Saturday, April 16, 2016

Sunday Sermon:The Maze Runner

The Maze Runner

We hate to fall into the category of predictable but Marcus and Agata have been suckered into reading The Maze Runner  by James Dashner

Apocalyptic Future
Indeed this is another story of life in a post Apocalyptic or Dystopian future.  To us; there was first something like

- The Hunger Games (Suzanne Collins)

and then

- The Knife of Never Letting Go  (Patrick Ness)

and now

- The Maze Runner (James Dashner)

Some Characteristics

The adolescent hero

An unwilling hero

And usually a heroine partner too

They show courage, moral fortitude and have an uphill struggle to be recognised

Eventually they win the hearts of their oppressed brethren

And lead the revolution against the bad guys

Oh, and at the end of the book, a twist reveals it is not the end of the story as one had expected. Indeed, there is actually a trilogy or longer that you are going to have to get into.

Are you Seriously Concerned?
The above is of course just fiction.  But in all seriousness I do fear the premature end to Civil Society, and today not from a Nuclear Superpower confrontation.

Towards Un Civilisation
If you had to ask Marcus what the biggest risk to our current Civilisation is, it would be a return to barbarism.  Our attitudes towards different races, sexes, what should represent sexuality has changed radically in the last 100 years.

Laws had been formulated and gradually changed, improved over time, in the face of Consensus, Reasoned Arguments, the Advancement of the Sciences, Ethics and Philosophy.

We have Democracy, Equality of the Sexes, Free Speech, The Right to Offend, The Separation between Church and State, to name but a few well established principles that underlie our society.

We have realised there is no one magical book written over a Thousand Years ago that has all or even the majority of the answers to complex life in the 21st century.

At least, for most of Western Europe.   The principal challenge I see therefore is the adherence of the many, to seriously follow the now backward, irrelevant and incorrect principles outlined in many of the more strident Religions of this world.

To be clear, I'm not talking about a meek, mild religion like Jainism,  I'm talking about Religions that promote or advocate severe sanctions and even the death Penalty just for leaving ones own Religion.

And in this connection

I invite you to Google search more, the penalties that the World Religions enforce, if any, for leaving the Religion that you were born into, or perhaps that you joined, but now feel is not for you.

Hadith and Sira

The most reliable Hadith collection contain numerous accounts of Muhammad and his companions putting people to death for leaving Islam. According to verse 4:80 of the Quran:"Those who obey the Messenger obey Allah."

Bukhari (52:260) - "...The Prophet said, 'If somebody (a Muslim) discards his religion, kill him.' " 

Bukhari (83:37) - "Allah's Apostle never killed anyone except in one of the following three situations: (1) A person who killed somebody unjustly, was killed (in Qisas,) (2) a married person who committed illegal sexual intercourse and (3) a man who fought against Allah and His Apostle and deserted Islam and became an apostate."

Bukhari (84:57) - [In the words of] "Allah's Apostle, 'Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him.'"

Bukhari (89:271) - A man who embraces Islam, then reverts to Judaism is to be killed according to "the verdict of Allah and his apostle."

Bukhari (84:58) - "There was a fettered man beside Abu Muisa. Mu'adh asked, 'Who is this (man)?' Abu Muisa said, 'He was a Jew and became a Muslim and then reverted back to Judaism.' Then Abu Muisa requested Mu'adh to sit down but Mu'adh said, 'I will not sit down till he has been killed. This is the judgment of Allah and His Apostle (for such cases) and repeated it thrice.' Then Abu Musa ordered that the man be killed, and he was killed. Abu Musa added, 'Then we discussed the night prayers'" 

Bukhari (84:64-65) - "Allah's Apostle: 'During the last days there will appear some young foolish people who will say the best words but their faith will not go beyond their throats (i.e. they will have no faith) and will go out from (leave) their religion as an arrow goes out of the game. So, wherever you find them, kill them, for whoever kills them shall have reward on the Day of Resurrection.'"

Bukhari (11:626) - "The Prophet said, 'No prayer is harder for the hypocrites than the Fajr and the 'Isha' prayers and if they knew the reward for these prayers at their respective times, they would certainly present themselves (in the mosques) even if they had to crawl.' The Prophet added, 'Certainly I decided to order the Mu'adh-dhin (call-maker) to pronounce Iqama and order a man to lead the prayer and then take a fire flame to burn all those who had not left their houses so far for the prayer along with their houses'."

Abu Dawud (4346) - "Was not there a wise man among you who would stand up to him when he saw that I had withheld my hand from accepting his allegiance, and kill him?" Muhammad is chastising his companions for allowing an apostate to "repent" under duress. (The person in question was Muhammad's former scribe, who left him after doubting the authenticity of divine "revelations" - upon finding out that grammatical changes could be made. He was brought back to Muhammad after having been captured in Medina).

al-Muwatta of Imam Malik (36.18.15) - "The Messenger of Allah said, "If someone changes his religion - then strike off his head."

Reliance of the Traveller (Islamic Law) o8.1 - "When a person who has reached puberty and is sane voluntarily apostatises from Islam, he deserves to be killed." (o8.4 affirms that there is no penalty for killing an apostate).

Two Thirds of British Muslims Say They Wouldn’t Inform Authorities When Learning Someone Has Terrorist Ties

Channel 4 study results PDF
UK Channel 4 Programme: What Muslims Think