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Do Muslims Have A Right To Force Dietary Restrictions On Non-Muslims?

Throughout history states across the globe have run into both internal and external problems due to differences in religion, as well as religion practice. Sometimes these religion differences manifest in sects as small as communities and towns. It is places like this where the Muslim neighborhoods clash with neighboring towns who sacrifice livestock in ways they find unholy. The question becomes, who is in the right? Philosophy may not have the answers, but it can certainly open the door for discussion.

In the context of this chapter this discussion question most closely relates to the philosophical ideas of Protagoras, one of the most famous of all the Sophists. Born in northern Greece, Protagoras was best known for his cultural relativist viewpoint. It was not only his belief that values of individuals differ from culture to culture, but his implication that values cannot be accepted as one collective cultural background.

Following the philosophy of Protagoras, I would suggest that the Government of India give into the demands of the majority of their country and ban the slaughtering of livestock in their “unholy matter” to appease the masses. Protagoras would have believed this to be the most practical solution. As he believed cultures will always have differences.

Now, although this isn’t a philosophy that has been brought up in lecture yet. I disagree that Protagoras’ belief on the matter is necessarily the most just. I believe that Protagoras’s approach is a little too lenient towards the majority, rather than a freedom for all members of society.


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