A Dialogue between an Atheist Professor and a Muslim student
The following scenario takes place at an educational institute:
“Let me explain the problem science has with God…” The atheist professor of philosophy pauses before his class and then asks one of his new students to stand. “You’re a Muslim, aren’t you, son?”
“So, you believe in God?”
“Is God good?”
“Sure! God’s good!”
“Is God all-powerful? Can God do anything?”
The professor grins knowingly and considers for a moment.
“Here’s one for you: Let’s say there’s a sick person over here and you can cure him. You can do it. Would you help him? Would you try?”
“Yes, sir. I would.”
“So, you’re good…!”
“I wouldn’t say that.”
“Why not say that? You would help a sick and maimed person if you could… In fact, most of us would if we could… God doesn’t.”
“He doesn’t, does he? My brother was a Muslim who died of cancer, even though he prayed to God to heal him. How is this God good? Hmm? Can you answer that one?”
The elderly man is sympathetic.
“No, you can’t, can you?”
He takes a sip of water from a glass on his desk to give the student time to relax. In philosophy, you have to go easy with the new ones.
“Let’s start again, young fella. Is God good?”
“Is Satan good?”
“Where does Satan come from?”
The student falters.
“That’s right. God made Satan, didn’t He?”
The elderly man runs his fingers through his thinning hair and turns to the smirking student audience.
“I think we’re going to have a lot of fun this semester, ladies and gentlemen.”
He turns back to the Muslim. “Tell me, son. Is there evil in this world?”
“Evil’s everywhere, isn’t it? Did God make everything?”
“Who created evil?”
“Is there sickness in this world? Immorality? Hatred? Ugliness? All the terrible things – do they exist in this world?”
The student squirms on his feet. “Yes.”
“Who created them?”
The professor suddenly shouts at the student. “WHO CREATED THEM? TELL ME. PLEASE!” The professor closes in for the kill and climbs into the Muslim’s face. He speaks in a small, deadly voice, “God created all evil, didn’t He, son?”
The student tries to hold the professor’s steady, experienced gaze, but fails.
Suddenly the lecturer breaks away to pace the front of the classroom like an ageing, confident panther. The class is mesmerised. “Tell me…” he continues, “How is it that this God is good if He created all the evil throughout all time?” The professor swishes his arms around to encompass the wickedness of the world. “All the hatred, the brutality, the pain, all the torture, all the needless deaths and ugliness, and all the suffering created by this good God is all over the world – isn’t it, young man?”
“Don’t you see it all over the place? Huh?” The professor pauses. “Don’t you?” The professor leans into the student’s face again and whispers, “Is God good?”
“Do you believe in God, son?”
The student’s voice betrays him, and in a cracked voice he mutters, “Yes, professor. I do.”
The old man shakes his head sadly. “Science says you have five senses that you use to identify and observe the world around you. You have never seen God, have you?”
“No, sir. I’ve never seen Him.”
“Then tell us if you have ever heard your God?”
“No, sir. I have not.”
“Have you ever felt your God, tasted your God, or smelt your God? In fact, have you any sensory perception of your God whatsoever?”
“Answer me, please.”
“No, sir. I’m afraid I haven’t.”
“You’re AFRAID… you haven’t?”
“Yet, you still believe in Him?”
“That takes FAITH!” The professor smiles sagely at the underling. “According to the rules of empirical, testable, demonstrable protocol, science says that your God doesn’t exist. What do you say to that, son? Where is your God now?”
[The student does not answer.]
“Sit down, please!”
[The Muslim sits, browbeaten into apparent defeat. However, ‘the help of Allah is at hand and victory is imminent.’]
Another Muslim, wearing a religious cap, having a beard and easily identified as a Muslim by his dress, lifts his hand up.”Professor, may I address the class?”
The professor turns and smiles. “Ah! Another Muslim in the vanguard. A Fundamentalist, I see. Come, come, young man! Speak some proper wisdom to the gathering!”
The Muslim ignores the sarcasm in the tone of the professor. He looks around the room, waits for the attention of the students and turns to the professor. “Sir, you have made some interesting points. With your permission,sir, I would like to tackle each point individually. This subject has to be tackled logically and scientifically, and not emotionally. The first point is your basic doctrine that God does not exist. The universe, therefore, started with the doctrine of ‘The Big Bang’ and through a process of evolution, Man finally came into existence. Is that not your belief, professor?”
