Does Religion Cause Conflict or Peace ?
Religion, according to Mrs. Kieffer, is “a set of beliefs and rituals based on a unique vision of how the world ought to be”. Religion has been a significant role in the lives of the everyday person, and while it has been a major factor in the history of humans, – creating hope and faith – it has also caused additional and unintentional conflicts in society. Initially, and still to a certain degree, religion is still a large part of today’s society, although the children of this century has become less devoted to religion and more devoted to the aspects of the ever advancing technology. Moreover as part of society, religion has caused many issues concerning gender inequality and inequality to the LGBTQ groups. Consequently, religion as a whole has caused many wars to erupt throughout history, because of its “unique” beliefs in certain aspect “of how the world ought to be”.
Religions across the world have principles and rules in which the followers are to live by. In religion women are considered to be 2nd to all male be it father, husband, or son. A women since ancient times are considered to stay at home and beare children for her husband’s family, there was never a mention of a women standing up and fight against the discrimination against these gender roles. For example Timothy 2:11-12 said “I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quite”(Olivia, Cassaundra, Isabella) , and to this day religious women still does not differentiate that a women should not bow to a man as all genders are equal. Women are the center of the religion, as they have been extremely active in the participation in rituals. For example, Woodhead from Washington Post wrote that “Nuns, for example, in the Christian tradition had huge power at certain times in history, acting as very independent groups doing their own thing without a great deal of clerical control” In the present day, religion has advance in some part, making it possible for women to hold power in some branches of certain religion. For example, less than 12% of women are pastors in 2012, even though the percentage are small, women are starting to hold power even if it is a small amount (Melissa, Gabe, Brock).
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Another conflict that religion has with is the indepence of a person’s choice in relationship. In most religion a man is not supposed to court a man or a women is not to court a women, because it is considered a taboo. For example, LGBTQ People and Religion wrote, “ For most of human history, gay men and lesbians have been viciously persecuted. Today, homosexuals are a favorite target of the religious right, whose members frequently quote scripture to justify anti-gay bias and even violence.’’ Although , the reason for these discriminations are because of wrong interpretations of the multiple religious texts. An example of the is from LGBTQ People and Religion who wrtoe that the “ Biblical interpretations that are used to condemn gay men and lesbians are used in much the same way that other readings of scripture have been to justify the perceived inferior status of other minority groups. This is, in part, because the Bible itself contains many opportunities for potentially controversial interpretations.” in these interpretations many will interpret it the way they view of it as right. An example of this is from 2017 in which a homosexual couple; David and Charlie wanted a wedding cake and asked the backer Jack from Master Cake to make them a wedding cake but he refused because it would be against his religious teaching and that it would express and opinion in which he did not support. The situation was taken to the supreme court, and they were in the favor or Jack. Although it was in jack’s favor, he knew the reason why the couple did what they did and the couple knew why Jack did what he did.
Consequently, in the same fashion religion caused some of the major wars in the world, because of the idea of how things are meant to be. For example the most current major war about religion in the middle east was because of the idea that the Holy land of Jerusalem is for only one group and should not be shared, between the Palestinians and Israelis. The conflict between these 2 countries started in the 20th century and is still ongoing, with a death count of 9,854 palestine and 1,261 israelites in 2019 alone. Another major current conflict in the past few years is a militant group from Al-Qaeda called ISIS; the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria is a group who believe that they are the new Caliph and is the new Islamic Force. They uses religion as a reason to terrorise and frighten people because the belive that it is the way for people to see what they believe in and for them to promote their religion. Overall religion causes wars, and inequality between people whether they be because of genders or personal preferences and the “unique” beliefs of different types of people and their beliefs in certain aspect “of how the world ought to be”.