Poster for the film Oh My God

I was born into a Malay family, where religion never seemed to play an important role. Most of the women in my family hardly covered their heads and the men usually consumed alcohol at every family gathering. There were a few who were staunch believers and prayed five times a day; some of them even covered their heads. But this was a rare instance and most often, it was looked upon as an act of extremism.

Growing up, religion was never imposed on me. Unlike most Muslim children I knew at the time, my parents never forced me to pray, never pressured me to cover or refrained me from doing things that were usually frowned upon in Islam. They did, however, teach me some aspects of Islam. I was taught the Kalimas, the six articles of Islamic faith, the stories of Prophet Muhammad, of Adam and Eve, and of Jesus. I was taught to be scared of the fiery depths of hell, to be aware of the wrongful path of non-believers and to believe that they were all doomed to Hell. I was told to not have doubts about God, to not question his will because it was a sin to do so.

At the age of 14, I transferred from a government school to an all-girls private Muslim school, where I was exposed to stringent Islamic beliefs. I was taught how to read and write Arabic, how to recite the Holy Quran and how to pray and worship God. I saw that teachers were using fear as a technique to help children stay away from what was deemed evil. I learned that the things I thought were acceptable were no longer right, yet I still watched movies, listened to music, and celebrated birthdays. I still drew figures with eyes, and collected photos for family albums. I experienced the stigma of being a “Modern Muslim”, a “Hypocrite”, a “Malay” in the midst of those who followed the words of the Quran. I listened to the stories of my friends, stories that echoed their difficulties in having heart-to-heart conversations with their parents or their inability to go out without adult supervision. I felt their resignation to their already-planned future and I remember the ominous sound of their acceptance ringing in my ears. I heard of the 14-year old girl who got engaged, about the 18-year old who got married, about the 20-year old who already had two children. Throughout all this, I hardly prayed, yet I still believed.

It became clear that there were two types of Islam being practiced. One considered to be the right path by the majority, the religious and the pious – those who stayed away from alcohol, who prayed five times a day and who covered – yet were victims of basic human errors, of lying, of slander, of selfishness and of greed. The other were moderate followers, who believed in the same – in God, in Heaven and Hell, in the Prophets, in marriage to your own kind – yet rarely covered, or prayed, or abstained from temptations. I saw the pious looking down upon the moderates, while the moderates looked down upon them.

Later when I grew older, I was given the freedom to make certain decisions for myself. I was then told that when the time came, I had to marry a Malay. “It is a sin to marry non-Muslims”, she said, “But the moors are too religious. They will not get along with our family. A Malay.. You need to get married to a Malay”. She did not need to say what would happen if I said no, if I by some chance married an outsider. It was a silent acknowledgment and I knew, I knew that I would lose her if I disobeyed her wishes.

Then, the day came when I had to go off to work and suddenly, the world was not black and white anymore. Perhaps it was the non-Muslim environment, or maybe a part-and-parcel of growing up, but suddenly I felt the need to question God. What is the purpose of life? I remember the confusion, the unanswered questions, the countless hours of research. Shouldn’t religion give us the answers we seek? Or maybe my teachers were right, maybe if you analyze Islam too much, you might find yourself going astray? I tried to stop myself from letting my thoughts wander, to ignore the incessant questions in my mind but with each day, the need to find answers became stronger.

I looked around and saw the Muslim world suffering – the innocents in the Middle East, the terrorists fighting in the name of God and the image of Islam tainted and I could not understand why there was no divine intervention. It seemed convenient for God to simply let us be after the death of the last Prophet, after years of guiding humanity since the beginning of time. Are we not worthy? Are we not your creation too? If you are so humble and modest, why is that our lives/actions are judged according to how much we worship you? Why put us in this world to test our devotion to you? Do our lives, the hardships, the victories, the people we love, the people you made mean nothing but a twisted game to show Satan that humans still follow what you have to say?

I suddenly could not understand why it was forbidden to fall in love with another who believed in something different. Why is it that we were to think we are much better than the non-believers? I have spoken to them, laughed with them, confided in them, shared my food with them and worked along with them. They do not seem bad at all. In fact, they were friendly, compassionate and engaging – just like us. The more I spent time with them, the more I felt the barrier between non-believers and myself begin to blur. I no longer saw them as Buddhist, Tamils, Moors or Christians – I saw them as individuals. There were no preconditioned thoughts anymore and I no longer saw any reason to judge anyone, or look down at anyone who was in a relationship with a person of another faith.

Soon, I found myself no longer understanding Islam. In fact, I no longer understood religion. It seemed pointless – the conflicts, the arguments, the wars – which at the end of the day was one person’s view of making sense of the world over another’s.

Yet, I understand the need for religion in our society. Although, I believe that the religion we see today is a system of man-made beliefs, I realize that religion serves as a moral compass and limits us from committing certain acts, thereby establishing social order. I understand that the world is a scary place and that looking up to God in times of hardship helps. I also know that death is frightening, and believing that everything you go through in this world will pay off after-death is comforting. I know that sharing the same beliefs with another brings about a deep connection, along with an identity and sense of belonging. I see that in this complex world, finding  meaning to your existence, a reason to live and a sense of purpose helps you get up every day. It makes people do good deeds, help those in need, to be selfless, to be kind, to accept one another and to be just.

But somewhere along the way, these harmless, good, and necessary elements of religion seems to have been forgotten. All I see now is conflict. I see people of a faith claiming to be far more superior than others. I see men oppressing women, women/men oppressing children, and children oppressing children of other faiths. I see men being killed and violence being carried out – all in the name of religion. I hear stories of couples eloping, their love for another rejected by their families, of children who think twice to confide in their parents in fear of being rebuffed and of homosexuals cowering in fear and committing suicide when society condemns them – all due to religious beliefs.

It is clear that rationality has become the enemy of organized religion, a force which drives wedges between people. It creates a mentality of “us vs them”, which refrains an individual from befriending others – breeding distance, suspicion and distrust – which leads to conflict, confrontation and warfare. It promotes the notion of “group thinking”, discourages individuality, encourages conformity and looks to “magical” answers rather than relying on science/technology. It fixates on storied past events, through which it derives social mores and beliefs – as if our understanding of the world has not expanded since then. It presumes that knowledge is static, and opposes anything that differs because it leads people away from God. It glorifies the concept of submissiveness, and advocates gullibility to believe on faith alone, regardless of seeking evidence.

Here’s what I think. I think, we need to start thinking rationally and question what we believe in. Its 2012, we have witnessed, learned, touched and experienced so much more (things deemed unimaginable a century ago) than those who compiled the holy books, who knew so little of the world, who probably would have come up with illogical reasonings to explain things that were beyond their comprehension. We need to take the good out of religion – its core values of peace, unity, tolerance, love, acceptance, selflessness, generosity, kindness and modesty and keep the bad out –  superstition, sexism, racism, extremism, homophobia and violence. We are all given a rational mind and its time to be open-minded, to think objectively and critically about things that matter and about things that affect our families, our communities, our society and our country.

  • hasthi

    What a beautiful self analysis. I had similar thoughts as I was growing up. I spent more than 30 years not knowing how to relate to my religion.

    Then I came to the realisation that it is not the great, wise, kind and loving people who brought us these valuable teachings who made the respective religions sorts of jails or ways of tying us down with iron chains, but it is the people who over time took the leadership roles, out of fear of losing their positions, their benefits etc brought severe divisions, subtle hates etc to our lives.

    I am still following my religion, but I do not take every word that is said in the name of my religion as what we should follow. I try to listen to my conscience and discern. I try to treat all and sundry as my brothers and sisters irrespective of their beliefs. Just as in a family we have people with different views, so is the world. We have to learn to accept each other as they are, as long as they are not using force. It is not easy to spread the message of Love, Compassion, Tolerance and Equanimity to all and sundry, specially through religion (though all religiois books are full of these words), because generation after generation had been indoctrinated to believe that “my religion” alone is right (and other religions are evil).

    The sad part of all is – the society needs religions, the religions need leaders and most of these leaders are self serving!

  • Rabindra

    Sometime back I read a letter to the editor written by a Muslim gentleman, when there was a debate about Islam in a Newspaper.
    Some said that Islam must evolve with the times and should be modernised, to be in line with the modern worldview and thinking, where rather harsh edicts handed down by Mullahs such as wearing of the Hijab, no education for females etc., should not be followed.

    Then this Muslim gentleman wrote a letter saying that it is not allowed to deviate from the Quaran’s teachings, as it is the God’s word, handed down to Prophet Muhammed, and should be followed without thinking.

    Another Muslim friend of mine told me that the Prophet never enforced wearing of the Hijab for all the women, covering themselves totally. He had only advised some women who complained to him that men were staring at them, to cover themselves so that the ogling will stop; that there was never a blanket order for the women to cover their face, hair and/or from head to toe. Another Muslim friend disputed that,saying all Muslim women are obliged to cover themselves as per the Quran.

    What is correct? I am not a Muslim, so I would like to know.

    I also see, mainly in europe and in some places in liberal MidEast, Muslim females wearing tight jeans and T-shirts which amply displays their body-forms, but wearing headscarves covering thier hair.

    • The Ranting Ranter

      I have come across similar situations such as this. There are many who believe that it is optional and others who believe its compulsory. Most often, those who believe its optional say that dresssing decently is enough, and as long as your intentions are pure, it should be acceptable. However, from what I learned, it is considered compulsory as stated in the Quran many times. See below:

      Quran (33:59) – “Tell thy wives and thy daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks close round them…”

      Quran (24:31) – “And say to the believing women that they cast down their looks and guard their private parts and do not display their ornaments except what appears thereof, and let them wear their head-coverings over their bosoms, and not display their ornaments except to their husbands or their fathers, or the fathers of their husbands, or their sons, or the sons of their husbands, or their brothers, or their brothers’ sons, or their sisters’ sons, or their women, or those whom their right hands possess, or the male servants not having need (of women), or the children who have not attained knowledge of what is hidden of women; and let them not strike their feet so that what they hide of their ornaments may be known.”

      Even in Hadiths, which are essentially a collection of traditions containing sayings of the Prophet Muhammad, one can find many instances to prove that covering is compulsory.

      Bukhari (60:282) – After Muhammad issued the command (Qur’an 24:31) for women to cover themselves, the women responded by tearing up sheets to cover their faces.

      Abu Dawud (32:4092) – The Apostle of Allah… said: “O Asma’, when a woman reaches the age of menstruation, it does not suit her that she displays her parts of body except this and this, and he pointed to her face and hands”

      Abu Dawud (2:641) – The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: Allah does not accept the prayer of a woman who has reached puberty unless she wears a veil.

      • Delta

        Is Hijab Compulsory?
        “The Quran does not suggest that women should be veiled or they should be kept apart from the world of men. On the contrary, the Quran is insistent on the full participation of women in society and in the religious practices.”
        By Dr. Ibrahim B. Syed, Ph.D

        One of the verses in the Quran protects a woman’s fundamental rights. Verse 59 of Surah Al-Ahzaab reads: “O Prophet! Tell thy wives and daughters and the believing women, that they should cast their outer garments over their persons (when outside) : so that they should be known (as such) and not molested”.

        According to the Quran, the reason why Muslim women should wear an outer garment when going out of their homes is that they may be recognised as “Believing” women and differentiated from streetwalkers for whom sexual harassment is an occupational hazard. The purpose of this verse was not to confine women to their homes, but to make it safe for them to go about their daily business without attracting unsavoury attention.

        Older Muslim women who are past the prospect of marriage are not required to wear “the outer garment”. “Such elderly women as are past the prospect of marriage, there is no blame on them if they lay aside their (outer) garments, provided they make not wanton display of their beauty; but it is best for them to be modest; and Allah is One Who sees and knows all things”. (24:60).

        The Quran does not suggest that women should be veiled or they should be kept apart from the world of men. On the contrary, the Quran is insistent on the full participation of women in society and in the religious practices.

        Morality of the self and cleanliness of conscience are far better than the morality of the purdah. No goodness can come from pretence. Imposing the veil on women is the ultimate proof that men suspect their mothers, daughters, wives and sisters of being potential traitors to them. How can Muslim men meet non-Muslim women who are not veiled and treat them respectfully, but not accord the same respectful treatment to Muslim women?

        To wear the Hijaab is certainly NOT an Islamic obligatory on women. It is an innovation (Bid’ah) of men suffering from a piety complex who are so weak spiritually that they just cannot trust themselves!

        Muslim women remained in mixed company with men until the late sixth century (A.H.) or 11 th century (A.C.). They received guests, held meetings and went to wars to help their brothers and husbands, and they defended their castles and bastions.

        It is part of the growing feeling on the part of Muslim men and women that they no longer wish to identify with the West, and that reaffirmation of their identity as Muslims requires the kind of visible sign that adoption of conservative clothing implies.

        For these women the issue is not that they have to dress conservatively, but that they choose to. In lran, Imam Khomeini first insisted that women must wear the veil and chador, but in response to large demonstrations by women, he modified his position and agreed that while the chador is not obligatory, MODEST dress is.

  • PanAm

    The Ranting Ranter, I’m sure there are many other Sri Lankan Muslims who have traveled down the path you have traveled, but are afraid to speak out because of the general rigidity of a society that believes in complete monotheism, the concept of a revealed religion, and where there is a very dim and harsh view on apostasy. So firstly, congratulations for having the courage to give words to your thoughts and sharing it with other Sri Lankans and the world.

    I think one of the main issues with revealed religions is the belief that the ‘holy book’ – whether it be the Quran or the Bible is the actual, literal word of a Supreme Being – that it has no errors even though it was written down by human beings, and that it has never changed since it was revealed. So no matter how ludicrous, strange or plain hateful certain aspects of the teachings are, they are accepted point-blank as being the words of a Supreme Being who demands complete servitude and obedience. In Christianity there have been several reform movements and many liberal Christians do not believe in the literal word of the Bible, but I don’t think the process has happened to the same extent among the Muslims.

    You mention submissiveness and relying on faith alone – if I am not mistaken this is a feature of Semitic religions to describe the relationship that humans should adopt towards the Supreme Being. It is not a feature of many other faiths so it would be rather unfair to generalize.

    Thirdly, I think most if not all people can sympathize with your thoughts about how religion can divide people and societies, and encourage attitudes and actions that are the polar opposite of what the religion wanted to encourage in the first place. We don’t have to go far to see this happening literally in front of our eyes.

    There is a saying from the Buddhist tradition which has been used often and may be somewhat cliche, but makes perfect sense to me because it is very intuitive:

    “Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it.
    Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many.
    Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books.
    Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders.
    Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations.
    But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”

  • Orang Melayu

    I too am a Malay brought up in relatively non religous surroundings similiar to those described in this article. I started studying my religon Islam only around the age of 20 when I was attending University. It was more of a search for a meaning to life and in the end I realised that there is more to life than just fun and games. Since then I have been constant in my prayers and religous obligations. In addition I have studied other religons and am aware of their beliefs and practices.
    My understanding of Islam and Religon in general is that this is a personal affair which one has to decide according to ones own situation. It cannot be forced on people and it has to arise from conviction and understanding.
    In general there is a common thread running through all the mainstream religons and beliefs. Call it Nature, God, Ram or Allah, most people believe in a supernatural force that guides and controls their destinies. Those who say they are atheist and do not believe in God may believe in Mammon, Material means, Government, Science, Systems, Own Self etc which is also a kind of belief in a multitude of deities / deity though not in a specific form.
    Further religon or whatever you chose to follow defines what is right and wrong. In Islam I believe this neccesary as if this is left open to everyones personal intepretation or whims and fancies then it will not be effective and meaningless.
    So generally in Islam one needs to follow the practices given in the Quran and Hadith which have been preserved for the last 1400 years, take it or leave it. If a person has some reservations regarding the practices one is free to do as one wishes. Certainly Allah is not in need of our prayers. These are mainly for our own benefit.
    As I have said above this is a personal affair between you and your deity and should in no way colour your relationship with your fellow beings.

    • PanAm

      Orang Melayu, do you not think some things that are advocated in Islam are a bit anachronistic in today’s world? We are not living in the Middle Ages and the world along with the societies that inhabit it have advanced quite considerably. Is it appropriate to practice things like stoning people to death, amputation and flogging? Aren’t these rather inhumane things to do and have no place in a civilized society? Why cannot backward practices like these be expunged and the good teachings retained? Even in Sri Lanka there was a news report of two Muslim girls being flogged for supposedly watching pornography in Kattankudy [ http://tinyurl.com/6vkltrx ] which is quite unfortunate.

      I do think a distinction needs to be made between fundamentalist Islam and moderate Islam even though many people would argue there is only “one Islam.” In Sri Lanka itself, there appears to be a growing Islamic fundamentalism led by Wahabi groups that has radicalized sections of the Sri Lankan Muslim population. A rigid “take it or leave it” stance as you have expressed seems to be their hallmark. I’m not accusing you of being fundamentalist here, but pointing out that such a stance is at variance with the spirit of co-existence and tolerance that has traditionally characterized Islam in Sri Lanka.

    • Orang Melayu

      @ Pan Am

      No I dont think that Islam is an oudated religon or that its teachings are not applicable today. There are systems in place to interpret and adapt to any modern circumstances through a process known as Ijmah (consensus) and Qiyas (analogical reasoning). This has to be done by the religous scholars who have a wide knowledge of Islam and the Holy Scriptures. For instance the current systems of Islamic Banking and Halal Certifcation which is gaining wide popularity even among non-muslims.
      The world is as bad today or worse than in those times. Compare the killing of 600 in battle as compared to 100,000 in Iraq, Thousaands in Afghanistan and even the deaths and killings daily in our own country.
      With regard to Islamic penal code if you compare the crime rates in various countries you will find that the highest are in the so called developed countries. A raoe every 20 secs in the US etc Please go to the following link and see for yourself. http://www.nationmaster.com/index.php
      I think it is good that Islam is strict, otherwise we will have a green light for all sorts of anti-social activities like prostitution, gay sex, porn, gay marraiges and what have you. Maybe in the future some countries will legalise marraige to animals, after all thats democracy?
      Before you pass judgement on the life of the Holy Prophet PBUH maybe you should take the trouble to study his life in depth and find out if the various accusations levelled are true. Please visit some of the Islamic Websites to obtain the replies to your questions not those intent on defaming the prophet.

      • yapa

        Dear Orang Melayu/PanAm;

        My view is to test the credibility/applicability/truthfulness of anything is to let it expose to the various methods available for the particular purpose: verification of truths.

        Modern knowledge generated in Science is being continuously verified using those systems, even though its accuracy and credibility are considered higher than that of (many) religions and other subject areas. According to “Scientific thought” “truth is verifiable”. According to “Rationalism” some truths are verifiable and some are not. Always it is better verifiable truths to be verified. I think most of the teaching in religions belong to verifiable category. Why not expose them for verification of their “truths” using the tools/methodologies devised for the purpose? One of the best tools devised so far in this connection is given below.

        http://groundviews.org/2012/05/05/mobs-monks-and-the-problems-of-political-buddhism/#comment-44209

        Thanks!

  • justitia

    What is the role of “chastity” among muslims? This concept is in hinduism.
    But the tamil hindu poet Bharathy sang that chastity should apply equally to both men and women,and that arranged marriges should be abolished,and marriage by choice should be the norm.
    It is permitted for a man who can afford,to have up to four wives in islam. But, the reverse – more than one husband is abhorred.Why?
    About sex and reproduction – in the eastern town of Kattankudy,the most thickly populated village in sri lanka,in the sixties & seventies,purda was strictly enforced.Girls were married off at puberty and continuously bore children until menopause – so much so,that the obstetrician said that most muslim women menstruated only once,at puberty.
    The endless child bearing without medical care for illness, as husbands were reluctant to have wives being examined by male doctors,and reluctance of women too, to be examined by male,if not by all doctors,resulted in increased mortality.
    But colombo muslims did not have this taboo.
    But recently,”fundamental islam” has crept in, and resulted in clashes, and the plight of girls & women is reported to be worse.
    In some islanmic countries, “honour killings” of women who disregarded social/islamic norms in marriage,occur. Males disfiguring females who rejected offers of marriage by throwing acid on their faces, is reported – the males go unpunished.
    We do have arranged marriages,among sinhalese and tamils, which mostly are without problems.But virginity (of females only)is preferred.
    Friends said that in kandyan areas,the mother in law examines the bedsheet after the honeymoon night and expects to find ‘blood stains’ as proof.
    A doctor advised a bride-to-be who was very concerned,to prick a finger and leave a small bloodstain during the honeymoon night – she reported later that the ma-in-law was delighted!

  • Roshan

    The main problem with the Muslim community is that the blind are leading the blind. Half baked religious leaders, you may call them ulema, are guiding the ignorant majority who take them at their word. It is not enough to memorize the Quran. It has to be interpreted. It is easy to sound learned by parroting out from the books of hathees in support of one contention or another.

    The Prophet led an exemplary life and it is important to follow him in so far as the social revolution that he endeavoured to bring about. Unfortunately, the Muslims are focused on following him on trivial matters and on matters that has no relationship to his message.

    That is the tragedy the Muslims.

    • PanAm

      Roshan, I think the Prophet Muhammad was a human being just like the rest of us; he had a good side, and a bad side. He was susceptible to the failings that all of us humans are. Personally, going by what is documented in the Quran and the Hadiths/Sunnah there were times when the Prophet Muhammad led an exemplary life, and times when the dark side ruled. The exemplary bits should be exalted and emulated, while the dark bits should be condemned and rejected:

      What are some of the good bits?
      – The freeing of several slaves and encouraging manumission
      – Treating his wives with kindness and compassion
      – Encouraging followers to show mercy towards others at times
      – Promoting the idea of a brotherhood where all are equal

      What are some of the bad bits?
      – The massacre of the Banu Qurayza (beheading of 600 Jews).
      – The raids on trade caravans
      – The marriage of the 50 year old Prophet Muhammad to a 6-7 year old Aisha and having all together 12 wives
      – Continuing to keep several slaves http://tinyurl.com/7e8gw4l

      • Orang Melayu

        Dear Mr PanAm

        You seem intent on potraying the so called darker side of the Prophet PBUH as a Pediaophile, Sex maniac, Robber, Murderer etc etc. Be assured that you are not the first person in history to attempt such and will not be the last.
        Even at the time of the Prophet PBUH such attempts were made but could not halt the progress of Islam as a religon chosen by more than 2 Bn worldwide. You are obviously not a Muslim but seem to be an expert at misquoting and demonising the religon of Islam using many of the Zionist and Racist propoganda available on the internet. Perhaps you need to look at your own self to find the answers to your questions.

        However for the benefit of other readers who may get confused by your diatribe I would like to clarify regarding two of the issues raised by you.

        The age of the marraige of Hadhrat Aisha Radh is a source of conflicting analysis. There are different views and intepretations as it has been stated so in Sahih Buhari. The two popular interpretations are that she was 19 years at the time of consumation of marraige or that in any case she was past the age of puberty and it was allowed during those times.

        With regard to his 12 marraiges
        He remained single until age 25. From age 25 to 50 he was faithful to only one wife, Khadijah, who bore all his children except one. She was 15 years older than him, with children from two previous marriages. She was his greatest ally when he received the Call at age 40 until she died when he was 50 years old. He remained in love with her until he died and often talked of his life with her with great nostalgia.
        Between ages 50 and 52 he remained unmarried and mourning his late beloved wife. He lived alone with his daughters.
        Between ages 53 and 60 he married all his other wives for many noble reasons such as to help widows or to bring their tribes into Islam.
        At age 60, Allah revealed to him verse preventing him from marrying any more until he died, which was at age 63. The Qur’an says what means:
        It is not lawful for you (to marry other) women after this, nor to change them for other wives. (Al-Ahzab 33:52)

  • Orang Melayu

    I think figures speak for themselves. This is the current situation in Sri Lanka. Even a women of 75 yrs is not safe as reported recently.

    The Sri Lanka Police have recorded 1,636 cases of molestation of women in the last 11 months and authorities believe the final total for this year would be high once records of the incidents that had taken place this month are added.

    Police Spokesperson Superintendent of Police Ajith Rohana says the number of cases recorded from island wide so far this year was much higher than previous years.

    According to the current statistics, about 5 rapes and molestations of women take place every day.

    Statistics have revealed a steady increase in rapes and molestations of women in the country. The number of incidents has seen a massive increase since 2007.

    The number of incidents that stood at 542 in 1995 has risen to 1,397 in 2007. There were 1,582 cases in 2008, 1,624 in 2009 and 1,854 in 2010.

    The police say most of the victims were under the age of 16. The underage girls have fallen prey to men who have befriended them and raped them later.

    However, the police maintain that while sexual relations between a consenting 16 year old and a male is considered as rape, there were many cases that went unreported due to the lack of awareness and cultural barriers.

    So why blame the Islam for providing safeguards for women to protect their chastity.

  • Lasantha Pethiyagoda

    The author is clearly a very developed and mature individual, who can analyse and rationalise using the confidence he has in his own knowledge and wisdom. This level of maturity does not come easily, and is not common to all and sundry.

    Th problem is that religion has been hijacked to serve the interests of rulers rather than to maintain social order or for people to ‘be good’ (as might have been originally intended). The gullible are led by their noses in achieving the objectives of individuals and groups which have discovered lucrative returns in this endeavour.

    The author is alone, or very much in the minority when it comes to ‘popular belief’ and I deeply empathise with him. I would like to wish him peace, contentment and compassionate joy.

    • The Ranting Ranter

      I am actually a she, not a he.

  • PitastharaPuthraya

    Dear Ranting Ranter,

    Thanks for the thought provoking article.

    The questions that you raise in your article is common to all the relegions including Buddhism although Buddhists often try to seperate it from the other Abrahmanic and theistic relegions.

    The common folly the buddhist often make is take the core teaching of the Buddha out of the other relegious practices and consider it as the true relegion and the others as decorations.

    The biggest problem of all the relegions today is that they are frozen in time and space with no possibility of progress. The social, poltical, cultural and relegious conditions of the times of these teachers have changed beyound any recognition but still the followers of them try to follow the commands of scriptures to the letter.

    In my opinion, relegion has served its purpose in the world. It is no longer valid for human development. It is especially not good for the children. Upbringing children in a strict relegious background invariably produce relegious fanatics with no creative thinking. It may also inculcate prejudice against ‘others’. We know what ‘prejudice’ can do to humanity.

    The fundamental problem is relegion including Buddhism is that they say there is only one truth. There is no room for the followers to have a different opinion. Science is not a relegion because it does not proclaim to be the sole proprietor of ‘truth’.

    A common argument of the importance of relegion to the human kind is that it is, they claim,the conveyor of ‘morality’. This notion has to be defeated as it is known that relegions are known to have been ‘amoral’ throughout the history and it has been proved that children can be raised as ‘moral’ being in truly non-relegious background.

    • PanAm

      Actually, I think there is a difference between Semitic religions (Judaism, Islam, Christianity) and Dharmic religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism). For example, where in the holy books of the Dharmic religions do you find teachings such as:

      “And when the sacred months have passed, then kill the polytheists wherever you find them and capture them and besiege them and sit in wait for them at every place of ambush. But if they should repent, establish prayer, and give zakah, let them [go] on their way. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” [ http://quran.com/9/5 ]

      “O Prophet, fight against the disbelievers and the hypocrites and be harsh upon them. And their refuge is Hell, and wretched is the destination.” [ http://quran.com/9/73 ]

      “Indeed, Allah has purchased from the believers their lives and their properties [in exchange] for that they will have Paradise. They fight in the cause of Allah , so they kill and are killed.” [ http://quran.com/9/111 ]

      “They wish you would disbelieve as they disbelieved so you would be alike. So do not take from among them allies until they emigrate for the cause of Allah . But if they turn away, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them and take not from among them any ally or helper.” [ http://quran.com/4/89 ]

      These are just a few selections from the Quran, a book that is considered the literal word of Allah by many people.

      • Orang Melayu

        Dear Panam

        These quotations of quran have to be read in context to the circumstances under which they were revealed. Thats why we need learned scholars to interpret. Islam was revealed to the pagan arabs over a period of 23 yrs and some verses are abrogated by the later revelations. All commands were not revealed at once.
        There are many web sites that revel in demonizing islam and the holy Prophet PBUH. However you should consider that Islam is the choice of nearly 2 Bn people who inhabit this planet and they follow and love the Prophet. So can they be wrong?
        Please see this video of a Playboy Playmate who converts to Islam. It is enlightening to hear her own words regarding her earlier life and new religon.

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        PanAm,

        Thanks for the reply.

        I agree with you that there is difference between them. Even Islam is different from Christianity as you do not see similar verses in New Testament. This is because Prophet Mohammed was a military leader unlike The Buddha, Jesus or Jaina Mahaveera. Although Hinduism is a ‘Dharmic’ Relegion (polytheistic), as you say, its holy books such as Maha Baratha and Ramayanya promote the chivalry in a military set up as a virtue.

        However, what is common to all these relegions is that they profess that only they have the formula to ultimate ‘salvation’, which is common to Buddhism as well. The Buddha has gone to such distance in this regard that he claimed that his way of salvation was even different from Hinduism even if the Buddhism is a off shoot of Hinduism. According to him, even if the notions of ‘karma’, ‘rebirth’ etc were common to both, the doctorine of ‘anathma’ differes Buddhism from Hinduism so much so that a Hindu would not able to see the ‘ultimate truth’, which is Nibbana. (Although Buddhists like to ignore, one would say it is paradoxical to have rebirth when you do not have ‘athma’ (self).)

        That is why I say Buddhism is not different from other relegions on ‘dogmatism’. I do not have any dislike of Buddhism, as Yapa likes to tell. I do not see why Buddhism is so different from others. Whenever you claim Buddhism is superior to all other relegion you imply that all the rest of the relegions are inferior with their followers to Buddhism and Buddhists. Would they like it? Won’t it be the origin of conflict? Wouldn’t a child reaised as a Buddhist behave in the same way as a child raised as a Muslim?

      • Dear PitastharaPuthraya;

        “I do not see why Buddhism is so different from others. Whenever you claim Buddhism is superior to all other relegion you imply that all the rest of the relegions are inferior with their followers to Buddhism and Buddhists. Would they like it? Won’t it be the origin of conflict?”

        One of the main problems in your thinking I noticed is your inability to think beyond homogeneity. You have always exhibited your inability to identify/perceive differences from a hierarchies. You always seem to take them synonymous and interchangeable. Your dislike for hierarchies makes you refuse the existence of differences. Just because interpretation of differences could cause hierarchical differences, it does not deny the existence of differences.

        On this basis you cannot say all religions are same or have no much difference. It should be decided on the basis of the comparative study of those religions on the basis of (verifiable/logical/consistent)truths those religions have. Just because somebody can interpret difference as the origin of conflicts, it does not cease to be different.

        Really the origin of conflict is not “not treating” all the different ideologies alike, but the inability to find the correct ideology among them. Just treating all the religions alike to avoid conflicts is just like hiding garbage under the carpet to claim the room is clean.

        You have exhibited this deficiency of thinking:total homogeneity, not only in the case of religions. Can you remember you said there would not be any peace and reconciliation or harmony in this country until Sinhalese accept that Tamils and Sinhalese came to this country at the same time. If the Muslims and Burgers also argue in the same line, there will never be any peace in this country.

        Truths are decided on facts not on anybody’s will or the way it is advantageous to an individual or a group of people or on their moral beliefs.

        We talk of the difference of Buddhism on that basis, not to satisfy individual preferences or group preferences or advantages or to satisfy
        moral obligations. We look at religions from an objective perspective to mark the differences in Buddhism.

        You problem is in your yardstick itself, not in the measurements (readings) you made.

        Thanks!

    • yapa

      Dear PitastharaPuthraya;

      “The fundamental problem is relegion including Buddhism is that they say there is only one truth.”

      Can you say who said so and/or where it is mentioned so?

      Buddhism never says so. Not only that Buddha himself said he did not preach all dhamma. In addition the Buddha has set aside some questions as Avyakatha, and advised not to try to search them. What Buddha said was his teaching contains “noble truths” about lives of the beings. Buddhism did not refuse existence of truth outside of his teaching. The Buddha sought advice of the doctor Jeevaka, when the Buddha was ill. If he said only his teaching contains truth, why did he get treatment from Jeevaka?What Buddha said was only way to liberate from suffering contain in his teaching alone. The truth/nature about beings and remedy for that pathetic nature was the truth(s) mentioned in Buddhism. It did not talk about the truths in Physics or truths in Mathematics or truth in Biology or truth in agriculture or in engineering. He didn’t try to tech farmers the truths in agriculture, how to do weeding or making seeds. His teaching was limited to a specific field. He claims the truths in that specific field, and didn’t claim the only truth in the universe.

      Most of the things you have mentioned about Buddhism above is incorrect. You should not try to generalize/extend other religions to unfamiliar area/Buddhism if you have no knowledge about them. I think it is morally wrong, if you cannot substantiate your comments on others’ affairs. Do you think you can back/substantiate what you say about Buddhism?

      Thanks!

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Dear Yapa,

        We are at it again.

        I do not pretend to be an expert in relegion including Buddhism. However, that does not discourage me from expressing my opinions on them in fora like these. That is because I do not agree with the idea that only specialists can talk about subjects. Therefore, I am more than happy to correct myself when somebody, like you, show me the ‘truth’.

        I also agree that the Buddha never boasted, if you like, that he knew everthing. But when it comes to the ‘ultimate’ truth did he ever say that there was any other ‘truth’ other than ‘Nibbana’? Is there any otherway to acheive this ultimate goal other than follwoing his teaching?

        I would like to divide Buddhism that we know today in to two. One is philosophical Buddhism and the other relegious Buddhism. I do not have any problem with philosophical Buddhism in the same way that I do not have a problem with Aristotle, Plato, Russell, Cant, Marx, Hagel, etc.(I am not an expert on them either. They are just names to me.)

        But the relegious Buddhism is on par with all the other world relegions. It has the weaknesses common to all the others, probably to a lesser extent. Take for example the Sinhala Buddhism. It has all the problems, we see in Islam today. It is dogmatic, bigoted, archaic, reactionary, etc.

        However, the fundamental principle of all relegions is that they claim that only they possess how to acheive the ‘ultimate’ truth. All the ‘heathens’, according to them would be unable to acheive the ‘salvation’. The only path open for them is the ‘hell’. In my opinion, even Buddhism can not escape this extremism, as it were.

        That’s why I do not see a difference between dogmatic outlooks of different relegions today.

        As soon as you assume that only you know the truth the conflict starts between you and the other, who is the mirror image of yours. That is the problem with all the relegions today.

    • yapa

      Dear PitastharaPuthraya;

      Here is a post I had written disclaiming popular wrong idea that Buddha taught “truth in its entirety”.

      http://groundviews.org/2012/05/02/the-mind-of-compassion-buddhism-and-violence/#comment-43981

      Didn’t you read it or are you pretending so to insult Buddhism by putting something wrong into Buddhism and to criticize Buddhism by way of criticizing that inserted wrong idea?

      Accepting you don’t know is better than pretending to know what you don’t know. At least keeping away from what you don’t know is better than pretending the opposite.

      Thanks!

  • Emil van der Poorten

    Eternal truths so simply and so well put. Bravo and thank you!

  • roshan

    I do not believe there was a dark side to the Prophet. Nor did he marry a 6-7 year old girl. Islam bashing usually begins with bashing the prophet. Shooting the messenger has always been a favourite mode by which to attack the message. Lets leave the messenger aside and concentrate on the message. That message is in the Quran. That message is a simple one and has to be gathered from the Quran. One should approach the Quran without preconceptions and prejudices.

    Lasantha may have a valid point about the hijacking of religion to serve the interests of the rulers. The ulema have been known to interpret the religion to suit those in power.

    Much of the confusion arises because of the failure to differentiate between the practices that were peculiar to the Arab culture of which the Prophet was a part and the teachings of the Prophet to clarify His message.

    What purpose is served by focussing on how the Prophet cut his nails or trying to figure out whether he trimmed his beard?

    The starting point for understanding Islam must be the Quran. One should approach it with an open mind, sans the prejudices and preconceived notions that they have accumulated.

    • PanAm

      Human beings, by nature, are imperfect creatures. They are capable of great good and also great evil. They are able to express love, kindness and compassion, and also anger, hatred, violence and jealousy. Prophet Muhammad – just like the rest of us – was also a human being.

      I think it is perfectly fair to judge particular teachings by the teacher. Is the teacher not supposed to be the highest examplar of what he or she preaches? I think so. You have stated that “The Prophet led an exemplary life and it is important to follow him…” However, I believe that only the good things that the Prophet Muhammad did should be appreciated, encouraged and followed. The more hateful and plainly wrong things he did should be rejected. I think this is a fair and justifiable path to take, don’t you?

      You mention Arab culture. I think this is a very interesting topic. Would you agree that Islam often serves (perhaps unwittingly) as a vehicle for Arabic culture, and that at times it inundates and wipes out the local culture, supplanting it with Arabic variety instead? For example in Indonesia, which is a largely Muslim country, there are many Indonesians who are devout Muslims, yet have native Indonesian names (for example Sukarno, Suharto, Budiman, Suparno). However in Sri Lanka, most Muslims have very clearly Arabic names even though the vast majority of Sri Lankan Muslims have no relationship with the Arabs and are far closer ethnically to the Tamils and the Sinhalese. Granted, Arabic is the language of the Quran and thus has the same place as Aramaic in Chrsitianity and Pali/Sanskrit in Buddhism/Hinduism, but is there a need to completely adopt Arabic names over more native ones?

      Secondly, dress forms like the hijab, jubba and burqa are not a part of Islam, but rather a part of Arabic/Middle Eastern culture. The question must be asked is – is it necessary for them to supplant traditional dress forms in places like Sri Lanka, India, Malaysia and Indonesia? A noticeable trend seems to be the creation of ‘Arab colonies’ around the world through Islam, where the population speaks Arab, wears Arabic clothing, follows Arab sects like the Wahabis, closely follows events in the Middle East including Arabic causes like the Israel-Palestinian conflict, and call themselves with Arabic names when in reality there is absolutely no need to be Arab or adopt Arabic culture/practices/clothing to be a practicing Muslim. This process of Arabization is happening in Sri Lanka where some enterprising people have even taken to growing date trees, and giving streets Arabic names in Arabic script so as to be even more authentically Arab.

    • yapa

      Dear roshan;

      It seems that your present post is contradicting with your previous post. What is the reason for sudden change?

      http://groundviews.org/2012/05/10/no-longer-blind-no-longer-bound/#comment-44207

      Thanks!

  • Lanka Muslim, UK

    I must confess that I was of the same views as the writer is about religions, and particularly my religion, and was more leaning towards philosophies of Bertrand Russell, etc. theories of Marx and Angles, rationalists and the like. I had the opportunity associating and living more with Buddhists, Christians and Hindus. But in the process of time I found that I am unable to face challenges confronting me and this put me off my balance driving me to seek other means to get away from facing the challenges. The ways that I then chose were habits that make me forget myself of which I do not wish to give details here. But they gave me only temporary relief. When I was out of those habits I was again in a state of confusion. Then I asked myself the question Why? Deep thinking made me to understand that I do not have a set guidance to conduct my life. I wondered where I could find this set guidance, that will induce me from indulging in wrong habits to face the challenges in life. I discussed with some of my relations, Muslims, who were not wealthy or affluent, but having a peaceful and disciplined life. That I found is because that were following the tenets of their religion and they have a set guidance to face challenges of life than going in wrong directions. I started little by little started the five-times and day prayers, bet at the Mosque on time of Fridays to listen to the Sermon, started re-reading the Holy Quran and attempted to understand Hadiths (the traditions of the Holy Prophet). Then I myself realised that I now have the alternate to find solace and peace of mind, that is my religion, Islam. Even now at late age, despite not having high position and much wealth, I enjoy peaceful life. Thanks to my faith in my religion and the Creator, Allahuthalah. That is why the religion of Islam is the fastest growing religion in world and mostly in West where materialism was considered supreme which lead to the destruction of family life and the society at large. The writer’s case could only be an isolated one and he/she could come out of it by getting to know more of Islam.

  • Akram W

    I too traveled a similar path as you traveled The Ranting Ranter.I am glad that I was able to see a like minded person.Actually I was born to a Moorish family,as you mentioned the Moors are a little more conservative than the Malays.Yet the family I grew up was not that strict when it comes to religious matters,so I had the freedom to study critically about each and every religion.Finally I decided the concept of religion is too narrow for me as an open minded individual who believes much more in Humanism.Yes Islam has certain aspects of Humanistic values,If we study about Sufi sages like Rumi,Hafez and the likes we can find so many humanistic values expressed in their poetry and various other publications,one could find such characters even in present day Islamic world.As an Agnostic though I do not believe in any organized world religions I do have slight doubt whether there exist something beyond our human perception,yet I can not totally be certain that there is such an existence beyond our human perception.Due to that I decided being an Agnostic is the best way to move forward in my life journey since before I made my decision regarding my beliefs I had to go through so many spiritual confusions that troubled my mind,yet once I made the hard decision and began being honest with what my conscience I started to feel better also have to admit it has made me even more compassionate and caring for the humanity and all living beings in this planet than when I was inclined to a religion,I now do not feel like am a separate entity from other religious/ethnic/nationalities,I feel more interconnected to everyone without any boundaries,getting rid of organized religion has really helped me as a human being.How ever I do respect and honor the beliefs of religious people irrespective what label it is based on,since I believe if someone stands for justice and equality for all then one should be able to tolerate and respect other religions as long as it does not affect a third party.Besides I have seen many atheists/agnostics bashing and insulting various religions for the sake of proving their rebelliousness,If one closely analyzes this attitude one would realize that such an attitude would not help to raise constructive awareness among the religious community regarding certain issues that we find does not suit for the positive evolution of our present day humanity.As human beings it is natural that all of us fall in to the trap of our ego based thinking when someone suddenly starts to insult our belief systems in that case irrespective of whether the truth is said or not there is little chance for them to think and analyze the ideologies of Agnostics/Atheists or any other irreligious community who promotes critical thinking and reasoning.

    By the way the Islamic world we see today was much different during its “golden age” many rationalist atheists and agnostics were tolerated and it was a very much thriving civilization,I am not saying it was perfect as heaven yet it was less imperfect,The Baghdad and Andalusia were very popular knowledge hubs.However with time and various other colonializations and discrepancies in the leadership that era finally ended.The biggest threat the Islamic world is facing in the present day is the Wahabi version of Islam advocated and promoted by Saudi Kingdom to various other moderate muslim nations/communities world wide.one could bring and argue many conspiracy theories behind this new trend yet I would not go to that extent.The silence and support the Saudi Kingdom receives from US would be an obvious reason for one to doubt the legitimacy of the so called “Human rights” that is being advocated by the USA.

  • In all religions there are many progressive thinkers that filter out what is useless, keep teachings that are valid and helpful and continue to practice in order to benefit themselves and everyone else. If you take the truly spiritual in all faiths they converge in a mind and habit. This is particularly so in Buddhism and meditative practices of Hinduism.

    Anything similar to the enlightenment (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_enlightenment) will not occur anytime soon in Islam except in different pockets and not as a general movement. In Chritianity it only really began as the masses became more and educated.

    Ultimately, the wave of Wahabism that swept through the world began from the importance of oil. If the Saudi’s save enough and become an investor nation they will retain the ability to influence the teaching of Islam with the same degree of power in the future as they do so now.

    The continuing modernity spearheaded by Turkey, Indonesia and Malaysia combined with the forces of the masses in these countries as they look for empowerment will be where an enlightenment may possibly begin, as it was with the more industrial Germany of the 16th century of Martin Luther compared to the Vatican of the time.

    A much smaller shadow play of the quite brutal religous conflict that occurred in Europe is now slowly being fought by Muslims, primarily as seen in the Arab Spring as a desire for economic and democratic empowerment compared to the autocratic rule of several middle eastern countries including in Iran.

    • PanAm

      Well most of Islam’s holiest sites are to be found in Saudi Arabia and many of the events recorded in Islamic literature took place there. So even without oil, I think there would a special place for Saudi Arabia in the world of Islam.

      All the countries you mention – Turkey, Malaysia and Indonesia are actually experiencing the growth of conservative/fundamentalist Islam just like what is happening in Sri Lanka. The Wahabis do have enormous influence, however, because of the money being invested in them by Saudi Arabia and I don’t think the other sects of Islam are able to compete as a result.

      The West, and Christian societies within it, have been able to move on from viewing the Bible as the literal word of God (although there are groups like the Christian fundamentalists) and several of the more hateful and violent teachings are not followed (like the commands to kill witches/homosexuals/death penalty for adultery etc). Instead the violence and hatred of the Old Testament has been largely put side and the more compassionate, kind and tolerant teachings of the New Testament are stressed.

      To be honest, from reading the Bible and the Quran, it is clear that there is more hatred and violence taught in the Bible than in the Quran, and the God of the Bible does come across as significantly more angry and blood thirsty (this is my personal opinion mind you). But the point is that Christianity has generally moved on from this and the compassionate teachings of Jesus Christ form the central place in its modern paradigm.

      I’m optimistic that the same will happen in Islam, but one of the defining features of Islam is the marriage of state and religion (caliphate) and the use of an Islamic system of law called Sharia, which, unfortunately, promotes and institutionalizes some of the gory violence of the Old testament and includes such practices such as flogging, amputation, stoning to death etc.

  • roshan

    WM Watt in his book on Islam has this to say: “We are heirs of a deep seated prejudice which goes to the war of propaganda of medieval times” The negative and spiteful characterisation of the Prophet was at the heart of this European project to paint Islam in a negative image. If you read Gibbons, for example, you will have evidence of what I say.

    The shaping of this jaundiced view of Islam was undertaken by bigots and it is this image that is being perpetuated under the guise of intellectual discourse.

    • PanAm

      Roshan, even if we take Islamic sources of information on the Prophet Muhammad, it is rather clear that the he engaged in violence – and killings. This is the ‘dark side’ I mentioned earlier, the side of the Prophet Muhammad that should not be emulated. This is not to take away from the Prophet’s ‘good side.’

      Consider Ibn Isha [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ibn_Ishaq ]

      “Mu?ammad ibn Is??q ibn Yas?r ibn Khiy?r was an Arab Muslim historian and hagiographer. Under the aegis of the ‘Abbasid caliph Al-Mansur, Ibn Ishaq collected oral traditions that formed the basis of the most important biography of the Islamic prophet Muhammad.”

      —-

      Ibn Ishaq describes the killing of the Banu Qurayza men as follows:

      “Then they surrendered, and the apostle confined them in Medina in the quarter of d. al-Harith, a woman of B. al-Najjar. Then the apostle went out to the market of Medina (which is still its market today) and dug trenches in it. Then he sent for them and struck off their heads in those trenches as they were brought out to him in batches. Among them was the enemy of Allah Huyayy b. Akhtab and Ka`b b. Asad their chief. There were 600 or 700 in all, though some put the figure as high as 800 or 900. As they were being taken out in batches to the apostle they asked Ka`b what he thought would be done with them. He replied, ‘Will you never understand? Don’t you see that the summoner never stops and those who are taken away do not return? By Allah it is death!’ This went on until the apostle made an end of them. Huyayy was brought out wearing a flowered robe in which he had made holes about the size of the finger-tips in every part so that it should not be taken from him as spoil, with his hands bound to his neck by a rope. When he saw the apostle he said, ‘By God, I do not blame myself for opposing you, but he who forsakes God will be forsaken.’ Then he went to the men and said, ‘God’s command is right. A book and a decree, and massacre have been written against the Sons of Israel.’ Then he sat down and his head was struck off.” [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banu_Qurayza ]

      ——

      Then consider the ‘Caravan raids’ that the Prophet Muhammad personally participated it [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caravan_raids ]

      • Orang Melayu

        The true narrative of this incident according to Islam is as follows.

        Before the Prophet arrived in Medina there were primarily two groups in Medina, the Jews and Pagans. The Jews were subdivided into three clans, the Banu Qainuqa, Banu Nazir and Banu Quraiza. The other inhabitants of the town were the Aws and Khazraj. Of the two chief clans of the Jews, the Quraiza were the allies of the Aws, while Banu Nazir joined the Khazraj. Fighting frequently broke out between the Aws and the Khazraj , and their Jewish allies however once the Muhammad (SAW) arrived in Medina the Aws and Kharzaj both converted to Islam.

        In an effort to unite the city in peace, the Prophet Muhammad drafted the Covenant of Medina (Mithaq-i-Medina) in 622 CE, whose general terms were – Muslims and Jews shall live as one people, each one of the parties shall keep to its own faith, and neither shall interfere with that of the other. In the event of a war with a third party, each was bound to come to the assistance of the other, provided the latter were the aggrieved and not the aggressors. In the event of an attack on Medina, both shall join hands to defend it and peace, when desirable, shall be made after consultation with each other.

