13 A Most religions originated hundreds or thousands of years ago. Their founders are worshipped as gods and considered to be infallible in behaviour and unsurpassed in wisdom. Religious writings follow tradition and have been handed down from the time when a prophet lived.
Many translations followed. There are also writings that find their origin in the time after a prophet lived. The traditions and translations present interpretations of reality as it was then and, consequently, have been explained in various ways later.
A different interpretation of these writings often served as a legitimate explanation to abandon the mother church. Holy writings are filled with discourses that point towards the right way of behaviour in daily life. They elaborate on the right choices people of faith can make in life.
The prophets of locally established religions inspire a society based on the morals and ethics of that religion. In general, religions lend people a tool that explains the unknown, the supernatural and the undefinable as the work of an almighty and omniscient God.
The prophets showed people the way to deliver them from evil and to strive for good. As a reward for trying to live according to the scriptures, an afterlife is promised where the soul, or spirit, becomes part of an eternal life of peace and harmony.
People that made too many mistakes will go to hell or will go back to earth to work at reaching a better life again. The strong need of people to put the meaning of life into a religious context and to protect society from barbaric abuse and violence have given religions a prominent part in society.
Their influence has been a huge and a positive one in history, and rightly so. It is just that these religions are centuries old and in order to survive many twisted reasons have been given in the name of God to justify disputable behaviour and the hierarchy of the church.
To found a religion is one thing, but to sustain it through the centuries is another. Pure behaviour never is the easiest way to reach a goal, power corrupts – also within the church. Just like the world of politics, the church suffers from bad influences and power play. Abuse of power and violence, however contrary to what is preached, have occurred more than once in the course of history.