Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Terrorism, Religion, Fanatics, Moderates

In today's world, thousands, or even millions religious fanatics used terrorism to reach their goal. Suicide bombing, mob attack, pogrom, etc. are practiced repeatedly. For many, such monstrosity is baffling. How could those religious fanatics do that?

Fanatics vs Moderates
Well, basically, religious fanatics give this kind of arguments to validate their terrorism:
"Quetzacoatl ordered us to kill them!"
"Quetzacoatl told us that those who rejects him are sinners, and deserves to be killed as a warning for everyone!"
"Quetzacoatl has wrote a holy book that explain to us that it is correct to kill them all!"
Etc. I think you got the point.

Basically, religious moderates give these kinds of arguments to counter terrorism:
"Quetzacotal order us to love everyone."
"Quetzacoatl told us that killing is prohibited."
"Quetzacoatl has wrote a holy book that explain to us that we have to be friend with everyone!"

What are the problems with those counter-arguments from the moderates? 
1) Who can judge what Quetzacoatl really said and ordered?
2) How to falsify or prove any order or words from Quetzacoatl?
That means, the moderates use theological arguments to counter the fanatics claims. Since as far as I know Quetzacoatl never deny or approve ANYTHING from ANYONE in our current time, that also means, the moderates use flimsy-unprovable arguments to attack the fanatics' flimsy-unprovable arguments. It is like witnessing 2 small children arguing which one will won the fight between Superman vs Ultraman. And there is another hole in this kind of argument too.

Fanatics AND Moderates
One similarity between any kind of fanatics, are their own assumption of the total primacy of their religion. Or ideology.

Every Nazi insist that the "Aryan identity" is the most important, to hell with gender, profession, nationality, religion or any other identity.

So does an Interhamwe militia in Rwanda. For them "ethnic identity" is the most important. Kill all Tutsis, regardless their gender, profession, nationality, etc.

So does any religious fanatics. Only their religion matters for them. Gender, profession, nation, etc are irrelevant  or even ... distracting so has to be suppressed with zeal!

The problem with the religious moderates' theological argument is, that means they ACCEPT this premise and try to fight the fanatics on their ground. This kind of discourse confirm and strengthened the premise of the total-primacy of religion.

Fortunately, that is not the only way to debate a religious fanatics. Secularists, nationalists, and many others attack the moral ground of the fanatics differently.

Fanatics vs Secularists, nationalists, etc.
Basically, the arguments against religious terrorism from them are:
"We have our official criminal laws, and killing is a criminal offense!
"Have you ever heard about the human rights? One of those rights is the right to live. Others are the freedom of religion."
"Do you realize that such terrorism is bad for business? Do you know that the income of millions of people's will be destroyed by terrorism?"

That means, the secularist, nationalist, etc used philosophical-pragmatical arguments to counter the fanatics claims. Unlike theological arguments, these arguments are not based on unobservable-supernatural explanations, therefore they are debatable, falsifiable, and provable.

But such arguments could only work if you debate with a normal person. A brainwashed fanatics often couldn't get any philosophical or pragmatical reason. They could easily dismissed any moderates who try to reason this way by branding them "hypocrite cherry-pickers" or even worse "traitors."

So, how if we try to convince the fanatics with theological arguments, while arguing with non-fanatics with philosophical-pragmatical arguments? The problem is, that means we argue incoherently. We have to start with the fundamental first: is there any PRIMARY identity that trumps every other identity in every occasion? Who actually has the authority to interpret God's law? Trying to debate in different ways without answering this fundamental question only undermines your argument. Anyone can pointed out that you are cherry-picking your religion, only using verses that suited your point of view, etc. So what is the best way?

The Best Method?
In my opinion, to be consistent we have to remind EVERYONE that they are not God, and no human can equate themselves with God, because it is a blasphemy. Heck, not only they are mere mortals, their prophets who wrote their books and scriptures are humans too!Their prophet is not God.

What? One of their prophet LITERALLY believed to be the incarnation of God despite all contrary rationals and historical evidences? And they even try to explain his Godhood with absurd argument, and pointed out since it is absurd, that means he is the true God? Wow ... okay ... let's see ... is that an exception or is there anything like that in another religion ...

Oh, here is its "sister religion" who claimed that God is singular, and no human can claimed to be God! Let's see .... anyone who draw the picture of their prophet would be beheaded? Pointing out that prophet had done some wrong also offended every single follower of him? 

... OK, I give up. They prefer to insult their own God, my intelligence, and everyone else while insisting that we have to respect them! 

Dear the rest of humanity, let them speak their minds. Let them reveal how vicious, how ignorant they are. Just make sure they STAY AWAY from any kind of power. 

Oh wait, many of them wields FORMAL POWER in some countries that prepared to go nuke. We are really screwed ...

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