- Nov 11, 2005
- Reaction score
- Lexington, KY
People blame 'religion' for all sorts of things, they say it starts wars, spread cruelty, etc etc. The truth is people use their religion as an excuse to be a lousy human being doing things they would condemn in others, their 'religion' can be anything it can be no religion but it's what people hide behind. Rarely someone comes out and says they are staring a war because they want the land, wealth and power that their neighbour has, it has to be dressed up as 'righteous' before people will join in. The neighbours have to be demonised and put so in the wrong it seems the 'right' thing to do to invade, kill and oppress. It does has to be religion of course it can be a something that people feel strongly about such a being 'wronged' by another country or that the other country is 'evil' ( such as being communist, so many countries were demonised because they were communist and invaded such as Grenada)
If people feel they have a faith in a diety I don't see why they should be pilloried for it why should it matter to others what people believe in if it harms no one? Blaming one religious person for the faults of humanity as a whole doesn't make sense, before blaming 'religion' people should examine closely the real causes of conflict and war and they will find it's not religion that has started it but the greed and nastiness of humans. You think IS is a 'religious' war? Look closer, they want land, power and the wealth that the countries they want to invade have, it's wrapped up in religion to get the followers but it's no more a 'religious' war than the Crusades were.
In general, I agree. People tend to use religion (or political ideology or science or whatever else they see as authoritative) to justify whatever it is they wanted to do in the first place. (Even if a neutral reading of the original religion/political theory/science might lead you to expect the opposite behavior.)
That said, I do think that certain interpretations of religion can have negative or positive influences on the behavior and attitudes of the believing populace. Therefore, I have adopted the "by their fruits you shall know them" outlook: If your belief in Christianity/Islam/Buddhism/Hinduism/Wicca/Secular Humanism/whatever leads you to be kinder, humbler, happier, more generous and peaceful, and so on, then I say hoorah for Jesus/Allah/Buddha/Ganesh/Mother Goddess/humanity/whatever. If said belief leads you to be an arrogant ******* who hurts others or a miserable person who hurts yourself, then I say find yourself a new belief system.