Nov 14

The Shareef Realy Don't Like It or Pray Like Sid and Nancy

Taqwacore: Punk Islam

There were a lot of good topics this morning for us to dive into, but how could I resist Punk Rock Muslims?
You can read the article for yourself. I am more interested in talking about Punk Religion. Punk, at its core, is about violation. In fact that is what it means. A punk is a male who...er...recieves, either as an act of rape or as a survival tactic, in prison. If you drop the soap in the shower you might become a punk. So if its not violation, its not punk.

{Yes, I am aware that the original term was used of prostitutes as in The Merry Wives of Windsor (1602), and came to be used in general of the criminal class of society. I'm making a point.}

Unpacking punk a little bit more we find some common themes: anti-authoritarianism and the accompanying disestablishmentarianism, a DIY ethic, non-conformity, direct action, and moral and artistic integrity in the face of commercial gain. It is, of course, most associated with music; but its just as much about a life style.

So, taking a cue from Taqwacore (piety core) what would a more universal Godpunk be like?
*It would be faith that denies the necessity of hierarchy, where all adherents are also interpreters of their faith. Faith without clergy/laity distinctions, just different roles for different people.
*It would be faith that creates. That does what needs to be done with what it has, not relying on traditional forms or methods. It would also explore creative ideas and forms of worship.
*It would be a faith that transforms its culture rather than adapting to it.
*It would be a faith that acts in the world, not simply praying or preaching but directly intervening in the lives of others.
*It would be a faith where money is less important than the message.
*It would be a faith that violates expectations.

Separating our faith from other aspects of culture and identity is hard. If, however, we believe that our faith is True then it can stand up to questioning. It can stand up to perceived violations so that the detritus of ages can be pushed aside for the core faith.

So next time you go to worship just ask yourself:WWtRD?
What Would the Ramones Do?

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