Every single Muslim is responsible. Part 3

Increasing numbers of Muslims are finding that hypocrisy will no longer provide them with comfort. Only by joining the likes of ISIS, on the one hand, or apostatising from Islam, on the other, can a Muslim escape hypocrisy and find honesty, with his or her inner human either dead, or set free.

Every single Muslim is responsible. Part 3
Doubt? What doubt?

Special Series on Apostasy: There's no better time than Ramadan

Part 1, Part 2

The great fault line that has opened up across the ummah is that between, on the one side, autonomous individuals, people who think for themselves, want freedom, democracy, the right to make their own choices, pursue their own dreams, unleash their own creativity, believe whatever they want to believe, and have no truck with tyranny, corruption, incompetence, mismanagement, ignorance, brutality and totalitarianism, and on the other, dependent subordinates, who are terrified of taking their own decisions, of non-conformity (their own or that of others), of not deferring to “people of knowledge”, of falling foul of prohibitions (real or imagined), of not being taken care of by a strong leader, of taking personal responsibility and, above all else, of not being Muslim. All other splits and divisions: Shi’a-Sunni, Arab-non-Arab, “moderate”-“radical”, even male-female, pale against the great historic fault line of human social evolution: the autonomous individual rising out of the subordinate dependent. It is inescapable.

Inherent to life as an autonomous individual is risk and doubt. Inherent to life as a subordinate dependent is security and certainty. Freedom presupposes both individuality and autonomy, and therefore necessarily risk and doubt. Totalitarianism, be it Islam, Russia, China or any other, presupposes both subordination and dependence, and therefor security and certainty. So long as you obey, you will be provided for. It might be meagre, but you will eat. The autonomous individual is finally generalising across the historically totalitarian societies, putting age-old social relations, and what has always been known to be true, under severe strain.

Today there are at least two generations in these societies whose lives cannot be fulfilled by subordinating themselves to their parents, the religious authorities, the secular authorities, their employers, their teachers, etc., and to being dependent on them. Such societies cannot accommodate non-submission and find themselves increasingly riven. Either they reform peacefully and embrace the freedom their awakening populations demand, or resist change at enormous cost in lives and wealth until the society finally explodes anyway (or implodes if enough males have been killed).

The entire Muslim world is subject to these pressures, whether the Muslims in question reside in the Islamic world, or in the West. When sheikhs lament about Muslim children having doubt, the cause of that doubt is not Western influence, which is merely the catalyst. The root cause of Muslim youth doubting Islam is that their generation is no longer the kind of people that are a prerequisite for totalitarian propagation. Russia and China have exactly the same problem. The generation now growing up in Muslim societies are not “confused” or “deviating from the straight path”, as the sheikhs will have us believe. They are simply completely different kind of people, a kind unknown to Islam, a kind that previous generations are incapable of comprehending, a kind “that will knock us over,” as Sheikh Bilal Phillips fears. It is a generation that does not fear doubt.

Fear of doubt is the ultimate insurance against rational and ethical intrusion into the Muslim mind. The infallibility of their blood-soaked Qur’an and prophet cannot be doubted. In his video Yasir Qadhi Doubts in Islam, Abdullah Sameer discusses Dr Qadhi’s encounters with doubt when the latter exposed himself to the environment of Western universities. Qadhi, in turn, highlights the perils facing young Western Muslims, exposed as they are to a world that not only values, but requires doubt, and for which Islam is wholly unprepared. Dr Qadhi talks about doubt rather a lot, in what is clearly a case of the sheikh doth protest too much, methinks, and in the tender world of Islamic proselytising, the backlash is vicious and has been running for years.

Sheikh Dr Yasir Qadhi, a forty-something Texas imam of Pakistani extraction, educated at Medina and Yale. When Muslim terrorists on 11 September 2001 flew passenger jets into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and, unsuccessfully, the U.S. Capitol / the White House, murdering almost 3,000 people and injuring 25,000, prominent American Islamic “scholar” and imam Yasir Qadhi recounts, “The first thought that came to my mind was, ‘Oh, Allah, I hope it is not Muslims’.” Muslims murder 3,000 people and fail to murder another 25,000 and all he can think of is that now people are going to say bad things about Muslims. In this response, Yasir Qadhi is just like any other Muslim: no matter how grotesque the carnage Muslims perpetrate and how “integrated” they are, their first and only concern is always for the image of themselves and their religion. Yet, Yasir Qadhi is also very different to other Muslims. For a start, he is highly educated, the highest three of his five degrees being from then respected Western universities. Western universities are places the average Muslim instinctively treats with suspicion.

