Whenever I hear people say things like “religion is the opiate for the masses”, or “religion is dead”, or “religion is for suckers” I have to laugh and cry at the same time. As the title of my blog states everyone is religious. We all have a framework for our lives that dictates our decisions and even our reality. Religion is not simply about acknowledging that there is a god, religion is the point of view that we have chosen to give our life direction. Believing there is a god is one of those frameworks, but it is not religion itself.
The two questions that follow that statement are “do you believe me?” and “what is my religion?” If you don’t believe me first look up the definition and see if I am right. Then after determining that I am right (many people struggle with this because they know me) you can move on to the next question. What is my religion? I have found that the framework that I have chosen to live life by needs to be one that gives me life. If that framework is wrapped around a traditions, buildings, or practices that are culturally bound then I need a new framework. If the framework does not speak truth to me about who I am and why I am here then I need a new framework. If the framework I choose leaves me with no hope for the future, then I need a new framework. If that framework does not teach me how to lovingly relate to the world around me then I need a new framework.