Tuesday, October 18, 2016

How to end religious terror – one suggestion


Yahweh by Michelangelo
Recently I stumbled upon a quote from Robert G Ingersoll’s book, Some Mistakes of Moses.  The quote which puts the Jewish God on a dissection table is reproduced below:

It is impossible to conceive of a more thoroughly despicable, hateful, and arrogant being, than the Jewish god. He is without a redeeming feature. In the mythology of the world he has no parallel. He, only, is never touched by agony and tears. He delights only in blood and pain. Human affections are naught to him. He cares neither for love nor music, beauty nor joy. A false friend, an unjust judge, a braggart, hypocrite, and tyrant, sincere in hatred, jealous, vain, and revengeful, false in promise, honest in curse, suspicious, ignorant, and changeable, infamous and hideous:—such is the God of the Pentateuch.

There are people who believe in such a heartless, mirthless, starkly absurd God too.  It is then that I fell on the contemplation whether most gods aren’t similar one way or another.  They make inhuman demands.  They do things which many of us human beings will find atrocious and brutal, absurd and hilarious, or plainly stupid.

One challenge which I am tempted to hurl at believers is this: how many of them have actually studied their religion and its god(s) - both scriptures and history - systematically?  I’m sure there won’t be very many who will raise the hand.  If they really study their religion systematically, most of them won’t find the god(s) worthy of devotion.  And all religious terror will come to an end.


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7 comments:

  1. Reminds me of a poem by Harivansh Rai Bachchan that has a line that says that without religion things would have been better.

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    1. Sadly there has been no civilisation so far without a concomitant religion. So mine is only wishful thinking. But dreams are free...

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  2. There was a time I used to pray...but then things changed....Now after having become a mother, I am charged by many as to why I am not letting my kids become religious. Not that I tell them that there is no God, since I don't know about that too, but the moment I think of telling them these 'stories' about Gods, I am stuck and struck by the 'terror' in these stories - birth of Ganesh - the wrathful Shiva, the helpless elephant - is one such example....so I keep telling them only one thing - that be kind, try not to hurt anyone, but if you do, accept your mistake....and other stuff like that....Looking at the way 'religious' people are behaving, I feel so numb when it comes to praying and other related stuff.

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    1. I now live in a village which is apparently very peaceful and almost idyllic. But I wake up at 5.30 am to religious songs played from the Christian church and the Hindu temple both of which are equidistant from my home. Neither songs are clear because they seem to be competing with each other with the volume levels.

      When I mentioned this to a villager I was told that the competition takes place at many levels. The church has Sunday catechism classes and so various Hindu organisations have started the same. The Christians started organised community-home prayers and it was soon emulated by the Hindus. So religion is a kind of competition. What are children going to learn, I wonder.

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  3. world without religion is impossible in today's world as it is used by rulers to rule their people, if people started questioning god they will question them which they didn't want

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    1. Yes. Religion and politics have always gone hand in hand making use of each other.

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  4. नोटबंदी के बाद डिजिटल पेमेंट पर जोर, जानें क्या है डिजिटल पेमेंट
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