Lucy, the fossilized Australopithecus afarensis that previously had claimed the title, by 1.2 million years. The papers announcing the find described a transitional specimen, with the long arms and short legs of an ape and strong, grasping big toes suited to life in the trees, but also a pelvis whose shape allowed her to walk upright on the ground below. Continue reading
Filed under Islam, Science
By Mona Eltahawy
I am a Muslim, I am a feminist and I detest the full-body veil, known as a niqab or burqa. It erases women from society and has nothing to do with Islam but everything to do with the hatred for women at the heart of the extremist ideology that preaches it.
We must not sacrifice women at the altar of political correctness or in the name of fighting a growingly powerful right wing that Muslims face in countries where they live as a minority.
Filed under Islam, Women, World
By FAIZ AL-NAJDI
President Barack Obama’s historic address of Thursday 04 June-09 from Cairo is certainly talk-of-the-town now. A great speaker that he certainly is, he was surely able to leave some good impressions especially in the Muslim world and the results are showing already. The elections results of Lebanon, where a pro-West coalition has been able to trounce the Hezbollah-led coalition, and those in Iran, where street protests go on with full fervor, may be termed as the testimony to the same. His speech continues to resonate all over and is already winning praises from his foes and friends alike. The pundits say, in his 55-minute address he was able to connect to the Muslim world largely because of the fact that he was bold enough to speak the truth. Continue reading
By Yasser Latif Hamdani
I am used to shaking my head in disbelief at the popular theory that Americans got rid of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto because Bhutto was pursuing a policy of nuclearisation and Pan-Islamism that threatened American interests in Middle East. Yet the strange similarities between what went on in Pakistan in the early summer of 1977 and the events in Iran this summer has given me reason to pause. As many other people have now begun to say it openly, it will not be out of place to dwell on the similarities between the agitation against Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and the agitation taking place against Ahmadinejad.
By Yasser Latif Hamdani
President Obama’s landmark speech was extraordinary and unprecedented. It marks a paradigm shift in US’ relationship with the Muslim world and is a recognition that our common earth needs to be saved from destruction and mindless violence. President Obama is proving himself to be the change that he promised. Yet as a Pakistani I feel that the speech was delivered at the wrong forum in the wrong city. Continue reading