Prisoner No. 12 sits at the edge of his bed as some memories from childhood roll through his head. He takes out the picture from under his pillow and smiles at the vest he was wearing. What’s more interesting is his skeptical countenance. Some thoughts roll off;

The way I see it, the majority (I truly cannot claim acquaintance with all) of spirituality and religion misunderstand themselves. There is so much in-fighting among them, premised on perceived misconceptions of each other. For instance, Buddhism denies the existence and any belief in deities that other religions do. For me, both Buddhism and the others misunderstand themselves: truly, to take the deities so literally is a fault but also to reject whole systems because of this is a fault. It does not help to “throw the baby out with the bathwater” – this shows both are not good businessmen. Anyway, both would consider businessmen, whose focus is on advantage and not integrity (surely their own notion of it) unscrupulous. Buddhism mistakes or projects its own literalism for the meaning of the others and also mistakes the practice for the root meaning. The others also mislead themselves in following their guiding literature so literally. Buddhism, to me, is concerned more with practice and path while the others are more with the nature or structure or metaphysics of the same subject. Both relate but they are not the same.

Most religions assert an unveiling of a Divine Plan on Earth. In as much as this is so, the believer and practitioner is behooved to find the correspondence on Earth between this plan and what is on Earth. Either they are lazy or not intelligent enough or just blinded by their own faith or afraid of the task – I cannot diagnose their problem in their absence. When ones understanding of this Divine Plan is so obviously in contention with what the world presents, why should one proceed in such understanding? It is this that betrays their blind faith. Ahh yes, they say man is the instrument of that Divine Plan and so they say it is he who has to put it in place. Obviously, one still has to find the correspondence between the Earth and heaven to do this. I have never met any that did this.

And then they claim not to be subject to Logic. They forget that logic is already involved in their systems. It was logic that set about to demarcate the extents of those concepts that are encapsulated in their gods and so forth. If not for logic, would they differentiate one feature from another, a rule from a personality? Here we can propose that it is this denial of logic that is responsible for their non-performance of the search for that correspondence I mentioned for it is Logic which will tell whether the correspondence is proper or not.

As I see it, religions misunderstand themselves. They have use of course especially where they are clear but belief en masse as is usually the case is a fault and I will have nought to do with it but criticism. A criticism which should lead to a critique whose product is identification of faults and solution of them.

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