SOME BASIC POINTS ABOUT RELIGION ISLAM (part one)
1) Before one could really understand islam one must separate personal faith from organised religion and know the fact that organised religions was invented by the rich and powerful and always used to exploit the destitute masses. One must also realise the function of human brain, senses and body. It is of vital importance to realise how brain imports information about the external environment in which it exists and how it uses body to manipulate it or to interact with it. Human beings are material beings and they only sense or experience material things and only manipulate material things. We express ourselves by way of material things and we sense what others express by way of material things. Our experiences are stored in our memory cells as material values just as we store data in the computers as physical values. All our ideas in our brains are represented as physical values moving about inside the brain between its different parts as signals for processing and storage, for example. All our pleasures and pains are represented by actual physical values. So people who think we are a mix of physical and nonphysical are wrong in my views but only time will tell ie when methods and systems have been invented to prove all this. What people do when they cannot observe something or cannot explain something is that they just throw up silly ideas and explanations about them and derail the whole thing. It is therefore important to not to lose the sight of science or reality of this world. Since our existence is entirely physical therefore our science or true knowledge is also about the things that are there and not about things that are mere figment of our imagination.
So please remember, not to muddle up the scriptures and science. Study scriptures independent of science and get a sense they give and study the universe and the things in it independent of scriptures and see the sense they give you. Finally test one against the other ie match them. That is science. Not that you keep on changing what the scriptures say to make them according to what we observe. That will be cheating. The investigation method used by police is quite simple. Gather statements of alleged witnesses to the crime independently and gather physical evidences about the crime scene independently and then see whether they match or they do not. The true witness statement should be able to explain the event and the self evident facts involved in it logically perfectly. You do not get statements of the alleged witnesses and create the crime scene yourself as you go along according to the statements of the witnesses or the other way round. Crime scene investigation is about collecting all the possible physical evidences at the time and then assuming how the crime might have taken place. The flaws in the investigation begin to become obvious as the case builds up and further investigations are carried out to fill the gaps. In case of scriptures and science things are even simpler. The alleged divine testimony is there for all to see and the scientific observations about the universe and things in it are also there for all to see. To match the two you must compare their main structures and then the rest of their detail but only if the main structures match. Now the questions, does it work? No. Should it work? No. Why not? I need to explain quite a bit more so that one could understand my answers to such questions.
2) As for the arguments. My arguments exclude all those who have faith in faith regardless whatever their faith. If you have faith in faith then you do not and cannot have faith based on proof, for faith and proof in this context are opposite of each other, so if you have one, you cannot have the other. You reject one to affirm the other. By rejecting faith based on proof you are also accepting the fact that anyone has the right to believe whatever one decides to believe for oneself and none has the right to take that away from him unless one changes oneâ€™s mind oneself. In that case one does not have to prove anything to anyone, for faith is oneâ€™s personal thing and so no one has any need to disprove anything. As for the proof, in a criminal case for example, an ordinary proof uses statement of an ordinary witness, which logically links ordinary physical evidences to connect the criminal to the crime whereas faith is something taken for granted and is beyond such scrutiny. In other words if I believe black is white then that is totally my business and of no one elseâ€™s unless I make it someone elseâ€™s business buy getting into somebody elseâ€™s space. If that happens then it is no longer a matter of personal faith but a matter of interaction. In such situations when one person does something it affects others and thereby the matter becomes their business as well. This is where questions start arising and proofs become necessary to justify what one believes and practices. This is where rules become necessary so that we all could exist in peace with each other according to some sort of agreed boundaries. This also makes it necessary that each and everyone of us has his or her own space that no one can be allowed to intrude or invade. When people invent and organise a religion for some purpose of their own and so they propagate it, they try and indoctrinate others for their own ends using their own methods, ways and means. The religion therefore lends itself to be the target for severe criticism and scrutiny etc.
