Apologetics: What’s the point?

Apologetics is derived from the Ancient Greek word ‘Apologia‘ (Απολογία) which means to defend, ‘apologíān poieîsthai’ (ᾰ̓πολογῐ́ᾱν ποιεῖσθαι) ‘to make a defence‘. Each person who reads this will have encountered an apologist at some point on Twitter and because they’re armed with religious scripture and faith they either believe they know the truth, or act completely disingenuously and attempt to refute what’s been proven by science. They hit a stumbling block instantly with their attempts to prove their chosen god as it falls flat against someone like me, a non-believer, who relies on evidence and proof to reach a conclusion and whilst I’m vehemently sceptical I’m not close-minded enough to reject proposals if they are argued using reason.

But this is sadly where they fail time and time again.

To use the argument that the universe was created and a creator must prove a god is ludicrous and frankly baffling, despite nothing whatsoever helping them reach that conclusion other than speculation, hearsay and blind belief. No rational person who uses reason, logic or even common sense could come to the conclusion that any gods exist due to the frail complexity of life, and the vastness and inhospitable universe we reside in. Everything points to naturalism.

Every god throughout history has needed a middle-man, or a prophet to spread the word and promote their said god’s word. If Allah is the creator of everything then surely he could speak on his own behalf, and this ridiculous notion that you must have faith and believe before he shows himself to you is the biggest scam in all of humanities history. Why did Allah need Muhammad to convert the gullible to Islam, and why did he leave it so late despite Judaism, and then Christianity making almost the same claims centuries before?

“Truth exists; only lies are invented” – Georges Braque

Let’s go back to the start and talk about truth. Truth is in accordance with facts and reality, and evidence alongside proof leads people to the truth. When people quote the Bible and make claims that it’s the truth, where exactly is the foundation of their claims? Because the Bible has hundreds of references to the alleged truth, how can anyone prove that anything written within its pages is credible? God and his worshippers allegedly say numerous times that god’s word is truth.

“God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” – John 4:24

But what exactly is truth within the Bible as parts of the Bible claim that god is kind and merciful, but other parts claim that god must be obeyed, worshipped and feared and whilst he’s a jealous god with wrath, he loves us all despite murdering or ordering the murder of countless lives. Which part it truth? He’s either a genocidal maniac or he’s a loving god, he cannot ever be both, and this is where apologists cherrypick what suits their narrative and if they are unable to defend their claims they always, without fail, claim that without faith we don’t, and cannot understand the words of the Bible, and we take everything out of context. Apologists are the lowest of the religious charlatans that plague the reality we live in and they are never, ever to be trusted and prey on the weak, easily influenced, gullible and people that are too simple-minded to think for themselves and to question.

Radicalisation: Political Warfare

To be radicalised is essentially to be brainwashed into thinking that one’s ideology is paramount and they’re prepared to defend it at all costs.

the action or process of causing someone to adopt radical positions on political or social issues.” – Oxford dictionary

When people are radicalised into cults, or fundamentalist schisms of religions they are often recruited to perform a duty that will attain a goal. People who are radicalised are often force fed propaganda to give the illusion that the ideology, that’s often political agendas, is substantiated, and in some cases necessary for the greater good. Unfortunately this often leads to violent extremism that manifests in terrorism, be it global or the political arena.

“No one really knows why they are alive until they know what they’d die for.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

I’m going to quote Marton Luther King Jr. twice for a reason.

“A man who won’t die for something is not fit to live.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

I know where his mindset is coming from with both of the statements, and with him being an incredibly intelligent and articulate man, and a pacifist, I understand his passion for life, but what he’s said can so easily be taken out of context and in the hands of a radical extremist his words can be enforced to mean a far more sinister ideology.

Jihadists

Take the Islamist extremists who were part of the terrorist group ‘Al-Qaeda’ (al-Qāʿidah) they believed in a cause that was bigger than them and hijacked and flew American Airlines Flight 11 into the North tower of the World Trade Center, and United Airlines Flight 175 into the South tower. This is currently the most devastating terrorist attack in history that resulted in thousands of deaths, many more thousands injured because Osama bin Laden objected to American foreign policies in the Middle East. Here is the statement published by the ‘World Islamic Front‘ and below is their call to arms.

“We — with Allah’s help — call on every Muslim who believes in Allah and wishes to be rewarded to comply with Allah’s order to kill the Americans and plunder their money wherever and whenever they find it. We also call on Muslim ulema, leaders, youths, and soldiers to launch the raid on Satan’s U.S. troops and the devil’s supporters allying with them, and to displace those who are behind them so that they may learn a lesson.”

This is known as the ‘1998 fatwā’ created by Osama bin Laden and signed by four other key members of Islamist groups and was published February 23, 1998, in the ‘Al-Quds-Al-Arabi‘ newspaper, and was called the ‘World Islamic Front for Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders‘.

