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Muslim campaign looks to repair Sharia’s reputation
The organization’s PSA features Rais Bhuiyan, a man who was shot in the face as part of a revenge shootings post 9/11 but went on to lobby for the right of his shooter.
March 2nd, 2012
05:00 AM ET

Muslim campaign looks to repair Sharia’s reputation

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) – A major American Muslim group is embarking on a national campaign Friday to clarify a word it says has been given a bad name by recent global and domestic politics: Sharia.

The Islamic Circle of North America says its effort is aimed at “educating Americans” on what it says is the noble meaning of Sharia through conferences, billboards, and TV and radio PSAs.

The group is also launching a national hot line to answer questions about Sharia and Islam.

For more than a billion Muslims around the world, Sharia describes a way of life, from dietary laws to a code of moral life. For some conservative American critics, the word is sinister – connoting a draconian legal code that they contend threatens to subvert American law.

Sharia was politicized in the post-9/11 world as the U.S. paid more attention to perceived threats from the Muslim world, said Zahid Bukhari, president of Islamic Circle of North America.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

More recently, Bukhari says Republican presidential candidates have used the word to foment Islamophobia.

“We should have a federal law that says Sharia law cannot be recognized by any court in the United States,” Newt Gingrich said to a standing ovation at the Values Voter Summit in Washington in 2010? “No judge will remain in office that tried to use Sharia law.”

“Some politicians like to abuse the word in this national spotlight they have,” Bukhari said. “They are trying to make it a dirty word.”

The campaign includes a website titled “Defending Religious Freedom: Understanding Sharia” listing ways people can get involved and answering questions about Sharia.

In the “Sharia FAQ” sections, it discusses what Sharia exactly is, whether it’s a threat and how it affects women.

“Muslims are taught to respect the laws of the land they live in as long as they can still effectively practice being Muslim,” the website says. “Islam is a faith, a way to be in a community with others and be in a relationship with God. Like other people of faith, whose values are inspired by religious tradition, Muslims can be and are engaged citizens.”

One public service announcement  features Rais Bhuiyan, who was shot in the face as part of a post-9/11 revenge killing but went on to lobby for the right of his shooter. “Join me in the fight against hate, ignorance and Islamophobia,” Bhuiyan says in the ad.

Islamic scholars admit the definition of Sharia is complex. There are multiple contexts of the word – theological, historical, contemporary – and different applications have different meanings.

“As Islam moved to different countries, it began to adapt to a historical context,” said Akbar Ahmed, chairman of Islamic studies at American University in Washington. “For example in Iran, Sharia means something slightly different than other countries.”

The religious meaning of the word, said Ahmed, is the path to righteousness.

But that changed in the public mind after the September 11, 2001 terror attacks, according to Clark Lombardi, professor of Islamic law at University of Washington in Seattle.

“Sharia has become a political buzz word,” Lombardi said. “The word Sharia has an extremely wide and complex semantic tradition. To use the word is a fraught path.”

In 2010, Oklahoma voters approved a ban on imposing Sharia, though courts have blocked the measure from taking effect. Other states across the nation have mulled similar bans.

According to Lombardi and Ahmed, the proposed bans don’t make sense because implementing Sharia law in America “doesn’t add up.”

“This contemporary debate is slightly out of proportion,” Ahmed said. “Indonesia – they don’t have Sharia and they are a majority Muslim nation. If the Muslim community is 2% in America, how can 2%, even if everyone wanted it, impose Sharia on the 98%?”

Lombardi said what some may consider as a law inspired by Sharia could also be a law in line with the Judeo-Christian traditions.

“Let’s say that Muslims and Evangelicals both voted in a state, democratically, to ban gambling and drinking alcohol on the grounds that they both believe it is immoral,” Lombardi said. “Evangelicals because they find it in the Bible and Muslims because of their understanding of what God wants. Is the state applying Sharia law?”

Lombardi went on to say that some laws, whether they originate from secularism or from religion, can comply with Sharia. But that doesn’t necessarily mean those laws are based in Islam, said Lombardi.

“A law would not become Sharia law just because Muslims are behind it,” Lombardi said.

Some said the fear is escalating.

“We are almost reaching hysteria levels,” Ahmed said. “When people say, ‘Sharia is coming to America,’ I ask, ‘Who is bringing it?’ It doesn’t add up.”

