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#Manchester Stronger Than Ever

Manchester. Another city added to the list of horrific attacks by individuals, usually men, who have been misguided into thinking their actions are somehow a salve for whatever torments them, or helpful to those suffering occupation and the terror of non-distinguishing “smart bombs” dropped in the tens of thousands on the homes of innocents. Also bewildering is the tenuous allegiance paid by attackers such as Salman Abedi to groups like ISIS and AlQaeda; whose bastardized modernist twisting of theology and law is no solution to grievances but only compounds and entrenches the multi-dimensional challenges and problems faced by Muslims. It takes God out of the center of din (way of life) and replaces it with jihad. When the hoped for victory is not achieved it often results in greater resentment, extremism and blind victimhood.

We have known that attacks of this kind do not end the vicious cycle of bloodletting but only feed it. The explosive growth industry of the field of “terror studies” and its ties to power, both governmental and non-governmental means that there is little incentive or effort to truly understand what causes “extremism” (aside from a handful of scholars and specialists) beyond the problematic radicalization models that lead to programs such as PREVENT and CVE.  Statistics highlighting that the nebulously defined category of so-called “Islamic terrorism” is less of a threat than dying in car accidents, or of an allergic reaction to peanuts is of no comfort, since Islamophobia is tied to existential and emotional concerns about the decline of Christianity, challenge to white supremacy and rise of minority groups, especially Muslim populations. Rational thinking doesn’t enter the equation.

This is not to say that imperialism cannot and should not be resisted but that the contemporary movements that are wreaking havoc are clearly not the way to respond to the challenge. Any resistance and liberation from the dominant paradigms however must be rooted not only in socio-economic terms but foremost in an authentic and spiritually grounded ethos.

Despite the hysteria and exploitation by the usual fear merchants: Katie Hopkins who tweeted for a “Final Solution,” the never-reconstructed EDL bigot Tommy Robinson claim that the mayor of Manchester is in cahoots with “Islamic radicals,” the laughable stupidity of  a UKIP politician whose brilliant response was to demand the return of the death penalty for suicide bombers, or Israeli PM Netanyahu’s shameless attempt to milk the tragedy by analogizing the Manchester attacker to Palestinian resistance, the overwhelming response of Britons and the City of Manchester has been to reject hate and the politics of division.

Take the message by Islamic scholar Abu Eesa from Manchester that has gone viral.

The comments are heartwarmingly refreshing in their solidarity and the expression of united grief for the victims. The message is clear we will not be divided, we will be stronger.

Also take Aarron Lambo’s viral video:

There’s many more such instances of togetherness and we hope that these attempts to divide us and subvert our democracy whether by terrorists and their Islamophobic dopplegangers will come to naught.

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  • Bye-bye.

  • Khizer

    MUH RIGHTS!?!?!?!!!!

  • LOL. Whatever. I’m not even going to read this.

    We ban whomever we choose. If you don’t like the policies here, go somewhere else. It’s that simple.

  • Yes, it does. Because it’s evidence you’re Alistair.

    No one can be “silenced” or “censored” by Loonwatch. We can only deprive you of a venue. We have every right to do that, as this is a privately-owned blog, and we don’t have to allow comments at all.

    I can’t believe what obnoxious whiners some of you are. I’ve been around on blogs and disqus channels. Once I got kicked off of a “Christian” site after ONE COMMENT, in which I was actually defending Christians. Did I think that was reasonable? No, but it doesn’t matter. It’s their channel, and they have the right to manage it however they like. I didn’t whine or cry. I didn’t stamp my feet and call people names, and I certainly didn’t create a sock puppet and go back where it’s clear I’m not welcome. I moved on.

    This is because I’m not a giant toddler. There are a lot those around these days, and when they come here, I don’t feel obliged to indulge the endlessly.

  • How is it you know who is or isn’t banned, Mr. Born Yesterday?

  • Khizer

    No…No..No Illisha. Don’t you see that whatever Muslims do, past and present, it always is/was according to Islamic doctrine! Even if the doctrine prohibits such behaviour, this behaviour is actually part of ‘an interpretation of Islam’ and hence is valid, even though Islamic doctrine says otherwise!

    This is why ISIS is Islamic! If islamic doctrine says terrorism and other actions of ISIS are NOT islamic, it’s actually Islamic according to ISIS’s interpretation of Islam, and hence valid…even if scholars and Islamic doctrine disagrees.

    Something something extremely violent and aggressive interpretations of Islam are valid, something something peaceful interpretations are not…..

