For the past year I've been discussing religion, and other subjects, with religious people and non religious people. The usual structure of the discussion goes like this:
I present what I think of perhaps Islam or some other religion.
The religious person or the non religious person that I am arguing with says that I am wrong and that I've missunderstood religion and that it is the people, the evil leaders, that have corrupted the religion. Sometimes they accuse me of getting my arguments from sionism, when clearly I have not gotten anything from there.
I show them quotes and context from the book, or I keep explaining why religion poisons everything.
This continues and the person keeps denying what I'm saying and I keep telling them what I think, and they keep telling me what I think.
This continues for ages until it ends in some way.
The problem, or insane thing is, that the way that I look at this person, is the same way as he or she sees me. I know that I'm right, not to sound arrogant, and even if Dawkins himself or perhaps Hitchens, two great debaters, would argue with these people, they would never listen.
I'm not trying to say in some philosophical way "What is the truth?", but instead I want to discuss how you can argue when clearly both the sides look at each other like if the other one is misunderstanding or being "Blind and ignorant".
This goes for every other subject there is, like Cannabis (Which I discussed two days ago with an arrogant priest". Except with Cannabis, you can clearly find evidence that are way more effective.
Now, some parts of the Quran are obviously hostile, bigoted, plagiarism or just plain stupid. Anti-theists chooses the obvious context and meaning that the verses of the Quran were written in, we expose the plagiarism from Arabian myths, folk tales, Buddhist legends etc.
But religious people goes against these remarks and says that we could not be more wrong. But it is very difficult, or nearly impossible, to expose the true meaning of the Quran and the true meaning of the verses. The religious side and the anti religious side will continue to try to disprove each other, and people will choose the side that has the best arguments. But what is the point in discussing religious verses with religious people, they will only say that you've misinterpreted the texts or that the text was written in this confusing language because of some idiotic reason.
So why would you discuss religious texts with religious people when the answer of the intentions of the author can probably never be proven?
I find myself in the same situation more often than not. If someone is going to follow a particular religion then I feel like they should at least adhere to all of the doctrines. If someone can't follow all of the rules (I doubt I've met anyone that can) or chooses to ignore certain sections, then they have no business in the religion. Reading a few pages in a book on surgical techniques wouldn't make someone qualified to perform open heart surgery. I know that there are lots of people that aren't very religious but still choose to call upon portions of a religious text that may help them in life. I don't think there's anything wrong with that unless the sections being toted are used to justify slavery, beating children, denigrating homosexuals, etc. The religious are always going to do mental gymnastics to try to defend themselves and that's probably why they cling to religion in the first place.
It is the idiotic deluded dyslectic epileptic Muhammad fault for this cryptic language, not poetic, cryptic, in the Quran. Even if they claim that these people have misunderstood their holy book, it is because of the way it is written that makes people commit atrocious acts upon their fellow people, murder, genocide, racism, hate, ignorance, irrationality, non-reason, enslavement of the mind, all of this and more has their religion caused, and they claim that it is caused by people, not their religion. But the people get the inspiration from the Quran, even if the inspiration has been misinterpreted. But in my opinion, the Quran was clearly written so they can bestow power by creating this totalitarian dictator. The Quran sets a pretty big image of itself, by claiming that it contains the answers to the Cosmos and the necessary information about the world, when clearly the book has nothing to do with Science and it contains contradicting statements.
I myself am not that well educated of the Quran, NT and OT, but I have still read criticism from intellectuals and I have also read quotes that are so insane and ludacris that it gives me the creeps. As Dawkins has answered when he was criticized for his ignorance of the bible "Do you have to read up on leprechology before disbelieving in leprechauns?"
lol I am going to start using that Dawkins quote. I agree with your sentiments. If the Quran (or any religious book) is able to be misinterpreted then who says which side is right? Like you said, the book clearly advocates and promotes murder, enslavement, racism, genocide, etc. Trying to debate that is just ignoring facts. Nothing you can say to someone that refuses to acknowledge reality.
Personally, I never bother to discuss the contents of any delusional faith with the believer. It is as futile as any discussion about what is printed upon toilet paper. Because I cannot imagine any other use for the bible, or koran or what other venerated book they have.
But there is a fascinating question: Why has the gullibility and suscibility for any religious delusion so successfully evolved by natural selection.