Parresía cristiana frente a taqiya musulmana / Christian Parrhesia vs. Muslim Taqiyya

I would like to present to you this Greek word related to one of the current hot topics of our besieged civilization: the freedom of expression and the moral obligation of telling the truth. You can find the basic information on Parhesia in this entry of the Wikipedia. If you have time, I also recommend you to read the lectures by Foucault on the changing meaning of this word in Greek political and moral philosophy: Discourse and Truth: the Problematization of Parrhesia. (Six lectures given by Michel Foucault at the University of California at Berkeley, Oct-Nov. 1983). Please note that this Foucault is the same nefarious individual who praised the Iranian Revolution. You may acknowledge, however, that those lectures are examples of master classes indeed.

I want to draw your attention to the continuity of the risky practice of telling the truth to the powerful in Ancient Christianity:

A related use of parrhesia is found in the Greek New Testament, where it means “bold speech,” the ability of believers to hold their own in discourse before political and religious authorities (e.g. Acts 4:13: “Now when they saw the boldness [την παρρησίαν] of Peter and John and realized that they were uneducated and ordinary men, they were amazed and recognized them as companions of Jesus.”). It is also used to describe the reply Jesus made to the Pharisees [5] [6]. See Heinrich Schlier, “παρρησία, παρρησιάζομαι,” Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, Gerhard Kittel and Gerhard Friedrich, Eds. Ann Arbor: Eerdmans, 1967. Vol. V, pp. 871ff.

It would be interesting to see how the meaning of parrhesia changed again when the Christians themselves became powerful and suppressed the heterodoxy. Heterodoxy means, literally, incorrect opinions. Religiously incorrect opinions in those days, politically incorrect opinions today…

We Christians are convinced to be in possession of the truth; that is why we dare to proclaim it. Muslims, despite the absence of any embarrassing supra-rational believe in their theology -the Trinity (there equals one), the Incarnation (the Infinite contained in the finite)- can not afford discussions regarding the doctrines of their self-proclaimed Prophet. No wonder: those doctrines are as deceitful as the emperor’s new clothes. That is why this term of the Greek and Christian cultural traditions has no counterpart in Islam. As Fjordman has reminded us more than once, Muslim philosophers cared very much not to translate the political and moral philosophy of antiquity into Arabic.

Indeed, there is a very characteristic Muslim practice that is precisely the opposite of parrhesia. This is the taqiyya, a strategy of concealment, self-censorship and flattery to the powerful, aimed at keeping him happy and confident up to the day when one feels strong enough for taking him over.

It is never superfluous to repeat it, especially to those engaged in the impossible task of dialogues with Muslims: the intercourse of Muslims with those non-Muslims which are powerful enough not to have been subdued yet are essentially corrupted by this strategy of concealment and deception.

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La entrada de la wiki tiene la información básica, pero si podéis os recomiendo que leéis también la serie de artículos de Foucault sobre el significado cambiante de esta palabra en la filosofía política y moral de los griegos: “Discourse and Truth: the Problematization of Parrhesia”. (Seis conferencias magistrales dadas por Michel Foucault en la Universidad de California en Berkeley, Oct-Nov. 1983). Por cierto, hemos tratado de este infame individuo en otras ocasiones: Foucault sobre el Islam. Hay que reconocer, en cualquier caso, que son esas unas verdaderas clases magistrales.

Sobre el atrevimiento de los creyentes frente a las autoridades:

A related use of parrhesia is found in the Greek New Testament, where it means “bold speech,” the ability of believers to hold their own in discourse before political and religious authorities (e.g. Acts 4:13: “Now when they saw the boldness [την παρρησίαν] of Peter and John and realized that they were uneducated and ordinary men, they were amazed and recognized them as companions of Jesus.”). It is also used to describe the reply Jesus made to the Pharisees [5] [6]. See Heinrich Schlier, “παρρησία, παρρησιάζομαι,” Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, Gerhard Kittel and Gerhard Friedrich, Eds. Ann Arbor: Eerdmans, 1967. Vol. V, pp. 871ff.

Los cristianos se consideran -y se saben- en posesión de la verdad, por eso se atreven. Los musulmanes, a pesar de la ausencia de toda teología, no pueden permitirse razonar sobre las doctrinas de su fementido Profeta, por su carácter intrínsecamente falso. Por eso este término de la tradición cultural griega y cristiana no tiene correlato en el Islam. Es bien sabido que los filósofos musulmanes se cuidaron muy mucho de traducir al árabe los libros de filosofía política y moral de la antigüedad.

En efecto, hay una práctica musulmana muy típica que es precisamente lo contraria de la parresía. Se trata de la taquiya, una estrategia de ocultación, mentira y adulación ante el poderoso, para tenerlo contento y confiado hasta en día en que uno se sienta suficientemente fuerte para someterlo.

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