There are so many shapes and sizes of religions. From all the many Christian religions, to Judaism, to Moslem religions, and beyond they all have something in common. Most important for me to have understood is that they believe that happiness, and all goodness comes from outside of ourselves. It comes from God. From praying to God, from acknowledging God, from the interactions between us and God’s messengers on earth (such as priests, rabbis,imans etc) and from following the tenets of God. For me that was the first clue that religion did not have the answers. It is just so logical to me to believe that happiness comes from within each of us individually, without any help from anything or anyone other than the awareness within ourselves that this is true. If I believe in a certain religion, and I have faith that this religion is correct than that intrinsically means that I am separate from any “non-believers”. It creates a division between people and that leads to competition, alienation, and as we are seeing now the aggressive behaviors between the different groups and their beliefs. Certainly we all “know” that we are all of the same beginning, and universally we are all the same. Our differences were taught to us. We were domesticated from the first second we were born, and it continues to this day. Who believes that babies are born with hate, anger, jealousy, desire for fancy things, or desire to have more toys than all the other babies?
Humans are born all the same.
Great ancient sages such as Buddha, and Lao Tze understood this and said that to get out of this domestication “fog” you need to find your true self, and they discovered this can be achieved through meditation. That’s it! That is the basis of their “religions”. No need for rules that need to be followed for the sake of feeling spiritual, and no need for the concepts of heaven and hell, golden chalices, fancy cathedrals and synagogues, building funds, the purchasing of tickets to be able to attend and pray, picking a man to make all decisions for hundreds of millions of others (the pope), and no need to be “ the right religion, which makes us separate from all others.
I believe that we all live in a fog, having lost the understanding of who we are. We have been domesticated by all our cultural foundations such as family, government, religions, teachers, advertising, and all the controlling structures of our society. The domestication started in the beginning and continues today. The common thread throughout the continuum of humanity is religion. It has always been the major influence to people and yet it just doesn’t work or make any sense. It just is a mechanism to control us.
We don’t need religion to make us moral. There are natural rules such as the universal good of not hurting others, and the positive vibes created by spreading love that give us everything we need. The world for the most part has got it wrong. I believe that we can get it right eventually, and that takes developing awareness one person at a time. I am starting with myself.
These are my thoughts on religion.