Just the other day a bumper sticker caught my attention. It read: “Noexist… Imagine a world without religion.”
Well… since you whipped out the time machine…
There are many “Coexist” stickers, but this is the first “Noexist” I have seen; so about this, I have something to say: “Yo Dre. I got somethin’ to say…” Okay, not that hot pepper-like. Bet I caught your attention though. 😉
First the short answer: Humanity is not ready for that. Forward only; not reverse. If only we could rewind history and “undo” the mistakes that were to happen in the future, what we can only ever call the present.
“Hfffft, had the silly thing in reverse.” -Daffy Duck
The long answer: the point is noted, as one with his own frustrations over the mistakes throughout history committed in the name of religion, the thread of thought is indeed seen and understood, and since the time machine has now been officially fired up and we are on the edge of our seats ready and waiting, our first destination must be the stone age. The stone age was largely peaceful…
With the exception of probable excess meat consumed by early humans, which were even then more suited to eating plants and starches, (you know the twenty foot curvy small intestine thing, versus the five foot and straight small intestine of a true carnivore such as a tiger;) oh, and never forget the flat pencil-eraser sized-teeth versus the thumb-sized fangs… The stone age was close to ideal and it was largely peaceful. It is fair to say that it is the closest historical model known to ideal, living in alignment. I bet you will agree; if not, feel free to email. Maybe the further back we shall travel, the more ideal things became…. “Watch closely from the left front window and I’ll take the other window. Tell me everything you see from your view”…
Okay, with that mouthful, rewind a bit but only to the stone age. There we were, about 6000 years ago, the closest thing to ideal that we can imagine. Between people, things are largely peaceful. That is of course until the discovery of how to forge and liquidate the ore, channel it, filter it, hone it to a hard metal object. Fantastic right?! Because this made very efficient garden tools. But it also made very effective weapons. The copper and bronze ages, progressed to iron, then to steel. Each of these came with additional options, accessories if you will even in B.C time span.
We also call it progress. With more options though, came more potential problems. With metal, wars were then more common. They were more convenient; they became an accessible option.
This is not to argue in contrary to all progress. Which individual doesn’t, (which individual hasn’t) wanted an easier and better way throughout history? “Necessity is the mother of invention.” But hindsight is better than foresight. I am confident that you will agree with me that this statement can and will stand the test of time. Name a marker into progress, a famous creator, an inventor from the age of metal to the digital internet. The individual could never have known the potential for misuse by their fellows of their object or idea, their attempt to improve the world. Even that historical world, which we can only imagine had something, a rule which we must abide by even today.
It is that the future is never here. As soon as it arrives it converts to the present. All that any individual ever has is the present.
While religion has without a doubt seen its fair share of use, abuse and misuse throughout the centuries, religion represents at least a temporary sanctuary with guidelines in place for one’s protection, well-being and overall happiness. True that these guidelines may not apply the same all the way across the board to everyone; but these guidelines do help to maintain order and balance as people continue their lives. I believe that you will begin to realize this now too as I did. Religion offers a sense of community, and at least a beginning point in togetherness for when people start to ponder life’s questions. Religion offers a beginning place for the individual journey. We can learn to respect where another is on their own journey. While religion should not be a crutch, a permanent pill, nursery/hospital, or an excuse, it can provide a sense of familiarity for specifics according to region, a place to meet, and possibly to furthering one’s journey as one is ready and as people collectively and individually grow and mature in light and knowledge.
On the flip side of that bumper sticker, imagine the day when religion was wide open, and instead of another reason to fight and disagree, what if it were open tasting and sharing in delicious joy of the truthful bits that exist in all faiths, the realization that each of us not only enjoyed tasting the delicious fruits, but we each need a few of them for our own journey? What if religion were not closed, but wide open?
Now another consideration: What if that sticker were suddenly true? That is, overnight, everything is a free for all. This means no rules, no guidelines, no reward or punishment. This is the first question: If this were to happen, could we instantly return to the stone age, with just raw nature and humans? Or, does the world as-is still exist, but merely without any religious structures, communities, writings, matrons, martyrs, or remembrance? This means that asphalt, cars, skyscrapers, digital gadgetry-fancy-like still exist. It is only anything religious that ceases to exist… It is an interesting thought indeed. One could let their imagination run fun with the possibilities.
I submit that the nursery/hospital of the world religions is a place of refuge while humanity grows in light and understanding. They have a purpose, and while they may not be perfect, they began with pure intentions. Religion at least temporarily offers sound guidelines, pillars, structure as humanity grows and matures. Having said this, as mentioned in my second book: Life Is Conscious, Live with Purpose. Abandon Fear. Coexist. As we grow and learn to trust one another, the universe, life, and tune in to our intuitions, the safety of religion becomes less necessary with time. But we are not yet prepared for a time, where the world religions could simply be erased, but the rest of the world remained as is. We are not ready for this. Humanity would self-destruct. It is indeed a worthy goal to align oneself with life; that is, closer to harmonious, ideal living, and to help others do the same, to have the maturity to need less spoon feeding from the nursery/nest, so to speak. Hopefully we choose this sooner than later; I believe that we will.
So, from that time machine platform, I bet my seat is better than yours! 😉 it’s a good thing that that we haven’t mastered time travel just yet.
Thank you for reading.