The Arrogance of Religious Thought: episode #977


Sundas Hoorain, Human Rights lawyer discussing her experiences as a practicing Muslim in Pakistan.
Asking her mother “Well, who made god?” Her mother was appalled, as would many Conservative Xians be angry and dismissive of a child’s honesty inquiry about god or religious dictates. Think of the arrogance built into that response. That pretentiousness is part and parcel of all religious thought and certainly not exclusive to either Islam or Xiansanity.
At 21 minutes she gives a great example of how information kills religion. Sundas is told the same old story line how women are so much better off under Islam, given more rights than in any other religion and in the barbaric times before Islam the “jahiliyyah” women were so much worse off.
She embarks on her own study to check that out and in reading anthropology and history where societies and cultures have undergone systematic observation by outsiders she finds that much of the nomadic Bedouin culture of Saudi Arabia before Islam actually was a matriarchal society where women had a great deal more power and freedoms, before Islam’s compulsory covering up and sharia laws restriction of women’s property and family rights.

As is typical of religious perspectives, historical fiction rather than real history is ensconced in its scriptures. Many of the stories in the OT of the Bible are classic examples of embellishment if not outright rewrites and fantasies in describing the exploits of the ancient Hebrews. Just more arrogance that its OK to rewrite history, bend the truth, bend the rules if it has a religious justification behind it. Again a component of all religious thought. Mythologizing is taken as a source of knowledge.

A bit later she discusses how Islam refuses to evolve and there is therefore a choice for any questioning Muslim of submitting all the way or discarding it, which she has done. There is no middle ground in Islam at this point for accepting modernity. That issue is more of problem in Islam than any other religion.

All religions have many of the same problems. They demand respect for their god which doesn’t exist. They refer to historically inaccurate and absurd mythologies as the words of their nonexistent god. They proclaim equal rights for women while preserving primitive repressions and second class citizenship for females.
They needlessly divide us and retard working on our real problems as we clean up religion’s messes continually across the world.

In the words of Sam Harris:
“We have to get out of the game of defining ourselves tribally based on imaginary and fictitious ideas and we have to realize that the way forward is recognizing our common humanity, we’re a single species on a single planet, trying to build a single, viable global civilization and there are a thousand different ways we can screw this up and not so many ways where we can build paradise overnite on earth which should be our common project”

Well put.

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