The perception of right and wrong

Faith is very powerful. It can make you believe even in the absence of evidence. It can also make you exterminate old men, women and children. That is how powerful faith can be.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

Black is black. White is white. That’s what the practicalist would say, not that there is such a word as practicalist or one who is practical. But black can be white and white can be black, any sycophant would agree, just as long as it pleases the boss. And that is why many leaders like to surround themselves with sycophants who would readily tell you what you would like to hear rather than what you should be told.

Is this not the basis of the story of the emperor and his clothes? The emperor paraded naked because no one dared tell him he was naked lest he take offence. And anyone who saw the emperor naked would be considered an idiot so better one pretends that one sees the emperor fully clothed than be called an idiot.

Humankind would believe what it has been taught to believe. Education is not always education in the true sense of the word. You may have been taught but this does not mean you have received an education. Even dogs can be taught to do tricks, or any circus animal for that matter. But just because an animal can respond to commands does this mean we now have an educated animal in our midst?

What is humankind if not but just another animal? But humankind has been blessed with a more developed brain although this does not always mean this brain is used to its maximum potential. Brains, just like artificial intelligence such as computers, too can be taught to think the way it is programmed. And the way it thinks would all depend on the programmer.

The religionists talk about man’s ultimate sins such as pride, arrogance, greed, lust, jealousy, and whatnot. The scriptures talk about the agreement struck between God and Satan where God allowed Satan to prove that mankind is weak and susceptible to these sins, the most deadly of all being the sin of pride and arrogance, which was the failing of Satan himself.

And the religionist is the greatest programmer of all. The religionist does not teach us how to think. The religionist teaches us what to believe. And logic and belief are not compatible. You either believe or you do not. And anything other than belief, logic included, is unbelief.

On the one hand we are taught that God made humankind more superior to other animals because of our more powerful brain. But in that same breath we are taught that our thinking power should be limited and not extended to matters of religion. Religion does not require thinking. Religion requires belief. So logic has to be kept out of religion. And the absence of logic is explained by one word, faith.

What is faith? Faith is the belief in the unexplained. Where no explanation is possible then that it is categorised as faith. Faith, in short, is the belief in anything where proof is not forthcoming.

Humankind lives in two worlds. In one world evidence is required. The absence of evidence would mean a total rejection would be in order. Then there is the parallel world that humankind lives in. This parallel world is called the world of faith. And in the world of faith no evidence is required. It is a world that survives on sheer belief.

How do we reconcile these two parallel worlds that we live in? We can’t. One world is based on tangibles. The other world is based on the unproven. But most times we allow both worlds to overlap and function as one. We can no longer separate tangible from faith. And that is when impose our beliefs on others and take faith as fact, which all humankind must subject itself to.

Since the beginning of time, long before even Islam or any of the Religions of the Book, humankind has been imposing its faith on others. It is what they believe even in the absence of evidence. And this belief must also be the belief of others. And those who reject this belief must suffer death because by rejecting this belief they have forfeited their right to live.

This, the religionist would argue, is what God decided. But who amongst us has ever had an audience with God to confirm this? Can anyone come forward to declare that he or she has personally met God and this is what God commanded?

Not one of the seven billion or so members of the human race still walking the face of this earth can lay claim to ever meeting God and that this is what God had commanded. How do we know, therefore, that this is true? We have to believe this is so because this belief is based on faith, not on eyewitness accounts.

It is not that there is no evidence. There is. There were, in fact, even some witnesses. Of course, none of these witnesses are still alive today. All died thousands of years ago. What we have today is hearsay and stories passed down mostly by word of mouth through the ages. This is the evidence that we possess, or rather the faith in that there were people a long time ago who did have this evidence but which is no longer available.

But there was not just one witness. There were many witnesses. And all these witnesses contradict one another. So which evidence do we accept as true and which do we reject as false? Ah, this depends on your programmer, the religionists. They tell you which evidence is true and which is false.

But how do they know? They don’t. They just have faith. And they program you to also share their faith. And your beliefs are based on this. The religionists are virtuous people who would not lie. They are here to save you, to lead you through the right path. They are people of God. They would do no wrong.

Almost two thousand years ago, humankind was told that God had decreed the true faith. And God decreed that all those who did not believe this must be put to death. And over hundreds of years millions were killed because they refused to believe what Rome had decreed you should believe. Finally all the unbelievers were exterminated leaving only the believers alive to walk the face of this earth.

Slightly over 1,000 years later these true believers were declared as unbelievers and England exterminated all those who did not switch over to the true church, the Church of England. An ethnic cleansing that dwarfed even what happened in Bosnia and Iraq swept England and the land was cleansed of unbelievers. Today those of the Roman faith may still not sit on the Throne of England or become its Prime Minister.

This, we are told, is God’s command. But not one who put the unbelievers to the sword ever met God or met someone who had met God. Yet they decided who lives and who dies in the name of God.

Faith is very powerful. It can make you believe even in the absence of evidence. It can also make you exterminate old men, women and children. That is how powerful faith can be.

It took six days for God to create the universe and mother earth, say the scriptures. And on the seventh day God rested. And on the seventh day when God rested humankind created religion and murdered fellow humankind in the name of God. And when humankind demanded evidence the religionists came out with the word called faith. And the religionists told humankind that God commanded we must all have faith or else be killed.

Faith is a dangerous thing. Faith is sometimes another word for pride and arrogance. Is this maybe what Satan and God agreed? Make humankind believe that only his faith is right and all others wrong so that the killing spree can commence?

Hmm…could faith then actually be a creation of Satan, a secret weapon meant to mislead humankind? I sometimes wonder.