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posted by LaminatorX on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:00PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the 685.98-and-1-nights dept.

girlwhowaspluggedout writes:

Hoping to be a pioneer on the Red Planet? First seek permission from your local cleric. Dubai's Khaleej Times reports that the General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowment in the UAE has ruled that promoting or being involved in a one-way trip to Mars is prohibited by Islam. The fatwa appears to be a response to Mars One's call for volunteers to make the pioneering trip to the red planet.

According to the General Authority, 'Such a one-way journey poses a real risk to life, and that can never be justified in Islam. There is a possibility that an individual who travels to planet Mars may not be able to remain alive there, and is more vulnerable to death.' Because of the inherent dangers of the trip, those who choose to go there are likely to die for no 'righteous reason,' thus incurring 'punishment similar to that of suicide in the Hereafter.'

The Khaleej Times further states that the General Authority fears that some of the volunteers, among whom are 500 Saudis and other Arabs, may be interested in traveling to Mars to escape punishment or to avoid standing before Allah for judgment. The General Authority decreed that 'this is an absolutely baseless and unacceptable belief because not even an atom falls outside the purview of Allah, the Creator of everything.'"

[ED Note: Likening the one-way-ticket to suicide does make some theological sense, but I am saddened that the Authority does not consider space exploration a "righteous reason" to risk one's life. In times past, many great explorers hailed from Muslim societies, and were part of what made them great.]

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State of the Site: 02/23/2014 108 comments
Well, we've survived our first week as a functional website, and have yet to go belly up because of it. The speed and growth of our community is staggering to say the least, and we are working hard to get this site fully operational. I'm pleased to announce that a development VM is now available for public consumption, and if you're interested in site development, one should join us in #dev on irc.soylentnews.org. Beyond that though, I've got a few points to address on and updated statistics to share ...
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  • (Score: 5, Funny) by monster on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:12PM

    by monster (1260) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:12PM (#3480) Journal

    Of course it is prohibited!.

    At the time of praying, how would you lay DOWN towards Mecca?

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by mindriot on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:40PM

      by mindriot (928) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:40PM (#3513)
      Couldn't be any easier once you're in outer space -- just aim towards Earth...
      --
      soylent_uid=$(echo $slash_uid|cut -c1,3,5)
    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Debvgger on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:05PM

      by Debvgger (545) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:05PM (#3534)

      This was a funny comment but think twice about it: It's already needed to point down if you are on the other side of Earth!

      • (Score: 5, Informative) by LaminatorX on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:08PM

        by LaminatorX (14) <reversethis-{moc ... ta} {xrotanimal}> on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:08PM (#3535)

        This is a solved problem (if it was ever even a problem). There have been Muslims on the ISS, and they worked out the appropriate angles just fine.

        • (Score: 4, Funny) by rcamera on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:18PM

          by rcamera (2360) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:18PM (#3544) Homepage Journal

          screw the iss. half the population of new mecca was able to do it until the necromancers busted everything up... the imam was even able to pray on the ship from "planet number two of the m-344/g system"

          --
          /* no comment */
      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by melikamp on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:15PM

        by melikamp (1886) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:15PM (#3542) Journal
        Near the surface, they can use the spherical geometry, which would provide a well-defined direction at any point but the antipodal one (an anti-Mecca, if you will).
    • (Score: -1, Troll) by duvel on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:09PM

      by duvel (1496) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:09PM (#3538)

      On the other hand, I'm sure that those clerics will applaud any 'infidel' getting on the flight.

      --
      This Sig is under surveilance by the NSA
  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by johaquila on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:14PM

    by johaquila (867) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:14PM (#3482)

    ... this were not a new opionion. It could explain why there was never a big tradition of taking one-way boats to the Americas in the Muslim world.

    On a slightly more serious note, I would imagine that Muhammad would be quite shocked to learn that his religion is now interpreted by some as forbidding the valiant spreading of the belief in Allah to new human settlements. Historically, it was all about expansion.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by melikamp on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:56PM

      by melikamp (1886) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:56PM (#3522) Journal
      It could explain why there was never a big tradition of taking one-way boats to the Americas in the Muslim world.

