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Using every kind of human knowledge AGAINST INFRAHUMANIZATION AIR – 2010 Annual International Retreat | 8 – 12 April (Cape Town – Tulbagh - South Africa)

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Presentation on theme: "Using every kind of human knowledge AGAINST INFRAHUMANIZATION AIR – 2010 Annual International Retreat | 8 – 12 April (Cape Town – Tulbagh - South Africa)"— Presentation transcript:

1 Using every kind of human knowledge AGAINST INFRAHUMANIZATION AIR – 2010 Annual International Retreat | 8 – 12 April (Cape Town – Tulbagh - South Africa) Thanks to our sister organization

2 2 - Ludovic Lotfi Mohamed Zahed, 32 y.o. – born in North Africa (Algeria), grew up in Paris – Muslim since I was born (Teenager - 5 years studying Quran ; Adult- 7 years of questioning : is it possible to be gay AND Muslim how !?) - Master of psychology, awarded from l’Ecole Normale Superieure in cognitive neuropsychology (scientific measures, mechanisms and processes underlying our thoughts) - 9 years – small sized company, HRM

3 3 A – Infrahumanization, theoretically B – Infrahumanizing sexual minorities C – Educate and purify our Human dignity D – Is Islam a homophobic religion by nature ? CONCLUSION : Islam is a living, breathing, humanist religion !


5 5 SOCIAL PHENOMENON That social phenomenon is tacitly held by an unconscious belief that one’s in-group is more human than an out-group

6 6 UNCONTROLABLE Produced by an individual or a group of individuals ; here is the “ recipe” to ostracize someone without feeling guilty about it… (doesn’t mean they are not guilty !)

7 7 ANIMAL INSTINCT Infrahumanization is a basic, instinctive reaction ; endangered groups reinforce their group frontiers; scapegoats to catharsis in-group fears !

8 8 NO emotions, NO faith - Endorsed by a majority, against a minority Being more numerous helps to thing you are right - Denial of Humanity (“they have no true human emotions” - “they are beasts” - “they have no human faith” - “it is not a sin to hurt them”...) - Robust scientific proofs The more participants infrahumanize the out-group member the less likely they were to help.

9 9 MORTAL SOCIAL ILLUSION “Denial of humanness associated with extreme intergroup violence such as genocide” (Leyens & al.) [1] Leyens & al. (2009). “From infra-humanization to discrimination: The mediation of symbolic threat needs egalitarian norms”. Journal of experimental social psychology; 45-2, p.336-344.

10 10 B - INFRAHUMANIZING sexual minorities (personnal reflexion, no true or faulse answer…)

11 11 1 – Is it possible those that we categorize today as homosexuals did not exist among Arab tribes of the 7 th century !? How could it be possible ? (“homosexuality” - scientific term invented during the 18 th c. ; 1974 - homosexuals are not perverses DSMIV)

12 12 2 - How comes they never wants to talk about those other scriptural sources ? - 'A'isha reported that a eunuch [mukhannath] used to come to the wives of Allah's Apostle ASWS / - We used to fight [in battle] together with the Prophet, peace be upon him. There were no women with us. We said: O Messenger, may we treat some as eunuchs “ hadith from Ibn Mas’ud, al- Bukhari / - « innee rajulun shaabbun wa ana akhaafu 'alaa nafsee al-'anata wa laa ajidu ma atazawwaju bihi an- nisaa'a ” /

13 13 3 – Why is it so important for them insist on homosexuality, as “one of the most sensitive issues facing Muslims living in the West, particularly in Europe” ? (like Leyens & al. said that violence, sometimes could genocide an entire population : Nazis, apartheid, sexual minorities… scapegoat !)

14 14 4 – Is the most important think to find out wether homosexuality was condemned or not at the 7 th century !? (“The regulation of male and female sexuality by Muslim law does not obey to moral concerns, preservation of any hypothetical "natural order“ or even to the perpetuation of the human species, but to the preservation of the social order“, M. Mezziane )

15 15 5 – what could be the best possible answer to thwart these unconscious, uncontrollable psychological mechanisms underlying a social infrahumanization processes? (Tarbiyah – Tasfiyah : long term, peacefull strategy against religious violence ; change the cognitive representation of what a Muslim could be, long term changing the society itself)

16 16 C - EDUCATE & PURIFY our human dignity

17 17 “Rahma”, an entire surat dedicated to empathy The executioner need infrahumanization to violate the victim’s human dignity Infrahumanization makes the victim suffering, it certainly alienates the executioner

18 18 Simple solution : Deprive them from there power on us, TOGETHER unified ! Imam Hendricks : defending S.Minorities human dignity is what we LGBT do Politic has nothing to do with Islam !

19 19 Shall we never forget Allah wisdom : “O People of the Scripture. Come to an agreement between us and you : that we shall worship none but Allah, and that we shall ascribe no partners unto Him, and that none of us shall take others for lords beside Allah. And if they turn away, then say : Bear witness that we are muslimun ( = in peace)” (Quran : 3-64) We also shall be here and know, witness about how brothers and sisters treat us…

20 20 Peaceful dialogue to educate, purify ourselves, others representation Continue pointing at stigma, & discrimination, fight prejudices 18 th century European doctors were wrong, direct - indirect violence Neither Islam nor LGBT have anything to win from direct nor indirect violence !!! [2] [3] American Psychiatric Association - DSMIV: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual : [4] Amnesty international report : bb9d43f3e059/pol300032008eng.pdf bb9d43f3e059/pol300032008eng.pdf

21 21 و التربية التسفية (educate all Muslims, us and them; purify our/their cognitive representations about being LGBT Stigma, discriminations Violence Against Muslims, & LGBT Muslims Challenging extremismS ! Peace and Knowledge Non hegemonic, dogmatic, Universal Human Dignity


23 23 We shall never forget our prophet’s wisdom ASWS : “Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood. Nothing shall be legitimate to a Muslim which belongs to a fellow Muslim unless it was given freely and willingly. Do not, therefore, do injustice to yourselves.” (many other hadiths and Quran’s verse about jurisdictional right / wrong : collected anyway 200 years after our prophet’s death ASWS)) What could be more important for a free willing Muslim than his/her human dignity !?

