As the final installment to the series I had going this week, I want to conclude with some thoughts on how the drive embedded in religious groups can tie into the judgmental views and lead to trouble.
Just as most other groups, I see religious groups forming in ways that appear to lead to members becoming more and more similar. For Christians (the religious group I’m the most familiar with), I see this being the case.
The drives within the Christian groups are pressuring individuals toward becoming more and more alike. The denominations within the Christian faith preach for their members to become alike in the nature of their interpretation of the Bible is the way they should worship and they should be. It is almost as if they are to the point of saying, it is this way or no way. One is to live a life in a certain way in order to be a part of that community or group.
The similarities are encouraged to the point that differences are made out to be “wrong.” The stronger the drive for similarities, the more discrimination is placed on differences. Those deviating from the Biblical interpretation preached from their pulpit are considered “different” and many times labeled as individuals behaving in sinful ways.
Those favoring same-sex relations are sinning. Those doubting God’s existence are sinning. Those who are pregnant outside of wed-lock are sinning. Those sitting down to a meal with an alcoholic beverage of their choice are sinning…
These are behaviors that can lead an individual to being outcast from the “group,” should the behavior become known. These individuals become known as “the others”—the outsiders. Those kept out of the group until behaviors have been adjusted, and repented for.
It gets to the point where it seems as if there is push within the religious groups for everyone to be alike. I wonder if religious groups see it as God made mankind in His own image, therefore, we are to be as one—all alike in our ways of being, since we are made in the likeness of a one and only powerful being Himself—God. Mankind should be alike in the form of one type of image since we were made in the image of one God.
But if this is the point, I would argue this…
The God that many of these religious groups worship is also worshipped as a God of three spirits…
God as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
With that being the case, can’t mankind be made in three images too—all making up the title of “mankind?”
Mankind as males, females, and hermaphrodites.
Each part of mankind can be made in “His image” just as “His image” is made up of the three spirits.
Okay, so the hermaphrodites part was just for fun, but in all honesty, I think religious groups try to put a third group in mankind, because the males and females. It is almost like they outcast some individuals to the point of not even considering them a part of mankind anymore—either male or female.
Sometimes I get the impression that religious groups can get so absorbed in the idea of people being similar and anything making someone different places them in the “others” group; not even seen as species of mankind like themselves. The “others” become outcast.
Sometimes I think it takes us being willing to open our eyes and see that those who do happen to be different from us actually are similar to us in more ways than one might think. “Outcast” or not, we are ALL members of the human race—making “mankind” our “group” tying our similarity together!
So maybe some do see it as mankind has three groups…
…males, females, and “others”…
…but whether one falls into the category of “others” in the eyes of some, their differences do not make them any less a part of “mankind,” which is believed by those same eyes to be made in God’s images…
…the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.