Thursday, January 30, 2014

Great conclusion to Habermas article on tolerance!


Sunday, August 18, 2013

So much good and bad in this article about the Current Middle East

so I can take so many different approaches to this article, I'm no fan of political islam, but do feel it has some legitimate political ideas and shouldn't be destroyed like the Egyptians are doing, but not being a fan of it I can't help but think that this may be good for an entire region which is trying to transition from absolutism and dogmatism and intoleration to one of secular nationalism, free thinking because of the internet, and pluralism of a global diversely religious society.  This should sharpen the islamists focus that when they do attain to power in this day and age they have to govern effectively or else the people are going to rise up and force them from office.  So many other things I could think of as well, i wonder what the fractal structure is of this whole section of people, the first muslims, transition from the late middle ages into the age of the french and american revolutions.  so much more of this story needs to be written, but enjoy what has happened so far

INSIGHT-Egypt seen as graveyard of Islamist ambitions for power

Sun Aug 18, 2013 12:27pm EDT
* Muslim Brotherhood downfall in Egypt a regional setback for Islamists
* Arab Spring brings sectarian, ethnic struggles out of deep freeze
* Violent suppression less effective on young internet-savvy populations
By Samia Nakhoul
BEIRUT, Aug 18 (Reuters) - As the army ruthlessly crushes the Muslim Brotherhood on the streets of Cairo, having swept away its elected president, Egypt is being painted as the graveyard of the Arab Spring and of Islamist hopes of shaping the region's future.
This week's bloody drama has sent shockwaves out of Egypt, the political weathervane and cultural heart of the Arab world. The effect on the region of the army's power grab will not be uniform, because while countries such as Egypt are locked in a battle over identity, other states, from Syria to Yemen, and Libya to Iraq, are in an existential struggle for survival.
The Egyptian chapter of the Arab awakening began with the uprising that ended the 30-year dictatorship of Hosni Mubarak and has moved on to the spectacular implosion of the Brotherhood that replaced him. Having been outlawed intermittently since their founding 80 years ago, the organisation won parliamentary and presidential elections, then self-destructed in one year.
Deposed President Mohamed Mursi alienated all but a hard-core constituency by devoting his energy to seizing control of Egypt's institutions rather than implementing policies to revive its paralysed economy and heal political divisions, analysts say.
"I was surprised by the rapid fall of the Islamists," said Jamel Arfaoui, an analyst on Tunisia, the birthplace of the Arab Spring uprisings.
"I was expecting that the Muslim Brotherhood would continue long in power and benefit from the experience of the Islamists in Turkey," where the Islamist-rooted Justice and Development Party has won three straight elections.
The Egyptian Brothers, or Al-Ikhwan, now have reason to fear they could be back in the wilderness for decades after the army, with much bloodshed, imposed a state of emergency last week. The last time emergency rule was implemented - after the assassination of President Anwar Sadat in 1981 - it remained in force for more than 30 years.
In power, Mursi and his backers in the Brotherhood proved unable to collaborate with either Islamist allies or secular adversaries and fatally alienated an army they first tried to co-opt. They have left the country more divided than at any time since it became a republic in 1953.
"They have no understanding whatsoever of the way democratic politics operates," says George Joffe, an expert on North Africa at Cambridge University. "It is difficult to imagine how anyone, given the opportunity of power, could in any circumstances have behaved as stupidly as they did. It is staggering incompetence."
The 2011 upheavals promoted Islamist groups affiliated with or similar to the Brotherhood to the heart of politics across the Arab world, and most observers say events in Egypt are not just a national but a regional setback for the organisation.
"The Brotherhood have committed political suicide. It will take them decades to recover ... because a significant number of Egyptians now mistrust them. Al-Ikhwan is a toxic brand now in Egypt and the region," said academic Fawaz Gerges, adding that the damage goes beyond Egypt to its affiliates in Tunisia, Jordan and Gaza, where the ruling Hamas evolved from the Brotherhood.
This has delighted leaders as distinct as King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, traditionally wary of rival flavours of Islam, and Bashar al-Assad, who greeted last month's military takeover in Egypt as vindication of his own bloody fight against Islamists.
Some say Egypt is a setback for democracy itself in the Arab world.
