Perhaps this is motivated a bit by the post I just wrote for Swallowing The Camel, but I can’t help but wonder what it is about human nature that makes us intolerant of others. Especially their religious beliefs.
To many Christians, anyone who isn’t of their specific sect is going straight to hell. Many Muslims believe that infidels must be killed. Even in the pagan community there exists a level of non-tolerance. Those of us who have been practicing for years and are not Wiccan tend to look down on Wiccans and new practitioners as “fluffy” and/or not worth our time instead of doing our duty and helping them learn. We tend to see Christians as a whole as sheeple with no brains of their own that blindly follow the church when we should be seeing them as our brothers and sisters to be treated as equals. Hard line Atheists see anyone with a faith at all as being weak minded.
Perhaps the human race, as a whole, needs to step back and look at itself. Our stereotypes of other faiths are no more true than the racial stereotypes of the 1950s were. Unfortunately very few seem to see it. I’ve seen several people touting that picture above who then turn around and bash a certain religion at the drop of a hat, almost habitually.
I’ve heard people say that, for tolerance to become the norm, we just have to wait for the intolerant to “grow old and die out.” What if the Human Race doesn’t have the time to wait?