Category Archives: Muslim

Even Stevens Mock Abrahamic Religions

This hilarious video, featuring Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart as, respectively, a Muslim, a Christian and a Jew, really hones in on the ridiculous dogmas and apologia of the Abrahamic religions.

Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell

 

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Is That You, Miss Lebanon?

Over 4 years ago, a Yahoo! Answers member posted a question asking, “What are some modern day examples of religious discrimination?“. My reply nabbed the Best Answer honors. Here’s the text of my reply:

  • Terrorists insist on being Muslim.
  • The first President Bush declared atheists untrustworthy.
  • Seventh Day Adventists get doors slammed in their faces.
  • Pope Benedict XVI slams Islam.
  • Muslims clerics slam everybody and anybody who is NOT Muslim (by the way, “Islam” is “I slam” without a space).
  • Science keeps forcing religion to backpedal on doctrine.
  • Voters and courts keep rejecting Intelligent Design (and affirming evolution) in public schools.
  • After thousands of years, supernatural entities are STILL prevented from leaving evidence of their existence.

In an attempt to drum up visitors to my website (AtheistExile.com), I entered my site’s URL as a “source” for my answer.

Here’s the thing . . .

. . . Ever since then, somebody, has used that link to visit my website on a regular basis. This means that they first go to Yahoo! Answers, then revisit Miss Lebanon‘s question, then click on the link there to my website. A bookmark would be so much easier! I’ve always wondered who this person is and why he/she uses Yahoo! Answers to visit my website.

At first, I thought it must be Miss Lebanon who is visiting my website via Yahoo! Answers. But then I realized that she didn’t even choose a best answer (much less, mine). The best answer was chosen by “voters”.

So, maybe, the mystery person was one of the voters.

Well . . . I’m tired of wondering. I’d like to know who this person is. He/She is, after all, one of my most enduring followers. Over four years now! The next time you visit (whoever you are), the image featured in this post should be very familiar to you and grab your attention (I’m hoping).

Whoever you are, mystery person, I would appreciate it if, the next time you visit my site, you comment on this post or send me an email to identify yourself. I am REALLY curious to know who you are.

Either you share the interests I blog about or . . . you’re a Muslim keeping tabs on me 🙂

 

Leftist, Politically Correct, Apologists for Islam

(Originally posted at http://AtheistExile.com)

Mormon (LDS) missionaries, who come knocking at your door to proselytize for their church, all receive formal training to ensure they provide approved canned answers to questions and objections from prospective converts. This tactical training previously came from a book called ‘The Uniform System for Teaching the Gospel’. I once had a couple of doorknockers visit me to tell me all about the Mormon faith. Whenever I asked a tough question, they would refer to what they both called ‘the brown book’ for answers, which, I now presume, must be The Uniform System for Teaching the Gospel. In 2004, this book was replaced by ‘Preach My Gospel’, which shifts tactics to ‘teaching by the Spirit’ (designed to cater to ‘individual needs’ of potential converts). I’m not sure if the brown book is so named because it has a brown cover or because it’s contents are derived from the works of Scott Kent Brown (who edited the Encyclopedia of MormonismJournal of the Book of Mormon Studies and the Historical Atlas of Mormonism). I’ve never actually read the brown book . . . it’s not, after all, intended for popular consumption.

It seems that leftist, politically correct, apologists for Islam have developed their own version of the Mormon brown book. In forum and group discussions and debates all over the Internet and other media, you see the same tactics used; as if they’ve all been prepping from the same apologist brown book. I’ve never read this book either but it must be out there somewhere; secretly passed around from apologist to apologist.

Political correctitude, over the last few decades, has evolved to become a leftist, totalitarian, dogma. We all know the routine by now. Criticism of Islam is racist (even though Islam is not a race). Alarm at the consequences of Islamism is fear mongering. Pointing out Muhammad’s questionable morality is hate speech. Anger or frustration at Muslim rioting is intolerance. Support for the anti-burka law in France means you’re a misogynist. The mere mention of the abject failure of multiculturalism in Europe makes you an ultra-conservative wingnut. By impugning your character, apologists for Islam often walk away from an argument without ever rebutting a single point made.