24 24 Hammurabi's Babylonian Coda – Moses Tablets - Quran … - Social fairness - Human rights and dignity Arabo-Islamic civilization used to be a symbol of enlighten tolerance !

25 25 Religion is not about rules, but about secularized humanism… - “Rules” are confounded with traditions - Traditions change from one spatiotemporal context to another We have to embrace the Islamic humanism ! (Scott Siraj al-Aqq – “Homosexuality and Islam”, 2010)

26 26 That is a global renewal that Islam needs, LGBT Muslims are at the forefront of it, and infrahumanization has no place in such Islamic humanism … - We have no choice but to see the truth : Religion claims to come from the Universal our Lord - Imams and philosophers for human rights, against homophobia (imam T. Oubrou) - Modern humanist representation added to the Islamic theological corpus (A. Bidar) Our brain is a machine creating different representation of what we call “reality”. We have been given the freedom to choose which reality we want to live in !

27 27 That is what seems to be said in the Quran, that our knowledge made us creators, successors of our Lord on earth with his permission to do so; and that knowledge is by nature linked to our human nature, based on our intrinsic DIFFERENCES ! “And when thy Lord said unto the angels : Lo! I am about to place a successor (khalifat) in the earth (…). And He taught Adam all the names, then showed them to the angels, saying : Inform me of the names of these, if ye are truthful (…). He said : O Adam! Inform them of their names, and when he had informed them of their names, He said : Did I not tell you that I know the secret of the heavens and the earth?” (Quran : 2-30;33)

28 28 Knowledge is what made us better than angels, we have been created to learn ! It is also said : “O mankind! Lo! We have created you male and female, and have made nations and tribes that ye may know one another. Lo! the noblest of you, in the sight of Allah, is the best in conduct. Lo! Allah is Knower, Aware” (Quran : 49-13) DIFERRENCE, is not tolerate only… It ought to be the corner stone of our identity representation, of our humanity ! It is the reason why our Lord DWA created the humankind for : so we’d better try to understand how to accept and live with those differences.

29 29

30 30 - Infrahumanization is an in-group phenomenon based on fears and intrinsic, basic, animal instincts; made to reinforce in-group boundaries - No need to be Muslim to be have homophobic representations - Islam means “peace” : we have to be in peace with our Islamic traditional inheritage, with Sunna and Quran (extremists are not…) - LGBT are at the forefront of a wider reform needed for all Muslims (the first suffering from Islam in-group fears) - DIFFERENCE is the corner stone of humanity, - we’d better learn to live with it - The only enlighten strategy : peaceful tarbiyah, tasfiyah ; there is some Islamic reform that could only be upgraded by LGBTQI ! - Islam is a living religion (“spiritus” means breathe !) : Muslims and humanly dignified all together, we stand ! - the “Ruh” of our Lord Allah DWA is within all of us, we are not “infrahumans”, we are true Muslims contributing to a reform nobody else could endeavor ! - HERE AND NOW, we are changing the World; that is even more than challenging extremism, it is reinventing our faith knowing that conjectural political issues shall pass, our faith in Allah shall last forever (sourate Al-Rahman : “koulou man aalayha fan…”)

31 31 Allah is our Light : even extremism is not powerful enough to block our Lord’s Light ! Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth. The similitude of His light is as a niche wherein is a lamp. The lamp is in a glass. The glass is as it were a shining star. ( This lamp is ) kindled from a blessed tree, an olive neither of the East nor of the West, whose oil would almost glow forth ( of itself ) though no fire touched it. Light upon light, Allah guideth unto His light whom He will. And Allah speaketh to mankind in allegories, for Allah is knower of all things. ( This lamp is found ) in houses which Allah hath allowed to be exalted and that His name shall be remembered therein. Therein do offer praise to Him at morn and evening. Men whom neither merchandise nor sale beguileth from remembrance of Allah and constancy in prayer and paying to the poor their due ; who fear a day when hearts and eyeballs will be overturned ; That Allah may reward them with the best of what they did, and increase reward for them of His bounty. Allah giveth blessings without stint to whom He will. (Al-Ghazali, “the Niche of Light” - Quran : 24-35;38) اللة اعلم

32 32 [1] Leyens & al. (2009). “From infra-humanization to discrimination: The mediation of symbolic threat needs egalitarian norms”. Journal of experimental social psychology; 45-2, p.336-344. [2] [3] American Psychiatric Assocaition - DSMIV: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual : [4] Amnesty international report : 4cd3-11dd-bca2-bb9d43f3e059/pol300032008eng.pdf M. Hendricks answer to T. Ramadan’s article entitled “Islam and homosexuality” : Hegemonic masculinity : A. Bidar (2008). « L'islam sans soumission: pour un existentialisme musulman », p.36. Albin Michel, Paris S.S.A. Kugle (2010). “homosexuality and Islam”. Oneworld Publications; Oxford, England. M. Al-Ghazali (1981). « Le Tabernacle des lumières », traduction de Roger Deladrière. Editions du Seuil, Paris. I. Ibn-Kathir (2007). « As-Sira : la biographie du prophète Mohammed, les débuts de l’islam », traduction de Messaoud Boudjenoun. Editions Universel, Paris. F. Lenoir (2008). “Petit traité de l’histoire des religions”. Plon, Paris.

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