Truly Amazing

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Who would’ve imagined something like this?

 

Uproar as archbishop says sharia law inevitable in UK

The Archbishop of Canterbury drew criticism from across the political spectrum last night after he backed the introduction of sharia law in Britain and argued that adopting some aspects of it seemed “unavoidable”. Rowan Williams, the most senior figure in the Church of England, said that giving Islamic law official status in the UK would help to achieve social cohesion because some Muslims did not relate to the British legal system.

His comments, in a lecture on civil and religious law given at the Royal Courts of Justice, were swiftly rebutted by the prime minister’s spokesman, who insisted British law would be based on British values and that sharia law would be no justification for acting against national law.

“Our general position is that sharia law cannot be used as a justification for committing breaches of English law, nor should the principles of sharia law be included in a civil court for resolving contractual disputes. If there are specific instances, like stamp duty, where changes can be made in a way that’s consistent with British law … to accommodate the values of fundamental Muslims, that is something the government would look at.”

Williams was also criticised by the Tory peer Sayeeda Warsi, shadow minister for community cohesion and social action. “The comments may add to the confusion that already exists in our communities,” she said … “We must ensure people of all backgrounds and religions are treated equally before the law. Freedom under the law allows respect for some religious practices. But let’s be clear: all British citizens must be subject to British laws developed through parliament and the courts.”

Sharia law sets out a broad code of conduct for all aspects of life, from diet, wearing of the hijab to marriage and divorce.

British courts do not recognise Islamic marriages performed in this country unless they are registered separately with the civil authorities. The result is that some Muslims think they are protected by family law when they are not, and others can think they are properly divorced, when they are still married. However, Britain recognises Islamic marriages and divorces conducted in Muslim countries such as Pakistan or Bangladesh.

Under Islamic law polygamy is condoned, allowing a man up to four wives and giving him the primary right to call for divorce. This means he can leave his first wife, refuse her a divorce and remarry, yet still consider himself living in accordance with his faith.

Some Muslim groups supported Williams’ views. The Ramadhan Foundation, an educational and welfare body, said the speech was “testament to his attempts to understand Islam and promote tolerance and respect between our great faiths”.

More than 800 people were in the Great Hall of the Royal Courts of Justice in London for last night’s speech, while another 200 poured into the overspill marquee.

Williams said introducing sharia law would mean Muslims would no longer have to choose between two systems.

“If what we want socially is a pattern of relations in which a plurality of diverse and overlapping affiliations work for a common good, and in which groups of serious and profound conviction are not systematically faced with the stark alternatives of cultural loyalty or state loyalty, it seems unavoidable,” he said.

Earlier, in a BBC interview, the archbishop was more succinct. He said it was a “matter of fact” that sharia law was already practised in Britain. “We already have in this country a number of situations in which the internal law of religious communities is recognised by the law of the land … There is a place for finding what would be a constructive accommodation with some aspects of Muslim law, as we already do with some kinds of aspects of other religious law.”

He did not endorse, however, the “kind of inhumanity” that was associated with sharia law in some Islamic states.

Methinks that there is a fair amount of “misunderstanding” in this article’s presentation of sharia law, as my understanding is that women have a very clear path to divorce, and that the subject of polygamy in Islam is not as cut-and-dried as this article intimates (as is the case with Mormonism).  The Bible has all sorts of references to polygamy, and yet the practice is very limited in today’s Christian world — as is slavery.

The fact is, I think that the Archbishop is to be commended for saying something that, while he had to know it would bring down the wrath of orthodoxy, is nevertheless a common sense observation that honors and respects an entire people.

If a clergyman said this in America, the uproar would be deafening, and the messenger would be run out of town on a rail.

I’m stunned.

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8 thoughts on “Truly Amazing

  1. william johnson says:

    Whenever I see the phrase “freedom under the law” I am compelled to inform that in the UK it doesn’t exist.
    For over twelve years I have been sat on by what can only be described as an illegally tax funded civil service population control organisation. It is sometimes referred to as ‘the friends’ ( you may have heard of it, I know some people have, and a lot of those who have heard of it are then tricked and/or coerced into silence and co-operation.)
    Illegally tax funded is accurate because its task is to subvert the rule of law repressing human rights and freedom under the law for the convenience of civil servants.
    Essentially it’s a tidied-up copy of the typical repression arms of all totalitarian regimes. Tidied-up in the sense of a heavy reliance on perception distortions ( misusing and abusing Freud and Jung’s work on the production of psychoanalysis ) rather than the physical abuses which is limited to a black-eye perhaps, and the careful application of drugs viruses and bacteria, but to illustrate the point, the terror induced by perceptually orchestrated death threats is very real.
    So too is loss of freedom of association ( associates, neighbours landlords employers etc. tricked/coerced into cooperation using the same perceptual distortion methods );
    So too is the attempts at re-education, using Pavlovian dog training methods of reward and punishment via ‘circumstantial’ good and bad ‘luck’, ( in my own case to get me to abandon the idea of the rule of law as my only master ) and believe it or not a relentless assault by psychopaths using Freud’s dream inducing techniques producing a nightly routine of sex and nightmares.
    Mystique is ruthlessly exploited. With a tax funded budget any talent can be recruited from anywhere for its control effects whilst constant illegal surveillance provides evidence of the effects.
    Contempt for the rule of law is total with respect only for the absence of hard evidence that might attract the attention of law enforcement.
    After twelve years of this attention and whilst observing the effects of ‘the friends’ on wider society, (particularly the lower income groups which have the most contact with the civil service and suffer the most damage) I get the strong impression that the civil service wants wide acceptance of a particular sub-message that reads similarly thus, “There is no law, there is only control. Do as you’re told. Law is no protection and your vote is useless”.
    I hope this is of interest to our American kin because I know the American Bar Association pay regular tribute to the site of Magna Carta’s signing at Runnymede here in England. What the British civil service have done is a rank betrayal.

