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In the Name of God بسم الله
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Haydar Husayn

Apologetics and its dangers

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On 9/18/2016 at 2:19 PM, Haydar Husayn said:

If you encounter arguments that you can't refute, then assume that it has to do with your lack of knowledge, rather than assume there is a hole in your religion. There is also nothing wrong with bowing out when you know that you are outgunned. Generally though, there are a lot of people reading and watching material produced by professional debaters and deceivers, who's job is to make you lose your own faith, and ideally (although this is just a bonus for them) make you join theirs. So if you are in a position where they know your religious sources better than you do, then of course they are going to be able to manipulate you into having doubts about your religion. Therefore, unless you are willing to invest serious time in finding answers to the doubts created, my advice would be to not delve into matters that could do serious damage to your spiritual well-being.

This is a great post. The Shia/Sunni thread seems to be under attack by professional Sunnis creating fitna and the only ones defending are some of us 'un-knowledgable' ones while the more 'educated' ones sit on the sidelines and simply call out for unity or worse criticize shia for tatbir, organized matam, majlises, etc. Almost makes one wonder whose side these people are on.

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OP: I never knew there was a word for such people. I admit that I was guilty of being an apologist a few times. It's funny when you think that certain topics/concepts are so obvious but when you come to discuss them, you realize how little you know. I was trying to debate the concept of "tawwasul" with my manager just 2 days ago, and I thought I was well equipped as we I had a few verses memorized (the obvious ones you hear shias quoting all the time) and a few wishy washy reasons of why it is legitimate (again, the obvious ones you hear often from shias). But he had way more knowledge than me and started quoting obvious verses from the Quran which clearly oppose this concept. You can imagine what a downright idiot I felt like by the end of the discussion.  

Edited by Pearl178

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8 minutes ago, Pearl178 said:

OP: I never knew there was a word for such people. I admit that I was guilty of being an apologist a few times. It's funny when you think that certain topics/concepts are so obvious but when you come to discuss them, you realize how little you know. I was trying to debate the concept of "tawwasul" with my manager just 2 days ago, and I thought I was well equipped as we I had a few verses memorized (the obvious ones you hear shias quoting all the time) and a few wishy washy reasons of why it is legitimate (again, the obvious ones you hear often from shias). But he had way more knowledge than me and started quoting obvious verses from the Quran which clearly oppose this concept. You can imagine what a downright idiot I felt like by the end of the discussion.  

Well, sometimes you might just have the weaker position in the debate. That can happen too. And sometimes discussions can force us to re-evaluate our own beliefs, or at least the justifications for them. So there can be benefits to these sorts of discussions, but the type of people who are prone to doubts or don't have the energy to do a lot of research should probably stay away from them. I'm speaking here mostly of major issues than can affect someone's faith. I don't think debating tawassul is going to change much either way, although I know that for some people it's an extremely important topic.

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