Throughout my life I’ve met a number of people who’ve changed religion, sometimes radically. I’ve encountered people who’ve changed from their birth religion or from atheism / agnosticism to become Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists or neo-Pagans. I’ve no big problem with this as the right to accept, reject or even change one’s religious belief is an important right in a free and open society.
In 99.5% percent of those that have converted to another faith there has, at least in my experience, been very little impact on the wider society. Yes, these newly minted religious types may have been a minor pain in the arse to their families and friends in some ways, but in general society doesn’t suffer from many negative effects from people deciding after study to become Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists or whatever. We have religious freedom for many reasons, including historical ones and it’s a right that was fought hard for and a right that should be cherished. For me an important justification of the right to change faith is that nobody but the individual can see what their own concept of the Divine is. If I had a window into another person’s soul, their mental picture of the Divine may differ somewhat from my own. Their picture of the Divine may, for example, be more or less judgemental, or proscriptive than mine would be, even if we followed the same Deity.
The opinion I have formed over the years, is that people who choose to follow religions that have at their heart the ideas of peace, love, justice, service and harmony are not in any way a problem for the nation. However people who choose to follow violent death cults are a completely different matter. These individuals should be seen as both a problem and a potential threat. I speak here mostly of those who convert to Islam and I am minded to speak of it following the allegation that the Islamic savage who killed and maimed people during the Palace of Westminster attack was a convert to Islam. The murdering savage whose Islamic name was given as Khalid Masood was originally a Kent-born habitual violent criminal, originally named Adrian Elms or Adrian Russell Ajao depending on which source you read.
Those who convert to Islam should worry us since they may be dangerous; that’s not just my opinion, that is becoming an almost indisputable established fact, as there are a significant number of ‘new Muslims’ who engage in these sorts of Islam-related crimes. I must say at this point that I have encountered people who have converted to Islam and they’ve all had something very ‘wrong’ with them. They were people with catastrophic mental illnesses or who were badly warped by their life experiences or who were thugs attracted to the theological thuggery of Islam. None of them were what I would happily call ‘sane’. From what I’ve seen, it appears to be the case that you don’t have to be mentally ill to convert to Islam but it damn well helps if you are.
The key issue for me as to why those who convert to Islam are a problem and a threat, is the question of ‘what are they following?’ If a person converts to a monotheistic religion, such as Christianity or Judaism, then these religions have at their heart key characters which are separate to a greater or lesser degree, from the figure of the Divine itself. When you dig into the lives of these foundational characters then you can discern, even at great historical distance, a shadow of what their personalities may have been like. In the case of Christianity, it’s helpful to strip away the metaphysics and some of the later additions to the Christian testament that appear to have been inserted in order to make Christianity more appetising for the Roman world, in order to do this. What remains when you do this, is a description of Jesus as a 1st century CE Rabbi who may have been of the theological school of Hillel. We get the picture of a kind and educated man, driven by his religious learning to give voice to what he had learned and what he felt. Also, we need to remember that Jesus was living and working in a Jewish state that was under Roman suzerainty. Whatever else one may pick up about Jesus from the Christian Testament, you don’t get the impression of a bad man or a tyrant or a person who relishes cruelty to others.
Or take the Jewish Moses, the foundational figure of Moshe Rabbainu, the Great Teacher, as he is known in Hebrew. From what we can gather, if again we take away the metaphysics and the miracles, we are left with a figure of a man with somewhat of a tortured soul. According to the Torah, Moses was a man who was brought up in privilege, but who gave up that existence when he killed an Egyptian who was oppressing an Israelite. He became an outlaw from the Egyptian government and later led his people from slavery into freedom. I get the picture from the text of Moses as administrator, law giver, honest judge and yes, military leader. More so than with the examination of the perceived character of Jesus as discerned from the text, the character of Moses is more rounded with many more shades of grey in it. However, Moses was not a bad man. He was a man of his time, his class and his tribe. He was a normal bloke with both good and bad bits and who doesn’t seem to have really wanted the job of leader. One thing that doesn’t come through about Moses, except following the incident of the Golden Calf, which I believe is a rendition of a folk memory of an awful civil war between the Israelites, is any indication that he was a tyrant or enjoyed cruelty or killed for pleasure. Moses was like you and me, not thoroughly bad and not thoroughly good either.
Following either of these two foundational characters is not going to cause the majority of people many problems at all, even in a quasi-secular society. The foundational characters and the teachings that they gave and the religions that they created, do not in the main inspire people to do bad things. They don’t inspire people to kill and they don’t inspire people to enslave or oppress others. Yes there are people of these two faiths who do bad things, but these are individuals who have chosen to ignore teachings such as ‘thou shalt not kill/steal/covet thy neighbours wife’. Bad people are in Christianity and Judaism aberrations and are accepted as such.