But Frank Gaffney, president of the conservative American Center for Security Policy, said that concerns about Sharia law in the U.S. are valid.

“I am not concerned about these guys imposing Sharia on us tomorrow,” Gaffney said. “I am concerned, though, that that is exactly what they want to do in the future and are making progress in doing that.”

Gaffney said the Islamic Circle’s Sharia campaign would “only muddy the definition of Sharia further.”

Pamela Geller, an outspoken Sharia critic, agrees with Gaffney.

The campaign is an attempt to “whitewash or outright deny the elements of Sharia that conflict with Constitutional freedoms: the denial of the freedom of speech and the freedom of conscience, and the institutionalized discrimination and subjugation of women and non-Muslims,” Geller said.

In response to the ICNA program, Geller wrote in an email that a group she is affiliated with, Stop Islamization of Nations, will roll out a “multicity program to educate the American people on the true meaning of Sharia and the threat it poses to our cherished freedoms.”

This campaign will include billboards and radio ads – both of which were rolled out in the Kansas City area last week.

Harris Zafar, spokesman for the United States Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, says that opinions like Gaffney’s and Geller’s show no matter how much an organization focuses on a program, it will never reach everyone.

“There are always going to be the Pamela Gellers of the world,” Zafar said. “People who have their intentions and no matter what we educate, it is not going to connect with them.”

“This debate becomes a distraction from allowing us to talk about more meaningful things,” Zafar said. “We like having dialogues about spirituality, but we get distracted by conversations of Sharia, of jihad, of apostasy and the conversation becomes more about this is what Islam is not, as opposed to a proactive conversation about real Islam.”

The ICNA campaign plans to draw in its 30-35 chapters across the country and will be highlighted prominently at the group’s annual convention in May in Hartford, Connecticut.

"ICNA is making an honest attempt to reach out and connect to our fellow Americans and introduce them to our Islamic faith,” said Naeem Baig, ICNA’s vice president of public affairs.

“We see it as our responsibility to clarify misconceptions about American Muslims."

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- Dan Merica

Filed under: Belief • Islam • Islamic law • Sharia

soundoff (139 Responses)
  1. Xam

    Im pretty sure that everyone bad mouthing Sharia in this comments section dont know the first thing about it. I dont understand the logic of people being against something they dont understand.

    Stop listening to the fear mongering politicians/media outlets and actually read some books. Educate yourselves, its the cure for ignorance !.

    March 2, 2012 at 6:03 pm |
    • Anon

      I know exactly what it stands for and for that I reject it completely.

      March 2, 2012 at 7:02 pm |
    • Beverlee

      I understand Muslim law as much as I understand Jewish law and the United States has no room for either. I live near Lakewood, New Jersey which has Hasidic population. They use Jewish law and basically run the town. If you lived there you would hate it. They have their own police, first aid, schools. It is a country within a town. They avoid paying property tax by making rooms of their homes into prayer rooms. It goes on and on and on. This should not be allowed. Now figure the number of Hasidic Jews and multiply that by the influx of religious Muslims into the country. Not a good idea. Oh, and if you have any questions about the results of Sharia law on a western country just read up on how it has effected England. Not a real stretch of the imagination on what it would do here. There are sections of London a Christian can't even walk in without getting attacked.

      March 3, 2012 at 9:20 am |
  2. J.W

    When I see the word Sharia it makes me think of Maria Sharapova. I hope that we adopt Sharia law so I will constantly think of her.

    March 2, 2012 at 5:55 pm |
  3. Reality

    IOnly for the newbies:

    slam’s Koran and World Domination- a history lesson we all better learn

    "Mohammed could not have known the size of the world, but several passages in the Koran show that he envisioned Islam dominating all of it, however large it might be: “He it is who sent his messenger . . . that he may cause it [Islam] to prevail over all religions´(Koran 9:33, M.M. Ali; see also 48:28 and 61:9). M.M. Ali designates these three passages as “the prophecy of the ultimate triumph of Islam in the whole world.”

    Mohammed’s successors, the caliphs, quoted passages like these to inspire Muslim armies as they advanced out of Arabia, imposing Islam by the sword upon a peacefully unsuspecting Middle East and North Africa, as I described in the previous chapter.

