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Islam Unveiled: Disturbing Questions About the World's Fastest Growing…

by Robert Spencer

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1753122,752 (3.84)1
In "Islam Unveiled," Robert Spencer dares to face the hard questions about what the Islamic religion actually teaches--and the potentially ominous implications of those teachings for the future of both the Muslim world and the West. Going beyond the shallow distinction between a "true" peaceful Islam and the "hijacked" Islam of terrorist groups, Spencer probes the Koran and Islamic traditions (as well as the history and present-day situation of the Muslim world) as part of his inquiry into why the world's fastest growing faith tends to arouse fanaticism. "Islam Unveiled" evaluates the relationship between Islamic fundamentalism and "mainstream" Islam; the fixation with violence and jihad; the reasons for Muslims' disturbing treatment of women; and devastating effects of Muslim polygamy and Islamic divorce laws. Spencer explores other daunting questions--why the human rights record of Islamic countries is so unrelievedly grim and how the root causes of this record exist in basic Muslim beliefs; why science and high culture died out in the Muslim world--and why this is a root cause of modern Muslim resentment. He evaluates what Muslims learn from the life of Muhammad, the man that Islam hails as the supreme model of human behavior. Above all, this provocative work grapples with the question that most preoccupies us today: can Islam create successful secularized societies that will coexist peacefully with the West's multicultural mosaic?… (more)
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Robert Spencer’s Islam Unveiled is a rather disturbing book. It’s a negative critique of Islam. Undoubtedly, all religions have strengths and weaknesses. They are many aspects to agree and disagree about them. But for the most part the writer undertook to demonize the Islamic faith. Throughout the book he explained how Islam is violent towards non-Muslims. Further, he deplored the life the prophet Muhammad by comparing him with Jesus Christ. And according to Spencer the Islamic faith in the Middle East and around the world is inspired by fundamentalism.
Occasionally, the author did a comparison of Islam with Christianity. With reference to the historical evils of Christianity, he recounted that Christian leaders had acknowledged these wrongs, and made efforts to correct them. This he stated was not the case with Islam. In contemporary times Spencer wrote that Christianity had changed for the better. He saw this as the result of a change of emphasis beginning with a shift from the teachings of the Old Testament to that of the New Testament.
Instead of dwelling on the negative aspects of Islam, it would have been more beneficial to readers if the writer had presented a more balanced picture of Islam. And he had provided a more comprehensive account of Christianity’s past when comparing these two monotheistic faiths. ( )
  erwinkennythomas | Mar 16, 2020 |
NO OF PAGES: 214 SUB CAT I: Islam SUB CAT II: SUB CAT III: DESCRIPTION: To proclamations that Islam is a religion of peace, Spencer responds (in chapters entitled with questions such as "Is Islam Compatible with Liberal Democracy?" and "Is Islam Tolerant of Non-Muslims?") with evidence, historical and recent, of harsh treatment of women, other religionists, and social minorities in Islamic societies. Besides the facts Spencer presents, his citations of the Qur'an; the hadiths, or sayings and deeds of Muhammad; and Islamic authorities across the liberal-to-fundamentalist spectrum verify attitudes and practices that secular Westerners and present-day Jews and Christians don't think of as peaceable, just, or decent. For instance, slavery and polygamy may be waning in Islamic societies, but they aren't disapproved of or banned because the Qur'an and hadiths endorse them. Islam hasn't adapted to change nearly as much as Judaism and Christianity have, and that accounts for its savage relations with the West. Spencer doesn't see either Islam moderating or the West regarding Islam realistically any time soon. Barring "some wondrous intervention from the Merciful One," he concludes, the immediate future "will be difficult." Alarmingly cogent. Going beyond a shallow distinction between a "true" peaceful Islam and the "hijacked" Islam of terrorist groups, Robert Spencer probes the Qur'an and other sacred documents, as well as Islamic traditions and history and the present-day situation of the Muslim world, to find out why the world's fastest-growing faith tends to arouse extremism. A student of the religion for the last twenty years, Spencer brings a knowledgeable and critical sensibility to this brave, searching work. Cutting through the touchy and sentimental relativism of so much curreny discussion about the subject, he rigorously interrogates Islam: - Were Osama bin Laden and his followers preverting Islam when they claimed to find sanction for their attack against the United States in the Qur'an? - How did the hard-line Wahhabi sect spread so quickly through the Muslim world and gain such great influence? - What did Muslim leaders worlwide actually say about the September 11 terrorst action? - Do the events surrounding the Crusades really justify Islamic hostility toward the West? - What do Muslims learn from the life of the Prophet Muhammad, the man that Islam hails as the supreme model of human behaviour? - What are the reasons for Muslims' disturbing treatment of women, and the consequences of harshly misogynistic Muslim polygamy and Islamic divorce laws? - Why did science and high culture wane after their early flourishing in the Islamic world, and is this decline a source of Muslim resentment? - Does the explanation for the grim human rights record of Islamic countries lie in basic Muslim beleifs? - Finally, and perhaps most importantly, can Islam create successful secularized societies that will coexist peacefully with the liberal, multicultural world of the West? In this captivating, carefully reasearched book, Robert Spencer asks the hard questions about Islam and gives the hard answers, providing a profoundly needed antidote to the wishful thinking and willful distortions that have swamped the media since September 11. As noted observer of the Arab world David Pryce-Jones says in his introduction, "In ints own lively style, "Islam Unveiled" puts down a strong and significant marker to what lies ahead, as Islam and the rest of the world strive to come to terms.NOTES: Donated by Barbara Kase. SUBTITLE: Disturbing Questions About the World's Fastest-Growing Faith
  BeitHallel | Feb 18, 2011 |
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In "Islam Unveiled," Robert Spencer dares to face the hard questions about what the Islamic religion actually teaches--and the potentially ominous implications of those teachings for the future of both the Muslim world and the West. Going beyond the shallow distinction between a "true" peaceful Islam and the "hijacked" Islam of terrorist groups, Spencer probes the Koran and Islamic traditions (as well as the history and present-day situation of the Muslim world) as part of his inquiry into why the world's fastest growing faith tends to arouse fanaticism. "Islam Unveiled" evaluates the relationship between Islamic fundamentalism and "mainstream" Islam; the fixation with violence and jihad; the reasons for Muslims' disturbing treatment of women; and devastating effects of Muslim polygamy and Islamic divorce laws. Spencer explores other daunting questions--why the human rights record of Islamic countries is so unrelievedly grim and how the root causes of this record exist in basic Muslim beliefs; why science and high culture died out in the Muslim world--and why this is a root cause of modern Muslim resentment. He evaluates what Muslims learn from the life of Muhammad, the man that Islam hails as the supreme model of human behavior. Above all, this provocative work grapples with the question that most preoccupies us today: can Islam create successful secularized societies that will coexist peacefully with the West's multicultural mosaic?

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