"It delegitimises the ballot box and legitimises in the eyes of Arabs that the army is the only institution we can fall back on to protect us against disintegration or Islamists who hijack the state," said Gerges of the London School of Economics.
Tarek Osman, author of "Egypt on the Brink", said Egypt represented a clash over whether these states are to be governed according to traditions of secular nationalism or see their rich, ancient identities squeezed into the Islamist strait-jacket of the Brotherhood.
It is "the Islamic frame of reference versus old, entrenched, rich national identities", he says: "This identity clash is a root cause for the antagonism that wide social segments have for the Islamists."
The struggle might be about the identity of the state in countries like Egypt and Tunisia, where political structures are relatively strong, but in Libya and Yemen, riven by tribal rivalries and lacking properly functioning institutions, it is about the survival of the state.
"In Libya, the Brotherhood is hardly in the scene," says Joffe. "The danger is that there is chaos, no centralised government, not even regional authority of any kind."
In Libya, armed militias have filled the vacuum left by the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi. In Yemen, the militant Islamists of al Qaeda have taken over swathes of land, while sectarian, tribal and regional rivalries are tearing the country of 25 million apart.
In Syria, a popular uprising against Assad's 40-year family rule has evolved into a civil war that has killed 100,000 people and provided a new opportunity for al Qaeda and a proxy battleground for regional rivals Saudi Arabia and Iran.
And now in Iraq, fresh venom is being injected into the conflict between the country's Sunni minority and Shi'ite-led majority.
It is obvious, analysts say, that the future of the East Mediterranean nation states, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, is in danger. These countries were created by Britain and France from the Arab provinces of the Ottoman Empire after World War One, but their imperial interests took priority over the sectarian and ethnic cohesion of the new states.
The faultlines have since been kept in check by the deep freeze of the Arab security state.
The removal of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in a U.S.-led invasion in 2003 and the lethal challenge to Assad has certainly brought Islamism to the fore, and made these countries the front line of the Shi'ite-Sunni sectarian battle.
"Sectarianism now rules supreme. The Iraq war and its aftermath - effectively dividing the country along confessional lines - and then the Syrian civil war, which is already sending tremors into tense sectarian-ridden Lebanon, create various triggers for potentially wider conflicts.
"Now that these nation states have fallen (in Iraq and Syria) and face serious threats (in Lebanon), these realities are crumbling, and the region's societies are confronting these demons," Osman said.
Al Qaeda militants have been quick to exploit sectarian tensions in Iraq, the power vacuum in Yemen and civil war in Syria. They have yet to play a significant role in Egypt, though the Egyptian Foreign Ministry, as part of a push to disseminate the state's narrative of events, has distributed photos showing, among other things, Muslim Brotherhood members carrying clubs, firearms and a black al Qaeda flag.
The Brotherhood denies links to the network.
In the new Arab order, the region's leaders and generals are finding that their people will no longer roll over in the face of violent suppression. Heavy-handed attempts to stamp out civic unrest led to the ousting of Zine al-Abidine Ben-Ali in Tunisia, Hosni Mubarak in Egypt, Ali Abdullah Saleh in Yemen and Gaddafi in Libya, as well as triggering the revolt against Assad.
Although the Brotherhood is the big loser of recent weeks, the war zone in Cairo where young Islamists keep pouring into the streets undeterred by tanks and snipers of the mighty Egyptian army and security forces is a vivid illustration.
In Egypt, Tunisia, Syria and other parts of the region, over two-thirds of the population are under 30-years old, which should give pause to the generals and secret policemen as much as the politicians, whether Islamist or secular.
"Not only do these huge young masses have immediate economic demands; they are also the first Arab generation ever to grow up with immediate gratification and expression," says Tarek Osman.
"Their exposure to the Internet, satellite channels and instant communication make them express their views quickly, share their frustrations instantly, build and destroy narratives at incredible speeds, and certainly they are not willing to wait and be patient for inexperienced leaders to learn on the job."


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Pierce's Metaphysically Intrinsic Scientific Entropy

More on actual science with pierce!  enjoy!

