The Wood Shed

You never know what you're going to find in the pile.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Highly Informative

Spengler's column in Asia Times, dated February 7th, is a very well-written study of Islam's current plight:

With freedom of choice and access to information come doubt. Western scholars doubt whether Mohammed ever existed [2] or, if he existed, whether the Koran was invented two centuries after his death, or indeed whether the Koran even was written in Arabic. Christianity and Judaism are bloodied - indeed, drained almost dry - by nearly two centuries of scriptural criticism; Islam's turn barely has begun.

Muslims rage at affronts to their faith because the modern world puts their faith at risk, precisely as modern Islamists contend. [3] That is not a Muslim problem as such, for all faith is challenged as traditional society gives ground to globalization. But Muslim countries, whose traditional life shows a literacy rate of only 60%, face a century of religious deracination. Christianity and Judaism barely have adapted to the modern world; the Islamists believe with good reason that Islam cannot co-exist with modernism and propose to shut it out altogether.

Throughout the world, literacy erodes traditional society, and the collapse of traditional society leads to declining population growth rates. But in the Muslim world these trends hit like a shock wave. Both the traditional life of Muslims as well as Muslim theology have been frozen in time, such that Muslims are repeating in compressed time trends long at work in the West. The result is devastating.

The entire column is well worth reading. The above paragraphs were selected for content and do not follow each other in the original. The numbers refer to footnotes found at the end of the column. Spengler's logical approach helps to explain in context the reactions and violent language coming out of the Muslim world today.

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