reply to post by beezzer
Many have spoken of freedom of speech as being "responsble" freedom of speech
John Stuart Mill in "on liberty" talks about the restrictions to free speech as being speech which specifically exhorts violence.
One mustn't be restricted in a mere inflammatory attack on someone elses belief system; it must be in the form of "attack this person" or "the Jews
say this" and in doing so specifically encourages a violent behavior.
Thus, anyone who urges violence against Muslims has overstepped the boundaries of free speech; but simply attacking the prophet of Islam, or Allah, or
the entire Muslim community (ummah) is a protected right of free speech. It is a personal opinion on the content of another persons beliefs; whether
right or wrong, we grant people the latitude to express that.
Thus is the fundamental difference between the western world and the Islamic world: it is based on a metaphysical grounding which determines how
people think, feel and act. In the western world, the philosophy of Thomas Aquinas prevailed and brought with it an understanding of God as logos - as
reason. This meant that man could connect
with the divine Will by following his own reason.
As I've mentioned numerous times, Ibn Hanbal, Al Ashari and Al Ghazali (the biggest figure in Islam behind the prophet Mohammad) developed a
metaphysics where Allah was identified with Pure Will - as power beyond all contingencies; to be accorded "reason" would be to bind Allah to following
His reason, which is to say, to make him contingent on determined states of being; this was inconceivable to Islams early theologians; God is ALL
powerful, and cannot be limited in any way - he cannot be bound by the need to act justly; rather, he is pure arbitrary will; and His only Will is the
Will revealed in the Holy Quran, which is at once co-eternal with Him.
This is why in Islam Will and power takes precedence over reason; why science never developed in Arab world, and the early philosophical advancements
in the Averroes, Avicenna, and the great Arab and Persian scientists were wiped away and labeled forbidden to be studied and blasphemous after the
heyday of Mu'tzailite rationalistic Islam in the Caliphates of Al-Mamun and his son and grandson.
Until Islam is reformed from within by moderate streams who give primacy to reason over will - who conceive of Allah as a God bound by his Reason -
will this problem be remedied. The good news is, this was the position of Mu'tazalites, i.e. Averroes, Avicenna. So it can gain traction again.
The bad news is, were seeing the opposite. The Islamist radicals are growing in popularity in the Islamic world; instead of reform, were seeing calls
for the 'return to the days of the prophet and his companions' i.e. Islam in it's imperialistic period, where the primacy of Will expressed in Jihad
was most expressed.
edit on 15-9-2012 by dontreally because: (no reason given)