Against powerful currents of determinism that derived from the Enlightenment philosophy of the eighteenth century, Peirce urged that there was not the slightest scientific evidence for determinism and that in fact there was considerable scientific evidence against it. Always by the words “science” and “scientific” Peirce understood reference to actual practice by scientists in the laboratory and the field, and not reference to entries in scientific textbooks. In attacking determinism, therefore, Peirce appealed to the evidence of the actual phenomena in laboratories and fields. Here, what is obtained as the actual observations (e.g. measurements) does not fit neatly into some one point or simple function. If we take, for example, a thousand measurements of some physical quantity, even a simple one such as length or thickness, no matter how carefully we may do so, we will not obtain the same result a thousand times. Rather, what we get is a distribution (often, but not always and certainly not necessarily, something akin to a normal or Gaussian distribution) of hundreds of different results. Again, if we measure the value of some variable that we assume to depend on some given parameter, and if we let the parameter vary while we take successive measurements, the result in general will not be a smooth function (for example, a straight line or an ellipse); rather, it will typically be a “jagged” result, to which we can at best fit a smooth function by using some clever method (for example, fitting a regression line by the method of least-squares). Naively, we might imagine that the variation and relative inexactness of our measurements will become less pronounced and obtrusive the more refined and microscopic are our measurement tools and procedures. Peirce, the practicing scientist, knew better. What actually happens, if anything, is that our variations get relatively greater the finer is our instrumentation and the more delicate our procedures. (Obviously, Peirce would not have been the least surprised by the results obtained from measurements at the quantum level.)

What the directly measured facts of scientific practice seem to tell us, then, is that, although the universe displays varying degrees of habit (that is to say, of partial, varying, approximate, and statistical regularity), the universe does not display deterministic law. It does not directly show anything like total, exact, non-statistical regularity. Moreover, the habits that nature does display always appear in varying degrees of entrenchment or “congealing.” At one end of the spectrum, we have the nearly law-like behavior of larger physical objects like boulders and planets; but at the other end of the spectrum, we see in human processes of imagination and thought an almost pure freedom and spontaneity; and in the quantum world of the very small we see the results of almost pure chance.

The immediate, “raw” result, then, of scientific observation through measurement is that not everything is exactly fixed by exact law (even if everything should be constrained to some degree by habit). In his earliest thinking about the significance of this fact, Peirce opined that natural law pervaded the world but that certain facets of reality were just outside the reach or grasp of law. In his later thinking, however, Peirce came to understand this fact as meaning that reality in its entirety was lawless and that pure spontaneity had an objective status in the phaneron. Peirce called his doctrine that chance has an objective status in the universe “tychism,” a word taken from the Greek word for “chance” or “luck” or “what the gods happen to choose to lay on one.” Tychism is a fundamental doctrinal part of Peirce's mature view, and reference to his tychism provides an added reason for Peirce's insisting on the irreducible fallibilism of inquiry. For nature is not a static world of unswerving law but rather a dynamic and dicey world of evolved and continually evolving habits that directly exhibit considerable spontaneity. (Peirce would have embraced quantum indeterminacy.)


Monday, June 24, 2013

Charles Sanders Pierce on the Scientific Method

this is from his stanford entry and it's a great concise statement of what scientists actually do when they do science!  Thank you Aristotle ala Alhazen ala Roger Bacon ala Francis Bacon (I wonder if they were related) ala Charles Sanders Pierce.  Here you go, the perennial scientific wisdom that was discovered by great minds throughout the centuries, even more evidence of the truth of the empirical part of the perennial philosophy

As so integrated, deduction, induction, and abduction are not simply argument forms any more: they are three phases of the methodology of science, as Peirce conceived this methodology. In fact, in Peirce's most mature philosophy he virtually (perhaps totally and literally) equates the trichotomy with the three phases he discerns in the scientific method. Scientific method begins with abduction or hypothesis: because of some perhaps surprising or puzzling phenomenon, a conjecture or hypothesis is made about what actually is going on. This hypothesis should be such as to explain the surprising phenomenon, such as to render the phenomenon more or less a matter of course if the hypothesis should be true. Scientific method then proceeds to the stage of deduction: by means of necessary inferences, conclusions are drawn from the provisionally-adopted hypothesis about the obtaining of phenomena other than the surprising one that originally gave rise to the hypothesis. Conclusions are reached, that is to say, about other phenomena that must obtain if the hypothesis should actually be true. These other phenomena must be such that experimental tests can be performed whose results tell us whether the further phenomena do obtain or do not obtain. Finally, scientific method proceeds to the stage of induction: experiments are actually carried out in order to test the provisionally-adopted hypothesis by ascertaining whether the deduced results do or do not obtain. At this point scientific method enters one or the other of two “feedback loops.” If the deduced consequences do obtain, then we loop back to the deduction stage, deducing still further consequences of our hypothesis and experimentally testing for them again. But, if the deduced consequences do not obtain, then we loop back to the abduction stage and come up with some new hypothesis that explains both our original surprising phenomenon and any new phenomena we have uncovered in the course of testing our first, and now failed, hypothesis. Then we pass on to the deduction stage, as before. The entire procedure of hypothesis-testing, and not merely that part of it that consists of arguing from sample to population, is called induction in Peirce's later philosophy.


