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Author Topic: Why are people converting to Islam?  (Read 5734 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: October 13, 2009, 12:44:30 PM »

Yeah you're right, there are two different Ahmadiyya groups, though Muslims don't always distinguish between the two.

*bump*

I just noticed an error in my previous post. The "Solas Quran" sect is called The Submitters.
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« Reply #46 on: October 13, 2009, 12:49:57 PM »

Yeah you're right, there are two different Ahmadiyya groups, though Muslims don't always distinguish between the two.

*bump*

I just noticed an error in my previous post. The "Solas Quran" sect is called The Submitters.

Towards the end of my Islamic period, I believed the same as these folks.  In fact, I used to correspond with a few of them.  Basically, they're the Protestants of Islam. 
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« Reply #47 on: October 13, 2009, 01:58:25 PM »

Yip that's exactly what they are, they even call themselves "Reformists", Yuksel has even made a "Reformist" translation of the Quran: http://www.irshadmanji.com/PDFS/ReformistTranslation.pdf.
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« Reply #48 on: October 20, 2010, 11:25:03 PM »

Islam seems to use a lot of deception and covert tactics and outward force to convert others to their point of view.  And this has been part of Islamic tradition since its founding, e.g. the Janissaries. 

Hello, I read that the Janissary system had a rule that conquered Christian communities would have to surrender 20% of their children as slaves called Janissaries, and that this forced conversion was strongest in the Balkans.

Do you know if this system was in Palestine too?
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« Reply #49 on: October 21, 2010, 03:26:38 AM »

Why is Islam so popular now?
Here are the reasons given by the Roman Catholic priest, Father Idris Tawfiq, as to why he converted to Islam:
The first part of the video is very briefly not in English, but the rest is in English:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PDrNoJrUJE0&feature=related
http://www.idristawfiq.com/index.php?category=3
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pn0iPlWQNlI&feature=related
http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/586/
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« Reply #50 on: October 21, 2010, 09:09:24 AM »

The Sufis are very peaceful people, and they focus on the individual internal Jihad- that is, the war within.

I'm not sure where this idea comes from. Historically, Sufis were just as much involved in the Islamic wars of conquest as everyone else. "Internal jihad" doesn't negate the external one.
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« Reply #51 on: October 22, 2010, 12:22:22 AM »

To the OP: People are hungering for a spiritual experience. They aren't finding it in the modern churches, and don't know where else to turn.
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« Reply #52 on: October 22, 2010, 01:14:30 AM »

The Sufis are very peaceful people, and they focus on the individual internal Jihad- that is, the war within.

I'm not sure where this idea comes from.

I got fed this from day one at the university, and I believed it until I did a bit of digging. The liberal lilies are always looking to support the underdog, and since Islam is falling on rough times right now in our culture, they need their intelligent advocates from the higher institutions. You know, save the world without ever repenting of sin yourself...

Sufism seems to fit the bill quite nicely at first glance. You have a contemplative mystical tradition, to which my undergraduate students last year responded "They get in a circle and say Allah a lot. Who cares?" Then there are the writings of Rumi, and presto, you've got (two?) of the ingredients for a loving, peaceful Islam that is super different from Wahhabism. Roll Eyes  Take that, evangelical fundamentalist parents!

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« Reply #53 on: October 22, 2010, 05:19:41 AM »

The Sufis are very peaceful people, and they focus on the individual internal Jihad- that is, the war within.

I'm not sure where this idea comes from.

I got fed this from day one at the university, and I believed it until I did a bit of digging. The liberal lilies are always looking to support the underdog, and since Islam is falling on rough times right now in our culture, they need their intelligent advocates from the higher institutions. You know, save the world without ever repenting of sin yourself...

Sufism seems to fit the bill quite nicely at first glance. You have a contemplative mystical tradition, to which my undergraduate students last year responded "They get in a circle and say Allah a lot. Who cares?" Then there are the writings of Rumi, and presto, you've got (two?) of the ingredients for a loving, peaceful Islam that is super different from Wahhabism. Roll Eyes  Take that, evangelical fundamentalist parents!

I will never defend Islam, but our condemnations of false religion must be rooted in truth rather than straw man arguments. As Orthodox Christians, we especially should recognize this. As far as the Evangelicals are concerned, Orthodoxy and Islam are the same thing: if it has a beard it must be demonic!

