Moe, 49, wears a mint-green hijab and is the director of Alnor. She is a patient woman, knowing that it takes some time for outsiders, for non-Muslims, to understand the dilemma facing the faithful of Tromsø.
On the one hand, there are the health concerns. "Nobody should fast for more than 20 hours a day for 29 days," she says. "Ramadan isn’t just for the strong among us, rather it is for all Muslims."
But there are also religious concerns. "Despite our extreme situation, we can’t just make up our own rules." She expresses both points of view as though she is speaking about incontrovertible laws.
In Islam, those who do a good deed which is then furthered by others, rather than merely being gratefully received, will be rewarded doubly in the afterlife. The same holds true for bad deeds, with the originator being punished doubly if others follow him. That is what Moe and the Muslims of Tromsø are afraid of […]
As the Ramadan nights got shorter year after year — and the thirst correspondingly greater during the day — the uncertainty drove Tromsø Muslims to seek out Dr. Abdullah Bin Abd al-Asis al-Muslih. The Saudi sheikh has never been to northern Norway, but he is a highly respected Muslim scholar whose word carries authority. His resume shows that he is the general director of a body that focuses on the Koran’s relationship to science and research. Indeed, it isn’t just the Catholic Church that must address the conflict between science and miracles.
The bikini – unabashed celebrant of the female form, cornerstone of global beauty pageants in the modern era and proud cultural legacy of the 1951 Festival of Britain – is to be stripped from this year’s Miss World contest in Indonesia.
The shattering decision, which has been under discussion for some months, is a response to fears that the most traditional element of the competition could enrage the most traditionalist elements of Indonesia’s Muslim community.
Where normally the Miss World finalists would parade in minimalist attire, they will now contest the beachwear section wearing more conservative one-piece costumes and Balinese sarongs
Yes, no more objectification of women. Now fat women may apply to beauty contests.
Who’s ready for the world famous and highly anticipated one-piece, conservative beach sarong competition? I can imagine a scenario in which a Western contestant, keen on the kind of nose-thumbing at stuffy cultural norms that lifted the dreary “Little Miss Sunshine” to Oscar commendations and would lift her to viral video fame, rips off her sarong to reveal—gasp!—a shocking two-piece swimsuit
Clerics of the Indonesian Council of Ulema, or MUI, said they would send a letter to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to demand that the beauty pageant be canceled.
"That contest is just an excuse to show women’s body parts that should remain covered," said Mukri Aji, a prominent cleric from West Java province’s MUI branch. "It’s against Islamic teachings."
Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia, a hardline Islamic group, said it planned to stage a protest and called for the competition to be moved elsewhere.
We do agree. If a country does not accept the rules of the contest, it should not cripple the contest but rather not stage it.
What is next? Non-violent boxing world championships in pacifist countries? Shooting championship without bullets? Saudi Arabia prohibits dancing (watch the video at the end of this post)
Nobody pities the poor girls? Watch the following video: the candidates worked out hard, for years, to have a great body. And then, in the Miss World Finals, they might as well gain 10 pounds, as it will not make any difference. Of course, radical feminists will applaud.
Most Muslims in Indonesia, a secular country of 240 million people, are moderate, but a small extremist fringe has become more vocal in recent years.
They have pushed through controversial laws — including an anti-pornography bill — and have been known to attack anything perceived as blasphemous, from transvestites and bars to "deviant" religious sects.
Lady Gaga was forced to cancel her sold-out concert in Indonesia in May following threats by Islamic hard-liners, who called her a "devil worshipper." Jennifer Lopez toned down her sexy outfits and dance moves during a show in Jakarta last December.
Westerners ought not feel superior. In the USA, in Europe, religion dominates laws on abortion, right to die, prostitution, pornography and often even shop opening hours on holy Sunday. Everywhere, religion interferes with the freedom of all citizens, be they religious or not.
One hundred thirty-seven women set to compete in this year’s Miss World beauty pageant in Indonesia reportedly won’t wear bikinis because organizers don’t want to offend locals in the Muslim-majority country. […]
“I don’t want to upset or get anyone in a situation where we are being disrespectful,” Miss World Organization chairwoman Julia Morley told the site.
