[Free Download in .pdf format - Ali Sina Challenge eBook ]
Although I would suggest you read the introduction on this page, you may click the links below to skip the introduction and go directly to the rebuttals of the Ali Sina Challenge, posted on Faith Freedom:
INTRODUCTION to ALI SINA CHALLENGE to MUSLIMS, from FAITH FREEDOM:
The very fact that most of the insults against Islam, are followed by quotations from Hadith is enough to prove the shallow understanding of Islam by critics like Ali Sina. There is not a single verse in the Qur’an which advocates injustice or unsolicited violence, unless it has been quoted out of context. I hope to get rid of all the false accusations made against Islam by people like Ali Sina of Faith Freedom, using a logical and common sense approach, as described by Al Nawai, Ibn Khaldun and Muhammad (P) himself.
Ali Sina of Faith Freedom has used several insulting phrases for a man who is held in high esteem by 1.2 billion people worldwide. In an attempt to insult Muhammad (P), I think Ali Sina has gone a bit too far. I can not claim that this person who spreads such insulting stories, makes his own assumptions and passes his own judgement about people, to be someone with high moral values or credibility. Nevertheless, I am quite thankful to Ali Sina, as had he not challenged the Muslims, I would not have bothered with responding to his false accusations against prophet Muhammad (P).
Ali Sina has declared on his website that he will pay $50,000 to anyone who disproves him. Besides, he will not only remove his website but also declare Islam to be a true religion. I think he is simply bluffing himself!
(1) It really does not matter whether or not Ali Sina declares Islam to be a true religion. He thinks that by declaring Islam to be a true religion he can change the faiths of a billion people. To be frank, nobody really cares. Most of the people who seem to be visiting his site are Muslims who simply laugh him off as an idiot who fails to understand the difference between the Quran & Hadith.
(2) Ali Sina says he will remove his site if he is proved wrong. NO, please dont! Critics like him are very important to Islam. Without people like him, how can one acknowledge the misconceptions that some people hold about Islam. He makes it so easy for us by pointing out the controversial verses from the Qur’an and un Islamic traditions of some orthodox and uneducated Muslims. People like him are extremely important to the Muslims in order to recognise and eliminate the un Islamic traditions, generally known to the Muslim world as Wahabism (Arab traditions).
(3) I would request Ali Sina to donate the $50, 000 to poor and needy people rather than Muslims.
Ali Sina suffers with Islamophobia (phobic disorder) and “querulous paranoia” and holds an impression that “all” Muslims are conspiring to harm him as well as the society. This may be linked to a traumatic childhood experiences he has had as a Muslim living in Iran. Iranians and Arabs are typical examples of some of the most uncivilized people on Earth. Considering that Islam is one of the fastest growing religion in the west, and as every fifth person in the world is a Muslim, the world would have already been wiped out! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persecutory_delusions
Let us put forth the Muslims side of the argument, starting with the following verses from the Quran -
“Invite (all) to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious.” Noble Qur’ân 16:125
“Let there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is good, enjoining what is right, and forbidding what is wrong: They are the ones to attain felicity (bliss)” Noble Qur’ân 3:104
A lesson in Logical Fallacies: http://www.tektonics.org/guest/fallacies.html#000
Ali Sina loves talking about logical fallacies on his website, Faith Freedom, but has committed several logical fallacies in his own arguments. In order to realize this, first we will need to understand what is meant by logical fallacy and the different types of logical fallacies in an argument which make it a fallacious argument.
Logical Fallacy – A fallacy is typically defined as, “A mistake in reasoning; a type of argument that may seem to be correct, but that proves upon examination not to be so” (Copi, 632). Some of the types of logical fallacies made by Ali Sina are as follows -
(1) Ad Hominem – Latin for “against the man.” One kind of this general fallacy is to discredit an opponent instead of his argument. In most places Ali Sina has resorted to attacking Muhammad (P) and the Muslims to such an extent that he has tried to make their side of the argument appear weak and pointless, due to the “mere fact” that the argument has been debated by someone who is not worthy of listening to due to their lack of worth. In other words it is like saying – “Don’t listen to him because he is an idiot.” Ali Sina’s website Faith Freedom is full of these fallacies.
