Whenever the subject of religion comes up, the common response is a nod of reverence and deference to discuss. It is like a cloud appears over a discussion mostly for fear to offend. Yet the subject of religion is the one subject that needs critical analysis. It is not a word that has some special status making it exempt from analysis. It is simply a word that describes a belief system and there is no reason why beliefs should not be scrutinized.
If person believed unicorns existed there would be people questioning why they believe unicorns exist because they have never seen one. There would be a general dismissal of such a belief as fantasy. It would be pointed out that some person imagined a horse with a horn protruding from its forehead, called it a unicorn and even though no such animal has ever been seen simply categorized it as an imaginary animal. But when the word religion is introduced such analysis is immediately is deferred to the nod of deference. Even though the same arguments and observations apply to the concept of religion as the analysis of a fantasy animal the discussion falls silent.
It is well known that there are many religions in the world and all are different. Some are outlawed and some are dismissed as “not really a religion” and some are simply adhered to out of habit or tradition and some are simply tolerated and mostly ignored. They can be identified and their creeds elucidated but an analysis of why such beliefs are held in spite of evidence to the contrary or no evidence at all is ignored as not relevant. Ignored because the truth is not considered a recognition of reality but the words of their chosen book is. This distortion of truth is not to be questioned because it would demolish a belief system. Why shouldn’t a belief system be demolished if it in fact is false? This question cannot be brought up because it is a question that threatens those who have bought into it and are not prepared to face the fact that they have spent their life clinging to that which cannot be.
Religion doesn’t deserve to be designated equivalent to morality. We know many religions advocate violation of individual rights. Why? Because their avenue of “truth” sanctions violations. If this isn’t questioned and rejected, the violation individual rights will continue. No individual should buy into something that threatens their individual rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. With such a high stake what prevents a person from having the courage to challenge this anti-life tenant? The fear religions instill with such false ideas as original sin, an eternal suffering beyond life or the fear that rejecting a religion places you in a category of infidel and expendable. These are all intimidation tactics that are geared to making people believe what they wouldn’t without the threat.
Freedom of speech includes the freedom to analyze and question. Since America enunciates and protects free speech what beyond intimidation and fear stops people from using this ability to question what is obviously untrue? As the Lion in the Wizard of OZ movie declared, “Courage”. That is all that keeps people from asking a priest why they should believe they were born in sin? That is all that keeps Jihadists from asking an Imam how does he know there are 72 virgins waiting after killing an infidel?
A person asks questions about their political candidates, their merchants and their mechanics. These are questions that refer to the real world such as what are your policies, what is the price of your hamburger or how low is the oil in my engine? They do not feel by asking these questions they will burn in hell or not be a martyr. There is no baggage attached to their inquiries. There is no reference to some supernatural overseer. Their mind is free from the shackles of intimidation to ask what they need to live their lives. Yet they enter a building where it is understood they are not free to question the imaginary promoted as truth.
If a plumber told you needed a complete overhaul of your pipes and if you questioned that you would burn in hell you would dismiss him as a quack. If a minster tells you if you don’t get dipped in water you will burn in hell you readily defer. Why?
The fears instilled by these charlatans serve their purpose to get your compliance to their dogma. That is all they have. They depend on your fear to use your mind to question . They demand faith where you know otherwise. They demand belief in that which they say is so. You have a choice centered in your mind to either defer to these claims or openly question what is the basis for their claims and is it valid. That choice will always be yours even if you choose not to activate it.Tags: religion