The future of dance contests in Saudi Arabia (where dance is prohibited)
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If life starts truly starts at Conception, then God is, the world’s most prolific abortionist. Most fertilized eggs get washed away without ever implanting in the uterus.     Many of the ova that do implant abort spontaneously very early in pregnancy. This scientific truth remained unknown to the public.
Why do bioconservatives like Robert George not advocate the rescue of naturally conceived unimplanted embryos? They are live human beings with a soul.
"If the embryo loss that accompanies natural procreation were the moral equivalent of infant death, then pregnancy would have to be regarded as a public health crisis of epidemic proportions: Alleviating natural embryo loss would be a more urgent moral cause than abortion, in vitro fertilization, and stem-cell research combined," declared Michael Sandel, a Harvard University government professor, also a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics.
“The policy of a Romney administration is to oppose abortion with exceptions for rape, incest and life of the mother,” . So rape or incest justify murder of an innocent child? Up to what age?
If fire breaks out in a fertility clinic, would you save a 2 year old child, or save 10 lives in a petri dish with 10 fertilized blastocysts? 
Wikipedia shows many other options to define as the beginning of life. We are showing that the popular concept of "conception is the beginning of life" causes extreme logical problems: over half of all life never gets born, due to natural causes.
So other definitions need to be found (Wikipedia).
Late term abortions, of course, lead down a slippery slope until Peter Singer‘s philosophy that provides logical argument why "abortion" should be allowed into the first month after birth. We will not discuss this further, rather we will return to the absurdity of "conception at birth", defended by most US politicians of both parties.
Current estimates say that 60-80% of fertilized eggs probably fail to implant and then another 15-20% of the fertilized eggs that do implant spontaneously abort. So… that gives us a 34%-16% survival rate for fertilized eggs or to flip it around God murders between 66% and 84% of all babies. Why if God is opposed to abortions does he kill so many babies?
Sucking an infant’s bleeding penis, after first cutting off his foreskin without anesthesia. Torture abuse of a sexual organ. An old man performing a satanic torture sexual abuse rite. Not traumatic for the baby?? Not a crime!
A satanic torture sexual abuse rite?
An infant gets viciously tortured by removing a part of his sexual organ. No medical necessity. Worse, no anesthesia! How cruel!
An old man puts the infant boy’s injured penis into his mouth to suck the penis, to suck out blood
By conventional wisdom, sucking the penis of an infant is a heinous crime that will scar and traumatize the infant for life 12. Even if it is done tenderly and painlessly. By today’s laws, anyone who sucks an infant’s penis (or vagina), even if it were the father or the mother, would be punished as harsh as a murderer and labeled an "infant rapist".
I don’t see concerns about the trauma to a defenseless baby who gets physically hurt and injured in cruel ways, without anesthesia. And then painfully gets the penis sucked. See Circumcision study halted due to trauma
A few states, in a desperate attempt to create obstacles, require ultrasound before abortion. Not for safety, but to show women their fetus, with a heart beating and little arms and feet, to make women feel bad about killing such a little thing, even if it still has no functioning brain or capacity to feel pain. On the other hand, the same conservatives try to shield the agricultural industry, so that unconscious consumers of eggs, or hamburgers, have no awareness of the cruelty towards feeling adult animals involved in the creation of the meal. No pictures of sick caged hens on supermarket egg cartons!
A few US states, in a desperate attempt to create obstacles, require ultrasound before abortion. Not for safety, but to show women their fetus, with a heart beating and little arms and feet. To make women feel bad about killing such a little thing, even if it still has no functioning brain, no capacity to feel pain, no conscious will to live.
On the other hand, the same conservatives try to shield the agricultural industry, so that unconscious consumers of eggs, or hamburgers, have no awareness of the cruelty towards feeling adult animals involved in the creation of the meal. No pictures of sick caged hens on supermarket egg cartons or of movies of slaughterhouses at the butcher’s!
The new ultrasound law not only requires the medical procedure, but also requires that women know they have the option to hear a description of what is seen in the ultrasound, to receive a photograph of the ultrasound image and to view the ultrasound.
There is no exception for victims of rape or incest.
