We need more blasphemy, introspection

Discussion in 'Religion & Culture' started by LurkerBaba, Sep 21, 2012.

  1. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    To all those Muslims who feel hurt and angry over the anti-Islam video, they should stop to think back to the time of their Prophet. He was one of the earliest to blaspheme against religion.

    Without the Prophet’s initial blasphemy, where he entered Mecca and destroyed what he thought were false gods and mindless idolatry, there would be no Islam as we know it today.

    For those who worshipped the previous gods, the Prophet was a blasphemer. For Muslims today, people who think differently about the Prophet are blasphemers.

    When Jesus railed against the malpractices of the Jewish priests, he was blaspheming against the religious practices of the day. He was not even trying to create a new religion. But he was sent to the cross.

    [​IMG]
    Protests against the film have erupted across the world. Reuters

    Blasphemy was what the Buddha indulged in several centuries before Christ, when he criticised the Vedic religions and what they had been reduced to by narrow Brahminism. He saw no need for a god when we had reason and ethical values to guide us with independent thinking. He may not be a blasphemer in the same league as that US creator of the Islam video, but for that age he surely shocked his audiences.

    The thought process of his contemporary, the Mahavira, was different, but he too went against the dominant ideas of the day to embrace a non-deistic concept based on ahimsa (non-violence). We know it as Jainism today. He was a blasphemer of sorts, too.

    When Guru Nanak found both Hinduism and Islam wanting in terms of progressive ideas, he established Sikhism. Between him and Guru Gobind Singh, you can say they took a critical attitude to two established religions, even while drawing elements from both. This may not be blasphemy, but rejecting the religions you were born into is apostasy – something not too different from the purpose of blasphemy.

    When Babasaheb Ambedkar wrote harshly about the “Riddles of Hinduism,” it sent shockwaves among the upper castes. But it was a necessary wake-up call to reform Hinduism. Without Ambedkar’s blasphemy, Hinduism would have died long ago.

    To be sure, it has become fashionable to welcome free speech and blasphemy in some degree, but we still pander to those who are burning and killing in the name of protecting Islam or Hinduism by adding a personal disdain: “Oh, that anti-Islam video was so pathetic, so bad.”

    This is what we did when Aseem Trivedi was arrested for his “seditious” cartoons. We had news channels and writers loudly proclaiming the right to free speech, and still ridiculing his cartoons. The question is not how good or bad they were, but did they try to express a thought in some way that challenges us? If it didn’t, why bother?

    This, for example, is what Hillary Clinton did on the Islam video. She called the video “disgusting and reprehensible.” She said “it appears to have a deeply cynical purpose, to denigrate a great religion and to provoke rage.” There was thus “no justification, none at all”, for the video. As the US Secretary of State, she may have said it to defuse the powderkeg situation in the Islamic world, but it won’t work. If you are going to defend free speech, you might as well defend it without ifs and buts.

    Moreover, what would have been a better justification for the video? Would it have done less damage if it had better production values or story line? MF Husain was one of our best painters but we still managed to work up a rage over a few of his paintings.

    Is it wrong to question or provoke believers in a religion, any religion?

    For all those Muslims who think the anti-Islam video is a plot by crusading Christians against their religion, I would only urge them to read Sam Harris’s Letter to a Christian Nation, which denounces born-again Christianity in no uncertain terms, to feel better.

    For smug Hindus, who think this is all about other religions, I could recommend any number of books by Dalits castigating their religion in no uncertain terms. They are all more or less blasphemous. The ongoing efforts to organise beef festivals in various universities is part of the Dalit campaign to provoke Hindus with gastronomic blasphemy.

    Hindus should be provoked enough to introspect and change.

    What we all need to understand is this: to provoke, is to force someone to think and reconsider. While it is fine to get a bit angry or even protest about whatever it is that angers you, the fact is blasphemy is the basis of progress. When you challenge what you think is wrong or untruthful, you blaspheme against an existing thought process.

    That is how we change for the better – never mind if the odd writer or film-maker or cartoonist produces low-quality work. It is the message, not its quality, that matters.

