Ayham

I Just Don't Understand Religious Fundamentalists

28 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

Hear me out, I'm from Iraq, the pinnacle of stage blue, but I grew up with a somewhat diverse family, my father is sunni, my mother is shia, I had extremist uncles and some atheist ones

This was rare, most families have one school of thought or religion that they are extremist about and teach it to their children.

Anyways so I have left Islam 6 years ago, when I was 11, I kept it secret for years. 

Though I always debate within my mother's family side, it's usually fun and cool debates, since there's a lot of diversity.

Meanwhile on the other hand, all my friends are extremist sunni muslim fundamentalists, it didn't bother me much until recently when I started debating with them, I always tried to do debates in a conscious way, that pushes for understanding, but it got into a low consciousness activity.

My friends believe that Sunni islam is the only truth, all other religions and sects are corrupt, I tried to find  contradictions or scientific mistakes within their beliefs and the quran in general, they have replies to everything, and I do too, it keeps getting extremely annoying, like I'm not even trying to convert anyone, I'm just trying to show them that they aren't the absolute truth and other beliefs  are also valid and could be the truth. 

One argument that they didn't have a reply to, is evolution, they just dismissed it as "yeah that's just a laughable theory, we don't believe in it" 

 

I'm sick of this stage blueness here, there's much more details but that's the idea.

I'm just a classical non dualist, who's into Western philosophy and also mysticism 

I dont know how I got involved in all of this and it's so annoying, the debates aren't stopping but I'm also enjoying them since I'm learning a lot about different beliefs

I just can't understand how someone can believe that there is only right belief and all else are to go in hell, and this one right belief turned out to be the one they were born into

I never disrespected anyone in any debate or made fun of them, but I just can't get that.

Any insights? Have you been in a similar experience?

My current feeling is to cut them off, because I just can't take it anymore, they try to push their beliefs on me, they didn't use to do that before I started the debates, but now its unstoppable, it's a good friendship of 3 years. 

But I also don't have any friends in real life who aren't extremist to their belief

Edited by Leo Gura

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Posted (edited)

There is other side of Islam which teaches a totally different understanding which talks about "oneness" "unity" etc . Checkout Ahmed Hulusi work.

If you ask me how i landed in this search. There is fanaticism within Islam & radicalization has made Islam evil . Wanted to check whats so evil in it & got to know people , corrupt leaders made it.

The only reason why the path which Ahmed Hulusi took (toward Sufism) is not reachable to common Muslim :

- Persecution of people who talked about it . "Mansur Al-Hallaj" is one of it. You can search for his story. There are many.

- Its tough when you try to convey it to public even Muslims . They will not get it . Common Muslim & Christian believe God / Allah something outside and sitting on cloud but the book (Quran Translated by Sufi . lets take example of Ahmed Hulusi) doesn't say anything about it.

- Wrong translation of Quran by Fanatics to serve their own agenda. Check out Translation from Ahmed Hulusi . I haven't read it fully. May be in future i will check it out.

There are tons of article , audio, books translation on his website . Just mentioned couple of them below.

https://www.ahmedhulusi.org/en/article/from-god-to-allah

https://www.ahmedhulusi.org/en/article/observing-allah-throughout-existence

https://www.ahmedhulusi.org/en/article/the-meaning-of-the-word-of-unity

Here is snippet from a audibook of Ibn 'Arabi/Balyani .

While going through my search. Some people who are working to get this out to the world have mentioned that most of the work done by many Muslims authors , philosopher in past is either destroyed or dis-credited by Fanatic's within Islam.

You will find the same things happening in other religions & even in spirituality.

Also Check out Leo video on Islam.

Can you be able to convince your fanatic friends after reading Ahmed Hulusi work. Most probably "No" . But you can always share.

As in Air travel get your oxygen mask first in case of emergency before trying to help your next seat passenger.

Have been to many parts of the world . I understand when you are surrounded by so many conditioned people that opposing them will land you in trouble sometime. So you have to play your survival game carefully.

Always Start your journey first before giving advise , motivation to others.