        In 627 CE. the Jewish tribe Banu Nadir instigated polytheists from all over Arabia to come with them and finish off the Muslims in Medina. When the Allied armies arrived they found a trench dug around Medina by the Muslims to keep them out. There was no water in it but it still offered some protection to the Muslims. The Allies numbered 10,000 while the Muslims numbered 3000. The Muslim women and children were in fortresses inside Medina. It was at this time that the Jewish tribe Banu Qurayza broke the treaty that they had concluded between themselves and the Prophet PBUH. According to this treaty they were allowed to live as Jewish citizens in the state of Madina that was ruled by Shariah, in return for not conspiring against the Muslims and not joining forces with the enemies of the Muslims.

        The Banu Qurayza had a fortress to the east of Madina and 800 fighters. The Banu Nadir convinced them to break the treaty and support the Allies against the Muslims. After about a month long siege the enemy forces retreated, disappointed and empty-handed. The Prophet PBUH returned to Medina victorious and people laid down their weapons. This is when Jibreel (alaihis salam) came to the Messenger of Allah, while he was washing off the dust from the expedition in the house of Umm Salama (radi Allahu anha), telling him that Allah commands him to not lay his weapons down till he has dealt with the treachery of the Banu Qurayza.

        When the Banu Qurayza had surrendered, the Prophet asked the Jewish leader, “Will you be satisfied, O Aus, if one of your own number pronounces judgment on them? When they agreed he said that Sa’d b. Mu’adh would do so. The significance behind this was that Sa’ad b. Mu’adh was a Jewish convert to Islam. As a former Jew, Sa’ad knew the Jewish law and according to al Mithaq-i-Medina Jewish law dictated the Jewish community, which meant handing down a sentence in accordance with Jewish law:

        Deuteronomy 20: 12-14

        “And if it will make no peace with thee, but will make war against thee, then thou shalt besiege it And when the LORD thy God hath delivered it into thine hands, thou shalt smite every male thereof with the edge of the sword but the women, and the little ones, and the cattle, and all that is in the city, even all the spoil thereof, shalt thou take unto thyself; and thou shalt eat the spoil of thine enemies, which the LORD thy God

        So this was a punishment for treachery and sedition and not a massacre as portrayed many Zionist and anti Islamic websites. This was carried out according to the Jewish law prevalent at that time.

  • PanAm

    Orang Melayu,

    Thank you for sharing the video. I do not doubt that for millions of people Islam is a religion that provides solace and a meaningful life and that it has inspired several civilizations. I also do not doubt that there are many who convert to Islam or adopt Islam out of their own free will and find great benefit in doing so. What I am pointing out, however, is that there are teachings in the Quran, that – in my opinion – promote violence and incite hatred. These are not qualities or teachings that should be accorded respect or promoted, despite the fact that they are found in a holy book and considered the literal word of Allah. Unlike some others, I recognize that there is good in religion and do not advocate throwing out the baby with the bathwater so to speak. I do believe that the bad bits should be excised and the teachings that promote tolerance, kindness and compassion should be emphasized.

    You mention that we ‘need scholars to interpret’. This is another issue that I have with revealed religions. If the Holy Book such as the Quran or the Bible is the literal word of God, and it is his/her message to human beings, then the teachings should be clearly understood and accessible to human beings. There should not be any middle men to filter the message. Unfortunately, however, this is not the case. Islam has its tafsir, and whenever the Quran is quoted verbatim there are those who respond by saying that it has been quoted out of context or interpreted wrongly. Does this mean that the Quran is not for the hoi polloi and only scholars should read it and interpret it because the rest of us are somehow not up to task?

    Lastly, I don’t think the number of people believing in something is an accurate reflection of how true that something is. For example, most people in Europe believed at one time that the earth was flat but that did not make it true.

    • Orang Melayu

      PanAm

      Quran is quite clear and can be understood by even an illiterate person but certain people skeptical and have doubts can seek an explanation from scholars.

      For instance the verses you have referred to are with reference to the treatment of an enemy who had retrograded on a peace treaty entered to with the muslims regarding permission to peacefully carry out the pilgrimage.

      In 6AH, there was a treaty between the Quraysh and the Muslims at Hudaibiya. One of the clauses of the treaty was that there will be no war for a period of 10 years and the tribes which wish to join alliance with the Quraysh will be allowed to do so and those who wish to join the Muslims are free to do so. Following this, Bani Khuza’a became allies of the Muslims and Banu Bakr joined the Quraysh.

      After 17 to 18 months of the signing of the treaty of Hudaibiya, Banu Bakr attacked Bani Khuza’a. The Quraysh joined in this attack thinking that it is night time and no one will know what happened (Tafsir Kamalayn Sharh Tafsir Jalalyn).

      This was a clear violation of the treaty and even though Bani Khuza’a took shelter in the Ka’aba and begged for protection, they were butchered without any mercy shown by the Quraysh and Banu Bakr. Only 40 of Bani Khuza’a were able to flee and reach the Muslims. Amr Ibn Salim Alkhizai pleaded to the prophet Muhammad (saw) in the following words:

      “The Quraysh broke their pledge and broke the agreement which they had concluded with thee.

      They uprooted us like dry grass understanding that none will come to our help.

      They are mean and low, they surrounded us in slumber and butchered us in state of kneeling and prostration.”

      It was at this time that the concerned verses of Surah Tauba were revealed.

      The complete chapter is as follows

      1.Here is a disavowal (proclaimed) by Allah and His Messenger against the Mushriks (polytheists) with whom you have a treaty.
      2.So, move in the land freely for four months, and be aware that you can never frustrate Allah, and that Allah is going to disgrace the disbelievers.
      3.And here is an announcement, from Allah and His Messenger, to the people on the day of the greater Hajj, that Allah is free from (any commitment to) the Mushriks, and so is His Messenger. Now, if you repent, it is good for you. And if you turn away, then be aware that you can never frustrate Allah. And give those who disbelieve the good news of a painful punishment.
      4.Except those of the Mushriks with whom you have a treaty, and they were not deficient (in fulfilling the treaty) with you, and did not back up any one against you. So fulfill the treaty with them up to their term. Surely, Allah loves the God-fearing.
      5.So, when the sacred months expire, kill the Mushriks wherever you find them, and catch them and besiege them and sit in ambush for them everywhere. Then, if they repent and establish Salah and pay Zakah, leave their way. Surely, Allah is most Forgiving, Very-Merciful. – [Qur’an 9:1-5]

      So the chapter has to be read in entirity not just one verse and you need to know the historical background in order to understand completely.Fighting back against the enemies of Islam was made lawful because they violated the treaty and thus initiated war with the Muslims. Verse 4 explicitly mentions that war is not permitted with the Mushriks who did not violate the treaty. This is enough to refute the claims of propagandists that the Qur’an tells Muslims to go on seek and destroy mission against the non muslims.

      So those who seek to find fault with Islam and the Quran should first take the trouble to read the complete story rather than quoting bits and pieces out of context to prove their preconceived notions.

      • PanAm

        Orang Melayu, thank you for your explanation. But I think regardless of whatever stories are used to “justify” those teachings in the Quran, the quotes from the Quran I have referred to are very clear incitements to hatred and violence against disbelievers (ie non-Muslims). Such exhortations have no place in a civilized society in 2012 and need to be rejected as being inappropriate.

        The massacre of the Banu Qurayza is not something that can be appreciated, especially as the execution of 600 or so Jewish people appears to have happened at the hands of the Prophet Muhammad. In any case, as leader, the Prophet Muhammad could have very easily granted mercy to these prisoners of war. He did not do so. In modern parlance I think this would be classified as a war crime. Then consider the behaviour following this massacre:

        “The spoils of battle, including the enslaved women and children of the tribe, were divided up among the Islamic warriors that had participated in the siege and among the emigrees from Mecca (who had hitherto depended on the help of the Muslims native to Medina….As part of his share of the spoils, Muhammad selected one of the women, Rayhana, for himself and took her as part of his booty.”

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banu_Qurayza

        Similarly in modern parlance, the raids that Prophet Muhammad led on the caravans of the Quraysh would be classified as banditry and plain old robbery.

        I am sure you will agree that murder and robbery/banditry are NOT things that we would like people to emulate. It is clear that the Prophet Muhammad did some very questionable during his life and my argument is that these should be rejected.

      • ekelbroom

        The fact that in the cases of all major religions there are large numbers of Sects is a clear indication that serious ambiguities exists in the teachings of all such religions. The teachings of each Sect are based on the interpretation of the principles of that religion by a ‘Learned Scholar’. These interpretations do not contradict the basic tenets of that religion (because of the inherent ambiguities) and are therefore believed by the Followers of the Sect to be ‘The Truth’. Thus we have Catholics & Non-Catholics, Sunnis & Shi’ites, Theravada & Mahayana just to mention a few examples. This ambiguity in my opinion is the most serious weakness in the concept of ‘Religion’ . In the case of Islam this weakness is magnified exponentially because the Quran is described as the ‘Word of God’. Why did not God in his wisdom be more direct and clear in his instructions to Mankind ? At the end of the day, it appears that each and every Religion has created more divisions among it’s people than strengthened unity.

        So Orang Melayu’s statement that “Quran is quite clear and can be understood by even an illiterate person……. “ may not be quite correct. The Quran was first written many years after the death of Prophet Muhammed – based on the recollections of those ‘Learned Persons’ who had memorized various portions of it. Moreover, the original Quran did not have the necessary ‘diacritical points’ which were added only later. I am told that the average Arab has great difficulty in understanding the Quran because of the issue of Tajweed (Tajweed is the knowledge and application of the rules of recitation so that the reading of the Quran is as the Prophet Mohammed recited ).

      • Orang Melayu

        You may notice that most people try to explain their own experiences or explain their own religons. However a few seem to be experts in religons other than their own and tend to demonize and abuse the teachings of other faiths. Their arguments mainly based on heresay or deregatory publications from the internet.

        The world would be a better place if we tried to understand each others religons instead of attacking each others faiths and teachers bringing about hurt and conflict.

        Religon is not something that you can learn by browsing the internet or reading / talking about. You need to practice and experience the miracles and inner peace achieved to know what religon is about.

  • PanAm

    Pitasthara Puthraya,

    Thanks for the reply. Correct me if I am wrong here, but in the Semitic religions one is supposed to burn in an eternal hell for eternity if one simply does not believe or have faith in the Supreme being of that particular religion, whereas in the Dharmic religion one goes to hell/suffers because of their deeds – regardless of whether they believe in of have faith in one deity or another. If that’s the case, then that is a huge difference between the two religious traditions in my opinion – meaning in one tradition, no matter how good you are if you do not believe in the Supreme Being you will be punished for eternity, while in the other tradition it does not matter what you call yourself or the deity you believe in, it is rather your actions that determine your fate.

    Just so you know I have never claimed that Buddhism is ‘superior’ to any other religion and I have no idea how you have come to that conclusion. I think all religions/faiths have their good bits and bad bits and that the good bits should be taught and emphasized and the bad bits thrown out. People following a particular religion – whatever that is – clearly feel it offers something more to them than any other religion. Does that mean they inherently look down on other faiths?

  • Kadalay

    All religions do impose discipline, self control, and a code of conduct for what they believe is an accepted mode of life. However, its the man-made rituals and folklore that have been innovated through the ages, for whatever reasons of those times, that have made them all look so silly and stupid in todays modern world of science and technology. We are all born into some religion, not by our own choice. We need to think about what we believe and question it vehemently and reject everything that does not make any common sense to us. Faith cannot be proved by science and hence it is certainly questionable.

    • PanAm

      I don’t think “man-made rituals” and “folklore” necessarily make religion look “silly” and “stupid” unless they hurt people in some way. If they actually harm society then they ought to be rejected and cast aside, but otherwise I see no harm in them. Hinduism, for example, has very many rituals that are actually quite beautiful. It’s the same for Catholicism, Buddhism and Islam.

  • anbu

    hello Ranting ranter

    Thanks for the beautifully nuanced essay wrtitten with compassion.

    Like you I think one needs to take into accounts of the neeed for religion amongst some people whilst being critical about some stuff.One cant throw the baby out with the bath water.

    Whilst there are variants amongst all religions, semetic or otherwise, I belive they call all take a leaf from your writing.

    bravo

  • azhar

    Above story is not real view of islamic teachings ;

    In media mostly showing muslims/ islam mis-interpreted.

    Try to learn and understand islam

    • The Ranting Ranter

      If you read it well, you’ll see that it is not a story about Islam. Just a personal account of understanding religion.

  • Mohamed

    Religion?

    The billion dollar question is why we need a religion? Answer could be many based on each individual situation. i questioned each and every question the writer has questioned, infact much more. I even mixed science as I couldn’t look anything away from science. I studied other religion for answers and studied islam also with correct source.

    Yes, I am a muslim and 100% convinced on my belief. Reason?

    Why people go in to religion is “the need” or “unanswered questions”. When it comes to” needs”; a person when he/she miss something he/she seek refuge in a super natural power. The need could be food, shelder, security, etc.

    But the reason I end up in islam is not the above, it’s the unanswered question. It’s the “natures engineering” the perfect design. Can the whole nature happen by chance? Can an intelligent being come to existence by chance? Well. I looked in to the unproven theories such as evolution, etc. they all miss an important question; from where the intelligent design behind every living being came from? From where the every natural system that exists in the planet earth which in fact so essential for life was designed? These question science fail to answer.
    How these could relate to islam? Any religion that talks about the super natural power can satisfy these questions isn’t? Not really. Because the definition for that super natural power matters and I was able to find this in islam.

    The super natural power that designed all the creatures cannot be a creation. If so a limitless is limited. Islam talks about god not the way other religion defines it. Its doesn’t mix the creation with creator. It clearly says the nature of this supernatural power. This is the uniqueness that differentiate islam from rest of the religions.
    The religion of islam is mostly misunderstood religion and thanks to the middle east crisis of black gold war game, media of invading powers had no choice but to demonize this religion.

    After I learned islam from right source I found that all the islamobia efforts are not worth believing in. I read them and found answers for those accuses over the net itself. Islam gives right of men and women, it fights against social injustice and crime. Its roots outs all the anti social elements. It respects even other faith. Mean time it has its own set of rule to guard its teachings. This is how I see how the islam becomes a whole system which so complete.

    Religion is a personal choice to understand who we are and what we are, a different approach where science cannot fulfill. Science is a yardstick to measure creations and certainly we cannot apply this limited knowledge on creator. Different people may have different idea based on their level of intelligent and exposure. As a science lover I discovered islam as my relief.

    • PitastharaPuthraya

      Dear Mohamed,

      I completely understand and respect your beleif in God. A creator is the easist way to explain the seemingly unexplainable. When you beleive in an omnipotent god your mind is at ease as you do not have to bother about anything.

      The planets, stars, galaxies etc have been created by Him. The animals and plants have been created by Him. The man has been created by him. The world is under his constant supervision. Everything in your life happens according to his will. Only thing you have to do is not to offend him. The final salvation is ultimately yours. I would say this is the easiest way to live.

      I should also accept that whatever the atheists say there is a possibility that everything has been created by a creator God because the science has not yet proven beyound any doubt how everythign was created from nothing after the ‘big bang’.

      That does not mean science is wrong. As we know by our experience it has proven many things in the past one day it would show us how evertyhing was created from nothing at the beginging of time.

      Therefore, while you beleive in God you have to keep your mind open into the possibility that everything was created without a help of a creator.

      Although you say that evolution has not been proven I choose to differ. I would say it has been proven beyound reasonable doubt. Darwin’s theory has been vindicated by the the discovery of DNA and genes (human genome project). If you open to ideas without shutting them out as they do not agree with your preconceived ideas you would be able to appreciate what I say.

      You as a human being must be enjoying the inventions made by science everyday from dawn to dusk. Howeve, I accept that it may not be able to give a meaning to life even if it is capable of proving the origin of the universe because human life may not have a ‘meaning’ in the relegious sense. Therefore, for the people who are anxious to find a meaning of life, to understnd who we are and where we came from relegion is like a starw for a drowning man, if you like.

      • Mohamed

        dear puthraya

        I hope you didn’t understand what I really meant, I was not against science and my religion was not against science either. Infact if you had seen the history, science started flourish during Islamic civilization, because science, the study of creations has never conflicted with creator. In fact the same science demands the creator and that’s the reason I believe in a super natural power.

        Even big bang theory doesn’t contradict with creationism. Its points out what was there at the time line but never explains how it gained the control structure.

        Everything put in to books cannot science, some are mere theories not proven. One such is evolution theory.
        Darwin’s theory has nothing to with DNA and RNA. Even evolution theory has its own evolution. Early Darwin’s theory had suggested transforming of one species to another with the natural selection. But today’s evolutionist believes in advantageous mutation in addition to natural selection. To date nothing was proven with advantages mutation.DNA and RNA has nothing to do with these theories. If I make simple BMW Car cannot be claimed as evolved from benze Car just because both have same basic elements. Infact all these theories not considering the intelligent design and perfect engineering behind all living beings and natural systems (such as,solar system and its placement, ozone layer, eart’s magnetic field, water cycle, air quality control ). Please note that all these are interconnected and the probability calculation for all these to happen by chance is nothing but zero, if you apply conditional probability.

        I will give some insight after shortening an article

        Modern discoveries such DNA directly conflicted with Darwin’s theory. Consider the fact that Darwin was completely ignorant of genetics, having died before this field was established as a science in 1900. In ignorance, Darwin believed in the inheritance of acquired characteristics–that is, if an animal acquired a physical characteristic during its lifetime, it could pass that characteristic on to its progeny. Of course, it is an established fact that living things can only pass on the genetic information they inherit from their parents. Will a man who loses a leg in an accident have one-legged children? No, his children will have two legs, because although the man’s body (or phenotype) changed, his genotype (or DNA) remains the same.
        Now evolutionist states that “an important point to remember is that the variety of genes carried by all living species is the result of millions of years of random mutation, natural selection, and genetic drift.” But natural selection only explains survival of the fittest; it fails to explain arrival of the fittest. Natural selection, i.e., the forces of nature, does not change the DNA of the individual animal at all, and can only change the total gene pool of a species by eliminating unfit individuals (leading to the loss, not gain, of genetic information). Genetic drift, or gene shuffling, only involves the shuffling of existing genes within a kind. It does not explain the origination of any gene. Same evolutionist say “New alleles |genes| originate only by mutation.” The only way for organisms to acquire DNA other than what they inherited from their parents is for their DNA to change, or mutate. If their DNA doesn’t change, living things could never change regardless of how much time passes. Lizards could never become chickens and monkeys, and fish could never become philosophers. Since evolution rejects purposeful design, genetic change could only be random, or accidental.
        Evolutionist teaches that all the wonderful organs and enzymes in humans and animals–eyes, hemoglobin, lungs, hearts, and kidneys, all coded with DNA–arose totally by random chance through mutations in DNA. Consider the construction and operation of a machine. If random changes are made to a machine or the blueprint that codes for the construction of the machine, will that help its function? Absolutely not. Random changes occur every day that destroy the manufacture and function of machines. Likewise, random changes to information destroy the function and outcome of that information.

      • Dear Mohamed;

        I agree with you that a Science cannot disprove something decisively, as scientific knowledge is not perfect. Scientific theories are developed generalization of observations. So, the universality of scientific theories is questionable as there can be infinite number of observations, but a theory is based only on a few of them. So, taking science as the yardstick to measure other things is not correct and not justifiable. Further more the scope of science is limited to physical phenomena and transcendental matters are out of its domain. Therefore, I think your arguments against PitastharaPuthraya seem to be more reasonable than his arguments, though the same conclusion cannot be reasonably arrived about the “beliefs” under discussion. There is a possibility that PitastharaPuthraya’s “beliefs” can be more credible than yours, even if your arguments are better. The reason is the beliefs under discussion had not been derived using your arguments, but they are “beliefs” taken from a “holy book”, depicted without argumentation.

        However, just like a theory of science, “creation” too has not established consensus. So, like any other theory it has to establish its accuracy/ universality against better yardsticks. I think non contradiction is one of the such yardsticks/principles. Non dis-provability is another one.

        Do you think “creation” can jump over these two hurdles?

        I will give you just one example from one of your posts. You say;

        “It’s the “natures engineering” the perfect design. Can the whole nature happen by chance? Can an intelligent being come to existence by chance?”

        Here I think you have brought up this argument to say that all these were created, not natural occurred phenomena.

        You say such complex things cannot happen by chance. Your argument then more reiterates that a more complex thing cannot happen by chance. I think “Creator” is a more complex thing than an intelligent being definitely and should be even complex than nature as it was created by the creator as per your argument. Hence, your argument implies that the complex and intelligent “creator” should also should be a perfect design of somebody else. Therefore that “Creator” is not the original creator.

        How do you solve this contradiction?

        Thanks!

      • Mohamed

        Dear yapa

        i must correct that, I never said my belief is without an argument. My belief is based on an argument which I will explain further later. So in my humble opinion I have a stand over others. People can have their own view and can claim their belief is better as per their own understanding. I am fine with it. I hope I better address first the contradiction issue over creator you have put forward and then proceed further.

        You raised a valid point, if I make your point in simple words; if all creations are created by the creator, who created the creator? This is because more complex supernatural being cannot come in to EXISTANCE by chance.

        This is a valid point from perspective of physical phenomena but your question is directed to a power that doesn’t falls under this physical nature. If I make it more clear. The question is valid for creations but not for creator. The word creation itself defines another related function, that is “Time”. All creations are time bounded as the point of creation is the begging of its time. But again time itself something came in to existence, what we are talking about a power that doesn’t limited by time. Which in fact “eternal”. As I pointed out earlier, this is the uniqueness of god’s definition that Islam also advocates which caters the rational thinking. When we talk about the god most of the religion are defining or painting it with the physical nature. But Islamic concept of god is not such which take the forms of creation. The true nature of god is also beyond our comprehension. We only know its existence and nature by creations that super natural power created. It is valid as if anyone tries to elaborate an object that in the universe, need an understanding of a related objected or pre information. For instance if a person not seen an elephant, asks you to explain about it, you will put forward some related object or pre information that he knows, such as, leg is in the size of a tree trunk, tail is like a broom etc. what is the other person should know are, what is a tree trunk and what is a broom, etc. Otherwise he will never be able to understand. With this sense, god is something beyond our compression as there is no related pre information to explain. All what we can understand is the existence of such power that driven by creations that need a designer and engineer, this is a pre request of all the system around us to be exist. this is the rational thinking behind it. If you put forward this in to a logical frame, then also the same is true.

        Statement 1: The physical world, due to its nature of engineering, demands a designer. Because, creations cannot come in to existence by chance.
        Statement 2: The creator which designed and engineered the physical world should be eternal. In other words, no beginning and no end.

        First statement is an observable truth. Second is a necessary condition for first to be true. Hence the second statement should be true. This is an argument for “creations” and “creator” concept or “creationism”

        On the other hand I had told, my adherence to Islam is not blind view or driven by other physical need such as to marry a muslim woman. I see some question the islam because they cannot fulfill some of their desire such as marrying a non muslim man et. the reason behind my acceptance is driven by careful analysis not only about the natures engineering but also the major religions.

        If I come to major religions. Abrahamic religion such as Judaism, Christianity and Islam are with the “creator – creation “concept. Indian religion such as Vedic religion also with the same concept. At the mean time other non Vedic religion such as Jainism and Buddhism though doesn’t explicitly mention about the concept of god, the existence of a supernatural power is a condition for some concept such as karma to take place. For instance, the karma is a reflection of previous deed ( as per hindusiam or buddism) or desire ( as per Jainism). Inshort this is what makes a person to reborn as a superior being or inferior being. It cannot happen by chance as there must be a direction towards them by analyzing his previous deed or desire. So such concept indirectly demands a supernatural power to direct or program such events.

        If there is a supernatural power, it should have delivered its message. The right place to know about these message are religions as they are the one directly or indirectly points a creator which demanded by the natures engineering.

        These religions have something in common, that is, the message and renewal of message once it loose its originality due to human intervention. In fact this is what some people here also demands from islam. They want to be selective and like to alter the message the way they want without taking any attempt to understand the religion and its true teaching. The same would have happened to earlier religions. for instance if you scrutinize Christian bible jesus had never demanded trinity but most of his statements are enforcing monotheism. He distinguish himself from god and foretold another messenger and named him as “comforter” . Some in the case of Vedas, some are preaching the monotheism contrary to the Hindu religious view of polytheism. Even they demand the refreshment of message when they are altered and corrupted. This understanding is there in all religion and this is the reason Jews waiting for messiah, Elijah and “a prophet”, Christian teachings demands “a comforter” , Hindus waiting for kalki avatar and Buddhism waiting for Maitreya. All of them have something in common that is belief in Absolute and eternal supernatural power and its final message. The differences due to lost in originality, this is driven by two factors
        1. Human intervention and alteration
        2. The time gap between the point of message received and put those messages in writing, this gap had reform the teaching.

        For me Islam has clearly defined the nature of this super natural power which demanded by the natures engineering, it highlights the previous messages and the finality of the message.

        As I mentioned earlier, people may have their own view and understanding based on the exposure and analysis. I am convenience with what I have analyzed. So I am never blind and never bounded for self desires.

      • Dear Mohamed;

        Thank you for the response. It is interesting. Give me a little time (maximum two days)to answer your questions.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Mohwmed;

        I must say something about your correction mentioned at the beginning. I too didn’t say that your belief was not without arguments, what I said was the ideas of Quaran were not based on arguments. On the other hand though your belief can be based on arguments, the validity and accuracy of those arguments are matters that bears some concern. Because, no amount of arguments make a single point if the arguments are not accurate. I am not the presumption that your arguments are inaccurate, but there is no assurance that they are not as well. Anyway we will have to go into details, on the presumption that availability of arguments is not necessarily a reason to believe that the conclusions derived on them are correct. A small defect in an argument can sink the “Titanic”.

        Yes, my question was who created the creator.

        Your answer is that it is not a valid point as “the creator” is not “physical” but a more complex super natural being”.

        Now we will see whether your argument that my point is not relevant to super natural being or not.

        I think being “not physical” is not a merit to establish something’s existence, but the opposite. Many of us believe physical things exist as they can be experienced. But the non physical things do not have that merit. Establishing the existence of “non physical” things are rather difficult. For instance take a few non physical entities/concepts we know.

        The concept of unicorn is a non physical entity/concept prevailing among the people. But its considered as non existing and as a myth, because there is no a corresponding thing reality to that concept. For the same reason, “Chinese Dragon” is considered as myth.

        Those two myths are mentioned in many more books than the Creator, I think Creator is mentioned in the Bible, Quaran and in a few other books. Still they are considered as myths because one of the main criteria to decide the existence is availability of a correspondence entity in the reality to the concept. Disregarding whether a concept (proposition)is physical or non physical non availability of a correspondence entity in reality over rule the existence of the proposition (concept). Does your proposition fulfill this criterion? Is the creator a existent reality or just a proposition/concept? I think have not provided anything to supportive the existence of the creator, rather than just telling over and over again the proposition. A proposition does not prove it self true, how much time talked about it. A proposition must be proved to be accepted.

        So, I think in the debate there is nothing available to accept that there exists a creator, leave aside his attributed qualities like “eternal” or “Almighty” or subsequent issues such as “creation”. It is a simply understandable logic that if something does not exist, there is no use of discussing about its “designated qualities” or assumed consequences.

        Therefore, I think before discussing the details of the “creator” we must establish that there is a creator. Otherwise it would be like holding international seminars about the medicinal value of the “horn of the unicorn”.

        I will come to the other issues as well. Shall we finish the things one by one, unless it hurts the total argument. I think this step does not affect other matters, the shortest and best way to solve the issue. I think we should hold the bull by its horn.

        Please answer the specific issue.

        Thanks!

      • Mohamed

        Dear yapa

        Let me begin with your statement, a small defect in an argument can sink the “Titanic”. True enough. When I say non physical it doesn’t mean that it’s a myth, rather I have pointed out clearly something not falls in to our yardstick which really exist.

        I am sorry to say that the defect in your part is imperfect analogy. To claim Unicorn or dragon’s existence; they didn’t given any clue of its existence other than mere printing in the book. Mean time I didn’t claim of a creator just because they are presented in the books, BUT the natures demand of a designer and engineer. Hence I have gone behind the books to understand its characteristic and realized why its not falls under our yardstick of physical measurement. Hope you got the differences clearly

        Your claim of requesting to put aside “creation” as subsequent event is against the scientific or logical thinking and I feel biased towards the philosophy you willing to insist or prefer to follow. Many theories developed with subsequent events. For instance take “big bang” theory. Following observable facts demands the theory or supports the theory.

        1.Galaxies appear to be moving away from us at speeds proportional to their distance. This is called “Hubble’s Law,” named after Edwin Hubble who discovered this phenomenon in 1929. This observation supports the expansion of the universe and suggests that the universe was once compacted in to a infinite dense point
        2.if the universe was initially very, very hot as the Big Bang suggests, we should be able to find some remnant of this heat. In 1965, Radioastronomers Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson discovered a 2.725 k Cosmic Microwave Background radiation (CMB) which pervades the observable universe. This is thought to be the remnant which scientists were looking for. Penzias and Wilson shared in the 1978 Nobel Prize for Physics for their discovery.
        3.the abundance of the “light elements” Hydrogen and Helium found in the observable universe are thought to support the Big Bang model of origins.

        All of above are subsequent events of big bang as per the theory and according to your way of demand bigbang theory should be proven without above observable facts. Sorry that’s not the way, scientific, logical or rational thinking works. Mean time, if someone asks you what was before big bang none of us able to say anything other than non comprehensible which scientist will claim as singularity.
        Same is with my argument. Observable requirement which is perfect engineering in nature demands designer and an engineer. For your question what created this supernatural power, my answer is, it is eternal and reason behind its eternality is something for us not comprehensible because we don’t have the yardstick to understand it with proper measurement. The same answer which talks about the singularity.

        Of course you can put forward another model against big bang theory which also MUST explain above observable facts. The same way you can put forward another explanation for these natures engineering and design which is observable in nature. Then we can talk about which is much valid and based on what.

        Thank you

      • yapa

        Dear Mohamed;

        I didn’t suggest to strictly limit our arguments to the creator alone at present, what I said was to limit to it unless didn’t “hurt” the total argument. It was said for the convenience of the debate only for and nothing else. This is what I said

        “Shall we finish the things one by one, unless it hurts the total argument. I think this step does not affect other matters, the shortest and best way to solve the issue.”

        There is no any insistence, if you feel you need any other concept to explain any concept you may use them. But the purpose should be to make them clear, not to make them unnecessarily complicated. I requested that only for the purpose of clarity of the arguments.

        You say, unlike unicorn and the Chinese dragon, nature demands a creator. You posed it as a logical demand.

        However, in my first post addressed to you I showed how that demand ends with a logical contradiction. Therefore that (logical) demand has no validity for a necessity of an existence of a creator. Further, nature can exists more logically without the existence of a creator.

        There is no absolutely reason to believe everything should have a beginning. What if it does not? Does it create any contradiction the way the introduction of creator does, by trying to suggest a beginning to nature? Not at all. There is no any valid reason than human’s will to suggest a beginning to nature. Such introduction as a creator or as the Big Bang did not establish a better theory than non existence of a beginning. I think all the evidence found to suggest the Theory of Big Bang can suggest the Crunch theory as well. Crunch theory does not need a beginning for nature and does not make any contradictions. However, the theory of Creator is a much “lower theory” which creates contradictions within itself and collapse down to a non theory.

        Now it is clear that as per the argument forwarded by you, nature does not demand a creator, not only that that claim ends up with a contradiction, hence that argument does not hold water. So, you have so far failed to show any valid reason to your claim that nature demands a creator. If you have some other arguments, we can discuss and consider. Up to now there is no difference in the claims of the existence of unicorn, Chinese dragon or the creator. For sure creator makes troubles to the claim of a creator, by creating contradictions to his existence.

        As you agreed, the defect of that argument (the contradiction) sank the Titanic: the Creator.

        Now you say “When I say non physical it doesn’t mean that it’s a myth, rather I have pointed out clearly something not falls in to our yardstick which really exist.”

        Yes, try to indicate creator as something not falls in to our yardstick, but really exist while unicorn and Chinese dragon do not exist though they also do not fall into our yardstick. What is the special reason you have to separate creator from other two as existent? (Your argument of natures demand has no logical validity) You have not yet shown any special reason that is no common to other two concepts. Until then you cannot claim one has a different quality from other two. Therefore my analogy in the previous post was not affected with your latest post. None of them have provided any clue other than mere existence of the printing books to my knowledge. You have not yet gone a single step beyond the mere reports of the books in proving the existence of the creator. If you provide non contradicting and consistent reasons I will not hesitate to accept it.

        I think as we said scientific theories have no much relevance to relate as examples, as they are not universal in their nature. If we try to give some light from theories of Science to illuminate creator concept, creator would come down to a theory or something less than that.

        I think you will not like to bring down the creator to the level of a scientific theory, which is always waiting to be disproved. I think you know that almost all the Classical Science theories have collapsed, in the advent of the 20th century. I hope you will not bring examples from science to justify the creator. However, I would like to comment on the Big Bang theory and the conclusion you derived on it.

        You say, “Mean time, if someone asks you what was before big bang none of us able to say anything other than non comprehensible which scientist will claim as singularity.
        Same is with my argument. Observable requirement which is perfect engineering in nature demands designer and an engineer.”

        Here your argument is never same with the concept of singularity. Singularity does not demand any designer or engineer but demands the opposite. It says nothing existed other than the singularity before the Big Bang, hence it refuses an existence of any other thing whether a designer, an engineer or (a doctor, ha! ha!!). What you can safely say then is singularity was the creator as singularity becomes the “creation”. Then the creator becomes the creation and hence logically creator demands a beginning that is the beginning of the Big Bang. This contradiction can be cited in another way. Can knife cut itself? Can a hand hold itself? Can an eye see itself? Can a mirror show itself? Can the creator create HIMsef? What a mess the creator is creating?

        Again you say “For your question what created this supernatural power, my answer is, it is eternal and reason behind its eternality…..”

        Other than your belief and contention can you provide any reason to reach at that conclusion? How do you reasonably attribute an arbitrary answer as you don’t see a reason or an answer to a question?

        “….is something for us not comprehensible because we don’t have the yardstick to understand it with proper measurement. The same answer which talks about the singularity.”

        If it is incomprehensible, tell me how anybody can know about the creator? How it came to the comprehensible plane of humans from that incomprehensible plane. In other words, how come it is possible know by the humans just as you and many believers know?

        Comprehending incomprehensible? Very interesting.

        You say “Of course you can put forward another model against big bang theory which also MUST explain above observable facts. The same way you can put forward another explanation for these natures engineering and design which is observable in nature. Then we can talk about which is much valid and based on what.”

        If you want to rely/support creator with scientific theories, as I said before it will collapse with the collapse of that theory and the creator becomes a refugee of Science.

        Do you think so far you made non disputable arguments for the creator? Your different versions also welcome.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Mohamed;

        Let me summarize my last post.

        1. There is absolutely no necessity of a beginning for nature to exist.

        2. Even if there is a beginning, it does not necessarily demand a creator. Your example Big Bang theory itself does not demand a creator though the theory assumed a beginning.

        Therefore, in either case, nature can exist without the necessity of a creator.

        Hence, nature does not demand a designer or an engineer for its existence.

        Therefore creator is a redundant introduction/inclusion made to the nature. It is not necessary at all to explain the existence of nature.

        Thanks!

      • Mohamed

        Dear yapa;

        My earlier post was not on your statement “Shall we finish the things one by one, unless it hurts the total argument. I think this step does not affect other matters, the shortest and best way to solve the issue.” But “leave aside …. or subsequent issues such as “creation”
        For your question “If it is incomprehensible, tell me how anybody can know about the creator?” my answer is the same way scientists comprehended the singularity. If there is no pre-information on an existence or event, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist or never happened.

        I am sorry to say i don’t see any logic behind your argument and you didn’t putfarward any alternative theory for nature’s perfect design and engineering other than “Your argument of natures demand has no logical validity?”. in my humble opinion a blind claim.

        You, yourself suggested alternative theory to bigbang is not standing a chance to be, due to its inherited defects. So that’s the reason still most widely accepted theory is “bigbang”. Someway if you do not put alternative proposal with evidence to perfect engineering, my argument will remain valid.

        Iet say some intelligent being in a remote island which never had seen the latest technology come across an abandon car which holds a perfect engineering. One group of it started to believe this car is something came in to existence by chance because the car holds the elements available in the island, the other group started to believe it was there forever. Then I will consider both their position and thought as without logical argument as they haven’t consider the intelligent design. Same with your point, I feel you are with the second proposition. Your claim is, nature was there before and never been something came in to existence, perfect design it bare has no validity to be considered. All you have to do is produce your proof to consider it as an alternative, of course taking in to account three observable facts that big bang also considered in to its explanation.

        I hope from there we can proceed.
        Thank you

      • Mohamed

        Dear yapa

        For your points

        1. There is absolutely no necessity of a beginning for nature to exist.

        Sorry I totally disagree, this is not true. It is absolutely necessity of a beginning for nature to exist. Physicals laws can be applied to physical world hence this can be proven by science. If your background is technical I can explain this clearly with thermodynamics.

        2. Even if there is a beginning, it does not necessarily demand a creator. Your example Big Bang theory itself does not demand a creator though the theory assumed a beginning.

        Of course it does. This is the place intelligent design demands a designer. Nothing can come in to existence by chance. as I mentioned before bigbang theory speaks about the event in the time line after birth of time and space, but not giving enough insight about the order from disorder

      • yapa

        Dear Mohamed;

        What you said about the car that they are wrong, if they believe this car is something came in to existence by chance. And the same way they are again wrong if they think that car came into existence as a creation of a super natural being.

        Just because we are not aware of the cause, attributing it to chance or to a supernatural being is equally wrong. If you don’t have special reasons they are nothing but arbitrary choices, which have little probability be true.

        So the example of car does not give any help for attributing something to an unknown factor, Creator.

        Now you say “For your question “If it is incomprehensible, tell me how anybody can know about the creator?” my answer is the same way scientists comprehended the singularity. If there is no pre-information on an existence or event, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist or never happened.”

        Dear Mohamed two cases are entirely different. First the singularity was a conclusion of extrapolation of the observation of the continuously expanding universe. It is based on an observation. It is a logical inference based on that observation. Therefore, there is no comprehension problem at all about the singularity. It has no any mystic component or any super natural thing involved, it is perfectly physical conclusion which comes under Physics, which only deals with physical entities. But there is no any such observation implying the creator. On the other hand as you claimed earlier creator is a non physical supernatural entity that cannot be compared with physical entities and has an entirely different existence.

        On the other hand, as I have said earlier singularity as the original point of existence, does not need any outside “force” to turn it to the nature we see today. According to Big Bang theory it happened automatically, if it said there was somebody else to start the process the theory itself gets invalidated as, it has assumed the existence of some thing other than the singularity prevailing before the beginning of the universe.

        So, again I must emphasize you that Big Band does not do any supportive role to the existence of a creator, but act against the concept. Big Band can never assume a creator outside the singularity defending its theory. Only similarity in Big Bang and the creation is that both of them accept that there must be a beginning to the universe (nature), however, it is not a well established fact yet. Rivalry theory, the Crunch Theory has all the advantages the Big Bang theory has, on the available evidence. However, whether the universe has a beginning as per the Big Bang theory or not as per the Crunch theory does not support the existence of a creator. In conclusion both prominent Scientific models provided to explain the universe collide with the concept of a creator. If somebody assumes one of them as credible, he automatically accepts that creator theory is unacceptable.

        You are asking me to provide an alternative theory to the Big Bang. Crunch theory is an alternative for it. Both theories coexisting with the blessings of two schools of scientists. However, none of the theories or the scientists back either of them do not back the existence of a creator. Really it is not possible for them to support it on the basis of the nature of their knowledge systems. They (science)cannot accept something contradicting with it. Creator contradicts with both the prominent Science theories available today.

        Now you must have understood that creator cannot be comprehend the way the singularity was comprehended. Singularity was purely a physical phenomena by its definition.

        On the other hand what evidence do you have for a “nature’s perfect design and engineering”? How come it is perfect? I feel it is more imperfect than perfect. Have you seen any perfect thing in nature? At least have you seen a single perfect man or a woman? The concept of nature’s perfect design and engineering is an imaginary tree that has no roots. It does not hold the ground. Rather than a set of words, it has no any correspondent thing in nature.

        You again say ““Your argument of natures demand has no logical validity?”. in my humble opinion a blind claim.”

        Dear Mohamed what sorts of things you call blind claims? I logically showed you that nature can more logically exists without a creator than with HIM. I logically proved that existence of a creator is contradicting with his existence itself. You cannot say my claim is blind but in that case you will have to say sound argument of Deductive logic is faulty.

        On the other hand it is also the claim of the Big Bang Theory and also the claim of the Crunch Theory.

        According to Science and Logic not only the creator is a redundant inclusion to explain the nature, but it also contradicts withing itself and with the other commonly more acceptable theories.

        You say “You, yourself suggested alternative theory to bigbang is not standing a chance to be, due to its inherited defects. So that’s the reason still most widely accepted theory is “bigbang”. Someway if you do not put alternative proposal with evidence to perfect engineering, my argument will remain valid.”

        No I didn’t say Big Bang is not standing a chance. What I said was it is not the only logically possible theory.

        I will explain a bit to you.

        The beginning of the Big Bang came as a result of the observation that the universe is (presently) expanding. Thinking backward in time on the presumption that “the universe have been ever expanding”, they arrived at the logical inference that universe should have existed as a dimensionless point (singularity)at a certain point of time in the past. However, there is any other valid reason this presumption to be taken as more correct than not. There is no any valid reason for anybody to think universe only expanded just because it is presently expanding. There is no sensibility of concluding a presently accelerating car accelerated for ever. So, that presumption is only an “axiom” to develop the Big Bang. Without that axiom/presumption there is no a Big Bang Theory.

        Same way if one assumes though the universe is expanding presently, it could have contracted in the past then on that axiom one can construct the Crunch theory.

        Neither of those two axioms has any advantage over the other. Both axioms are of logically equal merit.

        No one is certain whether either of these theories are correct. That is why they are still theories.

        However, one of the main obstacle available against the Big Bang is that the validity theory formation process is that they have to believe/assume that their process(extrapolation)invalidates at a point preferred by them, that is at the point where the universe becomes a singularity. But what is the big reason to think that there is an invalidating point at all or if it is there, it to be assigned to that specific point of time and not any other point of time before or after that specific point?

        So, Big Bang Theory needs more assumptions than Crunch Theory to come up as a theory. So, as per Okham’s Razor, I prefer the theory with less assumptions, the Crunch Theory. However, empirical evidence may change my stance.

        I think I explained an alternative theory you requested however, you can see both of the theories opposes the existence of a creator.

        Do you have any more scientific theory to help the existence of the creator or do you want to solely based on an independent theory (from science)to establish HIS existence.

        We should see the validity of any theory or argument before accepting the conclusions. We can discuss your other alternatives as well.

        However, I should note following facts.

        1. Creator has no corresponding in reality. Hence, it does not agree with the “Correspondence Theory of Truth”.

        2. It contradicts with more credible facts (in Science and also withing itself.) Hence it does not agree with the “Coherence Theory of Truth”.

        Further, if possible please tell me according to what modern theory of truth, the existence of creator can be justified and accepted as true.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Correction……

        The first sentence should be read as,

        Your statement that they are wrong if they believe the car is something came in to existence by chance is correct.

        (Sorry about the inconvenience caused due to my poor standard of English)

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Mohamed;

        This ie regarding your post of May 20, 2012 • 11:32 am

        You say

        “”””1. There is absolutely no necessity of a beginning for nature to exist.

        Sorry I totally disagree, this is not true. It is absolutely necessity of a beginning for nature to exist. Physicals laws can be applied to physical world hence this can be proven by science. If your background is technical I can explain this clearly with thermodynamics.””””

        You may disagree with reasons, not without reasons. I showed there is no any weight logically or in terms of probability or with evidence to suggest there should be a beginning than there shouldn’t be. If you say you disagree it is you who should support it.

        I am quite comfortable with science. You may use science to justify your stance.

        You say:

        “””2. Even if there is a beginning, it does not necessarily demand a creator. Your example Big Bang theory itself does not demand a creator though the theory assumed a beginning.

        Of course it does. This is the place intelligent design demands a designer. Nothing can come in to existence by chance. as I mentioned before bigbang theory speaks about the event in the time line after birth of time and space, but not giving enough insight about the order from disorde”””

        My dear Mohamed, I should say that you have caught up in the fallacy of “Infinite Regression”.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infinite_regress

        You assume a Creator. To justify the creator you assume a perfect design in nature. To justify the perfect design you assume nothing can come into existence by chance or by itself. To justify the creation you will have assume that there is a beginning to the universe. To justify the creators existence against the creation you will have to assume eternity to the creator. To justify the perfect design you will have to assume “almighty” and “omniscience” to the creator, where is the end. An answer leads to another question.

        As you indicated you are comfortable with Science, I would like to draw your attention to the beginning of the “Brief History of Science” written by the famous Theoretical Physicist, Prof. Steven Hawking.

        “A well-known scientist (some say it was Bertrand Russell) once gave a public lecture on astronomy. He described how the earth orbits around the sun and how the sun, in turn, orbits around the center of a vast collection of stars called our galaxy. At the end of the lecture a little old lady at the back of the room got up and said: ‘What you have told us is rubbish. The world is really a flat plate supported on the back of a giant tortoise.’ The scientist gave a superior smile before replying, ‘What is the turtle standing on?’ ‘You’re very clever, young man, very clever,’ said the little old lady. ‘But it’s turtles all the way down.”

        Thanks!

      • Mohamed

        Dear yapa

        i read the post and thank you.i will reply once i get enough time.

      • Mohamed

        Dear yapa

        Please read this carefully before you reply, I found we are not understanding each other and there is a communication gap. I have written this by taking much time to avoid this sort of discrepancy. I am not forwarding any circular or infinite arguments as you claim. Here also I tried to explain my argument simple possible way to avoid the communication gap.

        Thanks for suggesting “Brief History of Science” by Steven Hawking which was published in 1988; to be frank with you its came in to my book collection years back and its one of his old book, I suggest you to read his new book “The Grand Design” Where in my opinion again fail to detail out the claim of atheism for few reasons that he himself admit. I feel it better to be name that book as “in search of the grand design”. For me “the grand design” is another book which explains our universe as a more complex design and demands a designer. It simply extended the understanding of existing complex design but not explaining anything about the positions of such design in detail other than blindly claiming as co incidents. For me this books lacks following

        1.He failed to explain the process and condition how everything came to existence with a precious design. For him every event is a chance and magic
        2.He says, that our universe followed inevitably from the laws of nature. But, we might ask, how they governed. This facts is not answered
        3.He has taken M-theory as a universal theory which is having some overlapping of two basic theories, Quantum theory and theory of General Relativity .With this 11 space-time dimensions (most of them so tiny and curled-up that they’re undetectable), and populated not only by vibrating strings and particles, but two-dimensional membranes, three-dimensional blobs and multidimensional objects called p-branes. Under M-theory’s tenets, Hawking contends, it is possible for the universe — actually multiple, coexisting universes — to pop into being from nothing. In short conclude that the creation of the universe was therefore “a quantum event. In the early stages time-space was either stretched or compressed, resulting in “mixing.” This mixing gave rise to our universes and other universes spontaneously. Some of these universes died while others like our own began to expand at alarming rates. In chapter seven, entitled “The Apparent Miracle,” the authors proceed to acknowledge the several coincidences that have made the earth a habitable planet for intelligent life. The earth lies in the goldilocks zone, and the authors outline how its circular orbit is “friendly to life,” and how it is fortunately situated in the solar system. These are all lucky coincidences but towards the end of the chapter the authors conclude that this would have been remarkable if other such planets with similar hospitable environments did not exist. if the concept of m-theory is proven to be correct all I can say is what sir Isaac Newton said back in history of course with additional claim of lessoning the probability further to happen everything by chance. “Atheism is so senseless. When I look at the solar system, I see the earth at the right distance from the sun to receive the proper amounts of heat and light. This did not happen by chance.” “The true God is a living, intelligent and powerful being.” (Sir Isaac Newton)
        The problem some contemporary scientists have in digesting the super natural power as the people define god in terms of material being where they place him in our time and space. But islam always shown a different approach when it comes to this super natural power ( by separating creation and creator) and I never had any problem in understanding this supernatural power and its nature.

