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Cat Stevens: song over.

  1. Sep 24, 2004 #1
    Mr. Stevens was very surprised that he was sent back on the first plane when he wanted to enter the US. I am not aware of his present stance regarding extremist Islamism, but if I remember well, Mr. Stevens approved of the Fatwah that the Ayatollahs laid upon Salmon Rushdie. With other words, Mr. Stevens approved the condemnation to death of a person who supposedly wrote a book with anti-Islamic content. This alone should be reason enough to bar him form any civilized country. Come to think of it: what is Mr. Stevens still doing in the UK? I think it would be much better for him to join his brothers in the Iranian paradise.
     
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  3. Sep 24, 2004 #2

    Ivan Seeking

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    NBC reports that he never condoned the death of Rushdie; he was only explaining the aspect of Islamic belief referenced in the call for his death. Later Stevens was interviewed and clarified this point. Allegedly he has also publicly condemned terrorism on many occasions.
     
  4. Sep 24, 2004 #3
    Yeah, I read that too. The argument was something like: although he supported the fatwah as a serious warning against anyone maligning the prophet of Islam, he did not wish for Rushdie's dead. mmm.... Anyone who can explain me why the fatwah is for then?
     
  5. Sep 24, 2004 #4

    Ivan Seeking

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    Keeping in mind that I'm not defending Stevens as I have no idea what his true ideologies may be, the Christian bible calls for some unreasonable actions as well. This doesn't meant that Christians take it all literally.

    I mean, after all, the Christian bible essentially teaches that Islam is evil. This doesn't mean that we all believe it.

    Edit: I do love his old music. Great stuff!
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2004
  6. Sep 24, 2004 #5
    True, what is in the script is one thing. ( I am an atheist btw, and therefore wish that science and not religion would form the basis of our ethics) But the fatwah is for Islam what the inquisition was for Catholicism. Are there any catholics left who defend the inquisition but wanted nobody to get hurt? Were there ever any? It all sounds like a contradiction to me.
     
  7. Sep 24, 2004 #6

    Ivan Seeking

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    I was thinking how strange the Catholic ritual may seem to someone unfamiliar with the context. Each week everyone gets together to celebrate cannibalism. We eat the body and drink the blood of Christ. This is not only symbolic. I was taught [standard doctrine] that at the moment of consecration, the host [bread] and wine literally become the body and blood of Christ. Consumption of this "real" body and blood is not only the highlight of the mass, it is the primary purpose.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2004
  8. Sep 24, 2004 #7
    :surprised You should immediately be locked away! :smile: I see your point, still think there is a difference with a religious death warrant that IS take seriously by many radical Muslims. It resulted in Rushdie's life in hiding, don't think anybody is hiding from Catholic cannibals after sunday church?
     
  9. Sep 24, 2004 #8
    Apparently Cat Stevens' brush with Islamic militants is nothing new. From four years ago:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/832796.stm
     
  10. Sep 24, 2004 #9
    Partaking of Christ's body and blood is not in any way similar to Rushdie's plight. first of all, Christ himself commanded his apostles and disciples to partake of his body and blood. It isn't cannibalism strictly speaking (cannibalism is to partake or consume another being of the same specie, genus, etc.); Christ is 100% human and 100% divine. In short, WE are not LIKE Christ... if we were, we'd be perfect, we wouldn't have to go to Mass and Salaman Rushdie would be living in peace with the Islamic coalition.

    Salman's plight is different to the partaking of Christ's body in Mass precisely because Salman doesn't want to die for what he believed in (which is butchering Islam in Satanic Verses---please read this novel, it is such a good read!---something to die for, if i may,hahaha). He is not divine in any way and there is no such thing as a fatwah in the Roman Catholic tradition. Yes, there had been Catholic inquisitions in the PAST (with the stress on the word PAST) and no amount of reasoning will ever replace the lives lost due to the convoluted mindset of past clergymen AND not even the Holy Bible will condone the evil implications of the inquisition. What we have to remember here is Catholics partake of the Celebration of the Mass precisely because of man's imperfection; man is basically imperfect which is why part of his convoluted thinking made him force non-Catholics and witches to suffer inquisition. But that doesn't mean Catholics never considered any room for change---several councils such as that of Nicea were created to correct the mistakes of the past.

