Farshad Kholghi, Danish actor and debater (born in Iran), had an interesting column in Berlingske Tidende this Monday. Funny, thought-provoking or just utterly offensive? I can't really decide.
Farshad Kholghi: Humorous Muslims
Do we need a new organization: "Humorous Muslims"?
There are countless Muslim organizations such as Critical Muslims, Less Critical Muslims, Absolutely Uncritical Muslims, European Muslims, Communist Muslims, the Danish Socioliberal Party, Vegetarian Muslims og now also Democratic Muslims.
Common for all of them is that they have an urgent need to underscore the name of their religion. For example: Democratic Muslims. Is it not possible to form an association simply called "the Democrats", where there is room for everyone who has a democratic mind?
There are no organizations called "Democratic citizens of Bornholm", or "Critical Homosexuals" or "Tantric Rockers".
Now the time has come to form a new Muslim organization. If God created everything on earth he must also have created humour, satire, self-irony, self-examination and the self-critical way of thinking. Therefore these ideas must be holy.
Since I am not Muslim myself I will simply pass on the idea so others can found the association:
1- to spread out self-irony and self-critique in the Muslim faith.
2- to go through the faith and clean it for quotes or passages that say "kill them whereever you find them" or similar urgings to killing and violence that can be abused by terrorists.
3- to learn to recognize own mistakes. Only by laughing at them you can win the hearts of others and reform old ideas.
4- to encourage all members to draw caricatures [...] or write self-critical or self-ironical stories that can challenge and move own borders. You cannot achieve the divine if you never transgress your own limits and renew your faith.
5- the new organization will be called "Humorous Muslims".
If you are not offended by the above-mentioned and do not feel urge to set buildings or flags on fire you are automatically a member of Humorous Muslims.
(Berlingske Tidende, 19-06-2006, my translation from Danish)
Read the full article here