Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Organized Religion?

The overbearing MY WAY OR YOU'LL BURN IN HELL/
can best believe I'm not buying what you trying to sell/
cause no man or wo(man) either/
can make me a believer/
or conform to their way of thought so I can ascend through the ether/
the organized teach/
to the organized sheep/
but the religion/
that they teaching em/
is organized (BLEEP).

What is religion? There are as many answers to that question as there are religions, probably more. I for one broadly define religion as structured belief, that is a set of beliefs with some connecting theme or structure.

I used to be a very cynical, person. I believed that all religion was superstitious nonsense. Over time, I became more tolerant, and tried to understand religion and religious people. I found that most of them were not superstitious nutcases, but kind, sensible people, no different than anyone else.

As I examined the religions of the world, I realized that they exceeded my definition of religion. It was then that I realized that I have no problem with religion, only with organized religion.

Now, to most people religion and organized religion are one and the same. That i because non-organized religion is no longer common or recognized. And yet, there is nothing to stop me ore someone else from creating my own religion and never telling anyone about it. The problem is, organized religions often bring out the worst of religion.

Before you start tearing my throat out or write me off as a religion-basher, hear me out. As I said, i define religion as structured belief. As such, one of the problems with organized religion is that it expects all of it's members to conform to the same system of belief. This is why there are so many branches of religions. When a group from a certain religion disagrees with one or more of that religions beliefs strongly enough, they break away and form there own religion.
However, this conformity is a minor problem when compared to some of the other issues with organized religion. The first of organized religion's failures is inflexibility. If I change my mind about a subject, I can just alter my beliefs to compensate. In an organized religion, the beliefs of the religion are set in stone, and can not be changed unless a majority of the religion's members disagree with said beliefs. Even then, many religions claim that their beliefs are the word of a higher power, and fear that changing these beliefs is an admission that this higher power made a mistake. Yet how can something perfect be unchanging? Reality dictates that the perfect action or response in one given situation will likely not be the perfect action or response in another. Being perfect is being perfect for the situation, and as such requires adaptability.

The second failure of organized religion is it's exclusivity. Many religions believe in a "good place" and a "bad place". Of course there are many that don't, but a great deal of mainstream religions do. Now, to go to the good place one must be a good person, and the opposite is true for the bad place. Yet a startling number of religions also say that one will go to the bad place simply for not believing in their religion and that one will go to the good place simply for believing in their particular religion, regardless of morality. As such, admission to the good place, which began as a reward for good behavior, has been reduced to a spiritual lottery. You take your ticket and hope that you picked a winning number. As such, the original intent of the good place and the bad place (to provide incentive for good behavior and to act as a deterrent for bad behavior, respectively) has been lost. One's manner and actions no longer matter, only their choice of belief.

The last major failure of organized religion is their need for survival. In order to survive, an organized religion must attract new members and steer people away from other religions. The way this goal is accomplished, sadly, is often through scare tactics, demonizing of competitors, and advertising. Organized religions can not simply state their beliefs, they also tend to state that all other beliefs are wrong. In this way, religion has become difficult to distinguish from business. In fact, many of the tactics that religions employ would seem underhanded, even in the business world. Many businesses wish they could get away with claiming that those who buy from their competitors will suffer eternal torment after they die.
Not all organized religions are like this. Some are just gathering of people with similar beliefs. Yet these religions tend to be smaller, largely because the tactics that other organized religions employ, while underhanded, work.

Organized religion does suck, why you ask?

For example, on one hand you have a woman, an Atheist, who died just before she turned 80, she lived a fairly pure life. She had only fucked one man, her husband, who died at 59. She did fall in love after, but decided not to pursue. She never stole, only drank once. She was always nice and respectful to everyone, never spoke or even thought a bad thought in her entire life. She had three children and raised them according to her standard, as outstanding people, who knew that their mother would always be there for them.

On the other hand, we have a businessman, died at 59, smoked and drank all his life. He had 2 children, but didn’t see them that much, for he was always pre-occupied with his work. He never thought of anything but himself. He once cheated, but confessed, he stole more than once, but confessed this too. He went to church every week, and prayed every day.

According to most organized religions who has more chance of being allowed to ascend? The religious dickhead, or the righteous Atheist? Now what I thought, is that God should embody all that is good in the world. Sending you to hell because you don’t honour him by praying to him. It doesn’t matter if you’re a good person, it just matters if you follow HIS rules. That even sounds a little like dictatorship and self-glorification.

So the entity that’s supposed to embody all that’s good, is a self-glorifying dictator! Now that’s plain brilliant! Couldn’t have thought of that! 

Listen, I'm aware of all the good religion is supposed to bring to the world. Hell, communism is fantastic in theory, but it just doesn't work. WAY too many people have gotten it wrong, and that's why organized religion sucks. To those who belong to such an accepting religion, please do not be offended by what I have said, these words are not meant for you. And to those who do belong to a mainstream organized religion, I make no judgment of you individually, only a judgment of organized religion as a whole.

Posted via email from OnMugen's posterous

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