Yasir Qadhi is an enigma. Muslims love him and loathe him in equal measure. Dr Qadhi wants Muslims to modernise, yet at the same time not be ashamed of their religion. He wants Muslims to read history, yet wants them to memorise history as Islam would have it. He wants Muslims to think for themselves, yet must never question their “scholars”, let alone the Qur’an. He tells his congregation, “Oh Muslims, never lie for your religion,” yet he must lie to those very Muslims about their religion to keep them from apostatising. Yasir Qadhi studied Islam in Saudi Arabia for many years. In the aftermath of the 9/11 jihad mass murders, he returned to the US in order to, “build bridges of understanding between Americans and Muslims,” he claimed, implying that Muslims can never be Americans, and going on to prove it by insisting, “I do not have to respect the laws of the land [the United States]. I have to abide, agreed. But I can criticise, I can hate it, I can try to change it. All of this is something I will do, as a Muslim.” Some bridge.

Yasir Qadhi clearly has problems with Islam, but the preservation of Islam will always be paramount for him, regardless of how catastrophic it is, so he is forced to always take one step forward and two steps back. Every Muslim is a walking contradiction, yet the duped liberal West finds in Yasir Qadhi another “integrated Muslim” chimera to cling to, since their previous darling, Tariq Ramadan, turned out to be a violent, Islam-driven rapist. Yasir Qadhi embodies much of what I have to say about Muslims.

Back to the question of doubt, Sheikh Omar Suleiman offers Muhammad’s simple advice. If all else fails, know that you did not doubt, but that Shaitan (Satan) put those thoughts in your mind, so that the moment such a thought arises, quash it straightaway by saying to yourself, “I believe in Allah.” That pushes Satan away—note, it pushes Satan away, not your doubts. The sheikh does not want to remind you that you have doubts, or that those doubts have anything to do with you, reducing you again to a passive object awaiting your orders. How the “scholars” manipulate lay Muslims and control their minds have been much in focus of late.

One way that rational and ethical Muslims deal with their doubts is by cognitive dissonance, a form of lying to yourself. Those less schooled in the finer points of reason and those ethically more primitive, dress up their fear as faith. The one group shuts off their minds, the other abdicates their minds. Both groups are dishonest, but the former, being more self-aware, is also more deluded. To be steadfast in the face of clear evidence of the cruelty and irrationality of Islam has, in the conception of the latter group, nothing to do with fear, but with “having strong iman”, a dubious virtue peddled by both the ulama and imams.

The poor ulama, what Muslims grandly refer to as “the scholars”, such as Sheikh Suleiman, have their hands full dealing with Shaitan using the Internet to place doubts in the minds of so many young Muslims. Search for “Doubt in Islam” on YouTube to see just how busy Shaitan has been over the last five years alone. He has even infiltrated the Islamic Studies departments of Western dhimmi universities. Nowhere is safe. Doubt lurks around every corner, ready to pounce on the unsuspecting Muslim. The antidote to doubt is simple and obvious: to remain a Muslim of strong faith, remain primitive and simplistic in thought, base in emotions and desires, and, above all, remain profoundly ignorant of the world and especially of your own religion.

Apart from the clergy and the caliphate-junkies, few Muslims actually take their guidance from Islamic scripture. This does not mean that lay Muslims do not read the Qur’an; many do, but most cannot, even if they think it the right thing to do. Their children reading the Qur’an in madrassa sort of makes up for their not doing so themselves. Muslims imbibe the rules of Islam through their madrassa indoctrination and through cultural osmosis. Their “scholars” and clergy tell them the Qur’an says this or that, or the prophet did this or that, and they assent because they hear and obey, as they have been trained to do, and definitely not because they understand and agree. A Muslim neither understands nor agrees; he hears and obeys. The damage is long-lasting and continues well after the Muslim has left Islam.

Those lay Muslims who do read the Qur’an, do so not for guidance, as a Christian might read the Bible, or a Jew the Torah, but to recite it. “Recite”, though, is still too grand a word for what actually takes place, which is a simple voicing of sounds corresponding to symbols on the page. The ability to understand Arabic has no bearing on this at all; the “reciter” merely produces verbal copies of the text they see before them without any engagement beyond that. Not only is understanding of Arabic not required, literacy is not required. The “reciter” needs merely remember at what point in the “recitation” to turn the page. This means that a Muslim can have memorised the entire Qur’an, without being able to read a single word of it. It is another of Islam’s famous “miracles” that an illiterate Muslim is able to read the Qur’an upside down!

The virtue of this activity is taken to reside exactly and exclusively in making the sounds that correspond to the symbols on the page. The benefit lies in uttering the Arabic sounds, whether understood or not. Indeed, Arabic is the only valid language in which the Qur’an may be read, and Muslims find reading the Qur’an in translation demeaning of its majesty, sacrilegious even. Devout Muslims who really want to understand the Qur’an find the idea of reading it in translation extremely uncomfortable, and express their desire to learn Arabic so they can read the Qur’an. In the meantime, since a translation is “not the real Qur’an,” they would rather have a “scholar” tell them what they have just read, thereby perpetuating the structural ignorance of Muslim society, and keeping Islam going.

