Well, we saw the violent responses to the Pope’s Regensburg address. Some would have liked to think that that was “true” Islam showing its colours. But, as is often pointed out, there is no “Muslim Vatican” to speak on what is “authentic” or “true” Islam. Now comes a response which is anything but violent; a response which is considered, reasonable, even “friendly” in tone; a response which takes up Benedict’s invitation to sincere dialogue and which can stand as an authoritative basis for the future of the dialoge.
The “Open Letter to His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI” has been signed by such an incredibly universal array of signatures from Grand Muftis, political authorities and Islamic university professors, that one cannot but conclude that the views expressed therein are “authentic” Islam. What’s more, there is not a belligerant word in the entire letter. It is as respectful and gracious as Papa Benny undoubtably intended his original lecture to be.
I suspect that there may be plenty reading this blog who may not be inclined to read the “Open Letter”. I suggest that this inclination may be due to the fact that such persons do not wish to sincerely enter the dialogue, but prefer to hold their own preconceived notions about what “true Islam” is. Well, if that describes you, I pity you. Prove me wrong and read it. Then leave a comment.