Religion is a word that has recently come under scrutiny more than ever before in my life. It’s not without reason, a lot has been done with religion as the reason. From Mass killings by people wielding firearms to terrorist attacks, to the lynching of people considered infidels, the list is an endless one of printable and unprintable acts done under the guise of devotion to some religion.
The word religion is being even further dissociated from by quite a number of Believers, as it is subtly used to refer either to some orthodox expressions of the church as it were, or parts of the body who they think are a few inches if not miles away in their profession and practice of things which can be considered a misinterpretation or an outright disregard of what is written in the scriptures.
Religion? Do we throw away the baby with the bathwater?
Religion is only one of many things or words, in summary, concepts that have been abused.
Personally, I’m not one to shy away from being called religious because when the rubber meets the road I’ve realised my devotion to God requires a regimentation of activities, in a manner that can best be described as religious. Especially some I can’t or don’t feel I should explain to everybody.
True as the opening statement might sound the demarcation is only visible to us. The one who looks from outside, the unbeliever as it were, refers to everyone who doesn’t believe in science’s explanation of creation as religious, as people of faith. It sees one who prays before eating as religious, regardless of what spurred that action which can be of fear, faith or just tradition?
It sees one who leaves his home to meet with other like-minded people on Sunday mornings and/or any other day to fellowship together as religious, whether they went there because they love God or feared what would happen if they didn’t go.
It refers to one who seeks the power of one above him who has not beheld with his physical eye when the life of a loved one or they themself are on the line as religious.
As people of faith, the words Religion and Religious are similar to badges we’ll have to wear with honour, not because it has been referred to as the opium of the people but they might just never get why we do what we do and we have to do it regardless.