None of this embarrasses Muslims in the slightest, especially not their mindless waste of human energy in “reading” the Qur’an. One of the most highly-praised accomplishments among Muslims is the ability to recite the entire Qur’an by heart, even without being able to read, let alone understand, a single word of it. This insane squandering of human brains has for centuries conspired with “We hear and we obey”, as well as the reduction of almost the entire female Muslim population to brood mares, to result in the pitiful specimens of humanity that populate the Muslim world today. Far from grasping their incredible loss, Muslims admire their Qur’an memorisers. They bestow a special recognition on them, Hafiz, and a family that has one of these shows off such pièces de résistance to the kufaar to rub Muslim supremacy in their faces.

Muslims award prizes for this mindless “reading” of the Qur’an at grand community events (I wear as a Badge of Honour my failure ever to win such a prize). Besides, the very sound of the Qur’an being read not only attracts angels, it provides incontrovertible proof to sheikh Dr Yasir Qadhi that the Qur’an is divine. The marvellous harmonics and creative vocal dexterity with which a man is told to beat his wife, or kill his wayward daughter, or rape his sex slaves, or behead transgressors, or crucify people, or chop off hands and feet and fingertips, or violently subjugate unbelievers, or lie, or extort money from Christians and Jews, or pimp out his divorced wife before reconciling with her, ah, why would the angels not rush down all the way from Heaven to bathe their ears in such divine beauty?

Occasionally indulging in mindless singsong, or making their hapless children do it, helps Muslims feel they are not going entirely adrift as they live out their real human passions, preferences and predilections to the extent that they can socially get away with, in other words, to the extent that the system of Muslim hypocrisy will bear. Certainly, the prohibitions and restrictions they observe derive from the sacred texts, but this is mostly because of longstanding social convention (hence the many local variations), rather than because they have read and understood those texts themselves.

This is not to suggest that all Muslims are constantly torn between being human and being Muslim and would jump at the chance to break another shackle from their legs. As I have noted earlier, fear plays a central role in why Muslims would rather indulge in hypocrisy than simply walk away from Islam. Fear of putting a foot wrong, i.e., doing something haram, in practice, anything the “scholars” and clergy disapprove of, lies behind many of the truly pathetic enquiries to the ulama for fatwa determinations, such as whether a desperately ill wife may be given this, that, or the other modern, life-saving treatment. The fact that these so-called “scholars” do not know the first thing about medicine cuts no ice; they know the Shari’a and the Shari’a knows everything, i.e., “Allah knows best” — another Muslim all-purpose get-out clause alongside “insha-Allah”. Besides, the “scholars” are the “bearers of knowledge” and the role of the rest is to hear and obey, and “regurgitate out” what they have been told.

It is truly heartrending to read page after page of a fatwa website and get drawn into the pathos and tragedy that is the tortured Muslim soul. Thankfully, they are a relatively shrinking constituency. Muslims want to get on with their lives just like everybody else; this is true. Everybody else, though, does not have Islam standing between themselves and their lives. Given the widespread exposure of the bankruptcy and barbarism of Islam, increasing numbers of Muslims are finding that hypocrisy will no longer provide them with comfort. Only by joining the likes of ISIS, on the one hand, or apostatising from Islam, on the other, can a Muslim escape hypocrisy and find honesty, with his or her inner human either dead, or set free.

Hypocrisy is the mortar that holds Muslim societies together, not the muhabarat, not the mutawa, and most certainly not piety. Indeed, hypocrisy is the human in the Muslim turning taqiyya against Islam by feigning piety. The powerful echelons in Islamic society maintain the same fraud, but generally have nothing to fear from those lower down the social hierarchy. They have both the means and the opportunity to commit every wrong in the book, and they do. Egypt’s King Farouk’s transgressions—and they were spectacular—unfortunately became public knowledge, necessitating every Egyptian, hypocritical to the bone, to howl his indignation at the Heavens, so much so that the former King’s dead body was refused repatriation, in defiance of his final wish for burial in Al-Rifa'i Mosque in Cairo. For a Muslim to reveal his actual life is to threaten the hypocrisy of all Muslims. And if the Muslim being exposed happens to be or to have been the king, then every Muslim in the land will be tainted. They railed against Farouk’s failed hypocrisy only to reinforce their own.

Part 4/...

Picture credits:

Screenshots from "Why are Young Iranians Knocking Turbans off Islamic Clerics' Heads?", The Quint, YouTube, 5 Nov 2022. https://youtu.be/AJDfjxvyers

Screenshot detail from Youtube search results for: "Doubt in Islam"


On 21 March 2024 at 15:29, Ben Dor A. wrote:

Dear Anjuli Pandavar

Do you believe that Islam can overgo a reformation such as Christianity in the 16th C?

Are there any Islamic intellectuals brave enough to challenge the present Islamic clergy and come up with a modern civilized interpretation of the Quran?

Something similar or close to the Achmadis?
Best Regards 

Ben Dor A.

On 21 March 2024 at 16:08, Anjuli Pandavar wrote:

No. That is impossible. Islam is built to be future-proof. I don't have time to give a full answer now, but will as soon as I can.

That Muslims persecute Achmadis / Ahmadias is down to this. There is either Islam or no Islam, just like there is either Nazism or no Nazism. That's it.