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Opinions of Saturday, 9 March 2019

Columnist: Ernest Tsifodze

Religion without conscience; where is your God?

It was around 10pm after taking a hot coffee. I was waiting patiently for the uber driver to come and pick me up. One of my friends right in front of the coffee shop gave out a gift to a poor family who has found their new home on the street.

I was so touched by his kind act.

After some few minutes, the driver arrived. We started our journey back to our residence.

On our way, I saw families sleeping on the street. Some were fortunate to have beds and others have to bargain with the cruel pavement.

Looking closely, I saw some children begging for money. It was very late and I was wondering why ain't they sleeping. One can't tell what the money will be used for. But in my sincere opinion, they needed it for food or probably they were hungry.

It was a very sad scene to watch. Without even considering how cold it was, they were still hoping at least a good samaritan will show them mercy.

But what shocked me most was that these people were very close to a temple. In the temple, people were praying and giving offerings to their deity.

I asked myself, “where is their God?”

Does God actually live in structures built with the hands of men or he lives in our hearts?

How could one bypass hungry children and go into a temple to offer a lot of sacrifices and offerings to idols?

I started questioning religion. It was once written on a temple plaque that, “stretching one hand to help someone is better than joining two hands to pray.”

When I shared this, I got backlashed by one of my friends. He said all are equally important.

But who are you praying to, if you can't help someone in need?

Often times, people claim they love God. But if you can't love someone you see, how can you love someone you don't see?

Religion without conscience is the root cause of all our problems. We need more love and compassion rather than more temples, churches and mosques.

The problem with the world today is that our hearts are polluted.

Instead, let us make our heart our temple, church and mosque. Our conscience should be our God. Our actions and good deeds should be our offerings.

Before you join your hands to pray to God, make sure you have helped the poor god you met.