crazymonkie_ wrote:So: For THOUSANDS OF YEARS, China, Japan, and SE Asia were doing fine without monotheism. Without warnings about/"from" the "one true god". Thriving, in fact, well independently of the "right" religion.
What does thriving have to do with religion
The Quran says that those who reject the message- and supposedly there are messengers for EVERY nation- are defeated.
The fact that first, there were no monotheistic religions in the areas I mentioned before the Jesuits and Dominicans came, and second, that the cultures were thriving before any of them had ever heard the name Muhammad or about the religion Islam, means that this claim is false. Totally and completely.
So it has a lot to do with religion, at least according to Islam and the Quran.
crazymonkie_ wrote:So 1) What took the almighty, all-knowing, all-powerful creator so long?
What took Him so long to send the prophet Jesus 400 years after Malachi, and what took Him to send Muhammad 600 years after Jesus?
Besides, well before the introduction of buddhism or taoism, the chinese dynasties worshiped a single all powerful entity.
What about the places I mentioned? You're not making a good case.
crazymonkie_ wrote:2) If they were doing great without the "right" religion, without knowledge of the "right" god- what makes those things so great
Its not about their greatness, but about ackowledging ones position in the universe and accepting to live within the limits set by the King and Generous Creator, One full of wisdom to His creatures. The Quran explains the fact that many nations who thrived with disregard to the way of God, were razed to the ground.
Ummmm.... but if the limits exist, they'd be universal laws. Truly universal laws. Not laws that were made by men, even if those men claimed to be speaking for the "one true god". Nobody would be able to transgress them. Can humans break orbit by running really fast then jumping? Can we stop breathing air and still live? No. In the same way, a universal law would be impossible to transgress. The laws in the Quran? NOT universal.
And there have been so many cultures/nations/kingdoms without even the non-universal laws as vaguely mentioned in the Quran who have thrived. I doubt you'd say that the situation-specific gay Hellenistic cultures that dominated the Mediterranean, and then gave the Romans their culture (pre-Greek contact, there wasn't much in the way of arts) were following the laws of the Quran. And that's just an at-hand example. History shows variation, and survival in variation. Allah doesn't destroy most, or even many, cultures that violate "his" laws, pre- or post-Islam advent.
crazymonkie_ wrote:3) Why are they necessary? ARE they necessary?
It depends on how you view the universe. It is necessary to live within the limits of the ultimate King otherwise you're living in impunity and ingratitude.
We can't help but not to live within the limits of universal laws. That's why they're universal.
If, however, these are not necessary laws- only contingent- then that makes Islam, at best, a choice between several options.
And if these laws are dependent upon when a nation learns "the" message- why and how are they necessary? You didn't answer the question.
crazymonkie_ wrote:If you say they are, you're stuck with the fact that the "right" religion wasn't even available until less than a century
The Quran says for every people there was a way, and that Islam came as the universal way at the appropriate time.
It says for every people there was a MESSENGER. There should have been traces, maybe even a few groups, of monotheists all over the world. Yet there are gigantic gaps that existed until monotheistic missionaries came- mostly Christian- and started giving the concept. So you've still got a huge problem.
And even moreso if you say Islam came "as the universal way at the appropriate time." That means its in history yet always was? That makes no sense. And don't give me that claptrap about "Allah is out of time" because he had to be IN time to be a part of causality (to create, to destroy, to bless, to judge, to have a beginning and ending of time). A universal way is UNIVERSAL- always existed and always will. If something comes at the appropriate time, that means that it's temporal and temporary. And it still doesn't answer how a huge portion of Asia had no concept of a single creator god for so long.
crazymonkie_ wrote:The first "warners," even if we're talking about monotheism *like* Islam, were CATHOLICS!
Go back to your kindergarden library and get your facts right
Truth hurts, doesn't it? Catholics beat you to it. So Allah bless Catholics, amirite? The warners of the nations of Asia, right!?!?
crazymonkie_ wrote:So it really sounds like knowing about Islam is way worse than not knowing about it.
