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SOME BASIC POINTS ABOUT RELIGION ISLAM (part eight)

13) My muslim brothers and sisters say the quran contains clear predictions and that science explains them but my question is, what is the purpose of doing this? I have already explained how brain works, how senses work, how we use our bodies in order to import information from the environment and to manipulate our environment the best we can. I have already explained what proof is and how it proves an event and is is place of logic. Logic is a sequence of physical events that begin from a physically verifiable point and end at a physically verifiable point eg once we find a dead body of a murdered person, we want to know how exactly the person met his death or how exactly the killer killed him. This is called sequential logic. It is sequential because it explain the murder step by step exactly how it happened by way of a witness who was present at the scene of the crime. If you have to change your clothes, you first have to take off the ones you are already wearing before putting on the other ones. If you put on the other ones before taking off the ones you are already wearing then you will have problem getting them off. So you will have to follow an order to do so or you will not be able to change your clothes. If you mess up the steps, you will not be able to accomplish what you set out yourself to do. Whether a sequence makes sense or not is verified by way of experiments.

This is why a sequence of statements or events is only logical if it works out in practice ie if it is provable physically otherwise it is illogical or absurd. Logic has nothing to do with sequences of baseless unconfirmable assumptions. The other sense of logic is linkage between things eg a gun as a murder weapon is linked to the killer by physical evidence of fingerprints and the gun is also linked to the victim by way of ballistics evidence ie the bullets found in the victim‚€™s body match the gun that fired them. One form of logic links together physical actions and the other actual physical things. These are called two independent bodies of evidences ie statements of the witnesses and the physical evidences collected as a result of crime scene investigations. Now we test one against the other. For example, the witness tells us description of the killer and the weapon used for murder and how it was used etc etc etc. We have the victim‚€™s body, we have the bullet wounds on the body, we have the bullets from the body, we have the murder weapon etc etc etc. The whole thing makes perfect sense leaving no lose ends ie the actual events and all things involved fit in together neatly. Only a witness could describe the event the way it happened. You see if you have not been to a house, you cannot describe things about it exactly the way they are. This is why a false witness cannot describe the event. He will leave many vital things unexplained leaving us with lose ends.

As one can see from my explanations that logic is only logic when confirmed by physical evidence and physical evidence only makes sense when is it logical, and science therefore is all about physical world and not nonphysical. Some people also use word theory often even for their baseless unscientific assumptions. Theory is actually three things. Physical evidence which is used for hypothesis about more physical things that are then to be physically verified. This is called a theory. Theory is not about assumptions upon assumptions upon assumptions that have nothing to do with physical verification. For example, when a dead body is discovered, we may assume it was a natural death and to confirm this we can examine the body. If it shows no foul play, we can then examine it further to confirm our assumption that it was a death due to natural causes. Now suppose it shows heart attack as cause of death then our assumption proves to be true ie it is confirmed. So our theory of natural death proves to be correct. Now if we make an assumption that cannot be verified then that cannot be called a theory. For example, by looking at the universe one assumes that the universe is result of an intelligent design, this cannot be confirmed yet one makes further assumption that the universe is designed therefore there has to be a creator. Now such assumptions cannot be proven by physical facts in actual facts. It is impossible to do so therefore such assumptions do not qualify as proper scientific assumptions. None can link god physically with universe and unless there is an actual link such an assumption cannot be proven. It is therefore important for a person to realise what logic is, what physical facts, what science is and what proof and proving is all about. Unless one is clear one‚€™s mind about such things, the useless or invalid arguments can continue for a life time.

