Recently, I engaged in rather short online “discussion” with a couple of people regarding the existence of so-called “peaceful” muslims (which I believe to be a myth). I thought I would share the conversation with you here, in the hope that it would be informative and aid you in your own conversations with religious bigots and their apologists. I have omitted the last names of the participants in the interest of their privacy. The conversation began when I posted a link to my article titled, “A ‘Peaceful’ muslim? Really?!” and it went as follows:
Danielle: There are millions of peaceful Muslims. Just like not all christians are like the Westboro crazies, not all muslims are fundamentalists.
Gandalf Stormcrow: No, Danielle. There are no peaceful muslims. Actually read the blog post, and my post below to Matthew. Break out of the “box” and do a bit of research and critical thinking. The fact is that all existing religion is inherently bad, because it ACTIVELY TEACHES, advocates, practices, institutionalizes and validates as “normal” (and even demands of its membership) things like bigotry, intolerance, oppression of entire demographic groups (such as women, gays, and all people of other faiths), and in some cases (e.g., islam) harsh brutality, violence, intimidation, and murder. Whether these things exist in mild or extreme forms (compared to one another) is completely irrelevant. They all do it, and it is ALWAYS wrong, so to compare one sect of christianity (or rather, your perception of that sect — as an outsider) to Westboro and then claim that it must be “good” or “peaceful” is patently ridiculous because institutionalized bigotry in any form is not a “peaceful” thing — and neither are intolerance, divisiveness, or the wholesale oppression of entire demographic groups. “Peaceful” is not simply (and narrowly) defined as “an apparent lack of overt violence and brutality” as you and so many others seem to believe. Stripping entire demographic groups of many (or all) of their freedoms and civil rights and human rights and forcing them to live their entire lives in fear, deprivation, and/or anonymity is NOT a peaceful thing — even if done without violence. Even mere tolerance of these things is NOT a “peaceful” thing — especially when the “fundamentalists” are so few compared to the so-called “millions of peaceful muslims” in the world.
Religion itself is the disease. People who choose to expose themselves to the mental pathogens (i.e., the infectious agents) of its teachings (and it is important that you remember that it is a choice they make) are always affected by it to one degree or another, and the “health” of society is always compromised as a result. The symptoms of infection that we see in the individual include pretty much the same types of bigotry, intolerance, divisiveness, hate, oppression, and violence that their religion espouses and teaches, perpetrated against selected individuals and demographic groups, and (just as with any physiological sickness) the severity and outward appearance of these symptoms may vary individually but they are always present — whether you happen to (or are trained to) notice them or not. The widespread, cumulative symptoms we see in our society are many. They take the obvious form of strife between “opposing” religious doctrines (especially as they battle to gain prominence and power within our governments); but the concepts are then extended and applied beyond religion and take the secondary forms of racism, sexism, and other forms of inequality, bias, and discrimination (bigotry); and the oppression of, and violence (including war) against, those who are different from us (because after all, even “god” is a very violent, destructive being when it wants to get its way). Yes. I am saying that the roots of all these societal maladies lie in religion and the evil, bigoted shit it has taught (and imposed upon) societies since the beginning of time. It is my belief that most of these things are not inherent to the heart of the individual human being, but that they are learned from (and largely accepted in) societies that are well-steeped in varied (and mostly unapparent) religious bigotry, doctrines, beliefs, and practices.
Whether or not one cares to admit it, the reality is that ALL of christianity is bigoted, intolerant, divisive, and oppressive — even if only mildly so compared to Westboro. The same goes for ALL of islam, ALL of judaism, and so on. WHY would anyone (or any society) want to tolerate these things — even in “milder” forms? People’s lives are still being negatively affected by it — just to a somewhat lesser degree. How much bigotry, intolerance, hate, exclusion, violence, and oppression of entire demographic groups is an “acceptable” amount, Danielle? I guess the answer to that probably depends upon how much YOU and those you love are being affected by it. Christianity talks a lot about “love” but its love (like that of all religions) is extremely conditional, and the “seed” at the center of the fruit of their “love” is the institutionalized bigotry that their own “god” expects from them. They will never truly accept you if you are different from them — because their “god” has taught them that you are an “abomination” or an “infidel” and that they are better than you — that they are “special,” and “favored,” and “acceptable in his sight.” And that means “non-believers” are not, and that is blatant bigotry. That is why the concept of “sin” exists and why they believe there is a hell.
