|Religious Philosophy |
It is my belief that, in some people, there is a genetic/biological affinity toward 'religion'. The matter of which type of or established religion, faith system one follows has a great deal to do with in which religion/faith system on is born. Hence those born into a Christian family/community will, as a matter of natural course of learning one's culture, be 'Christian'. The same in regard to various beliefs/faith of those born in Muslim, Hindi, Buddhist, atheistic, etc., cultures.
The difference between myth and holy truth...myth is someone else's beliefs that are not accepted by others...holy truth/gospel...one's own accepted beliefs. This is evident in what is considered 'sacred'.
Sacred...that which is selectively important to any certain religion/belief group. This then connected to what we definitely consider important to a religion: books /scripture (Bible, Koran, etc.), places (pick any one of the many in Jerusalem), things (icons, relics). The 'sacred' may not be readily viewed as sacred when we consider groups that are not within our 'normal/usual' realm of what we label as religious groups...such as, Marxist atheism (which in itself,, atheism, that is, is indeed a religion), but in the case of Marxist atheism we have sacred items such as the Communist Manifesto, Lenin's tomb and, in China, Mao's 'Red Book'.
As much as any group may profess it, God's Community as a universal concept doesn't actually exist...not among men, anyway. Every group that professes that God and religion are universal usually has some groups/people that they would exclude...and, in the case of the true Universalist, there are groups that would refuse to be included within the all encompassing universalism of the Universalists. So while, for example, Eastern and Western religions have their similarities, if in nothing other than end aim, each would tout their differences so as not to be too similar to the other....just a matter of human nature.
As for religion and science, there should be no conflict in that science can be seen as what is revealed to us by the Devine in the way of knowledge of our universe, yet fundamentalist would disagree in that science does not account for the literary, word for word, interpretation of scripture. Hence fundamentalist would say science is wrong when scientists say the world/earth was created over an extended period of time and not in six days with a day off for God.
We can look to the past and see that there are those religions which have come and gone, as so will, no doubt, many of our current religions. All are the current accepted interpretation of what people consider 'Divine will' (or lack thereof). It's all just human nature. Human nature to question, to wonder. And, if all this seems a mixed up mess, even if one interprets all the mis-mash between religions current and past, as well as, future, one should consider....maybe this is as God meant it to be.
By Rev. Daniel Irwin
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