Posted by: nimbu | October 17, 2007

I have a god complex

I remember as a youngster, looking at my fellow Christians and Jews with a superiority complex. Not only did my parents instill this in me, but every religious “leader” in my life forced/encouraged me to believe that every non-Muslim was just simply ignorant. They didn’t know the truth. They were beneath me – it was my responsibility to teach them the truth. That was my mission. I should be grateful to have been born a Muslim.

I see the same condescending attitude all around me. From Muslims, Christians, Jews, and even Hindus & Buddhist.

They look at me as if I’m lost. As if I’m beneath them. It’s their mission to “teach” me.

This is a really interesting role reversal. I’m digging the dark side…

Posted by: nimbu | October 15, 2007

Eid Mubarak!

My first Eid as an atheist was a bit surreal.  I was surrounded by hundreds of Muslims from all over the world.  I couldn’t help but walk around with a smile on my face.  I also couldn’t help but wonder how many of these sheep actually has read the Quran – in their native language!  Probably not many.

I also wondered how many atheists or agnostics where present.  I tried out my atheism-radar for the first time.  I think I spotted a couple of guys that were probably non-believers like me.  They looked way to “normal”.  Most of the people at this mosque where Pakistani.  But there where also many middle-easterners and Africans.

It was much fun.

Later that evening, we were at a family dinner where we were discussing the annual tradition of arguing over who saw the moon and when.  Should we just follow the Saudis?  They are the custodians of Islam after all.  No, one of the guests mentioned.  We should wait for the moon sighting.

So I proceeded to have fun. 

“Don’t we have star/space observatories all up and down the US?  Shouldn’t this be more scientific?  Rather than depending on rumors?”  I asked the guests.

I saw a number of heads nodding “yes”.  But not “HELL YEA!”

“What if one was in an airplane?  Could they spot the moon and ‘phone it in’?”

More nodding – perhaps a couple of chuckles.

Finally – “What are Muslims going to do when we start living on Mars?  On Jupiter?”

My brother responded “Oh, there’s a different God on those planets.”

Oh, yeah.  It was a fantastic Eid!

Eid Mubarak everybody!

Posted by: nimbu | October 8, 2007

Another one joins the “dark side”

Welcome brotha!

Posted by: nimbu | September 14, 2007

It’s a strange Ramadan

This is one of those strange moments for the new atheist: going through Ramadan with a newly opened mind. For the first time ever, I’m entirely guilt-free while I eat during the day!


This was one of the most confusing and painful parts of Islam. I was given many reasons for its existence: From sympathizing with the poor to cleansing, to being closer to God. But growing up, I couldn’t help it. I wasn’t feeling closer to God. I was just plain hungry. Hunger with an extra benefit of stinky breath.

Oh yes, all you non Muslims. When you don’t eat or drink water all day, you get nasty breath. Uber-nasty.

It sucked.

I couldn’t concentrate in school. I had nasty heart burn all morning, because we’d wake up at an ungodly hour to gorge! I always thought it was insane to consume virtually the same amount of calories, just at odd hours. Doesn’t it defeat the purpose? I guess that wasn’t the purpose anyway…

Anyway…what was really bothering me was this: Why would God want you to punish yourselves in his honor? Does he get some sort of sick pleasure watching children as young as 7 or 8 try to starve themselves all day? What the fuck? I’ll give you another example: There are many women in my life and some of them are extremely old with various medical conditions. They all feel compelled to fast. It drives me insane!

I don’t go over there preaching, trying to convert them! I simply get emotional and tell them: “God doesn’t want you to punish yourselves like this. You’re in no condition to fast.”

But the Islamic mind is not thinking rationally. I know what these ladies are thinking:

“I know I don’t have to fast, but if I do, perhaps I’ll get extra-credit!”

That’s right, folks. Extra credit. All religious people believe in it. It stems from the eye-for-an-eye philosophy. Catholics are instructed to say stuff repeatedly and count beads…and that’ll make up for spilling their seed last week! Or for having dirty thoughts about their neighbor’s wife!

Many Muslims cling to insane traditions similar to the Catholics: repeat this phrase a gazillion times and you’ll get what you’re looking for. What?!? It’s true. My mom believes it…all of her friends believe it. And you can find it anywhere on the internet. The magic of prayer! With step-by-step instructions.

Back from that tangent…

I’m super glad to be eating. I can’t believe that people can be so well disciplined. To not eat or drink (or smoke, or screw) all day takes will power. Now if only Muslims could apply that same will power to making their own countries and villages and societies better.