    Islamic armies, imbued with what Mohammed claimed was divine authorization, imposed Islam by force over vast areas, all the while extorting wealth from subjugated Jews and Christians to fund their ongoing conquests. As I noted, major defeats at Tours, France, in A.D. 732, and again at Vienna, Austria, in A.D. 1683, halted Islam’s attempt to take all of Europe by force. Gradually Islamic forces were forced to retreat from Europe, except for part of the Balkans. But Islam has again set its sights on a conquest of Europe and of European civilization, wherever the latter has spread to North and South America and other regions. Muslim strategists ask their followers, Why do we find in these modern times that Allah has entrusted most of the world’s oil wealth primarily to Muslim nations?

    Their answer: Allah foresaw Islam’s need for funds to finance a final politico-religious victory over what Islam perceives as its ultimate enemy: Christianized Euro-American civilization. So, Islam follows Nazism, fascism and communism as the world’s latest hostile takeover aspirant.

    Nazis, fascists and communists failed. Does Islam have a better chance at success? I believe it will flounder if we awaken to its threat in time; yet, if there is not adequate planned resistance, Islam does have a better chance of succeeding. Communism’s world takeover attempt was guaranteed to fail because its economic policy was naively contrary to human nature. Advocating the rubric What is mine is thine, and what is thine is mine, communism failed to see that human nature will not keep those two balanced propositions in equilibrium. Like a female black widow spider consuming her mate, the latter part of the formula makes a meal of the former, leading to the collapse of any system based upon that formula.

    In contrast, political systems do well if they can persuade people to adhere to What’s mine is mine and What’s thine is thine maxims.

    Only if a strong religious incentive is added does such an idealistic formula have any long-term chance. Even then success will be spotty. But communism (and Nazism, for that matter) excluded religion. And that mistake was the final nail eventually clamping a lid on communism’s coffin. Communism, on a historical scale, perished while still in its childhood.

    Islam is not repeating communism’s mistake. Mating political cunning and incredible wealth with religious zeal, Islam does have a chance to succeed and will succeed unless major parts of the Western world unite to take appropriate countermeasures. But many Western leaders, unable to believe that a mere religion could possible be a serious political threat, keep proclaiming themselves as Islam-friendly, reasoning that all religions are good-aren’t they?

    A Muslim strategist in Beverly Hills, California, declared several years ago, as quoted by a friend of mine: “Now that the struggle between Western democracies and international communism is winding down, it is time for the real and final struggle to begin, and we are going to win!”-D. Richardson

    March 2, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
    • Anon

      In other words never give sharia an inch.

      March 2, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
    • Bo

      Reality, did you know that some of the things that you posted here was predicted in Bible prophecy? I have neither the time, or skill to chart it out to you, but most Bible scholars agree that the conquest of much of Europe and the Roman empire by the Moslems was predicted in the 9th Chapter of Revelation. Even the exact day of the withdrawal of the Muslims from Europe was predicted.
      The predictions of the 2nd chapter of Daniel is almost complete as is the 13th chapter of Revelation, we are almost ready to enter the predictions of verse 14.
      Bible prophecy is only history foretold.
      The prediction of the overthrow of the Papacy in 1798 (I think I have the right date, I’d have to look it up) when Gen Berthier (Spelling?) of Napoleon’s army took the Pope prisoner, is even foretold. I wish I could give you a whole outline of the time line of Bible prophecy and how accurate it is.

      March 2, 2012 at 6:58 pm |
    • Reality

      Nineteenth-century agnostic Robert G. Ingersoll branded Revelation "the insanest of all books".[30] Thomas Jefferson omitted it along with most of the Biblical canon, from the Jefferson Bible, and wrote that at one time, he "considered it as merely the ravings of a maniac, no more worthy nor capable of explanation than the incoherences of our own nightly dreams." [31]

      Martin Luther "found it an offensive piece of work" and John Calvin "had grave doubts about its value."[32]

