/ Jimmy's Corner: Mr. Moderate and Santa Claus!

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Wednesday, January 25, 2006 

Mr. Moderate and Santa Claus!

A young kid around 5 years old called the show and asked Sheikh Khaled a very smart question. "?Sheikh Khaled, is celebrating Christmas Haram (forbidden)?"?. Khaled'?s answer popped out my eye balls.
“You shouldn’t be celebrating Christmas. Instead of receiving gifts from Baba Noel (Santa Claus, Baba Noel literally means Father Noel) you should be receiving gifts from Baba Mohammed (Father Mohammed)” Khaled said. The Big Pharaoh
It was not a shock for me to hear Sheikh Khaled's answers as I never believed in him as a moderate preacher. Sheikh Khaled's answer just sums up how far misunderstanding of religion could reach. I believe that it is not the guy's fault to answer that way. Replying to Big Pharaoh I told him "the mistake is well beyond this mere fact that Khalid does not know Islam well himself. The mistake is there in training, educating and presenting the preachers. They are fed what to say and never told that one big Fiqh (the study of religion) rule is "Ijtehad" (which means reforming the rules according to situations). But miserably, in Islam there is even no rule that says that it is forbidden to celebrate Christmas (this tells u what this size of El Gendy's knowledge). He couldn't use the Ijtehad to understand that tolerance in Islam never makes such a celebration forbidden".

The interviewer himself was shocked with Khaled's answer and smartly replied "you drive a western car, wearing a western watch and a tie". Yet, Sheikh Khaled answered "Islam gave me no fashion magazine". Well, Khaled, Islam didn't tell you not to take presents from Santa Claus because it is not a Muslim celebration. Actually Khaled's answers show a great lack of knowledge and naivety, which seems to be the main characteristic of most of the current preachers, and is a direct result to the state of "misunderstanding and misinterpretation" that seems to be prevailing every now and then.

Two sides I noticed on the comments on the BP blog:
The positive one is that muslims who commented on the post heavily criticized Sheikh Khaled El Gendy and even went to calling him a hypocrate. The negative one is that some Catholics and Jews found Khaled's answers very logical as they just celebrate their feasts but be good to others... I am leaving you to analyse this!

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