The lawsuit argues the ultrasound requirement is “unconstitutionally vague” because it doesn’t explain whether a person performing the ultrasound exam must try to force the woman to accept the envelope containing the photograph. The lawsuit also says it could violate a patient’s right to confidentiality by “exposing their private information to the risk of delivery by third parties.”
During legislative debate, supporters of the new law said they hoped the ultrasounds could dissuade women from getting an abortion by having to learn more about their pregnancies. Opponents said requiring a procedure that might not be available at a free clinic nearby will make it more difficult and costly for women to get
The Center for Reproductive Rights has challenged similar ultrasound laws in other states.
Normally, human-stupidity is in favor of increasing consciousness. Though, this is more about emotional sentimentailsm then about intellectual awareness. We also agree with abortion foes, in that i t would be better if abortions could be avoided. If not by abstinence then responsible sexuality with diligent use of birth control. We think these abortion ultrasound movies should be shown BEFORE women have unprotected sex that gets them pregnant in the first place. Of course, consciousness raising would also require showing movies about the hardship of unwed pregnancies and child rearing.
Now, interestingly, the same conservatives who want to increase women’s consciousness about their fetuses and their abortions, often decry birth control education in school sex ed.
The anti-abortion conservatives also normally back up the meat industry who actively hides their cruel activities from the general populace. The average meat eater would be appalled and turn vegetarian if he were constantly reminded of all the cruelty in industrial caged animal raising and slaughtering. Peter Singer, and many TV stations were consistently denied access to filming US industrial animal farming enterprises.
The more enlightened Christian readers have themselves now recognized that their Church’s preoccupation with sex has been a mistake: Dr George Carey, Archbishop of Canterbury, has admitted that the church has been guilty of ‘being caught up with the idea that sexual sins were “more significant” then other sins’ and has said that instead we should think more in terms of global problems such as world poverty. […] ethics has no necessary connection with the sexually-obsessed morality of conservative Christianity Peter Singer “How Are We to Live?”
World poverty, corporative greed, dishonesty of politics, culture of violence, school yard bullying. So many real problems require ethics and morality. Real violence, real damage to society and economy caused by moral failures.
But religions obsess with issues like birth control, abortion: “saving” human life of small clusters of cells, while thousands of really alive and breathing humans starve or get killed in wars. Religions cause suffering by prohibiting stem cell research, mandating that embryos can be discarded to waste but can not be used for life saving medical research. Our laws interfere with birth control and HIV prevention. 20 year jail sentences for consensual sex with adolescents or mere possession of nude photos.
There is a reason for this religious obsession with sex. Our holy books, are all around 2000 years old and were not updated.
Sexuality and baby-making were inseparable 2000 years ago
But nowadays, we have birth control. Sexuality is not identical to child production any more. Paternity can be verified with DNA tests and does not require virginity enforced by draconian punishments.
It is funny, though, how churches extrapolate their teachings unto issues that are not covered by the Bible: areas like stem cells, birth control pill, etc. It is also interesting how churches influence politics and legal codes, in countries that have clear separation of church and state.
New ethics and morality are needed.
Merely abandoning religious ethics can lead to crime, greed, moral disorientation. We can observe this in politics, youth violence, obesity, nutrition, corporate (lack of) ethics, general moral disorientation of large parts of the population.Morality & Ethics without God: Peter Singer’s Utilitarianism
Very good overview of Peter Singer’s ethics. Just listen to the audio, the video is not interesting. This is not a single video but a set of videos.
Peter Albert David Singer (born 6 July 1946) is an Australian philosopher. He is the Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University, and laureate professor at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics (CAPPE), University of Melbourne. He specialises in applied ethics, approaching ethical issues from a secular preference utilitarian perspective. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Singer
Singer is the greatest contemporary exponent of utilitarianism, the doctrine that actions should aim to maximise the greatest happiness for the greatest number of individuals. Given that our every action has consequences for this end, we are truly immersed in morality.
Peter Singer’s utilitarian philosophy is an alternative to stupidity derived from religious beliefs. Where Richard Dawkins just vaguely surmises about morality without religion, Peter Singer devotes his life to the intricacies of such a morality. As I have stated, the rules from holy books like Bible or Koran were very sensible at the time they were written. But they need overhaul. And, preferably, without resorting to God or Prophets. Peter Singer can come to the rescue.