As for the quran, it cannot be proven as word of god ever, for that is simply impossible to do. Why? Because if I claim that a man killed another man then at least such an event is possible therefore believable but if I claim that an angel killed a man then such a thing is impossible so no one will believe me. My claim will be rejected instantly. Moreover, if people believed such a claim then anyone could kill anyone and get away with it by claiming it was the angel or demon that killed the man etc etc. Likewise if one human claims he has received a book from another human that is acceptable but if a human claims a book from god or angel etc etc then one is lending oneself to ridicule, for no one in the right frame of mind can be expected to make such claim, for one is not in a position to prove it. To claim that the quran is word of god or that it contains supernatural information is ridiculous. For example, in case of 55/19 please read 18/60, 25/53, 27/61, 35/12 etc as well and read the earlier interpretations. Moreover may I request that you go over as to what I have been trying to explain. To me these verses simply state certain facts that the author of the quran meant. Nothing more nothing less. They do not have any scientific significance nor any spiritual significance, for they cannot. Science contradicts spiritualism in principle and so needs not to contradict it in each and every detail. As for the two bodies of the water, it is as if you muslims are telling me that there are two kinds of goats, they mix yet they are two separate things. Now I fail to grasp what you are trying to make me understand in this matter.

The sense of verses even of those that tell us to observe this or that is to argue from the design point of view and nothing more. We need to realise that even the proof arguments simply link physical facts and that is all they can do. In case of religion god, angels, jannah, jahannum, jinns etc etc are not the physical facts at all and that is why they cannot be proven either by logic or by physical facts. I have already explained that science is not there to explain the quran but to explore the physical world. It is upto the quran to explain itself and let people see if the facts clearly stated in the quran match or not. Moreover even if they do match, it still does not prove the quran is a divine revelation. Now if science cannot be used to prove the divine truth then why use it at all?

Many muslim brothers and sisters quote 4/82 to define the criterion for divine proof. To me it seems a flawed statement. What kind of criterion is this that fails to prove what it intends to prove? The purpose seems to be to say that if there is a mistake in the quran then the quran is not word of god but if there is no mistake in it then what? According to the quran, it means the quran is word of Allah. Is Allah right in putting forth this argument this way? Not in my opinion. Why not? Because even if the quran is free of all faults as regard the statements about the physical world yet it does not and cannot only mean it is word of god. The reason is this statement goes directly against the scientific principles, which is physical world and things therein cannot prove existence of god, for god is not a physical being according to religious people and their scriptures themselves. A book without any mistake does not have to be from god, it is quite possible that someone is able to produce such a book if not today may be in a million years time. It is impossible to eliminate this possibility till the humanity in the world ends yet no one produces any perfect book.

I am not bringing in the fact that the quran is full of flaws or contradictions but just trying to explain the implications of the quranic statement under consideration. We must accept that it is quite possible for a human being to produce a perfect book, even if they cannot in actual fact, which contradicts the quranic assumption that they cannot. In fact the quran is wrong to make such a statement that cannot be verified within a reasonable time limit. When a human is a baby he cannot do many things which he can when he grows up. Likewise humanity is always making progress so what seems impossible today may become a reality tomorrow. The quran is also wrong to suggest by way of implication that perfect book can only and only be from god. In fact it is only a possibility that it might be the word of god as much as it is possible that it might not be so. Moreover this is an absurd argument that cannot be confirmed. This statement appears to decide the issue but actually it creates the problem, for quran is a physical thing but god is not. Only physical things can be linked together and not nonphysical or physical and nonphysical. Some verses likewise tell us that none can produce the like of the quran 2/23, 8/31, 10/37, 11/13, 68/15, 17/88. Again the quran fails to clarify why one cannot produce anything like it? Moreover, the quran itself is haphazardly put together as already explained. It is no where near perfect in any sense.

The quran clearly shows that Muhammad had no idea as to what the proof was 2/253, 4/153, 6/124, 7/143, 10/36, 21/5, 28/36, 48. He tells us that assumption and proof are two different things yet he demands of his opponent the proof and fails to provide them with one himself. He simply says, the quran is the proof 2/176, 4/170, 174, 5/17, 6/104, 157, 7/85, 101, 106, 10/57, 108, 16/44, 33/45, 35/25, 17/81 etc etc. One has to ask what clear proofs is Allah talking about in verses like these which he gave to people? Also how do those proofs prove the claims of alleged divine prophets? They could not be better than the quran yet we are having problems even with the quran the miracle of miracles as some mullahs put it. The quran states in 4/82 that if it was from other than Allah, there would have been found many contradictions in the quran. As I see it there are problems with this very verse itself. Is this verse trying to state the definition of divine proof? If yes, it fails. Why? Because, if we do not find even a single fault in the quran it still fails to be proof of divine revelation. I have already explained in reasonable detail that science cannot prove existence of god but it can disprove various claims that are found in the alleged holy scriptures about physical universe and thereby disprove religion. On the other hand even if all claims about physical universe are true in a scripture they still fall well short of proof. The proof does not and should not rely on assumptions that cannot be verified and to borrow the quranic words, the conjectures are no use when proof is the requirement of the situation or circumstances.