But in order to succeed with these tactics, apologists must shift the target of your criticism away from ideologies and doctrines by, instead, emphasizing the adherents. Be wary of this ploy. Always return focus to the ideas – not the people. If you don’t, they will label you a bigoted hater (ad hominems are okay if they’re politically correct).

Apologists for Islam bend over backwards in an ostentatious display of accommodation and inclusion of Muslims. It’s very nice to accommodate and include people: even when they tend not to accommodate or include you in return. Accommodation and inclusion are among the finest of liberal ideals. Human rights, equal rights, anti-discrimination and all that. But Islamism is different. In order to explain the difference, you need to keep focus on Islamic ideology and doctrine, not on the adherents. Do we really want to accommodate and include Sharia and Jihad? Of course not! But neither do we want to single out Muslims in any way . . . including extending them special treatment.

Which brings us to the difference between pluralism and multiculturalism. America has traditionally been a ‘melting pot of nations’. Ours is a pluralistic society which encourages immigrants to blend in while still embracing their own cultures, if they choose. Nobody gets special treatment. In contrast, Europe, for many decades, has adopted the approach of multiculturalism; partly to accommodate the special demands of Muslim immigrants. This policy has led to Muslim enclaves in Europe’s cities – entire areas dominated by a culture and values foreign to their host countries. By extending them special treatment, Europe has not succeeded in integrating Muslims into their societies and is now waking up to the abject failure of their multicultural experiment. From restrictions on the height of mosque minarets to banning the burka: we are witnessing, in Europe, a backlash against a multiculturalism that has failed its main goals to include and accommodate.

European multiculturalism has failed because it doesn’t understand just how alien the Islamic worldview is to their own. European culture and worldview is rooted in (reformed) Christianity and Greek philosophy. Islamic culture and worldview is rooted in the Quran and Arab philosophy. Everything about Islam: it’s hadith, traditions, culture, Sharia law and Jihad is based on the unerring truth of the Quran. Logic takes a back seat to Allah’s will: if Allah willed it, it’s right: end of discussion. Islamic culture precludes questioning or challenging its sources and, thus, does not evolve – much less, reform itself.

I should, belatedly, distinguish Islamism from Islam. Islamism is not just the religion of Islam; it is also a political (Jihad) and legal (Sharia) ideology. I criticize the religion of Islam as a rabid dogma. And it is. But MOST adherents are like most of us — they just want to live their lives with as little drama as possible. I know this from the 6 months I lived in Kuwait.

But the Islamic fundamentalists are another matter entirely. They are the pawns of Islamism: manipulated by callous and calculating leaders who hate everything we stand for. Islam is a rabid dogma that provides Islamism with the fanatics and license for violence needed for Jihad.

Apologists for Islam want to deny this. They want to embrace those who hate us, in some sort of holier-than-thou vision of an uber-liberal utopia. They don’t understand that Islamists see this cumbayah vision as a weakness. Islamists laugh up their sleeves at these clueless apologists while thanking them for helping to undermine our values and way of life.


© Copyright 2012 AtheistExile.com
eMail: AtheistExile@AtheistExile.com

Epilepsy, the God Module and Muhammad


Has a major branch of history been determined by one man’s bout with epilepsy? I think it might have!

Epilepsy Toronto has, on its web page, a list of famous people who have had epilepsy. The idea of the list is that epilepsy doesn’t need to stand in the way of achievement. On that list – along with such luminaries as Fyodor Dostoevsky, Joan of Arc, Napoleon and Newton – was Muhammad. Well, you guessed it . . . the incendiary email this organization received from indignant Muslims, prompted them to quickly remove Muhammad from its on-line list. By now, we all know that nothing gets results like Muslim threats.

This incident reminded me of the connection between epilepsy and the ”God Module”. If you’re not familiar with the God Module or ”God Spot”, here’s a quick summary . . . It was discovered when scientists explored the association between epilepsy and intense spiritual experiences. It seems that temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) creates electrical storms in the brain that stimulates an adjacent area (now identified as the God Module). Many of these epileptics are hyper-religious.

