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Can Human Transcend Their Religious Differences to Coexist Harmoniously?

Popularity 6Viewed 2870 times 2015-10-28 14:11 |System category:Life| Can, Human, Transcend, Their, Religious

Scanning through daily newspapers, one may fall victim to despondency and despair. Nowadays, the majority of the media is focusing on the friction between Muslims and other religions. Reading all about the protests in Europe and USA against Islam leads one to believe that people of various religious beliefs can’t coexist with one another.

The protesters believe that the spread of Islam may lead to the deterioration of the Western civilization. Is that true? One may argue the validity of that claim. Islam is a religion of peaceful coexistence with and tolerance toward believers of other religions.

One can’t deny the fact that there are extremist Muslims who refer to distorting the teaching of their religion to justify their horrendous acts. Islam is innocent of their distorted logic.

One may dispute the fact that extremism exists in all religions. Consequently, why do Westerners single Islam and Muslims out to protest against? What would they like to achieve? Do they believe that Islam and Muslims will vanish into oblivion?

Their protests will lead to nothing except infuriating modest Muslims and creating animosity between Muslims and the believers of various religions. Extremists may use that to recruit new members emphasizing that the Western society will never accept them as equal citizens.

One may wonder what we can do to avoid the conflicts that exist between the various religions. We need to be tolerant and open-minded to create a harmonious society in which all people of different religious beliefs can coexist harmoniously.

With acceptance of the individuality of our neighbors, colleagues and even strangers, we eliminate the hostility and animosity from our communities. In addition, It is a well-known fact that most religions have common grounds. We must focus on those common grounds in the various religions instead of emphasizing the differences.

If we can accept each other’s religious beliefs without attempting to analyze them, we may achieve the peaceful coexistence that we desperately searching for and dream to experience.

With the feeling of being accepted as members of their societies, Muslims will avoid being brain washed by ISIS and other terrorist groups to join their ranks. Gradually but certainly, extremists may fade into oblivion.

Could the dream of coexisting harmoniously with one another regardless of our religious beliefs materialize into actuality? We have no other option but to hope soOtherwise, we may engage in destructive behavior such frivolous wars that could end up destroying our planet.

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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Reply Report Dracarys 2015-10-29 15:58
you gotta think what's wrong with the religion itself .. then we can talk about people ..
Reply Report seanboyce88 2015-10-30 02:01
if it wasn't religion it would be another excuse...
Reply Report Ted180 2015-10-30 04:16
It's largely a matter of 1. education and 2. a firm separation of religion from matters of government. Where these civilized improvements exist religious violence is reduced.
Reply Report KIyer 2015-10-30 08:46
One has to differentiate between an idea or concept and someone who professes to practice it. Often, not always, there is a gap or distortion between the two. Some humans do transcend differences of labels and live harmoniously, many even without claiming any religious affiliation. Human acts are driven by human motivations, good or bad. There are good acts and bad acts. It is more difficult to identify correctly good and bad people, though some make it quite easy to do so.
Reply Report TedM 2015-10-30 08:47
Unfortunately religion is not only an "opium of the masses" but also the excuse used to take power and assets from other people. This has always been the case since pre-historic times. When religion and politics are mixed, trouble arises. The tribal chiefs were influenced by their "holy men". Medieval kings were encouraged to wage war on other countries by the catholic leaders so they could gain wealth. Now extreme religious zealots are rulers of Islamic countries. Islam is, indeed a peaceful religion and the teachings of the Koran show this...... so what you say may be true. It is the political extremists who govern and who now have the power to use religion as a tool to gain power over others.... and the masses follow as they always have. War is the result and no-one benefits in the end. (John Lennon.... Imagine.   a world with no religion?  An impossibility, but it is not religion that is a problem, it is politics and greed.)
Reply Report TedM 2015-10-30 08:52
Am I correct in saying that Buddhism is not a religion but a philosophy? In any case it appears that this has never been the cause of wars and violence... and not bound in politics. Interesting!
Reply Report KIyer 2015-10-30 10:27
TedM: Am I correct in saying that Buddhism is not a religion but a philosophy? In any case it appears that this has never been the cause of wars and violenc ...
Buddhism, as articulated by Gouthama is a cleaned out version of the core of Hindu philosophy which had got corrupted by too many religious franchises, rituals, temples, bells and whistles and blind practices. Buddha, in his last sermon, asked people to not follow him, make a deity out of him, not build temples or have elaborate rituals. He said each and everyone of those who wanted to learn from him could become a Buddha (one who has realised or become aware of a great truth about life).

Many of the words describing the very core of Buddhist philosophy are exactly the same as in Vedanta philosophy that is the core of Hindu culture (Hinduism is not a typical religion in the western sense).
Current day Buddhism is almost exactly like another version of Hinduism with temples, bells and whistles and different branches. Hindus feel just as comfortable praying in Buddhist temples or even other temples, churches or mosques all over India and vice-versa.

Political people professing Buddhism have waged war in Sri Lanka, Mynamar and other parts of Asia, including China and Japan in opposition to people professing other religions including Hinduism, Islam or even other forms of Buddhism.
Reply Report TedM 2015-10-31 11:17
Thanks. Politics using religion for their own ends again.
Reply Report HailChina! 2015-11-24 12:13
I agree with Ted180

There needs to be one law for all people and no special treatment for religion or minorities. The American idea of 'religious freedom' encourages disharmony and disorder.

Aboriginal Australians used to spear people through the leg for breaking tribal law and many still want to. Some Muslims want sharia law in non-Muslim nations. For society to have civilized standards all people must follow one law. Making exceptions and and giving special treatment to minorities or for religion is uncivilized and wrong.

Since we are all connected now we need to go to war with nations like Saudi Arabia and UAE to bring in global civilized standards. We also need to force civilized standards on backward nations like Papua New Guinea and many African nations and others that have savage uncivilised culture. Religion and culture should not excuse uncivilized standards and it is the responsibility of civilized nations to bring civilized standards to all of the citizens of the global community.

The first nation that the civilized world should go to war with is Saudi Arabia.

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