    I'm sorry I didn't prepare any scientific explanantion for the phenomenon precisely because the nature of the topic calls for a religious perspective. I am an inactive Catholic but I do know enough regarding my faith to be able to defend it before people. I am not coercing anyone to become Catholic by my response; rather, I believe that by calling on attention to Salman's plight, the fundamental human value of life is a concern made stronger and of common importance among Catholics and non-Catholics and as such should be the issue focused on and not a criticism of a past that can never be undone (such as that of the inquisition).

    As for the comment "the christian bible calls for unreasonable actions", only a scholar of the bible can have the right to make such a remark. Unless you yourself have read the Bible in its entirety and in all of its rich historical context (archeologically and anthropologically) will u have the right to tell everyone what "those" unreasonable actions that were called for are. A person can't just simply isolate any instance or event in the Bible, it must always be seen against the whole from which that snippet was taken. It means having to work with the Biblical scholars all over the world to dust and search for historical queues that underline the events in the Bible. We simply won't understand any STORY for that matter if we weren't aware of the context about which it was set.

    Sorry, this came in rather long. I welcome any atheists' or non-believers to question this argument after taking on the Herculean task of deciphering the Bible by going out of him or her pride and start reading the Bible from start until finish and after doing so, join anthropologists and archeaologists to understand the context about which the Bible was written. Then and until then will I take your word that indeed the Bible has called for unreasonable actions.

    And I guess the same goes for all stories. One cannot aptly make a review regarding a novel one has never read. One cannot aptly describe a movie one has never seen at least once. One cannot aptly debunk a scientific theory unless one understands the premises about which those theories revolve. The same goes for the Bible: unless you have read it as a whole (in regard toits historical context) will one be able to make a wise criticism of it.

    I am also a man of science (I am a budding Electronics and Communications Engineer) so I sonehow understand every scientist's dilemma when the realities we face do not coincide with what is empirically observable. But that doesn't mean that when something is unbelievable, it already doesn't exist. There was an epoch in history when ELECTRICITY was considered a myth because the technology of that particular era wasn't enough to make observable and empirical findings to support the theory on the existence of Electricity.

    I still respect everyone's desire not to believe in Christ. But a person who doesn't regard human life as a fundamental human value, that person will never earn my respect. Salman shoudn't be killed on account of having butchered Islam. Cat Stevens should think before saying anything---he should be wise and evaluative enough of current events to know the subtle implications of his statement no matter how subtle they are.
     
  11. Sep 24, 2004 #10
    Well, good thing about we, atheists is that we neither have fatwahs nor had an inquisition. It is not here that we have to have a discussion on religion as such. Glad we agree on Stevens.
     
  12. Sep 24, 2004 #11
    yes, u didn't have inquisitions or fatwahs but atheists do have persistent philosophers who espouse social darwinism which states "un-productive members of society such as beggars should be eliminated---only those who can properly contribute to the wellness of society should be allowed to live". just because you guys didn't have fatwahs nor inquisitions doesn't mean there were no atheist murderers or the like.

    did Cat Stevens sing "The Leader of the Band"?

    spero meliora (latin for "I hope for better things"),
    patrick
     
  13. Sep 24, 2004 #12
    I think that was Dan Fogelberg. For the rest, dont lay crazy words in my mouth, I have no idea what you are talking about. Any facts?
     
