Wahhabi Contention: What happens if kalam arguments are undermined rationally?

Wahabi contention: What happens if these kalam arguments are undermined rationally? In the West these antiquated arguments have basically been rejected since the time of Kant; isn’t it therefore a terrible mistake for a person to base his faith on them?

Answer: The argument I presented in “The Foundations of the Religion” is not false, and it is not antiquated, and will never be undermined. Formulated by men yes, but solidly agreeing with the scriptures and sensory reality, because all it says is that anything with a beginning needs a Creator, simply based on the existence of events; the changes we see around us. It is a simple and logically sound argument based on premises that no reasonable person would deny. I can tell you that I know of philosophers in this day and age that have been silenced by these types of arguments. A friend of mine has a Phd in math from Berkley, for example, and he converted because some of his students presented such proofs.

Kant, the miserable kaafir, may Allah give him what he deserves along with his ilk, did not bring anything new that the scholars had not already faced. In fact they have faced worse. What you are referring to are the philosophers who deny certainty of any knowledge, or certain types of knowledge. If they were right, then it would mean that scriptures also do not provide certainty of knowledge, so you cannot say that the Kant managed to prove his point without falling out of Islam – but you did not know that about Kant I am sure, so this is not an accusation. The scholars called these people the “I don’t Knowers” and the like. They are of several different kinds. They are very dangerous so please do not go down this path, or even dwell on it. Their sole purpose is to cause doubts, and they are very, very good at it. This is one of the reasons why the scholars considered it haram to read philosophy unless you were doing it to attack them and was highly qualified, and even for this purpose a rather significant number of scholars considered it haram.

You see, the philosophers were and are in general haughty, proud of their intelligence, and showing this was important to them, so they engaged in debates to win, even if it meant denying their own mother, and one of the ways to do that is to simply engage in producing doubts. As a general rule, a debate is won for many reasons, and sometimes the person being right actually loses a debate, because his debating skills were poorer, and fell in traps, or because he was not knowledgeable enough. There are ways to deal with “doubt strategists” like Kant, and I have personally dealt with them, but it is better not to let an opponent raise this issue at all.

I generally avoid anybody taking me on this ride by having them agree with me on every premise and every step of the argument as I present it. I do not continue unless they verbally express agreement. That way it will be much less tempting to employ a doubt-spreading strategy, as it will not benefit their personal image, since they will clearly be contradicting themselves. Instead you will find them simply keeping silent, or saying “I’ll think about it”, or even “you are right” (followed by no action) and then you never see them again. Which is a good thing.

If they have problems with the first premise in the argument in “The Foundations of the Religion” which states, “we are here today,” then one may start what I like to call “current event enlightenment therapy” by kicking the “patient” hard in the shin and see if you can’t have him admit that he was surely kicked in the shin. If you find him resisting the idea that events follow each other, you could apply “serial event enlightenment therapy” and kick him several times, but before you do all this you may need a government license, and make sure that he won’t be able, once enlightened to the existence of series of events, to apply one right back at you, like a lawsuit procedure.

Authored by Sheikh Abu Adam al Naruiji

25 Responses to Wahhabi Contention: What happens if kalam arguments are undermined rationally?

  1. loveProphet says:

    Assalam-o-Alaikum,
    JazakAllah Khair
    That was an enlightening read with the humour making my day bright:)

    By the way, that mathematician with the PhD, was he converted by the kalam cosmological argument that you presented?

  2. waˆalaykumussalaam, I know only that kalam arguments were a major part, because the one that convinced him was a student at AUB and a scholar in kalam who used to go and argue with him.

  3. Sign of Saturn says:

    Hi there,

    I’m currently pursuing my PhD in philosophy. I’m wondering, what exactly are these proofs that led your friend to convert?

    Thanks for your time!

    Regards,
    Sign of Saturn

  4. Click on the linked article.

  5. Sign of Saturn says:

    Hi,

    I read the article linked above. I have a few questions!

    First, I gather that the first proof you offer is the argument from design. Is that correct? If so, I was wondering how you’d address the common objections to the argument from design.

