Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Friday, July 14, 2017

Something more

 I saw that Muslim gentleman on television this morning. Ever notice how they emphasize that ? The fact that he is a Muslim. Don't say what country he comes from though. Muslim isn't a nationality but his religion and that's makes a difference ? Anyway, he's back. You know the one, the Gold Star father that Hillary paraded out during her campaign. It didn't have quite the impact she had hoped for and he just kind of faded away. Now he has stepped out on the stage once again. This time he was at Towson University speaking against hatred and discrimination. Well , I thought to myself, I should hope so. I guess because he is a Muslim that is supposed to be some radical concept ? Lend some more credence to the topic ?  Hmm, I'll have to give that some thought. I do feel for the loss of his son. I'm assuming his son was a practicing Muslim as well. He wasn't the first Muslim to serve in our armed forces and certainly not the first to be killed in action. I knew a few Wiccans personally as well. None of that is news to me. That we shouldn't hate each other and discriminate against each other is also not a new concept to me. But whatever, I'm not sure what his claim to fame is, but he is certainly entitled to speak wherever and whenever he chooses.
 Listening to the news reporter talking about eliminating hate and discrimination I couldn't help but think. This gentlemen is heading up a campaign to eradicate these human behaviors. That is his stated purpose. He is only one of millions of people that agree that hate and discrimination are wrong. Mankind has created an entire philosophy about just how we should deal with that. Generally speaking, we call it religion. One definition of religion is :" the belief in and worship of a controlling power, especially a personal God or Gods." It is that personal God or Gods that instruct us in social behaviors. IE : what is right and wrong. I know of no religion that preaches hate and discrimination. Know some that use that as a tool to gain followers though. That is another discussion however, one I have addressed in the past. So I will not enter into that here.
 The thing that struck me about all of this is how we have these folks campaigning to eliminate these behaviors but without the use of religion to do so. Except the emphasis was placed on the fact that he is a Muslim. I find that a bit confusing. So you are going to tell me what is right and wrong but there is no accountability to your God(s) ? All religions traditionally offer a reward for correct behaviors and a punishment for incorrect ones. So, just how are we going to decide right from wrong if man is the sole rule maker ? Do you see the problem with that ? You always win when you can change the rules at will ! Everyone can not be the winner ! That is just a universal truth. No matter how much you feel that it is unfair, that is the case. There are winners and losers ! You can not replace God with government. You just can't do it ! The reason is a simple one. Human beings tend to change their minds and attitudes based on their current situation. Humans are not consistent in their thoughts or actions. We may believe in our God or Gods but we also know they will likely not interfere with whatever choices we make. Gods have a tendency to be patient. Fact is they use the logic, give then enough rope and they will hang themselves ! I certainly agree with that assessment. Are any of us perfect ? No, not hardly. That is why the whole forgiveness thing exists. Seems like now we want to change it to, we don't even have to try. We will not be held accountable. All that is necessary is to say, I know what is wrong !
 I realize that I write these thoughts with a biased opinion. I freely admit to that. Take that Muslim fella campaigning for diversity, tolerance and eradication of hatred and discrimination. Ever read the Quran ? That isn't what his text instructs the faithful to do. So if I am to believe this man is genuine, sincere in his beliefs, how can he preach the opposite of what his religious texts tell him to do ? That is an issue for me. But I don't want to start a big discussion on that. I'm just sayin' religion and the writing of religious texts are to instruct us in behaviors that are acceptable to our God or Gods. It is those behaviors that will give us the reward we seek. Failure to follow those rules will result in what ? Depends on which religion you are talking about. The most important function of any religion is to hold us personally accountable.
 No one wants to die. No one wants to believe that this is all there is. We all want more. And if you want more you must do what your God or Gods tell you to do. Failure to do so will result in your being held to account. When the account doesn't balance, you are in arrears. Problem is, if you are dead it's just too late ! No time left to balance the books ! That is the personal accountability I am talking about.
 Obedience is a prerequisite to receiving the reward. Just as you have to work to earn your pay so you must obey your God or Gods to receive whatever is being promised. If you genuinely want what is being promised, that is exactly how it works. What is the reward for not being discriminatory and hateful ? What if you are discriminatory and hateful, what is the punishment ? Can it be written into law that I can't hate you ? Can it be written into law that I can't be discriminatory ? I submit the answer is a resounding no ! I can provide penalties for when I believe you are acting that way, evidence must be provided, but does that eradicate the actions ? No. I just got caught is all, held to account. I am being held to account by whom ? Think about that. I am being held to account by other people, the lawmakers, the lawyers, the courts or whatever label you wish to apply. I can be fined, imprisoned and maybe even executed. But that is all that can be done. Those actions will not eradicate prejudice or discrimination. You can kill me but promise me nothing beyond that. And that my friends in why we have our God or Gods. The promise of something more, whether for the good of the bad. There will be consequences.
 You see there are those trying to make a campaign out of just actions. At one time in history we called that a Crusade. The crusades were more about territory than religion. Religious belief, a promise of something more was used as the motivation. The same thing is happening today. All this unrest and campaigning really has little to do with religion. It is centered on property, money and opportunity. Not much has changed since the middle ages in that regard. This is just another crusade. It is being fought with rhetoric. ( the art of effective or persuasive speaking or writing, especially the use of figures of speech and other compositional techniques. ) What is being promised ? The promise is that life will be " fair. " Heaven on earth ? We will receive our reward while we are still alive ! Sounds pretty good doesn't it ? Thing is we will all die one day, then what ? Is death fair ? I'd say so because we are all equal in death. It is what comes after that will separate us. My advice is to plan ahead. The goal is to avoid negative consequences, always has been and always will be.