Even one who doesnt live by God's limits out of ignorance is bound by what the Quran refers to as the basic innate guidance, his ingrained God-cousciousness
Now you've added "ingrained God-consciousness." That's just begging the question as to whether that exists in the first place. Faith again, yes? Because otherwise, that's just more of that "listen to your soul" stuff that's caused lots of divisions in every religion. Though every religion doesn't have an issue with schisms. Yours does, but not everyone else's.
crazymonkie_ wrote:See- quite a few Christian groups tried this sort of mental gymnastics
The Quran states these facts in plain words
It's still mental gymnastics, whatever the source.
crazymonkie_ wrote:BUT, that idea, as appealing as it may be, means that Allah's "universal" laws are NOT universal.
Not when the Quran states there are many ways that lead to Allah when they conform to our basic ingrained guidance, that for every people there was a way and that Islam as the universal system will reach the whole world and that people will only be held accountable for rejecting it after guidance is made manifest to them and when they do not hearken the calls of their ingrained God-counsciousness.
Your problem then becomes: Why have the five pillars of faith? Why not just let the "ingrained God-consciousness" do its thing? Why have the "seal of the prophets?" If you take the specifics out of Islam, there's no reason for it to exist as a specific religion. There's no reason to say that the Quran HAS to be in Arabic, or that Muhammad was the final prophet.
At best it seems like Islam is Allah butting in to people's lives where he shouldn't be. Your presentation of it minimizes Islam's specifics to the point that they vanish into a haze of vague monotheism muttered in archaic Arabic. Since this is not what Islam is, I have to wonder about your angle here.
crazymonkie_ wrote:the baffling contradictions in the Quran about free will and Allah sealing the hearts of unbelievers.
The seal (death) of the spiritual senses is the natural result of a specific, willful behavior of spiritual self-destruction. God causes the spiritual senses to die just as He causes the physical death of the one who would continuously mutilate himself.
So that means he's all right with sending people to hell. Cool. Glad we cleared that up.
The consequence of such spiritual condition is the incapacity to react positively to guidance and accept it, due to a deep aversion to it. One causes himself to reach that point where he can no longer react positively to spiritual guidance until his appointed time comes. After reaching that point where spiritual guidance causes him aversion, one can choose to adopt a passive attitude towards it instead of fighting or mocking it and thus avoid growing in sin and worsening his state in the Hereafter.
But Allah already knows 100% who will get the seal and who won't, who will be "spiritually self-destructive" and who won't. So the contradiction is this: humans supposedly have choices in their lives. But Allah already knows and has power over everything. There can be no will, at all, in such a universe.
So where is exactly is the contradiction with freewill when the death of the spiritual body, just like the death of the physical body are the result of a willful behavior
Because there is no will, there can be no responsibility for humans. That's the contradiction: the Quran says there is will and responsibility, yet there cannot be in a universe with Allah.
crazymonkie_ wrote:Locked up is not free. Sealed is not open.
Yes, spiritual suicide, which is exactly what the sealing of the senses is, stops one from ever being able to react positively to guidance just like physical suicide ends all motions
So how is that just? How is that merciful? If Allah seals hearts, HE is taking away free will. And also being unjust and unmerciful.
crazymonkie_ wrote:how do we know the Quran is right?
By looking at all people. The belief in the unseen, of an Ultimate Power is the norm.
Only in certain cultures. And there's more to Allah than just "an Ultimate Power", and you know that. Adding to that changes the definition of that particular deity. Allah is not universal, never was, and never will be. Some day he'll join the ranks of Apollo and the Magna Mater in the long rolls of gods with "dead" religions. If we look at "all" people, all we see is variation. Many gods. Not one source. Sure, supernatural stuff- that seems to be a pretty universal human norm. But as far as gods? No real single idea of gods have primacy over another. Yours is just a preference, like animism or belief in no gods but in ghosts, is a preference.
crazymonkie_ wrote:Faith is a dead end, because anyone religious can have the same faith in the same way you have, yet end up with a different religion. If it all went to the same source, there would only be forms of Islam.
