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CHAP. IV.]

DR. BADGER VERSUS HIMSELF.

231

finds that the name of the author is George Percy Badger. The reader may satisfy himself by looking at the first volume of a learned work on The Nestorians and their Rituals.' He will find all my references on the following pages :—34, 37, 48, 49, 57, 69, 75, 133, 303, 305, 329, 362, 371, 372, 382, 383. The work is out of print, I believe; and it is probable that very few of those who read Dr. Badger's letter on Islam and Christianity in the East ’ had the advantage of comparing the opinions there expressed with the author's previously published opinions on the same subject. Which, then, are we to believe ? the Dr. Badger of the Pall Mall Gazette, or the Dr. Badger of The Nestorians and their Rituals ? I believe the latter, because I find his opinions and facts supported by independent testimony, while the somewhat imperious dogmatism of Dr. Badger in the Pall Mall Gazette rests on no better authority than the shallow plagiarisms of an Oxford charlatan of the last century. I cannot help thinking, too, that Dr. Badger would have shown better taste if, in the enthusiasm of his fresh conversion, he had expressed less scorn for opinions which were so lately his own, and which have at least this much to recommend them—that they rest on solid and irrefutable facts.

CHAPTER V.

THE LITTLE RIFT WITHIN THE LUTE.

BEFORE advancing further in our argument, let us look back for a moment and see where we stand. The ends for which civilised governments exist I have summed up under four heads : namely, to afford security for life, security for honour, security for religious freedom, and security for property. I have proved by a mass of overwhelming evidence that the Turkish Government fulfils not one of these ends; which means, in fact, that it is a misnomer to call it a Government at all. I have then gone on to show that there are no elements in the case upon which it is possible to build any hopes of regeneration, and that the evil is consequently incurable. The next point in my argument is that the evil, though aggravated and crystallized in the Turk, is inherent in all Mussulman Governments, as proved by their most favourable specimens, namely, the rule of the Saracens in Sicily and Spain.

But I can imagine sanguine or prejudiced objectors saying: We admit your premisses so far. We will not deny that the Turkish Government is all that you have described it. Nor will we deny that the same symptoms, with whatever differences in detail, have been visible in all other Mussulman Governments. Still, and despite all these admissions, we cannot accept your

CHAP. V.]

ISLAM AN ANTI-HUMAN RELIGION.

233

conclusion, that the evil is incurable and regeneration hopeless. We hold to the truth of the proverb which warns us that while there's life there's hope.' In bodies politic as in human bodies we have instances of wonderful recoveries in defiance of the most skilful diagnosis, and therefore we do not yet despair of the recovery of the Sick Man at Constantinople. He has just made an unexpected display of vitality; there is evidently a reserve of latent force in him for which nobody gave him credit; we are disposed to think that the doctors have mistaken his case; and we believe that by means of careful nursing and a judicious application of non-irritating stimulants, the patient may be put on his legs again, and live to do good service to British interests.

I proceed now to show, therefore, that the case before us is not that of a man smitten with a disease of which the doctors have mistaken the nature; but rather that of a dipsomaniac or opium-eater who persists in imbibing the poison which paralyses his limbs and disorders his faculties. The poison of the Sick Man is Islam. Cure him of that, and I will grant that even the Turk may yet be reclaimed. But while he remains a Mussulman his case is quite hopeless. I do not affirm that under no condition whatever could a Mussulman Power discharge the functions of a civilized Government. There is one, and but one, condition under which that is possible. Given a population which is wholly Mussulman, it is possible for it under the Sacred Law of Islam to enjoy security in respect to life, honour, religion, and property. In such a case Islam is doubtless a great improvement upon pagan religions; though even then it binds the State that owns it in fetters which bar all progress beyond a certain

a

point. But it has this bad distinction among all the religions of the world, that it is the only one which is essentially and professedly anti-human. Islam is the only religion which declares a war of extermination against the whole non-Mussulman world—a war which is implacable and endless except in the case of those privileged religions whose members are allowed to ransom their lives on certain oppressive and degrading conditions.

But when a Mussulman people rules over a nonMussulman population it cannot possibly govern that population justly. It cannot give it equality before the law. It cannot mix with it. It cannot assimilate it or be assimilated. There is an eternal gulf between the two races which there is no possibility of filling up or bridging over except by burying Islam in it. The inevitable result of course is a state of chronic disaffection on the part of the subject population ; and when, as in Turkey, they form the majority, and are, moreover, superior to their rulers in intelligence, in education, in morals, and in capacity of development, it is only a question of time when they will throw off the yoke of the oppressor. They will not submit to it, and they ought not to submit to it, a moment longer than they find themselves in a condition to break it. A Mussulman Government ruling over a non-Mussulman population is thus always and by necessity in the cruel dilemma described by Livy: it can neither bear its vices nor their remedies.' It is obliged by an unchangeable constitution to refuse the simple necessaries of political life, and its only choice is between starvation and apoplexy.

The Turkish Government, like all Mussulman Governments, is strictly theocratic. It is based on the

CAAP. V.]

INSTITUTION OF THE ULEMA.

235

Koran, or rather on the authoritative interpretation of the Koran which is enbalmed for ever in the unrepealable dogmas of the Multéka. The Koran itself is bad enough; but it is not necessary to enter into any controversy as to its teaching. We are saved all trouble on that score by the Multéka, the doctrine of which is too clear and incisive to admit of any doubt. Let the reader refresh his memory by looking back on pp. 102-6, and let him remember that the Multéka is an authority binding on every Mussulman, from the Kalif to the beggar, and from which there is no appeal. It has always been the law of every State in which Islam has been supreme.

But the Turkish Government has absorbed into its system more thoroughly than any other Mussulman Government the principles and doctrines of the Multéka. And this it has done through the institution of the Ulema. For some time after Mahomet the Kalifs summed up in their own persons the functions of the pontiff, the lawgiver, and the judge. The Kalif recited the public prayers at the stated hours in the mosque; he made such changes in the civil law—the law of the Koran he could not alter--as he deemed expedient; and he heard complaints and administered justice in person. As the empire of Islam extended, the Kalifs found the discharge of all these offices too much for them, and they had recourse to a division of labours. The reading of the public prayers, except on special occasions, was discharged by deputy, and the administration of justice was gradually resigned into the hands of the Ulemas or authorised interpreters of the Koran. Theoretically Islam has no sacerdotal caste; practically it has a very strict one. Every Mussulman, for example, has in the abstract a right

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