148. M. Idrees

I am delighted to write this letter in support of WORLD INTERFAITH HARMONY initiatives. Difference of opinion is innate to human nature. In any discussion, dialogue or debate, different people come out with different opinions of their own. Under a system of freedom of choice, a consensus is never hundred percent; there is always dissention, at least thirty percent. Religious diversity is nothing but a reflection of difference of opinion, innate to all of us. Therefore, having one world religion or having no religion (atheism) is incompatible with human nature. The whole creation is full of diversity. Variety is innate to creation. Had the Creator wanted He would have created only one belief system. Major world religions including the most demonized, stigmatized and despised, are going to be with us. They have survived throughout ages and are not going to vanish now. This is reality and the best policy is to reconcile with reality. What better way than create world interfaith harmony to reconcile with this reality? Traditionally, decent people are supposed to tolerate each other’s religious views and that is where the problem lies. One tolerates something bad, something evil and hence tolerance carries with it a sense of us, the righteous vs. non-us, the evil. There is no such thing as an evil-religion. All religions have their share of good and bad. Humans tend not to smell their own odor and thus it is hard for one to find what evil ones religion has done. There is no such thing as an all-good-religion Such a religion would have wiped out man’s cruelty to fellow man long ago. Globalization and interdependency are forcing us to deal with religious diversity. Those who can deal with it will be more successful than those who decide to go against this tide of history. If a religion appeals to ones heart and mind and comforts the soul then one has the right to believe that his/her religion is the true religion: there is nothing wrong with it and nothing wrong in becoming an informant of it. We need to understand it and accommodate it. Problem arises when people are entrapped in believing that they are all-good and them of false demonic religions are all-evil; let us proselytize the evil or else exterminate them. This is the biggest hurdle to world interfaith harmony. I end this letter with a hope that, eventually, people will realize the fallacy of going against something, which is innate to the creation such as religious diversity. We the created, have no right to challenge His design. Hating and demonizing other religions is like challenging His design.

United States


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