As an atheist I obviously do not claim to be a god or a prophet nor a believer in any such claim or its promoter. A muslim claims daily at least fives times that he is a witness that there is no ILAH=god but Allah=the god and that Muhammad is his messenger. In order to prove this claim a muslim needs to come up with proof. The way of proving and prove it as well. Before a muslim could come up with the proof, he must realise the nature of his claim, for nature of proof needs to be consistent with the nature of the claim ie nature of claim decides what sort of proof will satisfy the claim. He needs to realise that the way of proving the claim needs to be consistent with the nature of claim and the nature of the proof. Not only that but he must also realise the fact that his proving of his claim needs to be consistent with the nature of claim, the nature of proof and the nature of the way of proving his claim. In order for any of this to work he must begin with definition of the proof. Once definition of the proof is given by someone who believes I need to scrutinize the definition to see if it serves the purpose or not. If it does discussion proceeds or else not. If the definition of the proof is satisfactory then one can put forth the proof and that will be examined to see if the proof is consistent with the definition of the proof or not. If not proof is void but if it is then we proceed further. Next we need definition of the way whereby the proof is supposed to prove the claim. The way of proving then needs to be defined and scrutinized to see if it serves its purpose or not. If it does then the proof will be examined to see if it proves itself according to the defined way of proving or not. If not, the proof will be ignored but if it does then proving process begins for the rest of the whole case. Now we are interested in the case itself ie what the whole thing is allegedly all about and whether it is true or false. This is where real arguments come in about the case. I hope this will clarify the way I look at things in this discussion. Remember these are only foundation rules, which one has to follow in this discussion.
3) Is it possible to prove any organised religion true beyond a shadow of doubt? The answer is, no. It is not possible to prove any organised religion true. Why not? Because religion has to be either true or false and there is no in between or gray area. Proof and proving in this matter involves an actual testimony of an actual witness, rationality, logic and other physical evidences which are not there to begin with. Moreover, science is all about observation of the physical, observation based hypothesis about the physical and the verification of the hypothesis about the physical. One must also remember that due to possibility of various kinds of errors there is no absolute certainty even in scientific method therefore to claim that organised religion can be proven true by means of science is nothing less then figment of claimantâ€™s imagination. Let me explain it a bit. Let say that we have proven a person criminal in a court of law. Possibilities are; may be we have charged the wrong person, may be we have arrested the wrong person, maybe we have failed to collect the evidence properly, maybe we have misinterpreted the evidence, may be we have false witness, may be we have misjudged the case. So even after we have reached a decision the doubt remains that the convicted person may be innocent in reality. Miscarriage of justice is always possible even by people who are expert at their jobs even if we leave out conflicts of interest and thereby corruption and contamination. Human error can never be ruled out or eliminated. So our proof and proving cannot be relied upon as something perfect beyond question therefore it would be wrong for god to create us ignorant, vulnerable, unsuitable for his purpose and yet command us to make judgements as regard things of which we have no real knowledge or to take actions of which we are incapable in reality.
Another problem we have is that knowledge is not easy to gain, please think of billions of illiterate and uneducated people in the world and their plight or the reasons behind it. Besides conflicts of interest, there are not enough schools, equipment or teachers in the world to get rid of ignorance, for all these things need human effort in every sense to be brought about. If our parents gave us birth and left us to fend for ourselves, what would we be able to establish from scratch? The same is true about our existence in this world. Even if we accept that some god created us yet he abandoned us. Would it be sensible for any parents to leave their children completely on their own without any knowledge how they should fulfil their needs? We are indoctrinated mercilessly right from the day we are born that god is all knowing, fair, so nice and so loving etc etc, does this act of god fit the profile of this god? I will talk about that elsewhere as well but remember the natural disasters and food chain etc. Back to education, yes, even those who try hard to get educated some of them still fail their exams. This is the reality of our real world. Now what use is an encyclopedia for a baby who is not only illiterate but ignorant as well? That is what missionaries asks us to believe ie god has given them a message for us to believe and live by. It is therefore not right to go down this road. If one still wants to be a missionary and believes in proving organised religion divine then we will have to go through various other arguments as well that are against such an objective.
Although I have touched on other thing as well but purpose of my this argument is to prove beyond even a shadow of doubt that faith in god is impossible through scientific proof or proving. Faith is only a matter of faith and being that it is a matter for individual to decide for oneself. No missionary has any business in what anyone believes or does not believe. Whatever one finds helpful to believe and practice that should be left to oneself. The idea is that if you think that something works for you then that is fine ie if you assume that there is a god and whenever to pray to him for anything it happens then that is fine, so long as you do not make bad things happen to others in the name of that god. Anyone could be superstitious and people could grow out of it with a bit of knowledge. However, those who have an interest in keeping others down would oppose tooth and nail to keep that knowledge away from others. Organised religion is wrong in the sense that it inherently tends to impose superstition on others. Its follower is a missionary by definition whose sole purpose is to bring as many people into the flock as possible for himself or his master by way of false propaganda. These people try their best to show you that grass is greener on the other side of the fence but once you get there then trap shuts and you are locked in. This is how one can distinguish between two different kinds of faithful people. So it is alright to be superstitious oneself but it is not right for others to impose their branch of superstition upon you.
