He describes a British general in India on the practice of suttee, forced burning of a widow when her husband died:
Gen. Sir Charles Napier was impeccably multicultural:
"You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: When men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks, and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours."
Conversion from Islam triggers the death penalty, the new Afghan Constitution notwithstanding.
Not even getting into the questions of denunciation by one's family, Abdul Rahman's forced repatriation by Germany, or lurid curiosity about the precise methods by which The Authorities call on the people to pull [anyone] into pieces so there's nothing
left. Do they post "employment opportunities" openings? Advertise in newspapers? Announce the celebration in the mosque? Text-message? Impress roving gangs of the blood-thirsty? Surely some recruits are more enthusiastic than others.
Dilys, having seen a lot and believing in inevitable self-correction of processes, does not usually support anecdotal outrage, special policies because of one unfortunate person. But some situations are iconic. More information will not make matters clearer.
"We will not allow God to be humiliated. This man must die," says Abdul Raoulf of the nation's principal Muslim body, the Afghan Ulama Council. "Cut off his head! We will call on the people to pull him into pieces so there's nothing left." Needless to say, Imam Raoulf is one of Afghanistan's leading "moderate" clerics.
So what now? What is to be done in the face of merciless spokesmen for a god so tarnishable he could be humiliated, by so many, many, many things free humans do? -- a god helpless and passive before the merciless honor code of his exponents.
Comparative Religions assignment: make a simple,
side-by-side chart. List the characteristics of the Judaeo-Christian
deity, compare-and-contrast with Sheik Raoulf's ancient entity. Begin
with the topic, "humility cf. humiliation." Discuss.
*An unidentified lady-in-waiting to Queen Victoria, on the other hand, having seen Antony and Cleopatra, is said to have exclaimed, "How different, how very different from the home life of our own dear Queen!"
It's time to celebrate when they Get the Modern Memo that Death to the Infidel is not in the Constitution. Apparently the announcement is that charges against Mr. Rahman are being reconsidered. The basis --
"The court dismissed today the case against Abdul Rahman for a lack of information and a lot of legal gaps in the case," the official said Sunday, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.
"The decision about his release will be taken possibly tomorrow," the official added. "They don't have to keep him in jail while the attorney general is looking into the case."
-- is a bit of a puzzlement, but any good news is welcome.
The words that come to mind are, "Run, run like the wind!" But it is a shame that faith minus any other crime can make someone persona non grata anywhere and mandate exile from his country.