ARE FUNDAMENTALISTS CREATING
THE PROBLEMS IN OUR WORLD?
No one denies that there are many problems in our world, but few people – stunningly few people – seem to be able to agree that it is humanity’s most sacred beliefs that have created a huge number of them.
Conversations with God made it clear years ago that “beliefs create behaviors,” asserting that it is humanity’s beliefs that are killing us, creating everything from the horribly unending disaster at Fukushima to the unending calamity in Syria to the unending stalemate in Washington D.C. and the unending terrorism around the world.
Now a new analysis, contained in an op-ed piece just published at www.NationofChange.org by author Robert J. Burrowes, places the responsibility for many of the world’s ills specifically on the foundational beliefs of its people.
In a sweeping indictment, the author writes:
“Fundamentalism, in a religious guise, is both widespread and problematic.
“For example, Christian fundamentalism plays a crucial role in shaping US domestic policies in relation to abortion, gay marriage and theories of evolution as well as US imperial and military policy, Jewish fundamentalism is a key driver of Israeli domestic and foreign policy including in relation to Palestine, Islamic fundamentalism (of the Wahhabi variety) drives attitudes towards women and foreign policies in countries such as Saudi Arabia, Hindu fundamentalism manifests as a form of religious nationalism in India, and Buddhist fundamentalism is driving the violence against the Rohingya (Muslim) population in Burma.”
Conversations with God long ago made it clear that it was our beliefs that are the cause of humanity’s ills. In the first CWG text to be released after 9-11, titled The New Revelations, God told the human race: “You think you are being terrorized by other people, but in truth you are being terrorized by your beliefs.”
And it is the most deeply and firmly held of these beliefs, God said, that are at the root of the problems — particularly the problems of violence — confronted daily by our species.
Author Burrowes appears to agree. He also outlines the nature of the problem as he understands it in the op-ed piece.
“Psychologically, a fundamentalist is a person with an intense fear of being ‘wrong’; that is, an intense fear of being judged to hold the ‘wrong’ view or to engage in the ‘wrong’ behavior,” he says.
“This intense fear of being wrong develops during childhood when one or both parents, and probably teachers, dogmatically refuse to listen to the child, thus denying it the chance to develop its own views and moral code (based on its own experience), while also terrorizing (by threatening and using violence) the child into believing/adopting a particular set of values and beliefs, and behaving in a particular manner.”
Virtually the same points are made in The New Revelations. When asked what humanity can do to avoid any new 9-11’s in its experience, God said: “Education, education, education.”
The dialogue points to how we are raising our children, and the beliefs that we have been instilling in them, as the chief source of humanity’s difficulties.
The op-ed piece by Mr. Burrowes puts it this way:
“It is the intensity of their fear of being judged ‘wrong’, and the violence they will suffer if they are so judged, that makes the child hold, with phenomenal tenacity, to the ‘approved doctrine’ with which they are presented.
“It is this intense fear of being wrong that marks out the fundamentalist from the person who is open-minded and/or conscientious.”
What is the solution? Mr. Burrowes says:
“Fundamentalism is a significant social problem, particularly in some contexts. And to fix it, we need to recognise its psychological origin. Unfortunately, however, this is not easy to do, because the terror that holds their value and belief system in place, and drives their behaviour, is deeply hidden within the individual’s psyche.”
Conversations with God also offers a solution. Says this dialogue:
“Your experience of yourself and your world will shift dramatically if you adopt, collectively, the Five Steps to Peace:
“1. Permit yourself to acknowledge that some of your old beliefs about God and about Life are no longer working.
“2. Explore the possibility that there is something you do not fully understand about God and about Life, the understanding of which would change everything.
“3. Announce that you are willing for new understandings of God and Life to now be brought forth, understandings that could produce a new way of life on this planet.
“4. Courageously examine these new understandings and, if they align with your personal inner truth and knowing, enlarge your belief system to include them.
“5. Express your life as a demonstration of your highest beliefs, rather than as a denial of them.”
CWG makes it clear that violence is neither an inevitable nor an unavoidable aspect of human behavior. “Your differences do not have to create divisions, your contrasts do not have to create conflicts, and the variations in your beliefs do not have to produce violence in your lives,” the dialogue tells us.
Yet how to stop the violence before it stops us? That will take a collective effort. A massive collective effort. And this is where the spiritual activism work of Humanity’s Team — a global movement based on the messages of Conversations with God — comes in.
“What is needed is a worldwide Evolution Revolution,” Nanette Kennedy, a spokesperson for Humanity’s Team and the Managing Editor of this online newspaper, has said. Persons who feel the impulse to join in producing such a revolution may learn more about it by clicking on the blue box in the right hand column of this newpaper.
As well, persons wishing to join another worldwide movement to end all violence, in whatever form it manifests, may sign online “The People’s Charter to Create a Nonviolent World, Mr. Burrowes said in his op-ed.
A person posting as “AntiSocialSailor” in the Comment section beneath Mr. Burrowes’ article offered this additional observation:
“The author left out the most insidious and evil fundamentalists of all, Free-Market Fundamentalists. These are the fundamentalists that have caused the majority of problems for this country since the 80’s. They’ve infected our government to such an extent that they pose a far greater risk to the country, and the world, then all the religious nutcases combined.”
What about you? Do you believe that fundamentalist thinking — in politics, religion, economics, or any area of life — is a danger, or the bedrock of a civilized society, the bulwark against constant and destabilizing change? We invite you to share your own Comment below.
Editor’s Note: Robert Burrowes has a lifetime commitment to understanding and ending human violence. He has done extensive research since 1966 in an effort to understand why human beings are violent, and has been a nonviolent activist since 1981. He is the author of Why Violence?