TV Discussion on the Western Creed of Individualism

Salam alaikum brothers and sisters, I will be speaking LIVE today at 9pm (UK/GMT time) on Islam Channel on the topic of Individualism – the creed and foundation of Western philosophy and political thought. It is as central to western worldview, as tawheed is to the Islamic one.

Most of you probably have never heard of it by its proper name, it usually goes by other names and manifestations, like ‘freedom of the individual’, ‘human rights’, to cultural manifestations in statements such as ‘express your individuality’, ‘follow your heart’, and my personal ‘favourite’: ‘you’re special’.

Hopefully, we will be discussing the irrationality of the dogma of Individualism, its fallacies, the issues caused by its application, and how the Muslim community in the West can intellectually protect ourselves from it, and challenge it, as part of our mission to be witnesses (shuhada) to the truth.

The host is Mohammed Mustafa, and I will be joined on the panel by Saleem Chagtai (iERA), inshallah.

For those of you not in the UK, you may be able to view it on Islam Channel’s online live stream:

http://www.islamchannel.tv/ ICPlayer.aspx

To see my previous work on Individualism, read the ‘Third Argument against Individualism’ here:

http://www.thedebateinitiative.com/2013/09/12/the-fallacies-of- the-free-will-argument-for-individual-freedom/



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8 replies

  1. Wow. With each and every post, you promote some sort of robotic slavery.

  2. I think Mark is maybe referring to the “Destiny-Freewill paradox”.

    Which basically goes like this.

    [1] Factual observation: “Life is choice.” Death is the end of choice. Thus…
    [2] Conclusion: Without choice there is no (meaningful) life. Making us “robots”.

    [3] FALSE Assumption: Destiny and Choice are mutually exclusive (only one can exist)
    [4] Fact/Definition: Islam requires the belief in Destiny. Thus…
    [5] = [3]+[4] Conclusion based on FALSE Assumption [3]: “Islam rejects Choice”.

    [6] = [5]+[2] Misguided Conclusion: “Belief in Islam necessitates the rejection of Choice and therefore the belief in “Fatalism” (that humans are mere robots).”

    Note that the whole conclusion [6] rests on the false assumption that Destiny and Choice are mutually exclusive, which is incorrect.

    In fact both exist at the same time and this is not a logical contradiction. The paradox is only an apparent contradiction.

    “We do not choose what Allah writes, but Allah writes what we choose.”
    It is just that our plans and actions will never contradict Allah’s Will.

    Both Allah’s Will (Destiny) and our own choices thus exist at the same time.

    We have ‘choice’, but we cannot 100% guarantee that our ‘will’ will eventually manifest in reality.

    Allah is The Creator, Continuous Sustainer, All-Knowing. Thus Destiny exists.
    What happened, happened. For reality (the past) there is no “What if?”, just “What is!”
    The acceptance of Destiny is essentially the acceptance of reality!

    We are not God, nor robot.
    We are human. Thus we are only responsible for what we can do. Not what we cannot do.
    Our choices have consequences. In this life and the afterlife.

    May…
    We accept the past,
    Live in the present and
    Hope for the future.

    May we ask forgiveness for our mistakes
    and be grateful (in heart and action) for our blessings.

    • @Saif Katana – is it possible to post this (your) comment on my blog and credit it to you, please? Please provide us with a link to your blog/website (if you have one) so I can link my post to your blog/website.

      @Abdullah al Andalusi – I will also link this (your) post to the same (my) post, if I may.

      Jazakallahu khairan guys 🙂 Keep writing

      • I can’t speak for Saif, but you are free to copy anything from my site as your wish.

      • Jzk bro. (With anything I share I try my best to reference them.)

      • @ModWestMuse
        Sure you can use it ^-^
        I don’t have a blog since I am better at adapting my material based on the person I am talking with, than writing for a general audience.
        But you can just use my name and a link to this website as a reference.

        My post didn’t actually deal with the “Destiny-Freewill paradox” issue in detail yet, due to it being a pretty big topic. To big for just a blogpost or comment in a comment section.

        On this topic there are two main areas on interest.
        1. How to practically deal with the question, without “looking under the hood” and going into the workings of how Allah actually created the Universe like this.
        2. Trying to describe how Allah created a Universe where Allah’s Will and human choice (the choice between wright and wrong) are in harmony with each other.

