View Full Version : “What mean and cruel things men can do for the love of God” (W. Somerset Maugham)

02-10-2009, 09:19 PM
“What mean and cruel things men can do for the love of God” (W. Somerset Maugham)

Ironically, throughout history, many things that were done in the name of God would be abhorrent to Him; for example, in the bible it is said 'thou shalt not kill' but more people have been killed in the name of God than for any other reason. Absurdly, a great number of people and societies have committed heinous crimes like torturing and killing by using in justification the Holy name of God, who actually must be related to love, caring, mercy, comprehension, tolerance and forgiveness. Enigmatically, fanatics and fundamentalists have repeatedly been sowing panic, terror, pain and death in the world in the name of God. "The Lord tests the righteous and the wicked, and the one who loves violence his soul hates." (Psalms 11:5)

Admittedly, some people claim that punishing sinful people and societies is the way of cleaning the world from the impiousness. Besides, in the Holy Scriptures it is written in several passages of the Old Testament different kind of God’s punishment for the heathen people, so it’s not very much mistaken to follow Scriptures blindly to the letter in order to please God. However, if we were to kill every sinful person, the world would be empty of human beings at all. No one is pure enough to judge a soul; what is more, how much pure can somebody be while his/her hands are blood-stained? The Old Testament was written by men of other times, when the beliefs were different and quite more primitive as well as their sense of justice. Additionally, there was a change in the New Testament from the avenging God to a loving and caring Father who does justice taking into account our hearts’ intentions. "Every man's way is right in his own eyes, But the LORD weighs the hearts." (Proverbs 21:2)"Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, but wait until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men's hearts..." (1Corinthians 4:5)

To begin with, it is unbelievable the atrocious cruelty men are able to achieve while naming God as their Lord and Master. Since very old times, Heaven was the common goal of everybody but the means to such goal were extremely odd and monstrous. A very well known phrase from Crusades’ time was “To kill an infidel is not murder. It's the path to Heaven” is enough evidence of how crooked the view of religion and of God’s true will was. The Holy war had as a result many corpses floating in the river where Jesus was baptized, so where is the logic in this view of holiness? Bloody-mindedness, barbarity, outrage and inhumanity were what stood out in this war from both sides. Like the Crusades, the Inquisition was another black stain in the Catholic’s history, when people were accused of any kind of sin and tortured till they confessed to then be sentenced to death. Moreover, the incredible imagination and developed technology applied to create torture instruments, which were able to cause a lot of pain without taking the prisoner’s life, was appalling, repellent and evil. In addition, the torturers were monks and priests, whose aim was to clean the world from infidels and paganism, but they should have been preaching by words and actions exactly the opposite of what they were doing.

In the present days, the Lord’s name is still being used for atrocious crimes against life and peace. The unforgettable the Twin Tower event is a remaining of how sickly a Love image can be distorted to a terrorist demonstration of power. The bloodshed and sorrowful victims’ families is far away from God’s commandments which most important are “love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind” and “love others as much as you love yourself.” Furthermore, wars and violence still exist in the Middle East, Jews against Muslims is a constant problem, which involve killing of men, women and children indifferently. Where is the love, the mercy and the brotherhood?
In conclusion, who are we to name God as the reason for our crimes? He is love, peace, fraternity; we cannot use His name even to swear, but it has been used as an excuse to take somebody’s life, to cause affliction, horror and despair. It’s not difficult to assume that hate and evilness are behind all this but not God. His name has being badly used for cold- hearted people who do not understand the true image of God. Thus, fanatics and fundamentalists also have to understand they are not pure enough to judge somebody else’s soul. “You hypocrite! First remove the beam from your own eye, and then you will see clearly enough to remove the speck from your brother's eye." Matthew 7:5