Fragile masculinity

Dear crusader against the times,

We hear you loud and clear: feminism is the great scourge of our times, apparently set to undermine our faith — along with modernism, scientism, liberalism and materialism. Thus must you argue at length in every post about the dangers they pose to orthodoxy, irregardless of your simplistic reductions. Continue reading “Fragile masculinity”

These scales

When I look back on my life, I see that I have spent most of it in sin. But for the mercy of my Lord, my balance stands against me. However will I turn things around, I often ask myself, so late in the day with so many evil deeds weighing down so heavily on one side of my scales? Yes, it is a frequent cause of despair. True, Ibrahim said: “And who despairs of the mercy of his Lord except for those astray?” (Qur’an 15:56) — but for one oft-repeating in the same sins, over and over as the years pass by, it is difficult not to lose hope, seeing the ruin I have built for myself. So many times have I stood at these crossroads, resolving to turn my life around and reform, but alas, alas, here I am once more, with all the same regrets and remorse, as if nothing ever changed. What I would give to be faithful and pure.

Pawns

Is it not rather hypocritical for Turkish state media, notably TRT World (the international branch of Turkey’s public broadcaster) and Daily Sabah (the international voice of the ruling party), to lament the continued detention of Dr Tariq Ramadan — allegedly for Islamophobic reasons — given the number of imams, academics and journalists incarcerated in Turkey for alleged affiliation with Muhammed Fethullah Gülen? According to Human Rights Watch, there are currently 77,000 people held in pre-trial detention in Turkey, on charges relating to the 2016 coup attempt alone, where suspects can now be held for up to seven years. Continue reading “Pawns”

To be trustworthy

Faith does not mean forwarding every piece of spurious crap you receive on WhatsApp, believing everything you read on Facebook, or liking every Tweet shared by a Muslim personality. You still have to verify the information you receive, even if it comes from a trusted friend.  Continue reading “To be trustworthy”

Political prisoner

Yes, I believe we could be political prisoners: prisoners to the politics of community, so often browbeaten into an unthinking stupor through loyalty to a common cause, shackled by that ever-present fear: of the imminent accusations of heresy and disbelief reserved for anybody who might step out of line and think for themselves.   Continue reading “Political prisoner”

Two sides of a coin

The parallel lives of anti-Muslim and Muslim activists are remarkable. They reside in different rooms of the same house: only the furniture is different. They read from the same script; only the actors are diverse. The conspiracies they take to heart are the same; only the protagonists are unique.  Continue reading “Two sides of a coin”

On lizard holes

How easy it is to find fault with the other. It is always our opponents that have entered the proverbial lizard hole, while we ourselves cling firm to authentic faith. Our orthodoxy is palpably correct, while the beliefs of our foes are obviously suspect. Thus do we wield in our armoury words famously attributed to the Prophet, peace be upon him, with which we trounce our opponents: Continue reading “On lizard holes”

A truly dreadful organisation

Dear members,

We don’t often call other organisations out by name, but frankly the state of membership of the Bucks Biscuit Dunking Society is so perilous, so flaccid, so lax, that it merits us causing a humongous controversy for all to see, in order to increase the standing of our society in the eyes of the general public. Continue reading “A truly dreadful organisation”

Skeptical Muslim

After twenty years moving in this community, and over a decade — on and off — amongst Muslims online, I have grown far too skeptical to take the latest manufactured controversy at face value. To our activists and leaders of opinion, amongst whom are the sincere and faithful, I am sorry; I am sorry that skepticism is my overriding reaction to the latest populist altercation online. Continue reading “Skeptical Muslim”