        Mean time I found some general physics errors in your explanation in defining the axiom, etc and I’ll tried to clear them out in this reply.

        If you follow the “Brief History of Science” properly it will explain the expansion of universe but after this many development in observation took place such as in 1998 discovery which is universe is expanding and accelerating in expansion. A phenomenon against the bigcrunch.

        Initially, scientists believed that there were only two factors that greatly influenced the expansion: the gravitational force of attraction between all the galaxies (which is proportional to the density) and their outward momentum due to the Big Bang. But that was until scientists discovered that the Universe was actually increasing its rate of expansion at regions farthest from us.To explain this phenomena, scientists had to assume the presence of an unknown entity, which they dubbed ‘dark energy’. It is widely believed that this entity is pushing all galaxies farther apart. With dark energy, and what little is known about it, in the picture, there seems to be little room for the possibility of a Big Crunch.

        The Big Crunch is one of the scenarios predicted by scientists in which the Universe may end. Just like many others, it is based on Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity. That is, if the Big Bang describes how the Universe most possibly began, the Big Crunch describes how it will end as a consequence of that beginning. Its not an alternative theory to bigbang but a theory that talks about end of all. As big bang is try to clarify beginning of universe (or whether existence of universe forever) hence an alternative theory to big bang have to be describe with the same concept whch try to explain the beginning or existence the observable evidences such as why universe is expanding etc.
        Please note that I know well there are models alternative to big bang and my request was not to give them here. Let me clear my point.
        If a person is interested in arguing against bigbang theory, he is left with the choice of presenting an alternative model to bigbang and should explain all the observable evidences same as the bigbang theory explains. SAME WAY (please note this). If you putforwrd a concept against creationism you have to explain the observable evidence how the perfect design came in to existence which is an observable evidence. When I say perfect design, it doesn’t mean that something design to be eternal. A car is a perfect design by considering purpose of transportation. It engineered well to serve the purpose. If you are not a perfect design you may not be read what I am writing here. My request clearly .

        You had tried to explain singularity as a well understood concept of since. Please see this vedio which explain the limit by plank wall on this singularity.

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPuhJ98VjoA

        There is a hope of understanding this singularity in an indirect methods which they hope to push the wall behind, because its clear that the scientists say “ after the wall all the laws (of physics) came to existence” , this is why I say, big bang is a singularity and we have know yardstick to explain it as all the physical laws came in to existence after this. My question is, there are matters and events still science cannot explain but feel, the same is true for the concept of creator. Through the intelligent design among us makes it feel. If you think it’s not, please explain with an alternative theory with present observation of intelligent design as I demanded above where even steven failed to present.

        I said earlier we have enough scientific understanding when it comes to beginning of universe and I’ll put this in simple words possible for all to understand. By understanding thermodynamics, especially entropy, we can conclude that everything in our universe had a begging. The entropy principle, however, is nothing less than the Second Law of Thermodynamics, which is as universal and certain a law as exists in science. First, however, before discussing the Second Law, we should define the First Law and, for that matter, thermodynamics itself.
        Thermodynamics is a compound of two Greek words, therme (“heat”) and dunamis(“power”). It is the science that speaks of the power or energy contained in heat, and its conversion to other forms of energy. The term “energy” is itself derived from the Greek wordenergeia (“working”), and is normally defined as “the capacity to do work.” In modern scientific terminology, “energy” and “work” are considered equivalent, each measured as the product of a force times the distance through which it acts (foot-pounds, in the English system of dimensions). Something which has “energy” has the “capacity to do work” … that is, the capacity to exert a force through a distance.”
        The concept of “power” is closely related to that of “energy” except that the time factor must also be taken into account. Power is the work done, or the energy expended to do the work, per unit of time measured in foot-pounds per second.

        If we look in to The First Law of Thermodynamics
        Since all processes are fundamentally energy conversion processes, and since everything that happens in the physical universe is a “process” of some kind, it is obvious why the Two Laws of Thermodynamics are recognized as the most universal and fundamental of all scientific laws. Everything that exists in the universe is some form of energy, and everything thathappens is some form of energy conversion. Thus the Laws which govern energy and energy conversion are of paramount importance in understanding the world in which we live.

        Isaac Asimov defines the First Law as follows:
        “To express all this, we can say: ‘Energy can be transferred from one place to another, or transformed from one form to another, but it can be neither created nor destroyed.’ Or we can put it another way: ‘The total quantity of energy in the universe is constant.’ When the total quantity of something does not change, we say that it is conserved. The two statements given above, then, are two ways of expressing ‘the law of conservation of energy.’ This law is considered the most powerful and most fundamental generalization about the universe that scientists have ever been able to make.”

        Asimov makes a very interesting point when he says concerning this Law: “No one knows why energy is conserved.” He should have said, of course, that science cannot tell us why energy is neither created nor destroyed.

        When it comes to the Second Law in Classical Thermodynamics
        In so-called classical thermodynamics, the Second Law, like the First, is formulated in terms of energy.

        “It is in the transformation process that Nature appears to exact a penalty and this is where the second principle makes its appearance. For every naturally occurring transformation of energy is accompanied, somewhere, by a loss in the availability of energy for the future performance of work.”

        In this case, entropy can be expressed mathematically in terms of the total irreversible flow of heat. It expresses quantitatively the amount of energy in an energy conversion process which becomes unavailable for further work. In order for work to be done, the available energy has to “flow” from a higher level to a lower level. When it reaches the lower level, the energy is still in existence, but no longer capable of doing work. Heat will naturally flow from a hot body to a cold body, but not from a cold body to a hot body.

        For this reason, no process can be 100% efficient, with all of the available energy converted into work. Some must be deployed to overcome friction and will be degraded to non-recoverable heat energy, which will finally be radiated into space and dispersed. For the same reason a self-contained perpetual motion machine is an impossibility.
        Since, as we have noted, everything in the physical universe is energy in some form and, since in every process some energy becomes unavailable, it is obvious that ultimately all energy in the universe will be unavailable energy, if present processes go on long enough. When that happens, presumably all the various forms of energy in the universe will have been gradually converted through a multiplicity of processes into uniformly (that is, randomly) dispersed heat energy. Everything will be at the same low temperature. There will be no “differential” of energy levels, therefore no “gradient” of energy to induce its flow. No more work can be done and the universe will reach what the physicists call its ultimate “heat death.”

        Thus, the Second Law proves, as certainly as science can prove anything physical system, that the universe had a beginning because this entropy is increasing and not decreasing when it comes to the our limited universe.

        Also you said 1. Creator has no corresponding in reality. Hence, it does not agree with the “Correspondence Theory of Truth”.2. It contradicts with more credible facts (in Science and also withing itself.) Hence it does not agree with the “Coherence Theory of Truth”.

        I think still you haven’t got the simple point that, reality and truth that you have defined are limited with the physical world if your realy want to see them in your naked eye. Perhaps you have to revisit my earlier post to grasp them clearly which I said the indirect method rather than the direct method is taken to prove existence of super natural power. In short the “requirement for every intelligent design a designer.”

        Let me now come to the final part, the car example I have given you said

        “ Your statement that they are wrong if they believe the car is something came in to existence by chance is correct. And the same way they are again wrong if they think that car came into existence as a creation of a super natural being.Just because we are not aware of the cause, attributing it to chance or to a supernatural being is equally wrong. If you don’t have special reasons they are nothing but arbitrary choices, which have little probability be true.So the example of car does not give any help for attributing something to an unknown factor, Creator.”

        If they are wrong to think that car came by chance, the prudent approach is to study the design and engineering behind that car and come to a conclusion that the car was designed by a designer and an engineer. Also better to understand how the car was designed and replicate it and use in the island. The same way, for me science is the study of laws in our nature and all that process which demands a designer behind it. i cannot explain simple than this I guess.
        I haven’t caught up in the fallacy of “Infinite Regression” as you have mistakenly understood.
        1.Complexity of our physical world need a designer due to the fact that nothing can happen by chance
        2.The designer who designs this cannot measured due to the fact that our yardsticks are limited which only help us to define the physical world.
        3.Hence go for available message if given by this designer and that place is nothing but a philosophy not contradicts with available physical observation
        4.Such entity is properly define in Islam and other philosophies have their own limitation when it comes to physical science
        5.I rest my case to Islam

      • Mohamed
      • Dear Mohamed;

        Thank you very much for the long reply.

        With regard to the communication gap you have mentioned I should say something first. I had no problem of understanding anything you mentioned in your posts. My problem in writing is, while accepting my English is not very good, is mainly due to my carelessness and also my attitude. In my case i put more emphasis on the content rather than language and grammar. Though I can recheck the accuracy of language using tools available online, I never do as I take it as a tool of communication, and when I feel my writing is sufficient for understanding by others, I satisfy with it, I put my saved energy to improve the content. I do not believe language is that much important when the content is very important. I believe “Snow is white” in every language, hence I do not invest much in language. However, I accept readers undergo difficulties in reading my posts.

        The passage of “The Brief History of Time” (not Brief History of Science, as I incorrectly mentioned in my last post addressed to you) I quoted not considering its Scientific value but considering its logical value. It is one of the best examples for “Infinite Regress”, which I said you were caught up in. The objective of quoting Hawking was to explain how you were caught up in that “Logical Fallacy” and I think you remember I did not rely on Science in engaging with you. Unlike PP, Gamarala or Saban at the very beginning I said Science is not a fruitful tool in this discussion. This is what I said in the beginning.

        ……………
        “I agree with you that a Science cannot disprove something decisively, as scientific knowledge is not perfect. Scientific theories are developed generalization of observations. So, the universality of scientific theories is questionable as there can be infinite number of observations, but a theory is based only on a few of them. So, taking science as the yardstick to measure other things is not correct and not justifiable. Further more the scope of science is limited to physical phenomena and transcendental matters are out of its domain. Therefore, I think your arguments against PitastharaPuthraya seem to be more reasonable than his arguments, though the same conclusion cannot be reasonably arrived about the “beliefs” under discussion…….

        However, just like a theory of science, “creation” too has not established consensus. So, like any other theory it has to establish its accuracy/ universality against better yardsticks. I think non contradiction is one of the such yardsticks/principles. Non dis-provability is another one.

        Do you think “creation” can jump over these two hurdles?”

        This is what I said in a later post.

        “I think as we said scientific theories have no much relevance to relate as examples, as they are not universal in their nature. If we try to give some light from theories of Science to illuminate creator concept, creator would come down to a theory or something less than that.

        I think you will not like to bring down the creator to the level of a scientific theory, which is always waiting to be disproved. I think you know that almost all the Classical Science theories have collapsed, in the advent of the 20th century. I hope you will not bring examples from science to justify the creator. However, I would like to comment on the Big Bang theory and the conclusion you derived on it.”

        ……………..

        So you understand I refuse to take Science as my tool at the very beginning, agreeing with your arguments against our friend PP.

        Big Bang theory too came into my discussion, as a result of you quoting it to justify one of your claims. This is what you said,

        “Mean time, if someone asks you what was before big bang none of us able to say anything other than non comprehensible which scientist will claim as singularity.
        Same is with my argument. Observable requirement which is perfect engineering in nature demands designer and an engineer.”

        So, I never wanted this “insufficient yardstick” to be used in our discussion, but used it only because I had to use it to answer your questions, examples and queries.

        Just for that same reason I would like to mention a bit about “The Grand Design” of Hawking and Thermodynamics too keeping in mind that Science is not the perfect tool for the purpose.

        Really the main purpose of “The Grand Design” was to refute the necessity of a creator for the existence of universe. As you have rightly pointed out he has failed in that endeavour, as one should expect. In the video cited by Saban to Hawking fails. He choose the wrong tool, weak tool, when the perfect tool “first principles” formulated by Aristotle are available.

        Science based on Inductive Logic is not perfect. Even if Science is perfect, it can never grasp the total reality as the scope of science is limited to “physical world” and reality does not confine to that domain.

        However, it also should be noted that Science bear the “truths of second degree”, just after the truths obtained trough “logical reasoning”, which one can say perfect. he knowledge gained through “faith”, “hearsay”, “authority” etc. etc. never even come close to science.

        You say Crunch Theory is not an alternative to Big Bang. Really Crunch is a alternative to explain the universe parallel to Big Bang, which opposes the notion put forward by Big Bang, and in that sense it is an alternative to Big Bang. Otherwise, there is no sense in giving an alternative to Big Band if the alternative is not different from it. It is not a alternative for Big Bang but fundamentally differs from from it. However, “Creation” is an exact alternative for Big Bang in the sense both accept a beginning to the universe, however, I clearly showed that Big Bang is a better theory than “creation” and how creation becomes a non theory, by contradicting itself and with more credible knowledge systems. I also showed another of its basic short comings to be accept as “true”, as it has no correspondence in reality.
        You tied to indicate this as a case confine to “physical reality”, no, it is applicable even to metaphysical realities as well. You again try to say though there is no correspondence, nature demands it. Such demands are represented in “Coherence Theory rut” and if such demands are there they should “cohere” or consistent with other accepted truths. But in this case too creator does not stand to this challenge, it contradicts with itself and also with a better knowledge system you too referred to justify the explain the existence of a creator, with both Big Bang and the crunch. Therefore, again that path too is closed for the creation as creation cannot be demanded with contradicting other facts.

        Now, you talk of Thermodynamics. Don’t you see the First Law of Thermodynamics contradicts with the creation? If the universe was created out of nothing, according to the conservation of energy, there cannot be any energy in the universe now. So again Creation contradicts again with what you quoted from Science. Please see all what you cited from Science to support the creation opposed the creation. I am sure the more you cite from Science to substantiate the creation, the more you get contradictions. I invite you to quote from any theory of Science, I think I will most probably contradict all of them using science itself.

        However, you could not answer, why the question, “who creates the creator?” creates contradictions with the creator concept. That was not based on Science or not limited to physical sphere alone. It stands itself without the help of anything, as it is based on logical reasoning. You know any theory, which has a single contradiction becomes invalidated, it will no more can prevail as a theory. Creation theory has no validity any more if it cannot solve this contradiction it faces.

        I expect your response for this post. I have more effective tools to against the creation. I think they are unnecessary, if you cannot solve the above contradiction. I think that is the main issue you are faced with now.

        However, I cannot understand how a person with knowledge in modern science going back to quote Newton for the support of his arguments. I think Newtonian Science is discarded as a way of explaining nature, invalidating his thinking in that line. His wrong line of thinking was the result of his wrong world outlook. What is the use of quoting discarded thinking in the era of “modern Science”?

        Thanks!

      • Dear Mohamed;

        I would like to touch upon the the conclusion you indicate as arrived at in the light of second law of thermodynamics.

        However, your conclusion has nothing to do with what you have described in terms of the second law of thermodynamics. This is what you said,

        “Everything will be at the same low temperature. There will be no “differential” of energy levels, therefore no “gradient” of energy to induce its flow. No more work can be done and the universe will reach what the physicists call its ultimate “heat death.”

        Thus, the Second Law proves, as certainly as science can prove anything physical system, that the universe had a beginning because this entropy is increasing and not decreasing when it comes to the our limited universe.”

        In terms of thermodynamics it is true that there is a possibility some day our universe would reach a “heat death”. But tell me how it implies that there is a beginning to the universe.

        For me I don’t see any relationship in the description of the second law of thermodynamics and your conclusion. For me, it is not an argument different from “The dog ate the bun, therefore the apple fell on the head of Issac Newton”. If you think there is any sense more than that please explain the connection between the description and the conclusion, step by step. It is a common mistake from the part of many “decision makers” to think availability of information tends to conclusions they desire. The most difficult part is to draw (right)conclusions out of information, not understanding the information. I think you have well understood the physics parts of your argument but arrived at a conclusion the argument does not point to.

        So, thermodynamics you explained does not give any support to the burning necessity of theists that the universe has a beginning.

        Further, I would like to draw a bit attention to the last five points you made to conclude your post.

        ………….
        1.Complexity of our physical world need a designer due to the fact that nothing can happen by chance
        2.The designer who designs this cannot measured due to the fact that our yardsticks are limited which only help us to define the physical world.
        3.Hence go for available message if given by this designer and that place is nothing but a philosophy not contradicts with available physical observation
        4.Such entity is properly define in Islam and other philosophies have their own limitation when it comes to physical science
        5.I rest my case to Islam

        …………………….

        1. above you first cited as “perfect design” and here change to complexity. You were failed to explain why a perfect design is needed rather than just claiming it. I think you know that a claim does not justify itself. Perfectness of a design or a complexity of it is not a “free lunch” for a creator. They doesn’t themselves indicate a creator. Complexity is the nature, some times may be for the “human laws”, and may not be for others. As I have said earlier, if the nature was “complex to the creator” then again he can be the creator, and he cannot create the world in six days. Then the complexity itself contradicts with the creator. On the other hand “perfect design” is not really perfect at all seemingly or in deep sense as well. I think you know what Chaos Theory suggests. It suggests universe is more of chaos rather than perfect (design).

        2. Clearly this is not relevant as it was only a consequence of 1- above. However, tell me specifically what “yardstick of ours” is not sufficiently deal with the subject. Science we have already set aside. But there are many more “yardsticks” that do not limit their capacity to physical world alone. Do you say they too cannot deal with the subject? Deductive reasoning? First principles of philosophy?

        3. If they only contradicts with physical observations what you said is true. But the contradictions I showed to you were not physical with physical observations. They are the contradictions taken place in the sphere of philosophy, if specifically mentioned, in first principle of philosophy, which is equally applicable to both physical and non physical phenomena. How can you solve the riddle when they contradict with things in the non physical sphere as well?

        4. You say that entity is properly defined in Islam, hence ask to follow it.

        My dear friend a knowledge system/theory obtained through a set of axioms cannot justify its axioms. Those axioms are always right according to the deduced knowledge on them. A worm born and lived whole his life in a bitter gourd cannot “say chocolate is “delicious” the only thing can say is “bitter gourd is delicious”, which is true in his domain, but not true for the outside world. Those are “system specific truths” which is true only in relation to that reference frame. What you said is true only for the believers of Islam. When you accept the axioms of Islam, everything in Islam is true to you. It is true for Christianity as well. When you accept the fundamental beliefs of Christianity, everything in Christianity is true fur you. There is no merit for Islam in your logic. Just because the bitter gourd is delicious for that particular worm, it does not jump into the general theory that “the bitter gourd is the only delicious thing.” This is my version of “Godel’s Theorem”.

        5.I rest my case to Islam

        You can do it in faith just like others do, but not with any sound arguments as you claimed in the beginning, at least for now. Not a single argument you brought forward so far pointed to a logical existence of a creator, preventing you from believing Islam with a logical background.

        Thanks!

      • Correction………..

        “As I have said earlier, if the nature was “complex to the creator” then again he can be the creator, and he cannot create the world in six days.”

        Should be

        “As I have said earlier, if the nature was “complex to the creator” then again he can [not]be the creator, and he cannot create the world in six days.”

        Thanks!

      • Mohamed

        Dear yapa
        As I cannot spare much time I’ll write shortly what is important
        Positive energy is constant and first law of thermodynamics talks about conservation of this energy, negative energy or dark energy is not considered in the subsequent laws of thermodynamics. The question what separated the negative and positive energy remain unanswered (according to some m-theorist due to membrane friction, but many do not agree).

        Your position is; science cannot prove anything, many others position here is; science can prove everything. My position is science can prove only whatever comes in to the domain of physical laws ( if considering only the present time and space we live) anything beyond is over limitation. I insist again I don’t put the supernatural power that I claim in this physical domain. So I rest my case here to understand my point. If not possible, I have no other means to explain.

        Please note that Newton’s works are still under modern science with its own limitation. His gravitational laws are still applied in many field of science with further development. So his question about the precision of earth’s position in our solar system is still an unanswered mystery (he himself knows well about our solar system and their governance with gravitational laws) which is for many just by chance. How many chance they can claim from nothing to human. Good explanation for those doesn’t know probability calculation isn’t? ( I know you don’t believe in chance). Every disorder that you are talking about in the universe contributes to the highest order’s (i.e human’s) existence. So when I it say the perfection in complexity I am talking about the precision.newton’s understanding about the nature is reasonable but his belief and the concept of god where he too put that power in to the physical world is contradictory. he couldn’t come to a reasonable understanding about this supernatural power.

        BTW, what is your theory about this nothing to human (I mean nothing to energy, energy to matter, matter to animated matter, animated matter to highest form of human). I think your theory is everything was there without a beginning and will be there without an end. Sorry, with the limited science we know this concept is no longer valid.

        thanks

      • yapa

        Dear Mohamed;

        1. My position about science is that though it can handle physical issues (well), it cannot assure the accuracy of its results.

        2. Wrt to the thermodynamics, thermodynamics as it is contradicts the creation, (especially the first law)I showed it.

        3. It is unnecessary to put the supernatural power you claim in the physical domain to contradict its (super natural power,creator) existence. It was done just by pure reasoning which is unnecessary anything to be physical to use the methodology on it.

        4. Earth position is not a “precision” meant for humans, but it is a human interpretation.

        If precision argument is correct, why only the earth is in the precise position for human (and other animals) habitation?

        Do you say no other planet in the whole universe is set in that precise position to have life? Do you deny the existence of life in the whole universe, except on earth?

        5. Yes!, Newton could not believe his five senses when he realized how his discoveries collide with the creator. This is an indication that the creator is contradicting with physical laws well.

        This clearly proves that the creator collides with both the physical and non physical laws alike.

        You say at end,

        “BTW, what is your theory about this nothing to human (I mean nothing to energy, energy to matter, matter to animated matter, animated matter to highest form of human). I think your theory is everything was there without a beginning and will be there without an end. Sorry, with the limited science we know this concept is no longer valid.”

        Can you tell me how that concept is no more valid with the limited science knowledge we know? Please show me how. I cannot come to such a conclusion with the limited knowledge of science I have.

        Thanks!

      • Mohamed

        1.My position about science is that though it can handle physical issues (well), it cannot assure the accuracy of its results.

        This is an incorrect view, because science is the understanding of laws in the nature within defined limits. Within these limits its results are accurate. For example relative velocities of two moving objects are deducible accurately; the limit is speed of light.

        2.Wrt to the thermodynamics, thermodynamics as it is contradicts the creation, (especially the first law)I showed it.

        Disagree; you fail to understand the limits defined by the science. The physical laws came in to existence after the negative and positive energy came in to existence. Conservation of energy is applicable when it comes to positive energy where we have the yardstick to measure. If fundamental understanding of science is correct, this basic confusion will not occur.

        3.It is unnecessary to put the supernatural power you claim in the physical domain to contradict its (super natural power,creator) existence. It was done just by pure reasoning which is unnecessary anything to be physical to use the methodology on it.

        The reason you come to contradiction is purely your reasoning to think it is “unnecessary” . Again you yourself limit the power. so, the contradiction that you are claiming is mere contradiction within yourself. An outcome of not able to grasp beyond the physical world.

        4. Earth position is not a “precision” meant for humans, but it is a human interpretation. If precision argument is correct, why only the earth is in the precise position for human (and other animals) habitation? Do you say no other planet in the whole universe is set in that precise position to have life? Do you deny the existence of life in the whole universe, except on earth?

        With the present dada available, its precision is not a mere chance. I have wrote about it in detail earlier and reapeat that here
        Does the earth give evidence of having been designed to be inhabited by living beings? You decide!
        Liquid water is necessary for life. Most of the universe consists of flaming gasses or frozen desolation and has no liquid water. If water in liquid form exists elsewhere, it is rare. It not only exists on earth, it exists in an amount that permits life, even human life.
        “If earth had just a little more water, c”
        “…The oceans contain enough water to cover a spherical Earth to a depth of about 4000 meters. If the surface of the planet varied only a few kilometers in elevation, Earth would be devoid of land. … Continents would not extend above sea level.”
        To keep the land up out of the water: “required the formation of land masses made of relatively low-density materials that could permanently “float” on the denser underlying mantle while parts of them extended above the sea.”
        {Peter D. Ward, Donald Brownlee, Rare Earth, Why Complex Life Is Uncommon in the Universe, 2000, p. 51-54}
        The moon has the right mass and distance from the earth so the tides help keep nutrients circulating in the water, but don’t cover the continents at high tide.
        The correct temperature is essential to life. If we were closer to the sun, or had longer days we would fry. If earth were farther from the sun or if the nights were longer, we would freeze and earth would have no liquid water.
        The correct atmosphere is necessary for life. If earth had a bit less gravity we would loose our atmosphere. To much gravity and it would crush us. Too much CO2, or several other gasses and earth would have been more like Venus, too hot to host life.
        Earth is also protected from deadly radiation. It is situated at the right distance from the center of our galaxy. Closer to the center, there are too many deadly gamma rays and X-rays.
        The gravity of a big planet nearby sweeps up much of the space trash that might otherwise crash into the earth with devastating force.
        The earth’s metal core produces magnetism which is helpful in protecting earth from harmful radiation. {Peter D. Ward, Donald Brownlee, Rare Earth, Why Complex Life Is Uncommon in the Universe, 2000, p. 28-29}.
        I could go on. One evidence after another shows that the earth was purposely designed to sustain life. Do atheists also see this evidence for design? Yes, we all see it. The book in reference above was written by atheists. Some atheists refer to this evidence as “appearance of design.”
        With all this tell me , I have to agree with you and say everything by chance or with Newton, as he said “Atheism is so senseless. When I look at the solar system, I see the earth at the right distance from the sun to receive the proper amounts of heat and light. This did not happen by chance.

        5.Yes!, Newton could not believe his five senses when he realized how his discoveries collide with the creator. This is an indication that the creator is contradicting with physical laws well.

        Wrong again. Nature’s law or natures order is the evidence of existence of such power and this was rightly understood by Newton but wrongly attributed this powers nature. Unfortunately many even at that time couldn’t grasp this. The same situation exists to date. There are creationists in the science community who go one step further to understand nature. The reason for non creationist to exist is not their inability to understand but dislike admitting the fact as their own belief will be in jeopardy. In short, ego.

        For your statement “Can you tell me how that concept is no more valid with the limited science knowledge we know? Please show me how. I cannot come to such a conclusion with the limited knowledge of science I have.”
        The limited knowledge itself proves this and I have given that by thermodynamics. Your logic is, just because science is limited, gravity is not something we cannot assure that exist.I think it’s a pessimistic view

        as we have some fundermental differences in understanding, i think no point in proceeding further with you.

        Thanks.

  • Raven

    I myself am a Malay. I grew up in a religious household, but I attended an all-girl Buddhist school. So all of what you have described here, I too have experienced much earlier in my life, during my teens. My parents understand my lack of belief, and are cool enough to respect that.

    I’m not saying that I’m an atheist. I do believe in god. But I see religion more as a guide than a control mechanism. I believe in hard work instead of prayer, action instead of fate. I don’t believe that god has already planned our lives for us, I believe our lives are a result of the choices we make.

    The way I see it, religious bias starts in grade school. In Sri Lanka we have Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu and Christian schools, where they often limit or even restrict children of other faiths from entering. But Sri Lanka is a multi-religious, multi-ethnic country. So by the time that child gets out of school his/her mind is so narrowed down, that he/she can’t get out of that bounded mindset and look at the world freely. Their minds are already conditioned to think that their faith is far more superior than the others. These are the kids that go out into the society and create religious havoc.

    I have first-hand experience with this during my school education and my university education. At university I observed that those who were from mixed-race schools were far more open minded than those who were from religious schools. An individual from a religious school would be fine until he/she finds out that I’m a Muslim; up comes the “Muslim frame”, and thereafter all they see is a Muslim, not ME as an individual. I’m not saying that these people are racists, but they are quick in judging people on stereotypes popularized by media.

    Religion goes against logic most of the time. I completely agree with your idea that we should take the core values of religion into practice. Those are the values that are common to all religions, and those are the things that actually matter in the end. Quoting (or mis-quoting) verses from the Holy Quran or the Holy Bible or any other religious book is not going to get us anywhere. It will only aggravate an already tense situation, which I firmly believe is best left to die with the generation before us.

    P.S. I was in a relationship with a non-Muslim. The fact that we believed in different things did not bother us at all. Our beliefs complemented each other, and taken as a whole, made us complete.

  • Mohamed

    I disagree with writer and the comments that only some values of a religion have to be practiced. Because not everyone believe in the concept that Islam was a man made religion. As I pointed out earlier, my belief in islam as a divine revelation. If it was a made man religion we don’t have to accept it and no need to take any values from it. Religion is a choice and the person who follows all the basics and mandatory codes of a belief can be called with so called follower of that religion. In that way, muslim is the person believe in religion of Islam as divine revelation and answer to his unanswered questions. People can define religion to suit their selfish motive, if each practice this way, there is a no religion at first place. either inside or outside. partially is impracticable and it doesn’t make any sense.

    point is, religion need to be studied from right source. that will take out many of the accuses a religion is facing.

    • PitastharaPuthraya

      Dear Mohamed,

      It seems that you beleive beyound any doubt whatsoever that Islam is divine revelation. I have few questions for you.

      As a Muslim do you agree with the other muslims who kill innocent people in the name of their relegion?

      If the answer is yes please explain to me your reasons.

      If the answer is no tell me why these ‘other’ muslims’ interpret the ‘divine revelation’ in different ways. If it can be interpreted in different ways to suit the whims of individuals can you call this ‘revelation’ perfect? Don’t you expect from the ‘creator’ of whole universe a much more ‘perfect’ one?

      • Mohamed

        Any action have right and wrong element.
        For example, fulfilling person’s desire with right partner is good but same fulfillment with wrong methods and partner is bad.
        Same apply for killing, killing for just cause such as defending a nation or society is good ( infact this is what even sri lanka did during LTTE period) but killing unjustly innocent is bad. This is what even my religion teaches us. A religion should be able to practice by all in all position. When a person joins the army to protect his country, he can’t abandon his religion.
        Mean time, not all the action by a Muslim is related to his religion. This is the place islamobia playing a role. People can invade others land and fight for oil but when they retaliate or a victim takes revenge over some innocents with rage, they simply accuse the person’s religion. What is the justice you see in it?
        Interpretation is based on information they have, if people are misinformed and less informed what it has to do with the perfection of a religion? If you breach some traffic law with some partial understanding, then whom to be blame, you or the law?

      • Gamarala

        Dear Mohamed,

        I think you have missed PitastharaPuthraya’s point. You say that you have the “correct” understanding. Others killing in the name of religion, issuing Fatwas etc. have also studied the Koran and Hadith’s, probably more than you have, and they also claim to have the “correct” understanding. If two people who read the Koran carefully come to such different conclusions, there’s something wrong with the Koran, don’t you think?

        Why isn’t the Koran crystal clear and unambiguous about what it has to say? Why is it that people reading the Koran can’t even understand a basic thing like why it’s wrong to kill their fellow human beings, stone people to death, mistreat women etc.?

      • Orang Melayu

        Islam does not sanction the killing of innocent people.

        If people misinterpret or hijack religon to suit their own ends you will have to ask those people for their reasons just as they may kill people for political reasons or for security reasons. Why did Bin Laden bomb the WTC? As an act of revenge but no santioned by Islam, a heinous crime according to Islam.

        Sharia law is only applicable in a few Muslim countries like Saudi so you need not worry unless you go there and commit crimes like adultery. Then you will be tried under their laws.

        Quran is easy to understand if you read it with the translation and commentary. Islam is a complex religon which deals with all aspects and the minute details of human life from prayer to eating, sleeping, work, earning, politics etc. For the ordinary person only a few commandments are applicable and are easy to follow. For the more complex questions you need to study very deeply. Dont think that Islam is something that can be explained in a few sentences.

        In addition there is the spiritual dimension which can only be mastered by rigorous training and practice. Who said Islam is easy? Good things no cheap. For a degree you spend 16 yrs of your life? Religon is much more than a degree it is an eternal asset in this world and the next. If you really wish to learn Islam you need to spend many hours, days and years. The level of understanding increases with each step and there is no end to the depth of knowledge and understanding of the universe you will achieve. The creator of the universe knows more about his creation than what we mortals can think or visualize.

      • Gamarala

        Orang Melayu,

        Your argument that the Koran is so complex that it cannot express a simple idea like “do not kill people” clearly and unambiguously, frankly, makes no sense. There is nothing “complex” about expressing that idea. I just expressed it in one line.

        High-school text books today express this idea clearly. Aesop’s fables express this idea clearly. Is there any genuine confusion among Buddhists on the Buddhist doctrine’s position on violence? What about Hindus?

        The Koran states that apostates should be killed, women treated like chattel, and contain dozens of other violent edicts. Here is a nifty collection for your reference: http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/Quran/023-violence.htm

        I would expect that a divine text would have no difficulties in explaining its position, when even high-school textbooks can explain these simple concepts better. Why is a divine text unable to achieve what a high-school textbook has achieved? Food for thought, don’t you think?

      • Orang Melayu

        As I said before the Koran does not sanction the killing of INNOCENT people. But if you are attacked and persecuted then you have the right to fight back.

        “And slay them wherever ye find them, and drive them out of the places whence they drove you out, for persecution [of Muslims] is worse than slaughter [of non-believers]… but if they desist, then lo! Allah is forgiving and merciful. And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is for Allah.”

        Dont you think that it is quite clear. What do you expect people to do when they are persecuted, turn the other cheek? This is from your nifty collection and I have already explained some of these episodes above.

        This is the source of your so called nifty website which is a non muslim and quite obviously anti Islamic and funded by extreme racist sources. So dont quote the devil and try to demonize Islam.

        About TheReligionofPeace.com

        Glen Roberts, Editor

        TheReligionofPeace.com is a pluralistic, non-partisan site concerned with Islam’s true political and religious teachings according to its own texts. We present the threat that Islam poses to human dignity and freedom, and document the violence that ensues as a direct consequence of this religion’s supremacist teachings.
        We are not associated with any organization. We do not promote any religion, but we are not hostile to religion. We generally support the rights of atheists, Christians, Hindus, Jews, homosexuals, woman, Muslims and anyone else on the planet to live as they wish without violating the rights of others.

        We strongly condemn any attempt to harm or harass any Muslim anywhere in the world because of their religion. Every human being is entitled to be treated as an individual and judged only by his or her own words and deeds. (see About Muslims).

        We also denounce any act of vandalism against mosques or other property, including juvenile attempts to offend Muslims by desecrating copies of the Quran. (The best way of discrediting the Quran is to tell non-Muslims what it actually says about them).

        At the same time, we see no use in pretending that Islam is just another religion – which always seems to be the assumption of those who prefer not to look too closely.

        In fact, Islam is dreadfully unique.

        What other religion’s most devoted members videotape themselves cutting people’s throats while screaming praises to their god?

        What other faith has tens of thousands of terrorists across the globe united by an explicit commitment to advance the cause of their religion by pursuing horrific mass murder and mutilation?

        What other religion has clerics lauded as ‘moderates’, ‘bridge-builders’, and advocates of ‘peace and tolerance’ who, at best cannot even bring themselves to condemn suicide bombers or denounce Islamist terror organizations, or at worst actually support terrorism, wife-beating, female genital mutilation and justify the killing of apostates and homosexuals?

        What other religion kills innocent people over cartoons and teddy bears, and murders humanitarian workers of other faiths who are merely trying to help them?

        What other religion actually celebrated the 9/11 attacks, described the carnage as “one of the miracles of the Quran” and proclaimed it to be “God’s work against oppressors”?

        What other religion childishly brags about its growth while at the same time openly denies other religions equal opportunity to evangelize – and even endorses killing those who leave?

        What other religion has prominent PR organizations and charities so closely tied to terrorism – organizations like CAIR, which whine about dress codes and rubber ducks in the West while ignoring the Jihad genocide of thousands in Darfur?

        What other religion has verses in its holy book that remind men of their divine permission to beat their wives and rape their slaves?

        The list could go on (and does – each day on TheReligionof-Peace.com). Islam so routinely produces horrible atrocities in the name of Allah that no one is all that surprised when…

        Adults are tied to a tree or planted in the ground and bludgeoned to death by fundamentalists for engaging in consensual sex…
        A New York woman trying to file for divorce is beheaded by her husband, who also happens to be the founder of a Muslim-American TV channel dedicated to combating “misconceptions” and “stereotypes” about Islam…

        Religious leaders are charged by authorities with plotting spectacular acts of mass murder in the name of their god…

        A Christian woman is arrested, raped and tortured by police who also starve her children in an explicit effort to get her to return to Islam…

        Clerics advocate raping virgins prior to executing them for verbal crimes and political dissent…

        Pollsters admit that about 1 out of 3 Muslims worldwide (450 million) view the terrorism of 9/11 as justified…

        The most prominent self-proclaimed Muslim “civil rights” group in America (CAIR) bluntly refuses to condemn an organization (Hamas) that kills innocent people specifically in the name of Islam…

        A Christian is murdered in front of his own family for leaving Islam, and his children then kidnapped and ‘conscripted’ by his killers…

        Muslims express no outrage when an admitted terrorist is assigned by a government to oversee “Islamic Affairs”, nor even when unrepentant child killers are invited to make the holy pilgrimage with VIP treatment.

        80% of all federal terror prosecutions involve a religion that is practiced by only 1% of all Americans…

        How shocking any of this would be if it didn’t involve the Islamic religion. As it is, most of it barely registers in the media. The very fact that the bar of expectation is set so low for “the Religion of Peace” underscores just how different it really is from others.

        In fact, Islam is more than a religion. It is a rigid political and cultural system with a mandate to conquer and govern the lives of others via necessary force “until religion is only for Allah.” Violence is sanctioned by the Quran since, as the Ayatollah Khomeini bluntly put it, “people cannot be made obedient except with the sword.”

        Thus, the enemy of this orthodoxy is not just intellectual dissent and free speech, but human freedom. The divine charter of Islam is to impose itself and thus prevent the individual from discovering a different meaning for their own lives.

        Islam breeds arrogance and self-absorption, which accounts for the collective petulance and perpetual grievance characterizing Muslim populations in general – along with the astonishing unwillingness to extend equal moral consideration to those outside the religion.

        This disregard for others is rooted in the supremacist ideology of the Quran and Islamic law, which unashamedly draws the sharpest distinction between those within the group of believers and those without – towards whom arbitrary denigration is cast and hatred, harsh treatment and eternal punishment is prescribed.

        As a consequence, not a day goes by without someone, somewhere in the world being horribly murdered by devout Muslims in the name of this religion – over ten thousand persons each year. More innocent lives were taken in two hours by devoted Muslims on 9/11 than by the Ku Klux Klan in its entire 140-year history.

        Where Islam dominates, there is systematic discrimination and oppression of those of other faiths. Where Muslims are a minority, there is peevish self-interest, disloyalty and eventual rebellion and terror when demands for special privilege and entitlements are not met – all part of the eternal jihad to bring about the rule of Islam as Muhammad ordered of true believers.

        It isn’t the victims who need lessons in tolerance and understanding – it is the Islamic world.

        Can one name a single country in the West in which the significant influx of Muslims has not been accompanied by severe social strain? Can one name any country affected in the same way by Hindu immigration?

        Those willing to open their minds will find that, regardless of the excuse-du-jour, the remarkably wide-spread level of narcissism, repression and violence is deeply ingrained in the teachings, double standards and early history of the Islamic religion. While there is not a single verse in the Quran that commands love for those outside Islam, there are over 493 that either promote violence or speak of Allah’s hatred for unbelievers – in a book that is largely about how to think of and deal harshly with those outside the “true” faith.

        Why rely on rosy platitudes and carefully-edited fragments of Quran verses from apologists when Islam speaks so well for itself? Beyond the whitewashing are obvious reasons why so many devotees do horrible things in the name of Allah, while most of the rest never seem to get terribly upset by it – busy as they are throwing tantrums and demanding for themselves what they explicitly deny others.

        How much favor are we really doing Muslims by not challenging them to the sort of self-critique necessary for moral progress? How much favor are we doing ourselves by desperately trying to accommodate that which has no intention of accommodating us, or by continuing to sacrifice blood and budgets for those who hate us in return? Is it really in our best interests to assist the expansion within our own borders of a religion that is consistently incapable of building countries in which even Muslims themselves want to live?

        Tolerance is a good thing, but not when we allow it to be used cynically against us by those who have no use for it once they obtain power. We need to back away from the altar of political correctness and throw out our preconceptions. We need to rediscover critical thinking.

        The truth is that Islam is not a religion of peace and it is not like other religion. Sometimes the truth isn’t comfortable. Sometimes the truth offends. But it is far better that we offend others than lose our own freedom.

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Orang Melayu,

        You haven’t responded to Gamarala’s very simple question.

        It is not difficult to say ‘do not kill’ if you do not condone killing of humans under any circumstances. You can not say ‘do not kill’ because there are certain killings you can do according to your relegious beleifs.

        The Buddha did not say do not kill but he showed his followers the consequences of killing others. According to Buddhism, it does not matter whether the Buddha said so or not. A person who kills other humans (not only humans) will have to face the consequences in this life or next life. Therefore, however much the Buddhists laity and Monks try to justfy killings of LTTE terroists in ‘quasi-Buddhist’ language it is not going to help. According to Buddhistm, killings will have their own consequences.

        According to Islam, as you said, certain killings are ‘good’ others are ‘bad’. Who decides which killing is ‘good’ and which killing is ‘bad’? You might say, at the ‘judment day’ God will decide. But until that day, it is up to the individuals or to the ‘groups’ or to the communities to decide. Accordingly, Bin Laden decided to destroy ‘the towers’ as a means of ‘self defence’. The Al-Quida, Thaliban, Al-Shabab, and many other muslim millitant organization think that their way of killing fellow human beings is ‘good’.

        When the meaning of a statement is ambiguous this happens. People can interpret ‘self defence’ in different terms. A person can justify killing American Civilans as they are the ones, who are primarily responsible for electing American President, who is instrumental in killing Muslims in middle-east. Therefore, in the final analysis, the American civilians are responsible for everything American president and military do.

        This is the problem with Islam. Earlier, you have justified killing of Jews by Prophet Muhammad because they have betrayed them quoting from Quran. Do we have the other side of the story, the Jews’ side, to decide whether the action of Prophet Muhammad was acceptable? You may accept everything in Quran as you beleive every word in it as Divine revelation. But Can you accept all the rest to beleive and accept every story just because they appear so in the Quran?

        Therefore, it is my view that the reason for disproportionate occurance of muslim militancy and terrorism has its root in their relegion.

      • Orang Melayu

        Dear Pitasthara Puthraya

        You cannot prove or disprove Islam by quoting Buddhism because as a Muslim I do not beleive in Buddhism. As said in the Quran verse 109

        In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

        Say: O disbelievers! (1) I worship not that which ye worship; (2) Nor worship ye that which I worship. (3) And I shall not worship that which ye worship. (4) Nor will ye worship that which I worship. (5) Unto you your religion, and unto me my religion. (6)

        As I have explained we have a right of self defence and Islam is very strict that we should not exceed our limits. If a Muslim does exceed his limits he is guilty before the Allmighty and will be punished on the day of judgement.

        Please do not blame Islam for evils committed by Taliban, Al Qaida etc. just as we don not blame Buddhism or any other religon for the excesses committed by members of its faith. Also we dont want to dig and find fault with the teachings of other religons and expect the same from you. If you are really interested in learning about Islam you may purchase a translation and transliteration of the Holy Quran by Yusuf Ali and study the same instead of quoting various Racist Web Sites. ‘To you your way and to me mine’

      • Gamarala

        Dear Orang Melayu,

        Please don’t be distracted by the website. My only purpose in quoting it was to highlight direct quotes from the Koran inciting people to violence, so as to buttress the point that the Koran does not offer clear and unambiguous advice to its constituents on ethics. Do you not accept that those verses exist in the Koran?

        As PitastharaPuthraya has highlighted, this ambiguity leads to different interpretations, which in turn leads to violence and misogyny. Therefore, I too would suggest that it is primarily up to Muslims to battle such “interpretations”. Complaining about Islamophobia is misguided, as long as Muslims use the Koran to justify violence.

      • Dear Orang Melayu;

        “If a Muslim does exceed his limits he is guilty before the Allmighty and will be punished on the day of judgement.”

        Where can you find this Almighty? What evidence do you have for his existence? Can you tell me when will be the day of judgement? Also tell me how you know that there is a day of judgement.

        Further, if you don’t mind please answer my post addressed to Mohamed as well.

        http://groundviews.org/2012/05/10/no-longer-blind-no-longer-bound/#comment-44337

        Thanks!

      • Mohamed

        There is a difference beween the statement and understanding the statement. Just to say “don’t kill anything”; Islam is not an impracticable religion in my opinion. It followers the moderate teaching in all. It never ask us to leave the normal life to get salvation, salvation is within normal life. Also when it comes to killing, yes, according to Islam there is permission for killing in times of injustice. Injustice is oppression and fighting against the oppression is allowed, which is present even in non religious concepts. Its clear and reasonable. i think, submitting to the oppression and getting killed is nothing but lack of perfection and impracticability of such philosophy.

        Following explains clearly about the killing

        The word ‘context’ has two dictionary meanings:
        • The parts of a written or spoken statement that precede or follow a specific word or passage, usually influencing its meaning or effect.
        • The set of circumstances or facts that surround a particular event, situation, etc.
        Any discussion on Qur’anic verses that refer to violence would be meaningless, without a study of the surrounding context. Before we study the verses in question, therefore, let us examine this issue in a wider perspective

        The Sanctity of Life:

        The Glorious Qur’an says:
        “…take not life, which God hath made sacred, except by way of justice and law: thus doth He command you, that ye may learn wisdom.”
        [Al-Qur’an 6:151]
        Islam considers all life forms as sacred. However, the sanctity of human life is accorded a special place. The first and the foremost basic right of a human being is the right to live. The Glorious Qur’an says:
        “…if any one slew a person – unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land – it would be as if he slew the whole people: and if any one saved a life, it would be as if he saved the life of the whole people.”
        [Al-Qur’an 5:32]
        Such is the value of a single human life, that the Qur’an equates the taking of even one human life unjustly, with killing all of humanity .
        The Verses of War:

        The words that often causes consternation among those unfamiliar with Islam, is:
        “…and slay them wherever ye catch them…”
        The truth is that this is only part of the verse 191 of Chapter 2 of the Qur’an. Let us read the verses 190 to 191 in order to get a complete picture:
        “Fight in the cause of Allah those who fight you, but do not transgress limits; for Allah loveth not transgressors. And slay them wherever ye catch them, and turn them out from where they have Turned you out; for tumult and oppression are worse than slaughter; but fight them not at the Sacred Mosque, unless they (first) fight you there; but if they fight you, slay them. Such is the reward of those who suppress faith.”
        [Al-Qur’an 2:190-191]
        It is a well-known fact of Islamic history, that fighting against aggressors was prohibited during the first thirteen years of the Prophet’s mission. After Muslims migrated to Madina , the verses above were revealed to enable the community to fight in self-defense. The verses that follow clearly indicate Islam’s prohibition on aggression and inclination towards peace:
        “But if they cease, Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. And fight them on until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah; but if they cease, let there be no hostility except to those who practise oppression.”
        [Al-Qur’an 2:192-193]
        The verses above specifically refer to fighting against oppression and in defense of religious freedom as the Glorious Qur’an says:
        “Let there be no compulsion in religion”
        [Al-Qur’an 2:256]

        Fair-dealing towards all:

        When read in context, the above verses do not even remotely suggest an exhortation for Muslims to be vicious or hateful towards people of other faiths. Far from this, the Qur’an actually requires that Muslims conduct themselves with fairness and dignity in all matters, and especially in regard to interfaith relations, as indicated by the following verse:
        “Allah forbids you not, with regard to those who fight you not for (your) Faith nor drive you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them: for Allah loveth those who are just.
        [Al-Qur’an 60:8]

        the points to note

        1. No compulsion in religion,
        2. Muslim must resist any obstacle that comes against the freedom of practicing their religion.
        3. If anyone persecutes Muslims for their religion, they are allowed to retaliate
        4. Dealing with justly those who are dealing justly is necessary

        Now my question is, are they difficult to understand? If some do so, its their problem and it has nothing to do with religion. Contradiction is not in quran, its in people understanding. Because we don’t practice quran and hadith with few verses, the concept of whole teaching is what matters.

      • Gamarala

        Mohamed,

        Thank you for the response, but unfortunately, you have once again missed the point. The Koran’s own adherents are confused about how to interpret the Koran, as evidenced by the violence, misogyny and barbarism done in its name. You maybe a moderate, as is Orang Malu, but there are more than enough extremists who resort to violence in the name of the Koran. Therefore, the onus is on you to explain why the Koran cannot be clear in expressing its content simply and clearly, a task that a high-school text-book would excel at.

