I’m often told, “You Should Read The Quran.” – Really? Why? Islamic specialism seems to presume I’d be enlightened by one particular holy text, but not by others.
I’m an atheist that doesn’t see any merit in holy books that claim to be inspired by or revealed by imaginary friends. I don’t swallow the presuppositional existence of a deity that such inspiration or revelation demands. There are just too many religions, and sects within religions, to make ANY of the claims credible – and there is NEVER any evidence to back up the claims.
It would take some, as yet missing, apparently astonishing and amazing full disclosure of a revelation, public, to ALL people on earth, to make the notion of a deity even remotely plausible – and even then it would need a great deal of scrutiny to be sure some mass delusion or mass manipulation hasn’t taken place. The notion of a deity is so childish that without something more persuasive than an ancient holy book it can be dismissed as easily as are fairies or Santa Claus.
There will be nothing in a holy book that is useful that cannot be extracted and presented without the religious context. If some content requires the authority of an imaginary deity, it’s of no use.
If the book has some universally helpful content that can be presented without reference to a deity, then present it outside the book, without pretending it needs the book or the deity for context.
There is nothing useful in a holy book that can’t be made useful as a humanist statement outside the book.
But I took the bait. I read the Quran. And I re-read it. And I listened to Muslims explain it. It never got any better. It only ever came off as even more ridiculous than I thought before.
And despite my suggestion that useful information be extracted, when that’s tried it rarely turns out to be more than platitudes verging on the stupid.
“To kill one person is as if to kill all of mankind”
No it isn’t. That’s an emotive nonsensical narrative. Killing one person is bad. It’s not as bad as killing two. It is nothing like killing all of mankind.
AND it’s taken out of context of 5:32, 5:33 and the rest of the Sunah.
So, having read the Quran, and the history, I found it to be a despicable document invented on the hoof, a collection of ‘revelations’ of convenience that are used to justify conquest, rape, child abuse, killing – all wrapped up in prose and appeals to the authority of an imaginary friend, with a few platitudinous carrots to go with the sticks.
And having read it, I wonder why I don’t see anyone demanding Muslims read …
The Bible, The Vedas, The Guru Granth Sahib, The Sutras, The Tanach, …
In a similar vein, have you noticed how the gullible are conned into wearing the hijab in solidarity with hijabis? How often do you ever see a Muslim wear kippah, a crucifix, or any other symbol of any other religion? This solidarity business is a one way street. The thought wouldn’t even occur to most Muslims, any more than they would be persuaded to read other religious texts. For so many, particularly the more fundamentalist schools, the commitment to Islam must be total and exclusive.
Not surprising, as Islam has a duelism to hand: conquerors and victims. It’s all about YOU.
Try it. Start asking Muslims to read the other texts. Ask them to wear other religious symbols in solidarity with those oppressed in ‘Muslim lands’, as hijabis to remove their hijab in solidarity with Iranian women who are forced to wear one … the solidarity is fake.