|Posted by Cobaltsoul on January 7, 2011 at 9:11 AM|
I don't consider religions to be bad but I do think the absolutizing of any one of them is a bad thing.
I think a concern for humanity is the thing to relativize all religions. Not comparing one religion to another, but measuring any religious stance in terms of it's effect in enhancing coroporate and individual human existence.
Now all religions are going to say they enhance more than the others, or enhance the most important aspects of human existence better than any other.
That's no more sophisticated a position than the sporting team supporter who always supports her team regardless of their results and can always find a way to be positive regardless of the reality of her teams performance or history. Just because that attitude is displayed in the context of a religion does not make it any more credible, perhaps less so.
The place I stand now is that I measure my own religious beliefs and conduct by it's relevance to making human life better. Not some pie in the sky when I die idea of human life, but THIS life, the one I can see and feel.
Don't get me wrong, I believe in Eternity and I believe there is much more to a human being than merely the material existence. I find (An admittedly ambigious.) comfort in the idea of a spiritual community that I can share in after my body drops it's bundle completely.
I think any code for living that allows the unseen to warp and weight it's balance of priorities against that which can be seen and clearly weighed in the lives of the living is just irrational and inexcusable.
Simply, if your and my religious beliefs and practices enhance the health, justice, equality, joy and richness of humanity and humans, all of us, then I'm cool with it. If not, then I'm not.
And yes, I realise that my use of the concept "seen and unseen" begs a whole bunch of clarifying questions, for the time being I'll clarify that there are at least two kinds of "unseen", that which is unseen but available to human exploration and reflection because it's inside us in ways we share and can reflect on together as part of our shared experience and the "unseen" that is postulated to be outside us and available only by access to special revelations, faith and that kind of thing.
I'm cool with the internal and shared "unseen" of human experience as part of the measuring of what's good and not so good.
Happy New Year.