        Area 1 has been dealt with very well by many scholars already.
        Basically it is…
        We know Destiny exists, due to revelation in the Quran
        and we know choice, human will, exists because it is directly, but mostly indirectly, referred to in the Quran.
        Thus we just accept this truth and deal with it. And there are many examples from the Quran and Hadith where the Prophet s.a.w. shows us how to deal with it practically in our daily lives. Like “tie your camel first and then trust in Allah”.

        What people who reject Destiny miss, because it is “just a belief”…
        Is that the opposite of Destiny, (metaphysical) chance is also just a belief!
        The belief that “everything is just an accident”, events are “random” and “it could have been different” are all also unprovable and non-disprovable beliefs.
        One of these modern forms of belief in chance is for example the multiverse hypothesis.

        Note that (metaphysical) chance is not probability. Probability is just the uncertainty in our prediction about the future. Probability doesn’t state anything about metaphysics.

        Area 2 is about “the unknown realm” which is not know and cannot be known to us mortals, except through what Allah chooses to reveal to us.
        We can guess and we might even guess correctly, but we will never be able to actually prove any of our guesses.

        Just like we cannot prove we and the Universe “exist” or are just living an eternal dream.
        We just have to believe in it.

        My guess, which is just conjecture and can never be proven, described very briefly is this…

        “Allah simply says “Be” and it exists”

        Allah knows/knew all our choices and their respective effects, including all the interactive relationships between the choices and effects of all beings in this universe. Allah just simply matches all causal relationships so that Allah chooses exactly which effects will occur in all our lives and matches it with all the choices all beings including us will make in this universe.
        That way all humans are still responsible for what they do,
        while simultaneously having to accept and be grateful for that what is done to them by Allah. Gratefulness is the only way to be happy by the way.

        This guess only makes sense if you see “above” the whole space-time reality. If you see it from a “linear time” step-by-step past-present-future “linear causality” perspective you are never going to see it. Try to see all time and causality as one whole.

        To see the whole you must use synthesis, not analysis. Logic is about analysis. It is about breaking apart not about putting together. Logic is necessary but not sufficient. Both analysis and synthesis must be in harmony, like the male and female.

        NOTE that this is just a guess and it can never be proven to be true. But it can be proven to be false by being internally contradicting. And disproving my guess does not disprove the existence and harmony of Destiny and human choice.
        This is just a way to describe it in a way for us humans to understand it and show you that a non-contradicting explanation is possible.

        My intention is not to give definitive proof, or add something to Islam.
        My intention is to make people struggling with this paradox some relief in their minds and hearts, so their hearts are more inclined towards Islam.
        Because I have seen many Muslims in the West, especially teenagers, struggling with this paradox and most parents and other first generation Muslims in the West from “Muslim countries” give really bad and demoralizing explanations which just make the teenagers doubt their faith.
        Like: “Yeah there is no freewill!” or after they made a decision saying “You have to accept my decision, because it is Destiny (Allah’s Will)!”

        The point of my guess is actually not the guess itself.
        It is to show you the excellence of logic.
        The excellence of logic is when it reveals its own limits.

        Destiny or random chance?
        Are we humans… God, angels, devils, animals, robots or just human?
        Ungratefulness (rejection of Truth) or gratefulness (acceptance of Truth)?

        We cannot choose to believe or not to believe.
        We only choose what we believe in.

        And faith like trust and hope, is most valuable in the beginning.
        And useless after the event has already past.
        Just like believing in yourself, your marriage, your children MUST be in the beginning and is utterly useless after “the end”.

        That is why faith in Allah, the Afterlife and Judgment is only useful when you are still alive and useless after death.

        Faith after death is like
        love after divorce
        trust after failure.
        It is a square circle.

        Sorry for going a bit off-topic, but these points are exactly why many people disbelieve in reality as the Will of Allah.

        Come to think of it, an overemphasis in the West on logic and analysis, breaking apart the whole, might be the cause of a breaking apart of human relationships to their smallest form “the individual”. Seen from this perspective, Individualism is a mental imbalance/illness.

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  1. The Destiny-Freewill Paradox | ModWestMuse

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