Sunday, February 12, 2012

No Personal Freedom in Islam

Hazem Saleh Abu Ismail is a well-known Islamic scholar in Egypt. He is affiliated with both the Muslim Brotherhood and the even more radical Salafists, the two groups that dominate the Egyptian parliament after the recent elections.

Mr. Ismail is now a candidate for the presidency of Egypt. During an interview last summer he said that there is no room for personal freedom in Islam, and that women in Egypt must wear the hijab.

Many thanks to Mary Abdelmassih for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for subtitling this video:

Hazem Saleh Abu Ismail has also been interviewed on CBC. He made headlines several years ago by calling for a boycott of Pepsi-Cola, saying that the company was a Zionist conspiracy, and that name of the drink stood for “Pay Every Penny to Save Israel”.

A transcript of the video is below the jump:

Moderator: If you have started to control the way she dresses…
Hazem: I started it? God Almighty is the one who said that. I have nothing to do with it
Moderator: God Almighty has left it to me as a personal freedom
Hazem: Who told you that?
Hazem: If you claim to me that God has left it to me as a personal freedom, tell me where? This is something no one has said, except the people who have no knowledge of Sharia.
Moderator: There is “Let there be no compulsion in religion”
Hazem: In faith, yes, meaning you do not convert him to Islam by force.
Moderator: When God mentions religion in the Koran, does this apply to faith only? When he says “I have accomplished for you your religion,” is he talking here only about faith ?
Hazem: Exactly, because here it is like “let there be no compulsion in joining the military academy.” He who wants to join, can join, and he who does not wish to join, then let it be. But if you join the military academy you have to wear the uniform of the military academy, go there at the times specified by the military academy, and you have to train and obey the leader
Moderator: This is a problem. Am I to tell the one who does not wear the hijab that if you want to escape this, you have to change your faith?
Hazem: Exactly. Well done. If you are a Muslim woman, where is the difficulty? This is Islam. Does she want to be a Muslim and not obey God? They have to say it. If only they were “honest”. I am only asking from them to be honest.


Hans Georg Lundahl said...

I am at Georges Pompidou Library of Paris. I cannot see the video.

Has it been deleted or is it just the Parisian Library (or maybe all Parisian Libraries) that block it?

That would not surprise me, some third to half of the security guards here are Muslims or of Muslim extraction.

Anonymous said...

On December 24, 1902, the Pepsi-Cola Company was incorporated in North Carolina, and on June 16, 1903 the first Pepsi-Cola trademark was registered.

On 14 May 1948 David Ben-Gurion, the Executive Head of the World Zionist Organization and president of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, declared Israel a state independent from the British Mandate for Palestine.

This clown is going to be the next President of the largest Arab nation on Earth? The least he could do is fact check and try to come up with something a little more plausible... like "the Mossad did it" or "Western NGO's want to bring down the government of Egypt"... oh, wait. Never mind.

R D-C said...

Hello again,

it's a win/win situation for the woman because Islam has ZERO tolerance for oppression:

« (...) Beware of the supplication of the oppressed, for there is no barrier between it and Allah ». [Hadith reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

Any hardships endured with patience will reap great rewards in the Hereafter. Deniers of Judgement Day must admit that if they aspire to perfect justice, they cannot come up with a better scenario. Do we really think Hitler just died, and that's it?

« On the Resurrection Day, the rights will be paid to those to whom they are due– so much so that a hornless sheep will be retaliated for by punishing the horned sheep which broke its horns ». [Hadith reported by Muslim].

Disbelievers' entendre & understanding of "freedom" is of course different from that of a slave of God Almighty. Most would define freedom as the creation of options with ultimate power over choice, while muslims are "free" to choose from already pre-determined options given by The All-Powerful, All-Merciful. We can't transpose the same parameters over different standards. The same thing can have exactly opposite meanings, as Derek Sivers demonstrated in his 2 mins presentation called "Weird, or Just Different?".

That doesn't mean that I expect the Egyptian upcoming leaders to represent Islam authentically, I'm afraid.

Thank you & be well,

Miki said...

I agree with him. From what I read in the Koran and biography of muhammad there is no choice for muslim women. So if someone wants to convert - suit yourself. At least he's being honest. Frightning that islamists might win in Egept though.