Why I left Islam

I was an observant Muslim who had very strong belief in Islam. I had a huge interest in philosophy and was a keen reader of books on morality, religion, rationality and science. I always thought that theologically, Islam is the most rational religion. It seemed ridiculous to me how someone would choose to believe in something else. As I matured, I decided to study my religion deeper, as to better myself at defending it. The DOs and DONTs that Mullahs preached never made sense to me. My reason did not reconcile with things like ban on playing chess, music and drawing… all the things that I so much loved. I grew tired of Mullahs and so I rejected those things and convinced myself that Islam has deeper meaning than this.
I decided that to be a perfect muslim, I have to follow and understand the character of Muhammad. But when I read the life of Muhammad, the things that I found made me quiver, cringe and squirm. I was totally disgusted by the fact that he married a 9 year old, exterminated a tribe of around 800 (mostly innocent) Jews, including boys who had just grown pubic hair. He ordered stonings and amputations and commanded capital punishment for anyone who spoke against him. I just couldn’t defend these loathful acts, not even to myself let alone defending it to others.
I became suspicious by the fact that whenever he did questionable things, those events were immediately followed by verses that approved of those things. He married the divorced wife of his adopted son, and when people questioned this immoral act he presented them with new verses that ratified this. He was married to nine women at a time, although Islam permits four wives at most. When Aisha thought of questioning it, God “revealed” new verses that gave him special dispensation, allowing him to marry as many women as he pleased. Although many good sayings and deeds are related to him, on the other end his life account is also full of stomach churning incidents. I became skeptical of him and I felt that the character of Muhammad reported in Hadith was a moral paradox. He certainly is not the best example for human beings and if he were alive today, he would have been sent to prison. It was a bitter pill to swallow, but my belief was so strong that I decided to reject all Hadith books. I convinced myself that Hadith are not authentic.
One by one I had rejected most of the things claimed by Islam. I thought to myself that the only thing on which I could base my belief in Islam, was Quran. I believed, as it is commonly believed that Quran is the direct word of God and is free from any corruption. To be honest, I never finished reading the Quran because it was too boring and I used to feel sorry for myself not to appreciate the precious and eloquent word of God. But the little that I did read, completely blew me away. It was full of such laws and commandments that could never be word of an all Good God. The God of Quran totally condones owning female slaves for sex, commands brutal punishments for thieves and adulterers, recommends beating of wives, restricts women rights to half of men in court testimonies and inheritance, and even sanctions child brides. He persuades us to use our intellect yet not to ask questions, has created the universe yet makes erroneous claims about science. And before I tried to reject that, I asked myself who was I trying to fool? I decided that if this is the all good, all knowing God, I don’t want anything to do with such a god.
I began losing my faith. I moved to philosophical questions and asked myself why does God need worship? Why did he send all prophets to the middle east? Who guided the indigenous Amazon tribes who had their first contact with outer world couple of years ago. Why did He send books only in pre-scientific era? There are more non-believing and misguided people in these times, why doesn’t he send us a prophet now? Whats the purpose of life? What is it that he wants to test? I never opted to take the test. Why is he always threatening the non-believers? Surely he could have created a more reasonable religion. Why would he punish people for rejecting something that lacks reason. The torment in hell is so brutal that no human would suggest it for a criminal or disbeliever? Does this mean we are better moral beings than God?
There are so many questions that made me doubt all religions. I went through the most mentally disturbed period of my life. But I came out strong in the end, rejected Islam and became a Deist. Finally, I want to say that I tried my best to believe in a God’s religion. But he has left no room for reason and rationality. Mankind is suffering from pain, disease, filth, agony, hunger and corruption, while God sits back and enjoys the show. I have recently read a story of a taxi driver in Pakistan who poisoned himself, his wife and children because he was too poor to feed them. The god who not only allows such suffering but also ordains eternal torture in hell as punishment for suicide, and yet claims to be Ar-Raziq (The Provider) and Ar-Rahim (The Merciful) is a sadist, selfish, morally corrupt and a hypocrite. And is certainly not the God, I would like to believe in.

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14 responses to “Why I left Islam

  1. Good post.
    Most religions continue to exist because the followers remain ignorant to what they are really about.
    Revealed religions deliberately dumb down their followers.
    Deism welcomes informed discussion and never hides from an educated debate.

