Does Quran Have All the Answers?

In my trip to Los Angeles two weeks ago I met a sweet educated Egyptian lady who lived most of her life in the States. And while we were having different conversations at the dinner table, religion subject popped up, in which I did not want to participate, but was forced to announce that I was a skeptic. When she asked why, I replied that I’m searching for the truth. And apparently my answer shocked her and she hastily replied that why should you look for the truth when Quran gives you all the answers. When we resumed our conversation about how that statement was not true, my best friend, who is a religious person and who was sitting at the table with us, cut in the conversation and she changed the subject. She did not want to hear my elaboration about the misconception of that statement.
It appears to me, from my conversation to many devout individuals, like the lady above, and many others on the Net (educated as well as others), that Moslems read their scriptures emotionally as a ritual. They never look deeply into the meaning of the words, nor ponder on its consequences on the society (I was a devout person once and I did the same). But if one is looking for the truth, one should take all emotions aside, and read the scriptures critically. And I believe that except for some vague parts, Quran is a very straightforward text and anyone with a moderate education in Arabic language would understand it. There’s also the hadiths (traditions) and the tafseer (interpretation) books that supports Quran in case there were any misunderstanding. And therefore relying on the contemporary clerics to give you the answers, as was advised by the lady above, would be foolish, especially when most of them are either illiterate or naturally biased. And mind you, I have done that before and my statement comes out of experience. A simple example of the misconceptions we have been taught in schools and through clerics is the issue of slavery. We have been educated that Islam had abolished it while in fact no religion ever did that.
But only very few people really care to question their beliefs, the majority take the directed education, mostly in government schools which are no different than Islamic schools in context and which is full of lies, for a fact. They never open any supporting books I mentioned above. Only when confronted with an opposing thought they seek the help of those clerics who provide them with ready-made answers for the purpose of refutation only. But if they do open those books and read for themselves, they would be in for a lot of surprises.
Those people are not looking for the truth, they are satisfied with what they have been taught, or more accurately molded since their infancy. If they read their scriptures carefully, they would understand that religion is a choice, and not a hereditary gene. And therefore a child born to Moslem parents should not be labeled at birth as a Moslem, same with Christian or Jew or Buddhist’s child. As Richard Dawkins mentioned in his book The Root of All Evil, “ Despite the massive costs religion has imposed on human society, it persists because children do not question their parents’ beliefs”.

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20 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. chikapappi
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 00:38:05

    Oh my god – I love this post…

    Well yes we are “labeled” upon birth with the religion of our parents and society – it’s something we cannot tap but can change or convert as many are doing now. It’s a personal choice & we are not here to condemn nor accuse those people of anything – we’ll all find out the ULTIMATE TRUTH on judgment day 🙂

    Now, I won’t blabber here as if am that into religion o I won’t lie to you and say I read Quran all the time nor understand all the fo97a Arabic to interpret it so I go and ask. When I do, I make sure I speak to a person who is not biased as you mentioned and won’t try to effect my believes. The problem now a days is a lotta persons try to come up with their own interpretation to serve their own theories and I do not like that, it creates fraction o dilemmas amongst groups. What I do is try to look things myself – stay away from fishy resources and be subjective all the time when it comes down to religion, except for the sayings of the prophet PBUH and books of Quran interpretation. I don’t go and read books that would cause more confusion….

    Reply

  2. kila_ma6goog
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 01:42:05

    بالنسبة للموضوع السابق

    اولا تعليقي ماله علاقة بالرجال اللي يطقون زوجاتهم

    في آخر الموضوع انتي تكلمتي عن ان المسلمين أو بعضهم يعصبون و يسوون مشكلة عودة من بعض تصرفات غير المسلمين و كأنهم ملتزمين و لكنهم بنفس الوقت يسوون أشياء غلط و عادي ما يهتمون

    انا قلت مو كل الناس مثاليين و صراحة انا بدأت أمّل من النقاش المرتكز الأحادي اللي يصور طرف على انه شيطان و الطرف الثاني على انه الحمل الوديع

    يعني نحتاج الى عمق أكثر في تحليل المواضيع و نقاش جذور هالتصرفات بدل ما نقعد بس ننتقد المسلمين و المسلمين

