Saturday, May 6, 2017

The Emasculated Muslim (Toxic Masculinity & Terrorism)

After every Islamist terror attack, there is a lot of analysis into motives and lots of discussion about who or what in particular is to blame. There is a natural inclination to say that the actions of people that say they are religiously motivated can be blamed on that religion. It seems like quite a solid argument.

But there is a critique of this analysis that points out a bizarre trend - that these terrorists murdering for the sake of Islam are not really great at Islamic history or theology. Some of the attackers have a rudimentary understanding of their religion at best. Therefore placing blame on Islam is an explanation that is found wanting.

Let's explore a different angle. That is, that all Islamist terrorism is the fault of misplaced machismo, broken masculinity, emasculation. This is a narrative that was taken seriously by several publications after the shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando. (... 3 & 4)

Assume for a moment that one is a young male with a background that can be traced to one of many "muslim" cultures or with a present exposure to "Islamic" ideals.

What does masculinity mean to this person? If we assume that men need various forms of validation, then we can look at each dimension of the masculine problem. Each dimension is an expression of a masculine need or identity that may compete with a theological explanation.


As demonstrated by Euro 2016 and much of history, national pride is a typical go-to for an undeserved sense of self and excuse for violence. Unfortunately, nationalism is a spirit that excludes many muslim men living in the west - for they've been educated to believe that American and European nations are exploitative, valueless, colonialist nations that have sullied the once-great muslim world.

Yet having complaints about the west means nothing if one does not have a great national identity to attach oneself. This is when the promise of nationalism breaks down for young muslim males - there is nothing much to be proud of. An 'Islamic state' is basically synonymous with a 'failed state'. The state is seen as a variation of disaster, a departure of what could be - over and above what the evil westerners have done.

The exception to this rule is perhaps Turkey and Iran. Turkish and Iranian national identities seem to be intact in that they seem themselves as vastly superior to their nearest neighbours. Sectarian explanations aside, this could be a contributing factor to why the jihadis the west is dealing with usually not born in Istanbul or Tehran. It appears from a distance that Turk and Persian men are more wed to their respective nationalist causes than the broader "ummah" that seeks to live out the fantasy of an Arabic-speaking god.

For the rest of the muslim brothers, it's less likely nationalism will allow one to expend much pent-up masculine energy.


Europe has football. America has "football". These are only two of the choices available that allow the men of western world to form tribes and obsessively track their progress against an enemy in a completely pointless war. Sport does not have many barriers to entry, does not require much thought, and supplies enough depth to invest a lifetime of effort.

What sport is owned by the muslim male? South Korea has more Olympic medals than every muslim nation combined. (And would also dominate in a round of StarCraft) The national battle that comes close to being interesting is how frequently Pakistan manages to lose a cricket match, a useful distraction from the fact that was the largest country that was net zero in Rio.

There are many muslims that do excel in several sports. However it also turns out that nearly all of the celebrated success stories are those of African Americans - even in the most obscure of sports do not happen to create role models for young South Asian and Arab men that may not culturally identify with the black community. It turns out muslims do not actually exist in a post-racial fantasy world, and the muslim community harbours its own anti-black sentiments that is a complicated subject in its own right.

The simple fact is that young muslim men have slightly fewer reasons to turn on the television on Saturday night and live vicariously through some jersey clad hero.

Art and Music

Often testosterone-fueled passion is consumed by one's desire to create a substantial work of art. To make a cultural contribution that everyone enjoys.

Of course, for muslim men living in the west, this poses the following dilemmas directly related to religious ideals:
  • Music is regarded as haram
  • Commercial animation is largely sacrilegious comedy 
  • Modern art is a clique of the impoverished when it isn't entirely pointless
Take for example that in the western world, the most famous "muslim" rapper happens to sell a brand of vodka, the most well known muslim songwriter is a British dude nearing his 70th birthday, and the remaining man to carry the banner is a member of One Direction. 


Perhaps the greatest thing about a capitalist society is that it keeps all the sociopaths busy. And when there is not sociopathy, there is good old fashioned male competition that helps keep all the startups buzzing. Whether it is due to privileged opportunity or natural inclination, business is a man's world. 

Yet it is a world that largely excludes muslims. Indeed, there are many wealthy muslim nations, but their riches are not generally sourced in entrepreneurship. Muslims are not excluded due to 'systemic bias', but something far more sinister - religious dogma. 

