Thursday, August 13, 2009

[Faith] Is “Religion” mental slavery?

I wanted to ask those out there a very simple question. Is Religion a form a mental slavery? I’ve been thinking about this for sometime now and when I ask people who consider themselves “religious” they give me this deer caught in the headlights expression and never give me a concrete answer. I wonder many times if “Religion” is just a tool that the powers that be out there use to have us do there bidding in the world.

Growing up, most people in my family were heavily involved in the Baptist church, but I was one of those kids that really didn’t get the whole concept of believing in something just because. It’s not like I wanted to see God himself, I just wanted some one to explain to me why this “religion” was the right one over all others. Being a youngster, my questions were just dismissed and I was told that I had to believe because if I didn’t then I was going to Hell. Threats like that kept in line for awhile. I didn’t go to church because I believed, most times I was asleep in the pewees waiting for that final prayer while people danced and shouted in the aisles because the caught the “spirit”. It was that fear that if I didn’t go then I was damned.

When I began to study in African American history in college, I asked my pastor why any African-Americans would believe in the Bible when it was something that was forced down slaves throats by there masters. I even mention the whole “Curse of Ham” theory (Curse of Ham is supposes to be a curse that Noah placed on his son Ham’s children and descendants to be slaves to Ham’s brothers descendants, because Ham saw his father’s nakedness as he lay in a drunken sleep.) many people of faith used during slavery to justify its existence. Once again, after 15 minutes of bible quotes, I never received a solid answer, which caused me to not to return.

As an adult, I’ve become very wary of “religion”. I do have faith there is a Higher Power in the universe. A being that is just and all knowing, but I believe that many of the worlds “religions” distort it to fit their own agenda. The most horrible atrocities done in world history have been done in the name of God, men like Jim Jones, who used religion as a way to attract followers to come to the People’s Temple in Guyana, comes to mind.

So I am going to leave this to a debate. Is “religion” just a tool to trap people in some sort of mental slavery, being blind followers to something that may or may not be real or is it something good that will bring people closer to the God they believe?


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