Candidates and their Religion

A person’s religious beliefs are the foundation for their perception of reality.  My favorite quote is by anonymous  “the God you believe in, is your vote for the kind of world you want to live in.”  The question has been asked if it is wrong to prefer someone from your own religion as a candidate for public office.  It really depends on how much that person lives and makes decisions based on their religious philosophy.

For example, there are several religions that espouse the inferiority of women or the inappropriateness of women holding positions of authority in society.  A person of that faith will be influenced, however subtly, by that belief which may have been infiltrating his psyche since childhood.  It would be difficult for them to grant equal rights to the female population.  A candidate who fervently believes that God, the ultimate authority, is a man in the sky, will set up any organization in that model.  Masculine power over all, remote and unflinching in his punishments and decisions on the fate of those he deems wayward.

To assume that anyone will set aside their religious beliefs to run a country is to assume they can easily adopt a different framework for reality.  Not so.  Ultimately our deepest beliefs become the launch pad for our behaviors.  There was no question that the Ayatollah Khomeni upheld his religious beliefs in his governing of Iran to disastrous results.  The same is true of the Taliban in Afghanistan.

The day may be dawning when we ask our candidates the most important questions of all:  What do you believe is the nature of reality?  How do things come into being?  What role does the human mind play in shaping its own destiny?  Do you believe humans can solve the problems we have created?  Do you feel the equality of all people and the necessity of diversity?  Is your God, the Source of everything, made in our image and likeness, a human form looking down on us?  Do you think Science and religion are on the same quest for Truth?

How can a person believe on ting on their Sabbath, and behave any differently the rest of the week.  We have seen that it is possible, but when push comes to shove, the mind will revert to its most fundamental beliefs about Power.  Where is it, who has it, how shall I wield it?


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