Dinesh de Souza made the great compliment: Singer’s ethics is what you arrive at with logic and without God: “Peter Singer represents the sharpest, deepest, certainly the most lucid, the most consistent in arguing out the premises and the implications of atheism”.
(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Phgb67NAaHA is part 1 of a 12 (!) part discussion with Peter Singer. Very interesting to see in its entirety. In part 1 Dinesh gives a fairly good but hostile description of Peter Singer’s philosophy)
And now Geert Wilders is risking jail for comparing Muslims to Hitler and the Koran to “Mein Kampf”. Now that I write this I understand the analogy. His court case is a living example how Muslims march through the institutions, taking advantage of a weak and toothless democracy to gain anti-democratic dictatorial powers.
First Video: Muslims openly calling for Geert Wilders’ death. Later movies: Geert Wilders speeches. Now who should be in court facing a jail sentence?
In a clear case against free speech, Member of Parliamaent and member of Dutch government is being prosecuted by over-zealous judges – against the express will of the prosecution. In liberal Holland a leader of the 3rd largest party can not speek freely without risking jail, against the religious and political movement that is threatening his life. Imagine where the freedom of the average European is heading!
Political correctness is prohibiting offenses to Islam, like in
Koran burning (Fatwas ordering murder, embassy burning etc ara much lesser crimes)
caricatures of the prophet (they justify murder, riots, …)
the example of Wim Wenders. (he is constantly threatened with murder but he, the victim, risks jail for speaking against the murders’ culture)
Political correctness is also prohibiting research and scientific arguments about race and intelligence
Discussing unpleasant truths is dangerous, gets prosecuted in many countries. Discussing muslim religion is so dangerous that even human-stupidity.com avoids to discuss muslim religion. this is a very rare exception.
The focus here is not analysis of muslim terrorism and religion, but freedom of speech for an articulate and quite moderate politician (listen to muslim preachers to see how moderate Geert Wilders is)
The human stupidity in all the above cases is:
pretending to be open-minded, liberal, scientific, and at the same time repress free speech, repress the truth (or at least potential truth).
Genetically Defective Embryos’ Right to Live: “There can be no selection between handicapped and non-handicapped life”
This is the opinion of the Christian government of the state of Bavaria and of a stong minority of the government of Germany. Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis of embryos to be implanted into women in fertility treatment should be outlawed.
Even though preventable, without abortion, and without having less offspring, women should be obliged bear defective children. These children will have a life of suffering, make their family suffer and be a burden to society. By simple pre-implantation genetic testing all this suffering could be avoided and instead a happy productive child could be born.
Religion prefers genetically damaged children to healthy children
I think only the twisted mind of religion could come up with such a perverted idea of how to create suffering on this earth. All this in the name of the rights of defective embryos! But, instead, a healthy embryo, already available, and ready to be implanted, will be discarded and distroyed.
German Government Divided over Calls for Embryo Protection
Artificial insemination: Politicians want new legislation to ban genetic testing of embryos.
Maria Böhmer of the CDU, a senior official in Merkel’s Chancellery, is also calling for a rapid ban on PGDs. “There can be no selection between handicapped and non-handicapped life,” Böhmer said. The politician argued that it would be impossible to place limits on the selection of traits once doctors were permitted to do PGD tests.
Following a federal court decision that would allow pre-implantation genetic diagnosis procedures in Germany, a number of conservative politicians are calling for a tightening of German law to ensure that “selection” of embryos cannot take place.
A growing number of conservative politician in Germany are rallying for a swift prohibition on genetic testing of embryos produced via artificial insemination prior to implantation in a mother’s womb. The politicians with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and its Bavarian sister party, the Christian Social Union (CSU), are reacting to a ruling last Tuesday by the Federal Court of Justice that such procedures were not in violation of the country’s Embryo Protection Law.
“We need a swift change in the law to make clear that pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) does not lead to selection,” said Markus Söder, the health minister for the state of Bavaria. Söder, a member of the CSU, said he had sympathy for future parents who would want to do this, but that it was unacceptable that embryos could be destroyed through PGD procedures.