The Outer Circle - Politics and Power

The third group of issues to consider are those that involve our 'Outer Circle'. Those people who have an influence over our lives but we are not in regular contact. Again there is a bit of an overlap with our Inner Circle and Personal issues - precisely because there is an influence.

Most of us, most of the time, leave this circle to get along by itself. For those of us in democratic societies, we have the opportunity to influence this circle ourselves in a small way. This group however has a huge influence in the other direction - it sets the framework for everyone's behaviour, by defining crime and punishment. It has huge resources and can use the media to influence the thought patterns of the majority of the population.

There is thus the opportunity for large-scale abuse of these powers. Again, we cannot possibly hope to cover this in depth here - just raise a few items for consideration in the context of Islam and Muslim communities.

An import item to discuss here is the issue of Islam (the religion) vs Islamism (political Islam).