It’s a Sunday, I know. For many Christian denominations, Sunday is a day of rest. A day that should be spent with one’s family. However, with stuff that’s been happening as of late, I think I need to speak up again. Do take note that I do hold religious beliefs and would prefer to enjoy my Sunday in the comforts of my home and keep quiet for the rest of the day as the coming week will be a very busy one for me.
Anyway, here I go…
In a quiet conversation with some gamer buddies, we briefly discussed the differences between popular horror game franchises. What particularly come to mind are Resident Evil and Silent Hill. While both series certainly have their own flair and shine out in their own right, I will always firmly side with Silent Hill being the scariest because of its villains and not only because they’re supernatural, although that is one of the reasons mind you.
Anyway, in Resident Evil, you only have the Umbrella Corporation as villains. While scary and not beyond the realm of possibility, the stuff that they do goes right into levels when you stop to think about it. Even the wealthiest and most influential of companies are subject to laws and, being private organizations, must still obey the authorities and be somewhat transparent (translucent I guess) about their activities. Religions, like the cult in Silent Hill, are a different story however. Being a religion, a cult has a protected status and are thus not required to present themselves for safety inspections like companies unless there is an absolute need for them to do so such as when there is a crime. A religion can gather all the funds it needs for whatever purpose without having to worry about government issues breathing down their necks as they are exempt from taxes. A religious leader can bash any person or organization before a public audience with little fear of reprise. Lastly, a company is essentially just a business and money will almost always have the final say over its constituents. However, a religion can have absolute control over its constituents, regardless whether those in power have the best of intentions or the worst. So no, a private company will never be as dangerous (unless circumstances allow it of course) as an organized religion that drills misguided beliefs and twisted ideals into its followers.
A corporation like Umbrella can be evil but you can trust that their success relies solely on how long they can bribe authorities and how much money they can offer to their constituents. A religion, on the other hand, can become really bad and authorities can only interfere with them when and if something really bad happens and this already means that it is too late. A religion can rule its followers with misplaced faith and fanaticism while a corporation can only pay for the loyalty of its members and money can only go so far.
I have always believed in a God who loves and welcomes all His children regardless of their race, creed, gender or social status. I believe that He didn’t just create us but that He also placed a part of Himself within each of us. An ember, so to speak, of godhood so that perhaps one day, we can be more than what we are now. I know that not everyone shares my beliefs and I don’t really mind all that much. What I do mind however is how some people use religion to further their own selfishness. What bothers me to no end is how there are so many out there who likes to take the name of the God they worship in vain so that they may use His name to justify their terrible acts and deeds.
I do not claim to know or understand God and I probably never will because I am only mortal. Even if I could live a thousand years, I will never come within a trillionth of understanding His nature. However, since we’re on the subject and since so many of you like to take cover behind your “FREEDOM OF SPEECH”, here’s what I think:
Religion Isn’t For Bashing People Who Don’t Agree With You
I see my religion as a measuring stick. Something that tells me whether I am doing what’s right or that I am doing something irrevocably terrible. However, it is my measuring stick and mine alone. I cannot measure others with the same stick as their relationship with God might be different from my own. It is not a stick that can be used to harm others even if it is actually tempting to use it as a kind of club against people you don’t like. Using it to harm others will only cause it to degrade and, if you keep using it that way, will cause it to break.
God Does Not Hate LGBT People
While other religious folk like to bash homosexuals, I for one tend to think that they have their own place in the beautiful world that God created. I support same-sex or gay marriage because it is observed in social animals like bats and wolves that homosexual pairs (who are unable to bear children of their own for obvious reasons) look after offspring whose parents have died or are unable to take care of them. I believe that we should allow for kind and responsible same-sex couples to adopt and care for some of our less-than-fortunate children as I see more and more otherwise “straight” people who don’t even know how to treat their children like proper human beings.
We Shouldn’t Shame Our Sexuality
Sexuality is essentially part of our humanity. God put it there for a reason and, when you look through the Bible, you’ll notice countless instances of it if you pay close enough attention. The tendency of common Pinoys to shame and suppress our sexuality is probably the chief reason why we’re having so much trouble with it. Because we refuse to talk about it with a straight-face, we lend it an air of mystery and coolness, making it much more enticing for our youths. It’s essentially like telling someone who’s stuck in a high place not to look down.
Brothers and sisters, the sermon is over. Go and live responsibly.
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