What I know of Islam (and I'm no expert), comes from three primary sources:

1) My reading of the Qur'an- which I found contains some beautiful truths as well as some very disturbing ideas. But I imagine a non-Christian who reads the Bible would assess our Scripture much the same.

2) What I hear and read from the media - conservative and liberal - none of to which I pay much heed.

3) My many personal encounters and friendships with Muslims - African American, Anglo American, and Middle Eastern -  all who outrightly rejected terrorism and emphasized the personal, internal struggle for spiritual peace.


Yet I am not naive. I understand fully that many Muslims in the world are intent on bringing the entire world into submission to their god and their Sharia law through violent conquest. We must take this seriously, and therefore we must be serious and sober in our refutations and criticisms of Islamic idolatry.


I know GabrieltheCelt can probably address this better than I can, since he was a Muslim for many years.



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« Reply #54 on: October 23, 2010, 02:11:14 AM »

Here is my take on why Islam is growing more in the West. First I think a lot of it comes from the hypocricy found in Christianity today from among those who call themselves Christians who are only Christian on Sundays (this happens even in Orthodoxy sadly). There are so many who call themselves Christians but don't act like it but then they see Muslims who are devout and proud about their faith and fill the mosques on holy days where a lot of Christians don't seem to care and this also happens in Orthodoxy on feast days since at my church at least, we only get a few people to show up and our parish is huge. Many Muslims take their faith more seriously than most people who call themselves Christians. Another factor is the "loosy-goosy" (can't think of another word to use) feel of most Protestant groups who don't seem to have any serious grounding in faith and are only changing everything all the time and sprouting into numerous groups and many really make Christianity look like a joke so people are looking for something more serious. Think about the quote from Mahatma Gandhi: "I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians." Remember what he saw of Christians where he was. He saw people who went to church on Sundays and when they got out still showed hate to other human beings and they didn't follow the teachings of Our Lord.

This.

Every Muslim I've met in the West is rather serious about their faith (outside the nominal Turkish Muslims in Germany) and treat others rather well and decently.

Regardless of my thoughts on their beliefs, I must say that most Muslims I meet strike as rather dignified and up-standing.

"Christians?" Not so much.

If the growth of Islam is a problem for Christians, then it is time for Christians to become more Christ-like.

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« Reply #55 on: October 23, 2010, 02:14:16 AM »

And stop your Sufism. An irrelevant dot on the map in the world of Islam. "Sufism" has more relevance among undergraduates seeking a "spiritual path" at the coffee house than it does to Islam.

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« Reply #56 on: October 23, 2010, 07:50:18 AM »

Let's not be soft on Islam. Muslims in the West are not yet in a dominant position.

Consider rather all of those countries in which Islam is dominant and the plight of the Christians, all Christians, in those countries. Centuries of constant persecution and oppression right up to the present day. This is what Islam is really like. This is what Islam would be like if it took control of a Western country.

Already in the UK there are restrictions on behaviour in 'Muslim' areas. Women are spat at and abused. Christians are arrested for doing quiet evangelism under 'hate crime' laws. Criticism of Islam is considered racist. Islamists are infiltrating political parties in the UK to gain control. Islam (as a political/religion is the enemy of Christianity and all of our historic Western values. It must be opposed at every opportunity.

I would much, much rather live in a country with a majority Protestant population than in a majority Muslim one. To say otherwise is frankly obscene. When did the last pentecostal group in the UK blow up innocent men, women and children? Yet every single day Muslims are actually killing such innocent people around the world. EVERY SINGLE DAY. And all in the name of their god.

I am sure we could have found many very nice Nazis, cultured, well educated, kind and generous even. But the behaviour of a few does not take away the appalling obscenity of that creed.

In the UK alone 160,000 Muslims, that is 160,000!!!!!, have said that they agree with suicide bombing.

How many British Methodists, or Baptists, or Quakers, or Catholics could be found to agree with the idea that God requires us to murder innocent people to please Him?

Why has the Church in Iraq been almost wiped out? Who martyred the Chaldean Catholic Archbishop of Mosul? It wasn't Christians. It wasn't American soldiers in some terrible accident. It was and is the deliberate activity of 'good' Muslims doing the will of their god. And this is going on all over the world, every day. It is not incidental. It is not a fringe activity. It is what Islam really is like.
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« Reply #57 on: October 23, 2010, 09:38:58 AM »

Let's not be soft on Islam. Muslims in the West are not yet in a dominant position.

