Friday, 4 June 2010

Some Counter-Apologetics

Javed Ahmad Ghamdi vs Ali Sina Debate; Some Extracts

(...) The Qur’an, on repeated occasions reiterates its claim to be a clear book (5:15) easy tounderstand (44:58, 54:22, 54:32, 54:40) explained in detail (6:114), conveyed clearly, (5:16, 10:15) with no doubt in it (2:1), with clear ordinances, (98:3), of divine nature, (10:37) full of wisdom, (36:2) etc. Yet you tell us that we must first learn its “scheme of presentation” in order to understand its meaning. If that is the case then what shall we make of the above claims of the clarity of the Qur’an? If we first need to learn the “scheme” of the book before we begin to understand it, then the claim that the book is clear and easy to understand is false. Please show me one verse where it says before understanding this book you must first learn its scheme of presentation. What is thist scheme of presentation? Will you please explain it to us?

(...) Are you suggesting that we should take first, a course on how to read the Qur’an before reading it? Will you please tell us why a book that claims to be so clear and easy to understand is so complicated? The Qur’an says that the unbelievers are “the vilest of animals”(8:55). How should we interpret this verse? In what scheme these insulting words mean something different than what they appear to mean? This to me sounds a hate speech. How would Muslims react if someone says Muslims are the vilest of animals?

(...) The Qur’an encourages the Muslims to slay the unbelievers wherever they find them (2:191), do not take them as friends and helpers (3:28), fight them and show them harshness (9:123), and smite their heads ( 47:4). Under what light should we read these, and many other gory and hate mongering verses like these so we could instead love all mankind, respect others, mingle in amity with people of all faiths, be kind and loving and accepting of everyone? Don’t you think these verses are responsible for the fact that Muslims are violent and intolerant of others?

(...) There are hundreds of blunders and absurdities in the Qur’an. How can an infallible God err so much? If there were only one or a handful of errors, we could still argue that those verses have crept into the book in later stages. But when the book is replete with scientific heresies, historic blunders, mathematical mistakes, logical absurdities, grammatical errors and ethical fallacies, we must question the legitimacy of its divine origin.

(...) Why should we believe in Muhammad and not in equality-unproven claims of other prophet-pretenders and impostors? We know about all the bad things that Muhammad brought to the world, such as religious intolerance and misogyny that did not exist in Arabia before him. (The Arabs, even believed in a prophetess (Sijah), and women like Salma and Aisha led armies. Such thing is inconceivable today.)

Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached,” asked the Byzantine emperor Manuel II Paleologus, six hundred years ago. The only answer Muslims had to this question, when it was repeated by Pope Benedict, were riots, burning of churches and killing an elderly nun and her bodyguard. Will you answer this question now? Will you tell us what new Muhammad brought that was not evil? I have counted innumerable evil things that this man brought. Will you tell us about one good thing that he brought?

(...) Abdullah ibn Abi Sarh, who was Muhammad's secretary and used to write down the Qur’an for him, realized that Muhammad was making things up. He was not an illiterate like Muhammad and often suggested better ways to compose the Qur’anic verses that Muhammad happily would agree. He escaped and went back to Mecca and told his story to everyone, which prompted Muhammad to decide to kill him even though he promised he would not kill anyone in Mecca if they surrendered.

(...) When Muhammad recounted his tale of ascending to the seventh heaven, riding on a horse-like beast with the head of an angel and there meeting the dead prophets and bargaining with Allah on the number of prayers that Muslims should say, Abu Bakr was stunned. He did not know what to make of this. This sounded utterly mad. He had two choices. He had to either admit that Muhammad was a loony and leave him or believe in his fantastical tales. There was no middle ground.

(...) Ibn Ishaq says when Muhammad made his vision known, “many Muslims gave up their faith, some went to Abu Bakr and said, ‘What do you think of your friend? He alleges that he went to Jerusalem last night and prayed there, and came back to Mecca!’ He replied that they were lying about the apostle, but they said that he was in the mosque at that very moment, telling people about it. Abu Bakr said, ‘If he says so, then it is true. And what is so surprising in that? He tells me that communications from Allah, from heaven to earth, come to him in an hour of a day or night, and I believe him, and that is more extraordinary than that at which you boggle!’” The logic is flawless. Basically what Abu Bakr was saying is that once you give up your rational faculty and believe in an absurdity, you might as well believe in anything. Once you let yourself to be fooled, then you should be prepared to be fooled again and again because there is no end to foolishness.

(...) How many people would let a 54 year old man sleep with their 9 year old daughter? Such thing requires extreme foolishness. This much foolishness, that you erroneously call “sincerity” is only possible through blind faith.

The last thing that can be said about the Qur’an is that it is ‘clear’ because it has been a source of confusion to Muslims from the beginning. Why do we think early Muslims had those wars between them? Didn’t each side quote the Qur’an? Why do we have sunna? Isn’t it to explain what is not clear after reading the ‘clear’ Qur’an? Why do we have so many tafseer books? Isn’t it to explain the Qur’an? Why should Allah need a human interpreter for Him?



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