By: Rev. Daniel A.Odwel

We all believe in something that may be what we inherited from our forefathers, or may be what we acquired within the culture we found ourselves in, such as system of moral and aesthetic values developed over centuries in that society.

Also can be the structures of the society we live in and our place in them. Finally, it can be family and national crises which make us ponder deep questions alongside our fellows in the wider or in the narrower community.

Because of what we believe, we are all insiders; speak from within some pattern, this mean that we can never be entirely objective, either about our own beliefs, or in evaluating other people. But that does not mean we can never seriously examine our basic assumptions. Indeed, the powerful moldings influence of culture and heredity does not mean that everything is relative, that we can never know the truth. Therefore, what shapes our beliefs should give us a proper humility about ourselves and determination to look for alternatives as clearly as we can.

Indeed, due to globalization changes every community look for alternative in order to meet the requirements standard in governing state, for if they do not change it will be very difficult for them to move forward in all aspects of life. But before we implement any alternative we must be very keen by asking the following questions: How well do these alternatives contribute and modify the life of people? What sort of effect do these alternatives have on the people who adopt them? How valid a purpose do these alternatives offer for our lives? For any blind alternative adaptation will lead to chaos in any given society.

For example faithful Christians begin with the foundational belief that God as creator gives meaning to life itself, and their beliefs about which Jesus is and why he lived and died will reflect their belief about the trustworthiness of the Bible and how it is to be interpreted for life today. And because of those beliefs they were ready to die for the cost of the Gospel of Christ, and they did not spare their lives with intention of reaching others with the Good News. They do it by persuading people to accept that faith and not forcing people to accept that.

Negatively, the '' Christianity religion'' and not the faith in Christ has it own biases, for during Medieval Age  the Church leaders such as  Popes declared the holy war for personal gain and imperial mentality and the exploration of the world for economical benefits. To me it was not the faith in Christ but religion. For the faith in Christ is love and have compassion concern toward all humanity created in likeness of God. And it intentions was to reconcile people to God to win back their position which they missed as result of fall. That attitude brought negative impression about ''Christianity'' special in Arabs world. Also most of missionaries brought religion to Africa and          not the faith in Christ, because they were part of imperialism and agents of their country system, and they brought their culture in association with that religion to westernized Africans thinking that by doing that they will establish true system of rule. Why I say so is  because they did not challenged the evils done by their status quo in the areas of their mission, this implies that they were part of exploitation system, even some of them were slavery trade masterminded. In this juncture we can conclude that they were not servants of Christ but they were servants of domination states in Western World, I think they were thinking that by westernizing the indigenous in places of mission the world will be in peace, this is the same mentality being employ by Muslims in our contemporary, assuming that Islam is the only solution to problems of human beings and answer to all sufferings. For they claimed that the Islamic state is system govern by God laws. They think if the World become Islamic States, than the human atrocities will immediately cease. The weaknesses of that belief are as follows: One, everyone outside Islamic faith must be brought into the faith by force, for God of Islam promotes that act. Second, those who live within tat system and they done profound Islam, they are termed as ''protected people'' and they have no citizenship rights. Therefore, they cannot challenge the system and they have to live in passive state. Interestingly, the Muslims who live in other states which are not Islam states usually shout for their rights with the top of their voice and they speak about human rights but they ignore what they do to others in their nations.

Thirdly, Muslims regard every person who did not confess Islam as God enemy. Therefore, all Muslims are obligatory by Islamic faith to bring such people to Islam faith even through Jihad. Fourthly, look around the World and see the atrocities and destruction caused by those who called themselves most religious and holy Muslims; their attitude made many people to become increasing skeptical about Islam truth worthiness.

Another example some people believe in communist as the best system and the only one that can bring justice, equality and freedom and it is the system that can liberate people from oppressive forces. But the weakness of that system is centrality control of the whole affairs of nation that make everybody dependence on the state, they disregarded other systems and they intent to change the systems through revolution act.

Other people believe in dictatorship or military rule as option to quietness or silence any rivalry through gun threat. This system is more appealing to Africans and Arabs leaders even to those so -called democratic states. This is why you find some of them want to remain in the power for life. The shortcoming of this system is that there is huge gap between public and the leader, public has no opinion about the matters affecting their well being. Criticism to such system will lead to death sentence, the media is control and the opponents are eliminated brutally by the state.

Other people believe in democratic system as essential governing system, believing that it is the people rule, because leaders reach to leadership positions through election. It is the system govern by majority and every body has a right to express his/her opinion through media, and people have right to challenge the system. In true democratic system everybody work hard for the people who elected him or her to the position, knowing that if they failed to render the services require of his voters he will not   success to win their confidence in the next election. People have right to impeach the leader when they loss confident in him, or when the Government is discredit it can dissolve itself and call for new election. But the weakness of democratic system in most of the times it encourages capitalism that wider the gap between riches and poorest. Corruption is some times wildly practices especially by those who are immune of the law. In some cases this system marginalized it opponents, and in this respect the minority may be victimize by the system.

In this article we have discovered that all beliefs have their loophole and shortcoming that affect the life of the people who are not within those beliefs. If this the case how can this world live in harmony and peace with these rivalry beliefs? For me, people must question themselves why did God create humanity and placed him on this earth, what was the purpose of that creation? We need to know that human beings were create with free well by God, them who am I to dominate free being, the only suitable means for us is to sell our beliefs to others in peaceful manner if they accept them will and good and if not let leave them alone as God the creator left them to choose what they want.

Again, it is necessarily to begin looking into our beliefs and modify them to become inclusive rather than being exclusive. I tent to think that the intention of every belief is to serve people regardless of their differences but today we are only interest to serve our parties objectives and not the human beings in first place. We must face the reality that our beliefs may not be attractive to others. Therefore, to live in peace and harmony with our neighbor we must accept them as they are. If we think that our beliefs are the only one that gives suitable solutions to the problem of this world without convincing others to accept our views, then it means we are creating more problems that will make the world dislike us.                

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  • Guest - James Okuk

    The important points which strike me in this good article of our brother Rev. Daniel are:

    1. If you do not change in the globalization process, you will be changed by its phenomenon.

    2. Persuade rather than force others to accept your belief or opinion.

    3. Imposing one's religion on others on a mere missionary zeal is a recipe to conflicts and wars. This is evident from wars of religions in Europe during the crusade and also in jihad (the so-called holy war) during the Islamic wars of victories (Fatuwat el Islamia)in East Asia, North Africa and South Europe in 16th century. These warriors were not driven by believe in God but rather by believe in religion as our Rev. rightly presented it this article. If they were driven by believe in God they would have respected other peoples who were different from them but believed in the same God too in their own way of worship.

    4. Not only religion but also imposing political systems of rule like Mythocracy, Theocracy, Autocracy and Democracy (with both its forms of Communism and Liberalism) is a recipe to conflicts and wars. For example, Russians and Germans tried to impose democracy of Communism with its Centralism and socialism but it resulted in resistance that led to World Wars I and II. Also Anglo-Americans tried to Impose Democracy of Liberalism with its Decentralism and Capitalism and the result is Terrorism as we experience it today.

    All these points leads to the conclusion that no human invention is perfect because human beings are both sentimental-rational animals open to many possibilities. Even men of God are not immune from human weaknesses and loopholes.

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