    -Islam according to the internet.

  • It’s unfortunate that you can’t grasp a point no matter how many times or in how many different ways the same point is repeated.

    That’s like saying American law is “vague” and can be defined by what Americans do rather than by what American law actually says. By that logic, murder is permitted or perhaps even prescribed in America law because there are Americans who commit murder and always have been. Does that make sense to you?

    It’s nearly impossible to get any impartial data on the so-called “Arab slave trade” because people like you are focused on demonizing Islam, not finding and expressing truth. Regardless, Islamic doctrine is Islamic doctrine, and it says what is says. Arab and Muslim behavior does NOT CHANGE the doctrine. To drive home the point since you seem rather dim witted, if every single Muslim on planet earth started eating pork, Islamic doctrine WOULD STILL PROHIBIT PORK.

    If you do not like Islam, don’t become a Muslim. That’s your sphere of influence and nothing more. Muslims don’t need your approval, and you will NEVER put an end to Islam or any other religion. You just have to learn to live with that.

    Now leave here. You’re not on topic, or on mission, and you’ve long ago worn out your welcome.

  • MichaelElwood

    Alistair John wrote: “Individual Muslims condemned slavery, but there was nothing equivalent to the European and American abolitionist movement in the Muslim world and Islamic countries were much more backward over this issue than Western ones. That is a matter of historical fact.”

    No, that’s not a historical fact. It’s just another one of your ill-informed atheist opinions for which there is no evidence:

    “The history of the slave trade is now studied by African historians, and among them Boahen, Ajayi et al., and this is particularly interesting. African scholars are able to make a much better evaluation of the scale of the Atlantic slave trade and its consequences in Africa than European historians.

    “Undoubtedly some questions have to be revised. It is utterly wrong to assert, for instance, that Africans themselves are to blame for the development of the slave trade or to speak of equal co-operation between European and African slave traders, just as it is absolutely incorrect to exaggerate, as has been done in the last few years, the role of the Arab slave trade in East Africa while diminishing the role and consequences of the Atlantic trade. . . .” (see “General History of Africa: The African Slave Trade from the Fifteenth to the Nineteenth Century: The General History of Africa, Studies and Documents, vol. 2,” by UNESCO, p. 27)

    Alistair John wrote: “There are texts which suggest Mo the character married a child. I didn’t make those up. They are part of Islamic tradition, whether or not you reject them as apocryphal or think they have been misinterpreted.”

    Except for the most authoritative and the only contemporaneous text, the Quran. Sucks for you and your argument, doesn’t it?

    Alistair John wrote: “Has Roman Polanski lectured anyone on morality?”

    No, but his atheist defenders like the French philosopher, Alain Finkielkraut, has.

    Alistair John wrote: “I can’t be bothered to read the stuff about Dawkins. If it is true, which it almost certainly won’t be, it is irrelevant. If an atheist actively promotes rape and paedophilia that has no bearing on not believing in the divine. They are separate issues. Nor does it reflect on other atheists by association. That is the foundation of bigotry, blaming the group for the sins of an individual.”

    I know you can’t be bothered to read the stuff about Richard Dawkins, just like you can’t be bothered to read the Quran, yet you expect me and others to take your pontificating about them and other things seriously.

    Alistair John wrote: “I already pointed out the anti-gay bigotry of the Quran which you ignored and the nonsense of the Adam and Eve story which you also ignored.”

    You haven’t “pointed out” jack. You just assume that the the Quran is anti-gay and that the Quran’s particular narration about Adam and Eve is nonsense, but you said that you were too impatient to actually read the Quran, remember? So you must have gleaned these things via your psychic abilities, the same way you and Harris divine the “bad intentions” of Muslims. And like I said, you can tell yourself that you won this debate, if it makes you feel better. But I’ll leave that assessment to whoever is reading this. This is my last comment. . .

  • MichaelElwood

    Alistair John wrote: “As there is no hard evidence for the existence of Mohammed as a real historical figure and we are dealing with myths and fairy tales and ‘histories’ written long after the events they claim to have taken place that is a moot point. The real point is that your friend Mo is a bloodthirsty figure in Islamic texts and traditions.”

    There’s as much hard evidence for the existence of Muhammad as there is for any other person in ancient history. Your assertion to the contrary places you squarely in company of atheist crackpots like Tom Holland and Christian crackpots like Robert Spencer. Prof. J. Mark Nicovich wrote an excellent review–Muhammad: Man or Myth?–of Spencer’s book and the Muhammad-was-a-myth-argument:

    “In recent decades it has become common in certain circles—often academic, sometimes popular—to challenge the historicity of famous figures and seminal events. The most well-known expression of this trend can be seen in those circles, skeptical and sometimes openly atheistic, that have taken the “search for the historical Jesus” to an extreme, calling into question whether a historical Jesus existed at all. . . .

