More people have been killed in the name of religion than anything else.
Religious wars, religious persecutions, religious phobias, religious stereotypes, you name it …
This week another death toll was taken – this time via the tragic events in Paris.
Of course this was more than just a terrorist attack. There are several angles to look at the situation from – the problem of disobedient immigrants, the failing politics of multiculturalism, the freedom of speech, etc. The incident is symptomatic of all of these issues.
Yet another fundamental concern here is how people are manipulated by religion and engage in doing things that are simply medieval and even primitive in the twenty-first century.
By no means do I mean to criticize Islam here – one of the global religions having hundreds of millions of followers all over the world. Nor do I want to discredit Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism or any another confession.
The problem is not with religion (even though I am not a religious person myself). Religions are part of social reality and cannot be denied as such. The problem is with people who blindly believe that religion gives answers to all questions, who misinterpret grossly the revelations of prophets, and who belittle – either by speech or action – the God they are supposed to honor.
Does Muhammad call for calling in Koran? I never read it in full, but I really doubt so. Or does jihad actually mean eliminating anyone “on the other side”? Not a chance.
Those radical elements who think otherwise are stuck in the Middle Ages. They are elements of the past, the fading glimpses of the pre-modern society who are naive enough to think they can integrate in the modern or post-modern one.
Or maybe they don’t want any integration? Maybe they see their life mission as a fight against the “rotten consumerist spiritless Western civilization”? If two assholes shoot down ruthlessly an editorial team under the pretext of insulting religious caricatures, something is definitely wrong.
Such people are too narrow-minded to see that caricatures were drawn against all religious prophets, and not only Muhammad. They are too arrogant to realize they live in another country where freedom of speech and liberty are fundamental values. They are too self-important to understand they were kindly granted residence in a foreign land.
But above all, they will never grasp that each at the core of each religion there is a profound spiritual teaching. If they need “real stuff”, they need to dig in to the sources, and not find an escape in the shell of their distorted religion.
Condolences to the French families of those who passed away.