HOT BLAST: Islamic judge leads reform movement in Israel
Jul 16, 2013 | 1652 views |  0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
An elderly man reads verses of the Quran, Islam's holy book, on the first day of the fasting month of Ramadan in the grand Mosque in the old city of Sanaa, Yemen, earlier this month. (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed)
An elderly man reads verses of the Quran, Islam's holy book, on the first day of the fasting month of Ramadan in the grand Mosque in the old city of Sanaa, Yemen, earlier this month. (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed)
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Over at the Huffington Post, Ron Kronish, the director of the Interreligious Coordinating Council in Israel, writes about the scholarship of a religious judge "of the Muslim Sharia court of the state of Israel, which functions under Israel's Ministry of Justice."

Kronish writes: Kadi Iyad Zahalka's "work, which is based on solid scholarship over many years, brings classical Islamic doctrines up-to-date for the times in which we live. He, and the other kadis in Israel who represent a new generation of serious, responsible, and thoughtful religious leadership, are slowly but surely changing the face of Islam in Israel today.

"This phenomenon is virtually unknown both inside and outside of Israel. The mainstream media does not report on this and tends to portray all of Islam as radical and fundamentalist and would be surprised to learn that the leadership of Israeli Islam is rational, moderate and even liberal in their thinking. This is why I take the time to write about this.

"Unfortunately Islamophobia -- based largely on ignorance and misinformation -- is rampant, both in Israel and beyond. This is why it is so refreshing to hear Muslim moderates, like Kadi Zahalka, speak so thoughtfully and inspirationally about new reform thinking in Islam -- in Israel and in other parts of the world -- today. Despite the widespread presence of radical Islam in many countries surrounding Israel in the Middle East, Islam in Israel remains, for the most part, both solid and sane. This is indeed a very positive development."

All this leads Kronish to pose this question, " Is it possible that Islam is being reformed? And in Israel!" His answer is yes.

[Hat tip to Dan Spector of Jacksonville, who brought this post to our attention.]

-- Bob Davis
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