  14. Sep 24, 2004 #13
    Back to Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam

    I read the article today on his deporting and I was really, really surprised at the decision of the air controls people. If my memory serves me right, Yusuf Islam DID condemn the terrorist attacks and I thought he is pro-peace and he is quite vocal about it! Maybe, yet again, I'm missing something but this whole thing still sounds scandalous to me!!
     
  15. Sep 24, 2004 #14

    Gokul43201

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    A man of science that believes in witches ? An odd combination, I must say !


    What do you mean ? "Reality" is that which is empirically observable. I see no dilemma here.

    And so, lightning and thunder were explained to the masses as signs of God's anger/displeasure with man. The religious leaders have, for centuries, used the unexplained to support the belief in God.

    Slowly, through science, things like fire, disease, floods, earthquakes, volcanoes, lightning, celestial mechanics, the life-cycle of stars, meteors, auroras, hurricanes, and now evolution have been explained. And until science explained these things (and many more), the people were told that these things were miracles that could only be performed by a omnipotent being.

    Okay, lest this turn into a debate that gets rerouted to Philosophy, let me return you to thewords of Cat Stevens :

     
  16. Sep 24, 2004 #15
    Is it allowed to prefer "Sweet home Alabama?" Cajun and zydeco's OK too.
     
  17. Sep 24, 2004 #16
    Shahil, remember that religion is like opium to the people!
     
  18. Sep 24, 2004 #17
    Tom Ridge has already explained that Cat Stevens' late 80s comments had nothing to do with his deportation. They may very well have something on him.
     
  19. Sep 24, 2004 #18

    Ivan Seeking

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    Like I said, I was thinking about how strange it would seem to someone not familiar with the context.

    Well, as a Catholic kid in a Catholic school I studied the bible six days a week for eight years. This was in addition to attending church seven days a week at times as an alter boy, and six days a week as the norm; in addition to church youth groups and other school related activities in which we studied the bible "religously". I have read the bible cover to cover a number of times since and have probably studied most familiar passages within their proper context [as argued by various scholar] dozens of times each. I have also been a practicing member of several denominations and a casual member of half a dozen more.

    Now, it has been a long time since I got into all of this, and I do forget a lot of the details, but I am willing to bet that I still remember a little of what went on in the old Testament. I also know that by definition [according the mainstream Christian beliefs] Muslims are damned unless they accept Christ. So I think we all need to understand that orthodox religous beliefs can sound much more extreme than most people really accept as true - that they would implement as a daily guide to life. This was my point.

    I've even read all of the begats a few times! I have always had a fondness for all of that begetting. :tongue2:
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2004
  20. Sep 24, 2004 #19

    Ivan Seeking

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    I had to throw this in. IIRC, technically it is still a sin to shave.
     
  21. Sep 27, 2004 #20
    I have to agree with a previous post that science did explain things medieval citizen attributed to an omnipotent being.

    Gokul, stop putting words in my mouth as well: I do not believe in witches! I believe that people long ago died branded as witches! Gokul, whoever you are, please don't put words in people's mouths. It is my calling and not yours to reconcile science with God. If u think they are simply irreconcilable, that is ur calling. Like I said in my previous post, I would never coerce anyone here in this forum to believe in God. It is ur freedom not to.

    For Ivan Seeking (and for those who are interested to read): yep I experienced the same thing. Went through Catholic schools all the way... regarding Muslim condemnation, the Catholic Church has these dogmas that ascertain how morally culpable you are of not believing in Christ. In theology class, my teacher who had a doctorate in Catholic dogmas, said there is such a thing as salvation outside the Christian Church and this is made possible if one follows the covenant made in hearts of men, a covenant between man and God. This covenant is what we simply call today as a conscience. Sorry for other readers if u can't relate with what I'm saying. Once again, I stress that whatever I mention here is not a coercion to join the Catholic or Christian faith.You guys have the freedom to choose what to believe in (as long as ur belief doesn't compromise the fundamental human value that is life---nobody has the right to murder anyone).

    i hope for better things,
    patrick
     
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