Leaving Islam



Celine Leduc


There are two kinds of scholars: scholastics and scouts. The first group read what others have written and regurgitate them back. They are like taperecorders. They faithfully memorize books, trust what they read and  rehash them. The second group think, question and doubt everything. They are not satisfied with the conventional wisdom but rather defy it at every turn. They do not believe what they read or are told. They go deeper than what meets the eye and get to the core of the matter. They take nothing for granted. They question the claim that God exists, and then they question the claim that God does NOT exist. They are thinkers, innovators, discoverers, philosophers and the true prophets. They do not try to re-invent the wheal but try constantly to make it better.  

We can put a library on a few CDs and with a search engine access anything we want with a click on a mouse. No matter how much information you accumulate, you cannot compete with the information recorded in a two bucks worth CD. That is how much scholastics are worth today. Gone are those days we respected "walking encyclopedias". Now any kid can have access to all human knowledge by typing a few keywords on his electronic notepad.  

Let me give you an example of what I mean by scholastic. A few days ago a reader of this site asked me to debate with a Canadian woman who had converted to Islam and was hostile to me without having read any of my articles. Generally I ask people to read first and familiarize themselves with my thinking before engaging in debate. If they want to refute me they should at least know what the heck I am saying. Nonetheless, I accepted the invitation and read her story of conversion to Islam in MSA site, along with a few more essays that she had written in preparation. This lady, who goes by the name Celine Leduc, never addressed me in her correspondence directly. She sent her emails to our common friend who forwarded them to me. However, she insulted me from the start to the delight of her heart and as this friend wrote: “she feels you are not a man of your word, amongst other things I shall not repeat”. Ms. Leduc at first refused to debate arguing: 

"I have a Master's degree in Religion history and philosophy,... I expect him to have the same type of academic background or higher.  Next year I am applying for a doctorate program so I do have the right and privilege to debate people on my own level, otherwise what happens it becomes an illogical free for all and I do not lower my standards for anyone...After reading his email he only reinforced my thought that he is a coward who hides as I do not know his real name nor where he lives, nor his view on religion in general.

Upon the insistence of this friend Ms. Leduc laid four "rules"

I stick to my guns, his full name, city he lives in, his credentials (academics one) not the number of sites he is quoted on, and his stand on religion. I am not interested in a person who is to cowardly to give his name and where he lives...  Celine

All she had to do was make a Google search with my name or with my site, and read any of my articles that are scattered all over the Net. That is what I did. I searched her name, found no more than three articles written by her and read them to find out about her.

As for my identity, I have never made any statements about it being real or a pseudonym. (The less my enemies know, the better) As for my address, I don't know how it would have helped the debate. I found those demands irrelevant.  Ms. Leduc’s response was:  

“...and all I can say, is that when in the presence of a fool, I walk away. I have wasted enough of my time with foolishness to last me a life time.. He does not want to answer my questions, too bad, my credentials speak for themselves... I do wish he gets an education in religion then we can debate otherwise it is like talking to a fool... “  

Needless to say that the discussion ended there, before it even began. Ms. Leduc is not a bad person. She is involved in feminist causes and she is also against anti Semitism. How can a person with those views get involved in Islam? Islam is a misogynist and anti Jewish cult par excellence. Ms. Leduc is a typical example of a scholastic that I am talking about. She has education but has no discernment; she has a degree but no sagacity. She loves the Jews and she is a women’s rights activist, but she converts to Islam and claims “God guided me back to my spiritual roots.” ... Was it really God?.... If you read her story you'll see that her conversion was by impulse. She did not investigate the truth about Islam before converting. Where she stands today is not very clear either.  She seems to be critical of Islam and says "I left the Muslim world full of paradox and conundrums", and yet she bashes me for "my ignorance of Allah" and for no disclosed reason she is extremely rude and hostile to me - a kind of vitriol that only a Muslim is capable of. Is this hatred a residue of her Islamic indoctrination, or is it part of her personality? 

Her testimony, now featuring in several Islamic sites, continue doing the damage and misleading people. Not only it encourages other foolhardy people to convert to Islam, also stupid Muslim women in Islamic countries read these stories of conversions of western women and the pot of their zealotry starts boiling, pushing aside the lid of moderation and they become fanatics and terrorists. This is not an exaggeration. Read the story of Asiyah Andrabi, a Kashmiri woman born and raised in a moderate family of medical doctors who read a book about women in the west converting to Islam and was so inflamed that she went on to become a terrorist. Most likely the testimony of Ms. Leduc was one of them.

Ms. Leduc equated me to the terrorists: 

"This guy Ali Sina is inaccurate just as much as the terrorist are, it is the two opposites of a long string pulling to see who will fall first." 

No wonder she converted to Islam. She is obviously used to make her judgments before having knowledge of the facts. She further wrote: 

"Sina is I think an atheist and more than likely very much to the left which does not want religion hence also a threat to Israel as he will try to destroy the State and its religion.. I do not like extremists on either side of the debate..."

In Persian we say a donkey can be loaded with books, but I will not use that parable here. The example that I would use is a CD loaded with gigabytes of data. Despite all the information on it, it’s just a piece of plastic, a polycarbonate plastic. It can’t think. It is not enough to be loaded with information. You must also be able to think and to discern. 

