Atheism and Islam

Question from Michael:
I have a few friends of mine who were discussing Islam with me. They had points to defend Islam such as; Predictions about scientific phenomenons that were not discovered till this century or the century before. They also have points like the validity of the Quran as its literature is of high eloquence. Its hard to debate with them as they are biased and dont approach atheism with an open mind. Any help with points to prove that atheism is valid especially when in regard to Islam would be greatly appreciated.

Answer by SmartLX:
My existing piece on prophecies uses exclusively Christian examples, but the core argument applies perfectly well to material from the Quran. Cases of scientific foreknowledge usually go into category 4, Shoehorned.

I’ve been decidedly outdone in this area by YouTube user TheIslammiracle. In his playlist of Quran Miracle Debunked videos, he systematically tears down 50 separate claims of the Quran’s divine foreknowledge of modern science. If your friends aren’t being specific, it may be simplest just to point them to that playlist. If on the other hand they’re being specific enough that what they say isn’t covered in the videos, put more detail in a comment here and we’ll try to help out.

The eloquence of the Quran leads into two different arguments for Islam, the first bolder than the second:

1. As the Quran itself says, “Bring one sura or just one verse like it, if you can!” or in other words, it’s so beautiful that no human literature can match it, so it must be divine. This is entirely subjective, and has been flatly denied (scroll to the section on Eloquence) by many scholars over centuries.

2. The Quran came out of a time, a place and a people so savage and primitive (Muhammed himself was likely illiterate) that only divine assistance could have produced such competent prose. I think I’ll let you come up with possible alternatives to this yourself.

More generally, if you want to be prepared to defend atheism against Islamic apologetics, go and research Christian apologetics. There is tons and tons of overlap, and there’s a lot more Christian stuff written in English. Start with the rest of my series on The Great Big Arguments; every one of them applies to Islam in some way, and just the titles will give you plenty of leads for wider Googling and reading.

If you need help with any particular point, feel free to write in again.

7 thoughts on “Atheism and Islam”

  1. Most of the problems of the world have been caused by religion. Think of the crusades, the inquisition, the dark ages, the witch burnings, the restrictions on learning, free speech, instilling guilt and shame into children, and the wars fought in the name of religion.

    More recently, think of family planning clinic bombings, oppression of gays and non-believers, murders of doctors and homosexuals, imposition of religious beliefs by force of law, and illegal use of public funds to promote particular religions.

    Mankind will never truly be free until the black yoke of religion is lifted by the clear light of truth and rational thinking.

    1. We after 1000’s of years of civilization are still here…. a fact to ponder in itself…
      Moreover the worlds greatest wars were not religious wars… (world wars, hundred year wars, Napoleonic, Rome, Alexanderic, Carthegenian, Genghis Khan etc wars).. One could probably argue that there were gods involved (supposed) like zeus, neptune etc but the denominator to be said for these wars was more religious than for glory and greed is absurd…..
      Furthermore todays advance in dangerous technology is not advocated by religion.( supposedly if religion were to just vanish when one wakes up tomorrow will all world militaries dissemble??)
      Religion says no to war without any underlying contradictory assumptions and premises which can be starkly compared to contemporary authoritative bodies like UN which also say no to war but not absolutely….(hypocrisy, racism, nepotism)
      One can easily mistake the argument (wars are caused by religion) but not realize that the opposite can also be true, religion is because of war (saying no to it absolutely) and that humans are actively greedy, imperialistic, self-centered, egoistic and that were it not for religion the scale of oppression would definitely have been greater. (religion said no to all sorts of injustice e.g racism)…
      The denominator of rational thinking is less for the sake of rational thinking but more for the sake of recognition… (Human lust for glory; argument very difficult to ‘rationally’ see). Essentially then humans do what they are good at less for the sake of “rational thinking” and “scientific advances” and more for the sake of “personal glory, and recognition which simply everyone cannot have essentially resulting in the “rational” and “logical” conclusion that we humans are divided into lesser mortals and greater mortals which is very violently condemned by religion. So essentially the promoters of peace do it for glory and the conquerors also do it for glory. Unless or until we have an outside force bigger than our petty egos but sadly again those in command more often than not succumb to that very ego……..
      Some of many thoughts………..

      1. Judaism and Zoroastrianism have been around for at least a thousand years longer than Islam; does that make them more likely than Islam to be correct? Of course not, because mistaken people can propagate their mistakes just as well as the truth.

        No one’s saying that Islam or any religion is the sole cause of war and violence. We do often say that religion, and commonly Islam in particular, is A source of war and violence, and there would probably be less of both without it. This isn’t a reason to force people to abandon their religion, as it would only provoke further violence, but it is a good reason to convince people to abandon their religion voluntarily. The problem with Islam in this respect is that Muslims are commanded to kill apostates.

          1. God is an unproven concept that is embraced by less intelligent people simply because it makes them feel superior to others. Accepting as true something for which there is no supporting evidence or eve evidence against it is delusional.

          2. The question is only worth considering if we know there is one. But how does the nature of God pertain to anything I wrote in the post you replied to?

  2. Religious people are so deluded that no amount of facts or logic can sway them from what they desperately want to believe. Using fact and logic is like trying to convince a fish to smoke cigars. They very concept is possible to them.

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