I remember seeing a cartoon of Jesus standing in a crowd looking at a woman accused of adultery, who had been pushed to the ground. He says "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone." The next panel shows a rock hurling through the crowd and hitting the woman squarely in the face. The third panel is Jesus looking at the crowd in disgust saying, "Mother will you just stay out of this." It is comedy, it is satire, it is parody. The worst one could say about it is that it isn't funny. Substitute Mohammad for Jesus and you have a crime against Islam punishable by death?
When James Egan Holmes walked into a Colorado Theatre and opened fire on the crowd he was not doing it in the name of Allah. He was not looking for the 13 people he killed by name. He was not trying to set things right with Mohammad, he did not yell "God is Great" when he was finished. I'm not even sure Holmes can spell the word religion. He is just a homicidal, deranged mass murdering- Fuck.
So, as outraged as I am that artists doing parody, comedy and satire were targeted and killed in the name of Islam, I do realize that "deranged mass murdering fucks" exist in all religions. Timothy McVeigh was a card carrying Christian. Since there is no amateur video of him blowing up the Oklahoma Federal building, we don't know if he yelled "Thank You Jesus" as he lit the fuse. And it doesn't matter since he was not convicted for being an over zealous idiot; he was executed because he was a mass murdering fuck.
I know the least about Islam of any religion. I have never read the Koran, attended a Mosque nor do I even know which way Mecca is from Encino. All I know is the propaganda and bullet points about the belief that follow crimes linked to Islamic extremist. ie, "Muslims hate Jews and Christians and want all infidels dead." or "In Islam you go directly to paradise if you kill in the name of Mohammad." I don't know if any of that is truly in the Koran or part of the actual practice of Islam.
This is what I do know. No human concept of God is correct. Any religion that portrays God as illogical, wrathful, vengeful or less than omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent is not the Truth. God is not a Christian, nor a Muslim, Jew, Rastafarian, Pentecostal, Morman or Frisbeetarian. God doesn't care if you wear beanies, burkas, prayer shawls, lipstick or special Mormon underware.
God doesn't care if you dance, sing, do magic tricks, make puppets talk or draw funny cartoons. God doesn't care how you acknowledge Deity, be it, prayer, prose, preaching, kneeling, standing, rocking, bowing or yelling. The relationship is individual and unique between you and God. Like snowflakes no two expressions are the same.
Perhaps the only hard and fast rule to Universal Deity is this: Leave everyone to their own relationship with God. If a religion requires followers to "convert" anyone else to "a way" or "save" them from another philosophy then that God is not God. Why would the omnipotent and omniscient need humans to correct the path of its own creation?
How ever you experience it or acknowledge your own Spirituality do that. Make sure your own life is living up to your own belief system. If the guy next door has a different way, and it does not impede your own study...leave him or her alone. The only way you can effect another person is to live in such a way as to be an example of goodness.
If your religion is telling you that you must do something about, or something to, those who do not believe the same, it is not a religion it is tyranny.
God is good if anything. God is expression if anything. God is freedom if anything, therefore God is Freedom of Expression. Any sect, race, religion, government, state or gang that would restrict or kill the freedom to express can not be good.
Keep drawing.... keep challenging... keep expressing art in whatever way you are called to express it. Keep your faith..... but keep it to yourself. Human intelligence is not great enough to decide who is right or wrong.
Je suis Charlie,