    “Much like those skeptical and atheist critiques of the historicity of Jesus, Spencer’s arguments about Muhammad hinge upon a serious reevaluation of the earliest sources of Islam. (I do not mean to imply that Mr. Spencer is an atheist or agnostic; from what I understand, he is an avowed Catholic. I only intend to note that his methodology is quite similar to those used by those atheist and agnostic critics of early Christianity.) His coverage of those sources is, laudably, quite comprehensive, making use of relevant textual, archaeological, epigraphic, and numismatic evidence. Yet the problem with Spencer’s approach is not the sources that he uses, but how he goes about using them.

    http://www.catholicworldreport.com/Item/1497/muhammad_man_or_myth.aspx

    There’s an irony about your newfound skepticism of Muhammad’s existence that’s lost on you because you’re ignorant of the subject. Prof. Nicovich didn’t mention him in his review, but the person who initially claimed that Muhammad didn’t exist was the Russian atheist polemicist Liustian Klimovich. Klimovich was a card-carrying member of the League of Militant Atheists, the group that I mentioned in my previous comment that was responsible for the murder of millions of Muslims. You claim that atheism is simply an absence of a belief in the divine, yet your beliefs about history, politics, ethics, epistemology, etc., constantly mirrors those of other atheists.

    Alistair John wrote: “I have never attempted to defend individual atheists, except from what I believe to be a false representation of their position. If they are immoral they are immoral. Atheism has nothing to do with morality, it has nothing to do with anything other than a lack of belief in the divine.”

    Atheism has a lot to do with purported morality. Atheists constantly tout their supposedly superior atheist morality over Islamic morality on issues like war, sexuality, etc.. Harris’ ethical positions flow from his atheism. And atheist ethicists like Peter Singer and Michel Onfray would probably be shocked to hear that atheism has nothing to do with morality and that they’re engaged in a discipline that doesn’t exist.

    Alistair John wrote: “The point I was making is that Jesus as presented in the Bible is not a martial figure, his talk of ‘swords’ is largely metaphorical (although that is more than enough for some Christians to legitimise violence) and doesn’t have a record of bloodshed and slaughter to his name, unlike Mo.”

    Jesus’ talk of swords wasn’t “metaphorical”. The sword that one of Jesus’ disciples, Simon Peter, used to cut off the ear of one of Jesus’ enemies in John 18:10 wasn’t “metaphorical”.

    Alistair John wrote: “And yet many Islamic texts speak of Mo’s slaves.”

    Except for the most authoritative and only contemporaneous text, the Quran. Sucks for you and your argument, doesn’t it?

    Alistair John wrote: “Don’t be silly. You cannot compare the fictional accounts of a largely fictional character with the real reports of known historical figures. Even if he was a liberator and not a slave owner, he was one man and slavery thrived throughout the Islamic world for centuries.”

    I can and did compare a known historical figure like Muhammad to other historical figures. And he may have been just one man, but he is the obvious choice to look at to determine how a true Muslim would behave in any given circumstance.

    Alistair John wrote: “However, there were far fewer atheists at that point, certainly far less openly atheist people and I am unaware of an atheist led pro-slavery movement either. although there were Christian supporters of slavery.”

    That’s not the reason you can’t name any atheist abolitionists or atheist-led abolition movements. It’s because then, as now, many atheists simply don’t find anything morally objectionable about slavery. They only feign offense to slavery when engaging in anti-Muslim and anti-Islamic polemic.

    Alistair John wrote: “Can you show me, other than the mythical figure of Mohammed, a large abolitionist movement in the Islamic world?”

    There have been numerous abolitionist movements in the “Islamic” world inspired by the historical figure Muhammad:

    “An International Muslim Abolitionist Movement (IMAM) was even created to provide education about the strong and clear anti-slavery aspects of Islam.

