I must receive at least one e-mail per day in praise of God warning me to continue the ‘good news’ by sending the e-mail on to all my friends. Sometimes it tells me that I may be one of the few people who are afraid to spread the word, chastising me in advance if I decide to hit delete.
Then some of the e-mails started to get political in view, actually suggesting I would not be a true Christian should I vote for one political party versus the other.
I did delete the messages and continue to do so, yet they did make me think...about how I was raised Episcopalian, attended church services every Sunday and then on to Sunday School. Even then, as a young girl, I was confused. Having been taught that God created the world, the creatures, the land, the sea, the sky and ultimately man, I recall all it said about man was he was created in God’s image, no mention of skin color or ethnic determination. I have yet to meet anyone who actually has seen God so I suppose if I had to describe God, he/she would be of mixed color, brown skinned with eyes that change color from light blue to the darkest brown.
On one hand, I was taught that God was love. Yet when I questioned my Sunday School teacher and dared to ask, “If God is love and he loves each of us as his creation, why would he punish us and harm us,” I was immediately thrown out of class, never to return. I cried for days over this and could not understand why when I innocently asked a question, I had been humiliated in front of the entire class and thrown out of God’s house. I hadn’t meant to hurt God or criticize Him, rather I wanted to know why my God of pure love would harm anyone.
Then, as I grew older, I questioned the fact that Jesus was God. The whole trinity thing was much too confusing and didn’t make sense to me. Hadn’t God created the world ages before Jesus was born? And what about all the people who prayed to one or more Gods prior to Jesus walking the earth. Were they now condemned to hell? Inquisitive, I started studying various religions and found there was one link that existed which held all of the religions together – they all believed in a creator and in living a good, caring, honest life. Some quoted Karma and reincarnation. Others worshipped each living creature or the entire world and universe, from the trees to the sparkling stars.
So I ask you “What is with all this talk about religion?
Why is it so important that one religion be held in higher esteem than another? If you personally have found peace of mind and true belief in your own religion, why would you care about forcing others to share your own views? Is it for you to judge how others choose to live their life? Is a man who gives to the needy, shares his wealth but believes differently than you doomed to hell? And why should politics play any part of religion?
No, I hear too much talk about religion and not enough talk about effectively changing our world for the betterment of mankind. If we would reach out to those who think differently than ourselves, perhaps we would be surprised to find we are much alike.
Religion is a personal matter. It is your own connection with your creator, one on one, not thousands against a few. I love my God and still enjoy hearing others religious points of view but when it comes down to the truth, the reality of my own feelings, I can merely be honest about what is deep within my soul. No amount of harassing e-mails, threats of damnation or fear tactics can waiver your own religious views.
Be true to yourself. Do good, show compassion, love of your fellow man, the creatures and nature while in this journey of life and quit judging those who think differently than you, for they must follow their own spiritual path in life.
One last request...quit sending me all those e-mails.