      Taking a one-way plane to Americas seems to be OK with clerics, though.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by frojack on Thursday February 20 2014, @07:50PM

        by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 20 2014, @07:50PM (#3661) Journal

        The summary:
        "Such a one-way journey poses a real risk to life, and that can never be justified in Islam."

        So much has been justified by Islam that I don't know whether to laugh or cry at such a statement.

        You can throw that quote out into a crowd of Muslims and watch them break into heated arguments and fights over exactly what true Islam is. It seems anything can be simultaneously banned by Islam and required by it.

        After a thousand years, Muslims no longer understand their own beliefs, and have lost control of their own identity.

        --
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        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 21 2014, @05:16AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 21 2014, @05:16AM (#4094)

          The same argument can be used to ban driving a car or eating burger. They can be dangerous compared to walking on the pavement or eating an apple.

    • (Score: 5, Funny) by mhajicek on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:55PM

      by mhajicek (51) on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:55PM (#3596)

      To be fair, everyone who set out to discover / colonize the Americas has died.

      --
      The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by mojo chan on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:58PM

      by mojo chan (266) on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:58PM (#3601)

      On a slightly more serious note, I would imagine that Muhammad would be quite shocked to learn that his religion is now interpreted by some as forbidding the valiant spreading of the belief in Allah to new human settlements.

      I doubt it. When you look at what the guy actually said and did it is quite clear that he was small minded and a bit thick, as well as being mostly interested in consolidating his own power and wealth. The main reason for spreading Islam was to get more people to follow him.

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    • (Score: 0, Flamebait) by isostatic on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:31PM

      by isostatic (365) on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:31PM (#3621) Journal

      expansion through conquering, slaying the men, and bedding the women (hence the 4 wives thing)

      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by iNaya on Friday February 21 2014, @07:40AM

        by iNaya (176) on Friday February 21 2014, @07:40AM (#4153)

        This might be marked flamebait, but Mohammed did encourage that.

        But I guess it's better to lie to oneself and not be offended, than to be offended by the truth.

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Nerdfest on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:16PM

    by Nerdfest (80) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:16PM (#3483)

    I suppose there's a big difference between "righteous reasons" and worthwhile reasons, where perhaps in the past there was more overlap.

    • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:19PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:19PM (#3488)

      Exploring the universe: Not-righteous
      Blowing yourself up in a shopping mall full of infidels: Righteous

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Daniel Dvorkin on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:18PM

    by Daniel Dvorkin (1099) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:18PM (#3487) Journal

    Explorers have always been, and probably will be, a tiny minority of the population. Most people don't want to leave the places they are--whether for religious reasons, or economic ones, or simply because that's where their friends and families live--and particularly not if there's a substantial risk (or certainty!) of death at the other end of the journey. Nothing wrong with that.

    But we remember the ones who take those risks, for good reason. Those who choose to obey this fatwa are ensuring they won't be among those remembered. Their choice.

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  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by girlwhowaspluggedout on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:25PM

    by girlwhowaspluggedout (1223) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:25PM (#3495)

    OP here -- has anyone succeeded in finding the aforementioned fatwa in the General Authority's Fatwa Archives [awqaf.ae]? Ana ma naja7tu.

    Incidentally, a working implementation of UTF-8 would be most welcome. I mean, what is this, the other site? :)

    --
    Soylent is the best disinfectant.
    • (Score: 4, Informative) by bitshifter on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:04PM

      by bitshifter (2241) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:04PM (#3533)

      I can't even find Sheikh Ali al Hemki on the net.
      Seems this was first published in October 2013 and now has re-surfaced.
      I call bullshit.

      • (Score: 3, Informative) by girlwhowaspluggedout on Friday February 21 2014, @10:24AM

        by girlwhowaspluggedout (1223) on Friday February 21 2014, @10:24AM (#4203)
        The difference here is that Farooq Hamada, the president of the fatwa committee who is quoted in TA, is a real person [al-hamada.com]. Since the Khaleej Times is ostensibly [wikipedia.org] "the second most popular English language newspaper published in the UAE", its journalists can presumably recognize a hoax when they see one.
        --
        Soylent is the best disinfectant.
  • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by boinker on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:26PM

    by boinker (2434) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:26PM (#3497)

    Although I agree with the thought, the Editors note at the end doesn't do much except take away from the humour of the idiocy of religion. Let the stupidity speak for itself.