Edited by ExplorerMystic

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I used to debate and fight with everyone close to me. Realized it needs to stop when it became obvious that I am just fighting myself the whole time 


“Every sunrise is an invitation to brighten the world with your own unique light.“ - ChatGPT

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@ExplorerMystic thanks for sharing, Sufism is great yes, I am aware of it, haven't been too deep but I like Ibn Arabi, My friends brushed it off as "corruption of Islam" and "shirk"
I don't know about Ahmed Hulusi, but he seems promising, I will for sure check him out, whenever I mention those people to them, they don't even regard them as Muslims
They are particularly fond of "Ibn Taymiyaa",  and if you know anything about him, that says enough about the people I  am dealing with.

I noticed that to probably understand the complexity and nuance of Islam, being an Arab is almost necessary, which is why I suppose most people on the forum here haven't gotten into it, even the mystical aspects are hard to understand fully  without actually living and being in a Muslim culture.

I agree that figures like Al Hallaj made a bad rep for Sufism, and that most Muslims believe Allah or god as a seperate entity, I tried to explain Al-Hallaj's situation, but they still regarded "wahdat al wujud" or "unity of being" as shirk and corruption of monism (which is most central to all of Islam), to me it is the purest form of monism.

I liked your reply, if you have more to share ,please do 

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Travel the world when you can and find a place which resonates with you.

I've lived in several countries and it's a very enriching experience. Really recommend it to you


God-Realize, this is First Business. Know that unless you live properly, this is not possible.

There is this body, you should know the requirements of your body. This is first duty. We have obligations towards others, loved ones, family, society, etc. Without material wealth we cannot do these things, for that a professional duty.

There is Mind; mind is tricky. Its higher nature should be nurtured, then Mind becomes mature and Conscious. When all Duties are continuously fulfilled, then life becomes steady. In this steady life God is available; via 5-MeO-DMT, ...                       Lovingly discipline Life & Realize Absolute Infinity

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I can definitely empathize with you. I'm of Lebanese descent, and so I have a lot of religious fundamentalism in my family. I also go to a College with a heavy Muslim population, and they are certainly insufferable. 

I try to have my own worldview, but it seems that Muslims are the only group that have no issue not respecting sensitivities and differences, and will have no problem telling that your, or other religions views, are just incorrect that their religion from their specific sect is the only correct view. They have no issue with saying that the other religions are going to burn in hell. 

Muslims as well seem to be the only group which refuses to self-reflect and find flaws in their culture and worldview. I think Israel-Palestine is the best example for this, as they seek to destroy the only well functioning democracy in the middle east, while the other Arab countries are no where near as successful as Israel. 


أشهد أن لا إله إلا الله وأشهد أن ليو رسول الله

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I think you'd need to find a way of meeting whatever core needs their belief in rigid ideology meets for them. Imo, in these types of debates all that is happening is the lower consciousness party is continually just trying to keep their needs being met. I.e. need for belonging, need for understanding of the world.

Non violent communication could be a useful resource for understanding this further imo. 


Be-Do-Have

You have to play the cards you're dealt

There is no failure, only feedback

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Posted (edited)

In my experience debates are almost never about discussing who's more logically correct but rather it's an ego battle :D

And the only way debates bear good fruit is if when the heat boils up and you remain present and aware and you respond from that silent presence rather than the ego. That response will grow you both. That response is magic. It's gems of growth for everyone. Even if you don't win the debate, that response from presence rather than ego still does miracles in ways we can't understand. 

When you become good at it, you become a teacher of God. And that presence actually guides you, and tells you what and when to say. There are many levels to it and the more egoless you are, the better you become. It's like mental jujitsu basicly. Having black belt would be equivalent to being pure presence and zero ego talking. 

Edited by Salvijus

Those you do not forgive you fear. 

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@Davino that is certainly a plan I am determined on doing on the future, what cultures have you lived in?

@Ulax debates are usually low consciousness yes, I am trying my best to not be apart of that too and maintain respect, like I never insulted or made fun of any idea or person during a debate, but there is this sort of building up tension in both parties lol.

@Husseinisdoingfine I agree, Muslims seem to ridicule all other beliefs, "oh Christian? deluded fool" "another sect? what corruption of Islam" "atheist? lol you believe we are monkeys"
I mean to an extent, everyone is dogmatic about their view, even us non dualists, but at least we are aware of that and do our best to not take it as dogma, and we don't force anything on anyone, even though there is no belief to force, since direct experience is king rather than belief in non duality, but some people still take it as a belief.

they also seem to bend science to claim that Islam knew about a specific phenomenon which science just discovered now, which is supposedly a miracle, even though the Quran is so easy to interpret  in different ways since the language is vague.

and they claim they are the "only religion who preaches true monotheism of god", just because Christians have a trinity, or Hindus have avatars of god, therefore they worship more than one god, they reject the idea that god can take any form.

