These days, atheism is becoming more and more a common phenomenon for youth in Egypt. The atheists were interviewed by many TV programmes and Egyptian daily newspapers to show their reasons and thoughts about why they move to atheism and left their religion. Those atheists received many threatens to kill from religious people and sent to prison by the Egyptian government. Before the Egyptian revolution it was too hard to talk about atheism through Egyptian media press because of National Security and the past regime didn’t allow this happen, but now after the Egyptian revolution it is usual to discuss these controversial issues for public. However, we are suffering from the systematic crack down from the government and mainly from Al-Azhar and Salafists about atheists and agnostics communities in Egypt. In this essay, I will highlights different reasons that make youth in Egypt turned to atheism.
There are several reasons of leaving religion whether Islam or Christianity and turning to atheism or agnosticism for Egyptian young people. For me, the main one is a philosophical reason and this is my own experience with atheism. Being read in-depth about philosophy, in particular about Greek philosophy encourage you to use your own reason and ask big questions about God, religion, life after death and so on. So, atheism is mainly a philosophical phenomenon since the Greek philosophers such as: Socrates and Protagoras. On the other hand, the atheism in the Arab World has been for religious reasons in most cases. However, I would argue that atheism should be for philosophical reasons not just religious reasons because you deny the idea of God and religion in all religions not just Islam or Christianity.
Having said that, it is undeniable that leaving the religion and turning to atheism was for many irrational causes in the religion itself and what are clergies doing in the real life that is far away from what they teach. These reasons made many Egyptian young people to ask themselves about the real religion in the real life. In addition, the religious duties like divorce problem in Christianity and child marriage in Islam. Many young people have read many books that criticize these ideas and this led to go back other books that explain the black history of messengers (prophets) and how they were governing and dealing with social issues. All these reasons encouraged youth to use their own reason freely without any fair to find out the truth behind the religion.
To sum up, every atheist or agnostic has a own experience with atheism, it depends on education, family, friends or maybe bad experience with clergy. Now the social media like Facebook, twitter, YouTube and blogs bring the voices of atheists to public and impact other youth that have doubts about the religion and this help atheism community in Egypt to be a high population and no longer minority.