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by chazzz @, USA, Thursday, February 16, 2017, 14:56 @ Old_Ponter

There is no denying that for about the first thousand years more or less, the related religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam each went though a period of violent repression of all competing cultures they were in contact with. Not only were these religions merciless to their neighbors at times, they were even less tolerant of dissent among their own adherents.

At first Christianity was spread by personal conversion, in later years once it had a position of authority alongside and at times over the civil governments it was sometimes spread by conquest, though more often by persuasion of an existing king who then decreed that his entire nation was converted to Christianity and must follow that religion. This was the model for most of early Europe. Later the Protestant Reformation and other dissenting ideas within Christianity convinced large groups of Christians to see and experience Christianity in a little different light. This and other reasons led to the Hundred Years War and other religious warfare within Europe in spite of all sides professing to be Christian. Eventually Christianity for the most part learned to tolerate and respect variations of doctrine within its own religion and also small numbers of non-Christians living among them. But this took nearly a thousand years and terrible suffering to get to what we think of as modern Christianity.

Islam is roughly 1400 years old. It went through a history of conversion by conquest and forcible conversion. This is very unfortunately incorporated in their holy scriptures. Islam has its own schisms such as between the Sunni and Shia. If you live in a country controlled by Islam it is a religion of peace - But only if you are a practicing member of the predominant branch of Islam of that country. In many such countries if you renounce Islam you may be put to death - And this is considered as "reasonable"!

As I see it, Islam simply has not grown up yet and matured enough to become a religion that will tolerate religious differences. No doubt there are many individuals within the greater Islamic community who are tolerant, but these are not in the global majority as far as I can see. I do not wish ill will upon the individuals who by choice or by birth are practicing members of Islam. But I do not trust any group who will not practice true tolerance of other thoughts, values, or religions. I especially would not live in such a place nor do I want my own community to be overrun by large scale immigration of the intolerant - And that is simply rational self preservation.


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