    العملية بأغلبها أفعال و ردود أفعال معاكسة

    ادري هذا اختصاصج بس يعني ماكو أحد مو زين الا المسلمين؟

    انتي عارفة اني مو وايد متعاطف مع ربعنا بس أنا اراهم ضحايا لأشياء كثيرة و تحتاج الى شرح طويل جدا

    أكرر انا ضد أي نوع من انواع التعدي على الغير لا سيما ضرب الزوجات و غيرها من الممارسات الظالمة

    Reply

  3. AyyA
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 07:14:21

    KM
    في تعليقي السابق انا كنت اشره عليك ككاتب متفتح ذهنيا و شخص لا
    يقبل الظلم لاي مخلوق كان و في نفس الوقت تشوف الظلم الواقع علي المراه بسبب تطبيق قوانين الشريعه الظالمه و مع هذا لم تحرك ساكنا
    مو مهم انك تقدر اتسوي شيء او لا. مثل ما تكتب عن سياسه الدوله مثلا انت ما راح تغيرها. لكنك بكتابتك تزيد التوعيه لعل و عسي.
    Offfff, it took me forever to type that ( no Arabic keyboard), hope you got the point. And btw, I respect you and love you like my little brother, and that’s why I said what I said specifically to you.

    Reply

  4. AyyA
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 08:52:53

    Chica
    😉

    Reply

  5. sknkwrkz
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 09:52:58

    dogma and religion were invented for those that do not want to think. any religion was the ancient worlds MTV as far as the desire for instant gratification and the desire for ready made explanations goes.

    i dont subscribe to any religion, but i did have a chat about values and morals, trying to sidestep religion, with a former fundamentalist,…. and he recalled a passage in the quran that said that this book is to be used to “complement” the teachings of morals and values, ie not that it was the be all and end all of everything as many people believe.

    as you said, it was written so anyone could learn to read and read it for themselves with an open mind. otherwise why would they have bothered to write it down?

    when you start letting people tell you how to understand what you read, you start letting them control your mind. and that is the kind of power that man has never been able to handle responsibly.

    then again, as i said, some people dont want to think and just want the answers.

    great post 😀

    Reply

  6. Purgatory
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 12:34:25

    I read all the post to find out what you ate but it is never mentioned! Why post if you will not post food pictures ???

    Reply

  7. The Aggressor
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 14:15:07

    Considering the fact that religion is made up of individuals who want to control & contain the masses-as you loosely put it, where does that leave the rest of the ‘believers’?
    Are all those Nobel Laureates from the Muslim world so brainwashed with something incomplete that they cannot spot the difference? I find that had to believe.

    The Quran does says that everyone in this world is born a Muslim, has all the answers ‘you need’ to be a believer (mo’min), and yes, there’s a stark difference between the two meanings. Anything beyond what a believer “needs to know” falls under the realm of things unknown except to the Creator. (Eg. Alef-Lam-Meem’) Succumbing to this belief willingly is Islam at it’s most basic form.

    Slavery, human rights, struggle, due process, rule of law, equality, etc..are issues that have been simply ‘commented upon’ by the Quran, and have been left to it’s followers to practice “as they see fit”, especially when each society differs. Everything else in the Quran is not open to interpretation simply because it’s based on solid fact and empirical scientific proof. Don’t take my word for it, just read about how babies are born, or the calculation of the speed of light, or how energy is extracted from water. You will not see such examples in other scriptures, and that’s all the proof a ‘believer’ needs to consider the Quran as true revelation of the Creator.

    Don’t mistake the sheiks and clerics to be experts in this field, as most of them today have ‘hijacked’ the true meaning of the Word of God and put it to their own use , or worse still, worldly gains.

    If you really are Agnostic it’s OK, just make sure you’re not trying to ‘refute’ the truth in the process. And to borrow the quotation you’re used:

    “To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom.”

    Reply

  8. maliha11
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 18:08:01

    I think that you are just not getting the point of Islam, I guess or maybe you were just taught by a very bad person about Islam and Muslims…

    we are Muslims because our religion holds us together and if you are talking about those care free kind of people who pretend to be Islamic and have no sense of direction in there religion its because they are to consumed in there own personal life and stopped making any effort of having a good faith, You don’t only have to understand the words in the Quraan and read it critically its more to it than that!!! and how can say that a person should keep there emotions aside when practicing a religion, a religion is chosen by you heart before your brains. am just sorry that you couldn’t write a good positive thing about Islam, in our religion your no going to find any flaws but in any other religion you’ll find some many mistakes that it would take you 3000 blogs about each one and still you wont be done criticizing!!!!