Thursday, June 20, 2013

Great Quote about the Colombian Exchange Yin Yang

So I was watching this great courses snippet from lunch from the turning points in american history lectures and he was talking about the colombian exchange so i looked it up on Wikipedia and oh my goodness, I had no idea that potatoes are not native to Ireland!  Check out what else is going on here! Is this an argument for globalization or no, look at the bad that came along with all this good below this as well! the good and the bad linked again, we havent' seen this before though have we students!  indeed, satan is always just one step behind us up the ladder of the GOOD, isn't he?

Part of the GOOD: Before the Columbian Exchange, there were no oranges in Florida, no bananas in Ecuador, no paprika in Hungary, no tomatoes in Italy, no potatoes in Ireland, no coffee in Colombia, no pineapples in Hawaii, no rubber trees in Africa, no cattle in Texas, no donkeys in Mexico, no chili peppersin Thailand or India, and no chocolate in Switzerland.

Devastation of the less good: The smallpox epidemics are believed to have resulted in the largest death tolls among Native Americans, surpassing any wars and far exceeding the loss of life due to the Black Death in Europe.  It is estimated that upwards of 80–95 percent of the Native American population died in these epidemics within the first 100–150 years following 1492; the most affected regions in the Americas lost 100% of their population.


Thursday, June 13, 2013

Standing Feuerbach on His Head!

So I"m reading about these 19th century German philosophers so I can understand Jurgen Habermas better and today it is Feuerbach's turn and I really like this quote from the Stanford Online Encyclopedia on him so I thought I would requote it here.  Enjoy!

Feuerbach's 'The Essence of Christianity' - the allusive nature of the book is best accounted for if one understands that it is only intelligible against its Hegelian background; more particularly, The Phenomenology of Spirit. Not only does it recapitulate the theory of self-differentiation in that work but the central ideas of objectification, alienation, and reconciliation are drawn from it. Indeed, what made Feuerbach's book appear to be “the truth for our times” was that it enabled an entire generation of young intellectuals to appropriate the most important elements of Hegel's philosophy of Spirit without accepting his metaphysics and his endorsement of Christianity. Feuerbach, it is said, simply stood Hegel's philosophy of Spirit on its head.  

This is the part that I really like thought and for those with minds to know, it is the meaning of the poem at the top of my blog, where my soul might be, do you get it?

Just as Absolute Spirit achieved self-knowledge by objectifying itself in the finite world, so the finite spirit comes to self-knowledge by externalizing itself in the idea of God and then realizing that this externalization is only the form in which the human spirit discovers its own essential nature.

This is a pretty interesting idea of his as well, I guess is this part of his projection theory of religion

This “omnipotence of feeling” breaks through all the limits of understanding and manifests itself in several religious beliefs, all of which Feuerbach explored: the faith in providence, which is a form of confidence in the infinite value of one's own existence; faith in miracle, the confidence that the gods are unfettered by natural necessity and can realize one's wishes in an instant; and faith in immortality, the certainty that the gods will not permit the individual to perish.

This is also really good here too, is Nietzsche's death of God just this, his Neo-Feuerbachinism, taking Feuerbach to his logical conclusion, it's a possibility

Who then is our Saviour and Redeemer? God or Love? Love; for God as God has not saved us, but Love, which transcends the difference between the divine and human personality. As god has renounced himself out of love, so we, out of love, should renounce God; for if we do not sacrifice God to love, we sacrifice love to God, and in spite of the predicate of love, we have the God—the evil being—of religious fanaticism  


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Against Marillion and Junior and Free Pussy Riot

So I watched the free pussy riot documentay yesterday and now i'm all fired up and i saw marillion spewing his religious hatred all over the web and i thought NO MORE i'ts time to call a spade a spade and let's remove some of these illusions and misconceptions we all seem to have about one another, he's so busy pointing his finger at the sawdust in his brother's eye that he has totally neglected removing the huge fucking log that is obviously in his, oh how very sad that one who professes to follow the way is actually one of the biggest perverters and distorters of teh way , this is this sad gentleman here

