My father’s words jumped at me when I read the phrase, “outward professions of faith.”
He was a mayor as well as a respected uncle of the town, and everyone came to him with their problems for solutions. It was a small town called Yelahanka, a suburb of Bengaluru, India. Obviously the majority was Hindus, but we had Muslims, Sikhs, Zoroastrians, Jains, Christians and the Dalits. Every time someone came and said, “Believe me, I am a good Christian, Hindu, Muslim or a ….” My father’s ears would perk up, and he would become extra vigilant. After the individual left the house, he would tell my mother, “I am still waiting for an individual who would say, I am an honest guy and I have this problem with the other person. He would add I rather believe the person who does not profess “outward professions of faith”; Why does he need to use God or a religious shield?
Indeed, my ears perk up when I encounter those who wear their religion on their sleeve. In fact, a handful of imams, rabbis, priests, and pastors have not failed me in my caution, no one has robbed me, but they have not been truthful to their congregations in my interfaith interactions with them.
When Ted Cruz said, “Let me first of all say, to God be the glory” and Marco Rubio uttered “my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” Is God favoring these two over others? Is God a villain of Jeb Bush, Carson, Kasich, Fiorina, Paul, Huckabee, Santorum and others?
God expression should be personal and not for public consumption. God loves each one of us equally and does not favor one over the other. If he does, we don’t need a prejudiced, discriminatory God like that. Would God place an individual in the White House to carpet-bomb civilians elsewhere or bomb the nations to the ground? Heavens no, God is not in the business of bombing people. He has given us the discretion: Some get it, and some don’t. We the people need to elect those who are determined to preserve harmony of the creation be it among individuals, between nations and the environment.
When God created animals, he gave them horns, fangs and paws to settle their disputes with an attitude of you survive or I. But when he created humans, he did not give us fangs, paws or horns to fight, but a tongue to talk and resolve our disputes. Anyone who wants to bypass talks need not be our president.
Cruz and Rubio (and others) are running for public office and not the pulpit. I have seen politicians of all religions deliberately use God in their language. It may be a part of their nature to make God expressions, but when they say it in public, making it obvious for the camera, I question their sincerity. Maybe God is all that’s left to rescue them rather than their record or their abilities. Should I trust a candidate because he or she invokes God or because he or she is capable?
Please don’t invoke God in the public for the purpose of show, unless you are God deficit and need God to side with you to hurt others.
Mike Ghouse – The author is a community consultant, social scientist, thinker, writer, news maker, and a speaker on Pluralism, Interfaith, Islam, politics, terrorism, human rights, India, Israel-Palestine and foreign policy.