(2) Red Herring (a.k.a. Irrelevant Conclusion, Ignoratio Elenchi) – A Red Herring is an irrelevant topic or premise brought into a discussion to divert attention from the topic at hand. Usually, the irrelevancy is subtle, so that it appears relevant to those not paying close attention. Ali Sina has used this tactic in some of his debates, especially with people like Edip Yuskel. It is simply a waste of time debating with someone like him.
(3) Hasty Generalization (a.k.a. Converse Accident, Leaping to a Conclusion) – The Hasty Generalization is a statistical no-no, when an observation of a rather small group is assumed to apply to a larger group. The most common kind of Hasty Generalization is stereotypes, overly broad generalizations of certain types of people. Eg. Irani and Saudi Muslims oppress their women hence all Muslims are Misogynists. Khomeini issued fatwas to kill non-Muslims and as Khomeini was a Muslim, all Muslims are evil. Muslim invaders attacked and killed non-Muslims hence Islam is a cruel religion. All suicide bombers are Muslims hence all Muslims are terrorists. A majority of critics including Ali Sina have resorted to this tactic in order to prove their point that Islam is evil, completely forgetting that there are 1.2 billion Muslims living in the world and most of them are peace loving people. What would happen if all of them had been terrorists and killed their neighbour? Would anyone be alive today?
(4) Quoting Out of Context – This is exactly what the name suggests. Ali Sina has quoted several verses from the Qur’an outside the context in order to prove his point. Most of my rebuttal to the Ali Sina Challenge consists of providing the context from the Qur’an with reference and leave it for the reader to decide the worthiness of the arguments made by Ali Sina by exposing his “logical fallacy of Quoting Out of Conext.”
(5) Wishful Thinking (also, Appeal to Consequences) – Wishful thinking is a fallacy that posits a belief because it or its consequence is desired to be true. Ali Sina has used a lot of Wishful Thinking in his arguments. Ali Sina’s modus operandi has been to Quote Out of Context, then using Weak Analogy followed by Wishful Thinking to prove his case. On reading the rebuttal to Ali Sina’s Challenge his “logical fallacies” are self evident.
(6) Weak Analogy – There are two common ways to use analogies: using a familiar concept to help understand an abstract concept, or showing a subject has a property because an analogous subject has that property. Using a similar concept to explain an abstract concept is totally acceptable by itself. The only time when it becomes a “logical fallacy of Weak Analogy” is when the 2 concepts being compared are dissimilar. Ali Sina has compared the Quran with the fabricated and corrupted Hadith to derive the conclusions in most of his arguments. All Muslims believe the Qur’an to be the last and final word of God directly from Muhammad (P). It is a requirement of faith. At the same time any critically thinking Muslim will realise that the Hadith are traditions or sayings “ATTRIBUTED” to Muhammad (P) by his followers. It is NOT the actual “Sunnah.”
Looking at the allegations made by Ali Sina of Faith Freedom, although he has quoted some verses from the Qur’an, that too out of context it appears that he has based these allegations mainly on fabricated Hadith. It would be pointless to repeat myself over and over again as we proceed through the rebuttal. It makes the subject very dry and boring. Hence I have exposed the Weak Analogy between the Qur’an and the Hadith on this page so that we can exculde this from our rebuttals. We can then concentrate on exposing the other logical fallacies in the Ali Sina Challenge. Therefore let us examine both the evidence presented by him in greater detail to understand the worthiness of each piece of evidence.
