Islam

Morality for Athiests 

Many say religions are bad, I disagree. With the exception of extremist currents, I think religion is good for the masses.

Why ? you might ask …

Well, religion simplifies morality, it makes it so simple that even the dumbest humans could understand …

In almost all religions: you steal, you kill, you do bad things you will be punished by God/gods …

It take it even farther, you do good , you get rewards, like paradise etc …

Result > more people doing good and less people doing bad things.

Now, if we remove the religion factor, and ignore the criminal justice in a given country, things get complicated.

For example, how morality should have any effect on an atheist ? 

– stealing ? Why would that be wrong ? Some would rationalize it if they want.

– murder? With the human history full of savage barbarism, don’t think it’s hard to rationalize murder …

– Corruption, lies, cheating, Scam…. easy to rationalize 

In all honesty, for people that do not believe in Devine laws, morality becomes a personal struggle …

However, it is easy avoid this struggle especially concerning the minor “sins” …

Once we understand that small steps can lead to a destination we don’t want to go to.

Meaning, once we understand that small bad actions will lead us to normalizing them, and eventually lose part of self respect.

Example, the shoplifter, who continues shoplifting will probably end up becoming a criminal.

Thus Morality should be seen as a way to avoid becoming bad. 

Our brain always seeks validation, that’s why we rationalize, but if we mark clearly that such minor actions lead to this result, then the actions would be clearly rejected by our brain, not because of morality, but because of self validation.

Game of Thrones : The Andal Invasion

I’m a big Game of Thrones fan, team John Snow …

As any respectable GOT fan, i was curious and researched a bit the history of westeros…
I came across the event called “The Andal Invasion”.

Here’s a small video that explains it in a simple way:

While i was reading the article in the Game of thrones wiki, i came across this passage:

Given that author George R.R. Martin has said that the story loosely parallels the War of the Roses in fifteenth century Britain, the Andal Invasion is loosely comparable to the Anglo-Saxon invasion of Britain. Just as the First Men were able to stop the Andals from expanding to the North in Westeros, the Celtic people living in Scotland were able to repulse Anglo-Saxon expansion from the south. However, the real-life Anglo-Saxon invaders followed a polytheistic religion and destroyed the Christianized Romano-British society that existed in Britain up to that time. In an inversion, the Andal Invasion introduced the pseudo-Catholic Christian “Faith of the Seven” which supplanted the polytheistic, nature-worshiping religion of the Old Gods.

I have reasons to believe that the Andal Invasion is comparable to an entirely other invasion, so let’s start examining my points:

The Andals were a tall, fair-haired race whose original homeland was located across the Narrow Sea on the western coast of the continent of Essos, in a region known as Andalos.

First, Andalos sounded very familiar to my ear, and for a reason Andalus is considered the peak of the Islamic expansion, Andalus is the name given by the Muslim invaders to the territory they controlled in modern day Spain.

Then there’s 3 small points that poked my curiosity:
– Andals were a tall fair haired race, thus a different phenotype from the 1st men.
– The Narrow Sea, thus there was a sea separating the 2, and the invasion happened from the narrow part.
– Westeros sounds a lot like “West” Essos like “East”
Arabs were the opposite to the above phenotype description, and the Muslim invasion happened from the narrow sea between Morocco and Spain. It seams that GRR Martin just flipped the image. It’s not that surprising from someone who names a dragon : drogon !!

then there’s this part:

According to Andal legend, the God of Seven revealed itself to them in the Hills of Andalos, and from this they developed a new religion, the Faith of the Seven. Not long afterward, spurred on by the zeal of their new faith, the Andals set sail across the Narrow Sea to conquer Westeros.

Andal God revealed himself in the hills, a bit similar to the Islamic first revelation that took place in a cave on a hill near Mecca.

The Andals developed a new religion that rapidly expanded, spurred by the zeal of the new faith. Again, Islam is the only religion that after it was developed rapidly expanded, spurred by the zeal of the believers. And another point, Islam expansion, is the only conquest that was really motivated by religion.

