Anglican Samizdat

January 5, 2010

Islam and homosexuality

Filed under: Anglican Angst,homosexuality,Islam — David Jenkins @ 9:59 am
Tags: ,

From the National Post:

EDMONTON — Junaid Bin Jahangir was such a devout Muslim that when he arrived in Canada he ate only yogurt for two days until he was sure which food followed halal dietary rules.

The university student prayed five times a day, and joined a local mosque.

Then one day, at age 27, he started to wonder why he had never been with a girl. “Why don’t I like women that way?” he asked, and it led him to a counselling office, where he sat, sobbing, with the realization that he was gay — a pariah to his community.

Mainstream Islamic leaders say gay men should be shunned and some around the world are killed each year.

Mr. Jahangir’s world imploded; work on his PhD ground to a halt.

But out of that despair, Mr. Jahangir began to work on another project: Understanding the teachings of Islam on homosexuality. From his office at the University of Alberta, he contacted experts, read everything he could on the subject and studied the scriptures intensely for two years, rebuilding his own identity in the process. His work is starting to be recognized internationally.

Now he argues Muslims misinterpret the Qur’an if they consider the ban on homosexuality to be as firm as bans on alcohol or pork. The common story from which most Muslims draw their teaching is about violent homosexual rape, he says, and it’s time to rethink the possibility of consensual, supportive relationships.

It is instructive to note that the same argument employed by liberal Christians to justify homosexual activity is drifting into Islam.

The comparison even extends to elevating trivial food regulations – eating pork – over matters of sexual ethics; an Anglican example of this is to forbid intinction while smiling benignly on consensual, supportive sodomy – something Ralph Spence did when bishop of Niagara.


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