Postcard from Religious intolerance

It's sad to think how much of human history has been shaped by intolerance, particularly religious intolerance. The current and best known group is clearly ISIL, but they are only the latest in a long line.

Most religion believe in a loving God. Oh, there are exceptionss of course. The Myan Gods demanded regular blood sacrifices, some of the Egyptian Gods were thoroughly unpleasant, and the Greek Gods behaved like recalcitrant children. But Christians and Muslims base their beliefs on a God whose defining characteristic is love of his creations.

However, there's never a single expression of religious belief. Protestant and Catholic have had a difficult and violent relationship ever since the time of Henry VIII. 800 years ago, Pope Gregory IX created the inquisition to suppress what was seen as heresy. The target wasn't just non-Catholics, but also those who followed a slightly different "flavour" of Catholicism, and for the time, the death rate and barbarism was incredible.

Roll on to the twenty first century, and followers of another supposedly peaceful religion have taken on the need to torture and kill anyone whose belief is even slightly different from their own. That covers not only Shia muslims, but also followers of every other religion on Earth. It also includes many Sunni's who don't follow the fundamentalist beliefs of ISIL.

It's sad to feel that when the current war against this group of extremists peters out, as it will eventually, another group will feel that they can't share the world with people who have a different view of God.

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