A Hindu on Islam

A reader writes:

"I am so tired of Muslims of blaming 'culture' not the 'religion' for any trouble inside Muslim countries. If you need an example of the falsehood of that statement - look at India and Pakistan. The people are ethnically identical, speak the same languages and eat the same foods. (In fact they were the same country until Muslims demanded they get their own country).

Today Pakistan is a military dictatorship and has been for most of its 50 plus year life. Its only claims to fame are killing journalists, operating jihadi camps, beating up women who try to run marathons, possessing nuclear weapons and blowing up the local KFC to prove that Islam is not violent. India on the other hand is a striving (albeit Third World) democracy that is home to Gandhi, yoga, computer programmers, hugging saints, doctors and spelling bee enthusiasts.  Thus once again demonstrating that it isn't the 'culture' but the 'religion' that is truly incompatible with the modern world.

In fact, it's sad to say this but in the eyes of many Hindus, myself included, September 11th is just another horrific example of the 1400 years that Islam has been fighting 'the other'. We don't view it as some sort of perversion of Islam but rather the way it has been since its birth. I'm also tired of liberals blaming marginalization in Europe and Britain for everything. That is just rubbish. Hindus in Europe are the same colour as their Muslim counterparts and therefore would face the same discrimination and barriers but choose to direct their energy to better education and assimilating into the culture. Not to building better bombs."

I am not going to second-guess this reader's experience. But I would say that, from what I know, Islam is not monolithic and has many strains and sub-varieties that will inevitably affect its capacity to adapt to modernity. I can also think of two predominantly Muslim countries that don't support this argument: Indonesia and Malaysia. But that Islam does indeed have a problem I'm afraid I no longer doubt. "Problem" may even be too euphemistic a word. Pathology in some places is more appropriate.