Some freedoms must be defended


I don’t like the Pope. I think he is creepy looking.

But the current controversy over his speech at the University of Regensburg are not only over-blown, but unfair. There are definitely elements at work to politicized a clearly non-issue.

Read the full speech here. (Translated into English)

These are some bad parts, but hardly Death-threat-worthy material.

The Pope merely used the attributed quote to kickstart a conversation that has very little to do with Islam, the role of Greek thought in Christianity.

There are a few passages there that might stand to criticism, like:

“The vision of Saint Paul, who saw the roads to Asia barred and in a dream saw a Macedonian man plead with him: Come over to Macedonia and help us! (cf. Acts 16:6-10)– this vision can be interpreted as a distillation of the intrinsic necessity of a rapprochement between Biblical faith and Greek inquiry.”

or,

“… this convergence [between Greek philosophy and Bibical faith], with the subsequent addition of the Roman heritage, created Europe and remains the foundation of what can rightly be called Europe.”

At least these two statement can be CONSTRUED to be against non-Christians, non-Europeans.

I also read somewhere that the Pope was wrong about the Surah [2:256]. It is not “one of the suras of the early period, when Mohammed was still powerless and under threat,” but written (according to scholars) when he was in Medina (and in full control of that city.)

There is also a claim floating around that the Pope was wrong about where the conversation between the Emperor and the Learned Persian took place. It should be Anakara and only some years later was it put to paper in Constanople.

I cannot substaniated these two facts. Just something I read.

Also, for a VERY VERY good (but not totally unbiased) treatment, read this.

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