Where’s the Tolerance for Difference?

2011_1001jhbgaypride110070A recent article stating that homophobia was on the rise in Africa made me think some.. then some more.

I just cannot get my head around why this ‘orientation of difference’ gets up so many people’s noses – and normally all in the name of some higher being!

I was always led to believe that people of religious belief or persuasion were taught tolerance and compassion and all those good things. I will not add ‘forgiveness’ because homosexuals have done nothing that warrants forgiving.

I can count on one hand the number of mainstream, organised religions with global followings. I believe in each to their own. There are a great many non-believers or people of no faith in this world as well. So, working on that premise, why do the flock feel entitled to cast judgement upon and condemn those who do not subscribe to their beliefs? I for one really don’t care what the Bible bashers feel about gays, because I do not subscribe to their scriptures. (I do care how they hurt gay people via their ignorant and blinkered rants though! Or anyone for that matter!). Therefore, I feel entitled, yes entitled, to be given the same respect for my non-belief and how I choose to live my life as I give to those who live or have different views to me. That is tolerance. That is allowing others to be different to you and accepting it.

To word-bash, and at times physically harm those who do not believe in the Christian way, or the Muslim way, or the Jewish way, or the Hindu way, or any other way is a gross act of self-righteousness, self-import and self-indulgence. I just don’t get why these people feel quite within their rights to state that other viewpoints, lifestyles and persuasions are wrong and sinful. Even if I was a believer, I wouldn’t feel I have sinned, this is who I am and what I am.I believe in trying to treat others as I would like to be treated; to not judge; to show compassion for hardships experienced by others; to not impose my views, but merely debate them – and lets face it one’s views evolve due to one’s own journey of life and the knocks or lack thereof that it gives you – and to be able to stand tall and agree to disagree. Isn’t that what being a compassionate human being is all about? Tolerance to others?

I have not been running down the road beating up heterosexuals with verbal insults because of how they live their lives or which tranche of faith they chose to follow. I do not judge their behaviour based on my non-belief or on my living differently. I look at their behaviours as a I look at my own. Am I ethical? Am I humane ? Do I have sympathy and compassion ? Am I a good person, a good member of society? Am I honest? Do I care for my companions, friends and colleagues in life? I do! I am ok! I am a positive contributor to the world within which I live.

Therefore when did it become the business of the religious mainstream and bigoted collectives to cast derogatory views on anything that dares to deviate from their norm… THEIR norm not mine!

Re-reading the above, oh dear, yes I am intolerant of extremism within the belief system. Many wars and killings continue today based on religious extremism.

If there is a higher being – of whatever adjective you care to use – I do not believe they would be as condemning, as narrow minded, as unfeeling, as hypocritical and venomously vitriolic as those that claim to serve him… ahm … or HER are.

Sometimes one protests too much. Those in glass houses …

You will find me happily driving past the church where many wife-beaters go to clear their conscience each Sunday morning.

2 thoughts on “Where’s the Tolerance for Difference?

  1. The older I get the more I feel sorry for GOD. There She was with everything laid out clearly for us in The Colour Purple, and still we don’t get it. I am sure She is shaking her head from side to side and disappointed deeply. Thank heavens for the animals and the insects and the plants who simply live and let live, and don’t poke their noses or stems in others’ business.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s