Junior says:muhammad laid down severe restrictions on such free speech, assassinating many who insulted him. In their deplorable qur’an, he promises death and eternal damnation if anyone deviates in words and action from allah (a pagan idol moon god chosen by mohammed to be the god of islam AND mohammed invented islam) and his messenger. In their disturbing hadith, he kills dissenters and insulters. Later legal rulings, rooted in their troubled qur’an and hadith, follow his lead and decree that hard, hitting speech must be stifled. The dissenters must die if they cross the line. Furthermore muslims are told to emulate the example of mohammed. Finally....“When I examine the qur’an, the hadiths, and the islamic books under my microscope, I came to the absolute conviction that it is impossible-impossible for any human being to read the biography of muhammad and believe it and yet emerge a psychologically and mentally healthy person.” Dr. Wafa Sultan Psychiatrist, Author and Ex-muslim

I said:
Against Marillion, if you want to start talking about paganism and it's relationship to the different Abrahamic monotheisms, Judaism Christianity and Islam, why don't you check out some of the links I have provided you and you will see that Judaism started as a pagan religion that was eventually changed into orthodox or rabbinic Judaism.  You have obviously studied the pagan roots of Islam to your credit, but have you missed the pagan roots of both Judaism and Christianity.




If you look at this list, you will see the god El, which is a name used for your God in the Old Testament.  So look those up and study those and you will better understand the 'so called pagan' roots of beliefs and practices we now call Judaism.

Let's talk about Christianity now.  I've included some links you may want to look at as well so you can understand the intricate relationship between Christianity and paganism, especially when you compare early christian belief and practice against the greco-roman mystery religions of dionysius and even earlier egyptian mystery religions of osiris.




Here's an example that concerns Christmas

'Many modern Christmas customs have been directly influenced by such pagan festivals, including gift-giving and merrymaking from the Roman Saturnalia, greenery, lights, and charity from the Roman New Year, and Yule logs and various foods from Germanic feasts.[119]'

why don't you also learn about sol invictus, the god whose birthday we celebrate every december 25th


so before you go accussing  (the original meaning of the devil in the book of job which is what your satanic attitude towards muslims represent) Muslims of being a bunch of pagan idolotars, why don't you look up the roots of your own religion of hatred that you i'm sure now call christianity now and it's pagan roots.

ALL RELIGIONS IN THE ENTIRE WORLD HAVE SO CALLED PAGAN ROOTS, the distinction between pagan and orthodoxy is a false scholarly one and used by haters in religions the world over to persecute and justify their hatred of people who are different from themselves.  This is a truly satanic attitude masked the guise of righteousness, so instead of going after people, why don't you open your heart to understanding what the real problems in that part of the world are and offer solutions in order to solve the, instead of drawing on old and false energies of hatred and division, masked the in the guise of religious orthodoxy.

my fellow light worker william says :
One never hears or reads of Muslims being charged with the same crime when they diparage, defame and decry Christianity and Judaism so in Egypt "blaspheme" and the laws against the same only apply to non-Muslims as a coercive forced applied to them in an attempt to have them convert to Islam, which, according to the teachings in the Qur'an is "haram" or forbidden as there can be no coercion in regards to religion.
Bearing false witness against another is also taught by Islam to be one of the worst crimes a Muslim can commit to such a point that one is advised to be honest even if the honesty is against one's own self.
Then there is the question of judging others, which Muslims are taught only Allah, Subhanna wa Ta'ala, has both the necessary knowledge and the right to do.
Truth be told, when viewed with such in mind, there are no Islamic countries and any that would impose a "blaspheme" law such as Egypt, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the UAE, etc. are distorting the teachings of Islam which is again, strictly forbidden in the Qur'an.
Seen for that which it is, Islam is simply another failed religion who professed adherents cherry pick, twist and corrupt the faith for their own gains which proves they obviously do not believe what they profess because they do not practice it.

just found this as well, this is very sad indeed, we need to get these terrorists and marillion in a room together and hjust have all the crazies from all the religions kill each other, because they are the ones that ruin it for everybody

The beginning of the New Year saw only an increase in the oppression of Christians under Islam, from Nigeria, where an all-out jihad has been declared in an effort to eradicate the Muslim north of all Christians, to Europe, where Muslim converts to Christianity are still hounded and attacked as apostates. According to the Chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, “The flight of Christians out of the region is unprecedented and it’s increasing year by year”; in our life time alone, he predicts “Christians might disappear altogether from Iraq, Afghanistan, and Egypt.”