Consider rather all of those countries in which Islam is dominant and the plight of the Christians, all Christians, in those countries. Centuries of constant persecution and oppression right up to the present day. This is what Islam is really like. This is what Islam would be like if it took control of a Western country.

Already in the UK there are restrictions on behaviour in 'Muslim' areas. Women are spat at and abused. Christians are arrested for doing quiet evangelism under 'hate crime' laws. Criticism of Islam is considered racist. Islamists are infiltrating political parties in the UK to gain control. Islam (as a political/religion is the enemy of Christianity and all of our historic Western values. It must be opposed at every opportunity.

I would much, much rather live in a country with a majority Protestant population than in a majority Muslim one. To say otherwise is frankly obscene. When did the last pentecostal group in the UK blow up innocent men, women and children? Yet every single day Muslims are actually killing such innocent people around the world. EVERY SINGLE DAY. And all in the name of their god.

I am sure we could have found many very nice Nazis, cultured, well educated, kind and generous even. But the behaviour of a few does not take away the appalling obscenity of that creed.

In the UK alone 160,000 Muslims, that is 160,000!!!!!, have said that they agree with suicide bombing.

How many British Methodists, or Baptists, or Quakers, or Catholics could be found to agree with the idea that God requires us to murder innocent people to please Him?

Why has the Church in Iraq been almost wiped out? Who martyred the Chaldean Catholic Archbishop of Mosul? It wasn't Christians. It wasn't American soldiers in some terrible accident. It was and is the deliberate activity of 'good' Muslims doing the will of their god. And this is going on all over the world, every day. It is not incidental. It is not a fringe activity. It is what Islam really is like.

Precisely.
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« Reply #58 on: October 23, 2010, 10:54:36 AM »

I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned tajweed as a factor in people's decision.  The unconscious is constantly receptive to what touches the senses, and Qur'aanic recitation counts as one of Islam's strongest points in matters aesthetic.  One of the best reciters and masters of Islamic chant was the late Egyptian Sheikh Abdul-Baasit Abdus-Samad.  The natural acoustic system at work in this man's body was something staggering.  If someone becomes a Muslim, it would be no surprise if listening to recordings like these will have played a good part in directing him towards joining the religion.  Recitation is an art and for one with access to the language, it is easy to recognise this in the Qur'aan:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hXa2yqILWE4
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvbP2N7CHeE
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jhWXRSj-OI
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3krQsLyEcII

(Notice in the second of the four videos how the bearded man seated next to the sheikh is hanging onto his every note and ornamental shift, particularly during 1:45, and how he is possibly wiping away a tear at 2:05.  This is wherein lies the emotional core of the religion for its followers, especially when in their conviction they hear God speaking to them with these words in beautiful tones.  A Westerner can easily fall sway to something with such power; oriental Christians like myself can admire it from a safe distance.)

Here's another example of his capable voice working its effect.  Many I'm sure are particularly curious as to the perception of Heaven by Muslims, and as sensual as it appears in description, it is not an idea that is void of spiritual dimension and that is not meant to touch one on the level of the soul and to imply a spiritual fulfilment as well.  And to give an idea, here's the recited verse (the video will start at the right point) rendered accurately in syntax:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FtRGorhNc0#t=6m17s

"Until they {the blessed} came to it {Paradise} and have been opened its doors {'its doors' being abwaabu-ha--the possessive adjective is a clitic suffix} and have said to them its keepers {i.e. the keepers said to the blessed} "Peace be upon you {salaamun `aleikum}; '{ye} have become blessed', so enter it, {as} immortal{s} {khaalideen}."

He punctuates 'peace' in the above.  He moves on to a quiet line: "And have been driven those who feared their Lord to Paradise 'grouply' {i.e. in groups}."  Then he repeats what came before with a variation to the melody and ornamentation, stressing on 'its doors' and punctuating 'so enter it, immortal' with a more 'minor-key sound'.  Needless to say, all this carries strong impact and makes many Western Christians not from a traditional religious environment with ritual integrity all the more eager to convert when they go into enough churches and in comparison see the aesthetic and ritual equivalent of a pile of you know what.



Edited for objectionable language.

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« Reply #59 on: October 23, 2010, 11:01:37 AM »

The Sufis are very peaceful people, and they focus on the individual internal Jihad- that is, the war within.

I'm not sure where this idea comes from.