    Second, the other proof that you listed appears to be the Kalam cosmological argument. Although presented as a mathematical argument, it does seem to entail rather strong, non-mathematical assumptions about the natural world. Premise B, for example, seems to imply some belief about causality, namely, that each and every event has a cause. That wouldn’t be a purely mathematical argument, but rather a scientific argument. Premise B therefore seems to rest on certain strong scientific assumptions, thereby making contemporary scientific views on this point deeply relevant. My question is: there are also a number of common objections to the Kalam cosmological argument, some of which come from scientists. I’m wondering how you address those objections.

    Third, does Islam have a doctrine about human origins? If so, could you kindly share what that would be?

    Thanks for your time! It’s greatly appreciated!

    Regards,
    Sign of Saturn

  6. Sign of Saturn says:

    Also, could you kindly share your educational background? Thank you very much!

    Regards,
    Sign of Saturn

  7. loveProphet says:

    Sign of Saturn,

    His educational background has already been posted on in another article.
    In regards to predestination, loads of topics have already been made, please browse through them.
    As for the KCA, you should see James Watson’s(the famous physicist who discovered the helix structure of DNA) article on this where he defends the argument as very sound as it agrees with science.
    As for Islam on human origins, Sheikh Nuh Keller’s article is enough:

    http://www.masud.co.uk/ISLAM/nuh/evolve.htm

  8. loveProphet says:

    Note that James Watson is the famous molecular biologist, not a physicst!

  9. Sign of Saturn says:

    Hi there,

    Thanks for the comments, but I’m not sure that they tell me very much.

    Where, for example, has Mr. Abu Adam’s educational background been posted? Does he have a background in science, for example? If so, in what field? What did he study and at what institutions? What degrees did he earn?

    With regards to the Kalam cosmological argument, I’m not sure that the article to which you referred was very helpful, since it’s merely a restatement of the Kalam cosmological argument and doesn’t address the obvious objections to that argument.

    For example, the argument begins with the premise that “Whatever begins to exist has a cause of existence.” However, how do you know that this premise is correct? How do you address the longstanding objection from the community of physicists that there are indeed events that do not have a cause? Photons, for example, come into existence without a cause. If the starting premise of the argument is false, then doesn’t the entire argument fall apart?

    Watson’s article doesn’t deal with objections to the first premise. In fact, it doesn’t say anything about the nature of causality. I don’t see how his being a biologist qualifies him to make pronouncements concerning a question belonging to the domain of physics.

    Incidentally, Watson also believes that race is tied to intelligence. He believes, for example, that blacks are not as intelligent as whites. Do you agree with those views, too?

    Concerning the article on human origins, I gather that the Islamic belief is incompatible with the scientific account of human origins, namely, that human beings evolved from a non-human species of primates. Is this correct? If so, how do Muslims respond to the scientific account of human origins?

    Finally, concerning the issue of predestination, would you be able to kindly tell me whether and how human accountability fits into the Islamic scheme of beliefs? Are human beings held accountable for that over which they have no control?

    Thanks for your time!

    Regards,
    Sign of Saturn

  10. loveProphet says:

    So Sign of Saturn,

    Can you tell me your qualifications in science?

  11. Sign of Saturn says:

    Dear loveProphet,

    My background is in philosophy of science. I’m currently working on my doctoral dissertation on the thought of Charles S. Peirce, an American philosopher, mathematician, and scientist (who, incidentally, was mentioned in Mr. Keller’s article on evolution). My dissertation uses Peirce’s theory of truth to critique the coherence of the incommensurability thesis. I use as a case study Steve Fuller’s recent controversial statements at the Dover trial. I’d be happy to go into my work in more detail if you’re interested!

    Again, could you kindly provide some details concerning Mr. Abu Adam’s educational background? Also, does he have a list of scholarly publications?

    Thank you very much! I’m very grateful for your time.

    Regards,
    Sign of Saturn

  12. loveProphet says:

    Thanks, so you’re not a scientist nor qualified in it then…

  13. Sign of Saturn says:

    Dear loveProphet,

    I’m sorry, but I don’t understand your comment. It appears rather ill-mannered and not very mature. I inquired into Mr. Abu Adam’s educational background. I wanted to know what he studied and where, as well as what degrees he received. If he doesn’t have an educational background or is unwilling to share it, then it would be simple enough to say so and leave it at that. The above comment is not only incoherent, but just plain rude.