        My explanation for why this confusion occurs is simple – the Koran is a man-made text, just as the old testament it is based on, is a man-made text. These are all early attempts at making sense of the world, by providing a simplistic moral framework to keep tribal folk in-line.

        Religions are universal to (almost?) every culture, and each culture is full of people who genuinely believe that their respective God/messiah was the only true god/messiah. You devoutly believe that Mohammed is the one true prophet, just as a Christians believe Jesus is the one-true prophet, and Buddhists believe Buddha is the one true prophet etc.

        The pattern is undeniable, don’t you think?

      • Mohamed

        I think you didn’t get correctly I what said earlier, quran is Cristal clear on what it says BUT both the extremists and Islamophobia painting them in different ways. Any statement is subjected to less understanding and twisting. If all what is said in high school text books are simple; all the students will end up in 100 marks in the exams. If that’s not the case it doesn’t mean that the subject is not perfect. This is because human understanding differs person to person based on the effort taken to study. the other is the purposeful twist, the job of Islamophobia to fulfill their political agenda. Both these can overcome by careful study.As I pointed out earlier Islam never said don’t kill at all. It specifies correctly the point at which the rule is applicable. Even a 7 year old will understand looting others property or land is oppression hence not all what happening in Islamic world is violence as defending a nation not falls in to the category of violence. However killing innocent whom are not involved in any crime or oppression is violence and islam is crystal clear on that either. out of the eight path a buddist has to follow is v?ca, that is speaking in a truthful and non-hurtful way. Expecting to detail out the wording exactly “Yakko, me kakko oluwa udin yanawa witharak nevei kuudu wennath hadanawane” and giving the clear ruling these words are filthy which are against vaca is abnormal. If such are used it’s a fault of a religion or the fault of the particular monk?

        You have the right to have your line of thinking but do you have a solid evidence to claim. Yes I agree, each person will think that their teaching is correct with or without an in-depth analysis. Then only they become the followers of that religion. I don’t say any religion is bad, they teach good. They teach set of morals. My analysis is one step further, not just which religion is good but which is right. There is a difference between good and right. The reason I look for the right religion to get salvation both in this life and the next. After seeing the natures design and mortality of life I look for answers. I am convinced with what I have ended up.

      • Mohamed

        Mistreating women?

        my question is, if Islam is not treating women well, why many women convert to islam and change their life style? That is the place the knowledge about Islam many miss.

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FCALyYTN5Rs&feature=fvwrel

    • Orang Melayu

      Gamarala

      I did some more internet research on this ‘Nifty Web Site’ TheReligonofPeace.com which styles itself as an Islamic web site but disseminates anti Islamic and Racist propoganda.

      The owner goes as Glen Roberts aka Glen Reinsford but his real name is Gina Roberts. You can learn the full story of this individual and his site at http://www.phonyrev.com/pages/Chasing-Evil/TropReport.htm

      Apparently this man is an ex KKK leader and well known racist.

      ‘8/11/2010: UPDATED: New information has been developed in the past six months that conclusively shows “Glen Reinsford” is in reality Gina Roberts, who lives on Highland Club Dr. in Atlanta GA. Roberts has a lengthy list of both male and female names. Roberts has a criminal history of 55 convictions for robbery, felonious assault, homicide, burglary, theft, bad checks, etc., and a few stints in prison, all for which we have the documentation. We also have Roberts’ bankruptcy filing. Mr. Roberts is a self-employed locksmith for a company called “AA 24 Hour AAA Locksmith.” It’s easy enough to find Roberts’ correct address in the Atlanta, GA telephone listings under the locksmith company’s name, as he works out of his home.’

      So maybe thats why he is so much against Islam and Muslims.

  • mohadsha

    I saw Islamic teaching about women. Islam asks the women to cover their entire bodies except their wrist and face. Some scholars say everything. On the face of it, it seems difficult to digest and odd. But what is the reason behind it. Islam values women. Human definition for freedom has brought women on the road as prostitutes, actresses of pornography, and models of the stage. What do they do? They make the women body as a commodity. They sell women’s body here in many forms. But they name it freedom, feminism. But what is the truth. You take the movies, dramas, advertisements everywhere women are used only for her body. They worship sex. They use women as sex toys in the name of freedom. Do you like to call it freedom? Do you call it women right? Islam calls it oppression on women. Islam calls it molestation of gender. Islam calls it sexual harassment. Islam orders women to cover her body. Why? It protects her value. Even the entire world votes in favor of stripping off all the women on the road could it be correct?. This is what you call it freedom? Peoples wish. How many times I saw on the road men teasing women with vulgar speech looking at the way they dress. You like to call it freedom?

    • Gamarala

      This is a strange argument. If men are treating women badly, it is the men who should be punished, instead of forcing women to live in cloth bags in fear of men. Following the logic of this argument, since there are criminals in society, it is the general populace that must be locked up and kept in cages, not the criminals. Does that sounds absolutely nuts? That’s because it is.

      It is only in Islamic countries today that women are not allowed to vote, not allowed to drive, are killed for studying, are married off as sex slaves to lascivious old men, are forced to wear cloth bags in the burning sun etc.

      So yes, women in the west clearly have more freedom. Some may not understand how to use that freedom and end up as sex toys. However, no woman is forced to be in that condition, and most women have the freedom to reach their full potential.

      Ergo, the west is better for women than Islam.

      • Orang Melayu

        Gamarala

        Since you are so keen to protect women why not make a start at home. Please note below article and specially note that there is no talk of any Religous education in it.

        Is rape logical? Is it the absence of religous teaching?

        Child abuse and rape in Sri Lanka seen a steady increase
        Fri, May 11, 2012, 12:42 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

        May 11, Colombo: The Child Development and Women Affairs Ministry of Sri Lanka says that the cases of child abuse and rape of women have increased over the past decade.

        Deputy Child Development and Women Affairs Minister M.L.A.M. Hisbullah has informed the parliament that at least 6,343 cases of rape and 15,158 child abuses cases have been reported in the past five years.

        The Deputy Minister has revealed these figures in response to a question posed by the United National Party (UNP) Kurunegala District parliamentarian Dayasiri Jayasekera.

        According to the Deputy Minister there has been an increase in the cases of girl rape in five years with 799 cases reported in 2006, 805 cases in 2007, 914 cases in 2008, 922 cases in 2009, 1,089 cases in 2010 and 1,169 cases in 2011.

        The police say during last year, the National Child Protection Authority had received more than 20,000 complaints of child abuse. The Deputy Minister has noted that one of the main reasons for the increase in child abuse and rape cases was the lowering the standards of education.

        Among other reasons that have been identified are insecurity of children, popularity of the usage of mobile phones with internet facilities among the youth, emergence of mentally imbalanced people due to use of cocaine and alcohol, increase of sexual misbehavior within sub-culture that has become prominent in the garment industrial sector and existence of a wrong impression among children and youth in the society about the low level of education on sex.

      • mohadsha

        Mr.Gamarala,
        First of all you failed to understand a basic principle in Law.whatever legal system you take, first you have to shut all the doors which leads to a crime.after that if someone commits a crime then the criminal system punishes him.to elaborate it little more,first law would ask you to wear helmet,seat belt,to keep to the traffic rules.after closing all the possibilities which leads to accident law will push a person who violates it.you can not say ‘why should i wear helmet,punish the one who
        who ran over me’do you say like that?this is the case in Islam.first it closes all the possibilities for a women being molested.then if a man violates it Islam punishes.Islamic Hijab is not contrary to women freedom.you have to take it as safety measure.when you deal with chemicals you are forced to wear safety clothes fro tip to the toe.can you argue i don’t want to do that.it is against my freedom to wear whatever i like.First of all you have to understand the reason behind the implementation of Hijab.

        2.you said in Islamic countries women are not allowed to study,not allowed to drive,vote.first of you please understand that whatever an Muslim country does does not necessarily be the stand of Islam.if many Buddhists kill people will it become the stand of Buddhism?a religion and a follower of that religion is completely different matter.you cant base your arguments on the basis of what Muslim countries do.

        3.a woman not allowed to drive or go out of the house without accompanied by a Mahram(one you can not marry,father,brother ect.) is not because it suppresses her freedom but because of her safety.all the matters relating to matters in regard to Muslim women should be understood in the light of protection to a Muslim women not as an oppression.

        4.you talk about freedom.you have to ask first whether Islam accepts the definition of freedom like western,secular law defines.every system of law has their own terms and definitions.That’s why there were huge war in Sri Lankan court room among the Judges which law to apply.Roman Dutch Law or English Law.Roman Dutch law will says something as wrong the same thing will be considered correct in English Law.If you are someone who follow English some areas in RDL will contradictory and against your Law.the problem is which law you accept.within your definition of freedom what you are saying is correct.yes Islamic law in relation to women is inconsistent within the definition of freedom you are referring to. before you say that you have to check whether Islam accepts the definition of freedom you have adopted.if you read Islam you will realize Islamic definition of freedom is completely different as the difference of chalk and cheese.to cut this short,western understanding id freedom is you are allowed to do whatever you like as long as it does not affect another one’s right to do whatever he likes.In Islam freedom is that you are allowed to do whatever good as long as it does not stop another one to do whatever good is.then you will have a question who defines good and bad.according to western definition it is most of the time Majority people.whatever majority wish is good even if it is against the morality or against the wish of minority.but in Islam it is God who decides right and wrong.man is not given right to decide what is good and what is wrong.Then if you say God is unfair,then it will leads to another question what is fair and unfair.who define that.simply,Muslims follow the laws of God.Others follow laws of man.according to God’s law man’s law is contradictory.according to man’s law God’s law is contradictory. This is nothing but a very old fight between man made law and god made law.

      • Gamarala

        Dear Mr. Mohadsha,

        I believe that is also a rather strange argument. A woman should not have to be hidden from view in “safety clothes” and suffer under the assumption that all men are criminals. Are all men criminals? What kind of a sad, barbaric world is that? Societies generally work on some level of trust. For example, I trust that you will pay me when you come to my shop and buy a loaf of bread. Should I treat you like a criminal instead?

        Secondly, the argument is even stranger in that, God created man and woman. But then god made man a criminal. And then as a solution, God suggests that a woman be dressed in a cloth bag. Does that make sense to you? Would God do that?

        Also, the modern definition of law isn’t that it should be the majority’s wish over the minority. That’s why they are constitutional safeguards in democracies to prevent a majority from violating the fundamental rights of the individual/minority.

        Finally, I have a question for you: If you say you simply follow the word of God without question, under the assumption that the Koran is the word of God, then it would be ok to keep slaves, as described in the Koran, ok to kill infidels who defy you, flog adulterers etc. However, under Sri Lankan law, you would be immediately arrested.

        How do you reconcile these two things?

    • PitastharaPuthraya

      Dear Mohadsha,

      You have mixed up two issues. Sexual exploitation of women and freedom of women.

      In a free society the woman has the choice. If a woman feels that if she exposes her body she would be sexually explited she has the right to cover her body. No body else makes choices for her.

      In muslim societies, men make decisions for women. That is the differernce. That is why it is not a free socity. If they allow the women to take decisions and still they prefer to wear the niqab no body would be bothered.

      In muslim societies all the rules, laws, traditions, customs,etc have been made by men. Do you really know what women think in those countries?

      Just because the women are not allowed to expose their bodies in the public aren’t they abused, both sexually and physically at homes by their husbands, fathers, brothers and Uncles in muslims societies?

      Women body is a beautiful thing. We have been admiring it through art since the dawn of civilization. Only a hypocrite would say that he does not. Sexual exploitation is not showing women in advertisment. Even prostitution and pornography, if the women have choice and freedom, can not be called sexual exploitation. It becomes exploitation when the woman has no other choice.

      Who do you think you are to take decisions on behalf of a woman, who is a porn star and does not think that she is being exploited?

      The other day, I saw a young muslim couple walking on a street in a European town. The man was wearing a pair of blue jeans, a red T shirt, nice pair of tan Boots and sunglasses and while the woman was covered in blak from head to toe. Even her eyes were covered. Isn’t there something wrong?

      • Mohamed

        Gamarala
        Your point is correct if the human are gifted with reading minds and future. So we can easily find who has the potential to become criminal such as rapists and cage them before it take place. unfortunately that’s not the reality. Also, just because of women are covering, islam never claim men are free from behaving responsibly. By covering; women honor them and never allow men to use them as an object. Modestly dress woman and half naked woman can caste different thoughts in human mind, it’s obvious isn’t? Tell me frankly what a woman going to gain and lose by covering herself. Not going to caste desires over other men, she will not become an object, etc. is that really going to pull down her potential. Do you think, by covering a woman can’t be an engineer, doctor or accountant? Why you try to judge a person’s potential by her dress. Perhaps covered women can perform better than the beauty revealing women as theses women’s mind will be much focus than the less covered provided that her covering comes with the proper understanding.
        Why woman want to show their beauty. Don’t you think nothing but to appeal opposite sex? For what. I hope answer can be extrapolated by you.
        Tell me where it is mentioned in islam, woman should not drive, should not learn and not to vote? If you read proper islam, you will find the opposite is true. Woman not only can vote but also can question the ruler according to islam. You can ask the same Islamic country that you are referring why not allowing woman to drive but allowing woman to be alone with driver and which is allowed in islam? For your information some played a scholarly position even in the early days of Islam itself. While you see some old man marrying small girls in some urban society due to poverty of parents, you will also see the same poverty made some non muslim parents to sell the same small girls to sex trade to deal with many men. So why don’t you blame those religion for that. Infact the remedy for such action in Islamic society is proper education of islam and implementation of some rules among Muslims such as mandatory tax by the rich to poor (which islam call zakath). What remedy the other party have? Do you know that it is mandatory to get the consent of woman when it comes to marriage in islam. Please don’t blame the religion for practices that it cannot take responsible.
        Finally, if west is treating women well, why you see in the west woman are accepting Islam and changing their lifestyle? For your information both in US and UK out of all the converts, women are majority. This statistic is contradicting your statement. Have you question why?
        Many videos are available in youtube and this is just one

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q5LvL8PkJmQ

        You can also watch the earlier two videos that I have posted which directly contradict your claim.

      • Mohamed

        PitastharaPuthraya

        I think you are contradicting your statement, if men are taking decision on behalf of women then it will not be society driven but individual driven, inotherwords men will restrict only their women and encourage other women to be not covered. It’s not happening that way, even women as mothers encourage their children to wear hijab and society as a whole accepted it. No compulsion in religion and anyone come in and if not can go out

        For your statement

        “Just because the women are not allowed to expose their bodies in the public aren’t they abused, both sexually and physically at homes by their husbands, fathers, brothers and Uncles in muslims societies?”

        In true muslim household this will not happen. And do you have any evidence to say this is happening in every Muslim household? In houses where Islamic teaching not taking place are more susceptible for such act than the rest.

        You said “Women body is a beautiful thing. We have been admiring it through art since the dawn of civilization. Only a hypocrite would say that he does not. Sexual exploitation is not showing women in advertisement. Even prostitution and pornography, if the women have choice and freedom, can not be called sexual exploitation. It becomes exploitation when the woman has no other choice.”

        My question is, are you ok with the woman you mention here to be your sister, daughter or mother?

        You said “The other day, I saw a young muslim couple walking on a street in a European town. The man was wearing a pair of blue jeans, a red T shirt, nice pair of tan Boots and sunglasses and while the woman was covered in blak from head to toe. Even her eyes were covered. Isn’t there something wrong?”

        If this is ok with the man and the woman, please tell me what is your problem regarding this. Did she made a complain or do you have any additional sense to read her mind?

        hope you will see the videos that i have posted above

      • Mohamed

        Gamarala

        I forgot to mention two more points in my earlier post. You said in western society woman has more freedom. But you didn’t claim that they have full freedom. Even in the western society woman cannot be naked in public or have sex in public though by their own definition of freedom it’s a personal choice and not going to harm anyone. Why is that?

        Mean time, Yemeni Nobel Peace Prize Winner Tawakkul Karman when asked about her Hijab by journalists and how it is ‘not proportionate’ with her level of intellect and education, she replied “Man in the early times was almost naked, and as his intellect evolved he started wearing clothes. What I am today and what I’m wearing represents the highest level of thought and civilization that man has achieved, and is not regressive. It’s the removal of clothes again that is regressive back to ancient times.”

        Inshort she is not telling muslim women those who understand the concept of covering are not going to stone-age but the rest do.

        BTW I hope you will give a convincing answer for my question “ if west is treating well those women than islam, why they enter in to islam?”

      • Gamarala

        Dear Mohamed,

        I will start by answering the question for which you were most desirous of a reply: “if west is treating well those women than islam, why they enter in to islam?”

        To be honest, I would hardly think this is a difficult question. Why would Islamic people leave Islam? There are those who do aren’t there? Why would people convert to Christianity or Buddhism?

        There are all kinds of women – women who fall in love with their oppressors, women who are grateful for being abused, women who believe that wearing a veil somehow makes her a better person, women who are easily groomed into being sex-slaves. There are people who can be taught to believe practically anything. So the fact that a woman converts to Islam has nothing to do with whether a woman has freedom and equal rights in Islamic society or not. It is the same as the reasons that compel a person to join any cult or religion – it gives the illusion of order and meaning in their lives perhaps? they want a sense of community perhaps? I’m sure we can all think of reasons.

      • Orang Melayu

        Dear Pitasthara Puthraya

        It seems you are in favour of women exposing their bodies because it is “Beautiful”. Isnt that rather sexist? Why only women? What about Men? Shouldnt women have the chance to ogle men? What do you think of women having to strip and perform for money?
        I suppose you wouldnt mind if your daughter or wife or mother were to walk about in revealing clothes for all the perverts, voyeurs and cads to ogle and get sexually tittilated? Is this a part of the liberal culture you propose. How will you control rape and child molestation? Any idea?

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Mohomed,

        Thanks for the reply.

        It is a fact that women have been under the men’s rule since or even before the civilization in all kinds of different societies. Some societies have realized that it was so and changed. Some are still sruggling to accept that women are equal to men. When the west is on one extreme of the scale muslims are in the other extreme. Sinhalese both buddhists and christians may be in somewhere middle.

        In any society people are restricted to some extent by the accepted practices of the society. Even in west, no body can walk in public naked. For that they have to go to privately run ‘nude beach or club’. In sinhala society although it is not still accepted that women can smoke or drink in public they have much more freedom than the muslim women in choosing their clothes, about their social interactions, etc.

        It is the accepted norms of the society that dictate the behaviour of the individuals. In muslim societies (in general) it is the accetpted practice that women wear hijab, not allowed to go alone in public, unable to drive, can not have social interactions with men other than their family, etc, That is why mothers, fathers, brothers uncles want their female relatives to follow the norms. Not becase it is good or bad. They just follow the centuries old custmos blindly. Even if they feel these are unacceptable, as men do not have any such restriction, they are helpless to do anything about it as it is not easy to swim against the current.

        If muslim society is so good because of these restrictions and teaching of Islam as you claimed that domestic abuse is not heard in true muslims house holds, why do these women have to cover theselves in public even in 100% muslim countries like Saudi Arabia? It shows that it is not the danger to women, the men are concerned. It is the pure and simple male chauvinism of restricting women freedom. The sexual jelousy of their own women can sometimes take the men to extreme situations. Can you please tell me how can you justify punishing a rape victim for being raped or ‘honour killing’ while the perpetrators are free to roam?

        When you look at the statistics of all the muslim world you can see where women are in terms of education, employment, literacy, etc.

        Accepting certain things in a liberal society does not mean that you aer willing to do that or send your mother/sister/dughter to do that. Porno industry and prostitution are not good profession for women or men. However, if men and women are willing to do that by their own choice it has to be allowed as long as they do not impinge on other peoples’ freedom. It is same as in cases of homosexality. That is the base, on which the liberal society stands.

        When I saw the couple I did not have the chance ask the woman whether she liked to get rid of her hijab. But I knew that the woman did not have a choice like many muslim women in the world. I do not have any problem of women who wear them by their own volition. Most of the women, who we see on TV, are poweful women, who have a choice. So they have chosen to wear it. I am not talking about those women. I am talking about the millions of powerless women, who does not have other choice.

        My argument is give them the choice and see without interference of the men. In Sinhala society the women have the choice to wear, saree, osari, skirt & Blouse, frocks, even salvar kameeze, short, jeans, shorl sleeved, long sleeved, mini skirts, swim suits, etc. What is the wrong with that?

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Dear Oran Melayu,

        Thanks for the reply.

        What is sexist about admiring human body, both male and female? Have you ever admired the beauty of Micheal Angilo’s David and Titian’s Venus? It seems you have misundestood the cocept of Sexism? Sexism is prejudice and discriminatin based on sex. If any body is sexist it is the Muslims, who treat women in the way they do because they are women.

        The reasons for both males and females to engage in pornography and prostitution are many. Poverty, unemployment, broken families, sexual abuse, lace of oppertunity, poor education are few. However, if those who engage in these professions do that in spite of having a choice to do otherwise we have to respect their choice as long as they do not impinge on other peoples freedom. Individual freedom without restricting other’s freedom is the base of a liberal society.

        There is no question of being happy about mothers, sisters, wives or brother, for that matter, engage in these professions. Pornography and prostitutism are not ‘good’ professions. There are many people, who engage in professions, which we do not like for ourselves. But we have to respect their freedom to engage in their professions within the frame work of a liberal society and law.

        Prostitution and pornography are different from rape and child sexual abuse. In west, where former has legal status the incidence of rape and child sexual abuse is very low. In Sri Lanka where the former is illegal the incidence of latter is very high. One cure for incrased rape and child sexual abuse is to legalise prostitution and pornography. Although You may not solicite prostitutes there are people in the society who have the need. Lack of the sexual freedom is one reason for increas incident of rape and child sexual abuse in countries like Sri Lanka.

        Your solution to the problem is probably to restrict people’s freedom like in Saudi Arabia, where a few Mullah’s decide the fate of accused based on Sharia Law. The punishment they mete out is disproportionate to the offence. Whipping, canning, amputation, stone to death, public beheading are common. Do you like to live in a society like that? Obviously the majority of Sri Lankans do not like to live in that kind of a society.

      • Orang Melayu

        Pitashthara Puthraya

        According to your contorted logic when women cover up to protect their modesty it is sexist whereas it OK for some brutes to take advantage of poor women and satisfy your sexual desires for a few rupees? Also who told you that rapes are less in developed countries? There is a rape every 45 secs in the US

        http://www.crisisconnectioninc.org/sexualassault/rapestatistics.htm

        Of course according to your liberal ideas anything is possible. I think the Quran and Islam is an impediment to your activities.

      • Mohamed

        Dear gamarala
        If you consider empirical data you will find majority of convert to one religion to other is , from others to islam and majority of them a women.
        You can reason out, some women go out of islam to other religion because it is giving more undressing possibility. Then I will agree on you
        But statists do not supporting this. According to you who believes in woman’s freedom, in west where freedom of choice as its peak, more women are insane than men when it comes to conversion. Strange!

      • Mohamed

        Dear PitastharaPuthraya

        You said “ When the west is on one extreme of the scale muslims are in the other extreme. Sinhalese both buddhists and christians may be in somewhere middle.”

        This is as per your understanding and norms around you, a westerner might think they are in the middle just like you do. In short, people define code with what they believe in as correct. In Islamic society the initial freedom of belief is give. Either in or out. If you are in, then follow the code what it defines as middle. Don’t forget that when islam impose rule on dress immodestly or anything else, it going to impact opportunistic men too, whether he is muslim or not. Islam not ONLY passes codes to women, it also passes for men. They can’t be alone with women, they can’t flirt, they can’t drink and many more. If any men and women breaching these rules they are responsible for their action and if they still want to be in their religion have to accept the penalty it has imposed. What’s the problem in that?

        Out of what you said
        In Muslim societies (in general) it is the accepted practice that women wear hijab – yes, there is a hijab for men as well. They are not allowed to gaze at woman and must cover below his waist.

        Not allowed to go alone in public- not true, can go and it should not be more than a day. This is for their own safety.

        Unable to drive – not true, ask the evidence those who impose this rule

        Cannot have social interactions with men other than their family, etc, – not true, can interact as long as its in public and not other action such as flirting etc take place. Also this is applicable to both men and women as you said not just for woman

        Also you are forgetting another important aspect here. Its not an obligation for woman to contribute financially to the family. In other words men are responsible for earnings. Second men and women are not physically equal. Women need special protection.

        For your question “Can you please tell me how can you justify punishing a rape victim for being raped or ‘honour killing’ while the perpetrators are free to roam?”

        Of course punishing a rapist is not correct. There is no excuse even in islam for that. It has given the optimum punishment anyone deserves. Please produce your proof from Islamic sources which infact demands to punish the victim instead of rapist.

        For your question “If muslim society is so good because of these restrictions and teaching of Islam as you claimed that domestic abuse is not heard in true muslims house holds, why do these women have to cover themselves in public even in 100% muslim countries like Saudi Arabia?”

        100% Muslim doesn’t mean that they are born to one family and all are brothers and sisters. I hope you are not with the view that Muslim women must cover only to non Muslims. They have to cover against non blood relatives and that includes Muslim men too. The reason is, in every society there are hypocrites, rapists, etc. Expecting 100% obedience of complete society is not possible and Islamic rules are mitigate the anti social elements because cannot eliminate 100% as human are with choice and not robots.

        You said “When you look at the statistics of all the Muslim world you can see where women are in terms of education, employment, literacy, etc.”

        1.If Muslim woman want to educate and get employed Islam doesn’t prevents it
        2.For a person to be happy, higher education and employment is not a must. If a woman willing to marry and settle, its her choice. Why we have to bother. Haven’t you see in western world and sri lanka even in many well off families, woman never bother about working. i don’t think being a house wife is less worthy. instead of working for others she works for her own family development and happiness. its the capitalistic system fooling the world and degrading women for its own benefit not islam.

        Finally, for the immorality your solution is freedom of choice and to be allowed, but have you thought about the society around the world which restrict being naked in public , not allowing indecency and imposed many other rule have problem in imposing rules on these immorality. They must find alternative solution without making it a choice. If women are forced to prostitution people and government should act against them. If these woman conduct for easy money, it should restrict too, because indirectly it is harming the society by disease, family bond etc. we don’t allow drugs just because of personal choice and not hurting others isn’t? These topics can be discussed for pages unfortunately I cannot spare much time.

  • Orang Melayu

    This is a scientific study about the exposition of the female body and its effects

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/6586031/Women-should-bare-40-per-cent-of-their-bodies-to-attract-men.html

    Women who revealed around 40 per cent of their skin attracted twice as many men as those who covered up.

    The study, published in the journal Behaviour, found that the most popular women combined the 40 per cent rule with tight clothing and provocative dancing. The 15 per cent that combined all three criteria were approached by 40 men each.

    I think this proves the need for women to cover up or dress modestly.

    Also another study supports the use of head scarf.

    http://shine.yahoo.com/fashion/study-finds-men-are-more-attracted-to-hair-than-cleavage-really-2451926.html

    Pantene* did a study that found that 60% of men would rather date a woman with great hair over a women with large breasts. Other fun finds from their survey:
    •44% of men said hair is the first thing they notice, over clothes (26%), legs (25%) or makeup (4%). Good thing I followed these quick-and-easy makeup tips before going out last night and didn’t waste my time on something like this look.
    •82% of men said sexy hair is key to overall sex appeal. Of course, what hair men actually find sexy is kind of shocking. We did our own lil’ survey on their favorite styles — see the results here.

  • PitastharaPuthraya

    Orang Melayu and Mohamed,

    I mentioned about Buddhist teaching not to say that it is the ‘ultimate’ truth. No body knows what that is. You just believe that yours is the one.

    I did not ask you to accept his teaching, as I, myself, have some misgivings of certain Buddhist dogmas.

    I mentioned Buddhist teaching just to show how straight forward its teaching is with regarding to killing. There is no room for compromise. No body can quote the Buddha’s teaching to justify ‘killing’ or accuse him for being ambiguous or accuse him for being a hypocrite.

    It does not matter how extensively you quote from Quran to show us how killing humans being is justified at certain situations. For that you do not have to look for religious scriptures, any ‘Criminal Law Code’, including the ‘Penal Code of Democratic Socialist Republic Sri Lanka’ would tell you in what situations killing of a fellow human beings can be justified. For humane conduct of war, you have to look at the Geneva Convention with its additional protocols and etc.
    a
    As Gamarala also reiterated several times the crux of the matter remains the same. If I am to repeat Gamarala’s words in a different way, how can humans interpreter a treatise in different ways with grave consequences to their own religion and to the humanity at large unless it is less than perfect? If a considerable number of people misinterpret a message intended for them, whose fault is that? Is it the people, who read it or the writer who wrote the message?

    I completely agree with what Gamarala says about the origin of these Holy Scriptures and it is also the view of the majority of scholars all over the world, including theistic and atheistic. Why can’t you accept that simple truth?

    By doing so you do not necessarily have to deny the existence of a creator God. There are many Christians including Christian theologians who still believe in God while accepting that the Bible, old and new, was written by humans and not by God himself.

    By doing so, you, moderate Muslims, would be able to label the extremists as heretics and show the world how good Islam for the mankind is.

    • yapa

      Dear PitatharaPuthraya;

      Excellently argued.

      Especially following two are spotlessly correct.

      “If a considerable number of people misinterpret a message intended for them, whose fault is that? Is it the people, who read it or the writer who wrote the message?”

      “By doing so you do not necessarily have to deny the existence of a creator God. There are many Christians including Christian theologians who still believe in God while accepting that the Bible, old and new, was written by humans and not by God himself.”

      Thanks!

    • Orang Melayu

      Although you have a problem with your religon, I have none with mine. Our religon and all the scholars tell us to follow the laws and constitution of the country we reside. We have absolutely no problem with that.
      The average Muslim does not need to know much about the Quran to set about his daily life. If any complex problem arises we can consult the Ulema for their advise. It is like consulting a doctor regarding a complex ailment. Self medication is not advised.
      Islam is a religon which can be practiced by anyone at his own level of understanding. It is like a train where you can travel first class, second class or on the footboard. Nominally you require only to believe and practice prayer, fasting, charity and pilgrimage if able. There is not order to go around killing people as you allege.
      So it is better if you study the Quran before making various unfounded remarks about Islam and Muslims.

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Dear Orang Malayu,

        Thanks for the reply.

        I do not have any problem with Muslims or their relegion. In fact, I greatley respect and admire prophet Mohommad as a relegious teacher. I also know that a great majority of Muslims are ‘good’ people. There is no difference between Muslims, Sinhalese, Tamils and others in this regard.

        As you know we discussed about everything in this formu without any racial, relegious or sectarian prejudice. I entered into this discussion with the same enthusiasm.

        I do not know much of Islam. However, I do not think that it should prevent me from discussing it as an amateur.

        The problems with any relegion is not solely due to its founder or scripture. The followers should also share some responsibility of not understanding the limitations of relegions.

        The Islam, as all the other relegions, was founded in a different era to suit the people who lived in it. Although they contained some universal moral principle, there are some which are unique to the social, economic, political and cultural background of that era. The problems with Islam arise with the dogmatic assertion that the Quran contains nothing but God’s words. This takes the space of any compromise away as then the teaching should be universtal and valid forever. That is why some Muslims can use Quran and Prophet Mohommad’s personal life to justify certian questionable practices and conduct such as anti-semitism, polygamy, killing enemies, child marraige etc.

        If you Muslims, especially moderate intellectuals like you, maintain that everything in the Muslim society is hunky-dory who is going to give a voice to the opressed women, men and children in your society all over the world?

        I am sad to say Orang, you are a typical example of an intellectual, whose natural insticts of neutrality, inquistiveness, intelligence, analysis etc has been usurped by the uncompromising unreasonable beleif in the idea that ‘truths’ of all the unvierse are contained in one single book.

        I should also re-emphasis that this is nothing to do with the existance or not of God.

        Thanks

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        I am sorry. I can not see the videos.

      • Orang Melayu

        Dear Pitisthara Puthraya

        I am sorry I hurt your feelings. However my belief in Islam and Allah is very strong and not open to any compromise. I have practised Islam and experienced the power of Allah for many decades. Also I have studied other religons and am aware of their beliefs etc. So I am fully convinced and my conviction cannot be shaken as maybe some inexpirienced person.

        Anyway thanks for expressing your feelings and beliefs so that we may know what others feel about Islam and we may change our ways if there are shortcomings. As I said, to you your way and to me mine. God bless you and show you the straight path as he is the one who guides and there is nothing we can do which is not known to him.

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Dear Orang,

        I have never intended to shake your beleif in your God, which I pretty much know that I am incapable of, even if I wanted.

        My intention was to make you look at your own society and have a critical look on it, as we all know that no society is perfect. My appproach is also not from a position that we are correct and you are wrong.

        This stubborness of not willing to accept that you have major problems in your society and the relegion, as they practice it today, has a share in it, is unbeleivable as you have already accepted that mis-interpretation of Islam is a major problem facing Muslim societies all over the world.

        Have you ever thought why so many people mis-interpret Islam, when it is crystal clear for you and many others?

        It is my opinion that you can find answers to these questions whithout shaking your beleif in God.

        In Christianity, even if the Old Testament upholds ‘eye for eye’ and ‘tooth for tooth’ morality Jesus Christ promoted the practice of ‘turning your other cheek’ morality. No practicing devoout Christian today would justify ‘eye for eye’ saying that it is ‘God’s word’.

        Thanks

  • Orang Melayu

    This is a great answer to the question about Muslims killing innocent people given by Dr Zakir Naik

  • Orang Melayu

    This is avery good video about the Miracle of the Quran in response to questions regarding its divine source by Sheik Ahamed Deedat.

    • yapa

      Orang Melayu;

      Really it is a good video.

      However, I think we should pay your attention to the most critical issues of the the religion.

      I think in Islam Creator is the most important topic, as without HIS existent, there is no validity to talk of its details as there cannot be Islam without the creator. As I said to Mohamed, discussing details of Islam without establishing creators existence is meaningless and futile as holding international seminars on the medicinal value of unicorn horns.

      I have posed you core questions in this regard and you seem to be busy with other matters and I am yet to have answers from you. I hope you will answer them or join with Mohamed to the discussion he is having with me now.

      http://groundviews.org/2012/05/10/no-longer-blind-no-longer-bound/#comment-44410

      Thanks!

      • Orang Melayu

        Dear Yapa

        There are many explanations regarding the existence of Allah the creator. A few are given below, however if you do not want to believe it is your choice and whatever explanation is given may not suffice.

        Once Khalifa Haroon Rasheed asked Imam Malik: “What is the evidence (daleel) pointing to the existence of Allah (subhanahu wa ta`ala)?” Imam Malik replied: “Difference in languages, difference in pitches of voice, difference in singing are proof that Allah (subhanahu wa ta`ala) exists!”

        The same question was asked, by an atheist, of Imam Abu Hanifa and he replied, “Forget it! At the moment, I am busy thinking about this ship. People tell me there is a big ship, it contains different goods on board. There is no one to steer it, no one maintaining it. Yet, this ship keeps going back and forth; it even traverses big waves on the oceans; it stops at the locations that it is supposed to stop at; it continues in the direction that it is supposed to head. This ship has no captain and no one planning its trips.”

        The atheist who posed the question interrupted and exclaimed, “What kind of strange and silly thought is this? How can any intelligent person think that some thing like this can occur?”

        Imam Abu Hanifa said, “I feel sorry about your state! You cannot imagine one ship running without some one looking after its affairs. Yet you think that for this whole world, which runs exactly and precisely, there is no one who looks after it, and no one owns it.”

        Hearing the reply, the atheist was left speechless but he found out more about Haqq (The Truth) and proclaimed Islam.

        Imam Shafi`i replied to the question in the following way, “The leaves of Toot (berries) are all but one. Each leaf tastes exactly the same. Insects, honey bees, cows, goats, and deer live off of it. After eating these the insects produce silk; bees produce honey; deer give musk (a special kind of scent), cows and goats deliver off-springs. Is this not clear evidence that one kind of leaf has so many qualities, and who created these qualities? It is the Khaliq (Creator) who we call Allah (subhanahu wa ta`ala) Who is the Inventor and the Creator.”

        Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal reflected on the question in the following way. He said, “There is an incredibly strong fort, it has no doors, there is no way to get in. In fact, there is not even a hole in it. From outside it glows like the moon and from inside it shimmers like gold. It is sealed from all sides, matter of fact it is air tight. Suddenly one of its doors breaks down, a living thing with eyes and ears, a beautiful looking animal appears yelling and wandering all over. So is not there a creator who made it possible for life to take place in this secured and closed fort? And is not this Creator better than humans? This Creator has no limit.” Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal was referring to an egg which is closed from all sides but Allah (subhanahu wa ta`ala) The Khaliq (Creator) puts life in it and a chick pops out

      • yapa

        Dear Orang Melayu;

        You made me think a lot and I am still not sure how to answer your post.
        Let me think a little bit more.

        Thanks!

      • Gamarala

        Orang Melayu,

        “This ship has no captain and no one planning its trips”

        Think about what you are saying for a second. Do you actually believe that the top scientists in the world do not understand a simple argument like the one you are raising, and your favourite imam’s analogy just stumped them all? Evolution is not “random”. Whoever told you that (the imam?), does not know anything about evolution. Try reading biology from a reputable source, preferably from scientists who have spent the better part of their lives studying evolution.

        First of all, are you denying that evolution occurs?

        Secondly, evolution is a fact. The whole of modern biology is predicated on the fact of evolution, including all the “miracles” of genetic engineering, micro-biology – you name it.

        The fact of evolution is explained by genetic drift, gene-flow and natural selection of which natural selection tends to have the most impact.

        Natural selection can be summarised as “the non-random selection of random mutations”. Note, that it is non-random. Let me repeat that – non-random. If it makes it easier to digest, remove the word random, so that:
        “natural selection is the non-random selection of mutations”.

        For some introductory articles on the topic, try:
        http://theskepticalteenager.wordpress.com/2012/04/30/random-selection-vs-random-mutation/

        http://evolution-101.blogspot.com.au/2006/02/random-or-nonrandom.html

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_evolution

        For a good treatment, try:
        Any popular science book from a reputed biologist or a university-level text-book on evolution.
        http://www.amazon.com/Best-Books-Evolution-Published-Decade/lm/R6SZF692OH56G

        This is all “a liberal, immoral atheist” can do to help a fellow human being. The rest is in your hands 😀

      • Dear Orang Melayu;

        I still couldn’t find a way to answer your post. However, pondering on it a Sinhala song came into my mind quite effortlessly. It goes….

        “Ha! mal pipenne ganga galanne handa naga,
        Manike nsai gama dilenne thvath haeda wela”

        which means, a lover tells his girlfriend Manika that

        “Why blossoms blooming, why the river is flowing merrily, why the village is shining?, It is just because you my love.”

        Dear Orang Melayu; If I don’t want to believe this lover, is it my choice?

        Thanks!

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Gamarala,

        It is impossible to make somebody understand something if he does not want to understand. Orang does not want to open his/her mind to look at the possibility of evolution or any other alternative to his world view for that matter. That is why he/she stick to seemingly ‘childish’ arguments to disprove evolution. I would like to advice you to put your time and energy to a better use.

        It is impossible to wake a man who pretends to be sleeping.

        Priyanjth

      • Thass

        Islam does not speak much on evolution. However the concept of the creation is central and the status of mankind in central in the universe. Islam may support limited evolution within a species. Whatever be, it is not an issue of contention.

        As stated in the Quran
        O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honorable of you with Allah is that (believer) who is pious. Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.
        Thus the present condition of the human race in various shapes, sizes, colours could be considered to be through a process of evolution or adaptation to the environment, food, lifestyles etc. Just as an athlete may train and improve his physical capabilities and size, weight etc. It is not known if these physical conditions are carried over to his progeny. People who live in cooler climes tend to become fairer etc.

        One of the 99 names of Allah is Al-Bari – The evolver, He who creates all things in proportions.

        He… creates every thing and determines its nature in accordance with His own design.
        Al-Furqan 25:2

        He is Allah, the Creator, the Evolver, the Bestower of Forms
        Al-Hashr 59:24

        So maybe it is possible for lower organisms to divide and mutate etc which is a known phenomenon. This is in line with design of the creator.

        Today there are around one million species of animals and two hundred thousand species of plants. Scientists also say that today’s existing species are just 0.1 percent of the total species that this earth ever witnessed.
        It means that 99.9 per cent of species have already died out and became extinct. So, out of the 2 billion species that ever existed on earth why is man the only species which has such a highly developed brain? What made man to develop so fast and evolve in to such a remarkable intellectual and social creature that he is unmatched by the two billion species which ever existed on this earth? If, according to Darwin, monkeys and apes had the same ancestors as mankind, then why did they not develop into creatures resembling man? Why did they remain so far behind whereas the environmental conditions for non-random selection and rules of evolution apply equally to all species?
        Why is it that a specie which, according to scientists, came into being only a few million years ago, become the most prominent creature of the world, whereas those species which have existed for the past 3.5 billion year are still at the stage of development where they had been before and have not shown any social or intellectual improvement? Who created DNA? Who created the atom? Who created the proton? etc.
        If you are so convinced about evolution or random / un random selectivity why not create a simple living organism from the basic elements. Although you talk of facts, Evolution is still only a theory. Even the theory of relativity which says the speed of light is the maximum that can be achieved, has been disproven. So this simply proves that we are mortals with limited powers of understanding and knowledge. Can you visualize infinity? No, because infinity is bigger than anything you think. Such is the concept of God in Islam.

        Surah Ikhlas (Holy Qur’an 112:1-4) is:
        Say: He is Allah, the One and Only! Allah, the Eternal, Absolute; He begetteth not nor is He begotten. And there is none like unto Him.

        So we are just specks of dust in this mighty universe and creation but we think we know everything.

      • Gamarala

        Dear Thass,

        It looks like you are at least willing to accept that Evolution is a fact, based on solid evidence, which is progress of a kind!

        However, you have then followed up by asking several questions, and suggested that these questions lack answers (which is not entirely correct, most of them are basic questions in biology & physics, and discussed at great length in the literature). Therefore, you suggest that the lack of answers implies that the Koran is true and God did it.

        Regardless of whether or not there really is a lack of answers, how does the lack of answers to a question prove that some other arbitrary assertion is true? Does that sound logical to you?

        If I said, “no man has explained how thunder and lightening happens, therefore, only Thor can cause lightening with the Mjolnir, as written in the Edda.”, does that sound logical to you? Are these two things even related? Incidentally, that’s roughly what Nordic people used to believe. That’s what you sound like to others.

        In any case, your answer to every question seems to be: “man is too ignorant to know the answer to these questions, therefore god’s magic did it”. I must say, this is indeed a convenient theory, even if it’s not a correct one 🙂 No need to explain anything, no need to study, no need to deal with messy equations etc. Everything is explained in one go: “God’s magic did it”.

        If you wish to believe in magic, that’s your prerogative, and I have no inclination to stop you. However, I have good reason to believe that much of what is happening around me is not Godly magic, and what we don’t know, well, we don’t know – and God will have to show up in person if he is so insistent on taking credit.

        In addition, please learn to distinguish between a
        “scientific theory”, and the layman’s use of the word “theory”, which have very different meanings. Evolution is a scientific theory, and not just a “theory”. It doesn’t mean what you think it means.

        A parting question -why is the Cheetah the fastest animal on earth and us humans so slow? Why is a bear so strong and us humans so weak? Asking why an animal is strong in its area of specialization is a meaningless question. It only depends on which “aspect” you think is special. In a contest of strength, the tiger wins, and man is a bit of a joke. In a contest of chewing through wood, the lowly rat would beat us humans. You happen to be questioning the intelligence aspect, which is man’s evolutionary niche.

        Anyway, thanks for your input.

      • Gamarala

        Dear PitastharaPuthraya,

        I agree with what you say, but “someone is wrong on the Internet!!!!” 😀
        http://xkcd.com/386/

      • Dear Thass;

        I think the issues you have raised about evolution is valid, as evolution is only a theory. Science itself accept that theories of Science are not perfect, hence most of the theories (especially the theories in Biology)leaves many unanswerable questions. In my first post addressed to Mohamed I mentioned this.

        http://groundviews.org/2012/05/10/no-longer-blind-no-longer-bound/#comment-44337

        However, what you say about Relativity is not true (yet). Recent CERN experiment claimed that they were able to send neutrinos faster than the speed of light, later they accepted that it happened due to some experimental errors. Einstein’s postulate that light has the maximum speed, is still valid and awaiting more experiments on it.

        Further, you seems to justify the creator on the basis of the unsolved questions of the universe. It is not reasonable to attribute them to a unknown power, creator or Allah. Some of such questions prevailed in the past were solved later, and many are being solved. So existence of unsolved questions doesn’t necessarily demand a creator, if so no question would have been solved by the modern man without the help of the almighty, but it is not the case.

        On the other hand, the creator is not only redundant to explain nature, it contradicts with other facts related to nature. On the other hand creator is without any correspondence in nature. These facts clearly refuse the possibility of existence of a creator.

        I think Islam is totally based on creator and his revelations to the humankind, according to the believers, recorded in Quran. If the existence of the creator is negated, the whole religion of Islam becomes invalid. I discussed this fact with Mohamed, you may read them in the post cited above and in the subsequent discussion.

        Can you established the existence of a creator against the facts forwarded by me in those posts and establish the validity of Islam?

        Thanks!

      • Mohamed

        Dear gamarala

        For you to claim evolution is a “fact” none of these theories tested for full in laboratory. So it will remain a theory. Your claim such as many scientist accepted is not true and there are many scientist whom are creationists. For example “Dr.Kevin Anderson” is a creationist who published around 20 technical papers on genetics and molecular biology of bacteria. Scintist such as John P Marcus told “We have already seen that no such system could possibly appear by chance. Life in its totality must have been created in the beginning, just as God told us.” (John P Marcus, Research Officer at the Cooperative Research Centre for Tropical Plant Pathology, University of Queensland, Australia. John holds a PhD in Biological Chemistry from the University of Michigan.) We don’t care how many scientist creationist or evolutionists, what matters here is their work to prove their claim. Please note the following

        1.So far evolutionists not figured out how the first cell came in to existence. This is one of the crucial points to determine un-animated non living maters to animated living being. While all the cell elements are available and known and science world has the facility to facilitate the environment with required condition non possibility so far is shows the difficulty behind such task and required precision towards the work. (There are enough scientific explanation about Why Is Abiogenesis Impossible)

        2.So far not a single macro evolution is tested in laboratory to prove their claim of evolution. Some always tried their best to deviate the subject by giving evidence of adaptation in micro organism as evolution.

        3.Many other tools such as “probability calculation” are against the subject of evolution.

        Let me ask you a question
        One of your link says as below
        “Let me explain. In the genetic sequence, there are genes which are extremely important, like the ability to produce sex cells or heart cells or liver cells or brain cells, and there are genes which aren’t very important, like the length of one’s nose. So that the genes which create heart cells or brain cells do not get mutated away, (because they are very important) these genes are highly protected for. The organism creates many copies of those genes, so that even if one gets mutated, the information for building a heart is still there.”
        another site you have given also says the same
        “Now, most mutations don’t affect an organism’s ability to live and reproduce. These kinds of mutations are called silent mutations. Since they’re not selected for or against, they accumulate at a regular rate in populations. But some mutations can affect genes either positively or negatively, with the result of having a positive or negative effect on the ability of an organism to survive in its environment, what we would call an organism’s fitness.”
        Mean time it says
        “When a strand of DNA is copied, there can be errors. These errors can be caused by a number of factors, including radiation, certain chemicals, or viruses.”

        Now my question is, if these facts are so clear why they cannot produce a macro evolution in the laboratory? All the material and condition required are achievable in today’s science world.

        Given all these facts your claim that evolution is a fact is really surprising me.

        As you have given some links on evolution, I also would like to share some links which are against evolution.

        http://www.math.utep.edu/Faculty/sewell/articles/mathint.html

        http://www.aboundingjoy.com/molecular-fs.html

        http://www.prophetsorevolution.com/BookList.html

      • Gamarala

        Mohammed,

        I don’t understand why you need to ask me about macro-evolution. A quick read of wikipedia would have given you the answers you seek: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macroevolution

        For the rest of the questions, I’m sure that no argument I raise will have any bearing on your opinion. Had you been really interested in answers, you would have already read an introductory book on the subject. All of these hackneyed arguments have been debunked ad nauseam. The scientific evidence and consensus is not in doubt.

