Mumin Salih

There are indications that atheism is on the rise in the Arab world. This rise is alarming enough to force many Arabic TV channels to admit it and discuss it in several shows, which is very unusual in media that normally highlights the spread, not the recession of Islam. The spread of atheism across the Arab world is an extraordinary development to say the least, considering that the process of Islamic radicalisation has been going strong, fast and unopposed for decades.

Obviously, the scale of the ‘problem’ is different from one country to another. Interestingly, Saudi Arabia seems to be the country affected most with 5% of the population(1) identified as atheists! That is in the country where Sharia is meticulously implemented and considered by many Islamists as the model to emulate.

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“The Quran is such a good book and is free from errors. I conclude it is from Allah”

The above short statement helps to explain why there are Muslims in the world- because they believe the Quran to be “such a good book with no errors”.

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As we know, the Islamic Khilafa ended with the collapse of the Ottoman empire in 1924. Not many Muslims at the time mourned the death of the khilafa, certainly nothing on the scale we see these days. The Turks were thrilled by the prospect of cultural freedom in the modern and secular Turkey that was already being established by Mustafa Kamal. Outside Turkey, the Arabs celebrated the victory of their revolt which brought about the downfall of a repulsive and ailing empire.

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The Deluded Muslims

The great Egyptian Muslim reformer, Muhammed Abdu (1849-1905), made a famous comparison between France, where he spent sometime of his life, and Egypt. He said: “In France there is Islam without Muslims and in Egypt there are Muslims without Islam”. Mohammed Abdu was very impressed by the high morality of the French people as he judged from their manners and the way they treated him.

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Since the dawn of civilization, man has been making religions and attributing them to God. Democracy can be counted as one of the best of those religions, which we liked so much that we did not attribute to God; we preferred to keep this one to ourselves. Democracy is known and practiced all over the world but is more revered in the West, where people cling to it in a way that reminds us with the Muslims’ obsession with Islam.

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