Taken from my blog at c2cmappers.blogspot.ca
I remember learning as a child that it would eventually become illegal or dangerous to follow a faith or believe in a religion. I thought that was silly at the time, now I think that within the century it will become a reality, because fault is found with religion for almost everything bad in the history of the world.
Personally, I believe that humanity itself is to blame, not religion. Religion at it's core is just a system of beliefs that people hold to to try and guide their lives. Just like any system of beliefs, this can be picked apart, recreated, and altered to best suit the desires and perceptions of the individual. That's why you have so many different types of religions, and why they have different denominations, why there are so many cults, mythologies, etc.
I believe this is why we have so many different philosophical and political models in the world. Human beings are varied, there are billions of us, and we all want to be right. We all want to live our lives the way we want to, how we want to. So I think that we create and define a bunch of terms for the things that we value most, and unify them all under one banner for simplicity's sake and say "I am a Protestant/Marxist/Liberal/Pro-lifer" so that we can easily identify and catalogue ourselves and each other.
I think that we do this for almost everything, not just forms of government or religious beliefs. When someone says that they are Canadian, a general idea is conjured in the mind. When someone says that they are a Conservative in Canada, that conjures up something much different. An American is different than a Brit, an Aussie is different than someone who is Japanese.
Continuing on from that, a PC fan is different than a Console fan, and a Windows user is viewed differently than a Linux one is. Actors and artists prefer different styles of approach, and an individual from a specific class of life or a specific region or city will be assumed to behave in a certain way. And everyone from all of those things will all value a lot of the same things, and dislike a lot of the same things. There will be variations, and then you will get sub-factions of those factions, until you eventually have Faction-Ception (hah!)
Basically, human beings have too many different ideas. I think we try to classify and group all of those ideas into categories just to try and make sense of everything and not become horribly confused. Some of our ideas are very dangerous, and if I didn't think I wasn't rambling enough as it was I'd go into something even worse that involved a bunch of references to V for Vendetta or Fight Club or something. But ideas in and of themselves are not -bad- things. It's just that some of them are, and we have to try and figure out what are the good ideas, and what are the bad ones, for ourselves in general.
The sad thing is, I do not think that will happen. I cannot imagine a world where all of humanity stands in total agreement with one another. There are too many of us, and all of us have our own beliefs on what is and isn't a Good Idea or a Bad Idea, and we are going to disagree a lot. We will disagree violently, and painfully, and without hesitation or remorse or consideration for our actions to one another.
Me personally? I think that most major religions are a Good Idea because they are meant to promote peace and goodwill to one another, but I think a lot of ways they are interpreted and practiced are Bad Ideas because they are used as motivation and rationalization to commit horrible atrocities. I think most major forms of government are a Good Idea because they promote stability, peace, and unification that could make the lives of the people being governed better overall. I think a lot of the methods, common practices, and types of government are Bad Ideas because the powerful few can prosper at the expense of the many, cultural and scientific progress can be halted or at least stunted, terrible things can be legalized and rationalized, etc.
In short, Ideas are what sets humanity apart from the rest of the animals on this planet. They are simultaneously our best and worst asset, and in the past we would just move to the New World or Somewhere Else when we wanted to be free to behave how we wanted.
We can't do that anymore, and we are now in a situation where we're being forced to learn how to get along with each other. I seriously don't believe we can do that, you can only be in the space as someone who you can't stand for so long before you go nuts. That's why I really, really, really hope that we learn how to travel to other habitable planets, or can create self-sustaining ships or islands or something so that we can shoot off a ton of colonies and live far away from each other.
Space is supposedly an expanding, infinite thing. I wonder if that will be a far enough distance to separate some of us.