A Short Self Introduction
Posted: 24 October 2012 04:40 PM   [ Ignore ]  
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Hey everyone,


There was no “introduce yourself” section on the forums, so I thought I might as well introduce myself here.


I used to be a devout, practicing Muslim for over 20 years.


Even though I was always a skeptic, my faith only started eroding over the past 7 years.


I am now a strident atheist, helping other ex-Muslims with the ensuing struggles that occur when they lose their faith. I also help them escape situations that are potentially life-threatening if their apostasy was made public. I am also undertaking a fairly daunting project that will aim to tell their stories as well.


I’ve come here to ask you a few simple questions:


1- Using your current knowledge of Islam and its current state, what do you think it will take for Muslims to take steps towards accepting apostates among them?


2- How can Islam progressively become as relatively less-harmful to the development of societies as Christianity is? Granted, Christianity can have severe consequences if its version of the world were to creep into classrooms, but you don’t see a pastor shooting a 14-year old girl in the face for carrying a book.


We’ll start with those to get this discussion going!

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Posted: 24 October 2012 08:35 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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apostasin - 24 October 2012 04:40 PM

Hey everyone,


There was no “introduce yourself” section on the forums, so I thought I might as well introduce myself here.

Howdy, and welcome.

I used to be a devout, practicing Muslim for over 20 years.

Even though I was always a skeptic, my faith only started eroding over the past 7 years.

Let’s test ya with the avitar test.  Look at mine.

How are you doing?

I am now a strident atheist, helping other ex-Muslims with the ensuing struggles that occur when they lose their faith. I also help them escape situations that are potentially life-threatening if their apostasy was made public. I am also undertaking a fairly daunting project that will aim to tell their stories as well.

My hat’s off to you, brother.  Thank you.

I’ve come here to ask you a few simple questions:


1- Using your current knowledge of Islam and its current state, what do you think it will take for Muslims to take steps towards accepting apostates among them?

I would guess that, given the history of similar models, as well as a good number of players in the turmoil that is Islam today being people who only seem to understand violence and embrace it, it will take a very bloody civil war from within.  I think that the outside world can provide little more than cheerleading, and assistance in helping pick up the pieces when it’s over.  But I gotta tell ya, we really don’t want to be victims of Islam’s growing pains anymore.  We’re reaching some critical points in history where if we don’t rescue ourselves from the attacks on simple human freedoms from religious groups, we may never get them back.  Look at the Satanic Verses reaction, the Danish Cartoon bullshit, the death of Theo Van Gogh, or the recent flap over a silly movie.  There’s a pattern here.  When people allow their religion to do all their thinking for them, and their leaders gather them together and tell them what their opinion has to be, their IQs plummet.  Reason is replaced with bloodlust.  You can see it coming.  And Muslims, being the most reactionary people on the planet, are also inevitably the most predictable.

And of course, I’m referring to the Muslims that show up on our radar.  Not the bad Muslims.  The scripturally-incorrect/challenged Muslims.  The one’s we’re happy to have as neighbors.  We don’t hear from those Muslims when the real Muslims are being as uncivilized as the authors of the books Islam was plagiarized from often were.  And that’s the problem, as your story tells.  There are many within Islam who don’t agree with much, or don’t agree with some harsh, official interpretations, but are scared shitless to speak up.  And who can blame them?  It takes an exception person to do what you say you are doing. 

My question to you is, just how many Muslims do you suppose there are who don’t agree with much within their scriptures, but stay anyways.  Counter-part to the Christian pew-warmer.  I would guess it would be just as high.  Fear is every bit as effective as complacency when it comes to human behavior, and then some.

2- How can Islam progressively become as relatively less-harmful to the development of societies as Christianity is? Granted, Christianity can have severe consequences if its version of the world were to creep into classrooms, but you don’t see a pastor shooting a 14-year old girl in the face for carrying a book.

