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Saturday, September 16, 2006

It's different this time

It's funny how some people are wondering why Muslims are reacting the way they are toward the Pope's latest comments ... well let me tell you why;

It's because the comments came from the POPE!

Those comments weren't made by some low life, fame-seeking newspaper editor. They came from the highest Christian authority on the planet.

When this whole Danish cartoon thing broke off, I was extremely against the way the Muslim masses reacted to it for many reasons. Mainly, because the perpetrators were not even worth a fragment of the attention they received.

But this case is different.

We are in a time when people of different races and religions need to come closer, not drift apart. The world always views the Pope as someone who brings minds together through love and forgiveness. The Pope was never an advocate of division or dispersion. Those last comments do nothing but widen the growing civilization gap between

The Muslim world is in both shock and disappointment. The Muslim world is in shock because it came from someone who is supposed to symbolize peace and advocate coexistence in a world that’s torn by differences and deviations. The Muslim world in disappointment because most Muslims believed that the Pope knows more about Islam than any other Christian.

I spoke to many Christian friends and all of them share my views.

I just hope things don't get worse


  • wow.. i am impressed u blogged about it so soon.. it's bad.. totally totally irresponsible from the Pope.. he should be much smarter and better-advised than to fall into this trap.

    apparently he gave this example of an old european king that said that about the prophet (pbuh) and the point was that today's leaders in europe should not follow such a bad example.

    but surely you need to think about the immediate reaction ya habibi ya pope!

    By Blogger BuJ, at September 16, 2006 at 2:44 AM  

  • I just think his comments have been taken out of context: this was a private lecture and he was quoting historical documents. I don't believe he condones what was said in those documents in any way, merely quoting them to make a point.

    By Blogger Keefieboy, at September 16, 2006 at 8:50 AM  

  • His comment was out of context. It's not the first time he compromises the Vatican diplomacy with the world. Even thouh he wanted to condemn the terrorism and the jihad - as a bloodshed of non muslims- he could have quoted in a different way and he could have compared it to the 14th century bloodshed made by the Church in America

    By Blogger Moona, at September 16, 2006 at 11:26 AM  

  • I’m a Christian living in the Middle East and I also share your view. As for jihad, what Muslims are fighting jihad? Palestinians? They are fighting for their land. Lebanese Hezbollah? They are also fighting a cause. Iraqis? They are fighting the American and each other... so what jihad was he referring to? Bin laden and the rest of the CIA CLONES? Plsss that ticket has been spent and won’t get anyone through anymore. These terrorist attacks are not masterminded by Muslims or jihadists, I completely lost respect for the pope, and you know if you bring up the Christian history it’s even bloodier than Islam, much more actually. There is no jihad today, Arabs and Muslims in general, couldn’t care less, take Egypt, Jordan, khaleej... etc as an example of countries watching a bloody football game. So what is the pope trying to do exactly? Start a new war between Muslims and Christians in the Middle East? Thanks, that’s exactly what we needed!

    By Anonymous isabelle, at September 16, 2006 at 12:04 PM  

  • Maybe we should invite the pope here to UAE, to show him how different religions can work together and maybe he can learn a few things about islam. Ramadan would be a great time for this ;-)
    but i doubt that he has the time, too bad...

    By Blogger Dubai-Informer, at September 16, 2006 at 12:17 PM  

  • Isabelle: 'jihad' is not mentioned anywhere in the Pope's lecture. But the Western perception is that the likes of Al Qaeda and the Taliban are Muslims and their attacks are done in the name of Allah. I don't see anything Islamic in the way that these guys behave - but they seem to.

    By Blogger Keefieboy, at September 16, 2006 at 4:32 PM  

  • As has been said, the Pontiff's comments are indeed being taken out of context and the offending statement was a direct quote from a Byzantine emperor. However, as Moryarti points out, he is the Pope! How can the highest profile Christian authority on the planet unwittingly insult million of Muslims? Surely, being able to articulate your views on faith clearly without inadvertently pissing off half the world is something that a 21st century pope should be relied upon to do. Apparently not. How depressing...

