The book, which St. Martin’s Press is launched in this country Jan. 13, is one of the most hard-hitting analyses of Islam to appear since the Sept. 11 attacks. Manji catalogs the often-brutal repression of women in much of the Muslim world; denounces its widespread anti-Semitism; accuses Western Muslims of being cowed by virulent “desert Islam”; and says her religion, unlike others, treats its scripture “as a document to imitate rather than interpret, suffocating our capacity to think for ourselves.”
She implores fellow Muslims to reclaim the buried tradition of “ijtihad, independent reasoning, which she says allows every Muslim “to update his or her religious practice in light of contemporary circumstances.”
Centuries ago, “in the guise of protecting the worldwide Muslim nation from disunity,” Manji writes, the religion’s leading scholars made the momentous decision to freeze debate about doctrine.
“The only thing this imperial strategy has achieved,” she writes, “is to spawn the most dogged oppression of Muslims by Muslims: the incarceration of interpretation.”And of course the tolerance of others is highlighted:
Muslim organizations in Canada have roundly condemned “The Trouble With Islam.” A Calgary group, Muslims Against Terrorism, is conducting a series of talks to counter Manji and, in a news release, it thanked Muslim scholars “that they remain calm and did not issue a fatwa against this author, although the author is looking for it.”
Translation: “The bitch deserves whatever she gets”.
It’s not nicknamed “Religion Of Peace” for nothing…