    Reply

  9. kashifalvi
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 18:52:00

    I totally agree with Mr. Aggressor.

    Reply

  10. kashifalvi
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 18:59:22

    and yeah Quran does have all the answers, why don’t you do your self a favor search for Dr. Zakir Naik and ask him any question, he’ll quote you answers from Quran. peace.tv for reference.
    peace.

    Reply

  11. Nuwan Samaranayake
    Sep 07, 2007 @ 22:03:43

    In most cases, there is no point to convince a very religious person to think with a open mind. Most of these people have very closed minds because of the beliefs they hold in their mind as the “TRUTH”. All of are conditioned, from our birth to believe in certain things, which our subconcious takes are “TRUTH” without questioning them. This goes to all religious teachings. Starting from our parents, our teachers, friends, society and culture shape the way we think and what we believe. Some believe that Quaran has all the answeres, for some it is the Bible. All these ancients scripts have good things and our world has come to a very polarized position where people fight for what they were brainwashed to believe since the birth. Looking at the CNN documentary “God’s Worrier’s” made me see the gravity of this. It has come to a point that we fight to enforce our personal believes on others. This courses a lot of friction and wars around the world.

    The real truth is, what each of us call “TRUTH” is not absolute. We each of us have our perception of truth and they are all relative to what we believe. So there is no point arguing with a Muslim about Quran and truth and that is the same for a Christian with Bible. These scriptures are interpreted by different fractions of the same religion differently. There is no absolute intepretation. The main problem I see is also in the interpretation. A word can have many meanings that may lead to many perceived truths. That is one of the main issues I see in this whole thing.

    Uglyness of all this is that humanity may go to a global war in this century because of these intolerant nature. We must all understand how our beliefs and faith is set up and to tolerate each other.

    I dont have a problem with a Muslim who things the truth is in Quran as long as he does not violate social order and harm someone. And I don’t go to argue with them as there is no point and by doing that I will be trying to force my believes into that person.

    So if each one of us learn to keep those beliefs about truth to ourselves and live in harmony, this world will be a much better place.

    Reply

  12. dishevelled
    Sep 08, 2007 @ 00:14:52

    Funny how a country that’s becoming more and more “religious” has more and more moral/social/political problems…

    It’s also funny how a religion that literally means “peace” uses fear to get the believers to follow. Really, I been noticing it’s mostly takhree3…

    Reply

  13. حمودي
    Sep 08, 2007 @ 15:22:20

    صح كلامج عن ان وايج ناس يقرون الكتاب او الموضوع وهم حاكمين عليه بالفشل من الاساس
    يعني اهمه مكونين فكره وخالصين من قبل لا يقرون واذا قروا الموضوع يكون فقط لتصيد الاخطاء

    مشكلتنا هنا انهم يريدون وضع الناس في قوالب هذا مسلم وهذا كاقر وهذا ملحد وهذا لبرالي

    لا وجود للشخص العادي الذي يريد ان يشغل مخه ويسال اساله

    Reply

  14. Ri
    Sep 09, 2007 @ 10:34:34

    Any religious book will just leave you with not answers but more questions.

    And when you ask these questions that they cannot answers, “it’s all about faith. He works in mysterious ways. Just put your trust in him and you will find peace.”

    Me? I believe in logic and reason and humanity.

    Reply

  15. error
    Sep 09, 2007 @ 14:15:13

    وَلَقَدْ صَرَّفْنَا فِي هَذَا الْقُرْآنِ لِلنَّاسِ مِن كُلِّ مَثَلٍ وَكَانَ الْإِنسَانُ أَكْثَرَ شَيْءٍ جَدَلاً

    سورة الكهف 53

    That quote was not an answer to your question. If the quran has all answers then why are you still in doubt?

    I personally believe in the prophecy and I know that god created us doubtful and the quote above was to confirm that. There is nothing wrong with doubting, you will ultimately land on a conclusion.

    Reply

  16. Hadji
    Sep 10, 2007 @ 01:28:38

    Hi Ayya,

    It’s been a while hasn’t it. A couple of comments. You said that most clerics are illiterate or biased. Well, I will agree that most are biased since people that ask the clerics for their opinions are indeed asking for… opinions.