So here we go, i think the Andal invasion loosely parallels the Islamic invasion rather than the Anglo-Saxon one.

creationism evolution

Creationism VS Evolution , Who is right and who is wrong?

In the spirit of the contrarian opinions, i have decided to write today about a subject that have been debated for years. As always, the approach i’ll take is based on facts and what i analyze, based on my knowledge as a scientist.
This is a contrarian blog (the opinions are contrary to what is popular these days), the opinions are based on facts.

The debate is so long and so intense that i could in no way cover the points in a blog post.

But here’s what we know:

Creationists Theories:

This is a touchy subject, i won’t get into details due to the emotional associations many have with this subject, but in general religions have been mostly recycling ancient ideas about deities and gods, the main point of criticism to creationists is, who and why we were created?

And why would a God create humanity and (make us feel guilty,  force everyone to believe , select few as elite , or ….)

Scientists and evolutionists theories, center around:

1- The concept that everything is random,
2- Natural selection that funnels the evolution of species towards the most optimal output.
And by optimal output, it means having the most reproductive power and longest longevity.

If we look at the animal anatomy, we notice that the body systems evolved through species, in case you are not familiar with this concept i would recommend reading a bit about it, especially about the nervous system.

The systems evolution can be observed, but genetics might have brought some more to the table, the genes we share as humans with other animals, trace the road of evolution. In other words, genes were passed from the early animal ancestors to their other descendants , for example we share more than 96% of our genes with chimps, thus it shows that we and the chimps might have a common ancestor. We share less genes with other mammals, but we share nonetheless, meaning our ancestors shared a common ancestor with mammals ….

More recently, evidence for common descent has come from the study of biochemical similarities between organisms. For example, all living cells use the same basic set of nucleotides and amino acids.The development of molecular genetics has revealed the record of evolution left in organisms’ genomes: dating when species diverged through the molecular clock produced by mutations. For example, these DNA sequence comparisons have revealed that humans and chimpanzees share 98% of their genomes and analysing the few areas where they differ helps shed light on when the common ancestor of these species existed    more info..

3- An initial event, Abiogenesis  – life arising from non living matter- or the Big bang theory -birth of planets and the event that led to the creation of space, the universe, earth, the sun …
The planets, space and the stars are governed by the law of physics and general relativity

Here’s what is wrong and what we actually don’t know !!!

Big bang theory : We know nothing! according to this theory the universe expanded in a fraction of a second, and we do not have a unified theory of gravity and the other forces to explain it, in other words, the relativity theory and all other theories do not apply here, in other words we don’t know what led to the this initial event that created the universe!
Origin of life or Abiogenesis : Whether it happened on earth, or even if it happened on another planet, we still know nothing! Yeah, we can explain how the early cells evolved to give breath to a complex human being. But what we can not explain is how did these cells come to existence!!! How non-living matter evolved to give an organic compound, not only that, but how this organic compound became alive!!!

Creationism can have a role :

The 2 points that are basically like magic, are the points mentioned above, so basically creationists can pretend that the Big bang and the Abiogenesis were both initiated by a “Power” that they call GOD.

Mission accomplished : Creationists and Evolutionists Reconciled!

Charlie Hebdo , Truth, Facts, Islamic extremism, Conspiracy?

It’s a sad thing to see journalists die, but it’s even sadder to see cartoonist die!!
Journalist, especially those who choose to report in war torn regions, know the risk, and they take it, because they are the eyes and the ears of the world, and sometimes a shield against mass killing and exterminations, these Journalists are heroes, actually they are super heroes, because when people try to fly from conflict zones, these super heroes try to fly to these troubled zones.

Cartoonists on the other hand, are the goofy neighborhood kid that want to make everybody laugh, cartoonist did not choose to go into war zones, they did not choose the heroic but dangerous mission of reporting the truth. Instead, cartoonists try to approach the current issues with humor, to make you laugh and maybe reconsider your point of views.

