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Thread: Deconversion of an Iranian

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
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    Default Deconversion of an Iranian

    My deconversion was not an overnight process, just like others. However, I reached a point in my life which I could not tolerate Islam or any other religion anymore.

    When I was a child I was exposed to a paradox. On one side were my parents and siblings and relatives, and on the other side was the outside world, the government, media, school, common people. Islam almost had no place in our home. Mom my never wore hijab at home, although she had to wear it outside. My family never said prayers or read Quran, except for occasions during Ramadan when my mom used to do the rituals. However, in the outside world, everything was different. I was exposed to Islam indoctrination. At school, they gave us prizes for saying prayers, and frightened us from Hell and God's wrath. So I grew up believing the outside world and seeing that my family were going to Hell. So I prayed every night! to save my parents! I was a 9 year old boy, and not that bright.
    Anyway, I grew up and my faith out of fear started to fade. I started reading Kafka and Camus, and started listening to Metallica! Then, faith became an unfamiliar word for me. I doubted everything. By 18, I was a total agnostic atheist, although nobody knew.
    Later in the university, I felt like a rebel. I needed to go against everything. And I did! I educated myself. So that you know, in Iran, even in undergraduate years, we study Islamic subjects as general subjects which must be passed and have a great impact on our overall. I failed most of them at least one. I remember failing Islamic Ethics twice! just because I didn't believe in what they believed. Later, I was arrested and in the prison I lost my last drops of faith. When I came out, I was a new man. A man who has never again believed in a supreme being. I felt anew, I felt free and I improved in every aspect of my life.
    Although, I had never come out as an atheist only until recently. The only reason was fear! I was afraid of Iranian Government. As you probably already know, deconversion/conversion is treated by capital punishment in Islamic Republic of Iran. You'll be fine as long as no one knows but stating it publicly and writing about it as I am now, would get me in trouble.
    Coming out feels great! I am telling everyone, and I get mixed responses, but that only motivates me to go forward.

    So, if anybody is out there who is doubtful of coming out. I would highly recommend you to come out and state it publicly. However, if it puts you at risk, be patient. You will find your window of opportunity. I waited almost 8 years to be able to write this simple post! I am now writing short stories and my memoir to share with everyone!
    Last edited by Mbozorgi; 27th September 2017 at 06:26 PM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Deconversion of an Iranian

    I am glad you have a place to be free, Maz.

    Thanks for your story.
    EJB

    Iím not one of the dead ones yet. - Ms Fishie.


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  4. #3
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    Default Re: Deconversion of an Iranian

    I disagree with just one thing Maz. Your claim that you are not all that bright. You swam in a social sea of delusion, and yet you didn't buy into it. You have both courage and brains. Intelligence is not just about how well one can do IQ tests or maths or whatever. It is also about being capable of seeing things differently.
    Just stick to the idea that science tests falsifiable hypotheses to destruction.

  5. #4
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    Default Re: Deconversion of an Iranian

    Good for you Maz, yours is a story of intellectual honesty and also courage, I dip my hat to you. You don't have to answer these questions if they'll land you in trouble but are you still in Iran? Also, do you have a view on Islamic reform? Is it possible and what is the best way to promote more liberal views throughout the Islamic world, in your view? And finally, just how many secret skeptics are there in Iran, do you think?
    Sunlight is the best disinfectant.

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  7. #5
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    Default Re: Deconversion of an Iranian

    Thanks. No, I'm in Australia. Personally, I don't think any reform or addition of liberal views would improve things. They may alter them to less harsh, but I don't consider it as improvement. Religion in Iran is so intertwined with daily life that change is almost impossible.
    In my opinion, the only liberal way is to unweave the threads of life and religion. I think the first step is to teach people to question Islam. Quran, allah, prophet and Imams are so sacred that people don't allow themselves to question them. As long as there is a bubble of sanctity around everything, nothing will improve.
    About the number, as far as I know, it's rising. However, since no one publicly states their scepticism, it's hard to tell.

    I hope I've answered your questions to some extent.

    Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk

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  9. #6
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    Default Re: Deconversion of an Iranian

    Maz thanks for your story. I appreciate you sharing it as it exposes me to a cultural background and religion I am not familiar with.

    I have read some anecdotal evidence that irreligion and conversion to Christianity is on the rise in Iran, often attributed to rebellion against the conservative Theocratic controls. As you have stated however it would be hard to get data on this!

    Also correct me if I am wrong, however I think tertiary education levels among Iranians are quite high. There is some data to show irreligion is tied to levels of education and so could this also be driving younger Iranians away from their faith?

    One last question; do you prefer to say you are from an Iranian or Persian background? Forgive me if this exposes any ignorance on my part, however I have relatives who are Baha'i and strenuously tell me they are of Persian not Iranian ethnicity.
    __________________________________________________ _______________________________

    The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it - Neil deGrasse Tyson

  10. #7
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    Default Re: Deconversion of an Iranian

    Check out some of the music on this particular page of this thread, in this particular thread in Persian here.

    http://atheistfoundation.org.au/foru...=24224&page=23
    "I'm an ape, I'm an African ape and I'm proud of it, and you should be too". Richard Dawkins

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