    “Islamic scholars note the Qur’an teaches against slavery and encourages emancipation of slaves. (See the Qur’an for these references, e.g., 4:92, 5:89, 58:3, 90:13, 24:33, 9:60, 2:177, 2:221, 4:25, 4:36.)”

    http://www.stoppingslavery.org/faith-traditions-against-slavery.html

    “In the late 1950s, Yemen signed the Convention on the Prevention of the Slave Trade. Before that, the Islamic prophet Muhammad encouraged manumission of slaves, even if one had to purchase them first. On many occasions, Muhammad’s companions, at his direction, freed slaves in abundance. Muhammad personally freed 63 slaves, and his wife Aisha freed 67. In total his household and friends freed 39,237 slaves.”

    http://nationalyemen.com/2014/09/06/slavery-in-yemen-a-shocking-truth/

    Alistair John wrote: “That is most ludicrous point you have made so far. Everyone living in rich ex-slaving states is to some extent the beneficiary of the legacy of slavery, including the descendants of slaves. And if Dawkins inherited money that once came from slavery that has nothing to do with him personally. Everyone in Britain who had anything to do with slavery has been dead for a very long time. Unless Dawkins is advocating for slavery currently you have no argument. He is not his ancestors and that is just a pathetic attempt to smear him.”

    What’s ludicrous is your claim that everyone in Western countries is a beneficiary of slavery including the descendants of slaves. This may come as a surprise to you, but everyone in the West didn’t inherit million dollar estates made on the backs of African slaves, especially not the descendants of African slaves. I can personally vouch for that, being a descendant of African slaves. I have slave owners in my family tree too, but they didn’t leave me a million dollar estate. You apparently adhere to the Niall Ferguson school of atheist historiography which claims that Africans somehow benefited from brutal European slavery and colonialism:

    “The moral simplification urge is an extraordinarily powerful one, especially in this country, where imperial guilt can lead to self-flagellation,” he explains. “And it leads to very simplistic judgments. The rulers of western Africa prior to the European empires were not running some kind of scout camp. They were engaged in the slave trade. They showed zero sign of developing the country’s economic resources. Did Senegal ultimately benefit from French rule? Yes, it’s clear. And the counterfactual idea that somehow the indigenous rulers would have been more successful in economic development doesn’t have any credibility at all.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/books/2011/feb/20/niall-ferguson-interview-civilization

  • Honor killing is not part of Islamic doctrine, period. Not in primary or secondary sources. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the concepts like honor and virtue. Is there something inherently wrong with the concepts of “freedom and democracy” because the Western imperial powers misuse them to justify the mass murder and displacement of millions of people?

    Based on your logic, it seems like we would need to get rid of honor, freedom AND democracy, with the latter two being higher priority since they’re “responsible” for more death and destruction by far.

  • Incorrect. Islam got rid of every single of slavery except captives in war. At the time, what were they supposed to do with war captives who no longer had anywhere to go? Slaughter them? That was common back then. Leave them to starve? If they had just rounded them up, slaughtered them all and dumped them in ditch, then we could say Islam go rid of slavery 100%, but that would not have been superior solution.

    Islamic doctrine says that slaves have to be treated well and have the same level of food, clothing, etc as their master, and the prophet and his companions freed 10s of thousands of slaves.

    Muslims do often fail to live up to their doctrine, but that’s their failure. It changes nothing in terms of what Islam is, just as Americans breaking American law does not change what America law actually is. The idea the West came around earlier on the matter of slavery is false. Islam addressed the matter 1400 years ago.

  • Alistair John

    Individual Muslims condemned slavery, but there was nothing equivalent to the European and American abolitionist movement in the Muslim world and Islamic countries were much more backward over this issue than Western ones. That is a matter of historical fact.

    “As for your claim that Muhammad married women who were “suspiciously young,” that’s just one of the many things that atheists like you believe for which there is no evidence.”

    There is no real evidence for the existence of Mo at all. There are texts which suggest Mo the character married a child. I didn’t make those up. They are part of Islamic tradition, whether or not you reject them as apocryphal or think they have been misinterpreted.

    “By the way, even if the tales about the age of Muhammad’s wife were true, do you really think I’d let atheist degenerates lecture me about morality? When the atheist degenerate Roman Polanski had sex with his “suspiciously young” girlfriend, he was defended and sheltered by his fellow atheists, like the French philosopher Alain Finkielkraut (who is known for his Islamophobic beliefs).”

    Has Roman Polanski lectured anyone on morality? I don’t remember seeing him as head of a religion or a cited as a prophet. He’s not even the leader of a political party. He is a private individual and artist, not a spiritual leader. I think we should ask higher standards of the prophet of billions than we do a film director.

    Polanski’s atheism is irrelevant to his crime, just as the religion of paedophiles is irrelevant to their crimes unless the are committing crimes which are directly sanctioned by their religion. Your arguments are more pathetic than usual here.