      March 2, 2012 at 11:35 pm |
    • Bo

      This board is getting rather stale, so I doubt that you will return, nonetheless, I will reply.
      Does it really matter what Martin Luther, John Calvin or anyone else has to say? I don’t think so. Martin Luther disagreed with seventeen other books of the Bible, so what does that say? to me, his comments don’t influence me much. Some of the comments he makes only tells me he really didn’t understand what he was reading, by his own testimony, he didn’t understand Revelation so he disregarded it. I have read that Luther said that the return of Christ was at least 300 years in the future, if that is true, I don’t know where he got the idea if it wasn’t from Bible prophecy, especially Daniel 8:14. I think it ironic that he didn’t believe that New Testament writers could have had any visions, yet he himself says he had a visitation from Satan and threw an ink bottle at him, only to have it crash on the wall staining the wall and the floor. I’m thinking that too much credit is given to Luther for his understanding of the scriptures. I think he is more famous for his 95 theses that he niled to the door (no respect for property?) and his obstinateness of not recanting.
      I confess, I don’t know much about John Calvin’s theology, but I have an idea he was much the same as Luther.
      Thomas Jefferson on religion dosen’t influence me at all. In my opinion, he was worse than agnostic, it was as if he thought that if he cut something from the Bible, that he disagreed with, that would change it. I don’t know what he cut from the Bible, but it most likely interfered with his lifestyle and he didn’t appreciate it so he ‘cut’ it out disregarding what else he may have cut out at the same time. BTW, he tried to keep secret what he cut out–, hummmm, wonder why? (Although Jefferson is given credit for writing the Declaration of Independence, there were many additions, deletions and changes; not to good to his credit of all wise.)
      Quoting agnostics or atheists on religious beliefs is useless.

      March 3, 2012 at 7:46 am |
    • Reality

      Before the Book of Revelation:

      JC's family and friends had it right 2000 years ago ( Mark 3: 21 "And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said, He is beside himself.")

      Said passage is one of the few judged to be authentic by most contemporary NT scholars. e.g. See Professor Ludemann's conclusion in his book, Jesus After 2000 Years, p. 24 and p. 694

      Actually, Jesus was a bit "touched". After all he thought he spoke to Satan, thought he changed water into wine, thought he raised Lazarus from the dead etc. In today's world, said Jesus would be declared legally insane.

      Or did P, M, M, L and J simply make him into a first century magic-man via their epistles and gospels of semi-fiction? Most contemporary NT experts after thorough analyses of all the scriptures go with the latter magic-man conclusion with J's gospel being mostly fiction.

      Obviously, today's followers of Paul et al's "magic-man" are also a bit on the odd side believing in all the Christian mumbo jumbo about bodies resurrecting, and exorcisms, and miracles, and "magic-man atonement, and infallible, old, European/Utah white men, and 24/7 body/blood sacrifices followed by consumption of said sacrifices. Yummy!!!!

      So why do we really care what a first century CE, illiterate, long-dead, insane, preacher man would do or say

      March 3, 2012 at 8:42 am |
    • Bo

      @ Reality: Will get back to you this afternoon

      March 4, 2012 at 8:54 am |
  4. RS

    I urge every human being to read the Quran, in their language cover to cover.
    Don't let others, especially Moslems or their apologists, tell you what it says, read it yourself.

    Understand exactly what Mohammad commands for those who do not submit.
    Understand exactly what theocratic sharia is all about.

    March 2, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • jimtanker

      It's all a bunch of B S just like the NT. Made up carp.

      March 2, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • Anon

      Then why being apologetic all of a sudden for sharia?

      March 2, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • jimtanker

      I’m just saying that it’s a deterrent. Better than a r@pist sitting in jail for a few months and then getting parole or a guy sitting on death row for 50 years for murder. KiII them as brutally as possible on the nightly news. It would stop people from doing it and would save money in the long run.

      March 2, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
    • Anon

      Thank goodness your apathetic way of morality is only a low minority among the fringe.

      March 2, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
  5. jimtanker

    Those on here that know me know that I’m no fan of religion. But I would have to agree with some parts of Shariah law. One time when I was in Saudi Arabia they caught a guy that had r@ped 5 little kids. One was like 5 years old. After his short trial, which mainly revolves around the testimony of credible witnesses and not the ramblings of lawyers making millions of dollars, he was crucified in the public square and then his head was put on a pole for the next week. All of this is advertised on TV and in the papers.

    This is called a deterrent.

    Walking through the gold markets of Riyadh there are all kinds of small shops about the size of an office cubicle. No security, no police in sight. I’ve seen a $65,000 necklace just sitting there on top of a counter. Why can they get away with that? Shariah law. People know that if they are caught by the police, let alone the local people, they will be tried and have their hand cut off. I see nothing wrong with this. They have much less crime and a very civil society. It may seem very different to outsiders but I try to understand the culture of all of the countries that I have visited. I wouldn’t agree that they are very good on their civic rights but that is a different story.