Anyway, I did a Google search for ”Muhammad and epilepsy” and hit pay-dirt. There appears to be a strong correlation between the symptoms of epilepsy and the witness descriptions of Muhammad’s condition while in his ”trances”. Epilepsy (the ”sacred disease”, also known as the ”falling sickness”) is what the ancients thought were demon possessions. Muhammad was known to have had epileptic symptoms from at least the age of 5. His guardians were afraid he was demon possessed and pawned him off on other relatives.

Epilepsy would explain Muhammad’s visions and preoccupation with spirituality and his solitary retreats to the mountains for contemplative meditation. Many epileptics describe the spiritual sensations surrounding seizures as so exquisite that they actually look forward to these fits. Fyodor Dostoevsky claimed that he would not trade 10 years of life for a single epilepsy-induced spiritual experience.

Ancient, superstitious people, especially in Muhammad’s day, were easily impressed by these seizures. They seemed real, because they were. However, they weren’t demon possessions or contact with God; they were epileptic seizures. These seizures are reported to have frightened Muhammad until his wife (the first, ever, Muslim) convinced him that they were divine communiqués. That’s right . . . Muhammad’s wife was the first Muslim – Muhammad was the second.

There is only anecdotal evidence that Muhammad was an epileptic. It’s just a theory but is a convincing one: many historians and researchers believe it. The first to suggest it was the Greek monk, Theophanes. Theophanes (752-817) wrote, in his ”Chronography”, that Muhammad suffered from epilepsy. In 1869, Sir William Muir, made the same connection in his book, ”The Life of Mahomet”. More recently, Clifford Pickover writes:

Dostoevsky, another famous epileptic whose works are filled with ecstatic visions of universal love (and terrible nightmares of uncanny fear and radical evil), thought it was obvious that Mohammad’s visions of God were triggered by epilepsy. ”Mohammad assures us in this Koran that he had seen Paradise,” Dostoevsky notes. ”He did not lie. He had indeed been in Paradise – during an attack of epilepsy, from which he suffered, as I do.”

I guess it takes one to know one.


© Copyright 2011 AtheistExile.com
eMail: AtheistExile@AtheistExile.com


Slam Dunking God

The naturalist understanding of morality asserts that we have evolved empathy as an impetus to cooperation. Combined with personal experience, empathy leads most of us to a “Golden Rule” sense of morality. From experience, I know what hurts me: with empathy, I know the same things likely hurt you too. Experience and empathy is all we need to decide most moral matters. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you . . . because we need each other to survive and prosper.” We are complex social animals, so this rule of thumb isn’t sufficient for every moral decision but it is fundamental to most. Without this impulse for cooperation to counter our impulse for violence, we would probably squander the intellectual prowess responsible for our survival advantage.

It’s a fallacy (with obvious religious motivations) that “we can not be moral without God”. Our morality is part of the human condition and existed long before Moses. Morality is not a dispensation from God: it is subjective and personal and, because it is informed by experience and empathy, develops as we mature. As a matter of fact, we ALL use our personal morality to overrule Biblical morality. And by ALL, I really do mean ALL: believers and nonbelievers alike. This fact is amply demonstrated by our universal rejection of slavery and the subjugation of women (well, maybe not the Muslims so much). Even though God/Jesus condoned the subjugation of our fellow humans in both the Old and New Testaments, we ALL overrule God’s morality with our own and reject such human subjugation. Not only is God NOT the source of morality but he stands corrected by us all. WE decided what is moral. WE decide what is religiously worthy. NOT God.

You need to ask yourself: “If we overrule God, why do we need him at all?”

This subjugation of our fellow humans is a failing of Biblical morality that can’t be reasonably addressed by apologetics. This is critical for all believers to understand. THEY CAN’T HAVE IT BOTH WAYS. Either God is perfect or he’s not. Either the Bible is divinely inspired or it’s not. Either God is the source of morality or he isn’t. Even a believer, if he’s honest with himself, must admit that if God’s morality grows outdated, it was never perfect and timeless to begin with. The alternative is to claim that God is right and that the subjugation of our fellow humans is NOT at all immoral – that it is, in fact, desirable. But we ALL know that’s an untenable position. We all know that is WRONG. We will not reverse our hard-earned moral progress to align it with God’s morality. This is why the issue is out of reach of apologetics.

