Louis Palme / Jun 12, 2011

Recently, a group of 15-20 ex-Muslims posted things on a meet-up site about what they loved about being Muslim and some things they hated. Some of the language has been "cleaned up" because there was a lot of emotion/anger/hurt in these posts. These are the words and thoughts of ex-Muslims. Might be helpful information when dealing with people.

Here is a synopsis of the list:

Things we miss about being Muslim:

- A sense of belonging
- unbreakable bonds with other Muslims
- spirit of brotherhood/sisterhood
- warmth and security of community
- Family relationships
- parents being proud of them
- being honest with parents about leaving Islam
- Friendships

- at festivals, Eid, Ramadan

- calligraphy, poetry, literature, Urdu language
- festivals like Ramadan (the days were so ordered and organized)

- believing in god
- reading parts of the Qur'an
- certain hygienic rituals
- absolute opinions backed up by hadith
- all morality and ideals coming from the hadith (easier than having to think)
- being able to blame Allah for everything and not having to take responsibility for my actions
- meditation of prayer
- faking the Ramadan fast
- the promise of virgins in paradise
- using Islam as an excuse for anything I didn't want to do
- my foreskin!

- not having to worry about fashion because you know you won't be meeting the opposite sex

- Feeling self righteous and superior to non-Muslims

Things we do NOT miss about being Muslim:

Going to Mosque
-getting shoes stolen
-stinky socks of the people in front of you
-people in front of you breaking wind as they pray
-having to touch your nose and forehead to the floor
-listening to boring sermons that go on for hours in a language I didn't understand
-CRAZY mullahs and their BS
-going at all hours of the day and night during Ramadan; being asleep and wasting 2 hours of my time
-praying 5 times a day and having to excuse myself during work to do it
-having to wake up at 5:30 am every morning to do prayers
-Ablution; we don't live in caves anymore, we do have showers now
-Friday Prayers; having to listen to an idiot screaming about stupid things... it was a snooze fest interrupted with scary moments
-being told I would go to hell for going to a different religious facility

-fear of the brutality of Allah
-fear of not being good enough no matter how hard you try
-fear of hell
-fear of the two angels sitting on your shoulders noting every action for judgment day
-fear on not getting into heaven
-fear of being a woman and having desires

-hating Jews and not knowing why
-hating animals
-hating art
-hating other Muslims of other sects
-having to hear the words of hatred towards others

Muslim Community/family
-putting up with idiot Muslim relatives
-Muslim arrogance
-Muslim hypocrisy and racism
-having to take up the cause of offended Muslims around the world
-people calling me "brother" all the time
-having every "holy person" give advice about everything and making things you like the new forbidden (haram) thing
-elders getting upset with you for missing prayers
-being forced to pray when you don't believe in it
-people being inconsiderate because THEY cannot miss prayers
-every other person coming up with another reason of what "real Islam" is
-people growing beards and going to mosque suddenly acting superior to you
-having to hug every time you greet and the other person hurting you
-having to hug people who smell like mothballs
-having to respect people just because they are older than you
-having to call everyone auntie or uncle even if they are not related to you
-not knowing the real names of your real aunts and uncles
-dealing with Muslims who are stupid when it comes to science in the Qur'an

-arranged marriages/ Russian Roulette marriages
-having to attend weddings where you know that one of them is being forced into it
-guilt for any sexual thoughts
-sexual constraints (genitals are thought to be very dirty)
-incestuous thoughts when seeing relatives not wearing the hijab
-having to swim in a male only/female only pool
-having to worry about shaking the hand or kissing a member of the opposite sex
-gender segregation
-condescending attitudes towards women, treating them like objects
-brainwashing of girls from childhood
-having to beat your kids or wife because Allah is about fear
-having to kill my sister for dishonoring the family
-making sure my wife walks 10 paces behind me
-not being able to hold your wife's hand in public but it's OK to hold a man's hand
-going to a function to check out the women but not being able to because they are segregated
-feeling like a taxi driver to my mom and sisters
-having to give large dowries in order for a marriage to get the green light
-having to mutilate your child's genitals
-honor killings
-having to switch the TV channel when someone on TV kisses
-ban on dating/sex/talking to the opposite sex/physical desires
-being considered irrelevant and stupid because of my sex
-people being considered more worthy because they have male parts
-feeling dirty and disgusting when going through female cycles
-thinking that a sexual thought will make you a slut and you will go to hell
-being disgusted with myself for having sexual thoughts
-looking down on people who date or have sex
-the idea that virginity is sacred and making it an object that can be
gifted to a husband
-creating an entire status around virginity
-thinking of women as
-having to wear the hijab and having to worry tiresomely about being modest
-being told you are gay if you are not married, especially after just finishing your education

