The joy of religion 11

Religion – we contend – is the paramount man-made cause of human suffering.

Death, pain, terror, despair are the worst afflictions, and religion – after nature itself – is the super-generator of them all.

If a religious person were to concede that truth, he would probably qualify it by saying that religion also brings comfort and joy to many people too. That also is true. But so does heroin, and it doesn’t make it a Good Thing.

Besides which, the joy of the religious seems to lie all too often in inflicting death, pain, terror and despair on the adherents of another religion.

Here’s a recent example from Pakistan, where Muslims enjoyed an exciting binge burning Christian homes. This is from an AP report at Yahoo! News:

Hundreds of people in eastern Pakistan rampaged through a Christian neighborhood Saturday, torching dozens of homes after hearing reports that a Christian man had committed blasphemy against Islam’s prophet.

Blasphemy is a serious crime in Pakistan that can carry the death penalty but sometimes outraged residents exact their own retribution for perceived insults of Islam’s Prophet Muhammad. Pakistan is overwhelmingly Sunni Muslim and people of other faiths, including the nation’s small Christian community, are often viewed with suspicion.

Suspicion is not too bad. It’s the murderous hatred that does the worst harm.

The incident started Friday when a young Muslim man accused a Christian man of committing blasphemy by making offensive comments about the prophet, according to Multan Khan, a senior police officer in Lahore.

A large crowd from a nearby mosque went to the Christian man’s home on Friday night, said Khan. Police registered a blasphemy case against the man after the crowd gathered and demanded action, the officer said.

Fearing for their safety, hundreds of Christian families fled the area overnight.

Khan said the mob returned on Saturday and began ransacking Christian homes and setting them ablaze. …

But Akram Gill, a local bishop in the Lahore Christian community said the incident had more to do with personal enmity between two men — one Christian and one Muslim — than blasphemy. He said the men got into a brawl after drinking late one night, and in the morning the Muslim man made up the blasphemy story as payback.

He said the Christian community handed over to police the accused man, identified by police and Gill as Sawan Masih, when police came to the neighborhood to investigate.

But they knew that was not enough to propitiate the offended Muslims.

Then the Christians all locked up their houses and went to relatives in other areas. He said the mob was armed with hammers and steel rods and broke into houses, ransacked two churches and burned Bibles and crosses.

“Poor people were living here. They have lost all of their belongings,” he said. “Where can they go now?”

The scene was chaotic. An Associated Press reporter said roughly 150 homes were torched.

One man was seen carrying a dog and some puppies from a burning house. Refrigerators, washing and sewing machines, cooking pots, beds and other household goods were ripped from homes, smashed and burned in the streets. …

These pictures of the thrilling rampage are from PowerLine:



And not only is it fun, it’s also good because they’re doing it for God the Merciful.