And while we have Westboro Baptist condemning our country to hell because we are fighting for gay rights, Hobby Lobby fighting for its right not to cover women's health care, any number of Christian sects pushing for public prayer in school and government and still others using their religion to justify stiffing their waitress... the religious issues of my country pale in comparison to those in other countries and cultures.
The problem is, they don't see them as problems in other countries. In fact, religious doctrine is used to write their laws. Case in point, and the motivation behind this post: Saudi Arabia. Apparently (Warning: link is to an article detailing the crime; it is not for the faint of heart) it isn't a crime for a man to brutally rape, beat, torture and kill his own child. He will serve no jail time. In fact, his only punishment? A $50,000 fine, which would have been doubled if his five year old daughter had been a son instead.
While this whole situation absolutely disgusts me, and my heart breaks for the precious little girl Lama, the detail that repulses me the most, is that her father was an Islamic preacher. That's right. I supposed man of religion. A popular one at that. And in his book, the suspicion he had that his five year old daughter was no longer a virgin was enough to do these heinous and repulsive acts. To snuff the light of a beautiful little girl whose only crime was being born to this man.
I don't want to blame religion in this case. And in all honestly, it isn't Islam's fault. It is the culture in which all power is given to adult males in the name of Islam. It is a culture of dominance Many times through out history, religion has been used to raise a specific group of people to power. To give rights to a few while punishing the majority. In this case it just happens to be men. And as boys become men, they are taught that women are worthless. That they are possessions and nothing else. Toys to be played with but not shared. Sent out with the trash when they no longer hold their fancy or become broken. And it sickens me.
In full disclosure, I don't know a lot about Islam. I think I may remedy that though. I do know that they find the Bible corrupt. That their own prophet, Mohammad, was given the righted version of it which is what we know as the Qur'an. But in a quick search for women in the Qur'an I found this beautiful little nugget:
"O humankind! Be conscious of your Lord Who created you from a single soul, and out of it created its mate, and out of the two spread countless men and women. Be conscious of your Lord through Whom you demand your mutual rights and honor the wombs; God always watches over you." (Qur'an 4:1)*
Honor the wombs? Demand mutual rights? Do I hear undertones of equality here? That wombs should be sacred even? You'd never know that this was the same holy book that condoned beating of female spouses, the inequality of the sexes and that women must hide their faces from anyone not family.
And that is just the thing. Their holy books are just as corrupt, condescending and contradictory as any other holy book out there. They use the scriptures that work with their agendas and ignore the ones that don't.
So what then is the purpose of religion? An outsider to our world would assume that it was nothing more than a tool to control the masses. To raise people or parties to power and nothing more. Where is the spiritual outlet that religion should be? Certainly, brutally murdering your five year old daughter can't bring you closer to "God". And if it does... well, I want nothing to do with that sort of entity.
*Quote found here.
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