Sunday, September 16, 2007

What About Islam? (continued)

It is amazing how religion can convince a person that he or she is right, and that those who disagree are wrong.

Is the Bible or the Quran a miraculous book in which the writer knew scientific facts far before they were known to others? Previously "Honey" argued at my blog that the Bible was such a miracle book, and that all such miraculous claims for the Quran were false. Now we find Iesha arguing that the Quran is a miracle book of science and the Bible is wrong. How is it that each can be so sure that she is right and the other is wrong? Each can see the obvious flaws in the other's arguments for her book. Yet each seems unable to see the faults in her own arguments, which are quite similar. Such is the grip of religion.

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Monday, September 10, 2007

Debating Islam

Our discussion of Islam continues. Iesha had written to me and said, "write to me...all that you dislike about Islam...any 'mistake' in the quran." Iesha informed me that she would try to answer my objections. She wrote that when I get to know it, "You'll begin to love Islam." I wrote back, pointing out that the Quran sometimes encourages intolerance and evil acts. (I was not condemning all of Islam, nor was I condemning all Muslims. I was merely pointing out that I see that the Quran has faults, even as I point out that the Bible has faults.) Since the Quran approves of things that I consider unjust and intolerant, I do not love that book. Sure, there are good things in the book, but I find the intolerance unacceptable to my tastes.

After reading Iesha's later comments one might well ask if she ever really expected us to fall in love with the book, as opposed to following it out of fear of Allah. For fear seems to be the thrust of her latest posts, arguing that we need to be scared of Allah, lest he do horrible things to us.

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Saturday, September 08, 2007

"Peace be with you"

Iesha has posted a comment (here) concerning my "Branded on the Nose" entry. I address Iesha here.



I see you have bypassed most of my questions. No problem, I will simply ask again:. Once more:

Some believe the Bible but not the Quran. Some believe neither book. Do you think that they should have their skins burned off of them forever, continuously having fresh skin restored so it too can be burnt, further torturing those who came to a different conclusion from you?...If a person disbelieves the Quran for rational reasons, does that person deserve eternal torment?

I think it is evil to torture people for not believing something. What do you think? Please answer.

You write:

As-Salam u Alaikum

The words that I have cited above, most of you might not pronounce them correctly, these words are the ones which begin any conversation in the day to day life of a muslim be it formal or informal, be it the meeting with a friend or a business transaction.And what do these words mean?

Well according to how Islam has been branded, the ideal greeting should have been "death to the infidels" and things like that but these words actually mean:"Peace b upon u" And it is quite well known that even during the Prophet's time the Muslims used to openly greet even Non muslims with the same greeting.

Thats not all, after each of the five prayers a Muslim turns his face to the wright and left and says "Peace be upon u" meaning to send peace all around. Further among the many suplications one is "O lord!u r the peace and frm u is the peace, guide me to peace and make me enter the doors of peace" Further whenever a Muslim makes mention of nay of the Prophets of Islam, be it Moses or Jesus or any of the Biblical Prophets it is OBLIGATORY to say Peace b upon Him.

Now you tell me is this the way that an intolerant and fanatic religion tells its folllowers to behave in their daily life? How many times do u even use the word PEACE in your daily life?

Excuse me, but I have never said that Islam is an intolerant and fanatic religion. Those are your words, not mine. Please do not pretend I am saying something that I am not saying. That will get us nowhere. I have already explained to you that I have no objection to you finding comfort in Islam. You can certainly find good in Islam, and you are welcome to enjoy its culture. That is not the issue.

The problem is that you are trying to convince me that the Quran is infallible. It is this claim that I disagree with. I can see that the Quran is filled with mistakes, as I have explained to you in my previous post.

You mention that you greet people with "Peace be upon you." That is a good way to greet people. Your culture has good sayings. My culture has good sayings. This is not the issue. The issue is whether or not a certain book is perfect. Could I ask you to please stick with the issue?

And no Iwill not agree agree with u that there are mistakes in the Quran, NOT UNTILL MY LAST BREATH! Because Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him has said; "A true Muslim is He who holds firmly to his faith even if he is threatened, even if he is tied between two walls and his body is sawed into two, even if all his flesh is scrapped off bit by bit, still he should remain true 2 islam" This is my unshakable faith1 And u cant be so bad to me can u?

