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The Danger of Fanaticism

The Danger of Fanaticism

Is anyone else out there kind of wondering whether the world is just going a little bat-shit crazy lately? It seemed like the trends over the last few decades were one of tolerance and liberalism and this was a good thing. When did these concepts become dirty words?

I just read a story about a group of “morality police” who are banding together in groups and terrorizing citizens and businesses by demanding completely innocuous and personal choice issues like being allowed to shave your beard off or not wear a head covering if you’re a woman be followed without question. Why? The adamant Salafi’s piously state it is “God’s law on Earth”. Similarly the Ultra-Orthodox in Israel who have raised the ire of many by calling a female soldier a “slut” because she refused to move to the back of the bus. Even worse was a group of these idiots accosting an 8 year old girl on her way to school and spitting at her because she was dressed “immodestly”. She wasn’t of course! Not even remotely by normal secular standards..but again…this is “God’s law”.

Religion is feeling a bit on the defensive these days after all the progress science has done without its help

Don’t you get a little bit tired of assholes continually invoking this faceless, conveniently absent deity? He has millions of followers that have always failed to produce a single shred of true evidence that he exists, yet everyone else in the world is supposed to obey the religions and of course, the ones who propagate them.  Even though 9/11 has been carefully delineated between terrorism and religion, it’s arguable that without religion being at the very core of many corroborating factors, it wouldn’t have happened.  Great snow job to convince someone willing to commit suicide that they will be rewarded in the afterlife for their service.  How selfish! Oh but he’s serving God and that’s more important than their fellow man.

I suppose Religion is feeling a bit on the defensive these days after all the progress science has done without its help. Anyone truly knowledgeable about such things knows that there are very little true mysteries left in the natural world that haven’t been explained. More telling, nothing has ever  been demonstrated to be impossible with no supernatural intervention whatsoever. In the social sphere, we have become a global society and we can see for ourselves many tragedies that bigoted and violent actions have for people and their families and we’ve started to look beyond the surface of things and become more empathic. Not so the fanatics. We’re all heathens and immoral people who want to corrupt the world and must be stopped at all costs. Never mind logic, reason or compassion. It’s the Bible we must listen to. No wait, it’s the Koran. *Push, shove…tackle*.

There is a war happening, but it’s not the religions that are oppressed

And there you have it. More fighting ends up happening between religions than between secularists and those who want to convert them.  Most of the time we’re just trying to keep them from positions of power so we can at least live in a world with freedom to choose. We aren’t forcing them to live by our standards unless they are actually harming people or their children who they do not have a right to murder  for “honour” or genitally mutilate to keep them “pure”. Well at least in civilized places anyway.

There is a war happening, but it’s not the religions that are oppressed. They want to be the oppressors. Some sects are much more vocal and/or violent, and others are more savvy and soft-spoken like The Pope, but they all want to enforce their viewpoints and that’s the danger of fanaticism.

photo credit: Vectorportal

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