"Faith is deciding to allow yourself to believe something your intellect would otherwise cause you to reject - otherwise there's no need for faith."
In Matthew 18:3, Jesus said, "And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven."
Have you ever talked to a kid? I mean, seriously sat down and talked to one? They would believe pretty much anything you tell them. Don't take my word for it - experiment yourself Calvin's Dad-style! Fill their impressionable little heads with fairy folks, monsters, dragons, unicorns, superheroes, aliens, magic, and Lovecraftian mind-breaking horrors; they will drink it all up like it's the very word of God itself. When I was little boy, my father fed me rubbish like how I should always ask permission from wandering spirits and tell them to move aside when I want to pee outdoors, or they would steal my boy-bits away. He also told me that if I point at the moon, my finger would bleed and fall off. It took me years and years before I fully exorcised myself of those superstitious kookery. The very first time I dared to even point at the moon was when I was in high school! Imagine that! And I still catch myself automatically asking spooks to move out of the way of my stream of urine when I'm not paying attention. You can say that I'm pretty much scarred for life.
Jesus' line about becoming little children may sound cute, but I have always subconsciously read it as, "You have to be a real gullible moron to believe me." Hey, don't get pissed at me for saying that! A Christian gave me my first Bible - he asked me to judge for myself the worth of God's teachings and not rely on what other people say about it. I'm only following instructions.
Besides, Jesus was right. How else can you believe in the
ridiculous miraculous stories about talking snakes, parting seas, virgin births, and men who came back from death if you're not an unquestioning, incredulous infant?
|Any hypotheses on why this is so?|
The Qur'an elected a different tact. In Surat Al-'Isrā', verse 59, Allah said "And nothing has prevented Us from sending signs except that the former peoples denied them. And We gave Thamud the she-camel as a visible sign, but they wronged her. And We send not the signs except as a warning."
Muhammad was never witnessed by anyone to perform any miracles. The reason given by Allah was pretty much "We can totally do it (and trust us, we've totally done it before), but we chose not to now because you're not going to believe them anyway." How convenient. That thought popped into my mind very frequently every time I read the Qur'an. It's all so convenient.
We simply have to take his word for it that the book was conveyed entirely to him by Allah via the angel Jibrīl. We also have to believe him when he said that he did indeed ride a magic handsome white animal (that's slightly bigger than a donkey) to the "farthest mosque" where he lead other prophets such as Adam, Moses and Jesus in prayer before ascending to heaven to haggle with Allah over the number of prayers Muslims must fulfill per day. All of that makes perfect sense to Mohammedans all over the world it seems.
Hey, don't proclaim a jihad on my ass for that! The muslimah I first discussed Islamic theology with told me to read the Qur'an on my own and see its beautiful truths for myself. It's not my fault that you don't like the not-so-pretty conclusions I've reached.
Somehow, when I don't agree with the believers, it's always me who got it wrong. How very convenient also.
And thus concludes today's lesson on the comparison between the world's two biggest competing religions and what they have to say about faith and miracles. As it turns out, it all boils down to, "Believe us without any proof, or our God will torture you for eternity!" Questions?
Wouldn't fool himself,
k0k s3n w4i