February 21, 2005

Evidence of Moderate Islam

I'm very glad I scrolled down to an older Donald Sensing item at One Hand Clapping. I completely agree that this moderate Islam article is both important and exciting. The $64,000 question for those who equate islamism with the whole of Islam has always been how such a dysfunctional ideology could have survived so many centuries.

The answer that this article comes back is that Islamism didn't because it isn't of ancient pedigree but a modern mutation that is less than fully rooted in the events that led to the writing of the Koran. Essentially, this article places modern Islamism within a tradition of Islamic puritan movements that crop up every once in awhile and then get beaten down by mainstream Islamic forces. Apparently there have been several episodes of this sort of thing in the past.

None of this is indicative of whether non Wahabbi/Salafist/puritanical is not also fundamentally incompatible with modernity. In fact, if it wasn't for mainstream Islam's long downhill slide, the Wahabbi/Salafist puritans would likely not be so advanced. That's largely a fight for another day, though.

The decline of mainstream Islam is going to have to be corrected internally or the religion is going to eventually disappear. Managing that decline is a delicate job, one that seems to have gone amiss lately. Hopefully in future they will do better.

Posted by TMLutas at February 21, 2005 03:42 PM