On this Friday, a.k.a. Jumua, the Muslim day of congregational prayer, let’s all pray for the three-day Judeo-Christian-Islamic weekend! And let’s talk about religion, 9/11 truth, and whatever else our mothers told us never to bring up in polite company.
First hour: Davidson Loehr, Ph.D., Philosophy of Religion, University of Chicago; author, America, Fascism, and God: Sermons from a Heretical Preacher; witch-hunted Unitarian minister. Immediately after 9/11, Davidson Loehr delivered a sermon later published in his book, about which rock star poet Patti Smith writes: “The gut-wrenching honesty made me like Loehr instantly.” His later 9/11 truth sermons also displayed Loehr’s trademark gut-wrenching honesty, but his Board of Directors at Austin’s biggest Unitarian Church didn’t find them so likable. Personally, I think Patti “At heart I am a Muslim, at heart I am an American artist and I have no guilt” Smith has impeccable taste.
Second hour: Anab Whitehouse, Ph.D., University of Toronto. Anab Whitehouse, in my opinion, is one of America’s most interesting Muslim political thinkers. He is the author of more than ten books including The Essence of September 11th, one of the best and most underrated books on the topic.
Anab writes: “I really believe that the problems faced by the Muslim world are exactly the same as those faced by the American people — namely, what is the relationship of the individual to government/community … and vice versa? Irrespective of who or what is behind the uprisings — both large and small — taking place, or which have taken place, in Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Bahrain, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and Pakistan (and I believe that a good case can be made for the clandestine and not so clandestine role of the United States government as an instigator in all of the foregoing “spontaneous” conflicts), the issue is not necessarily what is causing the uprisings (although this is an important issue) but, rather, the issue is one which existed long before such uprisings began — what is a proper relationship between government/community and the individual? “Issues of: freedom, rights, sovereignty, democracy, justice, constitutionality, economics, banks, debt, representative government, the rule of law, balance of power, purpose, duties of care, public policy, education, power, and so on are caught up in the foregoing question — and this is true irrespective of whether one is talking about the Muslim world or the West.”