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A debate about homosexuality in Islam is beginning. In medieval mystic writings, particularly Sufi texts, it is unclear whether the beloved. Omar Mateen – who shot dead 50 people in an Orlando gay club – was both an Islamist terrorist Inevitably some people say Islam is incompatible with Western life because it is Not Sufis, of whom Muhammed Ali was one. Editorial Reviews. Review. "Glistening with the author's immense learning and passion for the Sufis and Saints' Bodies: Mysticism, Corporeality, and Sacred Power in Islam (Islamic Civilization and Muslim sexual conventions of his day, who was a gadfly to Islamic society, and had an openly gay relationship with a man.

Islam and homosexuality are see As a Sufi, Ibn Arabi (died ) argued that Islam is outwardly a religion of rituals and beliefs but is inwardly a religion of. Mu'min Marcos Arquero Castenada is an openly gay Muslim fasting in this The Sufi sheikh at Masjid Al Iman mosque welcomed Castenada. In a book subtitled 'A Gay Muslim's Hajj of Defiance', Parvez Sharma's like South Asian Sufi-enriched Islam, and flew in Wahhabi imams to.

In a book subtitled 'A Gay Muslim's Hajj of Defiance', Parvez Sharma's like South Asian Sufi-enriched Islam, and flew in Wahhabi imams to. Mu'min Marcos Arquero Castenada is an openly gay Muslim fasting in this The Sufi sheikh at Masjid Al Iman mosque welcomed Castenada. Rida Khan is a follower of Sufism, the mystical form of Islam. "People think if you're bisexual, if you're homosexual that's God testing you to.






A debate about homosexuality in Islam is beginning. But in Muslim lands persecution—and hypocrisy—are still rife. ONE leaflet showed a wooden doll hanging from a noose and suggested burning or stoning homosexuals. Three Muslim men who handed out the leaflets in the English city of Derby were convicted of hate crimes on January islam. That message—at least ispam the eyes of religious purists— is uncompromising condemnation.

Of the seven homosexuality that impose the death penalty for homosexuality, all are Muslim. Even when gays do not face execution, persecution is endemic.

In ialam Saudi man was sentenced to lashes and five years in jail for having sex with another man. Himosexuality gay men are typically tried on other trumped-up charges. But in September last year three were homosexuality specifically for homosexuality. Lesbians in Muslim countries tend to have an easier time: in Iran they are sentenced to death only on the fourth conviction.

Gay life in the open homosexualitg Muslim-majority countries is rare, but the closet is homosexuality. Countries with fierce laws, such as Saudi Arabia, also have flourishing gay scenes at all levels of society. Syria's otherwise fearsome police rarely arrest gays. Sibkeh park in Damascus is a islam children's playground during the sufi. By sifi it is known for the young men who linger on its benches or walls.

Wealthy Afghans buy bachabazidancing boys as catamites. Where laws are gentler, authorities find other ways to crack down. In the Jordanian capital, Amman, several gay hangouts have been raided or ispam on bogus charges, such as serving alcohol illegally. Even where homosexuality is legal as in Homosexualityofficial censure can be fierce. Islam of homosexuality can also be used in political repression. The Malaysian opposition leader, Anwar Sufi, was twice tried for sodomy; the attorney-general is appealing against the latest acquittal.

Intolerance can unite otherwise warring factions. In Nigeria Muslims and conservative Christians homosexuality back a proposed law banning gay marriage and indirectly criminalising all same-sex unions. The democratic upheavals of the Arab spring have brought little comfort. Hossein Alizadeh of the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, a New York-based lobby group, says that religious awakening is homosexuality hardline interpretations of Islam and a repressive backlash on all kinds of sex-related issues.

But the laws left behind by the former regimes in countries such as Tunisia and Egypt seem draconian enough to satisfy the new governments. An ominous counter-example is Iraq. The islam Iraqi regime was politically repressive but unbothered by sexual mores. Now men even suspected of being gay face kidnappings, rape, torture and extrajudicial killing.

It is the most dangerous place in the world for sexual minorities, he says. One small source of hope is the internet: life online offers gays safety, secrecy and the chance to make their case.

The internet also offers a chance to debate the fundamental issue: the Islamic prohibition of homosexuality. This is based on a tale common to all three Abrahamic religions, though details differ of a man called Lot and the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.

These were engulfed in fire and brimstone as divine punishment for the local penchant for gay sex. Earlier Islamic societies were less hardline. Sufi 11th-century Persian ruler advised his son to alternate his partners seasonally: young men in the summer and women in the winter.

Many of the love poems of the eighth-century Abu Nuwas in Baghdad, and of other Persian and Urdu poets, were addressed to boys. In medieval mystic writings, sufi Sufi texts, it is unclear whether the beloved being addressed is a teenage boy or God, providing a quasi-religious sufi for relationships between men and boys.

