Brief History of Atheism

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Kamil Ahmad

Channel: Kamil Ahmad

Episode Notes

Episode Transcript

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Bismillah Alhamdulillah wa Salatu was Salam ala rasulillah.

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While he was so happy he married my dad, Salaam Alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

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In reality, the topic that I had in mind,

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although it is related to atheism,

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it's looking at it from a different perspective. And I'll explain that in Sharla hotelguide.

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But to start off,

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the times that we live in,

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are times of great trial and test, especially for our youth, especially in this society that we live in.

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And even more so for the university students.

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And if we were to think about it, misguidance and deviation

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is different than what it was in the past.

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And so, the shark or the deviation of the kurush, for example, was one of idolatry. They used to worship idols, where city deviation is basically a deviation of ideologies. It is a deviation of ideologies. And so in the past it was, it was idolatry. Their fitna was that of idols. Today, we don't have too many idols around. We don't have,

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you know, our statues that people worship as much, especially in this part of the world. Rather, we have ideologies, that although the people don't admit it, the reality is that they worship these ideologies.

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And so

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you know, today's fitna with ideologies

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resembles the fitna of kurush, with with idols, and so they abandoned the watching the revelation from Allah subhanho wa Taala. And they demanded everything from, from their minds, from their intellects. And so an example is a Buddha jack when he said that we used to worship an idol. We used to worship an idol. And if we found one being better than it, we will throw that idol away and start worshipping this new idol. So this is exactly how this society is here today.

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Today, there are upon one ideology, following one manmade ideology. And tomorrow they find problems in the ideology. And so they find a new ideology.

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And among the fitting of ideologies today is that of atheism, that of atheism.

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And although atheism is nothing new,

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it is nothing new. And it has always existed.

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And especially in the last, perhaps 100 or 200 years in this part of the world.

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Today, atheism has come in a new form.

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It's the same beliefs, the same ideas, but it has basically come in a new form. And that is what our, you know, Western academics and researchers have referred to as being the new atheist movement, the new atheist movement.

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And this new atheist movement, basically,

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as I said, it hasn't brought anything new to the table. But rather, what's new about it is its vision and the way the way it carries out its dour

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wood, by using force, aggression, and, you know, militancy.

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However, I'm not going to really talk about new atheism as much today.

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Although we know it's dangerous, and the spread of atheism today, not only amongst non Muslims, but also among many Muslims. Today, we can trace it back to this new atheist movement.

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Because one of the targets of this new atheist movement is Islam and Muslims. Many of the leading figures of the new atheists, they have openly declared, you know, their enmity, particularly to Islam, more than any other religion. And so this has caused a lot of Muslims to become entrapped by, you know, their crops and has caused, you know, a lot of them to donate their beliefs.

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But what I wanted to go into today Firstly, is

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Talk a little bit about the history of atheism. And this is very, very crucial and important for all of us to get a bit of background about atheism, throughout history.

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If we go far back enough, we find that

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although atheism may have existed

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many, many centuries ago,

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even before the time of the Prophet sallallahu wasallam, it never existed as a widespread phenomenon.

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There were rare cases of people who claimed to reject the existence of Allah subhanho wa Taala rare cases.

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Rather, what we find in the past, and among past nations, was widespread what

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polytheism schicke that was what was widespread. And so what proves this is the fact that in the Quran, Allah subhanho wa Taala, has mentioned to us the stories of the past nations with great detail,

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precise detail mentioning to so many stories of the past nations.

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And we find that not in any one of these stories is your any mention of people rejecting the existence of Allah subhana wa Tada, we don't find, rather what we find common. A common phenomenon that we find among all of these past nations was their ship, associating partners with Allah subhana wa, tada

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while acknowledging the existence of a loss of Hannah, who, what

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we find the all of these, you know, nations and these profits that were sent to these nations, these nations, they accepted the existence of a lot in, in essence, but they had a deviation with regards to that belief. They had a deviation with regards to that belief, and that deviation was that they would direct their worship to other than a lot were associated partners in their worship of Allah Subhana, whatever. And that's why Allah Subhana who would that it says, Well, now you can walk through him Billa illa wahama shikun that most of them do not believe in a lot except while associating partners with him. And so the majority of mankind, they believed in his existence, they

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believed in a lot, but they would associate partners with him. And the reason for that is because

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the existence of Allah subhanho wa Taala is a natural belief, to believe in a law. This is, as we know,

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the very fitrah that exists within each and every single human being, from the beginning of time until you'll know piano, this fifth row is embedded in our hearts.