    March 2, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
    • Anon

      Shove a koran up your @$$.

      March 2, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • Anon

      Brainless politically correct fools like yourself is why sharia law is slowly creeping into secular countries.
      Yea, bringing out the child rapist card is whats costing us our internet liberties you fcktard.

      March 2, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • Really?

      To prosecute child rapists you need to invoke sharia?
      Serious penalities are advocated by all other religious texts too.
      What a pathetic excuse you use to further your agenda.

      March 2, 2012 at 3:53 pm |
    • jimtanker

      Obviously you have nothing to say other than ad hom.onym attacks. Try thinking for once.

      March 2, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
  6. Keith

    Why would we want this?

    Egypt: Christians, Actors Targeted as Islam Rises

    Actresses, comedians and Christians among the targets of a new rash of accusations of “insult to Islam” in Muslim Brotherhood Egypt.

    By Maayana Miskin
    First Publish: 3/2/2012, 2:44 PM

    Egyptian soldiers at the Rafiah border

    Israel news photo: Flash 90

    As Islamist parties gain power in Egypt, the country has seen a wave of lawsuits accusing various figures of “insulting Islam.” In the latest case, a group of lawyers belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood have accused high-profile Egyptian women of provocative behavior.

    The lawyers argue that the women “encourage se-xuality and other inappropriate behaviors.” The Egyptian paper Al-Bawaba named two of the targets as actresses Ghada Abd al-Raziq and Summaya al-Khashab.

    The same lawyers previously accused renowned comic actor Adel Imam of insulting Islam. Imam was given a three-month jail sentence.

    A Christian man recently received a far harsher sentence for the same crime. According to Bikyamasr, Coptic Christian Makram Diab was given a six-year prison sentence for making offensive remarks about Mohammed, who Muslims revere as a prophet.

    Egypt’s Christian community has also been hit by kidnappings targeting young women. According to Christian community leaders, many Christian girls have been kidnapped by Muslim men and forced to convert to Islam. Police often decline to intervene.
    (partial article from israelnationalnews.com)

    March 2, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
  7. Nii Croffie

    It isnt true that an Imam has 2 teach u de Quran. It is also not true that de Xtian n Jewish Bibles will harm ur faith. They'll expand it further. It is also not true that de English or any local language QURAN is false. I have met spiritual Muslims before and I hope to see more. Al salaam aleikum.

    March 2, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
  8. Nii Croffie

    My Muslim brothers! It isnt wrong for u to have your faith. Being a religious and pious Muslim is ok. However if u learn to love your neighbor as yourself, love your enemies. Forgive he that sins against you and help the disadvantaged you become a spiritual Muslim. Your joy will be boundless 4 Allah

    March 2, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • Anon

      Ram a koran up your @$$.

      March 2, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
  9. Feldwebel Wolfenstool

    The ultimate Creative Writing class assignment...."Whitewash iSlam and Moe Hammid".

    March 2, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • Dodney Rangerfield

      I liked curley hammed, but shep was o.k. too.

      March 2, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
  10. Anon

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ib9rofXQl6w

    March 2, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • Ali

      Good video!

      March 2, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  11. William

    find it ironical that the liberal media is in bed with sharia!strange bedfellows indeed!
    cnn-what did u find liberating in sharia?

    March 2, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
    • JohnR

      Because CNN reported this, you assume that they are in bed with Sharia law???????

      March 2, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
  12. Anon

    Fck sharia and everything related to it!

    March 2, 2012 at 12:41 pm |
  13. Baker Baranski

    "Sharia describes a way of life, from dietary laws to a code of moral life."
    The last time I checked every religion has a way of life that embodies codes for moral and healthy living and some other religions include principles that go beyond moral to extort highest form of ethos.
    In the words of I. Asimov-Never let your sense of morals get in the way of doing what's right.

    March 2, 2012 at 11:26 am |
  14. HD

    Islam is and always has been the religion of hate, intolerance, bigotry, misogyny and pedophilia... as it marches forward through time on its' never ending empirical conquest for world domination and Sharia is its guidebook for the ideologies enforcers. I don't need to spell out what Islam and sharia are, honest Muslims that are not engage in taqiyya will come straight out and tell you that it is their duty to expand the theological empire either by word or by sword.