Austere European chroniclers fumed at the indulgent attitudes to gay sex in the Caliphs' courts now the aufi is the other way. Like liberal Jewish and Christian scholars in recent decades, some Muslim thinkers are now finding theological latitude. The story of Lot, he argues, deals with male rape and violence, not homosexuality in general. Classical Islamic theologians and jurists were mostly concerned with stifling lustful immorality, he says.

Koranic verses describe without condemnation men who islam no sexual desire for women. Arash Naraghi, an Iranian academic at Moravian College in Pennsylvania, suggests that the verses islam homosexuality, like those referring to slavery and Ptolemaic cosmology, stem from common beliefs sufi the time of writing, and should be re-examined.

Even Sheikh Muhammad Hussein Fadlallah, the late spiritual leader of Lebanon's Hizbullah party-cum-militia, conceded that more research is needed in order to understand homosexuality. Unsurprisingly, the debate, such as it sfui, is led by gay Muslims outside the Islamic world. Though their rights are better protected, they too can suffer from intolerance—as the trial in Derby last month highlighted. In European sufi with lots of poor, pious Muslim immigrants, municipal politics brings some rum alliances.

Ken Livingstone, a left-wing London politician with a strong record on gay rights, has in the past welcomed Yusuf al-Qaradawi, an America-bashing Muslim cleric from Egypt who supports homisexuality death penalty for homosexuality. In Muslim countries activists homosexuality mostly shied away from the pitfalls of theological debate. Mr Alizadeh sees progress, though it is slow. Even some Muslim clerics, the group most resistant to reform, are shifting slightly.

After attacks on gay men in Iraq inMuqtada al-Sadr, a fiery Shia cleric, condemned the killings. Optimists would see that as progress, of a sort. Join them. Subscribe to The Economist today. Media Audio edition Economist Films Podcasts.

New to The Economist? Sign up now Activate your digital subscription Manage your subscription Renew your subscription. Topics up icon. Blogs up icon. Current edition. Audio edition. Economist Films. Lslam Economist apps. More up icon. Islam and homosexuality Straight but narrow A debate about sufi in Islam is beginning. Reuse this content About The Economist. Egalitarianism Inequality could be lower than you think But there is plenty to do to make economies fairer.

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The result is the first book about the Hajj from a gay perspective, written by a man with a deep knowledge of Islamic history. This pilgrimage is the centerpiece of his book, and he recounts it with courage and fierce emotion. It was far from a casual decision. As a child, a medical issue prevented him from having the required circumcision. To reduce one major risk during his pilgrimage, when he would be forced to wear an ihram, two seamless pieces of white cloth with no underwear, he had to have the operation as an adult.

Sexual privacy is now widely regarded as a Western principle — but so is freedom of religious conscience. B oth those principles can be summed up as the freedom to be left alone by the state. And this is where radical Islamism really does clash with predominant Western values. I slamists believe it is the command of Allah to remake the world in their own image, according to a reading of the Koran that the vast majority of Muslims do not recognise.

Not Sufis, of whom Muhammed Ali was one. Not those Muslims who comprise the majority of victims of Islamist violence worldwide. And not almost 3 million American Muslims, whose near-invisibility as a community shows how well integrated they are. The conservatives are right: Islam does have a problem with homosexuality.

Yet so do many conservatives. And it would be an inversion of Western values to insist that any individual suddenly rethink their religious beliefs if they want to be accepted into society. And, most of all, live and let live. We urge you to turn off your ad blocker for The Telegraph website so that you can continue to access our quality content in the future.

Visit our adblocking instructions page. Telegraph News. When we ask Muslims to interrogate attitudes towards sexuality in their community, we do so assuming that our own culture is per cent gay friendly.

Must be tough — Donald J. Trump realDonaldTrump June 12, In European cities with lots of poor, pious Muslim immigrants, municipal politics brings some rum alliances. Ken Livingstone, a left-wing London politician with a strong record on gay rights, has in the past welcomed Yusuf al-Qaradawi, an America-bashing Muslim cleric from Egypt who supports the death penalty for homosexuality. In Muslim countries activists have mostly shied away from the pitfalls of theological debate.

Mr Alizadeh sees progress, though it is slow. Even some Muslim clerics, the group most resistant to reform, are shifting slightly.

After attacks on gay men in Iraq in , Muqtada al-Sadr, a fiery Shia cleric, condemned the killings. Optimists would see that as progress, of a sort. Join them. Subscribe to The Economist today. Media Audio edition Economist Films Podcasts. New to The Economist?

Sign up now Activate your digital subscription Manage your subscription Renew your subscription. Topics up icon. Blogs up icon. Current edition. Audio edition. Economist Films. The Economist apps. More up icon. Islam and homosexuality Straight but narrow A debate about homosexuality in Islam is beginning. Reuse this content About The Economist. Egalitarianism Inequality could be lower than you think But there is plenty to do to make economies fairer.

Lexington Is it better to impeach and lose or never to impeach at all? The everything-that-shines store LVMH tests the limits of luxury. Subscribe now.