The Religion of Love
Muslims often wonder, if I am asking them to leave Islam, which religion I recommend? Which religion is better? Here is my response.
Most but not all the religions contain violence in their holy books and with a very few exceptions all of them have had bloody pasts. However the followers of these religions have managed to distance themselves from violence and have learned to live in peace with people of other faiths. As a matter of fact, religion can be a positive force in the lives of these believers and inspires them to do humanitarian and altruist works.
The problem with Islam is that it has not changed. Islam is a violent religion, its author was a violent and indeed a brutal man and it is designed in a way that it just can’t change. Islam can be weakened but it can’t be reformed.
A Muslim asked what Muslims should do if they leave Islam. Is it possible to be irreligious?
My response is yes it is possible. But each person should find his or her own answer to this question. There is not a one size fit all response.
I do not say everyone can live without a religion. I personally have a religion. In my religion I am my own prophet and the Golden Rule is my holy book. My awe and wonder of this universe satisfies my mystic quest and my love for all beings gives me the religious sense of belonging. My church is mankind and my God is the Single Principle underlying the creation that gives harmony to the world and meaning to the existence.
You are welcome to explore this religion, if you dare not to be a follower but a prophet unto your own.
However, this is not an easy religion. It is hard to be a follower and a prophet at the same time. Sometimes you just wish you had a genie or a guardian angel at your side that not only protected you, but also answered your questions and freed you from the daunting task of thinking and making decisions.
If you are among these people you find solace in religions. Someone else has done the thinking for you and you decide to trust this person. Religions provide you with all the answers. Those answers may not be true but they absolve you from thinking and making decisions. Some people go to shamans; some see psychics and some consult their holy books for answers. Even I sometimes throw a coin. The point is that deep inside we are children, we are insecure and in need of guidance. It is easier and more comforting to surrender and trust someone else than rely on our own judgment and commonsense.
So the question remains what religion one should choose? The answer is if you can’t be a prophet onto your own; choose a religion that teaches love. God is in love.
There is not a single and exclusive path to God. No matter where you are or which path you take you can get closer to God if your heart radiates love. Some religions claim to be the one and only path to God. This is because they have no understanding of God. These are the ones that are misleading and the ones you should avoid.
Compare God to the Sun. There is no path on Earth that can take you to the Sun or closer to it. All paths are the same. In fact to bask in the sunshine you do not need a path at all. You can enjoy its warmth everywhere.
In the words of Krishnamurti:
‘Truth is a pathless land’. Man cannot come to it through any organization, through any creed, through any dogma, priest or ritual, not through any philosophic knowledge or psychological technique. He has to find it through the mirror of relationship, through the understanding of the contents of his own mind, through observation and not through intellectual analysis or introspective dissection.”
But if still you need a path, the best are those that teach love and infuse in you the oneness of mankind. The only way we humans can experience God is through love. A religion is true to the extent that it teaches love and is false to the extent that it instills hate. This makes Islam the falsest religion and the most dangerous one.
Islam preaches hate. It portrays the non-believers and especially the Jews as the enemies of God and the enemies of Muslims. It makes Muslims paranoid and distrustful of others. It whitewashes the horrendous crimes perpetrated by the Muslims and magnifies the shortcomings of others. Muslims are led to believe that if America goes to Afghanistan or to Iraq to liberate the people from tyrannical rulers and make the world a safer place for everyone the real motive is to kill the people. They honestly believe that American soldiers are ordered to shoot the children. On the other hand if Muslim terrorists ram passenger jets into buildings and kill thousands, detonate bombs in metros and discothèques or slit the throat of innocent people, it is not as bad because these are done in “desperation” and in reality the culprit are the victims who oppress the Muslims and leave them no other choice but to retaliate. Practically all the Muslims believe that Bin Laden is created by America and yet amazingly these very people can not get themselves to condemn him wholeheartedly.
Muslims do not think killing Jews is wrong. In fact millions of them fantasize drowning all the Israelis into the sea. Muslims are absolutely unconcerned about the right of the Jews to life. But if a Muslim is driven out of his home, by non-Muslims this is an insult to the religion of Allah and Jiahd and bloodshed is the only way to restore this dishonor.
Islam is a religion of hate. It breads hate and it practices violence. This religion is the farthest from God and it is sheer evil.
This Muslims wrote:
“For me and millions of believers in our Creator to stay unreligious is impossible. This is the main issue Mr. Sina. You should find and offer an alternative for us.”
He is asking me to do something that is diametrically contrary to what I stand for. It is not up to one man to tell others what religion to follow. God has given us a brain and we are responsible to use it and find our own way. I can’t tell others what path they should choose. I can tell what path I have chosen for myself. But everyone has to find his or her own path.
I have chosen the pathless land. I search no more. I do not run here and there chasing a wild goose because I know truth cannot be found anywhere outside of me. I found the truth already in my own heart. I experience this truth in my love for my fellow human beings. In little things like talking to an old lonely woman and joking with her, in listening patiently to an elderly man who just wants to tell you about his youthful memories, in hugging a little child who is scared and wants comfort, in giving a hand to a friend or a stranger, in bringing love to mankind and in being an instrument of peace.
Truth is in patience, it is in forgiveness, in fairness, in justice, in service, in sacrifice, in compassion. Truth is in love.
Everything is relative. All truths change. What seems to be truth today; turns out to be false tomorrow. Only love is real. Love is real, everything else is fantasy.
“Forgotten lie the martyrs in their dusty catacombs
And the faiths, for which they died, are cold and dead.”
(Margaret A Murray in The Genesis of Religion)
By leaving Islam you do not have to leave your faith; but you evolve and your understanding grows. When Galileo proposed that the Universe is not geocentric, he did not deny the existence of the Earth. He introduced a shift of paradigm — a different understanding of the physical world. Likewise I am not advocating the abandonment of the faith in God but rather a shift of paradigm and a different understanding of the spiritual wrold.
It really does not matter what religion we follow. As long as our religion does not make us hate our fellow human beings, that religion is a true religion.
What is important is that these theological introspection concerning religions are not the crux of the matter but love is. If your heart is filled with love by contemplating a tree, you can worship that tree. Choose a religion that makes you more loving. What religion you choose is up to you.