    I don’t know if you literally meant illiterate, but that’s so not the case, well, at least it’s not the case today. I don’t know of any illiterate clerics.

    You also said that a religious book should be read without emotions. I can relate to that. I also disagree with Maliha. You can choose to read it either way. Yet, it is possible to grasp deeper meanings within the Qur’an and find answers even if you are being completely objective.

    Oh, and about learning the religion without the guidance of clerics. Well, there are tons of questions that may come to mind that are hard to answer. I don’t believe that there is a book of interpretation that is without error or completely reliable. Also the saheeh hadeeths are sometimes confusing, especially since “modern” Arabic is pretty different than the Arabic that was previously spoken. Also, the simplest issues have been disagreed upon by clerics that use different verses as evidence, and so on and so forth.

    Anyways, if you do know someone who is more knowledgable in the religion, someone that you trust, then why not ask them?

    فاسالوا اهل الذكر ان كنتم لا تعلمون
    Al-Anbiya 7

    Reply

  17. white wings
    Sep 10, 2007 @ 10:17:28

    Hay Ayya dearest
    As usual, a very hot and important topic.
    I stopped having “religion” conversations with people around me for two important reasons: one, a logical conversation creates a conflict within the person I am speaking with; I see pain in their eyes as their minds struggle to defy what they’re hearing because they want to believe and in the single way they were taught to do so as it is the only road to salvation, two: these conversations never resolve anything; they bring the whole issue of religion and of course all what follows of existential questions into the table and nothing comes out of that.
    Any thoughts that would ponder the accuracy of religion are just prohibited, and ever notice how people look at you after? As if you’re diseased or something..
    Very long and complicated subject….much can be said here
    But most importantly, we’d like to see you soon, are you in Kuwait??

    Reply

  18. أم دانية
    Nov 22, 2008 @ 20:38:27

    (لكم دينكم ولي دين )

    أيتها المرأة التي تقول إن الشريعة االإسلامية ظلمت المرأة
    ألم تعلمي أن الإسلام رفع من شأن المرأة وأعلاها ،بعد أن كانت مضطهدة في الجاهلية وكانوا يرون أنها عار يجب التخلص منه
    ألم تعلمي أنها كانت محرومة من الميراث بسبب أنها لا تستطيع الغزو والسلب باعتبار أنه السبيل الوحيد لكسب الرزق عندهم ، والإسلام أعطاها حقها ولم يحرمها من الميراث.
    ألم تعلمي أن الإسلام أوجب على الزوج النفقة على زوجته حتى ولو كانت غنية بمالها .
    ألم تعلمي أيتها المتعالمة والجاهلة أن حكم ضرب الزوج لزوجته لا يكون إلا بعد استنفاذ طرق العلاج السابقة من نصح ثم هجر مع الزوجة الناشز ،و ذلك الضرب للتأديب فقط ولا يحق للرجال استخدامه إلا في نطاق ضيق جداً وهو ضرب غير مبرح ولا مؤذي.
    ولك أن تقارني بين وضع المرأة في الإسلام من حيث كونها :زوجة وأم وبنت وبين وضعها في الغرب لتعلمي الفرق الشاسع بينهما ..

    الإنسان عدو ما جهله
    عليك أن تدرسي الإسلام الصحيح في مكانه الصحيح وليس من أعداءه لينقلوا لك ما هو خطأ وجهالة ..

    أسأل الله لك الهداية .. وأن تري نور الإسلام الصحيح الذي ينير القلوب ويشرح الصدور ..

    Reply

  19. AyyA
    Nov 22, 2008 @ 22:56:11

    ام دانيه
    المقارنه تكون بالمرأه تحت الشريعه الاسلاميه مع تلك تحت القوانين المدنيه، و ليس مع العهد الجاهلي و الذي حتي لا نعرف الكثير عنه، و مضي وقته من ١٥٠٠ سنه
    المرأه المسلمه و المدافعه عن كرامه الدين الاسلامي لها و هي أقرب إلي الامه هي العدوه اللدوده لنفسها و لبنات جنسها

    Reply

  20. Bilal Khan
    Sep 02, 2009 @ 14:08:01

    By keeping discussion in mind I will like to share a website http://zakirnaikblog.blogspot.com which is a website about great islamic scholar Zakir Naik who made a lot oif non muslims to accept islam by his speeches.

    Reply

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