How are atheists treated in Islamic countries

Lamisse Farhat, 30 years old, Lebanon

Farhat was 16 years old when she ultimately stopped believing. For her, it wasn't Islam in specific that she no longer believed in, but rather religion altogether. 

"I was 16 when I kind of gave God a deadline. I told God: people are hungry, dying, in pain ... evil people are getting stronger and happier, and good people are either poor, sad, sick or dying. If you exist, you should stop it.  

If not, either you don’t exist or you are a cruel sadist. I think the result is clear!" Farhat told StepFeed. 

For her, beliefs are more than just following a particular system of faith and worship. 

"I believe in morals, in [doing] good, being kind to others and not harming anything or anyone," she added. 

Contrary to what you might think, Farhat's family members - who are non-practicing believers - were quite supportive of her decision, so long as she "does not offend anyone from any religious background." 

Her dad, she explained, is her number one fan. 

"Dad is my number one fan ... we talk about this stuff a lot and share the same views regarding extreme practices, stupid rituals, baseless stories, and superstitions," Farhat says. 

Outside of her immediate family circle, Farhat prefers not to talk about her views with others. 

"My number one problem with religious people is using Islam or other religions as a measure to judge whether people are good or not. The few times I did open up about being an atheist, I was either lectured or terrorized." 

Farhat is an atheist but believes there are beautiful morals in all religions. 

"I believe in all Islamic ethics [including] kindness, honesty, hard work, caring for the elderly, keeping secrets, family ties, being good to my parents ... [but] I don't believe in the afterlife," she said.  

"I find it really hard to abide by laws that were written hundreds of years ago, and that I should be doing what people living in the desert said I should do," she continued.