Rev John Bell of the Iona Community  
Monday, 13 December, 2010, 08:27 AM - Bible, Koran
Rating 5 out of 5 (Extraordinarily platitudinous)

If I tell you that all vegetarians are anti-Christian you'd think I was nuts.

If I tell you that anti-government protesters are anti-Christian, you'd still think I was nuts.

Well that's what Christian fundamentalists say. They take every word of the Big Book of Magic Stuff literally. Because Jesus ate meat and Saint Paul told us to obey authority, any authority, fundamentalists hate vegetarians and demonstrators.

But it's not just Christians who can be fundamentalists. Atheists can be fundamentalists too. Fundamentalist atheists follow every single word of their Big Book of Magic Stuff to the letter. I can respect this as an intellectual position that chooses not to think about things.

The fundamentalist Christian, Terry Jones, no, not that Terry Jones, this Terry Jones, is coming to Britain to give a peaceful message of hope and reconciliation to the English Defence League, that well known champion of tolerance and religious freedom.

Terry Jones is either a victim or a megalomaniac. I know this because I saw him on telly once.

His type of Christianity is the wrong type of Christianity. Do not listen to him, he's not a proper Christian at all. How dare he claim to speak for the Invisible Magic Friend. Real Christianity, true Christianity, my Christianity, doesn't go around burning the Koran. Nowhere in the Big Book of Magic Stuff does it say anything about burning the Koran (although I hasten to add that I'm not a fundamentalist, so there's no need to take the Big Book of Magic Stuff literally on this). In several places in the Big Book of Magic Stuff, the visible bit of the Invisible Magic friend is seen to talk to people of a completely different religion. That's right, he actually kept company with non-Jews. That's how liberal and tolerant and generally nice he was (although once again, just because the Big Book of Magic Stuff says so, there's no need to take it literally).

Beware of people making extravagant, outlandish claims in the name of Christianity. The Holy Spirit is not a private poltergeist but a revealer of public truth[*].

I just want to make it absolutely clear that Terry Jones, no not that Terry Jones, the other Terry Jones, is not a good Christian Pastor at all, even though he runs a church. He's really just a slimy politician who has actually got nothing to do with Christianity at all, even though he's not standing for any elected office.

[* Ed - I've no idea what this means, so I decided to quote it literally.]

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Mona Siddiqui, Professor of Islamic Studies and Public Understanding and Director of the Centre for the Study of Islam, University of Glasgow  
Friday, 10 September, 2010, 08:39 AM - Be nice, Koran, Siddiqui
Rating 3 out of 5 (Fairly platitudinous)

Last month I told you that honour killings are unislamic. Today, I want to inform you that rioting and killing over the potential burning of the Koran by a lone American nutcase, is also unislamic.

Rev Terry Jones (not to be confused with Terry Jones, who is not at all reverend), wants to burn Korans on the anniversary of 9/11. He thinks Islam is the religion of the Invisible Magic Baddy because it doesn't think Jesus is the Invisible Magic Friend. Well, Jesus is not the Invisible Magic Friend. He is not the messiah, he's a very naughty boy. The Koran was not written by the Invisible Magic Baddy, it was written by the Invisible Magic Friend.

So my message to those misguided Muslims who may be thinking about having a good old unislamic riot, is to remember that it's Eid, the end of Ramadan. Chill out. Relax. Pop along to the mosque to hear some soothing words from your friendly neighbourhood imam.

For some reason, Islam has got this reputation in the west, as a violent, intolerant, fanatical religion. I can't think why. So whatever you do, don't feed this irrational stereotype.

So have a really nice weekend, and remember, whatever you do, please, no rioting.

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Professor Mona Siddiqui, of the University of Glasgow  
Thursday, 3 September, 2009, 08:35 AM - Siddiqui, Environment, Koran
Rating 5 out of 5 (Extraordinarily platitudinous)

Ban Ki Moon flew to the Artic to see for himself the alarming rate at which the artic glaciers are melting.

"I'm alarmed at the rate the Artic glaciers are melting," he said.

Me? I'm not really all that bothered about climate change. It's only a theory after all and a controversial one at that. I mean there are so many more important things to be getting on with, like reading the Koran. This might sound ignorant, but the whole thing all sounds very scientific, with nothing really interesting spiritually. Planet Earth is just a very small part of what the Invisible Magic Friend has given us and isn't really as fascinating to me as trying to understand what the Invisible Magic Friend wants. Should we do something about it, or should we not bother? I don't know. I don't really care either way. As Professor of Islamic Studies and Public Understanding and Director of the Centre for the Study of Islam, University of Glasgow, let me just assure you that Global Warming was predicted by the Koran anyway, which means it's inevitable, so why worry? Reusing carriers bags is such a hassle. It's so much easier to just chuck them away and get some new ones.

Having said all that, the Invisible Magic Friend would probably get upset at us trashing His planet. So, however grudgingly, no matter how tediously practical it all is, I suppose we better not leave the taps running 24 x 7, or burn spotlights in our back garden all night.

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