Category Archives: Religion

Are Shia True Muslims?

Shireen T. Hunter writes:

This widely held Arab belief that Iranians are not real Muslims is based on the premise that they never fully converted to Islam. Instead, they developed Shi’ism, which is allegedly nothing more than their old religion with a thin guise of Islam. Moreover, Arabs believe that the Iranians did so in order to subvert and undermine their true and pure Islam. In a Cairo bookshop near Al-Azhar several years ago, I saw a book for sale entitled Shia Conspiracy Against Islam. Since then, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and others, along with religious figures such as the Egypt-born resident of Qatar Sheik Yusuf Qaradawi, have sponsored many more books on Shi’ism’s threat to Islam and Iran’s plans to convert Sunnis to Shi’ism.

The idea of Shi’ism as an Iranian creation has, of course, no historical validity. The split that occurred within the Muslim community of Arabia immediately after the Prophet Muhammad’s demise and that eventually led to the Sunni-Shi’a divide, was a purely Arab phenomenon. At the time, Arab/Islamic armies had not yet conquered Iran. Later, some Iranians might have seen in the Shi’a split from Sunnism a reflection of some of their ancient values and rites. But they certainly did not invent Shi’ism. The first impetus for the Iranian embrace of the House of Ali came after the Arab invasion and the policy of ethnic discrimination practiced by Iran’s new Arab rulers, beginning with the first Caliph Omar, despite Islam’s claim to the racial and ethnic equality of all Muslims. The Abbasids even perpetuated this practice, although Persian Muslims had contributed considerably to their victory over the Umayyad dynasty.

If Iranians are non-Muslims then Islam’s edict that Muslims should not fight other Muslims does not apply to them. Therefore, you can kill Shi’a Iranians just like any other infidel without any twinge of conscience. In the current atmosphere of tension between Saudi Arabia and Iran, spreading the view of Iranians as non-Muslims has considerable political ramifications. For example, it can help the Saudis enlist other Muslims in their fight, both overt and covert, against Iran. Already, groups such as the Taliban, the Islamic State, and al-Qaeda have internalized this Saudi view and view the Iranians as infidels.

It’s not surprising for the Saudi mufti, out of political expediency, to call Iranians Majus. What is sad is that present-day Iranians should see this appellation as an insult. But then Iran’s Islamists have been waging a campaign against the country’s indigenous culture for at least 60 years. Since their victory in the 1979 revolution, they have worked relentlessly to erase all vestiges of Iran’s indigenous culture and to subsume it under a state-sponsored, politicized, and ideologized form of Islam that is totally alien to Iran’s traditional Shia Islam, which is closely intertwined with Iran’s early civilization.

That’s very interesting to me. I have a book on Zoroastrianism, but it’s only portions of surviving texts. As I understand it, much has been lost.

This sounds like a potentially worse split than the Protestant-Catholic split of Christianity.

Fifty Shades Over Performs at Box Office … More Proof America is Going to Hell!

Hey US flag wavers, here’s what your waving the flag for – abortion on demand, gay marriage, and a $94.4 opening for Fifty Shades of Grey. It opened huge despite the fact that it is getting hammered on IMDB. It’s got a 4.0 rating so far.

This doesn’t say much about the moral state of America. The only bright side is that feminists don’t like the movie, and it’s success actually confirms some manosphere beliefs. But it’s success is a net loser from a cultural standpoint.

Ben Shapiro on Why Jews Vote Leftist

I don’t agree with some of the first part of this with its implied interventionism. The position of the US on matters in the Middle East should be disengagement and neutrality. But otherwise Shapiro is correct, and since he is a Jew he can’t be faulted for saying it. American Jews are largely secular and their Jewishness is primarily an ethnic identity rather than a religion. As a Christian, I think all Jews need to convert to Christianity and find their true Messiah, but barring that, Jews need a religious revival the same way the fast fading Christian culture in this country does. Long term trends have this country on a rather fast highway to Hell.

Please do not muck up the comment thread with Jew bashing. We need to pray for the souls of Jewish people the same way we pray for the souls of Hindus, pagans, atheists, etc.