I really don’t understand this sort of thinking, except as insecurity or defensiveness. Inthis thread, a lot of people are getting worked up over a bumper sticker that says, essentially “I’m going to heaven,” with the unspoken corrolary of “you can, too, if you share my belief system.”
I’ve seen this attitude any number of times in many places: “How dare you claim that your holy book is sacred/that your religion is true/ that my religion is not,” and I truly do not grasp why this gets people upset, other than sheer insecurity. I’m NOT talking about people who are upset with obnoxious religious folk; I’m talking about people who regard it as inherently obnoxious to think that one’s religion is “true.”
Five minutes with a world almanac will tell me that most of the planet has different religious beliefs than I, and that there are several billion who can be safely said to think I am fundamentally wrong to the point of eternal damnation. I take it as a given that I’m going to run into them occasionally.
I’ve seen several “There is no God but Allah and Muhammed is his prophet” bumperstickers. I disagree, but I’ve no reason to begrudge them … they think so and want to tell me. No worries. I work very closely (two-man department) with a devout Muslim (white-guy convert) who, I’m fairly sure, thinks I’m hellbound. But he’s a fine guy and I actually wish he’s talk about his religion more. I had a Buddist student give me a brochure that basically said that I’d never have peace or happiness unless I followed Buddhist principles. I’ve had old-line Catholics tell me that, as a Protestant, I was not a true Christian. Heck, I’ve run into as many evangelical Vegans as the next guy.
Am I supposed to be offended by these people? Because given that they’re mostly all nice folk, none of these things upset or offended me in the least.
So, a poll which may end up in GD:
Does it offend you when people – otherwise completely cordial – say that their religion is true and correct (and that yours, by inference, may not be), and why?