Why Islam Needs A Reformation

Why Islam Needs A Reformation

Timothy Venella

Islam and Christianity have traded roles in the international world in a span of 700 years. In the “Middle Ages” of Europe, law and order was the Roman Catholic Church. This practice was called “demonology.” This practice explained criminal behavior as demonic possession. While this practice was continuing in Europe, we see no reference of extreme enforcement of Sharia Law in Muslim caliphates. In fact, we see a scientific and mathematical enlightenment period inside these caliphates due to trade from China via the Silk Roads. Geometry, Algebra, and astronomy are what they are today due to Islamic merchants and scientists. But, as we progress through history, we see Islamic caliphates become more aggressive towards other religions. The Islamic conquest of Iberia, the fall of Eastern Rome- and then the Byzantine Empire, the failed conquest of Gaul, and the Mughal Empire’s conquest of Western India are all examples of Islamic aggression towards other religions. In response to the hundreds of attacks on Europe, Catholic states joined forces to stop the ongoing Islamic invasion. These crusades failed but there was a silver lining; Christians did obtain Islamic mathematic and science documents. As science starts overpowering the Church, a renaissance emerges. Minds like Da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Machiavelli are celebrated. This weakens the power that the Roman Catholic Church has over citizens and produces free thought. This creates a chain of events that leads to Martin Luther writing the 99 theses and mass printing it, thanks to the newly invented printing press. Luther’s actions lead to the Protestant Reformation redefining the fabric of Christianity. Before the reformation, there were two faces of Christianity: Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodox Catholicism. While this reformation did cause intersectional violence, (Thirty Years War) it also brought more enlightenment to the West. Philosophers such as: Voltaire, Locke, and Kant influence Western governments. During this time, Western empires are colonizing the Americas, Caribbean, and Pacific. While all of this occurs, Muslim empires such as the Ottomans, Mughals, and Safavids are treating internal strifes. As Imperialism allowed Europe colonize Africa, Asia, and India; Islamic Empires were no longer the super powers they once were. After World War One, more Muslims were under European control due to oil dependency and the collapse of the Ottoman Empire- the last Islamic empire. It wasn’t until the Cold War where Islam became players in international politics again. In 1979, the Republic of Iran became a theocracy, enforcing Sharia law more than any state before them. Along with the resurgence of Islamic fundamentalism in Iran, the United States funded and armed an Islamic insurgency group in Afghanistan named the Mujahideen. This insurgency was a militarized group that used guerrilla tactics to stop the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. After the Soviets were successfully repelled from Afghanistan, the Mujahideen became the military of Afghanistan. The insurgency group produced extremist Osama Bin Laden- founder of Al Qaeda and mastermind behind the terror attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Virginia on 9/11. Counter terrorist policies after 9/11 have led to the creation of the biggest Islamic extremist groups in history: The Islamic State. As a result from the ever growing amount of terrorist groups created by Muslims, the Right Wing began to put moderate Muslims in the same bucket as radical Muslims. But maybe moderate Muslims aren’t always moderate. There have been multiple occasions where so called “Moderate” Muslims would not disavow Hamas- a terrorist organization set on the destruction of Israel. Cologne, New Year’s Eve, groups containing as many as 100 Muslim men went around the German town grouping, sexually assaulting, and raping women. This has become a trend with Muslim migrants; no assimilation into culture, and no respect for the laws inside the state. This is what creates- what the left calls “islamophobia.” We don’t see Polish immigrants to the United Kingdom forcing their beliefs, culture, and laws on their neighbors in their community. We don’t see Australian immigrants in the United Kingdom protesting against the police in England. So what gives Muslims the right to do so? We have also seen an increase in attacks (terrorist or not) inside the island state. These attacks aren’t even committed with firearms, rather knives. On multiple occasions in the past 8 years there has been a handful Muslim knife attacks on Western women or police. Islam has turned into a barbaric ideology and must be halted.

So, how does Islam change? It’s simple: do what Christianity did. If we look at Islam the same way we look at Christianity, Islam needs a reformation. Currently there are two major sects of Islam, Sunni and Shia (others are seen as pagans.) Sunni and Shia are the Islamic equivalent to Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodox Catholicism. If Islam were to have a reformation, the liberal and moderate Muslims can prosper; because they won’t be painted with the same brush as terrorists. A reformation will also produce free thought in the Islamic world. No longer will women be forced to wear a head covering, they can choose to wear whatever they want and artists won’t be murdered for drawing the Muslim Prophet Mohammed. Christianity became less barbaric once free thought and enlightenment  were allowed. In order to facilitate a reformation inside Islam, the Western Right and Left must work together. They must agree that all Muslims are not terrorists but also Islam is not a religion of peace. Once both sides can agree, then they must work together to empower the women and minorities within Islam, enough followers that do not agree with traditional Islam can start a movement to create a new sect or denomination of Islam. Unfortunately this burden is on the West’s hands due to Islam’s oppressive nature.

Works Cited

Costly, Andrew. “The Origins of Islamic Law.” The Origins of Islamic Law – Constitutional Rights Foundation. Web. 06 Feb. 2017.

“Europe’s Muslim Rape Epidemic: ‘Cologne Is Every Day'” Muslim Statistics. 01 Nov. 2016.Web. 06 Feb. 2017.

“Islamic Mathematics – The Story of Mathematics.” Islamic Mathematics – The Story of Mathematics. Web. 06 Feb. 2017.

Reporter, Martin Robinson Uk Chief. “PICTURED: The Moment Police Bundled Crazed Norwegian-Somali Knife Attacker to the Ground after He Stabbed US Woman to Death in Russell Square. Police Claim Attack Was ‘spontaneous and Random’ .” Daily Mail Online. Associated Newspapers, 04 Aug. 2016. Web. 06 Feb. 2017.

http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC0Uu4XnRS1hiz3JCpNFIuUg. “Bill Warner, PhD: Jihad vs Crusades.” YouTube. YouTube, 20 Aug. 2014. Web. 06 Feb. 2017.

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