In the beginning I admitted that I have not seen any definition of the proof by the quran. Now whatever little the quran states in this regard makes no logical or scientific sense. It is for this reason education is very important so that we could realise the problems we face. Islam as an organised religion is no answer to anything for us. It is better keeping our beliefs to ourselves and that as I understand the quran goes against its teaching. I have clearly stated that that quran is a product of tribal society. One can look at verses like 2/30, 140, 246, 247, 4/59-65, 5/22, 27/32, 38, 38/26, 49/2, 13 etc etc etc. The quran clearly shows that power rested in the hands of kings who were appointed by the priests or that the priests were kings themselves, just like Muhammad. The tribes had chiefs and those chiefs were appointed a chief of chiefs by the priests. The idea still exists in Afghanistan in form of JIRGA and in Arabia in form of SHOORA etc etc. This is the ruling system from the quran. The laws in the quran are also tribal, see 2/178, 5/48 etc and so are social structures and economic structures etc etc, see 4/11, 176 etc. For example, the goals of quranic ideology are something as follows;

1) The quran requires faith in Allah, why? I have explained already. No reference needed just open the quran and see sura 1 & 2 etc. It demands faith in Allah.
2) The quran demands unquestionable faith in the authority of the prophet, why? Explained already. See 2/247, 4/59, 65, 27/17, 21, 37, 33/36, 49/2 etc etc.
3) The quran tells muslims to force islam on everyone in the world. See 2/247, 8/ 39, 60, 65, 9/23, 28, 33, 21/57, 27/31, 38, 38/26, 48/28.

Please pay attention to actions of Abraham, who defiles holy shrine of pagans and leaves pagans with message of hate just because of their faith yet the quran says, he is a good example for muslims to follow 60/4. Also pay attention to actions of king Solomon. He too forces his faith on people of Sheba. He terrorises a people who mean no harm to him. In fact he was not even aware if these people existed as the quran narrates the story. I will be coming to the verses later. Again his actions are praised and that all prophets and their followers always acted similarly, says the quran. This is why I sense that muslims if they do not base their faith on a refined creed like christians etc instead of the quran, they will not be able to separate religion from politics and will find problems in coexistence with others who have different faith than muslims.

Please do realise that I have not yet started on pointing out principle contradictions within the quran and the terror employed by Allah to frighten people into believing the unbelieveable just like an ignorant and harsh mother who frightens her child into making him do what she say. This is just a by product but you should be concerned about my concerns, for we are neighbours. If you look at stories of prophets in the quran, those who did not acquired political power they acted subdued but were looking for opportunity like Muhammad did in Makkah but those who did get their hands on political power they acted ruthlessly lust like Muhammad did in Madina or Solomon in Jerusalem. Prophets by their aggressive missionary propaganda for conversion of others did create trouble everywhere. A people are living in peace and suddenly a prophet shows up creating a fight over faith where there was none 2/213, 3/19, 105, 10/19, 93, 16/93, 21/92, 23/52, 11/118. The pattern is showing in muslims as well 10/78, 48/29 etc. The quran definitely sanctions hatred and aggressive violence against people of other faiths. See what Abraham says in 60/4, 9/23, 28, 114, 123, 27/37, 58/22 etc etc. In fact pagan relatives of the prophets protect them yet they carry on their ill will towards their relatives regardless. See 9/23, 11/91, 27/49 etc etc. If a people show ill will towards others just because of their beliefs then how is it possible for them to coexist in peace and harmony with others?

