“Religion as a scapegoat for violence and extremism” by Charles Ganaprakasam


“All opinions are that of the author and not necessarily those of the website that it is published under.”

Each individual in this planet ought to comprehend the most vital piece of religion which takes a dynamic part in their lifetime. The issue that exist now is that some individuals are aficionados who have preposterous feeling towards others religions, to the extent considering their religion is more reasonable and fitting than others.

Sectarianism, bias, and its repulsive relatives had been conquering this delightful earth for quite some time. They have filled the earth with viciousness, splashed it regularly and frequently with human blood, crushed civilisation and sent entire countries into despair.

Religion is an indication and guidance in human journey towards a righteous life. Failure of understanding human of the greatest importance of religion and its teaching resulted in many misconceptions, and sometimes lead to heartfelt violence. There are many to be mentioned as the violence that hits our world due to the wrong interpretation of respective religious scripture.

The narrow understanding of God and their respective religious precepts, texts or doctrines among the followers are highly contributing factor towards fuelling war.

Human violence

Humans begin wars and slaughter their adversaries and blow themselves up for many factor such as political simulation, territory expansion, and economic factors and so on. In the past, people engage in small fights caused by agriculture.

Individuals who have less knowledge of interest are very easy target to be affected by the act of brainwashing. They have been brainwashed by the radicalised opinion that make them follow in order to fulfill their duty. Apparently, individuals use the word education instead of brainwashing in order to make people accept it as a perfect learning situation.

Forcing someone to accept a mind to use mental pressure will only be successful to individuals who have obsessed less knowledge and understanding on that particular notion.

In July 2014, two British men were arrested for their contact with an extremist group in Syria. An investigation found that they had ordered two books from Amazon namely ‘Islam for Dummies’ and ‘Koran for Dummies’. This phenomenon clearly shows that the narrow religious literacy possessed by the individuals who joined an extremist organisation, and it is no wonder that the cruel execution of punishment implemented by them is not originated from their religion.

The term ‘religious wars’ was coined to describe the violence from the crusade which began in 1095, when armies of Christians from Western Europe answered Pope Urban II’s urgent emotional request to wage war against Muslim forces in the Holy Land; until the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

One should be aware that religion always has its utmost purpose which tends to encourage peaceful existence and not to blame one’s or others’ faiths, when the evidence shows visibly that all types of violence in the name of religions are absolutely unacceptable and it’s an effort to legitimise their radical viewpoint.

Some instances are the murder of a Sikh by merely believing he is Muslim based on his appearance (wearing turban and bearded) which that took place in the Wisconsin Sikh temple where six people were killed following the 9/11 incident in America; the dreadful murder by burning alive an Australian missionary with his two young children in Manoharpur village in India; and anti-Muslim violence fuelled by the 969 radical Buddhist Movement- an organisation described as extremist and allegedly led by Burmese Buddhist monk Ashin Wirathu in Myanmar several years ago.

‘Driven by their own need for seeking revenge’

When we assess these violent phenomena deeply, it noticeably reveal that every single act of violence by radicalised individuals or organisations are driven by their own need for seeking revenge and single-minded determination to ensure the wellbeing of their tribesmen. They begin to ascribe these cruel acts together with religion in order to justify them within their own religious community.

In these circumstances, religion had been used as a scapegoat for the believer’s unrighteous deeds towards others. Thus, it is absolutely wrong to blame human violence solely on religion.

So here is my attempt to reassess the past in order to prevent these disastrous violence acts from taking place in future.

We all as persons of faith definitely get to enjoy never-ending bliss if we treat others as one would like others to treat oneself. This is the golden law of all religion that we are not fully aware.

The only solution for the rising extremism and violence is educating oneself to the presence of others’ religious philosophy in genuine humility. The spreading of these sagacious philosophies to the humankind will be a revolutionary change to the concept of all humanity throughout the world in the nearer future.

I would like to end this article with a verse from the legendary poet, Rabindranath Tagore which says, “I shall ever try to keep all untruths out from my thoughts, knowing, that thou art that truth which has kindled the light of reason in my mind”.

“All opinions are that of the author and not necessarily those of the website that it is published under.”


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