Jul 16 2012
Muslim scholar urges Western ideas [Excerpts]
An Islamic scholar who is trying to reform his religion says it will take a generation of instilling Western ideas before there is any real hope of change in countries like Egypt and Syria.
Dr. Zuhdi Jasser is a former U.S. Navy commander whose parents fled Syria to escape the oppressive Ba'athist regime in the mid-1960s. The former Navy doctor has recently published A Battle for the Soul of Islam: An American Muslim Patriot's Fight to Save His Faith (Threshold Editions, June 2012). Jasser predicts the ongoing civil war in Syria is not going to play out the way most Americans want.
"We keep thinking in America that it's going to be like a light switch that these dictators leave, and then you turn on the lights and you've got Jeffersonian democracy," Jasser tells OneNewsNow. "And that could not be further from the truth. You have to catch up with history."
He says one only has to look at Egypt where one of the two presidential candidates represents the oppressive Muslim Brotherhood, while the other was part of former President Hosni Mubarak's secular regime.
"The liberals, the dissidents, the reformists -- you haven't heard from," Jasser remarks. "And the reason is because in a post-dictatorship environment, you're not going to develop in a few months to a year the new mindset and skills and educational processes that develop liberal thinking. It's going to need a generation. It's going to need a doctoring, if you will, from the West."
Jasser says ultimately the Middle East must be educated to get out of the mindset that there are only two choices: either radical Islam or radical secular dictatorships.
[TBC: Reform based upon "Western ideas" misses the point. It is not a matter of reforming the culture, it's a matter of reforming the heart by the biblical Gospel.]