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Monday, 21 October 2013

Let's talk about religious tolerance, for a bit.

There's a current trend of dissing anyone with religious beliefs. The old trope of hating anyone who believes their god is better than your god, or has a different coloured beard, or hangs their hat in a different way is still alive and well and throwing stones; one of the pagan boards I visit had a charmer drop by threatening to rap us to dearth earlier on today. (The urge to send him a dictionary was strong. Note to fanatics : threats only work if you spell them properly, otherwise we tend to point and laugh. And debate not turning you into a frig.)

This one is slightly different, in that it shows complete and utter contempt for anyone with any sort of religious belief whatsoever. I'm not sure whether it started as a fashion statement or a rebellion. I do know that a lot of the time it descends into HYSTERICAL CAPITALS and screaming over the internet.

Nobody argues that certain powers in mainstream religion abused their positions, and still do. And of course there are fanatics in every religion on the planet. They're called bigots, and their true religion is hate. The latest group to join their ranks are the militant atheists, storming newspaper columns and comment board to proclaim everyone else's ignorance. 

The average person with a spiritual belief doesn't deserve the scorn and contempt I'm seeing. The average person tries to live their life, and carve a little place for themselves in the world, and religious beliefs - or lack thereof - are part of that. Demanding that I  - or anyone else - change a core, deeply personal belief is like walking up to a stranger in the street and demanding to examine their underwear. It's insulting, obnoxious and annoying, and at the end of the time it puts them right in the middle of the group they rant against. 

Because there is no reasoning with them. There is no room for debate in the world according to their outlook. There is no tolerance here, just the sound of heavy boots trampling reason into a mess of incoherent ramblings and the screaming of a crowd that has lost it's mind.

I have no issues with someone who wants to be an atheist. But like any other outlook, it needs to respect the fact that other people don't feel that way, will never feel that way, and have no urge to do so.

Anything else means you fit in perfectly with your own little Crusade, your personal version of Jihad; take no prisoners and to hell with the damage. But it's all in a good cause, right?

Until the morning you wake up and realise you are living your own version of Animal Farm; that there is no Us and Them because you do exactly the same things, poison the same wells, and cause a great deal of hurt and harm.

Irony. She bites.