As far as one can see from the quran, no one threw Muhammad out of Makkah for his beliefs. He was not alone to believe in one god, for jews already believed in one god and they were doing business with Arabs without any problems eg Muhammad‚€™s uncle used to work for them and so did Muhammad himself, for that is how he ended up in marriage with Khadija. It seems Muhammad had some other agenda that set him against pagan chiefs of Makkah. Which also set brother against brother. There was absolutely nothing wrong with exchanging ideas over their beliefs. In fact whereever there are different people living together as a community they do ask as well as tell each other about their beliefs and practices. To claim that Muhammad and his followers were persecuted by Makkans makes no sense whatsoever. It seems like Abraham and Solomon etc Muhammad too was aggressive towards his own people. The whole story seems to be a made up one and projected back in time to give Muhammad the justification for what he did to others in the name of Allah. Pagans took no action against him due to tribal customs of the time and their relationship with his tribe. It seems he did things which turned Makkan chiefs against him and then he left due to fear of their reaction, for his own security. I do not want to go deep into hadith literature nor into islamic history just now, for I do not have the time needed for discussing it. However, I will try and come back to it when I see the need for it. It is better to stick to the quran at the moment.

It is pointed out by some that the quran is mere a guideline and not a well detailed constitution. However, the question remains what are the guidelines and whether those guidelines are sufficient for guidance or not? The purpose of guidelines in that case would seems to be to leave the rest for us to fill in ourselves. Are we capable of doing that? Remember, we are born ignorant and illiterate and to become educated is not possible for most people due to reasons already explained. So when should the guidelines kick in? Moreover, guidelines do end up contradicting each other so which one should we follow and why? For example, look into controversy about issues like taking pictures, use of public address systems during prayers, praying in space, blood transfusion, body part transplants, human cloning etc etc etc. When is allegedly perfect guideline not a guideline at all? If we have that kind of attitude then how do we justify hadith? Are we then saying that the quran is not a sufficient guideline? Moreover, we have fiqh, does that mean that even the quran and the hadith both together are insufficient as guideline?

We are told that islamic history was written hundreds of years after the death of the prophet. It was compiled from hadith books and books of fiqh and biographies of the prophet etc etc. These books themselves were compiled centuries later. The most authentic hadith collection amongst sunnies is said to be by Imaam Bukhaari. According to him he left out hundreds of thousands of hadithes. Does this not point out as to how complete islam is as a religion? All fiqh books are controversial, all hadith books are controversial between sunnies and shias. In fact according to some shias even the quranic text is not above dispute. Shias claim that some parts of the quran are left out of sunni quran. They have named the missing suras eg Al-Walaya and Nurain etc and have shown their texts in their books. The situation is exactly the same between various christian sects ie some books of the bible and their chapters are disputed between Catholics and Protestants etc. In fact Mormon have their own bible called the book of mormons. The same is true amongst hindu sects ie people have different lengths of text for their books eg people have different Ramayanas. Some tell the story of Rama longer than the others. So this a common problem between all religions and their people.

If we look into islamic history the quranic compilation story is full of discrepancies. We can clearly see from the given information that the quran did not exist as a complete book in time of Muhammad. People only had fragments of quran which they then put together as they could but not free of disputes and controversies. In fact we are told that there existed many different texts of the quran, which were mostly discarded by the orders of rulers at the time. In fact this whole subject is so huge I better leave it alone. The quran as we have it today is sufficient to prove its manmade origin. Look at the suras the way they have been put together. All suras have imaginary place and time of revelation just like the books of the holy bible. No body knows who wrote them and when. The collection of the quran was just like that. We have no record as to who had which sura and how much of it or why? Yet my muslim brothers and sisters tell me that the quran has been preserved perfectly by Allah, for he promised to do so. Well my dear brothers and sisters, the proof of pudding is in the eating. Had Allah protected the quran he ought to have the means in place, would he not? He would not leave it to failing human memory nor to bits and pieces of material for writing that are insufficient to do the job. We cannot have all the clues that point to the carelessness towards the preservation of the quran yet claim that the quran has been preserved perfectly and very carefully, can we? It is impossible to prove any connection of any sort between the physical universe and the nonphysical being Allah. It is therefore wrong for muslims to attribute the quran to god as his word.

