MUHAMMAD AND NIETZSCHE

We present this new essay reprinted by permission of Paul and from The Bayview Review. See the links at the end for direct access to the rest of Paul’s work.

The Flight from Church.

When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? Luke 18: 8b.

In the wake of the nerve-wracking catastrophe of 9/11 a pall of anxiety set in  – causing  some to imagine that a dramatic increase in church attendance was on the horizon. It did not happen. Instead, the mind of the world has become more escapist and more frivolous by the day. The amount of space given to world news in my newspaper, the Ottawa Citizen, has dropped – typically, to four or five abbreviated items – one half of one full page.

The descent of the popular mind into frivolous and escapist entertainments, including professional  sports,  and the decline of church attendance — both follow from the feeling that everything that is comfortable and agreeable in one’s life depends upon resistance to larger meanings. Nothing in the present culture serves to validate a visit to church on a Sunday morning. Any grown up person who prefers church to golf has a lot of explaining to do.

In a previous essay (“The Confrontation Between Christianity and Islam,” Bayview Review, September 10, 2016),  I offered some statistics illustrating the decline in church attendance in our part of the world. For what follows I need refer only to the statistics for the U.K. – where Church attendance has sunk to 10%. The Church of England, cringing under the effects of nearly half a century of  mockery by Monty Python and other deep thinkers,  clings like a pitbull to the vestiges of its standing as the national church while its clergy turn their backs upon Christ’s mandate to “preach the Gospel” (Mark  16:15.)

Islam increases as Christianity Decreases in the U.K.

As everyone knows: Islam is the fastest growing religion in our part of the world. But it is too large a leap to blame Islam for the collapse of attendance in Christian churches. If everyone whoever stood up in a public place at any time in his life –at baptism or confirmation, or some such occasion – were to show up next Sunday in a church – any church – it would be all over for Islam in our midst.

Demographers say that if current trends continue, Islam could eclipse Christianity as the dominant religion in the UK, in as little as a decade. https://www.rt.com/news/muslims-uk-church-christianity-005/

British Muslim population has surged dramatically over the past 15 years, increasing by 75 percent. According to the latest data from the Office for National Statistics, Muslims have the youngest age profile of the religious groups, with 48 percent (1.3 million) aged under 25.

Meanwhile the church in Britain works  to prove its relevance by seeking a share in the prestige of atheist secular culture. Well before the end of the Nineteenth century, the great theological faculties had surrendered the principle that the Gospels know anything that could contradict anything that modern science knows.

 The key to Islam’s appeal to its youngest champions is its validation of hatred as the centrepiece of human purpose. 

Between September 11, 2001 and September 11, 2016, 29,133 acts of violent jihad were carried out throughout the world.  In the week September 3 to September 9 alone, 41 acts of violent jihad took place in fourteen countries, culminating in 301 civilian deaths, 432 injured. (www.thereligionofpeace.com.)

Many good Non-Muslims in our midst have dedicated  time and energy and sometimes reputation to persuading us that Islam itself is not responsible for the terror that is accomplished in its name. But it is the easiest thing in the world to find invitation to killing of fellow-humans in the pages of the Qur’an.  In at least 109 verses of the Qur’an Allah explicitly instructs his disciples to kill the unrighteous.

Here are the first three in order of appearance:

And kill them wherever you find them …and fight them until there is no more Fitnah [disbelief and worshipping of others along with Allah] and worship is for Allah alone. (2:191-193)

Then fight in the cause of Allah, and know that Allah Heareth and knoweth all things. (2:244.)

Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not (2:216.)

Anyone who feels that he needs the 100-plus examples that follow can find these at  www.thereligionofpeace.com/pages/quran/violence.aspx

Those benevolent souls who turn their backs on this reality imagine that they are helping to redeem the good name of Islam. And of course many spokesmen for Islam publicly welcome these validating gestures.  But in reality the most effective work of conversion from Christianity to Islam is being accomplished by proponents who insist that their own conversion came about precisely because the Qur’an commands violence and denigrates the notion of love for others as a worthy rule for life.

For example, Abdul Haqq Baker, who was raised Roman Catholic and is today the founder of Street UK, Strategy to Reach Empower and Educate Teenagers program, tells us that rejection of Christ’s message about turning the other cheek was instrumental in his acceptance of Islam – as, he finds, it has been for the majority of young people who have converted from Christianity to Islam.

Role models such as Malcolm X only helped to reinforce the perception that Islam enabled the empowerment of one’s masculinity coupled with righteous and virtuous conduct as a strength, not a weakness ….The passivity that Christianity promotes is perceived as alien and disconnected to black youths growing up in often violent and challenging urban environments in Britain today.  ‘Turning the other cheek’ invites potential ridicule and abuse, whereas resilience, strength and self-dignity evokes respect and, in some cases, fear from unwanted attention.

This Islamist’s judgment on the absence of virility in Christianity echoes exactly the judgment of Frederick Nietzsche:

 Christianity was born of weakness, failure and resentment and is the enemy of reason and honesty, of the body, and of sex in particular, and of power, joy and freedom… [Christians are] people [who] have dared to call pity a virtue… By multiplying misery just as much as by conserving everything miserable, pity is one of the main tools used to increase decadence – pity wins people over to nothingness! (The Anti Christ, 1885.)

Disseminating the impression of inevitable victory, causing the unbelievers to cringe in fear of the inevitability of Muslim victory and talking up the wisdom of early concession for the sake of “peace” — this was a major component in the strategy of the champions of Islam during the first centuries following the death of Muhammad. As the impression of Islam’s inevitable victory took hold, so did the fear, the willingness to surrender, in the heart of the enemy.

All of this is playing out now in England and is being prepared for us here even now:

The Home Office [of the U.K.] announced last month that it would provide £2.4million to increase safety at places of worship. The Counter Terrorism Advice for Churches provides safety and security advice to churches and advises congregations to flee in the event of an attack rather than try to hide. Vicars have been told not to wear dog collars in public [emphasis added] over fears that Islamic State will target a British church in its next attack…. It has also been suggested UK church congregations should have a ‘bouncer’ on the door so that worshippers at small parish churches are more protected… (www.dailymail.co.uk, September 12, 2016.)

 

Has it really come to this?

The ex-Muslim Adul Haqq Baker tells us that the reason for all those empty churches is that passivist pastors are preaching a message that let’s down the contemporary mind,  whereas Muhammad’s virile message captures it exactly. If so, we are tempted us to ask, “Should we not be re-writing our Scriptures so as to make it a manifesto for hate – like Islam ?”

Many profess to find it odd or at least paradoxical that contemporary leftist-atheists — the same tribe who in the West present themselves as defenders of primary liberty against Christian zealotry — stand- by-side in the cause of anti-Zionism on the same platform with the Islamists. There is no mystery here: The comradeship between Islamists and atheists-leftists is based on shared contempt for Judaism and its legacy.

Nietzsche’s indictment of Christianity echoes that of Muhammad and it turns on the conviction that the Christian notion of love is “anti-Human”. Nominal Christians who have fled from church are fleeing from a place where they might still hear the message that Nietzsche has taught several generations to despise — the message that is equally despised by the teachers of Islam – the common message of Hebrew and Christian Scripture (Mt 22:39,. cf. Leviticus [Vayikra kedoshim]19:18  – that one should love one’ s neighbour as oneself.

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