    By Anonymous Agnostic, at September 16, 2006 at 4:33 PM  

  • I am a little sick and tired of the world going up in flames at every single comment uttered by the next Tom, Dick or Harry.
    Sure, the Pope is none of those, he is the Pope after all. He should be more responsible.
    I have never believed in the concept of papacy, and while John Paul II at least had a face and a soul that I could warm up to, I got a bad vibe from this guy the minute I saw him.
    However, his comments have been taken out of context, and I highly doubt he meant to insult Muslims or Islam. People are quick to judge and follow the masses, but I bet that 90% of the people out there haven't actually taken the time to read the actual speech.
    I am also really sick of people trying to determine which religion has the bloodiest past, or competing to show off as the most peaceful one. In the end, all religions are meant to be peaceful and personal, which is exactly the opposite of what people of ALL faiths are currently doing.
    Keep it could be a good start. If there's a God out there, surely he can't be standing by watching people spill unecessary blood in his name. Shame...

    By Blogger sky, at September 16, 2006 at 7:09 PM  

  • In such a sensitive world that is going through a particularly tense time, the Pope was definitely mistaken in using the example and quotes he used, knowing very well that he was going to offend a religion struggling to retain a clear image of its real and true nature.

    I started imagining a 'holy' war happening thanks to comments like this and the current electrified and tense state of the world...could this happen in our lifetime?
    I never thought wars the way they are being fought now could still happen. But isn't Bush and the neo-con clan fighting a holy war anyway?
    I often wonder what the history books will tell kids 50-100 years from now. Might be even scarier looking back on it.

    By Blogger sky, at September 16, 2006 at 7:20 PM  

  • KEEFIEBOY: correct me if i'm wrong, but any attacks in the name of Allah is Jihad, is it not?

    By Anonymous isabelle, at September 16, 2006 at 10:44 PM  

  • I have to agree with sky. The minute I saw this one I got a nasty creepy crwly unclean feeling. There is a thing called "NOOR", a light which often emanates from a holy person.Not here.
    Anyway in view of the current walking on eggs situation around the world, the POPE of all people should practise a little censorship.
    it may be that his word were taken out of context. But all over the world it is the often uneducated masses that comprise the fighting spirit, the ardour and not the Rolex wearing, Montblanc pen in pocket types who fight wars. To expect them to read his speech, comprehend with historical references blah blah is just pure B.S.
    The common man makes the numbers. Not the Profs/politicians or the Scholars.

    By Blogger kaya, at September 16, 2006 at 11:16 PM  

  • I know this is my third comment moryarti, don't hate me :)
    But I was thinking about this some more because I'm really annoyed with all of it.
    As kaya said, it is generally the uneducated masses who comprise the fighting spirit. She is right on the money.
    But isn't it the duty of these scholars or leaders to actually take the time to understand what the Pope said, read that damn speech, and explain to the masses what was actually said...rather than just take one quote out of a 7 page speech and get the world to freak out about it?
    Ok khalas, I'll shut up now.

    By Blogger sky, at September 16, 2006 at 11:31 PM  

  • No sky, please keep em coming. what you are saying is true.. but how long or actually, how effective is it to get thousands of scholars to justify/explain what the Pope said or is trying to say to millions? it makes no sense really... its eaiser if he tries to get closer or understand what happening. Pope JPII was so good at that..

    And Isabelle... what those nutcases in Al Qaeda are doing s not related to Islam and its Jihad what so ever.

    Jihad is the effort you exert for the perusal of good or virtue. Going to work is Jihad, going to College is Jihad. Jihad comes form the Arabic word Ejtihad, which means exerting extra effort..

    Persecution of women and locking them up like they used to do in Afghanistan is not Islam, blowing oneself up is not Islam... all what so-called Jihadi's are doing is not Jihad.

    The real Jihadis are doctors, the teachers and the scientists. The real Jihadis are the parents who work 18 hrs everyday to get their kids into college... Now that is true Jihad.