    I certainly hope this isn’t the sort of website that greets simple and honest inquiry with suspicion and hostility. That would be most unfortunate.

    Regards,
    Sign of Saturn

  14. Hi Sign of Saturn,

    This is not an academic matter, or about my person, or a philosophical matter, or about taxonomies of arguments. It is a very practical matter: the avoidance of eternal torture. It is too serious to be brushed off with sophistry, verbal acrobatics and one up-manship. I am not making accusations, I am just letting you know my perspective, attitude and motivation. I do not argue or answer questions if I feel it will not help anyone closer to Islam or defend the faith of a Muslim. Time is far too short, and I do not feel that this work is particularly pleasant either. I do it because I love Aļļaah and His Messenger, I love this great religion, and because I fear that if I do not, while given capability in this box that is me, I may face terrible consequences after my death, and I would deserve it.

    Logic is important, but it is the heart that drives one to use it honestly and face the consequences of the truth. If our hearts are hard, then we are no better than dumb animals, for logic will do us no good. What does 2+2=4 mean to a computer?

    Note that to a Muslim there is not significant difference between an agnostic and an atheists. Both of them do not believe in a creator, and what is beyond that is not important. It is academic so to speak. The former is more mocking and the latter more aggressively stubborn, and that is about it.

    I do not at all accept the idea that they believe faith should be proof based. That is mere demagoguery on their part. How can this be for sophists when they make or accept claims like “this happened for no reason,” or “I am not sure I exist,” or “I exist, but I am not sure about anything else.” What would be a proof to such a person? It is like saying, “I think faith should be based on proof, but I accept no proof.” This is as blind a faith as they come, it is a fanatical belief in doubt so to speak. As for the atheist that claims there is no god, where is his proof of that? There is no proof of that, so how is this following proofs?

    Please read my article with the intention to truly understand what I said. I said nothing about contingencies. I made no mention of cause or contingency in premise b, simply observed that one event happens after another. See also the first answer is this post: https://sunnianswers.wordpress.com/2008/05/27/agnostic-contentions-randomness-and-infinity/ .

    As for believing that things come from non existence to existence without something bringing it into existence; if photons appear without any correlated prior event, then this simply proves that there is a creator that brings them into existence. This is because prior to their existence their existence was merely a possibility. How did they come into existence if this mere possibility was not changed in likelihood? You can’t have something from nothing without a reason. If you believe otherwise then speaking to you is pointless, because you have no premises, and you will accept no proof of anything (if you don’t want to.) You have canceled your membership card for the club of reason so to speak. If someone kicked you in the groin and you asked them why, and they answered, “for no reason and nothing brought the kicking into existence,” would you accept it? Of course not, and no sophist will. This is because now the heart has kicked in with different motives than winning a debate for the sake of winning.

    Sincerely,
    Abu Adam

  15. Sign of Saturn says:

    “I do not argue or answer questions if I feel it will not help anyone closer to Islam or defend the faith of a Muslim.”

    This only tells me that you’re not at all interested in truth. A Christian can also say that he or she does not argue or answer questions if he or she feels it will not help anyone closer to Christianity or defend the faith of a Christian. A Christian can also say that all that matters is “the avoidance of eternal torture.” That wouldn’t reveal a commitment to truth. It rather would reveal an obstinate clinging to certain beliefs regardless of the logic, reason, and evidence adduced against it.

    There are Christians who insist on believing that the earth is 6,000 years old, even though there is irrefutable scientific evidence against such an absurd belief. There are Muslims who insist on believing that human beings appeared on earth without any prior, non-human ancestry, even though there is irrefutable scientific evidence against such an absurd belief. In both cases, the believer clings to an absurd belief regardless of the logic, reason, and evidence adduced against it.

    I asked you to kindly share your educational background. Apparently, that’s a threatening question. If you are unwilling to share it, you can simply say so. It tells me enough about your intellectual credibility.

    Incidentally, your response to the issue of quantum mechanics is more than just slightly silly. As a response to the problem that quantum mechanics poses for the Kalam cosmological argument, it’s neither persuasive nor coherent. As a commentary on quantum mechanics, it tells me you have no idea what you’re talking about. I’d be willing to have a point by point discussion with you on this matter. Better yet, I can easily arrange to have a physicist (or several of them, if you’d prefer) have a point by point discussion with you about quantum behaviour.

