I have been hearing many things and seeing many posts about the new Mosque in New York near the old Trade Center buildings. It’s a little disturbing to hear about the complaints on the matter. I have a certain philosophical problem that is quite simple. Why are the religious types complaining about a religion and calling for the control of a religious institution?
I think that it is a fair question.
Think of the implications of the following: The local Muslims plan to build a mosque in America. They purchase a plot, build a building, lay out the plans, and set their papers in order. Now, say a local mass of people (the majority) want to keep them from building the place based on propriety. Whether it be due to a tragedy connected somehow to Islam or the mass belief of the people, there is a hope that some religion can be barred from building this place of worship.
Some of you might thing that this is a legitimately American thing to do. But if you are Christian, and you are saying this. Put Christianity and the Church in place of the Islamic references. It changes to the most appalling thing you can think of. The Church in its own history has been known for placing itself into scenarios where it was not wanted (Just ask the early Church).
This is the very reason why opposing things like this based on impropriety can be damaging. Opposing it will be detrimental to all religions in America. The reason we are a Democratic Republic was not only to keep the people represented as a Democracy, but that all peoples are represented as a Republic. I think that having one religion oppressed means that mine is about to be oppressed too. It’s too scary to think that no religion is safe from the masses telling it that it has no place here. Correct me if necessary, but that sounds close to mob rule, which is why we have laws and concern over civil rights.
To be clear, I am Christian and have disagreements with Muslims concerning God and life and salvation, among other things. But it is the truth that you have to make friends with people in order to reach certain ends. My advice to everyone is not to be afraid to play religious hard ball, but to remember to think twice about certain statements and to not ruin religious freedom by suppressing another religion.
To those who are hurt by the tragedy of the World Trade Center buildings, I deeply hurt with you. There are many Christians who hurt with you. There are many Americans who hurt with you.
And there are many Muslims who hurt with you.
Some things are not a threat. Let healing happen.
And know that to heal in this case may be to forgive.
To all the Christians who complain about the Mosque that is filling the news these days, can you disagree with forgiveness and freedom of religion in American?
Grace and peace to you all.