    I can’t be bothered to read the stuff about Dawkins. If it is true, which it almost certainly won’t be, it is irrelevant. If an atheist actively promotes rape and paedophilia that has no bearing on not believing in the divine. They are separate issues. Nor does it reflect on other atheists by association. That is the foundation of bigotry, blaming the group for the sins of an individual.

    If a Muslim promotes paedophilia that is also separate to his faith unless he claims that he is doing so in the name of Islam and cites Islamic texts to support his position. Even then he would not represent most Muslims who find paedophilia abhorrent, despite the possibility of their prophet marrying a child. The promotion or practice of paedophilia is not part of mainstream Islam.

    “Knock yourself out! It’ll just become apparent that you don’t know what you’re talking about and that you’re the one cherry-picking verses.”

    I already pointed out the anti-gay bigotry of the Quran which you ignored and the nonsense of the Adam and Eve story which you also ignored. That is what you do with difficult questions, you ignore them. What would be the point of quoting more questionable verses for you to ignore? We both know what they are.

    “I’m not going to keep following you down these rabbit holes, Alistair. I have neither the time nor the patience to do so. You can unilaterally declare victory in this debate if it makes you feel better, but I’ll leave it to the people reading this to determine who has the stronger argument(s).”

    There are no rabbit holes. I ask you simple questions and you refuse to answer them because you find them hard to answer. I didn’t win the debate by defeating you, you lost it by running away.

  • Whatever, dude.

  • Anyone who presumes to know what ‘spiritual work’ someone they don’t know has to do is arrogance personified.

    You’ve written pages and pages of comments here, revealing much about your beliefs and way of thinking. It’s enough to assess some things about you.

    Human beings have understood and explained in various ways the spiritual realm for thousands of years. It’s always been a part of the human experience, and it always will be.

    To accuse nearly ALL of humanity of believing in nonsense is arrogant. It suggests think you’re better than most people past and present. What have I said that compares? I wouldn’t dare behave the way you do, though I did once upon a time to some degree. Which is why I will always associate your brand of myopic arrogance with immaturity.

    Maybe someday you’ll get past it. Maybe not. I prayed for you and wished you well, and beyond that, it’s not my concern. God invites whom He will to the home of peace.

    Take care.

  • Alistair John

    I would say the stubbornness and arrogance are yours. Anyone who presumes to know what ‘spiritual work’ someone they don’t know has to do is arrogance personified. Not believing in something for which there is not one shred of evidence is not stubborn. It is the opposite of stubborn. I don’t refuse to believe I simply cannot believe. What is stubborn is believing without evidence. Religious people call such stubbornness faith.

    Even if I did believe in your god I could do little but despise him. My views about the god of the Torah, Bible and Quran are similar to Stephen Fry’s in his recent brush with ludicrous blasphemy laws in Ireland. Any god who created the world as it is, with all its huge amount of undeserved suffering is a monster. A god who demands you love, honour and obey him for presiding over such a world is a demented egotist. Any god who casts ‘sinners’ into eternal damnation is a vile sadist.

    When I watched my mother slowly die of cancer it came to me more powerfully than ever just how disgusting any creator figure necessarily has to be. Satan, by comparison, seems the moral figure. How could anyone be anything but a rebel in the face of such divine cruelty? There is scarcely one part of the morality of the Abrahamic faiths I can sympathise with as a vegan pacificist. More than that, much of it is bigoted, violent, oppressive and hateful. So much that is truly evil in the world has its source in religion.

    I appreciate your sincerity, but even if I believed I would look for moral guidance from every other source than your imaginary friend as portrayed in the Abrahamic texts.

  • Not really. You’ve blinded yourself, fallen for some deception, and you are the one who has spiritual work to do.

    The good news is that God has yet to stop calling you back to Him. The very fact you’re here debating with us is a sign. The day you stop being curious and drawn to debate about God is likely to be the day He has abandoned you to your own stubbornness and arrogance, and then you really will wander in a spiritual wilderness without guidance.

    I prayed for you today, and asked God to guide you. When I say “may God guide you,” it’s not just an expression. I’m quite sincere.

  • Alistair John

    I think God has his/hers/its work cut out with me.

    Peace to you too.

  • Alistair John

    There question is not whether the incident took place, or took place in the way some people said it did. The incident is one of many attributed to the mythical figure of Mohammed which has been accepted by some Muslims as factual and justifiable. There is a catalogue violence attributed to the prophet which has been used to justify violence by Muslims. It is certainly a stretch to view Mohammed as a peaceful figure based on many Islamic texts.