The quranic logic also seems to be childish at times eg why Muhammad could not have written the quran himself? Because he did not know what faith was nor what scripture was and that he could not read and write 29/48. We are told his wife was a very successful business woman and that she was jewish and therefore ought to know how to read and write. He has been with her for fifteen years and had about eight children with her. Did they never talk about their beliefs and practices or knowledge etc etc? That would be unbelievable. Further more to make up things you need brain not necessarily reading and writing skills. Also as I said that islamic religion may well have been created later on and projected back in time to give muslims a base to stand on for sake of unity. It was needed because soon after Muhammad‚€™s death quarrels between muslims emerged. Anyway all ancient religious scriptures survived through memory of people rather than reading and writing. The quranic case is a bit different and more difficult for memory, for Muhammad used to reveal as much of the quran as much he would deem necessary and it was all from here and there. On top of all this he had problem with abrogation. Since the quran is not a consistent story nor a set of consistent speeches or lectures, suchlike things would cause serious problems as to memorising of the quran. Particularly when Muhammad and his companions were always busy with jihad for expansion of islam. This is why it seems that the quran we have today was not left by Muhammad but probably created after him for the reasons such as pointed out already ie to control the crowd by giving them something to keep them focused.

I am an atheist because of the way I look at the organised religion including islam. This is why I see no future for religion or its followers. It is time that people moved on for the better of themselves as well as others. The struggle between religious and nonreligious has to stop so that we could divert our focus on struggle between rich and poor, locally nationally and internationally. World in my opinion can only become a better place when people have the ways and means to satisfy their needs as well as the opportunities to take advantage of them. As our population increases so increase our needs and so does the need for jobs for all everywhere. Jobs are created by small or large scale useful inventions, their small or large scale improvements, their small or large scale productions and their small or large scale distributions etc etc. We must encourage all kinds of inventions that make life easy, cheerful or entertaining, exciting and happy. Life on its own is not worth living at all. Who wants to live a sad and boring life? People who promote sad and boring life should not be allowed to make our world a sad and boring place. We should try our best to make our world a paradise here on the earth and live happy and die laughing having no regrets. The pointing out of problems that I have with religions seems good to me in the sense that if my understanding of the religions proves to be correct then people are obviously better without them and if my understanding is incorrect then perhaps I may be helped to educate myself.

14) Please note that guidelines are a framework of instructions, not individual instructions at random. In a framework we gather all the related instructions in one place and then see how they make sense if any at all. The implication of that framework is that it is permanently fixed. Why? Because according to most of our muslim brothers and sisters the divine revelation is complete and final. Now whatever understanding people had of the framework has to be original. We cannot add or take away anything as far as the framework is concerned. Now the question is, where do those instructions come from which could be called the framework? Are they to be from the quran alone or are we to take hadith into consideration as well? What is fundamental basic framework of islamic instructions? Remember, if you answer that it has to be the quran then hadith instructions cannot be accepted in the framework, for quran is then the sole framework. In this case the hadith becomes like fiqh except that this time it was the prophet who allegedly understood the quran the way he did to act upon it. Fiqh too in that case would be just the same ie an understanding of the quran by learned muslims instead of the prophet. What this means is that these things themselves cannot be taken as additional instructions of the framework. Moreover, as I understand it muslims do not accept that hadith are complete nor that they are above suspicion.

Now the problems.
If the quran commands people to perform prayer, what is the framework for prayer? The quran talks about reciting Alfaatiha, it talks about people who used to perform slah in ancient customs etc. People would do rakuh (bending at 90 degrees), sujood (prostration), qayaam (standing up right) and that they used to face in a particular direction during prayer at particular times. However, there is no mention of any sort as to what happens if people are no longer living in Arabia here on the earth nor if they are in space on some other planet perhaps? You see the quran is flawed in the framework because it fails to address the time and place of prayer. The quran confines its commandments to near about Arabia place-wise and to times of day as within that confinement. Anything you add would be your own imagination and that you can keep on doing for as long as you like. The quran does mention how people are to pray when travelling from place to place or in fear but nothing if they are travelling in space.

