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Monday, January 23, 2006

A 7th Century Philosophy In a 21st Century World

I had previously posted about the comments by Pope Benedict re the inherent intractability of Islam to "modernize" (my word) and find its place in a 21st century world. It is the Pope's view that, because there's no way to reinterpret the Koran -- i.e., change Koranic teachings on infidels, women, polygamy, penal codes and other markers of Islamic law, it cannot find a basis upon which to co-exist with the West. I believe this is part of the most important and relevant analysis of why Islam has "bloody borders" (a phrase I believe first used by historian Samuel Huntington) wherever it appears and why the prospects of some sort of accommodative coexistence with Western cultures and religions is remote. Diane West has a great column on this today. Coincidentally, I'm currently reading "The Victory of Reason : How Christianity Led to Freedom, Capitalism, and Western Success" which deals tangentially with this question but from a broader perspective.

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