Logan responded:
Another time waster from M.  Thank you J.  Lol!
 Thus separation of Church and state is a good thing. 
People shouldn't judge others for their religion. 
God will judge us when we die. 
Or we're just dust anyways, if you're an atheist.
 My wife's microbiology professor is Hindu Indian, believes in evolution, slams Christianity, and Americans in class.
I also found out he doesn't drink alcohol cause he sees what it does to your live and put pictures of drunk frat boys on the over head.  Maybe we should pull a Jihad on him!

I responded to Logan:
More time wasting.  

You know, I see a lot of similarities between different groups of people.  for instance, you talk about separation of church and state, but there has really not been very much of that in the Muslim world. it has always been the traditional Islamic caliphate ruling quite literally unbroken from the time of Muhammad in 600 AD really up until the breakup of the ottomon empire during WWI in 1914-1917.  1300 years of no separation between church and state really until this last century.  

what has replaced this caliphate has been authoritarian rulers who oppressed their people and who were being backed by either the USA government or the USSR after WWII ended in 1945 because our entire foreign policy and theirs from the end of WWII until the fall of the Berlin Wall & the USSR in the early 90's was geared toward combating the spread of global communism or global capitalism and winning the cold war against Stalin's descendents like kruschev or the damn global capitalists in america like kennedy.  so neither super power cared what the rulers of the middle east did to their people's as long as they were on right side during the cold war, the history of the shah in iran from 1945 through the islamic iranian revolution in 1979 is a damn case study in USA government turning a blind eye to human rights abuses by the shah in iran in order to win the cold war.  

look at what is happening in syria now, a damn cold war shadow proxy war between usa and western europe on one side and russia and china on the other side, playing out as shia (hezbollah are their radical militants) and alowite muslim minorities backed by Iran on the side of the communists and sunni (al queda are their radical militants) muslim majorities backed by Saudi Arabia and Qatar backed by USA on the side of the capitalists.  as if the tensions between the capitalists and the communists didn't need more flame, now the centuries old religious war over whether Ali should have been the 1st caliph after the death of Muhammad (what shia's belive) or whether abu bakr who was the 1st caliph is legitimate (what sunni's believe) has added an extra dimension to this already polarizing conflict.  it's been 1300 friekin years, and these people are still killing each other over pretty much who should have been the first pope.  obviously it's more complicated than that, but its' so easy to draw on old and negative energies like this especially during times of conflict that modern issues often reflect ancient hatreds and biases.  

But with all this said, the Muslim world is going through what we all went through, meaning europeons and their descendents, 500 years ago when martin Luther said fuck you to the catholic church, which was the christian caliphate of Europe at the time, and actually was protected and survived the christian caliphates attempts to kill him and his treasonous heresy.  it was a turning point in world history because it was the first time that somebody had actually challenged the governmental authority of the catholic caliphate of the vatican and wasn't killed or burned at the stake for it. check out the knights templar and the cathars to see how previous attempts at rebellion against mother catholic caliphate turned out for those groups and you'll better understand what I mean.

But even with this, Europe went through 150 years of religious and governmental turmoil with protestants killing catholics and kings rebelling against the pope and vice versa for 150 years until the treaty of westphalia in 1648.  let me repeat that, religious conflict between protestants and catholics was so constant in europe during this time that the wars from this period are called the 30 years war (1618-1648) in the holy roman empire and the 80 years war (1568-1648) between spain and the dutch. 110 years of religious and governmental war all between protestants and catholics before finally europe got their shit together and decided let's stop killing each other and try to live in peace.

