Your impressions after encountering Muslims on this forum


#1

Hello all,

Many Muslims have been on this forum for a while now . Some are regulars and some arent. I have been on the forum for three years now.

I am trying to understand if this presence of muslims have made any effect in making each other view the other person better, or in more precise words, bieng able to give the other a good treatement as a neighbour, co worker, fellow citizen.


#2

I learned that what Muslims say is often time different than what muslims do. They have many misconceptions of what Christians believe and sometimes don’t want to listen when Christians attempt to explain things.


#3

I cannot vote in your poll, meedo because it doesn’t give me enough options. My reading of/dialogue with Muslims has not changed my view of them for the better or for the worse. My view has not changed, in fact, it has only be reinforced. And I’ve never believed that I don’t need to hear from those of other beliefs. And, I do and have read posts concerning Islam.

I have always viewed Muslims as I do Fundamentalist Christians. Both are taught there is no truth outside of what they believe and that everyone else is lost unless they believe what Muslims or Fundamentalist Christians do. I understand why both groups believe this and will not change their ideas about it.

I think both quite wrong, but saying so gets me nowhere, no matter how reasoned my argument nor how much I might appeal to their own beliefs that might mitigate their understanding of man and his relationship with God and others.

Both groups must believe what they do or fear being lost–not in the sense of deliberately turning one’s back on God, but in the sense that God will not have pity on anyone unless he believes as they have been taught to believe. I think that wrong and very sad.


#4

Hi Meedo,
Like Della I can’t vote either. I know there are some good and bad people of all faiths. What has always concerned me about Islam is that there isn’t much room for hope. Islam is so exclusive of everyone but muslims even to the point of violence against non-muslims.

God is Love. We have to want to be obedient, but out of love not fear. Christianity is about hope and faithful obedience whereas Islam is about fear and blind obedience.

I know you seem to be a very nice person, but I am sorry, nothing you have said or done has changed my impression of Muslims. I still see that there are many extremist Muslims that will do anything to spread their faith, including murder, terror, intimidation, and oppression.


#5

Meedo, I have learned that you are just as nice as can be. If the other Muslims who come on this forum were more like you, I would still believe that there are many in Islam who are also nice, & do not support the radicals.
Instead, I have come to realize that most Muslims are very angry, very hostile, & completely unwilling to accept that Christians might, just might, know a little more about what we believe in, than a radical Muslim writer/speaker who tells outrageous lies about Christians.
I am sorry about this, too, because it is sad to find so much hatred in folks who profess religious faith…But I don’t feel I can lie about this.

And since I personally believe that there is no way to God & Heaven except for Jesus Christ, I have become increasingly :frowning: worried about the souls of Muslims.


#6

I read the Muslim posts from time to time but find them tedious. In my experience, their intellectual engagement of Christianity is limited to criticisms of alleged contradictions in our Scriptures. These threads rarely explore the implications of our common heritage, tend to exhibit little capacity for self-criticism, and fend off (rather than honestly engage) Christian concerns. It’s disappointing, and ultimately, repelling.

Of course, we Catholics rarely critique Islam to any depth. We usually just find ourselves rolling our eyes at the latest proselytic Muslim post or news story involving Islam (an embarassing fact). Then again, most of us would never jump on a Muslim forum and criticize their “sacred text” (it strikes many of us as uncharitable, and opposed to the respect proper to interfaith dialogue). I would willingly invite a Muslim to explore my faith, and reexamine his faith in that light, but I couldn’t approach a Muslim with a pocket full of pre-packaged criticisms of his faith. “Do unto others…”?

Besides, Christian theology is complex and reflects an array of historical concerns; Islam’s polemic appears superficial beside it. We don’t consider a “prophecy” delivered six hundred years after Christ (about a thousand miles away) a more authoritative source of His teachings than the texts written a few years or decades after His death by those who learned at His feet. Groundless mention of a lost or corrupted “Injil” can only strike us as absurd and ahistorical, given the wealth of textual-critical evidence supporting apostolicity of New Testament theology. We Christians want to be taken seriously.

But we have our faults. Both sides need to establish a new depth of conversation.


#7

For me the answer depends in part if Pro_universal is a Moslem, or not.

But at least I enjoy your honesty!


#8

meedo,

You are honest. You admit that stoning adulterers, pesecuting Christians, world conquest, and killing converts is part of Islam. Others try to deceive us or hide these unpleasant facts. While I applaud your honesty I am appalled by your religion. It puzzles us how a “nice” guy can hold beliefs that are so revolting to human conscience. This has struck me with other Muslims I have known. As others mentioned the lack of a capacity for self-criticism or introspection in Muslims is a subject worthy of further study.

I just got back from Rome. Let me share with you something that really bothered me. 10 years ago I could walk up the steps into St. Peter’s without a problem. Today I cannot do that. To get into the basilica you have to go through airport security including x-rays. This creates immense lines. Why? Because of Islams propensity for violence. This is the world Islam is creating. It is not a nice place. There is a satirical poem called “When” written by a Saudi, you will find it on the memri.org site on Feb. 28th. Read it and think about it, take off the Islamic blinders just for a moment. Is that the world you want?


#9

meedo and all,

I too did not contribute to the poll, not finding the accurate answer to communicate my feelings.

