The bloodiest wars in history have been religious wars, you would agree. Though on the surface religion appears to bring people together, to me religious sentiment seems to arouse mostly anger and intolerance among people of different faiths.
As India goes into electing its next leader to steer the country towards development and growth, the minority classes that include Muslims and Christians seem to be worried. Last weekend I was subject to the most frantic sermons from various members of the church in my neighbourhood. For me who is deeply private about matters such as faith, the speeches delivered on loudspeakers seemed to amplify the political aspect to religion more than the passionate faith in Christ of those purporting his cause. It is not easy to be a passive listener for 12 hours a day if you happen to be anything other than a die-hard Christian. Hence I’m hoping that the new leaders who form the government in May will help quell this anxiety among non-Hindu communities all around the country.
I like the simplicity in Dalai Lama’s thought on religion when he says there is no need for temples, or complicated philosophy. I couldn’t agree more when he says our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.
Why then is it so hard to practice something so simple?