Western stereotypes frequently cast Muslims as either "good" (quietist) or "bad" political, with Sufis wholly identified with the former camp, says Omid Safi. This dichotomy ignores a third group of Muslims: Those who, whether mystically inclined or not, want to neither destroy the world nor acquiesce to the wishes of the Empire, but rather seek to redeem the world by speaking truth to power.
Seeing the report today in the Times about church leaders in Camberley who have joined together to protest against plans for a mosque near the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst, I was reminded of a similar situation which was handled rather differently by a group of Christians in a rather more tense situation in Northern Ireland.
The Great Mosque in Paris and the French capital city’s Catholic university are getting together to offer non-religious university education for home-grown imams, so as to help integrate foreign-born Muslim leaders in France.
Clergy who usually wear dog collars in public are being advised by a safety group to take them off when they are on their own, to reduce the risk of being attacked. But others believe security consciousness should not undermine the character of Christian service.
West Midlands Police have reported Channel 4 TV to the media regulator Ofcom over the way an Undercover Mosque programme in its Dispatches series was edited - claiming that it was misleading and could harm community relations.