I.The Actual Qur’an – The Qur’an is widely regarded by Muslims to be that which issued from Muhammad’s mouth from AD 610-632. F.E. Peters states, “Few have failed to be convinced that what is in our copy of the Quran is, in fact, what Muhammad taught, and is expressed in his own words… To sum this up: the Quran is convincingly the words of Muhammad, perhaps even dictated by him after their recitation”. Peters argues that “The search for variants in the partial versions extant before the Caliph Uthman’s alleged recension in the 640s (what can be called the ‘sources’ behind our text) has not yielded any differences of great significance.” Reference: -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historical_Muhammad#Historical_authenticity_of_the_Qur.27an
II. The Fabricated Hadith – Early Muslim scholars were concerned that some hadiths may have been fabricated, and thus developed a whole science of criticism to distinguish between genuine sayings and those that were errors or frauds. Overall western academics view the hadith collections with caution. Bernard Lewis states that “the collection and scrutiny of Hadiths didn’t take place until several generations” after Muhammad’s death and that “during that period the opportunities and motives for falsification were almost unlimited. ” In addition to the problem of oral transmission for over a hundred years, there existed motives for deliberate distortion.
Before proceeding let us list the points relevant to the argument with Ali Sina -
(1) The Quran is considered to be the authoritative book on all matters of religion by all muslims
(2) The hadith have been known to have so many errors that the Muslim scholars of Hadith had to develop a “whole science of hadith” to diffrentiate between the fabricated and genuine hadith. We all know that sceince is ever developing and only an ignorant person would deny this fact.
(3) The Qur’an “strongly disapproves” the rigid adherence to fabricated hadith in several verses as mentioned on my page Fabricated Hadith .
(4) There are several hadith in Bukhari which are unsceintific and contradictory, hence we know that Imam Bukhari may have made innocent errors in reporting the exact “content” of the hadith.
(5) Imam Al Nawawi, who was a Sunni Muslim, a popular hadith scholar and an authoritative figure in the Shafi Madhab, in his commentary on the collection of Muslim, wrote: “A number of scholars discovered many hadiths in the collections of Muslim and Bukhari which do not fulfill the conditions of verification assumed by these men.” Hence we know that hadith may be fabricated.
(6) Another Islamic scholar, Ibn Khaldun* wrote: “I do not believe any hadith or report of a companion of the Prophet to be true which differs from the common sense meaning of the Qur’an, no matter how trustworthy the narrators may have been. It is not impossible that a narrator appears to be trustworthy though he may be moved by ulterior motive. If the hadiths were criticized for their textual contents as they were for the narrators who transmitted them a great number would have had to be rejected. It is a recognized principle that a hadith could be declared spurious if it departs from the common sense meaning of the Qur’an from the recognized principles of the Shari’ah, the rules of logic, the evidence of sense, or any other self-evident truth.”
(7) A prominent Muslim scholar of our times, Dr. Muhammad Mustafa Azami, M.A., Ph.D. and Professor of Science of Hadith, University of Riyadh, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia writes:
Many scholars criticized Bukhari’s work. The criticism concerns about 80 narrators and some 110 ahadith . (Quoted from: ‘Studies in Hadith Methodology and Literature’ by M. A. Azami, published by Islamic Book Trust, Kuala Lumpur, page 92.) http://www.mostmerciful.com/hadithbook-sectionone.htm
(8) Prophet Muhammad himself has stated in another hadith – “After I am gone differences will arise among you. Compare whatever is reported to be mine with the Book of God (Qur’an); that which agrees therewith you may accept as having come from me; that which disagrees you will reject as a fabrication.”
(9) Overall western academics view the hadith collections with caution. Bernard Lewis states that “the collection and scrutiny of Hadiths didn’t take place until several generations” after Muhammad’s death and that “during that period the opportunities and motives for falsification were almost unlimited.”
