From ExMuslim Blogs
Dear Abujee (father),
I am writing this letter to you to explain why the value of a God in the twenty first century is deteriorating. By looking at the history of the human race one can notice a pattern of evolution. We have evolved in every aspect and nothing is as it was a hundred years ago. As a computer programmer you have single handedly experienced the evolution of technology in your field. You once told me that you worked on creating an instant messaging software as an undergraduate in the 1980’s. You told me it was remarkable to send one message from one computer to another. Now just thirty years later this technology has exponentially progressed to something even greater. This is just one simple example of human progression with ideas through time. This progression is a common trend amongst our species. This trend also exists with the concept of God. By looking at our history one can see that the concept of a higher power has evolved to what it is today. It started with a concept of a spirit and eventually turned into the concept of a single almighty creator of the universe. The evolution of God did not stop there. The concept of a God even existing is being questioned and deteriorating slowly. I believe that the increasing discoveries in science undermine the reason for God’s existence. One day God will play no role in an individual’s life and this day will come sooner than one can imagine.
First I want to examine why people believe in God. The concept of God arose so we could have answers to life’s hardest questions. Why are we here? What is the purpose of life? Why is there so much suffering? God became an answer to these questions. In Islam the purpose of life is to please Allah. A true Muslim’s sole purpose in life is to submit to him. In return for this submission a Muslim is to be rewarded with eternal paradise in the afterlife. I used to not question this and believe that life was a test. I believed that if people suffered it was because God was making them stronger. If I was having a tough time I remember I would feel ease when I read the verse in the Quran that says, “Our Lord, and burden us not with that which we have no ability to bear. You are our protector (Quran 2:286).” This verse gave me a sense of hope knowing that someone was watching over me. I remember when I used to get sick and could not bear the pain I would ask Allah to take this pain away and that would make me feel better. Allah was merely a psychological healer for me. I never thought about him during the good times and only thought about him during the bad. I thought I was selfish for doing so and at that time I never questioned him but questioned myself. When I did start to question him I saw many flaws in the ideology behind God. I saw it as a fairy tale. Why would a supreme being that made the entire universe care if humans obeyed him? If he were so great why would we matter? It seemed to me that Allah was playing a game. This made me feel that Allah had characteristics of a human. It made me believe that Allah was a man made concept. An American poet Charles Eliot Norton said, “ The loss of religious faith amongst the most civilized portions of the race is a step from childishness to maturity (Armstrong, 251).” Believing that someone is watching over you is very childish. In times of need one truly is alone. You have to work your way out of your mess because no one is going to clean it up for you but yourself.
With this said it is very easy to fall into the trap of believing in God, as believing in God has a lot of perks. However, it is always easy to believe something that one is told but by believing it without evidence we are degrading ourselves to a lower level. If humans always followed this trend of believing and not questioning we would not be where we are today. A professor of mathematics in London named William Kingdon Clifford argued that it was intellectually and morally perverse to accept any opinion-religious, scientific, or ethical-without any suffice (Armstrong, 253). If one told you that it was ok to murder an innocent life because you are doing it for a greater good and you go ahead and do it because you believed what you were told then you are at fault. You are at fault for believing in something without sufficient evidence. This same theory should coincide with our belief system for God. Why do we blindly believe in something that has no factual evidence? Convenience should no longer be an answer as there are many flaws behind the ideology of God.
Aside from the flaws in the ideology behind God another reason behind his diminishing role in the twenty first century is due to the increase in our mental capacity. Humans have always been intrigued by how the universe worked. This caused the birth of God as well as science. As science developed God was no longer the only scientific explanation of the universe (Armstrong, 246). This theory was portrayed through scientist Charles Darwin’s findings. Darwin’s findings concluded that species had evolved slowly over time as they adapted to their immediate environment and during this process of natural selection innumerable species had perished (Armstrong, 245). This meant that human beings were not the pinnacle of purposeful creation but instead a result of trial and error (Armstrong, 246). This implies that God could not have been the direct creator. If God was not the direct creator than what is he? Is he just in our imagination? We no longer need a God to justify the reason for who created us, as we are merely accidents. With this said God and science do not mix. I believe that it is time for humanity to allow science to allay our fears and provide a new basis for morality (Armstrong, 259). We need to step away from the religious fairy tale and focus on finding answers through science and evidence. We need to continue to educate ourselves further because the amount of knowledge available is limitless. We need to fill in the gaps not with hopeful thinking but with facts.
At the rate that technology and scientific discoveries are occurring God will soon have no role in the twenty first century. God will be a myth that people will not live their lives by. It is hypocritical to say that God does not exist because that is just as dogmatic as saying that God does exist. But I can say that the God we believe in today does not exist. There is no way a protector would allow so many atrocities to take place. Until we unlock more discoveries we will just have to accept that we do not have the answers to everything rather than believing in something without factual evidence.
With this said I hope you now understand my lack of faith in Allah. I cannot believe in something that does not make sense to me. I wish I could believe in the fairy tale that I was grown up to but I would rather drown in my questioning than float in a lie.
Armstrong, Karen. The Case For God. 1st. New York: First Anchor Books, 2009. Print.