It used to be said "all roads lead to Rome", though I am not sure that this was a vatican reference or a purely political reference to the Roman empire.
Nowadays it would seem that most, if not all, jihadist terrorism and extreme fundamentalist Islamic distortions all seem to have a common pathway…….and a common destination. Time after time after time researches into the 'influences that have affected so called 'Islamic' terrorists and/or terrorist movements' trace the same route. It seems that many of these pathways lead to 'The Shadow of the Koran' and other writings from , Sayyid Qut'b.
It is, perhaps, worth noting that "The ulema of Al-Azhar University school took the unusual step following his death of putting Sayyid Qutb on their index of heresy, declaring him a "deviant" (Al-Azhar - the chief centre of Arabic literature and Sunni Islamic learning in the world) – source Wikipaedia. Perhaps it would be allowed to mention that Al Quaeda is predominantly Sunni and yet, for example, there are very strong identifiable links between Qut'b's works and Osama bin Laden's declared aims.
I have previously mentioned, in this blog, that Islam is not a unified faith but, as with many religions (particularly Christianity) is troubled by schism, dissension and often violent disagreement.
I mention this, at this time, for two reasons:
1. To be fair to the majority of peace-loving, tolerant and caring Muslims who populate this world.
2. To draw attention to the aspects of this internal Islamic struggle to cope with the transitions of the 20th and 21st centuries, which are creating massive strains upon old and out-dated standards of morality (as we also see in Catholicism)..
The old-tactic of 'creating a common enemy to unite a cause' is nowhere more visible than in the modern struggles of Islam. Check out Iraq. Check out Iran. Check out Yemen.
BUT – before we support, in the name of 'religious freedoms' any modifications to our higher humane standards such as those espoused by Al Quaeda , Taleban or promoted under the more extreme variations of Sharia law, we need to be very certain which faction we support. It is hard to have respect for actions which deny or contradict the lovingness of the One God or demean moral and humane standards that have evolved over thousands of years.
The defence of tradition, which in centuries past served society, is not a road to travel down where that tradition no longer meets the higher moral, ethical or humane standards expressed within a society.