Yasir Qadhi has doubt in Islam regarding the preservation of the Quran and regarding evolution. Yasir Qadhi has always struck me as a rational individual, a person of academic integrity. I always suspected that he may end up agnostic one day. He has come out and said his faith has taken a major blow that he has come close to a crisis of faith. This is an important development because it shows that even the most strong believers, the ones who studied the religion in depth, are not immune to the problems in the faith. The narrative of Islam we have been taught is false and it falls apart under scrutiny. In emails that Sheikh Yasir sent to a private list that were leaked August 2016, he admits he had doubts regarding the preservation of the Quran.
Yasir Qadhi states: I am personally aware of around a dozen Muslims in academia who had major crises of faith and perhaps one who has left the faith because of this issue. And I have also confessed on this list that my own personal crisis of knowledge – I wouldn’t really call it a faith crisis although perhaps it came close – was when I entered into this realm during my first year at Yale and felt my world come crashing down in front of me. I didn’t know what to believe about the hifdh preservation of the Quran anymore because there was no alternative. You either had non-Muslim views or these simplistic, standardized, triumphalistic claims that a rational mind simply cannot acknowledge as true.
So he’s saying that because of what he learned, his world has come crashing down, that dozens of Muslims in academia had major crises of faith by studying this content, that he doesn’t know how to make sense of the preservation of the Quran anymore. This mirrors what Noman Ali Khan said about his friend:
“.. for example I have a friend who’s in Harvard at the Islamic studies program and I met him. He was getting his Master’s, then he was going to get into his Phd, again Islamic studies. He’s not even done with his Masters I went to Boston and I was hanging out with him and what does he tell me? He says “After two semesters, I lost my faith and the only way I can actually continue my studies is that I stop thinking about it because if I think about it I can’t keep my mind anymore. It’s gone.”
Why is it that studying Islam in Western universities makes Muslims lose faith? Because Islam cannot survive scrutiny. These are believers who have no desire to become disbelievers but end up either doing so or coming close to it despite their best efforts not to.
I was one of the first people that’s doing a Phd from an Ivy league. I have 10 years in Medina and I still don’t know anybody who’s done something like this. I’m being honest with you. You’ve all done very well in the study of Islamic sciences. I’ll be honest with you. The shubuhat (meaning doubt) that I was exposed to, some of them I still don’t have answers to.
This is a man who studied at Medina University for over ten years. Being exposed to the academic analysis on Islam has created doubts in his mind he cannot answer. Do you think students in Medina are exposed to academic arguments? No, of course not. Medina University’s entire purpose is to pump out more Muslim sheikhs who will propagate Islam further. They only present one narrative, the dominant one without question. The preservation of the Quran cannot then be a letter for letter tashkil for tashkil narrative that later scholars verbalized and the Muslim Ummah is taught. He’s saying that letters for letter, dot for dot preservation cannot be true. That is the conclusion of this topic.