A lot of people have problems with religion. It’s to the point that I often feel that, as a religious person, I can’t talk about what I really believe in for fear of being labelled. I have been called a fanatic. I have been told that I can’t think for myself and that’s why I follow religion. I have been told that I have been brainwashed.
The thing that puzzles me is this.
If you love something, you can’t help but talk about it. If you are in love with a person and talk about him/her, you’re not necessarily a fanatic; you can still think for yourself; and you are not necessarily brainwashed.
And yet, a religious person in love with their religion doesn’t have that same freedom.
If you are in a good position in life—say, if you have a job at Google, which is said to be one of the current top employers—and you wish that on someone else, you are seen as a kind and generous person.
And yet, a religious person wishing the spiritual joy of their lifestyle on someone else is seen as a brainwasher.
If you are still sick after following only a portion of the full treatment prescribed, even individuals with no medical background will know that your health might have been a lot better had you stuck to the full course as prescribed.
And yet, individuals think that because the aspect of religion that they chose to apply didn’t transform their lives for the better, all religion is completely wrong.
If you judge a population based on horrible things a very small number of them have said or done, you are called out for being narrow-minded and told to move beyond your prejudices.
And yet we judge all followers on the horrible actions that were done in the name of the same religion that they follow.
This has created a society ruled by contradictions.
We are not allowed anymore to refuse anyone their lifestyle choices; and yet mine is constantly and consistently being denied.
We are told we are all free to live the life that we want to live; and yet mine is constantly and consistently being belittled and vilified.
But the truth is that although I am a religious person, I am not a fanatic; I just have faith in what I believe in. The truth is that although I am a religious person, I am not trying to convert you; I just naturally share with others what brings me the most joy in my life.
These contradictions, based on judgement often built on historical events that are so far back they shouldn’t have any hold on a maturing world like ours, create a society in which everyone is unhappy.
I think it’s time that we changed things, don’t you?
Image courtesy of Chad Mauger.