The basic guidance spoken of is not Islam, but a counsciousness of the One God. Every concept that does not spring from this basic principle is unnatural, per the Quran.
So does that mean that Unitarian Universalists are Muslims? Because they've got that. Oh, but they're cool with gay people. Maybe that's against the universal, non-universal laws of god. What a conundrum.
You're again begging the question- starting from the conclusion and working backwards for your case. The Quran says it. So what? It also says lots of wrong things (I didn't want to list them, just to have you ignore them again). Relying upon a clearly mistaken book for evidence is not the best idea in the world.
crazymonkie_ wrote:I wasn't corrected. Faith still has primacy. If it doesn't, then anyone who accidentally acts according to Allah's laws can get into paradise.
If that person has at least accepted the basic notion of monotheism which is ingrained in his self. For example an atheist doing good, ie acting within God's limits "without knowing it", the Quran says such person will be requited for his good actions only in this world. In the hereafter in which he does not believe in, his deeds which he confined to the present world, will be reduced to ashes.
So then- Islam really doesn't matter? Because this is what you're saying. That "even an atheist" (totally not insulting little phrase, btw) can get into paradise if this atheist ACCIDENTALLY follows Allah's laws. So that brings me back to my earlier point: That you're basically following an arbitrary, and thus, unjust, god. If he could bring a "righteous" atheist into heaven, he could send a "righteous" Muslim to hell. You just said he would- don't act like he won't because you don't want him to.
According to your logic here, Islam is superfluous. So why have it exist in the first place? As per your earlier points, only those who hear the "right" message are responsible for acting according to it. Which means that NOT hearing it, and possibly making it to heaven without all those pointless (because Allah is arbitrary) rules, is better than actually KNOWING and BELIEVING in the "right" message! Which means the "right" message is rubbish and a waste of time.
crazymonkie_ wrote:You only think so. Where's your proof?
Common sense and the words of Allah in His Quran, and His word is the truth 39:9,38:28,68:35-36"Shall We then treat the People of Faith like the People of Sin? What has happened to you? How do you judge?" 55:60"Is the reward of goodness aught but goodness?" 95:8"Is not Allah the best of the Judges?" 4:147"Why should Allah chastise you if you are grateful and believe? And Allah is the Multiplier of rewards, Knowing".
Don't quote from the Quran when the Quran is under scrutiny. If I ask you to define a word, you don't say the word and act like you've defined it. If I ask for proof, you cannot use the questionable source that you THINK is right.
And "common sense" leads lots of places. It led Thomas Paine to lack of belief in any god; it led Martin Luther to a strict Christianity; it led Mani to experience what he believed was a religious event and form a religion based on what he thought was revealed to him.... and on and on. Common sense doesn't go anywhere- it must be backed up by evidence. You don't have any, you only have faith and preference.
crazymonkie_ wrote:Allah says all over in the Quran that he COULD have saved such-and-such people, but didn't.
Because it would contradict the Quranic notion of freedom in choice of creed and the concept of accountability.
So one is free to choose a creed and Allah may allow one to exist in heaven, unless one has heard the "right" message (Islam) and rejected it, in which case Islam is needed? Hm. And how can one be responsible for ANYTHING in a universe where a fully knowing, fully powerful being exists? It's just not possible.
crazymonkie_ wrote:not all afterlives have retribution at the end
Hades, a lot of Native Americans, Buddhism. That's all I can think of, but I'm sure there's more. It's a lot of cultures/nations anyway.
crazymonkie_ wrote:That's Gehenna. It's a different concept of the afterlife. Where's "Sheol" there? Nowhere. Point still stands.
You were educated on Judaism's position on the afterlife and how it upholds the notions of retribution -suffering and bliss- in the afterlife, thus canceling your original nonsense that such concept appeared only about 2000 years ago. Sheol is understood to be a transition place of all souls, the righteous and the sinners.