Additionally, religions are inherently viral and predatory; thus, they intentionally exploit the poor, the weak, the desperate, and the gullible, and they actively seek to spread themselves and gain power over the citizenry through a marriage to our governments.
Matthew: There is a bit of a difference between the active Jihadi and the Muslim who wishes to belong to modernity, yet can’t because of a fear of speaking up.
It is likely that Martin Luther would have had a difficult time with the Protestant Reformation if modern weapons had existed at the time.
Islam faces the same problems. It is in the midst of a Reformation, yet any reformers, who wish to cast off the archaic relics of ideology (demanding ideological purity, and demanding that Islam is the “perfect” religion, etc), have difficulty doing so, because they tend to be promptly killed when they attempt to do so.
Gandalf Stormcrow: I totally understand what you’re saying, Matthew, and it is always a hopeful thing for the world when barbaric, bullshit religions like islam begin to evolve, but they never do so on their own, because they actually believe they are “commanded by god” to do the sick things they do to humanity. Complete elimination of organized religion would be an even greater boon to mankind. But even when barbaric religions like islam begin such a transformation, it always takes hundreds of years, costs untold millions of damaged or destroyed human lives (or whole societies), and requires enormous social pressures to force such change; and remember that even in their most “peaceful” state, religions are still inherently bigoted, intolerant, oppressive, and hateful — which negates ANY notion that they are peaceful (or that they ever can be). Christianity underwent a similar transformation — and, in fact, is still in the process of change. But it will never be truly peaceful, or it will cease to be “christianity” as defined by its own “god.” The same goes for islam. Regarding islam and the so-called “peacefulness” of its “members,” please consider the following, Matthew:
Speak out against institutionalized oppression, bigotry, intolerance, and hate in all its forms wherever you find it (even “holy” religion), so that humanity can eventually live in peace and freedom. Such philosophies do not have a place in a peaceful, functional, modern society. Use logic and solid reasoning to unravel the long-held religious legends, superstitions, and myths and expose the truth — regardless of who it pisses off or where it leads. Your silence is not respect. It is not “peaceful.” It is approval. It is passive support. It is complicity in the atrocities that religion inflicts upon humanity every day.
“I am here to challenge your comfortable and familiar perceptions and paradigms — to help awaken you — to make you think.” — AAJG
I have found that there seems to be a fairly common misconception among the religious masses (and surprisingly, even among those who claim to be atheist or nonreligious) that religion is somehow “owed” some special place of prominence in our society—that it is “owed” respect or “protection from criticism“—that for some reason, it is extra “disrespectful” (a highly egregious and even a “punishable” offense, depending on one’s culture) to speak out against something “holy” like a religion or a “prophet” or a “god.” I assume that the reason for this is that people have fully committed themselves (mentally) to their chosen religion and, therefore, have decided (or far more likely, they were indoctrinated in their youth to believe) that their particular religion’s “god” is holier, mightier, and more righteous than the other religions’ “gods” and they make the mistake of becoming personally offended when someone speaks in an other-than-respectful way about that religion or its so-called “god” or “prophets.”
Well, the truth of the matter is that religions and other “belief systems” do not “deserve” to be respected at all, much less enjoy special protection from criticism. Such a thought is asinine! It’s completely ridiculous! Only individual people “deserve” to be treated with respect—and then, only so long as they are living peacefully, and treating others with respect, and not harming others in some way. Always remember that ideas, concepts, beliefs, and theories do not “deserve” to be respected. One may individually choose to respect these things, but that is an individual choice and such respect is NEVER “owed” by anyone else or by society at large. Likewise, groups of people (regardless of why they are grouped) do not “deserve” to be respected, and religions and other belief-systems do not “deserve” to be respected either. Things like ideas, concepts, theories and belief systems don’t have rights—human, civil, or otherwise. Ideas, concepts, theories and belief systems don’t have feelings. We have been led to believe that “belief systems” are somehow so special and sacrosanct that they are above criticism. Bullshit! It is just as okay to speak out against a religious institution that is actually harming people in some way (and they all do to varying degrees), as it is to speak out against financial institutions, or political parties, or entire industries that are causing harm to people. In fact, one has a moral duty, as well as a right, to do so. And some religions ARE more harmful and dangerous than others, and it IS okay to say so! Yes. It. Is. Of all existing religions, islam (purposefully not capitalized for extra disrespect) is BY FAR the worst in the current era. (What other religions did in past eras has a place of importance in the discussion, but it is irrelevant to what is happening now.) Creepy islam is the 250 pound bully in the schoolyard. It is dangerous, extraordinarily viral, bigoted, hateful, demanding, intolerant, brutal, unforgiving, oppressive, enslaving, and misogynistic—and (Have you noticed?)… unapologetically so. It (as an institution or a belief system) does NOT deserve respect. Neither do any of the others. The fact is that all religions are predatory—some far more than others; but in the current era, islam is the worst, by far. All religions are harmful to societies that desire to be truly free. Harmful things should never be respected.
