A Call for the Responsible Use of Religion

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A Call for the Responsible Use of Religion is an appeal to redefine what is acceptable within the purview of religion.

We recognize that while much good has been done in the name of religion throughout history– including humanitarian work in health care, education, and charity– the bar must be raised even further.

As a consciously evolving society, it is time to resoundingly call for an end to the leverage of religion to abuse, oppress, exploit, or harm others and our earth. 

To honor the sanctity of all people, religion should no longer be used for:

  • financial profit off of the weak
  • political gain 
  • keeping women in abusive marriages
  • harassing and shaming LGBTQ persons
  • suppression of healthy sexuality
  • stoking fear about those who are different than yourself
  • a shield to hide the abuse of children
  • denial of the laws of science
  • justification for the exploitation of animals and the earth
  • claiming superiority over others

A prime example of the social impact of the irresponsible use of religion is demonstrated clearly in the Covid-19 crisis.

Some religious groups are defying public health edicts by continuing to congregate in large groups and frequenting public spaces without social distancing in the belief that they are immune from the laws of biology– all of which puts broader society at risk. Some religious groups blame LGBTQ or non-religious people for the pandemic. Some governments are utilizing the pandemic as a shield to restrict women's reproductive rights or enforce anti-immigration measures, both of which typically have religious ideological origins. 

The coronavirus has proven that the laws of science do not discriminate and we are all One Human Family. Our thoughts and our actions affect each other on a global scale, now more than ever. We must raise the bar for what is normative in religion.

There was a time in human history when barbaric acts like throwing babies in volcanos, marrying off 12-year-old girls, and slaughtering animals were acceptable forms of religious practice. Today, we view the above list– and other similar concerns– as modern barbarism.

Most significant spiritual luminaries taught an ethic of Love, compassion, and kindness. We ask our religious brothers and sisters to demand nothing less than this within their respective traditions. We call upon our government to no longer codify policies that reward discriminatory practices in the guise of religion. We implore all people, beginning with ourselves, to be the hands and feet of Love in the world.

www.americannone.com

American None™ is a change-agent organization that seeks to evolve the way we understand meaningful living and spirituality based on 21st-century values. We serve the religiously unaffiliated– aka "Nones"– and all who value Love over labels.