Religion revisited, honor violence and onto voting

Due to an unfortunate injury, I had to cut back on my time on creating more content, apologies. However, the episode on religion raised a lot of debates and threw more subjects onto the table which needed to be looked at. As early voting is beginning, it's also the right time to give some ideas on what to think when choosing a candidate to vote for.

Honor violence

While there is no honor in violence, I am sticking to this term because scholars argue for use of it quite well. If honor is seen as the motive (excuse), it should be named so we can properly study it. This is a matter which involves religion quite often - or is it culture? Doesn't matter. Religion is culture, culture is religion and there's always some form of traffic between these in any country. Religion gets off the hook too easily, quotes like "...however religion had no part in this violence" are seen too often. Sometimes that is true, often that is not. Religion has much to answer for, be it a religion with a long history among us, or something that's come to Europe more recently.

And this brings on the matter of integration, be it integration of immigrants or integration of a closed religious sect from within. I believe integration needs three things. First it needs potential, conditions in society that allow it to happen, realizing the possibility and accepting that as an axion. Secondly it needs methods, concrete ways, what needs to change, how it is changed, how people are supported - in short, resources. Finally it needs reason. A person needs to feel there is something to gain from changing one's old habits and beliefs. If there is nothing to gain in everyday life for these great big changes to one's beliefs, then that change will not happen. There needs to be a carrot, the stick alone will not make permanent change.


The term "Euroislam" or "European islam" has been tossed around every now and then. I find many islamic scholars to have very well thought opinions on the reform of islam. Understanding religion means understanding context and finding ways to interpret the historical texts again in every new time. I am quite unhappy with how little we're giving support to this movement of reformation from the inside. I think this is a very healthy debate and could use more of our support. To be blunt, racism and strong anti-islamic attitudes only push people into more extreme forms of islam, as has been shown in many European countries. If we wish for peace, we need to offer peace a way to grow. This is one of those ways. Because it is founded in studying, learning and openly debating, I think it's built on solid ground.

Why and how to vote?

Why to vote in the elections? Because one tends to feel better after doing something. Because whatever you do after you return from voting - eat, drink, watch netflix - it feels and tastes better after doing something. Think of yourself.

As for what and who to vote for, if you don't have a lot of time, try this. Read the few keywords on the "ideology" list on the right hand side for the key parties, EPP, S&D, Greens and ALDE, see which ones sound okay to you. In addition to these ones, there's the euroskeptics which are probably forming a new group, so links to old ones don't help. But if you dislike integration, it's easy enough to find a euroskeptic party and of course, it's your vote, please use it the way you feel.

Okay, so choose a European party, and find out your local party which is a member of it (on the above Wikipedia pages). Then check out their candidate list. Look at their occupations - banker, student, career politician, carpenter, journalist, you name it. Choose one that relates to you, things close to you or things that matter to you. That's it. If you do not have more time to look for a candidate, this will get you sorted within a minute or two. And it beats not voting anytime, because a vote not cast can become a vote for the absolute opposite of what you feel is important. Don't take the risk.