It’s too bad that wasn’t one of the 5 pillars of Islam. Perhaps there should’ve been a sixth:

Pillar number 6: Please don’t kill people. Never. I don’t like it. I’m God telling you that I don’t want you to kill people. It’s never justified. Don’t do it. This is the 6th pillar of your religion. By God. It’s me. I wrote this on a very large mountain in every language…on every continent. In fact, if you look at your palms right now, it’s written there too…in your language. You know how I did that? I’m God!!! I can do anything. That’s right. This is the end of my 6th Pillar

I’m done ranting – now it’s time to eat!!!

Posted by: nimbu | September 11, 2007

Why does God hate homosexuals?

I’m talking of course about all Abrahamic religions; but I want to focus on Christianity. No other religion pushes the loving nature of its god as much as Christianity. Apparently Jesus loves everybody, except homosexuals, idol worshipers and many more…too many to count. Apparently hell is going to be a very busy place.

Recent events in US politics have brought this issue up again. I just can’t seem to get around the circular argument that many Christians make: God loves you…but hates you because you’re a guy… and you like other guys. Why does God care about your sex life? Seriously: Is loving somebody of the same sex something to really hate? If I were god, I’d put people’s sexual stuff pretty far off my radar. It wasn’t so long ago that God didn’t like doggy-style! It was missionary position, or you’re going to hell. Again, why does God care about how you have sex?

Tangent…If I were God, I’d try to fix hunger first. Too many kids die every year from hunger and malnutrition. I wouldn’t give a shit about whether you do it with another guy, or girl, or a donkey for that matter.

End tangent.

God seems to really care about sex. No wonder people assume he’s a guy! That’s why I firmly believe that Christianity, in particular, was manipulated by Monks to make the rest of us feel guilty for wanting to have sex. The reason being this: Monks were the photocopiers of the past. They copied Biblical text. Is it too hard to believe that there were some editorial changes made?

Plus, monks loved the alcohol!!! Perhaps one drunken evening…

Posted by: nimbu | July 15, 2007

What about slavery?

People often ask me why I’m so anti-religion. My replies over the months and years have fermented into this: god loves slaves. In fact, god loves slavery so much, in his last book (according to Muslims), he gave specific instructions on how to treat slaves. Never mind that he never mentions that slavery is bad. People can side-step and dance around other topics in these “holy” books all they want, but there’s one thing that they cannot escape. The clear absence of any passage remotely condemning slavery is significant.

If you’re an ex-Muslim or ex-Christian that’s trying to bone-up on their debating tactics against the believers, practice saying this: “God loves slavery”. I challenge any person to find a passage in the Bible or the Quran that openly condemns slavery and states that slaves should be set free. No fuzzy, gray innuendos; I want god to say straight-up: “Let your slaves go. I don’t like slavery.”

Posted by: nimbu | July 15, 2007

Where are all the Pakistani atheists?

I’ve been crawling all over the internet in search of my species: the Pakistani atheist. So far, I’ve only run into a handful. With the Internet, there is a newfound freedom that journalists and citizens can now enjoy. The anonymity the Internet provides is important; it should free us all to write what we think secretly, without fear.

So, I’m begging you: pretty please – with sugar on top – stop being silent. I know that if you’ve left Islam, you’re probably not going to be “sold” on another religion. Take up a pseudonym and start writing. After all, do you think my real name is Nimbu?

After many months of doing this, I’m sad to see that it’s only me and a few others that are speaking out.

Posted by: nimbu | July 6, 2007

Halal food?

Living in the US, pigs are everywhere! They’re in my Twinkies, french fries, burgers, breakfast foods – they’re everywhere! Why does God hate pigs? I don’t get it. If he’s God, why didn’t he make pigs just a little bit cleaner, so that I could enjoy wonderful, tasty bacon? Mmmm, bacon.

So I’m at a bar-b-q at my parents house over the 4th. Tradition – just like most other Americans. My mom likes to shop at halal grocery stores where they have special halal meats. What is halal? According to my dear friend Wiki (and the Quran):

“He hath only forbidden you dead meat, and blood, and the flesh of swine, and that on which any other name hath been invoked besides that of Allah. But if one is forced by necessity, without wilful disobedience, nor transgressing due limits – then is he guiltless. For Allah is Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful”[Qur’an 2:73]

Damnit. Why swine?