Again, religions (as belief systems) do NOT “deserve” respect, nor are they ever “owed” it. No—they are not. Religions are dangerous, controlling, predatory, manipulative institutions—at best. Why would they be owed respect?! (Remember that only individual citizens are “owed” respectful treatment—as long as they are living in peace and aren’t harming others or quietly supporting systems or institutions that are harming others in some way.) All organized religion is bad for humanity. It affects your life in negative ways even if you are atheist, because (due to its inherently predatory nature) it actively seeks to enlarge and spread itself, and to gain official legitimacy and legal authority over the general citizenry by intertwining itself with our governments; and by doing so, it is allowed to impose its will and its “standards of morality and conduct” on you, whether you are a member of that religion or not. That is what christianity did in America and don’t be fooled—all of our lives have been negatively affected by it, whether we are christians or not. It is also what islam has done to many parts of the world and is doing even now in America and all over the west; and passive, undeserved “respect” for that brutal, controlling belief system will likely see some form of Sharia law in America at some point. It is foolish, I believe, to think it can never happen here—that we are somehow inoculated against such a disease simply because “we are America.” It is foolish, because we are a naturally tolerant and accepting people, and those who desire the global spread of islam understand that about us. They consider it a weakness, and they will use it against us. They are already bragging about it on the internet. They are a very persistent, patient, and calculating group and they are intentionally deceptive about what their goals are—but if you look around, you can find plenty who say it openly because they know we won’t believe them.
Not to get off on a purely islamic tangent, but here I will remind the reader that it is estimated that by the year 2030 (Only 17 years short from now!), muslims will be the majority in England—due to extremely high immigration and birth rates. Think about what that means—to the people of England, and to the West at large! Do you think that the muslims who immigrate to England will not also invade the seats of government in the same proportions and begin to enact (or rather, impose) new laws? First blasphemy laws (which effectively stifle free speech and eliminate ALL criticism of what they are doing “in the name of allah“)? Then sharia laws? What is there to stop them? They are already bragging about it—all over the internet! Do you not think that they have the same goal for America? They are bragging about that, too. If (or rather, when) England become an islamic nation, one very great Western domino will have fallen—and that is no small thing. Think about it!
Religious influence in government is why women have had to fight so hard to obtain and keep reproductive rights, and voting rights, and other forms of basic equality in society. Religion was the main underlying oppressive force. Religious influence in government is why gays have been shunned, oppressed, and denied equal rights forever. Religion was the main underlying oppressive force in that as well. Religion’s intrusion into our government is why we used to have to pray and listen to the bible being read in school when I was growing up. I’m not certain, but religion is probably where the idea for the “death penalty” comes from. Religion, when allowed to marry itself into our governments in any way, always causes problems for some portion of the population, so it isn’t ever good enough to just “be an atheist” and live quietly, because extremely rich, extremely determined, extremely powerful religious institutions are working hard to embed themselves into all levels of our government and make sure they have legitimized, legal, and controlling authority over your life in as many ways as are meaningful to them, and over the lives of your children as well. This must be fought—not “respected.”
A practice of strict, absolute separation of church and state (which we do not have here in America) robs religion of all real power over us and gives us more freedoms. Then, religion simply becomes a creepy, manipulative “belief system” that still preys on the weak, the desperate, the naive, and the gullible (because that is what they do)—but at least it has no real power over us. They could never impose their will on us through legislation of any kind. They would have to resort solely to seduction, indoctrination, and trickery to maintain their membership and achieve their goals rather than through any form of legal authority over us. In America, we talk a lot about “separation of church and state,” but we don’t really practice it very well at all, in reality. Religion must be purposefully and carefully controlled, and it must be treated with suspicion any time it comes near our governments. It should be actively opposed when it seeks power by approaching our government officials with large “donations,” or when they are harming people in some way (as they all do). We should be necessarily concerned about the state of “separation of church and state” when we see organizations like the Congressional Prayer Caucus being formed, or learn of the existence of organizations such as the Michigan Muslim Democratic Caucus. These are not social groups. They are evidence that organized religion is attempting to infiltrate and influence our government—your government, so it can gain “official” legitimacy for itself, and ultimately… legal, governmental power over our lives—just as islam has done in every society it has migrated into.