“My son, it goes without saying. There is enough scientific evidence for this. What are you getting at?”
“Let us not be hasty. Let us use logic and reason and proper scientific argument. As a preamble, I wish to point out that I use the word ‘doctrine’ knowingly, for the priests of pseudo-science are, in fact, merely promoting atheism as a religion. I have a question for you, professor. We have in this world millions upon millions of fireworks, ammunition and bombs. Have you heard of any going off spontaneously, or do you admit that, although the ingredients may be in existence in a container, there is required a detonating mechanism to set off the explosions? Two factors have to be present: firstly, the correct ingredients in correct amounts in a suitable environment; and, secondly, somebody to set off the explosion, whether it be by means of a match stick, or the hammer of a pistol, or some electrical spark. For example, if somebody said that he had a bullet in his hand and it went off on its own and killed somebody sitting nearby, would any scientist accept such a ludicrous statement?”
“Of course not. What are you trying to say?”
“Surely, then, if you want us to believe in the Big Bang, that a massive explosion took place on its own without anybody there to ‘pull the trigger’ or ‘light a match’ or ‘electrical spark’ then explain to us how smaller bangs are not taking place all over the world without any external agency? Any scientific claim has to be reproducible for it to be accepted.”
The professor’s mouth opens, but no words come out.
“Also, we know that it is scientifically impossible for matter to create itself. Take this wooden desk. It did not come into existence by itself. Some external agency had to make it. Even the wood did not come into existence by itself. It came from a seed that was planted and nourished. The seed itself came from some source and could not come into existence by itself. Can you explain to us how the original matter came into existence – matter that the priests of pseudo-science state was ignited by the mysterious Big Bang to produce the first living matter? Also, why are your priests not able to reproduce this phenomenon in the laboratory? Professor, you must know that any scientific argument must be reproducible for it to have any scientific credence.”
“Son, it is naive to thing that we can do such a thing. The energy that was unleashed with the Big Bang was such that we do not have access to, otherwise we would also have reproduced the same phenomenon.”
“Professor, you have not told us who provided the basic ingredients, and you are unable to tell us who it was who pushed the button or pulled the trigger or lit the matches for the Big Bang to take place. Where did this tremendous energy, that you are speaking about, originate? Come, come, professor! Let us be scientific about it. Yes, professor, it takes a lot of FAITH in the doctrinal teachings of the priests of pseudo-science to believe in the Big Bang. Do you expect us to discard proper scientific principles and believe in all this hocus-pocus on blind faith in the face of definitive scientific principles?”
“If you don’t mind, professor, I will now go on to the doctrine of evolution as promulgated by the priests of pseudo-science. You are aware that no fossils have been shown that would directly link the descent of Man from the apes and that there is a constant search for what is termed, the ‘Missing Link’?”
“Yes, but there is so much other evidence…”
“Sorry to interrupt, professor. You admit there is no direct link. You must also admit that there are no fossils showing definite intermediary steps in the transition from ape to Man. And I’m sure you are also aware of the Piltdown Forgery, professor?”
“Let me refreshen your memory, professor. Some fossils were discovered in a place called Piltdown in England. These fossil-remains showed all the features that all the priests of pseudo-science and atheism were searching for as the ‘Missing Link’ in the chain of evolution. The whole world was led to believe in it, and even the sceptics were convinced – until it was found, some forty years later, that someone from the scientist-priest fraternity had ‘doctored’ the fossils to make them appear to be the missing link. It was a big lie, a massive forgery that your priests had forged to try and convince the world that the religion of atheism was true and Man had descended from the apes! If you want more enlightenment on it you can read the works of Professor Tobias, of South Africa, on the details of the forgery.”
The professor’s face goes an ashen white. Still no comment.
“Speaking about forgeries – professor, do you know what is plagiarism? Can you explain to the class what is plagiarism?”
Rather hesitantly, the professor speaks, “Plagiarism is to take somebody else’s work and pass it off as one’s own.”
