Sunday, November 13, 2011

Share something on Sunday

Rabbi David Wolpe in Slate

"[A lot] of the good that religion does in the world goes unreported—not because people are prejudiced against religion, but that’s just the nature of reporting the news. You don't say, “Once again today, a religious aid worker saved someone's life.” That just doesn't make the paper. Religion is more complex and does much more good than people assume. Every single study in America shows that people who are part of religious communities participate in civic life more, give more money not only to religious charities but to secular charities, are more likely to help someone who's homeless, and more likely to help someone who's destitute. Religion does an enormous amount of good. Even though there are certainly egregious counterexamples, they are more flashy than persuasive."

It is so easy to be cynical about what religion does. It can be divisive, deluding, depressing. But as the good rabbi says earlier in this interview, it's not "religion that makes people do bad things . . . it’s being people that largely makes people do bad things." All the more reason for religion to focus on what God is doing, even though it's hard for us to see, than on what we're doing, or how we're doing it, or how we're describing it. And when we try to tell what God is doing, we need to do so modestly, because any one story of ours is only a small part of God's story.

1 comment:

Paul Erickson said...

Agreed! Don't bury that treasure, spread it around!