Don’t condemn Christianity less, condemn Islam more: Every atheist should earn a fatwa

Christianity is an awful religion. Although Christ largely taught acceptance and patience, most of the rest of the bible contains approval of large-scale human rights abuses. It’s because of the bible that people (even in modern America) can justify bigotry, misogyny, homophobia, and just about every other barrier to peace. But, as I’ve written earlier, Christianity is rather benign compared to Islam.

I’d rather live in a society that prevents gays from marrying than one that kills gays. I’d rather live in a society that tells rape victims that they can’t get abortions than one that kills them to preserve their family’s honor. I’m not saying that either societies are ok; both are horrible, but one is considerably more horrible than the other.

I’m American. I’ve lived in the US most of my life. Most of my atheist activism has focused on issues that are ever-present in these fifty United States. But sometimes I think that my “talents” may be better suited in my beloved Lebanon (although that country too is rather secular). In other words, I feel that American atheists should be more concerned with Islam than Christianity.

This isn’t to say that atheists and progressive anti-theists should disavow themselves with the struggle against Christian lobbies and aggressive churches, but that the focus right now should be to push Islam into the Sea. Call me an Islamophobe if you will, but first consider the following Hadith:

Nobody who dies and finds good from Allah (in the Hereafter) would wish to come back to this world even if he were given the whole world and whatever is in it, except for the martyr who, on seeing the superiority of martyrdom, would like to come back to the world and get killed again (in Allah’s Cause).

This Mohammedan teaching directly contradicts the Koranic prohibition against suicide. This is precisely the justification for why even educated middle class men from Islamic states fly planes into buildings. And when Muslims commit acts of suicidal terror in the name of Islam, what is the general response from Muslims?

It’s “Islam is a religion of peace” and “The Quran does not support terrorism” and “Jihad is a battle against your mind, not a battle against non-believers.” In none of these statements do I hear a criticism of a religion that allows men and women to become so radicalized against non-Muslims that they are willing to kill themselves in order to kill as many non-Muslims as possible. Indeed, Sam Harris, in his book The End of Faith, makes a compelling argument that there is no such thing as a “moderate Muslim.” Moderate Muslims would be calling for a reinterpretation of a religion that leads to suicide terrorism, not attempts to preserve Islam in its present form.

Christianity (largely) reconciled itself with the fact that slavery is evil even though god condoned it in the bible. In other words, Christians critiqued their own religion and changed it. For example, the Vatican now condemns capital punishment, despite it carrying out more executions than most people could comprehend. And while a lot of Christians still support capital punishment, they don’t condone stoning as a method, despite its use in the bible. Most Christians don’t believe that the woman is the property of her husband, despite the biblical insistence that she is. But, while Christianity has evolved to fit social standards of decency, Islam has held steadfast to 14th century beliefs.

When Samuel P. Huntington wrote about the Clash of Civilizations, I believe he accurately predicted events such as 9/11 and subsequent wars between the US and the Taliban, al-Qaeda, and other Islamist regimes.

It is because of the dangers of Islam that I call on Western atheists and progressive anti-theists to focus more of their effort on condemning the absurdities, dangers, and threats we face by those who adhere to a religion that calls for the death of those who condemn it. In other words, don’t condemn Christianity less. Condemn Islam more.

Besides, what kind of a life is worth living if you don’t have a fatwa threatening it?!

About Rayan Zehn

I'm a political scientist.
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12 Responses to Don’t condemn Christianity less, condemn Islam more: Every atheist should earn a fatwa