I have read somewhere that the attack on Charlie Hebdo does not represent Islam. That’s ridiculous! It’s ridiculous because it makes no sense to associate a religion or race to an act, anyone who does the association is clearly a fool, that you should no waste your time discussing with …
But the real question is why do these extremist Islamic groups want to kill and are killing innocent people?
That’s a long answer, that probably every politician who is serious about foreign policy already knows.
These terrorist organizations have been killing people everywhere, their Muslim victims are hundred of times more than their western victims … “Hence the question, Is this Islam teaching?”, makes no sense ! Even when these terror groups are targeting western populations, there are often also Muslim amongst the victims, for example in the Charlie Hebdo massacre, from the 12 people killed by terrorist, 2 were Muslims.
On the other hand, the Islamic teaching, do talk alot about warfare, mainly due to the fact that Muslims had to take up swords to defend themselves at the beginning of Islam.
This being said, it is quite easy for manipulation experts to manipulate religious zealotry and turn it into extremism, especially due to the strong brotherhood feeling amongst Muslims (putting religion before tribe, race, country and sometimes family).
The Plan of action becomes simple, find a bunch of moderately religious young teens (young adults even better), push them to become religious zealots, the side effect is that this will increase their brotherhood through Islam sensation, then all you have to do is put them in contact with the suffering of their Muslim brothers throughout the world. For example, in the late 90’s photos and videos were widely circulating of Muslim women raped and killed, men and young boys  killed , and mass graves for Muslim population in Kosovo and Bosnia, all perpetrated by the Serb forces, helped extremists present it as the war of infidels against Islam.
The examples of tragedies taken advantage of by extremists, are numerous, from the massacres of Sabra and Shatilla camps (elderly, women and kids massacred – no men were in the camp) in Beirut by the Fallangite Christian forces, to the Israeli massacres in Gaza and Palestinian territories, to the Muslims suffering and persecution in Asia (China,Burma etc..). Add to this the embargo on Iraq the late years of Saddam Hussein that killed thousands of kids due to malnutrition,  the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan etc…

Add to this, a never ending struggle, tension and aggressivety in the Middle east since the creation of Israel, and a sense of oppression in the Muslim world where dictatorships muse conservatives from expressing their opinions or have a saying (see how democratically elected Egyptian president Morsi was toppled by an army general within weeks), and you’ll get a formula to push some extremists to become terrorists.

Sure not all extremists become terrorists, but some will do, and in their mind they are waging a holy war against those waging a war on Islam.

The second important factor is, finding the side manipulating the extremists? , and that can be very difficult to know, and most probably there are several players. Take for example the Afghan soviet war, the extremist were manipulated by the U.S.A to fight the Soviet, since then, many other international players started playing the terrorist card, financing specific groups to execute specific agendas.

It is a Chess game played globally between major players, and very few know what is really going on. Often the leaders behind the attacks are amongst  the first to present their condolences!!

Let’s go back to the Charlie Hebdo massacre: I would like to raise a few questions:
1- How come did the terrorist group know that the weekly meeting was being held?
2- How come the terrorist forget his id in the car, that they hijacked!!! when they take precautions to hide their identity by wearing masks and gloves, the id in the car looks only like a way to either selecting a scapegoat or a way to quickly point fingers so that the audience (with the attention span of a fish) don’t lose interest, without id and fingerprints investigation would have taken at least a week!

Either way, wars, politics and terrorism always choose innocent people to be their victims.

Charlie Hebdo team were defending something they held deer, they were defending the freedom of expression, and more precisely the freedom of making fun of religion and politicians alike. And it’s both these combined that were the bullets that killed these martyrs of Freedom.

charlie hebdo extremism

The Last image cartoon by Chab, making fun of extremists’ promise to attack France, published few hours before the terrorist attack.

Validating your believes does not require to engage others

On this rock we call earth, people decided to believe in a mightier power, all is good … They followed great ideas and became followers of specific ideology ( Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, …), an ideology that gave them the answers they are looking for and the peace of mind they were hoping for, all is good … But somewhere along the road, they lost orientation, each one of these groups realized that for them to be right they should prove that all the others are wrong!

