Dictionary

Why? (aka Killing In Any God’s Name Seems So Contradictory)

[Adverb; ~ Pronunciation: /wahy/]

“He who has a why to live can bear almost any how”
– Friedrich Nietzsche –

Why do people kill each other in the name of their god? When I was growing up I was always told God (I’m officially Catholic) was made of love and He loves everyone equally. Then why would He want anyone to blow themselves up, taking tens if not hundreds of other, innocent people with them? Beats me.

Right after the bombings at Zaventem in Belgium earlier this year the question arose: where will the terrorists hit next? The Netherlands seemed like a very plausible answer, so we sharpened our national security and introduced even more tedious and time-consuming safety measures at out national airport. Because you cannot be too prepared, can you?

Turns out you can’t, as the next target (presumable, the attack hasn’t been claimed yet) was Istanbul’s airport. I’ve seen footage of the attack and all I can think is: why? Why do people brainwash fellow people into blowing themselves up? Why would anyone believe their god really, desperately, wants them to break down a piece of the world he has supposedly created? It doesn’t make any sense, does it?

And why would you be proud of it, too? Murdering people who don’t share your view of the world is bad enough, but then you have to go and “claim” the attack, as if someone else might if you don’t. As if it’s something you get to be proud of. I don’t get it.

After my initial “why-do-people-do-this-to-each-other”-reaction, my second thought after learning about Istanbul (and every other terrorist attack) was: what if everyone would conform to their rules and wishes? What if everyone in the whole wide world would give them what they want? Would that help? Would they stop the killings? Would they be happy? Would they think their god was proud of them for succeeding? Would they find inner peace?

I don’t think it would matter one bit. Because people who murder in the name of their god do not have a single clue what their god is about. They don’t have a conscience, they don’t have empathy. If we were to give them everything they are “fighting the good cause” for (please note a heavy scent of sarcasm there), they’d find something else to fight about.

God, Allah, Yahweh, Jehovah, the Universe, they all have some things in common: love, respect, acceptance. These are the basics of every religion, and not of war. You cannot possibly go around fighting a war and claiming it’s what your deity wants. It simply doesn’t rhyme.

So why do people really do this to each other? I have no idea. Then again, I am not a terrorist, so maybe it’s for the better I don’t know the answer to this one.


My thoughts go out to all those involved in the Istanbul bombings and everyone involved in any attacks before. At times like these I feel so sorry for being human.
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14 thoughts on “Why? (aka Killing In Any God’s Name Seems So Contradictory)

  1. Well said Samantha. However, I have never found most religions to have respect or tolerance for other viewpoints, other ways of living or science. The religious have a tendency to impose their viewpoints and their morality on others. The history of earth is littered with bodies from religious conflict. However, I suspect it would be no difference if there were no religions. I’m a bit surprised humans have lasted as long as they have given their tendency towards conflict with one another, but perhaps that is as it should be, since we could not know peace if we did not know conflict. All this thinking makes me want some pizza :)

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  2. “I don’t think it would matter one bit. Because people who murder in the name of their god do not have a single clue what their god is about.” You have stated the truth clearly. True religion is not violent. True evil uses religion as an excuse for violence. These terrorist attacks have two intents–to harm people and to damage God’s reputation. Let us trust that, in the long view, good will prevail. J.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. If you really want to know why, you have to forget about your world view, and think in their terms. Then things may make sense, for if anyone can give up his life for something, it must be the one that moved him deeply, no matter how wrong from our point of view.

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    1. I don’t think I want to be able to understand them. Terrorists and paedophiles I don’t want to understand, ever. I know they are completely convinced they’re fighting a good cause (terrorists, not paedophiles), but still. I can’t stop wondering what they’d do if we’d all comply. Probably find something else to murder people over, I suppose.

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