In a new book called The Closing of the Muslim Mind, foreign policy expert Robert Reilly tells how the Islamic people made a very important decision in the 7th century when they came in contact with the Greeks, who believed that God endowed man with reason so man could know God and his moral order. Islam rejected this theology and instead adopted the belief that man is unable to determine what is right or wrong, and that actions are good or evil only because Allah deems them so. Islam believed that Allah can will whatever he wants and does not follow natural laws of cause and effect. For example, an apple does not fall from a tree as a result of gravity, but because Allah wills it. This theology, therefore, rejected scientific inquiry. As a result, no major invention or discovery has emerged from the Muslim world for more than seven centuries.
This peculiar rejection of cause and effect is reflected in Muslim behavior. Their military forces have a lackadaisical attitude toward weapon maintenance and sharp shooting because they believe human skills are inconsequential; if Allah wants the bullet to hit the target it will; if not, it won't. Even the use of seatbelts in cars is considered presumptuous; if Allah decides it is your time to die, then a seatbelt is useless; if he decides you will live, it is not necessary.
The author says that "It is no accident that the embraced view of a tyrannical god produces tyrannical political orders." Where reason is rejected, persuasion is only by violence. Islam lacks the foundations needed for democracy. The Middle East is poor and violent "because of a dysfunctional culture based upon a deformed theology. Unless it can be reformed at that level, ... the development of constitutional political [and economic] order will not succeed." The name of this book by Robert Reilly is The Closing of the Muslim Mind.
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