by Nimi Princewill
The casual rise of Atheism, or most emphatically; the non-committal, cold and distant ‘been there, done that’ ex-fanatic Christian & Muslim folks, who don’t believe much in anything anymore remains on the constant increase! Why’s that? I’d tell you.
In their thoughts, “Why praise or exalt the name and doctrines of a self-glorifying Pastor, or tread the heavily devout principles of an Islamic Sheik(human beings & religious joint-heirs like you & I) when I can find God for myself and evolve my personal depth of understanding of the Bible or the Koran?”. These are frequently asked questions, and with the never-ending continuous trend of slavish devotion to Orthodox & Pentecostal doctrines / practices, as well as the steady influx of Islamic extremism, I decided to weigh in my opinion to lend little pieces of advice to my Christian & Muslim brethren.
CHRISTIANS: Doesn’t it bother you that your local assembly shares a totally different theological belief and opposing doctrine(s) with the other churches across the hall? Sure it does in your heart, and although you share silent reservations, you tag along with your preacher’s point of view anyways.. After all, you always haven’t got time to flip through the scriptures for personal research, so your “Man of God’s” interpretation becomes superior in all issues to yours. Your seat belts are clung tight to a church that cannot assist members in distress, yet demand ‘sacrificial giving’ and amazingly judge it’s congregation(including poor you) for the quality of offerings and tithes they render, yet you sit lips sealed and nod in partial agreement(sometimes you even clap in naivety!). If for EVERY problem you have, you always crave the need to run to a Pastor or Prophet, or you strongly believe that continuous prayers, sowing seeds & prophesy without putting to work or developing yourself will amass riches for you, then you’ve failed overwhelmingly as a Christian! Discover God for yourself through study of the scriptures and develop your skill set! Much said.. Moving on…(Christians can now leave the page)
MUSLIMS: Through current study, I’ve discovered that the inconsistency between certain Islamic philosophies, doesn’t quite have much to do with the sacredness of the Koran, but rather the ‘appropriate’ & ‘inappropriate’ interpretation of it’s verses. Could it be that some narrations of the Koran may not be accurately conveyed by the narrator, hence misinterpretation and conflict of instructions? Digging further, I realized disagreement in Islam is not only acceptable, but in fact, “rewarded by Allah” and those who ‘qualify’ for this reward are only the Islamic Scholars who have the working knowledge of the Koran(in other words, the average Muslims are not permitted to review or uphold personal insight for themselves). Therefore, could this be the reason for Islamic extremism & other rigid philosophies created by these Scholars? I strongly urge the Muslim brethren to not solely depend on the Imams or Sheiks for interpretation of the Koran. The only difference between you and the Sheik, is the depth of understanding! You can evolve your understanding as well!
Muslims, ask yourselves.. What’s the Koran’s precise view on Polygamy? Was it stated as a universal concept, or a particular instance of the Arab culture? We all know seventh century Arabs were the first audience of the Islamic practice. So can we be entirely wrong to say the Koran may have been written in a language and way that was relevant to the lives of the Arabs? The same Koran that “permits” a man to marry four wives, also stated that marriage should not be for lust. In that case, what then drives men into accumulating more wives for themselves? Or can a man love four women at the same time?
Secondly, where does the Koran stand on women rights? Why do some Muslim men allow their wives pursue their dreams & prospects, while others stifle the freedom of theirs? Is the Islamic patriarchal nature a cultural inheritance of the ancient Arabs, or a spiritual commandment? Find out for yourself!
Lastly, what does the Koran truly say concerning association with “Infidels?”. While some scholars take some verses out of context and portray Islam as violent & aggressively devout(hence terrorism & Islamic insurgency), other Scholars preach peace and are against forced conversion, as war against “infidels” should only be called for, when Muslims have been expelled by force out of their lands for the sake of their religion(of which neither is the case with Boko Haram or the other Jihadist sects).
We have all got responsibilities as Christians or Muslims to seek for TRUTH ourselves, without being radicalized or religiously enslaved by others who seek the truth for us based on their own understanding and interpretation. #FindOutForYourself!
Op–ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.
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