Celine Leduc represents a typical convert to Islam. If you read her story, of after she left Islam you'll see she has been a religious butterfly all her life. She has been in many cults and religions and out and obviously each time she must have believed “God guided me back to my spiritual roots.” How can God err so many times? Or is it she who makes her decisions lackadaisically, guided by emotions instead of reason? 

God has given us two eyes to look before stepping forward. He has given us a brain to use before making decisions. Her statements about me, without having read a single article of mine, tell us a lot about her commitment to facts and truth. These are people who are too lazy to think. They are not stupid people, they are not bad people. They are just intellectually lazy. In fact once you read Ms. Leduc's story, you can't help but feel compassion for her. She is a hurt woman. But she has only herself to blame. She is hurt and if her treatment of me is any indication, she probably hurts those around her too for reasons that are only known to her. Why? It's because her approach to life is superficial. She is convinced to know everything. 

Ms. Leduc graduated at the age of 57. Good for her. Better late than never. Now she is part of the clerisy, lodged in cloud nine where we mortals, a.k.a. "fools" are not worth to touch her sandals. She is too aware of her "credentials" and not enough of her ignorance. Little she knows that the syrupy stuff they fed her in the university as education was the watered down and politically correct apologetic nonsense. What she has got is a Master's degree in lies. But she is not the kind of person who would look beyond the surface. Thinking and doubting are not her forte. She believes everything the establishment tells her. She is a scholastic but not a scout. 

The Persian poet Nezami tells us of  the lover Majnoon searching in the dirt. Someone asked him what is he doing. “I am searching for my beloved Leili” responded Majnoon. “But Leili is a pure soul and you look for her in the dirt?” objected that person. “I seek her everywhere”, said Majnoon.  This is the way of a true seeker. And Ms. Leduc wants to know the city where I live, what is my real name, my stand on religion, my academic background and she has already determined that I am a fool even before having read a word of what I say. How can you add to a cup that is so full? 

Today, Ms. Leduc laments: "I had made many mistakes and that I felt badly about them". Her spiritual mentor told her that she should not worry because God would forgive her mistakes. But God never condemns us for our mistakes to begin with. Instead of seeking God's forgiveness we must learn lessons from our mistakes and try to avoid them next time. Ms. Leduc does not try to find the causes of her mistakes and keeps repeating them. "The Muslim world was harsh, full of rules and I had to cover my spirituality and was left with little room for freedom of thought", she repines. Why did you not investigate this first? Would you dive head on before checking whether the pool has water? "When I asked questions I was told to have faith in God and to submit to His will. I felt something was wrong," she grumbles. Why you did not ask these questions before converting? Muslims lie to convert people. They are not to be blamed. Liars lie. It is up to us to be careful, don't act on impulse  and investigate the facts. 

Why some people have to learn everything the hard way? All she had to do was go beyond the surface, doubt the conventional belief and investigate the truth like a scout. At any moment in her life, even when she was committing those mistakes, Ms. Leduc has been convinced to be right and viewed others as fools. Then as she hit the wall it became clear to her that SHE was the fool. Despite that she keeps repeating the same mistakes. After hitting the wall she changes direction, but continues walking blindfold. She acts on impulse, not on logic or reason. She is a believer, not a doubter or a seeker. 

One attribute of the scout is humility. To know that you don't know is the foundation of all wisdom. Willing to doubt what you know is the virtue of the sage. Haughtiness and arrogance are the traits of the fool. 

So, you are a doctor, a nuclear physicist and a university professor to boot! Congratulations! But how much thinking have you done? you dismiss my site and say it is worthless. How much of it have you read and can you prove it wrong too? What is the difference between you and Ms. Leduc? 

The world does not need more scholastics. In fact now that the Internet is so ubiquitous, we can dispense with them completely. What we need more are scouts. We need people who can get the information, process them and come up with their own synthesis. The difference between scholastics and scouts is not in their intelligence or in the breath of their knowledge, but in how they process the data. The scholastics choose not to think. They choose to accept the prevailing belief and are satisfied with the answers that others have given before them. They do not dare to challenge the vox populi and swallow the conventional "wisdom" hook, line and sinker. They are followers. The scouts on the other hand, choose not to accept the popular explanations. They are not satisfied with the answers that are given to them just because they come from “authoritative” sources. They try to find their own answers and even question the authority of those sources. They are leaders. They are the ones who shape this world, make the civilization advance and make human knowledge grow. We owe everything we have, to them.

It is not that Muslims are not intelligent or there are no scholars among them. It’s that they suffer from intellectual languor. They perpetuate the lies and the fairytales that they have been told since childhood lackadaisically. They are too lazy to think. They are scholastis and not scouts. 

Happy holidays and a good year to you too and also to Ms. Leduc. She hated me with no reason, at least now she has one. .

Ali Sina 

See follow up

back  1  |  2  

Comment here





Articles Op-ed Authors Debates Leaving Islam FAQ
Comments Library Gallery Video Clips Books Sina's Challenge

  ©  copyright You may translate and publish the articles in this site only if you provide a link to the original page.