Sunday, September 26, 2004

Good intentions

When religious leaders speak passionately about something their very show of emotion is sometimes enough to prompt a reaction by those listening.

The Rabbi's Yom Kippur sermon got me thinking.

He got me considering doing things I hadn't thought of doing before; such as attending a protest march in the street.

What I realized is that he got me thinking of doing things I neither wanted to do nor had ever thought of doing before.

This concerned me.


While someone living a comfortable life has no strong incentive to correct the inequalites of the world, someone who is far less well off is very easy to convince of the need to take some form of 'action'.

What shape and form this action might take is left up to listeners.

Sitting in a New York church, I wasn't amongst a crowd of people likely to engage in any form of violence protest.

However, if transplanted into the Middle East or any other place where violence and poverty are far more widespread, I might expect a different response.

In a region where religion and religious beliefs are enbedded in everyday life, religious leaders have far more reponsibility.

This means they need a game-plan. If they don't then their good intentions could result in an even more violent world.

No comments: