Monday, May 8, 2017

Politics is NOT a Religion

As the politics of the world and troublesome individual country in the world becomes more and more complicated, I begin to believe that many people think of politic as a religion. By that I mean if you are an avowed member of a political party, you must only believe and live by the the teachings and the values of that party. Believing or sharing other teachings and values can cause you to become excommunicated in Christianity or immediately makes you a murtad in Islam.
turban and cap

I believe that such is the thinking of many people today. Hence if you're a Republican in the United States you cannot share some or any of the thinking and values of a Democrat. If you're a Conservative in UK then you cannot hold any of the thinking and values of the Liberals. Thus in the Muslim countries if you're a Muslim you cannot share or agree with some of the thinking and values of the those from other religions such as Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism etc.
ex-Primier and DAP
Yet everyone knows that members of political party can jump from one party to another like our friends living on the trees in the jungle. But one does not change our religious faith that easily. You can not only live in a country along side people belonging to different political parties without your religious faith being sullied or affected but you can even live in the same city, township, village or community. In fact you can live in the same building,or even family without your religious faith being eroded, i.e. if you have a strong religious faith to begin with.

If you then believe that politics is not religion, then why is the world so torn up by political membership and political allegiance both at international and national levels.Politics after all is only an organisational device to gain mass support,and acquire mandate to govern. Worls leaders from different parts of the world with different religious beliefs meet every other day, without their religious values becoming eroded. They discuss ways to live together in this world and work together to solve common problems.Political leaders in one country and belonging to different political parties should also be able to discuss issues faced by the country with no fear about their religious believe and values being affected.
we've our own problemsIt is only when the political parties are based on religion that the fear of compromising on religious matters prevents open discussion and collaboration between parties for the good of the country and people. Politics is easily considered as religion and any cooperation means compromising religious beliefs and vales. It is this attitude which is dividing the Muslims in many countries including Malaysia where a dominant Islamic political party sexists alongside dominant racially based political parties. Thus people don't seem to be aware of the difference between political needs and religious faith and members of a political party sharing some of the ideals and values of another party from a different religious/racial group are considered to become part of that group. Thus a member of the United Malays Ntional Organization (UMNO) sharing some of the the ideals and values of the Pan Islamic Party (PAS) or the Democratic Action Party (DAP) would be immediately considered as supporting that party. You do not have to compromise your political beliefs and religious faith or racial/cultural values to work together to solve the political and economic problems of the country.

If you accept this premise than political parties regardless of racial, religious and cultural background would have no problem working together. You work tother to seek mass support and acquire a mandate to govern and administer the country, not to streamline religious and cultural values or force the acceptance of a common religion or culture. You work together to gain the trust and support of the people like workers involved in the construction of buildings, bridges, roads, socoal and economic infrastructure etc. You don't have to compromise your religious and cultural values to work together. Surely any conflict that arises can be solved within the party or parties involved. You don't have to take allegiance to the party as a measure of religious faith.

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