With the attention Gretha Wiid is getting in the current press regarding her statement she made in her 2009 book, I again started to ask myself the question of the status of good manners in the modern society.
I was brought up in a so-called Afrikaner home, with praying before every meal, “aand godsdiens”, (evening scripture reading and prayers). Going to church and Sunday School etc. I took it even further, I went to the University of Pretoria to study, to become a minister in one of the so called Sister churches in the Afrikaans community. It did not stop there, for years afterwards, I searched for the inner peace and love that God and religion was supposed to bring into one’s life. Unfortunately after many attempts, conversations of hours at a go, I have not been able to find this God, and his promise of peace and love. This is nobody’s fault, expect probably my own.
I have the greatest respect for people who belief and try their utmost to live a life as they belief they should. I mean it from my heart, it is not my place to ever criticize any person, who lives and loves his religion.
However this is also where everything becomes a bit , as they say in Afrikaans “ deurmekaar” , mixed up. Because Christians hates Muslims, Muslims hates Jews particularly, but in practice they hate anybody that is not a Muslim. This not the end, protestants hates Catholics in Christianity, Shia’s and Sunni’s hate and kill each other, there is certain Jewish sects that do not belief the Israeli state should exist and actively work against it .I am not going through the whole history, but it is an accepted fact that more people has been killed in the name of God and religion, than anything else
“Religion is the opium of the people” is one of the most frequently paraphrased statements of German philosopher and economist Karl Marx. It is of particular importance in the USA, where probably one of the most narccistic people in the world became president on the back of blue collar religious people. Time after time Trump is found out to lie, but still people support him.
This brings me back to our “volkie” (nation). When it was necessary every “Dominee” from the pulpit told us apartheid was God’s will when it suited them , just to later make a U turn and say it is wrong . The biggest evangelical of our time in South Africa, Angus Buchan keeps on telling us that woman should be sub servant to men, and that homosexual behavior comes from the devil. The same as Gretha Wiid. Talking about Gretha Wiid, she has a book or product for everything, and at her conferences the enveloped for money is on every table. Now , again I do not understand “lekker” , in the Bible , Jesus says to the fisherman , leave everything and follow me , he says ,let the dead bury themselves , in another part he says sell everything and follow me , and he uses the birds of the sky as an example. However, when you talk to people like Gretha Wiid, she would tell you, God wants his children to be successful. One of the biggest jokes of our time is the way Jehovah Witnesses live and try to spread Gods word however we think it is funny. The beginning of this year the internal revenue service, find 54 churches only in Johannesburg for not paying taxes. A criminal act. According to certain newspapers a million people attended the prayer gathering at Wilde Als by Angus Buchan . I cannot help but to wonder, that it at least must have cost everybody at least R100 to get their and back, that is R 100 000 000.00 .That is a lot of money, and could have been used to feed a lot of people. Part of the 40% in this country that goes to sleep hungry every night. Now I can continue with this, for page after page .But I am not trying to make any religion or God bad , there is a lot of religions that works hard to look after the poor and try to do good deeds , and I respect it.
I say again what I said earlier, I respect every person who beliefs in his or her God and lives in such a way that they are happy and content, but the bottom line is the following:
Please have good manners , I will not tell you, you are wrong or the way you choose to live , so do not tell other people they are wrong , even if you do not agree with them. Treat somebody like you would like to be treated, and love other people like you love yourself. Respect and you will be respected.

Hein

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