With so many religions vying for supremacy in our increasingly unified global community, the fact that tens of millions of people cannot decide which spiritual tradition, if any, they should affiliate with is perfectly understandable. Which doctrine is correct? Does God even exist? These are reasonable questions and there is no way to determine the answers with any semblance of certainty. The question is, are such answers even required?
As a society we are far too concerned with labels. We academically compartmentalize our beliefs and coldly dissect every possible philosophical position until the spiritual foundation of our faith is essentially lost. In fact, faith does not require certainty nor does it demand religious belief. Whether one is an atheist, any brand of theist, spiritual but not religious or even a committed agnostic is utterly irrelevant.
Humanity tends to differentiate between our diverse religious beliefs in the same manner we segregate ourselves into specific races by the color of our skin or cultures by geography. We lose sight of the singular truth that every human being is a member of the same species. Individually we are not defined by our religion, our culture or by the color of our skin but rather by our capacity to feel compassion toward our brothers and sisters. Faith is what guides us, whether toward understanding the Great Mystery or simply understanding ourselves.
The process of segregation, in any form, is extremely detrimental to our personal growth and on a societal level prevents the natural evolution of human understanding from following its proper trajectory. We are all equal members of one global family; this is an incontrovertible fact. Religion, skin color, gender, orientation, culture, in the final analysis these differences are immaterial.
Those who live their lives surrounded by hatred walk a very narrow path indeed, smothered by a desperate fear that blinds them to the truth, but their influence is waning; they no longer control the world. Our journey has been a long one and though we yet have far to travel, I remain encouraged by our continued progress toward respectful co-existence, unified in our faith and committed to positive change. Hope lives on.