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And so, no one denies that belief, except that he's going against

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against his very natural belief that he has inherited from Adam and Sarah.

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And so coming back to the point, the mystery Kuhn of the past used to believe in a law as the creator, the Sustainer, the one who controls the universe.

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And so, in various places in the Koran, Allah subhanho wa Taala. You know, he says to His Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam asked them

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we're in Santa Monica Santa Lottie, what are they akuna lacuna. We're in Santa Monica la casa now it will Allah Saqqara, shumsa. Will camara laye aku Luna LA, the if you were to ask them who created the heavens and earth, and who caused, you know, the sun and the moon to move, they would say, Allah subhanho wa Taala in similar Ayah to that. And this is who correct who did not accept the message of the prophet SAW Selim

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and who used to associate partners with a loss of Hannah who went ahead. And so this is why, you know, a loss of Hannah who attended never sent prophets and messengers

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to any civilization

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to tell them to believe in a loss existence, nor to prove that to them, because it's something that they already believed in.

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And that's why, as they would say, a feeler he shocked the prophets will say to their people, a fella he shocked thesaurus and now it will or is there any doubt about Allah, the One who created the heavens and the earth? The obvious answer to that, you know from them is that obviously, there is no other creator. There is no other God except Allah Subhana who would add rather Allah Subhana who without a cent these prophets and messengers to come

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Correct a deviation

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that existed. And that was the deviation of shift, associating partners with that Lord with a law who they already believed in.

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So the question is, when did atheism start to appear?

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Or when did it start to appear

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as a phenomenon,

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as something that started to become widespread.

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If we were to trace back the roots of atheism, as we know it today, we find basically, it can be traced back to the Renaissance period in Europe,

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the period known as a renaissance or

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the religious reformation.

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And so

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this period was, you know, started around the 14th 15th century, and extended.

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And so, the Europeans, after living in what they themselves termed as the dark angels, they had a Renaissance, where they took what they learned from the Muslims

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in the various fields of, you know, science, and they started to advance forward materialistically. At the same time, they had a religious reformation where they started to detach themselves from the authority of the Catholic Church.

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And so you had, for example, Martin Luther, who, you know,

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and his, you know, reformation movement, the Protestants and they basically broke off of the Catholic Church, and others during this period of time.

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Now, one of the distinct features, one of the distinct features, prior to this period, and even during this period, we find was, that the Catholic Church had complete authority and power and control over the affairs of society.

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That the end

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was with the Catholic Church, the last day was with them in everything. And so all the laws in society, were executed by the church. And so, it was nearly impossible for anyone to object to the religion or object to

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any

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of the actions of the Catholic Church, whatever they would do, whatever, you know, laws, they would implement, no one could object except that either they would be imprisoned, or they will be tortured, or they would be executed. And this was common practice, this was common practice. And so to deny the existence of God, in its very essence, was unthinkable. And so prior to this time, atheism never existed, or it never openly existed. But with the beginning of the Renaissance period, and, you know, as the power and control of this church started to diminish, as a result of, you know, what was going on in Europe,

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of the advancement of technology, and the various sciences. And the Reformation movement, as all of this was happening, the power and control of the, of the church started to diminish.

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And this basically gave way for individuals and groups to openly criticize the church,

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and to openly criticize their religion and religious beliefs.

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But what is important to, you know, realize here is that even now, in the beginning of this period, no one openly rejected the notion of belief in a loss of Hannah who without, even when they had the ability to do so, rather, there are cases where people actually tried to do that. But it wasn't the church, rather the people, the society itself, that rejected, society itself wasn't ready for, you know, widespread atheism. And so whoever announced their disbelief in the existence of a lot, they would be tortured by the people.

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And some were even killed. Some were even killed, when they even you know,

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basically fancied the idea that, you know, God does not exist.