    The question isn't "is sharia bad?", the question is; when will the West wake up and realize that groups like CAIR and ICNA are not here to bridge ideological differences with the West? Muslims "have a duty to deliver the message of Islam" and that "Islam isn't in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant." Omar Ahmad (joint founder of CAIR – 1998)

    March 2, 2012 at 11:09 am |
  15. Jsdretich Polkczar Diavtro

    I dont understand why people are scared to death of Shariah. Are you an adulterer, a criminal, a cheat ? If you are, then you should be. All I've seen so far is hateful lies against Shariah with material copied and pasted from anti-Islamic websites. Come on is this really your best shot. If you lie about what Shariah is really about, you are giving it more power. And by default, the truth always prevails over falsehood. So learn to accept it. And learn to accept your own faults.

    March 2, 2012 at 10:39 am |
    • Gabriel

      Are you adulterer, a criminal, a cheat? No, but no one needs sharia to say all of the above is wrong.

      March 2, 2012 at 10:51 am |
    • Keith

      Jsdretich Polkczar Diavtro, By those standards probably 98% of our local, state, and federal officials would have to be be-headed.

      March 2, 2012 at 11:26 am |
    • Explorer

      That ain't funny.wonder what the definition of adultery would be? before you start beheading people.crescent news network at it again and stooping to new lows.

      March 2, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
    • JohnR

      Adultery is a civil matter. Whether one is a criminal or not depends on what laws there are. There was a time when a native speaker of Welsh speaking Welsh in his or her won home was a criminal, but a slave owner wasn't. That's why it matters that laws are truly just, in both what is prescribed and proscribed and what the punishments are. Sharia law fails on many counts.

      March 2, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
    • SPA Knight

      Are there any countries living under Sharia Law in the world where there is peace, respect for human rights and freedom is protected and common?

      March 2, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
    • sam

      Can I buy a vowel?

      March 2, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
  16. Sabih

    Thanks for a balanced article. I noticed that the link to the “Defending Religious Freedom: Understanding Sharia" website isn't working. Here is the correct link: http://www.defendingreligiousfreedom.com/

    March 2, 2012 at 10:22 am |
  17. PrimeNumber

    “I am not concerned about these guys imposing Sharia on us tomorrow,” Gaffney said. “I am concerned, though, that that is exactly what they want to do in the future and are making progress in doing that.”
    If the western nations keep depopulating themselves like they are, this Sharia law will become reality.
    This reminds me of what happened in Oklahoma awhile ago: a vote was taken whether to allow Sharia law. The vote was against Sharia and the Okies were criticized for their intolerance and closed mindedness. But now, everyone else seems worried about it, too.

    March 2, 2012 at 10:22 am |
  18. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things.

    March 2, 2012 at 10:16 am |
    • Jesus

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs.

      March 2, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      J, statement is untrue and to date has yet to come up with the source of his quote. Don't hold your breath, but compare it to the wiki article or a google search.

      March 2, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • just sayin

      To it that takes the Lords name in vain. You have been weighed in the balance and found wanting

      March 2, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
    • TooFunny

      "Don't hold your breath, but compare it to the wiki article or a google search."

      LOL! More desperation from the xtians. They've been told wiki isn't a reliable source yet they continue to post their crap. LOL!

      March 2, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
    • Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

      Prayer changes things
      Proven

      March 2, 2012 at 6:42 pm |
    • Jesus

      "Prayer changes things
      Proven"

      You've been proven wrong. The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs.

      March 2, 2012 at 6:45 pm |
  19. Jim Blanco

    You actually do make a lot of sense, but you must be brainwashed because you dont think like the western people do.

