reply to post by TheRooster
as Ghandi said, paraphrased, be the change you wish to see in the world.
I was once very dogmatic as a Christian, spreading the gospel and trying to get people to come to Christ for salvation, worried about any being lost,
and all of that. I was also, as a younger man, involved in a lot of different religions, trying to find the truth. In the end, I had to walk away
from them all for a few different reasons, most of which I won't bore you with here.
But there were a few things that I learned in my travels, and most of them not good, when it comes to organized religions.
My take on it all is this : Religion can, and does, bring out the best or the worst in a person, and is enigmatic enough to be able to justify BOTH.
I'll use Christianity as an example, since it is the one that I know most are familiar with, overall.
What the message of Jesus (aka Yahshua, for some reason they couldnt even get his name in any way close to his real name :| ) taught boils down to
something extremely simple... Love yourself, love your neighbor, and love your god, because all are one and the same. If people stuck to that
message, without any of the extraneous crap on top of it, I think this world would be the beautiful place that it could have been all along.
But then, some people decided that that was not enough, and needed tp control the minds and actions of others. Apparently they did not have enough to
So, the church began to be organized, with this man who had a beautiful message at its heart, because they knew that his message, at its heart,
would be something that would draw people like moths to a flame. Remember, most everyone would agree that a message as simple as, love yourself, love
your neighbor, and love your god, because all are one and the same, would be something that most people could agree is simple, beautiful, and heart
Then the "others" start to sink their grips into lives, and create texts to back up their opinions, and desires. And thus an organized religion is
I ask people a simple question, if they are the fire and brimstone bible thumpers.... If Jesus were alive today, and you did not know him as being
"that man", and you tried to get him "saved", and he refused... would you walk away from him, damning him to hell?
I ask this question because I have seen the glee that some people take in going to people and flaunting that "salvation" in the persons face. They
will do everything under the sun to make that person turn away from the "saving grace of God", so that they can then turn around and zealously damn
that person for not accepting Christ.
It's sick, it really is. They are like little kids, jealously guarding their salvation like a bully at christmas, demanding that anyone who wants to
play with his toy pay their price for doing so. You can literally see the glint in their eyes, I am not kidding.
Did Jesus preach that way? Did he ever? He was known as gentle Jesus for a reason. Never would he have flaunted it in someones face. So for those
of you out there who do this kind of thing, how can you be better than the master you profess to follow? Think about it.
As I said, religion can bring out the best or the worst in a person. Both stances can be justified if you follow the texts literally. And,
unfortunately, there have been a lot of people throughout history who have taken advantage of that. We've had some examples of the good ones, for
sure, but anyone who wants to be fully honest with the ring of history has to admit that, unfortunately, more of the bad ones have come about than
Does that mean that all religions are bad, or whatever you wish to say? No. only the ways people use it.
The core is, never interfere with anothers free will. It is the best gift that we have. If you can live that way, you'll see the world CAN be good.