I have been raised with Catholics believes, by a woman who had to hide in the Italian Alps during WWII because she happened to be half Jewish. She didn’t bother telling me about it, until there was not much time left to talk about it. She took me in and she made it happen that I could spent 12 school years in a elite boarding school in the South of Germany, five hours away from our farm in the Alps -even though we were rather poor.
I was supposed to be religious, but allowed to find my own way. Under the guidance of my Grandmother and the Catholic nuns who helped educating me in many ways, I spread my wings and studied and learned about different religions, and one day I walked away from all of it, knowing nothing.
Today I do not believe in anyone’s god or gods, but I remember them well.
For example, there is a phrase in the Fourth Gospel which offers the Christian people a very Jewish way of looking at things. Truth is not just something you *believe*, it is something you *do.*
To be a bystander is to do nothing, and to do nothing is to deny both what we say we believe and what it means to be a human being.
A couple of years ago a Rabbi gave a sermon where he discussed such a thing as an unforgivable sin. He did not describe some heinous act. He said basically this. When a person sees wrongdoing who has the power to stop it and does nothing, that is an unforgivable sin.
In Christian teachings, we are told that we are all sinners. But in the Jewish tradition, it is not the wrongdoers who are the ultimate sinners, but those who standby and let it happen.
It is the responsibility of all of us to stand up and prevent our world from falling apart. It is the responsibility of all of us to participate in the political process to preserve our democracy. But sadly, something like 100 million never bother to vote. Sadly, many educated people don’t follow the news.
They don’t want to be bothered. Sadly, those that spread outlandish lies are not opposed in the public square because they are thought to have a right to voice their opinion when their opinion is nothing but lies that will tear us apart.
This apathy, this lack of participation, this lack of responsibility to each other, may very well be our undoing.
Spiritual leaders have been telling this for over 2000 years and we still haven’t learned the lesson. But we sure have had a ton of brutality in the mean time.
Actually, the golden rule is found in all the world’s major religions in one form or another. It’s foundational, and about the only thing you can find recognizably in all of them. We have free will, yet we let ourselves be persuaded that other people can tell us what God’s will is. I think the only guideline god ever offered is the golden rule. The rest, like it or not is our will.
Perhaps, “What would Jesus do?” is the wrong questions asked by many. What would Jesus NOT do, might be more helpful in finding your way.
I am only one voice, but my job is to speak up -like it or not! Again going against all blogging rules, shooting myself in the knee with gusto, while daring to call out the so called Christians who spread hatred at a time when love is needed the most.