Islam: Female Circumcision and Honor Killings, Faith or Tradition?

Via Benjamin Riggs
on May 29, 2011
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In the video below, Mustafa Akyol looks at separation of genders, female circumcision, honor killings, and more and asks whether they are pre-existing traditions or tenets of faith in Islam. Mustafa Akyol has set the stage for an intelligent and necessary discussion, which I hope we are capable of executing right here on elephant journal.

Enjoy the video, and leave your comments below.

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About Benjamin Riggs

Ben Riggs is the author of Finding God in the Body: A Spiritual Path for the Modern West. He is also the director of the Refuge Meditation Group in Shreveport, LA and a teacher at Explore Yoga. Ben writes extensively about Buddhist and Christian spirituality on Elephant Journal, and his blog. Click here to listen to the Finding God in the Body Podcast. To keep up with all of his work follow him on Facebook or Twitter.


5 Responses to “Islam: Female Circumcision and Honor Killings, Faith or Tradition?”

  1. Latife says:

    I agree with Mustafa Akyol that Islam has to be reinterpretated. That the beauty of Islam is covered with the dust of symbolic traditions. On the other hand there always has been and there are still today Islamic philosophers that reveal the very core of the religion which is not very different from the teachings of Buddha. Rumi (the image next to Bin Laden) is a perfect example and a very wellknown philosopher for that subject. Unfortunately as we watch the video, towards the end we see that Mustafa Akyol has prefered to give his subjective and supportive ideas on today's Turkish politics which spoiled the very essence of his speech. As a Turkish woman with Muslim familial upbringing who is still in the search for the "Truth", I agree that the Arabic and regional social and political traditions are the reasons for such acts and not Islam or Quran itself. As within many spiritual teachings in Quran as well, personal enlightenment is suggested with personal research and effort. Not by memorizing the teachers or whatever religious authorities interpretations. The guide is Quran itself, the method is meditation in the form of prayers 5 times a day. As I am very convinced that there is only one truth, I think that all the spiritual teachings are pointing us the same direction. The best thing to do is to clean the core from all the traditions and I am not saying this only for Islam but for any spiritual or religious philosophies. And I am sure we will see that they are not so different from each other…

  2. Victornas says:

    Those who do not understand God and his wisdom by his rule and laws that benefited all human been, they call God laws is tradition of culture because they are ignorant about God. For example. When God said do not drink, his did not order that just for the sake of been the lord and his power without know the drink is bad for people. God said do not drink because he knows drink is bad and can bring evildoer to do the evil thing. And the same time God did not excluded that in the alcohol subsistent, they’re no benefits. He said alcohol is bad and good things, but it is evil more then it’s benefits. Same thing with other things like circumcise it is not a tradition.

  3. Aryan says:

    Basically, Islam ‘was’ good, in fact the best. But the masses have just diluted the content or rephrased or even changed the content of The Holy Koran. In fact, they’ve divided Koran-Shia and Sunni. Ultimately, it has led to misunderstandings about various concepts like jehad, hijab, kaafir and many more. The fundamentals, that were the best at one time, have been shaken thoroughly which leaves the evidence clear-how much progress’ve Islamic nations done in the past year. Conservativisim has replaced the initial Islamic values of peace, brotherhood and humanity…
    I just hope and pray for a good future of Islam as it’s my most admired religion.<3

  4. […] I am not a follower of Islam, I support the religion of our Islam sisters. I understand that what is happening in the Middle East in several countries is not a secular […]

  5. oogenhand says:

    Not just clitoridectomy and infibulation, but also male circumcision were present in Egyptian paganism. The mandatory headscarf and beard were present in Assyrian paganism. The pilgrimage in Mecca was present in Arabic paganism. If all these things are survivals from the original religion of Ibrahim(ra) or even Adam(ra), this begs the question, why did these pagans preserve the original religion better than e.g. the Christians, who are considered People of Book, while pagans aren't. Think of it. It can have eternal consequences.