  2. Hawk Sr. says:

    With regard to the Bishop, he makes me hunger for such courage here in the USA. I also like his eyebrows.

  3. Gariban says:

    Well running one system with another had been carried out by Ottoman Empire(Today it is Turkish Republic). Formal religion and regime of Ottoman Empire was islam, however, christians and jews were living under the ottoman regime and Ottoman Empire was allowing them to run their religious based courts for the Christian and Jewish public. For instance marriages, divorce issues were being done in accordance with their laws. In islam , drinking Alcohol is haram(forbidden) , however, alcohol was allowed to be sold on jewish and christian streets in Ottoman Empire where as it was forbidden on muslim streets.

    However, shariah is carried out differently in some islamic countries today. England is a cosmopolit country having muslims from all around the world. While muslim countries are getting difficulty to join eachother outside the authority of the UK in the world, How could they join eachother and set up a shariah court inside the UK system? I see problems there. This could cause divisions and problems amongst the muslims . However, if unity is achieved it could be a nice example.

  4. adreampuppet says:

    Dear friend Gariban,

    I was hoping you’d respond to this post, so thanks for giving us your “boots on the ground” perspective.

    My feeling is that, no matter what comes of this issue, it’s refreshing to see the Arbishop of Canterbury taking such an open and tolerant position. He is practising the “spirit of Christianity,” as opposed to so much of what passes for Christianity these days. I think that the man has guts, for sure.

    Warmly,
    Michael

  5. Gariban says:

    Hi Michael thanks for your warm comments,
    There are always nice people in the world no matter how much we sink in to the mud. Surely the archbishop’s comments were very nice and brave. I am also fun of his eyebrows like the others.

    However, having lived in the UK for a long period of time, I can see that some people will not be happy with his good opinions. Since the public swept the religion from the community, it is a battle to make people listen to your opinions. Let me give you a few experiences I had in my environment:
    We have a small mosque in here. We tried to put a full time imam in the mosque but the yobs tried to burn him in the mosque. As he was afraid, we could not succeed to hold him in the mosque to hold prayers. I was attacked by two youngs in one evening when I was alone in the mosque. Thanks to God, I did not get injured.

    After a few months, I saw a dream in which a mosque was burning and I was trying to extinguish the fire with a bucket of water but the water was getting less in the bucket when I was walking towards the fire.So I could not extinguish it. I sent an e-mail to my sheikh to comment on my dream. He said you must be under the effect of the events in the media.

    Two days after, I asked the brothers in the mosque to see if we have any precaution for fire in the mosque. 2 days later , I had a call from one of the brothers saying “Our mosque is burnt”. The mosque we had was an islamic center as we are not to use the word mosque if we wanted to use the hall given to us. Because we are not allowed to rent the hall with that name. Simply our council does not support us to have a local mosque in our hometown. After the fire, dozens of people came and gave comforting speeches to us in a temporary hall rented to us by the council.

    One of the people who gave speech was the head of the churches in our county. He made a beatiful speech. He sat down with us on the floor humbly. One thing which he said had hit me. He said ” You must have realised so far that this country is not a christian or a religious country. Majority of the public lives in accordance with old traditions. So do not think that this is done to you by christians”. Well this had hit the nail on the head. He was right. So it is quite normal that archbishop is critisized within the country.

    With peace and my prayers
    Gariban
    UK

  6. adreampuppet says:

    Dear friend Gariban,

    Thank you for sharing your experiences with regard to the attitude toward religion in the U.K. It seems like a complicated matter, but in the end, we see yet another example of fear driving people to behave like animals. I am so sorry to hear about the burning of your mosque. That you dreamed about it ahead of time shows that your personal practice is bearing fruit, and that your inner guidance is true.

    It’s also good to hear about the response of the local Christian community in your area. It seems that the U.K. is going through a very difficult period of intolerance and oppression, as is the case in much of the rest of the world. Thankfully, we are able to communicate in this way, thereby reminding ourselves that the world if filled with good folks who wish only the best for their brothers and sisters.

    Warmly,
    Michael

  7. adreampuppet says:

    Oh, Gariban,

    I love those eyebrows on the Archbishop, too!

    Blessings,
    Michael

  8. Gariban says:

    Me too my friend , me too! Mines are getting long bit by bit as well. Perhaps one day I will catch up with him.

    Qur’an 95/4.”Certainly We created man in the best make.”

    Wassalaam (With Peace)
    Gariban

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