Sep 042014
 

I have put up a comprehensive response to 25 questions (some very offensive) from a self-declared islamophobe.

The Questions include stuff like:

“Marrying a child in Islam”

“Beating one’s wife”

“Allah deceiving Christians”

“The sun sets in a pool”

Download the 1 Meg pdf Here

 Posted by on September 4, 2014 at 10:15 pm  Comments Off on Responses to 25 accusations of an islamophobe
May 292013
 

Full question: Why is God so cryptic in his scriptures? Could’nt he make it more easy on everyone to believe in Him, by just by putting words in his scriptures that  give all the answers to all our problems, and that even exactly foretell events with names and places.  Then it would be impossible for anyone to reject belief in God or to argue over any matter.

Yes, I also get the feeling that God is sometimes cryptic in the scriptures, but not always.  For example, as far as the story of Joseph is concerned, very little uncertainty remains.  The whole story is told to us loud and clear in the scriptures.  Not so with Jesus though.  The events and circumstances of Jesus’ death are still disputed and shrouded in much mystery.  Even Christians have to dig especially hard to find scriptural narratives that really, in an unambiguous way tell the story of the last days of Jesus on earth.  If you compare the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, it shows up much differences in the events prior to, and immediately after the crucifixion.  To make the story worse, the disciples deserted Jesus at the time of his arrest, leaving it to unbelievers and enemies to capture the events first hand.

Now to get to the question.  Crystal clear scriptures that foretell every event and answer every question would remove the gift of free will, and mental exertion from us.  When you want your child to be good at mathematics, you don’t show him the solution to each and every problem.  This would in no way develop his mathematical abilities.  What you rather do is to coach him by offering clues and methods, and then leave him to gain the satisfaction of striving and perhaps finding the solution.  In that way, he will be much more skilled at solving problems.  Mankind is the same.  By leaving a measure of ambiguity, we are given the opportunity by God to, through research, debating, reasoning any other form of mental effort, try to approximate the real truth.  Mankind therefore, even if we experience some distress in the short term, must rejoice that our long term condition is enhanced by our constant efforts to discover more and more truth everyday on our own.

 Posted by on May 29, 2013 at 5:52 pm  Comments Off on Why is God so cryptic in his scriptures?
May 292013
 

Knowledge is a boon, while faith is to be avoided.  “Knowing” is linked to truth while “faith” has the risk of being construed with subjectivity, myth and superstition.  If we “know” something, we would expect to have followed a reliable method of verification.  There are three ways of making such a verification. (1) By actually having a personal sense perception of that which is claimed to be known. For example the knowledge that “it is raining” is based on the senses feeling, hearing and seeing the rain.  (2) By deducing the fact from another set of facts by reasoning.  For example: “Whenever it rains, there must be clouds in the sky.  It rains, so therefore there must be clouds in the sky”  Here we deduce that there must be clouds outside, even while we do not see, feel or hear the clouds outside.  (3) Lastly, we can obtain knowledge from processing information from a reliable source or witness . This in fact is the most common form of obtaining knowledge by ordinary people.  For example, when reading the weather report for the day, it may say that “it is raining currently”, and I will then operate on the knowledge that it rains.   Obviously, the last means of achieving knowledge is fallible and needs an intense scrutiny of the witness to make sure that he or she is honest and believable. Believability must also be made subject to what is rational as well as what can be confirmed by the senses.  If the weather channel says it is raining here today, and I see no rain, then obviously the weather channel has provided incorrect information.  To summarise the third source then: Information from a witness, or what we call testimony, when processed and verified by the mind, also becomes knowledge.

The word “faith” is only used when perfect knowledge is absent. People claim to have “faith” in the government to sort out the problem or  “faith” in the police to protect them.  This is not the same as “knowing” that the police will protect them or “knowing” that the government will sort out the problem.  From these two examples it is clear that faith is closer related to doubt than certainty.  For the Theist (God Believer), KNOWLEDGE and not FAITH should be the minimum standard for making the declaration of belief.  We should declare that we KNOW God exists instead of that we have FAITH that God exists.  Our knowledge is based on the testimony (witness) of the Prophets, and is verified by the fact that there is no contradiction with reason or with what our senses perceive.  Any knowledge claim must withstand any test of verification.  In other words, the witness must be constantly monitored for reliability, our senses must be constantly monitored for reliability and our logical reasoning must be constantly checked for reliability. If any of these three becomes doubtful, then the knowledge looses validity.

 Posted by on May 29, 2013 at 12:46 pm  Comments Off on What is the difference between Faith in God and Knowledge of God?