No doubt that good people love others and respect others but bad people only and only want to control and dominate others so that they could somehow exploit them for their own ends. None should be in doubt as to what hindus did to lower caste hindus and women or what they did to nonhindus to date being the followers of oldest religion in the world. Likewise the history of christians is full of atrocities against each other as well as people of other religions. They did not treat their women any better. Muslims spring from the same root and they did the same things. It is therefore beyond any argument as I see it that organised religion for as long as we have known it has done every wrong to humanity that it could but something always good came out of the bad as well. For example, due to fights between ourselves, we have invented new way of attacking and defending which led to all kinds of developments. For example, war wounded needed to be saved so efforts were made to cure illnesses. All this because when people have problems they try to solve them. Organised religion was always bad and I do not believe even for a second that you can change a leopard by changing its spots. If you are interested in proofs, please search for links to organisations of various religions and sects and seek information of them about their opponents. Hindu missionary websites are really good for providing information against christian or muslim etc etc missionaries and christian missionary websites are great for providing information about hindu and muslim missionaries. Likewise you can find information about the rest from the islamic missionary sites. If your general knowledge is already good, probably you already know what is going on in the world and why, in that case you are not bothered for any further proof, for what I have stated here as facts are facts. You may disagree with my reasoning or grouping of things but that is alright there is nothing wrong with looking at same thing in many different ways. In fact that is what hypothesis is all about ie you try and raise different explanations for an event and test them out to see which of them is actually true. Back to what I was saying that purpose of my this article is to show that as I understand it, it is impossible to prove religion true by way of any kind of proof or way of proving. Definition of proof and of way of proving is impossible. When all this is impossible, I do not see how one can prove any religion true beyond a shadow of doubt. Remember, you can never prove any certainty by ways and means that are doubtful themselves.
4) Does Allah require of us to believe in HIM? The answer of this question needs answers of a lot more other questions. For example, does Allah really exist? Has he created this universe and things in it and their beliefs and actions? A missionary will tell us, yes he did all this. What a missionary does not realise is the fact that this universe and things in it have no capability whatsoever to be proof of godâ€™s existence or his actions. This universe and all things therein are all short of perfection. If Allah is immaterial being, how can he affect material things or vice versa? Because only such things as are similar in their makeup in some way can affect each other? Even if we accept such a link yet if Allah is perfect then how can one explain existence of imperfections in the universe? Is this universe perfect or is it that it is a compromise between the ideal and the practically possible? Remember, perfection can only beget perfection or only imperfection can beget imperfection. Why is it that we cannot prove existence of god beyond doubt? Is it our fault or is it that this is the way the things are? If this is the way the things are then they are not fit for the purpose they have been supposedly assigned and that makes them imperfect. For example, if I design a system for a purpose but it fails to work then obviously there is something wrong here, no ifs and buts. Even if God wanted to remain hidden from his creation, at least he could have created a perfect way for proving his existence to prove to us that he does exist. The proof is doubtful, the way of proving is doubtful and the actual proving is also doubtful yet the missionary demands that I must believe in god or I am as good as worse than all the lowest forms of life, according to his god?
There are various religions with different holy scriptures of their own likewise Islam too has quran, hadith, fiqh and various other religious writings eg tafaseer of quran, sharahs of hadith and fiqh, and biographies of the prophet as well as islamic history etc etc. Each religion is divided into different sects. These sects came about because the scriptural texts are disputed between themselves ie they argue between themselves as to what text is scripture and what is not. Sectism is also result of different interpretations of the very same scripture or text ie different people who claim to follow a scripture understand the scripture differently. The question is why? The answer we may get from the missionary is that people have their own self interests. This answer does not give the full picture ie the scripture itself is imperfect as well as people who read it. Why? Because it is written in human language and all human languages are creation of humans themselves and they are all imperfect. We humans are born illiterate and ignorant and when we learn we can only learn whatever is possible for us to learn under natural circumstances in which we are born and live. This means our life experiences are naturally different and so people not only know different things from each other but also they know them to different degree. So when we are given a particular text to read we interpret it according to our individual understanding. Whose fault is that, ours or godâ€™s? Is it fair of god to create this sort of situation for us at every twist and turn in our lives yet expect that we must believe in him without doubt? I can understand a father hiding from his baby showing the baby the way to find him but that is not the situation here, is it? This god is hiding from us in such a way that we have not found any way to discover him so what kind of god this may be? Real or imaginary? Of course imaginary, for we have not found any proof that he ever existed nor have we any proof that he ever told us, he was going in hiding. If god hides himself from us then the implication is that it would be impossible for us to find him out or prove his existence, for if we did that then god would have failed in keeping himself hidden from us and we would have won from god because despite his to hide from us, we have found him out.
