From: Nur Elisa Ghazali

Hello there,

I accidentally came upon your website while looking for some writing explaining "misleading statistics" used in arguments. Very impressive!

I'd also like to share the following article with you. Hope you'll find it interesting to read.

Take care.

- Nur Elisa

"For People Who Think"

[The text from the above website had been inserted here]

Nur Elisa,

Thanks for your comments on my website.

I read your attached article. I find it similar to arguments I have read for the accuracy of the Jewish/Christian Bible. As with the article you provided, they claim that the Bible contains no contradictions (which would be somewhat impressive since the Bible has many authors) but it turns out that it has many. When these are pointed out, the Bible defenders present excuses that are often horribly lame. They also claim miraculous knowledge, usually in the form of prophesies. When investigated, it turns out these could be easily explained (the prophecy was made after the event happened, the event was assumed to have happened as based on the prophecy, or the prophecy was vague and inaccurate). In general, people promoting a religious view are rarely at all objective. This seems to apply to all religions and to some atheists as well.

The claims that the Qur'an contains correct knowlege of the universe that would have been unavailable at the time could be evidence of its divine origin, but I cannot judge that since I don't own a copy and the author of your article didn't quote the relevant passages. However I plan to look up the references when I get the chance (which may not be for a few weeks).

My impression is that most people believe in whatever religion they have because people they respect have told them that the religion is true. This may be family, friends, clergy, or some charismatic person, particularly one who has been kind and helpful. In addition, those advocating the religion suggest that followers are more moral or enlightened than those that believe something else, which naturally appeals to people. Finally they often indicate that followers will have better treatment in the afterlife. I think this applies to almost all religions. Unfortunately this has little to do with whether the religion actually is true.

Sometimes people have emotional or psychological experiences that they interpret as divinely caused and evidence for whatever religion they otherwise favor.

I doubt many people arrive at a strong religious view through impartial analysis of the facts. Obviously, many people choose religions unwisely, and through history this has led to warfare and much human misery. We all need to be very cautious about what we believe, but few of us are.

I am curious why you personally decided that Islam is the true religion. Was it for the reasons stated in the article or because some of the influences I described above? How familiar are you with other religions? I suspect that religious debates usually go nowhere because people only discuss the issues that make nice sounding debating points, but few people try to actually figure out the real, deep down, reasons they and others believe what they do.