      • Mohamed

        gamarala
        I didn’t ask you what is macro evolution; I asked you where the evidence for such evolution. Presenting an evidence will be much valuable than presenting an article which indirectly says such evidence do not exist hence it’s only a creationist claim. If man can came from monkey, it comes under definition of macro evolution. It seems to me the evolutionist only present the pictures not evidences.

      • Gamarala

        Mohammed,

        And I didn’t tell you what macro-evolution is, nor did I provide any evidence, because I suggested that you do the necessary homework yourself by reading some basic books on biology. Since you insist, here’s a link ;-):
        http://lmgtfy.com/?q=evidence+for+macro+evolution

        As I explained before, the scientific evidence is not in doubt, and there is no “controversy” in the scientific community over evolution – the whole of modern biology is predicated on the fact of evolution. Molecular genetics, the reconstruction of our phylogenetic tree, the fossil record, vestigial organs – everything, and I mean everything in modern biology, corroborates and stands as evidence for evolution.

        I’m sorry, I do not see how it is my business to provide a basic education of these topics on a forum, and engaging with you in a whack-a-mole type of circular discussion is not of interest to me. If you truly desire to learn, the links I provided in my previous post are excellent resources. If on the other hand, you are not really interested in learning about it, and only in furthering your “belief”, that’s your prerogative, and I leave you to whatever comforting belief you desire.

      • mohamed

        gamarala

        Unfortunately the given link is not giving any proof. Theory is still a theory if there is no experimental proof in the laboratory 😉

      • Gamarala

        Mohamed,

        I’m curious. I take it that the reconstruction of the phylogenetic tree, the dna markers that enable this process, the demonstration of speciation,, artificial selection demonstrated in the laboratory, transference of genes between species and all the mountains of other incontrovertible evidence is insufficient to you.

        Therefore, I assume you are looking for some very specific type of evidence? You also insist on a laboratory experiment. Can you explain to us, what the experiment you expect is? Can you outline the hypothetical laboratory experiment, and provide an outline of how it could be conducted to your satisfaction?

      • mohamed

        Reconstruction of the phylogenetic tree? Yah benze evolved from BMW 🙂

        How about experimenting a chimp and turning it to human in lab. Only 2% difference in DNA isn’t?

      • Gamarala

        Mohamed,

        Aah. I suspected as much. A member of the crocoduck brigade 😀 Sums up your knowledge on the topic nicely!
        1. Do you understand the difference between a cousin and an ancestor?
        2. Do you understand that turning a chimp into a human is not what is meant by evolution?

        Like I said, hit the books mate! You need to understand what evolution is before you ask for evidence that only suggests that you understand nothing about it.

        Read up on crocoducks while you are about it 😀

      • mohamed

        If you put my demand in to crocoduck, it shows your understanding about the subject too. If I put the question in different way, provide experiment evidence with macro multiple cell organisms with so called mutation. i.e evolution from one distinct kind of organism into another
        Please read about 5 kingdom of life. Now take the kingdom of animalia and give an experimental evidence. Demand is not unreasonable isn’t? Because in phylogenetic tree the evolution of such is shown. I didn’t ask to turn the monkey in to human overnight. Perhaps if the experiment is conduct there should be some “transitional” forms that we could observe. But experiment is not out of hand either, because facility is within reach so experiment can take place. Hope you know that Evolutionary geneticists have often experimented on fruit flies and other rapidly reproducing species to induce mutational changes hoping they would lead to new and better species, but these have all failed to accomplish their goal. No truly new species has ever been produced, let alone a new “basic kind.”A leading evolutionist, Jeffrey Schwartz, professor of anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh, acknowledged that:
        “. . . it was and still is the case that, with the exception of Dobzhansky’s claim about a new species of fruit fly, the formation of a new species, by any mechanism, has never been observed.”

        If evolution is true and its happen in the nature we should see these “transitional” forms in the nature too as it has to happen now as it was before. Unfortunately many species remain the same for last many years of human observation.

        Unfortunately so far the mutations that occurred in the lab were not advantageous. Destruction of DNA information is not evolution, its called devolution. I hope you need more education about the subject before you claim that evolution is a fact or I need to know what evolution is. In short evolution was just a theory as it wasn’t experimented in the lab. 🙂

      • Gamarala

        Mohamed,

        Since your new found knowledge on evolution was cut-and-pasted from here: http://www.icr.org/article/scientific-case-against-evolution-summary-part-1/

        you can read a rebuttal here: http://www.fsteiger.com/icr-articles.html
        😉

        I kinda know the game Mohamed. You are not the first creationist chap I’ve talked to. I also know the whack-a-mole type discussion format you guys prefer.
        1. Come up with a nonsensical argument, picked up from a site like the one above.
        2. Have it debunked, and nonchalantly slip away and come up with another.
        3. Keep doing this until original argument is forgotten.
        4. Circle back to first argument as if it’s all new.
        5. Repeat endlessly.

        Like I said, I don’t have the time for that nonsense. If you have an interest in learning about this, hit the books! In any case, creationist nonsense is only taught in backward parts of the middle-east and maybe the bible belt (not surprising, when one’s knowledge of the world is based on a 1st century book). Most of the sane people in the world have moved on, and what’s left are fossils like you. Evolution in action eh? 😉

      • mohamed

        Gamaral,
        You are right, note that I did not just as you cut and pasted the links, I went one step further and got the reference. What is the problem in that, much better than giving links right. the site you have given not negates the reference as falls, read in the both articles Jeffrey H. Schwartz, Sudden Origins (New York. John Wiley, 1999), p. 300. This is what I referred from the article and the rebuttal doesn’t talk anything about this reference. Infact, Dr.morris highlighted the content and rebuttal is not refereeing directly what he has highlighted. So, another swiping under the carpet job by these evolutionists.
        Whatever it is, I referred the quote for my question and without answering my question all you have done is pointing at my reference which in fact not rebutted. Funny isn’t? keep on insulting others without taking any efforts to find the facts. You are not the first one I am talking about this and not be the last. All points that you had given as suiting me is really suits you as I didn’t deviate from the content but your inability to answer my question puts you in that position. Facts can stand clearly from errors. Evolution is the biggest blunder in modern science, a non-scientific theory that bunch of atheist forced to be in science.
        Even I don’t have time to waste with …. 🙂

  • Najeeb

    Dear sister,

    Let me first ask Allah (SWT) to give first of all me, you and all who reads this email hidayah and guidance to right path. Verily Allah is most forgiving and most merciful.

    While I was reading through your email I was thinking to myself how interesting it was until at one point I realized how misguided you are by your own thoughts and analogies. Subanallah and at one point I realized how sinful your questioning the creator with so limited knowledge you have. First I thought to ignore your email as your email did not have any signature nor any name. However unfortunately since it is being distributed among all members I felt it is a duty upon me to give my view. Insha Allah I like to ask moderators of this forum not to distribute anonymous emails in the future.

    According to your email you sound very confused, because your desire to try to mingle with non Muslim(s) and justifying your thoughts and actions, hence ultimately drifting to kuffar and atheist thought process. Coming to your points. Lets forgot all your theories, analogies and confusion. First question why do you bother what is happening around you? Ask yourself few simple questions?

    1. Who is my creator?
    2. Why I was created?
    3. What is my duty upon my creator ?

    These are the questions each and every one of us should be asking. We know for centuries atheists have argued in similar fashion and they miserably failed. Think about universe, solar system, creation of earth and perfection of its creation, its living beings, and creation of greens and veggies for existence of living and every other creation and nature around us and how perfectly everything is engineered. No person with a sound mind will question the existence of Allah the most supreme. If so and if we firmly believe in his existence, then comes why we are created and our duties towards the creator and meeting his expectations. What is expected from each one of us and how am I we are going to face in the day of judgement and account for my deeds?

    At that point are you going to ask those questions? While you are writing such an email shows your little intellect, from the other end it also shows your ignorance and stupidity. All the observations you made does it matter to you to make a judgement upon the existence of GOD? Isn’t it your duty to first start to understand your creator from core and then understand in a logical manner regardless of what is happening around you. Like you, each and every one of us around us also being created and subject to sins and errors of our own. Hence we all are individually judged. Does it mean you question GOD’s existence because you see people sinning around you? How logical would it be?

    Think about your statement:

    “It seemed convenient for God to simply let us be after the death of the last Prophet, after years of guiding humanity since the beginning of time. Are we not worthy? Are we not your creation too? If you are so humble and modest, why is that our lives/actions are judged according to how much we worship you?”

    This is more than enough to show how ignorant you are with your own conflicting statements.

    Allah created this world guided human being for generations and perfected the religion and his guidance with prophet Muhammad.

    Allah the All Mighty Says “This day have I perfected your religion for you and completed My favor upon you and have chosen for you Islam as your religion.” [Quran 5:3]

    This was one of the last verses revealed to Prophet Muhammad, marking the completion of the Quran and the perfection of Islam. Islam is complete and perfect and is not thereafter susceptible to addition or abrogation. Being eternal and universal, the Islamic Law, which was made by Allah who knows what is best for us under all circumstances, is resilient and adjustable to the changing conditions of time and place.

    Lets analyze with your general analogy of this world:

    1) We have millions of students sitting for O/L in Sri Lanka every year. Just because all are educated in government schools does that mean that government has to pass them all. In order for them to pass they have to work hard, study and perfect the knowledge and sit for final exam. They will be rewarded or find the consequences based on how they prepared.

    2) You are going in to a new working place or a job. Are you expecting to behave as you wish on your own without any code of conduct and then expect your bosses to be quiet and put up with you. Evey one of us has to follow the code of conduct and job description for us to be rewarded or else will find our self out of the job (punished) no time.

    These are man made situations and worldly matters where you and I conveniently abide by and put up with but then you question Allah (SWT) who has given the perfect guidance but you never wanted to follow his divine law yet you question? Ask yourself who is the looser?

    The perfection of Islam is manifested in the fact that Allah has made it’s reign supreme and prevail over other religions. Allah’s favor upon the Muslims is manifested in the fact that he granted them true guidance, support and honor in this world and in the hereafter. He has chosen Islam for us as our final religion because it is the truth, and it is for this reason that he will not accept any other religion but Islam. Just because others believe in GOD and practice some form of worshiping it doesn’t mean it is the also right way.

    The Quran says (what means): “And whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it shall not be accepted from him, and in the life to come he shall be among the losers.” [Quran 3:85].

    May Allah show all of us to the right path and guide us for the victory in this world and here after.

    Wassalam

    Zaid

    • Dear Najeeb;

      I cannot understand with what a closed mind set you are writing here.

      The main issue here in the discussion is whether there is a creator to believe HIM. Skipping the crux of the issue, you go for asking consequent questions assuming there is a creator.

      These are your questions;

      1. Who is my creator?
      2. Why I was created?
      3. What is my duty upon my creator ?

      If there is no a creator, your questions have no any validity.

      Your questions to be valid, first of all you will have to establish that there is a creator. But my posts in the discussion shows negative answer to the question.

      Can you first establish whether there is a creator or not to start with?

      No coconut oil is possible if coconut is not a reality.

      Thanks!

  • Dear Gamarala;

    Orang Melayu may not have heard about the modern ships and airplanes that find their sea and air routs with “auto pilots”.

    Thanks!

  • PitastharaPuthraya

    Thass,

    “So we are just specks of dust in this mighty universe and creation but we think we know everything”.

    I do not think I know everything. I pretty much sure that the great majority of atheist including Yapa and Gamarala (and the scientists) do not think that they know everything.

    But one thing we can all agree that we have gradually become more and more knowledgable. A generation ago people called chicken pox ‘deiyanne lede’ and thought it was due to a curse. Now we know that it is a viral disease and if you take Acyclovir you do not have to suffer like we did when we were small. That is how our knowledge has evolved.

    Today, scientists know great deal about thing, which a hundred years ago they couldn’t even dream of.

    Even if we do not know today for sure why only humans obtained intelligence it is not an excuse for beleiving in creation. Creation is not the answer to all the thing we do not know.

    People for centuries beleived ‘creation’. Many centuries before Judaism, Christianity and Islam people of all the ancient great civilizations beleived in some form of divine creation becaue they could not understand the natural phenomena. Those days they thought even thunder, lightening, eclipses, epidemics, floods, famine, drought etc were divine creations. Now, even the atheists like you do not beleive they have anythign to do with divinity but you still beleive the creation of universe.

    As Islam took the teaching of Judaism and Christianity and converted them to their own Judaism took the ideas of monotheism and creation from the previous civilizations and made them their own.

    You should understand that the answer to all the unknown is not the ‘divine creation’ because unknown is not eternal and static. It changes into to ‘known’ in the forseeble future as happened in the past.

    • Thass

      The wonders of creation are a proof of the creation. Quran says

      “Behold! In the creation of the heavens and the earth; in the alternation of the night and the day; in the sailing of ships through the ocean, for the profit of mankind; in the rain which Allah sends down from the skies, and the life which He gives therewith to an earth that is dead; in the beasts of all kinds that He scatters through the earth; in the change of the winds, and the clouds which they trail like their slaves between the sky and the earth; here indeed are Signs for a people that are wise” (Quran 2:164)

      “And Allah has created every animal from water. Of them there are some that creep on their bellies, some that walk on two legs, and some that walk on four…” (24:45)

      “See they not how Allah originates creation, then repeats it? Truly that is easy for Allah” (29:19).

      “It is He Who created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon. All (the celestial bodies) swim along, each in its rounded course” (21:33).

      “It is not permitted for the sun to catch up to the moon, nor can the night outstrip the day. Each just swims along in its own orbit” (36:40).

      “He created the heavens and the earth in true proportions. He makes the night overlap the day, and the day overlap the night. He has subjected the sun and the moon to His law; each one follows a course for a time appointed…” (39:5).

      “The sun and the moon follow courses exactly computed” (55:5).

      “Man We did create from a quintessence of clay. Then we placed him as a drop of sperm in a place of rest, firmly fixed. Then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood. Then out of that clot We made a fetus lump. Then We made out of that lump bones, and clothed the bones with flesh. Then We developed out of it another creature. So blessed be Allah, the Best to create!” (23:12-14).

      “But He fashioned him in due proportion, and breathed into him of His spirit. And He gave you hearing, and sight, and understanding” (32:9).

      “That He did create the pairs, male and female, from a sperm-drop when lodged in its place” (53:45-46).

      “Was he not a drop of sperm emitted, then did he become a leach-like clot. Then did Allah make and fashion him in due proportion. And of him He made two sexes, male and female” (75:37-39).

      “He makes you in the wombs of your mothers in stages, one after another, in three veils of darkness” (39:6).

      This is the wonder of the quran which was revealed 1400 years ago to a simple unlearned arab.

      So my dear Puthraya, Gamarala and Yapa, dont you wonder as to the miracles of Creation? We know a lot these days but can we prevent an earthquake or Tsunami? Can we cure cancer? Aids?

      Islam says there is a cure for every disease. Only we have yet to dicover it.

      In established Hadith narrated on the authority of Ibn Maso’ud the Holy Prophet says “God has not inflicted a disease without prescribing a cure to it, known to whoever knows it, and unknown to whoever does not know it.” (cited by Ahmad. cf Nayl-al-Awtar, V.9, p.89)
      He said – on the authority us Usama Ibn Shuraik – when a Bedouin asked him whether he should seek treatment: “Yes, servants of God seek treatment; God has not set a disease without setting a cure to it, known to whoever knows it and unknown to whoever does not know it ” (cited by Ibn Mujah, Tirmidhi and Abu-Dawood).
      And again, on the authority of Abu-Huraira, the Prophet said, “God has not sent any disease without sending a cure to it” (cited by Ahmad, Bukhari and Ibn Majah).

      This is not magic. This is the miracle of the Quran

      • Dear Thass;

        I wonder why Allah created diseases at all, even along with cures. It is really unproductive. It seems that Allah had no knowledge about “effectiveness”, otherwise he wouldn’t have done such a waste.

        Anyway, as I have said earlier, coconut oil is not possible, unless coconut is a reality. Same way creation is not possible unless creator is reality.

        Can you prove/establish that creator is a reality? Without that discussing the marvels of creation has no point. Characters of fairy tales we take fairy tales as we cannot establish the existence of those characters. You cannot prevent Quran becoming a book of fairy tales if you cannot establish at least its main character, the creator, Allah.

        I hope you will give your maximum effort to establish HIS existence as your first obligation towards Allah.

        Thanks!

      • Thass

        If you have coconut oil then you have to admit that the coconut is a reality. Similiarly if you have a system you have to admit that the system administrator is a reality.
        We have a universe of Billions of years, a World of Billions of Human Beings functioning so do you think that there is no administrator.
        Many events occur in this world, good and bad. What is good for one person may be bad for the other. However a balance is maintained. The human body is like a machine. The manufacturer of this machine has asked us to use it in a certain way. A manual has been issued. However if we misuse it then there is bound to be a breakdown which is disease, sickness etc.
        Islam asks us to wash our hands before eating. Makes sense? Asks us not to over eat. Dont drink alcohol. Dont eat pork, observe fast etc. People think that these are small details but overall they contribute to the well being of the human race.
        Islam says dont gamble, dont take interest, give charity, dont break the trust. These are all for our own good.
        So if I dont mention the word creator you may accept these as good.But the miracle is these things were taught to us 1400 years ago before when science was not so developed etc. There are so many such things that would amaze you and as I said if there is coconut oil there has to be a coconut.

  • PitastharaPuthraya

    Sorry ‘even the theists like you…’

  • The first and the foremost challenge/task there in front of the Atheist is to find a way to establish the existence of creator to convince the the world (not just the atheists, which doesn’t need any effort) as all those religions depend on this fundamental per-requirement.

    I think, different from Orang Melayu and Najeeb, Mohamed tried some rational path in this effect, however, he has to leave the discussion due to lack of time. I hope he or somebody else would undertake this endeavour, if they wish modern society to have some faith in theist religions. Otherwise no one can prevent them deviating away from the ever increasing knowledgeable people of the world. Otherwise they will see their extinction according to the natural laws; unfits will be eliminated.

    Thanks!

    • Correction………….

      In the first sentence “Atheist” should be changed as “Theists”

      Thanks!

  • PitastharaPuthraya

    Thass and Najeeb,

    Please stop for a moment quoting from Quran and think. It does not make any sense. Give me good valid answers to the following questions.

    1. Why should any body accept or beleive a thing just because Quran says so?

    2. Your main argument is that because this and that is so complex that they should have been created by the God. Isn’t it just a presumption? Without relying on just presumptions can you give us a one ‘concrete’ evidence to prove your argumetns?

    Something like penicillin kills baceteria. It is a fact and can be proven and has been proven.

    I will accept the existance of God and his creation if you show me a single evidence, which is not based on quotations from books, speculations, second hand knowledge, presumptions and guess works.

    • Thass

      Dear Mr Yapa

      I herewith present some logical reasoning for your consideration

      1. The Universe runs on its own
      2. Things that run on their own require intelligence
      3. Therefore the Universe is an intelligent being?

      1. The universe has a beginning
      2. A beginning is caused by an event
      3. There is a cause for every event
      4. Therefore the universe has a cause

      1. The universe is a complex system
      2. The universe functions according to scientific rules and laws
      3. The rules and laws that govern the universe were promulgated by an entity
      4. Therefore the universe is controlled by an entity.

      1. Fire is the combustion of carbonaceous matter in conjunction with oxygen.
      2. Combustion is not 100% efficient and gives rise to smoke.
      3. Smoke consists of carbon particulates suspended in natural convection currents generated by the evolution of heat by the fire.
      4. Therefore there is no smoke without fire.

  • PitastharaPuthraya

    Dear Thas,

    1. In your first syllogism the 2nd premise is wrong, which is things that run on their own requires intlligence. Nothing is more wrong than this.

    A bacterium, which runs, eats, breaths, reproduces etc. by their own does not require intelligence. (I can show you literally millions of examples)

    When one premise of your ‘argument’ is wrong the conclusion has to be wrong. It is not a valid argument.

    Universe need not be an ‘intelligent’ being.

    2. In the sencond, even if the conclusion may be correct. The cause does not need to be the God.

    3. In the third syllogism, your 3rd prmeise is not a prmise but a conclusion. You haven’t showed us how you came to that conclusion.

    4. Your fourth one is not worth any comments.

    If this the way your are going prove the existance of God I feel sorry for you.

    Thanks

  • PitastharaPuthraya

    Did you watch this? The big Question: Is Islam an intolerant relgion?

    • Thass

      Yeah. Nothing wrong with it. They say Anjum Chaudhry is the problem not Islam.

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Thas,

        I know. But it is the politically correct answer isn’t it? Most of the people do not liike to criticise relegion in the media as it may be conceived as politically incorrect.

        The fundamenatal problem with Islam, as one of the participants pointed out, is its violent begining. Muslims can do many things, which are considered to be ‘wrong’ in the 21st century, and still justify them as being according to their relegion by quoting from Quran or life of prophet Mohommad. That is what Anjam Chaudhry did that day. It is scary to think that there are many thousands like him all over the world.

        Although there are many Sinhalese Buddhists, who are violent, racist, bigoted etc like Chaudhry, they never can justify their actions quoting the Buddha or Buddhist scritptures. This is true for most other relegions in the world including, Christianity because their founders were not violent men.

        There is nothing wrong with Prophet Mohommad, who was a brilliant teacher and a leader. The problem lies with the present days Muslims who try to interpret Quran and his life taken out of the context beleiving it true to the last punctuation mark.

        The ‘true’ Muslims all over the world have a duty to do onbehalf of the human kind and their own relegion, which it to show the world the true ‘meaning’ of Islam. You need a ‘Jesus Christ’ to show its humane, kind, loving aspects ignoring the violet past and present. In that process they have to accept that the Quran and Prophet’s life have to interpreted in a different way.

      • Mohamed

        Dear PitastharaPuthraya

        First of all I think you have little knowledge about Islam and Mohamed, I am not surprise by it with present islamobia.
        Secondly you are wrong about Mohamed, he was more merciful than any and dont confuse with execution by the law reveal to him with his mercy towards those who try to harm him. I kindly request you to read Islamic history and Mohamed’s history to assess properly your view about him. This is a good book

        http://www.2muslims.com/books/alraheeq.pdf

        also you can find following videos which I feel somewhat accurate about Islamic history

        http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4222791480425043142

        http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7502243539190558658

        http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=94144204270367302

        As you pointed out the video for some of your comment and as you are a Christian, let me ask you a question
        According to bible (New Testament) an adulterer (Mary Magdalene) was brought in front of Jesus by Jews and asked to execute as per mosses law. But he didn’t and said,” the one who haven’t committed such a sin can throw the first stone” , he himself also not did anything. Mean time in another place Jesus says “he came to fulfill the laws of mosses and not to destroy it” . Can you explain the following as per bible?
        1.If Jesus changed the law, he was not up to his words and lying is not a character of a holy man
        2.If only Jesus teaching are binding , why Christians keep the teachings of old testament in their bible and others such as st.pauls
        I have my own understanding from non Christian prospective; I believe in Jesus as a prophet and a man never go against the words of god. but would like to know hw christens answer this conflict.

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Dear Mohamed,

        I am sorry to say that you have not answered to my questions.

        First of all I do not have anything against Islam or Prophet Mohommad and I am not a Christian, as you incorrectly assumed.

        I accept that Prophet Mohommad had been a merciful leader according to the standard of the day. However, you can not deny that he approved the Killing of Jews and stoning of a woman for adultry among many other things, probably according to the customs at that time.

        I repeat this over and over again. The problem may not be with Prophet Mohommad. It is with the people, who take his action out of context and make use of them to justify violence meted out to people in the name of Sharia law.

        Whatever the contradiction Jesus’ teaching had with that of the old testament he never approved or practiced violence against fellow human beings. This was becasue he was not a political leader of the Jews unlike prophet Mohommad. I repeat, it was not due to any particular violent tendency of Prophet Mohommad’s character, which made him to use violence. It was purely because of his position as a political and relegious leader.

        The problem is that his actions are interpreted in the 21st century to justify violence.

        I know that I do not have any prejudice aganist Islam or prophet Mohommad.

    • Thass

      1. Even a bacteria have intelligence

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microbial_intelligence
      Microbial intelligence (popularly known as bacterial intelligence) is the intelligence shown by microorganisms. The concept encompasses complex adaptive behaviour shown by single cells, and altruistic and/or cooperative behavior in populations of like or unlike cells mediated by chemical signalling that induces physiological or behavioral changes in cells and influences colony structures.

      Complex cells, like protozoa or algae, show remarkable abilities to organise themselves in changing circumstances [1]. Shell-building by amoebae, reveals complex discrimination and manipulative skills that are ordinarily thought to occur only in multicellular organisms.

      2. Our God is by definition the Absolute and Eternal. By definition he is the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe.

      3. Rules and Laws are not random but specific and universal. If laws are random and non-specific and non-universal there will be conflict and chaos. Such a system would be unstable and cannot be sustained.
      Therefore such a system can only be created by a single entity. You may call this phenomenon whatever you want. We call and define it as the Lord of the Universe.

      4. Proof of the Creator is in the Creation. There is no Smoke without Fire. Believe it or Not.

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Thass,

        What do you mean by ‘intelligence’? Does every living thing have intelligence? What about plants? What is the difference between a bacterium and a human being?

      • Thass

        Dear Puthraya

        Plants too have inelligence

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plant_intelligence

        “In botany, plant intelligence is the ability of plants to sense the environment and adjust their morphology, physiology and phenotype accordingly.[1] Research draws on the fields of plant physiology, ecology and molecular biology.

        Intelligence is an umbrella term describing abilities such as the capacities for abstract thought, understanding, communication, reasoning, learning, learning from past experiences, planning, and problem solving. Studies indicate plants are capable of problem solving and communication.”

        Animate beings are those that pro-create, exist, grow and die. Inanimate objects are those that are do not posses life or intelligence.

        The folowing Quranic verse from Surrah Al-An’associates plant germination, growth and emergence with the emergence of the living from the dead and the dead from the living. Here Allah, Great is His affair and supreme is His ability, says:

        “It is Allah Who causes the seed­grain and the date­stone to split and sprout. He brings forth the living from the dead, and it is He Who brings forth the dead from the living. Such is Allah, then how are you deluded away from the truth?” [Al-Anaam: Verse 95]

        Studying the processes in which the living components inside a plant’s body are built up from non-living simple elements, as well as studying the decomposition of the plants – all plants – to its initial form/state as non-living elements, that will help us to understand these Holy verses. Are these random or meaningless events. Judge for yourself.

      • sabbe laban

        Tass

        Vey interesting! Now I see why plants can be considered more intelligent than human beings!(at least some of them..!)

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Thass,

        It seems that Wickipedia is second only to Quran for you. You can find reference to any absurd thing on earth in Wickipedia. It has to be used discreetly by the wise.

        Anyway, I agree that there is no consensus among experts about what ‘intelligence’ means. However, it is absurd to argue that plants, virus and bacteria have intelligence as we intuitively know that they don’t.

        If we accept that what a plant or bacterium has is ‘intelligence’ we have to accept that the ‘universe’ also has some form of its own ‘intelliegence’. Then why should it be God’s intelligence? Why do you need a God to control it? As a bacterium looks after itself adjusting to the enviorment without the support of exogenous intelligence the Universe can look after itself without interference of a externl power, which is God.

        why do you need a God to run a autonomous system?

      • yapa

        “Plants too have inelligence”

        It is wrong usage of language.

        The intelligence referred here is not the intelligence usually referred in other places/contexts.

        They are really two different concepts coined with a single term. It is a linguistic confusion.

        Thanks!

      • Gamarala

        Dear Thass,

        “It is Allah Who causes the seed­grain and the date­stone to split and sprout. He brings forth the living from the dead, and it is He Who brings forth the dead from the living. Such is Allah, then how are you deluded away from the truth?”

        Surely, this is not your actual threshold for being impressed is it? Such a mundane thing as a seed-grain splitting, which is plainly observable to a stone-age farmer, is a miraculous revelation? I assume you are pulling our collective leg?

        If the Koran is of divine origin, surely the creator would have taken some pain to make it sound more impressive than what a bronze-age view of the world? How about producing some equations, maybe a few things taught in middle-school like Newton’s laws? That would undoubtedly be ahead of its time, and leave no doubt as to the divine origin of the book?

        Yet, religious people so often produce these vague and hazy paragraphs and perform incredible feats of gymnastics to read in tenuous connections to modern science. I can’t recall the number of times I’ve seen Buddhists relating their holy books to evolution (at least that’s progress!), or Christians to the big bang, all through one or two cherry picked sentences which are so ambiguous they could mean practically anything.

        What baffling and mutually contradictory claims.

        On the other hand, if all these books were considered to be man-made notions, everything makes such perfect sense…

      • Thass

        Wikipedia is mainly for your benefit, for me Quran is more than adequate.
        All living beings have some form of intelligence. They all have some form of autonomy just as the human being. They strictly follow the commands and laws of the creator as embedded in their genetic code and physical system. What is important is that they require certain conditions to survive like water, sunlight, air etc. They survive only as long as these conditions are met. If not they die and return to dust. Thus they require a Sustainer which is one of the attributes of Allah.

        Quran 27:64
        Or, Who originates creation, then repeats it, and who gives you sustenance from heaven and earth? (Can there be another) god besides Allah? Say, “Bring forth your argument, if ye are telling the truth!”

        According to Islam the Human Being is key figure in the creation. All others have been created for his use.

        Quran 10:24
        The likeness of the life of the present is as the rain which We send down from the skies: by its mingling arises the produce of the earth- which provides food for men and animals: (It grows) till the earth is clad with its golden ornaments and is decked out (in beauty): the people to whom it belongs think they have all powers of disposal over it: There reaches it Our command by night or by day, and We make it like a harvest clean-mown, as if it had not flourished only the day before! thus do We explain the Signs in detail for those who reflect.

        Just as plants and animals have a purpose of existence so has the Human. Humans have been given the freedom to decide between right and wrong and sent guidance through the prophets.

      • yapa

        “Just as plants and animals have a purpose of existence so has the Human. Humans have been given the freedom to decide between right and wrong and sent guidance through the prophets.”

        “According to Islam the Human Being is key figure in the creation. All others have been created for his use.”

        Then the purpose of the other animals must be to act as a deep freezer to keep their flesh afresh until the humans want to consume them.

        Thanks!

      • Thass

        All these so called simple examples are miraculous because no scientist with all their modern equipment has been able to create even a seed of grain from the elements. The life force or spirit inside living organisms cannot be replicated by Science.

        Quran 22:73
        O men! Here is a parable set forth! Listen to it! Those on whom, besides Allah, ye call, cannot create (even) a fly, if they all met together for the purpose! And if the fly should snatch away anything from them, they would have no power to release it from the fly. Feeble are those who petition and those whom they petition!

        Newtons laws are very basic. Maths and other Sciences are like the Blind men touching various different parts of the Elephant and giving different perceptions. What they cannot explain is life itself. A living organism is highly complex. Even a date seed is a miracle because you can’t produce one on your own. Everyone knows how limited our intelligence and senses are. If we are limited in our capacities can we understand what is unlimited?

        http://creationwiki.org/The_odds_of_life_forming_are_incredibly_small_(Talk.Origins)

        “The odds of life forming by chance is so incredibly small as to be virtually impossible. This is also why scientists have, in recent years, resorted to looking for life from outer space, and have speculated that life must have come to Earth from a meteorite or comet. But this only shifts the problem to a realm that is totally out of our reach, or to replicate (i.e. demonstrate) or prove, and is a matter of blind faith in the power of Nature to do what we have never before seen it do (or even come close to doing) on earth.
        To give you some idea of the complexity of the most basic self- replicating bacterium, we first need to break it down into some of its “basic” (yet still incredibly complex) components. For example, all known living organisms are made up of, DNA, RNA, ribosomes, and MANY different types of proteins.
        Proteins come in thousands of different types. They are, however, all made up of 21 basic amino acids. However, living organisms are only made up of the Left-Handed (or L-types of) amino acids, whereas experiments in the lab (such as that performed by Stanley Miller) produce both Left-Handed and Right-Handed amino acids. The most basic protein molecule consists of only 8 amino acids, yet it has never been observed to form naturally. The most simple bacterium known to man is the Mycoplasma. It consists of 40,000 protein molecules of 600 different types. It also has DNA (which it uses to make new protein molecules), and RNA (which copies the information from the DNA and then transfers that information to the ribosome (which is located in a different part of the cell)). Ribosomes read the information brought to them via the RNA molecule — which got it from the DNA — and use it to line up (Left-Handed Only) amino acids in their respectively correct order, in order to make all sorts of complex Protein molecules.
        In other words there is NO WAY that a self-replicating organism such as a Mycoplasma (which is itself only a parasite, and requires a more complex “host” organism to survive) could have somehow made itself — meaning that (according to the best of our knowledge) there MUST BE A CREATOR.”

      • sabbe laban

        Thass

        Hey, your Holy Book seems to consider a seed as a non-living thing! Am I hearing you right? What a true statement! Certainly must be a divine uttering only!

        If Qu’ran gives all the necessary knowledge(as Taliban too believed!) why did you study science at all? You could have gained a better knowledge by studying the Qu’ran, right?

      • Thass

        The scientific definition of living includes those things that are alive or have ever been alive ?? including what’s left of a tree that died years before. Likewise, the seed, which appears lifeless and may remain dormant for years before finally germinating, qualifies as living. In contrast, nonliving things are not alive, nor have they ever been.
        What does it mean to be alive?
        According to biologists living organisms are characterized by seven “signs of life”: 1) living things have highly organized, complex structures; 2) living things maintain a chemical composition that is quite different from their surroundings; 3) living things have the capacity to take in, transform, and use energy from the environment; 4) living things can respond to stimuli; 5) living things have the capacity to reproduce themselves; 6) living things grow and develop; and 7) living things are well suited to their environment.

        It is scientifically known that there are tiny living substances in the calm static form. All the biological activities from breathing and nourishment is in its lowest activity to keep the grain alive for the longest time possible under the outer and inner environmental conditions.
        The embryo is composed of the same parts of the whole full grown plant: a rootlet, a leaflet and stem. To let the embryo grow, it must be alive because dead embryo does not grow even if all researches and labs tried to give life to it.
        Who gave this embryo life? Is it nature according to the Darwinian theory? Or, Is it the blind accident and faulty mutation? It is God the Everlasting and the Eternal who is capable of bringing the living from the dead.

        http://www.nazme.net/ar/index.php?p=en_show_articles&id=782

        Pls see this account by Prof.Dr.Nazmi Khalil Abo-el-atta Mousa Ph.D. Botany , Ain Shams Univeristy , Egypt

      • yapa

        Dear Saban’

        I think there is a point in what Thass says in this post (though there are some contradiction within them). I think not science but those contradiction within his argument itself and the general contradiction arisen with the creator concept only invalidate Thass’ argument, not Science. As he rightly says science has no answers for them as well (just like the Thass’ theory does not have).

        Thass’ argument that date seed is a miracle, if man cannot produce even a molecule is a profound argument.

        However, I find that following ideas containing in his post is unbecoming/contradictory.

        1. “If we are limited in our capacities can we understand what is unlimited?”

        He really has no proofs use the word “unlimited” here.

        2. “Those on whom, besides Allah, ye call, cannot create (even) a fly, if they all met together for the purpose! And if the fly should snatch away anything from them, they would have no power to release it from the fly. Feeble are those who petition and those whom they petition!

        Newtons laws are very basic. Maths and other Sciences are like the Blind men touching various different parts of the Elephant and giving different perceptions. What they cannot explain is life itself.”

        Quran quotation says “they would not have power to release it from the fly. But Thass accept that Scientists were able to produce some amino acids in laboratory. Further, the knowledge quoted in here by Thass is produced by so called “feebles”.

        Further he has accept the contribution done by Mathematics and Science, which is not included in his so called “all knowing knowledge system”, that means science and Mathematics have produced some knowledge unknown by the creator. I think Quran has not revealed Newton’s Laws or Mathematics.

        3. Even if keep all these aside, how can Thass solve the fundamental general contradiction(s) the creator HIMSELF produce? It negates the existence of the Creator.

        Then the fundamental problem (maekka)is how come the a non existing Creator can do anything that Thass describes and wants to attribute to the creator?

        The fundamental (one of the)contradiction is “if some body (creator)is necessary some thing to come into existence, who created the Creator?”

        I think Thass is advertising unicorn horns for sale.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        (Please post here, not below).

        Dear Saban;

        Really Saban, the allegation of Thass of science is justifiable.

        Even when the “dough” containing all the (material)ingredients properly mixed (which science is asking for), science cannot bake the cake. That is why Science cannot make a “being” out of a corpse.

        Really something important is missing in the (material)”dough”.

        Don’t you think so?

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Thass

        I hope you don’t have a comprehesion problem as well!

        My question simply is: Is a date seed a non-living thing?-if you have any doubts, you can examine a date cell under the microscope to see whether the cells are dead!

        Looks like Qu’ran is wrong at least once!Can a literal God’s word go wrong even once?

        A dead tree or a dead turkey is dead! Have any doubt about it?

      • sabbe laban

        Thass

        Your lack of response prompted me to elaborate what you see as the “mystery of life”

        A cell dies due to many reasons and beyond a certain point these processes become irreversible. It could be due to reaching the end of the genetic blueprint known as telomer, when the nucleas stops co-ordinating the processes of synthesis and transport etc. The cell death could also be the result of lack of nutrients or oxygen in certain cases or due to the accumilation of toxins in the cell.

        That is why a dead cell-therefore a dead person- cannot be brought back to life, even though the same ingredients seem to exist there. What you see as life is, this functioning protoplasm and it doesn’t need for Allah to blow life into that!

        The creationists have been telling, “ok, create a human being out of nothing and show” as their last stand! But it took earth 3 billion years to have life like you and me through a gradual process of evolution. Even now the creationists have no explainations for the vestigial organs like the rudimentary hip bone of the python, and the whale, the claws jutting out of some birds wings and the rudimentary feet of certain snakes! They also over-look the evidence of evolution in drug resistent bacteria, pesticide resistent insects, and fish who can live in polluted water. Darwin, 150 years ago had an open mind to see all these, whereas you in the 21st century still think that ancient desert wisdom of a tribal man is superior!

      • Thass

        There is no confusion at all. When you take the seed it consists of both living cells and organic components like starch, oils, proteins etc. However as a whole the seed is static and does not germinate unless it is triggered by suitable conditions. So on the whole at a macro level it can be considered as dead as it does not grow.
        Similiar situation exists in the Human Being where sperm and ova which consists of living cells and other components, meet and fertilize to produce an embryo. The embryo develops and only after a period of time do we call it a fetus.Fetal development takes more time etc.
        So when you consider the living being as a whole it comes into existance by the assembly and interaction of many living and non living components as well as external factors.
        Similiarly death of a cell is not equivalent to a dead organism. Even in our body cells die and are shed. Our hair consists of dead cells. Scientist have created live tissue form dead stem cells. Skin cells are living for some time after the death of a person and can be harvested. But this does not equate to a living human being.
        The point is that all these wonderful systems cannot come into existance at random or on their own. They need a designer and creator.

      • Thass

        Darwin’s theory of evolution is summarised by biologist Ernst Mayr as follows:
        • Every species is fertile enough that if all offspring survived to reproduce the population would grow (fact).
        • Despite periodic fluctuations, populations remain roughly the same size (fact).
        • Resources such as food are limited and are relatively stable over time (fact).
        • A struggle for survival ensues (inference).
        • Individuals in a population vary significantly from one another (fact).
        • Much of this variation is inheritable (fact).
        • Individuals less suited to the environment are less likely to survive and less likely to reproduce; individuals more suited to the environment are more likely to survive and more likely to reproduce and leave their inheritable traits to future generations, which produces the process of natural selection (inference).
        • This slowly effected process results in populations changing to adapt to their environments, and ultimately, these variations accumulate over time to form new species (inference).
        It is very rudimentary and boils down to survival of the fittest which is an obvious fact. However this does not imply that living organisms have the self power to modify their own genetic makeup and physical characteristics to adapt to any external environment. Such a capability would require the ability to analyse and assimilate external sensory perceptions and intelligently propose a necessary solution to a complex organism on an self control basis (assuming the absence of a creator). When you talk of a period of 3 Billion years are we to assume that our present state is the process of analysis and adaptation over such a long period. The logistical implications of such a massive task would require huge database of all our experiences and external stimuli and factors over this period and parallel mechanisms for analysis and adaptation.

        For instance if I have a problem of say not being strong enough. Then as an intelligent being I will analyse my deficiencies and take corrective action. Say weight training, better diet etc. Is this improvement carried on to my progeny? I became stronger so my children will be as strong? Can Darwins Theory prove that such a mechanism is available in nature? I think not.

      • sabbe laban

        Thass

        What a heap of words?

        Yet,

        Stem cells are not “dead” as you say!

        Humans have dead tisseu like nails and hair;are we dead too?

        A seed is not a dead tissue;therefore the Qu’ran verse calling it “dead” is wrong!

        Evolution, works at gene level, individual level and group level. The healthy habbits you mention can contribute to the preservation of such traits.

        It will be very interesting to ask as to why you don’t find human fossils among the sedimentary rocks from the time period where the dinosaur fossils are found. Maybe God “hid” them in in the correct time period to fool us!

        You still haven’t answered the question on vestigial organs! Are you unable to do so?

      • Thass

        SL

        It is well documented in the Quran that the Universe was created prior to the creation of Humankind. Hence the existence of fossils predating those of Humans is not an issue.

        With regard to vestigial organs this is based on the so called theory of evolution. The theory of evolution is based on assumptions such as

        • Creation did not begin? The universe has been in continuous existence?
        • If universe evolved from an eternal system do we know the original state say 4 Bn years back?
        • Living organisms came into existence through random probability from basic elements?
        • How and from where did these basic elements evolve?
        • Basic organism mutated and evolved to form various living creatures?
        • Various living creatures mutated, adapted and evolved?
        • A result of these mutations was the apes and monkeys.
        • Apes mutated and evolved to form humans.

        Don’t you think that such a theory is rather far fetched? Can all these things happen at random based on mathematical probability where there are thousands of variables. You don’t believe in a creator where there is ample evidence whereas above assumptions devoid of any proof is believed?

      • sabbe laban

        Thass

        The point that you are trying desperately to evade is, why were the dinosaurs extinct 60 million years before we come across evidence of the existence of human-like creatures! Why were the trilobites extinct more than 300 million year before the appearance of human-like creatures?

        It appears that until JUST about 3 million years ago(which is like a split second in terms of earth’s history) there were no humans! What was going on, was the appearance and disappearance of various species continuously. Just because one such species evolved into us, is there any reason to believe that we are entirely different? The structure of the human body doesn’t say so!

        Once again you haven’t answered the question on vestigial organs-though you seem to take a start! Please try again!

      • Thass

        Dear SL

        With regard to so called vestigial organs it has been observed that these too have a purpose

        http://www.waza.org/en/zoo/choose-a-species/reptiles/snakes/python-molurus

        Python molurus is a solitary species. Mating is the only time that these snakes are commonly found in pairs. During courtship in early spring, the male wraps his body around the female and repeatedly flicks his tongue across her head and body. Once they align their cloacas, the male uses his vestigial legs to massage the female and stimulate her. Copulation ensues, with the female raising her tail to allow the male to insert one hemipenis (he has two) into the female’s cloaca. This process lasts between 5-30 minutes.

        http://www.creationstudies.org/Education/vestigal_organs.html

        Slijper was professor of general zoology at Amsterdam University, Netherlands and he was the world’s leading authority on whales. In chapter 2 of his classic work is entitled Evolution and External Appearance, he talks about a bone in whales that he calls the ‘pelvic bone’, which is some 30 centimeters (12 inches) long, “but unlike the pelvis of normal mammals, it is not attached to the vertebral column.” This bone serves as an anchorage for the male reproductive organs.

        So actually what we think is useless or vestigial, does have some purpose if we bother to research into it. The numerous variations in the species need not be explained by evolution theory alone.

      • Thass

        Dear SL

        With regard to so called vestigial organs it has been observed that these too have a purpose

        http://www.waza.org/en/zoo/choose-a-species/reptiles/snakes/python-molurus

        Python molurus is a solitary species. Mating is the only time that these snakes are commonly found in pairs. During courtship in early spring, the male wraps his body around the female and repeatedly flicks his tongue across her head and body. Once they align their cloacas, the male uses his vestigial legs to massage the female and stimulate her. Copulation ensues, with the female raising her tail to allow the male to insert one hemipenis (he has two) into the female’s cloaca. This process lasts between 5-30 minutes.

        http://www.creationstudies.org/Education/vestigal_organs.html

        Slijper was professor of general zoology at Amsterdam University, Netherlands and he was the world’s leading authority on whales. In chapter 2 of his classic work is entitled Evolution and External Appearance, he talks about a bone in whales that he calls the ‘pelvic bone’, which is some 30 centimeters (12 inches) long, “but unlike the pelvis of normal mammals, it is not attached to the vertebral column.” This bone serves as an anchorage for the male reproductive organs.

        So actually what we think is useless or vestigial, does have some purpose if we bother to research into it. The numerous variations in the species need not be explained by evolution theory alone.

        Withe regard to your theorie on evolution the position of Islam is that the Quran is revealed as guidance to man kind. It is a moral code and guidance for us how to live in this world.

        Quran 3:138
        This [Qur’an] is a clear statement to [all] the people and a guidance and instruction for those conscious of Allah.

        Quran 7:52
        And We had certainly brought them a Book which We detailed by knowledge – as guidance and mercy to a people who believe.

        It is not meant to be a scientific treatise or white paper to explain anything or everything we may perceive. Rather it confirms the existence of a Designer and Creator of the Universe.

        With regard to your questions regarding dinosaurs etc. These could have been in existence billions of years before and does not contradict any statement in the Quran. Man is a subsequent creation and endowed with special intelligence and powers.

        Quran 2:29-30

        It is He Who hath created for you all things that are on earth; moreover His design comprehended the heavens, for He gave order and perfection to the seven firmaments; and of all things He hath perfect knowledge.

        Behold, thy Lord said to the angels: “I will create a vicegerent on earth.” They said: “Wilt Thou place therein one who will make mischief therein and shed blood? – whilst we do celebrate Thy praises and glorify Thy holy (name)?” He said: “I know what ye know not.”

        So it is certain that the earth was allready in existance prior to the creation of man.

        It is recorded that Dinosaurs suddenly became extinct 65 Mn years ago due to a catastrophic event. Prior to that they are said to be the most dominant species on this earth. If they were destroyed then why weren’t all other species destroyed and if so how was life reintroduced on the earth? Was it a new beginning altogether?

        So the theory of evolution has no continuity and various gaping holes. Recent research in genetics supports the theory that man evolved very recently.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Journey_of_Man:_A_Genetic_Odyssey

        By analyzing DNA from people in all regions of the world, geneticist Spencer Wells has concluded that all humans alive today are descended from a single man who lived in Africa around 60,000 years ago.

        http://www.onthewing.org/user/Sci_Journey%20of%20Man.pdf

        So the debate on evolution is ongoing and you we may research and debate as long as we want.

      • sabbe laban

        Thass

        Thank you for the explanation. I woud like to quote what another interlocutor of this discussion has said:…“religiosity – the ghost that refuses to give up (gracefully or otherwise)”.

        You and the rest of the creationists you quote, seem to have mistaken the “cause” for the “effect” and vice-versa, havn’t they? To justify your claim that the vestigial organs were created for a purpose you attribute a function to them, don’t you? Whereas the real reason that they are there at all, is that they performed a more useful function back in their past!

        This is akin to saying that just because you use your grandma’s closet or her out-dated valve radio as a table now, the closet and the table were made to keep your tea cup, isn’t it Thass?

        That poor python coud have anyway mated without its rudimentory legs, coudn’t it? In that case it intrigues me to ask you, what purpose does the borrowing skink’s legs serve?(Oh! they attach muscles?:P)

  • sabbe laban

    Thas

    Our “common sense” that the “cause” should precede the “effect” doesn’t apply to a quantum particle?(anyway how do we know that it is true on all occasions?) The universe has been a quantum particle 13 billion years ago! So, it solves your problem!

