Back in August and September I decided to cover the subject of Islam for my Objectivist club. First we saw the film The Third Jihad and then in September an ASU College Professor of Russian language who became interested in Islam and studied up on it after 9/11.
All I can say is learning about it was quite eye opening.
To sum it up, ex-Muslim Ayaan Hirsi Ali best describes the religion when she recently stated:
Islam is more than a religion, it does have a spiritual dimension, but there is another dimension to Islam--a political dimension.
As our guest lecturer, Dr. Carl Goldberg, pointed out the Prophet Muhammad defined the state of peace and tolerance as a moment when the entire world submits to Allah and Islam.
The way that the submission is carried out is by settlement (i.e. jihad) and the institution of Sharia Law.
The four main sources of Islamic jurisprudence are the Quran, Hadith, Sunnah and Sharia of which they include specific commands to conquer and guidelines on how to do it.
The Sunnah or Hadith (I do not remember which) describe how Muhammad (who is not only the prophet of Allah but whose word is considered Allah's word) defeated his enemies in more than 60 military campaigns.
The books also describe war tactics, the concept of deception, legislation on crime prevention, punishment of behavior such as the hanging of apostates and the stoning of adulterers, and laws governing family matters such as divorce and marriage.
The way Islam is structured not only is dissent in the religion not doable (due to the specifity of the texts on which it is based) but also cannot be tolerated. The religion (if you want to call it that) is a way of life.
In terms of war, there were times that Christianity was spread by the sword but the religion can and has been reinterpreted to where it is not in the sense of military campaigns.
Islam is and it is a requirement of the religion. Many groups have suspended violent action in favor of pragmatic political activities.
If you want to see what life would be like under Islam, you need look no further than Saudi Arabia and Iran.
Edited by Mike Renzulli, 17 November 2010 - 08:18 AM.