Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Is Majority All That Matters ?

We have all heard it, though no one dares to write about it in public. It's our secret desire to convert everybody else to our own lifestyle, thought, philosophy, and religion. Everybody wants to be the majority. It probably arises from the fear of being overwhelmed as a minority. Propaganda goes on at all levels- religion, politics, philosophies, sexual orientation, lifestyles,...We are constantly subjected to evangelism, and do it on our own. Everybody is trying to win others over to their own way.

The minority tries persuasive methods, and the majority uses forcible coercion- to convert others. Now we see less of open force in the more civilized societies, because the world immediately gets to know of any excesses. Perhaps, the media is also being suppressed-we never get to know some news.

Lets look at the futility of attempts at religious conversion using some historical examples, and what might really work, using a story at the end.

Religious fanatics have long believed that if all of the population were converted to their own religion, all problems would vanish. The 'enemy'-the people of the other religion must disappear-either by conversion or by elimination. Lets conveniently forget that this contradicts the very foundation of all major religions-GOD or the SUPREME POWER is everywhere, and therefore, in the 'people of other religions' also.

The most recent examples of religious states (theocracies) that failed are Nepal (Hindu), Pakistan (Muslim), and Libya(Muslim). One can say the Colonial Empires (British, Spanish, Portuguese,...)  also failed because they could not adhere to the principles of their guiding religion (Christianity)-their colonies would not have struggled for independence if all were well. One can go back through history to revisit the gory details!

If one religion was sufficient for the entire mankind, there would not have developed numerous sects within that religion (take any religion). Differences of opinion arose among followers because each individual is inherently different.

The "gaining majority" solution is doomed to fail, sooner or later, wherever it is tried-whether religion or politics. Eventually, differences arise due to ego or selfish interests of the leaders and the followers. All 'isms' are thrown to the wind then.

Religion does not guarantee the experience of the Truth that it professes. One needs spiritual practice for that. And that starts when we start seeing the essential unity of human beings. It is not possible for love and hate to dwell in the same heart together. Only one can survive.

The solution?
Perhaps the following story indicates a way out: It's the lament of an old man on his death bed:
In my youth, I tried to change the world. By middle age, I realized it was futile, and started trying to correct my family instead. I couldn't change my family either-they only resented it. Now I don't have much time left- Oh how I wish I'd tried to change myself all this time!
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