If there was an entire industry that makes products that do not work as advertised, and tells people they will die or even get eternally tortured if they don't buy it, it would not be accepted by society.
But is there such an "entire industry", dear Illum (peace to you!)? I mean, I know one or two religions teach this ("christianity" and perhaps Islam, though I'm not sure that's exactly what they teach... and I don't know if we can even say that ALL "christian" religions teach this)...
So, isn't this more like SOME products in an industry not working as advertised? How, then, can you call for the elimination of the entire industry? We all know that all kinds of beauty products that purport to make us "appear" younger, don't. Or to remove blemishes... don't. Or get rid of stretch marks... don't. We know that all of the gadgets that purport to do this and do that... don't. Or things advertised to "last"... don't (not even close to the advertised life period). We know that things advertised to be "fresh"... are not. Or "easy"... are not. Yet, we don't call for the elimination of the entire industry they belong to.
I think dear tec (peace to you, dear one!) hit the nail on the head in that it is a personal issue, based on personal pain for many... rather than an objective view of the entire thing. One (or perhaps two) religions have terribly hurt some here. And so, based on that, they are perhaps judging them all. Or one (or two) have committed heinous acts against humans in the past and, based on this, some feel the entire industry should be judged.
Again, I am not for religion... but MY issues with religion recognize that there IS a God, the Most Holy One of Israel... and so the leaders of these are all imposters... if not enslavers and interlopers.
But it seems curious to me that those who truly believe there IS no God... would have an issue with ALL religion (not that all who believe so do, but I am speaking of those who DO have such an issue). Why? Why do they not see religion as just another "service" industry, perhaps like psychology (which provides services for people's very real psychological needs)? Why is not just an industry that provides services for, say, people's very real "religious" needs? Because, obviously, a whole lot of people HAVE such a need...
And, like any other industry, sure, if it's shown that they're blatantly advertising falsely, they can be subject to legal sanctions, etc. (although, I can't see how we can leave politics out of that - candidates "advertise" what they're going to do all the time... but rarely do it!). However, if they say they're selling entry to heaven... and folks can't prove whether they truly ARE or are NOT... and folks want to BUY... why not let them? Isn't it the same as an investment in a risky stock - you don't know how it's going to perform... or even if it will... and so might lose your entire investment??
If your dear elderly mother WANTS to pay someone to get someone out of "Purgatory"... and YOU can't convince her otherwise... and she's a grown, competent, responsible ADULT... I mean, it's not exactly like some salesman selling her swamp land in Florida: in that case, you can probably convince her that she's being scammed... because she doesn't really WANT land in Florida - she was just sold that it was "good idea." But people WANT religion, some of them. MOST of them. They WANT to belong to a church, temple, synagogue, congregation... religion. And for a REASON: they want the FELLOWSHIP, the sense of COMMUNITY, and the... ummmmm... "comfort" that comes with knowing that others believe "like" they do. These things are IMPORTANT to them... almost more than the "products" of any other industry OUT there (excluding, maybe, beauty and health... and in that order).
If there is NO God, then... why NOT give that to them? That's all I'm asking.
Again, my belief is that there IS a God... and a spirit realm. And so, while these should be able to "sell" like any other industry... it should be everything BUT God... and things relating to the spirit realm. Because in THOSE cases, the advertising IS false... and THAT is what makes it "wrong", IMHO. I do not include psychis/mediums, etc., here, as that is another subject entirely...
Anyway, thank you for commenting and if I stated anything above you (or anyone else) feel compelled to further comment on, please... do so!
Again, peace to you!
A slave of Christ,