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Sir Garlon on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:38PM

      by Sir Garlon (1264) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:38PM (#3512)

      What's idiotic about saying signing up for a one-way trip to Mars is equivalent to suicide? A reasonable person could disagree with that statement, but it's not a dumb thing to say.

      Or perhaps you're trying to say that religion is idiotic because it disapproves of suicide. Again, debatable but not off the wall.

      Wait, what was your point again?

      --
      [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by SleazyRidr on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:57PM

        by SleazyRidr (882) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:57PM (#3526)

        Yeah, going to Mars could be an awesome thing, but it's not something that I could encourage my daughter (or anyone for that matter) to do in good conscience. I wouldn't want to stand in someone's way, or tell them that they'll go to hell but they'll probably be a lot happier in a nice safe life on Earth.

        • (Score: 1) by melikamp on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:03PM

          by melikamp (1886) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:03PM (#3531) Journal

          Yeah, going to Mars could be an awesome thing, but it's not something that I could encourage my daughter (or anyone for that matter) to do in good conscience.

          I would volunteer James Clapper for a one-way Mars mission in a heartbeat.

          • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Sir Garlon on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:22PM

            by Sir Garlon (1264) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:22PM (#3548)

            I think that is more or less how Australia got colonized...

            --
            [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
          • (Score: 1) by jcd on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:05PM

            by jcd (883) on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:05PM (#3569)

            What, so he can get a head start on setting up pan-colonial surveillance? I think not.

            --
            "What good's an honest soldier if he can be ordered to behave like a terrorist?"
          • (Score: 1) by FatPhil on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:52PM

            by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:52PM (#3594) Homepage

            Even before the spaceship's ready. I'll chip in $10 for fuel.

            --
            Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
        • (Score: 2, Insightful) by SecurityGuy on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:12PM

          by SecurityGuy (1453) on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:12PM (#3779)

          I don't know, being among the first humans on Mars would be spectacularly awesome. I'd probably enjoy it quite a bit until I got near the actual dying part. It's much like regular life, actually. I'm having a blast now, but one day I'll be in a hospital bed facing my last days, or maybe in a crunched up car facing my last minutes, and expect that I might be unhappy about that.

          Dying is inevitable, but let's not let that stand in the way of actually living in the meantime. I think there's a tiny slice of the population who actually would be happier on a nice, dangerous Mars, even if that means they don't get to live as long as if they stayed here.

      • (Score: 5, Informative) by Thexalon on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:06PM

        by Thexalon (636) on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:06PM (#3570)

        A couple more things to bear in mind:
        - Islam is not unified, and a lot of Muslims will simply ignore what these clerics have to say. For example, Iranian Shiites will probably treat this decision the same way an Anglican treats the pronouncements of Pope Francis - interesting, but by no means infallible. The Sunnis in Algeria take what the ayatollahs in Iran say about the same way.

        - Even within the right sub-group of Muslims, there are lots of people who aren't very devout. Most people will declare the faith, do the routine prayers, observe Ramadan, maybe go on a Hajj, try to give something to charity if they have it, stop by Friday prayers at the mosque on occasion, and consider that "good enough" without worrying too much about the pronouncements of various scholars and clerics.

        A lot of people in the West have this idea that Islam is a unified billion-strong group of crazy backwards people. It's in fact a very divided bunch of people with about a billion average folks trying to get by, maybe a couple million that take it really seriously and focus their lives around it, and a few thousand that are actually crazy or backwards.

        --
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        • (Score: 2, Insightful) by ragequit on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:27PM

          by ragequit (44) on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:27PM (#3674) Journal

          The same could be said about any organized religion. How many Christian sects are there again?

          People are people, losing sight of this is the basis for prejudice.

          That being said, is this going to cause a religious divide on Mars? There appears to be a self selection here that would leave their voice unheard on the big red rock in the sky.