The truth is that the Old Testament, New Testament and Quran reflect the morality and level of ignorance that existed in their respective eras and areas . . . precisely as they MUST if they’re written without the benefit of God’s input. These ancient tomes are NOT divinely inspired. God is NOT perfect. The issue of human subjugation proves that the personal, revealed, theist, God of the Abrahamic religions is irrefutably false. This doesn’t completely close the door on God, however: there’s still supernatural hope for the impersonal, cosmic, God of deists and pantheists.

Empathy is a human trait that spawns a number of other human traits just as naturally as it spawns morality. Empathy also spawns human dignity and worth, cooperation and compassion. We can live moral lives without God but not without empathy.

Choosing faith means rejecting truth. Which do you really want?


© Copyright 2012 AtheistExile.com
eMail: AtheistExile@AtheistExile.com


The Grand Jihad

This video (below), by YouTube member, encounterbooks, tells the truth. The Muslim Brotherhood has a public and a private face. This two-faced organization preaches moderation to the public but, behind closed doors, backs violent fundamentalism.

Judging from the blurb for this video, McCarthy’s book sounds too alarmist. Some alarm is merited but McCarthy goes too far. But the brief video is more moderate and avoids over-the-top accusations (such as President Obama being an Islamist sympathizer). The following is the blurb that accompanied the video . . .

. . . The real threat to the United States is not terrorism. The real threat is the sophisticated forces of Islamism, which have collaborated with the American Left not only to undermine U.S. national security but to shred the fabric of American constitutional democracy. In The Grand Jihad, bestselling author Andrew C. McCarthy provides a harrowing account of how the global Islamist movement’s jihad involves far more than terrorist attacks, and how it has found the ideal partner in President Barack Obama, whose Islamist sympathies run deep.

McCarthy is the former federal prosecutor who convicted the notorious “Blind Sheikh” and other jihadists for waging a terrorist war that included the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. In his national bestseller, Willful Blindness: A Memoir of the Jihad (Encounter 2008), he explored government’s conscious avoidance of the terrorist threat, which made the nation vulnerable to mass-murder attacks. In The Grand Jihad he exposes a more insidious peril: government’s active concealment of the Islamist ideology that unabashedly vows to “conquer America.” With the help of witting and unwitting accomplices in and out of government, Islamism doesn’t merely fuel terrorism but spawns America-hating Islamic enclaves in our midst and gradually foists Islam’s repressive law, sharia, on American life. The revolutionary doctrine has made common cause with an ascendant Left that also seeks radical transformation of our constitutional order. The prognosis for liberty could not be more dire.

Google and YouTube: Too Big for Their Britches

First Google filtered out a lot of anti-Islamic content from its search engine. Then they enforced a “no pseudonym” policy on Google Plus — making anonymity difficult for whistle-blowers, corporate and government protest organizers and those who would risk their safety to criticize Islam. Now they’re removing videos critical of Islam from YouTube. Google/YouTube are near-monopolies who have no problem, whatsoever, throwing their weight around. These social networking giants need a lesson in social responsibility.

I don’t know about you, but censorship of freethought is unthinkable to me. How dare they silence our freedom of expression! The world NEEDS our perspective, our concerns, our voice. Google has repeatedly demonstrated a wrong-headed, accommodationist, cowardly, propensity to forfeit democratic ideals to placate vocal majorities. As the great American, Adlai Stevenson, once pointed out: “My definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular.” Being a minority should not mean being expendable.

If you value freedom of expression and hate censorship, please let Google and YouTube know that you will not tolerate our inalienable rights taken away so cavalierly. They’re big now but they’re establishing a history of cowardice that will come back to bite them on the ass. Their continued success is not guaranteed and it will be the users they alienated that will boost the fortunes of their competitors.

Something else you can do is to download all the freethought videos you can from YouTube, before they disappear, and repost them over and over. Or you can make your own freethought videos and post them over and over. Actually, I’m not sure that’s workable but you get my gist . . . punish YouTube. We could learn a lesson from the “squeaky wheel” religious zealots and make a big noise of our own.