How do you know you will not change your mind before your last breath? What if you find new evidence before your last breath? Will you change your mind if you find new evidence that clearly shows you are wrong? A person that will not change his mind even if he is presented with clear evidence is a closed-minded person. Are you a closed-minded person?

If you try to argue that you know there cannot possibly be evidence against your beliefs, then I will ask you how you know that. Surely you do not know everything, do you? Well, if you do not know everything, how could you be absolutely certain that within the vast body of knowledge in the universe, there is not some evidence that proves you are mistaken about religion?

And so if we cannot be absolutely sure we know everything pertinent to the question, and if you do not claim to be closed-minded, then you must admit that you might someday find new evidence that will change your mind about the Quran. So is your statement above false? Is it possible that some day you may change your mind?

And no, of course I would not threaten someone and tie them between two walls and scrape the flesh off them so that they would believe what I believe. How can you possibly ask if I would be so bad? I wouldn't think of doing that. As I explained before, I believe in using the pen, not the sword, to spread my ideas.

Now, to begin with the thing i find wrong with merle's interpretation is that where ever there is a sentence like "WE shall punish them.... "WE shall brand them on their noses...WE shall burn them...", MERLE resorts to asking me and muslims in general "Why do U want 2 burn me? or Why do U want burning water 2 b poured over me" And he says "Should I be scared of u?"

WHEN DID I SAY THAT? THE QURAN SAYS THAT NOT ME WELL WELL... Just to remind our very intelligent friend, here the WE refers to GOD not Muslims, the punishment that is being refered to is the one which will be given in the hereafter, and yes it does expect u to be fearful but not of me or anyother Muslim, it expects u to fear Allah, who is as Jesus says "MY LORD AND UR LORD".

Excuse me, but did you notice that I never asked the three questions that you listed here (although the last question is close to something I asked). Why do you make up questions and pretend I asked them? Why not answer the questions that I actually asked instead of making up questions and pretending that I asked them? Wouldn't it be more meaningful if you actually answer the questions I ask, rather than make up questions and pretend I was asking those?

You say that it is God, not Muslims, that are doing the acts here. But the verses I quoted often referred to people doing the acts, not just God. For istance, Quran 9:123 says "O ye who believe! Fight those of the disbelievers who are near to you, and let them find harshness in you, and know that Allah is with those who keep their duty (unto Him)." I quoted that verse to you before. It clearly refers to people doing those acts. Do you agree with me that this verses recommends that people do evil acts? Or do you think it is right to harshly fight unbelievers?

If someone harshly fights others, what good is it to say "Peace be upon you" while harshly fighting the person being greeted? Would not that be decptive?

And how can you interpret the word "we" in the Quran to mean God? The word "we" appears to refer to Muhammed and his followers. Look at the first chapter of the Quran:

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful. Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, The Beneficent, the Merciful. Master of the Day of Judgment, Thee (alone) we worship; Thee (alone) we ask for help. Show us the straight path,

Who does "we" refer to in this passage? Who is talking here? Clearly it is a man talking about Allah. The word "we" refers to people who worship Allah, who ask Allah for help, and who need to be shown a straight path. Likewise, in the verses I quoted previoulsy, "we" seems to refer to people. If it refers to God, how do you know that? Doesn't a book need to clearly define what it means before it uses a pronoun? If the word "we" does not mean the obvious--Muhammed and
his followers--where does the Quran state that "we" doesn't mean that? How can one arbritraly assign a meaning to the word "we", when there is nothing within the context of that book that makes that meaning obvious?

But even if "we" refers to God, how do you explain the fact that the "we" are doing things that most of us regard as evil, such as continuously torturing people because they don't believe what "we" think they should believe?

You can see for ur self in various places the Quran has harsh things to say to THOSE WHO BURRY GOLD AND SILVER, THOSE WHO STEAL THE ORPHANS PROPERTY,THOSE WHO FROWN AT THE GIRL CHILDA BIRTH, THOSE WHO LIE etc.

Many good books teach good morals. There are verses in the Quran that teach good morals. Great! But what about the verses that praise things that many people consider to be evil?

The basic declaration of Faith or EMAN in Islam is :"I believe in Allah and his books and his Prophets and his angels and in the day of judgement and in Destiny"

I find no evidence that the Quran is written by God, therefore I don't believe it. Do you think I deserve to be tortured for all eternity, because I carefully examined the data, and have reached a different conclusion from you?