In that fateful August week when the Taliban retook Afghanistan, I had the honour of addressing the annual summer gathering of the Fundacja im. Kazimierza Łyszczyńskiego, Kazimierz Lyszczynski Foundation (KLF), the national organisation of atheists in Poland, to promote my forthcoming book, Islam versus Muslims & The Apostate. I mainly shared with my audience my motivation for writing the book, and a little about the book itself. It was a ratio I considered most helpful.
The motivation was: a general, and fatal, non-Muslim misconception of what makes a Muslim tick; to hold up a mirror to Muslims; and finally, that the humanity of Muslims is now overwhelming Islam’s mechanisms for suppressing it. Muslims have become too human for Islam. I made the most salient points citing the most poignant examples:
1. Islam is fundamentally anti-human, necessitating the destruction or severe suppression of a Muslim’s humanity in early childhood.
2. The mass exposure of Muslims to the modern world, especially the values of the Enlightenment, has released the human in the Muslim from the chains of Islam.
3. The Muslim’s rising humanity is fundamentally antithetical to his uncompromisingly inhuman religion.
4. This has set off an ever-escalating conflict between Islam and Muslims, compounding the long-existing internecine conflicts between Muslims sects.
5. The practical outcome is a Muslim racked with inner struggles and an ummah in meltdown.
Since it was “Taliban Week” and woman’s rights was on everyone's lips, I illustrated my points with reference to there being no rights in Islam for anybody, how this systemic lack of rights pans out for women, and how the contemporary Muslim tries to reconcile his or her own humanity with the religion they are obliged to love and forbidden to leave. The audience demonstrated a clear hunger for discussion of Islam, and was visibly horrified to learn of, e.g., nikah halala. [The Muslim can resolve these inner struggles in one of three ways: leave Islam and become fully and freely human; imagine a palatable Islam and insist that the Islam of the Qur’an, Muhammad, Shari’a and ISIS is not the real Islam (this is the option of those who lack the moral courage to say, I wish to have nothing to do with Islam); or double down to abolish, or re-abolish, their own humanity, and throw themselves head-first into jihad.]
The questions and comments were thoughtful and also instructive. Two questions in particular stood out:
- “Do Muslims actually read the Qur’an?”
This was a brilliant question, as it points towards the central problem that the contemporary Muslim wrestles with: his negation of himself. I explained that Muslims do not read the Qur’an as Christians read the Bible, that is, for comprehension. To the lay Muslim, Shari’a forbids comprehension, even if the meaning of the words is crystal clear on the page. Only the “scholars” may comprehend. The Muslim’s role is only to voice the sounds that correspond to the letters they see. [Muslims hold in particularly high esteem those who have memorised the entire Qur’an and are able to recite it verbatim from memory. Thus it is that even illiterate Muslims can “read” the Qur’an, a feat that Muslims tout as a “miracle”.] This mindless act in itself constitutes the good deed.
If lay Muslims wish to comprehend what they’ve just read, then Shari’a commands they ask a “scholar” to explain to them what they have just read. And whatever the “scholar” tells them, they simply memorise. So much have Muslims been ground down that they consider it arrogance to assume that they can understand anything they’ve just read, no matter how clear and simple it might be. [A very good illustration of this negation of the self is the reception of the printing press in Muslim lands. Whereas the printing press triggered a social revolution in Europe that culminated in the Enlightenment, in Muslim lands the “scholars” declared it haram, forbidden. We see the results today.]
2. “What do we do about Muslim refugees? We want everyone to have their human rights.” The questioner was noticeably vexed, if not anguished.
I was very relieved that someone had asked this question, because, believe it or not, even in Poland there is fear of saying anything that might cause someone to associate you with the “far-Right”. I understood this question in the context of the current conservative Polish government’s prohibition on Muslim immigration into Poland, together with seemingly everyone’s unshakeable conviction that the Muslim Tatars (fewer than 2,000 people, less than 0.005% of the population), is fully integrated into Polish society. Those who oppose the Polish government would rather believe that Muslims are like “their” Tatars, than entertain any thought that they might actually be more like the Muslim immigrants who are constantly in the news for raping and killing in Western Europe and elsewhere.
It was a critical question that needed to be discussed and, thankfully, I did not have to offend anyone by raising it myself. The questioner was a young woman, and I acknowledged the virtue, merit and necessity of widening the reach of human rights. However, I pointed out, there are no human rights in Islam, and the Muslim migrants whose human rights you are concerned to not deny want nothing more than to abolish your human rights, especially if you are a woman. I urged everyone to keep a very close eye on what was about to unfold in Afghanistan over the ensuing days and weeks. Some people seemed surprised, as if they actually believed that woman will have rights under the Taliban, because these monsters promised that woman will have all their rights within Islam. That’s an easy promise to keep, since woman have no rights in Islam. “Men are in charge of women,” (Qur’an 4:34).
There were many expressions of appreciation, which I reciprocate. I am grateful to Stanisław Pisarek, editor-in-chief of Stapis, and Nina Sankari, vice-president of the Kazimierz Lyszczynski Foundation, for inviting me.
- Nina Sankari, 5 September 2021, 18:43
We've read your report within the Foundation, I translated it orally. We thank you very much for such an insightful, revealing and intellectually honest report of your talk and discussion at our gathering. We agree with every single word of its content.
For me personally, it was a very important moment. As I may have mentioned to you, about three years ago, I wrote an article entitled "In the name of human rights" (published in the weekly "Faktycznie" where I was expressing a view, already too "right-wing oriented", that we should not only think about human rights of the Muslim refugees, but also require they obey the same rights. You pointed out quite a simple fact that for a Muslim (a person who is of the Muslim religion) human rights are simply non-existent, so we cannot require from such a person to obey them.
Still remains: can we take back human rights from the persons who don't recognise them? And even more importantly: is a denial of these rights to the enemies a necessary price to defend ours and to defend our civilisation based on them?
Again, thank you very much for your text. I hope you still agree to give us permission to publish the Polish version in our next issue of the "Atheist Review".
A big hug,