Can Politics and Religion Mix?

       By: Harvey Russell
Posted: 2010-07-27 07:25:28
Politics and Religion are usually intertwined, although in a not-so-obvious knot. Whenever there is people, politics and religion are present as well. This is because both of them are inherently human manifestations of everyday interactions. Religion and politics are there to serve humanity. It therefore follows that we need to re-view if both of them lived up to their supposed function, which is to promote the betterment of everyone in the world.Politics and religion are so intricately connected that they can even be considered as "one". Historically, their union is far from positive. Instead, one of the most common fruits of their union are major wars. Consider the crusades as well as many recent wars anywhere in the world. Whenever politics and religion become indistinguishable from one another, wars erupt. People directly involved in spheres of religion will deny they are political, but their actions, most of the time, betray them. Even in many religions, politics is an undeniable manifestation. In Roman Catholic Church, priests with clout usually get prestigious and comfortable parishes. This is the opposite for priests without political sway in Church hierarchy.A good case in point is the rise of Christianity founded by Jesus Christ. As per the gospels, the apostles left by Christ to manage the Church quickly became political even during the time when he was still with them. It just took moment for them to jockey for position in both here and now. The wisdom that Christ bestowed on them quickly became corrupted, making the Church just any other human institution with supposedly "divine" backing. As the group of followers grew during the time of Christ, it came face to face with dominant political organizations of the era, namely the Scribes, Pharisees, Sadducees, Judaism, and even the might of the Roman empire. Judaism and Romanism were considered the most formidable opponents of Christianity at the time. Since Christianity was still an infant political power at the time, it barely survived the onslaught of these two powers beginning with the death of its founder. If we analyzed the scriptures without any religious bias, the story of the death of Christ was just another deposition of a leader that dared oppose a politically powerful organization at the time.Blood and death are the inevitable result of the merger of religion and politics. Brothers kill brothers in the name of religion or philosophical leanings. Countless deaths were wasted on religious wars since the history of man. Leaders of political and religious organizations were assassinated in the name of freedom or religion--thin masks of the struggle to retain political or religious power. The Federal Election 2010 may not be a contest between religion and politics but many religious citizens are definitely vying for political positions although not necessarily in national levels.It can be said that politics and religion are two demonstrations of being civilized but so far, the present world is yet to see that they will work out to the advantage of everyone.
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