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Warning! Controversial Thread: " Artist defiantly draws Prophet Mohammed"

Discussion in 'The Lounge - Off Topic' started by tripwire45, Oct 16, 2007.

  1. tripwire45
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    Warning! This is a news story from CNN on a controversial subject. If you believe that you will be offended by this subject or by a discussion based on this subject, PLEASE do not read any further. Also, this is not an opportunity to flame Muslims or members of any other religion. It is an attempt to understand a thought process that I cannot seem to understand as a person of faith. If you continue to read on after this disclaimer, that is your choice.

    First of all, here's the link to the story:

    http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/europe/10/16/artist.controversy/index.html

    Now, apparently a Swedish artist has purposefully drawn the Prophet Mohammad as a dog in order to elicit a reaction among Muslims and to demonstrate his free speech rights. Unfortunately, he's gotten the response he's asked for:
    Unless you think the artist in question is just picking on Islam, the article mentions the following:
    and
    Now based on Al Qaeda's history in general, their reaction is predictable and no one would believe that their point of view represents Islam as a whole and many, many Muslims have gone on record as denouncing Al Qaeda's violent acts. That said, there is another part to consider:
    I don't know if Amatullah is just one extremist individual who agrees that murder is an acceptable form of artistic criticism or if her opinions are shared by a wider audience. I do know, based on the article, that there is a more measured response from the Islamic community in Sweden:
    Certainly, demanding an apology from the artist is more reasonable than demanding his life.

    Now to the 64 Thousand Dollar question. This artist once drew a picture of Jesus as a child molester and pictures and books have been written that are highly critical and even insulting to other religions including Christianity and Judaism. The thing I *don't* understand is why only Islam responds to insults with death threats? Not even the most fringy, extremist elements of Christianity of Judaism threaten to kill their critics.

    I know that there are a number of Muslims on this board and please understand, I am not trying to be insulting or critical of Islam, but it seems that the reaction here is not one you typically find in many other faiths in the world...at least in modern times (historically, both Christianity and Islam have participated in crusades resulting in many, many deaths).

    I also must reference the last time pictures of the Prophet Mohammad were aired in the media, there were riots by hundreds or thousands of Muslims in cities all over the world, so this doesn't seem to be the response of just a few extremist individuals or groups.

    Can anyone please shed some light on this subject with a reasoned response (and remember the disclaimer from above...if you can't be polite and rational, don't respond).

    I apologize in advance to the mod and admin staff for throwing this monkey wrench into the machine. In terms of this thread, I'm taking myself out of the loop as a mod and am posting as a regular member. The staff is free to follow the R&Gs and their own judgment regarding what I am writing.
     
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  2. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

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    Its an interesting story, to be sure. However, I would point out that Christianity is not immune to extremists issuing death threats. A quick search on the web reveals This. I can also recall (vaguelly) other instances of the same from christians. And thats even without going into the Crusades, where some Christians felt it was acceptable to kill anyone not willing to convert to their religion.

    Bottom line, is that there will always be people, in every religion, who think it is acceptable to kill or threaten to kill anyone they perceive to be 'insulting' their religion. These people are (Today) generally a minority, and in no way represent the religion as a whole. Its unfortunate that it exists, and that everyone cant just respect everyone elses right to believe as they wish, but it does exist.

    I'm not sure I agree with the artist personally. To me, everyone has the right to believe as they wish, and everyone should respect that. There will occassionally be instances where its not possible, but for the most part it should be fine.
     
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  3. BosonMichael
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    Please. The Crusades were a thousand years ago. :rolleyes: I'd like to think we've moved a bit past that...

    Sure, there are a few "supposed Christians" who go out bombing abortion docs... but how often do you see that sort of thing happen? You don't... because there are an extremely small number of Christians who think it is right to take someone's life - especially for creating a chocolate Jesus. You don't see "Christian terrorist groups" offering $100,000 to take that artists' life... comparing the two incidents is absurd.
     
