Is the World on the Verge of Religious War? Will Democracy Disappear?

Can anyone win a religious war--really?

There has been a movement afoot for some time now to demonize Islam. In fact, there is a giant effort on the part of atheists to discredit religion altogether. Read Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins, and others if you aren't aware of that effort.

Anyway, Islam. Wow. What a religion, eh? Yes, it has its violent doctrines, its determination to either convert the world to Islam or destroy it in the trying. And perhaps Western democracies should be continually on the alert.

Still, there are those who insist that Islam is a religion of peace. Well, it may seem that way, and at the beginning of the Koran it appears Muhammad had peace in mind. But as you get further and further into that book, you find the tone a lot more intolerant; in fact, it becomes a declaration of war against all infidels. That's the rest of us, by the way.

Before you take up arms against your Muslim neighbors, remember this: Many evangelical and conservative Christians are ready to overpower the US government and turn America into a 'Christian' nation. They base their Chosen Mandate on the Bible. And many of them are prepared to do whatever it takes--Second Amendment solutions, as recent Congressional candidate Sharon Angle put it. Bring on Armageddon. It's what the Lord would have them do.

Are we on the verge of a worldwide religious conflict? All evidence supports that view. And if it's so, how do we who love peace respond to all the anger and fear and deceit and distrust, especially when both sides are claiming that God is on their side, supporting their cause, and ready to smash their opponent, usher in a new Islamic or Christian age and crush all dissenters?

One more thing: Behind the scenes are the money changers, ready to capitalize on the conflict, no matter the direction it takes. In fact, they do a little pushing now and then. Profiteers love war.

Can we bring a true peace--of any kind--to the world in this day and age? What do you think?

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Comments 21 comments

tonymac04 profile image

tonymac04 6 years ago from South Africa

To answer your last question - only by fostering understanding and acceptance. If we can learn to understand those with different world views we might bring about peace. Starting with ourselves having peaceful intentions. Hatred and violence come from the intentional refusal to understand the other person - and this is commonly supported by the ideology of nationalism, whether applied to a nation or to a religion.

Thanks for this Hub which I hope will stimulate some useful discussion.

Love and peace


RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 6 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

Tony: Thanks for your comments. I agree that understanding different views is key. Still, when a religious force/body sees itself as the Correct and Only Way, it is very difficult to get that force to the negotiating table. It is rare to hear American or European Muslims condemning the radicals. A few lonely voices on CNN but that's about it. It tells me that few of the Muslims actually want to live side by side with the infidel, at least not forever.

You will also notice that many conservative Christian/Republican types criticize the President whenever he extends a hand to the Muslim world. They still see him as one of 'them.' They do not really want to come to the table either.

Both sides in any conflict must be willing to sit down together if peace is the desired outcome. In this case, that is a big IF.

What can people like you and I do about it? Nothing, really. Except for one thing: As Gandhi said, when there is peace in your heart, it will find its way into the world.

Hxprof 6 years ago from Clearwater, Florida

I agree with you that the world is moving steadily towards a conflict or towards many conflicts in which religious views will be central.

The world is a smaller place-travel is faster and easier than it ever was and many have the means to bridge great distances in communicating with others; still, there's no peace. Countries have weapons that can wreck great destruction on every part of the planet, and it seems there are leaders who may be willing to utilize them.

What can we do about it? Nothing. Even if 60-70 percent of the world's people had their hearts transformed, those who's hearts remainded mixed with good and evil would still bring about much mayhem.

Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada

Well, what can I say ... I am enjoying the death of religions. As an non-believer and one who stands against any monotheistic religion, I certainly enjoy when I see religions clashing against each other. They are destroying themselves from within thus, making my job at discrediting them much easier.

And like you said while they keep the fight going, corporations make money on the products of war which governments keep adding resources to. It's all so ridiculous, it is bound to fail sooner than later. This non-sense cannot keep going much longer.

RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 6 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

The corporations will eventually win, of that I am certain. Theocracies are very harsh with money changers. And as bleak as that may seem, it's much better than either Sharia or Levitical Law. Anyway, the Christians think they will be 'raptured' out of the world before all that happens. I wish them luck and good journey. The Muslims? Seventy virgins? Do they have any idea how long eternity is? Seventy virgins, seventy days. Then what? Oh, well. If sex is the reason you want to go to heaven, you're in for a big disappointment. Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!

Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada

The corporations only win if we continue to feed them our natural resources and energy. If we stop working for corporations; if we stop giving them our money and buying their products/services how could they win?

RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 6 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

Mr. Happy: Perhaps, but how do we live without their products? Remember, even our food comes from the big giants: Kellogg's, General Mills, Dow? And we depend not only upon our cars but our buses, trains, planes, roller skates and iPods from them as well. All corporate productions. You ask too much.

Also, the corporations have stockholders and the stockholders are most often the employees. Gotta watch out for Number One, after all.

Sorry... More suggestions needed. :-))

Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada

Haha, I appreciate your honesty Mr. Richard.

I am not asking too much. First of all I do want to say that there are businesses who do not embrace child labour or unfair business practices. There are companies still manufacturing products in North America - buy from them.

It took me an extra ten minutes in a store to find boxers made in Canada last week ... not that big of a deal. I refuse to support companies making products in countries that do not have or do not enforce child labour laws (for example).

It is true in terms of gasoline, we do not have much of a choice, that market is a monopoly already.

In terms of stocks, I have none and know many peole without them. It just takes a little more consideration and careful planning on how we live our lives, that's all.

PS Food-wise, same thing: take a bit of extra time and find products grown in your community, or close by ... it is not impossible it may take a bit more time and perhaps a few more pennies.

