Ex-Muslims in the Mosque
About three weeks ago, while going through the Citizen’s Free Press website, I came across a YouTube video by David Wood entitled “Ex-Muslims in the Mosque: The Impending Collapse of Islam.” If you are not familiar with Dr. Wood, he is a Christian apologetic whose mission is to critique Islam and present the truth of Christianity to Muslims. A Christian apologetic is a person who studies and researches historical, evidential, and valuable facts to defend Christian theology. Dr. Wood heads up a YouTube channel called Acts17Apologetics.
One of the features of my blog is to examine the mechanics of Islam and Christianity; to see how one institution differs from the other and how that difference can be used to its advantage. Last week I discussed the marketing advantage that big data would have for Christianity since the demographics of Christian countries are more digital in makeup. This time, we are looking at a derivative of religious switching.
Let me explain. The Pew Research Center studies the growth and demographics of religions. The growth projections consider the current size and geographic distribution of the world’s religions, age differences, fertility and mortality rates, international migration, and patterns in conversion. That last factor, “patterns in conversion,” can be identified as religious switching. In other words, not all people stay in a religion their whole life. Sometimes they switch to another religion. In a free-market society, people change things all the time. We change clothing styles; we change schools; we change diets; we change cars; we change almost everything to meet our unfilled needs. When a product does not fill a need, people will switch to a product that does. Religions are products that serve our spiritual needs.
That’s where Dr. Wood’s video comes into play. He maintains that Islam is not filling the needs of resident populations in dominant Islamic countries. Thus, he claims there are millions of undercover ex-Muslims. He claims the best place to meet an ex-Muslim is in the mosque. In Islamic dominate countries, to become an ex-Muslim is to be an apostate. While many ex-Muslims do become Christians, many become unaffiliated or non-religious. In either case, you are still an apostate. In many such countries, apostates are either killed, imprisoned, given fines, or deported. Apostates are not accepted, which causes many ex-Muslims to remain in place, still going to the mosque, doing Friday prayers, and fasting at Ramadan. Wood’s video shows live footage of imams and religious scholars acknowledging the problem but not knowing what to do.
Dr. Wood’s thesis might have legs. Possibly, one of the instigators of this finding came out in a Pew Research report back in 2018. An analysis of conversion rates in the United States showed that 23% of children raised as Muslims had left the faith. For Christianity, 22% had left the faith. In other words, religious switching to a certain level is normal behavior for populations of people. In the US, there is no admonishment to switch from one religion to another to find what works for your personal beliefs. However, there are no multiple religions to choose from in a dominant Islamic country. If you don’t like the teachings of Islam, what do you do? Suppose you are a citizen of Pakistan, Syria, Iran, or any Islamic countries in Central Asia or the Middle East. In that case, you are stuck worshipping a belief that you don’t believe. If we use 20% as a conservative number to represent the number of unhappy people being Muslims, we’re talking about 360 million people who would leave the religion. Christianity doesn’t have that problem. The people who don’t believe in Christ don’t have to put up false fronts. In Islam, they do.
A couple of interesting notes that the Pew Research Center noted. In the US, where there is a choice, 55% of the people who left Islam became unaffiliated with any other religion, and about 22% became Christians. Ironically, of the people who left Christianity, most (77%) joined the Islamic faith.
While there is freedom of choice in the West, there is no freedom of choice in Islamic-dominated countries. If there were, Islam might find their base much, much smaller, but their people much happier.