    Please see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-jQUHUF1MU&feature=related

    • Mohamed

      Dear sabbe laban

      We have already discussed much about this subject. Please read them above

      http://groundviews.org/2012/05/10/no-longer-blind-no-longer-bound/?replytocom=44324#comment-44775

      Regarding the video you have given, interesting but doesn’t serve the purpose

      Here it talks about the particles the machine (even in the video they use it) is made of, but its not answering the question how the precision in design came in to existence, what makes the natures law etc.

      for many years science is a relion arch enemy, this is due to church involment about on scientific interpretation of physical laws. But as per the islam its different and these conflict never happened as creations and creator and their limits were defined well. This event was related to your vedio

      During the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), there was a solar eclipse on the day that his son Ibrahim died. Some superstitious people said that the sun eclipsed because of the young child’s death and the Prophet’s sadness on that day. The Prophet corrected their understanding:
      Narrated Al-Mughira bin Shu’ba: On the day of Ibrahim’s death, the sun eclipsed and the people said that the eclipse was due to the death of Ibrahim (the son of the Prophet). Allah’s Apostle said, “The sun and the moon are two signs amongst the signs of Allah. They do not eclipse because of someone’s death or life. So when you see them, invoke Allah and pray till the eclipse is clear.” Meaning, it reminds the creations as allah says in quran
      “Allah , who created the sun, the moon, and the stars — (all) governed by laws under His commandment.” Qur’an 7:54
      “It is He who created the night and the day and the sun and the moon. All (the celestial bodies) swim along, each in its orbit.” Qur’an 21:33
      “The sun and the moon follow courses exactly computed.” Qur’an 55:05

      I respect Stephen Hawking not just as theoretical physicists but he is a good philosopher too. In my opinion his new book “the grand design” is philosophy than physics.

      I hope following video will give little more picture abut the m-theory (string theory) that I had discussed in my earlier post.

      • sabbe laban

        Mohamad

        One possible way to answer the question of “complexity” will be this:

        The seemingly precise position of the Earth in the solar system, the mass of the H atom etc. can be interpreted by the theists as evidence of a “divine plan”! But on close inspection this notion seems to be based on our bias towards a “God” who is responsible for the fine tuning of the nature!

        One possible way to answer this would be to speculate that the laws of physics are determined by what we observe them to be, rather than the other way round. In simpler terms, if we observed the laws of physics in a different phase of our universe(or in a different universe) they would be different to what we have here! And to say that there are countless such possible laws of physics, and WE happen to be in one such universe where a for an example “a system should be at its lowest energy level”, so as to agree with the second law of thermodynamics!

        But, look at this proposition carefully: If the universe turned out to be a differnt one from what we have, with a H atom with a different mass and a solar system with a different configuration, WE(the humans) wouldn’t have evolved here to question it! In other words WE exist because the universe evolved in this way rather than in any other way. There were countless possibilities of a universe taking a different path. In fact there may be millions of such universes out there, where WE don’t exist. But, once again WE wouldn’t have been here to ask that question! Just because WE don’t exist in those universes, the universe hasn’t gained or lost anything, has it? Our existance or non-existance is totally irrelevant to the universe;the universe just doesn’t care!

      • Dear Saban;

        You say,

        “Our existance or non-existance is totally irrelevant to the universe;the universe just doesn’t care!”

        I have a different version on this. Then where do you accommodate “free will”?

        I would like to have a look at that aspect alone with you if possible, when we finish the present discussion with Mr. Mohamed.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Free will has absolutely nothing to do with what I said here, Yapa. To have a free will, we have to exist in the universe. As we exist(I’m sure you do!)is this universe only, we have a free will, isn’t it? If we didn’t exist in this univere, we can’t have a free will(or any kind of will, for that matter!) There maybe other universes where life, as we know it, doesn’t exist!

        Does the universe care? No!

        What Hawking says in his new book, is that we are not specially chosen, but we happen to exist in one such universe where intelligent life can evolve, from countless other possibilities! And those ‘countless other choices’ too exist, but their existence is immaterial as we don’t exist in those universes to question them! Just because that we don’t exist in them, does the universe care?

        No!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        I think what you said is correct in the context that there are other universes without the existence of life. But the thing is the assumption that there are other universes itself contradicts with the fundamental concept of universe, I feel.

        In its original definition “universe” must contain everything without leaving everything outside. If we consider there are “other universes”, don’t you think “our universe” becomes a “non-universe”, but a part of the universe?

        On the other hand, if we take the multiple universe concept as true, we have to per-accept that those universes have boundaries in space dimension as well, just the way we accepted there is a temporal boundaries to the universe, when we accepted beginning of the universe with the Big Bang.

        I think we impose limits to universe to understand the universe through the Big Bang Theory. Without imposing those constraints I think the Big Bang cannot explain the universe and it is the problem and not that the scientists believe Big Bang know that there is a beginning to the universe or the there is a spacial boundary to the universe. The Big Bang theory demands to impose those constraints, otherwise it cannot sustain. If I say that in other words, the theory of Big Bang shows a necessity to take multiple universes as another axiom to the theory. Without that axiom it cannot go further with the rational questions coming up with the modern development of science and philosophy as well. I think Big Bang too is caught up in “infinite regression”. It has to keep on assuming new “self evident truths”. It happened to assume “dark energy”, “dark matter”, “black holes”, “string theory” and now a “whole set of universes” to explain “a universe” in that theory. That is also in addition to the first assumption that there is a beginning to the universe. I think none of these assumptions are with sufficient reasons to believe them.

        To ensure the validity of the Big Bang theory we will have to assume a hell of a lot of assumptions. Those assumptions are not assumptions of the nature of the assumptions many other theories have. Usually assumptions of a theory (axioms) contain a minimal assumed knowledge, but in this case the axioms contain more knowledge than the theory itself. I think Big Bang is not much different from creator theory in this sense.

        As you have pointed out “free will” doesn’t have a roe only in the scenario that there are other universes without the inhabitant of beings. Really that is only an assumption to support the validity of the Big Bang. So, I think if we take parallel universe concept as an evidence to negate the significance of “free will” we fall into the fallacy of “Begging the Question”, we beg the question for an answer.

        I think the theory of Big Bang is suffering from lack of reasons to sustain the theory, that is why it has to keep on searching for evidence and new arguments. I think the usual practice of science is to give up a theory when it feels a slightest doubt, but it is different in the case of Big Bang.

        Do you think there are enough reasons to believe the existence of multiple universes, other than as a necessity for filling the gaps in the Big Bang theory?

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Correction…..

        “In its original definition “universe” must contain everything without leaving [everything] outside.”

        Here the word “everything” should be replaced with “anything”.

        Thanks!

  • Mohamed

    As I have spent much time here, would like to present my position here.
    In my understanding the creator exists and this creator not like the one any religion prescribed where they place the god in the world were physical laws apply. The finger prints of god are seen in the creation where precision in design is visible. Science cannot prove or deny creator’s existence as it’s applicable with set of laws that govern the matter, energy and space.

    I believe this creator is eternal and absolute and only by this condition it doesn’t fall in to above elements of physics. Islam defines this understanding properly than any other religion.
    People can accept or reject this idea and that’s up to them. However if I come to risk assessment I am in the better position than them. That is.

    If there is a god – I will be saved and others will be including the “ranting ranta” facing the consequences after death

    If there is no god- all of us will be safe

    So there is 50% chance that others will be in trouble but 100% chance that I am safe, and by having this stand I am not going to lose anything either.

    Thank You
    And wish you all the best in life

    • sabbe laban

      Mohamad

      Thank you for taking the trouble to take part in this interesting exchange. Your God may be one way to explain the universe. But, that is a famous way the ancients tried to explain everything. When there is a better way, there is no need to involve a God to explain the nature!

      And also: “So there is 50% chance that others will be in trouble but 100% chance that I am safe, and by having this stand I am not going to lose anything either”

      I have heard this argument before, and it shows your personal fear of God(as required by your religion) rather than anything else! Such fear of God drives-and has been the cause of-this concept for more than five thousand years!

      • Mohamed

        sabbe

        you are wrong again. i am 100% certain the existence of the super natural power and its obvious from all perspective that i have analysed. so the risk assessment analysis for people who cant understand this fact. from nothing to highest form of creation i.e human is by chance is what many wrongly assumes and no connecting explanation given in science.practical science is doing proving in the lab and once you create the a full human from nothing, better claim your point.still science got no answer to what govern the physical laws though they could be different in different dimensions. so i am certain on what i believe in. perhaps people better think with their own brain than rely on something they cant understand. for your information i can understand science as much as any other can do. so i know well what is the limitation of science and how well it explain everything came from nothing and having precision to human world to move. thank you for your participation in the discussion too.

      • Mohamed

        sabbe

        Does the earth give evidence of having been designed to be inhabited by living beings? You decide!

        Liquid water is necessary for life. Most of the universe consists of flaming gasses or frozen desolation and has no liquid water. If water in liquid form exists elsewhere, it is rare. It not only exists on earth, it exists in an amount that permits life, even human life.
        “If earth had just a little more water, c”
        “…The oceans contain enough water to cover a spherical Earth to a depth of about 4000 meters. If the surface of the planet varied only a few kilometers in elevation, Earth would be devoid of land. … Continents would not extend above sea level.”
        To keep the land up out of the water: “required the formation of land masses made of relatively low-density materials that could permanently “float” on the denser underlying mantle while parts of them extended above the sea.”
        {Peter D. Ward, Donald Brownlee, Rare Earth, Why Complex Life Is Uncommon in the Universe, 2000, p. 51-54}
        The moon has the right mass and distance from the earth so the tides help keep nutrients circulating in the water, but don’t cover the continents at high tide.
        The correct temperature is essential to life. If we were closer to the sun, or had longer days we would fry. If earth were farther from the sun or if the nights were longer, we would freeze and earth would have no liquid water.
        The correct atmosphere is necessary for life. If earth had a bit less gravity we would loose our atmosphere. To much gravity and it would crush us. Too much CO2, or several other gasses and earth would have been more like Venus, too hot to host life.
        Earth is also protected from deadly radiation. It is situated at the right distance from the center of our galaxy. Closer to the center, there are too many deadly gamma rays and X-rays.
        The gravity of a big planet nearby sweeps up much of the space trash that might otherwise crash into the earth with devastating force.
        The earth’s metal core produces magnetism which is helpful in protecting earth from harmful radiation. {Peter D. Ward, Donald Brownlee, Rare Earth, Why Complex Life Is Uncommon in the Universe, 2000, p. 28-29}.
        I could go on. One evidence after another shows that the earth was purposely designed to sustain life. Do atheists also see this evidence for design? Yes, we all see it. The book in reference above was written by atheists. Some atheists refer to this evidence as “appearance of design.”
        With all this tell me , I have to agree with you and say everything by chance or with Newton, as he said “Atheism is so senseless. When I look at the solar system, I see the earth at the right distance from the sun to receive the proper amounts of heat and light. This did not happen by chance.

      • yapa

        Dear Mohamed;

        How do you say the “favourable/conducive conditions” you consider for the sustenance of life (human life?) on earth are the “ideal conditions” for the sustenance of human life on earth?

        If those conditions were created for the sustenance of the human life by the “almighty” and “omniscience” creator who is “gracious and compassionate” why it was created with some shortcomings that are not conducive for the human life? For instance, why there are droughts, why there are desserts, why there are Tsunamis, why floods, why earth quakes, …………….. why he created such unfavourable conditions as well with the favourable conditions?

        Really earth is not a bed of roses for (human?)life.

        This shows that if the earth was a creation the creator cannot be gracious and compassionate ,as he has chosen to create some calamities as well in the creation. Do you believe that creator is not compassionate?

        Contrary to your assumed theory, why can’t we think that only some life forms that are conducive to the existing environment came up there? For instance, human life is on land but it cannot sustain in water or in sky as fish or birds sustain. Because water and sky are not conducive environments for humans.

        I think life is chosen according to the environment not the environment was chosen according to the (human)life.

        This notion is more logical and free of contradictions. On the other hand it agrees with the relationship of “cause and Effect”.

        When the necessary causes and conditions are there effects come into being. When the they are not there effects do not appear.

        This also explains why the creator did not make other planets conducive places for (human) life. There cannot be other reasons for a gracious and compassionate almighty and all known creator not to make at least the whole planetary system (if not the whole universe)conducive for human life. Why HE is choosy in His compassion? Is HE not totally gracious and totally compassionate or is there any other reason for these lapses?

        I think “Cause and Effect” or “Dependent Co-origination” explains this more profoundly and Evolution to some extent.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Muhemad

        You seem to have lost your cool, Sir!

        When you say, “I know it…” it says a lot about your sense of reality too. By the way you must be surely “knowing” how the dinosaurs co-existed with humans!

        Thank you once again for taking your time!

      • Mohamed

        Dear yapa
        Islam never claimed this life is a bed of roses, so your question is misplaced. this is not disproving the existence of super natural power in discussion either. The understanding of this life is considered as a place of earning for next within the individual limited role each play. You need to study the religion from A to Z to understand fundamental question such as if god is merciful what’s the reason behind all the trials. This shows that many want to talk about Islam without any effort to read, at least the Quran. It has answered all these questions. As my intention is not to preach anyone religion I leave that to you. If you wish you can study by your own in some Islamic sources (not in islamobist sources 🙂 as many do) as the way I studied. Your concept about life is not much difference from evolutionist idea. As this subject came above and not given the facts to prove, I leave the matter as it is.

        SL
        I am cool as ice, if you question at me I have to answer “I know…” if I say “we know…” it’s not appropriate isn’t? you must be also knowing that how dinosaurs ceases to exist, isn’t ?

      • Dear Mohamed;

        Yes, I am asking why the merciful creator did not create a bed of roses? That is the question.

        You ask us to learn the religion. Why anybody should learn something (a theory)the axiom of which is fully disproved.

        The axiom of Islam is “creator” and it is rationally disproved, as wrong.

        I don’t believe a man can survive without hid head. though his other organs are elegant.)

        Thanks!

        Islam never claimed this life is a bed of roses, so your question is misplaced. this is not disproving the existence of super natural power in discussion either. The understanding of this life is considered as a place of earning for next within the individual limited role each play. You need to study the religion from A to Z to understand fundamental question such as if god is merciful what’s the reason behind all the trials. This shows that many want to talk about Islam without any effort to read, at least the Quran. It has answered all these questions. As my intention is not to preach anyone religion I leave that to you. If you wish you can study by your own in some Islamic sources (not in islamobist sources 🙂 as many do) as the way I studied. Your concept about life is not much difference from evolutionist idea. As this subject came above and not given the facts to prove, I leave the matter as it is.

        SL
        I am cool as ice, if you question at me I have to answer “I know…” if I say “we know…” it’s not appropriate isn’t? you must be also knowing that how dinosaurs ceases to exist, isn’t ?

      • mohamed

        Dear yapa
        Within your limited argument it may appear to you as existence of creator is disproved. I feel otherwise, that you haven’t extended your limitation hence you feel comfortable within your own limits.
        The bed of roses is created in another dimension for an unknown reason. The life is all about to being eligible to be in that dimension. If string theory is been proved in the future, the existence of this dimension will be verified where different physical laws will apply. Which will be called “HAVEN” 🙂

      • yapa

        Dear Mohamed;

        “Within your limited argument it may appear to you as existence of creator is disproved.”

        Ok, try this “limited argument” as well.

        Can your creator create a stone HE cannot lift?

        (You might say the job of the creator is not lifting stones, Eh?)

        Thanks!

  • PitastharaPuthraya

    Dear Yapa,

    As I have understood the concept of universe it does not include everything. Nor is it infinite. At the begining of time there was no time or space. Ever since the size of the universe increases as galaxies run away from each other. To explain that the scientists came up with ‘dark energy’. Therefore, the concept of ‘big bang’ does not necessrily negate the existance of other unverses.

    As laban says existance of humans is immaterial to our universe. Wheather there are humans or not universe proceeds in its course. The human ‘free will’ does not alter its course. The life as a whole is an accident.

    • yapa

      Dear PitastharaPuthraya?Saban;

      I think your understanding of the concept of universe is based on the scientific notion:Big Bang theory, but think of the original concept of universe prevailed before that.

      There was no necessity before the submitting the Big Bang the totality to be divided into pieces, then the universe was taken as the totality (of everything, material and non material). Even today in Philosophy universe is considered in that meaning. In other subject areas too, it is so. I think in its broadest form its definition is “the totality of known or supposed objects and phenomena throughout space; the cosmos; macrocosm.” In talking of existence of universe or nature, we cannot leave aside things. So, in general universe means this and in special cases it can give “qualified meanings”, however it does not change its “unqualified” meaning. Even the Big Bang theory when it was presented was taking of a single universe. Only after if faced “complications”, it had to resort to a different definition to avert those difficulties. Only later, Big Bang started to talk of “multi verses”, it had no that in the original concept.

      I think you are thinking in the light of the knowledge gained from the Big Bang theory. Hence you have already accepted the knowledge emanated from it and that is the reason you cannot deviate from the conclusions of the Big Bang. When one chooses a reference system, you cannot deny the knowledge included in it. You measure other things too in terms of that reference system and draw conclusions, however, if the conclusion so obtained to be true, that particular reference should be “absolutely true”. But the Big Bang (or even science) is not an absolute system. Those reference systems are “relative systems” and hence knowledge gained through are relative. They are just relative truths.

      So, definitely what you said “‘big bang’ does not necessrily negate the existance of other unverses.” is a perfectly correct relative truth with reference to the reference frame of “Big Bang”, but it does not mean it is an absolute truth. It is necessary for Big Bang to assume so, that is what I tried to tell.

      In here I would like to go a little bit in a tangential line too. When we choose a reference frame, what we perceive/understand is not absolute. It is relative to that frame or you can say it is biased to that frame of reference. When you assume a reference frame you cannot understand things unbiasedly. So if you want to understand things unbiasedly you will have to devoid of these “frame of references”. This is what Buddha says, the first step to “enlightenment” is “Samma Ditti” (Right view), a “ditti” which is devoid from all dittis or all reference frames. Without resorting to that path (Noble Eight fold Path, the first step of which is “right view”) Buddhism says none can achieve the enlightenment. Doesn’t this logical? Does it make sense? Can there be another path to enlightenment?

      Ok, will come to the main point. I was talking of the whole universe. Do you say “free will” doesn’t contribute to shape and mold the universe? Then what made this global warming and depletion of the ozone layer? Without “free will” do you think there will be a global warming or depletion of ozone layer in the universe?

      Even if you assume “multiple universes” as reality, how can you assume that any of those mighty universes solely empty of a single “free will”? It is very unlikely and unreasonable to think so, the most common experience of ours is the existence of “free wills” or beings. So, I don’t think Big Bang can safely assume universes without a single being, even if it assumes many universes.

      So again, just like “maekka (you know the story of maekka, the flea?) the question of “free will comes into the seen. ok, tell me in case all of your universes have at least a single being what will happen? Can the universes ignore it and go its own way, the way the universe want?

      If a universe want to be independent of “free will” definitely it will have to get rid of it, as you and Saban suggested. Otherwise no universe is a safe heaven from the effects of “free wills”. Only when you kill all the beings in the universe (or in all the universes as you say)universe (or universes) can roam freely in their ways.

      Do you have any alternative theory to rescue the universes from the effects of free wills?

      Thanks!

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Yapa,

        It is a well accepted fact that ‘big bang’ is just a theory, which explains the origin of the universe better than the others. As you know, there are scientists who do not accept it. It may or may not be true. But it is the best we have at the moment. This was common to all the scientific theories in the past, including Eienstein’s theory of general relativity.

        As for the ‘human will’ and its effect on universe it is my opinion that it does not have any effect in the long run. Even if we humans alter the earth and utlimately destroy its biosphere, it would not affect the final outcome. It might change the ‘energy levels’ of the rest of the universe temporarily. Will it slow the galaxies? Will it alter the course of the universe from its begining to end?

        What was the reaction of the universe to the human lunar landing? It might have increased the mass of moon by a fraction. It might have changed the orbit of moon, erath, sun and finally our Galaxy. However, the universe must have changed its positin a ‘little bit’ and continued it is course.

        Human free will may have a say in the buisness of the univese. But it is no bigger than an astroid hitting the earth, which is a purely chance occurance like the human existance. Once the immediate effect of the collison, the universe would adjust itself, as it did for last 14 billion years, and go on as if nothing has happened.

      • yapa

        Dear PitastharaPuthraya/ Saban;

        In physical terms what you said may be correct. The the physical impact (macro level) may be not that big. But in terms of epistemological impact/value of free will is rather huge. The amount of epistemological portion of free will may be more complex and huge than the epistemological component created by the physical universe. The mystery of free will (mind) seem to be even more complex than the physical mystery of the universe. I think there are more things to be explored in the line of mystery of mind than the mystery of the physical universe. If we consider the universe to be included everything both physical and non physical components, I think the quantity to be explored in non material part is more than in the material part. It is true that in spacial dimension physical universe is bigger, but I think the non availability of a physical dimension is not a reason to ignore the significance of mind. You cannot compare the significance of them, just as you cannot say whether an apple or a pumpkin is more important.

        I think the significant differences in mind from matter is a valid reason to investigate it. The increasing attention towards Psychology shows this significance. I think mind has only a temporal dimension in contrast to matter which has both spacial and temporal dimensions.

        On the other hand modern Science (Quantum Mechanics) accepts the significance of the observer, in deciding the the knowledge about matter. Quantum Mechanics says that just an observation changes the object that what we observe after the observation is different from it before that. Quantum Mechanics says that the mere act of observation changes the physical properties.

        So, don’t you think that everything we perceive has a contribution of the observer or the free will? The universe we perceived is a resultant of the physical existence and the observer (mind). Hence the universe we see is not without the contribution of the free will.

        On the other hand if an observer with a free will is not there how can we know that there is a universe at all, keep aside the details we talk of it. In that respect too for the existence of the universe or the universe as we see is a result of mind as well. How could we identify “redshift” if there was no a human observer to build up the Big Bang theory to know the universe as we perceive today?. If the observer had a characteristics of a dog (a different free will)he would not see the red shift and there wouldn’t have a “Big Bang Theory”. So, the Big Bang Theory is a result of the characteristics of the observer as well, and hence the the nature of universe we have perceive has a very big contribution of mind (free will).

        Therefore, the existence of anything (we know its existence only when we perceive/know it) cannot be a reality without the existence of an “active observer”.

        So, the universe as it is we perceive as existing is a non reality without an observer.

        That is why some philosophers say there is no matter without mind.
        Do you say matter exists without mind? For me I none can even faintly visualize anything without mind, hence there is no way to say whether there is anything, keep aside the whole universe.

        How do you weigh my point of view and Saban’s?

        http://groundviews.org/2012/05/10/no-longer-blind-no-longer-bound/#comment-44806

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Your theory of Steady State Universe is long discarded due to lack of evidence! I have already answered you!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        “Your theory of Steady State Universe is long discarded due to lack of evidence!”

        You mean “empirical evidence”, I suppose. Big Bang too is suffering from that, why then it has not been discarded?

        On the other hand empirical evidence (taken in the sense of science) is not a mandatory condition for a theory to be sound. Theories can be sound based on reason alone.

        Even if we take “empirical evidence” as necessary why should it be only empirical evidence taken in the sense of science is valid?

        In science empirical evidence means “five sensory evidence”, that is the evidence produced by eye, ear, nose, tongue and by body. Why only the evidence produced by these five are taken as valid? Why not take the “sensory evidence” produced by “mind” as valid? Mind also can act as a sensory organ. Why the (sensory) evidence produced by mind is ignored by science?

        In my view that is a weakness of science, its inability to identify the importance of “mental factor” in grasping nature (knowing).

        Science only takes only five empirical evidence out of six available. Out of its six eyes science is blind in one eye.

        On the other hand what is the big reason anybody has to think that we can grasp the information of the outside world though our (five, according to science) senses only? Aren’t there any other ways (organs) to suck the information into us? If possible such evidence is not sensory evidence, and such knowledge/perception is not sensory knowledge/perception. It should be named as Extra Sensory Perception. Buddhism and many other Indian philosophies say it is possible.

        Gaining knowledge through other means other than sensory organs? Many Indian philosophies teach (it seems) such methods.

        Don’t you think it is useful if we can have such an ability? Is the meditation the path for that?

        I think it is time to get out of the “scientific cocoon”.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Such inputs from the mind alone led to the assumptions like ether(which was thought to conduct electro-magnetic waves in a vaccum, before Einstein) and cosmological consonant(which Eistein proposed-and later withdrew- which he thought would help to maintain a steady-state universe)which were eventually proven to be errorneous.

        Big Bang theory agrees with all observations and makes accurate predictions about the universe, whereas the steady-state model does neither.

      • yapa

        Really Saban I did not see this post of yours.

        You say “Such inputs from the mind alone led to the assumptions like ether….”

        Dear Saban;

        Not only that almost all the inputs of Relativity are inputs from the mind. Relativity inputs were based on pure reasoning. Tell me how did Einstein know that the velocity of light is the maximum speed of anything? I think all the examples Einstein took to explain Relativity were “thought experiments”, not laboratory experiments. You know twin paradox, trains running close to the speed of light, so many thought experiments he used to explain his theory, I don’t think he had a single laboratory experiment. What do you think about M theory, dark energy, dark matter, singularity, black hole, …. do you think they were gained through laboratory experiments? No all of them are mind inputs. Mind inputs are the need of the hour for modern science.

        Dear Saban, mind inputs are the most accurate inputs, Socrates used that method, Plato, Aristotle, the lord Buddha used that method, they almost never used “laboratory experiments”. That input is called “logical reasoning or deductive reasoning”. That was the method used by the philosophers and Scientists until Francis Bacon introduced “Empiricism” to science. Early intellectuals considered “sensory experience” as a lower form of knowledge even animals use for the purpose and considered unsuitable/inferior for intellectuals. Really the “credibility problem” came into science only with this new introduction. Unlike in inductive logic knowledge gained through “deductive reasoning (logic)” is almost perfect.

        Do you think the concept of “Ether” was scientifically rejected? Almost all including all the scientists who know about science think so, based on Michelson–Morley experiment. But dear Saban, this is “my discovery”. Michelson–Morley experiment did not disprove the existence of ether.

        I think I am the first man to tell this. Scientists think that Michelson–Morley experiment as a turning point of the history of science. But this is not true, do you believe a “Sinhala Gamarala” from a under developed country can say such a thing?

        As ever, I stand behind my claim.

        You have talked about the cosmological consonant, which Einstein proposed-and later withdrew, as an example to disprove steady universe theory. However, it does not do so, what it only does is, it shows Einstein made a mistake, it didn’t disprove that theory. Thar theory has been there over 2500 years without the help of Einstein.

        You say, Big Bang theory agrees with all observations and makes accurate predictions about the universe.

        Tell me about the accurate predictions so made.

        (Dear Saban, I must be the only person in the 21st century to say that ether was not disproved yet. Do you think I am mad?, no I am very confident that I am correct.)

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        Do you know the problem with most of the people who are aware of science?

        They are only followers of the “gods” in the temple of science. They worship, pay homage, offer flowers and incense sticks and make prayers to the “science gods” in fear and faith. For them what science gods say are gospel truths.

        Difference in me is do not fear of them. I know that most of them are pseudo gods.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Those thought experiments were backed by sound math. And math can be considered an objective sense, which reaches beyond our five senses.

        Theories like Einstein’s and uncertainty princople were proven with experimental evidence and they have passed every test repeatedly.

        Even biological theories like evolution have heaps and heaps of evidence to support them and has made accurate predictions as well eg.The prediction of eusociality among the mammals(a super-organism) was proven with the discovery of the African naked mole rat, arti ficial selection of species led to the breeding of new species.

        That’s the position with even the current, mathematically sound theories like the string theory. They are awaiting experimental proof and that is why they are splitting atoms on the Swiss-French border!

        The difference between those theories and those of Socrates’, Plato’s, Lao Tze’s and Buddha’s is that they are not backed by sound math nor have they made any accurate predictions!

        You can believe in the existence of ether, spontaneous generation and that diseases are caused by spirits and still say that earth is flat. The reason is, you can always say, “in spite of the discovery of bacteria nobody has proven that they are not caused by spirits” can’t you? Or, “in spite of Louis Pastur’s experiments, some worms are still born in flesh spotaneously” “Because nobody has proven that it doesn’t happen always” Apply all your arguments to God and see the result: The theists will be thrilled!

        Finally, how do you know that getting rid of a “frame”(what you called a ‘ditti’ in Pali)itself is not another frame?

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        “Those thought experiments were backed by sound math. And math can be considered an objective sense, which reaches beyond our five senses.”

        I think you speak sense and come to the correct point about inputs of mind and inputs of matter and to the correct point to judge those inputs to see which is good and which is bad.

        As you said those thought experiments are backed by maths. Then what is math, is it a mind input or a input of matter?

        Really Maths is one of the creams of “deductive reasoning (logic)” and has nothing to do with matter or it is noway a material input (math is abstract). As you know deductive logic does make its axioms depend on the experience of material world. It exists purely independent of matter opposed to the “inductive reasoning”, which is the base of “Scientific Method”. So dear Saban, Einsteins thought experiments were based on strong math means nothing other than saying they are based on “mind inputs”.

        So, mind inputs when properly applied(through deductive logic) it is most accurate and is a better tool than material inputs.

        Dear Saban, in mundane knowledge, the main two (indirect)knowledge gaining systems are Deductive reasoning and Inductive reasoning. Those two are the methods used in developing almost all the subjects in the world like science, geography or social science. Materiel inputs (empirical evidence)always represent the “Inductive Logic” and inputs of deductive reasoning always represent mind inputs. The results of mathematics are nothing bur mind inputs, that belongs to logical reasoning.

        Really experimental evidence do good to a theory but not essential, it could be a show for novices, not for scientists and scholars. You may know that Galileo, understood bodies of different weights fall at equal speeds not through experiment but through logical reasoning. Pisa experiment was only a show meant for novices.

        You have mentioned about the theory of Evolution and said that it has a heaps of (material) evidence and make accurate predictions. Dear Saba, Evolution has to do so, it is a theory based on Inductive Logic, based on empiricism, it is theory of science, which is based on “experiments, observations and conclusions”. It does not imply that theories based on deductive reasoning essentially need material evidence. I think you know the nature of a “scientific theory”, Scientific theory does not become “truth” even with a several billions of observations agree with it, but just a single observation does not agree with the theory breaks the theory leaving nothing.

        So, a scientific theory never will be true, even with billions of evidence, but it will further remains as a theory awaiting a single evidence it to be disproved to be altered, amended or to be totally discarded.

        However, you know theories based on “deductive reasoning” or theories based on “logical mind inputs” bears a very high credibility and literally considered as overlapping with truth or reality.

        You call string theory is a mathematically sound theory. Dear Saban, Mathematics is used here only to strengthen and the weave the theory based on its assumptions. Mathematics is only an inactive agent in here like “uthpreraka” in Chemistry (I forgot the English term instantly) and string theory is result of its axioms, not of its uthprerakas. If the axioms are not sound math cannot do anything. Math is an abstract, passive and objective tool that can be used in any other subject area to help to improve their knowledge based on their axioms.

        Now you say, “The difference between those theories and those of Socrates’, Plato’s, Lao Tze’s and Buddha’s is that they are not backed by sound math nor have they made any accurate predictions!”

        Dear Saban, math is not an essential input of a deductive theory. The essential is only sound deductive arguments and correct axioms. Maths only a subset of deductive logic, we know there are many true knowledge areas developed without the use of math. If the basic axioms are correct and if the arguments are accurate, whether it is of Socrates, Platos, Lao Tze’, Buddha or any other fellow, the theories are correct and can make very much better predictions than scientific theories.

        You say,

        “You can believe in the existence of ether…”, but I don’t say believe in ether, but what I said was Science have not yet disproved of the existence of ether, as Michelson – Morley experiment claimed. If you want I can logically prove. This is my theory, no body else’

        Also, I don’t say I believe in all spontaneous generation and that diseases are caused by spirits and still say that earth is flat. As you rightly said, “anybody is free until he is proven guilty”, science cannot make any theory make guilty until it proves the particular theory is guilty and wrong. Science has no any “election” to call anything wrong or right without proofs. Science has proved earth is not flat, but not other things you have mentioned. Those may totally be wrong but scientifically, science cannot claim so. That is what I wanted to tell, not that all the nonsense are true, but there can be things which cannot be decided true on the basis of science, can you say it is not?.

        Do you really think I want theist to be thrilled? I you must yourself have seen it in this debate as well.

        You ask “Finally, how do you know that getting rid of a “frame”(what you called a ‘ditti’ in Pali)itself is not another frame?”

        Tell me is it principally possible to devoid from all ditties? I think such a situation is possible in principle at least. So, what do you call such a scenario? There is no a word to represent such a scenario in our day to day vocabulary, as we have no such thing to experience. So, we have to use an available word to express it to the world. We use “samma ditti”, not because it is another ditti, but due to the lack of a term to repentance that “unprecedented scenario”. Samma ditti is a possibility. Do you have any doubt we cannot choose the right view among a several sets of views in a given situation? Even practically very possible.

        Really if you want the step by step to the above scenario is described and explained, you can critically check whether that scenario is a another ditti or not. I think it is not another ditti at all and it is a scenario which we haven’t experienced, which is totally devoid of all ditties. A “correct worldview” at least in a given subset of reality or knowledge.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Firstly, you seem to concede that math is a result of mental input. In that case you have no complaint against science being based on 5 senses only, do you?

        What’s the guarantee that a theory made phylosophically through mental input only, can’t go wrong? Because many such theories have gone wrong in the history eg. Aristotle’s theory of gravity. Then how can you say that it is superior?

        If “samma ditti” means being devoid of all “wrong” frames:

        1. How does one know that they were the wrong frames in the first place? For example how does one know that believing that there is no afterlife is a false “ditti”? Is it because it is morally wrong? Is being “morally wrong” a valid reason, if truth is bitter and even bitter the truth should be taken?

        2. If “samma ditti” leads you along a pathway of seven more such concepts this whole thing itself amounts to another frame only. Unless the end goal means “total nothingness”, any other positive attributes of it, breaks down the concept itself!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        I think question and answer type response would be more effective as my response, hence use that method.

        I don’t really understand what you meant by the following statement.

        “Firstly, you seem to concede that math is a result of mental input. In that case you have no complaint against science being based on 5 senses only, do you?”

        Really from the beginning I have been in the stance that math is a very subtle special product of deductive reasoning, and science literally means the knowledge generated through the inductive reasoning, based on five senses. However, like many other subjects science also use math and logical reasoning to supplement its fundamental means of knowledge gaining.

        “What’s the guarantee that a theory made phylosophically through mental input only, can’t go wrong? Because many such theories have gone wrong in the history eg. Aristotle’s theory of gravity. Then how can you say that it is superior?”

        Really as I have mentioned several times in this thread any some other threads, a deductive reasoning can go wrong only when

        1. Premises is not correct.

        2. Argument is not correct.

        That is why I have many times said logic is not an easy subject and it is not meant for everybody. It is a very subtle tool, if used correctly that gives accurate results.

        The problem with Aristotle’s Theory of Cosmology (I suppose not “gravity”)became wrong due to his wrong axioms (presumptions). The theory was based on his “natural place premise”, that seemed correct as common sense pointed to him.

        His theory of Motions too went wrong due to his wrong axioms derived from common sense.

        “””If “samma ditti” means being devoid of all “wrong” frames:

        1. How does one know that they were the wrong frames in the first place?”””

        It is not that difficult. How do you find the correct answer of a multiple choice question?

        In Buddhas time there were 62 competing “ditties”, Buddha pointed out with reasons that all those were wrong and he showed “Middle Path” as true answer.

        As I have said earlier, deductive reasoning is the most powerful tool in differentiating truth from untruth. You can apply it to a particular ditti and if it generates contradictions, the way creator generated in our discussion, then the ditti is a wrong one.

        In addition there are three main theories that has been used almost everywhere to distinguish truth from untruth.

        1. Correspondence theory

        2. Coherence theory

        3. Utility theory

        I have a bit explained about these in my discussion with Mohamed. On the other hand in Buddhism “samma ditti” has been very well described, you can apply any of the criteria and see whether it stands the test. As far as I am concerned I found it successfully stands against any of the tests.

        “For example how does one know that believing that there is no afterlife is a false “ditti”?”

        It is not difficult, you can check the consistency of the concept with the other doctrines of Buddhism. It well fits the other doctrines. And you also can see how other dittis which does not believe in the concept, create contradictions. Buddha has discussed these in details and contradicted those “Uchcheda” ditties. You can read his profund arguments in this respect if you go through the relevant suttas. Further, there are many empirical evidence as well in this regard. You cannot explain Edgar Cayce, through any other hypothesis. Dr. Ian Stevenson’s experiments have no better hypotheses than rebirth. On the other hand almost all the major religions today believe in that. So many people in the world to believe that concept one can guess there must be some truth in that. Anyway consistency of the concept in the doctrine and the consistency of the component parts of the doctrine within itself is the main reason. It does not make any contradictions within the knowledge system of Buddhism.

        “Is it because it is morally wrong?”

        Not at all. It may have a moral importance as well. But the reason is that it is a fact, which mixes harmoniously in the doctrine.

        “Is being “morally wrong” a valid reason, if truth is bitter and even bitter the truth should be taken?”

        I think you know morality is something concerned with “good and Bad” while the Buddhism’s main focus is on “Four Noble Truths” (witht Truth and Untruth). I think you understand that there could be a possibility
        that a truth becomes a morally good thing as well. But I think some people use rebirth as immoral. Some people create “Bhava thanha” accepting the concept of rebirth. Their philosophy is “we don’t know what will happen in the next birth, therefore, kapalla, beepalla, jolly karapalla”.

        “”2. If “samma ditti” leads you along a pathway of seven more such concepts this whole thing itself amounts to another frame only.””

        Not at all. The “absolute truth” of a particular situation is not just a ditti (frame), it is an absolute frame of reference. Wrong views are the ditties. Right view may be a ditti, but it is the right ditti, right view, samma ditti, the absolute frame, it is not comparable with all other wrong alternatives for the issue. It is the correct answer for the question. It is the correct answer of the multiple choice question.

        “Unless the end goal means “total nothingness”, any other positive attributes of it, breaks down the concept itself!”

        How does it break down?, The question is not clear to me. Can you elaborate a bit?

        Ultimate goal is “Nirvana”. Some times it is also known as “nothingness”, however, not in the meaning used by “Nagarjuna” in his (in)famous “Sunyatha concept”.

        Really Nirvana is not total nothingness. There are vivid descriptions about it in Buddhism. However, it is said that it cannot be described directly using our experience or the terms we use to describe day to day activities. Nirvana was explained though metaphors and logical reasoning.

        You know my idea about “Nirvana” is, it is something which has neither spacial nor temporal dimensions. That is why it is difficult to explain and comprehend by us.

        Now the natural question will be, are there such things in reality?

        I will explain a bit.

        You know physical bodies have both spacial and temporal dimensions. Mind or thoughts do not have a spacial dimension, but only a temporal dimension.

        What do you think of Math, numbers for example, decimal numbers, complex numbers …… ? They neither have a spacial dimension or a temporal dimension, but they still exist. I think Nirvana is a such thing, which is independent of time and space. Do you think my explanation makes sense?

        Thanks!

      • Off the Cuff

        Dear Yapa and Saban

        Yapa
        your post of June 3, 2012 • 10:42 am is very succinctly argued.
        Well done.

        Saban
        “How does one know that they were the wrong frames in the first place?”

        The same way a small kid grasp the concept that 1+1 is not 1 but 2

        As our mind matures it will be able to discard the wrong frames.

      • yapa

        Thanks, dear Off the Cuff, I always value your timely encouragement and advice.

        Really what I am trying to do is request at least our people to understand truths objectively, not to do it in bias of big tradition or what ever without looking at them critically. Most of our people are used to take things on the basis of the “shadows” of big traditions. Big traditions are also of the products of some people, may be in the west, however, if we are not suffering from inferiority complex, we should not think that only they can produce mighty traditions but not us. No tradition should be taken for granted, that is my view. We also can think the way those big thinkers thought, why we can’t? Science or any other big thing is not something we cannot understand.

        In the shadow of Big traditions, people think that we cannot have such traditions, and reject our things even without looking at them. They throw away the water with the baby. They think nothing in our traditions to compared with big traditions, they look only insulting looks at our things, they never want to look at even at our religion as it is just a religion of the east born in the old age. But it is not the case. My first education was in Science, but later when I started learning Buddhism and philosophy, I felt shy about what I had learnt before.

        These common allegation are not relevant to Saban and PitastharaPuthraya and even to Gamarala. They are exceptions. They are very much open minded compared to the people who exposed to science, specially. Their capacity and tolerance about my adhoc English also was commendable. It is a privilege to have a discussion with them. Anyway I miss our old friend Heshan in discussions like this. I would be happy if SomewhatDisgusted too was there in the forum. I must appreciate Mohamed’s professionalism in discussion as well.

        Our intention in discussion should be to find truth, not to win a debate. I think it is happening well in the present discussion. I think this will be fruitful discussion. Thanks again dear Off the Cuff for encouragement and kind words.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa and Off the Cuff

        Thank you, but you havn’t answered me at all.

        (1) 1+2=3 (correct)

        (2) There is no afterlife! (wrong)

        (3) There is an afterlife! (correct)

        The reason you guys give is that no.(1),& no.(3) are based on a correct axiom. Cuff says that this is a result of mature thinking! Yapa says, you have to accept (3) as correct over (2) because Buddha has explained it in his doctrine and it is based on a correct axiom out of 62 other doctrines prevalent at Buddha’s time!

        Yet, none of you give a reason why that itself shouldnt’ be considered as another ditti.(Is it because you have to take Buddha’s word when he says, “Apart from my word, all other opinions on afterlife fall into a “frame” and therefore they are falty”.)

        Now, yapa, you were not convinced at all when I pointed out that your argument on “a universe without an observer” is possible! Now you want me to be convinced when you quote Buddha’s middle-path and say, “This is based on a correct axiom”? When I ask “why?” You say, “because it is based on a correct axiom!” Amazing, how mullahs can evolve in Buddhism!

        What Aristotle’s view of the universe perfectly agreed with perceptions of the universe at that time and it explained the law of gravity at that time. It took a Gallilio a leap out of the box to see that it was wrong. Similarly Einstein saw that Newton’s Laws of Motion couldn’t explain why the speed of light should remain the same irrespective of the frame of reference. Yet Einstein couldn’t believe that “God plays dice” when it comes to quantum physics! Can you see how reletive the concept of “correct presumptions” are?

        In the future Eintein would be overthrown, not because he was wrong, but people like the British phisicist Barbour is finding that some of those axioms which Einstein based his theory, may not be correct, after all!

        So, what you guys say here is, not second to what some of the defenders of Islam have said in this forum: “What Buddha said was like 1+2=3, you’ll know it with maturity” If you replace the word “Buddha” with “Qu’ran”, will you see any difference?

        Interesting!

      • sabbe laban

        Correction:

        “What Aristotle’s view of the universe perfectly agreed with perceptions of the universe at that time and it explained the law of gravity at that time.” should read as:

        Aristotle’s view of the universe perfectly agreed with perceptions of the universe at that time and it explained the law of gravity at that time.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        If I add a few more specific arguments to my above post:

        Thank you Yapa, for giving so much of ammunition to me;I can’t ask for more!

        First of all, you say, that there are 3 ways of knowing whether a theory is based on a correct axiom or not: Correspondence theory, Coherence theory, Utility theory

        And strangely(perhaps not, in your case!) you ask us to test the consistency of the theory of “afterlife” with the rest of the doctrines of Buddhism, and you say that it stands the trial. Did you try to test the consistency of the presumption, “no afterlife” with the doctrine of Ajitha Kesakambali(who famously said that there was no such thing) to see whether it stand the trial? Buddha said because it comes under “uchcheda vada”(for the benefit of the people don’t understand this dead language, this means materialism or hedonism),it is based on a wrong premise! What I say is, that I don’t take Buddha’s word just because he labeled it something; I say Buddha himself has used a frame(which is wrong) to conclude so!

        Furthermore, what you cite as empirical evidence of Edgar Cacey and Stevenson doesn’t pass any bench mark. They remain as some vague resemblances only. Your cherished ideals like objectivity seem to desert you when they are not beneficial to you, don’t they? If they can be considered objective evidence of rebirth, they should by now have become scientific theories!

        Strangely enough in your “well argued post”(according to Cuff) you say because most of the other faiths too believe in an afterlife, there must be some truth in that! Am I hearing this from the same person who said the he could be the only person in the world to believe that ether still exists, because science hasn’t proven that it doesn’t exist? Why don’t you argue in the same lines, as the majority of the religions believe in some kind of a God, there must be a truth to it? Is this too a difficult argument for you to grasp as in the case of math being a mental input that goes beyond our 5 senses and therefore that your claim that science is limited to inputs from the 5 senses falls flat?

        Is it the same person who says that Nirvana is an absolute truth and THAT an absolute truth doesn’t come under a frame? Yes, I think it is the same person! Nirvana, according to you is something which has neither “spacial” nor “temporal” only. And the example you give is decimal numbers and complex numbers. Those numbers can at least be written on a piece of a paper, isn’t it? If Nirvana too is a mathematical concept, I too agree and I have told this in the beginning!

        Then you say that Nirvana is not “total nothingness”. If it has some positive features, it becomes nothing, but yet another frame which could be false. I said earlier: “Unless the end goal means “total nothingness”, any other positive attributes of it, breaks down the concept itself!” And you say that it was not clear to you as to how it could break down itself. Simply because, if there is a positive attribute to it, it becomes another frame only. Just because Buddha said it was the absolute truth, I have no reason to believe it!

      • sabbe laban

        Sorry: “Nirvana, according to you is something which has neither spacial nor temporal dimentions”

        Sorry for the inconvenience!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        You say “Yet, none of you give a reason why that itself shouldnt’ be considered as another ditti.(Is it because you have to take Buddha’s word when he says, “Apart from my word, all other opinions on afterlife fall into a “frame” and therefore they are falty”.)”

        That was not my explanation at all. Please read my post again. The “concept of karma” is consistent (coherent) with the rest of the doctrine, in the first place. And I mention Ian Stevenson,s experiments and Edgar Cayce’s cases to as empirical evidence as well. It is one of the most difficult cases to “prove” taking it separately, it is intertwined with the total doctrine. When you consider total doctrine as a whole, you will see the rebirth is well fit in the theory

        “Now, yapa, you were not convinced at all when I pointed out that your argument on “a universe without an observer” is possible! Now you want me to be convinced when you quote Buddha’s middle-path and say, “This is based on a correct axiom”? When I ask “why?” You say, “because it is based on a correct axiom!” Amazing, how mullahs can evolve in Buddhism!”

        This is entirely a separate case. Not only I was not convinced, it was logically incorrect. I showed that. It is a argument put forward by idealists, which has not yet been refuted.

        Thanks!

        (I have to attend an urgent work. I will give a details very soon.)

      • yapa

        Correction ….

        The “concept of karma” is consistent (coherent) with the rest of the doctrine, in the first place.

        here “concept of karma” should be changed as “concept of rebirth”.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        ““uchcheda vada”(for the benefit of the people don’t understand this dead language, this means materialism or hedonism)”

        I think uchchedavada is nihilism, not really materialism or hedonism. Materialism and hedonism could belong to nihilism. Nihilism can represent a broad group. The opposite of uchchedavada is “saswathavada” and it is “eternalism” again a broad category. All 62 ideologies (ditties)prevailed in the Buddha’s time belonged to these two categories. Buddha refused both theses “extreme ends” and shown “middle path” which is neither nihilism nor eternalism.

        It is not that difficult to show that “middle path” is true even with mundane knowledge, mainly on the basis of its coherence. It can be shown that two other ideologies contradict in one or another point. The most exemplary feature in the Buddha’s doctrine is that “non-contradiction” and its consistency. That is why I challenged any body to contradict any doctrine of Buddhism in a past discussion. I think the result was the challenge reiterated the consistency of Buddhism.

        I would like to show you that how Buddhism is a very credible theory using the “theories of truth”. Don’t worry about mulla’s religions, they cannot survive a intellectual challenge, they create infinite number of contradictions in a critical analysis, where Buddhism is not. Please be open minded and give Buddhism the only attributes it has, not the ones it does not have. No attribute in any Mulla’s religion is similar to Buddhism in the perspective of an intellectual discussion. As I have said in another forum, Buddhism is a “profound and comprehensive theory” in terms of the definition of a theory, more than almost all the theories in Science, I reiterate this fact.

        Give me a little bit time.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        After searching the web I found that the equivalent term for “Uchchedavada” is “annihilationism”. I guessed it as nihilism, but it is not the correct term.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        I would like to answer the rest of your posts specifically, not to miss any query of yours.

        “Yet, none of you give a reason why that itself shouldnt’ be considered as another ditti.(Is it because you have to take Buddha’s word when he says, “Apart from my word, all other opinions on afterlife fall into a “frame” and therefore they are falty”.)”