All religions are predatory—some far more than others. In the current era, islam is the worst by far. All religions are bad for societies that desire to be truly free. Some religions are worse than others, and it IS okay to say so. Remember, “belief systems” aren’t people, so they don’t ever “deserve” to be treated with respect.
Let me close with this:
To the religious people: You only get ONE life to live. If you want to waste it “worshiping” an invisible, non-existent “god” and “praying” for it to do everything (so you don’t have to) instead of living a totally free, happy life and experiencing it to the fullest; spending as much time as possible with your children, your family, and the love of your life; making a tangible, meaningful contribution to society and trying to make the world a better place; or actually getting PERSONALLY involved with someone in need and helping them (instead of praying for your “god” to do it for you), then that is your individual, personal choice. I feel sorry for you. But remember this:
To the nonreligious people: You have rights and it IS okay to stand up for them. Don’t fear the inevitable threats and name-calling that will come your way from the religious people (who, ironically, claim to be better than you, but who will still threaten you, call you names, and hate you). Your fear is what they count on, and it is why they call you those names. It’s a form of bullying and intimidation. It is intended to either silence opposition to their predatory religion or a weak (and not very “holy”) attempt to defend a life choice they have made, and your words are exposing the stupidity of that choice and/or causing them to doubt their own choice. Remember:
That is all I have to say on this for now. Live in peace and harmony with one another, but remember that all religion is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It is inherently predatory. It should kept away from our government by any nonviolent means and at all costs! It always bears watching—especially islam, and none are “owed” respect—ever. Nope, not even yours. Always remember:
“I am here to challenge your comfortable and familiar perceptions and paradigms—to help awaken you—to make you think.” — AAJG
We hear this term used constantly, but I am not sure there is any such thing as a “peaceful” muslim. How can I possibly think such a thing? Well, islam itself (as a belief system) is not peaceful. Islam dominates whole societies and subjugates their citizens under ultra-strict religion-based controls and constant fear of brutality and death. Islam itself is not respectful, or tolerant, or progressive, or empowering, or personally liberating, or beautiful in any way. It does not advocate for freedom or equality among its members. It meets non-compliance or dissent with immediate brutality and intimidation — or in far too many cases… death. It actively seeks to spread itself to other cultures and to bring them under the dominion of islam as well — like a virus. It does not peacefully coexist with other belief systems — despite the claims of its paid spin-masters on television.
It seems to me, therefore, that if one is a dedicated muslim in their heart; if one willingly embraces the tenets of islam as they are actually written in the qur’an, and taught in the mosques, and practiced in the real world (not as they are “said” to exist by professional spin-masters with hidden agendas); if one “is a muslim” but does not openly abhor and fight against the rampant and inherent oppression and brutality associated with islam; if one “is a muslim” but does not actively and vocally denounce those who are commonly referred to as the “violent extremists” and remove them from their religion and bring them to justice; if one “is a muslim” but quietly supports or even sits passively by and allows the oppression and atrocities to continue unchallenged and unhated (even if only in their heart), then that person is not a “peaceful” muslim — even if they have never personally perpetrated a violent or oppressive act on another human being. If they “practice” the muslim faith in a very loose, watered-down way that is not strictly compliant with its god’s doctrines and its prophet’s instructions, then that person is technically not a muslim — they have invented a new religion (that they personally approve of and like better). It may appear to be “similar” to islam, but it is not islam — so they can’t be counted as “peaceful muslims.” If islam, as it is actually written in the qur’an and taught by the imams (the “divinely appointed, sinless, infallible successors of muhammad“) and other religious leaders, is not peaceful (and clearly, it is not), then no one who adopts that backward faith can be deemed peaceful. No one. Please read on.
