This I Believe

Rex - Lakewood
Entered on May 17, 2006
Age Group: 50 - 65
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A word on religion:

I believe God created the universe. I believe this should be taught in churches, synagogues, temples and homes, not public schools.

How I see science does not conflict with how I see God. In fact, it enhances it- science is, hands down, the best revealer of the wonders of God’s creation.

So I see the current flap between science and religion as pretty ridiculous. Politics and power struggles. Instead, heal the sick. Feed the poor (seems to me this is most of the world). Love one another. The rest seems like good energy pointed in a counter-productive direction.

I am sad when I see how exclusionary religions have become, how separatist, even tribal. I get the feeling these days that you have to know the secret password. The words “exclusive club” come to mind. And why is it that I feel bullied by religion these days? I feel bullied by bumper stickers like Support Our Troops, and even God Bless America. Isn’t the essence of religion support for _all_ God’s children? And why wouldn’t we want God to bless the _entire world_?

Further, I see religions leading efforts to actually legislate who can love whom. If this is not the apex of exclusionism, what is? Why wouldn’t we _celebrate_ when any human being declares his/her love for another?

I find myself recalling the Inquisition. What kind of people would insist, even legislate, that every public school child, regardless, pledge a belief in God every morning? Hasn’t history graphically taught us the results of this kind of intolerance?

But here’s the hardest part for me- I see religions reverting to Old Testament “my god can whip your god” stuff. To kill another human being in God’s name and for God’s sake- how can that be right? If you ask me, “Holy War” is oxymoronic.

Nevertheless, it seems to me we are in the middle of one now, both sides claiming God’s approval, even his imperative, as the body count on both sides increases as the violence escalates, as violence always does.

As the poet Naomi Nye says, “If this is holy, could we have some new religions please?”

I say God bless us all. The whole world. All people. No exceptions. Amen.