Arab Schizophrenia. Is there a cure?


In an article titled “Arab Society and Schizophrenia,” Iraqi reformist Dr. Abd Al-Khaleq Hussein, who writes on several reformist websites, argues that Arab society suffers from “social schizophrenia,” – the symptoms of which are similar to those of individuals suffering from actual schizophrenia. He further argues that the Arab governments must immediately launch social and political reforms which will gradually lead to democracy in the Arab world. If significant reforms are not carried out, he says, disasters will continue to strike the Arab world, and democracy will ultimately be imposed upon it through violent upheavals, as occurred in Iraq. In the article, he also called upon the Arabs to accept the help offered to them by the West – and especially by the U. S. – with the aim of facilitating positive change that will permit them to integrate into the international community.

The following are excerpts from the article:

“Delusions of Grandeur”

“A [schizophrenia] patient believes that he is exceptional and that others should treat him as though he is an important person. The Arabs also believe that they are more important than others in every respect. They [believe that they] are the best among nations…, and regard other nations with contempt. They acknowledge no religion [but their own] and are unwilling to coexist peacefully with other religions. [They believe] that their faith is the only faith that mankind should embrace, and that whoever fails to embrace it is an infidel.

“In other words, all other religions are heathen, heretical and fabricated, and their followers should abandon them and embrace the Arabs’ religion – Islam. If they fail to embrace Islam, the Muslims are entitled to wage war upon them, to kill their men or convert them by force, to take their women hostage, to sell their children in the slave market and to plunder their property…

“This disparaging view applies not only to non-Muslims, but also to other schools of thought within Islam. Each Islamic school of thought is full of contempt and hostility towards the others. The Salafis and Wahhabis, for example, are convinced that the Shiites must be killed, and that whoever kills them will be rewarded in the world to come…

Keyword(s): Arab society

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