100 years later europeons and colonialists read john locke's philosophy and the american and french revolutions gave birth the to west's cherised idea of the separation of church and state that we value and that logan has pointed out is such a good thing. thank you logan ala thomas jefferson ala john locke.  but my point is that although we are at this point in our history and development over here in the west, in the muslim world and especially the middle east arab part of the muslim world, they are somewhere between just going through all of these religious wars that we went through with the 80 years war etc. and just starting to give their own voice to Locke's values of the french revolution that our founding fathers fought and died for over 200 years ago. 

 it looks like there are just some historical processes that are universal (can you tell i've read hegel and marx) that all cultures and religions and governments and ethnicities of people have to go through them regardless.  it looks like one of these universals may be the disentangling of religious power from governmental power, which has been the prototype for all civilizations for thousands of years ever since the chief elder of the tribe was at the same time oldest person and president and shaman and priest and prophet and healer and judge of the tribe all rolled into one.  it's difficult to disentagle thousands of years of the way things used to be, it's embedded in our dna and human psychology to some extent i think.  so although we are already 200 years out from all of these disentanglements, the muslim world is right in the middle of it and that is what this arab spring and these revolutions in the muslim world and the war in syria right now are all about.  they are trying to give birth to the values of the modern age, which are the values of the french and american revolutions, but are being bogged down by their own religious tensions that europe fought wars for decades over between vatican catholics and luther's protestants.

to add even more complications to this picture, the majority of the muslim world is deeply conservative and believes their own false mythology about the golden age of islam in the time of muhammad and the caliphate and saladin the great muslim medieval conquerer who reconquered the holy land for islam.  their history is so damn romanticized and they believe so much in the myth of the lost golden age and the decline of the modern age, which is the basis of all conservative ideology, (just as the decline of past ages and the myth of future progress towards utopia is the basis of all progressive or liberal ideology, so pretty much conservatives believe the past was golden and the future is shitty, whereas progressives believe the past was shitty and the future is golden, but both are false myths), that then is why you see this desire in the muslim world to return to the caliphate and the times of past glories and why it seems that they are so far behind the rest of the modern europeon american world when it comes to certain things like educating young girls and religious tolerance and pluralism.

so i hear a lot of people say that oh those people have been killing each other for centuries they are not going to stop now oh it's just in their nature to be killers islam is a death religion yadda yadda yadda all this ignorant bullshit really, but in reality, up until about 1650, the same could be said about us, about europeon christians who had a history of conflict amongst themselves that it took decades to conflict and devastation to realize we need to find a better way. look at when john locked lived, from 1632-1704, he grew up in the shadow of all this inter christian governmental conflict and that's why he wrote the things that he did and gave birth to the modern age through american and french revolutions.  

so i guess the muslim world needs some sort of john locke figure and some militants (like our founding fathers were and Robespierre and jacobins were in France, I bet you never thought about george washington as a militant lockean liberalist!, but that's what he was folks), they need these people in order to put their islamic twist on locke's philosophy so that they can give birth to their version of the modern world, with some sort of separation between church and state that we here in the west take for granted because we forget all the blood and lives that were lost over in europe on the way to getting where we are today.  so that's why I plead for understanding and positive solutions when it comes to stuff like this, because when I see them over there going through all of this conflict and turmoil, I see a younger version of ourselves who went through the same things, only a few hundred years earlier.  

if you need me to issue a fatwa on your wife's microbiology professor logan, i can't do it, but i may know an iman that could help you.  he shouldn't slam america or christians, if he has issues, he shouldn't share them with his students certainly not in microbiology , and if his criticisms are valid, he should clothe them in positive language so that he could really engage others in productive dialogue so reasonable solutions and agreements could be found and made.  like i said before, you have to keep an eye out for haters no matter what religious mask they hide themselves in.

theirs really only two religions in existence, the religion of light and understanding and goodness and positivity and love, whether you call it christian or jew or buddhist or muslim or whatever you falsely label it as, and the religion of darkness and ignorance and evilness and negativity and hate, again regardless of how one self-identifies themselves. there are people and scripture and history in all the world's religions which reflect both of these tendencies, the light and the dark, baldassare cossa was a friekin dick and he became the damn pope, the head of all christendom for god's sake, so you just have to be on watch for what a person really is, despite what they advertise themselves to be. 

 master jedi zarathustra is now done with his lecture for the class this evening.  remember to read those wikipedia links I sent out and come to class tomorrow with any questions you have over the readings. no homework questions are due but i want your paper topics in by next week.  email me if you need some ideas i've got tons of stuff i'd love to have you teach me about with your research paper.  remember i prefer ala over mla style as well and you will be marked off a half a letter grade if I have to read endnotes instead of footnotes.  have a good night and i'll see you all in class tomorrow.