[新奇發現] 我脫離(基督)宗教~美國前總統吉米卡特

為了(婦女)平等(權力),我脫離(基督)宗教~美國前總統吉米卡特
Losing my religion for equality
2013/04/14 02:16

我曾經以一生時間來實踐宗教教義,且多年來在教會當過執事並是主日學教師,我的信仰是給我力量和安慰的來源,如同世界上其他無數的宗教信仰者。

經60多年後,我決心切斷與美南浸信會(美國最大基督教團體)的關系,這是很痛苦與困難的事,然而這是一個無法避免的事,當大會的領導人精心挑選聖經經文,宣稱夏娃被創造的地位低於亞當,並該為人類的原罪負責,因而命令婦女必須“屈從”自己的丈夫,並且禁止婦女在教會當執事、牧師或在軍中行教牧職務。

這種婦女地位不及男人的觀點,並不局限在一個宗教或信仰中,很可悲的許多信仰裏,婦女被禁止扮演完美或平等角色,更可悲的是影響所及,這些婦女被擋在基督教會,清真寺、猶太會堂,各寺廟等之外牆。
幾世紀以來在世界各地,這種歧視,無理地被歸結於來自一個更高的權威(按指:神),他們提出這種理由或藉口,來剝奪婦女的平等權。

最令人反感的是這類信仰,是令女人必須聽令於男人,成為奴隸及被強暴,賣淫,切除女性生殖器官(陰唇)和在國家法律上刪除強暴罪刑的藉口,這也讓無數女孩與婦女犧牲能掌握身體與生命力的力量,並持續否認她們可公平受教育、獲得健康、就業權以及在社會發揮影響力的力量。

這類宗教信仰沖擊我們生活各層面,這可幫我們了解為何男孩較女孩會有優先受教育權,為何女孩要被面告何時必要結婚與因何要結婚,及為什麼會有許多人在懷孕和分娩時會面臨巨大和不能接受的風險,因為他們的基本醫療需求根本就得不到。

在一些伊斯蘭教的婦女被限制外出,他們允許女人若因暴露手臂或腳踝而受到懲罰,女性被禁止駕駛汽車或與男性競爭工作,如果一個女人被強姦,受害的她往往變成共犯,且是被嚴重懲罰的有罪一方。

在西方辦公室,同樣的性別歧視思維,持續呈現在薪酬差距上,這也是為何只有只有少數婦女能上班的理由,這種偏見的根源深藏在我們的歷史,但其沖擊是每天都感受的到。這不僅是婦女(註:指已成年)與女孩(指:未成年)自已單獨承受,且已傷害所有的人。

証據顯示投資在婦女與女孩身上,會為社會帶來莫大利益,受過教育的婦女也會有健康的小孩,她們更願意將小孩送到學校學習,婦女賺的錢愈多,也會回饋家庭,任何社會歧視另一半(婦女)人口將會招致相反結果。我們必須挑戰這些自私自利的和過時的態度和做法~如同我們所看到伊朗婦女曾為民主和自由,走在前鋒而戰鬥。

然而,我很明白為什麼許多政治領導人可不願踏入這塊雷區,宗教和傳統,一向是強大和敏感的挑戰地帶。
但是,『The Elders長老』團體成員與我,各來自許多不同信仰與背景,不再需為選票擔心或必需避開爭議~且致力於挑戰我們所看到的不公正的地方(註~The Elders長老團體是由南非曼德拉前總統在2007年時所組成的全球領袖獨立團體,致力於和平與人權)

這些人物提供影嚮力與經驗支持建立和平,幫助並呼籲解決人類苦難的主因,並促進分享人類的共同利益。
我們團體決定要求宗教負起責任和提醒傳統領導人特別注意,以保証平等與人權,且我們已做聲明如下:『在宗教與傳統上,藉由最高力量的指示,針對婦女與女孩,正當化加以歧視,是不能令人接受的』;我們呼籲所有領導人去挑戰與改變這種傷害婦女的教導與實踐,無論多麼根深蒂固的觀念,都是証明對婦女的歧視,我們特別請求,宗教領導人要勇於承認,且強調世上主要宗教分享高貴與平等的正面訊息;這類由基督教聖經所精選,歸於許多地方與時間以証明男性較優於女性的經文,我們希望男性領導人,相較於真正的永衡的真理,會更決心守護自己的影響力。

同樣的摘錄,可以發現聖經也支持奴役和隱約的默許那些奉行暴虐的統治者。

但我也能在同樣經典中,熟悉的找到那些生動描述婦女被尊為超群絕倫的領導者,在早期基督教教會女性也曾擔任過執事,司鐸,主教,使徒,教師和先知,直到第四世紀佔主導地位的基督教所有的男性領袖扭曲和歪曲聖經,在宗教階級上延續他們的權勢地位。

