Belief (bi-lef') Something believed or accepted as true, especially a tenet or body of tenets accepted by a group. According to some, the more people who believe something the more likely it is to be true. In other words, if everybody in the world-but thee and me- believed the moon was made of green cheese, the moon would be made of green cheese.
Believe (bi-liv') on the other hand is a verb. To have firm faith, especially religious faith.
Essentially, I think, a belief is something that isn't true. If it were true, it wouldn't be a belief. One doesn't believe 2+2=4. One knows 2+2=4. One doesn't believe the sun rises in the East and sets in the West. It does.
A religious belief, I think, is one of the most pernicious mind sets anyone can have. No child is born with a religious belief, it is imposed on him. A kid is taught the religious belief he learns at his mother's knees is the true belief. The only belief. Everything else is false. This belief is enforced by a father figure, a congregation, a speaker for the congregation-priest, pastor, minister, whoever-and immediately a conflict is ingrained. Intolerance is imposed. Superiority or inferiority. Further, religious beliefs are always laced with myths- strange ideas and stories- no one not indoctrinated at an early age could possibly believe. Virgin births, talking snakes, original sin, a superior being- today almost always a father figure- reigning supreme, judgmental, critical, authoritarian. Also, in the Christian religion, there is a book, the Bible-the New Testament, the Old Testament-the words in which, according to many who wield power, are absolute truths. Command and obey.
"Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him, neither shall thine eyes pity him, neither shall thou spare, neither shall thou conceal him: But thou shall surely kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death and afterwards the hand of all the people." (Deuteronomy 13:8-9)
These words justify, to a fundamentalist believer, the killing of friends or family simply because they fail to change their beliefs.
Modern day Christians, introduced to Jesus Christ, a peaceful, loving man of god, son of god, was sent to earth to die for our sins and one is seduced into this belief system by the offer of peace and love. However, Jesus isn't god. He's the son of god. Which god? Zeus? No. The god of the Old Testament. The god who spoke the words of Deuteronomy 13:8-9 and this god is hauled out anytime the leader of the group finds an enemy he chooses to kill.
Also, Jesus had a thing against those who make his Father's house a house of merchandise.
Someone should clue him in. Today religion in America is Big Business. It's all about money.
There are four gods. The distant god. The benevolent god. The critical god and the authoritarian god.
Many of us would worship a benevolent god if we could find one.
To be be continued....
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James "Kimo" Rosen's