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|INTOLERANCE AND BIGOTRY||Published: 24/03/09|
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There are many hundreds of religions with new ones springing up each day. Unfortunately this can breed intolerance of each others beliefs which can occasionally spiral into violence.
Christianity based on belief in Jesus seems to be the most tolerant.
"Don't pay back in Kind - Pay back in Kindness".
Unfortunately not every religion follows this doctrine. As the number of new religious movements continue to increase the necessity to defend the right of people to worship as they please, as long as they do not harm others, is also increasing.
Religious bigotry stems mostly from ignorance, fear, and spiritual competition which are not reasons to become intolerant and bigoted. No one has the right to become intolerant about another's religious beliefs.
History shows us that much cruelty has been committed in trying to impose beliefs on everyone. Just as an example, the Spanish Inquisition. It is wrong to perform any wrongful act against a person or group based only upon that person's or group's religion, religious beliefs, or lack of religious beliefs. If no harm is caused they should be left alone.
Discriminating against someone for their harmless religious beliefs, or lack of them, out of ignorance is probably the greatest reason for discrimination and bigotry. People may believe they know something about a church, religion, or religious belief but in fact they do not. How members of a religion behave is the greatest way of knowing how their church or religion operates.
People trust what they know, and distrust that which they are not familiar with. Fear is a huge factor in trying to get rid of religious groups which are not too well known or too powerful.
The worse offenders against religious tolerance are members and leaders of competing religions. This is unfortunate because learning more about other religions widens our horizons and gives us a more balanced perspective. There are many reasons why people belong to the religions they do: the chief one being geography and familial tradition. If they are happy with their religion, and if they harm no one, there is no reason to object to their choice of spirituality.
Jesus was dogged with intolerance, fear and lack of knowledge for which he paid dearly.
Persecution just because of religious beliefs it very wrong. There has been awful discord which has lasted for many centuries and it is a lesson that we should learn. It is the ill of mankind and should not be tolerated.
Everyone should be in agreement with truth. Why then do the same men who admit in private indulgence, kindness, justice, rise in public with so much fury?
Bigotry must be eradicated if we are ever to live in peace and harmony.
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