真相是男性宗教領導人曾經且一直是選擇高舉或鎮壓婦女

他們有自私的目的。最終選擇後者(註:鎮壓婦女),他們在世界各地持續提供這無所不在的多重迫害和虐待女性的基礎與正當性。

這很明顯的違反世界人權宣言和耶穌、聖保羅、摩西和其他先知、穆罕默德(譯者按:卡特宣稱違反以上宗教人物教導,實在有點鬼扯,卡特總統可能不願得罪所有一神教教徒)和其他偉大宗教的教導~以上的都曾呼籲要適當且公平的對待神的孩子。

現在是我們必須鼓起勇氣要改變他們觀點的時候。

觀察者
吉米卡特是1977至1981年美國的總統

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Losing my religion for equality

I HAVE been a practicing Christian all my life and a deacon and Bible teacher for many years. My faith is a source of strength and comfort to me, as religious beliefs are to hundreds of millions of people around the world. So my decision to sever my ties with the Southern Baptist Convention, after six decades, was painful and difficult. It was, however, an unavoidable decision when the convention’s leaders, quoting a few carefully selected Bible verses and claiming that Eve was created second to Adam and was responsible for original sin, ordained that women must be “subservient” to their husbands and prohibited from serving as deacons, pastors or chaplains in the military service.

This view that women are somehow inferior to men is not restricted to one religion or belief. Women are prevented from playing a full and equal role in many faiths. Nor, tragically,does its influence stop at the walls of the church, mosque, synagogue or temple. This discrimination, unjustifiably attributed to a Higher Authority, has provided a reason or excuse for the deprivation of women’s equal rights across the world for centuries.

At its most repugnant, the belief that women must be subjugated to the wishes of men excuses slavery, violence, forced prostitution, genital mutilation and national laws that omit rape as a crime. But it also costs many millions of girls and women control over their own bodies and lives, and continues to deny them fair access to education, health, employment and influence within their own communities.

The impact of these religious beliefs touches every aspect of our lives. They help explain why in many countries boys are educated before girls; why girls are told when and whom they must marry; and why many face enormous and unacceptable risks in pregnancy and childbirth because their basic health needs are not met.

In some Islamic nations, women are restricted in their movements, punished for permitting the exposure of an arm or ankle, deprived of education, prohibited from driving a car or competing with men for a job. If a woman is raped, she is often most severely punished as the guilty party in the crime.

The same discriminatory thinking lies behind the continuing gender gap in pay and why there are still so few women in office in the West. The root of this prejudice lies deep in our histories, but its impact is felt every day. It is not women and girls alone who suffer. It damages all of us.

The evidence shows that investing in women and girls delivers major benefits for society. An educated woman has healthier children. She is more likely to send them to school. She earns more and invests what she earns in her family.

It is simply self-defeating for any community to discriminate against half its population. We need to challenge these self-serving and outdated attitudes and practices - as we are seeing in Iran where women are at the forefront of the battle for democracy and freedom.

I understand, however, why many political leaders can be reluctant about stepping into this minefield. Religion, and tradition, are powerful and sensitive areas to challenge.

But my fellow Elders and I, who come from many faiths and backgrounds, no longer need to worry about winning votes or avoiding controversy - and we are deeply committed to challenging injustice wherever we see it.

The Elders are an independent group of eminent global leaders, brought together by former South African president Nelson Mandela,

who offer their influence and experience to support peace building, help address major causes of human suffering and promote the shared interests of humanity.

We have decided to draw particular attention to the responsibility of religious and traditional leaders in ensuring equality and human rights and have recently published a statement that declares: “The justification of discrimination against women and girls on grounds of religion or tradition, as if it were prescribed by a Higher Authority, is unacceptable.”

We are calling on all leaders to challenge and change the harmful teachings and practices, no matter how ingrained, which justify discrimination against women. We ask, in particular, that leaders of all religions have the courage to acknowledge and emphasise the positive messages of dignity and equality that all the world’s major faiths share.

The carefully selected verses found in the Holy Scriptures to justify the superiority of men owe more to time and place - and the determination of male leaders to hold onto their influence - than eternal truths. Similar biblical excerpts could be found to support the approval of slavery and the timid acquiescence to oppressive rulers.

I am also familiar with vivid descriptions in the same Scriptures in which women are revered as pre-eminent leaders. During the years of the early Christian church women served as deacons, priests, bishops, apostles, teachers and prophets. It wasn’t until the fourth century that dominant Christian leaders, all men, twisted and distorted Holy Scriptures to perpetuate their ascendant positions within the religious hierarchy.

The truth is that male religious leaders have had - and still have - an option to interpret holy teachings either to exalt or subjugate women.


They have, for their own selfish ends, overwhelmingly chosen the latter. Their continuing choice provides the foundation or justification for much of the pervasive persecution and abuse of women throughout the world.

This is in clear violation not just of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but also the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, Moses and the prophets, Muhammad, and founders of other great religions - all of whom have called for proper and equitable treatment of all the children of God. It is time we had the courage to challenge these views.

OBSERVER
Jimmy Carter was president of the United States from 1977 to 1981.Women's Press (25 January, 2013). Losing my religion for equality…by Jimmy Carter . Retrieved on: 2013-03-31.
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