TERRORISM AND VIOLENCE

19 Dec

TERRORISM AND VIOLENCE
TERRORIST photo: Terrorist Terrorist.jpg

If humanity is on a road that can basically be called progress, from, say, the very primitive to the delightfully superior, then we in the so-called civilised world of the west have progressed so far – just a little way – and others, sadly, have not.

At the moment swathes of the middle east are involved in internecine conflict and all in the name of a god that reputedly existed once a long time ago because it was dreamed up by clever but bored men at what I like to roughly call the dawn of human time.

It’s no good trying to explain to them that murder in the name of hocus-pocus is no sensible thing because they, quite rightly, would turn to us and point out our own obsession with hocus pocus. They might even suggest that the words in the book that Christians like to treasure as their own propose even more violence to others than is suggested in their own book.

Books, you might ask? What have books got to do with bloodshed and murder and the mutilation of children, the massacre of innocents in the twenty-first century?

The answer, of course, is beautifully contradictory because it’s everything and nothing. The present swathe of atrocities has nothing and everything to do with religion. There always have been bully-boys and men with an absurdly simplistic view of life and they would be what they are with or without an old book to spur them on – yet that old book is there and open to a weird assortment of interpretations to justify their bullying and simple-minded ways. So devious and bearded old men make their interpretations and as a consequence the young bullies sally forth in search of someone to kill because they’ve been presented with a motive.

I suppose we might dispose of the books because, ultimately, it all boils down to them. The books pretend to be ancient truths and any wisdom in them is hidden by the fact that they are old. There’s something almost trustworthy about wisdom from the dim past. It’s odd, that. Because that same so-called wisdom would never stand up to scrutiny if it were wisdom evolving in the here and now. It has to be ancient because then devotees can claim that once upon a time there was real and singular magic in the air and truly wise men knew truth when they dreamed it. They can maintain that their devotion has arisen from that magic. After all, it’s in their Book.

So men get beheaded, schools filled with children get attacked, blood gets spilled, thugs glory in a belief that they’re right even though in their heart of hearts they must know they’re not, and the rest of the world looks on in disbelief and horror.

I suppose we could all quite simply get rid of the ancient religious books. All of them. Even the Old Testament. And the New. The Koran (spell it how you will). It might not solve the problems, but it would help.

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