The Guardian newspaper headline “Mainstream religious groups applaud murder” makes for uncomfortable reading. Of course this concerns the assassination of Pakistan’s governor of Punjab, Salman Taseer over his opposition to a blasphemy law which signalled signs of radical modernity in the higher echelons of the Islamic republic.
It’s important to remember, however, that most people there do not condone murder and the removal of the blasphemy law would’ve been compatible with ensuring the existing security of Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, Jews and atheists who live peacefully and happily in the country, and who may only – if ever – inadvertently ‘blaspheme’.
It’s certain that the many highly religious Muslims there want a tough shield held over their beliefs, but at the same time there needs to be an excision of the rotten core that is extremism; it is no longer justifiable for the ordinary people in power to look the other way or cave in. The ‘applause’ of some mainstream religious groups can be put down to fear of reprisal for saying anything else.
If there is a God and Taseer’s actions indeed needed to be reprimanded, surely it’s up to the holder of the heaviest gavel – up above the skies – to decide when a person must die and what they then must face; and then if there is a fair God it seems unlikely that they would also endorse a man who killed someone without real personal provocation. And that is also if God exists.
Religious people should keep comfort in their faith, but belief allows room for doubt. Bear in mind also that Taseer was trying to protect a Christian woman who is also tied to Islam by the Abrahamic umbrella, if not humanity alone.
Some further ‘justification’ for Taseer’s death was that he was not a good Muslim anyway due to various aspects of his private life, but to me he seemed better than those who look pious from the outside but are truly unscrupulous underneath.
In the end what I believe is: don’t worry about the dirt in somebody else’s house when you need to be moving the broom in your own. If there is a judgement to be made, no additional enforcers are needed.
There are others like Taseer and there will be more to come, but lone speakers will have the same fate, unfortunately. Real change will only come when many decide to band together to change the fabric. I can’t forecast when that could be but I’m looking forward to a divorce of God and government there – a vision that is actually more accurate to Jinnah’s (the founder of Pakistan) in which he wished to avoid the religious problems of pre (and even post)-partition India.
The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:
The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.
A helper monkey made this abstract painting, inspired by your stats.
A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 7,700 times in 2010. That’s about 19 full 747s.
In 2010, there were 18 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 81 posts. There were 6 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 304kb.
The busiest day of the year was July 20th with 136 views. The most popular post that day was Review: PiL @ Shepherd’s Bush Empire, 19/07/10.
Where did they come from?
The top referring sites in 2010 were search.aol.com, bigextracash.com, answers.yahoo.com, search.conduit.com, and facebook.com.
Some visitors came searching, mostly for high cholesterol and low vitamin d, vitamin d and cholesterol, lint grabbing wash balls, low vitamin d high cholesterol, and low vitamin d and high cholesterol.
Attractions in 2010
These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.
Review: PiL @ Shepherd’s Bush Empire, 19/07/10 July 2010
High cholesterol, low vitamin D and its significance August 2007
Toshiba NB100-11R running Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx (Netbook Edition) May 2010
eBay PayPal/Royal Mail online postage tips November 2007
Lint Grabbing Wash Balls review May 2007
Thank you as always to everyone who’s come to this blog – even if you’re a search engine robot. It would be a shame to write stuff here with no audience for it, even if it’s unlikely to be a consistent one
Right…This is highly-probably the last time (I say this because I’m notorious for backtracking) I’m going to talk about vitamin D here, so read very carefully – I will write zis only once:
My vitamin D project now has its own home which you can find here. Don’t expect to be bowled over by lots of content because there isn’t really much at all. It’s just a nice looking container for the moment and I aim to use the blog linked on that site as my scrawl-board for weekly assessments of vitamin D news that are unlikely to be in my book, because of course there are new developments all the time. That said, the core, timeless, stuff is in the book so you had better buy it when it’s out! Plus there will be things in there which I shall not share or reference anywhere or online. I’m not giving out an exact date yet of availability as I’m just beginning the final editing stages from today (well, make it tomorrow).
I’m shortly going to discontinue the mailing list which is buried in my ‘high cholesterol, low vitamin D and its significance’ page, and I’ve decided not to port over existing addresses at all to my new one. While this is my loss, I think it’s courteous that those who remain interested in my perspective should either sign up to the new one on the site or just follow the new blog. I’m sorry if this is a drag to anyone, but I promise to not make people move over again. That said, there are only more than a dozen of you, so…
I’ve also taken down the previous forum and put up a new one. The last one didn’t attract any attention, and the same fate may be in store for the new one, but at least it’s now on a visible location.
For people who like my other ramblings here, don’t worry this will continue at the same infrequent pace. I apologise to everyone else who wish it was ending…
Again, to the vitamin D fanatics – this is going to be interesting new year, at least from me if from no one else. Happy New Year.