  • Alistair John

    Still avoiding the Adam and Eve and the universal ideology of atheism points I see.

    “Atheism is whatever atheists do and say (just as Islam is whatever Muslims do and say, according to you).”

    No, atheism still remains the lack of belief in the divine. There are different form of atheist thought just as there are sects of Islam.

    “Atheism doesn’t need something that is shared by all atheists.”

    Yes, it does, if it is to have any meaning at all as a word. If it is something other than the lack of belief in the divine then atheists have nothing in common whatsoever. The word is there to define something specific and remarkably simple.

    “Just as Islam doesn’t need something that is shared by all Muslims , according to you”.

    No, various Muslims do share some things in common. Atheists share nothing other than their lack of belief.

    “Do you ever read the piffle you write before you post it, Alistair? If there’s an “exception,” then there is nothing in “common among all the various Muslims.”

    The piffle is always yours. I deal with observable reality, not a list of sheep and goats. I look at the people who call themselves Muslim who often differ from one another enormously. I don’t divide them into ‘real’ or ‘faux’ Muslims.

    “Your definition of Islam and Muslim is literally meaningless! A Muslim could literally believe in anything and still be considered a Muslim. And because you think that Islam is “whatever Muslims say and do,” Islam could literally be anything!”

    Not quite anything. But it does allow for enormous variation, which is notable in most religions, most of all in Christianity. It is even noticeable in secular ideologies such as feminism, where adherents can appear to have almost nothing in common beyond the vaguest intentions. That is just how it is, whether you recognise that or not.

    “No, you really can’t be a philosopher or theologian and not come into contact with evidence of one’s beliefs. Depending on the beliefs, the quality of the evidence may be good or bad. but providing evidence and arguments for one’s beliefs is the nature of the philosophical and theological enterprise.”

    Name the evidence behind any theology whatsoever. Name the evidence behind Nietzsche’s concept of the superman or Schopenhauer’s belief in life after death.

    “And, yes, you can be a scientist and have no recourse to evidence for your beliefs.”

    Of course, anyone can venture any opinion or entertain any belief on any subject they like, whether or not they are a scientist. That doesn’t make their opinion science. Science is science not the random opinions of random scientists. Science requires evidence and proof.

    “No, you wouldn’t settle for any form of evidence. Atheists don’t reject God’s existence because of a lack of evidence, they reject God simply because they don’t want to accept God’s existence. As Jean-Paul Sartre said, even if there was proof God existed, it would still be necessary to reject Him.”

    No, I see no evidence for the existence of God because there is none. If I had evidence of God I wouldn’t be able not to believe in him/her/it. My desires, either way, have nothing to do with the case.

    If knew God did exist I would certainly be of the Devil’s party. I should imagine that might be what Sartre meant, although I’m not an expert on French existentialists by any means. A creator who made the world as it is deserves nothing but hatred.

    “Dismissing the divine entirely is the nature of atheism.”

    Not really, it is just not believing in something for which there is no evidence. It is not currently possible to prove the non-existence of the divine and may never be. Some atheists may claim the divine cannot existent. However, in reality, we are all agnostics in point of logic.

    “As the Quran says: “. . . .Thus, no matter what kind of proof they see, they cannot believe. Thus, when they come to argue with you, the disbelievers say, ‘These are tales from the past.'”

    It would be much more credible if the Quran could show hard evidence. They are indeed tales from the past, like Cinderella. Why is there a need for faith? I don’t need to have faith in the existence of the sky or the government. I know they are there. Why am I required by your religion to have faith in something for which there is no evidence to dictate my actions and morals?

    “The question is not whether the Quran justifies violence “in some circumstances” like self-defense, but whether wanton violence is “condoned in the Quran against enemies of Islam,” the same way some atheists condone wanton violence against Muslims with “bad intentions” and “dangerous ideas”. I cited verses from the Quran that showed that violence was only permitted in self-defense, not simply against perceived “enemies of Islam” in an ideological sense.”

    Yes, you cherry picked verses from the Quran. I don’t condone violence against anyone. If some atheists do that is nothing to do with me.

    “In atheist countries like China, religious people have a secondary status and are subjected to discriminatory policies, but people aren’t rushing to become atheists. Instead, China has seen an surge in conversion from atheism to religions, including Islam.”

    China is not a free country and you have no knowledge what amount of the Chinese are atheists or not.

    “Why would people in “Islamic” countries convert to a religion that discriminates against them?”