This imaginary god of missionaries, for whom they kill others and die for, expects of us impossible, does he not? Do not get me wrong, I do not blame god for wars I am conscious of conflicts of interests but the concept of god cannot escape the blame ie it is the mechanism whereby one people exploit the others and I hope to talk about it later as well if I still remember that is. Anyway at what stage a test is not a test? Our missionary brothers and sisters keep on telling us that god is testing us. Each time there is a gap between perfection of god, his purpose and the realities of this world, they try to explain it away that it is because we are on trial. Just as god is hiding in our imagination so he has put us on trial in our imagination, for this trial has no limits whatsoever. The holy book says, Allah does not burden anyone beyond ones capability but who is in a better position to decide whether a burden is beyond oneâ€™s capability or not? Is it the one bears the burden or the one who has placed the burden on him? Or is it another trick of the trade by the masters on their slaves in the game of exploitation in the name of god? By this trick a master can make his slave work as hard as possible for his master and let him blame god for his suffering so to speak, which he is not going to do, for he is told to accept all this in the name of god and reward in hereafter. It was this idea that religious leaders once upon a time were against industrial strikes by workersâ€˜ unions. Disabled people were told, they are part of trial. Could this imaginary god not create a better way for putting people on trial ie why he has to be so cruel beyond belief, not only to humans but to all living things? We cannot explain away all faults in the scriptures just by blaming ourselves, can we? So far I have not touched upon actual faults that exist in the scriptures, for I am only trying to explain my way of looking at things to help you understand why I am not a theist or why I do not expect any revelation from any god anywhere at all. I mean no disrespect to anyone nor to anyoneâ€™s faith. My discussion is all about you educate me about your reasons for believing and I will try and educate you about my reasons for being an atheist. The idea is that if your reasons are able to convince me then I will join you and if my reasons convince you then you join me or if we fail to convince each other then we remain where we are, for we agreed to disagree in a civilised way. Now even if there is a god and that he is perfect, yet our languages are not perfect, we humans are not perfect to follow any perfect message perfectly then what is the point of all this carry on? Remember! a chain is as perfect as its each and every link eg a chain is as strong as its weakest link.
Our rationality and logic comes from god, we are told by missionaries. Even so, it is not perfect for proving existence of god. For we are told by missionaries that he is perfect, how do they know that for sure? Did they talk to god or is it even possible for us human beings to do that? If yes, I need proof. Is it that God decided to talk to them or is that even possible? If yes, I need proof. Claiming such a thing is one thing but proving it beyond a shadow of doubt quite another. The real question is, is it even possible to prove existence of god never mind believe in him? The answer so far as I know is, no. If god is infinite then he is not finite and therefore cannot be defined or described in any way. As for humans, they cannot understand anything beyond their own experience and billions of us donâ€™t understand even that. Is everyone of us everywhere a great scientist? No. Is everyone of us highly educated in every discipline there is? No. How many of us are even graduates to a basic degree qualification out of several billion people today? Making strange claims, makes it even more absurd for a silly little human being. If god ought to be perfect and all knowing then he ought to know better that he cannot prove his existence by going against common experience and common knowledge of human beings. How do we categorize such people as make claims that are beyond belief? We think, there is something wrong with them ie mentally they are not right.
So as I said before religion is a matter of faith in faith in superstitious sense and is a personal choice. If it is made a matter of public concern then it becomes a problem and so people will tend to get rid of it for people always run away from a problem. Organised religion in my opinion has no future whatsoever. It has been driven out not only in Europe but also in Asia and elsewhere as well. No organised religion commands absolute authority any where in the world including Islam. This is not to say that missionaries are not trying, they are, for there are numberless missionary propaganda centres through out the world but they have badly lost the plot. How they lost it is quite interesting ie through conflicts of interests. In simple words it is all part and parcel of struggle for survival.