It is our choice though!!

Tell me I am asking too much when I ask you to join me on a hunger strike.

RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 6 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

Good suggestions. My last point will be this: People are lazy and big business knows that. Major co-ops are along way off, I'm afraid.

Thanks for all the good input.

Are you in Canada, by the way? I used to live in Vancouver.

Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada

I only have one minor correction to your last comment: some people are lazy - not all peole are lazy. As a Romanian poet once said: "We'll die and see" (Mircea Dinescu)

I am in Toronto as my profile states. I have a road-trip planned for next spring/summer which will take me into British Columbia and Yukon thus, I shall finally get to see Vancouver.

RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 6 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

Ok, 'some' people are lazy. Most people are lazy about something all the time.

Trinidad49 profile image

Trinidad49 5 years ago from Kericho

It's hard to suggest ways to alleviate whatever confrontation ahead of us.i am a skeptic of armageddon i.e final war and even global warming,i think that is hot air to control countries.

I would like to ask you richard what are your opinions concerning the concerted efforts by world leaders in all sectors to forge global unity,they use such terms as creating a new world order,common approach to problems affecting the world,collective responsibility,global society,global transformation,creating a world court,these comes especially from mighty leaders i.e leading investors,u.s presidents,gordon brown etc and this started as far back as 1948.what is their objective,their agenda,who or what is pushing them even aged men like walter cronkite,what is it that they really want,is it selfish interests,but this has been on going maybe more than a century.most of the early proponents of it have since died.what's your take.the christians will say it's efforts to build a world government.if true what for why suddenly do these rich countries want to share their wealth with poor countries.

RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 5 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

There are basically three possibilities: 1) World government, mostly capitalistic 2) Continued war and separation, which is the current status quo 3) Peace, with all countries observing boundaries, keeping trade working well, respecting human rights, and making certain no one in the world goes hungry.

Which one do you think will play itself out?

Also, Christians never cease to amaze me. They are scared of a one-world government, even though their Bible says that must happen before the return of their Christ. You would think they would be overjoyed every time they hear of another step in that direction. But no. They scream isolationism.

Trinidad49 profile image

Trinidad49 5 years ago from Kericho

I think the third option will play itself out i.e to try and create a balanced and fair world resourcewise and knowledgewise in order to keep away extremism of any kind,be it religious or extremely rich and powerful nations who might destabilise the status quo or seek to expand their empires.

RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 5 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

Let's hope...

Hxprof 5 years ago from Clearwater, Florida

You're correct that the Bible does say a world government must take control before the return of 'our Christ'; many Christians DO fight this and are in fear of it-that doesn't make sense.

A small minority of Christians, myself included, understand that this is coming and that there's no fighting it; therefore, in obediance to 'our Christ' we're taking heed to ourselves to ensure we're prepared spritually to endure the difficult days ahead.

RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 5 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

Hxprof: It's important to consider the possibility that the real trouble will arise from within the Christian community itself. The devil, as Scripture says, comes as an angel of light. What better place to hide than in the fears of the Elect?

Most of the fear mongering in the US comes from the evangelical Christian world. Gays in the military, oh my! Illegal immigrants overrunning the nation, oh my! Ground Zero mosque, oh my! Secret Muslim/Kenyan/Socialist Pres. Obama, oh my! Scary liberal agenda on health care, oh my!

Fear is the favorite hiding place of Satan. So, Christians, when you see yourself and hear yourself spouting fear cries, look within. You may be harboring the Enemy in your own heart.

"Even the very Elect would be fooled..."

Hxprof 5 years ago from Clearwater, Florida

Agree with you about the fear. Fear and shame are two things the original disciples had to deal with in themselves. The Enemy wants nothing more than to have Christians focusing on what's happening more than on Christ's return.

Christ said (paraphrase) :'When you see these things happening lift your heads and look up, for your redemption is near". Christ didn't say, "Fear all these things I warned you about". Fear in us demonstrates unbelief, like the man who told Christ, "I believe, help my unbelief".

Merry Christmas.

RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 5 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

Hxprof: Indeed. "And every eye shall see him..." That means, as Jesus said, that the kingdom is within. When the heart is ready, the Master appears. Love brings up anything unlike itself, places it in our path and says, "Christ or Diana?"

Hope these metaphors are not too obscure??

Niteriter profile image

Niteriter 4 years ago from Canada

With Kudos to Dr. Deepak Chopra, I'd like to introduce the coupled ideas of focused thought and collective consciousness.

The talk on this Hub so far has been largely an agreement that peace in our world today seems far-fetched. So it seems that the collective consciousness is focused on the idea that peace is unlikely and there's not much we can do about it.

We could focus on a new thought: "Peace is with us right here and right now and there are people in every society in the world who are willing to negotiate a peaceful co-existence with us."

If we organize groups of people all around the world to focus on that thought, then we change the collective consciousness. (Avaaz is an example of how it could happen.) With this new consciousness in play, people begin to act in the direction of the new thought, because a thought held in consciousness will always clothe itself in physical form that's like itself.

If we accept the idea that humanity has the power to create life in any form we can imagine, what is wrong with supporting a movement that seeks to create a life of peace and harmony?

Our political and business leaders worldwide have had their turn and we see the results. How about a new kind of effort by "we the people"?

RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 4 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

Humans can and do create. But they do not create in a vacuum. To get the entire world, especially the Monied and Powerful to walk hand in hand to the Happy Place is, well, improbable if not impossible. So, as long as we each still can, the only peace possible on earth is inner peace. It's a choice. Not a hope. And definitely not a given. Overcoming our own anger, fear, and hatred is the greatest challenge we face.

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