How much financial success can be expected if paying & collecting interest on money is forbidden by one's faith? How does networking happen if one can't be found socializing over a beer with the infidels? What does one do without a student loan, an auto loan, a home loan or even a credit card?

The muslim community has a very fundamental problem due to theology, and a long list of practical problems due to a longstanding distaste for dealing with potential partners that Islam judges harshly. The result is men are underemployed if not unemployed, do not receive mentoring and do not have a means to achieve success in modern life that allows wealth acquired amorally to be displayed ostentatiously.


Islam in many respects is the ultimate sexual fantasy made for men. Four wives, many kids. Women covered up as shrouded gifts to be found, traded, prodded at like Pokémon. What more could a man want?

However the reality is that muslim men do not have an opportunity to truly live Muhammad's wet dream. What is promised as boobies under burqas turns out to be blue balls with blood relatives. Nobody but sleazy desert kings actually get to be the polygamous players -- the vast majority of faithful muslim men are doomed to have a single sexual conquest in their entire lives. To make things even worse, it happens that this conquest is very likely to be a first cousin or other relative. Estimates of cousin marriage in Saudi Arabia is about 40% and holding, rates in Pakistan may be even higher

The situation is even better in Egypt and Somalia, where not only may one be married to a cousin, but both sexes are likely to have been subjected to genital cutting as an infant! Nothing makes sex quite as hot as unnecessary surgery.

More Cuck Than Kaaba, More Beta than Burāq 

Looking at how much pent-up masculine rage the would-be 'radicalized' muslim men have, one can conclude that all terrorism is the result of toxic masculinity. Toxic masculinity ties together the IRA, the OK City Bombing, the ETA, Tamil Tigers, al-Qaeda & ISIS under the same diagnosis. "It's not religion -- it's men being bad men."

The only confusion is that this explanation is entirely circular, as religion is toxic masculinity. Religion is toxic masculinity written down. Scripture is like Playboy, if Playboy had no images and was entirely guest edited by fragile homicidal narcissists. 

Islam is a live-action roleplay without the exercise, a creative anachronism without the creativity. Some hobbies are healthier than others. When you suffer, superstition ain't the way.


  1. Isn't there a lot of Femininity about this also? The submission, the love of the perfect man (who happens to be a great warrior, not a meek and mild Lamb), the slinky sensual call to prayer (no lusty hymn singing), the men-only public spaces (like British public schools surely full of displaced sexual energies, and fagging).

    Sublimated sex is, as you say, a driver of culture, which was deeper and stronger when youngsters were inducted into it before they really got started on sex. But if there's no cultural world to conquer, and the theological world is to be met only as a passive partner, and no actual girl to win, what's a boy to do? Conquer the infidels in order to sell them fried chicken? He has to care for his masculinity without being able to exercise or develop it.

    Where are the modern Muslim mathematicians and astronomers and programmers? How many muslims are gay? How popular is bodybuilding?

  2. I've had a similar thought in my mind since reading the memoirs of Maajid Nawaz and Ed Husain a few years back. I think (with no research to back me up) most teenagers go through some degree of alienation/disaffection, but as you point out, westerners have many outlets to channel and overcome these feelings.

    In these books, both of these men make the point that the extremist rhetoric seduced them by, in effect, telling them they deserved power over their oppressors. God willed it, and so they needed to fight, conquer, and reign. In Muhammad, they find the perfect storm of both toxic masculinity and emasculated alienation: a war-mongering sex fiend whose lifetime arc was about building up numbers and plotting revenge against the Meccan elites who kicked him out for being super annoying.

    Everything is built, from the ground up, on that persecution narrative. Of course betas would respond positively to this, and appreciate the message that they are right to get their jollies by gaining power over those they see as dominating them. It's similar psychology to Elliot Rodger taking heart from PUA forums and trying to exert dominance over womankind... But it's a much more destructive form of this psychology. Fourteen hundred years of tradition and culture built around a dumb prophet and an even dumber book means those alienated betas looking for "confirmation bias" that they deserve power take it a wee bit more seriously than Mystery's acolytes.

  3. Only 1 sexual conquest in their life?
    Many fellow incels would love such a deal.
    In truth, the Whole responibility belongs to the womyn and grrlz who reject them.

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