So dear brethren, please do give this matter a thought. You can see how difficult it is to talk about things without any framework. Moreover any framework must be examined to see if it is flawed or not. If the framework is not good then discussing anything based on that makes no sense either. You want me to discuss about gays and lesbian as well. All I can say at the moment is that you need to understand biology and psychology and compare the quran and see what is wrong here. Each and everyone of your points needs a lengthy reply, for which I too have no time at the moment but what I can do is discuss things as and when I do have time. It is going to be very slow process but perhaps a little discussion is better than no discussion at all. In short, we can observe that genetic abnormalities are always a possibility. Many a time they show up in form of external physical deformity. For example, a baby may be born with such defects as having limbs in the wrong places, having no certain limbs at all at times or having extra at times. Just as there could arise external abnormalities, there could occur internal abnormalities whereby a person seems to appear normal but the person does not feel normal ie may be there is something wrong with one's heart or blood stream or circulation system, lungs or breathing system, immune system or functioning of brain etc etc. I mean there are many many things that can go wrong with human brain or body internally and externally. It is therefore wrong to condemn people wholesale for their behaviour in all cases. The problem with sexual behaviour determination is that it is not entirely genetic nor entirely environmental, neither completely external nor completely internal. It is quite possible that a person may appear to have a body of a man but may have mind of a woman or the other way round. It is also quite possible that a person may have such a body and brain that at times one may act like a man but at other times like a woman. In nature there are no straight forward blacks and whites rather there are many gray areas. Likewise this is the way one is born naturally. Harmonic imbalance, genetic disorder, environmental effect or whatever but a person is what one thinks to be, what one feels to be and what ones says to be.

As for the quranic laws they are tribal in their origin for a tribal society and in that society homosexuality is regarded a bad thing, for it goes against procreation. Procreation was essential in those times for tribal survival and also men who acted like women were thought of as cowards, for tribal survival depended on brave men so to speak. Of course, we can discuss in detail that islam is a tribal religion and its concept of violence or war can be fully discussed in tribal context. Islamic economics are also tribal in their origin. Please remember that Islam is not alone but all religions are basically the very same as I have already explained. Since I am here on islamic topic therefore I am talking about islam but you can apply my arguments against any organised religion you like and they will stand the equal chance for making a point against a religion.

1) My original curiosity is still there as to why should we believe in an organised religion in the first place?
2) Why do we need religion as a control system to get along? Why can't we figure out a way for ourselves to live in peace and harmony with each other?

Islam is not acceptable to me as a heavenly appointed religion yet it imposes itself upon me by ordering its followers to get rid of me if I resist. I have already stated the references where islam clearly threatens my existence of course as a nonmuslim. One can see 2/216. This is the beginning of violent campaign for expansion of islam. The verses 2/216 is part of a sura which is number 87 in its sequence of revelation. Before that there was none or little that kind of organised violence. This campaign begins with an excuse of self defense and as muslims become more and more powerful they gradually turns to offence. This is obvious if you now read sura 8 which is number 88 in revelational sequence. Read sura 4 from verse 54 till 107 etc. This sura is next in sequence ie number 92. Thereafter read sura 47 which number 95. After that you can go to sura 48 which 111 in sequence. This began just before the conquest of Makkh. The final nail in the coffin is sura 9, which is number 113 in sequence. Now look at verse HU WALLAH ZI ARSALA RASULAHU BIL HUDAH...... It is first found in sura 48 at number 28. The same verse is repeated see 9/33. Now when Muhammad came to realise that he has the power he begins to think that he is unstoppable and so final sura 110 which is final in sequence ie 114 is laid down.

In all these suras it is clearly stated that islam means war against all other faiths till they fall under islam. Islam does not allow coexistence as far as I can gather from the quran. So I am afraid I am forced to look at all muslim missionary activities in that context. Islamic war knows no bounds as far as the quran is concerned. I wonder what you muslim brothers and sisters of mine think ie what is your understanding of the holy war and can you support your ideas from the quran in the quranic context? I am very much concerned about the present situation between muslims and nonmuslims. The way I see things, muslim are quietly gaining ground here and there in subtle ways as Muhammad and his followers did and then suddenly things came out in the open and surprised the world. Just like the Sept 11th attack.