See answer to question 1.  It will take something huge.  Possibly earth-shattering.  It will have to become uncool to do such a thing.  That’s a social issue, and not a legal one.  It would be hard to imagine the townspeople letting someone get away so easily in the West.  And not because it’s illegal to shoot a 14 year old girl in the face. 

 

 

[ Edited: 24 October 2012 08:49 PM by Ice Monkey]
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What can be asserted without proof can be dismissed without proof.
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I prefer the full-on embrace of reality to the spiritual masturbation that is religion.
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I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people
~ M. Teresa, Fruitcake of Calcutta

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Posted: 27 October 2012 06:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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apostasin - 24 October 2012 04:40 PM

Hey everyone,


I’ve come here to ask you a few simple questions:


1- Using your current knowledge of Islam and its current state, what do you think it will take for Muslims to take steps towards accepting apostates among them?


2- How can Islam progressively become as relatively less-harmful to the development of societies as Christianity is? Granted, Christianity can have severe consequences if its version of the world were to creep into classrooms, but you don’t see a pastor shooting a 14-year old girl in the face for carrying a book.


We’ll start with those to get this discussion going!


Hello,


I too am an ex-Muslim. And I’ve written a few articles that answer your questions:


This one explains what is missing in Islamic society that is holding them back.
http://ramirustom.blogspot.com/2012/09/why-most-terrorists-are-muslims.html


This one explains why Muslims deny the truth.
http://ramirustom.blogspot.com/2012/10/why-do-people-rationalize.html


This one explains why ex-Muslims don’t go public.
http://ramirustom.blogspot.com/2012/09/why-dont-ex-muslims-go-public.html


This one explains why people *want* to believe in God.
http://ramirustom.blogspot.com/2012/09/is-allah-real.html


I’ve also discussed your ideas and others in depth with many Muslims on Islam-watch.org and on this forum:


http://dir.groups.yahoo.com/group/Fabric-of-Reality/msearch?query=islam+OR+Mohamed+OR+Allah&submit=Search&charset=UTF-8


So what do you think? What would it take for the Islamic societies to change?

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If you agree with my ideas, you’d enjoy these:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com
http://fallibleideas.com/
http://groups.google.com/group/beginning-of-infinity/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/taking-children-seriously/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/rational-politics-list/subscribe
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Posted: 11 November 2012 07:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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Please excuse the delayed response, I’ve been involved in a motor accident that rendered me immobile and unconscious for a while. 

Ice Monkey - 24 October 2012 08:35 PM

Let’s test ya with the avitar test.  Look at mine.

How are you doing?

Haha, I actually laughed out loud. That cartoon never really offended me in any way to be honest, and the reason is two-fold:


1- That never really came across to me as what the prophet might look like


2- It would take a tremendous measure of hypocrisy to take offense at that drawing, especially when Islamic publications and newspapers engage in some fairly obscene and morbid depiction of jews.


That said, I firmly believe that everyone should have the freedom to offend, with religion on the top of the list.

I am now a strident atheist, helping other ex-Muslims with the ensuing struggles that occur when they lose their faith. I also help them escape situations that are potentially life-threatening if their apostasy was made public. I am also undertaking a fairly daunting project that will aim to tell their stories as well.

My hat’s off to you, brother.  Thank you.

See answer to question 1.  It will take something huge.  Possibly earth-shattering.  It will have to become uncool to do such a thing.  That’s a social issue, and not a legal one.  It would be hard to imagine the townspeople letting someone get away so easily in the West.  And not because it’s illegal to shoot a 14 year old girl in the face.


The way I see it, I believe that pure, unadulterated scientific education and the fostering of critical thinking skills would go even further than any “earth-shattering” social upheaval.


The majority of the ex-Muslims I know have left Islam simply because of the mounting scientific evidence that makes the case for God look utterly absurd. They read the Quran with their freshly reinstated critical faculties, and wonder how the hell they ever believed a word of it in the first place.


