Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Religion Should Stay the Fuck Away From Love

I've been meaning to write something about this for a while, but I've been putting it off, partially because my connection's terrible this week. I'll add links later, when I can actually load the relevant pages. Recently, PZ posted about a Hindu/Muslim interfaith couple. They loved each other, but their community and family would have none of it, demanding that their marriage be annulled because of the difference in faith. They ended up committing suicide in the end. This is just one more reason why religion should stay the fuck out of matters of the heart.

I don't have much romance in my life, but I do have some passion for the topic. I'm a sucker for two people who love each other making it work against the odds. And I don't care if they're from different classes, opposite sides of a war, religions, or of the same gender. Heck, I'm fine and dandy if one's a sapient robot and the other's an alien. Biology isn't relevant, and frivolous cultural labels don't really matter to me. It's their lives, and if they want to spend it together, they should able to.

I especially detest the tribalism involved in objections based on religion or race. It really brings home how petty some people are. Stone idols with pointless demands should hold no sway over a person's heart. Let us continue to smash such frivolities with logic and ridicule.


Joshua said...

Guitar Wolf says...

ksenija.krusevac said...

Disclaimer: English is not my mother tongue, so I can't express my thoughts perfectly. If I offend someone, please assume that it's because I didn't phrase my answer well and ask for clarifications.

There are at least two sides to this story.

One is that we should indeed "smash such frivolities with logic and ridicule" so that this world can become a better place, governed by rationality and empathy. In that view, everyone should reject religion, nationality and race as obstacles on the way to love and togetherness.

The second side is that this world will probably never be such a place and in many cases, taking such a position might do much unintended harm. I'll try to explain why, if I were to marry again, I'd never choose someone of a different background. I live in the Balkans, a region notorious for its civil wars and chauvinism. I'm old enough to remember, in graphic detail, the horrors of the Bosnian war of '92-'95. It was led between people of three different faiths - Orthodox Christian (Serbian), Catholic Christian (Croatian) and Muslim (Bosnian) people. Differences between these three peoples are minor except the religion, since we all understand each other perfectly, have similar customs and same mentality. Still, there was a bloody war. Many interfaith families fell victims to this war, because they didn't fully belong to either of the three faiths, hence neither of the three nations. Many were shun by their communities, forced to leave the country, killed and tortured and, if they survived the war, other people closed off to them.
The divide between these nations is becoming smaller with time, but it's still there and it's still big.
But what strikes us all most is that this war was pretty much nowhere in sight as late as '90. The three nations (plus two more) were all a part of one big country, Yugoslavia, and all was happy and brotherly. As for those who saw the war coming, I bet no one thought it would get so bloody.

What I'm saying is that the reality sucks. Things might be shiny and happy today but tomorrow all hell can break loose, especially when there is room for the narcissism of small differences. And I'd rather not risk getting into any sort of trouble by even considering a possibility of a romantic relationship with someone "different than me". Friendship, certainly, but that's as far as I'll go.

An interfaith couple living on "neutral territory" might have it easier and less complicated than couples living in the native community of one but not the other partner.

On one hand, you make a strong point, saying that "religion should stay the fuck out of matters of the heart." I share that view with you. It shouldn't. To think otherwise is to be petty and backward-thinking.

On the other hand, the families prohibiting the marriage might have a point. Where they come from (the Kashmir region, for example), it might be the most sensible thing to do.

The tragically insensible actions, of course, are the suicides. So very Shakespearean.

Chiral said...

Isn't love just a chemical process of the brain - something that tells us when to mate, who to mate with and when not to return a phone call? I wouldn't know myself. I'm the kind of "see it when I believe it" person (or the other way around... whichever). So... my point is (buried like a bone in this rambling) that if two people allow mythologies and superstitions to control their lives - well... they deserve each other and their tragic ends.

Ryan Michael said...

Wow, 2 Fuck words in one entry? BD, this must be a personal one for you since I think that tops your previous fuck word entry by one.

Bronze Dog said...

Not really personal, but it is something of a berserk button anyway.