@Salvijus I totally agree with this, it is usually an ego battle, maintaining awareness and mindfulness during that is tough but would be very fruitful

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12 hours ago, Davino said:

Travel the world when you can and find a place which resonates with you.

I've lived in several countries and it's a very enriching experience. Really recommend it to you

How many languages can you speak and understand? 


“Every sunrise is an invitation to brighten the world with your own unique light.“ - ChatGPT

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On 16.4.2024 at 6:05 PM, Ayham said:

I'm just a classical non dualist

New Age*

 

On 16.4.2024 at 6:05 PM, Ayham said:

I just can't understand how someone can believe that there is only right belief and all else are to go in hell, and this one right belief turned out to be the one they were born into

I never disrespected anyone in any debate or made fun of them, but I just can't get that.

Any insights? Have you been in a similar experience?

I used to be a militant atheist when I was a teenager, which is essentially the same phenomena as you're talking about. So I can understand how it is to believe you're right and all else "go to hell" and that it simply happened to be what I was born into.

But you said you used to be muslim like them, so what are you not understanding? Were you somehow different?


Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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On 4/16/2024 at 0:05 PM, Ayham said:

Hear me out, I'm from Iraq, the pinnacle of stage blue, but I grew up with a somewhat diverse family, my father is sunni, my mother is shia, I had extremist uncles and some atheist ones

This was rare, most families have one school of thought or religion that they are extremist about and teach it to their children.

Anyways so I have left Islam 6 years ago, when I was 11, I kept it secret for years. 

Though I always debate within my mother's family side, it's usually fun and cool debates, since there's a lot of diversity.

Meanwhile on the other hand, all my friends are extremist sunni muslim fundamentalists, it didn't bother me much until recently when I started debating with them, I always tried to do debates in a conscious way, that pushes for understanding, but it got into a low consciousness activity.

My friends believe that Sunni islam is the only truth, all other religions and sects are corrupt, I tried to find  contradictions or scientific mistakes within their beliefs and the quran in general, they have replies to everything, and I do too, it keeps getting extremely annoying, like I'm not even trying to convert anyone, I'm just trying to show them that they aren't the absolute truth and other beliefs  are also valid and could be the truth. 

One argument that they didn't have a reply to, is evolution, they just dismissed it as "yeah that's just a laughable theory, we don't believe in it" 

 

I'm sick of this stage blueness here, there's much more details but that's the idea.

I'm just a classical non dualist, who's into Western philosophy and also mysticism 

I dont know how I got involved in all of this and it's so annoying, the debates aren't stopping but I'm also enjoying them since I'm learning a lot about different beliefs

I just can't understand how someone can believe that there is only right belief and all else are to go in hell, and this one right belief turned out to be the one they were born into

I never disrespected anyone in any debate or made fun of them, but I just can't get that.

Any insights? Have you been in a similar experience?

My current feeling is to cut them off, because I just can't take it anymore, they try to push their beliefs on me, they didn't use to do that before I started the debates, but now its unstoppable, it's a good friendship of 3 years. 

But I also don't have any friends in real life who aren't extremist to their belief

The secret reason is because they are truth and love, and the second reason is because each perspective of God can only know itself as the Absolute and can only understand other as itself if it can get outside of itself.

But to get outside of yourself you have to go meta which requires exiting and killing your perspective. God as ego defines itself by its perspective, so you are complaining about them not committing ideological seppikku/ suicide.

Each perspective is at a different maturity level and will test your maturity with their immaturity. Our level of maturity is defined by our ability to accept their lack of maturity and vice versa.

But yeah I get your frustration. Understand that the human psyche's nature is to both assume and investigate. Assumption is easy, while investigation takes time and effort. We pick and choose what is worth our time due to love/preferences. 

The first truth to a human is what is comfortable, and that is due to survival.


You are a selfless LACK OF APPEARANCE, that CONSTRUCTS AN APPEARANCE. But that appearance can disappear and reappear and we call that change, we call it time, we call it space, we call it distance, we call distinctness, we call it other. But notice...this appearance, is a SELF. A SELF IS A CONSTRUCTION!!! 