    March 2, 2012 at 9:55 am |
  20. Wei Yu So Dum

    1) Atheist folks are much more dumber than I thought they were.
    2) Moses, Jesus, Muhammad were Prophets of God.
    3) The penal codes that people object to in the Shariah are in the Bible as well.
    4) Honor killing is a complete falsehood. Idiots who associate this with Islam are proving them to be a bunch of morons.
    5) Vote for Ron Paul! He is the only one who can save this country. Otherwised we are doomed!
    6) Jews are waiting for the anti-christ. Muslims and Christians are waiting for the Christ. Christ will kill the anti-christ.
    7) No thank you, my forefathers were not apes and monkeys. And living cells did not magically evolve from lifelss gaseous matter.
    8) Muslims are getting beat up because they have left Islam and Sharia. But more the hate, lies and oppression there is against them, the more they will become stronger and come back to Islam.
    9) Shariah laws are laws of our Creator, Whose land we walk on, Whose air we breath every second of our lives.
    10) The best act for Satan and his children is to take away the life of a human baby.
    11) Kuffar have made a firm intention to disbelieve. So if you give them a life of eternity, they will still disbelieve. This explains torment in hell forever.
    12) 9-11 was clearly an inside job.
    13) Filthy freemasons make money off of wars by selling and buying weapons, oil etc.
    14) Filthy freemasons make money off of objectifying women, abusing human emotions of love and hate, greed, envy, jealosy, pride.
    15) Islam is the only religion that connects human beings to God and requires believers to purify their hearts and control their desires.
    16) Jews hate Muslims because the last Prophet of God did not come to the children of Israel, but to the descendents of Ishmael. But in reality they hate God – The Mighty and The Praiseworthy.
    17) In Hebrew and Aramaic, the name of God is Alaha/Eloh/Ilah. In Arabic the name of God is Allah. Be careful when you curse your own Creator.
    18) People dont like to get their toes stepped on AND WE ARE DROPPING 1000-POUND BOMBS ON INNOCENT PEOPLE in the Muslims countries. They love their children, parents and families just like we do. They are not leaving us alone so easily.
    19) Be honest and sincere in your pursuit of the truth.

    March 2, 2012 at 9:46 am |
    • BRC

      I am an atheist who choses nto to regard any of the "religious truths" you've set out here because there is no evidence for any of them. So, how am I so much dumber than you already thought I was (despite having never met me).

      March 2, 2012 at 10:08 am |
    • Wei Yu So Dum

      @BRC
      Why and how do you think there is no evidence? Have you looked hard enough with an open heart? And I apologize for hurting your feelings.

      March 2, 2012 at 10:18 am |
    • Dave Geartz

      I agree with you on pretty much everything except the first one. Not all Atheists are dumb.

      March 2, 2012 at 10:28 am |
    • BRC

      @Wei Yu So Dum,
      Have no fear, my feelings are fine, good thick skin, but uninformed generalizations are dangerous, so I tend to question them when I see them. And yes, I have looked, at many faiths and in many directions, and I have never seen or experienced anything that would make me believe in the supernatural, or in any gods. It is worth noting that the heart, while useful, is a miserable organ for determining the truth of things. Much better to use the brain.

      March 2, 2012 at 10:28 am |
    • SciGuy

      Moses was a prophet of God. Jesus was a prophet, yes, but much more than a prophet, he was also a Priest and King. Mohammed was of his father the devil.

      March 2, 2012 at 10:29 am |
    • Ling Meing Hun

      islam is a false relgion. you are worshipping an idol.

      March 2, 2012 at 10:41 am |
    • Reality

      Only for the newbies:

      Mohammed was an illiterate, womanizing, lust and greed-driven, warmongering, hallucinating Arab, who also had embellishing/hallucinating/plagiarizing scribal biographers who not only added "angels" and flying chariots to the koran but also a militaristic agenda to support the plundering and looting of the lands of non-believers.

      This agenda continues as shown by the ma-ssacre in Mumbai, the as-sas-sinations of Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh, the conduct of the seven Muslim doctors in the UK, the 9/11 terrorists, the 24/7 Sunni suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the 24/7 Shiite suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the Islamic bombers of the trains in the UK and Spain, the Bali crazies, the Kenya crazies, the Pakistani “koranics”, the Palestine suicide bombers/rocketeers, the Lebanese nutcases, the Taliban nut jobs, the Ft. Hood follower of the koran, and the Filipino “koranics”.

      And who funds this muck and stench of terror? The warmongering, Islamic, Shiite terror and torture theocracy of Iran aka the Third Axis of Evil and also the Sunni "Wannabees" of Saudi Arabia.

      Current crises:

      The global Sunni-Shiite blood feud (e.g. Syria) and the warmongering, womanizing (11 wives), hallucinating founder.

