Thursday, January 05, 2006

Hypocrisy and the Role of Religion

Oftentimes, I ponder about the role of religion and my deep disdain of hypocrisy. According to the dictionary hypocrisy:

1. The practice of professing beliefs, feelings, or virtues that one does not hold or possess; falseness.

2. An act or instance of such falseness.

I've noticed in my short sojourn on this planet that the biggest hypocrites tend to be in religion. Now don't get me wrong, I'm a "religious" person per se, but the problem with us religious folk is that we tend look out the window and look at others, but forget to occasionally look in the mirror and look at ourselves.

For instance, over the past "holiday" the "Christian" right decided to go to war with companies and people who said "Happy Holidays" vice "Merry Christmas". As a Muslim, I found that quite funny for several reasons:

A: By now we should all know that Jesus(PBUH) was not born in December, and that his birth is celebrated then, as an act of the early church in their attempt to wipe out paganism by putting "Christian" holidays over the old pagan ones. The irony is that many of the pagan traditions remain to this day. Christmas tree anyone?

B: Christianity is supposed to be about those who follow Jesus(PBUH) in speech and deed. Why is it that most who practice this "holiday" care more about themselves than others?

C: It really troubled me at how "Christians" really rallied around this "war" but, won't rally against the wars Jesus(PBUH) would have cared about, like the war on poverty, illness, and wars against the fellow men.

I mean lets be real for a minute people, Jesus(PBUH) never taught us that we should celebrate his birth, which is probably in the fall, so why exactly are we doing it?

Then there's the Muslims.

We are supposed to be the example for ALL of mankind in manners, modesty, deeds, and worship. Yet, look what's happening in the Muslim countries! Look at North Africa, the Sudan, Indonesia, Iraq, Palenstine, Pakistan, etc. We are so busy talking about how righteous we are, yet we allow our fellow Muslims to suffer, treat our women like crap(and worse), and the so-called kings are living like pharaoh, while the masses suffer. I could go on and on, but all one has to do is turn on the news to see what I mean.

Then there are the Jews....well I will leave that alone, because its not Politically correct for a Muslim to comment on them. However, I will say this, since when did righteous supposed to take a back seat to financial gain and greed?

I point out these few examples and I could go on and on to say this, how can we as a believing people ever expect to get non-believers to follow us when we are just as bad if not worse than them?

One of the truest leadership principles I learned in the Marine Corps was that we are to Lead by EXAMPLE.

We have to rid ourselves of our iniquities and Submit to the One God of Abraham(PBUH) whom we claim to serve.