I got fed this from day one at the university, and I believed it until I did a bit of digging. The liberal lilies are always looking to support the underdog, and since Islam is falling on rough times right now in our culture, they need their intelligent advocates from the higher institutions. You know, save the world without ever repenting of sin yourself...

Sufism seems to fit the bill quite nicely at first glance. You have a contemplative mystical tradition, to which my undergraduate students last year responded "They get in a circle and say Allah a lot. Who cares?" Then there are the writings of Rumi, and presto, you've got (two?) of the ingredients for a loving, peaceful Islam that is super different from Wahhabism. Roll Eyes  Take that, evangelical fundamentalist parents!

I will never defend Islam, but our condemnations of false religion must be rooted in truth rather than straw man arguments.

Okay, but there is nothing particularly peaceful about Sufis or Sufism. Sufi fighters were instrumental in Islamic wars of conquest, including the conquest of the Byzantine empire.
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« Reply #60 on: October 23, 2010, 11:06:35 AM »

I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned tajweed as a factor in people's decision.  The unconscious is constantly receptive to what touches the senses, and Qur'aanic recitation counts as one of Islam's strongest points in matters aesthetic.

An excellent point. In my encounters with Islam, I am always immediately struck by the beauty of its various aesthetic components- the singing, the calligraphy, the sparse, open, peaceful beauty of the mosque. And it was certainly aesthetics before reasoning that brought me to Orthodoxy.

Quote
Needless to say, all this carries strong impact and makes many Western Christians not from a traditional religious environment with ritual integrity all the more eager to convert when they go into enough churches and in comparison see the aesthetic and ritual equivalent of pile of you know what.

Or, to be more precise, a dentist's office or a dolphin show.
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« Reply #61 on: October 23, 2010, 11:12:15 AM »


Okay, but there is nothing particularly peaceful about Sufis or Sufism. Sufi fighters were instrumental in Islamic wars of conquest, including the conquest of the Byzantine empire.

Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones! Smiley

Remember, Orthodox Christians have a LONG history of extremely objectionable behavior, yet if someone were to tell us, "there is nothing particularly peaceful about Orthodox Christians or Orthodoxy. Orthodox fighters were instrumental in all sorts wars of conquest" we'd take offense that a person saying such a thing was painting our faith with too broad a stroke and that they were unfairly judging our religion. We must be careful to not tend to do the same mass accusation. Whatever Sufism has done in the past, I think it's hard to challenge the point that TODAY they are one of the liberal and peaceful wings of Islam. Maybe they did some bad things in the past, but then, as I said so has our Church. I'm not trying to defend radical Muslims, but considering the fact that not all Muslims are radicals (not even close) I think it's important to keep a balanced perspective.

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« Reply #62 on: October 23, 2010, 11:20:04 AM »


Okay, but there is nothing particularly peaceful about Sufis or Sufism. Sufi fighters were instrumental in Islamic wars of conquest, including the conquest of the Byzantine empire.

Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones! Smiley 

Scroll up on the thread. I am responding to the claim that "the Sufis are very peaceful people."
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« Reply #63 on: October 23, 2010, 11:25:10 AM »


Okay, but there is nothing particularly peaceful about Sufis or Sufism. Sufi fighters were instrumental in Islamic wars of conquest, including the conquest of the Byzantine empire.

Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones! Smiley 

Scroll up on the thread. I am responding to the claim that "the Sufis are very peaceful people."

No, I understand you were trying to debunk a specific idea that all Sufis have always been peaceful. It just seemed like you were pigeonholing all Sufis for all time based on facts of history. I'm just saying that if the same criteria were to be applied to us, we'd not have much of a defense either. That's all.
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« Reply #64 on: October 23, 2010, 11:27:17 AM »



Quote
Needless to say, all this carries strong impact and makes many Western Christians not from a traditional religious environment with ritual integrity all the more eager to convert when they go into enough churches and in comparison see the aesthetic and ritual equivalent of pile of you know what.

Or, to be more precise, a dentist's office or a dolphin show.

LOL!
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« Reply #65 on: October 23, 2010, 12:20:05 PM »

Hazrat Inayat Khan established a Sufi movement in the West, often called "Universal Sufism" because one does not need to become Muslim in order to practice it. Needless to say, many Muslims question whether such a Sufism is possible. Nevertheless, Inayat Khan's influence has been very powerful in the 20th century, and continues today.
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« Reply #66 on: October 23, 2010, 01:16:30 PM »


Okay, but there is nothing particularly peaceful about Sufis or Sufism. Sufi fighters were instrumental in Islamic wars of conquest, including the conquest of the Byzantine empire.

Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones! Smiley 

Scroll up on the thread. I am responding to the claim that "the Sufis are very peaceful people."

No, I understand you were trying to debunk a specific idea that all Sufis have always been peaceful. It just seemed like you were pigeonholing all Sufis for all time based on facts of history. I'm just saying that if the same criteria were to be applied to us, we'd not have much of a defense either. That's all.


No, we wouldn't have much defense since we have even canonized some people who have killed quite a bit.
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« Reply #67 on: October 23, 2010, 05:44:35 PM »


Okay, but there is nothing particularly peaceful about Sufis or Sufism. Sufi fighters were instrumental in Islamic wars of conquest, including the conquest of the Byzantine empire.

Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones! Smiley 

Scroll up on the thread. I am responding to the claim that "the Sufis are very peaceful people."

No, I understand you were trying to debunk a specific idea that all Sufis have always been peaceful. It just seemed like you were pigeonholing all Sufis for all time based on facts of history. I'm just saying that if the same criteria were to be applied to us, we'd not have much of a defense either. That's all.


No, we wouldn't have much defense since we have even canonized some people who have killed quite a bit.

But have we enshrined the concept of holy war as a requirement for all believers? Moreover, has war of conquest characterized the spread of our faith since its foundation? No.
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« Reply #68 on: October 23, 2010, 06:02:41 PM »


Okay, but there is nothing particularly peaceful about Sufis or Sufism. Sufi fighters were instrumental in Islamic wars of conquest, including the conquest of the Byzantine empire.

Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones! Smiley 

Scroll up on the thread. I am responding to the claim that "the Sufis are very peaceful people."

No, I understand you were trying to debunk a specific idea that all Sufis have always been peaceful. It just seemed like you were pigeonholing all Sufis for all time based on facts of history. I'm just saying that if the same criteria were to be applied to us, we'd not have much of a defense either. That's all.


No, we wouldn't have much defense since we have even canonized some people who have killed quite a bit.

But have we enshrined the concept of holy war as a requirement for all believers? Moreover, has war of conquest characterized the spread of our faith since its foundation? No.
That's because Christianity is not a 'political' tradition, whereas Judaism and Islam started with definite political visions. Baha'ism and Christianity are more analogous to each other, in that sense, than Islam and Christianity.
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« Reply #69 on: October 23, 2010, 06:19:46 PM »

Let's not be soft on Islam. Muslims in the West are not yet in a dominant position.

Consider rather all of those countries in which Islam is dominant and the plight of the Christians, all Christians, in those countries. Centuries of constant persecution and oppression right up to the present day. This is what Islam is really like. This is what Islam would be like if it took control of a Western country.

Already in the UK there are restrictions on behaviour in 'Muslim' areas. Women are spat at and abused. Christians are arrested for doing quiet evangelism under 'hate crime' laws. Criticism of Islam is considered racist. Islamists are infiltrating political parties in the UK to gain control. Islam (as a political/religion is the enemy of Christianity and all of our historic Western values. It must be opposed at every opportunity.

I would much, much rather live in a country with a majority Protestant population than in a majority Muslim one. To say otherwise is frankly obscene. When did the last pentecostal group in the UK blow up innocent men, women and children? Yet every single day Muslims are actually killing such innocent people around the world. EVERY SINGLE DAY. And all in the name of their god.
I am sure we could have found many very nice Nazis, cultured, well educated, kind and generous even. But the behaviour of a few does not take away the appalling obscenity of that creed.

In the UK alone 160,000 Muslims, that is 160,000!!!!!, have said that they agree with suicide bombing.

How many British Methodists, or Baptists, or Quakers, or Catholics could be found to agree with the idea that God requires us to murder innocent people to please Him?

Why has the Church in Iraq been almost wiped out? Who martyred the Chaldean Catholic Archbishop of Mosul? It wasn't Christians. It wasn't American soldiers in some terrible accident. It was and is the deliberate activity of 'good' Muslims doing the will of their god. And this is going on all over the world, every day. It is not incidental. It is not a fringe activity. It is what Islam really is like.


Father bless,

I agree that we should not be soft in our Christian critique of Islam. I will condemn it as the enemy of Christianity, but I won't condemn it for being the enemy of our "Western values." I respectfully ask you Father, when did we begin equating Orthodoxy with Western values? Personally, I can never make such an equation.

