Like many others I have thought similarly for many, many years of religious types, visionaries and self appointed seers who hear voices and have visions.
I originally posted this some back in 2015 but thought it worth another rotation for those that haven’t considered the link between either epilepsy or schizophrenia and religion. Everyone including Muslims and their apologists should read this. The historian Theophanes had it down as epilepsy way back in the 8th century.
“….He would sometimes fall to the ground as if he were drunk or had fallen asleep on his feet; while unconscious his face would become flushed and sweat would drip from his brow, even when it was cold; in this state his lips would move and his face would often appear anxious. Muhammad’s own descriptions of auditory and visual hallucinations add further evidence of a neurological affliction….”
“….How then can his belief that God talked to him be explained? Schizophrenia perhaps? People suffering from this condition experience the visual and auditory hallucinations that Muhammad reported, but schizophrenics are usually incoherent and unable to function on their own….”
“….The only explanation that stands up to an analysis of the original Muhammadan literature is that he suffered from epilepsy. This is the belief that many of his contemporaries held, and it is a theory that has been advanced by his critics ever since, beginning with the Byzantine ecclesiastical historian Theophanes (752-817). He attributed creation of Islam to a ploy by Muhammad’s first wife to hide the shame of being married to someone with the falling sickness, as epilepsy used to be called, by claiming he was a prophet and was divinely inspired.
“…There is no shortage of anecdotal evidence of Muhammad’s epileptic seizures in the canonical works, though in the literature they are given an entirely different explanation. The first recorded episode happened when he was in the care of a foster mother who became so frightened her four-year-old charge was devil possessed — the ancient explanation for epilepsy — that she attempted to return him to his mother, who was also possibly an epileptic based on what is known about her.
Muhammad suffered epileptic episodes in his youth and early manhood, culminating in what he came to believe was a vision of an angel in a cave on Mt. Hira outside of Mecca when he was 40 years old. In terms of the formation of Islam, the cave experience was the most significant of his epileptic experiences, for it led him to believe he had been given a divine mission as prophet of the Lord, an idea that was enabled and reinforced by his first wife.
He would sometimes fall to the ground as if he were drunk or had fallen asleep on his feet; while unconscious his face would become flushed and sweat would drip from his brow, even when it was cold; in this state his lips would move and his face would often appear anxious.
Muhammad’s own descriptions of auditory and visual hallucinations add further evidence of a neurological affliction. When his child-wife Aisha asked him how “divine inspiration” came to him, he said: “The angel sometimes comes to me with a voice which resembles the sound of a ringing bell, and when this state abandons me, I remember what the angel has said, . . . and sometimes the angel comes to me in the shape of a man and talks to me, and I understand and remember what he says.” Was Muhammad an Epileptic?