What is the appeal of Islam?

Muslim people seem very devout. What is the basis of their strong faith? Catholics have miracles, strong evidence for divinity of Jesus and the resurrection, etc.

I am sure Muhammad existed, and the Koran is written, but what else is there?

Not a Muslim here but there are some good educational materials on Islam that might help answer your question…

Back in 1977 I saw the movie “The Message” directed by Moustapha Akad… I still think this is a classic … It covers the early years of the beginnings of Islam.

I’d also recommend the PBS series “Empire of Faith”:

youtube.com/watch?v=yX3UHNhQ1Zk

I saw the title of this thread and was going to mention the devoutness shared by a majority of Muslims. I think it has to do with the simplicity of the faith, there aren’t teachings that are particularly hard for someone to accept assuming they were not biased from another religious background. There’s no impossible to explain doctrine of the Trinity, no transubstantiation, just the all knowing/powerful/merciful God. I can certainly see why some people find it more “logical” than Christianity, because it’s easier to understand.

To me, Islam seems like a very simplistic, easy to follow religion. Simply follow the 5 pillars, say your prayers, and know the Koran. There is no bureaucracy or magisterium, unlike the Catholic Church. I’m pretty sure that there’s no priesthood, either.

Seems like a great way to get out your aggression, depending on what flavor of Muslim you are.

Islam is monotheistic and in truth everyone has a God shaped hole in them. It’s quite wrong to say that our God and Allah are the same God, though.

It provides order to one’s life which is something we all crave.

I think you say a simple prayer to belong and read the Koran and believe Mohammed is the last prophet and follow the 5 pillars of Islam.
And the appeal might be if everyone in your country is Muslim and other religions are not allowed or frowned upon. As far as non-muslim countries having people convert I am not quite sure what the appeal is.
Maybe curiosity or they see it as somehow revolutionary or romantic.

young , unemployed uneducated males living in 3rd world crapholes rally under the banner and use their prejudice and hatred as an excuse to slaughter their neighbors

i guess that would be appealing to me if i was a sociopath

Like certain organized religions, Islam in its own way has a disposition towards some element of logic and natural law.

Having studied Islam, Muhammad, the Qur’an, Hadiths, historicity, a certain amount about language {historic and current], the rationale and effects of taqyyia {‘holy deception’], and studied psychology at university; that the answer to why Islam holds sway in so many minds is multiplex.

I am firstly drawn to the passages in the Qur’an that are called the ‘Satanic Verses’, I am simultaneously minded of the Qur’anic surah, that claims the Jews as being deceptive, but that ‘Allah’ is the best/greatest of deceivers. These days many Islamic apologists claim that the passage speaks of ‘scheming/planning’, and not ‘deception’, but this is not so:
The Qur’an openly states many times that Allah is the ‘best deceiver’. The root word used in these verses is Makr which means deception.

Muhammad himself is claimed [in Islamic writings] to have said that war is [about] deception. That the world is for the present divided by and large into two areas, that of the dar al-Islam - the lands where Islam and the likes of Sharia hold sway - and the dar al-Harb - the lands of war, where Islam does not [as of yet] hold sway.

In Judeo-Christian tradition the attribute of ‘greatest/best deceiver’ goes to Satan - that God is Truth.

Most people hold that Islam is a religion, but a close study of the Islamic tracts points more towards it being mostly political in nature, and that the biggest part of the Qur’an refers to how Muslims should treat non-believers/kufrs {including the people of The Book - Jews and Christians], indeed in the latter part of Muhammad’s life such tracts have him railing at Jews and Christians in particular].

I have concluded that by and large it is tradition, ‘ignorance’, and fear of the consequences of being labelled as ‘apostate’ should they leave Islam, that keeps them ‘Muslim’. I also feel that many westerners who become Muslims are drawn to the façade of their moral code, while seeking something different to the ‘free licence’ so often practised in the secular modern world.

For one thing it is a religion with discipline. For another, it is difficult for some people to accept that Jesus was God. There are certain passages in the Bible that are difficult to reconcile with the divinity of Jesus such as The Father is greater than I, or Mark 13:32: “However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.” Islam accepts Jesus as a great prophet, but not divine.

Yes, Islam says that Jesus was a great prophet, in fact He is mentioned in the Qur’an(s) 20 some times, whereas Muhammad hardly gets a mention.