    What religion would that be?

  • Alistair John

    “No, it’s not a joke. What is a joke is your belief that atheists don’t believe in things for which there is no evidence. . . while believing in things for which there is no evidence like the “slaughter” of the Banu Qurayza. The story was literally made up out of the blue.”

    As there is no hard evidence for the existence of Mohammed as a real historical figure and we are dealing with myths and fairy tales and ‘histories’ written long after the events they claim to have taken place that is a moot point. The real point is that your friend Mo is a bloodthirsty figure in Islamic texts and traditions.

    “Some propositions are so dangerous that it may even be ethical to kill people for believing them. This may seem an extraordinary claim, but it merely enunciates an ordinary fact about the world in which we live. Certain beliefs place their adherents beyond the reach of every peaceful means of persuasion, while inspiring them to commit acts of extraordinary violence against others. There is, in fact, no talking to some people. If they cannot be captured, and they often cannot, otherwise tolerant people may be justified in killing them in self-defense. This is what the United States attempted in Afghanistan, and it is what we and other Western powers are bound to attempt, at an even greater cost to ourselves and to innocents abroad, elsewhere in the Muslim world. We will continue to spill blood in what is, at bottom, a war of ideas. ”

    It isn’t a position I agree with but it is a commonplace idea. It is often used as a retrospective justification for fighting the Nazis, to give a moral gloss to Allied activities Personally, I don’t believe military action in fascist Muslim states is the answer to oppression, I think it makes things worse, and I don’t believe Britain or the States should have entered WW2 either. Nevertheless, I don’t necessarily condemn those who support the overthrow barbaric regimes which are oppressive and/or genocidal and whose leaders cannot be reasoned or negotiated with. The problem is that too often of the intentions of the ‘liberators’ are often as suspect as the oppressors.

    “I can think of many historical and contemporary examples of atheist degenerates who are more repulsive than your ahistorical Muhammad, but space doesn’t permit me to name them all.”
    You would be wasting your time. I have never attempted to defend individual atheists, except from what I believe to be a false representation of their position. If they are immoral they are immoral. Atheism has nothing to do with morality, it has nothing to do with anything other than a lack of belief in the divine.
    “Anyway, Jesus wasn’t a pacifist, as you erroneously suggest. Jesus, like Muhammad, wasn’t against using physical force in self-defense.”

    A questionable interpretation. I am not a Christian and don’t need to defend or condemn the figure of Jesus. The point I was making is that Jesus as presented in the Bible is not a martial figure, his talk of ‘swords’ is largely metaphorical (although that is more than enough for some Christians to legitimise violence) and doesn’t have a record of bloodshed and slaughter to his name, unlike Mo.

    “As for slavery, Muhammad didn’t keep slaves. Owning slaves was against the message that he promulgated.”

    And yet many Islamic texts speak of Mo’s slaves.

    “One thing is clear, both Jesus and Muhammad were ethically superior to their degenerate atheist detractors.”

    Interesting choice of word, ‘degenerate’. I can almost see the spittle as you say it. Is every critic of Mo and Jesus a degenerate? I’m not a fan of Jesus’s teachings, but Mo I find to be a despicable character.

    “Muhammad, for example, probably emancipated more slaves in his lifetime than all atheists throughout history combined.”

    Don’t be silly. You cannot compare the fictional accounts of a largely fictional character with the real reports of known historical figures. Even then he was one man and slavery thrived throughout the Islamic world.

    “Think about it, can you name a single prominent atheist abolitionist or an atheist-led abolitionist movement?”

    Off hand no. During the 19th century most abolitionists were Christian, in particular Quaker and Evangelical. In other words, specifically non-conformist Protestant North Europeans. However, there were far fewer atheists at that point, certainly far less openly atheist people and I am unaware of an atheist led pro-slavery movement either. although there were Christian supporters of slavery.

    There was less of an anti-Slavery movement among Anglicans or Catholics and no movement at all within Islam. Anti-Slavery became a British, then European and then North American phenomenon, spreading by force through European empires at considerable cost in both lives and money for those countries enforcing it.

    It is one of the ironies of history that biggest slaving nation became the first to end it permanently and the biggest driver in its eradication, and that European colonialism was a key factor to the ending of slavery.

    Can you show me, other than the mythical figure of Mohammed, a large abolitionist movement in the Islamic world?

    “This may have something to do with the fact that European atheists, like Richard Dawkins and others, benefited handsomely from the brutal slave trade.”