Again, if a “muslim” does not support the atrocities islam is so widely known for in their heart — if, even in the privacy of their own terrorized heart, they do not willingly embrace islam as good and right for human society — if, in their heart they “know” there must be a better way, then they are not muslims, strictly speaking — regardless of what they wear, or where they live, or what “god” they outwardly pretend to pray to. Perhaps they are simply people — trapped from birth in an oppressive muslim culture, and would likely eagerly accept any other way of life that offered them real freedom and equality — unless they suffer from some sort of “Stockholm Syndrome“-type mental disorder. These can be peaceful people, specifically because they are not muslims.
So please push away any political correctness “spin” that has been put into your mind (in exactly the same manner as all religious leaders put creepy “belief-system” ideas into the minds of their “sheep”) and consider the following:
Oddly, very sadly, my president apparently supports and admires the religion of islam. He has stated this publicly on many occasions. He may even have even been a practicing muslim at one point in his life. There is evidence to suggest that he was, though I can’t say for certain. This is very distressing to me. He must, it seems then, also support the “peaceful” things listed above. I say this because I have never heard him speak out publicly against these things, which are apparently integral to islam itself. He has even stated publicly several times, that “islam has a long history of tolerance. [Peacefulness is likely implied in this statement as well.]” Really?! Because none of the things listed above are remotely tolerant or peaceful — in any way. None of them. Yet, they are apparently all integral to islam itself. So I worry why my president would say such a thing, but never openly condemn islam for the countless brutal atrocities (and “softer” crimes against humanity) that are done in its name. Give it some thought, do some research, and draw your own conclusions. Don’t ignore your common sense, though. It probably serves you very faithfully.
Remember: All human beings are born atheist. All human beings are born free. All human beings are born equal. All human beings are born without religious affiliation; without cultural, racial, ethnic, gender, or sexual orientation biases; we are born without man-made “social status;” and even without national allegiances. People don’t stay that way for long, though. The families, the villages, the societies, the cultures, the governmental systems into which we are born then apply all these things to us in our infancy — without our knowledge or consent. We are assigned a religion by our parents (unless we are born into an atheist family). Almost no one chose the religion they practice as an adult. We are taught (primarily by religion and government) to hate or mistrust those who are not like us. We are assigned a social “status” and an accompanying set of rights and privileges (depending upon our assigned social status), and we are expected to comply — to obey — to keep our place. We are expected to support the system into which we were born. I understand that much of this is a necessary or inescapable by-product of living in an ordered society, but where religion is concerned, I believe a very heavy line should be drawn. Religion is exploitative and seductive. Religion is predatory. Religion is controlling. It is divisive. It is inherently intolerant. Religion is viral — it spreads itself to other cultures and societies in hopes of dominating the population in some parasitic way. Religion is dangerous. It was not invented to help you, or to bring you peace. That is a con. It was invented to exploit and control you. And children are at particular risk, as they ensure the continuation of the scam into the next generation. But the cycle needs to be BROKEN. As completely impossible as it would be to enact and implement, I think no child should be exposed to religion until they reach the age of majority — thinking majority, not arbitrary chronological majority — for the same reason that children are not legally allowed to vote, or sign contracts, or purchase alcohol and tobacco, or engage in “consensual” sex. Their minds simply aren’t developed enough to allow them to understand the totality of the consequences of such things. So, as a society, we protect them from the unscrupulous who would take advantage of their naivete for nefarious purposes — except where religion is concerned, for some inexplicable reason! This really needs to change. If it did, probably within two or three generations, religion would be nearly wiped out, and all of the problems it causes human society would have begun to disappear. That is why ALL religions specifically target children! Disgusting! Mentally enslaving children is NOT a peaceful act!
I’ve created all the memes used in this post, along with several others that deal with this subject (included below). Feel free to copy and use them as you see fit. I hope they make you think somewhat differently than you did before about the sham idea that islam is a “religion of peace” and about the existence of so-called “peaceful muslims.” There is no evidence that they exist.
Obviously, I could go on with this, but I’ll leave it at that. So what does your “gut” tell you? Does it sound like a “religion of peace” to you? No? Well you are not alone. Growing numbers of people are beginning to see what islam really is — and what it really does to the people it enslaves. Speak out. Resist the spread of religion wherever you find it — especially brutal, backward islam. Don’t be fooled or intimidated by their name-calling. (Read my very short blog post titled “Labeling the Dissenter.”) The religion of islam is NOT owed respect. No religion is. (I invite you to read my other blog post(s) on “Respecting” Religion for more on that.)
“I am here to challenge your comfortable and familiar perceptions and paradigms — to help awaken you — to make you think.” — AAJG