We are right to condemn the inherent violence of Islam, but our Western secular/Protestant society is no less violent. Americans kill thousands of innocent babies every day, EVERY SINGLE DAY! And all in the name of their various and sundry gods.

I mean no disrespect Father.


Selam
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« Reply #70 on: October 23, 2010, 07:26:52 PM »

Western values don't equal western secularism.

For actual values, look toward western Christianity, such as Roman Catholic. It's actual values, and it's western Christianity.
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« Reply #71 on: October 23, 2010, 07:38:13 PM »

Western values don't equal western secularism.

For actual values, look toward western Christianity, such as Roman Catholic. It's actual values, and it's western Christianity.
A. We Orthodox are not Roman Catholic.
B. The values of Orthodoxy =/= the values of "our Western [Roman Catholic/]secular/Protestant society". It is partly a violent society, with some glorification of war. Whether the war in Afghanistan is "just", some adults' values about the war is glorification, and young people are sometimes tempted to compare it to a cool video game. Then when the young people get there, filled with all kinds of ideas like easterners=Arabs=Muslims=Islam=demons, join in slaughter and see their friends killed, they realize like the brave WT Sherman said, after complaining about glorification of war, "War is Hell".

The Western Values led to the Crusades, a slaughter of Orthodox and Muslims both, that became a glorified legend in Western Values.

However, positive western values are, "Western Values" =/= Orthodox values.

One should admire Jesus' Christian values.

Regards.
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« Reply #72 on: October 23, 2010, 07:50:54 PM »

Western values don't equal western secularism.

For actual values, look toward western Christianity, such as Roman Catholic. It's actual values, and it's western Christianity.
A. We Orthodox are not Roman Catholic.

I agree that we should not be soft in our Christian critique of Islam. I will condemn it as the enemy of Christianity, but I won't condemn it for being the enemy of our "Western values." I respectfully ask you Father, when did we begin equating Orthodoxy with Western values? Personally, I can never make such an equation.

GMK denied the connection of Western values and Orthodoxy, and instead equated the secularism in the West to Western Values.

B. The values of Orthodoxy =/= the values of "our Western [Roman Catholic/]secular/Protestant society".

See above.

It is partly a violent society, with some glorification of war. Whether the war in Afghanistan is "just", some adults' values about the war is glorification, and young people are sometimes tempted to compare it to a cool video game. Then when the young people get there, filled with all kinds of ideas like easterners=Arabs=Muslims=Islam=demons, join in slaughter and see their friends killed, they realize like the brave WT Sherman said, after complaining about glorification of war, "War is Hell".

The Western Values led to the Crusades, a slaughter of Orthodox and Muslims both, that became a glorified legend in Western Values.

However, positive western values are, "Western Values" =/= Orthodox values.

One should admire Jesus' Christian values.

Again, a lot of this is the pagan/secular values from the Western culture prior to Christianity, not the Roman Catholic Church itself. Do events in the Soviet Union, events in Armenia, Syria, etc. reflect the values of the Eastern Orthodox?

You cross politics with religious values. I'll ask, is there no concept of a 'just' war in Eastern Orthodoxy? Are there no warrior saints?
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« Reply #73 on: October 23, 2010, 09:00:39 PM »

GMK denied the connection of Western values and Orthodoxy, and instead equated the secularism in the West to Western Values.



I actually went on to say "Western secular/Protestant society." But I should have said, "Western secular/Protestant/Catholic society." The values of America and the West in general are predominantly shaped by the influences of secularism, Catholicism, and Protestantism. In fact, it has become quite difficult to to distinguish secular values from the values of many Protestants and Catholics- e.g. homosexual clergy, Catholic politicians who support pro-abortion policies, etc. It is clear that the values of our Western society - historically and currently - are shaped by many influences, but the Orthodox Church is not one of them. Let's pray and work for this to change.


Selam
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« Reply #74 on: October 23, 2010, 09:05:36 PM »

GMK denied the connection of Western values and Orthodoxy, and instead equated the secularism in the West to Western Values.



I actually went on to say "Western secular/Protestant society." But I should have said, "Western secular/Protestant/Catholic society." The values of America and the West in general are predominantly shaped by the influences of secularism, Catholicism, and Protestantism. In fact, it has become quite difficult to to distinguish secular values from the values of many Protestants and Catholics- e.g. homosexual clergy, Catholic politicians who support pro-abortion policies, etc. It is clear that the values of our Western society - historically and currently - are shaped by many influences, but the Orthodox Church is not one of them. Let's pray and work for this to change.


