Jalal, an ex-Muslim apologist, shares his experiences as a formal conservative Muslim debater.
Many Muslims present examples of people who converted from other faiths (e.g. Christianity) to Islam but there are counter examples. In fact, there are people who are well-educated in Islamic doctrine, devoted and conservative Muslims who are now servants to the Secular and Christian communities! Those are not new-fledged young Muslims who are newly introduced to the faith of Islam, rather people who studied the faith very well, initiated debates with Secularists and Christians and vowed to win. This article sheds the light on one such case study.
It is difficult for someone to admit that he has been mistaken about important topic like religion, especially if he is well established in the topic with a vast experience. Someone who discovered the falseness of Islamic doctrine even after participating in debates, as a Muslim. Quite humiliating it is to receive a “six of the best” when you are in school and you have failed to behave or committed something wrong. But receiving it – figuratively – when you are well established and matured is indeed a different level! I decided to become a Muslim scholar so I can defeat western Secularists and Christians in debates, mainly in Britain as an ex- colonial administrator who acted superiorly over our predecessors. I wanted to show that tables have turned and I can logically defeat their concepts. I was very insistent to defeat them in debates and become a “hero” of Islam.
Unfortunately, all that turned on me and I was thoroughly defeated in the debates. Unlike most encounters where both parties claim victory over each other. I admitted my full decisive defeat and the victory of my opponents which was acknowledged by them. I have written a formal testimony of my defeat. Thus, the results of the debates are objective and complete. Right-Wing Secularists traded high fives. In fact right-wing Secularists were really cooperative and understanding yet very strict about documenting the case and enjoying it in literature – a well deserved achievement.
Supposing they were to treat me in the same way right-wing Islamists treat their captured opponents, they will place me in a cage inside one of the main Secular halls with a stand holding my testimony beside it, so visitors can “see” and “read” about the “hero”! But they did something better than that: they returned a Muslim genie into the bottle and closed it forever … How? Whether I intentionally or unintentionally tried to defend/promote Islam or proselytize Islamic ideas or even if I plan future counter debates with religious/non-religious groups as a form of revenge, all that is now useless and has no effect at all, because:
I fully admitted the defeat, thus, the credibility of any future attempts to defend Islam have been aborted ahead. The result is final and objective. Why would potential converts to Islam listen to someone who was once defeated in debates with Secularists and Christians, admitted that and submitted a testimony!?
The case was fully documented and was published to serve as a source material for freethinkers in the Muslim world. Thanks for the Internet that never forgets anything! That is, if you are inside a closed bottle you can shout as you like, no one can hear you. Which is something good if you are shouting and saying wrong ideas and wrong logic. That was one of the advantages of announcing my testimony, it rendered my supportive opinion to Islam useless. The discussions in UK had deflated my inflated sense of importance and overconfidence.
I was a devoted Muslim, however, behind this mask laid a fragile content which was vulnerable to the slightest criticism. It was like a hot-air balloon, it may appear large but it was empty and easily deflated. I stopped debating and defending Islam. I admitted and accepted the full decisive defeat. Instead, I favored to use all the knowledge that I have of Islamic doctrine to demolish it in a proper and systematic way. Ironically, all the gained knowledge about Islamic doctrine will now be put to serve this goal. An example case study and a lesson to be learnt by conservative Muslims.
Jalal Tagreeb is a freelance researcher and translator from the Levant, his major is Islamic Studies and History. He is a big fan of and supporter to the Western colonization/civilization mission’s views of the Middle East in a very objective way. He understands that his predecessors fought against that, but he thinks that was completely wrong. He believes that the level of education and awareness at that time were insufficient. He has a strong passion to research the topic, mainly the role of modern colonialism and global power politics in shaping the middle east.