          --
          The above views are fabricated for your reading pleasure.
        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by akinliat on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:38PM

          by akinliat (1898) <reversethis-{moc.liamg} {ta} {tailnika}> on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:38PM (#3683)

          +1. Oh, where are mod points when I need them?

          Seriously, where are they? I got 10 this morning and they've already expired. I am not that decisive.

          It's in fact a very divided bunch of people with about a billion average folks trying to get by

          On a side note, most folks are like this. We in the West spend so much time inventing stereotypes and debating what it is that various Others are "really" like, when the truth is that most are just looking to put food on the table and roof over their heads. And, like enough, having a hard time managing even that much.

        • (Score: 1) by philip on Saturday February 22 2014, @12:58AM

          by philip (1614) on Saturday February 22 2014, @12:58AM (#4639)

          you would get mod points if I had them

    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by girlwhowaspluggedout on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:42PM

      by girlwhowaspluggedout (1223) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:42PM (#3516)

      Although many (most?) modern day Islamic "denominations" are intent on becoming a perpetually backwater culture [wikipedia.org], medieval Islam was hardly the same. You can choose to view the religion as nothing more than a joke, but you can also look at its history as a tragedy.

      LaminatorX was right in referring to the past achievements of Muslim travelers. But do take the page he linked to, which claims, inter alia, that the Arabs discovered America 500 years before Columbus, with a grain of salt.

      --
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      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by girlwhowaspluggedout on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:37PM

        by girlwhowaspluggedout (1223) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:37PM (#3560)
        Also, everything Sir Garlon [soylentnews.org] said. The fatwa doesn't appear to be anti-science per se but anti-suicide. Which, as has been said, is entirely reasonable. What's more, it is also appears to be theologically consistent.
        --
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        • (Score: 1) by kumanopuusan on Friday February 21 2014, @01:51AM

          by kumanopuusan (2575) on Friday February 21 2014, @01:51AM (#3970)

          It would be a little easier to understand if it wasn't coming from the religion that brings us so many suicide bombers.

          • (Score: 2) by girlwhowaspluggedout on Friday February 21 2014, @07:32AM

            by girlwhowaspluggedout (1223) on Friday February 21 2014, @07:32AM (#4148)

            And Christianity is the religion that brings us so many abortion clinic firebombers, yet there are many Christian pro-choicers. Religions, especially global ones, are hardly monolithic.

            Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, Pentecostalists, and Anabaptists are all nominally Christian, but that doesn't mean they share a systematic theology, or even a single set of beliefs. In like manner, has the UAE's General Authority ever issued fatwas in favor of suicide bombings? Even if they did, it is readily apparent why a fundamentalist would view suicide bombings as a theologically legitimate "righteous reason", whereas a trip to Mars, that may not even succeed, as a religiously unjustified risk.

            --
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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by mhajicek on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:59PM

    by mhajicek (51) on Thursday February 20 2014, @03:59PM (#3528)

    Don't most Muslims die on Earth for no righteous reason?

    --
    The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Sir Garlon on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:08PM

      by Sir Garlon (1264) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:08PM (#3536)

      Yes, but they don't choose that death. IANAM (I am Not a Muslim) but presumably it's the choice to do something that will lead to an un-righteous death that is theologically problematic. So, for example, dying of cancer is not a theological problem, but choosing euthanasia while suffering from cancer would be.

      --
      [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
      • (Score: 1) by Buck Feta on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:21PM

        by Buck Feta (958) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:21PM (#3546) Journal

        >> dying of cancer is not a theological problem, but choosing euthanasia while suffering from cancer would be

        Sounds like another few religions I could name.

        --
        - fractious political commentary goes here -
        • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:34PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:34PM (#3680)

          What about dying of suicide vest while suffering from Islam?

      • (Score: 1) by mojo chan on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:24PM

        by mojo chan (266) on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:24PM (#3794)

        Wow. This is the first time I recognized the .sig of another Slashdot regular. Welcome aboard son.

        --
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        • (Score: 2) by Sir Garlon on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:33PM

          by Sir Garlon (1264) on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:33PM (#3807)

          And your UID is *still* lower than mine! :-) I love your sig, by the way.

