بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

Debate between Ninad Gaikwad and Shah Saaib Ahmed Rabbani

Topic: What is better for society, the current social order or Shariah?

Introducing the first author Ninad Gaikwad: I’m a 19 year old student (computer applications). I am an atheist, which means I do not believe in god (NOT believe that god doesn’t exist). I have read the Quran and a few hadiths. I believe that freedom and equality are the most important rights that a person can have. As for my opinions on the Quran, I strongly believe that Muhammad was a fraud, and Quran is full of logical and scientific errors and is at times extremely violent and at other times extremely childish. 

I am strictly pro science, and anti dogma. I accept the theory of evolution and big bang. I am not anti faith and believe everyone has the right to follow their faith as long as it doesn’t interfere with other people’s rights and freedoms. 
I think this is sufficient information about me, at least for the current topic of discussion. I would like to know more about your beliefs and qualifications (I need to know if you’ve studied at least the basics of science, including TOE and Big Bang theory). I would also like to know if you consider the hadiths as reliable source of information (name the ones you consider unreliable). I would also like to know if you agree with the current implementation of Sharia law by various countries and name the country you think is applying this law most accurately.

Introducing Saaib Ahmed, the second author, is Zeba aka Tekno Freek:

Shah Saaib Ahmed Rabbani is a 20 year old medical student, though he plans to be a future critique and a social activist. Saaib Ahmed is a newly turned debater, debating in diverse fields, from Islamabad, Kashmir. He has debated many christian apologetics and critiques of Islam (Kazim Salini, Antonio Santana, James Annaswamy etc).

In 2010, he laid the foundation of the APYEM Foundation which is running successfully. This year, he laid the foundation of Exploring Faith(s) Organization, which aims at researching various faiths and religions.
He is a Muslim, which means he believes in one and only one God, Allah, and Prophet Muhammad(PBUH) to be the last among the messengers sent by Allah. He believes the Qur'aan to be the authentic word of God. He accepts following the teachings of the Qur'aan and Hadeeth as the best possible code of conduct.

He has studied not only the Qur'aan and Hadeeth, but also other scriptures of the major religions of the world, the Bible, the Ramayan, the Mahabharata etc. 
He believes that Shari'a law is the best possible system to acheive a perfect social order.

Writer of several articles on Islam and Comparative religion and known to his audience for his criticism of Christianity this his first debate with an atheist.
His two books will soon be available for reading. 1. Original Sin 2. Un-named yet.

You can reach Saaib Ahmed at www.facebook.com/saaibahmed and also at www.apyem.blogspot.com

Opening statement.

This is one of those topics where you can never truly win. It’s the “which is better” problem. It all depends on what you prize most, freedom and equality or faith; progress or dogma. Sharia shall be judged on how it was and is applied, since it’s practicality that matters. For the current social order, I will consider democracy for obvious reasons.

So what is Sharia? The moral/religious code of law based on the Quran and Muhammad’s life as documented in the hadiths. Does it respect freedom or equality? No. Freedom of expression is breached by the blasphemy laws; freedom of religion is breached by jizyah and killing of apostates. There is no equality as people are discriminated based on their religion and gender.

Sharia is code made to control the masses. Order and obedience takes the front seat while freedom and equality are sacrificed. Muslims often argue that the judiciary system of extreme punishment keeps people from committing crimes. Well first off that’s just a lie. They assert it, without giving reasons or statistics. Secondly sacrificing our humanity for fighting crime is not a desirable thing. We cannot sacrifice our humanity, and stoop to the level of the criminals to avoid crime. In secular democratic countries, the law is much more effective and it awards a fair punishment for any particular crime.

In addition to that there are harmful judicial practices like the punishment for rape and murder being the same. This, as any good attorney will tell you, is more harmful to the potential victims, saving who should be the priority of the law. When the punishment for rape is equivalent to the punishment for murder, the culprit has no reason to keep the victim alive and all the incentive to kill the victim (to eliminate witness). In contrast most modern judiciary systems recognize this need to keep the punishments for these crimes different in severity.

Then there is polygamy. Under Sharia, you can legally marry upto four women. This is an extremely sexist practice. Men are allowed 4 wives whereas women are allowed a single husband shared with three other women. Monogamy is the accepted way of marriage in modern societies, which is fair for both the sexes.

Next up is child marriage. Since the honorable prophet himself married and had sex with a child, there is little restriction in case of marriage, or indeed, sex with a child. This is not only disgusting, but also physically and mentally harmful for the child. Furthermore, a child isn’t mature enough to give consent, which makes this statuary rape. In modern societies having sex with a child lands you prison, PERIOD.

Speaking of consent let’s talk about arranged marriages. There are no other types of marriages under Sharia since women aren’t allowed to interact or even show their faces to non family member males. Arranged marriage is again a breach of freedom as it robs the individual the right to choose their own life partner. The consent of the father is taken instead of asking the girl if she is willing to marry the guy, which is unfair on both the girl and the guy as they are committed before getting to know each other. On the other hand a secular country allows its citizens intermingle with each other and choose their life parners. It considers the consent of the brides rather than their father.

Then we have the inheritance laws.
Chapter 4 11. As for the children, God decrees that the share of the male is equivalent to that of two females.
I hope I don’t think I need to explain why this is unfair. Modern society allows people to make their own wills instead of following a ridiculously unfair universal will.

Under Sharia trade laws, people are banned from applying interests on loans. Which would destroy the modern financial system as banks would be unwilling to loan money (due to there being no profit in it), which means that the poor cannot buy houses or cars easily. It would also mean no interest on saving so your retirement funds will not double by just keeping them in banks. It also means no insurance.

Divorce laws are discriminatory as well. Unilateral divorce is allowed where the man simply has to inform the wife that he wants to divorce her (Shia require 4 witnesses). Woman has to go through the court system where she may or may not be granted divorce. In the modern judiciary system, men and women have equal rights for divorce.

Sharia orders the killing of homosexuals. Essentially it is the killing of innocent people for being who they are. For being what they are born as. For being natural. Modern society has come to accept homosexuality.

There are more, but I will not name these now. I have named the issues which bother me the most.

Your stand as far as I’m aware is that Sharia is better for society. What is society? It’s just a bunch of people living together in harmony (usually). What is more important, the rights of these people, or the society as a whole? And even then the argument doesn’t hold any weight when we can clearly see that that the safest, least conflicted and happiest countries are never Islamic.

Shah Saaib Ahmed Rabbani's opening statement and rebuttal to the above article can be found here.
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