Literary works against the religious establishment such as the ones authored by Harris, Dawkins and Dennett are also making their way to the collective Muslim subconscious, however slowly so.


Dangerous as it is, such works might gain even more traction amongst Muslim readers if the argument against religion were to come from a high-profile author from within their own commune, i.e. an ex-Muslim who is willing to go public about his/her apostasy and lays out a firm argument against Islam and its tenants.


The trick is to get other ex-Muslims to lose their fears of coming out. This is the main challenge I am currently facing: convincing ex-Muslims that they have to take things into their own hands if they want to see the Islamic stronghold wane and weaken enough for their forthcoming generations to experience a better future.

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Posted: 12 November 2012 06:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]  
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apostasin - 11 November 2012 07:28 PM

Please excuse the delayed response, I’ve been involved in a motor accident that rendered me immobile and unconscious for a while. 

Ice Monkey - 24 October 2012 08:35 PM

Let’s test ya with the avitar test.  Look at mine.

How are you doing?

Haha, I actually laughed out loud. That cartoon never really offended me in any way to be honest, and the reason is two-fold:


1- That never really came across to me as what the prophet might look like


2- It would take a tremendous measure of hypocrisy to take offense at that drawing, especially when Islamic publications and newspapers engage in some fairly obscene and morbid depiction of jews.


That said, I firmly believe that everyone should have the freedom to offend, with religion on the top of the list.

This is confused. We should all have the freedom of dissent of ideas, and the freedom to voice our ideas. That some listeners might get offended is their concern, not the concern of the speaker.


Getting offended is evil. Getting offended means getting hurt by words. How can words hurt you? Consider the saying: “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.” This saying means that the speaker doesn’t get offended because he’s not actually getting hurt.

apostasin - 11 November 2012 07:28 PM

I am now a strident atheist, helping other ex-Muslims with the ensuing struggles that occur when they lose their faith. I also help them escape situations that are potentially life-threatening if their apostasy was made public. I am also undertaking a fairly daunting project that will aim to tell their stories as well.

My hat’s off to you, brother.  Thank you.

See answer to question 1.  It will take something huge.  Possibly earth-shattering.  It will have to become uncool to do such a thing.  That’s a social issue, and not a legal one.  It would be hard to imagine the townspeople letting someone get away so easily in the West.  And not because it’s illegal to shoot a 14 year old girl in the face.


The way I see it, I believe that pure, unadulterated scientific education and the fostering of critical thinking skills would go even further than any “earth-shattering” social upheaval.


The majority of the ex-Muslims I know have left Islam simply because of the mounting scientific evidence that makes the case for God look utterly absurd. They read the Quran with their freshly reinstated critical faculties, and wonder how the hell they ever believed a word of it in the first place.


Literary works against the religious establishment such as the ones authored by Harris, Dawkins and Dennett are also making their way to the collective Muslim subconscious, however slowly so.


Dangerous as it is, such works might gain even more traction amongst Muslim readers if the argument against religion were to come from a high-profile author from within their own commune, i.e. an ex-Muslim who is willing to go public about his/her apostasy and lays out a firm argument against Islam and its tenants.


The trick is to get other ex-Muslims to lose their fears of coming out. This is the main challenge I am currently facing: convincing ex-Muslims that they have to take things into their own hands if they want to see the Islamic stronghold wane and weaken enough for their forthcoming generations to experience a better future.


I’m an ex-Muslim and have come out publicly. I’ve written an article explaining why most Muslims don’t do it. It explains the straightforward reason of self-preservation, but more importantly it explains their psychology hurdles getting in the way:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com/2012/09/why-dont-ex-muslims-go-public.html


In this article, I also explain why Muslims should go public.

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—Rami Rustom

If you agree with my ideas, you’d enjoy these:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com
http://fallibleideas.com/
http://groups.google.com/group/beginning-of-infinity/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/taking-children-seriously/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/rational-politics-list/subscribe
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Autonomy-Respecting-Relationships/messages

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