Why is Religion so Important?

Dec 9, 2009
by: djones
What I'm good at

Something that I have been interested in learning more about has been why religion is so important. I remember my mother talking about it when I was smaller but when I think of her explanations for why religion is so neccessary, now it barely makes sense.Lately, the issue has caught my eye again. I know that there is a broad view on how people regard religion. Some would kill over it because that's how strongly they believe and some would spit on a bible and not even fear going to "hell". From what I have heard, religion is a very tense subject. I personally do not believe in God or anything higher than man. I mean in my point of view, religion is very politically based, corrupt and fabricated. For example, there have been a number of corrupt popes in our time. As well as lower level priests that have been convicted of raping little boys. My very mothers own priest when she was a child was convicted of raping 5 little boys. Another example having to do with the fabrication is when the indigenous people of some foreign country first saw airplanes. They described the sight as two steel birds. Now couldn't the people of 70 A.D., when the bible was written, have portrayed what they saw in a way that was unintelligible. Seeing that the peoples brains were less developed than those we have now then who is to say that a man walking on water or turning water to wine was not simply a trick of the eye. Just imagine when things are seen that are "amazing" for the first time. People of course fabricate and exaggerate the occurance to make it more than it is for the sake of following and trust. If you think this man can turn water to wine then of course you will fear what else he can do. 

One thing that I know for sure about religion is that some people will do anything to protect and defend it. Now I've studied my share of U.S. History and I've seen what people would do to protect their religious views. Whether past, present or future people will do what they will for this one sole belief in a god.

 For example the Crusaders went on a campaign in the "name of god" and killed many french. Most of the people that went on this crusade in fact did not do it for religious reasons at all, although they stated that they did. In this quote it states "Others believed they would gain more land and holdings, a title, and even salvation. Merchants believed the crusades would allow for greater trade opportunities in the Muslim Lands. It was simply a war to rid Europe of young nobles who insisted upon fighting each other". This exemplifies what the true reasons were behind fighting this war "for god". Another quote based on the Crusades also says that "The pope promised knights remission of sins allowing for the knights, who died in battle against the pagans, to be absolved from sin through the power of God which the pope had been invested."This also shows how corrupt the church was during this time and still to this day in some cases.

The pope which I talked about before was being very corrupt in allowing only the sins of the knights to be forgiven for taking the lives of many. Why did he take it upon himself to decide who should and shouldnt be forgiven for countless sins, some of which Im sure where not as drastic as killing a person. Wasnt that supposed to be "God's" job? The article where I found the quotes is here: Ancient Digger: Monday Ground Up: Saint Demitrios and the Crusades.

 Another way that religion is being used is in the overcoming of something. Being that I didn't have a lot of background information on religion and overcoming tribulations. I chose to do some research on the topic. As I searched for blogs and news articles on Google, I came across this one article:ScienceDirect - Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment : Religious faith and spirituality in substance abuse recovery : : Determining the mental health benefits. This article provided a lot of information and opinions on religion and tribulations in life. Some people felt that religion in this case had directly impacted the drug users of this story. There was an actual study done that stated that the people who believed in religion and had a faith in fact recovered faster than the people who did not have a faith. I think that the fact that religion can get people out of such enourmous and pivical depths such as drug abuse is quite amazing. Im not entirely sold on the religious aspect of things. I mean I think if someone has succeded in getting over drug use then maybe its something inside themselves that has gotten them to over come it. I also feel that Its like when you tell yourself you can do it repeatedly then ultimately you are going to think you can. Some people call that crazy if you keep saying you think you can fly and then try to do it. I think its quite amazing that someone can have that much faith in themselves to go to such great heights. Its the same as religion, there believing in a book, thats really all it is, a book, to tell them what to do in life. Crazy or an Astonishing feat of man?.

 Religion by Rickydavid.

 I found this quote below on an image and I thought that was an interesting message to send to all ot the people who will read this.

"God has no religion”
(Mahatma Gandhi, 1869-1948)

Anyways I chose this picture because I wanted a picture of an institution of faith. I wonder why people need one of these sometimes. Like what does a nice church have to do with "worshipping god". All for show to get more money in the collection pot in my opinion. I do however like this picture because it reminds me of a very traditional church. None of those new steel and metal churches that look more like office buildings. I like old buildings in general though so I might be a little biased. 

All of this makes me think that religion in its essence is not a bad thing. Its what people choose to do with religion that turns it into a corrupt business. Its like when did religion and military get inserted into the same sentence when it came to the crusades and even the war we have going on now in Iraq. And then when you read the article about how substance abuse was actually cured because of peoples faith in the lord, it makes you think that possibly there is hope out there that people will use religion in the proper ways. Religion is,  supposed to give you hope to go on to the next day and its supposed to bring people together under one common god.

Image: "Religion", Rickydavid, August 23rd, 2007. http://www.flickr.com/photos/cuppini/1214842248/