Religion in news and on the Internet


On my train ride back home from work few days ago an older man sat next to me and started to read a book on writing sermons. I say “started” because he fell asleep almost immediately. I had a read of a paragraph in his book. It basically said that a successful sermon must relate contemporary real life issues to the religious teaching. It is an interesting statement. Perhaps many religious scholars all failed asleep while reading this ever so important paragraph too and that is why we have so much ridiculous religious news recently, which fail that simple suggestion.

In last two weeks, we had reports in news of various Islamic clerics proclaiming it is OK to marry underage girls, force sex in marriage, physically abuse wives, declaring that all Australians are drunkards, gamblers and adulterers. On the Christian side we had a priest stealing millions of dollars from the faithful and yet another lawsuit against the Catholic Church in a sex abuse case. And Pope now has a YouTube channel.

Internet is a fantastic medium of communication and in pure sense, religion, which is the basis of our moral values should help humanity to better itself. However, as long the messages delivered over the medium are so absurd, incompatible with civilization and day to day issues people producing these “sermons” will only alienate people against religion (and indirectly their followers).

PS: I hear the Earth is no longer flat and knowledge of herbs does not make you a satanic spawn. If these two things have changed perhaps other religious “teachings” could be refreshed too.

Intolerable tolerance


This group of protesters tried hard to make themselves noticeable amongst the pilgrims in the Hyde Park. Their message? “We have nothing against Catholics… There is no God… it is not a sin to be gay… it is not against religion to use condom”.

Media reported later on there were heated exchanges between the protesters and World Youth Day attendees. Yes, some people took offence and exchanged words with the protesters. However, what was not reported or shown on TV was the fact the young pilgrims turned their backs on the protesters and simply walked away, ignoring them completely. After brief moment even media moved on.