Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Cartoon crisis: my view

What is freedom of speech? What should it allow? What things should be protected as sacred? Is Blasphemy outdated? These are just some of the issues that have been dominating headlines around the world and after a few weeks of contemplation, I think I am ready to post my comments as a person who believes in the same God as those from Islam.

It's freedom of speech that allows me to keep a blog. Its also freedom of speech that allows others to read it and think about what I have written. Its also freedom of speech that allows me to post pictures at the top of articles like this.

It is out of respect that I choose to blur out the actual image of the Prophet so as not to offend people. Its also respect (and common sense) that means I don't label all Muslims as terrorists. Its respect which means I choose to accept everyones right to an opinion, even if they don't reach the same conclusions as me.

The press argue...
Most of the press who have become part of this story itself, seem to be trying to flex some kind of 'free speech muscle'. They are calling to the faithful to jump into the new pool of personal opinion, where absolute truth doesn't exist and the water is warm for everyone. This is a problem to all three of the monotheistic faiths which claim that God has defined absolute truth in the law, and in the case of Christianity, even in the person of Christ Jesus. So postmodernism says that the new rule is that there are no rules, if it feels right, it probably is and unless you hurt others, anything goes.

What these 'champions of the modern faithlessnes' seem to misunderstand is that for someone of faith, these key laws could never become outdated or dusty. No matter what technology allows, the immutible words of God have been passed from generation to generation, they don't change with government or fashion, they are not dictated by Hollywood or lifestlye magazines. They have always been the same and the Koran expressively forbids the creation of graven images. Let alone ones of their key prophet.

Its into this way of thinking that the press have decided to ply their trade. Arguing that the right to free-speech is almost 'God given' and that the days of sacred obeyance really went out with the ark. They have been set free from folklore and fairy tale and have been reborn into a world of self awareness. They have seen the light from their own appearances and have become like gods, for seventy years at least.

I'm a Christian and when I see things like 'Jerry Springer - the opera' I sense a little bit of the same dismay and hurt. Jesus however warned that this would happen, he said "The world hated me, it will hate you too..." This means that I personally don't feel that God commands me in any way to stand up against such things, rather I should be ready with my opinion and then leave it at that.

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