-not being able to drink alcohol
-not being able to eat bacon or ham
-having to look at food labels that read "suitable for vegetarians"
-having to settle for the vegetarian option at restaurants and pretend it tastes nice
-feeling guilty for not fasting during Ramadan
-not being able to eat perfectly good meat in a restaurant that is no different from other meat because of a few words said before the animal died (halal meat)
-having to break a fast with a date --- even if you hate dates
-not being able to eat with your left hand, even with a fork (we do have toilet paper and hand soap now!)

-people who say, "It's Allah's will" and then ask you to pray for them
-requests for forgiveness for no reason
-grown men crying at Eid and being shouted at for not crying
-not being able to question ANYTHING
-having to buy silly book about non issues such as "fiqh"
-having to grow a scraggly beard and thinking that shaving it is forbidden (haram)
-having to fight for the "front of the line" for heaven and proving myself a better Muslim by volunteering to be a suicide bomber
-preaching 24/7 on TV during Ramadan
-having to learn Arabic to read the Qur'an and not understanding it anyway.
-being told if we recite the Qur'an harder and louder, we will understand it
-reciting the Qur'an like a parrot
-having to face east when you pray when actually you are facing the backside of someone in front of you
-not being able to blaspheme
-not being able to draw pictures of Mohammed
-having to kiss the hand of a Pir (teachers to spread Islam)
-having theological doubts all the time. I always knew something was wrong about believing, it was just easier to conform
-blindly believing everything in the Qur'an
-doing something everyday just because everyone around me was doing it
-doing good just for the sake of heaven
-the idiocy of people not realizing that they were Muslim only because of their birth to Muslim parents. They did not choose to be Muslim
-having to be selective about where I shop to that I can find a decent spot to pray
- Financial
-turning down good IT jobs in industries that were forbidden such as investment banking or breweries
-Muslims not being able to understand interest
-not being able to have an interest bearing checking account
-halal mortgages (annual mortgage fees are the same as interest)
-not being able to gamble

-believing babies come from praying
-believing babies are only delivered by operation
-tyranny of thought in science and politics --- that divine law is immutable
-abdicating responsibility for my actions and plans, thinking Allah had pre-determined everything
-feeling superior and self-righteous to everyone else, it felt good at the time but now I know that it hurts you, your community and others. Now life is more peaceful and loving because I don't think I am better than others just because of an accident of birth (being born Muslim)

-not being able to have a TV
-fanatical obsession with cleanliness
-having to use your left hand to wipe when you are right handed
-having to lie to please people
-being asked who my dad is 10 times a day
-having to say alhamdulla [Praise be to God!] every other sentence
-having to visit family and friends for Eid and feeling obligated to have the sweet, watery vermicelli dessert (sawine)for the umpteenth time
-having to watch the Muppet show that is on 24 hours a day on the Islam channel
-not being able to wear shorts
-not being able to go to the beach
-having to wait in line for 3 hours for a haircut the day before Eid
-having to sit around mourning for 40 days when some distant relative dies
-having to believe that pedophilia is okay as long as the molester is married
-stinky men wearing the desert oil (attar) that they think makes them closer the Mohammed
-people maintaining the full shari'ah look in public while doing disgusting things in private
-control of all aspects of my life like stepping to the restroom with my left foot, only sleeping on my right side, etc.

Other thoughts:
-I don't miss the controlling nature of Islam, especially for women! I don't miss being controlled by elders who thought they knew better and must be obeyed because Allah said so. I am now able to be an independent woman and make my own decisions.
- I don't miss living my life according to a false, corrupt & brutal doctrine of hatred, paranoia and misogyny
- It hurts me to see my loved ones afflicted by this twisted religion
- I don't need to be fearful now, I can enjoy creating love and peace to the world now!

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