  1. Naphtali says:

    Interesting. I am a Christian; or a “Jesus” follower. Considering your hate (and I don’t mean that critically; a statement) for Christians I am glad you find it better than Islam. The truth is Christianity isn’t a religion; it is a relationship with Jesus Christ; which makes it completely different. And I am sorry you feel the way you do but the Christian church has failed in many areas over the last decades in truly exemplifying the love of Christ. It is understandable why so many feel the way they do, however that doesn’t exempt them from standing in judgment before God. I grew up in a Christian home, graduated from a Christian college, sat in a church pew every Sunday and didn’t know Jesus. I do now; only because I was so desperate, and miserable and at one point on death’s door I searched for him. Spending years by myself with him every morning over coffee I know him more than I ever thought I would but know there is so much more to him which is a yearning in my soul to continue. Only now it isn’t out of stupidity or bad choices; it is because he is so awesome, funny, and I love his wisdom. I appreciate your take here,but I have to wonder: Why is it atheist always posts on a Christian tag? If you don’t believe it, then it doesn’t exist. So how can you write about something that isn’t there? I have never posted any of my posts in anything related to atheism. BTW: if you are interested in reading some very shocking atheist conversions to Jesus, I know quite a few bloggers you might find worth checking out.

    • rayanzehn says:

      Hey Naphtali, I want to point out that I don’t have Christians. For example, I don’t hate you for being Christian. I merely condemn the negative effects that Christianity has on societies. To answer your question about the Christianity tag, I think (most) atheists choose it because it’s merely subject matter. Although I’m sure many atheists use it in a mocking way. What I found most interesting in your comment is the image of you sitting down in the morning, a cup of coffee in your hand, getting to know Jesus. It’s a far cry from the image of the devout on their knees in prayer. You seem like a very open-minded person. Thankfully, most American Christians are. Unfortunately the religious right screams louder than moderate Christians. If all Christians were like you, I’d have far less to say about Christianity.

      • rayanzehn says:

        Oops. *hate in the first sentence, not have.

      • Naphtali says:

        Rayanzehn, thank you. Just so you know, God himself is not happy at all with the negative effects as you call them from the people who are suppose to represent him. And for the record it was that angle stirred me enough to find out otherwise. Jesus is not who or what the world has made him out to be. My blog is one where I try to reveal the truth which is he is awesome, funny, witty, the most intelligent and my best friend. Every morning I really do sit with my Bible and read and pray with him. It is more like a conversation which I am sure he gets a big kick out of some of my questions and/or rants about politics or why is this or that….And I know for sure this personal relationship is what is missing from his own people. The one question I always had was “how can the answer to everything be found in a person?” Now I know. You may think this is crazy but he speaks to me all the time; he is probably trying to speak to you! He has shown up in my life in many different venues. As far as the labels of “religious-right” or moderate Christians, those don’t fit Jesus at all. He is fair minded, balanced, peaceful, and does not believe in favoritism or racism! Describing him is a list so long I couldn’t write it. But those labels are how people have taken what he is and wrote and made it into a bunch of legalistic jargon. However, the great news is the world is about to change big time! God is getting ready to show up and show off! BTW: correct me if I am wrong but did you say you are from Lebanon?

      • rayanzehn says:

        I’m actually from Virginia, but I’ve visited Lebanon 4 times. Then one day I packed my bags and moved there. I came back to the US last summer to finish my graduate studies.

  2. LEjames says:

    This is essentially the POV of Dawkins, and the backfire towards him from this kind of thinking is that it touches on the aspect of political correctness, in how it stirs “Islamophobia.”

    • rayanzehn says:

      To be honest, I never got around to reading Dawkins, but I’m familiar with the backfire. I lived for a while in Beirut. I think that people who try to be PC over this should go visit a place where Shias and Sunnis try to kill each other everyday, while Zionists are constantly trying to destroy the entire country. I’ll get around to reading Dawkins eventually.

      • LEjames says:

        Actually, I haven’t read Dawkins either, this is just about flack he gets from comments on twitter. I agree about the insanity of what you are describing though.

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  5. Jason says:

    Great post, thanks! In this vein I’m trying to be sure to write or say “God/Allah” instead of “God” when referring to the Jewish monotheistic god, for what it’s worth. Also yes I’ve had some Christian family members call me out, ask me why I attack Christianity and not Islam (as much, that they see). Mostly that’s just because it’s my point-of-view (I’m US American) and Congress isn’t trying to legislate based on the Qur’an. But they make a fair point, as do you. Thanks again!

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