So back at the bar-b-q, mom brings out marinated “halal” chicken. I slap it down on the grill. After a couple of minutes, blood starts to ooze from the meat. Disgusting! I tell my mom that this is horrible – haram food doesn’t do this! We got into a lengthy discussion about how God didn’t know about organic and non-organic meats. He only tells us not to eat pig. Oh, he does teach us how to “sacrafice” food: allowing for the blood to completely drain from the body before cooking. Aparently, our “halal” butcher forgot about that part!

I asked her: What’s better? What they feed the chicken (antibiotics, steroids, pesticides, etc.), or how they kill that chicken? Would you rather have a “halal” chicken that’s loaded with sodium, nitrates, antibiotics, steroids and “god” know what else? What gives? Shouldn’t God have also prohibited antibiotics and steroids in the Quran? He probably didn’t know the future. Oh wait…

Posted by: nimbu | July 6, 2007

Burka please?

I hate the burka. I’m seeing unsettling pictures on TV where women are running around my former home of Pakistan wearing the burka in Islamabad. How sad. Pakistanis have worked so hard to rid themselves of this silly, religious leftover. I know personally that many (probably most) Pakistani women hate the burka.

On a slight tangent: I was discussing with my family how sharia law is insane – just like Old Testament laws are insane. Many of them instinctively jumped to the defense of old-school Islamic laws. Clearly, they hadn’t read a word of it. They’ve just been spoon-fed fluffy details by mullas. “Oh, you don’t have to read it, it’s way too complicated. Just believe that it’s God’s law.”

“Oh, ok. If you say so.” (I say with a sarcastic smirk)

It’s insane to punish people with death for something silly like adultery. Why does anybody care whether or not somebody has sex? What business is it of theirs? Is having sex with someone other than your partner worthy of a death punishment? Maybe your wife wants to kill you, but does the government actually have to kill you? Believe it or not, it is also Christian doctrine that promotes killing the adulterer. Even though, it’s understood that it’s really the women who commit adultery that are killed. The civilized world has moved away from such barbaric beliefs. In the west, it is not illegal to commit adultery; even though all of the “big” religions say that it is.

I’m still perplexed as to why God cares about people having sex? Anybody care to help me out here? Shouldn’t he be worrying about really big subjects, like AIDS, cancer, starvation, etc.?

Back to the burka: It’s becoming more and more apparent that Europe is going to swing towards Turkish law banning burkas. I don’t blame them. It’s not a symbol of Islamic identity – it’s a symbol of male-oriented religious oppression of half of God’s creatures. Fucking idiot mullas would have you believe that it’s to protect women from the nasty glares from men. So it’s the fucking men that are the problem, again! So, in order to protect my female friends from the dirty looks from men, they need to cover themselves from head-to-toe? How about I just kick their asses if the look at them funny? I’d love to do that. Oh, God, how I’d love to do that! Even better, how about we just keep our women locked up, away from everybody! Man this blog is making me soo mad.

I need a break.

Posted by: nimbu | July 1, 2007

Women of God

Women’s rights (or lack thereof) is what drove me away from Islam in the first place. There are lots of women in my life: wife, mother, sisters, daughters, friends, daughters of friends, wives of friends (no pun intended). Increasingly I found Islam to simply hate women. Islam is not the only one religion that hates women; hatred of women exists in all 3 monotheistic faiths. Oh, many women of “god” will disagree with me, but I think they’ve just been brainwashed into thinking they’ve got it good. Even women of the west, find that Christianity doesn’t hate women. I disagree. Just because Christianity isn’t as backward as Islam doesn’t mean that it’s free of this problem.

I recently read a blog where a journalist was interviewing a Saudi woman who simply loved that fact that she wasn’t allowed to drive, vote, or be seen in public without a brother/husband/father. I believe the quote goes something like this: “Why do I need to vote, when my husband represents me?” What a magical and fascinating work of nation-wide brainwashing! Let’s break away from the holy-land for a minute: you can see Muslim women all over the world either defending backward ideals, or showing indifference. It’s the vast majority of women in Islam that simply ignore these things that makes it worse. It is the rest of the modern world that has enabled Muslim women to break free of their veils; I find it shameful that more women, and even more men don’t stand up for what is right. Let’s stop being “tolerant” of these backward notions.

Just remember this one rule: Just because it’s traditional, doesn’t make it right. After all, it was traditional for Hindu widows to throw themselves onto the fire at their husband’s funerals.

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