The Mufti of Jordan came under fire after issuing a fatwa that permits Muslims to extend their condolences to non-Muslims as well as accept non-Muslims’ condolences.
Sheikh Abdul Karim Saleem Khasawneh, the highest religious authority in the kingdom, was roundly condemned for sanctioning a gesture that is seen by many as basic human courtesy.
Samy, a reader of the mass-circulation Ammonnews website, commented: “I thought the Mufti wanted to weigh in on the technological developments of the 21st century; about science, about medicine. Look at the world and look at us.”
Samkari chipped in: “Your Highness, man has landed on the moon – I mean, Mars – and what preoccupies us is whether non-Muslims should be comforted, whether a woman’s face should be veiled, and how long a man’s beard should be. This is why we are among the most backward nations when it comes to science, like discovering a new medicine or inventing a spaceship.”
“What have we come to… Now we need a fatwa on an issue that should be taken for granted,” said another.
The storm didn’t spare Twitter either. “Did you really think we’d wait for a fatwa to offer our condolences to non-Muslims????” wrote Nuthaila.
“Thank God, what shame, how low have we gone,” tweeted Omar.
“Even though it’s an excellent fatwa,” wrote Mohammed, “it reflects the shoddiness we’ve arrived at. Is a fatwa necessary to comfort our fellow humans, our brothers the Christian residents of the Kingdom?”
He added that the Mufti issued the fatwa after many followers turned to him, asking about a Christian musician who was killed in a car crash.
“In the past, if you wanted to meet extremists, you had to go to Tora Bora mountains in Afghanistan or to Raqqa in Syria,” Mohammed continued. “Today, there are so many extremists among us. Some wear suits and hold academic degrees. It’s about time the Jordanian Christian felt ideological and existential security in our society, and that the law intervened to put an end to all those who issue fatwas calling him a blasphemer.”