“Correct. Thank you, professor. If you were to take the trouble of doing a bit of honest and truthful research you will find that the Western nations had plagiarised all the TRUE scientific works of the Muslims and then built on it and passed them off as their own ‘discoveries’, which led to modern scientific progress. You don’t have to take my word for it. Just write to the ‘Centre for Studies on Science’, Al-Humera, Muzzammil Manzil, Dodhpur, Aligarh, India, and they will gladly send you all the relevant literature to prove this point.”
By now the class is fully attentive to the Muslim student’s words and they hastily jot down the address.
“Let us come back to the doctrine of evolution which the priests of pseudo-science have fostered on the world. The back-bone of all their doctrines is the concept of ‘natural selection’. This means that species adapted to the changes in the environment by a change in morphology and physiology, changes which they then passed on to succeeding generations, enabling them to survive; while those species which did not adapt, became extinct. The classic example given is that of the dinosaurs which could not compete with smaller, more agile animals which had miraculously ‘evolved’, thus the bigger, more slower animals became extinct, whilst the smaller animals survived. Also, during the course of evolution what was of no use anymore, disappeared, like tails and claws, being replaced with tail-less species with hands which could hold, the final result being Man. You do subscribe to this doctrine, don’t you, professor?”
The poor professor is unsure whether to nod or not, as he is uncertain from which angle the next salvo is coming!
“Come, come, professor! This is the cornerstone of the doctrine of evolution which you priests have been brainwashing the unwary masses with. Let us challenge this pseudo-science with true science. Professor, has any scientist ever produced any new species of life in his laboratory by controlling and changing the environment? Remember, science can only accept material doctrines if they are reproducible.”
“Of course not, even though attempts have been made, sure enough! Let us go a step further: We know that the Jews circumcise their male offspring very soon after birth. We also know that circumcision has been practised by them in an unbroken chain since the time of Abraham (A.S.). As a result, certain illness patterns have changed. Any male child with an inherited bleeding tendency would have died from bleeding and this disease would not have passed on to the next generation. You agree, professor?”
The professor nods eagerly, thinking that this is a point in his favour.
“So, tell us, professor, after thousands of years of circumcising all male infants, why are Jewish children not born without a foreskin? Even if the whole foreskin was not missing, according to the doctrine of natural selection of your priests, there should be some signs of the foreskin getting smaller! Don’t you agree, professor?”
The poor professor just stares blankly ahead, not knowing what hit him!
“Professor, do you have children?”
Somewhat relieved at the change of topic, the professor tries to muster some of his previous confidence. “Yes, I do. I have two boys and a girl.” The professor even manages to smile when he mentions his children.
“Professor, did you breast-feed them when they were infants?”
Somewhat taken aback by this obviously silly question, the professor blurts out. “What a stupid question! Of course, I did not! My wife did the breast-feeding.”
“Professor, have your priests ever discovered any males who breast-feed infants?”
“Again a stupid question. Only females breast- feed infants.”
“Professor, without undressing you, I am certain that you have two nipples, just like all other males. Why have these not disappeared because of redundancy? According to the doctrine of natural selection, such useless items as nipples in males, should have disappeared in all males thousands – if not millions – of years ago! Professor,” the Muslim student spoke gently, he did not shout and he did not push his face into that of the professor’s, “I’m sure that, based on proper scientific argument – and not on pseudo-science – you will agree that the doctrine of evolution is just a big load of rubbish?”
The professor’s face changes a number of colours and all he can do is splutter helplessly.
The Muslim student turns to the class of students and addresses them with a wisp of a smile on his lips. “In fact, one can go further and state that whoever believes he is descended from the apes, must be a monkey!”
It takes a few moments for the class to catch on to the pun in the Muslim student’s statement, but the moment it hits home, they roar with laughter.
When the students recover from their laughter the Muslim student continues. Turning to the professor, he says, “There are so many holes in the doctrine of evolution that it leaks like a sieve. However, time is running out – I have to rush to the Mosque for prayers shortly – so we will not deal with all the myths now. Let us go on to the topic of morality that you raised. But, before that, let us look at the point you may about your brother dying of cancer. If you are upset that he died, then you are absolutely foolish. That human beings, as well as all living matter, will certainly die is such an established fact, that it is believed in by all people, irrespective of whether they believe in God or not, and nobody can really object to the process of death. Secondly, you cannot be so naive as to object to the process of illness – whether it being cancer or any other illness, or an accident, etc. – as a prelude to the process of death. Your objection stems from your misconception that ‘goodness’ is to relieve suffering, and to cause suffering is being ‘cruel’. If this was so, then, professor, you have no choice but to agree that the cruellest people in the world are the medical research-scientists who use animals for all their horrible experiments. Surely you must be aware of the thousands upon thousands of animals that are tortured in different ways and made to suffer a million agonies to prove or disprove certain scientific and medical claims? Are these experimenters not cruel? You’re still with me, professor?”