So if you want to know the TRUTH OF THE CONSTRUCTION. Just deconstruct the construction!!!! No point in playing these mind games!!! No point in creating needless complexity!!! The truth of what you are is a BLANK!!!! A selfless awareness....then that means there is NO OTHER, and everything you have ever perceived was JUST AN APPEARANCE, A MIRAGE, AN ILLUSION, IMAGINARY. 

Everything that appears....appears out of a lack of appearance/void/no-thing, non-sense (can't be sensed because there is nothing to sense). That is what you are, and what arises...is made of that. So nonexistence, arises/creates existence. And thus everything is solved.

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@Ayham The problem you are outlining is not exclusive to religious fundamentalists. It is a general tendency to be dogmatic about certain things.

Regarding you debating them - you have to be clear to yourself about whats your goal with those debates and depending on what your goal is, you need to first check whether it is worth it or not. 

Sometimes you need to leave people alone even if you know for sure that their belief about something is 100% wrong.  Some reasons for that are: 1) Not all people can be persuaded (especially about certain things) 2) Sometimes arguing with people make their position more antifragile ( if you show them contradictions in their view, they will adapt their original position to it,without needing to change the original worldview  - so in this case you will get a more advanced muslim worldview).

+ you have to remember that persuasion doesn't stop with argumentation (especially when it comes to certain positions that wasn't rationally arrived at).  Scientific arguments won't work in general on fundamentalists. Maybe a better tactic would be introducing them  to different views in a much more friendly way, where they don't feel attacked.

So for example: Introducing them to honest, friendly christians or hindus or to any other religious group who has those characteristics. The effect of such a move could slowly lead to opening their mind up somewhat ,and they might start to learn more about those religions and about different cultures and that could end up with them starting to question their own beliefs or at the very least, they can realize that not all non-muslims are stupid or bad people.

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@Ramanujan hmmm, well it's not as bad as it seems, well for me at least since I don't know what's it's like somewhere else, but I will mention some points that come to mind:

  • It's extremely hard getting a government job, no matter how cool your degree or experience is, you need to either be a doctor or an engineer, or know someone in the government 
  • Corruption is everywhere, you can't do anything legally without paying some money to every person you deal with, usually high amounts 
  • You can literally go to a pharmacy and buy almost any type of medicine without prescription
  • You will get killed if you speak badly about certain government figures
  • If you are gay or atheist, you might get into serious trouble, for example I lied about being a Muslim for years because my school would have kicked me out
  • Lands and houses are extremely extremely expensive, you can work your whole life to just build a 100 meters house, this is new because of inflation 
  • We have laws, but those laws are overridden by families, or like tribes,  everyone has a last name right? Well here, your last name indicates your tribe, which aren't tribal, they are modern people, but if you get in legal trouble, most people will settle it by tribes, each person would call their tribe, then they either do a mass shooting at each other, or the tribe of the person who got treated badly take a shit ton of money from the other tribe
  • Temperature reaches 50 Celsius in summer
  • Government doesn't give electricity all day, maybe like half, so each district have their own power generator, which isn't as robust as one done by the government so it also shuts down sometimes 
  • We do have modern places, arcades, clubs, martial arts places, gyms, cafes, malls, high end cars, restaurants, and a lot of other stuff that's actually really fancy 
  • A lot of people are religious fanatics, but the new generation has good amount of atheists or balanced religious people, but it's usually based on a whim, an iraqi atheist most likely argument for their belief would be "I don't feel like praying 5 times a day therefore i became an atheist"
  • There's a great sense of community, people here live with their parents, it's a norm, the woman gets married and moves in with her husband, husband usually lives in parents house, though this is also starting to change 
  • Most people here don't know English except basic school grammar, like no ability to speak or understand
  • Normal have shitty teachers, though there's better schools, like distinguished high schools, which require an Iq exam and high marks to get into (this is the one I go to, teachers and students are better, all students are nerds basically, we study in English though somehow the teachers and most students don't speak English)
  • College is completely free, but it's based on your grades in 12th grade, which I'm in right now, most people here aim for medicine, the asian stereotype does apply to us as arabs, you need to get like 99 average to get into medical school, and our studying and material is extremely big and hard
  • There's also a lot of extremely smart and educated people, authors, professors, content creators, etc. but deffo not the majority 
  • Getting a visa to Usa or Europe is pretty hard
  • Men here are more in control in relationships and family than in western culture, for example, the man's permission is needed for a lot of legal things for the wife, children, etc. and also a wife can't get divorced, it has to be his word, also it's pretty regular for husbands to hit their wives here, husbands usually are the providers, and wives are usually well, housewives 
  • Most families here have family members who live outside of iraq, in recent hard times in the last few decades, a lot of people have fled, so those people also come to visit, i have like 1 uncle in Sweden, 1 in usa, 2 in Uk, and 3 aunts in the usa, one in the uk, so my cousin's are more like westerns, though we meet once every few years
  • Also recently sexual stuff has been getting more okay, but the norm is still sex after marriage, so people here marry too early