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  4. greenbrucelee
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    I am not sure if I agree with the artist but I have a problem with religion as whole.

    Why is it if you speak to a devout christian that they say there way is the way and if you speak to a devout muslim they say their way is the way?

    How about there all wrong and whn you die thats it, no after life no vestal virgins to meet you when you get your room in heaven.

    Your worm fodder thats it.

    I have said before and will say it again I went to sunday school when I was young but got asked to leave because I asked to many questions which made the stories we were told sound like a bunch of crap and stories is all I believe they are.

    I have muslim friends and they deplore what has happened in the name of Islam but they understand it, I don't even when they have explained it to me.

    I believe in my freinds, family and myslef and not some higher being.

    I quote John lennon "I don't believe in Beatles I just believe in me" he has a good point.

    If people believed in themselves they wouldn't need religion but then again if your parents tell you to believe in something then you are going to because they are your parents, I personally thing faith and religion should be left for the individual not get preached to them from an early age, then we wouldn't be in the mess we are in.

    All religions preach Love & peace, but none of the devout/extremist people amongst them practice it and thats were I believe religions fail.

    That poor artist will get killed I am pretty sure of that, but what does that say about the person or religion that made the murderer commit the act?
     
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  5. tripwire45
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    Good point. I'd heard about the "My Sweet Lord" exhibit but hadn't heard there were death threats:
    Still, how often do you find information in the media relative to Christians or Jews issuing death threats because their religions have been insulted vs. Islam? Now of course, we could say that the media has an ax to grind relative to Islam that it doesn't for other religions, but I don't see anyone issuing a bounty for slitting artist Cosimo Cavallaro's throat. I think there's more involved in one isolated incident about a "chocolate Jesus" vs. depictions of the Prophet Mohammad.

    BTW, I think the reactions to the "chocolate Jesus" are ridiculous. The whole thing would have blown over very quickly if Christians had just ignored it rather than giving the artist free publicity by going ballistic.

    EDIT: This is not a thread to debate which religion is "right" or if being an atheist is "right". This thread has a very specific focus so I politely ask that any responders attend to that focus. Thanks.
     
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  6. BosonMichael
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    You think so? I'm a pretty devout Christian... I sing in the choir, teach Sunday School, evangelize in my community, and am considering a mission trip. You're saying that there's no way that I could speak about "love and peace"? Choose your words carefully before you say "none"...

    ...that said, my message isn't about MY "love and peace"... my message doesn't have to do with me at all.
     
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  7. greenbrucelee
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    I like to point out that over here in the UK the christian, catholic thing for years i.e the IRA yep it was mainly about one side wanting be a united Ireland and not goverend by the UK but the religious thing played a major role and still does, we just don't hear about it that much anymore because people are'nt being blown up but believe me punishment beatings and knee cappings are still taking place over there due to religious biggottry.
     
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  8. Modey

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    I think both sides are wrong in this issue. The guy for drawing what he did in the first place as free speech is one thing, but there have to be limits I think. I would imagine many spiritual or deeply religious people would think free speech falls way down the list of importance when compared to blasphemy. And Al Qeada, well simply for what they represent. They jump on issues like this and claim to represent muslims, when clearly they do not. They do seem very good at 'pushing peoples buttons' in such a way to incite them to say and do things they would regret later.

    I believe the women mentioned in the article who is threatening to make good on the threat would actually be arrested under recent new laws that have been passed in the UK.

    I do feel a bit torn over the whole freedom of speech issue here though. On one hand I think the guy has every right to publish what he likes, but where do you draw the line on what is acceptable? If he did this purely for publicity then he is a fool.
     
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  9. JonnyMX

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    I know very little about the principles of Islam, so I can't judge.

    But, human nature and culture is a funny thing.

    We base our standards on how we live and how our society works.
    Here in the UK (generally) we are quite a restrained culture, so we don't understand this sort of behaviour.