It can hence be concluded that not all hadith that are reported to be reliable are actually true. Many muslim and western scholars hold the view that the hadith collection of Bukhari & Muslim are not free from errors. There are some who insist that the “Mutawattir” hadith are those hadith which have been mentioned by such a large number of people that there is no doubt that these are authentic. This is a logical fallacy of Argumentum ad numerum where something is believed to be true simply due to the number of people who believe in it. Therefore the argument that all Mutawattir hadith are authentic is a fallacious argument. I believe that the above observations would be enough to convince any level headed muslim or non muslim who posesses the least amount of common sense. The ones who would disagree are people like Ali Sina.
Heresay Evidence -
At the most, the hadith literature can be considered to be somewhat like “Heresay Evidence.” This sort of evidence is not generally accepted in a court of Law, unless under exceptional circumstances. Even if one does manage to put it forth as evidence it would not take long to overturn this sort of evidence based on the views of the scholars above. If “expert opinions” of 4 scholars, including 2 from earlier centuries, 1 modern and 1 western scholar is not sufficient I am quite happy to provide more expert opinions. Generally 4 expert opinions would be more than sufficient to disapprove the trustworthiness of any such ancient document used as “heresay.”
There are some hadith scholars who would oppose the views of the above mentioned hadith scholars. This simply means that the subject is so “touchy” that the expert opinions of the hadith scholars are divided as to the authenticity of the hadith. Hence, in any case the hadith used as “heresay” do not live up to the standard of “trustworthiness” required from “heresay evidence,” as not all Muslims agree that all hadith are true.
In effect, Ali Sina has failed to prove anything from the hadith that he has mentioned. All he has done is quoted some erronous and fabricated hadith from Bukhari & Muslim to mislead the unsuspecting readers. The evidence he has presented in his favour, if analysed critically, can easily be refuted as unreliable. “The burden of proof is always on the person asserting something.Shifting the burden of proof, a special case of Argumentum ad Ignorantiam, is the fallacy of putting the burden of proof on the person who denies or questions the assertion . The source of the fallacy is the assumption that something is true unless proven otherwise.” [www.infidels.org/library/modern/mathew/logic.html]
In his challenge Ali Sina has also stated that “Muslims will deny the authenticity of their own religious texts in order to prove their point.” The example he has cited is that of Edip Yuskel. Once again this is a typical example of a logical fallacy Argumentum ad Ignorantiam, as Ali Sina has assumed that the hadith are “authentic” without even bothering to prove its “authenticity.” Hence, the “burden of proof” in order to substantiate his allegations still lies with Ali Sina. In other words Ali Sina does not have a case at all! I am afraid he will have to work harder to prove the charges made against Muhammad (P) and will still need to provide irrefutable evidence to support the truth in the hadith “content.”
Ali Sina has also quoted from some other sources such as the writings of some of the Imams and historians. Posted below are their confessions!
IMAM TABARI’S STRANGE CONFESSION: “I am writing this book as I hear from the narrators. If anything sounds absurd, I should not be blamed or held accountable. The responsibility of all blunders rests squarely on the shoulders of those who have narrated these stories to me.” So, Tabari wrote nothing but hearsay. Mazhabi Dastanain Aur Un Ki Haqeeqat by Allama Habib-ur-Rahman Siddiqui Kandhalwi, Ar-Rahman Publishing Trust, Karachi
Tareekhil Umam Wal Mulook (The History of Nations and Kings) popularly called ?The Mother of All Histories. is the first ever “History of Islam” written by Imam Tabari (839-923 CE) at the junction of the third and fourth century AH. He died in 310 AH, three centuries after the exalted Prophet. What were his sources? Not a scrap of paper! ?He told me this who heard it from him who heard it from her and she heard it from so and so, and so on. By compiling his 13 Volume History and his 30 Volume Exposition of the Quran under royal patronage, Tabari became the Super Imam. The later historians until this day have persisted in following the trails of the Super Imam. – Imam Zahri Wa Imam Tabari, Tasweer Ka Doosra Rukh by Muhaddith-ul-?Asr Jaame?-ul-?Uloom Hazrat Allama Tamanna Imadi Phulwari, Ar-Rahman Publishing Trust, Karachi
IMAM RAZI’S HORRIBLE CONFESSION: Most Muslims have heard of one of the most ancient and famous Tafseer-e-Kabeer (The Great Exposition of the Quran) by Imam Fakhruddin Razi. This Tafseer is one of the tops being followed by our Mullahs till this day. After writing his 300 volumes, the great and authoritative Imam confesses: “All my intellectual and supposedly logical statements in the explanation of the Quran turned out to be lame. All the explanations of the Quran done by the so-called Imams (Tabari, Zamakhshari, Ibne Kathir, Bukhari, Muslim etc) are misguided and misleading. All of us were the tools of Satan. Our souls were polluted by our physical desires. All our endeavors and works of this world promise to bring upon us nothing but eternal humiliation, torture and doom.”