 

Yeah this was long, this is how it is in the capital at least, other placee are probably less developed (in a spiral dynamics sense)

 

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@Carl-Richard to be honest i don't like the term new age, it comes with many "woo woo" stuff, sometimes too much

I just like spiritual stuff, and I take what I like from all traditions, including new age 

--

Got it, so you used to be dogmatic about atheism and that also was what you were born into , nice! 

I mean I was Muslim by birth, here you are born Muslim and you get indoctrinated with it, my family didn't indoctrinate me strongly, and i got into spiritual stuff when i was 12, so I started questioning religion from then (which was extremely scary due to the indoctrination)

Do you know that if I attempt to change my religion in my official documents, i will get excuted?

Islam is forced here, you are born and what you hear is "we are the only true religion, never ever dare question it or think it's wrong" and everyone around you is the same

I just got lucky by not having that sort of parent's and learning English by watching online content in English, which allowed me to find different religions, science, and spirituality from an early age, then I got into leo when I was 15 and went through a dark night of the soul period 

Though I'm aware that the same thing I criticise religious people could apply to me, in the sense that I'm also dogmatic and 100% certain that religion is wrong , or that spirituality is right

I try my best to remain aware of that and never be too sure of anything 

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@Razard86 damn! What an insightful response, my favourite so far 

 

@zurewI agree, the structure of dogmatism is the same and applies to all beliefs, it's just the content that's different 

I like to think of the kind of beliefs we have here as anti beliefs, like an anti virus, beliefs that are designed to eliminate all other beliefs, including itself, and the ultimate belief of being a separate self or ego 

But it's still belief no matter what

 

Regarding debates, I think it started as a conscious thing and now it has become a classic "who is right" ego battle , yeah i must stop that lol

The idea of introducing them to people from other faiths is nice, I like it

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Posted (edited)

5 hours ago, Ayham said:

@Carl-Richard to be honest i don't like the term new age, it comes with many "woo woo" stuff, sometimes too much

I just like spiritual stuff, and I take what I like from all traditions, including new age

Yup. Most New Agers don't like the term. That's partially why I like to call them that 😂 (also because it's correct).

 

5 hours ago, Ayham said:

it comes with many "woo woo" stuff, sometimes too much 

What do you mean by "woo woo stuff"? Crystals? Astrology? Tarot readings? That's just one type of New Age.

 

5 hours ago, Ayham said:

I just like spiritual stuff, and I take what I like from all traditions, including new age

New Age is when you get inspiration from religious traditions without being married to a single tradition. It's when you want to be religious (spiritual) while also fully living in the modern world.

A general rule is whenever somebody from the West (or who identifies as such) calls themselves "spiritual", or whenever somebody calls themselves "spiritual but not religious", it's New Age.

Edited by Carl-Richard

Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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Posted (edited)

On 16.4.2024 at 6:05 PM, Ayham said:

I'm just a classical non dualist, who's into Western philosophy and also mysticism 

To hammer home the point: I think if you were to describe what you mean by "classical non-dualist", you would actually describe a contemporary type of non-dualist, inspired by different religious traditions but not married to a single one, i.e. New Age . "Classical" non-duality is found in "classical" religions.

Edited by Carl-Richard

Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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Posted (edited)

Non duality dogma is just as fundamentalist as evangelical christianity.  
“Everything is one”  Really?  How do you know?   People learn the dogma through hypnosis and then repeat it until they believe it.  The purpose of the belief system is to provide the illusion of certainty in a world where our small brains know almost nothing.  But we are afraid to say we don’t know.  We cling to our beliefs through fear.

 

Edited by Jodistrict

Vincit omnia Veritas.

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