          --
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          • (Score: 1) by mojo chan on Thursday February 20 2014, @11:51PM

            by mojo chan (266) on Thursday February 20 2014, @11:51PM (#3884)

            Thanks, the feeling is mutual :-)

            --
            const int one = 65536; (Silvermoon, Texture.cs)
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by animal on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:27PM

    by animal (202) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:27PM (#3553)

    and prohibits his followers to go to a Planet he created? meh
    Reminds me of George Carlin's view on religion:
    "If you don't follow these 10 rules, God has a special place for you to burn and suffer till the end of time. BUT HE LOVES YOU!"

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by wbslingr2001 on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:02PM

    by wbslingr2001 (1360) on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:02PM (#3568)

    How can anyone, regardless of Religion, see the advancement of the physical exploration of our solar system as tantamount to suicide?
    The furthering of our knowledge is a worthwhile and noble goal for anyone.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by jcd on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:10PM

    by jcd (883) on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:10PM (#3572)

    I thought about the trip pretty much as suicide once I heard about it, but now that I'm seeing clerics debate it I have to wonder... is it only considered suicidal because you can't reintegrate with society on Earth? They aren't traveling to Mars to die, they're traveling there to explore, and potentially, you could argue that a Muslim (or someone of any faith) is traveling there to explore new dimensions of the faith and communicate them back. You could also argue that the dangers of traveling on foot to Mecca five hundred years ago was just as likely a path to death as traveling to Mars will be.

    Though flying to Mars may actually be safer.

    --
    "What good's an honest soldier if he can be ordered to behave like a terrorist?"
    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by etherscythe on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:03PM

      by etherscythe (937) on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:03PM (#3604) Journal

      The argument is, apparently, that anything other than old age (or possibly martyrdom) is an unacceptable risk, and therefore tantamount to suicide. We're all, ultimately, going to die barring an unprecedented medical breakthrough. Choosing how you die sounds like the most liberating gift a man can be given. To decry this as against God's will (whatever name you think he chooses for himself) strikes me as supremely pessimistic. The implication is that ever leaving your house to learn anything about the world or take any kind of risk to have a life worth living is unacceptable.

      This is the kind of thing that pushed me to Taoism's self-deterministic empiricism. I like how Shinedown put it:

      I'm so sick of this tombstone mentality,
      If there's an afterlife,
      Then it'll set you free.
      But I'm not gonna part the seas
      You're a self-fulfilling prophecy.

      --
      "Fake News: anything reported outside of my own personally chosen echo chamber"
      • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:56PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:56PM (#3632)

        I like how Dead Kennedys put it:

        All religions make me wanna throw up
        All religions make me sick
        All religions make me wanna throw up
        All religions suck

      • (Score: 4, Interesting) by mhajicek on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:50PM

        by mhajicek (51) on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:50PM (#3687)

        We're all, ultimately, going to die barring an unprecedented medical breakthrough.

        According to XKCD only 93% of humans have died.

        http://what-if.xkcd.com/27/ [xkcd.com]

        --
        The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
        • (Score: 1) by etherscythe on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:39PM

          by etherscythe (937) on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:39PM (#3816) Journal

          Let's turn it around and issue our own fatwa! It is now obligatory for all Muslims to have themselves cryogenically preserved after childbearing age, as any other lifestyle leads to premature death. The funding from this aught to push science forward nicely ;)

          --
          "Fake News: anything reported outside of my own personally chosen echo chamber"
    • (Score: 1) by JThundley on Saturday February 22 2014, @03:57AM

      by JThundley (1160) on Saturday February 22 2014, @03:57AM (#4673)

      Allah watched over them traveling on foot on the Earth. He can't watch over them on Mars. Wait, what?

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by cosurgi on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:20PM

    by cosurgi (272) on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:20PM (#3576) Journal

    If you are interested in Mars colonization, then you should check out my homepage: Colonize Mars [kozicki.pl]

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    #\ @ ? [adom.de] Colonize Mars [kozicki.pl]
    #
  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Angelwind on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:01PM

    by Angelwind (1439) on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:01PM (#3602)

    I wonder what they call the flu, or cancer, or other less "righteous" ways to die. At least going to Mars serves a purpose. Someone needs to go to put their hand in the alien device to terraform Mars.