    I invite Muslims to read Joseph Anton, Salman Rushdie’s memoirs, and Hindus to read AK Ramanujam’s 300 Ramayanas. I invite Dalits to read Arun Shourie’s Worshipping False Gods on Ambedkar. For a slightly longer list of books that will offend someone or the other, please read this article on Firstpost. And these are hardly the most subversive or blasphemous of the lot.


    Why we need more blasphemy, not less | Firstpost
     
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  3. Known_Unknown

    Known_Unknown Devil's Advocate Stars and Ambassadors

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    Blasphemy is pointless. We don't need Blasphemy, we need Communism and the extermination of all religions.
     
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  4. civfanatic

    civfanatic Retired Moderator

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    +1000000000000000000000000

    To kill a weed you must pull out the entire root.
     
  5. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    @ KU, Would communists tolerate some one speaking ill of marx/denouncing communism/supporting capitalism in their communist paradise ?

    If not, then they are also practising Blasphemy.



    Dont tell me Communist countries tolerate anti-communist rhetoric.

    Communists are right there along with the Islamists in intolerance to anti-XXXXX views.
     
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  6. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    I hope you are not doing terribly bad after reading KU's post. Calm down buddy - we all are entitled to our opinion.
     
  7. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    Please don't turn this into another Communism/Capitalism thread :why:
     
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  8. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Why would I be doing bad. I like poking holes into the utopian balloon the communists so often like to blow.

    But I respect his right to have an opinion as long as it is not passed off as a fact,
     
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  9. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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  10. Known_Unknown

    Known_Unknown Devil's Advocate Stars and Ambassadors

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    Blasphemy - Definition and More from the Free Merriam-Webster Dictionary

    blas·phe·my
    noun \ˈblas-fə-mē\
    plural blas·phe·mies
    Definition of BLASPHEMY
    1
    a : the act of insulting or showing contempt or lack of reverence for God
    b : the act of claiming the attributes of deity
    2
    : irreverence toward something considered sacred or inviolable

    Examples of BLASPHEMY

    She was condemned by the church for uttering blasphemies.
    <in the 17th century the Quakers were persecuted for beliefs and practices that older churches regarded as blasphemies>

    "Blasphemy" is used almost exclusively in the context of religious insult/injury.

    My support for Communism was in context of the next three words: "extermination of religion". Hope it is not too complicated. :rolleyes:
     
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  11. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    You were doing bad with the definition of 'blasphemy,' and KU has poked holes into your argument pretty adroitly. Now you know that what you knew 'blasphemy' to be isn't correct and now you know that now you know better.

    :troll:
     
  12. devgupt

    devgupt Regular Member

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    Hmm the highlighted definition fits for the acts of N Korean dissenters against the cults of Kim Jong-il
     
  13. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Blasphemy is simply hurting the deep reverential feeling large number of people have for something and how communists treated their dissenters is no better than how Islamists want their blasphemers to be dealt with.

    In an Islamist country talking ill of Quran or Rasool or Islam would mean your death and in communist countries talking anti-communist rhetoric would mean death. I cant understand how replacing one evil with another evil is good :rolleyes:



    Read the second point in KU's definition, the one devgupt has highlighted. :rolleyes:
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
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  14. Bangalorean

    Bangalorean Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    If you speak of "communism", the cure is as bad as the disease.
     
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  15. parijataka

    parijataka Senior Member Senior Member

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    Cure worse than the disease...
     
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  16. A chauhan

    A chauhan "अहिंसा परमो धर्मः धर्म हिंसा तथैव च: l" Senior Member

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    Exactly!

    Lets not get off topic by talking on communism. Each religion is blasphemous against the previous ones and by that logic Islam is blasphemous against all other religions specially when they say "there is no god except allah". But the point is who needs introspection? Introspection is must for those who are killing people in the name of religion, for those who are vandalising properties, do you see any one else except Muslims who are behaving this way?
     
  17. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Rather hard hitting an article and very logically written.

    Indeed, what is 'blasphemy' is open to question.

    God is not God's name. That's right. The God of the universe has a name, but "God" isn't it. "God" is what God is. "Human being" is not your name, "Human being" is what you are. You also have a name. Whether it is "Barbara" or "Ken" or "Tom" or "Debbie", you have your own personal name. So does God.