The professor looks quite ill. The Muslim student goes across and gives him some water to drink.
“Professor, I’m going to ask you another obvious question. You are aware of examinations – tests that are given to students in order for them to pass and be promoted to the next grade?”
The professor merely nods his head.
“A student has to make certain sacrifices, and even live away from home, to attend a university or college; he has to deprive himself of all home comforts; he is loaded with work; he has to give up his leisure time and his sleep in order to get ready for the examinations; then he is faced with horribly difficult questions to answer in the examination and he may also be grilled in his oral examination – and he still has to pay the institution for putting him through this torturing process! – you do not consider all this to be cruel? Is the professor a ‘good’ person for all the mental and physical suffering he is putting the student through?”
“I do not see your point. Of course, the institution and the professor are doing the student a favour by putting him through a training process in order for him to qualify in his particular field. Only a very short-sighted person would object to students having to write examinations, irrespective of the sacrifices they have to make.”
The Muslim student sadly shakes his head. “Professor, it is amazing how you can understand the need for tests and examinations when you have to set them, but you can’t see the same wisdom when God sets tests and examinations for His creatures. Take your brother – if he withstood the test of his illness and he died with faith, what we term as Imaan – he will be rewarded abundantly in Paradise for the suffering that he underwent here. So much so, that he would wish that he had suffered a hundred times more so that his reward would be so much greater, a reward that no eye has seen and no mind has imagined! Unfortunately, ‘only a very short-sighted person’ – and an ignorant one – would object to the tests placed on His creation by God, bearing in mind the everlasting rewards awaiting those who are successful.”
“Paradise? Huh! Have you seen Paradise, touched it, smelt it, tasted it, heard it? According to the rules of empirical, testable, demonstrable protocol, science says that your Paradise doesn’t exist.”
“We will come to that point also, God willing. Let us continue. Tell me, professor, is there such a thing as heat?”
The professor has recovered somewhat and he is feeling more confident. “Yes, there’s heat.”
“Is there such a thing as cold?”
“Yes, there’s cold, too.”
“No, sir. There isn’t!”
The professor just stares blankly. The student explains, “You can have lots of heat, even more heat, super-heat, mega-heat, white heat, or – at the opposite pole – a little heat, or no heat, but we can’t have anything called ‘cold’. We can reach 458 degrees below zero, which is no heat, but we can’t go further beyond that. There is no such thing as ‘cold’, otherwise we would be able to go colder than 458 degrees below zero. You see, sir, ‘cold’ is only a word we use to describe the absence of heat. We cannot measure cold. Heat we can measure in thermal units because heat is energy. Cold is not the opposite of heat but merely the absence of heat.”
Silence. A pin drops somewhere in the room.
The Muslim student continues. “Is there such a thing as darkness, professor?”
“That’s a dumb question, son. What is night if it isn’t darkness? What are you getting at…?”
“So, you say there is such a thing as darkness?”
“You’re wrong again, sir! Darkness is not an entity – it is the absence of an entity. It is the absence of light. One can have dim light, normal light, bright light, flashing light. If one has no light constantly then one has nothing, and this is called darkness, isn’t it? That’s the meaning we use to define the word. In reality, darkness isn’t. If it were, one would be able to create darkness in a positive way and make darkness darker and obtain it in a container. Can you fill a jar with darker darkness for me, professor?”
“Would you mind telling us what your point is, young man?”
“Yes, professor. The point I’m making is that your philosophical premise is flawed, to start with, and so your conclusion must be in error. You are not scientific, but pseudo-scientific!”
The professor goes toxic. “Flawed…? How dare you…!”
The Muslim student is very cool and calm, and he speaks gently, as if to a little child. “Sir, may I explain what I mean?”
