Angola ‘bans’ Islam

Angola ‘bans’ Islam, Muslims, becomes first country to do so

source at:

English: Shaded relief map of Angola.
English: Shaded relief map of Angola. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m of two minds on this development. On the one hand, radical Islamists are an obvious danger to civilization. Their inflexible attitude toward other cultures and belief systems has them clashing, often violently, with non-Muslims.  Having said that, I hate to see free speech banned when “more” free speech seems to be the better response.

I suppose that the most chilling comment in the article was, “Not just Islam, many other faiths which have not been legalised will face closure of their houses of worship.” Who decides what religions are valid? Is Gnosticism valid? Wicca? Can you be a Jedi?

I believe that any change to radicalism must be made by the Muslims and I believe that they will.

“Yes I am, I am also a Muslim, a Christian, a Buddhist, and a Jew.”
― Mahatma Gandhi

Review: Understanding World Religions in 15 Minutes a Day

Understanding World Religions in 15 Minutes a Day:
Learn the basics of: Islam Buddhism Hinduism Mormonism Christianity And many more…
by Garry R. Morgan
Paperback: 176 pages
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (September 1, 2012)
ISBN-10: 0764210033
ISBN-13: 978-0764210037

(Barry’s score 4 stars out of 5 — link)

From the Back Cover

A Concise, Easy-to-Understand Overview of the World’s Religions

What religions are represented in your neighborhood, your workplace, and your children’s school? Things seem to be changing every day, and it can be hard to keep up. You may know a little about some of these religions. Others are new to you. You’d like to learn about them and how they differ from your beliefs, but who has time to do all the research?

In Understanding World Religions in 15 Minutes a Day, cross-cultural expert and professor Garry Morgan explains the key beliefs, histories, and practices of more than twenty religions, including the familiar–Christianity, Judaism, Mormonism–and some of the lesser known–Baha’i, Sikhism, and New Age religions. Broken into forty short readings, each chapter is engaging and easy to understand. In just minutes a day you’ll soon have a better understanding of the world’s beliefs.

My thoughts:

It’s been three decades since I had my “Religions of the World” course and my now 53 year-old brain struggles to pull up the various religions on command. The little gray cells need a kick-start and a brief reminder is all that it needed to get the ball, or in my case, brain rolling.

Symbol of the major religions of the world: Ju...
Symbol of the major religions of the world: Judaism, Christianity, Taoism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In Understanding World Religions in 15 Minutes a Day, Morgan covers a religion in about 4 pages to a chapter. Some religions have multiple chapters, Islam has six chapters and Christianity has five. I really liked that Secular Humanism was included as a religion. I imagine that a few professors’ heads exploded reading that!

All in all, I think that Morgan has put together an instructive book covering the broader aspects of the world’s religions. It should make for a solid introduction for those wanting to learn the basics or in my case a quick refresher course. I give Understanding World Religions in 15 Minutes a Day 4 stars out of 5 and I recommend it.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Saudi man beheaded for witchcraft


Mareeh bin Ali bin Issa al-Asiri was executed (murdered) because he had, “books and talismans from which he learnt to harm God’s worshippers”. If the price for esoteric books is death, I’m screwed. In addition to sorcery Mareeh had admitted to adultery with two women. I wouldn’t last long in Saudi Arabia.

This isn’t to be confused with the over 20 elderly people murdered in Mozambique for witchcraft in 2011 (source).

And man, whose heav’n-erected face
The smiles of love adorn, –
Man’s inhumanity to man
Makes countless thousands mourn!

—- Robert Burns

Militants bomb ancient shrine in NW Pakistan – The China Post

PESHAWAR, Pakistan — A bomb exploded at the mausoleum of a 17th century Sufi poet in northwestern Pakistan on Thursday, showing the gulf between hard-line Muslims and many in the region who follow a traditional, mystical brand of Islam. A letter delivered to the management of the mausoleum of Sufi poet Rehman Baba on the outskirts of Peshawar warned against its perpetration of “shrine culture” three days before the attack, said Sahibzada Mohammad Anees, a top government official in the city. The letter also noted that women were coming to pray at the shrine, he said.

Many Pakistanis like to pray at the tombs of mystics and holy men, something opposed by hard-line Muslims because they believe it is un Islamic. The extremists also believe Islam prohibits men and women from mingling unless they are husband and wife or close relatives.

via Militants bomb ancient shrine in NW Pakistan – The China Post.

Such have your sorrows overpowered me,
That I’ve lost every place in and out.My sobs have rendered people restless,
Like fire of a burning dry wood engulfing the moistured.In your pain, I’m weeping like a candle,
But you are smiling at me like a bright morn.

My heart’s hanging in your path,
Like your black hair dangling in front of your face.

Tis’ a norm for all the sorrows to be crushed under your feet,
When you are burdened with that single grief.

They come towards you, leaving me behind,
All those who advisingly forbade me from your path.

Such is the effect of yours over the face of Rehman,
Like a flame of fire over a thinly dry stalk.

Rehman Baba

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