On November 13, 2015, as many of us know, a series of coordinated terrorist attacks took place in the French capital of Paris. More than 100 people were killed and numerous others were injured. The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has claimed responsibility for these attacks.
Words cannot describe the atrocities committed that day and every civilized, peace-loving human being is in a state of shock. This senseless violence in the name of Islam needs to be stopped. It must come to an end. How many more innocent lives will be taken in the name of Allah Almighty? Allah: The Most Gracious and the Most Merciful. What will this bloodshed achieve?
An atheist friend of mine put up the following as his Facebook status:
Pray for Paris people say.. George was so right.. Couldn’t we as a species just grow up and forget all this religious nonsense??? But surely Muslims should start, they are way too serious about their imaginary friend..
Underneath his status, he shared a picture of George Carlin, which I’m sharing as well.
George Carlin is right and so is my friend. Humanity, as a whole, might be wasting its time praying to a God that might not exist. But what’s much more concerning than wastage of time is justification for violence based on a 1400 years old, outdated ideology. Ideas derived from Islamic scriptures such as the Qur’an are at the heart of all Jihadist organizations.
A very important point raised by Maajid Nawaz in the following discussion, and one which I have been saying for quite a while, is that Islam definitely has a role to play in these extreme acts of terrorism.
Islam is not a religion of peace. Islam is not a religion of war. Islam is a religion. As a religion, it has peaceful and violent elements in it and one has to be cognizant of this fact. Many so-called liberal Muslims, unfortunately, do not realize this fact and think ISIS is not a representation of Islam. One such friend of mine shared the following picture on Facebook:
My friend, like many such liberal Muslims, is, in the words of Maajid Nawaz, ‘too scared to actually make that connection and to say there is something to do here with Islam as well as the many other factors that cause radicalization such as maybe foreign policy or grievances. But Islam also has a role.’
Without the realization of this important fact, there is no way to combat extreme Islam. The terrible Parisian tragedy will continue to haunt us everyday. We must unite to ward off the evil of Islamic fundamentalism and strive towards a more peaceful and tolerant world.