Muslim stripped of inter-faith prize

Muslim stripped of inter-faith prize May 17, 2009

HEARD the one about a Jew, a Catholic, a Lutheran and a Muslim who won an inter-faith cultural award in Germany?
Oi vey, this is indeed a great honour,” said the Jew.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,” said the Catholic.
Praise be to Jesus,” said the Lutheran.
Allāhu Akbar,” said the Muslim – but grumpily added “Bollocks to the infidel!” when he was informed by the judges in the German state of Hesse that he’d been disqualified.

'Idolatrous': Jesus on the cross
'Idolatrous': Jesus on the cross
Navid Kermani, the Iranian-born co-winner of the 45,000 euro state-sponsored culture award – held to celebrate the “achievements” of the world’s monotheistic religions – was told that he could not have a share of the dosh.
The reason? Co-winners Catholic Cardinal Karl Lehmann of Mainz and Peter Steinacker, former head of the Lutheran church of Hesse and Nassau, objected to sharing the prize with Kermani after the Muslim wrote that the crucifix was “an idolatrous image”.
The fourth recipient, Jewish leader Salomon Korn, according to this report, appears to have remained schtum.
Kermani had begun an article about the crucifix with:

I’d express my personal rejection of the theology of the cross frankly with ‘blasphemy and idolatry’.

The Hesse judges then wrote to Kermani withdrawing its offer of the prize to him.
The speaker of Germany’s Parliament, Norbert Lammert, slammed the board’s turnabout, saying:

If this is true, they should abolish the prize altogether. … Culture is nice, tolerance too, but one can’t have both without making a big effort.

The Central Council of Muslims, one of four national Islamic groups in Germany, described the churchmen’s reaction as “childish”.
Aiman A Mazyek, secretary of the council, to the Berlin newspaper Tagesspiegel, said:

How would they have felt if a Muslim had refused to meet a churchman because he did not revere the Prophet Mohammed?

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  • once again the incompatability of different strains of idiocy clash head-on.
    Of course, no one has the balls to say that – NO strains of stupidity – should be encouraged.

  • Stonyground

    That seems to be the problem with all these attempts to get the different religions to bury the hatchet and work together. Their different beliefs are irreconcilable and each one actually has condemnation of some parts of the other's beliefs built in. As a result, the supposed ecumenism is never more than a tissue thin mask which inevitably keeps slipping off.
    It is a shame that it never dawns on any of them that their own beliefs are just as false as the others.

  • Yes, they're all religions of peace and love until you ask them to get together and be peaceful and loving to one another.

  • valdemar

    It's amazing how many mutually incompatible ways there are to be stupidly, stubbornly wrong about things nobody could possibly know in the first place. That's the lesson of religion, I guess…

  • It's fine for the muslims to get all whiny and petulant about this 'sleight' (after all, it's what they do best), but it's difficult to see how crticising one of the central tenets of one religion as "blasphemous and idolatrous" (even if it is bollocks) is somehow promoting interfaith relations.

  • Rubberduck

    But… IS “an idolatrous image”
    I don't get it.
    Then again I'm just a simpleminded atheist…..

  • Brian Jordan

    Just so long as they continue to squabble it's fine. The trouble comes when the form unholy alliances

  • Norman Lycan

    shargraves said:
    "once again the incompatability of different strains of idiocy clash head-on. "
    Response: Yes, they often do, maybe they cant help it. What puzzles me is atheists I meet who are skinhead bigots. I assumed when I came looking for open minded people like me on this site and others, that I would find people who realize that freethinkers are the last hope of humanity. People who really understand the flaws in the human condition. Those flaws that are thrusting us toward our self inflicted extinction.
    And listen up folks, there was no curse cast by a priest or cleric that killed the dinosaurs. And the same fate awaits us with the toss of the dice. If humanity disappears forever, the universe will not care. It's not keeping a diary, unless you count fossils. But, who is going to dig us up?
    The human condition, understand it, or we are lost.

  • Stonyground

    I think that Mr. Lycan has made an interesting point in that people in general seem to have a need to believe in nonsense. I often wondered if everyone in the world could be made to forget their respective religion overnight, how likely is it that new ones would spring up spontaniously and take us right back to square one. In western countries where religion seems to be in decline we see belief in astrology, magic crystals, homeopathy and all kinds of other unsubstanyiated guff springing up to take its place.
    The unspoken question that seems to arise from Mr. Lycan's post is what is to be done? We do our best through political campaigning, diseminating information, trying to improve education, particularly in physical science and of course taking the unmerciful piss. Anyone have any other suggestions?