    "And what is God's name?" Glad you asked. This writing will help you to recognize the answer.

    Before we get too deep into things, here are some hints to get you started. You already know God's name. Oh, yes, there are many, many names people have given to God, but He/She picked one and only one for Him/Herself. God's Real name is the same for all people everywhere. It matters not at all which religion or cultural heritage you are from! Truth transcends all boundaries we seek to erect. And no matter who you are or where you are from, you have known this Name from the day your mind first began to awake. You see it and hear it each and every day.

    The problem with God is not that He's so far away that we can't see Him. Rather, He is so close that we overlook Him. Our quest for God is just like fish in search of water. So don't be surprised if you start to recognize God's name everywhere.

    Helping you do that is the purpose of this writing.

    But God's Real name is not in this document! How's that for strange? Most of this document is about God's personal name, which reveals His Real name, but God's Real name can't be written down in any book.

    YHWH's name, the "I AM", reveals the fullness of His being. All of His nature and attributes are embodied in His name. In other words, rather than a cryptic mystery, "I AM" tells us everything that can be known about YHWH (yahweh). I know that sounds like a bold statement, but I hope to be able to convince you of at least part of it.

    The main concept here has to do with the elusive term "being". Some things "are", while others "are not". If you want a fancy word, this is an ontological issue.

    I'd like you to think about a coin. It exists, right? Right. And coins have two sides, heads and tails. They are opposite but equal, in that both exist. Philosophers say that "heads" and "tails" have the same ontological status, which is a convenient way to say that they both exist in the same degree and the same manner.

    Now what other things can we think of that are opposites with equal ontological statuses? Let's try these:

    Left and right
    North and south
    Front and back
    Male and female
    Open and closed
    Sweet and sour
    However, there are many pairs of opposites that do not share the same ontological status.

    Like what?

    Light and dark, for one.

    You may be surprised. We experience two seemingly (at first) opposite states, but they are not ontologically equivalent in the same way that heads and tails are. Why not? Because light IS. Darkness is not. Light IS. It is an energy. It can be measured, quantified, analyzed, seen, felt. Darkness is simply the absence of light.

    "Heads" is real. So is "Tails", and equally so. "Tails" is more than the absence of "Heads". Erase all the figures on the "heads" side and there is still something on the "tails." But remove all the light, and what is left?

    Nothing. Absolutely nothing. And the nothing we call darkness.
    Light IS. Darkness is the absence of what is. And YHWH is light. YHWH IS. Light is. Darkness is not.

    Over the years I have found a great many people have difficulty grasping this. But it is very important, so I'm trying to be as clear as I can, even at the risk of redundancy. And I want to try it one more way.

    Imagine yourself in a pitch dark room. You turn on the switch and light floods the room. An actual energy appears. Photons (the stuff light is made of) stream out of the bulb and illumine the room. Turn the switch again, and the photons disappear. It is not as though something different is now coming out of the bulb which we call "darks" that are "darkening" the room the way the photons were lighting it. It's just that the photons are gone!

    No one on the earth knows what light is. We know it moves in waves and we know that it is made of particles, and we know that particles can't move in waves and that waves can't contain particles. But that's what light is. But whatever light is, it is!

    "I AM THAT I AM." God is light, and in Him there is no darkness at all!

    Two more points about this light and dark business:

    First, there is an absolute limit to darkness: 0 photons present. Light, however, has no limitation. There is no theoretical limit to the number of photons that can be present in a given space. Go to the center of a star and you'll find a whole bunch of 'em. So, pitch dark is the zero point, and light grows to infinity. This is a statement of quantity.

    Second is a statement of quality. While pitch dark has only one color and shape (nothing and none), light has an infinite realm of possibilities for different colors and shapes. God is light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.

    If you are comfortable with this concept, then you can begin to see very deeply into the meaning of "I AM THAT I AM", and why I say that all of YHWH's nature and attributes are embodied in His name. Find the ontological opposites and YHWH is revealed by the one that is.

    Let's try some more.

    YHWH is life. Life, whatever it is, is. Death is simply the absence of life.

