Religion used to be the foundation of survival from which people used to derive comfort, serenity and tolerance. They learnt honesty, feared damnation and avoided debauchery and injustice to obtain approval of the Higher Entity. People strived for His love by loving deprived and disadvantaged.

However, with time the dimensions of life changed to the point that it adapted the modern symphony of existence. This trend of modernity requires success, competition, politics and materialistic amenities at all cost.

All of these (man-made) standards are directed to augment the exhibition of personal ego. In this race, religious values started wearing off because it seems to retard the pace of modern life. The exclusion of religious values and wisdom from daily life have regressed the array of social values.

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A handful of people rose up, taking advantage of this lack of religious knowledge equally amongst literate and illiterate individuals and started putting up their own religious interpretations. These interpretations were solely based on hatred, differences and hostility.

Faith–naïve people have distanced themselves further away from their creeds after receiving such malicious elucidations. They left the faith exclusively in the hands of abusers and riotous who played on the field of sacred teachings for decades to manipulate the truth, infuriate masses, spread hatred, kill innocent people, and propagate fallacies about each other.

Global poverty, unequal resource distribution and injustice have ignited the situation further in their favour. This unruly crowd was therefore encouraged to attract people from different faiths across the borders to enhance their circle of influence by augmenting self-doubts and impairing trust over establishments (police, governments and authorities).

Last four decades have seen a general trend of weariness towards belief systems. People mark religion as the cause of hate. On top of this anarchy, media has fueled the fire by propelling misconceptions and myths.

Media has persistently highlighted negative events (violence, hate speech, assassinations and terror) and diminished the voices of harmony and interreligious unity.

Today, religion which was the source of brotherhood stands as a victim of ignorance. Peacebuilding is the central core of all religions but obliviousness has devoured the minds and souls by camouflaging the reality.

Scriptural references:

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!

Luke 2.14

May the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.

Numbers 6.26

God is peace, his name is peace, and all is bound together in peace.

Zohar 3.10b (Judaism)

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you.

John 14.27

Allah summons to the abode of Peace and leads whom He wills to a straight path.

Qur’an 10.25

Prophet Muhammad (s) said, “Shall I inform you of the best morals of this world and the hereafter? To forgive him who oppresses you, to make a bond with him who severs from you, to be kind to him who insults you, and to give to him who deprives you.”

Hadith (Islam)

 

Scriptures contain the cardinal teachings about modesty and unanimity.

It promotes social coherence and amicably weaves the fabric of differences to generate diversity. It blossoms with justice, family love, spiritual content and patience.

This era of confusion and anxiety would complete its tenure and pass away but history would distinguish this age where religion stood as the source of confusion.