The students in the class eagerly nod their heads. They are all ears. The professor has no alternative but to consent. “Explain… oh, explain…” He waves his hand indifferently, in an admirable effort to regain control. Suddenly he is affability itself. The class is silent, expectant.
“You are working on the premise of duality,” the Muslim student explains, “that, for example, there is life and then there’s death, two different entities; a good God and a bad God. You are viewing the concept of God as a finite entity, an entity we can measure. Sir, science cannot even explain what a thought is. It uses electricity and magnetism, but has never seen them, much less understood them. To view death as the opposite of life is to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive entity. Death is not the opposite of life, but merely the absence of life.”
The young man holds up a newspaper he takes from one of the other student’s desks. “Here is one of the most disgusting tabloids this country hosts, professor. Is there such a thing as immorality?”
“Of course there is. Now look…”
“Wrong again, sir. You see, immorality is merely the absence of morality. Is there such a thing as injustice? No, sir. Injustice is the absence of justice. Is there such a thing as evil?” The Muslim student pauses. “Isn’t evil the absence of good?”
The professor’s face has turned an alarming colour. He is so angry that he is temporarily speechless.
The Muslim student continues. “If there is evil in this world, professor – and we all agree that there is – then God must be accomplishing some work through the agency of evil. What is that work that God is accomplishing? Islam tells us it is to see if each one of us will choose good over evil.”
The professor bridles. “As a philosophical scientist, I don’t view this matter as having anything to do with any choice; as a realist, I absolutely do not recognise the concept of God or any other theological factor as being part of the world equation, because God is not observable.”
“I would have thought that the absence of God’s moral code is probably one the most observable phenomena going,” the Muslim student replies. “Newspapers make billions of dollars reporting it every week. Professor, you have tried to put the blame of the evil in this world on the shoulders of God – in whom you don’t believe – which is an obvious contradiction. However, let us analyse who is really responsible for the spread of evil – those who believe in God, or those who don’t? A fundamental belief that a Muslim has is that of being resurrected on the Day of Judgement and answering for his actions in this world. For every good that he did he will be rewarded, and for every evil that he committed he will be held responsible. Every Muslim has to believe that he/ she is responsible for his/her actions and that nobody else will bear his/her burden on the Day of Judgement. The concept of Paradise being a reward for the believers and that Hell will be the abode of the disbelievers, the infidels, is also a fundamental belief, as well as the belief that even Muslim wrongdoers will be punished for their misdeeds. Professor, these concepts have stopped countless millions of Muslims from committing wrong. We all know that punishment is a strong deterrent for committing crimes. Without this concept we would not be able to run our worldly affairs: fines, penalties, jail sentences are part and parcel of any civilised system. On the other hand we have the priests of atheism who do not believe in these concepts when they are mentioned in relation to moral issues. To them there is no Day of Judgement, no accountability, no reward, no punishment. The message to the masses is quite clear, that ‘if you can get away with it then you are O.K. You have nothing to worry about’. Also, seeing that they state that there is no such thing as sin – sin, in our context, means going against the Laws of God – each individual is free to do anything he wishes and no action can be labelled as ‘wrong’. Let me put it this way: the atheist priests maintain that God does not exist. If He does not exist, then He can’t have set down any rules of what is right and what is wrong – thus there can’t be sin, sin means going against the wishes of God. So, man is free to make up his own rules, his own code of ‘morality’. Thus men get ‘married’ to men; women get ‘married’ to women; to spread AIDS and other diseases is O.K.; there is nothing sinful with adultery and fornication, as long as those involved are ‘consenting adults’; according to the logic of the atheists even incest would not be sinful if the parties are ‘consenting adults’, seeing incest is a sin based on a code of morality with its basis being religion, whereas the professor has categorically stated that he ‘absolutely does not recognise the concept of God or any other theological factor as being part of the world factor’; to kill infants in their mothers’ wombs is fine – it is exercising the ‘rights’ that the woman has; and so forth. The list of ‘rules’ passed by the atheist social pseudo-scientists priests is endless. The height of intellectual dishonesty is to place the blame for the spread of this immorality and filth on God! Let us be scientific about the whole issue, professor. Take a group of people who are God-conscious – who believe in Him as he should be believed in – and take a group of people who are adherents to your atheistic creed. Assess, objectively, who is spreading evil. I don’t wish to labour the point, but any objective observer will immediately see that the group of God-conscious people who use the Laws of the Almighty as their code of morality, are in fact, spreading goodness; whereas the those who make up their own rules of ‘relative morality’ are, in fact, the one’s spreading evil throughout the world.”
