Saturday, September 19, 2015

Believe or not believe that is the Question...

There are a lot of issues at play in our great country.  We are currently facing immigration issues, also shared by many parts of the world.  We are facing world hunger, the manipulation of economics, pollution and a cadre of other problems. We are also facing issues of religious beliefs and the multitude of ideas that separate those who believe in something and those who claim they do not, creating a further separation from those who believe at a zealous level and those who consider themselves mainstream.

There are also serious budgetary issues with governments of almost every country, taking and spending, but not for the good of the people who are taxed, and then there is the almighty political issues of graft and corruption, cronyism and self loathing companionship's that rape and pillage the offices of those that represent us.  Every one of these issues is important and potentially game changing, but  the most important is the fundamental issue of belief.  For centuries we have been a religious people with a strong faith toward God, whomever you claim as your god.  We have endeavored to worship and serve that god with all our heart, mind and strength.  

Throughout those ages, for good and for bad, religion has played an important role in the forming of our societies.  Plato believed in a relative moralistic idea and espoused a changeable and situational morality.  Other great thinkers have included Hume and Mead who follow the idea of nature being the overriding motivation for who and what we are, discounting the role of religion and the idea of a divine being who actually really cares about his children.  They disregarded the more salient role of belief and our personal associations with that un-provable but believable anthropomorphic being we often refer to as God.  The biggest problem with “religion” are those religious organizations that act more like political arms of an impersonal church; preaching and promoting unfathomable spiritual and existential doctrine that not only make believing impossible but makes adherence a loathsome and guilt ridden balance of faith and fear, neither can work effectively with the other.

No wonder the incidents of atheism are on the rise.  When taken from an historical sense, religion has been the bad guy, the evil overseer with minions and priest exploiting the good intentions of those that try to believe.  If there is a god he would be angry with those who profess to do His bidding only to find that His rules have been bastardized, manipulated and rewritten for the sole purpose of supporting the higher clergy of most religious sects, leaving the faithful with only a slim margin of hope, being forced into faithful adherence or risk death by fire, separation or worse, total excommunication.

The comparison to political adherence within the context of our current religious practices is a keen reminder of the power of believers without substance.  Global Warming/ cooling issues, Environmentalism, and even some forms of Animal rights worship or Nature worship are forms of a religious fanaticism that infects our country and pulls us off the path of reasonableness and clearly into areas of the mentally ill and all the connotation that are associated with those who are clearly not acting rationally.

The irony of religious belief is often found in the extreme nature of those who profess adherence in explicit areas of devotion but fail to believe in a god.  They exchange a belief in god with a belief in nature, or global issues, or the many causes that seem important and require an inordinate amount of time and actually mimic the actions of those who profess and believe in the more traditional aspects of Religion.  They rationalize their beliefs by placing blame on big oil or big business and even in the common man without any substantial proof of evil or discord other than the profits or actions from these non aligned concerns. As if making money  and living is indeed the root of all evil, but the bible says directly that it is the “love of money” that is most evil.

Why is it that one religious belief is OK and another is not especially if its nature centered, while a religion based on a supreme being is not?  The ultimate motivations are similar with the only difference being a substantial belief in a God as a person rather than the spurious aim toward Mother Nature or Gaia. 

A Religion is simply an organized collection of beliefs, cultural systems, and world views.  Following that mindset, political beliefs and adherence to a specific philosophy could be construed as a religion.  More succinctly the overriding motivations of those who profess any global destruction based on human intervention would also be considered a religion and to some a level of fanaticism that may often only be compared to those who have in the past been associated with those who bomb abortion clinics or those who are immune to snake bites or the crusades.  There are crazed devotees in all facets of life but those within religion are often given more credence in their zealously than others who exhibit similar motivations and personal devotions simply because they refuse to acknowledge their god.

Troubling is the opositional stances of those who follow certain beliefs but do not allow others to pursue their own beliefs freely.  In the first time in Human History America established a non-religious based government (no state religion) allowing for the express ideal of freedom to worship or the choice not too.  In other words, let all worship how, what and when they may with the continuing ideal of having the support of the government to establish those freedoms in the form of free speech and the ability to congregate beyond the express permission of that said government.

That freedom has become too much for some, especially those who follow the same precepts of a religion but now want to curtail those rights from others just because they are following a spiritual road instead of a natural path.  A religious belief is simply that, a belief, a conviction, a set of principles that are followed, not always spiritual in nature.  Any religious following whether it is of God or of nature should savor the same rights as the other but when the global warming religion tries to alter my freedoms than I grow concerned.  When those who profess an affinity toward vegan-ism but attempt to alter my desire for a large piece of slightly rare roast then they have stepped over their rights of worship into mine and that should not be allowed.

Religious worship is healthy when it’s done privately and reverently.  I will allow you to worship most any way you choose (Aztec style human sacrifices may not be allowed) but you need to let me do the same.  If you want to live your life eating celery, so be it but you have to also let me have my rare red meat, and respect my desire to be different than you.