CultureWatch

Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

What We Must Know About Islam

Nov 6, 2006

Even though not a day goes by without some media report about Islam being aired, most Westerners know very little about the world’s second largest religion. What is of concern is that so many Westerners are really quite naïve about

Continue reading...

Islam and Women

Nov 2, 2006

Much has been written and spoken about the recent comments by the imam of the Lakemba Mosque in Sydney, Sheik Taj el-Din al Hilaly. Fortunately, many Muslims sought to distance themselves from the remarks, arguing that women are treated with

Continue reading...

Religious Demographics

Oct 30, 2006

While certain religions are growing in some parts of the world, they are in decline in other parts. But the decline of one religion is often met by the rise of another.

Consider the Christian faith. As Philip Jenkins wrote

Continue reading...

Stay on Course in Iraq

Oct 27, 2006

It is hard to know what is really going on in Iraq. Much of the media gives us a fairly slanted view, highlighting the carnage and bloodshed. One hardly ever hears of what good things might be happening there. Thus

Continue reading...

Free Speech and the Free West

Oct 16, 2006

Freedom of speech has never been absolute. Crying ‘fire’ in a crowded theatre, we are rightly told, is just not on. So there is often a balancing act going on in democracies. But freedom of speech is a hallmark of

Continue reading...

Freedom and Servitude in Islam

Oct 11, 2006

When Muslim leaders speak about freedom, they have a very different concept in mind than does the Western world. Freedom for a Muslim is complete and unquestioning servitude to Allah. It allows no rival and tolerates no lack of conformity

Continue reading...

Exporting Democracy and the Case of Iraq

Oct 4, 2006

Detractors of the war in Iraq say we have been bogged down in another Vietnam and we have simply made matters worse. Critics cite the escalating violence and bloodshed, and say things were better under Saddam. They imply that a

Continue reading...

Will Appeasement Save the Church?

Sep 24, 2006

There is a place for religious dialogue. There is a limited place for interfaith discussion. All religionists should be treated with respect, and religious freedom and freedom of conscience must be championed. Having said that, not all religions are equal,

Continue reading...

Islam vs. Christianity

Sep 24, 2006

“All religions are basically the same.” That mantra is often heard from the secular media and our ruling elites. For those who know little about religion, the phrase sounds sensible enough. But for anyone who has actually taken the time

Continue reading...

Why the Pope Was Right

Sep 20, 2006

An editorial in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal (September 19, 2006) nicely makes the case for why the remarks recently uttered by the pope were needed. Entitled, “Benedict the Brave,” it laments what has now become a routine spectacle: “furious demands

Continue reading...

Right and Wrong Interfaith Dialogue

Sep 19, 2006

Most attempts at interfaith dialogue are doomed from the start, as they play down real differences between religions, and appeal to a lowest common denominator. As any serious student of the world’s major religions will attest, there exist very big

Continue reading...

Abbott on Islam

Sep 18, 2006

On Friday night Federal Health Minister Tony Abbott delivered an incisive talk on Islam and the war on terror. An edited version of the talk appears in today’s Australian (September 18, 2006). In the article, “Ask the hard questions,” he

Continue reading...

Academia and 9/11

Sep 15, 2006

How have the universities grappled with the tragic events of 9/11? Have they learned anything? Have they had a change of heart? Have they given up on some of their radical ways? Not according to Harvey Mansfield. He should know.

Continue reading...

Another Take on 9/11

Sep 15, 2006

With the fifth anniversary of the 9/11 calamity, there have been quite a few opinion pieces and commentaries on that fateful day in 2001. This is another piece, as found in the American Spectator, September 13, 2006. David Hogberg

Continue reading...

How to Think About 9/11

Sep 15, 2006

It isn’t often that Australia takes the lead over America. But in the case of a controversial documentary, Australia has led the way.

Many of you would have watched the 2-part docudrama this past Sunday and Monday evening, entitled “The

Continue reading...

Being a Christian in Indonesia

Sep 7, 2006

Indonesia is Australia’s nearest, largest neighbour. It is also the world’s largest Islamic nation. Amongst the 240 million people, around 85 per cent are Muslim. There is a Christian minority in the country, but its existence is perilous at the

Continue reading...

Coming to Terms With Evil

Sep 6, 2006

How does the secular left deal with evil? Well, it has great difficulty in even recognising evil, argues Jewish commentator and radio host, Dennis Prager. In a new article in Citizen Magazine (September 2006) he argues that while a horrendous

Continue reading...

Why We Are Fighting

Aug 30, 2006

In the war against terror it is always worth remembering what is at stake. Why is the free West engaged in this struggle, and just who or what is the enemy? Jewish commentator and radio host Dennis Prager seeks to

Continue reading...

Just Convert, or Die

Aug 29, 2006

North American commentator Mark Steyn, who was recently in Australia, has just penned an opinion piece on the release of the two hostages taken prisoner in Gaza. Entitled “Achilles’ Heel,” the article appeared in the New York Sun (August 28,

Continue reading...