I’ll start off by saying that of course this idea isn’t all-inclusive. There are a lot of religious groups throughout the world that practice what they preach and show kindness to everyone they come across. That being said, those that decide to use what they want from their religion in order to discriminate, harass, and otherwise make life miserable for those that they don’t understand and have no intention of getting to know tend to be some of the biggest hypocrites around. Unless your religion actively tells you to hate someone then the chances are that you’re taking a tenet from one obscure passage or another and using it for your own ends. And to be quite honest, while there are texts that speak of raining down one type of punishment or another upon a gathered society for some transgression, those that would follow such examples tend to describe themselves as easygoing, peace-loving individuals, so long as their religion isn’t challenged.
So what’s the problem with organized religion? Nothing really if you want the honest truth. The idea of organized religion doesn’t work for everyone, but it’s not the inherent evil that it’s made out to be sometimes.
But the extremists that decide to take such religions and create an exclusionary idea that certain religions simply hate other people for their differences and unwillingness to conform? Yeah, that’s a problem. If you’re only intent upon becoming religious is to throw hate upon another person then calling yourself a peaceful, loving Christian, or whatever faith you belong to, is about as accurate as calling a jackal a playful little puppy. The idea that anyone might use religion to campaign against anyone else isn’t new, but it’s still as appalling now as it was back when the whole mess was started. What happened to faith? What happened to the idea that God loves everyone? Did He not create the world as it’s seen in the texts? Then this means that He, in some way, created those that heap such hatred upon others as well, yes?
Ah the hypocrisy of it all.
Many religious followers and leaders do in fact preach tolerance, peace, and love towards all mankind. Love thy enemy and all that, but others, taking a harder line towards those they believe are living in sin, never seem to get the point that while God might have created all of us, He in his infinite wisdom also gave us free will to do as we please. Yes that swings both ways, but preaching that you love God and all His creations while denying those that simply irk you for existing at all is hypocrisy at its finest and its worst.
There’s a reason why some people stay away from religion, and a lot of it has to do with the fact that some, not all, decide to play mix and match with their own idea of religion and how to apply it.