Let Islam go out of business

…The person who wants to modernise Islam is like that forgetful genius who wants to invent a machine in his/her garage, which can turn copper into gold! Is it good for Islam to become modern? The first question is why should Islam be modernised and why do they insist on this? If someone says that slavery can also become humane, I will ask them why they insist on making slavery humane; is there a lack of modern and humane schools of thought? One should ask persons promoting modern Islam, whether they themselves are modern Moslems? If not, then why are they paving the way for oppressive and historically backward monsters to continue their existence in new forms? Let’s assume that Islam can be modernised; why are they helping it to do so? Leave it, let it be as it is and let it go out of business. Notwithstanding this, in my opinion, their depiction of ‘modern’ is limited, which is why they says Islam can be modern. Probably, if Islam allows a woman to go to school with a knee-length skirt or to become a judge as long as she does not speak of her sexuality, then Islam is modern from their point of view. Now this won’t do.

Islam has no place in what I call modern (in fact this word is also relative) nor in the society that I would like to live or in the modernism that I think we deserve. Islam must be uprooted. Just as some people believe in fascism and still strongly believe in patriarchy, some also believe in Islam. Islam’s track record is much more apparent than that for anyone to attempt its rescue…

Elsewhere in the interview, Mansoor Hekmat says:

…as I have said before, we are witnessing an anti-Islamic revulsion and a popular cultural struggle against Islam in Iran. As far as the ideological battle against Islam and exposing the foundations of this religion are concerned, for a free-minded human being, religion is part of the ‘lumpenism’ in society, which must be put aside. If this struggle is taking place now, it is thanks to communists like us, and even that is limited to what is available to a political organisation. In Iran, we do not have a large-scale social and national movement of enlightened intellectuals loudly proclaiming, ‘we do not have a religion; we are atheists,’ whereas Europe was full of intellectual giants who stood up to the powerful church and expressed their views. They criticised superstition at scientific, philosophical and social levels and many paid a price in doing so. We do not have intellectuals in Iran with the same political and intellectual courage. Today, Mr. Khatami’s friends are called ‘alternative thinkers.’ Consequently, perhaps it is up to the Iranian working class and the Worker-communist Party of Iran to bring this struggle to its end.

– Islam is part of the lumpenism in society, Mansoor Hekmat, June 1999



I’m blogging every half an hour from 9am to 3pm GMT in support of the Secular Student Alliance blogothon. The SSA is trying to raise £100,000 by 16 June.

Try to support the SSA if you can. If we’re going to beat the religion industry, we need to support organisations promoting secularism and reason.

It’s not Islamic

An Iranian mullah who has been insulted says:

…This must be understood in this country. They must in practice pull out their tongues. What reason is there I am walking and they must insult me, a clergyman; why insult the sacred? In an Islamic society at that.

Whilst this brings us back to the importance of free expression particularly for those living under and resisting Islamism, it also raises another issue, which is that Iran isn’t an Islamic society.

As Mansoor Hekmat has said:

…The image of an Islamic society prevalent in the West is one of pious believers of Islam who abide by its rules, pray and fast, and whose opinions are formed by religious texts or sources. In fact, it imagines that a citizen of a society like Iran is a follower of Mr Khomeini, is really offended if someone ventures onto the streets unveiled, does not like Western music, does not drink alcohol nor eat pork, etc. [Read more…]