Hello, and welcome back to 100 Days of Blogging. Today’s topic comes to us from the World category, and the card states, “What are your views on religion?”
Well, for anyone that knows me this won’t come as a surprise, but I am a Christian, and I would say devoutly so. To be more specific I am Episcopalian, by way of Evangelicalism and Seventh-Day Adventism. So in that regard, my views on religion are that I am religious so I don’t find anything inherently wrong with religion, otherwise that would be a lot of cognitive dissonance.
However, I do feel that religion, while it can be a great source of hope for people throughout the world, me included, can be a very harmful force in people’s lives. Religion has been used as an excuse to kill, torture, maim, and otherwise oppress people throughout the years. Slave owners in the antebellum south used Christianity to oppress black people for hundreds of years. Islam has been used to keep women oppressed according to various interpretations of Islam. Christianity has also been used to oppress women and keep women’s rights truncated from where they will be.
Essentially, religion as a concept can be used by anyone to keep the marginalized and the oppressed down and “in their place” so to speak. Religion is a double edged sword. It is simultaneously a place where people can come and find hope and a place where those that wish to abuse people and oppress them can find a place that will welcome them in and provide them a place to commit those acts. We only have to look at the various scandals in Christian churches where a priest or other clergy member has abused a parishioner and been protected by the organization at large to see that not everyone in religion is abusive, but that abusers will find places in religion that will protect them and allow them to operate with impunity.
So there we go, my views on religion in general.