Why so? Why you need to hate, attack and try to discredit others just for you to feel good about your ideas? That what i call intolerance.

Wouldn’t it be better to go more in-depth of the religion you were born to, or maybe debate other ideologies not in the hope to prove them wrong but to get a clearer analysis of your existence!

Nothing is sure, believe me, even if you ask the leaders of your faith, none will be honestly able to assure you that you are going to heaven.

Topless Jihad, FEMEN a good business

If i need to give a title to my blog it would be cultural tolerance, i have lived in different communities and closely interacted with people belonging to different nations, cultures, religions …

The thing i learned is to respect other people religions & cultures, and i despise those who try to get financial profit from attacking other cultures & or religions.

I have been reading about Femen a group of nobrain feminist activists based in Ukraine one of the biggest prostitution capitals of Europe and the world (40% of Ukraine economy is shadow economy).

What does this group do? they take topless pictures protesting against anything that would bring the cameras and the journalists!

Why? don’t be fooled not all organizations seek the greater good, organizations are a profitable business! the donations organizations get are unbelievable!  FEMEN’s office in the Ukrainian capital, costs the organization over $2,500 monthly and each member’s salary was around $1,000 (average salary in Ukraine is $300). Radio Svoboda claimed to have information that FEMEN activists were paid EUR 2,500 a month and protesters EUR 1,000.

So what do these women do? whatever it takes to get media attention and donations, after all it’s a good business!

So they show up naked, to protest anything that they think would get media attention, WHAT A GOOD BUSINESS!

lately they turned their eyes towards the Islamic world, well afterall there’s so much opportunities in the middle east and Muslim world to get headlines … and furthermore they would be described as freedom fighters 😛

So they started staging events, like if there’s a lack of causes they can fight for, they can fight for girls education in Afghanistan > but that would not suit their sexual protest style,
they could fight for women driving in Saudi arabia > but again they can not protest topless for this, it would be meaningless.
they can fight for nationality rights for kids of Lebanese women married to foreign men > then again that doesn’t enter in their style.
they can fight against rape, gang rape in india, brazil, …
they can fight against honor killing, domestic violence, sexism…
But NO, because they can not explain running naked as a sign of protest!

So instead they recruit girls in the middle east to post naked photos and wait for a an expected reaction, (in the middle east you can get a fatwa or death threats for the slightest things, there’s always a crazy imam somewhere that can consider what you are doing as a kind of  corrupting the population, but who said that they are taken seriously ?!)

This what happened, a 19 year old Femen Tunisian activist posted on  Tunisian Femen facebook page topless photos :

As expected, she got a fatwa against her, so the FEMEN organized Topless Jihad day, protesting naked (as usual), and getting international headlines ….

let’s recap:

if they know that would happen, why did they pay the poor girl to do such a thing ? … again it’s all about donations and media attention …

Furthermore, such an act even if there was no threats associated with it would label the girl as a “slµt” in the very conservative country, but wait, even in the much less conservative west a 19 yr old girl posting a topless picture of herself on a page with thousands of people would not be considered a good idea, and would cause the young girl social troubles …

FEMEN is a dangerous organization, because they do not care about the safety of their members as long as they get headlines and donations.

FEMEN protesting is stupid, and degrading for women, and i’m pretty sure there’s much more effective ways to protest than having a group of slµts running naked.

update:

some pictures and videos from the Topless Jihad protest:

FEMEN activists burning Islam flag in-front of the Grand Mosque of Paris:

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A message to my Atheist friends who attack believers!

Disclosure: I am not an atheist , i was in some periods of my life, but at this moment i am not.

Like other religions (ironically), you can easily find Atheist extremists or the Atheists that want to shove their believes  down other people’s throats.

I have a simple message for these people:

Let people have dreams, and hope for happy endings,
the shear thought of oblivion makes every human realize that the sum of their existence is irrelevant,
my friend let believers believe and hope you one day would to,
not to right the failures of this life but to simply feel that you are more than a drop in a sea of forgotten memories!