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Publisher's Summary

In much of the Muslim world, religion is the central foundation upon which family, community, morality, and identity are built. The inextricable embedment of religion in Muslim culture has forced a new generation of nonbelieving Muslims to face the heavy costs of abandoning their parents' religion: disowned by their families, marginalized from their communities, imprisoned, or even sentenced to death by their governments.

Struggling to reconcile the Muslim society he was living in as a scientist and physician and the religion he was being raised in, Ali A. Rizvi eventually lost his faith. Discovering that he was not alone, he moved to North America and promised to use his new freedom of speech to represent the voices that are usually quashed before reaching the mainstream media - those of Atheist Muslims.

The Atheist Muslim recounts the journey that allows Rizvi to criticize Islam - as one should be able to criticize any set of ideas - without demonizing his entire people. Emotionally and intellectually compelling, his personal story outlines the challenges of modern Islam and the factors that could help lead it toward a substantive, progressive reformation.

©2016 Ali A. Rizvi (P)2016 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"By demanding a space for questioning Islam openly that does not devolve into attacking individual Muslims, the work pushes towards the possibility of a cultural Islam that maintains family and ethnic traditions without requiring belief." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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An honest book

I find Ali's lifelong quest to find the truth to be honest Yet accurate. Being a Muslim by birth this book deals with questions that for centuries have been pushed under the rug by a vast majority. But time has come for us to have an open dialogue without fear of repercussions. This book is a breath of fresh air and I would recommend it to all including my Children born in Islam.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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A spectacular summary on why beliefs matter

I would be hard pressed to find a line in this book which wasn't useful and accurate. Ali uses his incredible life experience and penmanship to tell a story of why beliefs matter, about why we must be more interested in the truth and less interested in finding comfort in confirming our own beliefs. At times it's an extremely moving book and at other times his ideas are complex and take time to settle in. His openness and ability to artfully describe his thoughts and bring depth to complex and unpopular ideas are second to none.

For anyone who thinks beliefs should go unchallenged, this book is for you. For anyone who was lucky enough to grow up in an agnostic or atheist household and is interested in what it's like to come from a religious upbringing, this book will increase your empathy and is for you. And for anyone who grew up religious (still practicing or not), this book is most definitely for you.

Thank you Ali for sharing your story and incredible knowledge with us.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Excellent reading!

What an insightful and interesting book! A well written and engaging discussion of one of the most important issues of our day. Ali speaks from the viewpoint of one perfectly placed to offer a deep insight into the plight of one of the most persecuted minorities on the planet, the apostate Muslim. More than this, he gives the thousands if not millions around the world who are in that position the assurance that they're not crazy, broken or dammed. This is how the kind of change that tangibly makes the world a better place happens.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Incredibly important book

Such an important book that could apply to anyone of faith, but especially Muslims who are at any stage of asking questions. Very thorough and informative, but well-paced and clear. It also does well to keep a historical context in mind.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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An Amazing Work

I am not a Muslim, but this work so clearly explains the current Islamic conflicts that I feel for the first time I truly understand it. It is also must read for other believers and non believers, that helped me understand my own journey out of Christianity. It is also a work of hope.

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Beautifully written and read.

This book is deeply engaging, balanced, brave, honest and informative. I learned a great deal and will refer back to it often. Dr. Rizvi has a gift for narrative. Mr. Shah reads with emotive clarity. I highly recommend!

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  • David
  • Alachua, FL, United States
  • 03-23-18

excellent read

A must for both theists and atheists alike. dies a better job of explaining the ideology of the atheist mind than any other book I've ever read.

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Fantastic, insightful and humane

A very thoughtful , deep, introspective and insightful book. People have rights and ideas do not. This thought resonates throughout. Highly recommended.

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Loved it!

An essential read for today's religious licentiosness. Told in an empathic and disarming way, that invites the listener to question long held biases and beliefs. Best book on the subject I've ever come across!

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A very courageous book

It took a lot of courage for a former Muslim to write such a book. The clarity of thought and fairness of presentation really stand out. It is a very moving account of Dr. Rizvi's personal spiritual journey.