I have just finished reading Irshad Manji’s The Trouble with Islam Today: A Muslim’s Call for Reform in Her Faith. It is an impassioned plea by Muslim believer for the reform of a religion she describes as being frozen and archaic. Although I can agree with most of what she says I feel that in contrasting her religion with Judaism and Christianity she tends to let the other religions off lightly. While scriptural literalism and the dead hand of the religious hierarchy are clearly more extreme in Islam, they still exert an influence in the other two religions.
However, the book does raise issues for non-Muslims, particularly with respect to how societies like ours deal with issues of religious diversity and tolerance.
Manji advocates an “operation Ijtihad”, a return to a Muslim tradition of independent reasoning similar to the situation between 750 and 1250 CE. I fervently hope she has some success in this.
For more information go to Manji’s official website Muslim-Refusenik