Dear Muslims of the world,
So many things have been going through my mind since Friday 13th November 2015, and again since recent tragedies in Brussells. In fact, those same thoughts have been there since Sept 11th 2001 but today they have just leapt to the front of my mind. Today I feel compelled to speak out – in your defence.
Having been dragged up Catholic, made to go to church every Sunday and all that goes with that, I understand the importance of religion to so many people. However, these days I declare myself a non-believer of any God. That’s a choice I have & I feel that we all should have that choice – to believe or not to believe. It’s very difficult when you’re born into a faith, you don’t have a choice. Some might take the route that I did and dismiss any association with a God. Some will accept the faith one is born into and enjoy the comfort it offers. For a minority, their mission is to prove their worth to their God by misinterpreting the scriptures to accommodate their own evil needs. I guess that’s how the ‘fundamentalist’ is born.
What many people tend to forget is that every religion has a minority who will attempt to fight harder for their cause, ignoring the true meaning of being a member of a collective that is essentially peaceful. The IRA & Ku Klux Klan are a couple that come to mind – both proclaim to be followers of Christ, who was essentially a peaceful man. These off-shoots of Christianity are no less terrorists than ISIS. There is no doubt in my mind that whatever God you choose to believe in, you will not be exempt from spin off groups who are intent on taking their warped ideals of their chosen religion to the extreme.
I would like to say to all members of the Muslim faith, you are part of this world as much as anyone. You have a right to believe in your God and I do not categorise any of you as a potential threat to me, my family, friends, community or country. You are as much a victim of ISIS as the rest of us.
I am only one person, so my words don’t really mean much to the population of Muslims across our wonderful world, but I hope one day that you and I and all members of whatever faith will be able to live alongside each other without threat or prejudice. I don’t look at you in the street and assume you are a terrorist. I look at you as another human being, as disgusted by these terrorists as much as the majority of the population.
The world would be a much less wonderful place without you. I applaud the bravery of all Muslins who openly speak out against these terrorists. Stay strong and know that you are appreciated, accepted and not judged by me. A small thing that probably doesn’t mean much, but nevertheless I just wanted to say it.
The more I watch the news footage of last night’s tragedy in Paris, the more I fail to understand the relevance of religion. How can a person worship an abstract, fictional being and find it acceptable to fight for the right to have their ‘God’ as superior over another, by murdering innocent human beings?
There is nothing honourable in violence, no respect in loyalty to an intangible entity. Without religion, these people may well still exist, but they would not have the fuel to indoctrinate & radicalise to the extent that brainwashes one to kill & take their own life in the name of their ‘God’.
In the words of another victim of tragedy…
Thank you John Lennon for your wise, relevant words.