Leaving Islam: Apostatates Speak Out
(ISBN 1-59102-068-9) is a book, authored and edited by secularist Ibn Warraq
that researches and documents cases of apostasy
The first part of the book presents an overview of the theological
underpinnings of apostasy in Islam
based upon the Qur’an
, the hadiths
and written opinions from classical schools of Islamic
jurisprudence as well as contemporary written pronouncements of Islamic jurists.
The next section presents the history of the application of Islamic jurisdiction on apostates documenting notable cases from the early centuries of Islam, such as those of freethinkers Ibn al-Rawandi and Ar-Razi (865-925), or skeptical poets such as Omar Khayyam (1048-1131) and Hafiz (1320-89), or Sufi (mystic) practitioners including Mansur Al-Hallaj, executed in 922 and As-Suhrawardi executed in 1191, and the atheist Sulayman al-Ma'arri (973-1057).
This followed by numerous case studies covering modern day apostasies and conversions out of Islam trends throughout the world.
The later part contains testimonials of born Muslim apostates including the ex-Muslim Ali Sina and other western converts.
In a 2003 interview with The Religion Report
on Australia's ABC Radio National
, Warraq said he wrote Leaving Islam
to show that there were a large number of ex-Muslims and to highlight the courage of these 'out' apostates. He also said his target audience with the book was not just Muslims but everyone.