Hope: The St. Petersburg Declaration

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by PoliticalChic, Sep 11, 2011.

  1. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    The St. Petersburg Declaration
    April 5, 2007

    We are secular Muslims, and secular persons of Muslim societies. We are believers, doubters, and unbelievers, brought together by a great struggle, not between the West and Islam, but between the free and the unfree.

    We affirm the inviolable freedom of the individual conscience. We believe in the equality of all human persons.

    We insist upon the separation of religion from state and the observance of universal human rights.

    We find traditions of liberty, rationality, and tolerance in the rich histories of pre-Islamic and Islamic societies. These values do not belong to the West or the East; they are the common moral heritage of humankind.

    We see no colonialism, racism, or so-called "Islamaphobia" in submitting Islamic practices to criticism or condemnation when they violate human reason or rights.
    We call on the governments of the world to

    • reject Sharia law, fatwa courts, clerical rule, and state-sanctioned religion in all their forms; oppose all penalties for blasphemy and apostasy, in accordance with Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human rights;

    • eliminate practices, such as female circumcision, honor killing, forced veiling, and forced marriage, that further the oppression of women;

    • protect sexual and gender minorities from persecution and violence;

    • reform sectarian education that teaches intolerance and bigotry towards non-Muslims;

    • and foster an open public sphere in which all matters may be discussed without coercion or intimidation.

    We demand the release of Islam from its captivity to the totalitarian ambitions of power-hungry men and the rigid strictures of orthodoxy.

    We enjoin academics and thinkers everywhere to embark on a fearless examination of the origins and sources of Islam, and to promulgate the ideals of free scientific and spiritual inquiry through cross-cultural translation, publishing, and the mass media.

    We say to Muslim believers: there is a noble future for Islam as a personal faith, not a political doctrine;

    to Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, Baha'is, and all members of non-Muslim faith communities: we stand with you as free and equal citizens;

    and to nonbelievers: we defend your unqualified liberty to question and dissent.
    Before any of us is a member of the Umma, the Body of Christ, or the Chosen People, we are all members of the community of conscience, the people who must choose for themselves.

    Endorsed by:
    Ayaan Hirsi Ali
    Magdi Allam
    Mithal Al-Alusi
    Shaker Al-Nabulsi
    Nonie Darwish
    Afshin Ellian
    Tawfik Hamid
    Shahriar Kabir
    Hasan Mahmud
    Wafa Sultan
    Amir Taheri
    Ibn Warraq
    Manda Zand Ervin
    Banafsheh Zand-Bonazzi
    ISIS | Center for Inquiry
     
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  2. Lokiate
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    Lokiate Super Beast

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    That's what they say. Let's see what they actually do.
     
  3. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    Kinda hopin' that some of our Muslim friends would agree...
     
  4. AVG-JOE
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    AVG-JOE American Mutt Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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    :beer: To hope!

    To hoping for the best! :beer:
     
  5. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    What they do...is sign their names to this document in the face of the kinds of violence and murder that we've all seen by their opposite number.

    I'd say that that is pretty brave.
     
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  6. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    Amen.

    (it wouldn't let me add a rep...)
     
  7. AVG-JOE
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    AVG-JOE American Mutt Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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    It's the thought that counts, PC.

    Mahallo!
     
  8. C_Clayton_Jones
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    C_Clayton_Jones Diamond Member

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    There is no reason to doubt their sincerity and indeed such a ‘declaration’ is unnecessary given the fact the issues noted are not sanctioned tenets of Islam. Issues such as female circumcision, honor killing, and forced veiling are cultural, not religious, practices. Elimination of these practices is indeed necessary for the advancement of any civilized society but it is not incumbent upon Muslims alone to see reforms enacted.
     
  9. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    "There is no reason to doubt their sincerity ..."
    Agreed.

    "...such a ‘declaration’ is unnecessary given the fact the issues noted are not sanctioned tenets of Islam."

    Be serious, Jonesy...

    On which donkey would you pin the issues discussed?
    The issues need to be discussed, and it is eminently clear to all who will have to deal with them.


    "Elimination of these practices is indeed necessary..."
    Got my vote on that.
     
  10. OODA_Loop
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    OODA_Loop Account Terminated

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    May I propose a no wiping your ass with your hand amendment to the Declaration?
     

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