It is axiomatic: Anything good is proportionately dangerous. That is why the highest compliment is to say that something is “terribly good.” While there is no good inthe terror there is always terror in the good. We know how awful it is when love turns inside out. We know that when beauty, truth, and good are either perverted or subvertedthe result is appalling.
Religion is a great good. Religion misused can be amongthe most horrifyingly awful and self-defeating powers inthe universe. This too often has been seen in the use of war in the name of God. In every religion there are to be found traditions in which adherents did not — do not and will not — use their belief to enter into the peace of God but to enter into violence. Today we can see this in ISIL.
There is no reason to pick on Islam, any more than on Christianity or Judaism. All religions produce people who think beating evil by use of evil means is God’s will. Butthe world now has to face ISIL. To do so we have to understand it — beginning with how it emerged. Thearticle below, the first of a three-part series consideres theorigins of ISIL in the theology of Muhammad ibn ‘Abd al-Wahhab and in the ties of the House of Saud to “wahhabism” beginning in the 18th century. Thesecond article will look at the development of these views in subsequent history, and finally the final piece will deal with ISIL now.
ISIL in the Context of Religion
By Joe Morris Doss
Part one of a three-part series
Wikipedia on ISIL (The Islamic State of Iraq and theLevant; also termed ISIS): A Sunni jihadist group in theMiddle East. In its self-proclaimed status as a caliphate, it claims religious authority over all Muslims across theworld and aspires to bring most of the Muslim-inhabited regions of the world under its political control beginning with Iraq, Syria and other territories in the Levant region which include Jordan, Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Cyprus and part of southern Turkey…Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi — now known as Amir al-Mu’minin Caliph Ibrahim — was named as its caliph, and the group was renamed theIslamic State (IS).
Thesis: The long standing schism and profound struggle between Sunni Muslims and Shia Muslims is at the heart of the issue. As with other Sunni Muslims, ISIL focuses their enmity on Shiites, but they have no regard for anyone who fails to observe to their own form of Islam, which they consider “pure” and “authentic,” including other Sunni Muslims, and they are ruthless in their determination. Of course, they have targeted the powerful western powers, especially the United States, and like all terrorists they are trying to provoke more powerful enemies into overreaction. To understand ISIL it is necessary to understand wahabism and it is necessary to understand the role of modern Saudi Arabia. Read More…