Why People Stay (with Islam) (4.1)



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Segment 4.1 from my longer 2+ hour movie, “Why I am Leaving Islam and Ahmadiyyat” (publicly).

Previous Segment: A Message for Ahmadi Muslims (4.0) –
Next segment: The Value in Speaking Out (4.2) –

Many modern Muslim communities in the West deemphasize the problematic aspects of Islam. For them, the controversial minutia intrinsic to the religion and its history, is merely a backdrop to the repackaged theology which they emphasize, and which is what actually informs their day to day lives.

The cultural and communal benefits of being a member of the Muslim community often outweigh any inclination to engage in critical thought regarding the truth-claims and the history of Islam.

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♦ A full set of resources and references mentioned in this video can be found in the companion blog post,
♦ For this entire playlist as a single video (the way it was initially released), see:

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in 2017 I wrote an essay with 25 reasons for why many Muslims haven't left Islam yet if you take a look at reason 15 of the ecosystem halo effect you'll see why many people have stayed with Islam for so long even though deep down most of us have had problems with it the reason is that many modern Muslim communities in the West de-emphasize the problematic aspects of Islam for them the controversial minutia intrinsic to the religion and its history is merely a backdrop to the repackaged theology which they emphasize and which is what actually informs their day-to-day lives you the cultural and communal benefits of being a member of the Muslim community often outweigh any inclination to engage in critical thought regarding the truth claims and the history of Islam I suspect that many Muslims mistakenly Harbor the belief that if someone leaves Islam it must have been because such a person preferred chaos over order meaninglessness over purpose or sin over virtue perhaps these caricatures are even what went through your mind when you first heard the term ex-muslim but may I humbly suggest to you that this is just your indoctrination at work such gut reactions to the concept of X Muslims are likely due to the countless sermons that you've been fed to dismiss those who reject Islam many of us ex-muslims value the same things that you do we value building healthy prosperous and ethical societies we value truth and honesty we want our children to grow happy healthy and safe we want them to have educational opportunities that unlock their full potential we want them to have fulfilling lives and families of their own I know many Muslims including Emma DS who stay only because there's a structure and a system set up that they're already plugged into it's simply momentum convenience and comfort many board Muslims also don't want to rock the boat with their parents or with their extended families and friends there's an existential dread that can come from leaving religion and yet at the same time there's also something deeply inspiring about not living a lie there's something spiritually fulfilling in noticing and acting upon the realization that we have the chance to improve the fate of humankind in the here and now as human beings we crave identity community and purpose in fact we need these things to truly thrive most religions give us all three ready-made and neatly packaged that does not mean however that these religions are all true it just means that they're useful at least in this regard what I am advocating for however is not that we abandon these very human needs but rather that we rebuild the foundations to better serve them I propose that we remove the supernatural religious foundations in favor of more one's the best that our legacy of philosophical thought the world over has to offer I do think that on the whole post enlightenment religious communities and that promote secularism and pluralism do actually provide a lot of value to their members despite their flaws and the holes in their theology I believe that we needn't dismantle these community relationships as we challenged their foundational theology we may begin the transition to more honest foundations by simply acknowledging and accepting that the underlying substrate is suspect and that the Quran is a human text eventually these congregations like those of some churches will transform in place into humanist congregations to those of you Muslims who are questioning or who in secret no longer believe I want you to know that there are so many of us who have been pretending to believe and for far too long many of us have been and still are office bearers in senior positions within the mosque and within the Islamic councils of our respective communities

3 thoughts on “Why People Stay (with Islam) (4.1)

  1. Hello madaechod gandu.. I know you are trying desperately to get famous by bashing Islam.. but each morsel of food you get by these earnings will get you a free morsel of burning coal in hellfire.

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