I came to this forum looking for answers, insight,… enlightenment? I was instead distracted by the conflict on the non-Catholic Religions sections. I find myself more frustrated than ever.

My understanding and opinion of Muslims AND Christians hasn’t changed much. Sorry.


#10

I voted that I don’t need a Muslims input into my understanding, because I find most Muslims to be illogical and unreasonable.

For example, I can think of the following few strange thoughts that have come up by muslims, such as;

I’m sure there are more, but I really can’t be bothered finding them; I’m sure whatever I find will be trashed by a muslim anyway.


#11

Didn’t vote – mostly I found myself utterly amazed by your patience with the rest of this crowd and the xenophobia often displayed here. You and John Allison especially are quite inspiring :slight_smile:


#12

Didn’t have this answer as an option:

“No it wasn’t”

Your 4 choices were lacking


#13

Check out Khalfan’s posts on the “can we have a discussion with Muslims without getting angry” thread
forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=134581&page=4

Instead of dealing with the topic he’s launched about six posts that attack the Bible.

Then someone sends him links to two sites and he complains that they’re blocked in the United Arab Emirites, without even realising the irony that Christian apologetics sites are blocked in his country!


#14

I have learned more about “Catholics” than I have learned about “Muslims” while reading the threads on Islam.

I have found most of the Muslims try hard to state their beliefs in a clear manner…but are faced with antagonism from many posters here. But I see that with the Protestants too…

There seems to be a “dis-junction” of ideas as when a Catholic uses words like “God” and when a Muslim uses words like “God” in their minds are two different beings…no amount of “but Jesus is God” retorts are going to sway a Muslim…and no matter how many times a Muslim states that “God has no partner”…it’s going to rub Christians wrong…even though it’s not an attack on each other’s beliefs, but IMO, each poster is “reading past” the other and reciting “mantras” of doctrine instead of opening up hearts for understanding. Trying to understand one another does not mean to embrace the other’s belief…no one is asking that…

It is IMO, a sad state of affairs…if we cannot address one another with civility and kindness on this forum…how will those “in the world” ever work out their difficulties?


#15

Publisher,

Hang around. What really has driven me to be so hard on the muslims is the muslims themselves. When they defend terrorism, persecution of Christians, or the murder of converts I find it very difficult to “dialogue.” I haven’t met a single muslim on this board, or frankly anywhere, who is absolutely completely opposed to Islamic terrorism and will say so directly and without equivocation. How can you talk to someone who would cut your head off if you happened to be in his country?


#16

While I understand some of your misgivings…is it right to return anger for anger…hate for hate…impolite and rude comments for the same?

I do not “excuse” Muslims…but I think seeking to understand a little of the cause for them not speaking out too boldly might foster communication…as I understand…one of the tenets of Islam is that no Muslim is to speak against another Muslims by taking sides against unbelievers. They may argue and fight among themselves…but Islam binds them together in a very tight brotherhood…no Muslim may speak against another by taking sides with Christians…I don’t agree with it…but then I’m not Muslim.

Seeking to understand Islam in our Western society is very difficult…it is cultural…nuances we don’t begin to take into account when speaking with Muslims fall into play…PLUS we as Western Christians tend to have a very narrow and not so flattering view of Islam…even contentious…

We can promote dialog much better than we do as followers of Jesus of Nazareth…we can reflect his presence in our lives when dialoging with Muslims…but so often we don’t…we return real or imagined “kind for kind”.

IMO, we loose credibility as representative of Christ to the Muslim when we do not display love, compassion in our words, nor take the time to understand islamic culture…no matter how strange and different than ours.


#17

You’ve instantly assumed which one party is the antagonist, one is the respondent.

Moslems are not even to have non-Moslems as close friends, and sense that they’re pressed into a ‘brotherhood’ is bound up in the fact they make themselves exclusive to others.

There’s so much subtext here. You’re assuming you have a right view of Islam.


#18

I don’t think it is hate to protest Islamic terrorism or persecution. They don’t like it, but it isn’t hateful. You are correct. Muslims will never condemn other Muslims, which is why we continue to have the problem of Islamic terrorism. You are also correct that my view of Islam is not flattering. That is their fault. When they stop chopping the heads off of Christians and take a strong stance against terrorism my view will improve dramatically. Dialogue is nice, but it takes two. They see it as weakness and an opportunity to undermine our faith. Dialogue also demands equals and they do not see us as equal to them. We are kaffir. Islamic culture is precisely the problem. I do understand it which is why I don’t like it. I would like to show Muslims love by sharing the gospel with them, but as I pointed out they would kill me for it in their own countries. None of us have credibility in their eyes. As I said, to them we are unclean kaffir. They can prove me wrong easily enough. All they have to do is be unequivocally opposed to terrorism and persecution.


#19

meedo,

I didn’t answer your poll because there was no choice coinciding with my opinion. I think you’re a great example. You and some other Muslims that I have observed give me hope that things can be better between Muslims and Christians. We have, however, a long way to go based on what is transpiring around the world. Keep up the good work that you do.


#20

Pax,

Keep in mind that meedo admits that killing muslims who convert to Christianity is fine so long as Islamic law is obeyed. That is not hopeful.


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