Now we have to move on to the character of Mohammed and we get a completely different picture of a foundational character, this time of the wellspring of Islam. There is no good to be found in the character of Mohammed, no good at all, when you strip away the metaphysics from Islam. By the admission of Islamic scripture itself, Mohammed was a nasty individual. He was a man who accepted the idea that he and his followers could murder with impunity, who led piratical bands of desert robbers, who enslaved the women of the tribes that his gang murdered and a man who engaged in child sex. He lied to people, stole property, cheated in negotiations, and he raped and murdered. If Mohammed was alive today in the United Kingdom, then he would probably be residing in the Broadmoor Hospital for the criminally insane. He really was as awful, if not more so when we take body count into consideration, as some of that institution’s present and former residents.
This is the man that Muslims consider the perfect individual, the supreme man, the example to be emulated for all time. When you look at how bad Mohammed was, we have to ask ourselves why should we trust or accept those who freely choose to follow the example of this monstrous psychopath called Mohammed? The answer is we should not.
If someone chooses to follow a religious path that has a foundational figure that can be seen as decent or relatively decent, then there is little problem with a person changing religion because the foundational figures are not that objectionable. However, if a person freely chooses to follow a religion or ideology such as Islam, whose foundational character Mohammed would not look out of place alongside Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin or Pol Pot, then we do have a problem.
When a person chooses to follow Mohammed, then it’s a pretty good indication that the person choosing to do so has a moral compass is wonky beyond repair. Choosing Mohammed shows the world that this individual has little or no respect for the rights of others and is liable to commit appalling acts of cruelty against them. We’ve seen this time and time again with converts to Islam. It seems there is a well established pattern of individuals suffering from mental illness or personality disorders, or people with a history of violent conduct, choosing Islam and then going on to commit terrorist atrocities or other crimes that can be linked to their adherence to the teachings of a 7th century thug, robber and paedophile called Mohammed.
Religious foundational characters and their conduct are important. It matters because the character of the individual who is said to play a foundational role in a religious belief system affects to a very large extent the character of the religion itself. Hence we have the situation where those who follow the teachings of Moses or the teachings of Jesus are, in the main, sane individuals who care about the world, who want to do good and who revere the concept of peace. On the other hand, those who choose Islam are either damaged individuals or thoroughly bad people. Those who choose to follow such a reprehensible figure as Mohammed should be mocked, sneered at, ostracised, ridiculed and indeed hated for their choice. Those who choose Mohammed are as dangerous to the rest of us and the security of our whole culture, as were those deluded British citizens who chose to align themselves with Oswald Mosley, Adolf Hitler or Josef Stalin in the 1930’s.
We would quite rightly condemn or exclude from general society those who had a sense of hero worship for those tyrants, who’ve led political movements that have exterminated millions upon millions of people. This because such people are recognised as being the worst of the worst that humanity can produce. Therefore those who choose to see these murderous tyrants as ‘good’, place themselves beyond the pale of decency.
The time has come for the rest of us, whether we have a peaceful religious belief or whether we have no religion at all, to see those who convert to Islam as what they truly are and that is as dangerous traitors to civilised humanity. Those who choose Islam have chosen to ally themselves with a character who had no redeeming features whatsoever. They should be made to pay heavily for their choice. Those who voluntarily have chosen to embrace Islam and all that it entails should be considered as enemies. These individuals have opted for the path of savagery over pleasantness, of violence over peace, of treachery over fealty and have opted to put themselves in a position where they should be subjected to extreme public opprobrium.
Although I try not to actively hate anybody without good reason, I cannot think of any genuine and logical reason why I should not hate those who freely choose Islam, when they should have rejected it both for their own sakes and for the sakes of the rest of us. Hating those who choose the hate filled ideology of Islam is no different to my mind than despising those who still worship Adolf Hitler or Josef Stalin. I consider those who do this to be individuals to be justifiably looked down upon or even passionately hated.
Who a person chooses to follow matters and those who choose to follow the evil impulse need to be condemned for their decision. Choosing to follow Mohammed is the prime example of a person who chooses evil over good. As the Biblical book of Isaiah says: ‘Woe to those who call good evil and evil good’ and Adrian Elms certainly seems to have done exactly that. This murdering savage is now thankfully dead. It’s only sad that this savage didn’t meet his justifiable demise before he murdered and maimed innocent people who didn’t deserve that end. May their memories be for a blessing and a wake-up call.