    I've seen Italians fighting in the street over a parking spot, and as a Brit, I find that unusual.

    So when you see some Eastern countries on the news where 14 year old boys carry machine guns, I guess you have to say that this is a culture where they take things a bit more seriously.


    Or is it that Western religion is washed out?
    I know there are some people here who are religious. Some believe in God because that's just what they've been brought up with, and some make the effort to crawl out of bed on a Sunday morning.

    But does anyone believe strongly enough to go pistols at dawn over it?
     
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  10. greenbrucelee
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    There's a fine line between saying this is what god preaches and saying you must believe this because its the only way, thats what I mean.

    Good luck to you if you do your mission trip.
     
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  11. Cockles

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    The people that would feel strongly enough to do that would be fanaticals, and in most cases fanaticals are either denounced by a religion or are an offshoot that is recognized only in a negative light.

    With some people though, religion is certainly their entire life, I can can perfectly understand why they would get offended by an arsehole like this guy deliberately stirring up a shitstorm by doing things like this. Granted, I certainly think threats of death is way, way overboard and completely unnaceptable, but that's the fanatics in action.

    Consider a hardcore football fan. For them, their team is thier life, their religion. With some of these, they are willing to stamp someone's head into the ground for either not following the same team (believing in the same religion) or for insulting their team (insulting their religion). This kind of beahviour happens in many walks of life, probably without people even noticing it,.

    The media gives a lot of airtime to this kind of behaviour though, despite it being in a minority, as it sells. Imagine the Sun headline 'Everything is going well today', wouldn't sell as much
     
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  12. greenbrucelee
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    I agree with you there, I just wish people would grow up not being taught about religion and see what they do after they find out themselves that would be interesting.
     
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  13. JonnyMX

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    That's a very good point.

    When you weigh up one death threat against the many good and positive messages that can come out of religion, then it alters things somewhat.

    It definately sells more papers than 'Pope tells everyone to be nice'.

    :biggrin
     
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  14. greenbrucelee
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    religions a funny thing especially when the head of the catholic church used to be in hitlers youth league :blink

    Anyway back to topic, that artist should get polic protection because he is going to get killed and he shouldn't have done it as all he has done is stir the s*** up again
     
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  15. Fergal1982

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    Yes, the crusades were a thousand years ago, and yes we've moved on, but it still serves as an example of what people are capable of in their beliefs. Just because its not the mainstream view of the church any more, doesnt mean that there aren't people in the world who do honestly believe thats an appropriate response. Whether you choose to admit it or not, people do do this, from all walks of life and religions (Isnt the KKK supposedly christian? do they not still operate? Would they offer a price on someones head if it suited them? ok maybe not officially since the US government wouldnt be too happy about it - but it wouldnt stop them doing it on the side).

    AQ get away with it because its perfectly acceptable in the country they operate from. Does it make it right? no. but it happens. They dont represent the religion as a whole, but they are certainly the most vocal.

    I would also like to differentiate between Devout/Fundamentalist and extremeist. The former refers to people who are deeply into their religion, follow the tenets, etc (and this in most religions doesnt actually extend to murder). Extremeists are those who go to extremes for their religion. They usually end up twisting the tenets in a way that justifies their actions.
     
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  16. BosonMichael
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    Well, not really... the reason Christians say "you must believe this because it's the only way" is because that's what's written in the Bible... John 14:6 states,

    Not through good works... not through going to church... not through Mohammed... not through Buddha... not through anything else... but through Jesus Christ. That's why Christians say what they do... not because THEY think that there's no other way... but because Jesus SAID there's no other way.

    If you believe the Bible is the Word of God, then this must be true. If you don't believe in the Bible, then it's illogical for anyone to expect you to accept Jesus Christ as your Savior. It's not for ME to judge whether you'll go to hell or not... I simply tell you what's written, and you can believe what you will. If there are multiple paths to God, I'll let Him make that judgement call... not me.

