KimDonesia (former Muslim)
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[Some details of this testimony have not been provided for safety reasons]
Testimony of Leaving Islam
I would like to mention, before I go into my story, that I was very disappointed when searching for ex-Muslim testimonials on the internet while I was thinking about leaving Islam. I was looking for stories that I could relate to in order to know that I wasn't alone. However, a lot of the ex-Muslims were Western women who had married a Muslim man and didn't have a very pretty relationship.
This makes me cringe, because first of all it seems that each of these women converted for a man and left because of a man, and it didn't help me in my journey apostatizing from Islam. These women didn't exactly directly criticize Islam or provide answers. They, instead, based their views on Islam on the man they were married to which didn't help me at all. I prefer direct criticism of Islam and its actual teachings based on the Qur'an and sunnah.
Anyway, so first of all, I guess I'd better start with the formalities. I'm from Australia. I don't tell people my exact whereabouts in Australia for safety reasons - you know, death penalty for apostasy from Islam and all of that lovely stuff. I am a young woman of 18-years-old. Yeah, I know... Young... But don't judge me based on age!
In a nutshell, I converted to Islam after being attracted to it while living in a Muslim country with my step-father for a while. I was Muslim for almost 2 years (since I was 16-years-old) and within that time, I acquired a great deal of Islamic knowledge and had extremely high iman (faith). I agreed with everything in the Qur'an, I prayed 5 times a day (fard, sunnah & nafl), I fasted from sunrise to sunset during Ramadan and also non-obligatory fasts 2 days a week.
I wore a hijab (headscarf), and was very strict with my clothing... Nothing I wore was allowed to show any curve on my body whatsoever. I was strongly "connected" to Allah - so much that I would talk to him every night before I went to sleep. Every good deed I did was for Allah, and everything else I did was with fear of Allah's punishment if I did something wrong.
Early in my 2 years as a Muslim, I started doing my own form of "dawah" (propagating Islam) on Youtube. I became quite well-known on there as "KimDonesia", and I even went on the radio in Turkey, went on TV in the Middle East during Ramadan and did interviews for Islamic magazines. I constantly received praise, and nobody ever came to me with doubts of whether I was a Muslim or not.
I'd like to add that when I publicly left Islam, the Muslims turned to their most common logical fallacy in justifying my apostasy - "No True Scotsman" fallacy (e.g. "You were never a real Muslim, so that's why you left Islam. No true Muslim could ever leave."). It's funny that these claims were never made when I was a Muslim.
On my 18th birthday, my beloved canine family member and companion passed away. Beauty was a dog that my family had in our lives for 14 years, so her death struck us all. We were devastated, though convinced ourselves that she was no longer in pain - she had liver cancer and had to be euthanized - and that she had gone to a "better place". The death of my dog sent me into a depression which lasted for more than a week.
Contrary to the popular belief of Muslims mocking me and degrading the value of my dog's life by saying I left Islam for a mere "ugly, dirty mutt that was haram for me to keep anyway", it wasn't the death of Beauty that caused me to leave Islam. I do admit that she was the contributor to my constant thinking about death - the cognitive process that led me away from Islam. I wish I could thank her.
She caused me to realize that we will all die someday, which resulted in my fear for my non-Muslim family. You see, the Qur'an teaches that all of the non-believers who were exposed to Islam at some point in their worldly life - yet still reject it - will go to Hell for eternity and will be shown no mercy. I was terrified for my family and tried to think of ways to bring them to Islam.
My depression was cured when I confessed my fears to my mother. Mum knew that what I was depressed about had something to do with my choices about religion, however she waited for me to come to her rather than make assumptions. I cried to her and admitted out loud, for the first time, that my perception of God was different than the angry, sadistic dictator in the Qur'an. You could say I believed in the Deist god. No matter how much Muslims try to sugar-coat Allah's personality (or Muhammad's alter ego?) as shown in the Qur'an, I started to see right through it.
I explained to Mum that it is simply not logical that an omniscient God would create the human race just so that the majority of them would be sentenced to infinite punishment for finite actions. Mind you, the main action to grant one Hell would be to not believe in God. I decided with my mother that I wanted to leave Islam, however I still wanted to believe in God - I simply wanted to detach myself from organized religion.
However, I later realized that I was just following Pascal's Wager, meaning I was believing in God just in case there really was one and belief in God was the only thing that could get me a place in Heaven (if there was one). I realized that the existence of a God is illogical and in reality, cannot be proven. The day that God comes to me and shows me that he exists, I will believe in him. Or I might believe I had gone insane and had started hallucinating. For now, as there is simply no evidence that a God exists, I will continue to not believe in God.
I have been reading The God Delusion and might I say, Richard Dawkins is a complete genius. With this book, any lingering desire in my mind to believe in a God has been completely pushed out. I now understand that belief in God is a delusion, and we as human beings can live a more fulfilling life without religion or God for that matter. We do not need to delude ourselves just because we need "something" to "be there" and we are too cowardly to face that this is the only life we'll live, and we need to be free from religious indoctrination. We need to make the most of the only life we'll get, rather than spend it worshiping and fearing a supernatural being that probably doesn't even exist.
I do admit that I am rather proud of myself as it took a lot of strength to leave Islam and lose my beliefs in an imaginary sky daddy. I based my entire life around Islam and when I apostatized, I no longer knew how to live without religion. It took time, but I'm fine and completely happy now. I am back on track - back to how I used to be before Islam. Furthermore, I am proud of my bravery to "come out" in public on Youtube* as a new non-Muslim. I was surprised at how many ex-Muslims were approaching me, as well as Muslims thinking about leaving Islam and just needing that little push from somebody they could relate to.
Since I have left Islam publicly, most of the online Muslim community has been brutal. I have received a few death threats and wishes of AIDs upon me, ad hominem attacks left right and centre, assumptions that are logically fallacious, and ridicule for my decision to leave Islam.
I do admit it has been difficult and it may get worse as I'm not going to stop speaking out about my views about Islam. However, I take comfort in the fact it's only because their minds have been enslaved and completely closed, and their beliefs are laughable therefore nothing they say really matters.