“All these crimes and sins committed by the Americans are a clear declaration of war on Allah, his messenger, and Muslims.”

Right-Wing

The far right political mindset is equally as dangerous as it’s a form of extremism that gave birth to white supremacy and the Ku Klux Klan, or the fascist ideology of Nazism and white nationalism. Many of these groups share the same hatred for liberal ideologies and their views are often racist, sexist, and against rights or even acceptance of LBGTQ. This extreme radicalisation caused the Christchurch Mosque terrorist attack on 15th March, 2019, where 51 Muslims were executed in the house of worship and many more injured by lone gun man, ‘Brenton Tarrant‘. He was an Australian citizen who had adopted extreme right wing views and hatred of Islam. Christchurch has been recognised as a predominantly xenophobic region this led to the biggest terrorism massacres in New Zealand’s history. When he was asked if he had any regrets his reply was:

“No, I only wish I could have killed more invaders, and more traitors as well” – Brenton Tarrant

Some good did come of it as it made the government allow a month long amnesty where the public could freely return firearms without any legal requirements were enforced as they planned to ban the most destructive firearms. Many thousands of guns were handed over to the government.

Brenton Tarrant

On the 22nd July, 2011, Norwegian National, ‘Anders Behring Breivik‘, was responsible for two terrorist attacks; one, a car bomb in the nation’s capital, ‘Oslo‘, that killed 8 people and injured many more; and the second he dressed as a police officer he boarded a ferry to the island of ‘Utøya’, where he executed 69 victims with firearms who were there as a youth league attending a summer camp. His political ideology was racially motivated and he feared that white peoples would eventually be replaced with Middle Eastern Muslims who would wipe the whites out through genocide. Since imprisonment he’s confirmed that his views are Nazi, facist extremism and he’s actually said that he regrets not killing more people.

Anders Behring Breivik

“I prayed for the first time in a very long time today. I explained to God that unless he wanted the Marxist-Islamic alliance and the certain Islamic takeover of Europe to completely annihilate European Christendom within the next hundred years he must ensure that the warriors fighting for the preservation of European Christendom prevail.” – Anders Behring Breivik

Religion: terrorism and violent extremism

It’s getting all too frequent hearing about terror attacks and it being fuelled by religious motivation. I was just reading an article about 110 Christian farmers being slaughtered, mostly by slit throats or decapitation in Nigeria by the notorious Islamic terror group Boko Harem. What motivates people of faith to murder and maim innocent people and even declare that god is great after you’ve severed someone’s head off. Just recently there have been several attacks in France where the victims were beheaded, and on the 9th of November 50 people were beheaded by ISIS in Mozambique, and another 50 were executed in April as the gunmen chanted “Allahu Akbar”. The terrorist group are using extreme poverty as justification for their violence as they attempt to put Mozambique under Islamic rule.

“Religion is the most powerful entity on earth. A phenomenon that has conscripted millions to give or sacrifice their lives without so much as a minuscule query about their chosen beliefs or particular ideology. And today thousands of years on despite the huge advent, discovery and the advance of science forensic or otherwise, millions are still prepared and equipped to fall or kill in the name of their God, their Holy Scriptures, their messengers, their prophets and their faith” – Cal Sarwar

The Oxford dictionary defines terrorism as ‘the unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims’, but why terrorism? Why not create a political party and do it the correct way. The Islamic state of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), or the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) have no desire to enter the political field peacefully as they have one ambition, and that’s to turn the world into a caliphate. A caliph is a claimed successor of Muhammad and has a natural right to lead, and they do this through strict Sharia Law. Islamic State claimed the establishment of a caliphate under the leadership of Iraqi born terrorist, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, until he killed himself by suicide vest during the U.S led Operation Kayla Mueller, who’s aim was to capture him.

I guess it’s unfair to just focus on Islam, despite their violence being extremely prevalent throughout the last 40 years, so let’s focus on different sects of Christianity and the bloodshed that they’re responsible for. In the Reformation period that was during the sixteenth century, many people broke away from the Catholic Church due to the direction they were going, and the brutality that occurred during the inquisition. The people that broke away were called Protestants which literally means protestors against Catholicism. They were targeted in vicious terrorist attacks by Catholics as they’d turned their backs on the church.

As technology has developed it’s made terrorism much more dangerous, with people like Osama Bin Laden brainwashing young men to destroy none Muslims, or Aleph (formerly Aum Shinrikyo) who believe that it’s their mission to destroy non-believers in god and have carried out multiple terrorist attacks including a nerve gas being released in the Tokyo subway. Terrorism has become a very serious national security issue to many western countries as sometimes it’s just a lone person like Libyan-born Salman Ramadan Abedi who walked into the Manchester Arena wearing a suicide vest and killed 23 people and injured over 800. Does anyone know that motivation to kill children at Ariana Grande-Butera pop concert? What could that possibly achieve in the political field other than terrorism being a cowardly and barbaric act.