The interesting thing is that much of what Jesus says about Himself in the NT is disregarded - since Islam claims the Old and New Testaments to have become ‘corrupted’ - this despite evidence to the contrary in the earliest surviving bibles and parchments which pre-date Muhammad and can be openly read and studied by scholars.

At one point in time I was attracted to Islam. If I had to to say why I would boil it down to a few simple traits.

  1. It’s exotic. Some people are naturally drawn towards the mysterious or the other. Think of the white people who decided to become Buddhist in the 80’s or 90’s. Of those people, how many people became Buddhist because they thought it was cool unlike “boring” (not true), regular Christianity.

  2. Sincerity of faith. Say what you will about Muslims, but unlike a fair amount of Western Christians, many of them actually believe what they profess. A lot of Muslim people there people very seriously and actually obey its rules. That’s attractive. If no Christians (for example) are taking their faith seriously (not true, but a serious perception) then it’s hard for others to take that faith seriously.

  3. Media flattery. When’s the last time you’ve seen Islam as a religion portrayed negatively on TV or in a Movie. Certainly Muslims and Arabs are often treated with suspicion, but Islam itself tends to be untouched. Compare that with Christianity. When is the last time that Christianity, or devout Christians, were even portrayed NEUTRALLY, let alone fairly. I consume a lot of media and I can’t think of anything. The result is people tend to be open minded towards Islam where they automatically reject Christianity.

  4. The strawman. People think they know Christianity, even if they know only a warped version, Going back to 1, since people don’t know Islam they have to go to Muslim sources and get a more glowing picture of Islam.

  5. Simplicity. When you get right to it, Islam is pretty simple. Read the Qu’ran. Act on the five pillars. Obey the rules. The great thing about obeying the rules is that they tend to be less encompassing than Christianity (as far as I’m aware - others more knowledgeable than I may choose to correct me). There things you can do, things you can’t do, and that’s it. You don’t have to worry about inner dispositions so much, or go into the constant and difficult growth of being Christian. That doesn’t mean that Muslims don’t try to become holier - they do - but the definition of holiness seemed to be less holistic. .

I tend to agree with CS Lewis depiction of Islam in his Narnia stories
It is essentially from the evil one
It distorts and twists and simplifies truths appropriated from Christianity
It simplifies God it teaches eternal warfare against non Muslims
It is truly the creation of the father of lIes

What about the masculine aspect of it as an attraction. When the local mosque turns out you will see plenty of young men, whereas with the Catholic Church that it in my local area you will see mostly frail old ladies. Now i know that is not representative of Catholicism as a whole but it is a striking difference.

forums.catholic.com/showpost.php?p=12652249&postcount=1

I know a lot of Christian converts to Islam and one reason that many of them say about why they converted is because they had a hard time understanding and believing in the Trinity. Most Christians, even educated ones, often can’t really explain the Trinity that well.

Well if the nature or God is an astonishment and indeed in some respects a mystery to the Angels, then what chance have we mere morals this side of the grave to fully know the workings and how of God?

As for the plurality of ‘persons’ in God, well the first reference in Hebrew uses the plural form - The Hebrew word translated “God” is the word El or Elohim. Elohim is the plural form of El. The plural form is used 2607 of the 2845 times the word “God” is used in the Old Testament. Not only is the word for God usually used in the plural form, but several verses refer to God as “Us”

One thing that attracts people to Islam is that Islam bans alcohol, whereas Catholicism does not. Alcohol has been show to be at the root of many sins and many crimes. Yet, drinking alcoholic beverages is allowed in Christian and many other non-Islamic countries, as Catholicism and most Christian religions do not forbid the drinking of alcohol.
Alcohol would be banned under countries ruled by Islamic or sharia law.
“About 3 million violent crimes occur
each year in which victims perceive
the offender to have been drinking at
the time of the offense.”
“Two-thirds of victims who suffered
violence by an intimate (a current or
former spouse, boyfriend, or girlfriend)
reported that alcohol had been a
factor. Among spouse victims, 3 out
of 4 incidents were reported to have
involved an offender who had been
drinking.”
“In 1996 there were 17,126 alcohol related
traffic fatalities accounting for
40.9% of all traffic fatalities during the
year.”
bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/ac.pdf

Alcohol, like many things in life, is only legitimate if taken in moderation and appropriate circumstance.

It would be churlish and indeed problematic of me consider the consumption of alcohol as totally negative, since Jesus’ first recorded miracle at Cana involved a rather substantial amount of high class wine.

Having to walk around in a black tent all day seems rather a high price to pay for avoiding drunks.

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