The Muslim student pauses for these important remarks to sink in. The eyes of the students in the class light up as they see these issues in a clearer light. Nobody had ever explained these important issues to them before, having being brought up on the diatribe spewed forth by the mass media.
“Professor, I am amazed, but not surprised, at your unscientific attitude to morality. I am amazed that, even though you believe that Man evolved from the apes, he will not behave like an animal! I am amazed that, even though you do not believe in angels, you expect Man to behave like one on his own accord, without the assistance of a Divine moral code. The reason that I’m not surprised is that such muddled thinking is to be expected from those who are adherents of the false creed of atheism!”
There is a burst of spontaneous applause from the class.
“We have already discussed evolution, professor. Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes, sir?”
The professor makes a sucking sound with his teeth and gives the student a silent, stony stare.
“Professor, since no one has ever observed the process of evolution at work and cannot even prove that this process is an ongoing endeavour, are you not teaching a doctrine – a doctrine that leaks like a sieve and has less merit to it that any theological teachings? This is pseudo-science, not science, and its proponents are nothing but its ignorant priests!”
The professor goes blue in the face. “What impudence!” He huffs and puffs and strides up and down in front of the class, finally managing to regain some of his self control. “In the light of our philosophical discussion, I’ll overlook your impudence, son. Now, have you quite finished?” The words come out as a hiss.
“Sir, you don’t accept God’s moral code to do what is righteous?”
“I believe in what is – that’s science.”
“Sir, with due apologies, what you believe in is not science, but pseudo-science – and your pseudo-science is also flawed!”
“PSEUDO-SCIENCE…..? FLAWED…?” The professor looks as if he is going to have a fit. The class is in an uproar. The Muslim student stands cool and calm, that wisp of a smile back on his face.
When the commotion subsides, he continues, “You see, professor, TRUE SCIENCE is to discover the laws and designs that the Creator of the universe has put into the system of the running of the universe, from the mega to the micro, from the measurable to the immeasurable. Pseudo- science is an atheistic religion that tries to oppose this concept by forgeries, manipulation of statistics, half-truths, etc. Pseudo-science postulates a mythical unnamed force -their own, man-made, false deity – caused a Big Bang and then started a process of evolution that is contrary to what actually happened. The priests of this atheistic religion are the ones that try to justify the gibberish that must accompany such falsehood by means of forgeries, half-truths and manipulation of data. Truth must win – the truth of the logical conclusion anybody with any sense can deduce, that there is one God (Allah) Who is the Creator of the whole universe. He created the whole system whereby the whole universe has been running smoothly from time immemorial. Let us go back to the point you had made earlier to the other student and which I said I will deal with later. I will give you an example which everyone can follow: Is there anyone in the class who has seen air, oxygen molecules, atoms, the professor’s brains?”
The class breaks out in laughter.
“Is there anyone here who has ever heard the professor’s brain, felt it, smelt it or tasted it?” Nobody says anything. The Muslim student sadly shakes his head. “It appears that no one here has had any sensory perception of the professor’s brains whatsoever. Well, according to the rules enunciated by the professor himself, the rules of empirical, stable, demonstrable protocol of the professor’s pseudo-science I HEREBY DECLARE that the professor has no brains!”
The professor buckles into a chair. The class again applauds spontaneously.
The student goes and ministers some water to the professor. After a while he recovers. He glares at the student. “Your insults in no way proves the existence of God.”
The Muslim student replies. “Professor, I’m really surprised. I would have thought that you would have conceded defeat. But, it seems that you are a glutton for punishment.”
He pauses, looks very thoughtfully at the class and then at the professor. With a heavy sigh he addresses the professor again. “Sir, you have parents – you have a father and a mother?”
“Another of your stupid questions. It is obvious that we all have parents.”
“Be patient, sir. Are you certain that your father is your father and that your mother is your mother?”
The professor goes livid. “How preposterous! OF COURSE, MY FATHER IS MY FATHER AND MY MOTHER IS MY MOTHER!” He is shouting.