      March 2, 2012 at 10:49 am |
    • Wei Yu So Dum

      @BRC
      Do you believe in things that you haven't seen or experienced? Of course you do. And you can't fool yourself there.
      Usually I suggest the Atheists to look into the hundreds of scientific miracles in the Qur'an. One of the many miracles that the Atheists can relate to due to their what I believe "narrow minded" thinking of how human beings operate. Heart in fact is more vital to human existence than the brain. Because you can be brain dead or be in a coma, but be still alive because your heart is alive. So lets not assume things here based on the ever changing scientific theories.
      So, I assume you dont believe in afterlife either. Why is that? This shows that you don't believe in justice and accountability. A man can kill thousands of innocent people, but be still alive, happy, prosperous and get away with killing people. This should give a hint there is accountability for our actions.

      March 2, 2012 at 10:59 am |
    • Tim Baron

      @Reality
      I think our post clearly proves the point that Wei Yu So Dum is trying to make. You are helping him prove his point. You are helping Muslims become stronger and the Christians and Jews weaker.
      Garbage talk and slander doesnt really help. By the way, I think majority of the things he is saying is true. You are deomonizing the Muslims, and on the other hand the Muslims are winning the hearts of true Christians and Americans with their facts of life. I am a Ron paul supporter and a I sympathize with the oppressed Muslims!

      March 2, 2012 at 11:10 am |
    • BRC

      @Wei Yu So Dum,
      You continue to make guesses about what others think and feel, not a sound practice. I do believe in some things that I haven't "personally" seen or experienced, but only very few, and those have extensive observations. There is no fooling myself involved, I am extremely skeptical, so it takes quite a bit for me to be convinced of anything. I am reading the Abrahamic holy books in order, so I won't get to the Quran until after the New testament, but please, enlighten me as to the scientific ""miracles" I would be happy to review and consider them. The only miracle I know of offhand (with the exception of the same creation story which is patently false), is Muhammad taking the moon, and hiding it in his sleeve- which obviously never happened and is clearly impossible. Now, if you say that story is allegorical fine, but are the rest of the "miracles" the same?

      If your body is merely pumping blood (which, by the way, your heart won't do without input from your brain or an outside electrical stimulus), are you truly alive? I would say no, I would say that without your mind you are a shell, alive, but not actually living. Also hearts can be transplanted and replaced with mechanical substtutes, brains cannot, so for now the brain still wins. Nothing ever changing there, no guesses either.

      Your statement that I don't believe in justice is absurd, I propose that by not believing in the afterlife, I value it more than you do. IF you believe in the afterlife, you HOPE that justice will be done to bad people, and you hope that good deeds will be rewarded, but you have no proof, and there is no way to be sure until after you are dead. I don't think we should wait, a well lived life is its own reward now, you can see the positive effects on the lives of those around you, I need no other reward. And punishment for misdeeds should be doled out immediately, if a man kills thousands of innocents and is allowed to get away with it, that is the fault of the other people around them, they should have taken the actions, preferably legal ones, necessary to see justice done. IF they didn't , how many of them didn't because they were hoping the person would receive justice, that there is no way to be sure of?That's not a hint, it's a hope.

      March 2, 2012 at 11:26 am |
    • Reality

      How much money would the following save the US taxpayers ?:

      Saving 1.5 billion lost Muslims:
      There never were and never will be any angels i.e. no Gabriel, no Islam and therefore no more koranic-driven acts of horror and terror like 9/11.

      – One trillion dollars over the next several years as the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan will end.

      – Eighteen billion dollars/yr to Pakistan will stop.

      – Four billion dollars/yr to Egypt will end.

      Saving 2 billion lost Christians including the Mormons:
      There were never any bodily resurrections and there will never be any bodily resurrections i.e. No Easter, no Christianity!!!

      – The Mormon empire will now become taxable as will all Christian "religions" and evangelical non-profits since there is no longer any claim to being a tax-exempt religion.

      – Saving 15.5 million Orthodox followers of Judaism:
      Abraham and Moses never existed.

      – Four billion dollars/yr to Israel saved.

      – All Jewish sects and non-profits will no longer be tax exempt.

      Now all we need to do is convince these 3.5+ billion global and local citizens that they have been conned all these centuries Time for a YouTube,Twitter and FaceBook

      March 2, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.