Posted by pancho (188.8.131.52) on January 09, 2002 at 12:34:19:
There isn’t anything morally superior or particularly humane in any of the three sister religions of Judaism, Christianity or Islam. Seems to me they just expropriated what is good in humanity anyway and tried to identify its origins with their own development. Each of them would have us believe that goodness, kindness, right living…exist only through them and because of them. Clearly there are kind people, good people, everywhere in the world who have never heard of any of those religions. And just as obviously there are all manner of atrocities committed by leading advocates of each religion, such as divinely inspired kings and omnipotent religious leaders.
It just may be that organized religion was merely a force created to oppose the power of secular rulers…that popes and head priests were another sort of “king”…but ones that used an almighty and divinely inspired authority to offset the rule of brute force imposed by secular leaders.
In his book “Constantine’s Sword” James Campbell, an ex priest, plots the development of organized Christianity from its origins as a fervent hope in the hearts of those perishing under the Roman heel to the very dogma that Rome would co opt and redefine and put to use in continuing its domination over the lands it once controlled by the sword alone. The Cross is Constantine’s sword…and becomes the weapon of choice, and a far superior one, to maintain and greatly expand the power and durability of the Roman Empire.
No one in their right mind would accuse Constantine of being a Christian, or any of the many most Holy Roman Emperors or warrior popes. Religion was a useful tool, that’s all. That it has elements of goodness in it merely attests to the clever use of psychology by any number of its administrators, for that “goodness” that each religion preaches as its own dogma is universal and existed long before any of the three sisters came on the scene.
And without the organizations and dogmas and rules and beastliness of these three religions, humanity would go on being as kind as it seems to be able to be. The advantage would be that we would lose the mask and cover behind which the incredible cruelty each religion fosters could be any longer hidden. The world would be a far better place if each religion took itself off to Hell…where they all belong.
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