I told you: Gehenna and Sheol are two different concepts. The fact is that Judaism doesn't have consensus on what the afterlife is like. So it's *possible* that Judaism uses such an idea of retribution- but not *necessarily* so. And Judaism's Sheol was only one example.
crazymonkie_ wrote:Oh, and the Greek Hades. Only a very, very, very few "heroes" were "judged" in the sense that you talk about. The gods made the Elysian fields (or populated it with heroes after they died, I forget which) after a successful judgement by the gods. Everyone else- pay the fare to get across Styx, and stick around forever. No judgement there.
You are either an complete ignorant who enjoys making a fool of himself, or a purposeful deceiver. There is judgement and retribution of the souls in ancient greek belief systems, get your facts right before i start bringing quotes.
The Homeric Greeks didn't believe in that stuff. The later Classical Greeks did, sometimes, but it was under debate. So not universal. You said "all," and now you're backing off from that position. Wisely, but it means you're being inconsistent and don't have a solid position yourself.
HOWEVER: the specifically Islamic style of judgement and either heaven or hell, and that's it, definitely originated with Christianity. Other systems did exist- but they weren't consistent, more like ideas about what happened after humans died, not a statement of (alleged) fact.
crazymonkie_ wrote:No, they do not ALL BELIEVE. I've shown you several exceptions.
You showed no exceptions and even if you did then you showed that mankind's mainstream belief is that there must be a place where one will be held accountable for his deeds.
It's "mainstream" now, eh? Not "all"? Sneaky sneaky Eagle. You said it was universal, now you're saying it's not. And even saying "mainstream" is a stretch. Neither you nor I have the historical know-how to say that; I'm pretty sure nobody on earth does. But YOU have shown that you're willing to shift terms in order to fit the argument according to your desires. Of course there are plenty of cultures with ideas of after-life judgement. But the Islamic and Christian ideas are hardly all there are.
crazymonkie_ wrote:You said that it was a one-time, post-mortem judgement (okay, two if you count Judgement Day). Therevada Buddhism doesn't have that.
And i already told you, whether retribution occurs once or a 100 times, the concept of requital for the deeds is still there
But- an important point in Islam is that it's GOD doing the retributing. In Buddhism, it's a universal law- not even retribution. It's just what happens. So it's not even close to the same.
crazymonkie_ wrote:You said that a positive rebirth meant that someone had accrued karmic rewards.
I said what those who hold such belief say. Despite certain "subtilities", the basic principle is that a tositive rebirth means righteous past, and a negative rebirth means unrighteous past.
And you're wrong about it in the sense that I mentioned. A positive rebirth does NOT necessarily mean a righteous past.
crazymonkie_ wrote:Which first of all makes the Islamic desire for afterlife rewards seem REALLY selfish
Why would the concept of reward for continous selfless actions (will to please God and humbling oneself by showing gratitude to the Generous creator, will to please others, feed others etc) reflect a selfish system
Because of the final reason behind it: Personal rewards from the creator of the universe. How is that not selfish? It's pretty well the very definition of selfish.
crazymonkie_ wrote:means that Buddhism and Islam do NOT have the same idea of concept of retribution
How can it be so when both systems believe in the concept of retribution for the deeds through suffering or bliss.
Because Allah is ultimately responsible for the retribution and the rewards, as well as the judgment. This means that the responsibility is not with human beings. In Buddhism, the "retribution" is meted out by an impersonal universal law, and humans are ultimately responsible for their deeds.
And again: The "rewards" in Buddhism can be only apparent rewards. Not so with Islam's rewards. They're obvious and legalistic. And greedy.
crazymonkie_ wrote:and third, because the "retribution" is really just an impersonal, universal law at work, there is no judgement in Buddhism anyway!
This does nothing to the point that the deeds will be requited with justice. You can call that "system" enforcing the just requital anyway you want.