    • (Score: 1) by mojo chan on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:27PM

      by mojo chan (266) on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:27PM (#3798)

      Death by disease is punishment from God. If you get cancer and die it is because you pissed him off somehow. Occasionally he created special diseases just for groups he particularly hates, such as AIDS for gay people. Disease is the manifestation of God's love.

      --
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      • (Score: 1) by Angelwind on Friday February 21 2014, @06:32PM

        by Angelwind (1439) on Friday February 21 2014, @06:32PM (#4448)

        This is why I bowed out of religions a long time ago. God's love is deadly.

  • (Score: 1) by TheloniousToady on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:51PM

    by TheloniousToady (820) on Thursday February 20 2014, @06:51PM (#3627)

    What if some infidels had already colonized there?...

    • (Score: 1) by Yog-Yogguth on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:35PM

      by Yog-Yogguth (1862) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:35PM (#3681) Journal

      Then they'll do a zergling swarm of course :|

      "Let There Be Light!" -- 'Bomb #20' in 'Dark Star'

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  • (Score: 3, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:20PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:20PM (#3670)

    ...General Authority declares being born is prohibited by islam, 'Such a one-way journey poses a real risk to life, and that can never be justified in Islam. There is a possibility that an individual who gets born may not be able to remain alive, and is more vulnerable to death.'

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Boxzy on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:25PM

    by Boxzy (742) on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:25PM (#3672) Journal

    I've never heard a really good reason why such personal choices are bad in the first place? Is it all just about control? Slavery to a deity? What exactly is it about the ultimate expression of self determination that religious and authoritarian types cannot stand?

    --
    Go green, Go Soylent.
    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Sir Garlon on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:50PM

      by Sir Garlon (1264) on Thursday February 20 2014, @08:50PM (#3686)

      Well, taking your question at face value, I think the answer varies a bit but boils down to the belief that everyone was put on earth by the deity for a purpose. You could call that "slavery to a deity" or you could call it a duty to your fellow man, to help others, to love your brother, and to help make the world a place worth living in.

      And if you reject that duty, religious teachings say, you're being a selfish asshole. ;-)

      --
      [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @09:36PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 20 2014, @09:36PM (#3737)

        And the answer givers are put on earth to condemn.

      • (Score: 2) by Sir Garlon on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:14PM

        by Sir Garlon (1264) on Thursday February 20 2014, @10:14PM (#3781)

        I should add that I do not believe a just God would literally damn somebody for one mistake, especially not one that by definition can't be undone. So I respectfully disagree with the fatwa in question (IANAM).

        --
        [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by KibiByte on Thursday February 20 2014, @11:30PM

    by KibiByte (1024) on Thursday February 20 2014, @11:30PM (#3871)

    Islam always was science friendly and always attributed understanding to Allah.

    This is a BS fatwa promulgated by an extremist council.

    But that's fine. We don't want extremists on a newly-colonized world.

    Though it would make it so much easier to eliminate them.

    --
    The One True Unit UID
  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by regift_of_the_gods on Friday February 21 2014, @03:40AM

    by regift_of_the_gods (138) on Friday February 21 2014, @03:40AM (#4048)

    Huff is a sociologist who spent much of his career studying the roots of modern science across several cultures, in particular Europe, China, and the Arab world. His latest book 'Intellectual Curiosity and the Scientific Revolution' has attracted some interesting reviews [irtiqa-blog.com]. Huff acknowledges that the Arabs and Chinese were at least as scientificially advanced as Europe as of the late Middle Ages, yet the Scientific Revolution occurred in Europe starting in the 16th century. He argues that Europe's institutions were more conducive to continuous scientific and technological advancement, compared with those of China and the Arab world.

    The linked blog article contains an interesting online dust-up between Huff and another historian George Saliba, who thought that Huff was a typically myopic Westerner short-changing the historical achievements of the Arabs and Chinese.

    I haven't read Huff's or Saliba's books. I recently came across a review of Huff's book in a two-year old issue of American Scientist that I had lying around (the reviewer there was fairly critical of Huff's work as well).