The Muslim student pauses. The pause becomes lengthy. There is an eerie atmosphere suddenly as the students sit on the edge of their chairs. With a quiet well controlled voice, the Muslim student says, “Prove it to me!”
The atmosphere is electric. The professor is unable to control himself. His face changes to a purple hue. “HOW DARE YOU!” He is shouting even louder, quite beside himself. “I’VE HAD ENOUGH OF YOUR INSULTS..! GET OUT OF MY CLASS..! I’LL REPORT YOU TO THE RECTOR…!
The class sits petrified at the outburst. Is the professor heading for a fit or a stroke?
The Muslim student stands his ground, unruffled. Facing the class he lifts his hand up, reassuring them that there is nothing to worry about. He then turns his compassionate eyes on the professor. A force appears to emanate from his eyes, directed at the professor. The professor cannot maintain his stare. His gaze drops. His anger subsides. He flops back into his chair and holds his head in his hands.
After a few minutes, the Muslim student speaks, very gently. “Dear professor, I am not implying that your parents are not your parents. All I am trying to point out is that neither you, nor me, nor any of us in this class can prove that our parents are our parents or not.”
“The reason is that we did not witness the act of intercourse between our parents when we were conceived. We were not present to identify whose sperm it was that fertilised the ovum in our mother’s womb. We take our parents word for it that they are our parents. We consider our parents to be honest and truthful in the matter. We do not question them their integrity. In the same way, your children will have to take your word that you are their father and that their mother is really their mother. Is that not so, professor?”
The professor lifts up his head. He looks up at the Muslim student. One can see his face clearing up as some understanding dawns on him. The anger is gone. Very slowly he repeats, “We take the words of our parents.. We take the words of our parents…”
“Yes, professor. There are so many things that we have to take the word of others. The existence of air, of oxygen, of molecules, of atoms, and so forth. So, when it comes to matters that are metaphysical, from our real scientific research we know that there have been no persons existing in the world more honest and reliable than those who are termed Messengers (Rasools). We Muslims are prepared to stake our lives on the fact that Muhammed – peace be on him – had an absolutely flawless character. He never lied to anybody. His integrity was such that even his avowed enemies called him ‘Al-Ameen’ (the Truthful).If he said that God (Allah) exists – and we are prepared to accept the word of our parents that they are our parents- then, in all sincerity and honesty, we have to accept his word for it, as we have to accept many other things – the existence of Paradise and Hell; the existence of angels; the coming of the Day of Judgement; accounting to God for our deeds in this world; and many other concepts. Besides this one point, there are many other pointers to the existence of God (Allah).The Revelation called ‘Al-Quran’ is there for anybody to study. It has certain specific challenges for anybody who has any doubts. These challenges have not been met in the fourteen hundred years of its existence. If one is not prepared to believe in such a Messenger – peace be on him – then it is pure hypocrisy to accept the word of scientists, whose doctrines keep on changing, and even to believe in the word of our parents. Judging from the number of law-suits that take place every year in our courts, where parents deny parentage of their offspring, and also taking into account that there are innumerable babies conceived from donor sperms of men who are strangers, and also the fact that innumerable infants are adopted in infancy by childless couples and brought up as their own children, statistically there is room for a large degree of error in any person’s claim that his/her parents are really his/her biological parents.”
Turning to the class the Muslim student concludes. “It is every individual’s duty to learn more about Islam. Al-Quran is there for everybody to study. Enough literature also available on Islam. It is my duty only to inform you that the only Truth is Islam. There is no compulsion in religion. Clearly the right way has become distinct from error; And he who rejects false deities and believes in Allah (God), has grasped a firm handhold which will never break; And Allah is All-Hearing and All-Knowing. Having informed you, it is also my duty to invite you to join the brotherhood of Muslims by embracing Islam. Allah is the Protecting Guardian of those who believe. He brings them out of darkness into the light. As for those who disbelieve, their guardians are false deities. They bring them out of light into darkness… These are verses from Al-Quran – Words of the Almighty – which I have quoted to you.”
The Muslim student looks at his watch. “Professor and students, I thank you for having giving me the opportunity to explain these issues to you. If you would kindly excuse me, I have to go to the mosque for my prayers. Peace on those who are rightly guided.”