No, it speaks entirely to the point. Islam has a being judging and paying attention. Buddhism has no such being. The presence or absence of such a being totally changes the nature of the rewards and punishments, how they're meted out, and the nature of them. It's still not universal. Contingent.
crazymonkie_ wrote:And there's the fact that Buddhism says that there is no such thing as a single soul. Ever. Meaning that even if there were some sort of god at the end of life judging people, that god would be incredibly unjust for doing so.
Even if the mingling of incorporeal thoughts the many schools of buddhism have difficulty defining, and sometimes do so contradictorily, even if that immaterial part of the self evolves or ultimately dies, how would its judgement and retribution be unfair exactly
Because Allah, according to Buddhism, is yet another contingent being, subject to karma, and not fit to judge.
And I'll say again: Buddhism does not have the concept of a single soul. There are some sects that get sort of fuzzy about it (Tibetan seems to be the worst for it), but that's a truly universal belief (for Buddhism). So that makes the idea of getting judged for something that "you" did (your soul being the non-corporeal portion of "you") absolutely unjust and nonsensical.
crazymonkie_ wrote:Ahhhh, but who's ultimately responsible for the cause and effect? In Islam, the final cause is always Allah. He makes things happens or prevents them from happening.
He makes things happen in the sense that He established the laws of cause and effect that naturally lead to a certain outcome. That process is fully encompassed by Allah Who may intervene at any point, again through the laws of cause and effect and this does not cancel the principle that man's actions will always be bound to receive a corresponding retribution. How is that different from what you define as karma, ie the idea that an action creates a chain of events that lead to a just "retribution" by a "universal law at work".
There are no actions "by" "man" in a universe with Allah. Allah knows and has power over everything. Things are as they must be, now, in the past, and forever. No will, no action, no choice.
It's massively different from karma because karma actually *is* choosing. Not the apparent choice in Islam. Absent an all-knowing and all-powerful being, humans DO have a choice. With such a being in the universe, there is no such thing as choice. And karma, again, is a law. Like gravity. Not a being that chooses, and in fact is the only choosing entity in the universe.
There's nothing running karma; karma runs itself.
crazymonkie_ wrote:And you ignored that "dhukka" does NOT just mean "suffering." The gods and daeva have dhukka- despite the fact that they are the most blissful beings in the universe.
The suffering of your blissful gods does nothing to the point that buddhism too doesnt escape the natural principle of retribution for the deeds.
The principle is entirely different. And thanks, you pretty much said in "Muslim speak" that you were mistaken about dhhukka.
crazymonkie_ wrote:No such thing. That's a contradiction.
Where is the contradiction in the fact that an all powerful entity acts according to its perfect attributes, justice and wisdom being one of them
"Arbitrariness based on a perfect justice".
It speaks for itself. I can't even explain how it's a contradiction any clearer than just seeing it makes it obvious.
crazymonkie_ wrote:But WHO or WHAT is doing the retribution, how, and why, is CRITICAL in showing that the ideas are NOT the same.
The principle is always the same; just requital for the deeds.
No, it is not. I've explained how and why it is different.
crazymonkie_ wrote:No, I mean creating them so that they can't sin.
Which still means cancelling freewill, since there can only be 2 responses to guidance: obedience and disobedience.
That's assuming that the potential to sin still exists. I said this is going to be human beings that can't sin but still have free will. They can't disobey, because they can't sin.
So it's not possible, then?
crazymonkie_ wrote:That's a very different thing than forcing them to do good.
crazymonkie_ wrote:So I guess Allah ISN'T all-powerful then?
Because He cant force people to follow His guidance? If that is what you mean, then know that the Quran says He could force all mankind to believe but He doesnt in accordance with the principles that humans must choose the right path by themselves after falsehood is exposed "truth stands out clear from error".
I told you, it's not forcing, it's creating them so that they can't sin, yet have free will. If he's all-powerful, he can do that.
But since he can't, according to you, Allah clearly isn't all-powerful.