Bringing the Greater Jihad to the Silver Screen

Check out this wonderful exchange about the nature of jihad in Islam in a recent film. (And, if you know the film's name, please let me know.)Update: I've been informed it was "Sleeper Cell," a 2005 film I somehow missed. (Actually, it's in my NetFlix queue, but it's a long, long queue.)Aside from the fact that I agree wholeheartedly with its message and think such insights need to be more widely discussed--among not only non-Muslims but also Muslims, even if this isn't a radical new … [Read more...]

Hussein Rashid on LGBT Muslims

Hussein Rashid has a thoughtful piece in Religion Dispatches on the need for the American Muslim community to begin a rather overdue dialogue with its gay members. This is a topic I've often considered trying to gingerly broach, myself. I say "gingerly" because it's a complex topic, and one where it's easy to get co-opted by zealots on one side or another.Taking as his point of departure a controversy over an ad promoting tolerance towards gays that was rejected by a progressive Christian … [Read more...]

The MSM’s new “Jihadism vs. McSufism” narrative

Br. Yahya Birtfrom across the pond was so kind as to inform me of a much better and more thought-provoking link regarding the place of Sufism in the GWOT than the article in Time magazine that I shared earlier, so I'm passing it on. I explained  in the post's comments (reproduced below) why, despite my agreement with some of the Times article's underlying premises, I didn't like the piece much. As usual in MSM discussions of Sufism, the article … [Read more...]

Non Skeptical Essays on Islamic Law & pluralism

Aasem at Non Skeptical Essays has a stimulating post on Islamic Law. Here's an excerpt from Dynamics of Change in Islamic Law (I): Normative Pluralism:In my view, the most important crisis that Muslim society miserably failed to handle during Islam’s sojourn into modernity is diversity. By diversity, I mean religious heterogeneity in any form, may it be the pronouncement of legal injunctions, opinions regarding societal norms or something as personal as individual religious practices.I don't h … [Read more...]

Curious geopolitical commentary in a book of Islamic philosophy

Speaking of Iran... I thought I'd share a curiously polemical observation that I came across in the foreword to Richard Joseph McCarthy's otherwise invaluable annotated 1980 translation  of Imam Al Ghazzali's al-Munqidh min al-Dalal (Delieverance from Error), entitled  Freedom and Fulfillment (recently reprinted by Fons Vitae). The editor of the book series (i.e., not the author), a Harvard professor, concluded the foreword as follows (emphasis added):The present volume was prepared … [Read more...]

Salafis, Kalam, complexity, and hijab

Mere Islam (The Salafis and Their Kalam, Kalam, Kalam...) provides links to intriguing critiques of what seem to be ironic theological inconsistencies among some contemporary Salafi thinkers given their declared hostility to speculative theology.Mere Islam: The Salafis and Their Kalam, Kalam, Kalam.... Of special interest in this article is the inclusion of some statements by a couple of noted "Salafi" scholars in which they speculate about Kalam Allah and it's relationship to His essence, … [Read more...]

Geneive Abdo pans the Secular Islamic Summit in WoPo

Don't know how I missed this when it came out, but I just came across an article by Genieve Abdo in The Washington Post on the recent "Secular Islam" gathering the credibility of which I ("New from Monty Python: the Ministry of Silly Islamic Activists" and others  (e.g., alt.muslim, have challenged.   Not surprisingly, she seems to share our scepticism about their claim to being reformers, much less their ability to deliver the goods. Geneive Abdo - … [Read more...]

Show prayer times in FireFox with Fzami

Came across a handy Firefox plug-in called Fzami that displays prayer times in the status bar.  Haven't experimented with it yet, but judging by the screenshots it looks great. [HT: Dil-e-Nadaan] Man, this could be a real gold mine for the guy who made it, given how easy it is to get sucked into one's computer.  We're talking potentially gazillions of sawab .  This is a like a spiritual "dot com".  He'll be able to "retire" (to Jannah as opposed to the … [Read more...]