    YHWH is light (energy/matter). Energy is. Light is just one form of energy. Matter is. We know, in fact, that energy and matter are opposite sides of the same coin. We can change matter to energy and vice versa, but the total amount of energy/matter can't be changed. It is. And it is YHWH.

    YHWH is truth. Truth is a statement of what is. Falsehood is a statement of what is not.

    In these few paragraphs we have seen that the personal name of God, YHWH, I am Who I am, embodies all matter, energy, life, and truth.

    But there is more. Much more.

    Remember that one of the ways YHWH has been translated is "The Self-Existent one." What does this mean?

    Something is self-existent if it can exist all by itself, without any dependencies whatsoever. Everything we encounter in life is dependent on something else. Life needs air. Air needs molecules. Molecules need molecular cohesion. Molecular cohesion needs.......and so on. Where does the chain of dependency end? What is the "ontological anchor" of the universe?

    YHWH, the I Am that I Am, the creator of the universe, depends only on Himself for existence. He is the source and origin of all that exists. In Him we live and move and have our being.


    That is why YHWH is sometimes translated the self-existent one.

    Hopefully you can begin to understand why I say that all of YHWH's nature and attributes are embodied in His name. He is the ultimate ground. We are the figures. He is infinite subject. We are object. He is the source. We the proceeds. God, the creator of the universe, is. And that is-ness is not dependent on any other reality.

    Extract from

    God is Not God's Name

    Therefore, who are we blaspheming?
     
  18. panduranghari

    panduranghari Senior Member Senior Member

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    Exterminate religions for what? What do you end up with no religion? Honestly what is the premise of this assertion?

    Do you not understand that the problem of blasphemy etc is an invention of the Abrahamic faiths?

    I idea that A religion is the only right way to get to god, is the route of all problems without understanding that religion itself has nothing to do with it.

    Unlike the definition you have copy pasted - any religion based on the an event in the history or place if challenged is called blasphemy. If you question the origin of Allah or Christ, you are committing blasphemy. I have no problem if you say Vishnu does not exist, because my belief does not stem from an random but uncorroborated event in history.

    When west achieved some material wealth like a noeveau rich and when the colonies very expanding, the west needed a rhetoric to show a bright past to the brightening future. For the west, Christianity built on the foundation of Aristotelian and Greek ideas was well suited and it was convenient to discard the proof given by Voltaire and Schlegel that all the Greek Knowledge was based on Indian Vedic Principles.

    The Islamic world derived from Abraham has only 1 thing which they can claim for pride, the islamisation of Europe. They even have no colonies to brag about like the christian west does. To question that mohammad never existed gives them nothing to stand on. The belief system is shattered. That is blasphemy for them.

    Though I agree blasphemy is pointless, extermination of religions is a crazed ideal and solipsistic theory.

    What we need is mutual respect. Will Abrahamic faiths give other Abrahamics and non abrahamics any? No. Here is the origin of blasphemy. Its not us, its them.

    [video=youtube_share;ffwFXGPRDu4]http://youtu.be/ffwFXGPRDu4[/video]
     
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  19. Tshering22

    Tshering22 Sikkimese Saber Senior Member

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    And become identityless like North Korea, Cuba etc?

    Result in killing millions of innocent Indians like Communists did?

    No thanks.

    I'd rather join forces to exterminate communism from India by any and most inhuman means necessary than to be a part of such a bunch of self-ashamed yaboos.
     
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  20. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

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    The eternal itching of lefty ideology. ;)
    They want to construct the society from scratch by their own ideals.
    Sadly for us that implies - destruct/disown/negate everything that is there already.
    That is why the left thought is found hand waving and so impractical.
     
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  21. Energon

    Energon DFI stars Stars and Ambassadors

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    From the frying pan into the fire. Communists have been far more prolific when it comes to mass killings in the name of ideology. Stalin, Pol Pot, Mao, Kim Il Sung, Kim Jog Ill, and all other religion haters have more blood on their respective hands than all the deranged mullahs put together.

    The solution to mob violence in the name of blasphemy isn't communism, it is literacy, education, progress and prosperity.
     
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