    By Blogger moryarti, at September 17, 2006 at 12:06 AM  

  • @Sky
    Ur sick and tired when Arabs or Muslims have a complaint, granted it does to whining sometimes, well I’m sick and tired of Americans discussing the issue of Abortion, I’m sick and tired of the media stalking celebrities trying to catch a glimpse of them in their underwear, I’m sick and tired of many things in life, but u know how i handle it? I switch of the TV, after all I believe in freedom of speech, who is it that many people don’t think Arabs and Muslims shouldn’t be allowed to speak their mind, whether they are justified or not, why does democracy have to flavors? Now this is what really makes me sick. the double standards in this world.

    By Anonymous Markus, at September 17, 2006 at 9:33 AM  

  • thanks moryarti, i didn't know that about jihad. i will read more into it. i didnt say that the terrorists represent islam, i said the opposite, that they don't.

    By Anonymous isabelle, at September 17, 2006 at 10:32 AM  

  • I know you didn't Isabelle, i was just reitirating what u said.. sorry it didn't come thru my last comment :)

    By Blogger moryarti, at September 17, 2006 at 12:32 PM  

  • "Ur sick and tired when Arabs or Muslims have a complaint"
    Markus, that was never what I said. I'm sick and tired of ALL people resorting to extremes, and literally sometimes going up in flames about certain issues that do not deserve this kind of reaction.
    I believe in freedom of speech as well, which is why I have voiced my opinion on here. When things get too much, I do also switch off the TV and stop reading the news.
    But one can't help but feel fear or worry at the current state of the world, even if it doesn't affect me personally.

    Moryarti, you say "how effective is it to get thousands of scholars to justify/explain what the Pope said or is trying to say to millions? it makes no sense really... its eaiser if he tries to get closer or understand what happening."
    I'm not too sure about the word "justify" as it implies that he, personally, said something that insults Islam. And yes I believe it makes sense for leaders of influential people to take responsibility for their people and explain to them that things are not black and white, and in this case, that this was not the Pope's actual opinion, which seems to be what the unfortunately uneducated masses believe. If one, two, or ten high ranking Muslim scholars could take the time to explain and analyse the Pope's text and repeat it in human-friendly terms, a lot of drama could be avoided.
    But of course, this could have all been avoided if the Pope, eggs benedict, would have used a different example, one that relates to the Catholic's violent and bloody past, in a bid to show that Christians, just like Jews and Muslims, have all committed atrocities in the name of religion.

    By Blogger sky, at September 17, 2006 at 4:12 PM  

  • SKY: I listened to the popes speech... you maybe right there are so many directions and points that the popes mentioned in his speech no one denies that at the end it's a 7 page speech :)

    However, the Oil dose not mixes with water. You can clearly see there is dark oil when it is spill on water right :)

    I mean come on he is the pope! What was he thinking when he quoted that speech? Besides, from thousands of historical books and speeches can you tell whey the hell did he chose to say that quote.

    You may ask BUSH or maybe his precious Tony.

    With all my respect SKY: there are no other ways to understand the Quote said by the pope but in what it held in its deep meaning laterally meanings.

    In addition, if you think that more than 1 billion Muslim did not understood what the popes said then pleas be my guest and explain to the Islamic nation latterly the meaning of the popes Quoted speech.

    By Blogger blogyanonymous, at September 17, 2006 at 5:20 PM  

  • Blogyanonymous, once again, I reiterate that the quote chosen by the Pope was wrong in our current international climate. And maybe he does have ties with Bush and Tony, I wouldn't be surprised.

    But there are of course other ways to understand that quote depending on the context it's in.

    I will not take on the extremely difficult task of analysing and explaining the Pope's extremely dense and philosophical speech, as I probably don't understand a quarter of it anyway.

    But I stand by my point that yes, over 1 billion Muslims did misunderstand and misinterpret the quote. If something infuriates me, I may have a heated, knee-jerk reaction, but I will also look into it and try to understand it better. I understand that not everyone has the luxury of education, but that is what leaders and scholars are here for.

    Moryarti, I feel like this has turned into my post! Sorry again :)

    By Blogger sky, at September 17, 2006 at 7:59 PM  

  • One correction. I said "yes, one billion Muslims did misunderstand".
    No, definitely not 1 billion. Not all Muslims have reacted this way, obviously.
    I only meant to say that some Muslims, the ones the media have chosen to highlight, have misinterpreted the text.

