A man and a woman are in the clouds, standing on steps leading up to a podium behind which sits St. Peter, who is looking into a large book.
Writ large across the front of the podium are the words, “No Religion Beyond This Point”.
The man, speaking to the woman, says, “I always wondered how they could achieve peace and tranquility here for an eternity.”
– Non Sequiter (4/11/2016, by Wiley Miller).
Historians will tell you that throughout history one cause of war has been over land – either for control of its people (taxes, slave labor, etc.), natural resources (wealth), or as a buffer zone (against a neighboring enemy).
The other cause has been religion.
There is a difference between faith and religion; faith defined as a belief in a higher power (a god, and its attributes), and religion defined as ritual practices agreed upon by a group of like-minded persons (for worship and acts of obedience to their god).
Now, there are basically only two types of religions; those that have a tolerance for that of others (“live and let live”), and those that don’t (all others are in error and must be eradicated, the people converted or slain for their heretical refusal). Hence subjugations, crusades and jihads, evidenced by Judiasm of old, more recently Christians and, today, Islam.
All three religions claim the same father-god, each desiring to be (and believing they are) the favorite son.
All three religions share in their common history the stories of Cain and Abel, and of Joseph (of the multi-colored coat), both where the father is thought to show too much favoritism to one son, to the neglect of the other(s), and the one(s) who wrongly believe that take out their anger against their brother.
All three religions seem to overlook the the pain that was felt in the father’s heart as a result of what happened. And that there was no favoritism, the love the father had for each son was the same, even if it was different (as each son is different).
That’s what I like about the Non Sequiter cartoon, what the entry sign really means:
“This is my home and I want it to be a place of peace and tranquility. So leave your issues with your brother with your shoes at the door if you want to come in.”