Many innocent children, teenagers and women are killed by a suicide bomber who claims to espouse God’s will. Why innocent children?
Well, why not? Killing children is a good form of taking revenge. And to make a political and ideological statement.
Why the outcry about children, teenagers and women? Is it all right if they were mostly middle aged men? I wouldn’t mind living a few years longer, thank you. My daughters also probably will be thankful to any terrorist who will spare my life (at least for the time being).
Why does it happen when the majority of religions advocate peace?- That is the question that is being asked.
When I look back at history, we can see that this assumption is dead wrong. No religion has ever followed unconditional peace as a practical policy. It was never practical. If you are peaceful people, you will get killed as a reward. That was what was happening through most of human history.
What was advocated was peace among adherents of the same religion. Others were always evil. Either you have to cross to this side, or get killed. It was all very simple.
When Christianity had real power, during the Middle Ages, lot of interesting things happened in Europe.
All heretics were burned alive, including scientists who begged to differ.
All out war went on against Muslims, and church leaders offered total forgiveness of all sins and a place in paradise for the fighters.
Carnage of people among warring factions- among orthodox, Protestants and Catholics.
Colonisation of India, China(Virtual) , Africa , America and shameless exploitation and virtual extermination of some populations, including women and children. It was sanctioned and condoned by the church, as a necessary process to bring them to the one and true faith.
Massive capture and merciless use of black people as slaves against which there was no religious out cry at all.
When did it change?
A few developments:
It changed when TRUTHS began to be discovered by rational enquiry- all humans are the same species, all are capable of technology, etc
Technological progress that caused an educated populace that was reasonable well fed and cared for. They were freed from concerns of immediate survival and could THINK properly for the first time.
When a majority of the people rejected the primacy of religion to decide how they should take decisions. So, religion had zero influence over public policy.
The last one is crucial.
When this happened, God was happy. The he began to turn things around. Humans started behaving the way he wanted. Universal humanist principles started gaining currency.
So we should stop putting interpretations into God’s mouth. He hates it. He spits it out. Leave him to his job. It is definitely not killing people.
Who speaks for God?
I don’t know. Let him be. He will, if he wants.