    I suspect you don’t want that, however. I suspect that you’d rather reserve the right to make outlandish remarks about this or that scientific matter and than reject any serious discussion that would reveal your actual level of understanding about these matters.

    If your job is to persuade sincere and inquiring minds of the truth of your beliefs, I’d say you’re not doing a very good job. And, if, as I suspect, you’ll attribute your failing to the will of your god, who has supposedly blinded me to the truth of your beliefs, I’d say that’s a pretty pathetic way to rationalize your rational failings.

    I’m open to having my mind changed. I gather you’re not. If you’d like to seriously discuss the issues above point by point, I’m interested, ready, and willing. However, I get the impression that you’d rather “moderate” the discussion to avoid eternal torture.

    Regards,
    Sign of Saturn

  16. Saturn says: Comment:”I do not argue or answer questions if I feel it will not help anyone closer to Islam or defend the faith of a Muslim.” This only tells me that you’re not at all interested in truth.

    Answer: That is not what I said, I simply meant that I will not waste my precious time on “did someone use this word correctly or not” or “Was Kant and atheist or not.” I will also not spend time arguing with someone who says that things can happen for no reason and without anything bringing into existence” simply because we will never agree, because that undermines the use of logic. Arguing without logic is a waste of time.

    Saturn says: I asked you to kindly share your educational background. Apparently, that’s a threatening question.

    Answer: No, but it is irrelevant. As I made an effort to explain yesterday, this is not an academic website, but a website about Islam, and my Islamic credential are posted. What are you going to say, “your degree is so and so, therefore there is no god?”

    Saturn says: Incidentally, your response to the issue of quantum mechanics is more than just slightly silly.

    Answer: I detect you are trying to get relief from anger rather than being reasonable. I do not think you understood what I was doing. All I did was to answer, “how would Islam explain randomness” and I did. I did not write an article on Quantum Behavior. I am only answering a question about something relevant to the Islam belief. It is like when a physicist comes to you and asks you about something relevant to his work regarding the philosophy of science. If you answered him in a way that was not helpful, since it is not your field, he would rephrase until he got the answer to his question. My answer satisfied the one who asked, so I moved on. Maybe he did not know much about Quantum Mechanics, I don’t know, and I do not care, because my concern is to answer questions regarding what concerns the belief.

    Saturn says: However, I get the impression that you’d rather “moderate” the discussion to avoid eternal torture.

    Answer: I am moderating for two reasons. First, to avoid questions being sent to the comments, because they should got to our mail. Second, sometimes there are comments that should be answered immediately. I have not deleted anything yet without answering it as a Q&A, or planning to.

    Saturn says: I’m open to having my mind changed.

    Answer: I don’t think you are. I am under the impression that you are just playing on the internet, because as a student you have time on your hands. You never gave anything here a serious look. You get hung up on degrees, semantics, and Dr. this said this and Dr. that said that, which tells me that you are not looking for the truth, but to get “one up” in an academic debate, where such things would be considered important. This is why you chose to study philosophy, you want people to call you “philosopher” so that you can feel good about yourself. Then you engage in debates because you need to win debates about even silly topics to boost your ego further. A very clear indication of this being a correct observation is that you said: “Photons, for example, come into existence without a cause.” which is pure sophistry, and a denial of logic and reason as valid tools of knowledge. You said that because your intention was to undermine any logic presented to you, and so that you can keep claiming that there is no god, or that you doubt it. Then you went to the other ridiculous extreme above and said, “There are Muslims who insist on believing that human beings appeared on earth without any prior, non-human ancestry, even though there is irrefutable scientific evidence against such an absurd belief.” So the chickens came home to roost. Tell me, what is irrefutable evidence to someone who believes that something can come into being without a reason? First you say things can happen for no reason, then that circumstantial evidences are irrefutable. Your position on cause on the latter issue is different because of your motivation is to win your debates, and to support the atheist/agnostic agenda. This is not a site for soothing an ego ailing from inferiority complexes that needs a “debate fix”, but for answering serious religious questions.