    • Any religion honestly studied will reveal that it is nothing but a romanticised fairy tale, made up to control people and fill the gaps of knowledge about the universe.
      I have a sneaky feeling that God is a mad scientist… creation of universe is an unexpected consequence of his uncontrolled experiments… and since he cannot control the consequence, he has turned a blind eye on it

  2. First of all, welcome to Deism!

    Thank you for the open and honest story of your transition away from religion. My impression is that the move away from Islam, in particular, might be one of the more difficult. Congratulations! The only pity is that you cannot share this with your friends and family … and I do understand why.

    Best wishes,
    One Deist Φ

  3. “commands brutal punishments for thieves and adulterers” = just so you know the punishment in Britain two centuries ago for petty theft was hanging. In Islam the state is obliged to provide basic necessities for all citizens so amputation is never for those who steal out of hunger. Secondly, I live in South Africa which has the highest HIV/AIDS rate in the world – the most at risk? married women whose husbands sleep around. would the threat of stoning not deter behaviour that is tantamount to homicide?

    • What you said is the most common reply whenever you question morality in Islam. Muslim scholars argue how in the barbaric 7th century Arabia, Islam gave women the rights of inheritance and divorce. I agree, Islam was the most moral and humane way of life in the 7th century… but it is not today. And its wrong to claim that all moral laws of Islam still hold and must be observed in the 21st century. No more we believe in capital punishment or amputation for thieves, neither do we believe that women can’t be the leaders of a country. Our conscience has evolved.
      When it comes to morality, Islam believes in deterrent… but its a wrong idea to generalize it. By your argument, you seem to say that killing the adulterers is the right way to stop HIV. It is plain nonsense. Tell me why women have half the rights of men when it comes to court testimony or inheritance.

      • RE: court testimony – a woman’s testimony is only worth half that of a man’s regarding issues in which women are known to have less expertise. For example, if you look at the ‘pit’ on Wall Street, you will see mostly men, even in this day and age. However, in issues where women are known to have more expertise, midwifery for example, a woman’s testimony will carry more weight than that of a man’s. RE: inheritance – very simple, a man is obligated to financially maintain his female relatives (mother, sister, wife) and his offspring, whereas a woman is not. A sister who inherits half of her brother’s share can spend her money on trinkets if she wants, but the brother still needs to support his (unmarried) sister, his wife, his mother, his children.

      • good effort… but not good enough. The nature of case is not mentioned in Quran or hadith when it comes to court testimonies. Even among present day scholars, it is disputed. If Quran meant financial matters only, Was it too much for God to be specific? Couldn’t he have clearly said that “it is for FINANCIAL matters only… the testimony values is other way around IF its midwifery related issues”… No, the God of Quran is vague. He confuses his own people in trying to understand his commands.
        And how easy it is for you to generalize that financial needs of women is half of men. I understand the concept which is applicable in most of the cases, but I dont agree to generalize it on the whole world. The society has developed, we commonly see families where both of the parents have to work to support their family. In some cases, the mother is the major contributor. You cannot apply your law on such families.

  4. both spouses have to work BECAUSE women have entered the workforce in droves. working women have decreased the ability of men to earn a sufficient wage to support a family, and at the same time caused prices to rise, e.g. rents/house prices are no longer determined by what a single income household can afford, but by two income families. that is why many families today NEED two incomes to afford a lifestyle, that only a few decades ago was possible on one salary.

    • i dont have an economics degree, so i cant comment on that… But I am surprised; Are you suggesting that it is wrong for women to be part of the work force, hold offices or be professionals?

      • fortunately I have (an economics degree) 🙂 I’m not making any moral/ethical recommendation, I’m merely stating that if large enough numbers of women enter the workforce, they simultaneously a) make fewer jobs available for men (especially with ‘affirmative action) b) lower the wage rate (due to effectively doubling the supply of labour) and c) cause prices to rise – which then has the effect that wives of most men HAVE to work, whether they want to or not.

      • To read between the lines, you did make a moral recommendation…
        But it still doesn’t negate the fact that you can not generalize those rules, at least not in the present times (thanks to your economical insight)

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