Hadith-Ul-Quran by Allama Inayatullah Khan Al-Mashriqi, 1954 edition, Pg 190.
IBN KATHIR’S CONFESSION: [1301-1373 Abu Al-Fida, 'Imad Ad-Din Isma'il bin 'Umar bin Kathir Al-Qurashi Al-Busrawi]
Had Ibn Jareer Tabari not recorded the strange reports, I would never have done so. (Tafseer Ibn Katheer, Khilaafat-e-Mu’awiya-o-Yazeed, Mahmood Ahmed Abbasi)
IMAM AHMAD BIN HANBAL’S CHASTISEMENT: (780 – 855 CE, 164 – 241 AH)
(Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Hanbal Abu Abd’ Allah al-Shaybani)
Allama Shibli Nomani, on page 27 of his Seeratun Nabi has given a startling quote of Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal (780-855 CE, d. 241 AH), “Three kinds of books are absolutely unfounded, Maghazi, Malahem and Tafseer.” (The exalted Prophet’s Battles, Dreams, and Expositions of the Qur?an).
IBN KHALDUN’S THRASHING: [1332-1406 CE, 732-808 AH, Abu Zayd Abdur-Rahman bin Muhammad bin Khaldun Al-Hadrami]
The Muslim historians have made a mockery of history by filling it with fabrications and senseless lies. (Muqaddama)
SHAH ABDUL AZIZ DEHLAVI’S CRITIQUE: [1745-1823 CE] Six pages of Ibn Khaldun’s History have been deliberately removed since the earliest times. These pages had questioned the most critical juncture of Islamic history i.e. the Emirate of Yazeed and the fiction of Karbala. [Even the modern editions admit in the side-notes that those pages have been mysteriously missing from the ancient original book. Khilaafat-e-Mu'awiya-o-Yazeed, Mahmood Ahmed Abbasi]
SHAH WALIULLAH DEHLAVI’S CHASTISEMENT: [1703-1762] Imam Jalaluddin Sayyuti’s Tarikh-ul-Khulafa is the prime example of how our Historians, Muhaddithin and Mufassirin, each has played like Haatib-il-Lail (One who collects firewood at night not knowing which piece is good and which one is bad).
IMAM RAGHIB’S PROTEST: [Abul-Qasim Husayn ibn Muhammad al-Raghib al-Isfahani 1027- 1109 CE] Tabari, Waqidi, Mas’oodi, Sayyuti wrote any reports they heard. Moreover, Abu Mukhnif, Lut bin Yahya and Muhammad bin Saaeb Kalbi, in whose names the civil wars within Islam during the times of Hazraat Ali, Mu’awiya and Yazeed are reported, never existed. Their names have been concocted and narratives in their names have all been invented by one man, the Zoroastrian “Imam” Tabari bin Rustam.
Please follow the links on top of this page to view the rebuttals to the Ali Sina Challenge from Faith Freedom, and see how Ali Sina has been exposed through Critical Analysis.