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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Believe in [Insert Your Beliefs Here] or DIe!

Today on Twitter a good friend asked, "Why does me not wanting to believe in any god or fly my country's flag anger people? I don't care if they do..."

It got me thinking about the black and white belief systems presented to me as a child. For example, I was told, very seriously, that if I ever set foot in a Protestant church, I would be damned to hell. Seems a bit harsh, eh? I was told that there was only one way to live, and that was as a devout Catholic. Anyone else was damned. Seemed absurd to me, so I left that church when I was old enough to be in control of my own actions.

It is not only the catholics who promulgate that sort of idea, it is pervasive.

A lot of us believe, secretly or openly, that "my country is the best, the rest are no good at all"; "my religion is the only true religion"; "my way of eating is the only correct way to eat"; "my children are good, the others are bad"; "my sexual preference is the right one for everyone"; "my gender is good and the other gender is evil"; "my political party (or system) is good, the others are evil and should be annihilated".

Now that we live in a very closely connected world, these sorts of beliefs are being challenged on a daily basis. Thank you, dear Universe!

2 comments:

HeadBurro Antfarm said...

Great post - the tweet was only half serious as I'm so secure in my non-beleifs that I'm not fussed what they think of me, but I do find their inflexible thought streams so bizarre.

Young Geoffrion said...

I have lived in so many countries, among fanatics of every stripe and colour, that I have come to believe this is merely one side of human nature, something that can be washed out of a person with a little travel and encouragement, as long as their confined opinions do not support them in a position of power. Those who are well-educated, well-travelled and still cling to absolutist ideas simply lack grace and manners, and should be ignored until they learn 'em.