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And so,

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what we find is, that if we were to move on to the 18th

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If we were to move on to the 18th century, and the Enlightenment age, the Enlightenment age in Europe,

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we find that this is actually when atheistic ideas started to surface and become accepted by especially by the elite in society, by the intellectuals in society. And so you had, you know, scientists, intellectual figures, philosophers, who started to accept, or at least, you know, fancy the idea of, you know, God not existing, whether it be atheism, or agnosticism. And so

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many researchers, Western researchers, they believe that

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atheism, as we know it today can be traced back to that it can be traced back to the 19th century, that this was its starting point.

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The 19th century was the starting point. And we find that this is basically that this coincides with the French Revolution, that it coincides with the French Revolution. And so the French Revolution was basically what gave way for all the intellectual movements

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of the 20th century.

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Whether it be secularism, whether it be liberalism, humanism, all of these isms, and all of these intellectual movements and philosophies, we can basically trace their roots back to the 19th century, and the French Revolution. And so the French Revolution is an important turning point for atheism, becoming widespread and accepted in society. And what we find is that during this period,

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certain individuals arose in Europe, who laid the foundations for, for atheism, as we know it today. And so, almost every atheist, or, you know, our atheist scholar today,

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will be quoting from

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scholars in the 19th century, it was those individuals who basically paved the way for those intellectual movements, who the atheists of today can basically trace their roots back to. And so what these so called into intellectuals and philosophers did, and many of them were scientists in various fields, what they basically did was that they analyzed various phenomena,

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depending on their particular backgrounds, so if one was a biologist, he would analyze certain,

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he would do research on all experiments in the biology field. If he was

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a psychologist, he would do research in that field, all of them would do research in their particular fields,

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in order to try to prove that God does not exist, in order to try to prove that God does not exist. And so basically, what they tried to do is they tried to take the results of these experiments, and prove through those results, that there is no creator, to this universe. And this is basically

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common among all of these researchers.

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Now, what helped them to gain a following

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what helped them to gain a following among the people was that European society at this particular time was advancing scientifically, technologically. And so

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technology and science was basically starting to replace

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the authority of the church, and the authority of religious figures.

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And so, for them, their new religion became the authority of science, and philosophy, and intellectual thought, and so on and so forth. And so, once they saw that, things were being proven, through trial and error, and through experiment, and through science, they readily accepted whatever the scientists and intellectuals had to say. And so, based on their observations, the so called scientists and intellectuals, they basically came to the conclusion that God does not exist and so the people readily accepted it. And so we see a major shift here in how society

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He looked towards religion,

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we see a major shift here in how society started to approach religion. And so before, they would simply accept whatever they were told.

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And they would accept religious beliefs without questioning. But now, they put the test to science, and philosophy and sociology, and psychology and so on, and so forth.

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And we also see that people thought that there was a contradiction between religion and religious beliefs and the natural sciences.

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And so they thought that there is a contradiction between the two, between what religion teaches and between what science tells us and proves us. And the reality is that this is based on what they had experienced. This is based on what they had experience with,

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with the Christian religion. And so Christianity was a religion, and still today is a religion that is not based on proof.

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It's not based on proof, rather, it's based on distorted scriptures. And it's based on

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util false myths, things that cannot be proven. And so once they saw that science is proving everything they were, they had, you know,

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they had a very, very good reason to basically dismiss what religion and religious beliefs have to say,

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this is their experience with Christianity. However, if there was a religion that was based on, you know, proof and evidence, then we cannot use the same arguments. And so that's where Islam comes into place. That's where Assam comes into play where there's a huge difference between how how, you know, Islam view science, and how Christianity or how the Christians viewed science. And so we have no problem between religion and science, the two go hand in hand. And that's because both are based on proof and evidence. Whereas for them, one was based on proven evidence, and the other was not

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what is the point of mentioning this historical background? What is so significant about it?

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Who wants to

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volunteer to give an answer?

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When discussing atheism, why is it important to

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understand the historical background of it?

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That's a very good answer.

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Yeah, basically, to understand, to refute anything, you have to understand where it came from.

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came into existence. Most important is the fact that you mentioned that atheism was was born. When basically it started challenging Christianity based on the fact that Christianity and the Bible were corrupted on our basis. It was easy for easy for atheism to grow and get close roots, because it easily and constantly defeated Christianity. And you see those arguments they have against Christianity, the

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arguments against Christianity.

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Yeah.

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There was one here.

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Okay, any sisters?

