It was September 11th the other day.
For many, they remember the twin towers crashing, killing thousands and decimating any progress that had been made towards the acceptance of Muslims in America, and ultimately, the West. Reason being, the culprits behind it said that their motivation was religious thus pissing petrol onto the simmering corpses of the innocent and the raging flames of the burning buildings.
They did it because it was right – nay, necessary – by God.
Just as many before them have done. More people have died in the name of religion than have because of politics or money. More lives have been extinguished by God’s supposed ‘Word’ than have perished in any natural disaster ever. And why? Is there something fundamentally wrong with religion?
For every argument one may make about one religious group wronging another, a similar one can be easily retorted. So much so that the scales will forever keep tipping, from one side to the other without ever finding any balanced middle ground. In fact, I suspect that this lack of balance is getting worse. Whereas Holy ground was fought for in Holy Wars; now all we need is a cartoonist with no religious tact to doodle the wrong thing. One man shall insult another people’s religion, and their countries will then bear the brunt of the bombings that follow. The reasons for religious feud have never been good, but now the escalation factor has gotten so exponential that I fear for all our safeties when a parish priest of some remote church says he was going to burn the Qur’an on Eid.
And for what, exactly?
Have Muslims done terrible things? Why yes, of course. Have Christians? Yep, very much so. Hindus, Atheists, heck, name them. PEOPLE DO STUPID SHIT ALL THE TIME. Regardless of religion.
Yet, thousands of years have passed and a thousand more will come, where lives shall be lost because of the actions of man and everybody is keeping score as if this were a game. If it were a game, at least, there would be rules and an end. But when a religion that bases itself on surrender and peace refuses to let go of a grudge with a country, and a religion that professes love for thy neighbour and turning the other cheek goes for their guns to fight them, it’s clear what the problem is.
The fundamentals are sound but the fundamentalists aren’t.
There are certain basic principles that apply to most religions; the first of which is that there is a ‘God'(or gods). A Supreme Entity under which humankind is to worship. This is where the ‘Word’ comes from – be it in the form of the Holy Bible or the Glorious Qur’an. And holy are these tomes because the truth is somewhere in there.
But one thing we religious folk must all remember is that God is perfect, we aren’t. The word is divine, the people are human. The words; perfect. The pen that scribed those words, imperfect. The people who read it; even more imperfect. The hands that have carried it over the thousands of years, the most corrupted and imperfectly power hungry of our time. It’s like playing ‘Broken Telephone’. Suffice it to say, as the word was carried from Heaven and across Earth, a lot has changed in it.
Something that has not and will not change is the basic fundamental that we came from and shall return to our Creator. In which case, this ‘Truth’ that is missing from the books is in us. I don’t need a commandment to know that killing is wrong. But there is a commandment to that effect. Just like there are verses, chapters, pages full of peace in every major book, name it.
We wouldn’t have the ability to be understanding if this were not a necessary function. Final judgment is left with God, so for those who choose to take it into their own hands and destroy all who believe in a different God, you’re not faithful, you have a god complex. Yes, there are parts of the Qur’an and Bible that enforce violence, but let’s try peace first shall we? Let’s all put the guns down and act like it’s 2010 and that we are sensible adults with the god-given good sense to resolve differences without ripping out each others’ Adam’s Apples.
Let’s focus on being the best living examples of piety that we can be. I think that’s what is meant by giving your life to the Faith: actually using your life to propagate the truth. Not strapping on a vest full of bombs or slinging on an AR-15 and then running out into a warfield yelling out prayers.
But then again, maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m crazy and all this senseless bigotry and oppression is the wrong way to go.
Only God know and, last I checked, He gave us enough sense to know better, right?