Every time new terrorist acts happen in the world, I remember the reason I started writing ”The Good Troll”. That’s when the terror struck in Paris, against Charlie Hebdo, January 2015. I then chose to write an letter to the editor in the free newspaper Metro.
In my book I translated it to this…
Let children grow up before we limit them with religion.
Freedom of religion is in Sweden, I think, a good thing. In particular, the freedom not to be religious, that has not always been possible in this country. I believe it is wrong that a faith should be forced upon a child by the adult world. Everyone should have the opportunity to freely choose between all faiths or to choose not to believe. When children are young they believe mostly everything that adult tells them. It is easy to make anyone with limited knowledge, believe that Father Christmas is real, or that the tooth fairy exists and leaves a coin under the pillow. Mum’s and Dad’s religious beliefs may be incorrect. Ultimately, I think that if everyone who believes in different things, like ghosts and other invisible beings, would just realise that it is only a belief and not scientifically proven, maybe they would not become fanatical. Then maybe, the likelihood of one person killing another due to their faith will lessen. If children are made to wait until they become 18 years old before anyone is allowed to purposefully influence them, hopefully they would have developed some resistance to religious and mythical arguments.
The atheistic humanist
And a word from Sam Harris…
“In fact, ”atheism” is a term that should not even exist. No one ever needs to identify himself as a ”non-astrologer” or a ”non-alchemist.” We do not have words for people who doubt that Elvis is still alive or that aliens have traversed the galaxy only to molest ranchers and their cattle. Atheism is nothing more than the noises reasonable people make in the presence of unjustified religious beliefs.”
― Sam Harris,
Now it is not just religious that performs terror. Nationals and racists also often commit themselves to this. And within dictatorships, the whole people are exposed to constant terror. The reason for all terrorism is the idea that people do not have the same value. And that’s why I’m humanist. I think, like most thinking people, that we all are born without religion and are innocent to our ancestors crimes against humanity. Every time a new person is born, there is also a new hope that we will all be able to live together on this planet in peace. I am convinced that we are basically pretty nice. But some people teach their children to hate other people. And although all religions, nations and cultures consider themselves to be good, the story shows something different. But we are entering a new era now. The Internet brings us together and shrinks our planet. Nowhere can the repression happen without the outside world finding out. Not even in the closed North Korea. Information and knowledge leaks to all those who are interested. A global awareness grows and a common moral is created. And in most religions there is the golden rule.
The Golden Rule (can be considered as a law of reciprocity in some religions) is the principle of treating others as one would wish to be treated. It is a maxim of altruism seen in many human religions and human cultures. The maxim may appear as either a positive or negative injunction governing conduct:
- One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself (positive or directive form).
- One should not treat others in ways that one would not like to be treated (negative or prohibitive form).
- What you wish upon others, you wish upon yourself (empathic or responsive form).
Varje gång det sker nya terrordåd i världen så minns jag grunden till att jag började skriva ”Det Goda Trollet”. Det var när terrorn slog till i Paris, mot Charlie Hebdo, januari 2015. Jag valde då att skriva en insändare till gratistidningen Metro.
Ni kan läsa den här…
Jag är övertygad att vi i grunden är ganska trevliga. Men en del personer lär sina barn att hata andra människor. Och trots att alla religioner, nationer och kulturer anser sig vara goda, så visar historien något annat.
Men vi går in i en ny tid nu. Internet för oss samman och krymper vår planet. Ingenstans kan förtrycket pågå utan att omvärlden får reda på det. Inte ens i det slutna Nord Korea. Information och kunskap läcker ut till alla som är intresserade. Ett globalt medvetande växer och en gemensam moral skapas. Och i de flesta religioner finns den gyllene regeln.
”Den gyllene regeln” är en grundläggande etisk princip som återfinns inom många religioner samt filosofiska och etiska läror. Den äldsta nedtecknade varianten härstammar från Konfucius, ca 500 år f.kr. Principen kan uttryckas både positivt (”gör mot andra som du själv vill bli behandlad”) och negativt (”gör inte mot andra som du själv inte vill bli behandlad”).
“Consider it: every person you have ever met, every person will suffer the loss of his friends and family. All are going to lose everything they love in this world. Why would one want to be anything but kind to them in the meantime?”
― Sam Harris,