Muslim hypocrisy?

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
13,494
SoCal
#1
I was wondering if it is hypocritical of Muslims to be extremely offended whenever someone, say, draws a picture of the Prophet Muhammad or burns a Koran at the same time that Muslims appear to have no problem with what Muhammad did in Mecca--specifically destroying a bunch of shrines to other gods at the Kaaba. I mean, if one is not going to show respect towards other people's religions (such as by having no problem in destroying shrines for people with other religions), isn't it a bit hypocritical to complain when other people aren't showing respect to your own religion?
 
Likes: Tammuz

Theodoric

Ad Honorem
Mar 2012
2,590
#3
You don’t seem to understand iconoclasm.

But from a Muslim Iconoclastic theological standpoint, the two motivations are entirely consistent.

The reason that Islam is against the depiction of Prophets (such as Mohammad) is not because it’s rude. It’s against it because of Islam is against Idolatry, and that includes images of mohammad as a holy symbol. Iconoclasm condones the destruction of such images - and both Christian and Jewish faiths had periods of iconoclasm.

That is why depictions of Mohammad as well as other sacred or holy images are generally forbidden. The offence taken at the depiction of Mohammad stems from that cultural value.

The philosophical reason behind it grew out of Platonism that people and images on Earth are imperfect representatives - and when it comes to relationship with the divine, they don’t want an imperfect representative; otherwise you get stupid arguments like the worship of white Jesus vs Black Jesus. But basically the thought is that the worship of icons is the root of instability and conflict.

Whether the majority of today’s Muslims live up to such lofty ideals is another question. But I think it’s safe to say most people do not live up to the virtues of their culture: Christianity itself was founded on the absolute inability of humanity to live up to the Law - as Jesus’s interpretation of “lust” included even looking with desire upon another, and that one example alone meant almost every adult on earth was a sinner. Cultures shift and change, and that is why the modern “offence” occurs. Medieval Islamic artists would depict the historical Mohammad in art: but anyone who is very familiar with medieval history knows that the Medieval Islamic world was a very different sort of character than what we see in Syria, Saudi Arabia, and Iraq today.
 

Recusant

Ad Honorem
Sep 2009
2,624
Sector N after curfew
#5
I was wondering if it is hypocritical of Muslims to be extremely offended whenever someone, say, draws a picture of the Prophet Muhammad or burns a Koran at the same time that Muslims appear to have no problem with what Muhammad did in Mecca--specifically destroying a bunch of shrines to other gods at the Kaaba. I mean, if one is not going to show respect towards other people's religions (such as by having no problem in destroying shrines for people with other religions), isn't it a bit hypocritical to complain when other people aren't showing respect to your own religion?
I think it's a matter of perspective.

If my religion is the one true faith fashioned by and handed down from the Creator of the Universe, then those who disrespect it are in essence disrespecting the being who brought them into existence as well as disrespecting the most important aspect of all human culture.

On the other hand, if I destroy what I know beyond doubt are focal points of a false religion, an unquestionably evil false religion leading innocent people into perdition, then I am achieving a laudable and righteous aim. Once one has submitted to the one true faith, all becomes clear and there is no hypocrisy. Those benighted souls who have yet to submit will of course have a different perspective, but I know that they are either simply deluded or perhaps even evil.
 
Jan 2015
5,179
Ontario, Canada
#6
Futurist, I was under the impression that you were a Muslim. :)

I mean I guess what you're saying is true. Though generally I find that Muslims who are complaining are Liberals (such as Reza Aslan) who would not generally advocate for the destruction of religious artifacts. Where as the very religious Muslims oppose it because it is blasphemy and therefore against the laws of God. Faced with such an argument it would be hard to provide a counter-argument, you wouldn't be able to demonstrate hypocrisy to them as two different kinds of logic would be applied.

Does hypocrisy matter unless a double standard is upheld? Hard to say. At least personally I would never burn a Quran since I find those kinds of displays to be unsettling and pointless. But hey if a guy wants to burn things I would let him so long as it is safe and wouldn't lead to a riot.
 
Aug 2010
15,010
Welsh Marches
#7
On the specific point of iconoclasm, I agree with Theodoric above. As for the more general point of Muslims demanding absolute respect for their own religion and denying it to others, that is in no way surprising and perhaps not even hypocritical, it is not because they share share any western ideas of freedom of religion or respect for other cultures, it is because they believe their own religion be the absolute and final revelation of God (the Koran is thought quite literally to be the word of God) and other religions to be either steps on the way to Islam or utterly pernicious. They really believe this! One might as well complain that the Spanish Inquisition was hypocritical because it demanded absolute respect for its own religion and refused it to that of the Jews. What is harder to explain is not this, but rather how a situation has been created in the West in which even adherents of religions which make absolute claims really believe that respect should be shown toward other religions. This is even the case with many Muslims in the West, although the situation might change if they come to form a larger percentage of the population.
 
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Likes: Azad67
Feb 2011
6,042
#8
Abrahamic religions in general don't accept "false" religions on paper. Let's not pretend as if it's just the Quran which is rife with damnation against false believers. But modern liberal mindsets tend to soften the edges and have people put much less weight on these parts and rather focus on 'love thy neighbor' teachings that's more in line with modern morality. After all, once you take the step away from reading every sentence at face value, there is a lot of room to interpret holy texts any way you want. You can bet that a Muslim born in globalized/accepting communities are much more open-minded themselves, then a Muslim born in an extremist community.
 

tomar

Ad Honoris
Jan 2011
12,538
#9
The destruction of the Buddhas of Bamiyan is a more recent event and more relevant to the OP

Buddhas of Bamiyan - Wikipedia


But the thing is every ideology (whether religious, political or other) has double standards: i.e , what we do is of course brilliant , just and fair, while what others do is evil and stupid....
 
Apr 2018
1,324
Mythical land.
#10
its more bigotry than hypocrisy.
Islam is bigoted religion.

Muhammad made bigotry against idol worshipers,polytheist,etc a righteous act.

this quote is definetly true here
"Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities"
- Forgot the name of the person.