…of dhimmitude. The example is the nominally logical statement made by a Catholic bishop in the Netherlands that Christians should refer to God as “Allah.” This would, allegedly, lead to better relations with Muslims. The basics, from
Catholic World News:Bishop Martinus “Tiny” Muskens of Breda told the “Network” television show that “God doesn’t really care how we address Him.”Pointing out that “Allah” is a term already used by Christians who speak Arabic, Bishop Muskens said that humans are needlessly divided over such terminology. God, the bishop said, is above such “bickering.”
Dhimmitude in its literal meaning is actually a positive term, and can be used to describe to the protections afforded minority populations in Muslim lands in the past. But in the 21st century, and in a nominally Christian land such as the Netherlands, it is merely a way of preemptive surrender to Islam.
Dhimmitude is the mindset that informs us in the West to pander to Muslims, to never come right out and tell them what we really think of their religion. Examples? Installing special equipment, paid for out of public funds, so that Muslims may meet some of the obligations peculiar to their faith. Allowing miscreant imams to sue, when they should be in prison for fomenting a riot.
Allowing hate speech to go unchallenged and unstopped, when any rational person would know that such equivalent tirades (e.g. “kill the Jews”) would be squashed flat in microseconds if uttered by a Christian. The list is long; getting longer by the day (fresh examples may be found at Dhimmi Watch).
As for the statement, “God doesn’t really care how we address Him,” that’s only true if you think that the Muslim god is the same as the one true God, the God of the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures, the God of one substance in three Persons. They are not the same; not even close. Muslims deny, vehemently, and in their scripture, the Koran, that Jesus Christ was and is as one with God the Father.
Even if the Muslim conception of God were correct, if your native language is Dutch, why on earth would you use an Arabic word? A Christian might be tempted to use theos or Deus, the Greek or Latin words for God. Might be, but unless these happened to be your native languages, I wouldn’t think there’d be many who do this outside of seminary class. Is it because the confused Dutch bishop thinks that “Allah” sounds so much cooler than “God,” (English, and Dutch, the same)? Probably not.
The reason for using someone else’s language? You’d either be patronizing them, or appeasing them. In this case, given the violence visited upon the Dutch by Muslims of late, I’d guess it’s out and out appeasement, or, to use the even more accurate English word, surrender.