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  •  December 23, 2012, 09:25 PM

    Below is the post that formed the inspiration for this video.

    The wording has been altered slightly in the video, but most of it is verbatim.

    Just sent the following to an old Muslim friend of mine, following his request that I call him to "talk." Thought I'd share:

    Honestly bro, the reason I haven't really kept on touch with people is because the whole episode rerun is getting quite old. If I didn't already know how the show is likely to end, I might be interested in watching it along with you, but based on my past experiences thus far, I'm pretty familiar with how it goes.

    First, we'll likely discuss the formation of the universe and why, based on scientific knowledge, I no longer believe that a deity is a necessary part of the equation. We'll probably talk about its complexity and the likelihood that everything could have formed on its own. At which point, I'll concede that even if I agree that there could have been some type of creative force, what evidence you have to identify that force with the particular deity you believe in? I'll then point out the inconsistencies between modern scientific knowledge and the knowledge of the author of the Qur'an. I'll note that the author of the Qur'an clearly had a view of the universe that was not incompatible with a geocentric one, and, indeed, gives us no indication that he had any idea to the contrary. I'll point out the silliness of verses that talk about stars being used as missiles to drive away devils, the absurdity of the idea that the sun prostates itself under Allah's throne at night, and the falsity of the claim that our tiny and relatively insignificant planet was created before the stars and heavens. We'll go back and forth on those points, until ultimately, you'll realize that you won't convince me and I'll realize that I won't convince you. We'll then probably move on to a different topic. Maybe ethics?

    I'll talk about how torturing flawed creatures eternally is, in my view, completely incompatible with any idea of mercy, particularly infinite mercy. I'll point out the irony that the only unforgivable sin in Islam, shirk, is one where no one at all is harmed (since Allah is not harmed by shirk.)

    I'll point out the moral and ethical problems presented by the policies Muhammad initiated, including:

    • preemptive warfare and the raiding of unarmed caravans,
    • attacking villages at dawn, murdering the men, and forcing the women into sexual slavery,
    • beheading the males of an entire tribe after examining the boys genitals for pubic hair and forcing their women into sexual slavery, all for the alleged transgressions of a limited number of them,
    • and, most disturbingly, entering into a life long, sacred union with a six year old child and having sexual intercourse with a nine year old child.

    I'll mention that if you believe that these things would be acceptable today, then we have a serious problem on our hands. And if you don't believe that these things are acceptable today, then you are proving my point that Muhammad was not a model for all humanity and that Islam is not God's applicable formula for all times.

    We'll then move on to new topic, maybe evolution. I won't really argue that point, I'll let you talk about your ideas on evolution. I would assume, given your knowledge and background, that you must accept some form of evolution by natural selection. I'll then let you explain why you believe that a supernatural addition to your evolutionary model is necessary and ask you what proof you have to support your claims. I'll then point out the inconsistencies between the Islamic narrative (Adam crated from clay at sixty cubits tall and hawa created from his rib) and the fossil record, DNA evidence, and scientific consensus. I'll hear your reasons for why you still insist on believing what you believe and ask you ultimately why any one else should be expected to come to the same conclusions that you have based on the evidence. I'll then ask you if it seems just, or even reasonable, that a wise and all merciful being would subject his creatures to grotesque sadistic torture for reaching different conclusions based on the evidence they have available to them.

    We'll then move on to a different subject, maybe the so called "scientific miracles" in the quran. I'll ask two simple questions:

    • Do the brief, vague, obscure descriptions in the quran really portray the complexity of the scientific knowledge that you claim they represent?
    • And, was there really no one before Muhammad's time who ever made similar observations?

    I will argue that the answer to both of those questions is a resounding no, and therefore, the claims are not miraculous at all.

    We'll them move on, perhaps, to all the plagiarized legends in the quran. I'll recommend that you don't take my word for it. Instead, do your own research into the heretical infancy gospels and the stories of Isa in the quran, or the legends of the Alexander romance and the story of thul qarnain, or the story of the people of the cave and the Syriac legend of the seven sleepers. Our the story of the cow in Surat Al baqarah and the strange passages in Deuteronomy 21 of the Jewish Bible. None of these copied legends strike me as revelation, or indeed, anything new.

    Maybe then I'll draw your attention to the striking similarities between Muhammad's biography and that of other delusional cult leaders. I'll recommend that you research the life of Joseph Smith, founder of the mormons. He too was uneducated and claimed to have revelations from an angel that replaced, completed, and superseded earlier revelations. He too command his followers to migrate to a colony he founded to escape persecution. He too was a radical polygamist who married many women with different reasons (excuses) to justify his marriages. He too sanctioned holy war to spread and defend his faith. Indeed, a comparison between the biographies of cult leaders like Muhammad, Joseph Smith, Jim Jones, and David Koresh reveal many striking similarities. I have to wonder why we so vehemently rebuke some cult leaders while passionately defending others.

    Once we realize that our conversations aren't going anywhere, I'll probably end up recommending a couple of books.

    • Misquoting Jesus
    • God's problem
    • God is not great
    • Why evolution is true
    • Understanding Muhammad
    • And my favorite - The God delusion.

    You'll end up praying for me, or cursing me, or both. I'll tell you to get back in touch with me after you've read the aforementioned books. You'll either refuse to read them and call me astray, or actually read them and go through a similar process I did.

    I'll also direct you to the YouTube channels of CEMB Admins and strangestdude.

    We'll agree to disagree and you'll be left with the dilemma of hating one of your best friends and believing he should be killed or... agreeing with him! ... Let me know how that goes.

    Come check out more videos, and and subscribe to the CEMB Admins Youtube channel. Smiley

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