Religious groups ban it.
Interfaith groups avoid it.
The media glosses over it.
Government officials ignore it.
No one knows how to tackle it.
And so it continues to be a major obstruction to open, free communication between many diverse groups of people in a shrinking world where there is only going to be more contact between them.
“It” is acknowledgement of the very different concepts of God that exist in the three main monotheistic religions—Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. We can discuss similarities and differences in holidays, music, symbols, dress, or any superficial thing. But God, and everything coming from Him—prayers, rituals, commandments, parables and allegories, anything in the scriptures—are off limits, because these define a person’s faith or belief, and “true believers” feel strongly that to discuss or question what to them is “God’s Word” will lead to unfaithfulness, disbelief and Hell. Everyone skirts the issue because it seems insurmountable—to broach the subject is to attack the “certainty” of someone’s faith and usually elicits an immediate negative response.
The “true believer’s” understanding of God and all the commands and teachings coming from that source is correct. Any other idea must be wrong or misguided and has to be somehow discredited. Ignoring or avoiding this issue does not make it and all the fallout from it go away. The huge irony here is that prayers for peace are prominent and frequent in all three of the main monotheistic religions. The purpose of this blog is to tackle “it”—the fact that there exists and always will exist different concepts of God. Making an effort to reconcile them is a way to peace, whereas attempting to force one religion onto everyone is not, because there will be as many different interpretations of that religion to fight over as there are religions now.