    By Blogger sky, at September 17, 2006 at 8:11 PM  

  • His advisors should be fired ASAP.

    The bottom line here is not what he said or how he meant it. It WAS said and will not be forgotten or forgiven easily. If he meant to do/say it or not is in my opinion a closed issue.

    By Blogger CG, at September 17, 2006 at 9:30 PM  

  • I have been checking the map to find this Muslim world... couldn't find it. Is Pope too a resident of the same Muslim world?

    Moryati: when terrorists strike -- then the same people in the Muslim world are quick to disown the killers - 'There is a difference between Islam and Islamists!'

    Religion has a sacred role in most communities, which helps people live a spiritual life. When we try to use religion to make political statements then there will be conflicts.

    Of course, Pope doesn't agree with the idea of a Muslim or Buddhist world - in fact he cannot even tolerate other denominations of christians.

    Why I do not agree with the catholic church is simply because they refuse to update their operating system. Pope is only concerned about maintaining his power structure.

    When people start talking about a Muslim World, obviously the pope feels threatened.

    They are still on DOS, when the rest of us are going through a whole new experience of XP. (Ok, I hate Microsoft)

    Here is a classic example of the social values the church claims to instil in its followers

    A Vatican official has said the Catholic church will excommunicate a medical team who performed Colombia's first legal abortion on an 11-year-old girl, who was eight weeks pregnant after being raped by her stepfather.

    If a catholic priest has committed the most heinous of all crimes, child sex abuse -- the church will negotiate an out of court settlement for the paedophile - by making huge payments to compensate for his crime.

    It is not only morally wrong but also completely upsetting the legal process in most countries by "settling" a criminal offence by paying cash. You do crime, you do time.

    This is the background of the church and pope in question.

    Those comments weren't made by some low life, fame-seeking newspaper editor. They came from the highest Christian authority on the planet.

    correction: the pope only represents the roman catholics.

    We are in a time when people of different races and religions need to come closer, not drift apart.


    Excellent thought.

    Reading this...
    The Muslim world is in both shock and disappointment. The Muslim world is in shock because it came from someone who is supposed to symbolize peace and advocate coexistence in a world that’s torn by differences and deviations.


    On one hand you want races and religions to come closer; you want the pope to be, "never an advocate of division or dispersion."

    On the other hand you are talking about a clear division - Muslim world.

    I have many friends who are muslims. They don't talk about the Muslim world.

    It helps people like Sharons, Bush, bin Ladens to isolate, use, abuse and target muslims - if Muslims are categorized as a political entity - Muslim World.

    May your faith bring you closer to God, never too close to a division or war.


    Maybe it was the CIA which coined the phrase 'Muslim World'.

    Remember, in Nazi times Jews had to wear a Yellow Star.

    Moryarti also uses this term 'Muslim Masses', again I wonder what he means. By using such terms, you are only helping people target all muslims for the bad deeds of a few.

    If you put all the apples in one basket, there is a good chance that a few rotten ones will give all of them a bad smell.

    Moryarti, please don't misunderstand me. I am just putting forward a secular point of view to solving the atmosphere of hatred that divides the world today.

    I wish there was a better explanation and understanding about the Muslim World. What exactly the agenda is etc etc.

    As for Pope and the Catholic church, they have a clear goal - The Kingdom of God.

    Read Peter 2:9

    But ye [are] a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:

    If there are such agendas, then let not people throw up a great deal of hypocritical bile of peace and unity.

    If divisions exist, we shouldn't be apologetic about it and try to shove it under the carpet.

    By Anonymous Gandhi, at September 18, 2006 at 10:36 AM  

  • amidst all the protests and mass hysteria, a 70 year old nun was stabbed in the back and riots and bombs have ensued... all because the pope was misunderstood and a few words of a speech were quoted in isolation . when in reality his entire speech meant the EXACT OPPOSITE.

    makes one wonder , does'nt it?