Selam


I agree!
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« Reply #75 on: October 23, 2010, 09:12:45 PM »

GMK denied the connection of Western values and Orthodoxy, and instead equated the secularism in the West to Western Values.



I actually went on to say "Western secular/Protestant society." But I should have said, "Western secular/Protestant/Catholic society." The values of America and the West in general are predominantly shaped by the influences of secularism, Catholicism, and Protestantism. In fact, it has become quite difficult to to distinguish secular values from the values of many Protestants and Catholics- e.g. homosexual clergy, Catholic politicians who support pro-abortion policies, etc. It is clear that the values of our Western society - historically and currently - are shaped by many influences, but the Orthodox Church is not one of them. Let's pray and work for this to change.


Selam

The problem is you make huge generalizations to talk about the west as a whole.

"homosexual clergy" - only a few liberal protestant or anglican churches practice this, they are shunned by the rest
"pro-abortion Catholic politicians" - they are shunned by the Catholic Church and in many cases excommunicated (Sen Kennedy)

The West is a swirling pool of different groups. In some places they mix, but the groups are separate in their core identity. It's part of the double edge sword to full personal freedom.
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« Reply #76 on: October 23, 2010, 10:33:23 PM »

GMK denied the connection of Western values and Orthodoxy, and instead equated the secularism in the West to Western Values.



I actually went on to say "Western secular/Protestant society." But I should have said, "Western secular/Protestant/Catholic society." The values of America and the West in general are predominantly shaped by the influences of secularism, Catholicism, and Protestantism. In fact, it has become quite difficult to to distinguish secular values from the values of many Protestants and Catholics- e.g. homosexual clergy, Catholic politicians who support pro-abortion policies, etc. It is clear that the values of our Western society - historically and currently - are shaped by many influences, but the Orthodox Church is not one of them. Let's pray and work for this to change.


Selam

The problem is you make huge generalizations to talk about the west as a whole.

"homosexual clergy" - only a few liberal protestant or anglican churches practice this, they are shunned by the rest
"pro-abortion Catholic politicians" - they are shunned by the Catholic Church and in many cases excommunicated (Sen Kennedy)

The West is a swirling pool of different groups. In some places they mix, but the groups are separate in their core identity. It's part of the double edge sword to full personal freedom.


Fair enough. But I would nevertheless argue that generally speaking the values and influences of the West are more corrosive than Christian.



Selam
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« Reply #77 on: October 23, 2010, 10:48:04 PM »

Fair enough. But I would nevertheless argue that generally speaking the values and influences of the West are more corrosive than Christian.


Selam

I can agree.

To see what a traditional Protestant values country looks like, compare it to early 20th century or 19th century US civilization. Modern day is overrun with secularism or secular influence.
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« Reply #78 on: March 06, 2012, 09:20:44 PM »

Under the oaks at Oprah's home in California, Sufi mystic Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee defines Sufism and explains why it's about love and the heart.

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« Reply #79 on: March 07, 2012, 10:58:06 AM »

Under the oaks at Oprah's home in California, Sufi mystic Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee defines Sufism and explains why it's about love and the heart.



"Sufism" divorced from Islam... kind of like Madonna's "Kabbalah"
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« Reply #80 on: March 07, 2012, 11:14:01 AM »

Under the oaks at Oprah's home in California, Sufi mystic Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee defines Sufism and explains why it's about love and the heart.



"Sufism" divorced from Islam... kind of like Madonna's "Kabbalah"
I think Madonna's Kabbalah teacher was himself of questionable integrity. A 'universal' Sufism, though, as commonly seen in the West, was introduced by a Sufi teacher of impeccable honesty.
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« Reply #81 on: March 07, 2012, 01:43:15 PM »

"Sufism" divorced from Islam...

Let's admit it, much of Sufism, particularly the branches that have appeared in Western Europe and the Anglosphere is not really Islam.  It may be more palatable and even contain more truth, but it is not in accordance with the overwhelmingly accepted scripture and teachings of Muhammad.

To answer the question posed in the OP, there are many reasons.  I think the most compelling though is that it appears to offer a relatively straightforward, yet personal understanding of its deity, prescribed worship and way to live one's life.
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