    In short, they're not my rules, man... I'm just the messenger.
     
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  17. greenbrucelee
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    totally respect you for that.

    You believe the bible is the word of god. respect.

    I believe the bible was written by man and has nothing to do with anything beyond that.

    And when my time comes and I face st Peter or whoever I'll apologise and say I was wrong.
     
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  18. BosonMichael
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    What a group did that existed thousands of years ago, and followed behavior patterns that do not follow Biblical teachings, has no bearing as to what I do as a Christian today.

    Whether the KKK is "supposedly" Christian or not has no bearing on whether they are Christian or not. Would they offer a price on someone's head? I don't know, would they? Or better yet, when have they recently? I honestly don't know. They're not very influential anymore, if at all.

    No, they don't represent the religion as a whole... but there are far more people who are willing to kill in the name of Allah than are willing to kill in the name of Jesus. I don't know enough about Islam to know whether it's wrong to kill someone just for being a non-believer or for disrespecting Mohammed or Allah... but I can state definitively that it's wrong for a Christian to kill someone just for being a non-believer or for disrespecting God or Jesus.
     
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  19. Fergal1982

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    My point, of course, isnt to say whether its right or wrong under christianity. Its simply to point out that almost all religions have people like this.

    I have to agree with Modey ultimately. The artists shouldnt really have drawn it I suppose, and AQ shouldnt have reacted to violently.

    This kind of behaviour is really only understandable to the extremists, to us normal people we just cant understand it.
     
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  20. onoski

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    I would not normally reply to a thread like this but would use this opportunity to make some points. Firstly, Christianity is not a religion it's a believe. Hence the Bible states that those that have ears let them hear.

    He did not say just because we have ears we should hear. Everyone makes a choice on what they'd believe or not believe and that's a fact right there. Look at those that believe in evolution and that they originated from a chimp. This is the year October, 2007 and I have not seen one fact of a chimp evolving into a man. Evolution means evolving so this is utter rubbish if all of a sudden evolving stops. I stand to be corrected.

    That person who ridiculed the Muslims was wrong and I don't advocate wrong doings. Lets call a spade a spade whether they are in the right or vice versa. There is this thing called respect for others and their believe.

    Each day I understand more of God's love shown to me because am not killed when I do or say things wrong to others. On the other hand as mere humans we have the natural tendency to pay evil for evil or unless of course your a born again christian that understands forgiveness and how to forgive others.

    Jesus demonstrated this powerfully in the Bible as when he was about to be taken away before being crucified Peter a disciple of he's reached for he's sword and chopped the ear of one of the soldiers. Jesus turned round to Peter and said no one should hurt or kill by the sword or they themselves too would die by the sword and healed the soldiers ear.

    Again, the soldier did not even catch the revelation that Jesus is a good person but still went all out arresting Jesus. What would you have don't in this situation, just told a lie.

    Jesus in he's teaching in the Bible spoke about love and forgiveness, healing the sick and setting the bold free. I pray that God would open the blind eyes of many who say there isn't a God or it's all about religion.

    No, religion is man made. I thank God he never forces anyone to serve him as he's word is clear, broad is the way that leads to destruction and narrow the path that leads to life of internity.

    Which road are you on my friend? We can go on and on but there's one thing we all cannot disprove and that is we're all going to died one day.

    God that created you and me has commanded that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow. It either would be in this life or when we're dead and stand before your creator.

    I do not believe in imposing my believes on anyone but the Bible has a lot of examples used when trying to let man understand that God is love.

    The book of John 3.16 in the Bible states is love hence God sent Jesus he's precious son to died for all of us. I would personally not lay my life down for someone that hates my gut and wants to do me harm but this is what Jesus did for me and you whether you accept or not. Nuff said, so those that have ears let them hear:biggrin
     
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