        Dear Saban, I think we will have to get the meaning of “ditti” cleared before we proceed further. Ditti, is point of view or opinion.

        I think you know the difference between a point of view (opinion) and fact. Fact is not an opinion because it is true. If some thing is true, it is not an opinion or a ditti. That is why “samma ditti” is not a ditti.

        “What Aristotle’s view of the universe perfectly agreed with perceptions of the universe at that time and it explained the law of gravity at that time. It took a Gallilio a leap out of the box to see that it was wrong. Similarly Einstein saw that Newton’s Laws of Motion couldn’t explain why the speed of light should remain the same irrespective of the frame of reference. Yet Einstein couldn’t believe that “God plays dice” when it comes to quantum physics! Can you see how reletive the concept of “correct presumptions” are?”

        Aristotle’s axiom was wrong. Just like Newton’s laws, Einstein too cannot explain why the speed of light should remain the same irrespective of the frame of reference. It is the main axiom of his theory. The axiom has not yet been proved true yet, that is why scientists all over the world carrying out experiments like in CERN, it is to ascertain to whether the axiom of “Relativity” is true or not. If somebody proves the axiom is wrong, the miracle of the 21st century and the genius of the 21st century will succumbed to their destiny of the “criteria of theories”.

        “In the future Eintein would be overthrown, not because he was wrong, but people like the British phisicist Barbour is finding that some of those axioms which Einstein based his theory, may not be correct, after all!”

        This I said very much earlier.

        http://groundviews.org/2012/05/10/no-longer-blind-no-longer-bound/#comment-45160

        Choosing axioms is not an easy task. This I have said about Big Bang,Creator theory and also wrt theory of evolution.

        This is what has happened to the conclusion of Michelson-Morley experiment too. I found that the axioms of that experiment is not valid in the light of the accepted knowledge of modern science. In the light of that the particular experiment has not disprove the existence of ether.

        “So, what you guys say here is, not second to what some of the defenders of Islam have said in this forum: “What Buddha said was like 1+2=3, you’ll know it with maturity” If you replace the word “Buddha” with “Qu’ran”, will you see any difference?”

        Not at all. The axiom of Quran (creator)has been disproved, but not the axioms of Buddhism.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        “First of all, you say, that there are 3 ways of knowing whether a theory is based on a correct axiom or not: Correspondence theory, Coherence theory, Utility theory

        And strangely(perhaps not, in your case!) you ask us to test the consistency of the theory of “afterlife” with the rest of the doctrines of Buddhism, and you say that it stands the trial.”

        Exactly Saban, that is what I am telling, but it is not strange at all, that is how the theories of truth is applied. In any knowledge system if once concept is consistent with all concepts in the knowledge system, the the concept is true withing that system.

        “Did you try to test the consistency of the presumption, “no afterlife” with the doctrine of Ajitha Kesakambali(who famously said that there was no such thing) to see whether it stand the trial?”

        This is a very valid point. You are applying the Godel’s theorem correctly to this situation (I don’t know whether intuitively or knowingly). You say that knowledge system cannot justify its axioms. Exactly, on the basis of the consistency in the system we cannot justify rebirth, I accept the fact.

        But, I have given some empirical evidence to support the theory(concept), Ian Stevenson and Edgar Cayce, but I accept they do not “prove a case”, as I have mentioned early a theory based on empirical evidence never prove a theory true. Just like theory of Evolution, in this case I accept that “rebirth” has not been “proven beyond any doubt”.

        However, the Buddha’s methodology in this case is to apply the principle of “Dependent Origination” to his theory. You know dependent origination is the principle of cause and effect. The Buddha’s theory (teaching) is nothing but to explain the pathetic nature of beings in the journey of samsara and to show them the path to get rid of this pathetic situation. However, the theory he obtained though the application of dependent origination is an unprecedented theory which works in a circle (wheel)ultimately final cause causing the initial effect. I haven’t seen no any other such theory in any other subject area. The wheel shows a wheel of causes and effects which makes a being send through the samsara from one birth to another and to another and so on.

        The wheel starts from, avijja—> sankara—> vinnana—-> nama & rupa—— ———->jathi—> avijja. Each one is en effect of the preceding one. So, in this case if you establish any one of these, on the basis of cause and effect all others become consistant with each other. So, in this case you do not need to prove rebirth (jathi) it to be true, instead we can prove, either avijja or thanha is true in the circle(wheel). Really we can prove that the original cause of every defilement is avijja or ignorance, hence its chain consequence, rebirth is proven true.

        Do you understand the subtle logic in Buddhism? Many believe, even Buddha said that Paticca Samuppada (dependent origination) is something very difficult to understand. Buddha has said if somebody understands “PS” he understands the “dhamma”, it is so difficult, but I tried my best to explain a perspective of it to justify rebirth and your challenge.

        That is not all,I can prove directly that Ajitha Kesakambala was wrong in his point of view (ditti) as well. Not only that saswathavada also very easily refutable. If you are not satisfied the “Samsara wheel” tel me with reasons I will directly refute the person “who wears the clothes of hair”.

        I am unofficially informing you “HE is nothing but the Buddha”, I emphasize my statement.

        “Buddha said because it comes under “uchcheda vada”(for the benefit of the people don’t understand this dead language, this means materialism or hedonism),it is based on a wrong premise! What I say is, that I don’t take Buddha’s word just because he labeled it something; I say Buddha himself has used a frame(which is wrong) to conclude so!””

        Not at all. He said it with reasons, one of the reasons I have shown above.

        “Furthermore, what you cite as empirical evidence of Edgar Cacey and Stevenson doesn’t pass any bench mark. They remain as some vague resemblances only. Your cherished ideals like objectivity seem to desert you when they are not beneficial to you, don’t they? If they can be considered objective evidence of rebirth, they should by now have become scientific theories!”

        Conclusion of your last sentence is totally wrong. Scientific theory is never objective. It is biased towards sensory inputs of the senses and capacities and weaknesses of them, also on the interpreter of sensory data.

        I never put my objectivity on sensory data, I cited them as some extra evidence only, as many have “faith” on material evidence. I have said this earlier, material evidence could do good to a theory but it wll never prove the theory true, didn’t I say this? I have never said the empirical evidence I cited would pass any bench mark, have I?

        “Strangely enough in your “well argued post”(according to Cuff) you say because most of the other faiths too believe in an afterlife, there must be some truth in that! Am I hearing this from the same person who said the he could be the only person in the world to believe that ether still exists, because science hasn’t proven that it doesn’t exist? Why don’t you argue in the same lines, as the majority of the religions believe in some kind of a God, there must be a truth to it?”

        I think above answer is relevant to this as well. It was only a supplementary argument.

        “Is this too a difficult argument for you to grasp as in the case of math being a mental input that goes beyond our 5 senses and therefore that your claim that science is limited to inputs from the 5 senses falls flat?”

        Do you think this is applicable now?

        “Is it the same person who says that Nirvana is an absolute truth and THAT an absolute truth doesn’t come under a frame? Yes, I think it is the same person! Nirvana, according to you is something which has neither “spacial” nor “temporal” only. And the example you give is decimal numbers and complex numbers.”

        Do you find any confusion now in what I said?

        “Those numbers can at least be written on a piece of a paper, isn’t it? If Nirvana too is a mathematical concept, I too agree and I have told this in the beginning!”

        You have misunderstood the concept of numbers as well. Numbers cannot be really written, only you denote them.

        A picture of a dog drawn has some resemblance with the dog, but do you think, 2 or // or ii or .. has any resemblance to two? Nothing. That way if you want I can denote nirvana with or ^^^ or UUU. Do you say not possible?

        “Then you say that Nirvana is not “total nothingness”. If it has some positive features, it becomes nothing,…….”

        Why?, I don’t see any logic in it.

        “…. but yet another frame which could be false. I said earlier: “Unless the end goal means “total nothingness”, any other positive attributes of it, breaks down the concept itself!” ”

        Still I don’t feel any sense of it, can you a bit explain your argument?

        “And you say that it was not clear to you as to how it could break down itself. Simply because, if there is a positive attribute to it, it becomes another frame only.”

        Why it should be so?, I cannot understand.

        “Just because Buddha said it was the absolute truth, I have no reason to believe it!”

        Who says absolute truths cannot have positive attributes?

        Now, 2+2=4, it is an absolute truth in numbers, do you say numbers do not exist?

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        You seem to be utterly confused with my arguments, and I see no point in repeating the points that I have already made.

        There is an easier option of scrolling back!

      • Off the Cuff

        Dear Saban,

        Here is a part of a comment I posted on this thread earlier.

        I believe what Yapa is trying to say is that what we perceive as the Universe depends on the five senses. If we have a lesser number of senses our perception would be less and if we have more than the five senses that perception would be more. If that is the case he is logically correct.
        Recently I saw a program on Discovery Science where controlled experiments indicated that the eye is not just an organ of sight. The subject was a person blind in one eye. Images flashed at the blind eye caused simulation of the brain in areas other than the visual cortex (seen on an MRI). It was also mentioned that this other function of the eye is normally masked by the visual function. We may well have more than five senses but we may not be using them.

        Frames

        A small kid would think 1+1=1 due to the frame within which it thinks at that time. At the beginning a kid’s thinking frame consists of images.

        It seems I am wrong about maths ability of infants

        Quote
        Over the last two decades, researchers have discovered an impressive array of mental abilities in infants, “a creature which used to be thought of as utterly incompetent and ineffective,” Dr. Bryant wrote. Among the proven abilities of young babies: telling objects apart by their shape, size and color; knowing that objects continue to exist while out of sight, and even noticing whether a person’s lip movements match what is being said. Unquote

        http://www.nytimes.com/1992/08/27/us/study-finds-babies-at-5-months-grasp-simple-mathematics.html?pagewanted=3&src=pm

        However what I wanted to convey was that as the thinking frame moves to a higher level the understanding that the previous frame was wrong is realised.

        This is an answer to Saban’s question ““How does one know that they were the wrong frames in the first place?”

        Think about it.

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Thank you for taking time from your busy schedule! I won’t burden you more with difficult questions! Because in your last post you seem to contradict what you say in the first part of the post, in the latter part of it! I don’t want to judge your mental status as it is none of my business! Anyway thank you, for acknowledging the validity of my points(at least in the first part of your post!) No, I didn’t think of Godel’s theorum when I typed it!

        Before I end this, one more “small” question on Buddha’s doctrine on “dependent origins”.(I kindly request you to use English terms instead of Pali words in your explanations, as most of the readers can’t understand Pali!)

        If you start that cycle of “dependent origins” with “ignorance”, according to it , as a consequesne of “ignorance” the “seeds of karma” are born, and as a consequence of these karmic forces, a thing called “consciousness” is born. As a consequence of this “consciousness” the constituents of “physical and mental constructs” are born(five of them, according to Buddha..)As a result of this, the “five senses” and the “mental input” are born. And this goes on like this, and it will be unnecessary to go through the whole thing.

        Though it may not be difficult for someone to track down “ignorance” (of the nature of “aggregates”) as the cause of “our unsatisfactory existence”(though another person may track it down to reproduction!)do you have any evidence to say that “ignorance” causes “karmic seeds” apart from saying that “Buddha has thought it out”?

        Why do you say that “karmic seeds” causes the “consciousness”? Can’t it cause UUU or *+*? How do you know that “consciousness” is the cause of “mental and physical constructs”? Can’t those “mental and physical constructs” cause, in contrast, what you and I call “consciousness”? How do you know that those “mental and physical constructs” give birth to “five senses and the mind”? I’m not convinced at all! Just because you start a cycle with a ‘seemingly correct’ assumption, it doesn’t mean that the subsequent “utterrings” of yours are also correct! In fact the whole thing could be wrong, for that matter!What evidence do you have to say that this cycle should proceed in this way? I can suggest one hundred ways that this cycle can be arranged!

        Well, apart from saying things like, “Buddha has thoroughly gone through all that..” or “it agrees with the rest of HIS(not any other!) doctrines..” or “look around(behold..!), and you will see what he told is correct..!”

        Can you?

        Thanks!

      • Gamarala

        Saban,

        A lonely crusader waging an intellectual battle with an enemy that resurrects arguments long dead and buried, many of which even have trees growing over the grave. Will the crusader win against such hopeless odds? Find out in the next episode of “religiosity – the ghost that refuses to give up (gracefully or otherwise)”.

        Still, an enjoyable season so far 😉

      • Please post here

        Dear Saban;

        I never hesitated to accept your points when they were correct. Always I tried to behave honest in the debate. Not accepting some of your arguments is also a part of that policy. I never tried to take undue advantages in the debate, therefore, if you doubt my honesty in the debate surely I cannot accept it. I never want to cheat you. (and also I am very much confident about my mental status, Ha! Ha!!, don’t worry about it), will continue our discussion on facts.

        Answering before your question about the wheel of Samsara, I must do a correction to your explanation, consciousness is not a result of karmi seeds but karmic seeds are the result of consciousness. I think the consciousness or vinnana means “knowing”(though the judgement of mind). When you know with ignorance (chethana) volitional action is completed and it is the karma. Therefore karma takes place after the consciousness is arisen. This is common knowledge, you do bad or good deeds based on volition taken place after the consciousness is arisen.
        You can understand good or bad deeds have their consequences, they are the karmas and seeds of karma is awaiting as karmic seeds a chance to activate. You know you yield as you sow. Just after you kill a man you don’t get capital punishment. You ask “Why do you say that “karmic seeds” causes the “consciousness”? Can’t it cause UUU or *+*?” (the content of the question has a problem but the answer is to the corrected version),have you ever seen killing an innocent man is rewarded with gold by the world? Result is in accordance with the deed.

        You say, “Well, apart from saying things like, “Buddha has thoroughly gone through all that..” or “it agrees with the rest of HIS(not any other!) doctrines..” or “look around(behold..!), and you will see what he told is correct..!””

        Can you ever show me a place where I have asked you to accept so? I quote from Buddha’s doctrine only to analyses them. You think quoting itself is wrong?

        “Why do you say that “karmic seeds” causes the “consciousness”? Can’t it cause UUU or *+*? How do you know that “consciousness” is the cause of “mental and physical constructs”? Can’t those “mental and physical constructs” cause, in contrast, what you and I call “consciousness”? How do you know that those “mental and physical constructs” give birth to “five senses and the mind”? I’m not convinced at all!”

        Very valid point, Saban. Anyway you accepted that “ignorance” as a ‘seemingly correct’ assumption.

        Rest was only mentioned Saban, not explained. Without critically analyzing by yourself or without listening to my explanation you jump into conclusions, Saban. Your question “How do you know that “consciousness” is the cause of “mental and physical constructs”? Can’t those “mental and physical constructs” cause, in contrast, what you and I call “consciousness”? is well answered in Buddhism and also obvious from the process. This has been explained in Buddhism with the metaphor of “blind and the lame”. The lame helps the blind to go begging some food for both, seated on his shoulder and showing the blind the way, this way both are benifited.

        It is obvious that consciousness cannot arise without a physical body. And also physical body of a being cannot be constructed without a mind. If such a baby is born he is not alive or cannot function as a normal living being. (here the whole story is about the physical constitutes of beings, not to about the physical things like rocks, or walls, or buildings or flora, for the construction of them, you don’t need a consciousness).

        I think now you understand a mind should come into the womb of the mother when she conceives a baby as mind cannot from the physical genes of the parents. How do you explain an egg of a mother and sperm of a father, neither of which has a mind create a baby with a mind? Where did the mind cone from? Tell me how science explains arising a mind when to physical entities added together? You add many of the physical things in the laboratory, you add all sorts of chemicals, have you ever seen a mind created out of them?

        My dear friend Saban, show me any other reliable theory to explain the birth of a being, other than Paticca Samuppada or Dependent Origination?

        Another separate question, can you justify Ajitha Keshakambala’s claim you seem to adore much that there is no birth after death, his “annihilationism”? Please explain that to me, with facts, evidence, examples, metaphors or what ever with rational arguments?

        Thanks!

      • Dear Saban:

        I think this post also is relevant.

        http://groundviews.org/2012/05/10/no-longer-blind-no-longer-bound/#comment-45119

        Thanks!

      • Dear Gamarala;

        Your humour (humiliation?) almost always has been a substitute for your arguments.

        Congratulations!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Thank you for trying to correct “patcca samuppada”(dependent origination) according to what you perceived! That was my whole point wasn’t it? What I told was correct;at least that is what Buddha was supposed to have told! Yes, when someone like Yapa can reverse the cycle and still see it as a working mecahnism(and absolute truth) why not any other cycle?

        This is what Buddha says in his discourse called “Vibhanga Sutta”:

        http://www.ariyainfo.org/english/eng_dhamma_talk_010.html

        If you go through the whole article you’ll see that “avijja”(ignorance) gives birth to “sankara”(karmic cenceptions)and that in turn gives rise to “vinnana”(consciousness)!

        Anna dekada, Yapa? This looks like a f.cycle which can be run even if you swap your ICs with push-button valves, doesn’t it?

        That’s what I said there may be hundred more such cycles of “dependent origination” proposed by other Buddhas in the 21st century, with some of them beginning with “reproduction” and some of them with “delusion”(of course!)

        The bottom line is that Buddha has merely made another “frame dependent reality” and he is in no way out of the malady he preaches to avoid!

        Take for example your attempt to say that “karma” is a law of the nature.You say:”You can understand good or bad deeds have their consequences, they are the karmas and seeds of karma is awaiting as karmic seeds a chance to activate. You know you yield as you sow..”
        Do you really believe this rediculous argument that just because a “human made” law defines “good” and “evil” and punisheses murder, that it is a law of the nature too? Can you see any evidence to prove it? Does the nature care when one species eats another species-which was the case for millions of years-to punish that species for eating the other species? You seem to be another caged animal who cant see beyond the confines of its cage!

      • sabbe laban

        Gamarala

        Thank you for the trailer promoting this ‘show’! Your valued contribution is appreciated to make it a commercial-free programme! At the end of it lunch is assured with an “annihilationist” and a grave digger!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        I would like to add the following to the above post in an effort to debunk your ideas of karma and “consciousness”:

        You say that the ‘consciousness’ begins after a sperm fertilizes an egg cell and forms a zygote(a fertilized ovum) Before that, according to you, the individual sperms or the egg cells don’t possess a ‘consciousness’.

        Yet, I don’t think you would say that, they are not live either! In short, what you say is that they have a life, but not a consciousness. To have that ‘consciousness’, either a new ‘consciousness’ has to be reborn there or (according to creationists) God has to blow ‘life’ into it.

        This whole argument on ‘consciousness’ falls flat, when you realize that there is nothing that an egg cell or a sperm lacks, to say that it doesn’t have a ‘consciousness’. A sperm or an egg cell has all the attributes of life that a fertilized egg too has and the concept called ‘consciousness’ seems to be another creation of the human mind only!(how do you know that a sperm doesn’t have a ‘consciousness’?)

        Then, what have we been calling ‘consciousness’ for thousands of years in the human history, giving rise to a whole heap of concepts?

        You can call it ‘consciousness’ or whatever you like, but it is nothing but, what we call the functioning cell! It is yet another ‘frame dependent reality’!

        Furthermore, the question you may ask is as to why then, a sperm cell cannot develop into a complete individual. The reason is, that a sperm is a specialized cell, which performs a specific task and therefore it doesn’t have enough cytoplsmic resources etc. to sustain a long life.

        On the other hand, an egg cell in fact, can develop into a complete individual, if stimulated appropriately and this is exactly what happens in certain animals! eg. The drones of a bee hive develop from un-fertilized eggs.

        What all this points to is, that if you can’t consider sperms and egg cells as having a ‘consciousness’, you can’t definitely consider other uni-cellular life too as a having a ‘consciousness’.

        Maybe, hereafter you should preserve ‘consciousness’ by not ejaculating!

      • Dear Saban;

        Your point that karma arises before consciousness is a point to be further analyzed. It is true that sankara precedes vinnana (consciousness) in the cycle, but you said is true only if karma is completed with sankara before the consciousness (vinnana)arises. What you said is correct if sankara=karma. However, my idea is karma which is volition(intention)cannot arise without arising a consciousness (thought). That is the reason why I said consciousness should precede the karma, not that I didn’t know sankara precedes vinnana in the cycle. The completion of thought process is given in “Pncha upadanaskanda” (five aggregates of clinging)as rupa (form), vedana (sensation), sanna (perception), sankara(mental formation) and vinnana (consciousness).

        I thought karma formed after the thought was completed, however, you may be right. Still I think even if this was a mistake from my part, it has no effect to my argument there, what I did was to correct what I thought incorrect.

        I said Paticca samuppada was a difficult doctrine, in the process you might understand Buddhism better than me.

        However, it doesn’t make more than one cycles of dependent origination.
        It is not a problem of the doctrine, but if my notion is wrong it is a problem of my understanding of it.

        Now you say,

        “Take for example your attempt to say that “karma” is a law of the nature.You say:”You can understand good or bad deeds have their consequences, they are the karmas and seeds of karma is awaiting as karmic seeds a chance to activate. You know you yield as you sow..”
        Do you really believe this rediculous argument that just because a “human made” law defines “good” and “evil” and punisheses murder, that it is a law of the nature too? Can you see any evidence to prove it? Does the nature care when one species eats another species-which was the case for millions of years-to punish that species for eating the other species? You seem to be another caged animal who cant see beyond the confines of its cage!”

        You see Saban, the Laws (parameters)of the world(universe)according to the Buddhism is Pncha Niyama Dharma (Five laws of the world)and they are, uthu (physical), dhamma (manifestation of reality), kamma, beeja (genetics), chitta ( mind).

        They are not man made laws. They are just like laws of science, man only discovers them. Do you think “good and evil” exists only because man is there? No Saban, good and evil in Buddhism are objective dhammas. Buddha has preached how to identify those objective moral factors. If you feel something done to you you is bad, that is evil for every one (objectively), if you like something to be done to you, that is objectively good for everybody. Do you think animals do not know good and evil? Do you think a hen doesn’t think attacking her babies as an evil thing? Don’t you think a dog does not understand the good deed of giving some food to it?

        Dear Sanban these are not laws in physics, morality does not belong to there. I think it is a problem of trying to simplify everything to physics (or the physical world) or the material thinking.

        Really physical nature may not punish an animal eating another animal, it doesn’t negate, nothing punishes it. Karma does not have a machine operator to operate the machine of karma. Karma is a self operated machine of the nature.

        You say to Gamarala,

        “Thank you for the trailer promoting this ‘show’! Your valued contribution is appreciated to make it a commercial-free programme! At the end of it lunch is assured with an “annihilationist” and a grave digger!”

        I assure you Saban, it will not be a free lunch!

        I would like to answer the next post also here.

        You say “I would like to add the following to the above post in an effort to debunk your ideas of karma and “consciousness”:”

        Definitely it will have to be a hard earned lunch, Saban. I told you he is Buddha, do not miscalculate him.

        “You say that the ‘consciousness’ begins after a sperm fertilizes an egg cell and forms a zygote(a fertilized ovum) Before that, according to you, the individual sperms or the egg cells don’t possess a ‘consciousness’.”

        Definitely Saban.

        “Yet, I don’t think you would say that, they are not live either! In short, what you say is that they have a life, but not a consciousness.”

        Definitely Saban.

        Here if you want I will tell you a secret the whole science including Biology doesn’t know but Buddhism has profoundly explained?

        Life and consciousness are two different inputs of “life”,(“life” in the meaning of science.) “Life in Buddhism is called “jeevitha indriya” and it forms the life, a character common to both “flora and fauna”. but the availability of consciousness makes a “life” into a “being”. Plants have life (jeevitha indriya) but not a consciousness.

        “To have that ‘consciousness’, either a new ‘consciousness’ has to be reborn there or (according to creationists)….”

        Really as I have said in a different thread to you consciousness doesn’t “born again”, a consciousness arises there, it is not a transmigration of the consciousness of the being of the previous birth. If so, a man should behave like a dog, if his previous birth was a dog.

        “…God has to blow ‘life’ into it.”

        God has nothing to do here, it happens according to the laws of nature, according to the law of karma.

        “This whole argument on ‘consciousness’ falls flat, when you realize that there is nothing that an egg cell or a sperm lacks, to say that it doesn’t have a ‘consciousness’. A sperm or an egg cell has all the attributes of life that a fertilized egg too has and the concept called ‘consciousness’ seems to be another creation of the human mind only!(how do you know that a sperm doesn’t have a ‘consciousness’?)”

        Are you going to now accept Thass’ argument that a bacterium has a consciousness or something like that?

        I accept that sperm cells and egg cell have life, (attributable to beeja niyama), but not consciousness.

        “Then, what have we been calling ‘consciousness’ for thousands of years in the human history, giving rise to a whole heap of concepts?”

        Dear Saban, consciousness is one attribute of mind. Do you say, egg cells and sperms can compose poems, think about the “Big Bang” like you? Can they agree with the theory of Evolution like you?

        Consciousness is something related to “mind actions” like that. Physics cannot do it. That is why a computer cannot think.

        “You can call it ‘consciousness’ or whatever you like, but it is nothing but, what we call the functioning cell! It is yet another ‘frame dependent reality’!”

        Then please let a cell to compose a poem, and publish it in a news paper in the name of that cell, “Dogcell or “Catcell”.

        “Furthermore, the question you may ask is as to why then, a sperm cell cannot develop into a complete individual. The reason is, that a sperm is a specialized cell, which performs a specific task and therefore it doesn’t have enough cytoplsmic resources etc. to sustain a long life.”

        I don’t ask such questions, Saban, because I know it cannot develop because a sperm does not have a consciousness.

        “On the other hand, an egg cell in fact, can develop into a complete individual, if stimulated appropriately and this is exactly what happens in certain animals! eg. The drones of a bee hive develop from un-fertilized eggs.”

        This has well been explained and discussed earlier. There are many ways a life can form according to Buddhism, can you remember I discussed with you earlier. “Jalabuja” is only one among them. En egg is not an essential thing for a life to be born, that can happen without that, no contradiction, at all.

        “What all this points to is, that if you can’t consider sperms and egg cells as having a ‘consciousness’, you can’t definitely consider other uni-cellular life too as a having a ‘consciousness’.”

        Why not? Think about the other life forming methods explained in Buddhism.

        “Maybe, hereafter you should preserve ‘consciousness’ by not ejaculating!”

        It is not inable my stuff, Saban, so I think it is NA to me. (NA- not applicable). Ha! Ha!!

        Thanks!

      • Correction……..

        “It is not in[able] my stuff, Saban, so I think it is NA to me. (NA- not applicable……”

        should be,

        “It is not in my stuff, Saban, so I think it is NA to me. (NA- not applicable……”

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        You say: “They are not man made laws. They are just like laws of science, man only discovers them. Do you think “good and evil” exists only because man is there? No Saban, good and evil in Buddhism are objective dhammas. Buddha has preached how to identify those objective moral factors. If you feel something done to you you is bad, that is evil for every one (objectively), if you like something to be done to you, that is objectively good for everybody. Do you think animals do not know good and evil? Do you think a hen doesn’t think attacking her babies as an evil thing? Don’t you think a dog does not understand the good deed of giving some food to it?”

        It’s only becoming more and more ridicuous! I’m talking about your argument, only!

        Buddha’s other “Niyaama Dhammas”(Laws of the Nature) clearly differ from his “kamma niyaama”, because the latter is a “man made law” or a moral law! Does your favourite amoeba too know what is good and what is evil? But, a sperm cell can’t? What’s the amazing difference, Yapa? You know it…? “He is a Buddha, Saban..!”

        Now I have the answer!

      • Dear Saban;

        “Now I have the answer”

        You are loosing your cool, sir!, dear Saban. You seem to jump into hasty conclusions.

        You say,

        “Buddha’s other “Niyaama Dhammas”(Laws of the Nature) clearly differ from his “kamma niyaama”, because the latter is a “man made law” or a moral law!”

        You are trying to show that karma as a moral law, and hence as a man made law and hence has no universal validity.

        Very true, in the meaning of the day to day moral laws we experience, especially the hegemonic moral laws of the west including the moral laws of the western religions.

        The moral laws of west confines itself to morality among humans. It does consider discrimination of other animals as immoral. For that hegemonic moral principles slaughtering animals is not immoral. Hence very true, that moral laws are biased towards humans and therefore, are not universal laws, as laws of science.

        Just because there is no other terms to denote Buddhist moral laws do you think moral laws of Buddhism is not different and they are too biased towards humans, discriminating other animals? Do you think moral laws means just a single set of moral laws and there no moral laws that are not biased towards humans, all to be coined as man made laws, and not to qualify for universal laws?

        Dear Saban, Moral laws of Buddhism does not limit their scope to human domain alone. I told you in the previous post how Buddhist moral laws defined. According to Buddhism,

        “Sabbe thasanthi dandassa,
        Sabbe bayanthi machchuno,
        Aththanam upaman kathva,
        Nahaneyyana gathaye”

        “All beings fear of punishment, all fear of death, considering yourself as the example, do not kill.”

        Do you think this has a human bias? Do you think this was constructed for the selfish benefit of humans? Do you think this does not have a universality for all beings? Do you think this is a moral law like the other moral laws you experience in daily basis? So, do you think this as a human construct or as a discovery of universal law of the nature?

        Dear Saban, Buddhist morality is not biased towards humans, it is objective, it has no reference frame, it has no ditti, if there is a ditti, it is nothing but “Saama ditti”, right view, totally right view, a universal view like any other laws of nature.

        On the other hand Saban, how do you say that law of karma is only a moral law. It is a law of operation applied on tangible things, beings, that explains how a birth is taken place, how a destiny of a being is determined in this life and also in next lives as well. It tells how karma influence a being’s life, just as a force determines the motion of an object, in Newton’s laws of motion.

        You just cannot coin Buddhist law of karma as an ordinary moral law and negate its validity. It is a universal principle, which also contain some moral aspect, not just ordinary moral aspect as in other moral systems.

        Do you still think it is becoming more and more ridiculous?

        Now you say,

        “Does your favourite amoeba too know what is good and what is evil? But, a sperm cell can’t? What’s the amazing difference, Yapa? You know it…? “He is a Buddha, Saban..!””

        Dear Saban, I fall into a very embarrassed position for I have to teach a medical doctor the difference between amowba and a sperm cell.

        does a sperm cell breath?, can it reproduce the same kind of life, from it?. Can it detect its food and make a plan to trap them? can they grow? Other than swimming targeting an egg cell can it swim else where to find its target?

        I think now you have learnt a lesson you have not learnt in your medical school to differentiate an amoeba from a sperm cell.

        Do you think sperm cell has a consciousness? Do you think an amoeba does not know what is good for it and what is evil for it?

        Thanks!

        Now I have the answer

      • Correction………..

        “It does consider discrimination of other animals as immoral. ”
        should be,

        It does [not]consider discrimination of other animals as immoral.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        “Do you think an amoeba does not know what is good for it and what is evil for it?”

        Aanna dekkada Yapa? “The tongue never lies!”

        Does an Amoeba “know” what it good for it and what is evil for it? I don’t think it knows that, but definitely it knows how to eat smaller creatures! Does it come under a “universal law”? Yes, the only universal law that applies here is “one species eating another species”! That is the only universal law that applies to life! Any other law like karma(irrespective of whether it applies to humans only or not) is not a law of the nature. The nature doesn’t punish amoeba for killing, does it? It is a “man made law” which existed only in the mind of the 6th century B.C.E. great Indian Teacher, Siddartha Shakyamuni Gauthama-and before him in the Vedic doctrines too!

        As I said in my earlier post dealing with “consciousness”, the sperm and the egg cell don’t have to capture its food, still, they take the nutrients in! This is because they are highly specialized cells which perform a specific task. But it doesn’t take away any of the properties that YOU consider as properties of “consciousness”. Furthermore, there are some animal egg cells which behave exactly like an amoeba! What do you say about those?

        To answer another question you posed earlier: As I said earlier, what we call “consciousness” is nothing but an illusion, created by the higher level of organisation of cells. We see it in advanced animals and humans. It is the high order of organisation and complexity which give rise to intelligence. Apart from that intellegence, there is in reality, nothing that can be called “consciousness”. Life is life and only difference among various forms of life is the degree of organisation only!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        I think your present post is a colection of denials of clearly established facts.

        I don’t think you do not understand the difference between “animal kingdom” and other living thing that does not belong to animal kingdom. You really know amoeba belongs to animal kingdom while sperm cell not belong to it. You really know animals can think though in various degrees across the spectrum. It is true that amoeba cannot think like a man, however, it does not negate the fact amoebas cannot think. Just because a dog cannot think in the same degree as a man, do you claim a dog cannot think?

        Differences do not make negate the existence of things, by just showing difference you cannot refute an amoeba do has a consciousness. For that you will have to prove “absence”.

        I proved the absence in the case of sperm cell. Can you prove the absence in the case of amoeba?

        Again you seem to deny or ignore the fact I forwarded to show that karma is not just a moral law. The main role of karma in Buddhism is not to act as a moral law, but as a law of operation, I said it to you.

        You try to brand karma as a man made moral law despite the availability of ample facts, to make it a “value subtracted” (opposite of value added)product. This is just denial of facts, Saban.

        Repetition of negatives does not make it positive.

        “To answer another question you posed earlier: As I said earlier, what we call “consciousness” is nothing but an illusion, created by the higher level of organisation of cells. We see it in advanced animals and humans. It is the high order of organisation and complexity which give rise to intelligence. Apart from that intellegence, there is in reality, nothing that can be called “consciousness”. Life is life and only difference among various forms of life is the degree of organisation only!”

        Do you think this is anything other than a denial of obvious facts?

        I have said at the beginning my objective in discussion is not to win it. But to reveal facts and to accept the facts we have not come across before. So, I think genuineness is a vital factor in a scholastic discussion. We will have to come across instance where we have to accept things we detest. That is a hard reality to bear. That is what I think has happened to Mohamed.

        If we don’t accept realities when they are convinced true objectively, there is no use in any discussion.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Correction….

        “It is true that amoeba cannot think like a man, however, it does not negate the fact amoebas [cannot] think.”

        should be,

        “It is true that amoeba cannot think like a man, however, it does not negate the fact amoebas can think.”

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        Buddhist morality is a universal one, think of this thought experiment.

        Any creature will recite “Sabbe thasanthi dandassa” without any hesitation. But if they are asked to recite “First the man was created and the animals and other things on land and water was created for the benefit of the man”, the creatures will be aghast before reciting it.

        Buddhist morality is indifferent for all the beings, none has to fear about it. It is objective for all beings. It doesn’t create different “dittis” (opinions) among different creatures, they all can accept it without any harm or fear to any one.

        But the morality of western tradition brings mental devastation(and also physical devastation at the slaughtering point)to them.

        Do you accept the difference between two moral systems?

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Your argument is based on arbitrary reasoning and there is no sound proof to say so!

        In other words you have merely made another “frame of reality” called “consciousness” and you are trying to prove it! Then, you seem to be in trouble when you try to apply it to various life-forms;you don’t seem to be sure!

        The problem, which you can’t see, doesn’t exist with those life-forms! It exists with your concept!(and you can’t see it-or you can, but you don’t want to acknowledge-either way!)

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        The “theory of annihilation” if you call it that, didn’t come from the West! See, one of its first proponents was a contemporary of Buddha!

        While it may be true that all animals fear bodily harm, it doesn’t mean that the nature has a “law” which punishes the culprits! The Buddhist and Hindu belief of “retribution” or karma is yet another illusion!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        Please explain me how it is arbitrary. I am clueless of your statement.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        “While it may be true that all animals fear bodily harm, it doesn’t mean that the nature has a “law” which punishes the culprits! The Buddhist and Hindu belief of “retribution” or karma is yet another illusion!”

        Tell me the way you arrived at your conclusion that it is an illusion. I don’t understand how you arrive at conclusions lately.

        BTW, in that line if argument do you have any reason not to say Ajitha Kesakambili’s claim you adore much is not an illusion?

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        “Consciousness” is ability to know, a trait special to “beings”. If you it is only a “concept of mine” and does not exist as you say, explain me how the hell you understand things? Is it not an attribute limited to “beings”? Is it available for stones, bridges or rivers or rose plant? Don’t you see a difference between these things and beings? Do you say such a different doesn’t exist? If there is a difference, do you say that difference doesn’t exist?

        Dear Saban, if you accept that difference exists, can you explain what physical attributes make that difference? Do you say it is only a concept just because you cannot explain it in terms of physical attributes?

        Dear Saban, it cannot be explained in terms of physical attributes means, there is no physical explanation to the phenomenon, not that it is not existent.

        I think you have already accepted the existence of non physical things, at least like Mathematics. Just because Math has no physical attribute, do you say Math doesn’t exist?

        You have got confused two different concepts, “non existence” and inability explained by physical terms.

        I think you will strive hard to identify subtle differences.

        You think your ideas are non existent, your thought are non existent, your love for your children are non existent?

        Denial is an easy way to fight arguments, Eh? A clever tactic.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Dear Yapa

        Don’t lose your cool or your sleep over this!

        I’ll repeat my argument until it’s clear to you, as you still haven’t countered it!

        You say that karma is a law of the nature, and everywhere there is evidence to say it;I say it is not a nature’s law and there is NO evidence to say a law like that exists!

        I simply ask you to show me the evidence!

        If it is still not clear to you I will repeat it!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        As for the question on “consciousness”, please see under the relevent thread!

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        “Don’t lose your cool or your sleep over this!”

        None of that will happen Saban. Ha! Ha!!

        “You say that karma is a law of the nature, and everywhere there is evidence to say it;I say it is not a nature’s law and there is NO evidence to say a law like that exists!”

        It is one of the most difficult questions, even the Buddha said so. Understanding the operation of karma is not limited to one life time, according to the “concept”. You must understand the spatial, temporal and samsaric (transcendental) hugeness of the question.

        However, I think most of the questions including the questions belong to transcendental plane can be grasped with “logical reasoning”. Let me try. I will mark it as a remarkable question. Considering the vastness and sublimity of the question give me a little tome.

        I will not follow the course you doubted I would do. Never!, If I cannot I will accept I cannot.

        Will move with the other issues, until I put a thought to it. Let the correct “consciousness arise” in my mind.

        Ha! Ha!!

      • yapa

        Yes! Saban I think a satisfactory “consciousness” arose in my mind after meditating on the matter. Ha! Ha!!

        I think you also have a right for a share of the wholesome kamma arisen due to your questioning, and you will definitely be benefited from wholesome kamma in the future, as per the natural law of Kamma.

        Do you accept your share, Saban? Ha! Ha!!

        I will begin my sermon soon, behold!

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Your request for time is allowed, but make sure you come back before the Ground Views dudes, press that button called ‘divine intervention’ to end this “Hoy Communication!”

        I know sometimes it takes time to start those ‘rocket launchers’ and ‘missiles’!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Now, back to analysing “consciousness!”

        Why I told your understanding of it is arbitrary, is for this reason: If you look at certain life forms, the traditional definition of “consciousness” as the ‘ability to know good and bad’ falls flat!
        As you say, the difference between a mango tree and a human is obvious; but this distinction disappears in the microscopic world.

        Look at the life-forms classified in the group Protista. Here’s an example: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/euglena-facts.html

        Organisms like these can both photosynthesize and take food from out side as well, when the need arises. They can move about using a whip-like organelle. If you consider them as moving plants, the primitive ‘eye-spot’ and it’s ability to capture food don’t agree with that.

        As you say, if plants don’t have a consciousness and only animals have it, what do you say about ‘unclassifiable’ life-forms like these?

        If we forego the concept called “consciousness”, we’ll find a way out of this. What we see as a consciousness is a nothing but, a highly organized nervous system which can be seen in humans and (possibly) few higher animals. It is our concept to call it “consciousness” isn’t it?

        That is why I said that “consciousness” is another “frame dependent reality”. That is why you can’t arbitrarily say that amoeba knows what is good and what is bad!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        As I prophecied, the ‘divine intervention’ is imminent! As you are on the verge of ‘annihilation’, this might help you to survive to ‘fight another day’!

        Or your fate will become an “ahosi kamma”(a cancelled karma)!

    • yapa

      Dear PP;

      “The life as a whole is an accident.”

      How does anybody really know?

      This is again a mighty assumption of Science.

      I think, wrt to its notion of the cosmos, Science (based on Big Bang theory) is not much different from creation theory, as I said earlier. Both of them have to device assumptions and alter the original theories to face the challenges.

      The theories with a lot of assumptions and mighty assumptions (assumptions that contains a lot of assumed knowledge)are usually weak theories. (Ockham’s Razor)

      Thanks!

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Yapa,

        There is a huge difference between ‘creation’ and ‘science’. One is static and the other changes with available evidence. Even if you dispute a well accepted theory such as ‘big bang’ you will not be excommunicate from science. It is both rational and empirical as opposed to being based on ‘faith’. All scientists and those who love science accept that no person or theory is infalliable. Einstein’s theory of space and time is regarded as the best theory to explain the working of the universe at the moment. But everybody knows that there may be a better theory in the future as Einstein had failed to produce a theory which explains everything.

      • yapa

        Dear PP;

        “Even if you dispute a well accepted theory such as ‘big bang’ you will not be excommunicate from science. It is both rational and empirical as opposed to being based on ‘faith’.”

        I think this statement is true for most of the theories of science, except Big Bang theory (and Evolution), where many of the things have been taken almost on faith as assumptions just as in the case of religions of monotheist. In many scientific theories “axioms” are simple self evidence truths, but in the case of Big Bang the scenario is entirely different. Most of its axioms are too huge to be taken as axioms and are not self evident as well. Further, there are a lot of axioms which make it a bad theory.

        I think the credibility of Big Bang is low in terms of the criteria of scientific theories.

        It is true that many other scientific theories carry the property you mentioned against religion, but in the case of Big Bang I don’t see a big difference in this respect. Still I place Big Bang above the creator theory, as I have mentioned earlier. Creator theory has no credibility at all as a theory as it produces contradictions. However, I don’t think Big Bang too as a good theory from the perspective of a scientific theory. It lacks evidence and has many holes to fill.

        Thanks!

    • Dear Saban;

      I never hesitated to accept your points when they were correct. Always I tried to behave honest in the debate. Not accepting some of your arguments is also a part of that policy. I never tried to take undue advantages in the debate, therefore, if you doubt my honesty in the debate surely I cannot accept it. I never want to cheat you. (and also I am very much confident about my mental status, Ha! Ha!!, don’t worry about it), will continue our discussion on facts.

      Answering before your question about the wheel of Samsara, I must do a correction to your explanation, consciousness is not a result of karmi seeds but karmic seeds are the result of consciousness. I think the consciousness or vinnana means “knowing”(though the judgement of mind). When you know with ignorance (chethana) volitional action is completed and it is the karma. Therefore karma takes place after the consciousness is arisen. This is common knowledge, you do bad or good deeds based on volition taken place after the consciousness is arisen.
      You can understand good or bad deeds have their consequences, they are the karmas and seeds of karma is awaiting as karmic seeds a chance to activate. You know you yield as you sow. Just after you kill a man you don’t get capital punishment. You ask “Why do you say that “karmic seeds” causes the “consciousness”? Can’t it cause UUU or *+*?” (the content of the question has a problem but the answer is to the corrected version),have you ever seen killing an innocent man is rewarded with gold by the world? Result is in accordance with the deed.

      You say, “Well, apart from saying things like, “Buddha has thoroughly gone through all that..” or “it agrees with the rest of HIS(not any other!) doctrines..” or “look around(behold..!), and you will see what he told is correct..!””

      Can you ever show me a place where I have asked you to accept so? I quote from Buddha’s doctrine only to analyses them. You think quoting itself is wrong?

      “Why do you say that “karmic seeds” causes the “consciousness”? Can’t it cause UUU or *+*? How do you know that “consciousness” is the cause of “mental and physical constructs”? Can’t those “mental and physical constructs” cause, in contrast, what you and I call “consciousness”? How do you know that those “mental and physical constructs” give birth to “five senses and the mind”? I’m not convinced at all!”

      Very valid point, Saban. Anyway you accepted that “ignorance” as a ‘seemingly correct’ assumption.

      Rest was only mentioned Saban, not explained. Without critically analyzing by yourself or without listening to my explanation you jump into conclusions, Saban. Your question “How do you know that “consciousness” is the cause of “mental and physical constructs”? Can’t those “mental and physical constructs” cause, in contrast, what you and I call “consciousness”? is well answered in Buddhism and also obvious from the process. This has been explained in Buddhism with the metaphor of “blind and the lame”. The lame helps the blind to go begging some food for both, seated on his shoulder and showing the blind the way, this way both are benifited.

      It is obvious that consciousness cannot arise without a physical body. And also physical body of a being cannot be constructed without a mind. If such a baby is born he is not alive or cannot function as a normal living being. (here the whole story is about the physical constitutes of beings, not to about the physical things like rocks, or walls, or buildings or flora, for the construction of them, you don’t need a consciousness).

      I think now you understand a mind should come into the womb of the mother when she conceives a baby as mind cannot from the physical genes of the parents. How do you explain an egg of a mother and sperm of a father, neither of which has a mind create a baby with a mind? Where did the mind cone from? Tell me how science explains arising a mind when to physical entities added together? You add many of the physical things in the laboratory, you add all sorts of chemicals, have you ever seen a mind created out of them?

      My dear friend Saban, show me any other reliable theory to explain the birth of a being, other than Paticca Samuppada or Dependent Origination?

      Another separate question, can you justify Ajitha Keshakambala’s claim you seem to adore much that there is no birth after death, his “annihilationism”? Please explain that to me, with facts, evidence, examples, metaphors or what ever with rational arguments?

      Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        “Can you ever show me a place where I have asked you to accept so? I quote from Buddha’s doctrine only to analyses them. You think quoting itself is wrong?”

        “I told you he is Buddha, do not miscalculate him.”

        How do you know that I “miscalculated?”

        This is supposed to be the doctrine of Ajitha Kesakambali(according to Samannapala Sutta):

        There is no such thing as alms or sacrifice or offering. There is neither fruit nor result of good or evil deeds.A human being is built up of four elements. When he dies the earthly in him returns and relapses to the earth, the fluid to the water, the heat to the fire, the wind to the air, and his faculties pass into space. The four bearers, on the bier as a fifth, take his dead body away; till they reach the burning ground, men utter forth eulogies, but there his bones are bleached, and his offerings end in ashes. It is a doctrine of fools, this talk of gifts. It is an empty lie, mere idle talk, when men say there is profit herein. Fools and wise alike, on the dissolution of the body, are cut off, annihilated, and after death they are not.

        Can you say, it is not so?

        (After all) He is Ajitha! Don’t misinterpret him!

      • Dear Saban;

        I think you are trying to show that I have used my “caution” to you, as something I used to justify my arguments.

        It is a wrong interpretation Saban. The first place I mentioned it, I said, “I unofficially tell you Saban”, before that phrase. On the other hand I used the expression when I finish answering your “difficult” questions, to indicate that such questions are not difficult questions for Buddhist doctrine, to show that they all have rational answers in Buddhism. I think I justified my statement answering almost all your queries in terms of rational arguments. I have never used “authority” of Buddha as a part of my arguments. All others who argued for creator, argued on HIS authority like “eternity”, “incomprehensibility”,….., Can you show an instant I did so? You should not cling into a statement for its meanings of words taken out of context. Really what I meant was rather than rational arguments, I have never used any other unacceptable means to strengthen my points. I never did so and have no idea to deviate from that course in the future discussion as well. I think Buddhism can defend all its arguments rationally, no below the belt punches required. That was the message I tried to pass to you through my statement ““I told you he is Buddha, do not miscalculate him.” Buddha doesn’t need any unethical means to defend him. His Dhamma will take care of everything, you will see that is the difference. Now we have been testing it with philosophy, modern science, Biology, Ethics and Morality, can you show a single contradiction so far created? Why is that? All creator based religions fall flat on the ground just after their birth, contradicting creator himself in rational arguments. Can you explain the reasons for the difference, don’t you at least now see there is a difference?

        I reiterate the statement to you Saban, “He is the Buddha, do not miscalculate him!”

        This is the gem of doctrine of Ajitha Kesakambali, you quoted,

        “There is no such thing as alms or sacrifice or offering. There is neither fruit nor result of good or evil deeds.A human being is built up of four elements. When he dies the earthly in him returns and relapses to the earth, the fluid to the water, the heat to the fire, the wind to the air, and his faculties pass into space. The four bearers, on the bier as a fifth, take his dead body away; till they reach the burning ground, men utter forth eulogies, but there his bones are bleached, and his offerings end in ashes. It is a doctrine of fools, this talk of gifts. It is an empty lie, mere idle talk, when men say there is profit herein. Fools and wise alike, on the dissolution of the body, are cut off, annihilated, and after death they are not.