    That is most ludicrous point you have made so far. Everyone living in rich ex-slaving states is to some extent the beneficiary of the legacy of slavery, including the descendants of slaves. And if Dawkins inherited money that once came from slavery that has nothing to do with him personally. Everyone in Britain who had anything to do with slavery has been dead for a very long time. Unless Dawkins is advocating for slavery currently you have no argument. He is not his ancestors and that is just a pathetic attempt to smear him.

  • MichaelElwood

    In stark contrast, many Muslims throughout history, inspired by Muhammad’s example, have led abolitionist movements and have spoken out about the immoral and un-Islamic nature of slavery:

    “God did not grant rulers the right to enslave, to rob or to kill their own populations. He rather commanded them, by contrast, to protect them, as rulers have been created to serve their peoples not the other way around.”

    –Shaykh Nasir al-Din al-Daymani [Mauritanian slave rebellion leader. d. 1674]

    “. . . .in the beginning it [slavery] existed like other Pre-Islamic customs which were not repealed all at once. It [Islam], however, prohibited the making of new slaves, and for the slaves still present many regulations were fixed with this in view that bit by bit they should be released.”

    –Sayyid Ahmad Khan [1817-1898]

    “. . . .the basic assumption in regard to the human species is freedom and lack of any case for being enslaved. Whoever maintains the opposite is opposing the basic principle. . . .

    “How then can a man who has scruples about his religion permit himself to buy something of this nature? How too can he allow himself to take their women as concubines considering that this involves entering upon a sexual liaison of doubtful legality. . . .

    “Worse than that, in these days, the evil-doers and those who flout Allah, kidnap freeborn children in the qaba’il, villages, and cities of the Maghrib and sell them openly in the markets without anyone showing resentment or being angered on behalf of the religion. . . .”

    –Shaykh Ahmad ibn Khalid al-Nasiri [1834-1897]

    “. . . .the abolition of slavery is according to the spirit of the Koran, to Mohammedan tradition, and Mohammedan dogma.”

    –Shaykh Muhammad Abduh [1849-1905]

    “. . . .it was quit simply the greatest evil in the history of humanity. The Quran had forbidden all further enslavement and had commanded that all existing slaves be freed.”

    –Shaykh Musa Jarullah Bigiyev [1875-1948]

    As for your claim that Muhammad married women who were “suspiciously young,” that’s just one of the many things that atheists like you believe for which there is no evidence. I pointed this out to another atheist who made the same claim on this website:

    https://disqus.com/home/discussion/loonwatch/polish_magazine_8220the_islamic_rape_of_europe8221/#comment-2551212683

    By the way, even if the tales about the age of Muhammad’s wife were true, do you really think I’d let atheist degenerates lecture me about morality? When the atheist degenerate Roman Polanski had sex with his “suspiciously young” girlfriend, he was defended and sheltered by his fellow atheists, like the French philosopher Alain Finkielkraut (who is known for his Islamophobic beliefs). And of course the English biologist, Richard Dawkins, has stated that there is nothing wrong with a little “mild pedophilia”:

    “Richard Dawkins defends “mild pedophilia,” says it does not cause “lasting harm””

    http://www.salon.com/2013/09/10/richard_dawkins_defends_mild_pedophilia_says_it_does_not_cause_lasting_harm/

    “Richard Dawkins Defends ‘Mild’ Pedophilia, Again and Again”

    https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2013/09/richard-dawkins-defends-mild-pedophilia-again-and-again/311230/

    Alistair John wrote: “And there is little point cherry picking verses from the Quran. I can easily pick less savoury verses in response. The self contradiction within the Quran is notorious as it is with contradiction between the Old and New Testaments.”

    Knock yourself out! It’ll just become apparent that you don’t know what you’re talking about and that you’re the one cherry-picking verses.

    Alistair John wrote: “I have read much of the Quran and what it is says is not hard to find.”

    You haven’t read jack! You’re the one who said that you were too impatient to sift through the Quran, remember?

    Alistair John wrote: “In reality you ran away from this argument a long time ago, as you have constantly refused to speak about Adam and Eve and a universal ideology of atheism. Your moral and intellectual cowardice is so blatant and pathetic I wonder how you justify it to yourself. You do not win an argue by dodging from questions you cannot answer. And everyone who reads this can see how you refused to answer them over and over again.”

    I’m not going to keep following you down these rabbit holes, Alistair. I have neither the time nor the patience to do so. You can unilaterally declare victory in this debate if it makes you feel better, but I’ll leave it to the people reading this to determine who has the stronger argument(s).

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