We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
A year earlier a whole lot of German and French tourists were blown up outside the synagogue in Djerba, Tunisia. A few months later a Spanish restaurant and a Jewish community centre were blown up in Morocco. The chap who did it had been trained by bin Laden in Afghanistan. The radicals have blown up Shia mosques in Pakistan, before, after and during Iraq. They have blown up Iraqi Shias for being apostates. Closer to home, in spring 2003, two boys, one from Derby and one from Hounslow, travelled all the way to Gaza and then to Israel so they could blow the arms off a French waitress in an English bar in Tel Aviv.
The Islamic murderer of Dutch filmmaker Theo Van Gogh boasted of the killing today in court, praised Allah and Mohammed, told Van Gogh’s mother he had no sympathy for her, and said if he ever gets free he’ll do it again. (Hat tip: LawHawk.)
A decisive answer has now come from an authoritative source, a certain Dr. Hani Al-Siba' i, who runs an Islamic studies center right in London. This gentleman explained the bombers' religious basis in no uncertain terms: "The term 'civilians' does not exist in Islamic religious law. ... There is no such term as 'civilians' in the modern Western sense. People are either of Dar Al-Harb or not ..." [Dar Al-Harb is the House of War, where Islam is not dominant and infidels may be slaughtered - ed.].
The basic distinction that must be made regarding 'religions,' is between Man-made and God-made.
Man-made is man's attempt to reach God.
The Judeo-Christian faith is God's attempt to reach you and me - without intruding on our God-made free will. The Creator has initiated and maintained the process to fruition and completion.
He has Scripturally supplied us with Transcendent Criteria - which human beings cannot invent. Thus, we are enabled to exercise our free will in Choice by measuring alternatives with accuracy and equipped to anticipate consequences prior to choosing.
Humility is thus the result of recognizing superiority - not enforced ritual, tradition, or contradiction.
Man-made or God-made? An easy choice for the aware choicemaker. selah
James Fletcher Baxter