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started from the beginning of time. So anybody seeking the truth, like whenever somebody comes up to date or anything like that,

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when this whatever idea, we're talking about starting

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pipe pipe, basically. That is the gist of the answer. What are, you know, the bits that everyone gave in?

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By looking at by looking at how atheism emerged,

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and the circumstances in which emerged,

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it becomes crystal clear, it becomes crystal clear that those original atheists, those original atheists, whether it be in the Renaissance age, in the Enlightenment age

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Or even their followers today, even their followers today, it becomes crystal clear that

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there was a certain motive

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there was a certain motive or root cause as a brother mentioned

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that was deep down inside, even though they may not have shown, even though they may not have shown it, the root cause behind what behind them turning towards atheism, or openly declaring that God does not exist.

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And so, although there are many reasons and many motives behind why people may reject

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the belief in a loss of existence, there is one that stands out

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there is one root cause or motive that stands out.

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Besides all others, what is that?

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Especially considering what we have gone through the historical background that we went through?

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The church is controlled,

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denying scientific truth.

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Okay, but we're looking at the root cause what was it that made them go towards us?

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Okay.

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But now, the question is why, why are they? Why are they trying to counter the church.

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That's the closest that we can see here, basically,

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you know, the root cause or motive behind why they turned towards atheism.

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And this is something we notice, not only among them, the Christians will, you know, wanting to go against the church, or the Europeans, not only among them, not only among the atheists of today, but even of the far past.

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Even of the forecast, we find one common factor among all them, and that is arrogance,

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the arrogance, and not wanting to as a brother mentioned not wanting to submit, not wanting to submit to the confines of a religious system, whether it be the true religion that Allah has sent us with, or a religion that was once true and it became corrupted over the ages. And we find a beautiful example of that. In the Quran. Allah has mentioned this story so many times in the Quran, which example is that? The example of Pharaoh.

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And so Farah hone rejected Allah subhanho wa Taala. There are some who say that he was an atheist. But the reality is that he believed in Allah subhanho wa Taala. But what he claimed in front of the people that law does not exist,

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was not based on a firm belief that a lot does not exist. He didn't have the proofs and the arguments that atheists use today.

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He didn't have those proofs back then. He was simply arrogant. He was simply arrogant, he did not want to submit to move Sally Salaam and to the law that Allah had sent with Musa alayhis salaam and his followers as well. And that's why I lost him had him without it says about them. What jeho do was to connect her and food to him, woman

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that

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surround surround and his followers. They rejected it, meaning the message. This is openly was they Kanata and fuzu. Deep down inside, they were convicted of it. They had certainty about a lot and about what musala Islam came with, meaning that they were convinced of it internally. They believed it with their hearts, but they rejected it outwardly. And that was for no other reason. Then as Allah says, volman Wailua out of you know, injustice. And Hello, we're out of arrogance, wanting to be above wanting to be above the people wanting to be above the confines and the restrictions that a religion may come with. And so this was fear of the past. And this is also the atheist of today.

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This is also the atheist of today. And so the atheist of today, no matter what argument they may bring forth.

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To try to disprove the existence of Allah subhanho wa Taala. The reality is that the majority of them, I'm not saying every single one of them.

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There are those who may be convinced, deep down inside that, you know, there is no god to this universe, but the majority of them, although they may say it with their tongues, and this is what they try to prove outwardly. The reality is that deep down inside, they know that this universe has a creator.

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And it is run by laws, that that creator put in place. But it is the famous slogan of freedom.

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They want to be free, they want to be liberated from the confines, and the restrictions of a religious system. And that's what we find, when we looked at the historical background behind how atheism emerged in Europe. And so,

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the Europeans, they had enough of the church, and the oppression of the church,

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and its unjust laws, and so on and so forth.

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And not only that, but on top of that,

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you know, their new discoveries, scientific discoveries, discoveries disproved those religious beliefs of Christianity, and so they had enough and so it was time to break away and be freed and be liberated from the restrictions that were in place.

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However, the reality is, the reality is, as Islam teaches us that true freedom,

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true freedom is being freed from being controlled by our

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our knifes and our, basically, our base human desires. This is true freedom, and also being freed from manmade ideologies. And so submitting to Allah submitting to the laws of a lot.

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One is enslaving himself, yes to Allah Subhana who attach them to the laws of Allah. But this is true freedom. Why? Because one is freeing himself from following his own ego and his own inner desires.