Jesus ‘n’ Mo ‘n’ apologetics

April 25, 2018 • 9:30 am

The new Jesus and Mo strip, called “rid”, came with a cryptic phrase: “Like Brighton through rock.” I know Brighton Rock is a stick candy, but I’m not quite sure how it refers to this cartoon, in which Mo unapologetically admits to the nature of Islamic scripture, but then maintains it anyway. In fact, the whole cartoon doesn’t make sense to me, as those who defend the Qur’an don’t usually apologize for its contents, or admit that it’s bigoted.

Christians have another tactic: they just ignore the bad bits of the Bible.

22 thoughts on “Jesus ‘n’ Mo ‘n’ apologetics

  1. I know Brighton Rock is a stick candy, but I’m not quite sure how it refers to this cartoon, …,/blockquote>

    The wording “Brighton” continues all the way down the stick, so can’t be licked off. It’s suggesting that the harmful aspects of Islam are indelibly integral to Islam.

        1. 3D sugar printer these days!

          They used to have a similar expression: “dyed in the grain”
          grain (or grayne?) was a quality red dye which wouldn’t wash out, so it came to mean “will not change” or having rigid views (often political).

  2. Christians have another tactic: they just ignore the bad bits of the Bible.

    William Lane Craig gets more creative than that, at least when not allowed to ignore genocide. It can be amusing, if hardly reassuring, to hear of how wonderful atrocities commanded by God are.

    Glen Davidson

  3. My guess is that there is also reference to the problems inherent in religions which refer to some ancient book as their revealed teachings. Time and society move on but each religion is pretty much stuck with whatever the books says. There is a little leeway to be exploited by church leaders’ reinterpretation of the sacred texts but their books will be increasingly irrelevant to modern society and its ways of talking, writing, and thinking. Too bad! LOL

  4. I also see a possible reference here to the current problems in the Labour Party, where the leader, Jeremy Corbyn, has just admitted that there are some problems with anti-Semitism in the Party (side-stepping the fact that he is the main culprit) and talking the talk, but really doing nothing about it.

  5. I think the ‘toon is saying that there are many Muslims who must recognize the moral contradiction in the Koran, they have generally not done anything about it. There are a few reformers, such as Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Maajid Nawaz, but they are a minute minority.

  6. I think the toon is saying, religion is really bad, but it’s all we have. Too bad.

    By the way, I am just watching the speech by French president Macron to the U.S. congress. It is worth a look and all I can say is – Why can’t we get this guy for our leader?

  7. I think this is aimed at the “moderate” practitioners of Islam, who say the things that Mo is saying in the second panel, and yet usually end up doing nothing about it.

  8. It’s sometimes said that the Q’ran is the final word so no revision is possible–we are stuck with it in its most horrible form–like the woird “Brighton” runs right through a stick of rock no matter how you suck on it.
    (e.g. “O you who have been given the Scripture! Believe in what We have revealed confirming what is (already) with you…”Qur’an 4:47)
    Now–I’ve only read it in translation (at least I’ve read it–most muslims haven’t) but there doesnt seem to me that there’s anything beyond the reach of a half-way decent logic chopper. And we’ve got dozens of them (Karen Armstrong springs to mind, and Alvin Plantinga could probably find a use for his brain here as well)
    Instead of talking crap about Christianity (because–who cares, frankly?) they could talk crap about Islam–sketch out how this or that sunna is really about peace/inner struggle or some such. It could be a renaissance (ho ho!) for theology and give modern believers somewhere intellectually/emotionally credible (I mean in their own heads) to go for a generation or two while the whole thing dies out. There are some signs of this happening already, e.g.

  9. Islam overtly teaches that if the Koran seems to contradict itself anything chronologically later supercedes what is earlier. However, I’m not sure if the more bellicose sections are in earlier or later parts of the text. The only school of thought to overtly advocate a non-literal reading of it is Sufi Islam.

    Christians have the slight advantage of most of the bad bits of the Bible being in the Old Testament (and most of those being the parts by the J writer- one of 4 authors who contributed to the 1st 7 or so books of the OT). However, the NT apocalyptic sections remain troubling.

    Christians also have draconian beliefs about original sin and atonement which puts their own testament in a bad light, but these beliefs are not held by Eastern Orthodox Christians and are not straightforwardly taught in the New Testament. (I disagree on this point with Richard Dawkins who in The God Delusion holds the New Testament is no better because of Western notions of sin and atonement.)

    1. The more bellicose verses tend, unfortunately, to be the later ones — i.e. the ones when Muhammad was in a more powerful position (after his return to Mecca) and so could afford to be more uncompromising.

    2. The most developed form of the doctrine of original sin is indeed found in the New Testament, in Paul’s letters, especially the Letter to the Romans.

    1. Well Greene chose his title (and setting) precisely because the lettered rock candy was already famous. The candy came first, the novel was named after it.

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