        Can you say, it is not so?

        (After all) He is Ajitha! Don’t misinterpret him!”
        ……..

        Dear Saban;

        As a “supporter” of Buddhism I answered all the questions you asked rationally, without basing my arguments authority.

        Dear Saban, see the difference in your equivalent(?)statement to mine. You have not offered anything to back the statement you adore(Ajitha’s) and want to establish, but express that “authority”.
        Authority never inspire anybody other than a believer. That is why “creator” could not inspire despite all the efforts by people like Mohamed and Thass. Dear Saban, do you intend to toe the line of Mohamed and Thass, Najeeb and Oran Melayu?

        You brought Ajitha Kesakambali’s argument against the doctrine of Buddhism, and you have been adoring it for a long time in many other threads during the past as well. Why can’t you bring forward (any) rational arguments in support of your belief? Even, creator believers tried some rational arguments, quoting science and philosophy.

        On the other hand, if you establish Ajitha’s doctrine, Buddha’s doctrine will automatically invalidated as they are totally opposite from each other in this particular instant regarding the next life. You can kill two birds with a single throw of a stone, including the bird you have been trying so much to kill in this long debate, the Buddhism. Buddhism will be finished if Kesakambali is right. However, just quoting won’t do anything. You will have to establish his doctrine is true. Are you ready to throw that stone to kill the mighty bird (Buddhism) and declare your bird the winner?

        Please go ahead. As I promised, I will bring forward rational arguments (only) against your arguments you bring forth in support of your hypothesis.

        Are you ready, Saban? If you cannot Saban tell me that fact, then definitely I will hang Kesakambali by “his clothe of hair”.

        What do you say, can you defend your favourite with your brain power or if it is not a possibility, shall I use mine to turn him to dust, to his four components of his physical composition?

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        The last sentence of my previous post was ‘anecdotal’!

        You have so far tried to explain Buddha’s doctrine using its own premises. I have proven that the same can be said to many other doctrines as well. For example, I took the “dependent origination”, which is a key-stone in Buddhism and showed that this ‘cycle’ can be arranged in any other way. Even when YOU arranged it wrongly, you were arguing ‘strongly’ to protect it! What I wanted to show was that anybody who is highly intelligent can formulate any number of such cycles which supposedly explain our existence! Those cannot be proven or disproven, but will remain as another “frame dependent realism” in the attempt to explain life!

        If you try to understand what I say in the above paragraph intelligently, you would know that I have nothing against Buddha proposing such a path. My opposition is to this notion of yours that it is not another frame dependent reality, but the absolute truth, which can never be proven!

        In the same way the doctrine of this ascetic who was “in a cloth made of human hair” cannot be disproven too; in fact it agrees more with our knowledge! Can you say ‘no’?

        (Btw, you should have posted your above piece under the previous thread, where we discussed all this!)

      • yapa

        Ok, dear Saban do you say I have not provided any reason what so ever from outside the Buddhist doctrine in support of it?

        Testing coherence (consistency) is an accepted way to test a theory. on the other hand you accepted Avijja as a seemingly correct cause, that acceptance is not within the knowledge system of Buddhism, but a general agreement.

        Further, I showed how the broad notions of modern science agree with Buddhism, how the broad notions of philosophy agree with Buddhism, how nothing so far in epistemology is disagree with Buddhism, how the Buddhist knowledge system faced the time test for 2500 years and proven to be right even when science had to change its worldview 180 degrees.

        If you refuse these facts, and if you say I did not put forward these things for your attention, I cannot accept it as a true picture of the discussion.

        However, if you still say I did not say anything outside from Buddhism to substantiate my “belief”, why should you do the same? You can justify your belief in a better way.

        At least you must try a bit like I did, even if you proclaim I was not successful.

        Please try to give some “itzy-bitzy” reasons to justify your belief.

        I think my request is reasonable. Otherwise you will be more unjustifiable than Mullah claimers.

        Is human hair cloth wearer is justifiable? You claim, I think it is your responsibility to justify it.

        If you do not stand by the claim will automatically cancels off as no value. However, I will not let him retreat in peace, I have a rocket launcher to target him. However, I presume it is your turn now.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Sadly, You haven’t countered my argument!

        All your “utterings” are based on the “truths” found in Buddhism, and not supported by any outside proof!

        I said “Ignorance” is a seemingly correct premise. And I also said that some other “Buddha” could say that it is “reproduction”!

        What we call “life” turns into dust in the end, doesn’t it? This is proof which was not taken from any belief system! This agrees with what that “mityaadrushtikaya” called Kesakambali told during Buddha’s time.

        To say there is an afterlife, or Nirvana you can’t show any hard evidence, can you?

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        “What we call “life” turns into dust in the end, doesn’t it? This is proof which was not taken from any belief system! This agrees with what that “mityaadrushtikaya” called Kesakambali told during Buddha’s time.”

        Do you have any outside proof to support the “utterance” that “mityaadrushtikaya”?

        You want to say, it is another “self-evident truth”?

        You have so far failed to provide anything to support the “mityaadrushtikaya’s” claim despite my repeated requests and your assertions.

        Is that because his claim has a lot of outside proof?

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Sorry to interrupt;you have understood what I said wrongly! By “What that mithyadrushtikaya told was not taken from any belief system”, what I meant was that it can be viewed by out side.(sorry for the error!)

        What we see is ‘life’ turning into ‘dust’. And other objects too. Buddha too realized this. But he seems to have made a ‘frame of reality’ to incorporate morality and after-life into this, to make his doctrine.(maybe for reasons!) This makes what Buddha said ‘a knowledge system’ which is not verifiable by any outside evidence.

        But, if we say there’s no afterlife and life ends at death like a bubble of soap(as Kesakambali told) that can be verified by what we experience. Therefore it can be verified by outside evidence. I hope I conveyed it to you correctly this time!

  • sabbe laban

    Yapa/P.P.

    The universe can be shown to contain “no boundary”, as opposed to what you say; this can be visualized as a four-dimentional equivalant of a sphere. As the universe is self contained as well, we have no way of knowing the existence of other universes. But, the math of quantum physics indicates thus, as I have explained. We might never get the experimental evidence of other universes as there cannot be any communication between them(as things stand now!)

    Pitasthara Puthraya seems to have grasped this fact. Further, what made the universe evolve in this way rather than any other way can be broken down to the initial quantum fluctuations that occured. Small changes can have a ripple effect with time. For an example, if you throw a dice up, what made it fall on 6, rather than (say)5? It depend on small things like the angle of the impact of the dice, the height it was thrown up, the rotation of the dice etc. Those are real minute details of the process. Yet, see the outcome of all that; it finally means the difference between a “winner” and a “loser”

    The small changes in the initial universe which led to the difference between an inhabited universe and an un-inhabited universe could be the same!

    • yapa

      Dear Saban;

      Please refer my post of May 29, 2012 • 6:54 pm as well.

      Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        There may or may not be different life forms in ours and possibly in other universes, which we would never know of. The whole point is even if they explode an entire galaxy, the universe will go on. Even if we wipe out the whole human race tomorrow(an act of free will) the universe will continue to exist, won’t it?

      • yapa
      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        It will be preposterous, to say the least, to assume that an entity like the universe will cease to exist just because the observer ceases to exist! If the entire human race is wiped out tomorrow, as I told earlier, do you think the universe will also cease to exist? How do we know it, without an observer? Simply because in all possible ways, the universe doesn’t seem to depend on the existence of the human race!

        As you know, the same rule applies differently to a quantum particle, and your confusion, and hence the distortion, is a result of trying to apply the laws of the sub-atomic world to bigger objects like human beings!

        What you say is akin to saying, “when I die, I will no longer be there to observe the others around me, and therefore the others too will cease to exist after my death”, isn’t it? How do you know that the world will continue after your death?

      • yapa

        Dear Saba;

        “It will be preposterous, to say the least, to assume that an entity like the universe will cease to exist just because the observer ceases to exist!”

        I think this is again an exciting/embarrassing moment for science just like in the case of Newton’s embarrassment when he felt that his laws contradicted “god’s laws” and when Einstein happened to say “God doesn’t play dice”, when he observed the random behaviour of subatomic particle in Quantum Physics. Both of them could not believe their eyes. Both of them found new knowledge weird.

        My opinion is, this is a similar case for science. Please leisurely think back of the whole argument.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        “If the entire human race is wiped out tomorrow, as I told earlier, do you think the universe will also cease to exist?”

        Surely I think the universe we perceive as now will cease to exit and instantly vanish and there will remain the universes of the size, shape and colour the way the other creatures perceive. A universe of bird’s view, a universe of a fish.

        I think we all know how they perceive the universe(world).

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        Your deliberate twisting of the laws of physics is in no way tantamount to what Newton or Einstein felt. Your application of laws that govern the movement of quantum particles to moving bricks is not the fault of the nature or physics!

        It will only make people laugh, rather than make them amazed!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        OK, leave aside the Quantum explanation I gave in my post. What reasons do you have to reject my last argument based on Philosophy?

        “On the other hand if an observer with a free will is not there how can we know that there is a universe at all, keep aside the details we talk of it. In that respect too for the existence of the universe or the universe as we see is a result of mind as well. How could we identify “redshift” if there was no a human observer to build up the Big Bang theory to know the universe as we perceive today?. If the observer had a characteristics of a dog (a different free will)he would not see the red shift and there wouldn’t have a “Big Bang Theory”. So, the Big Bang Theory is a result of the characteristics of the observer as well, and hence the the nature of universe we have perceive has a very big contribution of mind (free will).

        Therefore, the existence of anything (we know its existence only when we perceive/know it) cannot be a reality without the existence of an “active observer”.

        So, the universe as it is we perceive as existing is a non reality without an observer.”

        I think it is similar the argument you made to back its opposite.

        “Free will has absolutely nothing to do with what I said here, Yapa. To have a free will, we have to exist in the universe. As we exist(I’m sure you do!)is this universe only, we have a free will, isn’t it? If we didn’t exist in this univere, we can’t have a free will(or any kind of will, for that matter!) There maybe other universes where life, as we know it, doesn’t exist!

        Does the universe care? No!

        What Hawking says in his new book, is that we are not specially chosen, but we happen to exist in one such universe where intelligent life can evolve, from countless other possibilities! And those ‘countless other choices’ too exist, but their existence is immaterial as we don’t exist in those universes to question them! Just because that we don’t exist in them, does the universe care?”

        I honestly believe my arguments are valid.

        Thanks!

      • yapa

        Correction…….

        Dear Saban;

        I accept your humorous counter argument about my Quantum argument is spot on. But, I honestly believe my other two arguments are still valid.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Thank you Yapa!

        If, the humans didn’t exist, this issue wouldn’t have been there;there wouldn’t have been a debate on a Creater nor would there have been people like Yapa, Muhammad(BPUH), or me with saban in his privates!

        Yet, the universe would continue to expand, as it does now, in the eyes of some other life-forms out there! Their evidence would not come in the form of a “red-shift”, but in some other kind of a shift!

        Still the universe wouldn’t care, Yapa.

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Yapa,

        What you are asking is a question debated for the enitre history of philosophy. Is there an objective reality separated from the observer? People who do not beleive in objective reality are called idealsists. One of the Mahayana Schools, Yogacara, thought that only mind exists.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Idealism

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yogacara

        So, you beleive that when you die universe ceases to exist. I do not think that you are serious.

        When the human race is annihiliated for some reason in toto, the ‘big bang’ theory may cease to exist. But the universee will go on.

      • yapa

        Dear Saban/PP;

        “When the human race is annihiliated for some reason in toto, the ‘big bang’ theory may cease to exist. But the universee will go on.”

        “Yet, the universe would continue to expand, as it does now, in the eyes of some other life-forms out there! Their evidence would not come in the form of a “red-shift”, but in some other kind of a shift!

        Still the universe wouldn’t care, Yapa”

        Ok, both of you accept that when humans are not there there is no big bang or in broad form there is no “human version of universe”. Again if the other life forms are not there in the universe, in the line of argument, there won’t be “other kind of a shift” as well and hence cannot have any other version of universe as well.

        That means no version of universe at all. That means there is no clue at all even about something called a universe exists or not. There is no clue about anything.

        Then tell me how can you say universe will go on, knowing nothing?

        This is also like the situation before the singularity in science. You have no information at all.

        No information means you know nothing and can say nothing.

        If you cannot predict anything before the singularity, how can you say you can predict things in this case? In both cases no information is available, a common scenario in both the cases.

        I am not arguing in support of idealists as PP guessed. I am arguing against the materialists and their belief. As there are no people arguing for idealism, I do not argue against them, not that I my belief is idealism.

        My idea is idealism alone or materialism alone cannot explain the reality.

        In this case what I have to emphasize is against materialism, because that is the most popular and powerful ideology which comes in the name of science.

        What I wanted to emphasize was science cannot explain the world, as though many hold that popular belief (set in faith on science).

        Science is not a panacea.

        Thanks!

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        If you ask this question from a gamarala in your village he will laugh his head off and say that everything in the universe will continue even if there are no life-forms to observe it! Further, he will wonder whether you have gone insane to think that others to die after your death. He’ll surely compare you to that famous ostrich!

        In that popular Sinhala song you quoted earlier, that lover might think that when “menike” dies, the moon would also die, but that’s not going to happen!

        In a predictable event like the expansion of the universe, you can make accurate predictions without involving an observer.

        This is different from a quantum event like the Big Bang, where the time has a beginning and the outcomes are unpredictable. Once again you seem to be confused with protons and bricks!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        Really out of joke, tell me whether there is any wrong in my argument, leave aside the ground (physical) situation for a while.

        If my augment is correct (sound) there can not have any reason for it to going against reality. I don’t think common sense(of Gamarala)is comparable with an outcome of a sound (deductive) argument. Surely Gamarala should be wrong in this case.

        That is how it is mentioned in the book!

        Thanks!

      • PitastharaPuthraya

        Yapa,

        Do you accept that there is material reality independent of your mind? I think that question has already been solved by science. Any book of science would let you know how this has been done.

        We, humans, try to understand this world using our intelligence. So far the discoveries made by science have proven that their approach and understanding are correct. (They are called discoveries because they are there for the people to discover. Inventions are things made by people using these discoveries. X-ray was discovered by Rontgen. Steam engine was invented by Watt.)

        When you look at the history of science you should be able to see that there is obvious progress of understanding the hitherto unknown things, occurrances, phenomena etc. Now we know what lightening is. We know how the communicable diseases are spread. We know how to use x-rays and microwaves. We sent men to moon. The list goes on and on….

        Think about the gadgets you use morning to night everyday. Arn’t they the fruits of scientific discoveries? Your should be a hypocrite to deny this fact and say science is crap.

        Finally, if the human civilization continues they would be able to unearth the ramaining mysteries of the universe. Only a man, who does not want to understnd this, would deny it. This assumption is based on solid foundation of the past discoveries of science.

        Isn’t this much more plausbile than assuming the existance of God or any other ‘enitity’, ideology, knowledge system etc, which can explain the universe better than science?

        When you find a man with a head injury on a high way your first impression is that he would have been hit by a vehicle. Then a fall, assault would follw. If somebody say that it is a meteorite, which killed him what would you say to him?

        You are like the man who talks about meteorite when there is a much more likely explanation at hand.

        You talk about sciene as if it has extinguished it self. It is live and dynamics as ever. Now science can not bake the ‘dough’. Who knows what it can do in the future?

        Look at the difference science has made into our lives. When we were young we did not have electricity, running water, fridge, cookers, tv, phones, Ipods/pads/phones,etc. We had only a ‘Unic’ radio to listen to Muwanpelessa. This all happens in a less than a 100 yeras time. When look at the history of human race isn’t a 100 years less than a blink of an eye?

        There should not be any doubt that science is the best knowledge system to explain the material world.

        The Jews, Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Zoroastrians, Jains, Thaosists, Pagans etc can continue to argue on till the end of human civilization who correctly explains the sprititual or metaphysical world.

      • sabbe laban

        Yapa

        It’s no joke! The gamaralas won’t just laugh, if they don’t see something ridiculous!

        I have shown that your argument is falty, because the degree of predictability is different in the two situations. Unless you are still confued with protons and oranges, you won’t repeat the same thing again!

      • yapa

        Dear Saban;

        I was not convinced at all. If you think you did, please tell that briefly again, countering my arguments. Really this is not my argument. As PP pointed out many idealists argued that way.I only submitted it in my version, with a little bit touch of Modern Science and Buddhism. I really cannot believe that argument can be that much easily refutable.

        Dear PP;

        I think the whole post of yours is represented by the following statement and I totally agree with it. However, my argument is not confined to the domain you describe in there.

        “There should not be any doubt that science is the best knowledge system to explain the material world.”

        Yes, science has created the “most detailed/decorated materialism” so far prevailed in the world. It has helped to improve the “material development”, in another sense, consumption, utility or if I use another word “greed” of human civilization. If the utility or the consumption or the greed is the only measure of development, yes, science has rendered a great service to the world.

        Why don’t you think of the other developments science brought to the “humans”? It has brought the world to the brim of the end of the civilization. It has almost brought the planet to a place unsuitable for habitation. Do you think science can carry on the glory it has created for another 50 years, when the fossil fuel is over and the atmosphere is full of carbon dioxide emitted from the burning of all the fossil fuel reserves available under the crust of the earth?

        I think science(really technology) has consumed the millions of years the planet had as future in less than 500years. When the science era is over, the planet also will be over.

        What you said is correct, from a “human centric view point of the universe”. The development and improvement in human life is commendable, if the universe is meant for only humans by the creator or who ever or what ever, if he or it had and objective or vision for the universe. Do you think other “creatures” are left out from the the universe in its original plan? Did science look after their welfare as well? How do you match their development and human development in the light of that objective/plan of the universe? Human development by science at the expense of other creatures is justifiable? How much is it going in line with the “planetary justice” or “universal justice”? How do you view if suddenly a another species of creatures or some aliens jump above the human scientific advancement and begin to act as us towards the other “creatures”?

        Science is a blind brute in the eyes of “collective beings” of the planet, though it is a fairy with a magic wand in her hand in the eyes of senseless humans.

        I don’t think in that line you cannot justify the advancement of “life” but you can justify the advancement of “greed” on earth. A civilized humans (If they live amidst the pollution)in the future will see a us as “cannibals” who ate the flesh of those who lived together with us. On the “day of judgement” all of us lived between 16th to 21st century would be judged for eating flesh of our brothers. Science (material thinking) made us some pack of denim clad fashionable cannibals of the 21st century who went hunting with 3G cellular phones in our ears.

        However, as you have understood correctly, my concern in universe is not materialistic. I am taking of the totality, of a holistic approach. Those norms valid for “the developed material world” are not valid for that “humane” world inclusive and respect all flora, fauna, rivers, mountains and the whole planet.

        I consider development of Science (really technology) as a distorted/enlarged organ. That is where this material thinking (science)has developed us today.

        In terms of “justice of life” materialism is a detrimental distortion taken place in the human mind. It was billion times amplified by the senseless Science . I think a sensible man cannot throw a party for the victories of science.

        Thanks!

      • Gamarala

        I can assure you that at least this Gamarala is laughing.

      • sabbe laban

        Dear Yapa

        “I really cannot believe that argument can be that much easily refutable.”

        That may well be the problem here and it may explain everything!

        Meanwhile, you are free to believe whatever you like, and it’s your right!

        Thanks!

      • Off the Cuff

        I have been reading the exchanges on this thread. Like a pendulum it has been swinging between religion and science.

        On the religion side there is hardly any point in conversing with people quoting from a book.
        Order is cited as evidence of a Creator disregarding the Disorder that exists.

        Humans are varied in design. Some White and others Black, Some Yellow and others Brown, Some short and others tall, some intelligent and others dumb, Some rich and others poor, some sickly and others healthy. Now the question arises as to how many of each design the Creator produced. Was it a couple of each? Then the question arises as to how the Creator planned to have his creation propagate, sexually or asexually? Why was asexuality rejected in the case of Humans in favour of sexual reproduction? Asexuality would have eliminated all sex crimes and the need to cover the female form. Was a female even needed when it was the man that was produced first. Well he/she decided that sexual propagation was best. Since that is the case the Creator would have planned to have sexual intercourse between the first couple to propagate the species he created. This is where the number that was created first becomes important. How was the subsequent generations produced if not by sexual activity between the first family? If the Creator built in such activity in to the design of procreation why are the “Books” that are claimed to be His/Her word prohibiting it? BTW. If the Creator created the perfect Human body why mutilate it by male and female circumcision? My opinion is that it is pointless to discuss Atheism or Theism unless your own beliefs are attacked.

        What is more interesting is the scientific discussion.

        I believe what Yapa is trying to say is that what we perceive as the Universe depends on the five senses. If we have a lesser number of senses our perception would be less and if we have more than the five senses that perception would be more. If that is the case he is logically correct.

        Recently I saw a program on Discovery Science where controlled experiments indicated that the eye is not just an organ of sight. The subject was a person blind in one eye. Images flashed at the blind eye caused simulation of the brain in areas other than the visual cortex (seen on an MRI). It was also mentioned that this other function of the eye is normally masked by the visual function. We may well have more than five senses but we may not be using them.

      • mohamed

        Dear Off the Cuff
        You said “Order is cited as evidence of a Creator disregarding the Disorder that exists.”
        Small correction. Infact order among the disorder and how well this order is protected from disorder is the evidence.
        Gender difference is a major blow against the evolution; it demands the both gender to be evolved together to end up in new species. This is not explained by so called evolution. So species has to be in their pairs

      • Off the Cuff

        Dear mohamed ,

        You said “Small correction. Infact order among the disorder and how well this order is protected from disorder is the evidence”

        Problem is that the Creator also becomes responsible for the disorder if He created everything.

        Hence if you says the Creator is real due to the order, the same argument using the disorder as evidence will negate the Creator.

        You say “So species has to be in their pairs”

        How many pairs were Created at the beginning?

        How many Human pairs were created at the beginning of creation?

      • mohamed

        Dear Off the Cuff
        The order itself a miracle to be by chance as the existence of life required every other orders to be in order. So, the order among disorder is the sign to say this order is well planned. Don’t you think a house in the desert require a designer and a builder.

        At least one pair to spread that particular specie, that’s obvious isn’t?

      • mohamed

        BTW variations in human is due to adaptation, in adaptation species are remain the same though they changed by the environment (i.e weather). Monkey and human are two different species. Both together cannot produce their lineage. but a white man and a black woman can give birth to mixed child.

      • Delta

        Dear Yapa,
        Please listen to this TED talk. It is all about an individuals search for clarity. I hope you enjoy it!

        http://www.ted.com/talks/devdutt_pattanaik.html

      • sabbe laban

        Mohamed

        I hope, you at least know, what is known as conjugation between bacteria!

        God could have avoided all these problems if he promoted asexual reproduction!

      • “The order itself a miracle to be by chance as the existence of life required every other orders to be in order. So, the order among disorder is the sign to say this order is well planned. Don’t you think a house in the desert require a designer and a builder.”

        Then how the hell dear Mohamed the designer is disproved in a similar argument like the one you raised to prove him? Do you think a dead man can rise again. The designer is already dead. Even Nietzsche said so.

        Unless you give back life to that designer, none of your arguments make any sense. It is common sense. I cannot understand a person who talked of advanced theories in physics is lack of common sense.

        Thanks!

      • mohamed

        @Delta
        Its not about why or how alone, it’s about what. Which links them together.

        @sabbe laban
        There are even earth worms does the asexual reproduction, but majority of species need pairs to reproduce. If life evolved from single cell, don’t you think two separate pairs need to be evolved with perfect DNA match?

        @yapa
        Designer dead? Can’t you remember that I told you concept of god in islam is not as any other religion where they try to give physical attributes and place it in the world were physical laws applied?

      • Dear Mohamed;

        Surely designer is dead.

        Rationality does not confine its validity to physical world alone. Non physical creator has no escape from rational arguments.

        Rationality killed the creator, no doubt. However, Nietzsche says he himself killed the God.

        Thanks!

      • mohamed

        What you call rational is not really rational if extended the limits. i already discussed with you this so I don’t have to proceed again on that.
        If god is deceased, the god that was deceased was not a god. Because creator cannot come in to existence, neither deceases. Hope you got that rationally. Your problem is want to find an answer about something you don’t have any pre information. This is not much different from buddah’s request to not to question creations. In fact it has to be, do not question what created the creator, as we know creations cannot come in to existence in order among disorder by chance. Your question why can’t WALK north beyond North Pole has no rationally. All you have to do is limit your rational arguments to the pre information that you know. Rational arguments without pre information is irrational.
        thanks

      • sabbe laban

        Mohamed

        Thanks for the response.
        You ask: “If life evolved from single cell, don’t you think two separate pairs need to be evolved with perfect DNA match?”

        No!That is flawed logic! The process called ‘conjugation’ takes place between two bacteria and they exchange nuclear material. From this primary form, if some of the ancestors of present day bacteria started to act as the “giver” and some as the “recipient” of nuclear matter, those species have a better chance of survival and hence to be selected by natural selection, isn’t it?

      • mohamed

        sabbe laban

        I am not talking about bacteria, I am talking about the species in the Kingdom of Animalia. If a male alone or female alone was exposed to mutation it cannot reproduce with existing female or male of its ancestry (because after mutation it will not belongs to rthe same specie), so its descendancy has come to an end, isnt?

      • sabbe laban

        Mohamed

        Once again wrong! Just because there are mutations it doesn’t make a different species! Such mutations should be selected at the individual and group level by the environmental factrs over a time, to make a different species!

        Not only bacteria Mohamed, many uni-cellular animals too exchange their nuclear material! And “some” of their ancestors who lived during the Cambrian period seemed to have started the gender differntiation, which was selected and propagated as it was a helpful trait!

        It doesn’t mean that asexual reproduction stopped altogether, either! That too survived in some life forms, when that kind of reproduction was more beneficial to the organism.

      • mohamed

        dear yapa
        What is non sense and what is making sense are evident. I am not pointing at your argument suger is sweet, I am pointing at your point that sugar is bitter. Anybody can see who is talking here without any base. If truth seems to you as lie; is that my problem dear yapa?
        Whether Buddhism is atheistic or agnostic, I’ll leave this to Buddhist to conclude. I see mostly in the net as giving an agnostic view but according to you atheistic. In both it has to depend on mere chance to explain everything around us. That’s the point I don’t agree. As I always insist nothing can happen by chance.

      • mohamed

        SL
        You didn’t get my point. Once again my point is on animal kingdom where pairs exist. If mutation happening in individual level it will affect the single animal. It cannot breed with existing pairs as it will fall in to a separate spice and ceases to exist. If , mutation happened in group level, type of mutation should be identical. But to what extent this is possible and proven to be true with type of event in the environment? Also why we don’t observe these transitional forms now?

      • Off the Cuff

        Dear Mohamad,

        My question was How many Human pairs were created at the beginning of creation?

        You reply “At least one pair to spread that particular specie, that’s obvious isn’t?”

        Can you please confirm what is stated in authoritative religious text instead of falling back on logic as you have done by asking “…..that’s obvious isn’t it? “

        In discussing a religion that depends on a Creator, nothing is obvious.

      • sabbe laban

        Mohemad

        Yes, I didn’t get your point atraight, though what I said was also relevent.

        This can be considered a grey area in evolution. There are many theories in this respect, but none of them explain everything on sexual evolution satisfactorily.

        However, this is no reason to believe that all this is a “creator’s work!”. Science is self-corrective and we will find an answer to this one day!

    • PitastharaPuthraya

      Yapa,

      I toally agree with what you say.

      My argument is not wheather the science is good or bad. Even if it has ‘bad’ aspects, it is not the fault of science but the humans who uses it to satisfy their ‘greed’.

      My central arguments is that the science is the only system of knowledge which understands the material universe. It is much more closer to objective truth than any other present or past systems of knowlege.

      Inquistivness, curiorsity, thrist for knowlege and understanding, exploitation of resources, greed, etc are inherent to human nature. Without them there is not humanity. Therefore, it is no use of talking about things which has never been and will never be.

      This is the way we have been ‘created’ by the universe. If our habits carry the seed of destruction of the human race it is the nature. I do not think any body can make any significant contribution to change it.

      Take for example Buddhism. Howevermuch, the Buddha and his followers tried to make the humans less greedy and by doing so to strive to enlighten them with the final goal of Nirvana, what is the success rate of acheiving that after 2500 years? Is there any effect Buddhism has made to change the ‘progress’ of human race? No. This is true about all the relegions of the world.

      I am not saying they are useless. They have a limited use of inculcating morality in the human mind. But the human ‘progress’, the material development, exploitation of the world, etc would go on. The impact of the relegion on this ‘march’ of human race forwards to the unkown future is so small that it can be ignored.

      I do not know where we are going. As you say, probably to our own destruction. That is the fate of human civilization. That’s how we were built. We should not forget that it was single and most imporant reason why we are here today.

      • yapa

        Dear PP;

        “This is the way we have been ‘created’ by the universe. If our habits carry the seed of destruction of the human race it is the nature. I do not think any body can make any significant contribution to change it.”

        “I do not know where we are going. As you say, probably to our own destruction. That is the fate of human civilization. That’s how we were built. We should not forget that it was single and most imporant reason why we are here today.”

        Thanks PP for your open minded response. However, the crux of the post represents and your views show that you are holding the “deterministic worldview”: everything happens to a pre-plan, and nothing can change that course. That was the world view of Newtonian Science as well. It believed that everything would be able to predict in terms of the theories of Newtonian Mechanics. However, Newtonian Science view has been discarded a long ago.

        Even after you devoid of the views of Newtonian science, if you separate physical world from the rest and try to analyze and understand it in terms of “physical laws” of the universe, which are considered as “objective laws”, your eventual conclusion cannot be any other thing than a “deterministic worldview” as you have invariably arrived at. Inanimate things cannot act by them selves, so your conclusion that the whole universe runs according to a set of “fixed” rules is unavoidable. Anybody who believes the independence of matter from all others eventually have to come to that conclusion.

        The fundamental problem is whether we can separate matter form the whole without affecting the whole or the separated components or in other words whether the matter is independent from the total reality. However, there are enough evidence that matter and non matter (mind etc..)are not interdependent.

        On the other hand mind has a capability to act of its own (free will), out from a predetermined procedure. When this capability acts on matter through mind, then the totality (reality)ceases to become dependent only on “objective physical laws”, breaking down the “determinism” imposed upon it by those “fixed laws”.

        When there is a component of “free will”, the universe cannot go in its own way. Mind can changed the path of the universe, and it has already been proven, through technological advancement and even from its material consequences and even by the theories like evolution, through concepts like “survival of the fittest”. A strong “personality” (animal or human)can change the heredity (world). Einstein changed the world through his free will, do you think he did not, and it was “the written destiny” of the universe for him command him to change the world? Do you think Einstein was a part of that pre-plan?

        Then there is no fruits of anybody’s hard work. Do you believe in the imperatives your viewpoint infer to?

        My dear PP, the problem is when you put together two halves, it always doesn’t give the total. Analysis alone or even analysis and synthesis taken together are not perfect ways of understanding things. There is a possibility they miss something. You will have to see it as total or as it is as well, a holistic approach too you need.

        Universe as it is or in total is not similar to the addition of material conclusions + non material conclusions. When the universe taken as a whole it is not deterministic, though it is so when you deliberately separate it as material and non material. There is a possibility for “wiiled” entities to take theirs and the destiny of the other things into their hands as well.

        You say, “Is there any effect Buddhism has made to change the ‘progress’ of human race? No. This is true about all the relegions of the world.”

        Dear PP, Buddhism itself cannot do anything. AS humans the world is changed according to their “collective vision” (worldview) they hold to act. Only “volitional action” can change the world other than the other(fixed)laws of the nature. When one’s (collective) worldview is science, the world changes according to science. When (collective) worldview is Islam, world changes according to Islam. When it is Christianity, the world changes according to Christianity. In other words destiny/destination of the world depends on collective mindset of the people and a persons destiny can be changed with this “view” and actions based on it. In other words destiny can be a result (not totally) of “intentional action” or “volitional action”. Can you disagree with me?

        If we want to change the world towards a desired end what we have to do is to change the collective worldview of the people and if we want to change the country what we have to change the “vision” of the country, if we want to change individuals what we have to do is to change their “views” towards the desired direction.

        So, “right view” is essential in going for any desired or noble goal. Do you think that right view can be formed through “Science”, which accepts physical laws as the only active force in the universe? What a foolish idea?

        The problem is not that something has not acted so far effectively or not. The reason for not activation so far is not a reason to say that it will never be active. A seed can become active after an inactive period of time. What we have to see is not whether it has worked so far, but to find the potential seed that would give the desired result. To find the best theory or action plan for execution of the future. If you keep locked in a safe, no marvelous plan would work. I think world is working on a wrong plan. I think there is a possibility that there is a better plan.

        Thanks!

      • Delta

        Yapa,
        Please listen to the podcasts. You may find them interesting.
        http://ttbook.org/book/physics-big-questions-0

      • Dear Delta;

        Thank you for the link. Discussions show that even physicists or people talk of spirituality are not sure of their notions.

        I think following points should be noted.

        1. When they talk about religion, what they talk about is only about the religions of a creator. They have no knowledge about the religions like Buddhism, which refuses the creator. It shows that the physicists have already analyzed the creator god religions and they say they were shrank to zero, it doesn’t mean other religions shrank to zero, as many generalize it to all religions.

        2. It seems justifiable from the discussion that the notion of the philosophers that physicists are arrogant. Physicists seem to acknowledge that philosophers handle some area which does not fall under science, but they try to give general conclusions on philosophy, really they are not capable or qualified to do so. Really philosophy disproves the creator concept more profoundly than physicists.

        3. Science is mainly based on Inductive logic while Philosophy is mainly based on deductive logic. It is true that Science has the advantage of Mathematics, however, it dies not negate its disadvantage science has because of its limited scope compared to philosophy.

        4. As I said earlier Buddhism has not been a subject for physicists of the west, and there comments on religion does not apply to Buddhism (and Jainism) as well. Though many physicists do not know many modern science concepts go in line with Buddhism, unlike discarded Classical Science. Classical Science view was totally deterministic and went against Buddhism, but in the line of determinism it supported creator god religions. But the modern science that discarded old science, supports a non-deterministic worldview and hence more close to Buddhism and totally opposes the creator god religions. This difference most of the people who talk of modern science, but really think in terms of old science do not know. In terms of their internal worldview of discarded science they automatically oppose Buddhism as well without any critical analysis. They are just science conservatives. What they talk is not in their hearts. They talk modern science out of their lips only. They know nothing about the openness of the modern science, humbleness of the modern science, fragility of modern science or discipline or the philosophy of modern science. Otherwise they cannot be so assertive of other things in terms of modern science. One of the main principles of Modern science is uncertainty principle. It talks of Chaos theory. It talks of randomness of their conclusions. But our people are very arrogant on what they have not even analyzed or considered, and so sure to throw them out off hand. They are not disciplined in modern science, though they just talk of it as a fashion (I think especially Gamarala belongs to this broad category.

        5. Just as philosophy and modern science Buddhism refuses the determinism. Buddhism was the earliest to do so. Until 20th century science supported determinism. In that sense Buddhism was about 2400 years ahead of Science. It has been proved that its broad worldview has been consistent unlike any other philosophy or religion.

        6. Not only with the science, but Buddhism is very much consistent with modern epistemology. It agrees with all the “theories of truth”, it does not make any contradictions with modern science, philosophy or theories of epistemology.

        Only insane people can reject Buddhism without deeply analyzing it in this background.

        It might proved to be wrong in the end. However, it should be at least be analyzed in terms of modern science and philosophy the way the Christianity was analyzed and discussed in terms of science and philosophy before it was proved wrong andrejected. Science and philosophy took a long time to reject Christianity on the basis of disproving the creator. Why our arrogant “science protectors” want to discard Buddhism so urgently, despite its positive signs? Slave mindset towards the discarded old science (though they stylishly talk of moder4n science outwardly)?

        Thanks!

      • Correction…..

        “Physicists seem to acknowledge that philosophers handle some area which….

        should be,

        “Physicists seem [not] to acknowledge that philosophers handle some area which….

        Thanks!

      • mohamed

        Dear yapa

        I disagree with you, even the modern science is in favor of religion which inclined towards a creator. Because more the discovery more the complexity, hence the mere chance of order among the disorder becomes less and the order with the aid of a creator becomes more. Even there are many modern discoveries exist in quran which recently assured by scientific discoveries, I can go to say; expansion of universe to early embryo development. Your attempt to put Religion < science < Buddhism (or Jainism) is just your claim. I would say reverse of it is true and can prove if every people go in to details of the religion that are inclined towards god, they will find all of major religions directs towards Islam.

      • mohamed

        In my opinion, Buddhism was emerged to abolish cast system at the time of Buddha. He understood that these cast system was driven by religious body which carried out in the name of god. so , he understood that silencing the creator concept is the remedy. Did Buddhism claim there is no god or it was silent about god? Perhaps yapa can tell what was the answer given by buddah for the question about the creator. Mean time other super natural entity such as divas are part of buddism and concept such as reincarnation is falls as myth to the eyes of science.

      • yapa

        Dear Mohamed;

        Anybody can disagree, we cannot prevent it. If I want I can disagree that sugar is not sweet. Disagreements doesn’t make the facts existence of to cease. Repetition of nonsense do not make them sense.

        You seem to want to form opinions without any basis and others to listen to them.

        Drear Mohamed, rejection of creator god in Buddhism is a well known fact. I cannot correct your doubting of very basic and obvious facts, it is a mighty task, anybody other than your all mighty can do. He can do anything no. By the way can HE create a stone he cannot lift?

        Dear Mohamed, In Agganna Sutta and Brahmajala Sutta, creator is clearly rejected.

        Modern Science??, please don’t repeat lies with the intention to make them truths.

        Thanks!

      • mohamed

        What is non sense and what is making sense are evident. I am not pointing at your argument suger is sweet, I am pointing at your point that sugar is bitter. Anybody can see who is talking without any base. If truth seems to you as lie; is that my problem dear yapa?
        Whether Buddhism is atheistic or agnostic, I’ll leave this to Buddhist to conclude. I see mostly in the net as giving an agnostic view but according to you atheistic. In both it has to depend on mere chance to explain everything around us. That’s the point I don’t agree. As I always insist nothing can happen by chance.

        “The heaven, we have built it with power. Verily, we are expanding it.” (51:47)
        The gradual expansion of the universe is one of the most important discoveries of modern times.

        “He makes you in the womb of your mother in stages, one after another, in three veils of
        darkness.” (39:8)
        The three veils of darkness or layers have been identified by biologists as (1) Abdominal
        wall, (2) Uterine wall, and (3) Amniochorionic membrane (a sac filled with fluid in which the fetus floats).

        “Man We did create from a quintessence of clay, and then We placed as a drop of sperm, in a place of rest, firmly fixed. Then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood; then of that clot We made a leech-like lump. Then we made out of that lump bones and clothed the bones with flesh; then We developed out of it another creature. So blessed be God, the best to create.” (40:13-14)
        “Then out of a morsel (chewed up) of flesh, partly formed and partly unformed.” (22:5)

        According to Professor Keith Moore, the above is a surprisingly accurate description of
        human development in the uterus. The word “chewed up flesh” and “leech-like clot,” precisely describe the appearance and characteristics of the developing embryo and of conception.

        Aren’t they sounds to you as modern science? Who is the liar?

    • sabbe laban

      Mohamed

      Once again wrong! Just because there are mutations it doesn’t make a different species! Such mutations should be selected at the individual and group level by the environmental factrs over a time, to make a different species!

      Not only bacteria Mohamed, many uni-cellular animals too exchange their nuclear material! And “some” of their ancestors who lived during the Cambrian period seemed to have started the gender differntiation, which was selected and propagated as it was a helpful trait!

      It doesn’t mean that asexual reproduction stopped altogether, either! That too survived in some life forms, when that kind of reproduction was more beneficial to the organism!

  • yapa

    Dear Saban;

    Really Saban, the allegation of Thass of science is justifiable.

    Even when the “dough” containing all the (material)ingredients properly mixed (which science is asking for), science cannot bake the cake. That is why Science cannot make a “being” out of a corpse.

    Really something important is missing in the (material)”dough”.

    Don’t you think so?

    Thanks!

    • sabbe laban

      Yapa

      Please see under the relevent thread.

  • sabbe laban

    Ranting Ranter

    Thank you so much for your article! It may not have been your intention to drag this debate to the extent that it did, yet it provided an opportunity to see how defenceless some of our long-held beliefs are, when taken into task!

    However, religion is a personal thing in my opinion and every organized religion is guilty(to a varying degree) of trying to force its doctrine down the others’ throat. You must have seen this tendency in this discussion too, and for me this is a result of archiac thinking!

    Finally, I’ll quote this loose translation of some thought provoking verses by Omar Khayyam, who seems to be well ahead of his time and all the religion prevailed at his time:

    XXVI
    Why, all the Saints and Sages who discuss’d
    Of the Two Worlds so wisely–they are thrust
    Like foolish Prophets forth; their Words to Scorn
    Are scatter’d, and their Mouths are stopt with Dust.

    XXVII
    Myself when young did eagerly frequent
    Doctor and Saint, and heard great argument
    About it and about: but evermore
    Came out by the same door where in I went.

    XXVIII
    With them the seed of Wisdom did I sow,
    And with mine own hand wrought to make it grow;
    And this was all the Harvest that I reap’d–
    “I came like Water, and like Wind I go.”

    • Dear Saban;

      Let me also quote one quotation form Shakespeare’

      “There are more thing is heaven and earth, Horatio,
      Than are dreamt of in your all philosophy.”

      Another quote from somewhere,

      “Education quotes, wisdom analyses.”

      Thanks!

  • Dear Saban/PP/Off the Cuff/Gamarala and all others interested;

    My discussion with Sanab and PP began with the statement of Saban given below,

    “Our existance or non-existance is totally irrelevant to the universe;the universe just doesn’t care!””

    and my response to it,

    “I have a different version on this. Then where do you accommodate “free will”?”

    PP also joined the discussion with the statement,

    “As laban says existance of humans is immaterial to our universe. Wheather there are humans or not universe proceeds in its course. The human ‘free will’ does not alter its course. The life as a whole is an accident.”

    The main point of the discussion was whether the (physical) universe has an independent journey of its own irrespective of all other effects. If I put in another way, whether the universe is going on a deterministic path, as suggested by the theory of Big Bang?

    I suggested that another variable other than the physical laws called “free will” exists and the journey of the universe is influenced by that “unfixed” variable and hence and hence the resultant function of the journey is not not deterministic or has no a path of its own, determined by its physical laws.

    I pointed out this was the notion of the Newtonian worldview and it was discarded with the dawn of the modern science.

    Really even without considering the “free will”, just using the physical laws of modern science alone it can be shown that the universe has no an independent journey of its own.

    Really determinism of physical world vanished with the notion born with the “Wave Particle Duality”. That is with the randomness of the events and the matter.

    The modern science suggest that random events can take place and hence the the future is unpredictable. Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle reiterated this stance.

    Anyway let me explain the thing with our familiar example of Big Bang.

    It is said that the universe began with the quantum event of Big Bang and and continues with the physical laws created with that event.

    OK, now modern science believe that Big Bang itself is a random event, that has no causes. So, if a random event of that enormous nature took place once, what is the guarantee that there will not be other such random events (that cannot be predicted)taken place in the future?

    If random events can take place at an unknown time, how can anybody say the universe can roam its own way it wants?

    Thanks!

    • Even with special relativity, it is proven that nothing is objective even in physical universe. everything changes with reference frames. “Dilation of time”, elongation of dimensions of an object (length, height and width) increase of mass with the velocity of the object with reference to the frame shows that there is no objective reality.

      The whole aim of the theory of relativity is to show that there is no objective reality, but to reveal its relative nature.

      Quantum Physics also negate the idea of objectivity if reality in terms of obvious existence of “Randomness as I have pointed out in the previous post above.

      All in all, the modern science, as a whole rejects the notion of an objective reality in terms of both its components.

      As per the notion of modern science, there is no objective reality or objective universe, even if only the physical universe concerned. What to talk about the total universe consist of free will as well.

      Thanks!

  • Dear Saban/PP/Off the Cuff/Gamarala/all others interested;

    I would like to a bit more elaborate on what I have said that there is no an objective reality or an objective universe in terms of the modern notion of Relativity while how Newtonian worldview had the objectivity for it.

    Science (physics)believes the universe is made out from space, matter (and energy as per Newton, but they are the same according to relativity, E= mc2),time and also gravity.

    For Newton,

    1. space is absolute (length dimensions).

    2. Time is absolute

    3. mass is absolute

    4. Gravity is absolute

    Hence, the universe is absolute.

    For Einstein,

    1. Space is not absolute, dimensions of an object is changed with the velocity.

    2. Time is not absolute, the speed of the flow of time can vary with speed. (Eg:- twin paradox)

    3. Mass is not absolute, mass of an object changes with speed. (If we send a thing at the speed of light the mass of the body becomes infinity.)

    4. Gravity is not objective (can change with acceleration)

    So, the composition of them is not objective.

    Now the Newtonian view has been discarded and replaced with relativity, hence the latest notion of science is there is no objective reality or objective universe, that can go in its own way, disregarding anything.

    But this is what Gamarala wants to tell about my version,

    Saban,

    A lonely crusader waging an intellectual battle with an enemy that resurrects arguments long dead and buried, many of which even have trees growing over the grave. Will the crusader win against such hopeless odds? Find out in the next episode of “religiosity – the ghost that refuses to give up (gracefully or otherwise)”.

    Still, an enjoyable season so far 😉

    Now he must think back and see whose arguments were long dead and buried, many of which even have trees growing over the grave.

    Latest notion of Science is “there is no objective universe”.

    Thanks!

    • mohamed

      well yapa

      You logic is one is a number; two is number, as the decimals points can be extended 1.1, 1.11,1.111 up to infinity number two from one cannot be reached. how far its true?
      To discard Newtonian view not everything moving at the speed of light (or at higher speed) isn’t? The limit is extended, in other words the calculated accuracy is extended from newton’s gravitational law to Einstein’s general relativity.
      Don’t you still use the formula f=ma?
      “Hence the latest notion of science is there is no objective reality”. Well not exactly. The accuracy of reality can be deduced not objectively but subjectively.

      • yapa

        Dear Mohamed;

        Yanne koheda? Malle pol! (Where are you going? Coconuts in my bag!)

        I am sorry to have broken down your expectation. It is not my fault. I washed my hand with holy water.

        Thanks!

      • mohamed

        For your statement “Now the Newtonian view has been discarded and replaced with relativity, hence the latest notion of science is there is no objective reality or objective universe” I wrote above answer. Because your conclusion was wrong.

        1.General relativity model has increase the accuracy of we view the universe, not discarded the Newtonian model, as still that model falls under modern science within its limit. Even tomorrow m-theory will come to play a role, it will not discard general relativity model. Perhaps these links can give you little better understanding.

        http://www.theory.caltech.edu/people/patricia/grelc.html

        http://westerncultureglobal.org/newton.html

        2.The accuracy of reality can be deduced not objectively but subjectively is the right conclusion. Still you can count for reality. that’s what matters

      • yapa

        Yanne koheda malle pol, again dear Mohamed.

        Do you say by increasing the accuracy of the deterministic worldview you can get a non-deterministic worldview?

        Thanks!

  • sabbe laban

    I’d like to summerize by quoting another bafflling thinker:

    “He is (after all) Buddha, Saban!”-Yapa

    • Really Saban, your message is not clear to me.

      Thanks!

    • yapa

      Dear Saban;

      You agree with the points forwarded by me or disagree?

      Thanks!

  • Delta

    Thanks Yapa. Science is not Buddhism and Buddhism is not science. If you try to justify one with the other you will be going around in circles!
    The Buddha’s doctrine is not to look at the heavens but to look inwards.
    There is a saying that goes like this :- “The one who knows god remains silent”.

    • yapa

      Dear Delta;

      “Kalena dhamma sakachcha,
      Ethan magala muththmang”

      Thanks!

  • Groundviews

    Given that many of the comments have digressed from the original topic of the article, this thread will be closed in 48 hours. Please submit your final comments. Thank you.

    GV.

    • sabbe laban

      GV

      Just as I predicted of this ‘divine intervention’ a few hours ago! I wonder whether you had a ‘secret communication’ with Yapa for him to say, “I need time to fire my rocket launcher”!LOL