    By Blogger hannibal, at September 18, 2006 at 4:16 PM  

  • @gandhi: good you know so much about the Bible etc. Re: "holy nation" as in 2Peter, not a political agenda, as you appear to have concluded. Refers instead to the spiritual kingdom populated by believers--the same one of which Jesus Christ said "My kingdom is not of this world".

    @ hannibal. The people are not going to react/riot etc., unless someone, somewhere, tells them they have reason to be offended. They haven't heard the Pope's speech themselves, so their reaction is totally based on hearsay. So who was it who very conveniently extracted these 2 lines from the Pope's speech and stir up the masses?

    Uneducated people riot. What do you say of government ministers and so on who clearly do not appear to have the faintest clue about what the pope said, yet have issued lengthy public condemnations? What do you say of governments who have called the Vatican representatives and chastised them? Do you think these "governments" read the transcript and tried to understand its context before doing so?

    How many more apologists are we going to find for the nonsense that is going on that has no basis whatsoever in reality?

    What on earth is free speech?

    Can (any well-known personality) say, for example:

    "In my opinion, Jesus Christ was not the son of God."

    Would that be acceptable? Or may we expect a riot?

    Can (any well-known personality) say, for example:

    "In my opinion, Mohammed was a lustful man."

    Would that be acceptable? Or may we expect a riot?

    By Anonymous oink oink, at September 18, 2006 at 5:05 PM  

  • By the way...Moryarti...thanks for posting on this subject and allowing people the opportunity to comment.

    I'm sure you have by now read the transcript of the Pope's lecture and understood the context in which it was delivered. My question is whether you have read it before or after you made this post. If after, would you still make the same justification for the worldwide reaction we have seen?

    By Anonymous oink oink, at September 18, 2006 at 5:16 PM  

  • after

    By Blogger moryarti, at September 19, 2006 at 12:50 AM  

  • Oink Oink: I didn't mean to say that Bible is a political construct.

    But, then, Crusade was.

    Papal church was very much the political head of Europe for a very long time.

    Here is the Pope's Speech which has caused so much of problems.

    Guardian reports:
    Protests against the Pope continued today, with even officially atheist China complaining that its Muslim population had been upset.

    Meanwhile, the president of the Islamic Association of China said Benedict had "insulted both Islam and the Prophet Muhammad", according to China's state-run Xinhua news agency.

    "This has gravely hurt the feelings of the Muslims across the world, including those from China," Chen Guangyuan said.

    Although China's ruling Communist Party is atheist, the country permits religious worship in government controlled places of worship.

    The Vatican does not recognise the country's state-run Catholic Church, which appoints its own bishops and refuses to adhere to Papal authority. Benedict has been trying to mend ties with Beijing.

    By Anonymous Gandhi, at September 19, 2006 at 1:18 AM  

  • Gandhi:
    Thanks for clarifying. Note that the political agendas which the Crusades were based on do not exist now. At this point in history, the Catholic Church is an apolitical, spiritual entity. (My assessment; I am not a Roman catholic myself.)

    With regard to those offended people and governments, including China: you have posted a link to the pope's actual lecture--having read it, would you, as a thinking, reasoning individual, see anything in it that merits the reaction we have seen? Is there anything to protest about?

    Yes, many were offended in this country in that country over here and over there. How many actually read the speech or even knew what it was about and what the context was? Even today. So what exactly offended them?

    The sad fact that we have all had to learn is that there are groups of people all over the world who are ready to be offended at the drop of a hat. They don't even need to know what it's about. And all these groups of people are linked by one common element. You figure that one out (it's not very hard).

    The rest of the world is now too scared to even breathe.

    By Anonymous oink oink, at September 19, 2006 at 10:49 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger hannibal, at September 19, 2006 at 11:24 AM  

  • is'nt it?

    supposedly the pope's remarks were meant to link Islam with Violence.. and now how are a few of the Islamic faithful reacting?

    with riots, stabbings, mayhem.

    surely this is'nt what the majority of muslims condone. however no heads of state/islamic scholars are condemning these acts with strong statements.

    Amidst all this, the Pope has apologised. is it still not enough?

    should'nt the message now be.. let's move on..

    By Blogger hannibal, at September 19, 2006 at 11:37 AM  

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