But what makes Islamic violence unique are its origins and purpose. Where it comes from, to whom it is directed, and how it is justified cannot merely be ignored or dismissed. In an Islamic context, the use of violence against another is rooted in the Islamic understanding of the person. Per Islamic theology, man is a mere creation, made not in the image of God, but as a mere animal. His humanity is believed to be an extrinsic quality that is bestowed upon him with his creation, but is not a permanent part of him. Rather, it is the Islamic belief that to be a human is to be a Muslim in good standing.
As far as non-Muslims are concerned, Islam regards them as men and women who by their own will have mutilated themselves by rejecting Islam. It is therefore permitted to kill these unbelievers on account of their non-belief. In the case of children, the teaching of Islam is that since they did not have a “choice” in their “apostasy,” they may legitimately be taken from their families and forcibly converted to Islam.
When it comes to the Muslim treatment of other Muslims, it is believed that a Muslim who either does not practice Islam or who practices a heterodox form of Islam makes himself an apostate and can be treated the same as a non-Muslim. While violence is not mandated in Islam, it is wholly permitted and no moral penalty is attached to the use of it. It is a permissible individual choice, and one Muslim cannot, in a moral sense, tell another Muslim not to use violence against a non-Muslim if he so wishes.
The perfect model for Islamic behavior and life is none other than Muhammad himself. Christians say “What would Jesus do,” and Muslims say “What would Muhammad do.” Muhammad is even called “al-insan al-kamil,” meaning “the perfect man” because all his actions are regarded as a perfect model for human behavior. The question when evaluating the morality of Islamic action according to their own internal system of belief therefore becomes, what did Muhammad do? By all of the orthodox Islamic accounts, Muhammad was a mass-murderer, a pedophile, a necrophile, a serial rapist, a man who claimed he was possessed by demons, a highway robber, a liar, a deceiver, and a tyrant who placed his concept of divine beatitude at the service of his own acquisition of power, money, and sex in this life with the promise that these same ill-gotten pleasures would endure perpetually in the afterlife. As St. Alphonsus Liguori said, “the Mahometan paradise is fit only for beasts, for only filthy sensual pleasure is there.”
Pope Francis’ statement is simply false. In the Islamic system of belief, violence is given a divine blessing in a way that no other religion does.
If I speak of Islamic violence, I must speak of Catholic violence . . . and no, not all Muslims are violent, not all Catholics are violent.Catholic violence? Which Catholic violence is that, exactly? I have never seen a Catholic blow up a bus of Muslim school children while screaming “JESUS IS LORD,”