"Most of us are perfectly capable of making distinctions within the
Christian world. The fact that someone is a Boston Roman Catholic
doesn’t mean he’s in league with Irish Republican Army bomb makers, just
as not all Orthodox Christians have ties to Serbian war criminals or
Southern Baptists to the murderers of abortion doctors.
Yet many of our leaders have a tendency to see the Islamic world as a single, terrifying monolith."
"Few in the U.S. or Europe remember that a devastating Taliban attack occurred last spring at the shrine of the 17th-century poet-saint Rahman Baba, at the foot of the Khyber Pass in northwest Pakistan. For centuries, the complex has been a place for musicians and poets to gather, and Rahman Baba’s Sufi verses had long made him the national poet of the Pashtuns living on both sides of the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. “I am a lover, and I deal in love,” wrote the saint. “Sow flowers,/ so your surroundings become a garden./ Don’t sow thorns; for they will prick your feet./ We are all one body./ Whoever tortures another, wounds himself.”