It is becoming more and more recognized that religious beliefs are and have most likely always been one of the primary sources of conflict in this world.
Here are some words about the underlying reasons for this:
“Religion often becomes the master variable,” Harris says. “It provides a unique reward structure. If you believe that the thoughts you harbor in this life and the doctrines you adhere to spell the difference between an eternity spent in fire or one spent on the right hand of God, that raises the stakes beyond any other reward structure on earth.”
Tribal tendencies are natural for humans who need groups and community to survive. But the driving forces behind especially alienating, fundamentalist beliefs are a combination of nature and nurture, experts say.
Personally, I have always struggled to fully understand why religion has such a strong hold on so many. The quote above helps me understand that a little better. I am just not one of those people who believe things without proof as most religions demand.
What will it take for religions to finally come to agree to coexist in the world today? That is the major question at hand. When will they accept that everyone has a right to believe in the god of their choice or no god at all? Thomas Jefferson understood that early on and thankfully at least the concept is part of our constitution even if it hasn’t been fully implemented. In fact, Jefferson was more strongly a believer in freedom “from” religion than “of” religion.
Given that there are literally tens of thousands of versions of God in the world today coexistence is the only logical way to approach religious beliefs.