Thursday, February 23, 2006

Why I like the Jehovah's Witnesses

Not being a spiritual person, I have difficulty understanding organized religion. In the Islamic variety, one that seems to take its faith deathly serious, my lack of understanding borders on nescience. The current Sunni/Shia attacks are a fresh reminder how much pain and suffering religious causes, struggles and movements have unleashed on our history. I was raised Roman Catholic and I have seen some really arrogant and bigoted Catholics in my time. I know that I don't understand anything about Islam, but I have heard about Jihad, so I thought I'd find out what it means. Here's what I found:
Jihad translates as "struggle," and in Islam there are four types:
JIHAD OF THE HEART:to purify oneself and try to live as the prophets did.
JIHAD OF THE TONGUE:to speak out in support of social justice, to educate.
JIHAD OF THE HAND:to touch others with dignity and respect.
JIHAD OF THE SWORD:to fight, as a last resort, against economic and social injustice.

It appears to me that many Muslims have skipped the first three.

Which brings me to why I like the Jehovah's. A couple of months ago, I answered a knock at the door and confronted two gentlemen from Jehovah's Witness. They were soft-spoken, articulate and listened intently to me while I revealed why I am faithless and extremely happy. They still wanted to leave their pamphlets and left assuring me that God still loves me. Not once did they tell me that their God was better than any others'. Now this is the kind of religion that the world needs: passionate but tolerant.

By the way, I had an Orval the other day and it was fantastic. The Abbaye's website describes "the calling to follow Christ along the way of the monastic life" and that brewing 'liquid bread' was a humble way to fund the needs of the monastery and it's charitable endeavors.

Huh, maybe I was wrong about the evils of religion.


At 9:17 PM, Blogger Brewer said...

From what I have gathered in my 36 years, I believe religion is a matter of faith. It also requires the "religious" to follow with their hearts that which they learn regarding the faith they choose. I being a Catholic as you too were raised do not believe in changing my religion for the times at hand. Being a christian is about living your life as did Jesus.It's not about making things fit neatly into your own percieved notion of what the world entails. It is totally unfair to judge a religion because of the horrible acts of others. Say the priests who molest young children. They are human and do not directly represent Jesus or his teachings. They are usually hiding behind the religion to further their quest to do such harm as they do. Just as Budweiser hinds behind "King of Beers" to sell the vile they put in bottles. It does not represent what us faithful beer advocates acknowledge as real beer. You can't whip up some crap, throw it in a bottle and call it real beer. Just as you can't interpret a religion so it fits your lifestyle.

At 4:04 PM, Blogger Liesel said...

As a practising witness in South Africa i am glad you had a good experience with the witnesses - quite often we are seen as 'pushing" our religion. As some people in life are generaly abrasive wether religious or not it is great that you had a good experience. Our aim is to make people aware of the biblical promises that god has made and not to "convert" everyone, Jehovah has allowed us the freedom of choice which is offered to all. Our main aim is to let everyone know about these choices, and then you make up your own ming from their. Liesel Chamen - Port Elizabeht South Africa

At 8:59 AM, Blogger Serai said...

And what they didn't tell you, was that they are looking forward to the day when everyone who is not a witness gets put to death, that of course includes you if you tell them to clear off.

As for respecting other religions, well they may give you that impression, but I assure you the organisation as a whole has nothing good to say about any other belief system. Christendom is referred to as the 'great harlot'by them, and they consider all things not JW to be 'from the devil'.

Quite ironic really, they condemn other religions for playing politics, and have themselves been revealed to hold secret ties with the UN, which of course they strenuously denied saying they just needed a library card, oh please pull the other one! Then there are the paedophile cover ups, with them withholding information from police, and threatening and disfellowhiping victims who went to the authorities.

To sum up I'd say, as individuals they may be nice people, but the organisation itself is a wolf in sheeps clothing.


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