  17. loveProphet says:

    The comment that the proof for human evolution is irrefutable shows absolute ignorance of science. Scientific “facts” change so many times and scientific theories do too.
    I’ve personally been studying the topic of evolution specifically for more than a year and although i’m not going to be bothered into going over it here, its actually plain that its nowhere close to facts like gravity nor is it irrefutable but rather i even deem human evolution scientifically wrong(and other agnostic biologists have too).
    I’ve known quite a few well qualified biologists who don’t believe in it(one having a PhD). Its a theory that is a “house of cards”.
    In fact i’d say that there’s scientific evidence for the Islamic account of the appearance of humans.
    Note also how much distortion and lies that the evolutionists have done on the topic as atheists don’t believe they’re accountable except if they’re found out. Is it ok according to atheists to lie and misrepresent others’ beliefs?
    I don’t see any point in discussing with an atheist/agnostic who is not even open to considering the other side who even resorts to mockery and ad hominem attacks.
    You’ve basically ruled out the possibility of Islam being correct without any proof at the start and then based your arguments on this premise and then said about its beliefs “its absurd and wrong”

  18. Assalaamu^alaykum,

    Darwinism will be covered elsewhere in shaa’ Aļļaah, but I have to find the time for it. For now, please stick to the topic of this thread.

    Abu Adam

  19. sunnimale says:

    assalam alaykum wa rahamatullaH

    Theory of Evolution and Darwin.

    http://www.harunyahya.com/

    All those scholars are living scientist.

  20. Ibn Mazhar says:

    as salam `alaykum

    Truth be told, Sidi, Harun Yahya over simplifies things too much, in my opinion.

    wallahu a’lam

  21. Someone wrote a comment here and said: Kant, the miserable kaafir, may Allah give him what he deserves along with his ilk, did not bring anything new that the scholars had not already faced. Do you realize how arrogant *you* sound when you say things like this? What a pity that your heart and mind is so closed.

    Answer: It is not arrogant. Kant is a miserable kaafir, and it is important that people are reminded of this. Allah said:

    “وَمَنْ لَمْ يُؤْمِنْ بِاللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ فَإِنَّا أَعْتَدْنَا لِلْكَافِرِينَ سَعِيرًا”

    Meaning : “Whoever did not believe in Allah and His Messenger – Verily Allah has prepared for the blasphemers a fire.” (Al-Fatĥ,13)

    Could I have left out the words “miserable kaafir” to sound gentler? Yes, but it is very important for people to learn not to have reverence for someone like Kant, who is an imam of kufr:
    إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا وَمَاتُوا وَهُمْ كُفَّارٌ أُولَئِكَ عَلَيْهِمْ لَعْنَةُ اللَّهِ
    Meaning: “Verily those who blasphemed, and died while being blasphemers, those are cursed by Aļļaah….” (Al-Baqarah, 161)

    Muslims today have been influenced by western style education systems to respect people like him, or even have awe for them. Thus an antidote is needed. My contribution is to say that he is just another miserable kafir.

    I do not see a connection between asserting that Kant was just another miserable kafir and saying that my heart is closed.

    Abu Adam

  22. Alex says:

    Jazak Allah khayr brothers for this wonderful website. The atheists and agnostics, may Allah guide them, are truly kufr in every sense of the word – ungrateful deniers of the obvious Truth (la illaha illallah). Their sophistry decieves countless people and they knowingly employ fallacious arguments to achieve their dubious goals. May Allah give us more brothers with solid foundational knowldege to disarm and defeat them insha’Allah.
    I have been keeping an eye on this site for a while now and am delighted that you logically sound reasoning to explain our aqidah. For myself and any other brothers and sisters new to the Religion this is very beneficial. In order to facilitate a soilid foundation in creed could you please recommend any books, in particular those relating to logic?
    May Allah grant you the best success in the hereafter. Apologies if this is a little off the topic.

  23. loveProphet says:

    Walaikum us Salam,
    It is true that Harun Yahya oversimplifies things and some of what he says is just plain wrong, not to mention that he’s not a scientist and can’t defend himself when under attack on evolution.
    I don’t recommend his works on evolution for those who want a serious study of the issue.

  24. loveProphet says:

    Assalam-o-Alaikum Sheikh,

    Are you aware of Sheikh Sa’id Foudah’s refutation of Kant and dialectic materialism?

  25. Waˆalaykumussalaam, no I have not seen it.

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